The Project Gutenberg eBook of The International Magazine, Volume 2, No. 2, January, 1851

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Title: The International Magazine, Volume 2, No. 2, January, 1851

Author: Various

Release date: September 21, 2007 [eBook #22694]

Language: English

Credits: Produced by Joshua Hutchinson, Josephine Paolucci and the
Online Distributed Proofreading Team at
(This file was produced from images generously made
available by Cornell University Digital Collections).



Of Literature, Art, and Science.

Vol. II.     NEW YORK, JANUARY 1, 1851.     No. II.

Transcriber's note: Minor typos have been corrected and footnotes moved to the end of the article. Table of Contents has been created for the HTML version.




[Pg 145]

Edmund Burke is the most illustrious name in the political history of England. The exploits of Marlborough are forgotten, as Wellington's will be, while the wisdom and genius of Burke live in the memory, and form a portion of the virtue and intelligence of the British nation and the British race. The reflection of this superior power and permanence of moral grandeur over that which, at best, is but a vulgar renown, justifies the most sanguine expectations of humanity.

It may be said of Burke, as it was said by him of another, that "his mind was generous, open, sincere; his manners plain, simple, and noble; rejecting all sorts of duplicity and disguise, as useless to his designs, and odious to his nature. His understanding was comprehensive, steady, and vigorous, made for the practical business of the state.... His knowledge, in all things which concerned his duty was profound.... He was not more respectable on the public scene, than amiable in private life.... A husband and a father, the kindest, gentlest, most indulgent, he was every thing in his family, except what he gave up to his country.... An ornament and blessing to the age in which he lived, his memory will continue to be beneficial to mankind, by holding forth an example of pure and unaffected virtue, most worthy of imitation, to the latest posterity."

In the last of a series of articles by Mrs. S. C. Hall, entitled "Pilgrimages to English Shrines," and published in the London Art Journal, we have an account of a visit to the residences and to the [Pg 146]grave of Burke, which we reproduce in the following pages, with its interesting illustrations.


It has been said that we are inclined to over-value great men when their graves have been long green, or their monuments gray above them, but we believe it is only then we estimate them as they deserve. Prejudice and falsehood have no enduring vitality, and posterity is generally anxious to render justice to the mighty dead; we dwell upon their actions,—we quote their sentiments and opinions,—we class them amongst our household gods—and keep their memories green within the sanctuary of our homes; we read to our children and friends the written treasures bequeathed to us by the genius and independence of the great statesmen and orators—the men of literature and science—who "have been." We adorn our minds with the poetry of the past, and value it, as well we may, as far superior to that of the present: we sometimes, by the aid of imagination—one of the highest of God's gifts—bring great men before us: we hear the deep-toned voices and see the flashing eyes of some, who, it may be, taught kings their duty, or quelled the tumults of a factious people: we listen to the lay of the minstrel, or the orator's addresses to the assembly, and our pulses throb and our eyes moisten as the eloquence flows—first, as a gentle river, until gaining strength in its progress, it sweeps onwards like a torrent, overcoming all that sought to impede its progress. What a happy power this is!—what a glorious triumph over time!—recalling or creating at will!—peopling our small chamber with the demigods of history; viewing them enshrined in their perfections, untainted by the world; hearing their exalted sentiments; knowing them as we know a noble statue or a beautiful picture, without the taint of age or feebleness, or the mildew of decay.

If these sweet wakening dreams were more frequent, we should be happier; yes, and better than we are; we should be shamed out of much baseness—for nothing so purifies and exalts the soul as the actual or imaginary companionship of the pure and exalted; no man who purposed to create a noble picture would choose an imperfect model; no one who seeks virtue and cherishes honor and honorable things, will endure the degradation of ignoble persons or ignoble thoughts; no one ever achieved a great purpose who did not plant his standard on high ground.

A little before the commencement of the present century, England was rich in orators, and poets, and men of letters; the times were favorable to such—events called them forth—and there was still a lingering chivalric feeling in our island which the utilitarian principles or tastes of the present period would now treat with neglect, if not contempt.

The progress of the French Revolution agitated Europe; and men wondered if the young Corsican would ever dare to wield the sceptre wrenched from the grasp of a murdered king; people were continually on the watch for fresh events; great stakes were played for all over Europe, and those who desired change were full of hope. It was an age to create great men.

Let us then indulge in visions of those, who, in more recent times than we have yet touched upon,—save in one or two Pilgrimages,—illumed the later days of the last century; and, brightest and purest of the galaxy was the orator, Edmund Burke. Ireland, which gave him birth, may well be proud of the high-souled and high-gifted man, who united in himself all the great qualities which command attention in the senate and the world, and all the domestic virtues that sanctify home; grasping a knowledge of all things, and yet having that sweet sympathy with the small things of life, which at once bestows and secures happiness, and, in the end, popularity.

Edmund Burke was born on Arran Quay, Dublin, January the 1st, 1730; his father was an attorney: the name, we believe, was originally spelt Bourke.

The great grandfather of Edmund inherited some property in that county which has produced so many men of talent—the county of Cork; the family resided in the neighborhood of Castletown Roche, four or five miles from Doneraile, five or six miles from Mallow—now a railroad station—and nearly the same distance from the ruins of Kilcolman Castle, whose every mouldering stone is hallowed by the memory of the poet Spenser and his dear friend, "the Shepherd of the Ocean," Sir Walter Raleigh. There can be little doubt that Edmund—a portion of whose young life was passed in this beautiful locality—imbibed much thought, as well as much poetry, from the sacred memories which here accompanied him during his wanderings.

Nothing so thoroughly awakens the sympathy of the young as the imaginary presence of the good and great amid the scenes where their most glorious works were accomplished; the associations connected with Kilcolman are so mingled, that their contemplation produces a variety of emotions—admiration for the poem which was created within its walls—contemplation of the "glorious two" who there spent so much time together in harmony and sweet companionship, despite the storms which ravaged the country; then the awful catastrophe, the burning of the castle, and the loss of Spenser's child in the flames, still talked of in the neighborhood, were certain to make a deep impression on the imagination of a boy whose delicate health prevented his rushing into the amusements and society of children of his own age. There are plenty of crones in every village, and one at least in every gentleman's house to watch "the master's children" and pour legendary lore into their willing ears, accompanied by snatches of song and fairy tale. All these were certain to seize upon such an imagination as that of Burke, and lay the foundation of much of that high-souled mental poetry—one of his great characteristics; indeed, the circumstances of his youth were highly favorable to his peculiar temperament—his delicate constitution rendered him naturally susceptible of the beautiful; and the locality of the Blackwater, and the time-honored ruins of Kilcolman, with its history and traditions, nursed, as they were, by the holy quiet of a country life, had ample time to sink into his soul and germinate the fruitage which, in after years, attained such rich perfection.

An old schoolmaster, of the name of O'Halloran, was his first teacher; he "played at learning" at the school, long since in ruins; and the Dominie used to boast that "no matter how great Master Edmund (God bless him) was, he was the first who ever put a Latin grammar into his hands."

Edmund was one of a numerous family; his[Pg 147] mother, who had been a Miss Nagle,[1] having had fourteen or fifteen children, all of whom died young, except four,—one sister and three brothers: the sister, Mrs. French, was brought up in the faith of her mother, who was a rigid Roman Catholic, while the sons were trained in the father's belief. This, happily, created no unkindness between them, for not only were they an affectionate and a united family, but perfectly charitable in their opinions, each of the other's creed. As the future statesman grew older, it was considered wise to remove him to Dublin for better instruction, and he was placed at a school in Smithfield kept by a Mr. James Fitzgerald; but, fortunately for his strength of body and mind, the reputation of an academy in the lovely valley of Ballitore, founded in the midst of a colony of Quakers, by a member of that most benevolent and intelligent society—the well-known Abraham Shackleton—was spreading far and wide; and there the three young Burkes were sent in 1741, Edmund being then twelve years old.

He was considered not so much brilliant, as of steady application. Here, too, he was remarkable for quick comprehension, and great strength of memory; indications which drew forth at first the commendation, and as his powers unfolded, the warm regard of his master; under whose paternal care the improvement of his health kept pace with that of his intellect, and the grateful pupil never forgot his obligations: a truly noble mind is prone to exaggerate kindnesses received, and never detracts from their value; it is only the low and the narrow-minded who underrate the benefits they have been blessed with at any period of their lives.

In 1743 he entered Trinity College, Dublin, as a pensioner. He gained fair honors during his residence there, but, like Johnson, Swift, Goldsmith, and other eminent men, he did not distinguish himself so as to lead to any speculation as to his after greatness, although his elders said he was more anxious to acquire knowledge than to display it;—a valuable testimony. His domestic life was so pure, his friendships were so firm, his habits so completely those of a well-bred, well-born Irish Gentleman—mingling, as only Irish gentlemen can do, the suavity of the French with the dignity of English manners—that there is little to write about, or speculate upon, beyond his public words and deeds.

Like most young men of his time, his first oratory was exercised at a club, and his first efforts as a politician were made in 1749, previous to his quitting the Dublin University, in some letters against Mr. Henry Brooke, the author of "Gustavus Vasa." His determination was the bar, and his entry at the Middle Temple bears date April 23, 1747. His youthful impressions of England and its capital are recorded in graceful language in his letters to those friends whom he never lost, but by death; one passage is as applicable to the present as to the past. "I don't find that genius, the 'rath primrose which forsaken dies,' is patronized by any of the nobility, so that writers of the first talents are left to the capricious patronage of the public."

It was the taste of his time to desire, if not solicit patronage. In our opinion literature is degraded by patronage, while it is honored by the friendship of the good and great. Nothing is so loathsome in the history of letters as the debased dedications which men of mind some years ago laid at the feet of the so-styled "patron!" Literature in our days has only to assert its own dignity, to be true and faithful to the right, to avoid ribaldry, and preserve a noble and brave independence; and then its importance to the state, as the minister of good, must be acknowledged. It is only when forgetful of great purposes and great power, that literature is open to be forgotten or sneered at. Still the indifference an Englishman feels towards genius, even while enjoying its fruits, was likely enough to check and chill the enthusiasm of Burke, and drive him to much mystery as to his early literary engagements. One of his observations made during his first visit to Westminster Abbey, while hopes and ambitions quickened his throbbing pulse, and he might have been pardoned for wishing for a resting-place in the grand mausoleum of England, is remarkable, as showing how little he changed, and how completely the youth

"Was father to the man."

"Yet after all, do you know that I would rather sleep in the southern corner of a country church-yard than in the tomb of the Capulets? I should like, however, that my dust should mingle with kindred dust; the good old expression, 'family burying-grounds,' has something pleasant in it, at least to me."

This was his last, as it seems to have been his first desire; and it has found an echo in many a richly dowered heart.

"Lay me," said Allan Cunningham, "where the daisies can grow on my grave;" and it is well known that Moore—

"The poet of all circles,"—

and, as a poor Irishman once rendered it—

"The darlint of his own,"

has frequently expressed a desire to be buried at Sloperton beside his children.

The future orator found the law, as a profession, alien to his habits and feelings, for at the expiration of the usual term he was not even called to the bar. Some say he desired the professorship of logic at the University of Glasgow, and even stood the contest; but this has been disputed, and if he was rejected, it is matter of congratulation, that his talents and time were not confined to so narrow a sphere. At that period his mind was occupied by his theories on the Sublime and Beautiful, which were finally condensed and published in the shape of that essay which roused the world to admiration.

Mr. Prior says, and with every show of reason, "that Mr. Burke's ambition of being distinguished in literature, seems to have been one of his earliest, as it was one of his latest, passions." His first avowed work was "The Vindication of Natural Society;" but he wrote a great deal anonymously; and the essay on "The Sublime and Beautiful," triumphant as it was, must have caused him great anxiety; he began it before he was nineteen, and kept it by him for seven years before it was published—a valuable lesson to those who rush into print and mistake the desire for celebrity, for the power which bestows immortality.

The literature which is pursued chiefly in solitude,[Pg 148] is always the best sort: society, which cheers and animates men in most employments, is an impediment to an author if really warmed by true genius, and impelled by a sacred love of truth not to fritter away his thoughts or be tempted to insincerity.

The genius and noble mind of Burke constituted him a high priest of literature; the lighter, and it might be the more pleasurable enjoyments of existence, could not be tasted without interfering with his pursuits; but he knew his duty to his God, to the world, and to himself, and the responsibility alone was sufficiently weighty to bend a delicate frame, even when there was no necessity for laboring to live—but where an object is to be attained, principles put forth or combated, God or man to be served, the necessity for exertion always exists, and the great soul must go forth on its mission.

That sooner or later this strife, or love, or duty—pursued bravely—must tell upon all who even covet and enjoy their labor, the experience of the past has recorded; and Edmund Burke, even at that early period of life, was ordered to try the effects of a visit to Bath and Bristol, then the principal resort of the invalids of the United Kingdom.

At Bath he exchanged one malady for another, for he became attached to Miss Nugent, the daughter of his physician, and in a very little time formed what, in a worldly point of view, would be considered an imprudent marriage, but which secured the happiness of his future life; she was a Roman Catholic; but, however unfortunate dissenting creeds are in many instances, in this it never disturbed the harmony of their affection.

She was a woman exactly calculated to create happiness; possessing accomplishments, goodness of heart, sweetness of disposition and manners, veneration for talent, a hopeful spirit to allay her husband's anxieties, wisdom and love to meet his ruffled temper, and tenderness to subdue it—qualities which made him frequently declare "that every care vanished the moment he sheltered beneath his own roof."

Edmund Burke became a husband, and also continued a lover—and once presented to his ladylove, on the anniversary of their marriage, his idea of "a perfect wife."[2]

For a considerable time after his marriage Burke toiled as a literary man, living at Battersea or in town, now writing, it is believed, jointly with his brother Richard and his cousin William a work on the "European Settlements in America," in two volumes, which, according to tradition, brought him, or them, only fifty pounds! then planning and commencing an abridgment of the "History of England."

Struggling, it may be with difficulties brought on by his generous nature, and which his father's allowance of two hundred a year, and his own industry and perseverance could hardly overcome, the birth of a son was an additional stimulant to exertion, and, in conjunction with Dodsley, he established the Annual Register. This work he never acknowledged, but his best biographers have no doubt of his having brought forth and nurtured this useful publication. A hundred pounds a volume seems to have been the sum paid for this labor; and Burke's receipts for the money were at one time in the possession of Mr. Upcott.

Long before he obtained a seat in Parliament he won the esteem of Doctor Johnson, who bore noble testimony to his virtue and talent, and what he especially admired, and called, his "affluence of conversation."

For a time he went to Ireland as private secretary to Mr. Hamilton, distinguished from all others of his name as "single-speech Hamilton;" but disagreeing with this person, he nobly threw up a pension of three hundred a year, because of the unreasonable and derogatory claims made upon his gratitude by Hamilton, who had procured it for him.

While in Dublin he made acquaintance with the genius of the painter Barry, and though his own means were limited, he persuaded him to come to England, and received him in his house in Queen Anne-street, where he soon procured him employment; he already numbered Mr., afterwards Sir Joshua, Reynolds amongst his friends; and his correspondence with Barry might almost be considered a young painter's manual, so full is it of the better parts of taste, wisdom, and knowledge.

Mr. Burke was then on the threshold of Parliament, Lord Verney arranging for his début as member for Wendover, in Buckinghamshire, under the Rockingham administration; another star was added to the galaxy of that brilliant assembly, and if we had space it could not be devoted to a better purpose than to trace his glorious career in the senate; but that is before all who read the history of the period, and we prefer to follow his footsteps in the under current of private life.

He was too successful to escape the poisoned arrows of envy, or the misrepresentations of the disappointed. Certain persons exclaimed against his want of consistency, and gave as a reason that[Pg 149] at one period he commanded the spirit of liberty with which the French Revolution commenced, and after a time turned away in horror and disgust from a people who made murder a pastime, and converted Paris into a shambles for human flesh.

But nothing could permanently obscure the fame of the eloquent Irishman, he continued to act with such worthiness, that, despite his schism with Charles James Fox, "the people" did him the justice to believe, that in his public conduct, he had no one view but the public good.

He outlived calumny, uniting unto genius diligence, and unto diligence patience, and unto patience enthusiasm, and to these, deep-hearted enthusiasm, with a knowledge, not only, it would seem, of all things, but of such ready application, that in illustration or argument his resources were boundless; the wisdom of the Ancients was as familiar to him as the improved state of modern politics, science, and laws; the metaphysics and logic of the Schools were to him as household words, and his memory was gemmed with whatever was most valuable in poetry, history, and the arts.


After much toil, and the lapse of some time, he purchased a domain in Buckinghamshire, called "Gregories;" there, whenever his public duties gave him leisure, he enjoyed the repose so necessary to an overtaxed brain; and from Gregories some of his most interesting letters are dated.[3] Those addressed to the painter Barry, whom his liberality sent to and supported in Rome, are, as we have said, replete with art and wisdom; and the delicacy of both him and his excellent brother Richard, while entreating the rough-hewn genius to prosecute his studies and give them pleasure by his improvement, are additional proofs of the beautiful union of the brothers, and of their oneness of purpose and determination that Barry should never be cramped by want of means.[4]

After the purchase of Gregories[5] Mr. Burke had no settled town-house, merely occupying one for the season. In one of his letters to Barry, he tells him to direct to Charles-street, St. James's Square; he writes also from Fludyer-street, Westminster, and from Gerrard-street, Soho; but traces of his "whereabouts" are next to impossible to find. Barry was not the only artist who profited by Edmund Burke's liberality. Barret, the landscape-painter, had fallen into difficulties, and the fact coming to the orator's ears during his short tenure in power, he bestowed upon him a place in Chelsea Hospital, which he enjoyed during the remainder of his life.

Indeed, this great man's noble love of Art was part and parcel of himself; it was no affectation, and it led to genuine sympathy with, not only the artist's triumphs, but his difficulties. He found time, amid all his occupations, to write letters to the irritable Barry, and if the painter had followed their counsel, he would have secured his peace and prosperity; but it was far otherwise: his conduct, both in Rome and after his return to England, gave his friend just cause of offence; though, like all others who offended the magnanimous Burke, he was soon forgiven.

He never forgot his Irish friends, or the necessities of those who lived on the family estate; the expansive generosity of his nature did not prevent his attending to the minor comforts of his dependants, and his letters "home" frequently breathe a most loving and careful spirit, that the sorrows of the poor might be ameliorated, and their wants relieved.

We ought to have mentioned before that Mr. and Mrs. Burke's marriage was only blessed by two sons; one died in childhood, the eldest grew up a young man of the warmest affections, and blessed with a considerable share of talent; to his parents he was every thing they could desire; towards his mother he exhibited the tenderness and devotion of a daughter, and his demeanor to his father was that of an obedient son, and most faithful friend; at intervals he enjoyed with them the pleasure they experienced in receiving guests of the highest consideration; amongst them the eccentric Madame de Genlis, who put their politeness to the test by the exercise of her peculiarities,[Pg 150] and horrified the meek and amiable Sir Joshua Reynolds by the assumption of talents she did not possess.

The publication of his reflections on the French Revolution, which, perhaps, never would have seen the light but for the rupture with Mr. Sheridan, which caused his opinions to be misunderstood, brought down the applause of Europe on a head then wearying of public life.

But, perhaps, a tribute Burke valued more than any, remembering the adage—an adage which, unhappily, especially applies to Ireland—"no man is a prophet in his own country," was, that on a motion of the provost of Trinity College, Dublin, in 1790, the honorary degree of LL.D. was conferred upon him in full convocation, and an address afterwards presented in a gold box, to express the University's sense of his services. When he replied to this distinguished compliment, his town residence was in "Duke-street, St. James."

His term of life—over-tasked as it was—might have been extended to a much longer period, but that his deeply affectionate nature, as time passed on, experienced several of those shocks inseparable from even moderate length of days; many of his friends died; among others, his sister and his brother; but still the wife of his bosom and his son were with him—that son whose talents he rated as superior to his own, whom he had consulted for some years on almost every subject, whether of a public or a private nature, that occurred, and very frequently preferred his judgment to his own. This beloved son had attained the age of thirty-four, when he was seized with rapid consumption. When the malady was recognized and acknowledged, his father took him to Brompton, then, as now, considered the best air for those affected with this cruel malady. "Cromwell House," chosen as their temporary residence, is standing still, though there is little doubt the rage for extending London through this once sequestered and rural suburb, will soon raze it to the ground, as it has done others of equal interest.


We have always regarded "Cromwell House," as it is called, with veneration. In our earliest acquaintance with a neighborhood, in which we lived so long and still love so well, this giant dwelling, staring with its whited walls and balconied roof over the tangled gardens which seemed to cut it off from all communication with the world, was associated with our "Hero Worship" of Oliver Cromwell. We were told he had lived there (what neighborhood has not its "Cromwell House?")—that the ghastly old place had private staircases and subterranean passages—some underground communication with Kensington—that there were doors in the walls, and out of the walls; and, that if not careful you might be precipitated through trap-doors into some unfathomable abyss, and encounter the ghost of old Oliver himself. These tales operated upon our imagination in the usual way; and many and many a moonlight evening, while wandering in those green lanes—now obliterated by Onslow and Thurloe Squares—and listening to the nightingales, have we watched the huge shadows cast by that solitary and melancholy-looking house, and, as we have said, associated it with the stern and grand Protector of England. Upon closer investigation, how grieved we have often been to discover the truth, for it destroyed not only our castles in the air, but their inhabitants; we found that Oliver never resided there, but that his son, Richard, had, and was a rate payer to the parish of Kensington for some time. To this lonely sombre house Mr. and Mrs. Burke and their son removed, in the hope that the soft mild air of this salubrious neighborhood might restore his failing strength; the consciousness of his being in danger was something too terrible for them to think of. He had just received a new appointment—an appointment suited to his tastes and expectations; he must take possession of it in a little time. He was their child, their friend, their treasure, their all! Surely God would spare him to close their eyes. How could death and he meet together? They entreated him of God, by prayer, and supplication, and tears that flowed until their eyes were dry and their eyelids[Pg 151] parched—but all in vain. The man, in his prime of manhood, was stricken down; we transcribe, from an article in the Quarterly Review, on "Fontenelle's Signs of Death," the brief account of his last moments:

"Burke's son, upon whom his father has conferred something of his own celebrity, heard his parents sobbing in another room at the prospect of an event they knew to be inevitable. He rose from his bed, joined his illustrious father, and endeavored to engage him in a cheerful conversation. Burke continued silent, choked with grief. His son again made an effort to console him. 'I am under no terror,' he said; 'I feel myself better and in spirits, and yet my heart flutters, I know not why. Pray, talk to me, sir! talk of religion; talk of morality; talk, if you will, of indifferent subjects.' Here a noise attracted his notice, and he exclaimed, 'Does it rain?—No; it is the rustling of the wind through the trees.' The whistling of the wind and the waving of the trees brought Milton's majestic lines to his mind, and he repeated them with uncommon grace and effect:

'His praise, ye winds, that from four quarters blow,
Breathe soft or loud; and wave your tops, ye pines,
With every plant, in sign of worship wave!'

A second time he took up the sublime and melodious strain, and, accompanying the action to the word, waved his own hand in token of worship, and sank into the arms of his father—a corpse. Not a sensation told him that in an instant he would stand in the presence of the Creator to whom his body was bent in homage, and whose praises still resounded from his lips."

The account which all the biographies of Burke give of the effect this bereavement produced upon his parents is most fearful even to read; what must it have been to witness? His mother seems to have regained her self-possession sooner than his father. In one of his letters to the late Baron Smith, he writes—"So heavy a calamity has fallen upon me as to disable me from business, and disqualifies me for repose. The existence I have—I do not know that I can call life. * * Good nights to you—I never have any." And again—"The life which has been so embittered cannot long endure. The grave will soon close over me, and my dejections." To Lord Auckland he writes—"For myself, or for my family (alas! I have none), I have nothing to hope or to fear in this world." And again in another letter—"The storm has gone over me, and I lie like one of those old oaks which the late hurricane has scattered about me. I am stripped of all my honors, I lie prostrate on the earth; I am alone, I have none to meet my enemies in the gate. I greatly deceive myself, if in this hard season of life, I would give a peck of refuse wheat for all that is called fame and honor in the world."

There is some thing in the "wail" and character of these laments that recalls the mournful Psalms of David; like the Psalmist he endeavored to be comforted, but it was by an effort. His political career was shrouded for ever—the motive to his great exertions was destroyed—but his mind, wrecked as it had been, could not remain inactive. In 1795 his private reply to Mr. Smith's letter, requesting his opinion of the expediency of and necessity for Catholic Emancipation, got into public circulation; and in that singular document, though he did not enter into the details of the question with as much minuteness as he would previously have done, he pleaded for the removal of the whole of the disabilities of the Roman Catholic body. From time to time he put forth a small work on some popular question. He originated several plans for benefiting the poor in his own neighborhood. He had a windmill in his park for the purpose of supplying the poor with cheap bread, which bread was served at his own table; and, as if clinging to the memory of the youth of his son, he formed a plan for the establishment of an emigrant school at Penn, where the children of those who had perished by the guillotine or the sword amid the French convulsions, could be received, supported, and educated. He made a generous appeal to government for the benefit of these children, which was as generously responded to. The house appropriated to this humane purpose had been inhabited by Burke's old friend, General Haviland; and after his death several emigré French priests sheltered within its walls. Until his last fatal illness Mr. Burke watched over the establishment with the solicitude of a friend and the tenderness of a father. The Lords of the Treasury allowed fifty pounds per month for its sustenance: the Marquis of Buckingham made them a present of a brass cannon and a stand of colors. When the Bourbons were restored in 1814 they relieved the government from this charge, and the institution was dissolved in 1820; in 1822 "Tyler's Green House," as it was called, was sold in lots, pulled down, and carried away; thus, Burke's own dwelling being destroyed by fire, and this building, sanctified by his sympathy and goodness, razed to the ground, little remains to mark the locality of places where all the distinguished men of the age congregated around "the Burkes," and where Edmund, almost to the last, extended hospitalities, coveted and appreciated by all who had any pretensions to be considered as distinguished either by talent or fortune.

It has frequently struck us as strange, the morbid avidity with which the world seizes upon the slightest evidence of abstraction in great men, to declare that their minds are fading, or impoverished: the public gapes for every trifle calculated to prove that the palsied fingers can no longer grasp the intellectual sceptre, and that the well-worn and hard-earned bays are as a crown of thorns to the pulseless brow. It was, in those days whispered in London that the great orator had become imbecile immediately after the publication of his "Letter to a Noble Lord;" and that he wandered about his park kissing his cows and horses.

A noble friend went immediately to Beaconsfield to ascertain the truth, and was delighted to find Mr. Burke anxious to read him passages from "A Regicide Peace," which he was then writing; after a little delicate manœuvring on his part, to ascertain the truth, Mr. Burke told him a touching incident which proved the origin of this calumny on his intellectual powers.

An old horse, a great favorite of his son's, and his constant companion, when both were full of life and health, had been turned out at the death of his master, to take his run of the park for the remainder of his life, at ease, with strict injunctions to the servants that he should neither be ridden, nor molested by any one. While musing one day, loitering along, Mr. Burke perceived this worn-out old servant come close up to him, and at length, after some moments spent in viewing his[Pg 152] person, followed by seeming recollection and confidence, he deliberately rested his head upon his bosom. The singularity of the action itself, the remembrance of his dead son, its late master, who occupied so much of his thoughts at all times, and the apparent attachment, tenderness and intelligence of the creature towards him—as if it could sympathize with his inward sorrow—rushing at once into his mind, totally overpowered his firmness, and throwing his arms over its neck, he wept long and loudly.

But though his lucid and beautiful mind, however agonized, remained unclouded to the last, and his affections glowed towards his old friends as warmly as ever, his bodily health was failing fast; one of the last letters he ever dictated was to Mary Leadbeater, the daughter of his old friend and master, Shackleton; this lady was subsequently well known in Ireland as the author of "Cottage Dialogues." The first literary attempt, we believe, made towards the improvement of the lower order of Irish, was by her faithful and earnest pen; to this letter, congratulating her on the birth of a son, is a PS. where the invalid says:—"I have been at Bath these four months to no purpose, and am therefore to be removed to my own house at Beaconsfield to-morrow, to be nearer to a habitation more permanent, humbly and fearfully hoping that my better part may find a better mansion!"

It would seem as if he anticipated the hour of his passing away. He sent sweet messages of loving-kindness to all his friends, entreating and exchanging pardons; recapitulated his motives of action on various political emergencies; gave directions as to his funeral, and then listened with attention to some serious papers of Addison on religious subjects and on the immortality of the soul. His attendants after this were in the act of removing him to his bed, when indistinctly invoking a blessing on all around him, he sunk down and expired on the 9th of July, 1797, in the sixty-eighth year of his age.

"His end," said his friend Doctor Lawrence, "was suited to the simple greatness of mind which he displayed through life; every way unaffected, without levity, without ostentation, full of natural grace and dignity, he appeared neither to wish nor to dread, but patiently and placidly to await the appointed hour of his dissolution."


It was almost impossible to people, in fancy, the tattered and neglected churchyard of Beaconsfield as it now is—with those who swelled the funeral pomp of the greatest ornament of the British senate; to imagine the titled pall-bearers, where the swine were tumbling over graves, and rooting at headstones. Seldom, perhaps never, in England, had we seen a churchyard so little cared for as that, where the tomb of Waller[6] renders the surrounding disorder "in a sacred place" more conspicuous by its lofty pretension, and where the church is regarded as the mausoleum of Edmund Burke.[7] Surely the "decency of churchyards" ought to be enforced, if those to whom they should be sacred trusts, neglect or forget their duty. That the churchyard of Beaconsfield, which has long been considered "a shrine," should be suffered to remain in the state in which we saw it, is a disgrace not only to the town, but to England; it was differently cared for during Burke's lifetime, and though, like that of the revered Queen Dowager,[Pg 153] his Will expressed a disinclination to posthumous honors, and unnecessary expense, never were mourners more sincere—never did there arise to the blue vault of heaven the incense of greater, and more deep-felt sorrow, than from the multitude who assembled in and around the church, while the mortal remains of Edmund Burke were placed in the same vault with his son and brother.

The tablet to his memory, placed on the wall of the south aisle of the church, records his last resting-place with the relatives just named; as well as the fact of the same grave containing the body of his "entirely beloved and incomparable wife," who died in 1812, at the age of 76.

Deeply do we deplore that the dwelling where he enjoyed so much that renders life happy, and suffered what sanctifies and prepares us for a better world, exists no longer; but his name is incorporated with our history, and adds another to the list of the great men who have been called into life and received their first and best impressions in Ireland; and if Ireland had given nothing to her more prosperous sister than the extraordinary men of the past and present century, she merits her gratitude for the gifts which bestow so much honor and glory on the United Kingdoms.

Mrs. Burke, previous to her death, sold the mansion to her neighbor, Mr. John Du Pré, of Wilton Park. Mrs. Haviland, Mr. Burke's niece, lived with her to the last, though she did not receive the portion of her fortune to which she was considered entitled. Her son, Thomas Haviland Burke, grand-nephew of Edmund, became the lineal representative of the family; but the library, and all the tokens of respect and admiration which he received from the good, and from the whole world, went with the property to Mrs. Burke's nephew, Mr. Nugent. Some of the sculpture which ornamented the house now graces the British Museum.

The mansion was burnt on the 23d of April, 1813. The ground where it stood is unequal; and some of the park wall remains, and fine old trees still flourish, beneath whose shade we picture the meeting between the mourning father and the favorite horse of his lost son.

There is a full-length portrait of Edmund Burke in the Examination Hall of the Dublin University. All such portraits should be copied, and preserved in our own Houses of Parliament, a meet honor to the dead, and a stimulant to the living to "go and do likewise." It hardly realizes, however, the ideal of Burke; perhaps no portrait could. What Miss Edgeworth called the "ground-plan of the face" is there; but we must imagine the varying expression, the light of the bright quick eyes, the eloquence of the unclosed lips, the storm which could gather thunder-clouds on the well-formed brow; but we have far exceeded our limits without exhausting our subject, and, with Dr. Parr, still would speak of Burke:

"Of Burke, by whose sweetness Athens herself would have been soothed, with whose amplitude and exuberance she would have been enraptured and on whose lips that prolific mother of genius and science would have adored, confessed—the Goddess of Persuasion."

Alas! we have lingered long at his shrine, and yet our praise is not half spoken.

—[The notes and drawings for this paper were contributed by F. W. Fairhold, of the Society of Antiquaries.]


[1] Sylvanus Spenser, the eldest son of the Poet Spenser, married Ellen Nagle, eldest daughter of David Nagle, Esq., ancestor of the lady, who was mother to Edmund Burke.

[2] This as a picture is outlined with so delicate a pencil, and colored with such mingled purity and richness of tone, that we transcribe a few passages, as much in honor of the man who could write, as the woman who could inspire such praise:—

"The character of ——

"She is handsome, but it is beauty not arising from features, from complexion, or from shape. She has all three in a high degree, but it is not by these she touches a heart; it is all that sweetness of temper, benevolence, innocence, and sensibility, which a face can express, that forms her beauty. She has a face that just raises your attention at first sight; it grows on you every moment, and you wonder it did no more than raise your attention at first.

"Her eyes have a mild light, but they awe when she pleases; they command like a good man out of office, not by authority, but by virtue.

"Her stature is not tall, she is not made to be the admiration of every body, but the happiness of one.

"She has all the firmness that does not exclude delicacy—she has all the softness that does not imply weakness. * *

"Her voice is a soft, low, music, not formed to rule in public assemblies, but to charm those who can distinguish a company from a crowd: it has this advantage—you must come close to her to hear it.

"To describe her body, describes her mind; one is the transcript of the other; her understanding is not shown in the variety of matters it exerts itself on, but in the goodness of the choice she makes.

"She does not display it so much in saying or doing striking things, as in avoiding such as she ought not to say or do."

"No persons of so few years can know the world better; no person was ever less corrupted by the knowledge.

"Her politeness flows rather from a natural disposition to oblige, than from any rules on that subject, and therefore never fails to strike those who understand good breeding, and those who do not."

"She has a steady and firm mind, which takes no more from the solidity of the female character, than the solidity of marble does from its polish and lustre. She has such virtues as make us value the truly great of our own sex. She has all the winning graces that make us love even the faults we see in the weak and beautiful in hers."

[3] Our cut exhibits all that now remains of Gregories—a few walls and a portion of the old stables. Mrs. Burke, before her death, sold the mansion to her neighbor, Mr. John Du Pré, of Wilton Park. It was destroyed by fire soon afterwards.

[4] During Barry's five years' residence abroad he earned nothing for himself, and received no supplies save from Edmund and Richard Burke.

[5] Mr. Prior says in his admirable Life of Burke—"How the money to effect this purchase was procured has given rise to many surmises and reports; a considerable portion was his own, the bequest of his father and elder brother. The Marquis of Rockingham offered the loan of the amount required to complete the purchase; the Marquis was under obligations to him publicly, and privately for some attention paid to the business of his large estates in Ireland. Less disinterested men would have settled the matter otherwise—the one by quartering his friend, the other, by being quartered, on the public purse. To the honor of both, a different course was pursued."

[6] Waller was a resident in this vicinity, in which his landed property chiefly lay. He lived in the family mansion named Well's Court, a property still in the possession of his descendants. His tomb is a table monument of white marble, upon which rises a pyramid, resting on skulls with bat's wings; it is a peculiar but picturesque addition to the churchyard, and, from its situation close to the walk, attracts much attention.

[7] Our engraving exhibits his simple tablet, as seen from the central aisle of the church, immediately in front of the pew in which Burke and his family always sat.


For the last twenty years the name of Mr. Goodrich has been very constantly associated with American literature. He commenced as a publisher, in Boston, and was among the first to encourage by liberal copyrights, and to make attractive by elegant editions, the works of American authors. One of his earliest undertakings was a collection of the novels of Charles Brockden Brown, with a memoir of that author, by his widow, with whom he shared the profits. In 1828 he began "The Token," an annual literary souvenir, which he edited and published fourteen years. In this appeared the first fruits of the genius of Cheney, who has long been acknowledged the master of American engravers; and the first poems and prose writings of Longfellow, Willis, Mellen, Mrs. Osgood, Mrs. Child, Mrs. Sigourney, and other eminent authors. In "The Token" also were printed his own earlier lyrical pieces. The work was of the first rank in its class, and in England as well as in this country it was uniformly praised.

In 1831 an anonymous romance was published by Marsh & Capen, of Boston. It was attributed by some to Willis, and by others to Mrs. Child, then Miss Francis. It illustrated a fine and peculiar genius, but was soon forgotten. Mr. Goodrich appreciated its merits, and applied to the publishers for the name of the author, that he might engage him as a contributor to "The Token." They declined to disclose his secret, but offered to forward a letter to him. Mr. Goodrich wrote one, and received an answer signed by Nathaniel Hawthorne, many of whose best productions, as "Sights from a Steeple," "Sketches under an Umbrella," "The Prophetic Pictures," "Canterbury Pilgrims," &c., appeared in this annual. In 1839, Mr. Goodrich suggested to Mr. Hawthorne the publication of a collection of his tales, surrendering his copyrights to several of them for this purpose; but so little were the extraordinary qualities of this admirable author then understood, that the publishers would not venture upon such an experiment without an assurance against loss, which Mr. Goodrich, as his friend, therefore gave. The public judgment will be entitled to little respect, if the copyright of the works of Hawthorne be not hereafter a most ample fortune.

Mr. Goodrich soon abandoned the business of publishing, and, though still editing "The Token," devoted his attention chiefly to the writing of that series of educational works, known as Peter Parley's, which has spread his fame over the world. The whole number of these volumes is about sixty. Among them are treatises upon a great variety of subjects, and they are remarkable for simplicity of style and felicity of illustration. Mr. Goodrich has accomplished a complete and important revolution in juvenile reading, substituting truth and nature for grotesque fiction in the materials[Pg 154] and processes of instruction, and his method has been largely imitated, at home and abroad. In England many authors and publishers have disgraced the literary profession by works under the name of "Parley," with which he has had nothing to do, and which have none of his wise and genial spirit.

Besides his writings under this pseudonym, Mr. Goodrich has produced several works of a more ambitious character, which have been eminently popular. Among them is a series entitled "The Cabinet Library," embracing histories, biographies, and essays in science; "Universal Geography," in an octavo volume of one thousand pages; and a "History of all Nations," in two large octavos, in which he has displayed such research, analysis, and generalization, as should insure for him an honorable rank among historians. We cannot better illustrate his popularity than by stating the fact, that more than four hundred thousand volumes of his various productions are now annually sold in this country and Europe. No living writer is, therefore, as much read, and in the United States hardly a citizen now makes his first appearance at the polls, or a bride at the altar, to whose education he has not in a large degree contributed. For twenty years he has preserved the confidence of parents and teachers of every variety of condition and opinion, by the indefectible morality and strong practical sense, which are universally understood and approved.

Like many other eminent persons, Mr. Goodrich lets sought occasional relaxation from the main pursuits of his life in poetry, and the volume before us contains some forty illustrations of his abilities, as a worshipper of the muse whose temples are most thronged, but who is most coy and most chary of her inspiration. They have for the most part been previously printed in "The Token," or in literary journals, but a few are now published the first time. In typographical and pictorial elegance the book is unique. It is an exhibition of the success of the first attempt to rival the London and Paris publishers in woodcut embellishment and general beauty of execution.

That Mr. Goodrich possesses the poetical faculty in an eminent degree, no one has doubted who has read his fine lines "To Lake Superior:"

Father of Lakes! thy waters bend,
Beyond the eagle's utmost view,
When, throned in heaven, he sees thee send
Back to the sky its world of blue.
Boundless and deep the forests weave
Their twilight shade thy borders o'er,
And threatening cliffs, like giants, heave
Their rugged forms along thy shore.
Nor can the light canoes, that glide
Across thy breast like things of air,
Chase from thy lone and level tide,
The spell of stillness deepening there.
Yet round this waste of wood and wave,
Unheard, unseen, a spirit lives,
That, breathing o'er each rock and cave,
To all, a wild, strange aspect gives.
The thunder-riven oak, that flings
Its grisly arms athwart the sky,
A sudden, startling image brings
To the lone traveller's kindled eye.
The gnarled and braided boughs that show
Their dim forms in the forest shade,
Like wrestling serpents seem, and throw
Fantastic horrors through the glade.
The very echoes round this shore,
Have caught a strange and gibbering tone,
For they have told the war-whoop o'er,
Till the wild chorus is their own.
Wave of the wilderness, adieu—
Adieu, ye rocks, ye wilds, ye woods!
Roll on, thou Element of blue,
And fill these awful solitudes!
Thou hast no tale to tell of man.
God is thy theme. Ye sounding caves,
Whisper of Him, whose mighty plan,
Deems as a bubble all your waves!

The "Birth Night of the Humming Birds" has been declared by the London Athenæum equal to Dr. Drake's "Culprit Fay," and it may be regarded as in its way the best specimen of Mr. Goodrich's talents. It is too long to be quoted in these paragraphs. In descriptions of nature he is uniformly successful, presenting his picture with force and distractness.[Pg 155]

There are many examples of this in one of his longest poems, "The Mississippi," in which the traditions that cluster around the Father of Waters, and the advances of civility along his borders, are graphically presented. The river is described as rising.

"Far in the west, where snow-capt mountain's rise,
Like marble shafts beneath heaven's stooping dome,
And sunset's charming curtain drapes the skies
As if Enchantment there would build her home.

The bard laments that

"though these scenes are fair
As fabled Arcady, the sylph and fay,
And all their gentle kindred, shun the air,
Where car and steamer make their stormy way;"

Yet trusts that in a future time,

"Perchance some Cooper's magic art may wake
The sleeping legends of this mighty vale,
And twine fond memories round the lawn and lake,
Where Warrior fought or Lover told his tale.

In the volume are several allegorical pieces of much merit, of which the most noticeable are the "Two Windmills," "The Bubble Chase," and "The Rainbow Bridge." Several smaller poems are distinguished for a quaint simplicity, reminding us of the old masters of English verse; and others, for refined sentiment, as the "Old Oak," of which the key-note is in the lines,

Here is the grassy knoll I used to seek
At summer noon, beneath the spreading shade,
And watch the flowers that stooped, with glowing cheek,
To meet the romping ripples as they played.

The longest of Mr. Goodrich's poems is "The Outcast." It was first published many years ago, and it appears now with the improvements suggested by reflection and criticism. Its fault is, a certain intensity, but it has noble passages, betraying a careful study and profound appreciation of the subtler operations of the mind, particularly, when, in its most excited action, it is influenced by the observation of nature.

The volume will take its place in the cabinets of our choice literature, and will be prized the more for the fact that by selecting American themes for his most elaborate compositions, Mr. Goodrich has made literature subservient to the purposes of patriotism.


[8] Poems: by S. G. Goodrich. New York, G. P. Putnam. [The designs—about forty—are by Mr. Billings, the engravings by Bobbett & Edmonds, Lossing & Barrett, Hartwell, and others, and the printing by Mr. John F. Trow.]

[Pg 156]


The author of "St. Leger" was by that admirable work placed in the leading rank of the new generation of American writers. The appearance in the Knickerbocker for the present month, of the commencement of a sequel to "St. Leger," makes it a fit occasion for some notice of his life and genius.

Mr. Kimball is by inheritance of the first class of New-England men, numbering in his family a signer of the Declaration of Independence, a President of the Continental Congress, and several other persons honorably distinguished in affairs. He is a native of Lebanon, in New Hampshire, where his father is still living—the centre of a circle bound to him by their respect for every public and private virtue. Though he had completed his preparatory studies before he was eleven years of age, he did not enter college until he was nearly thirteen. Four years after, in 1834, he graduated at Dartmouth, and upon devoting one year to the study of the law, he went abroad; travelled in England, Scotland, and Germany; and resided some time in Paris, where he attended the lectures of Majendie, Broussais, and Louis, in medicine, and those of the elder Dupin, and Coulanges, in law. Returning, he entered upon the practice of the law, at Waterford, in this state, but soon removed to New-York, where a year's devotion to his profession made him familiar with its routine. In 1842 he went a second time to Europe, renewing the associations of his travel and student-life in Great Britain and on the continent. Since, for seven years, he has been an industrious and successful lawyer in New-York.

Although but few works are known to be from the pen of Mr. Kimball, he has been a voluminous author. The vigorous and polished style of his avowed compositions, is never attained but by long practice. He has been, we believe, a contributor to every volume of the Knickerbocker published since 1842. He printed in that excellent magazine his "Reminiscences of an Old Man," "The Young Englishman," and the successive chapters of "St. Leger, or the Threads of Life." This last work was published by Putnam, and by Bentley in London, about one year ago, and it passed rapidly through two English and three American editions. It was not raised into an ephemeral popularity, as so many works of fiction easily are, for their lightness, by careless applauses; it arrested the attention of the wisest critics; commanded their study, and received their verdict of approval as a book of learning and reflection in the anatomy of human life.

Mr. Kimball had been eminent in his class at college for a love of Greek literature, and he studied the Roman also with reverent attention. It was his distinction that he had thoroughly acquainted himself with the philosophy of the ancients. At a later day he was attracted by the speculation of the Germans, and a mastery of their language enabled him to enter fully into the spirit of Spinosa, Kant,[Pg 157] and Fichte, as he did into that of the finer intelligences, Göethe and Richter, and pervading he found the passion to know Whence are we? What are we? Whither do we go? In "St. Leger," a mind predisposed to superstition by some vague prophecies respecting the destiny of his family—a mind inquisitive, quick, and earnest, but subject to occasional melancholy, as the inherited spell obtains a mastery of the reason—is exposed to the influences of a various study, and startling experiences, all conceived with a profound knowledge of human nature, and displayed with consummate art; having a metaphysical if not a strictly dramatic unity; and conducting by the subtlest processes, to the determination of these questions, and the flowering of a high and genial character; as Professor Tayler Lewis expresses it, "at rest, deriving substantial enjoyment from the present, because satisfied with respect to the ultimate, and perfect, and absolute."[9]

Aside from its qualities as a delineation of a deep inner experience, "St. Leger" has very great merits as a specimen of popular romantic fiction. The varied characters are admirably drawn, and are individual, distinct, and effectively contrasted. The incidents are all shaped and combined with remarkable skill; and, as the Athenaeum observes, "Here, there, everywhere, the author gives evidence of passionate and romantic power." In some of the episodes, as in that of Wolfgang Hegewisch, for example, in which are illustrated the tendency of a desperate philosophy and hopeless skepticism, we have that sort of mastery of the feelings, that chaining of the intensest interest, which distinguishes the most wonderful compositions of Poe, or the German Hoffman, or Zschokke in his "Walpurgis Night;" and every incident in the book tends with directest certainty to the fulfilment of its main design.

The only other work of which Mr. Kimball is the acknowledged author, is "Cuba and the Cubans;" a volume illustrative of the history, and social, political, and economical condition of the island of Cuba, written during the excitement occasioned by its invasion from the United States, in 1849, and exhibiting a degree of research, and a judicial fairness of statement and argument, which characterizes no other production upon this subject. As it was generally admitted to be the most reliable, complete, and altogether important work, upon points commanding the attention of several nations, its circulation was very large; but it was produced for a temporary purpose, and it will be recalled to popularity only by a renewal of the inevitable controversies which await the political relations of the Antilles.

"A Story of Calais," in the following pages, is an example of Mr. Kimball's success as a tale writer. Though less remarkable than passages in "St. Leger," it will vindicate his right to a place among the chief creators of such literature among us.


[9] The Inner-Life, a Review of St. Leger, by Professor Tayler Lewis, LL. D., &c.


Among the distinguished strangers who visited the United States during the last season, no one has left a more favorable impression upon American society than the thoroughly accomplished scholar and highbred gentleman, the Bishop of Jamaica. We propose a brief sketch of his history:

Aubrey George Spencer, D.D. and D.C.L., was born in London on the 12th of February, 1795, and is the eldest son of the late Hon. William Spencer, the poet, whose father, Lord Charles Spencer, was a son of Charles the second Duke of Marlborough, and grandson of John Churchill, the illustrious hero of Ramillies and Blenheim. His Christian names were given by the Dukes of St. Albans and Marlborough, who were his great uncles and godfathers. His mother was Susan Jennison, a countess of the Holy Roman Empire, and a lady of singular beauty and accomplishments, to whom Mr. William Spencer was married at the court of Hesse Darmstadt, in 1791. Aubrey Spencer and his younger brother George (subsequently Bishop of Madras,) received the rudiments of learning at the Abbey School of St. Albans, whence the former was soon removed to the seminary of the celebrated Grecian, D. Burme, of Greenwich, and the latter to the Charter house. For some time previous to his matriculation at Magdalen Hall, Oxford, Mr. Aubrey Spencer was the private pupil of Mr. Mitchell, the very learned translator of Aristophanes. At the house of his father in Curzon street, at Melbourne House in Chiswick, Blenheim, and Woolbeednig, Hallowell Hill, (the seat of the Countess Dowager Spencer,) he was in frequent and familiar intercourse with many of the most distinguished contemporary statesmen, philosophers, and other men of letters; and in this society his own literary and conversational talents obtained an early celebrity, and commended him to the regard and friendship of Mr. Rogers, Mr. Campbell, Lord Byron, Mr. Hallam, Lord Dudley, Mr. Coutts, Mr. Wordsworth, Mr. Francis, Mr. Homer, Thomas Moore, Mr. Southey, Lady Caroline Lamb, Mr. Crabb, and many other authors, with some of whom he still maintains a correspondence, while some have fallen asleep.

With the society of the county of Oxford, and with that of the University, he was equally popular. In the early part of the year 1818, he took leave of his College, on being ordained deacon, and entered on a charge of the parish of Great Oakering, in the diocese of London. From this, which is a very unhealthy part of Essex, he removed at the end of the year to Bannam, Norfolk, where he became the neighbor and frequent guest of the Earl of Albemarle and the Bishop of Norwich. In March, 1819, he was admitted a priest, and soon after gave up the brilliant society in which he had hitherto lived, and devoted himself to the Church in the Colonies, where, for a quarter of a century, he has filled a distinguished part as archdeacon and bishop.[Pg 158]

His first visit to the Bermudas was undertaken for the recovery of his health, to which a colder climate has always been hostile; and when, in the year 1825, these islands were attached to the diocese of Nova Scotia, he was, at the instance of the late Primate, appointed to them as Archdeacon and Ecclesiastical Commissary to the Bishop of the see. Here he may be said to have created the Ecclesiastical Establishment which, under his conciliatory influence, has so rapidly and largely increased; and with it he soon associated the revival of Bishop Berkeley's Classical Academy, and a system of general instruction, of which a chain of schoolhouses, from either extremity of the island, are the abiding monuments.

From his connection with the Bishop of Nova Scotia, the visits of Archdeacon Spencer to that colony were frequent, and many of the inhabitants both of that province and of New Brunswick retain a lively impression of his abilities, as they were illustrated in his preaching and in the practice of the other duties of his profession and position.

In July, 1839, Dr. Spencer was consecrated by the venerable Archbishop of Canterbury, on the nomination of the crown, to the new see of Newfoundland, retaining still episcopal jurisdiction over the isles of Bermuda, under the extension of the Colonial Episcopate, which relieved the indefatigable Bishop of Nova Scotia of a large portion of his cares. The new Bishop was enabled, by the aid of the Society for the Promotion of the Gospel in Foreign Parts, to quadruple the number of his clergy within four years, and to consecrate more than twenty additional churches within the same period. A very grateful sense of the Bishop's exertions, and of the prosperous results of his unceasing labor, was manifested in the several addresses presented to his lordship on his subsequent translation to the diocese of Jamaica, by the clergy and laity of Newfoundland and Bermuda.

In a paper which only purports to be a biographical notice of one who is still living, it is not desirable to do more than briefly advert to the principal topics and dates of a history which may hereafter be advantageously amplified and filled up. The real progress of the established church in Newfoundland at this period, would be best gathered from the Bishop's letters to the government and the religious societies, and to the clergy under his jurisdiction, but to these documents it is not likely that any biographer will have unreserved access during the life of his lordship.

On the decease of Bishop Lipscombe, in April, 1843, Bishop Spencer was translated, under circumstances peculiarly indicative of the high opinion which was had of his ability by the Queen's ministers and the heads of the English church, to the see of Jamaica, one of the most important connected with the crown. He quitted his old diocese, as the papers of the day amply testify, with the respect of all denominations of Christians. A national ship, the Hermes, was appointed to convey him and his family and suite to Jamaica, where he arrived in the first week of November, having made the land on the auspicious festival of All Saints.

The sermon delivered by him at his installation, in the cathedral at Spanish Town, was published at the request of the Speaker of the House of Assembly, while the Earl of Elgin, the Governor-General, in his speech to the Legislature, "congratulated the inhabitants of Jamaica on the appointment of a prelate of such approved talents and piety to that see." At every point of the Bishop's visitation, which he commenced by a convention of eighty clergymen, at Spanish Town, he was met by congratulatory addresses from the vestries, and other corporate bodies, declaratory of their confidence in his projected measures, and of their desire to aid him in the extension of the church. In consonance with his views the local Legislature passed an act increasing the number of island curates, and providing higher salaries for their support, while at the same time, they granted three thousand pounds as a first instalment to the Church Society, which had been organized by him, and to which the Governor-General contributed the annual sum of one hundred pounds.

On his visit to England in 1845 and in the beginning of 1846, he was continually employed in preaching in aid of various charities, and in assisting at public meetings which had for their object the promotion of Christianity by the servants of the church. At the weekly meetings of the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel, in London, he was a constant attendant; and the increase of the funds of that association, and the conciliation to it of many powerful supporters, are result of measures which may be traced to his projection and tact. In his reply to an address from the clergy, on his return from a recent visitation, published at length in the last annual report of the parent Society for the Propagation of the Gospel, will be found the clearest exposition of the existing state and future prospects of the church in Jamaica; and a charge addressed by his lordship to the clergy of the Bahamas, on the subject of a difficult and embarrassing question, for the adjustment of which the Bishop received the thanks of the Queen's government and of the local Executive, is full of valuable information on the condition, principles and progress of the colonial establishment. In closing the last session of the Bahamas Legislature, Governor Gregory declared in his speech, with reference to this matter, that he considered the arrival of the Bishop in the island, at that juncture, as a convincing proof of the interposition of a special Providence in the conduct of human affairs.

In 1822, the Bishop was married to Eliza, the daughter of John Musson, Esq., and the sister of a former friend at the University. He has had one son, now deceased, and has three daughters.[Pg 159]

As a man of letters, Bishop Spencer is entitled to a very honorable position. As a scholar and as a critic, he has evinced such abilities as, fitly devoted, would have secured fame; as a poet and essayist, he has unusual grace and elegance; and a collection of the various compositions with which he has relieved the monotony and arduous labors of his professional and official career, would vindicate his title to be classed with those prelates who have been most eminent in the literary world.

The following poems, from autographs of Bishop Spencer, we believe are first given to the public in the International.


I tread the church-yard's path alone,
Unseen to shed the gushing tear:
I read on many a mould'ring stone
Fond records of the good and dear.
My soul is well-nigh faint with fear,
Where doubting many went to weep;
And yet what sweet repose is here—
"He giveth His beloved sleep!"
The world has but a feverish rest,
To weary pilgrims sometimes given,
When pleasure's cup has lost its zest,
And glory's hard-earned crown is riven.
Here, softer than the dews of even
Fall peaceful on the slumbering deep,
Asleep to earth, awake to heaven—
"He giveth His beloved sleep."
Yes, on the grave's hard pillows rise
No cankering cares, no dreams of woe;
On earth we close our aching eyes,
And heavenward all our visions grow.
The airs of Eden round us flow,
And in their balm our slumbers steep.
God calls His chosen home, and so
"He giveth His beloved sleep."
Ah! vainly could the human voice,
In this dull world of sin and folly,
Tell how the sainted dead rejoice
In those high realms where joy is holy—
Where no dim shade of melancholy
Beclouds the rest which angels keep,
Where, peace and bliss united wholly
"He giveth His beloved sleep."
If on that brow so fair, so young,
Affliction trace an early furrow,
If Hope's too dear, delusive tongue
Has broke its promise of to-morrow,
Seek not the world again, to borrow
The deathful print its votaries reap.
Man gives his loved ones pain and sorrow,
God "giveth His beloved sleep."


Veil'd in robes of snowy whiteness,
Filled with love and sacred fear,
Forms of beauty, eyes of brightness,
At the altar's foot appear.
There with hearts oppressed with feeling
What their dying Saviour felt;
At His throne of mercy kneeling
Where their pious parents knelt,
Many a youth, and many a maiden
Meekly and devoutly bow,
And from worldly cares unladen
Ratify a Christian's vow.
Hark! what voice subdued and holy
In that deep and tender tone,
Prays upon those suppliants lonely
Christ's eternal benison!
God! who call'st them to inherit
Joys no mortal tongue can speak,
Guide them with thy gracious Spirit
Through the storms that round them break.
When thou seest these children straying
From the way thy word imparts,
Then, thine anger yet delaying,
Renovate their faltering hearts.
If provoked by strong temptation
From thy paths again they swerve,
If in prideful elevation
They forget the God they serve,
Then by timely, mild correction,
Lead them, wheresoe'er they roam,
Fan the embers of affection
For their Father and their Home.


Midnight is on the earth:
Flowers that in darkness bloom,
Their odorous life pour forth
Beneath the gloom.
O'er palace and o'er stall
Her sable curtain spread,
Mantles within its pall
The living dead!
Midnight is on the sea:
A soft and still repose
Steals o'er the untroubled lea
That darkly glows.
Hushed in their ocean caves
The winds their sleep prolong,
Or mourn along the waves
In dreamlike song.
Midnight is in the Heaven:
The planets of the air
To her as vassals given,
Wander and worship there.
No sound comes from her throne,
Piled in those lofty skies,
Calmly she broods upon
Her own deep mysteries.
Yet in her silence deep,
There breathes a language fraught
With spell to wake and keep
The energies of thought;
And on her awful brow
Strange characters appear,
The portraitures to show
Of the advancing year.
Night is a fearful book,
And in her darkling skies
Did Seers and Magi look,
Searching earth's destinies.
But oh! had I the power
To ancient science given,
I would not use this hour
To rifle Heaven.
The night is Memory's sphere,
In light and shadow cast;
In her dim disk appear
The last—the past.
The lov'd ones of our youth
Hasten'd to life's last bourne;
Dear to the heart's deep truth,
Will they return?
Ask of the phantoms pale
That haunt the hollow sky,
Ask of the fitful gale
That mourns and passes by,
Invoke the spirits' home,
Unsearchable, unseen—
Where do the wanderers roam?
Are they as they have been?
Silence is on the land,
No voice comes from the sea,
No spell can reach thy strand,
Thou dim Eternity!
Fled like the cloudy rack
With morning's early breath,
What night shall bring them back?
The night that brings us death!


My heart lies buried with the past,
'Mid scenes where fleeting memory strays
And time its darkening shadows cast
O'er all the marks of by-gone days;
I look in vain for ancient ways—
The olden paths are worn and gone;
No friend that trod them here delays,
I pass benighted and alone.
Yet in this mist of life and mind,
Which ever dark and darker grows,
There is one living lamp enshrin'd,
Whose ray in deathless lustre glows.
That star-like light my God bestows
To break the deep sepulchral gloom;
Its beams Eternity disclose,
And show the garden round the tomb.

[Pg 160]


In the concluding volume of the Life of Southey, just published by the Harpers, is a letter from the poet in answer to one by Lord Brougham, on the subject of the encouragement of literature by government. "Your first question," writes Southey, "is, whether Letters would gain by the more avowed and active encouragement of the Government?

"There are literary works of national importance which can only be performed by co-operative labor, and will never be undertaken by that spirit of trade which at present preponderates in literature. The formation of an English Etymological Dictionary is one of those works; others might be mentioned; and in this way literature might gain much by receiving national encouragement; but Government would gain a great deal more by bestowing it. Revolutionary governments understand this: I should be glad if I could believe that our legitimate one would learn it before it is too late. I am addressing one who is a statesman as well as a man of letters, and who is well aware that the time is come in which governments can no more stand without pens to support them than without bayonets. They must soon know, if they do not already know it, that the volunteers as well as the mercenaries of both professions, who are not already enlisted in this service, will enlist themselves against it; and I am afraid they have a better hold upon the soldier than upon the penman; because the former has, in the spirit of his profession and in the sense of military honor, something which not unfrequently supplies the want of any higher principle; and I know not that any substitute is to be found among the gentlemen of the press.

"But neediness, my Lord, makes men dangerous members of society, quite as often as affluence makes them worthless ones. I am of opinion that many persons who become bad subjects because they are necessitous, because 'the world is not their friend, nor the world's law,' might be kept virtuous (or, at least, withheld from mischief) by being made happy, by early encouragement, by holding out to them a reasonable hope of obtaining, in good time, an honorable station and a competent income, as the reward of literary pursuits, when followed with ability and diligence, and recommended by good conduct.

"My Lord, you are now on the Conservative side. Minor differences of opinion are infinitely insignificant at this time, when in truth there are but two parties in this kingdom—the Revolutionists and the Loyalists; those who would destroy the constitution, and those who would defend it, I can have no predilections for the present administration; they have raised the devil who is now raging through the land: but, in their present position, it is their business to lay him if they can; and so far as their measures may be directed to that end, I heartily say, God speed them! If schemes like yours for the encouragement of letters, have never entered into their wishes, there can be no place for them at present in their intentions. Government can have no leisure now for attending to any thing but its own and our preservation; and the time seems not far distant when the cares of war and expenditure will come upon it once more with their all-engrossing importance. But when better times shall arrive (whoever may live to see them), it will be worthy the consideration of any government whether the institution of an Academy, with salaries for its members (in the nature of literary or lay benefices), might not be the means of retaining in its interests, as connected with their own, a certain number of influential men of letters, who should hold those benefices, and a much greater number of aspirants who would look to them in their turn. A yearly grant of ten thousand pounds would endow ten such appointments of five hundred pounds each for the elder class, and twenty-five of two hundred pounds each for younger men; the latter eligible, of course, and preferably, but not necessarily, to be elected to the higher benefices, as those fell vacant, and as they should have improved themselves.

"The good proposed by this, as a political measure, is not that of retaining such persons to act as pamphleteers and journalists, but that of preventing them from becoming such, in hostility to the established order of things; and of giving men of letters, as a class, something to look for beyond the precarious gains of literature; thereby inducing in them a desire to support the existing institutions of their country, on the stability of which their own welfare would depend.

"Your Lordship's second question,—in what way the encouragement of Government could most safely and beneficially be given,—is, in the main, answered by what has been said upon the first. I do not enter into any details of the proposed institution, for that would be to think of fitting up a castle in the air. Nor is it worth while to examine how far such an institution might be perverted. Abuses there would be, as in the disposal of all preferments, civil, military, or ecclesiastical; but there would be a more obvious check upon them; and where they occurred they would be less injurious in their consequences than they are in the state, the army and navy, or the church.

"With regard to prizes, methinks they are better left to schools and colleges. Honors are worth something to scientific men, because they are conferred upon such men in other countries; at home there are precedents for them in Newton and Davy, and the physicians and surgeons have them. In my judgment, men of letters are better without them, unless they are rich enough to bequeath to their family a good estate with the bloody hand, and sufficiently men of the world to think such distinctions appropriate. For myself, if we had a Guelphic order, I should choose to remain a Ghibelline.[Pg 161]

"I have written thus fully and frankly, not dreaming that your proposal is likely to be matured and carried into effect, but in the spirit of good will, and as addressing one by whom there is no danger that I can be misunderstood. One thing alone I ask from the legislature, and in the name of justice,—that the injurious law of copyright should be repealed, and that the family of an author should not be deprived of their just and natural rights in his works when his permanent reputation is established. This I ask with the earnestness of a man who is conscious that he has labored for posterity."

The publication of this letter, and of the correspondence between Southey and Sir Robert Peel, in which the poet declines being knighted, on account of his poverty—a correspondence eminently honorable to the late Prime Minister, has occasioned an eloquent letter from Walter Savage Landor to Lord Brougham on the same subject.


The Edinburgh Review rebukes the daring of those uneducated story-tellers who profane by their intrusion the holy lands, the sacred names, and golden ages of art. We have acceptable specimens of the "classical novel" by Dr. Croly, Lockhart, Bulwer, and Collins (the author of "Antonini"), and in this country by Mrs. Child and William Ware; but nineteen of every twenty who have attempted such compositions have failed entirely. The Edinburgh Reviewer, after showing that the writers whom he arraigns have merely parodied the exterior life of our own time, proceeds—

"It is not uncommon to excuse such deviations from historical propriety by saying, that if the mere accidents have been neglected, the essential humanity has been only more fully realized: and those who quarrel with the neglect are stigmatized as pedants having no eyes except for the external. We think, however, that it will be found, in most cases where the plea is set up, that the humanity for which the sacrifice has been made is equally external with that which has been disregarded, and much more commonplace and conventional; being in fact, only the outer life of existing society. We are met, of course, by the triumphant answer that Shakspeare wrote Roman plays with a very slender knowledge of the classics. It would be sufficient to reply, that we are speaking of cases where ignorance of antiquity is not counterbalanced by any very exuberant or profound knowledge of human nature. Possibly posterity may have to deal with another myriad-minded dramatist whose poverty is better than other men's riches; but it must not be rashly presumed that he is likely to appear at all; or, if at all, with the same deficiency of learning which was not unnatural three hundred years back. Meanwhile, it is a perverse and pernicious paradox to maintain that Shakspeare's consummate genius was in any way connected with his 'little Latin and less Greek,' or that he might not have portrayed the Romans yet more successfully if he had known more about them. Believing this, we are not presuming, as the same absurd reasoning would have it, to set up ourselves against him. We do not say that any other man in his age or our own, however great his command of learning, could possibly mend those plays by touching them; but we say that Shakspeare himself, with increased knowledge, might have made them yet more perfect. It is easy to oppose inspiration to scholastic culture; to coin antitheses between nature and art; and to say that Shakspeare's Romans are more ideally true than Niebuhr's. There is some truth in all this; but it is not to the purpose. A poet like Burns may have really known more of classical life than a critic like Blair; nay, it may be that if Keats or Tennyson had been a senior medallist at Cambridge, they would not have produced any thing not only so beautiful but so purely Greek as Endymion or Œnone. In what we were just saying we were thinking of the very highest minds. And, when we recollect how gracefully Milton could walk under the weight of his immense learning, we need not fear that the Alantean shoulders of Shakspeare would have been oppressed by a similar load. The knowledge of antiquity may operate on the recipient so as to produce mere bookishness and intellectual sophistication; but in itself it is a real and legitimate part of all knowledge, a portion of that truth with which poets are conversant, a lesson set in other schools than those where man is teacher. We know not what were Shakspeare's feelings with respect to his own deficiencies; but we cannot believe that the same modesty which besought his friend to chide with Fortune, 'the guilty goddess of his harmful deeds,' would have shrunk from confessing want of knowledge as an evil to be lamented, at the same time that it was imputed to want of opportunity. If he was self-centred, it was in his strength, not in his weakness. His eulogists may show the greatness of their faith in him by doubting whether he could have assimilated the learning which obstructs Ben Jonson's Catiline and Sejanus; but we have no proofs that he thought so meanly of himself or of that which he happened not to possess. On the contrary, it may be argued, from the diligent use which he has made of such information as he had, that he would gladly have taken advantage of more. Arnold, in his Roman History, has noted the poet's perception of historical truth in a matter where it might well have been overlooked; and future critics may perhaps spend their time more profitably in discovering other indications of a like vigilant industry than in laboring to prove that the absence of so servile a virtue has been conducive to his preëminence as a creative artist."

[Pg 162]


The editor of The Albion thus christens, while he translates, the following lively narrative, culled from the varied columns of the Courrier des Etats Unis. The malicious writer dates from Paris; but for such experiences our own city would probably be quite as prolific a hunting-field.

How rapid is the progress of oblivion with respect to those who are no more! How many a quadrille shall we see this winter, exclusively made up from the ranks of inconsolable widows! Widows of this order exist only in the literature of the tombstone. In the world, and after the lapse of a certain period, there is but one sort of widows inconsolable—those who refuse to be comforted, because they can't get married again!

One of our most distinguished sculptors was summoned, a short time since, to the house of a young lady, connected by birth with a family of the highest grade in the aristocracy of wealth, and united in marriage to the heir of a title illustrious in the military annals of the empire. The union, formed under the happiest auspices, had been, alas! of short duration. Death, unpitying death, had ruptured it, by prematurely carrying off the young husband. The sculptor was summoned by the widow. He traversed the apartments, silent and deserted, until he was introduced into a bedroom, and found himself in presence of a lady, young and beautiful, but habited in the deepest mourning, and with a face furrowed by tears. "You are aware," said she, with a painful effort, and a voice half choked by sobs, "you are aware of the blow which I have received?" The artist bowed, with an air of respectful condolence. "Sir," continued the widow, "I am anxious to have a funeral monument erected in honor of the husband whom I have lost." The artist bowed again. "I wish that the monument should be superb, worthy of the man whose loss I weep, proportioned to the unending grief into which his loss has plunged me. I care not what it costs. I am rich, and I will willingly sacrifice all my fortune to do honor to the memory of an adored husband. I must have a temple—with columns—in marble—and in the middle—on a pedestal—his statue."

"I will do my best to fulfil your wishes, madam," replied the artist; "but I had not the honor of acquaintance with the deceased, and a likeness of him is indispensable for the due execution of my work. Without doubt, you have his portrait?"

The widow raised her arm and pointed despairingly to a splendid likeness painted by Amaury Duval.

"A most admirable picture!" observed the artist, "and the painter's name is a sufficient guarantee for its striking resemblance to the original."

"Those are his very features, sir; it is himself. It wants but life. Ah! would that I could restore it to him at the cost of all my blood!"

"I will have this portrait carried to my studio, madam, and I promise you that the marble shall reproduce it exactly."

The widow, at these words, sprung up, and at a single bound throwing herself towards the picture, with arms stretched out as though to defend it, exclaimed, "Take away this portrait! carry off my only consolation! my sole remaining comfort! never! never!"

"But madam, you will only be deprived of it for a short time, and—"

"Not an hour! not a minute! could I exist without his beloved image! Look you, sir, I have had it placed here, in my own room, that my eyes might be fastened upon it, without ceasing, and through my tears. His portrait shall never leave this spot one single instant, and in contemplating that will I pass the remainder of a miserable and sorrowful existence."

"In that case, madam, you will be compelled to permit me to take a copy of it. But do not be uneasy—I shall not have occasion to trouble your solitude for any length of time: one sketch—one sitting will suffice."

The widow agreed to this arrangement; she only insisted that the artist should come back the following day. She wanted him to set to work on the instant, so great was her longing to see the mausoleum erected. The sculptor, however, remarked that he had another work to finish first. This difficulty she sought to overcome by means of money.

"Impossible!" replied the artist, "I have given my word; but do not distress yourself; I will apply to it so diligently, that the monument shall be finished in as short a time as any other sculptor would require, who could apply himself to it forthwith."

"You see my distress," said the widow; "you can make allowance for my impatience. Be speedy, then, and above all, be lavish of magnificence. Spare no expense; only let me have a masterpiece."

Several letters echoed these injunctions, during the few days immediately following the interview. At the expiration of three months the artist called again. He found the widow still in weeds, but a little less pallid, and a little more coquettishly dressed in her mourning garb. "Madam," said he, "I am entirely at your service."

"Ah! at last; this is fortunate," replied the widow, with a gracious smile.

"I have made my design, but I still want one sitting for the likeness. Will you permit me to go into your bedroom?"

"Into my bedroom? For what?"

"To look at the portrait again."

"Oh! yes; have the goodness to walk into the drawing-room; you will find it there, now."


"Yes; it hangs better there; it is better lighted in the drawing-room than in my own room."[Pg 163]

"Would you like, madam, to look at the design for the monument?"

"With pleasure. Oh! what a size! What profusion of decorations! Why, it is a palace, sir, this tomb!"

"Did you not tell me, madam, that nothing could be too magnificent? I have not considered the expense; and, by the way, here is a memorandum of what the monument will cost you."

"Oh, heavens!" exclaimed the widow, after having cast an eye over the total adding up. "Why, this is enormous!"

"You begged me to spare no expense."

"Yes, no doubt, I desire to do things properly, but not exactly to make a fool of myself."

"This, at present, you see, is only a design; and there is time yet to cut it down."

"Well, then, suppose we were to leave out the temple, and the columns, and all the architectural part, and content ourselves with the statue? It seems to me that this would be very appropriate."

"Certainly it would."

"So let it be, then—just the statue, alone."

Shortly after this second visit, the sculptor fell desperately ill. He was compelled to give up work; but, on returning from a tour in Italy, prescribed by his physician, he presented himself once more before the widow, who was then in the tenth month of her mourning. He found, this time, a few roses among the cypress, and some smiling colors playing over half-shaded grounds. He brought with him a little model of his statue, done in plaster, and offering in miniature the idea of what his work was to be. "What do you think of the likeness?" he inquired of the widow.

"It seems to me a little flattered; my husband was all very well, no doubt; but you are making him an Apollo!"

"Really? well, then, I can correct my work by the portrait."

"Don't take the trouble—a little more, or a little less like, what does it matter?"

"Excuse me, but I am particular about likenesses."

"If you absolutely must—"

"It is in the drawing-room, yonder, is it not? I'll go in there."

"It is not there any longer," replied the widow, ringing the bell.

"Baptiste," said she to the servant who came in, "bring down the portrait of your master."

"The portrait that you sent up to the garret last week, madam?"


At this moment the door opened, and a young man of distinguished air entered; his manners were easy and familiar; he kissed the fair widow's hand, and tenderly inquired after her health. "Who in the world is this good man in plaster?" asked he, pointing with his finger to the statuette, which the artist had placed upon the mantel-piece.

"It is the model of a statue for my husband's tomb."

"You are having a statue of him made? The devil! It's very majestic!"

"Do you think so?"

"It is only great men who are thus cut out of marble, and at full length; it seems to me, too, that the deceased was a very ordinary personage."

"In fact, his bust would be sufficient."

"Just as you please, madam," said the sculptor.

"Well, let it be a bust, then; that's determined!"

Two months later, the artist, carrying home the bust, encountered on the stairs a merry party. The widow, giving her hand to the elegant dandy who had caused the statue of the deceased to be cut down, was on her way to the mayor's office, where she was about to take a second oath of conjugal fidelity. If the bust had not been completed, it would willingly have been dispensed with. When, some time later, the artist called for his money, there was an outcry about the price; and it required very little less than a threat of legal proceedings, before the widow, consoled and remarried, concluded by resigning herself to pay for this funeral homage, reduced as it was, to the memory of her departed husband.


There is scarcely in English literature a collection of tales by a simple writer that are better adapted for the instruction of the masses, than Harriet Martineau's Illustrations of Political Economy. Without believing her a very profound philosopher, we are inclined to think these works could be remembered longer than any of her other writings. The pleasure and instruction we derived from them were recalled by the announcement in the London Leader that she is to contribute a new series of stories for the people, to that journal. We copy the first of them.


The afternoon was come when the Morells must go on board. They were going to Canada at last, after having talked about it for several years. There were so many children, that it was with much difficulty they had got on for some years past; and there was no prospect for the lads at home. They had, with extreme difficulty, paid their way: and they had, to a certain extent, educated the children. That, however, was Miss Smith's doing.

"We shall always feel, every one of us," said Mrs. Morell, with tears, to the elderly homely governess, "that we are under the deepest obligations to you. But for you, the children would have grown up without any education at all. And, for the greatest service you or any one could possibly render us, we have never been able to give you your due,—even as regards the mere money."

"I can only say again," replied the governess, "that you do not look at the whole of[Pg 164] the case. You have given me a home, when it is no easy matter for such as I am to earn one, with my old-womanish ways and my old-fashioned knowledge."

"I will not hear any disparagement of your ways and your knowledge," interrupted Mrs. Morell. "They have been every thing to my children: and if you could have gone with us...."

This, however, they all knew to be out of the question. It was not only that Miss Smith was between fifty and sixty, too old to go so far, with little prospect of comfort at the end of the journey; but she was at present disabled for much usefulness by the state of her right hand. It had been hurt by an accident a long time before, and it did not get well. The surgeon had always said it would be a long case; and she had no use whatever of the hand in the mean time. Yet she would not part with the baby till the last moment. She carried him on the left arm, and stood on the wharf with him—the mother at her side—till all the rest were on board, and Mr. Morell came for his wife. It was no grand steamer they were going in, but a humble vessel belonging to the port, which would carry them cheap.

"Now, my love," said the husband. "Now, Miss Smith," taking the child from her. "Words cannot tell...."

And if words could have told, the tongue could not have uttered them. It was little, too, that his wife could say.

"Write to us. Be sure you write. We shall write as soon as we arrive. Write to us."

Miss Smith glanced at the hand. She said only one word, "Farewell!" but she said it cheerfully.

The steam-tug was in a hurry, and down the river they went. She had one more appointment to keep with them. She was to wave her handkerchief from the rocks by the fort; and the children were to let her try whether she could see their little handkerchiefs. So she walked quickly over the common to the fort, and sat down on the beach at the top of the rocks.

It was very well that she had something to do. But the plan did not altogether answer. By the time the vessel crossed the bar it was nearly dark, and she was not quite sure, among three, which it was, and she did not suppose the children could see her handkerchief. She waved it, however, according to promise. How little they knew how wet it was!

Then there was the walk home. It was familiar, yet very strange. When she was a child her parents used to bring her here, in the summer time, for sea air and bathing. The haven and the old gray bathing houses, and the fort, and the lighthouse, and the old priory ruins crowning the rocks, were all familiar to her; but the port had so grown up that all else was strange. And how strange now was life to her! Her parents gone, many years back, and her two sisters since; and now, the Morells! She had never had any money to lose, and the retired way in which the Morells lived had prevented her knowing any body out of their house. She had not a relation nor a friend, nor even an acquaintance, in England. The Morells had not been uneasy about her. They left her a little money, and had so high an opinion of her that they did not doubt her being abundantly employed, whenever her hand should get well. They had lived too much to themselves to know that her French, learned during the war, when nobody in England could pronounce French, would not do in these days, nor that her trilling, old-fashioned style of playing on the piano, which they thought so beautiful, would be laughed at now in any boarding school; and that her elegant needleworks were quite out of fashion; and that there were new ways of teaching even reading, spelling, and writing.

She knew these things, and cautioned herself against discontent with the progress of society, because she happened to be left alone behind. She suspected, too, that the hand would not get well. The thing that she was most certain of was, that she must not rack her brain with fears and speculations as to what was to become of her. Her business was to wait till she could find something to do, or learn what she was to suffer. She thought she had better wait here. There was no call to any other place. This was more familiar and more pleasant to her than any other—the Morells' cottage being far away, and out of the question—and here she could live with the utmost possible cheapness. So here she staid.

The hand got well, as far as the pain was concerned, sooner than she had expected. But it was in a different way from what she had expected. It was left wholly useless. And, though the time was not long, it had wrought as time does. It had worn out her clothes; it had emptied her little purse. It had carried away every thing she had in the world but the very few clothes she had on. She had been verging towards the resolution she now took for three or four weeks. She took it finally while sitting on the bench near the fort. It was in the dusk; for her gown, though she had done her best to mend it with her left hand, was in no condition to show by daylight. She was alone in the dusk, rather hungry and very cold. The sea was dashing surlily upon the rocks below, and there was too much mist to let any stars shine upon her. It was all dreary enough; yet she was not very miserable, for her mind was made up. She had made up her mind to go into the work-Pouse the next day. While she was thinking calmly about it a fife began to play a sort of jig in the yard of the fort behind her. Her heart heaved to her throat and the tears gushed from her eyes. In this same spot, fifty years before, she had heard what seemed to her the same fife. Her father was then sitting on the grass, and she was between his knees, helping to tassel the tail of a little kite they were going to[Pg 165] fly; and, when the merry fife had struck up, her father had snatched up her gay Harlequin that lay within reach, and made him shake his legs and arms to the music. She heard her own laugh again now, through that long course of fifty years, and in the midst of these tears.

All that night she pondered her purpose: and the more she considered, the more sure she was that it was right. "I might," thought she, "get maintained by charity, no doubt: I might call on any of the clergymen of this place, and the rich people. Or I might walk into the shops and tell my story, and I dare say the people would give me food and clothes. And, if it was a temporary distress, I would do so. I should think it right to ask for help, if I had any prospect of work or independence in any way. But I have none: and this, I am convinced, points out my duty. Hopeless cases like mine are those which public charity—legal charity—is intended to meet. My father little dreamed of this, to be sure; and the Morells little dream of it at this moment. But when do our parents and friends, when do we ourselves, dream of what our lot is really to turn out? Those old notions have nothing to do, if we could but think so, with the event. Nor has my disgust any thing to do with my duty. The plain fact is, that I am growing old—that I am nearly helpless—that I am cold and hungry, and nearly naked—that I have no friends within reach, and no prospect whatever. I am, therefore, an object for public charity, and I will ask for what is my due. I am afraid of what I may find in the workhouse;—the vicious people, the dirty people, the diseased people,—and, I suppose, not one among them who can give me any companionship whatever.

"It is dreadful; but it can't be helped. And the worse the case is about my companions—my fellow-paupers—(for I must learn to bear the word)—the greater are the chances of my finding something to do for them;—something which may prevent my feeling myself utterly useless in the world. This is not being wholly without prospect, after all. I suppose nobody ever is. If it were not so cold now, I could sleep upon mine."

It was too cold for sleep; and when, in the morning, she offered her old shawl in payment for her bed, assuring the poor old woman who let it that she should not want the shawl, because she was going to have other clothes, the woman shook her head sorrowfully,—her lodger looked so wan and chilled. She had no fear that there was any thought of suicide in the case. No one could look in Miss Smith's sensible face, and hear her steady, cheerful voice, and suppose that she would do any thing wild or impatient.

"Who is that woman with a book in her hand?" inquired the visiting Commissioner, some months afterwards, of the governor of the workhouse. The governor could only say she was a single woman of the name of Smith, who had no use of her right hand. As to who she was, he could tell no more than this; but his wife had sometimes mentioned her as a different sort of person from those they generally saw there. She could not only read, but she read very well: and she read a great deal aloud to the old people, and in the infirmary. She talked unlike the rest, too. She said little; but her language was good, and always correct. She could not do much on account of her infirmity: but she was always willing to do what could be done with one hand; and she must have been very handy when she had the use of both.

"I should have thought her eyes had been too weak for much reading," observed the Commissioner. "Has the medical officer attended to her?"

The governor called his wife: and the wife called a pauper woman who was told the question. This woman said that it was not exactly a case for the doctor. Nobody that shed so many tears could have good eyes. Ah! the governor might be surprised; because Smith seemed so brisk in the daytime, and cheered the old people so much. But she made up for it at night. Many and many a time she cried the night through.

"How do you know?" asked the Commissioner.

"I sleep in the next bed, sir. I can't say she disturbs any body; for she is very quiet. But if any thing keeps me awake I hear her sobbing. And you need but feel her pillow in the morning. It is wet almost through."

"And does that happen often?"

"Yes, sir. Many a time when she has turned her back,—gone into the infirmary, or been reading to the old people,—I have got her pillow and dried it. And I have seen her do it herself, with a smile on her face all the time."

The Commissioner walked away. Before he left the place, the woman Smith was beckoned out by the governor. She went with a beating heart, with some wild idea in her head that the Morells had sent, that some friends had turned up. While still in the passage, however, she said to herself that she might as well look to see her parents risen from the dead.

The Commissioner had, indeed, nothing to tell. He wanted to ask. He did ask, as much as his delicacy would allow. But he learned nothing; except, indeed, what he ought to have considered the most important thing, the state of her mind about being there. About that, she was frank enough. She said over again to him what she had said to herself, about this being the right place for one in her circumstances. She considered that it would be an abuse of private charity for her to be maintained in idleness at an expense which might set forward in life some person in a less hopeless position.

"You speak cheerfully, as if you were in earnest," said the Commissioner.

"Of course, I am in earnest," she replied.[Pg 166]

And cheerful she remained throughout the conversation. Only once the Commissioner saw her eyes filled and a quiver on her lips. He did not know it; but he had unconsciously called her "Madam."

Would she prefer the children's department of the House? There was no doubt that she could teach them much. Would she change her quarters? No. She was too old now for that. She should not be a good companion now for children; and they would be too much for her. Unless she was wanted—

By no means. She should be where she preferred to be.

She preferred to be where she was. The Commissioner's lady soon after dropped in, and managed to engage Smith in conversation. But there was no result; because Smith did not choose that there should be. Perhaps she was more in the infirmary; and had oftener a warm seat by the fire, and was spoken to with more deference. But this might be solely owing to the way she made with the people by her own acts and manners. The invalids and the infirm grew so fond of her that they poured out to her all their complaints. She was favored with the knowledge of every painful sensation as it passed, and every uneasy thought as it arose.

"I never thought to die in such a place as this," groaned old Johnny Jacks.

"I wonder at that," said his old wife; "for you never took any care to provide yourself a better—to say nothing of me." And she went on to tell how Johnny had idled and drank his life away, and brought her here at last. Much of Johnny's idling and drinking having been connected with electioneering in an abominably venal city, he was a great talker on politics, and the state was made responsible for all his troubles. He said it was a shame that any body should die in a workhouse; he appealed to his neighbor Smith, who was warming his broth, whether it was not so?

"Which is best?" she answered; "being here, or on a common, or the sea-sands? Because," she added, "there was a time when old people like us were left to die wherever they fell. There are countries now where old people die so. I should not like that."

"You don't mean to say that you or any one likes being here?"

"Oh, no; I don't mean to say that. But things are better than they were once: and they may be better again."

"I shall not live to see that," groaned Johnny.

"No; nor I. But it is something to think of."

"D—— it," said Johnny, "I am not the better for any good that does not happen to me, nor to any body I know."

"Are not you?" said neighbor Smith. "Well, now, I am."

And so she was to the end. She died in that infirmary, and not very long after. When the Morells' letter came, it was plain that they had enough to do to take care of themselves. So she did not let them know,—in her reply, written by the hands of the schoolmaster,—where she was. The letter was so cheerful that they are probably far from suspecting, at this moment, how she died and was buried. As "from the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh," there was so much in her letter as rather surprised them about her hope and expectation that the time would come when hearty work in the vigorous season of life should secure its easy close; and when a greater variety of employment should be opened to women. There was more of this kind of speculation and less news and detail of facts than they would have liked. But it was a household event to have a letter from Miss Smith; and the very little children, forgetting the wide sea they had passed, began shouting for Miss Smith to come to them just (as it happened) when her ear was closing to every human voice.


There are some peculiarities of style in the following performance, which is by no means devoid of eloquence, and which derives a certain interest from the efforts now being made to discover the fate of Sir John Franklin. The author is George Stovin Venables, LL. D., of Jesus College, Cambridge.


"And now there came both mist and snow,
And it grew wondrous cold;
And ice, mast high, came floating by,
As green as emerald.
And through the drifts and snowy clifts
Did send a dismal sheen:
Nor shape of men, nor beasts we ken—
The ice was all between—
The ice was here, the ice was there—
The ice was all around:
It crack'd and growl'd, and roar'd and howl'd,
Like noises in a swound."
Coleridge. Rime of the Ancient Mariner.

The secret wonders of the gloomy North bid proud defiance, in their solitude, to man's triumphant daring. Who shall pierce the ancient prison-house where Nature's might, in mightier chains of adamantine frost, lies fettered, since Creation? Who shall live where promontories huge, of pilèd ice, like monstrous fragments of primeval worlds tossed on the surge of Chaos, over the waves rear their triumphant heads, and laugh to scorn the undreaded kinghood of the lordly sea?

A fearful challenge! yet the charmèd spell, which summons man to high discovery, is ever vocal in the outward world, though they alone may hear it, who have hearts responsive to its tone. The gale of spring, breathing sweet balm over the western waters, called forth that gifted old adventurer[10] to seek the perfumes of spice-laden winds, far in the Indian Isles. Yea, there is power in Nature's solemn music. All have heard the sighs of Winter in the middle air, and seen the skirts of his cloud-woven robe lingering upon the misty mountain-top:[Pg 167] but years rolled on, ere man might understand the mystic invitation of that call to seek the Monarch in his Arctic home.

At length that call is answered. Daringly yon gallant ship, towards the Polar Star, walks the untrodden pathways of old Ocean, leaving the haunts of man. Even now, the bounds are passed where silently the Boreal Morn[11] folds and unfolds, in swiftest interchange, her silver robe of alternating light over the midnight Heaven. There is a change in every sight and sound. White glaciers clash on the tormented waves, in fierce career waving eternally, and hoary whales, with musical din[12] booming along the deep, breathe forth in giant chorus, wondrously, the welcome of the Spirit of the North.

Joy to the brave! That old phantasmal veil which checked the view of dim antiquity, shrinks from their eagle glance, while fabled hills and regions of impenetrable ice fade in the blue expanse of mighty bays[13]—now spread the bosom of the expectant sail unto the Eastern breeze, and while the prow furrows the yielding waters, image forth high dreams of lofty hope—the joyous bound of billows gushing between parted shores, where Asia's rocky brow for ever frowns on the opposing continent. And, borne on spirit-plumed wings, let fancy soar far from that sunless clime, to the warm South, where soft skies slumber through the cloudless noon, o'er the gold palaces of fair Cathay.

Why pause ye in mid ocean? Still the sail swells to the voiceful breeze; the high mast bends with hideous creak, and every separate rib in the huge fabric quivers. Yet the ship on the unmoved waters motionless struggles, as one, who in a feverish dream nervelessly fleeing o'er a haunted waste, strives horribly to shun some fiendish shape, with straining sinews, and convulsive gasp, and faint limbs, magic-stricken. There is rest, dismal and dreary, on the silent sea: most dismal quiet: for the viewless might of the keen frost-wind[14] crisps the curling waves, binding their motion with a clankless chain along the far horizon. Fruitlessly the imprisoned vessel writhes, until the gale, lulled in the embrace of evening, leaves its prey, to share the torpor of the lifeless waste, till earth awaken from her half-year's sleep.

Yet, in those daring hearts, the cheerless voice of boding Fear or dull Despondency can find no answering tone, whether the storm, round the snow-rampart[15] howling, interweaves his solemn moans with the rejoicing shouts of the glad theatre,[16] or simple strains of homely music leave that warm recess—vibrating far into the tremulous air. Here, even here are pleasures; those stray[17] forms of joy, which Nature spreads throughout the world, that he who seeks may find them. When the Sun, uprising from his long and gloomy trance, beams through the clearer air, how beautiful, in some obscurest dell[18] of that lone land, led by the music of an unseen river to see fair flowers, with light-awakened buds, salute the spring tide. Happily, they smile in the midst of nakedness, like sweet memories of laughing infancy, beaming around the desolation of an aged heart.

Oh, that the might of Man's majestic will were self-sufficing! that the meaner chains which bind him to this dark, material world, before the lightning glance of Enterprise might fade, as those Philistian bonds, that fell from him of Zorah. Back—in sorrow back—the ocean-wanderers turn the unwilling prow; for Nature may not yield, and all is lost, save gloomy thoughts of unrequited toil in the storm-beaten deep; and phantasies of gorgeous dreams, for ever desolate; and hopes, which were, and will not be again.

Yet if the race of Man, as some have deemed[19], form but one mighty Being, who doth live, yea with intenser life, while kingly Death benumbs each separate atom with the touch of his pale sceptre—one unchanging ocean of everchanging waves—one deathless heaven of clouds, which to their graves roll ceaselessly: if it be so, not vainly have long years sent forth their heralds on the trackless deep, where high endeavors of exalted will which in themselves find no accomplishment, shall build at length perfection. Peacefully he[20] sleeps, who erst beheld the rifted shores of Greenland "glister in the sun, like gold:" and that deserted chief[21] whose angry moan once mingled wildly with the screaming winds and the hoarse gurgle of ingulfing waves, is unremembered now. But high Emprise died not with them. Have not our latter days beheld, with awe, the ice-borne Muscovite[22] ride the fierce billows of the Polar Sea? Has not the Northern hunter seen the flag of England, o'er her floating palaces, unfurled in his dominions crystalline? And who shall mourn, while, in the mystic race, from hand to hand still moves the unquenched torch, that none have reached the goal? Not suddenly doth the sweet warmth of universal life, from brumal[Pg 168] caves advancing, interfuse the vast abysmal air, or penetrate the deep heart of the frost-entranced Earth. Gentle, and in its very gentleness invincible, it moves, though ruthlessly stern Winter calls his rallied armies on, and snow-blasts violate the joyous prime. So is it, with the silent victories of Man's enduring spirit: we have seen Winter and Spring; and shall we not behold the full rejoicing of the complete year?

The hour shall come, nor shall the longing heart in that dark interval be all unblest with glance prophetic. Though no meteor shape glare from the speaking sky, no sheeted ghost wander dim-moving in the weird midnight, with such forshadowings true as ever wait on him who, with a calm and reverend eye, hath viewed the mysteries of things, and dared to image forth the future from the past—bind on the mystic robe, and from the brow of Hope's enchanted hill look boldly forth upon the coming ages. Saw ye not white fog-wreaths floating through the cold gray dawn over ice-laden billows, as they roll through yon rock-cinctured chasm? A dusky shape looms through the hazy atmosphere, and sails, as of some struggling bark that wearily breasts the opposing strength of angry waves,[23] float with a fitful motion to and fro. Still on and on—a breath-suspending sight of pale Solicitude, and fearful hope—and hark! the triple crash of Britain's joy, the magical music of her wild hurra, peals with a sound of mighty exultation through the aerial depths. The cloven mist unwraps its folded canopy, and lo! the blue Pacific, boundlessly outspread, far glitters in the silvery light of morn.


[10] Columbus.

[11] The phenomenon which is commonly called Aurora Borealis, is in high latitudes frequently seen to the south.

[12] On entering the Arctic Circle, the musical sounds of the white whales is first heard.

[13] Modern discoverers have frequently found an open passage in latitudes, where chains of hills were laid down in the old charts.

[14] The effect of the change of temperature at the beginning of winter is almost instantaneous, as young ice at the thickness of half an inch will stop a large vessel in full sail.

[15] Captain Parry found considerable advantage from raising a wall of snow round the ship, in its winter station.

[16] The theatrical amusements, which were introduced during the stay of the Fury and Hecla at Melvile Island, are well known.

[17] Alluding to the following lines of Mr. Wordsworth:—

——"Pleasure is spread throughout the earth,
In stray gifts, to be claim'd by whoever shall find."

[18] The beautiful effect of these Arctic Oases is described in the account of Captain Parry's second voyage.

[19] See the speech attributed by Socrates to Diotima in the Banquet of Plato.

[20] Sir Martin Frobisher, who in 1577 anchored on the Western coast of Greenland, reported that in that country "the stones be altogether sparkled, and glister in the sun like gold."

[21] Hudson.

[22] Baron Wrangle.


The "Leaves from the Portfolio of a Manager," in the December Dublin University Magazine, disclose a number of interesting facts connected with Prynne's "Histriomastix," Milton's "Samson Agonistes," Hannah More's "Tragedies," Ireland's "Shakspeare Forgeries," and not a few very startling disclosures respecting the extraordinary emoluments of first class performers, from Roscius down to Jenny Lind. From this portion of our Manager's Portfolio we select the amusing recollections of Paganini in Ireland, twenty years ago:

"Catalani, Pasta, Sontag, Malibran, Grisi, Taglioni, Rubini, Mario, Tamburini, Lablache, cum multis aliis, have received their thousands, and tens of thousands: but, until the Jenny Lind mania left every thing else at an immeasurable distance, Paganini obtained larger sums than had ever before been received in modern times. He came with a prodigious flourish of trumpets, a vast continental reputation, and a few personal legends of the most exciting character. It was said that he had killed his wife in a fit of jealousy, and made fiddlestrings of her intestines; and that the devil had composed a sonata for him in a dream, as he formerly did for Tartini. When you looked at him, you thought all this, and more, very likely to be true. His talent was almost supernatural, while his 'get up,' and 'mise en scene,' were original and unearthly, such as those who saw him will never forget, and those who did not can with difficulty conceive. The individual and his performance were equally unlike anything that had ever been exhibited before. No picture or description can convey an adequate idea of his entrance and his exit. To walk simply on and off the stage appears a commonplace operation enough, but Paganini did this in a manner peculiar to himself, which baffled all imitation. While I am writing of it, his first appearance in Dublin, at the great Musical Festival of 1830, presents itself to 'my mind's eye,' as an event of yesterday. When he placed himself in position to commence, the crowded audience were hushed into a deathlike silence. His black habiliments; his pale, attenuated visage, powerfully expressive; his long, silky, raven tresses, and the flash of his dark eye, as he shook them back over his shoulders; his thin, transparent fingers, unusually long; the mode in which he grasped his bow, and the tremendous length to which he drew it; and, climax of all, his sudden manner of placing both bow and instrument under his arm, while he threw his hands behind him, elevated his head, his features almost distorted with a smile of ecstasy, and his very hair instinct with life, at the conclusion of an unparalleled fantasia! And there he stood, immovable and triumphant, while the theatre rang again with peals on peals of applause, and shouts of the wildest enthusiasm! None who witnessed this will ever forget it, nor are they likely again to see the same effect produced by mere mortal agency.

"The one string feat I always considered unworthy this great master of his art. It has been done by fifty others, and is at best but an imperfect exhibition on a perfect instrument; a mere piece of charlatanerie, or theatrical 'gag,' to use a professional term, sufficiently intelligible. There have been, and are, mighty musicians on the violin. Spagnoletti, De Beriot, Ole Bull (who according to some plays without any string at all), Sivori, Joachim, Ernst, Levey, &c. &c., are all in the list of great players; but there never was more than one Paganini; he is unique and unapproachable.

"In Dublin, in 1830, Paganini saved the Musical Festival, which would have failed but for his individual attraction, although supported by an army of talent in every department. All was done in first-rate style, not to be surpassed. There were Braham, Madame Stockhausen, H. Phillips, De Begnis, &c. &c., Sir G. Smart for conductor, Cramer, Mori, and T. Cooke for leaders, Lindley, Nicholson, Anfossi, Lidel Hermann, Pigott, and above ninety musicians in the orchestra, and more than one hundred and twenty singers in the chorus. The festival was held in the Theatre-Royal,[Pg 169] then, as now, the only building in Dublin capable of accommodating the vast number which alone could render such a speculation remunerative. The theatre can hold two thousand six hundred persons, all of whom may see and hear, whether in the boxes, pit, or galleries. The arrangement was, to have oratorios kept distinct on certain mornings, and miscellaneous concerts on the evenings of other days. The concerts were crushers, but the first oratorio was decidedly a break down. The committee became alarmed; the expenses were enormous, and heavy liabilities stared them in the face. There was no time to be lost, and at the second oratorio, duly announced, there stood Paganini, in front of the orchestra, violin in hand, on an advanced platform, overhanging the pit, not unlike orator Henley's tub, as immortalized by the poet. Between the acts of the Messiah and the Creation, he fiddled 'the Witches at the Great Walnut Tree of Benevento,' with other equally appropriate interpolations, to the ecstatic delight of applauding thousands, who cared not a pin for Hadyn or Handel, but came to hear Paganini alone; and to the no small scandal of the select few, who thought the episode a little on the north side of consistency. But the money was thereby forthcoming, every body was paid, the committee escaped without damage, and a hazardous speculation, undertaken by a few spirited individuals, was wound up with deserved success.

"When the festival was over, the town empty, and a cannon-ball might have fired down Sackville-street, without doing much injury, Paganini was engaged by himself for a series of five performances in the theatre. For this he received £1,143. His dividend on the first night's receipts amounted to £330 (horresco referens)! without a shilling of outlay incurred on his part. He had the lion's share with a vengeance, as the manager cleared with difficulty £200. The terms he demanded and obtained were a clear two-thirds of each night's receipts, twenty-five guineas per night for the services of two auxiliaries, worth about as many shillings, the full value allowed for every free ticket, and an express stipulation that if he required a rehearsal on a dark morning, when extra light might be indispensable, the expense of candles should not fall on him—a contingency which by no possible contrivance could involve a responsibility exceeding five or six shillings."


[23] A current is supposed to flow constantly from the Pacific through the North-West Passage into the Atlantic.


The Stamford Mercury gives an interesting account of the life and fortunes of a young woman of that neighborhood who rose to a high station by means of her personal attractions, and, after a checkered life, died in Italy a few weeks ago. She was the daughter of John Peele, a small farmer at Corringham, near Gainsborough, who eked out a somewhat declining livelihood by dealing in horses, &c., having previously been in better circumstances. Being an only daughter, and aware that she possessed no small share of rustic charms, she resolved to try her fortune in a higher sphere. She became a dressmaker in Gainsborough, and resided subsequently in Hull, and it is said as housemaid in a good family in London, where her attractions obtained for her the attentions of a person of rank, to whom she afterwards averred she was married; and she from that time occupied a position where her fortunes led her into contact with some of the highest classes. A few years afterwards she astonished her former companions by appearing with her carriage and livery servants in the character of chère amie to Mr. Fauntleroy, then a flourishing banker in London. The riches of the banker were of a doubtful character, however; some time afterward she was convicted of forgery, and paid the penalty with his life. Affected by the ruin, but not participating in the crime of Fauntleroy, she struggled bravely with fate, and generally maintained a fair appearance in society both in London and Paris. She shortly reappeared in her native county as Duchess of Palata. At this time the fortunes of her family had reduced them to be the occupants of a small cottage at Morton, and age rendering her father incapable of active exertion, he filled the humble office of rural postman. To her honor it should be recorded that she enabled her parents to pass the remainder of their days in comfort. Six or seven years ago she again visited her native place, a widow, his grace the Duke of Palata having paid the debt of nature. Her mother she left at Morton, paid the last duties to her father (somewhat ostentatiously), and volunteered her assistance to promote the advancement of her female relatives. Again, however, "a change came o'er the spirit of her dream;" and some three or four years ago the public journals announced her marriage to the son of an Irish clergyman of good family. In this character, accompanied by her niece as femme de chambre, but not by her husband, she once more visited Gainsborough and the scenes of her youth; after making her mother an allowance, she again departed for Italy, in good health; but death, which spares neither rank nor character, has closed the "last scene of all, in this strange eventful history."

The author of the "Nibelungenlied" is unknown, and, whether it be the work of one poet, of two, or twenty, is still a matter of doubt, among German critics. That the Nibelungenlied has been extensively interpolated, is, I believe, agreed on all hands; we may conclude as much, from having reason to believe that it was handed down for some time (how long, nobody knows for certain), by oral tradition, and what effect such a state of things may have on popular poetry, we may readily collect from what Bishop Percy and Sir Walter Scott have told us of the variations in the old ballads of England and Scotland. Lachmann attributes it to the thirteenth century.

[Pg 170]

Original Correspondence.

Paris, Dec. 2, 1850.

From time immemorial, no one knows why (for the legends which recount her history leave it doubtful whether she performed on any instrument), St. Cecilia has been chosen by musicians as their patron saint; and the musicians of Paris, on the approach of winter, always celebrate a mass, in music, to her honor, and for the benefit of the distressed members of their body. Not that they entertain any exaggerated idea of the consoling powers of the musical art, or hope to relieve the positive sufferings of poverty and destitution by any combination of sounds, no matter how harmonious; but this festival being held in the church of St. Eustache, the largest in Paris, and all lovers of music being so eager to gain admission, that the immense aisles of this grand old pile (which will contain five thousand persons), are always crowded to overflowing on these occasions, every one paying a franc for his admission: the sum thus gained, together with the collections taken up in the middle of the service, by the committee of ladies chosen for that purpose (who go round among the crowd, preceded by the beadle, and followed by two or three attendant gentlemen, carrying a little embroidered bag of a particular shape, used for that purpose, in which they receive the contributions of the benevolent), constitute a fund, from which many an unfortunate or superannuated brother of the tuneful craft obtains relief.

This vast building, with its lofty arches, is admirably calculated for the performance of grand religious compositions; the effect of the music being enhanced by the aspect of the building, and the accessories of sculpture, painting, and carving, which render this church one of the richest in the capital.

To obtain places on any occasion of the kind, it is necessary to go an hour or two in advance; and the gradual filling of the aisles is one of the most curious scenes which a stranger can contemplate. As there are no pews, each person, on entering, helps himself or herself to a chair, which he holds aloft over the heads of his already seated neighbors, as he slowly forces his way onward through their serried ranks, until he espies some unappropriated gap into which he can insinuate his chair and himself; the police and the beadles always taking care to keep a little pathway, just large enough to squeeze through, open all through the outer aisle that runs round the church. For the unfortunate people who form the walls of this pathway, the process of filling is a severe infliction; the uninterrupted stream of in-comers, forcing their way along with a ruthless disregard of the shoulders of those between whom they pass, is really, (especially when the in-comer happens to be a very stout man, or a very fat lady, enveloped in an unusual quantity of drapery,) almost overpowering. Every now and then the beadle comes along, rapping his silver-headed cane on the pavement, and crying, "Way, there! keep out of the path!" and escorting a party of privileged individuals for whom seats have been reserved; and, as the beadle is always tall and stout, and always forces his way through in defiance of apparent impossibilities, a chorus of murmurs accompanies his progress. The beadle is a very grand personage, and his appearance sufficiently indicates this fact. He wears a cocked hat, covered with silver lace, and decorated with nodding white plumes; a scarf of crimson velvet, stiff with embroidery in silver thread, covers the upper part of his person; black velvet smalls, fastened at the knee with silver buckles, white silk stockings and gloves, and enormous buckles in his polished shoes, complete his attire. He wears a massive silver chain round his neck; and a sword hangs at his side to strike terror into the hearts of all beholders. Besides the grand beadle, there are several minor ones, dressed in black, but wearing heavy silver chains; gens d'armes also are always present, and often soldiers, who mount guard, musket in hand, at all the doorways, and on the steps of the chancel.

When these sapient guardians of the peace perceive that as many have been admitted as can possibly be squeezed into the building, they shut the doors; and the process of distribution goes on until the mass is equalized throughout the edifice; a task of no small difficulty, as the portions of the building contiguous to the doors are always densely packed at an early period, so that the greater number have to pass through these crowded centres to gain the remoter parts of the church. Meantime people chat, and look about them, amusing themselves as they best can; and the sonorous edifice echoes with the footsteps of the moving mass. But at length the noise subsides; the "organ utters its voices," and a hush, intense, unbroken, falls on the vast assembly. The glorious music peals through the vaulted aisles, and swells upward to the arching roof, pervading every nook and corner of the fane; and so perfect is the stillness that one would think the winged notes the only living things within its precincts.

On Friday last this annual solemnity was celebrated as usual at St. Eustache; the mass, composed by Adam, a very noble and beautiful composition, was admirably executed by a choir of two hundred and fifty singers, and a band of one hundred musicians, including the whole orchestra of the Opera Comique, and the best performers from the Italian opera. The solos were sung by Mesdames Grimm and Couraud, and by Bassine and Chapuis, the latter being one of the best tenors in the city. Some of the quartettes, with accompaniments of harps and wind instruments, were indescribably beautiful.

The Archbishop of Paris made an elegant little address, in which he spoke of art in Pagan[Pg 171] and in Christian days, and of its mission in the present; and winding up with an appeal to the liberality of his hearers on behalf of the charitable idea which had prompted this performance. The Archbishop is a man of mild and grave countenance, but his dress was very inharmonious. He wore a surplice of very rich lace, a cape of violet silk, and a scarf richly embroidered in gold, which was all very pretty, but his arms and hands were encased in sleeves, finished with gloves, of scarlet cloth, which showed through the lace sleeves of the surplice, and gave the hands a very frightful appearance. He wore a little round cap on the top of his head, a golden crucifix on his bosom, and an enormous gold ring on his right hand. He spoke very slowly, screaming rather than speaking, in order to make himself heard in the distant parts of the building. The service lasted two hours, and yielded several thousand francs.

The Duchess of Narbonne, famed for her benevolence, was so desirous to aid on this occasion, that though unable, on account of her great age, to go among the crowd making the guest, as it is termed, she held a bag at one of the great doors, adding to the sum she thus received, a thousand francs as her own contribution, and a hundred francs for her chair, for which the ordinary price is two sous.

The musicians are not alone in their preparations for winter. The shopkeepers are just beginning the periodic display which betokens the coming on of the holidays: and conspicuous among the novelties whose appearance thus indicate the approach of Christmas, is a new style of porcelain, of English invention, which imitates with great success the antique marble vases, pitchers, &c., of classic days. Many of these objects are of great beauty; the creamy hue of the ware itself, slightly translucent, the graceful simplicity of their forms, and the delicate mouldings of classical designs in bass-relief with which they are adorned, producing an admirable effect, highly creditable to English taste.

While modern art is thus successfully emulating the symmetrical achievements of ancient times, a relic of great interest, recalling the romantic age of Spanish history, has just been unexpectedly brought to light. Some workmen, employed in making repairs in the Guildhall of Burgos, in Spain, have recently discovered the tomb of the Cid, so renowned in ancient story; a tomb whose very existence was unknown. An old chest, long considered as mere rubbish, and on which stood the antique chair from which, in other days, the Counts of Castille gave judgment, having been opened through the curiosity of these workmen, was found to contain the remains of Don Rodrigo Campeador, and his wife Chimena, immortalized in ancient legend, in the verses of Guilhen de Castro, of Corneille, and in our own days, in the graceful writings of Mrs. Hemans. The remains of the renowned hero and his beautiful spouse are to be removed to the church of San Gadeo, where a suitable monument will be erected to their memory.

The following incident, connected with the two prevailing manias of the day, lapdogs and balloon-ascensions, is just now amusing the gay circles of this gossiping capital.

It seems that Madame de N., the accomplished and beautiful wife of a triple millionaire of the quartier St. Honore, equally renowned for the charms of her wit, and for the intensity of her passion for the barking pets so dear to Parisian hearts, had taken a violent fancy (shared by half Paris) to a certain tiny gray spaniel, the property of one of the most admired of the innumerable representatives of Albion at this time here congregated, the beautiful and distinguished Lady R., whose intimacy was assiduously cultivated by Madame de N., all for the love of the little gray spaniel.

Sylphide, the spaniel in question, was in sooth well calculated to make havoc in hearts susceptible to canine charms. Her glossy fur, combed, bathed, and perfumed every day with the utmost care, was of the most delicate mouse-color, and softer than silk; her lustrous eyes sparkled like jewels, and her expressive face, with the delicate drooping ears that adorned her graceful head, were the realization of the most ideal dream of little-doggish beauty; her tail was perfection; her slender legs, in their light electric movements, hardly touched the ground; and the dainty way in which she raised her charming little paws from the sidewalk, when, by some rare chance (attired in her newest paletot of the finest merino, lined with wadded silk, and trimmed with a rich braid, her neck encircled with a silver collar, whose burnished chain was attached to her mistress's waist), she honored the sidewalk with their pressure, was so irresistibly bewitching, that all the fair round arms of Paris opened spontaneously at the sight, as though to offer a nestling-place to the little beauty, and raise her from a contact unworthy of so peerless a creature.

Any price, no matter how exorbitant, that could have been asked for this little paragon, Madame de N. would very gladly have paid; but, unhappily, Sylphide was not to be sold: Lady R. was very fond of her, and never seemed to understand the various hints thrown out from time to time, with the utmost tact and delicacy, but still quite intelligibly, by Madame de N.; and all that the latter could do was to bring her utmost power of petting to bear on the subject of her adoration, trusting to some unlooked-for stroke of good fortune to aid her in the accomplishment of her heart's desire.

Sylphide was excessively fond of sugar-plums (in which she was a great connoisseur), and also of fresh brioche, crumbs of which she would eat, in the most charming manner, from the snowy hand of her admiring friend; and as the bonbonnière of Madame de N. was always well supplied with her favorite dainties, Sylphide, who, on her side, was not ungrateful,[Pg 172] soon contracted a lively affection for Madame de N. and her bonbonnière.

Such was the position of affairs, when an incident occurred which produced a total estrangement between the two ladies. M. de S., a gentleman well known in the diplomatic circles, whom Madame de N. had long numbered among her conquests, fascinated by the charms of the fair islander, deserted his brilliant countrywoman, and ranged himself among the satellites of her rival. And by a curious coincidence, at the very time that M. de S. quitted thus abruptly the orbit of Madame de N., the Prince of ——, who had hitherto been one of the brightest luminaries in the train of Lady R., left her ladyship to lay his homage at the feet of the charming Parisian. But the acquisition of the Prince seems to have failed to console the latter for the loss of a knight who had so long worn her colors; and the defection of M. de S. drew from her an expression of resentment towards her rival, which the mutual friend to whom these angry feelings had been confided, lost no time in repeating to the object of her displeasure. But Lady R., so far from being affected by the indignation of Madame de N., merely replied, with a careless shrug of her handsome shoulders, "Mais, ma chère, she has really nothing to complain of; all the world knows that 'exchange is no robbery!'"

At this time a magnificent bracelet, the latest achievement of the wonder-working atèliers of Froment & Meurice, had been the object of Lady R.'s most violent desire; but her lord, who was subject to occasional attacks of a malady not uncommon to the husbands of beautiful and fashionable ladies, was just then suffering from an attack of jealousy so acute, that, to the despair of Lady R., he utterly refused to gratify her desire to become the possessor of this costly ornament; and the lady, after having vainly called to her aid all the force of her address, and all the charms of her eloquence, found herself obliged, though with a heavy heart, to renounce the idea of its acquisition.

Lady R.'s desire for this bracelet, and its disappointment, were no secret to Madame de N.; and on learning, from the gossiping confidant, the response made by her rival to her complaint, a sudden thought darted through her mind. "Chère amie," said she to the confidant, "I beg you to say to her ladyship, that, since such is her opinion, I hold her to the acceptance of the consequences of her maxim."

The confidant lost no time in delivering this message, to which Lady R., thinking only of her host of admirers, laughingly replied, that Madame de N. was quite at liberty to make any practical application of the principle that she pleased.

Within two hours from the reception of this challenge, the beautiful bracelet, inclosed in an elegant case, on whose lid the initials of Lady R., surrounded by her crest, were engraved in letters of gold, had passed from the jeweller's show-rooms to the boudoir of Madame de N., who thenceforth, by means of an espionage that followed every movement of her rival, kept her constantly in view. At length the tournament, to be followed by the balloon-ascension (held a week or two ago in the Champ de Mars), was announced to the great delight of the spectacle-loving public; and having learned that the fair Englishwoman was to be present in an open carriage, Madame de N. determined to avail herself of this occasion to execute her scheme.

Accordingly on the appointed day, the bracelet, in its elegant case, being placed in the carriage beside her, and the coachman duly instructed in the part he was to play, Madame de N., holding in her hand her bonbonnière, supplied with fresh crumbs of the most delicate brioche, followed, at short distance, the carriage of her rival to the Champ de Mars, and took her stand just in the rear of her ladyship's phaeton.

Lady R. was in excellent spirits, receiving the homage of a crowd of attendant cavaliers; Sylphide, to the unspeakable joy of Madame de N., being seated on the front seat nearest her carriage.

Madame de N. waited patiently through the various evolutions of the gorgeous scene; and, at its close, when the great balloon of M. Poitevin rose majestically from the field, surrounded by its graceful band of nymphs that seemed to float, self-sustained, in the air, their silver wands and wreaths of flowers shining in the light of the setting sun, when all eyes followed the aëronauts, and deafening acclamations rent the air, in less time than we take in recounting the movement, the carriage of Madame de N. advanced to the side of Lady R.'s; Sylphide, attracted by the well-known bonbonnière, leapt lightly into the outstretched arms of her friend; and Madame de N. depositing the morocco case on the very spot Sylphide had quitted, bowed gracefully to her rival, and drove rapidly away, before Lady R. had had time to comprehend what was passing.

Great was her ladyship's amazement, as may well be supposed; and great, for the first few moments, was also her indignation; but the mystery was soon explained; for, in opening the case, which occupied Sylphide's vacant place, and which was unmistakably intended for her, she perceived the rich bracelet she had so much wished for, and beside it, the card of Madame de N., on which was written, in pencil, these words, which contained the key of the enigma, "Exchange is no robbery."

A hearty laugh, which she tried in vain to repress, broke from the lips of the fair lady; much to the astonishment of the gentlemen who had witnessed the scene, and to whom, notwithstanding their eager inquiries, Lady R. very naturally declined giving any explanation of the affair.

I shall observe your instructions, to keep you advised of whatever occurs here in the middle of the world.


[Pg 173]

Authors and Books.

The German book trade has, for some months, been fairly overwhelmed with books upon Hungary. We notice among the latest, "Flowers from Hungarian Battlefields," a collection of novelettes, with scenes drawn from real life in the late war, by Sajó, one of the most popular writers of Hungary. The stories are spirited and vivid. "Confessions of a Civilian," and "Confessions of a Soldier," are two books, of which the last named has been for some time before the public, and has excited attention by the thoroughness of its absolutist tendencies. The Civilian is the opposite of the Soldier, being a liberal of the first stamp. Both these writers, however, oppose the present Austrian ministry. A German translation of Horwath's "History of the Hungarians" is coming out at Pesth in numbers, and is welcomed by the German critics. This is regarded by the most competent judges as an excellent work. "János the Hero," a Romance of Hungarian Peasant Life, by Alexander Petöfy, one of the most popular Magyar writers, is spoken of as a most successful delineation of national peculiarities. "The Revolution and the Jews in Hungary," is an interesting chapter out of the history of the Hungarian Jews, by J. Eichorn. The fidelity of the Hebrews to the cause represented by Kossuth and his associates, and defended by the entire nation, is as well known as the extortions with which the butcher Haynau attempted to punish their patriotism. Rerum Hungaricum Monumenta is the last work of the lamented antiquarian Eudlicher, and is designed to open to the literary world the authentic sources of early Hungarian history. It is, in short, a most valuable collection of ancient documents relating to the origin of the Magyars, their first settlement in Hungary, and their history under the native princes of the race of Arpad. One of the best results of this work will be the provocation of other savans to similar investigations, which cannot fail to throw light on many obscure historical questions.

A very interesting work has just made its appearance at Leipsic, giving an intimate though by no means flattering account of the condition of the Polish Population in Gallicia. The peculiarities of this race of people are described as wild barbarism combined with elegant politeness, dreamy melancholy, and practical cunning. The author was in Gallicia before the peasants' insurrection in 1846. He narrates a variety of the most striking scenes, which though highly colored are apparently true in the main. Among other things he gives an account of a dinner-party to which he was invited, at the house of a nobleman. The house stood in the midst of a scattered mass of outbuildings, none of which bore the slightest appearance of neatness, order, or comfort. Every thing, in fact, has the appearance of neglect and decay. Many of the walls are supported by props to prevent them from tumbling. Around the doors the slightest rain produces a disgusting morass, while the general aspect of the whole reminds the beholder of Attila's wooden palace in Pannonia, where he heaped up the booty of a world, and received the ambassadors of Rome. When the writer reached the door, he found his host with some other gentlemen waiting to receive him. The company was numerous, and all, especially the ladies, expensively dressed, in the last Parisian fashion, with abundant jewelry and ornaments. The saloon in which they were received was large but low, the walls covered with dirty paper, the floor of rough boards, the furniture of all sorts and sizes, and nowhere a trace of art or refined taste. The conversation was carried on in French, and the ladies exhibited a thorough acquaintance with Paris matters, notabilities, and gossip generally. At the table the drinking was almost incredible, and the topic of conversation, the emancipation of Poland. Every word was aimed at the conversion of the German guest. The hard treatment of the serfs was spoken of as necessary, as they must be kept in complete subjection in order to be made useful in the great work. The festivity grew more and more ardent, till at last one of the gentlemen took a shoe off from a lady's foot, filled it with wine, and after drinking from it himself, passed it to the others, so that all could pledge the ladies from such a cup. The next morning the stranger saw by chance a sight of another kind, as he was taking a walk. Behind a wall a man lay on the earth; another held fast his head, and a third his feet, while a fourth stood over him with a whip, laying on with all his might. The lord stood by in his dressing-gown, smoking a long pipe, and coolly directing the procedure. The guest turned away from the spectacle, but was told by his servant that this was the tenth man who had undergone the same punishment that morning. The offence was, that they had not begun work at sunrise. Of course a peasantry so treated could have no affection for their masters. All the work was done in the worst manner, while the lord was plundered in every way by his servants. Of the supplies for the family, more than half were regularly stolen, there being no supervision in the household. The extravagance of the masters was boundless, and when they got out of money they resorted to the Jews, who had the whole commerce of the country in their hands, besides having mortgages on most of the estates.

This is the merest outline of a small portion of the book. It renders more intelligible the atrocities which took place in the insurrection of 1846, and which the Austrian Government permitted, if they did not foment.[Pg 174]

One of the most remarkable philologists and travellers of the present day is the Hungarian Professor Reguly, a man as yet little known out of his own country and northern Europe. He has devoted himself a good deal to the exposition of the affinities between the Magyar and the Finnish languages, and his labors have impelled a number of learned Hungarians to the same study. In the year 1839 he left his country, and passed ten years in the north of Asia and Europe, mostly among the Finnish tribes of the Moguls, Ostiacks, Tsheremisses, Nordwins, &c., making himself familiar with their manners, customs, dialects, songs, and traditions, in order to attain a thorough personal acquaintance therewith. He also spent a long period in Kasan and St. Petersburgh, studying the other languages of Central Asia. His adventures during this time were, as may be supposed, remarkable. He suffered not only the privations and exposures inseparable from such an undertaking, but was also poorly supplied with money, and often in the greatest distress from that cause. Nothing but scientific enthusiasm carried him through, till he became acquainted with some Russian savans, and a Russian Councillor named Balugyanszky, who were of great assistance to him. He left his home a vigorous young man, and comes back broken down in strength and health. His investigations have related not only to philology, but to geography and ethnography. He has penetrated farther into the north of Asia than any previous traveller. On his return, at St. Petersburgh, he prepared, at the special request of the Geographical Society, a vast map of Northern Asia along the Ural Mountains, between 58 and 70 deg. north latitude, and 72 and 80 deg. east longitude, giving about five hundred localities. This map is made on the largest scale, containing sixteen large quarto sheets. The St. Petersburgh Gazette says of it, that it has proved Reguly to be the discoverer of a vast territory for Russia. He is now at Pesth, engaged in preparing for publication the fruits of his ten years' absence from home. He will treat of the languages of the European and Asiatic Finnish tribes, their grammar and vocabularies, with constant regard to the analogies of the Magyar tongue. By way of introduction he will first publish a special work, containing his philosophical views on the organism of language. After these philological treatises he will print a series of ethnographic works on the various races among which he has lived, with collections of their songs and traditions, and finally a detailed narrative of his travels, with a condensed account of their scientific results. The conclusion of his philological studies is briefly, that the Central-Asiatic, or as it might be called, the Ural-Altaic group of languages, is divided into six branches or families, namely, the language of the Mandshu Tartars, the Mongols, the Turkish-Tartar tribes, the Samoyedes, the Fins, and the Magyars. These families have however no nearer relation to each other than the individual tongues of the Indo-European group, as the Indian, the Romanic, German, Celtic, Slavic, and Persian languages. Still he regards the Magyar and Finnic languages as having greater mutual affinities than the others, though not to such a degree that one of these races of men can be supposed to be derived from the other. He rather supposes all of the races whose languages form the Central-Asiatic group to have sprung from an original race, which was probably Scythian.

The Austrian government has just set on foot an enterprise which promises to be of use to both Literature and Science. The plan is, to prepare and publish at the expense of the Imperial Treasury, a great work on the ethnography of the Empire, and all savans, teachers, artists, poets, of every race, are invited to furnish materials. It is designed to give a complete account of the origin, history, manners, language, character and condition of each of the many tribes and peoples included under the Austrian sceptre. This will be combined of course with descriptions of the country, scenery, climate, soil, minerals, and natural and industrial productions of each region. It is supposed that the whole will be completed in eight big volumes. It will be accompanied by a vast ethnographic map, which is now being prepared with great energy under the superintendence of the Minister of Commerce.

Karl Gutzkow is one of the most prolific and popular novel and playwrights now living in Germany. As to his last work, Die Ritter vom Geiste (The Knights of the Spirit), of which only the first volume has been published, the critics entertain the most contradictory opinions. Some exclaim at its great length, which indeed is rather terrific: there are to be nine books, and the first occupies the whole of the first volume. Others are charmed with the skill with which the details of the work are wrought up, and the great variety of persons who figure in the story. The author has certainly laid out all his strength in this book, which is designed to reproduce the present age in all the contradictions of its doctrines and the complexity of its tendencies. But instead of seizing these in some central and vital point, and setting them forth in a work whose very simplicity would conceal its depth from most readers, Gutzkow has adopted the easier and more clumsy method of multiplying his characters and complicating the actions of his drama. Thus it is hardly possible for it not to be tedious and a failure. But we can speak of it more fairly when it is farther advanced.

Dr. Neander's Library is advertised for sale by auction at Berlin, but our correspondent thinks it will be saved from the hammer by a private subscription, which will secure it to the University.[Pg 175]

Karl Simrock has just brought out at Frankfort a new collection of German Popular Songs, not obsolete or artistic poems, but such as still live among the people, and are familiar to every class. "Among Volkslieder," he says in his preface, "I include only such as have proceeded directly from the people, and still bear the tokens of their origin, in their unsophisticated form, and simple, hearty language. The pieces of cultivated poets which have found access and become loved with the people, are reserved for a future collection of favorite German songs. The distinction here hinted at between the people's songs and popular songs is not generally understood. All previous collections have confused the two, and some even have not a single production of the people. For example, Des Knaben Wunderhorn, whose great merit must be recognized, contains antique poems which by no means issued from among the people." In another place he says: "The songs here collected and arranged have been newly written down, literally from the mouths of the people; and where they could not be procured in this way, have been corrected by comparison of all earlier versions. So that as they here stand, they are in a sort my own property." The work is spoken of by competent critics as perfectly successful. We believe that Simrock, who is perhaps better qualified for the undertaking than any other man in Germany, intends in a future edition to publish the melodies of the songs along with the words.

Belgian Literature is a standing joke with the authors of Paris, and not without reason, for the majority of the books printed by the publishers of Belgium, are pirated from their French neighbors. There is, however, such a thing as a Belgian literature, though it is not very extensive, and one of its chief ornaments is Professor Borgnel, of Liege, best known as the author of a Historie des Belges à la fin du dix-huilième Siècle, published some six years since, to which he is about to bring out an addition, carrying the history back to the beginning of the same century. He has also been occupied for several years with the history of the Flemish Provinces, under the domination of the Spaniards, and has a work on that subject in preparation. The Introduction to it appeared not long since among the Memoirs of the Brussels Academy, where it is entitled: Philippe I. et la Belgique. In treating a subject which the masterly pen of Schiller has already rendered familiar to the world, Prof. Borgnel does not attempt to imitate the ardent and splendid eloquence of that great poet and historian; Borgnel's merits are distinctness in his outlines, remarkable clearness of arrangement, perfect impartiality towards individuals and parties, and conscientious use of materials. Of these he has had a greater variety, including many manuscripts not before brought to light, than any previous writer.

Among the new books announced in London is Notes on North America, Agricultural, Social, and Economical, by J. F. W. Johnston, author of "Lectures on Agricultural Chemistry." We may anticipate something of value from a man of his studies and well earned reputation. Professor Johnston passed the greater portion of his time, while in America, in the British Provinces. He had been led to believe that they offered the most interesting field for his professional observation. When he came into New-England, New-York and Pennsylvania, he was continually surprised at the perfection and the success of our agriculture. He regretted only, that the mistake into which he had been led by British travellers, had detained him from the United States until the period of his absence from home was nearly expired. Professor Johnston's lectures in New-York were given under singular disadvantages, but the too small audiences who heard them were pleased and instructed. All who became acquainted with him were impressed with a belief of his candor and his talents. We hope to see immediately an edition of his book in this country.

In Geissen, Prof. Liebig, has published a Review of the Progress of Chemistry, Mineralogy, and Geology, in the year 1849. He has been assisted in its preparation by Professor Kopp and several other savans connected with the University at Giessen. It is marked by his usual completeness, breadth of scope, and exhaustive treatment of each particular subject. Liebig is now engaged in preparing a new series of Chemical Letters, which will be specially devoted to the growth of this science, in connection with the history of mental progress in general. Professor Knobel, of the same University, has also issued a work on the Genealogies of the Book of Genesis, which excites remark by the thoroughness of its historical investigations. Leopold Schmid's last work is on the Spirit of Catholicism, and also highly spoken of by both Catholic and Protestant writers. This author holds a high rank in the Catholic literature of Germany, and has been chosen Bishop of Mayence. Professor Hillebrand is occupied with a revision of his highly esteemed History of German national literature since Lessing. There seems to be no reason to fear that Giessen is doing less than its share toward keeping the ocean of German books up at a high-water mark.

Beranger, the veteran chansonier, is now occupying himself in writing biographies, anecdotes, criticisms, &c., of the public men with whom, in the course of his long career, he has been in contact. It is five years since he announced his intention of giving such a work to the public, and he thinks it will possess great historical value, while of his songs, which alone will convey his name to the last ages in which the language of France is spoken, he thinks but "indifferently well."[Pg 176]

The house, at Paris, in which Eugene Sue laid some of the most exciting scenes of his "Wandering Jew," has lately been advertised for sale, and has been visited by crowds of curious loungers. It is known as the Hotel Serilly, and is situated at No. 5 Rue Neuve Saint François, in the quarter called the Marais. At the time the "Wandering Jew" was published, the street was often filled by groups of gazers at the strange old edifice, which had been so exactly described by the romancer, that no one could mistake it. Some even ventured to knock at the door and seek further information. They were received by a mysterious and taciturn old Hebrew, who looked as if he himself had charge of the great Rennepeal treasure, and three-quarters of the visitors went away convinced that they had seen the veritable Samuel himself. Now that the whole house has been thrown open to the public, there have been found under it vast sub-cellars extending under the large garden in the rear, and in these cellars are seven wells, partially filled up, but with walls of careful masonry, and other indications that they were of great depth and great utility. The opinion was at once set on foot by the explorers, that the millions of the treasure had been concealed in one of these wells. The fact is, that the house formerly belonged to a Protestant family which suffered extreme persecution after the revocation of the Edict of Nantes, and which doubtless found the subterranean passages extremely convenient. In the year 1791, it was inhabited by the revolutionist Carnot.

The Count de Tocqueville, a relative of the author of "Democracy in America," has just published a historical work on the Reign of Louis XVI. The writer, an old man almost sinking into the grave, enjoys the advantage of having himself witnessed and even shared in a part of the events he describes. He was intimate with Malasherbes, and personally devoted to the unfortunate Louis. Of his ability as a writer, a former work on the Reign of Louis XV. furnished proofs which are repeated in the present volume. Of course he does full justice to the amiable personal qualities of Marie Antoinette and her husband, without doing injustice to their faults. But he shows that after all what was charged upon them as political crime, was but the consequence of long-standing causes, over which they had no control, or even of measures of reform to which with the best intentions, they had given their consent. In speaking of the mission of Franklin at the French Court, M. de Tocqueville gives some interesting details. "At Paris," he says, "the zeal for the cause of the insurgents constantly increased. The women who exercised a great influence in the reign of Louis XVI., became passionate supporters of the Americans, and made aiding them a question of honor. The simple manners of their envoys,—their hair without powder, their citizens' dress, pleased by a sort of piquant novelty. All who approached Franklin were charmed by his wit. In him people venerated the founder of the liberty of a great nation, and even grew enthusiastic in behalf of that liberty." M. de Tocqueville shows however that the prime minister Maurepas only feared the Americans because he was embarrassed in his position, and thought to relieve himself by making war with England. But as there was no good reason for making such a war, the honesty of the King revolted at it. M. de Vergennes also said in the Council, that England would be much more weakened by a long war with her colonies, than by their loss. "But how," repeated all the women, "can we help embracing the cause of a people which sends us ambassadors without powder, and with shoe-strings, instead of buckles?" So weighty a reason turned the balance, and the war was declared. That war finished the ruin of the French monarchy, not only by inspiring the officers and soldiers sent to the United States with new ideas, but also by completing the exhaustion of its finances. With regard to the Revolution in which Louis XVI. lost his head, it is enough praise for our historian, that while he inclines always to the monarchical side, he is not altogether unjust to the popular virtues which shone with such rare brilliancy amid the gloom of that epoch.

The great work of J. G. Audubon and the Rev. Dr. Bachman, upon the "Viviparous Quadrupeds of North America," is much praised by those persons in Europe whose praise is of most value. The Athenaeum remarks that, hitherto, the mammalia of America have been known chiefly through descriptions by zoologists, in the Transactions of European Societies, and that no systematic attempt has been made to bring together into one connected view the very varied forms of animal life presented by this great continent, while these authors have not only used the materials which were at hand in the works of others, but have themselves observed with great diligence the habits of many of the creatures which they have described. "Their work is creditable to the United States, where a large number of subscribers have induced the authors to undertake it,—and a most valuable addition to our general natural-history literature." The geographical range within which the animals described in these pages are found is not that of the government of the United States merely; it comprehends Russian and British America, in fact, all the country which lies north of the tropics in the New World.

At the last Michaelmas Book Fair at Leipsic, the Catalogue contained the titles of 5,023 new works published in Germany since Easter. This is from twelve to fifteen hundred more than at any fair since the Revolution of 1848. A great number of these books are large and of remarkable merit, being in some sort, the accumulation of the more profound scientific labors of the past two years.[Pg 177]

The Baroness Von Beck has just published in London two volumes of "Personal Adventures" in the Hungarian war. She is herself a Hungarian, and she saw her husband fall while cheering his men to defend a barricade at Vienna. In this book Kossuth is her hero, her prophet, her demigod; and she sacrifices all other celebrities without compunction at the altar of his greatness. Dembinsky she treats with manifest injustice; Gēorgey comes out on her pages as a very Mephistopheles. Klapka himself does not escape without animadversion. But without adopting her opinions, either of the man she blames or the subject she discusses, it cannot be denied that she has great cleverness, and a wonderful power of exciting and interesting the reader.

A valuable scientific periodical is the Geographisches Jahrbuch for the Communication of all the more important New Investigations, edited by the distinguished Berghaus, and published by Perthes of Gotha. The last number has an article by the editor on the system of "Mountains and Rivers of Africa," which differs altogether from what is laid down in the present maps. The author lays down the river Nile as flowing from the N'Yassi, and as connected with a great number of rivers in Dar Fur, Waday, and Fertil, with relation to which only the vaguest views have hitherto been entertained. The article shows, too, that the newly discovered lake N'Gami, in Southern Africa, has been long known under the name of Nampur. The same number of the Jahrbuch also contains an article from the pen of the late lamented Albert Gallatin, on the climate of North America. This article was written in English, and was translated into German for the Jahrbuch.

Berghaus has also lately issued a complete work of the highest interest, especially now that so much attention is every where paid to Ethnographic studies. Its title is Grundlinien der Ethnographie (Outlines of Ethnography). It is in two parts, and contains a universal tabular description of all the races of the globe, arranged ethnographically and geographically, and according to languages and dialects, with a comparative view of their manners, customs, and habits. No person who undertakes to investigate the origin of the human family and the mutual relations of its different members, can afford to be without this work. Published in Stuttgart.

Berthold Auerbach has just brought out a little volume of tales, which we may well infer from his previous performances are charmingly replete with grace, good humor, and a keen perception of whatever is peculiar to his subject. The title of the book is Deutsche Abende (German Evenings). It contains three stories: "Nice People," "What is Happiness?" and "The Son of the Forester." Published at Mannheim.

Baron Sternberg, a dilettante book-maker of Germany, who generally resides at Berlin, has just added a new romance, or rather the beginning of one, to his previous publications. It bears the promising, if not pretentious title, of The German Gil Blas (published at Bremen), and claims to be comic, as a matter of course. As a whole, the book is a failure. Though there are passages here and there which may be read with satisfaction, there is not enough unity and connection between the different parts, and the humor is generally but a thin potation. It must be said, however, that the absence of continuous interest is the fault of most comic novels, as well as poems. Even the matchless works of Jean Paul grow tedious by the endeavor to read much of them at a time, a fact which may be ascribed to the sentimentality and mere fantastics with which the kernels of his wit are overburdened. It is certain that no German humorous work can be compared with those great originals in that kind, Gil Blas and Don Quixote, or even with the much inferior works of Smollett and Dickens. Baron Sternberg's last effort forms no exception to this remark, and there is little hope that the second and concluding volume, whose appearance in Germany ought to be made by this time, will prove superior to the first. His "Royalists," an anti-democratic novel, which he had the courage to publish in the chaos of 1848, and which excited much attention, and a great deal of severe criticism, was far better.

"The New Faith sought in Art," is the title of an anonymous little book lately issued at Paris, which, though not of great value, has more poetic originality of thought than is often found in printed pages. The author thinks that the time has gone by in which the subjects of art could properly be sought in the lives of saints and legends of the Church, and wishes to substitute for them the lives of artists and celebrated inventors, who have sprung from the bosom of the people. With this writer, every thing is democratic and popular. For him the people is alone King, and worthy of all honor. "Nothing," he says in one place, "is truer than the song of Beethoven. It is the song of life, the voice of truth, an infallible voice, which will create a world, and cause the old false world to crumble. Born of the people, the people sing in him, although they know him not." In painting, the heroes of the author are Ruysdael, Rembrandt, Claude-Lorraine, and Paul Potter.

The Poet Freiligrath has received orders to leave the village of Bilk, in the neighborhood of Dusseldorf; where he was residing, and to quit the Prussian territories. He will probably go back to England, where he passed some time in a counting-house or perhaps come to the United States, where he has several friends, to whom he has written of such an event as possible.[Pg 178]

In African Discovery greater advances have been made in the last two years than before since the journeys of the brothers Lander. We mentioned in the last International that the American traveller, Dr. W. Mathews, had been heard of at Vienna, and we now learn that he has been very successful in the five years of his adventure in the northern and central parts of the continent. Letters received in Berlin from Drs. Barth and Overweg, contain information of their having accomplished the journey across the Great Desert, or Sahara, and of their arrival near the frontiers of the kingdom of Aīr or Asben, (Aīr is the modern Tuarick, and Asben the ancient Sudan name), the most powerful in that part of Africa after Bornou, and never explored by Europeans. On the 24th of August—the date of their last letter—they were at Taradshit, a small place in about 20° 30' N. latitude, and 9° 20' longitude E. of Greenwich. Among their discoveries are some of peculiar interest, one of which is of several curious and very ancient sculptures, apparently of Egyptian origin. The King of Prussia has, at the instance of the Chevalier Bunsen and Baron Alexander von Humboldt, augmented the funds of the two travellers by a grant of 1,000 thalers.

While Richardson, Barth and Overweg have penetrated the terra incognita of the north, Dr. Krapf and the Rev. Mr. Rebmann have explored the region described on the common maps as the "Great Southern Sahara," and found it to be fertile, healthy, abounding in mountains, valleys and rivers, and inhabited by a race altogether superior to that which occupies the Atlantic coast. Mr. Mansfield Parkyns is endeavoring to cross the country southward from the Nile to the river Gambia; Mr. Charles Johnson is travelling in Abysinnia; Baron von Müller is conducting an expedition up the White Nile; and the American missionaries and colonists are gradually extending their knowledge over the various settlements on the eastern coast of the continent.

The Prussian Expedition to Egypt, Denkmaeler aus Ægypten und Æthiopien nach den Zeichnungen der von Sr. Majestat dem Könige von Preussen Friedrich Wilhelm IV. nach diesen Ländern gesendeten, und in den Jahren 1842-45, ausgefuhrten wissenschaftlichen Expedition: Herausgegeben von Dr. R. Lepsius; published at the expense and under the guarantee of the Prussian Government, will be completed in eighty parts, or eight hundred plates. Most of the plates are printed with tints, and many in the colors of the originals. This work forms a necessary completion of the celebrated work of the French Expedition under Napoleon. Parts I. to X. are now advertised as ready for subscribers, in London, at three dollars and a half each.

A new work on Africa, by H. C. Grund, is advertised at Berlin.

Almanacs for popular use, offer a means much used in France for the propagation of political, social and religious doctrines. Every sect and party issues its Almanac, and some issue several, crammed to the brim with the peculiar notions whose dissemination is wished for. One of the most successful for the year 1851, is the Almanach des Opprimés (The Almanac of the Oppressed). In fact, it is aimed wholly at the Society of Jesuits, whose history it exposes in the blackest colors. It begins with the early life of Loyola, depicts his debaucheries, his ambition, the religious mechanism invented by his enthusiastic and fanatical genius, the flexibility of his morality, and goes on to give an account of the intrigues and crimes of his successors in various countries and times, with an analysis of their books, their missions and their miracles. Another of these publications is called the Almanach du Peuple, containing a very great variety of articles of substantial value. Among the contributors are, F. Arago, Quinet, Charras, Carnot, Girardin, George Sand, Pierre Leroux, Dumil Aeur, E. Lithe, Mazzini, and other republicans distinguished in the political, literary and scientific world. This Almanac had the honor last year of being seized by the Government, but on trial before a jury it was acquitted of the charge against it, of being dangerous to society, and provoking citizens to hate the republic and despise the authorities.

A critic in the Allegemeine Zeitung, in noticing "Ottomar, a Romance from the Present Time," the last novel from the pen of Madame Von Zöllner, takes occasion to give some hard hits at women's novels in general. "It always must and always will be a failure," he says, "when a woman attempts to form a just conception of masculine character, and to put her conception into language. Female writers always comb out smoothly the flaxen hair of their heroes, and dress them up in the frockcoat of innocence. They go into raptures over a sort of green enthusiasm, and a romantic fantasticality of virtue, such as we godless fellows are not guilty of possessing; and in this way they turn out automatons which resemble nothing in earth, heaven, or elsewhere." The critic however admits that Madame Zöllner, who is undoubtedly one of the best living German novel writers, possesses remarkable and peculiar merits. No other woman occupies so high a place with the German public, except it be Fanny Lewald. Madame Zöllner is praised for the pure moral tone of her writings.

One of the most accomplished writers in France—M. de Cormenin—and one of the most spirituel of that spirituel nation, said at Frankfort, "It is true that it is difficult to abolish war, but it is far more difficult to abolish death; and yet if people would take the same pains to avoid the one as they did to escape the other, they would certainly accomplish their object."[Pg 179]

One of the most ardent and vigorous writers of Young France, Alphonse Esquiros, has brought out at Paris a new book called "The History of the Martyrs of Liberty." The author aims to follow the development of liberty in humanity; to expose the tie which unites ancient and modern society in historic solidarity; to determine the transformation of the doctrines, which, for a century past, have invaded the religious world under the name of philosophy, political economy, and socialism; to set forth the fertile sufferings which have brought about that double triumph of liberty in ideas and in facts, namely Christianity and the French Revolution; to indicate the questions yet undecided; and to call to their solution both the miseries of the laboring classes and the lights of science.

Whatever may be said of the more elaborate writings of George Sand, it is impossible for the most scrupulous critic to deny or resist the charm of her smaller works, such as the "Mosaic Workers," the "Devil's Love," and "Fadette." To these she has just added another, which is spoken of with the utmost delight by all who have read it, as a work of remarkable genius. It is intended for the use of children, and is called "The History of the veritable Gribonille." The text is accompanied by richly engraved illustrations, designed by Mr. Maurice Sand, the son, we believe, of the author. Why will not some American publisher give us a translation, with the original illustrations?

To the already immense literature of the French Revolution, we now have to signalize another addition, which is worth the attention of those who are not weary of books relating to that momentous epoch. It is a "Biography of Camille Desmoulins," by Ed. Fleury—an octavo volume, lately issued at Paris. The author discusses the history of this famous pamphleteer and revolutionary rhetorician, as an advocate defends a client before a jury.

The History of the Principles, Institutions and Laws of the French Revolution, from 1789 to 1800, is an anti-revolutionary work of elaborate character, and decided ability, published a few weeks since at Paris, by an anonymous author, who thinks he can do something toward getting the world right by rolling back some of its more recent gyrations.

A popular History of the French Revolution, from 1789 to 1799, written by Hippolite Magen, and lately published at Paris, in one volume, is having a great success among the laboring classes of Paris and other French cities. It is of course in favor of the Montangards.

A valuable manual for students of French history is M. Louis Tripier's collection of French Constitutions, since 1789, with the decrees of the Provisional Government of 1848. It has just been issued by Cotillon, at Paris.

Mirabeau, the great revolutionist, is the subject of a new work just published at Vienna, from the pen of Franz Ernst Pipitz, a native of that city, but now a teacher at the University of Zurich. It is in great part the result of original investigations, and in many particulars departs from the received biographies, while in others it casts a new light on facts previously known. The critics of Vienna speak in the highest terms of it, as worthy to be named along with the most brilliant French productions on the same subject. They are, however, bound to say the best thing possible for a book by a Viennese author, since they have but few to rejoice in.

The Memoirs of Massena, which have for some time been in course of publication at Paris, are at last completed, by the issue of the final volume, which contains the history of the campaign of 1810-11, in Portugal. No complete account of this campaign has ever before been published. The book also casts a great deal of light not merely on the history of the Marshal himself, but on the wars of Napoleon in general. It is founded on documents left by Massena, which have not before been published or consulted.

M. Cousin, who, after having exerted a more powerful influence in philosophy than any of his contemporaries, (though this influence was, in a large degree, secondary in its character), has recently been almost forgotten. We see by a paragraph in the Debats that he is collecting and editing all his various writings upon the subject of education. They will fill several volumes.

Another tribute to the memory of Louis Philippe, has just been offered by M. R. Paignon, who has collected and published a volume of the deceased King's thoughts and opinions on matters of State. This work exhibits the mental and political history of its subject in the best light, and has the merit of being arranged with care and fidelity.

M. Felix Pignory, of the Commission despatched by the French Government, in search of the tomb of Godfrey of Bouillon, has returned from Asia, and reports some curious discoveries relative to the object of the mission.

A new and enlarged edition of Zuinet's Genie des Religions has appeared at Paris.

The Political Maxims and the Private Thoughts of Frederick the Great is the title of a curious piece in the last number of Frazer's Magazine. It is unique as a sample of kingcraft; and every line supplies a proof of the candor, hypocrisy, unscrupulousness, sense of duty, courage, sensuality, and intellect, of the great Prussian, to whom are partially due the literary merits or demerits of the paper.[Pg 180]

The new edition of the Poems of Elizabeth Barrett Browning, contains besides many original pieces, her translation of the "Prometheus Bound," of Æschylus, never hitherto published, although, as she informs us, once privately circulated in another and less complete form. It bears no mark of a woman's hand: it is rugged, massive, and sublime, as befits the grand old fate drama which the genius of the Greek moulded out of the immortal agony of the beneficent Titan. From the new poems we select the following exquisite love sonnets, from a series scarcely inferior to those in which Shakspeare has given the history of his heart-life:

"I lift my heavy heart up solemnly,
As once Electra her sepulchral urn,
And, looking in thine eyes, I overturn
The ashes at thy feet. Behold and see
What a great heap of grief lay hid in me,
And how the red wild sparkles dimly burn
Through the ashen grayness. If thy foot in scorn
Could tread them out to darkness utterly,
It might be well perhaps. But if instead
Thou wait beside me for the wind to blow
The gray dust up, ... those laurels on thine head,
O my beloved, will not shield thee so,
That none of all the fires shall scorch and shred
The hair beneath. Stand further off, then! Go.
"Go from me. Yet I feel that I shall stand
Henceforward in thy shadow. Never more
Alone upon the threshold of my door
Of individual life, I shall command
The uses of my soul, nor lift my hand
Serenely in the sunshine as before,
Without the sense of that which I forbore,
Thy touch upon the palm. The widest land
Doom takes to part us, leaves thy heart in mine
With pulses that beat double. What I do
And what I dream include thee, as the wine
Must taste of its own grapes. And when I sue
God for myself, He hears that name of thine,
And sees within my eyes, the tears of two.
"Beloved, my beloved, when I think
That thou wast in the world a year ago,
What time I sat alone here in the snow,
And saw no foot-print, heard the silence sink
No moment at they voice; ... but link by link
Went courting all my chains, as if that so
They never could fall off at any blow
Struck by thy possible hand.... Why, thus I drink
Of life's great cup of wonder. Wonderful,
Never to feel thee thrill the day or night
With personal act or speech,—nor ever call
Some prescience of thee with the blossoms white
Thou sawest growing! Atheists are as dull,
Who cannot guess God's presence out of sight.
"First time he kissed me, he but only kissed
The fingers of this hand wherewith I write,
And ever since it grew more clear and white;
How to world greetings ... quick with its 'Oh, list,'
When the angels speak. A ring of amethyst
I could not wear there plainer to my sight
Than that first kiss. The second passed in height
The first, and sought the forehead, and half-missed,
Half falling on the hair. O, beyond meed!
That was the chrism of love, which love's own crown,
With sanctifying sweetness, did precede.
The third, upon my lips was folded down,
In perfect purple state! Since when, indeed,
I have been proud, and said, 'My love, my own.'"

The candidateship between Lord Palmerston and the historian Alison for the office of Lord Rector of the University of Glasgow, resulted in a majority for the latter, on the gross poll, of 69. As, however, of the "four nations" into which the students were distributed, each of the candidates had two, the election should have been decided by the vote of the present Rector, Mr. Macaulay; but he declines the duty, and would not go to the university during the contest.

The Official Gazette announces that "the Queen has been pleased to appoint Alfred Tennyson, Esq., to be Poet Laureate in ordinary to her Majesty, in the room of William Wordsworth, Esq., deceased." There have been poorer poets than Tennyson among the laureates; but this appointment does not and ought not to give much satisfaction. Mr. Tennyson had already a pension from the government, and was in no need of the salary of this office, as one or two others, and as we conceive, greater poets, are; and it had been hoped that the queen would appoint to the place the greatest poet of her own sex who has lived in England—Elizabeth Barrett Browning.

The original MS. of "Waverley,"—wholly in the handwriting of Sir Walter Scott,—the same which was sold in 1831 with the other MSS. of the series of novels and romances—has been presented to the Advocates' Library at Edinburgh, by Mr. James Hall, brother of the late Capt. Basil Hall. Several of the MSS. of Scott are in this country, having been sold here by Dr. Lardner, soon after his arrival here with Mrs. Heavyside.

Mr. Horace Mayhew, author of the metropolitan "Labor and the Poor" articles, has ceased to write for the London Morning Chronicle, the conductors of that journal wishing him to suppress, in his reports on the condition of the working classes, facts opposed to free trade. This appears to be characteristic of the advocates of that side.

D'Israeli has published an edition of his father's "Curiosities of Literature," with a "View of the Character and Writings of the Author." He is now engaged upon a Life of Lord William Bentinck, which he has undertaken at the request of the Duke of Portland. We do not think the author of the "Wondrous Tale of Alroy" will do very well in history.

The Earl of Carlisle has recently given two lectures before the Tradesmen's Benevolent Society of Leeds, and the Mechanics' Institute of the same city, upon the Scenes, Institutions, and Characteristics of the United States, which he visited when Lord Morpeth.

Leigh Hunt has probably done a foolish thing in again becoming an editor. He is too old. We have, by the last steamer, "Leigh Hunt's Journal: a Miscellany for the Cultivation of the Memorable, the Progressive, and the Beautiful"—certainly a characteristic title.

A Posthumous work of Joseph Balmas,—(the celebrated Spanish priest, whose book on Catholicism and Protestantism has lately been translated, and published in Baltimore, and who perished prematurely in 1848), has just been published. It is entitled Escritos Posthumos, Poesias Posthumos, and contains prose and verse on science, literature, and politics.[Pg 181]

The Death of the late Mrs. Bell Martin, at the Union Place Hotel, in this city, was briefly noticed in the last number of the International. It appears from a statement in the London Times that the vast estates known as the Connemara property, to which she had succeeded as the daughter and heiress of the late Mr. Thomas Martin, of Ballinahinch Castle, in Galway, was among the first brought into the new "Encumbered Estates Court," and has been for some months advertised for sale. The Dublin Evening Mail has the following remarks upon the melancholy history of Mrs. Martin, whose novel of "Julia Howard" must preserve for her a very distinguished rank among the literary women, of our time:

"The vicissitudes of life have seldom produced a sadder or more rapid reverse than that by which the fortunes of this excellent lady were darkened and overthrown. Born to a noble inheritance which extended over a territory far exceeding the domain of many a reigning German prince, her name was known throughout the United Kingdom as that of "the Irish heiress." Five years ago her expectancy was considered to be equivalent, over and above all encumbrances and liabilities, to a yearly income of 5,000l. Before two years of the interval had elapsed she found herself at the head of her patrimonial estates, without a shilling that she could call her own. The failure of the potato crop, the famine and pestilence which followed, the scourging laws enacted and enforced by an ignorant Legislature to redress the calamity, and the claims of money-lenders, swept every inch of property from under her feet. Her hopes and her prospects were for ever blighted. Her projects for the improvement of the wild district over which she had reigned as a sort of native sovereign were at an end; and she went forth from the roof of her fathers as a wanderer, without a home, and, as it would almost appear, without a friend. Never was hard fate less deserved; for her untiring and active benevolence had been devoted from her childhood to the comfort and relief of those who suffered, and her powerful and original mind was incessantly employed in devising means of moral and physical amelioration in the condition of the tenantry on her father's estates. She gave up her whole time to such pursuits, avoiding the haunts of fashion and those amusements which might be considered suitable to her age and place, that she might perform the various duties of physician, almoner, schoolmistress, and agricultural instructor. Her almost daily habit was to visit the poor and the sick in the remote recesses of that wild region, sometimes on foot—more frequently in her little boat, well provided with medicaments and food, which she impelled by the vigor of her own arm through the lakes which stretch along the foot of the mountains. How grievous it is to reflect that she should so soon have been driven across the ocean in search of a place to lay her head. The American editor intimates that the object of her voyage was to collect materials for literary works. We have no doubt that such was among her projects; for she was a very distinguished writer, and would by no means eat the bread of idleness or dependence; but there is reason to believe that it was a more stringent compulsion which obliged her, at an advanced period of the year, and in a peculiarly delicate situation, when even peasants remain on shore, to encounter the tedium and perils of a voyage in a sailing vessel. We have heard, in fact, from a quarter which ought to be correctly informed, that she was proceeding to the residence of a near relative of her father, with the intention of remaining there till some favorable change might come over the color of her life."

Our countrywoman, Mrs. Mowatt, has revised and partially rewritten her novels of "The Fortune Hunter," and "Evelyn, or the Heart Unmasked," and they have just been published in London. The Athenæum says of them:

"These tales give us a higher idea of Mrs. Mowatt's talents as an authoress, than her plays did. Taken in conjunction with those dramas, and with the pleasing powers as an actress displayed by the lady,—they not only establish a case of more than common versatility, but indicate that with labor and concentration, so gifted a person might have taken a high place, whether on the library shelf or on the stage. In another point of view, they are less agreeable. Alas, for those primitive souls, who with a perverse constancy may still wish to fancy America a vast New-England of simple manners and superior morals! The society which Mrs. Mowatt describes—whether in 'Evelyn,' which begins with a wedding out of Fleecer's boarding-house, or in 'The Fortune Hunter,' which opens with table-talk at Delmonico's—is as sophisticated as any society under which this wicked old world groans, and which our Sir E. Lytton and Mrs. Gore have satirized—or Balzac (to shame the French) has "shown up." Major Pendennis himself could hardly have produced anything more blasé in tone than some of the pictures of 'New-York Society' drawn by this American lady,—drawn, moreover, when the lady was young. Evelyn is married to a rich man, without her heart having any thing to say in the matter,—by a mother who is a superfine Mrs. Falcon:—and wretched mischief comes of it. Brainard, the fortune hunter, is a heartless and cynical illustration that a Broadway hunter can be as unblushingly mercenary, and as genteelly dishonorable as the veriest old Bond Street hack, bred up in the traditions of the Regency, who ever began life on nothing and a showy person—continued it on nothing and the reputation of fashion—and ended no one cares how or where. There are character, smartness and passion in both these tales—though a certain looseness of structure and incompleteness of style prevent us from being extreme in praising them, or from recommending them by quotation,—and though, as has been said, the tone and taste of the life which they describe must jar on the feelings of those who are unwilling to see the decrepitude of elderly civilization coming down upon a new country, ere its maturity has been reached—or even ere its youth has been sufficiently and steadily trained."

Mrs. Southworth, the authoress of "Retribution," "The Deserted Wife," &c., has a new novel in the press of the Appletons, entitled "Shannondale." Mrs. Southworth is the most popular of our female novelists, notwithstanding the doubtful morality of her works.[Pg 182]

Charles Mackay, who, two or three years ago, passed some months in New-York, and who is known for his very candid and intelligent book upon the United States, entitled "The Western World," has gone to India, as an agent of the Manchester Chamber of Commerce, for the purpose of inquiring into the state and prospects of Indian cotton cultivation. Mr. Mackay has had experience in the collection of statistical information; he has lived long enough abroad to know that essential differences sometimes lurk beneath external resemblances in the social arrangements of two countries, and to be on his guard against the erroneous inferences to which ignorance of this fact leads. He is naturally acute, energetic, and cautious. For the difficult task of investigating and reporting upon the condition of an important branch of industry, and the circumstances which are likely to promote or retard its progress among a community so different from the English as that of India, he is probably as well fitted as any man who could have been selected. The foundation of the British Indian empire and the establishment of the United States as an independent nation, were contemporary events. The loss of her American colonies helped to concentrate the attention and exertions of England upon her Indian dominions. The progress made by British India since 1760, in civilization, material wealth, and intelligent enterprise, is barely perceptible; while the United States have expanded from a few obscure colonies into a nation second only to Great Britain in the value and extent of their commercial relations, second to none in intelligence and successful enterprise. The Anglo-Norman inhabitants of the "Old Thirteen" provinces have made the valley of the Mississippi, and the prairies beyond it, which little more than half a century ago were mere wastes, the thronged abodes of a vigorous and wealthy European population. They have done this without the aid of the aboriginal tribes, who have proved irreclaimably addicted to their nomade habits. The Anglo-Normans who rule British India have had to deal with a country thickly peopled with races far advanced in civilization, though of a peculiar character; yet, in every respect, the results of their efforts lag far behind those visible in America. To place the difference in a most striking point of view, it is only necessary to contrast the cotton produce and the mercantile marine of British India with those of the United States. There is actually a more fully-developed steam navigation between Panama and California than between Bombay and China. The causes of these results are plain enough to us, but to the English they are enigmas. The mission of Mr. Mackay will scarcely end in a revelation of the truth, that liberty and independence have kept healthy the blood in the vigorous limbs of the Americans, while trammels and vassalage have deadened the energies of the Indies; but it may have an important influence upon the question whether the East India Company's charter shall be renewed, and it certainly will develop much information interesting to the cotton-growers of the United States.

Mr. De Quincey is one of the greatest of the elder race of literary men now living in Great Britain, and we believe he is in no very affluent circumstances. The bestowal of a pension by the Government upon Mr. James Bailey, an editor of the classics, residing at Cambridge, on the ground of his "literary services," causes The Leader thus to refer to the author of "The Opium Eater"—

"Where is Thomas De Quincey's pension? Some may not regard him, as we do, the very greatest living master of the English language; some may think lightly of those fragmentary works and fugitive articles with which he has for more than thirty years enriched our literature; but, whatever may be the individual estimate of his services, one fact is patent, namely, that you cannot mention De Quincey in any circle of the British Islands, pretending to literary culture, but his name will sound familiar; in most it will awaken responses of gratitude for high pleasures bestowed, in none will it arouse indignation of high power to base uses. Now, this we call a clear case for national beneficence. He has done the state service, and they know it; but they will not reward it."

Apropos of pensions: Upon the whole, we have the best exchequer in the world, and to soldiers we have evinced no special lack of liberality. To give five hundred dollars a year to Mr. Audubon, R. H. Dana, Moses Stuart, Edward Robinson, H. R. Schoolcraft, James G. Percival, C. F. Hoffman, and some half dozen others, would be something toward an "honorable discharge" of the country's obligations in the premises, and probably no slight addition to the happiness of men who have added much to the real glory of the nation, while it would cost less than a morning's useless debate in Congress. In a recent letter to Lord Brougham, on a cognate subject, Savage Landor exclaims:

"Probably the time is not far distant when the arts and sciences, and even literary genius, may be deemed no less worthy of this distinction than the slaughter of a thousand men. But how, in the midst of our vast expenditure, spare so prodigious a sum as five hundred a year to six, and three hundred a year to six more!"

A Mr. Chubb has published in London, in a small volume, a paper which he read before the Institution of Civil Engineers, on the construction of locks and keys. It embraces a history of the lock and key from the earliest ages, illustrated profusely with wood cuts. It forms an instructive and entertaining essay; but we think Mr. Chubb might have learned something more of the subject in the lock factories of Newark and this city.

Mr. Ticknor's History of Spanish Literature has been translated into German, and is announced for publication by Brockhaus.[Pg 183]

Mr. Dicken's "David Copperfield" is at length completed, and Mr. Wiley has published it in two handsome volumes, profusely illustrated. There is a variety of opinions among the critics as to its rank among the works of "Boz"; but it is not contended by any that it evinces a decay of his extraordinary and peculiar genius. We copy a paragraph which strikes us as just, from the Spectator:

"This story has less of London life and town-bred character than most of its predecessors; but what may thus be gained in variety is lost in raciness, breadth, and effect. The peculiar classes forced into existence by the hotbed of a great city, and owing a part of their gusto to town usage, may be narrow enough if compared with general nature, but they are broader than the singularities whom Mr. Dickens copies or invents as representatives of genteel country life, or human nature in general. In the mere style there is frequently an improvement—less effort and greater ease, with occasional touches of the felicity of Goldsmith; but we should have thought the work was likely to be less popular than many of the previous tales of Mr. Dickens, as well as rather more open to unfavorable criticism. Any prose fiction that is to take rank in the first class, must have what in epic poetry is called a fable,—some lesson of life embodied in a story that combines the utile and the dulce. This fable should not only please the reader by its succession of coherent events, and by the variety of its persons and fortunes, but should touch by appeals to the common kinship of humanity, and teach worldly conduct of ethical lessons by particular incidents, as well as by the general development. And when this end is attained, whether by design or instinct, technical rules are readily forgotten; even the great rule of unity of action can be dispensed with. It does not appear that Mr. Dickens has the critical training necessary to feel the importance of this principle, or a knowledge of life sufficiently deep and extensive to enable him to embody it unconsciously, as a well-chosen story will always compel an author to do. So far as David Copperfield appears designed with any other object than as a vehicle for writing a number of sketches, it would seem intended to trace the London career of an inexperienced young man, with infirmity of purpose, a dangerous friend, and no very experienced advisers. Any purpose of this kind is only prosecuted by snatches; "the theme" is constantly deserted, and matters are introduced that have no connection with the hero further than his being present at them, or their occurring to his acquaintance. In fact, from the time that David Copperfield emerges from boyhood, the interest in his adventures ceases, beyond that sort of feeling which many readers entertain of wishing to know 'how it ends.'"

Mr. David Dudley Field, of this city, one of the three commissioners who prepared the amended Code of the State of New-York, abolishing the distinction in procedure between law and equity, being in England for a brief visit, was invited by the leading members of the Law Amendment Society to give some account of the great changes effected here in the administration of justice. He complied, and a meeting of the Society was summoned specially to hear him. The result is much remarked upon in nearly all the London journals. Mr. Field is a clear headed man, master of his subject, perspicuous in his rhetoric, and distinct in his elocution, so that our new constitution was most advantageously displayed before his learned and critical hearers. The Spectator says of the subject:

"The visit of Mr. Dudley Field to England, and his interesting statements to the members of our Law Amendment Society, are real events in the progress of law reform in this country. The injustice which the English people submit to in the revered name of Law, and in the sacred but in their case profaned name of Equity, is more enormous than the future historian will be able remotely to conceive. The keystone of the barbarous Gothic portal to Justice in our common-law procedure was struck out some twenty years ago, when the logical forms of legal contest were reduced to their now moderate number; other heavy blows have further undermined the ruin, and almost cleared away whatever was feudal in that portion of the edifice; and then came the raising of the new and noble portal of the County Courts. Still, in all but the most trivial litigation the delay and expense are such that justice can only be had at a percentage utterly disgraceful to a nation either honest or merely clearheaded and commercial. We still preserve a diversity of tribunals, to administer laws that ought not to be inharmonious; and we are prevented from making the laws harmonious by the difficulties of finding tribunals able to rule the concord and administer the whole field of law as a single empire. In this case, as in a multitude of others, our young relations across the Atlantic have done that which we only longed to do. In this rivalry of nations, far above all other rivalries, they have pushed development of institutions which they received from forefathers common to us both, to a more rapid perfection than we. Mr. Dudley Field is one of three men who framed a constitutional law for the State of New York, under which the courts of legal and equitable jurisdiction have been successfully merged; the enactment has succeeded in practical working; and the spectacle of "Equity swallowing up Law" has been so edifying to the citizens of his State, that three other States of the Union have resolved to enact, and four further States have appointed conferences to deliberate upon, a similar procedure. It is impossible—however narrow-minded lawyers may object—that what Americans find practicable and beneficial should be either impracticable or disadvantageous to Englishmen."

A second part of the "Historical Collections of Louisiana," by B. F. French, has been published by Mr. Putnam. It contains some interesting papers, among which are translations of an original letter of Hernando de Soto, on the Conquest of Florida, of a brief account of de Soto's memorable expedition to Florida, from a recently discovered manuscript by a writer named Biedma, and Hackluyt's translation of the longer narrative "by a gentleman of Elvas." It is to be followed, we understand, by a second volume.[Pg 184]

Elihu Burritt is one of those people who are filled with the comfortable assurance of their own greatness. He seems always to regard the mob of men as very diminutive creatures, while his introverted glances are through a lens which reveals a character of qualities and proportions the most extraordinary. This is unfortunate. It renders Mr. Elihu Burritt, par excellence, the bore of his generation. He is really a person of very small abilities; of very little information, considering the opportunities presented by his travels; and the "learned blacksmith" has no learning at all. He had, indeed, an unusual facility in acquiring words, but he knows nothing of languages; not having in any a particle of scholarship; of the philosophy, even of his mother tongue, being as ignorant as the bellows-hand in his smithy at Worcester. But because of this not uncommon faculty of acquiring words—acquiring them as Zerah Colburn did a certain mastery of figures, without being able to comprehend any principle of mathematics—Mr. Everett, or some one else, advertised him as "learned," and ever since he has neglected his fit vocation to crowd himself into conspicuous places, all over Christendom; to blow continually his penny whistle in the ears of the little people called philanthropists; to speak and write in addresses and letters immense aggregations of ambitious platitudes, to pontiffs, emperors, kings, parliaments, etc., respecting their particular affairs, all of which addresses and letters are as cogent as the barkings sent by a lap-dog toward the moon, and receive from all sorts of people, except diminutives and impertinents whose profession is "philanthropy," just about as much consideration as Dian yields to the fast-yelping cur. It is all unfortunate, for poor Elihu Burritt will never be persuaded that he is a subject of derision only, instead of admiration; that men pause to regard him as a miracle of conceit and assurance rather than as a prophet; and that his commonplaces about "olive leaves," "calumets," "universal brotherhood," "fatherland," etc., have no more influence than the maudlin rigmarole of the madman whose preternatural force is lost in senility. It is time for Elihu Burritt to go back to his shop: the world wants a new fool.

John Mills, remembered by some unfortunate New-Yorkers as John St. Hugh Mills, has written half a dozen tolerable novels since he went home, and he is now publishing, in the United Service Magazine, a series of papers illustrative of his American travels, in which he illustrates his knowledge and veracity by certain anecdotes, which are described as having occurred on "the western prairies of Louisiana."

President Hitchcock, of Amherst College, who is capable of a very conclusive treatment of the subject, has in the press of Philips & Sampson, a work on the connection of Geology and Religion.

Dr. Latham's very important work on the "Varieties of Man," we are glad to hear is to be republished by the Appletons. Though much less voluminous than the work of Pritchard, and therefore less particular generally in its illustrations, it may be regarded as decidedly the most masterly and satisfactory production that has yet appeared in ethnology. The prospect of its republication affords us the more satisfaction, because the superficial and flippant infidelity of Dr. Robert Knox has been reproduced here by a respectable publishing house, and widely diffused. The "Races of Man," by Dr. Knox, is what is called a clever book; the Yankees might style it "smart;" but it is no more entitled to consideration as an exhibition of scholarship, intellectual strength, or fairness, than the rigmarole of the Millerite or the Mormon.

The Homœopathic Review and Quarterly Journal of Medical Science, is a new periodical, commencing with the year, of which the general character is indicated by the title. It is edited by Dr. Marcy, author of "The Homœopathic Theory and Practice," one of the most eminent scholars and successful practitioners of the new school; Dr. Herring, of Philadelphia, whose name is familiar to the students of German literature and science, and who was one of the most trusted friends of Hahnemann; and Dr. Metcalfe, who has been known as an able lawyer and ingenious critic, and who is regarded as a very accomplished physician. Under such direction, the Homœopathic Review can hardly fail of success. It will certainly, we think, commend the doctrines of the Hahnemannists to the favorable consideration of all thoughtful readers, and compel those who have been accustomed to deride the new principles to a courteous treatment of them. Mr. Radde is the publisher.

The cheapness of good books and good editions is one of the wonders of our time. American publishers have done much toward bringing literature into the homes of the poor, but the cheap books manufactured in this country have, for the most part, been badly printed, and in every respect so wretchedly put together, that they were hardly worth preserving after a first reading. The English are now competing vigorously for the popular market here, and mainly, through the house of Bangs & Brother of this city. Bohn and other great London publishers are supplying us with well printed, well bound, and excellently illustrated books, at prices altogether lower than those for which the American manufacturers have offered or can afford them. To sell such a book as Lodge's Portrait Gallery, in eight volumes, with all its finely engraved heads, for ten dollars, one must have the world for a market; and so with the long list of important writings in the compactly but correctly and elegantly printed volumes of Bohn's Standard Library—the best and cheapest popular series ever issued in any country.[Pg 185]

Many very correct writers are very poor authors, and there are abundance of good books with imperfect rhetoric; yet we have a right to ask some attention to the details of style in a literary critic. Professor Henry Reed has a delicate appreciation in poetry, but his remarks are nearly always marred by verbal infelicities incompatible with a knowledge of literary art. Thus, within a few pages of his Memoir of Gray, just published, he says of Jacob Bryant, who has been dead a century, that "he has recorded;" that "Gray retained a high admiration of Dryden's poetry, as was strongly expressed," &c.; that an ode published in 1747, "being the first publication of his English verse" (meaning his first publication in English verse); that Gray could not "break through the circumspection of so contracted a system of metaphysics as that of Locke's;" that "it is apparent from what Gray has done" (as if Gray were now living, or present), &c. &c. &c. &c. &c., all through every thing he publishes. Such things in a professor of mathematics would attract no attention, but they will be observed in a "Professor of English Literature."

Mr. Bancroft is not, as we were led by some newspaper to state in the International, engaged in printing his History of the Revolution; and when he does give it to the press, it is by no means likely that he will have to leave New-York to find a publisher for it. The History of the Colonization of America—introductory to the History of the United States—has secured for Mr. Bancroft a place among the greatest historians; he has now the assurance that he is writing for other ages; and he will not endanger his fame, nor fail of the utmost perfection in his work, for any needless haste. This second part of his History will probably occupy five volumes; and although the story has been written by many hands, with more or less fulness and various degrees of justice, Mr. Bancroft will have studied it from beginning to end in the original materials, of which his collection is by far the best that has ever been made. If upon this field any one successfully competes with him for the historic wreath, he must come after him, and be guided by his light.

Henry R. Schoolcraft, LL. D., is occupied, as his official duties permit, in the composition of memoirs of his long and honorably distinguished life. His great work upon the History and Condition of the Indians, now in press, and to be published in some half-dozen splendid quarto volumes by Lippencott, Grambo & Co., of Philadelphia, will contain the fruits of his observations in that department which he has made so peculiarly his own, and upon which he will always be the chief and highest authority; but his personal adventures, and his reminiscences of his contemporaries, will form the subject of this additional performance.

Dr. Samuel Johnson, the father of the Protestant Episcopal Church in Connecticut, and the first President of King's College, now Columbia College, in New-York, was one of the most interesting characters in our social history. His abilities, learning, activity, and influence, entitle him to be ranked in the class of Franklin (who was his friend and correspondent, and who printed, at his press in Philadelphia, several of his works), as a promoter of the highest civilization in the colonies. Except the Memoirs of Franklin, we have hitherto had no more attractive specimen of biography than the book known as Dr. Chandler's Life of Dr. Johnson. Franklin's Memoirs, it is well known, never came before the public in the form in which they were written, until a few years ago, and it has lately been discovered that Dr. Johnson's had suffered a similar disadvantage. Dr. Johnson amused himself in his old age by writing recollections of his life and times, which, after his death, were placed in the hands of Dr. Chandler, who changed them from the first to the third person, omitted many particulars which he did not deem it expedient to publish, and added others which the modesty of Dr. Johnson had not allowed him to write. The book thus made by Dr. Chandler was printed by his son-in-law, the late Bishop Hobart, who probably was not aware of its origin. But Dr. Johnson's MS. has now been discovered, and it will immediately be given to the public, under the supervision of the Rev. Mr. Pitkin, of Connecticut, who is adding to it many notes and illustrative documents. It is very much to be regretted that so little of the extensive correspondence of Dr. Johnson with the chief persons of his time in the literary and the religious world abroad, has been preserved; but the book will contain numerous letters by his more eminent contemporaries which have not appeared elsewhere.

Somebody has made the "discovery" that General Charles Lee, of the revolutionary army, was not unwilling to be considered the author of "Junius;" and two or three of our contemporaries have been busy with the subject of the internal and other evidence in the case. These critics are about as wise as the editor of an evening paper who published one of the old Washington forgeries, lately, as an important historical document. It was "characteristic," that the chief wrote so familiarly to his wife of affairs! In the same way, the history of the Book of Mormon (originally composed as a religious novel by the Rev. Solomon Spaulding), appears as a curious and altogether new exposure! We shall not be surprised if the same journals advise us that Walter Scott wrote the Waverley Novels.

Emilie Girardin has a new book L'Abolition de la Misére, in which he proposes the entire abolition of suffering. He has "found the philosopher's stone."[Pg 186]

Somebody is writing for the United Service, "Reminiscences of a Voyage to Canada," and we have looked into a couple of his chapters to see what sort of stuff, respecting America, is thus submitted to the officers of her Majesty's Army and Navy. The style of a fellow who talks of his "fellow countrymen" (not meaning, as the words do, persons who live with him in rural neighborhoods), is scarcely deserving of criticism; but the silliness of the falsehoods of this latest English traveller among us, may be referred to as illustrating the causes of the common prejudices in England against the United States. After describing his arrival at the Tremont House, in Boston, he says:

"A clerk [meaning our old friend Parker], dressed in the height of fashion, presided at the bar [meaning the office] at which we applied for rooms, wherein to perform our duties of the toilet. The one to which I was directed contained several beds without curtains, from which the occupants had evidently but a short time previously taken their departure. This was however a matter of indifference, as I imagined the apartment would have been entirely at my own disposal. In the course of a few minutes however, the door was opened, and in walked an individual, who, depositing a small carpet bag on the floor, commenced operations of a similar nature to those I myself was engaged in—not a word was at first exchanged between us; he eyed me critically, I returned the compliment, till at length I was favored with 'Stranger, I guess you are from Europe' (a strong accent on the last syllable), immediately followed by questions as to where I was going, what was my business, &c. This was somewhat amusing, so I informed my gentleman I was journeying to New-York, whereupon he told me I should see an 'almighty fine city.' His curiosity being next attracted by my portmanteau, which was lying open on a chair, he strode up and peered into it most attentively. Thinking I might as well follow his example, I did the same by his carpet bag; whereupon giving a grunt of dissatisfaction, he collected his valuables and soon after took himself off."

Thirty years ago, the Duke of Saxe Weimar published a western story of a coachman who said, "I am the gentleman what's to drive you." Our very original United Service tourist tells of a visit to Mount Auburn, and adds:

"Whilst driving back to the hotel I happened to remark, 'That is the man who drove us from the steamer in the morning.' Upon which 'Jehu' quickly replied, 'I reckon I'm the gentleman that drove you.' This information was received on our part with all the respect due to the elevated rank of our charioteer."

In a paragraph about luggage:

"The American trunk is a ponderous solid affair made of wood, secured with braces of iron, studded with brass or iron nails, and usually having the name or initials of the owner, and frequently the state of which he is a native, painted on it in large white letters. Owing to this custom, the traveller is liable to be addressed by any peculiarity appertaining to his trunk being affixed thereto. Thus a gentleman passing through the states, found himself designated as 'Mr. Air Tight,' because this simple term was marked on the outside of a tin-box, and no affirmations on his part could induce the bystanders to believe to the contrary. They 'reckoned it was on his box,' and that was sufficient."

Of the personal appearance of the Americans:

"To a stranger newly arrived from England, the absence of fresh complexions and of bright and cheerful faces among the male part of the creation is very striking. They are gaunt, sallow, cadaverous looking creatures; their general, far from prepossessing, appearance, in no way improved by the habit of wearing long, straight hair, combed entirely off the face, the bare throat, the never absent 'quid,' and that abominably nasty habit of constant expectoration."

And this trash is from one of the most reputable periodicals published in London—the one of all most especially addressed to gentlemen.

In the next number of his "Reminiscences" the author promises a sketch of the city of New-York, for which his authority will probably be Mrs. Trolloppe, Mr. Joseph Miller, and the last pick-pocket who went home to London.

The "Peace Congress," in which we have most faith—the only one that is likely to exert any very desirable influence, is that to assemble next year in Hyde Park. This will be a display of works rather than one of words; and apropos of its lingual character, which will show very conclusively that as yet "all the nations of the earth" are not "as one people," we find in The Leader this paragraph:

"The Exhibition of 1851, seems to promise a whole literature of its own. Journals are already established for the record of its proceedings. Useful information will be at a premium—unless there should happen to be a "glut;" while in the shape of translations and dialogue-books, every facility will be offered to foreigners. What a Babel it will be! How the English ear will be rasped by Slavonic and Teutonic gutturals, or distended by the breadth of Southern vowels. It will be a marvel if this incursion of barbarians do not very much affect the purity of our own tongue, and damage the tender susceptibility of the London ear, already so delicate that when an actor says—as it sometimes happens—"Donnar Elvirar is coming," the whole audience rises in a mass to protest against the outrages on taste. We are told the Athenians were also merciless critics in such matters. Nay, there is a famous anecdote perpetually cited as an illustration of Athenian delicacy in matters of pronunciation, that Theophrastus was known to be a foreigner even by a herbseller. People who wonder at every thing recorded of the Greeks, will regard us probably as reckless iconoclasts if we break that by a stone flung from common sense; but really, with the daily experience of Scotchmen and Irishmen before us, we must say the most wonderful part of the anecdote is, that it should have been recorded. Theophrastus came from Lesbos—if we remember rightly—and his pronunciation, therefore, naturally preserved some of the Lesbian flavor, as Carlyle's does that of Annandale. Would any critic compliment the cockney on delicacy of ear because it detects the accent of Carlyle, or Sheridan Knowles, to be other than its own true London accent? Yet, this is precisely what critics do with respect to the Athenians."[Pg 187]

Milton, Burke, Mazzini, and Daniel Webster, present the most extraordinary examples of the harmonious and effective combination of political and literary genius, that have appeared in modern times. There have been and there are now many politicians who are eminent as authors: but these are preëminently great in both statesmanship and letters. Mazzini is now the chief apostle of republicanism in Europe, as Milton was in the time of the Protector. He devises and executes the schemes which promise advances of liberty and happiness, and he is equal to the defence with the pen of every thing he essays in affairs. "Young Italy," since it was put down by French bayonets, has had as little quarter from parasite writers as from patristic governors; but Mazzini has come to her defence with as vigorous a pen as that with which Milton vindicated the people of England against the hireling Salmasius, under similar circumstances. In another part of this number of the International, we have copied from the London Examiner a reviewal of Mazzini's work on the Italian revolution. We should be glad to see it criticised by Mr. Walsh also, or by Professor Bowen, in his North American Review.

Since Sir Francis Head went home from Canada, and finished the last edition of his "Bubbles" and "Travels," and the funny anathema of poor Mr. William Lyon Mackenzie, in the Times, he has been very quiet, except now and then, when he has given an explosive and amusing paper in the Quarterly. But now he has published a new book, on "The Defenceless State of Great Britain," in which, the Examiner says "he has made up for lost time." Says the critic, "It is calculated to rouse all the old women in the country. Such a fee-fa-fum of a book we never read. The Duke's letter to Sir John Burgoyne was nothing to it, and it beats even Lord Ellesmere hollow." The baronet thinks every thing portends a French invasion, and he advocates the largest "war footing."

The Rev. Dr. Bloomfield, whose edition of the Greek Testament is so well known in this country, has just published two volumes of additional Notes, critical, philological, and explanatory, in fulfilment of a promise made in the third edition of his New Testament, in 1839. This promise was, that he would make no further change in the notes to the New Testament, but reserve all additions for a separate supplementary work. That work, after the direct labor of eleven years, is now published; forming a companion to all the editions of Bloomfield's Greek Testament except the first two. The annotations relate to a critical examination of the readings of the text, with the reasons for that selected, philological notes on the meaning of words, and exegetical annotations on the verbal interpretations of passages.

Mr. Cooper has a new book in press which, in New-York, will produce a profounder sensation, than any he has yet written. It is entitled "The Men of Manhattan," and reveals the social condition of the city, past and present, as it is known only to the author of "The Littlepage Manuscripts." Mr. Cooper is a thorough New-Yorker; he is intimately acquainted with all the sources of her past and present and prospective greatness; and he has watched, with such emotions as none but a gentleman of the old school can feel, the infusion and gradual diffusion of those principles of plebeianism and ruffianism, from discontented improvidence, immigration, and other causes, which threaten to destroy whatever has justified the wisest pride; and to sink—not raise—all the mob of people to a common level. He has his whims, and though they have won for him little popularity, we regret that they are not shared more largely by the public, which will never appreciate his merits as a censor, until the best features of our civilization are quite obliterated.

Mr. Judd, the author of "Margaret," an original, indigenous, striking, and in many respects brilliant New-England story, and of "Philo," a crude, extravagant, ridiculous mass of versified verbiage, has lately published (through Phillips & Sampson, of Boston,) a new work entitled "Richard Edney, or the Governor's Family; a Rus-Urban Tale, simple and popular, yet cultured and noble, of morals, sentiment and life." It is worthy of the author of "Margaret." Though it evinces very little of the constructive faculty, it illustrates in every page a quick and intelligent observation, a happy talent for characterization, and great independence in speculation.

Mr. C. P. Castanis, formerly known in this country as an agreeable lecturer upon various subjects connected with Modern Greece, has just published (through Lippencott, Grambo & Co., of Philadelphia), a narrative of his captivity and escape during the massacre by the Turks on the Island of Scio, together with various adventures in Greece and America.

Mr. E. G. Squier, whose large work upon American antiquities, published by the Smithsonian Institute, made for him a most desirable reputation, is now engaged in the preparation of an elaborate work upon the remains of ancient civilization in Central America, to contain the results of investigations during his recent official residence there.

Nathaniel Hawthorne's new work, "The House of Seven Gables," is in the press of Ticknor, Reed & Fields, of Boston.

Miss Fenimore Cooper, whose beautiful work entitled "Rural Hours in America" has been so much and so justly applauded, has a new volume in the press of Putnam.[Pg 188]

In the new novel of "Olive," republished by the Harpers, (which is much praised by the London critics), the heroine, who has a lofty, noble nature, full of poetic feeling and enthusiasm for art, determines to devote herself to its study, urged on by a desire of liquidating a debt contracted by her father. Apropos of the purpose of her life, and the sphere of her sex:

"She became an artist—not in a week, a month, a year. Art exacts of its votaries no less service than a lifetime. But in her girl's soul the right chord had been touched, which began to vibrate into noble music, the true seed had been sown, which day by day grew into a goodly plant. Vanbrugh had said truly, that genius is of no sex; and he had said likewise truly, that no woman can be an artist—that is, a great artist. The hierarchies of the soul's dominion belong only to man, and it is right they should. He it was whom God created first, let him take pre-eminence. But among those stars of lesser glory, which are given to lighten the nations, among sweet-voiced poets, earnest prose writers, who, by lofty truth that lies hid beneath legend and parable, purify the world, graceful painters and beautiful musicians, each brightening their generation with serene and holy lustre—among these, let woman shine! But her sphere is, and ever must be, bounded; because, however lofty her genius may be, it always dwells in a woman's breast. Nature, which gave to man the dominion of the intellect, gave to her that of the heart and affections. These bind her with everlasting links from which she cannot free herself,—nay, she would not if she could. Herein man has the advantage. He, strong in his might of intellect, can make it his all in all, his life's sole aim and guerdon. A Brutus, for that ambition which is misnamed patriotism, can trample on all human ties. A Michael Angelo can stand alone with his genius, and so go sternly down into a desolate old age. But there scarce ever lived the woman who would not rather sit meekly by her own hearth, with her husband at her side, and her children at her knee, than be the crowned Corinne of the Capitol.

"Thus woman, seeking to strive with man, is made feebler by the very spirit of love which in her own sphere is her chiefest strength. But sometimes chance, or circumstance, or wrong, sealing up her woman's nature, converts her into a self-dependant human soul. Instead of life's sweetness, she has before her life's greatness. The struggle passed, her genius may lift itself upward, expand and grow mighty; never so mighty as man's, but still great and glorious. Then, even while she walks over the world's rough pathway, heaven's glory may rest upon her up-turned brow, and she may become a light unto her generation."

Dautzenberg, a Flemish poet, has issued at Brussels a volume of small compositions, which, apart from freshness of fancy and beauty of thought, are remarkable for the correctness and smoothness of their form. The Flemish tongue is used by him with a lyrical success that would reflect honor on a writer in the more melodious dialects of Southern Europe. He has also licked that jaw-cracking tongue so far into shape, that it serves for regular hexameters.

Miss Strickland's Lives of the Queens Of England, republished by Lea & Blanchard of Philadelphia, in ten or twelve volumes, is a work of very great interest and value, for its illustrations of the higher and progressive British civilization. Her Lives of the Queens of Scotland, soon to be issued from the press of the Harpers, resembles generally her former work, by the success of which it was probably suggested, as much as by the desirableness of the biographies of the Northern Queens, as "adjuncts" to the lives of those of England. A good deal of matter was collected in reference to the later Queens of Scotland during the biographer's researches for the Queens of England; and this, augmented by further inquiries among public and private archives, especially among the muniment-chests of noble Scottish families, forms the materials of the present undertaking. The "lives" do not begin till the Tudor times, when the nearer relationship with England imparts a greater interest to the subject, not only from the closer communication between the courts, but from the prospects of the Scottish succession to the English crown.

John S. Dwight, of Boston, has recently delivered an admirable lecture before the Mercantile Library Association of this city, on "Operatic Music," illustrated by a critical examination of Rossini's Don Giovanni. Mr. Dwight's rare musical learning and accomplishments, his exquisite taste in art, and his remarkable felicity of expression, were displayed to singular advantage in this masterly lecture, and won the cordial applauses of the most appreciative critics in his large and highly intelligent audience.

A History of the Greek Revolution is soon to be given to the public by Baron Prokesh Osten, who for many years was Austrian ambassador at Athens, and who now fills the same office at Berlin. Of course his book will be published at Vienna.

A New Edition of the Complete Works Of Göethe, in thirty volumes (it would look much better and be far more convenient in fifteen), is advertised in Berlin. Two volumes are ready, and the whole are to be issued before the close of 1851.

W. G. Simms, LL. D., is referred to in the Southern Literary Gazette as having delivered in Charleston lately an elaborate poem entitled "The City of the Silent," on the occasion of the consecration of a beautiful rural cemetery near that city.

Dr. Oliver Wendell Holmes is writing a biographical sketch of the late Dr. Parkman, to form a part of a work called "The Benefactors of the Medical School of Harvard University," of which the poet is himself one of the professors.[Pg 189]

Pierre Dupont, the Parisian Socialist poet, has lately issued a new book containing six songs that have not before been published. Dupont is as much a favorite with the people as Beranger, and though he does not equal the latter in originality of fancy and gayety of spirit, he even excels him in revolutionary point and enthusiasm. His songs are heard in every workshop and at every popular banquet, their words and music are universally familiar, and when the clubs were permitted, each meeting was opened and closed with a song of Dupont's, the whole audience joining in the chorus. This was done instinctively and without previous arrangement. It often happened, too, that after some orator had delivered an ardent speech, Dupont would appear at the tribune with a new song which he had composed on the inspiration of the moment. Now each new political event is sure of a response from this poet; one of his late productions is the Chant du Vote (vote song), in which he denounces the attempt of the Government to destroy universal suffrage. Perhaps his most powerful production is the Marsellaise of Hunger; the hold this has taken on the public may be judged from the fact, that when at the theatre of the Porte St. Martin a piece was performed, called Misery, founded on incidents in the Irish famine, when the curtain went down at the end of the first act, the beholders spontaneously set up this song. So in the same theatre, when the piece representing the downfall of Rome was performed (this piece afterwards became famous through its prohibition by the Government), one of the spectators in the pit began the chorus of Dupont's Soldier's Song:

"Les peuples sont pour nous des freres
Et les tyrans des ennemis,"

the whole house joined in, and the performance had to be interrupted till the song was ended. The Chant des Transportés wherever it is heard moves the people to tears and indignation. The Peasant's Song prophecies the time when independent industry shall render the earth blooming with fertility, and the corn and wine shall "be free as warmth in summer weather." While the majority of his poems are political and social, some of them are full of love and appreciation of outward nature. In one, the Romance of the Poplar, this sentiment is finely combined with the spirit of liberty.

Arago's great work, which was some time since announced in the International, is now nearly complete and will soon be given to the public. The scientific and literary world of Europe expect it with impatience. It is said even that Alexander von Humboldt intends to be its translator into German, but this is not probable. It is also rumored that the author gives an appendix in which he for the moment abandons science for politics, in order to pay off some of the attacks he has suffered from Proudhon. Our own opinion is that he had better stick to his trade and leave Proudhon alone.

Charles Sumner has published (through Ticknor, Reed & Fields of Boston,) two volumes of his "Orations and Addresses." Mr. Sumner is a scholar of the finest and rarest capacities and accomplishments. He is of the school of Everett, but has more earnestness, and consequently more compactness of expression, and more force. He enters heartily into all the 'progressive' movements of the day, and is of many the intellectual leader. His bravery is equal to every emergency into which he may be led by a search after truth, and to all combats he brings arms of the truest metal and most exquisite polish. There are in New-England many more fervid and powerful orators, but we know of none whose orations are delivered with a more pleasing eloquence. We have not leisure now to review Mr. Sumner's volumes; but if among our readers there are any who desire to see displayed the "very form and spirit" of the new age, we commend them to "The True Grandeur of Nations," and the other discourses, speeches, and essays, here published.

"The Manhattaner in New-Orleans" is the title of a small volume, from the press of J. S. Redfield, which was written by an accomplished New-York lawyer who had resided some time in the Crescent City. It is a very graphic and delightful picture of the social life of the metropolis of the South; betraying a quick insight, a genial appreciation of what is manly, and fairness in regard to every thing. We have had need of such a book, for hitherto we northerners have generally known less of our southern neighbors than even Professor Bowen knew of the Hungarians, before Mrs. Putnam enlightened him. We are sorry that Mr. Hall, to whom we are indebted for "The Manhattaner in New-Orleans," intimates that it is the last book for the preparation of which he will ever have withdrawn his attention from the law.

"Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Margaret Fuller d'Ossoli and George Sand," is the title of an article in which the characters and genius of these three remarkable women is discussed, in the last number of The Palladium, a new English monthly.

Ike Marvel's "Reveries of a Bachelor," (printed by Baker & Scribner), appears to be the "book of the season." All the critics praise it as one of the choicest specimens of half-romance and half-essay, that has appeared in our time. But for ourselves—we have not read it.

The subject of "Junius" is again discussed in "Junius and his Works, Compared with the character and Writings of the Earl of Chesterfield," by W. Cramp, just published in London.

Parke Godwin's beautiful story of "Vala," suggested by the career of Jenny Lind, has been issued in a luxurious quarto, by Putnam.

[Pg 190]

The Fine Arts.

Gift from the Bavarian Artists To King Louis.—The artists and artisans of Munich have combined to make to ex-King Louis of Bavaria a gift such as monarchs have not often received. It consists of a writing-desk and album. The desk is of oak varnished, adorned with rich carving, and with locks and the Bavarian arms in gilt bronze enamel. The carving contains the most charming figures representing the various arts and trades. The album is bound in crimson velvet, the clasps and ornaments of gilt bronze. On the outside is a medallion, designed by Widnmann, set in brilliants, representing King Louis surrounded by artists. A smaller medallion stands in each corner, one representing architects with plans and models by Hautman; sculptors and bronze workers with the statue of Bavaria, by Halbig; historic painters by Esseling; and landscape and genre painters by Widnmann. Between the two upper medallions is a rich ornament with the arms of the four tribes of Bavaria in enamel, and the inscription "Louis I. King of Bavaria:" between the lower medallions is a similar ornament with "The German Artists, A. D. 1850." All the ornaments are in the old German style of the fifteenth century. In the Album are 177 sheets, each containing a contribution from some artist. The title-page is by Esseling. Kaulbach has a drawing of unusual freshness and beauty, representing the King calling to new life, at Rome, the neglected art of Germany. But we have not space to speak of the works of individual artists in this remarkable collection. It is enough to say that every distinguished painter and sculptor in Germany is represented in it.

Charles Eastlake has been chosen President of the Royal Academy, and the Queen has made him a knight. Sir Charles Eastlake is in some respects a great painter, and he has produced many works which evince very remarkable talents. Among the few pictures by him which evince genius, is that owned by Mr. Henry Carey Baird, of Philadelphia, of "Hagar and Ishmael." He has done something in literature, and from his own account of himself we quote, that, like Haydon, he was born at Plymouth, a soil congenial to art, for in its environs was also the birth-place of Sir Joshua Reynolds. Like Rembrandt, Reynolds, and so many before them, Eastlake showed an early aversion to the Latin Grammar. He fled the Charter-house school; and a glimpse of Haydon's picture of "The Dentatus," which was at that period exhibited at Plymouth, made him a painter. After studying in the Academy two years, under Fuseli, he produced "The Raising of Jairus's Daughter." This won him a patron, in Mr. Harman, by whom he was commissioned to make studies of the miracles of art, at that time collected in the Louvre by Napoleon. Here also Lawrence, Haydon, Wilkie, and we believe Allston also, came at this time to study. In the Louvre Eastlake made his first acquaintance with the wonders of Roman art. But the pleasant task of copying these old masters was relinquished on the sudden return of Napoleon from Elba. At a not much later period, the fallen hero became himself the subject of his pencil. Eastlake made a sketch of the ex-Emperor as he appeared from the gangway of the Bellerophon, when at anchor in Plymouth roads, interesting as the last delineation of a noble visage, then untinged with chagrin. In 1817 and 1819 he visited Italy and Greece, rather stirring up their living treasures than measuring antiquity with the inch rule of the archæologist. Nor yet did Eastlake confine himself to the external forms of art and nature; he then laid the foundation of that intimate knowledge of the arts, be they called formative, architectural, plastic, or pictorial, the able elucidation of which renders his writings so valuable. Thus, whilst all the technical skill of ancient colorists is found in his style of painting, all the principles on which Dutch and Venetian masters proceeded are found in his writings. Those who reflect on the unceasing labors of the Secretary of the Fine Art Commission, will be rather inclined to believe that the title of President was alone wanting to render Eastlake the legitimate leader of art in England. We need only mention his translation of Göethe's "Theory of Colors," the "Notes to Kugler," and the "Materials for a History of Oil Painting."

New Picture by Kaulbach. The King of Bavaria has ordered from Kaulbach a picture some twenty feet high, to represent the Apotheosis of a Good Prince. The lucky potentate is to be painted rising from the tomb, and conducted up to heaven by attending angels, where the Saviour, enthroned between the cherubim of Power and Justice, receives him with open arms. The purple mantle and crown, the signs and adornments of earthly might, sink from the transfigured monarch upon the tomb, around which the Seven Works of Mercy bear witness for him, while the Seven Deadly Sins lie under the earth asleep and in chains. The idea of the composition was suggested by the King. Kaulbach has advanced so far with its execution that the cartoon is nearly completed.

The Royal Russian Porcelain Manufactory, at Berlin, is known over the world for the elegance and excellence of its productions; most of the porcelain transparencies which are so common in all countries, and so much admired, are from this source. An honorary council has just been named to have the supervision of the artistic department of the institution. Among its members, are the eminent painter Cornelius, the sculptor Rauch, and the architect Huler.[Pg 191]

Mr. Healey, according to a letter by Mr. Walsh in the Journal of Commerce, is proceeding rapidly in Paris with his picture of the American Senate, during the debate so famous for the passages between Mr. Webster and Col. Hayne. Mr. Healey is said to be a very worthy person, and it is to be regretted that his skill and genius are not equal to his morals, in which case we might not despair of his producing a work not altogether unworthy of this subject. Some accident introduced Mr. Healey to the late King of the French, who gave him various orders, the reception of which was so noticed in the journals as to be of the greatest possible advantage to him. He was suddenly elevated in the common opinion to the condition of the first rank of artists. But he is really a painter of very ordinary capacities. We have probably some hundreds who are very much superior to him. It is impossible to point to even one portrait by him that is remarkable for any excellence; and all his fame rests, rather than upon his productions, upon his having received orders from Louis Philippe. We remember the general surprise with which groups of his portraits, displayed in the rotunda of the capitol, were viewed by critics. The "study" of Daniel Webster, upon whose every feature God has set the visible stamp of greatness, was among them, and it looked like the prim keeper of the accounts in a respectable grocery-store. So of all the rest. Men sat to him from deference to the wishes of the King, but every body felt that he was not an artist. Accidents and newspapers may confer a transient reputation, but they can endow no one with abilities; and to espouse the cause of newspapers against the cause of nature is a grievous wrong, in the end, to both newspapers and nature.

An elegant work of much value to the students of modern art has lately appeared at Berlin, under the title of Rimische Studien (Roman Studies), from the pen of Von Kestner, a diplomatist by profession. The author, who by the way is a son of the famous Charlotte, the heroine of Göethe's "Werther," dwells with the utmost partiality on these German artists, who have developed their talents by long and intimate acquaintance with Roman art, and who are now at work in the fatherland. To the productions of "Cornelius," he devotes a great deal of space. The special purpose of the work, as the author says in his preface, is to glorify Germany in the great creations of its artists.

The Philharmonic Society of Paris, at one of its recent concerts, gave a piece of original Russian music, called the "Song of the Cherubim," by Bortniansky, a composer who has written a good deal for the Imperial Chapel at St. Petersburg. It is a chorus without accompaniment, and is spoken of by the critics as most original and striking, in fact unlike any thing familiar to Western or Southern ears. We can easily conceive of a peculiar style of music being produced from the bosom of the Greek Church. Those who have heard the melancholy and touching, half-barbaric music usually employed in its ritual, will not be surprised that out of it there should arise a quite new order of compositions.

The Göethe's Inheritance—an extensive collection of models, engravings, sculptures, carvings, gems, minerals, fossils, original drawings, &c., collected by the great poet,—is to be sold at Weimar, for the benefit of his heirs, two grandsons. A catalogue raisonnée has been published by Fromman, at Jena, and it makes a very interesting book. It is suggested in the Art-Journal for December, that if the collection were distributed in separate lots, in America, or England, or Germany, the heirs would realize three or four times as much as they will by a single sale for the whole, which they have determined upon. Letters upon the subject may be addressed to Baron Walther Von Goethe, at Vienna.

The author of the following remarks on Art-Unions, is an eminent artist, whose name has never been associated with any discussions of these Institutions, or with any controversies connected with them, and he has not, we believe, since the foundation of the first Art-Union in America, had any production of his own in the market.


Art-Unions, and their management, have recently attracted much attention in this country, if we may judge from the numerous articles on the subject which have appeared in some of the most reputable journals. It is now about ten years since the first Art-Union was established in this city. Others, in various sections, have followed, and all, whatever their peculiarities, have been more or less successful in their chief objects.

Now it is reasonable to suppose, that the result of these ten years' efforts to promote the cultivation of the Fine Arts among us, should furnish some evidence of their capabilities for the accomplishment of so worthy and so great a work. The whole subject of their usefulness resolves itself into the following queries:

I. Has any person of decided genius, who was unknown, friendless, and in need, been sought out by them, assisted, encouraged, and at last added to the effective number of artists who are profitably employed among us?

II. Have those artists who have received the larger share of the patronage of these institutions, shown by their works a corresponding advance in the knowledge and love of excellence and truth in art?

III. Have they furnished any peculiar advantages to artists, as a body, by supplying the means of their improvement, in a free access to books, casts, pictures, or good engravings?

IV. Do Art-Unions promote the interests[Pg 192] and reward the labors of those who are most eminently deserving?

V. Do they elevate the pursuit of art, in the minds of the people, and teach them its value, by distributing to them, in return for their subscriptions, only the best specimens which they can purchase from the studios of our artists?

VI. Are there a dozen well known artists who will openly testify to a conviction of their usefulness?

It is believed by many that an affirmative response cannot be given to these questions; and if not, then the subject of their influence need be no longer discussed.

It is not my intention, nor my desire, to inquire into the management of these institutions. It is only at the system itself that I wish to direct the attention of the reader. If it is proved that, as a system, this is not calculated to elevate and enlarge the sphere of the arts, but on the contrary, that its tendency is to degrade and stifle all that is lovely and desirable in their pursuit, then there will be no need of troubling ourselves with the lower and baser subject of management; for there is no bad system, which, by any method, can be managed into a good one, and satisfy the just demands of those whose interests it professes to hold in its keeping.

Numbers rather than quality seem to govern the Art-Unions in their purchases of works, that they may give to subscribers a greater number of chances to draw something for their money, and thus encourage them to future patronage. This is the principle on which all lotteries live: and when we come to sift the matter to the bottom, we cannot but acknowledge that Art-Unions are nothing else but lotteries, under another and more popular name. Both exist ostensibly for the good of others, who in reality are but the dupes of a most deceitful and vicious system, against which every good citizen should indignantly turn his face. It cannot be justly said in defence of Art-Unions, that they spend more money for art than was ever done in the same period of time, nor that they have distributed works amongst a class of people who never thought of giving money for such things before. They must first prove that this great amount of money which they have collected, has been spent judiciously, for the benefit of deserving and meritorious artists, and that the works distributed are such as to elevate the judgment and enlarge the feelings in relation to art, among those who may have received them.

It is for the interest of lotteries to offer some very large and valuable prizes at the head of their list, to attract the attention of the public, and thus to sell their tickets.

Similar means are adopted by Art-Unions to increase their subscription lists, which show that the system is managed in the most efficient manner. Those who can look back fifteen and twenty years, will remember that our country was literally flooded with the bulletin boards of lotteries, printed in the most gaudy and attractive colors, showing a brilliant schedule of prizes, and pledging almost certain wealth to all who would venture their money on the "grand scheme." They will also call to mind how many a victim there was to this deceptive and depraved system of legal fraud, until it became so injurious to the public morals, that Legislatures were forced to hurl the bolts of the law against them, in all parts of the United States, and so put an end to their iniquity. Lotteries have been justly prohibited by wise governments, because they attract men from legitimate pursuits, into the speculative, uncertain, and, morally, illegitimate pursuit of fortune. The case is similar in its results to that of Art-Unions. They attract many from a calling for which their talents have fitted them, into a sphere so much above their natural powers, that they must in time fall back, victims to vanity and love of gain, into a lower plane of life perhaps, than that they once happily occupied. The effect of these Unions is seen rather in the great number of persons of mediocre abilities they have encouraged to enter upon the cultivation of art, than in the bringing forth greater powers and excellence in those whose undoubted genius is apparent to the world.

It was remarked by Carlyle, that our modern intellect is of the spavined kind, "all action and no go;" and so it appears to be in regard to the efforts that are being made to "promote the interests of art," in this country. Art-Unions have been active enough, for many years, and have possessed themselves of hundreds of thousands of dollars, and yet it is "no go;" the interests of art still lie gasping, without much hope of a change for the better. There is a great display made every year in the "distribution of prizes," and every means used to gain public confidence, by holding up the names of the most respectable citizens as guarantees that nothing under their control can go wrong; and by issuing bulletins in which is proved, by figures, the flourishing state of the institution, and consequently of the beautiful arts; yet in spite of all this, the great mass of common-sense minds and of true lovers of art, heretics that they are, go away and exclaim, "Well, after all it's 'no go,' the works distributed are no better than those of last year, and we are really afraid there are no hopes for the arts in this country, so long as no other plan is adopted for their improvement."

Some of the petty states in Germany and in southern Europe obtain a large revenue from lotteries, which are entirely under the control of the crown, and are hence commonly called "Royal," or "Imperial." The prizes are comparatively small, but the tickets are fixed at such a very low sum, say from ten to twenty cents, that they come within the reach of the poorest inhabitants. The consequence is that nearly all persons who are ignorant of the scheme which the Government has laid to[Pg 193] tax them, spend more or less every year for lottery tickets. We have known persons who, under the excitement produced by these plans for rapidly gaining fortunes, have pawned the last blanket from their beds, to obtain the means of purchasing a ticket. At every drawing of these "Imperial" lotteries, there is nothing left undone by Royalty to strike the people with a sense of their importance, and the honesty with which they are conducted. In an open square is erected a kind of stage large enough to be occupied by some twenty persons. Rich canopies of scarlet and gold overhang it, and above all are figures of Justice, Plenty, Virtue, &c. &c. The "Royal" band of music is stationed near, and amidst its enlivening tones, holding in silence many thousands of anxious hearts, the cortege, preceded by Royalty itself, ascends, and is seated in the order of its dignity. In front of the throne are placed, upon pedestals, two large revolving globes half filled with tickets, and by the side of each stands a page, in magnificent costume, blindfolded. Then commences the distribution of the prizes, in the usual way, by drawing numbers from the globes, by the hands of the pages, which are announced from the throne, and so along to the ears of the most distant in the multitude. At intervals, the drawing ceases, while most charming music serves to keep the crowd together, and possibly to drive for the moment, from many a heart, the pangs of disappointment or despair. Now there is some excuse for ignorance on this subject, among those poor people, for there are no means by which they can be enlightened and warned of the evil. But in this country, where the press is free, and the means of information abundant, it would be sad to reflect that such things can, under any name or phrase, long continue unmasked and unshorn of their power.

There is consolation in the belief, that however prosperous this species of gaming may be, the time is not far distant when its true character and tendency will be made manifest; and when the unseen but certain operations of the moral sense of our people will put an end to its inglorious career; if not directly, through the action of the laws, yet indirectly, by withholding the necessary contributions to its further support.

This parallel between Art-Unions and Lotteries is drawn that the character of the former may be more readily comprehended by the reader.

In the recent drawing of the American Art-Union there were distributed one thousand works of art, making about one prize to sixteen blanks. But where did all these "thousand works" come from? and what are they? Have they all been executed by living American artists? Are they paintings, or sculptures, or engravings, purchased from the artists who made them, and who have received an adequate price for them? We know from their advertisement that sixty of them are "impressions from the large engravings after Col. Trumbull's pictures of the Battle of Bunker Hill and the Death of Montgomery." Now the purchase of these engravings from the pictures of a long deceased painter can be of no possible service to the painters living and laboring among us, nor to the progress of art in any way. As well might the Art-Union purchase for distribution sixty copies of Dunlap's History of the Arts of Design, or of Allston's Lectures on Art, or any object pertaining to the subject that may be procured at any time of the book or print sellers. It is true, they must manage to offer a number of small prizes, the best way they can, that they may in some plausible way meet the expectations of their very extended lists of subscribers, to which, it seems, they never attempt to set a limit. Here is another proof that they are mere speculators upon the labors of artists, and only seek to enlarge their subscriptions, and usurp a power and control over the great body of artists, which should never, with their consent, be allowed to any, no matter how respectable, body of men.

Let us turn to the "Western Art-Union." Having but few good prizes to offer, nothing indeed which would ensure them a large subscription list, it became necessary to procure some well known production for this purpose, as a capital prize. The managers therefore negotiated, in a very quiet manner, with a Mr. Robb, of New Orleans, for one of Hiram Powers's finest statues, the "Greek Slave," then in the possession of Mr. Robb, and it was accordingly taken to Cincinnati, and placed on exhibition in the Art-Union, as one of the prizes to be distributed this year. Handbills were then sent over the United States announcing this fact. Of course, with such a celebrated work as this, thousands would be seduced to purchase a ticket, and thus place the Art-Union in a most flourishing condition, and probably secure to it at least double the sum which it had paid, or the sculptor had originally received, for the statue.

Now let us consider this transaction in its true light. The Art-Union was established solely for the purpose of benefiting artists, protecting their interests, and increasing the knowledge of art among the people. From these facts it is evident that neither of these purposes were kept in view or carried out. Instead of negotiating with the sculptor himself for one of his works, and giving him a liberal price for it, they never mentioned the subject to him, but secretly purchased one of another person—a rich man, who was in nowise whatever connected with the arts.

One would have supposed that even if there were very strong inducements to such a procedure on the part of this institution, for the sake of gain, still that a friendly feeling towards the great sculptor, of whom the Queen City is so proud, and a due regard for his interests and his fame, would have prevented the consummation of such an act. It can be no[Pg 194] pleasing reflection to Mr. Powers, that a work which many persons in Europe, as well as in America, would have purchased at any reasonable price, should, by any movement of his own townsmen, be disposed of at a public raffle, so that of its final destination he must long remain in ignorance.

It seems, from what has here been adduced, that Art-Unions have not proved of service to art or artists, notwithstanding the immense amount annually collected for this ostensible purpose; but that they are in reality only lotteries operating under another but less objectionable name.

If a corporation can be granted by the Legislature, with the privilege of selling pictures, or statuary, by lottery, every other branch of industry is as much entitled to such a privilege, or our laws are onesided and unjust. We would then see distributions of prizes from every quarter, until the whole mechanical and commercial interests of the country would be turned into Lotteries or Unions. Following the example of the Art-Union in this state, we have already advertised a "Homestead Art-Union," the grand prize of which is a "house and lot situated in Williamsburgh, which cost nearly $5,000." Subscribers are entitled to "an elegant and valuable engraving, which has heretofore sold at $7.50, (being $2.50 more than the price of subscription,) and superior in execution and elegance to any picture distributed in this manner." It has in its collection for distribution "ninety-nine elegant and costly oil paintings and engravings, richly framed in ornamental and plain gilt frames." All the difference between these Unions, seems to be in the fact that the "Homestead" has limited the number of tickets—certainly an improvement on the other, so far as the public interest is concerned. We may expect to hear very soon of Bread and Meat Art-Unions, when the whole community, for a very small outlay, may live like princes, and snap their fingers at haggard want.

The tendency of these hotbed methods of cultivating an appreciation of art and of rewarding its professors, has been to discourage artists from any suitable efforts to provide instruction, upon a liberal scale, to those who are seeking for it. Indeed it takes from them the power to do so, by drawing away funds necessary to such an object, which, but for these grand schemes, would be likely to come into their hands. One has but to observe the motives which induce persons to subscribe to an Art-Union, to be convinced that the great majority do so for the sake of self-aggrandizement, that is, to have a chance of getting the works of our best artists for a mere tithe of their value, or in the language of the advertisements, "of obtaining a valuable return, for a small investment;" as they would buy any other lottery tickets: to make the most out of their money. But there are many who subscribe from nobler motives—real lovers of art, whose only object is to lend a helping hand to its interests, and to show a generous sympathy in the struggles and self-denying endeavors of all whose souls are so wrapt up in its pursuit that they scarcely arrive at the knowledge requisite to a charge of their own pecuniary and worldly affairs. This latter class of subscribers believe they are gratifying this genuine love of the beautiful and good, when they give annually their five dollars to an institution chartered for the express design of protecting and cherishing the interests of art, and of enlarging the field of its labors and usefulness among the people. These genuine patrons give, without a hope or thought of drawing a prize, or receiving in any shape a return for their subscriptions. Did they reflect upon, or know, that these funds were worse than misapplied, they would withhold them, and seek in some other way to make a proper appropriation of them.

We have said that these Art-Unions prevent artists from taking any steps to provide the means of instruction for those who need and seek it. As an illustration of this we may mention the present state of the National Academy of Design. It is, and has been for two or three years, quite prostrate for want of funds; its schools have been closed, and without assistance it must soon die. A few years ago it was in a flourishing state, and offered the advantages of study which their fine collection of casts from the best antique statues, and a small but well selected and growing library could afford to students. Such have been the results of Art-Unions upon schools of art everywhere. To be sure the members of the National Academy are not entirely free from censure in this matter, for many of them, smitten with the "Union" mania, gave it their countenance, and even something more substantial, to assist its infant struggles for popularity, little suspecting, certainly, that they were lending a club which would sooner or later strike them to the ground. It may not be out of place here to remark, that it is firmly believed that the Academy of Design can yet rise up from its ashes, and overthrow all such schemes as Art-Unions, by placing itself upon a more liberal and popular footing; and by disclaiming all exclusive titles as utterly unworthy the ambition of every sensible and right-feeling artist. Institutions in this country, to be useful, must be placed on a popular foundation; and to be popular, they must rest upon the broad republican principle of equal rights and equal privileges to all. Let the members of the Academy open their doors wide enough to admit all classes of artisans who desire to study the principles of design—the basis upon which the beauty and the saleability of their works mainly depends. There might then, in addition to the sections of Painting and Sculpture, be added those of Architecture, Ornamental Marble and Stone Workers, Carvers in Wood and Metal, Gold and Silver Smiths, Cabinet Makers, and indeed, as many other occupations as chose to unite themselves, in separate sections, for the purposes of mutual instruction in the Art of Design. This would[Pg 195] at once be practical and popular, and with such objects in view, the Academy could with very little additional funds be put into immediate and successful operation, and become a highly honorable and most useful institution. These are mere suggestions, thrown out for the consideration of the members of the Academy and others interested. This is not the proper place to enlarge upon such a subject.

Artists must learn, if they do not know, how to control their own affairs, and if they are determined to succeed, they must not think of trusting their interests to the keeping of those not of their profession, and entirely uneducated in art, and who consequently cannot be qualified to discharge so delicate a duty with judgment and fidelity. It is an old saying, but very applicable to the present instance, that "if you neglect your own business, you need not expect others to attend to it for you." Let artists depend more upon private sales of their works to those who can appreciate them for a just remuneration, than upon the deceptive offers which chartered schemes may hold out to them. They will then, by their worth and their artistic merits, build up about them a solid body of friends and patrons, of whom nothing but death itself can rob them; and the number of whom time will but increase, until they may look forward with well-founded hopes to a peaceful and honorable old age, and a full reward for all their labors. They cannot justly suppose that permanent success and a distinguished name can be attained through any other channel than by honesty, and excellence in their works. Honors and rewards from private sources may be very laggard in their approach, but they must ultimately come—especially in this enlightened, progressive, and prosperous country—to those who have fairly earned them.

Recent Deaths.

Those who have been accustomed to visit the bookstore of Bartlett & Welford, under the Astor House, during the last half-dozen years, must have been familiar with the commanding figure and gentle but uneasy expression of our late excellent friend, the Rev. Sereno E. Dwight, D. D., who died in Philadelphia on the thirtieth of November, in the sixty-fourth year of his age. Dr. Dwight was born in Greenfield, Connecticut, in 1786, and was educated at Yale College, where he was graduated in 1803, being then about seventeen years of age. He became a tutor in the college, but soon abandoned this occupation to commence the study of the law at Burlington in Vermont, and in a few years he was admitted to practice in the highest courts of the country. An early and ever-increasing predilection, however, led him to the profession of his father, and upon completing his theological studies he was settled over the Park-street Congregational church, in Boston, where, he rapidly acquired the fame of being one of the ablest, most eloquent, and most useful divines in New-England.

He had contracted a cutaneous disease, from the injudicious use of calomel, while a tutor in Yale College; and its effects increased so much now, that his parishioners, who had become quite attached to him, in 1825 induced him to undertake a voyage to Europe. A year's travel, in Great Britain, Germany, France, and other countries, failed to restore his health, and soon after his return to the United States he resigned his charge of the Park-street church, and undertook the Presidency of Hamilton College, which in turn he was compelled to surrender, and in 1830 he opened, at New-Haven, an Academy, in which he was assisted by his wife, a daughter of the late Judge Daggett. The decline of Mrs. Dwight's health, and other circumstances, induced him to relinquish the business of teaching; he visited the Southern States, was during several sessions chaplain to the United States Senate, and, devoting himself to literature, wrote an elaborate memoir of his great-grandfather, Jonathan Edwards, and several works of less importance, one of which was "The Hebrew Wife," written to illustrate the Jewish laws of marriage, and published in New-York in 1836.

The death of his wife, and increasing physical infirmities, led him to adopt a habit of the utmost seclusion in New-York, where he passed nearly all the residue of his life. His last appearance in public was in the summer of 1848, when he consented to act with Mr. John R. Bartlett (now the chief of the Mexican Boundary Commission) and the writer of these paragraphs, as an examiner of one of the departments of the Rutgers Female Institute. He died suddenly, while upon a visit to Philadelphia for the purpose of trying the effect of the hydropathic treatment of his disease, on the 30th of September. In the Home Journal of December 14, Mr. Willis says of him:—

"In the death of this excellent man we have lost a friend, whose loss to ourself we most sincerely mourn, though the grave was, to him, a welcome relief from an insufferable disease, that had made life wretched for years. Mr. Dwight was the son of Rev. Dr. Dwight, President of Yale College. He became pastor of Park-st. church, in Boston, while we attended it in boyhood, and it is our pride to record that we were so fortunate as to secure his friendship at that time, and to retain it, in undiminished warmth and kindness, to the day of his death. Mr. Dwight was a man of qualities unusual in his profession. When he first came to Boston, in perfect health, he was, in personal appearance, the ideal of a high-souled and faultlessly elegant gentleman—with more of manly and refined beauty, indeed, than we remember to have combined in any other man. He wore these winning gifts most unconsciously, being beloved by the humblest for his open and accessible simplicity and kindness: and his health first gave way under the laborious discharge of his parochial duties. He was too severely critical and polished a scholar[Pg 196] to be either a very eloquent preacher or an easy writer, but his sermons were models of purity of style, study, and elevated thought, and his pastoral intercourse and counsel were too delightful ever to be forgotten by those who enjoyed it. Sent to Europe for his health, by his congregation, Mr. Dwight was received and followed with a degree of enthusiastic and flattering attention which fully confirmed his mark as a man, and showed how Nature's noblemen are recognized and honored everywhere. He resumed his duties on his return, but was soon obliged by illness to relinquish them, and, from that time forward, he was never again well. His weakness took the shape of a cutaneous disease of the most irritating and incurable form, and though he made one or two attempts at re-commencing his usefulness, it was sadly in vain. He resided secludedly in New-York during the latter years of his life, giving to books and scholarship what mind he could withdraw from pain, and, even thus, ready always with kindness and delightful earnestness, to give counsel or sympathy to those he loved. Mr. Dwight was a martyr to that great wrong of our country toward all clergymen—to express it by a common saying, "the working a free horse to death"—and we have only to look at the pale faces, the stooping chests, and the slender frames of most of our clerical men, to see how mind, patience, attention, needful leisure and more needful sleep, are cruelly overdrawn upon, by the service expected of them. But for his share of suffering by this exacting system, Mr. Dwight might have been, for years to come, the ornament and pride to his country which his unequalled combination of fine gifts qualified him to be; and we should not mourn, as we now do, over his life embittered while it lasted, and sent to the grave in what might have been its meridian of usefulness and ornament."

Count Brandenburgh, the Prussian Prime Minister, died on the 6th November at Berlin. He was a natural brother of the late King of Prussia, being the illegitimate son of the present King's grandfather, by the Countess Dönhoff Frederichstein, and was acknowledged, educated, and admitted as such, by the Prussian Royal family, by whom he was invariably treated as a friend and relative, although not with royal honors. He was born on the 23d of January, 1792, and had nearly completed his 59th year. He was educated for the military profession and entered the service in 1807; his promotion continued regularly, and in 1812 he was a captain on the staff of General Von York, under whom he saw some service. In 1813 he became major, and in that rank took part in the numerous actions between the Prussian and the French armies, including the battles of Leipsic, and Bautzen, Brienne, Laon, and Paris. At the passage of the Rhine at Caub, Count Brandenburgh was the first who reached the French bank. For his good conduct at Mokern and Wartenburg, he received the Iron Cross of the first class. In 1814 he was made lieutenant-colonel. In 1816 he received the command of the regiment in which he first entered the service. From 1816 to 1846 he received various promotions, charges, and decorations. In 1848 he was made general in command of the 8th army corps. Up to this time he had taken no part in politics. The London Times says:

"It was in the midst of those scenes of anarchy and violence which, about two years ago, had shaken the Prussian monarchy to its foundations—when a furious Assembly, beleaguered and intimidated by a more furious mob, had usurped sovereign power in the capital, and a democratic constitution was all but grafted on the military throne of Frederic the Great,—that we remember to have exclaimed, in the wonder and the dread of that terrible period, "Will no one save the house of Hohenzollern?" The state seemed to be on the brink of a cataract, and even the leaders of the popular movement were ignorant of the dark and stormy course before them. At that moment, it was announced one morning, to the amazement of the Prussians and of Europe, that an elderly gentleman, who had never taken any active part in politics, but had lived in the most exclusive circles of the aristocracy, and the Prussian Guards, was about to enter on the task which the boldest men had found beyond their courage, and the ablest beyond their capacity. But though he laid small claim to skill in political tactics, or experience in the administration of affairs, Count Brandenburgh brought to the service of his sovereign precisely those plain qualities which no one else appeared to possess. He had sense, he had firmness, he absolutely contemned the storm of unpopularity which greeted his appointment, and he proceeded to conduct the Government with full confidence that, although his countrymen were peculiarly subject to fits of enthusiasm, they respect nothing so much in the long run as a clear will and definite authority. After about fifteen months the citizens of Berlin hailed Count Brandenburgh as the saviour of his country."

George Grenville, Lord Nugent, died on the 26th of November at Lillies, near Aylesbury, aged sixty-one. He was the second son of the Marquis of Rockingham, and inherited the Irish Barony of Nugent, on the death of his mother, in 1812. During the same year he was elected M. P. for Aylesbury, and continued to represent that borough on the Liberal interest, until 1832, when he was appointed Lord High Commissioner of the Ionian Isles. He held that office until 1836, when he returned to England. In 1847 he was re-elected for Aylesbury. He enjoyed a very fair literary reputation. He was the author of "Lands, Classical and Sacred," "Memorials of Hampden," and other interesting productions. In conjunction with Lady Nugent, he also brought out the popular "Legends of the Library at Lillies."

M. Alexandre Fragonard, the eminent French painter and sculptor, died in October. He was a pupil of David. As a statuary, his great work is the frontispiece of the old Chamber of Deputies; and, as a painter, he executed several fine pieces, amongst others a ceiling of the Louvre, representing Tasso reading his "Jerusalem." His chief works were engraved in 1840.[Pg 197]

M. Joseph Droz, a member of the French Institute, died in Paris in November. The youth of M. Droz was devoted to stormier occupations than that in which he gathered the laurels now laid upon his grave. For three years he was a soldier:—for upwards of fifty he has been devoted to letters and to philosophy. His last escort was composed of the men who had been his comrades in that latter field,—and over his grave MM. Guizot and Bartholemy Saint-Hilaire, pronounced eulogies.

Professor Schorn, died in Augsburgh on the 7th of October, at the premature age of forty-seven years. In the formation of the Munich Gallery, he was the most trusted and active emissary, and traversed considerable portions of Europe, including England and Italy, in search of those treasures which now enrich this famous gallery. When in London, his companion was Von Martins, the eminent Brazilian traveller and naturalist.

Gustave Schwab, one of the most popular poets of Germany, died at Stuttgart on the 4th of November, aged fifty-eight. Schwab was the friend of Uhland. His death was very sudden. On the morning of the day on which he was summoned, he had entertained a party of his friends at breakfast, and read to them passages of a translation into German verse, which he was making of the poetical works of M. de Lamartine.

Spirit of the English Annuals.


The holiday souvenirs for the present season are less numerous in England, as in this country, than in some previous years; but the Keepsake, edited formerly by Lady Blessington, and now by her niece, Miss Power, is among the few favorite annuals that are continued, and it is as good as in its best days. We quote several of its chief attractions, and first



There arose out of the last Epsom races a little family perplexity, whereon the owner of Voltiguer little speculated: and as out of this apparently trivial circumstance a profound and useful moral may be drawn, to be applied by the polite reader; and as Epsom Races will infallibly happen next year, and, I dare say, for many succeeding generations; perhaps the moral which this brief story points had better be printed upon Dorling's next "Correct Card," as a warning to future patrons and patronesses of the turf.

This moral, then—this text of our sermon, is, Never——but we will keep the moral, if you please, for the end of the fable.

It happened, then, that among the parties who were collected on the Hill to see the race, the carriage of a gentleman, whom we shall call Sir Joseph Raikes, occupied a commanding position, and attracted a great deal of attention amongst the gentlemen sportsmen. Those bucks upon the ground who were not acquainted with the fair occupant of that carriage—as indeed, how should many thousands of them be?—some being shabby bucks; some being vulgar bucks; some being hot and unpleasant bucks, smoking bad cigars, and only staring into Lady Raikes's carriage by that right which allows one Briton to look at another Briton, and a cat to look at a king;—of those bucks, I say, who, not knowing Lady Raikes, yet came and looked at her, there was scarce one that did not admire her, and envy the lucky rogue her husband. Of those ladies who, in their walks from their own vehicles, passed her ladyship's, there was scarce one lady in society who did not say, "is that all?—is that the beauty you are all talking about so much? She is overrated; she looks stupid; she is over-dressed; she squints;" and so forth; whilst of the men who did happen to have the honor of an acquaintance with Lady Raikes and her husband (and many a man, who had thought Raikes rather stupid in his bachelor days, was glad enough to know him now), each as he came to the carriage, and partook of the excellent luncheon provided there, had the most fascinating grins and ogles for the lady, and the most triumphant glances for all the rest of the world,—glances which seemed to say, "Look, you rascals, I know Lady Raikes; you don't know Lady Raikes. I can drink a glass of champagne to Lady Raikes's health. What would you give, you dog, to have such a sweet smile from Lady Raikes? Did you ever see such eyes? did you ever see such a complexion? did you ever see such a killing pink dress, and such a dear little delightfully carved ivory parasol?"—Raikes had it carved for her last year at Baden, when they were on their wedding-trip. It has their coats of arms and their ciphers intertwined elegantly round the stalk—a J and a Z; her name is Zuleika; before she was married she was Zuleika Trotter. Her elder sister, Medora, married Lord T—mn—ddy; her younger, Haidee, is engaged to the eldest son of the second son of a noble D-ke. The Trotters are of a good family. Dolly Trotter, Zuleika's brother, was in the same regiment (and that, I need not say, an extremely heavy one) with Sir Joseph Raikes.

He did not call himself Joseph then: quite the contrary. Larkyn Raikes, before his marriage, was one of the wildest and most irregular of our British youth. Let us not allude—he would blush to hear them—to the particulars of his past career. He turned away his servant for screwing up one of the knockers which he had removed during the period of his own bachelorhood, from an eminent physician's house in Saville Row, on the housekeeper's door at Larkyn Hall. There are whole hampers of those knockers stowed[Pg 198] away somewhere, and snuff-taking Highlanders, and tin hats, and black boys,—the trophies of his youth, which Raikes would like to send back to their owners, did he know them; and when he carried off these spoils of war he was not always likely to know. When he goes to the Bayonet and Anchor Club now (and he dined there twice during Lady Raikes's ... in fine, when there was no dinner at home), the butler brings him a half-pint of sherry and a large bottle of Seltzer water, and looks at him with a sigh, and wonders—"Is this Captain Raikes, as used to breakfast off pale hale at three, to take his regular two bottles at dinner, and to drink brandy and water in the smoking billiard-room all night till all was blue?" Yes, it is the same Raikes; Larkyn no more—riotous no more—brandivorous no longer. He gave away all his cigars at his marriage; quite unlike Screwby, who also married the other day, and offered to sell me some. He has not betted at a race since his father paid his debts and forgave him, just before the old gentleman died and Raikes came into his kingdom. Upon that accession, Zuleika Trotter, who looked rather sweetly upon Bob Vincent before, was so much touched by Sir Joseph Raikes's determination to reform, that she dismissed Bob and became Lady Raikes.

Dolly Trotter still remains in the Paddington Dragoons; Dolly is still unmarried; Dolly smokes still; Dolly owes money still. And though his venerable father, Rear-admiral Sir Ajax Trotter, K.C.B., has paid his debts many times, and swears if he ever hears of Dolly betting again, he will disinherit his son, Dolly—the undutiful Dolly—goes on betting still.

Lady Raikes, then, beamed in the pride of her beauty upon Epsom race-course, dispensed smiles and luncheon to a host of acquaintances, and accepted, in return, all the homage and compliments which the young men paid her. The hearty and jovial Sir Joseph Raikes was not the least jealous of the admiration which his pretty wife caused; not even of Bob Vincent, whom he rather pitied for his mishap, poor fellow! (to be sure, Zuleika spoke of Vincent very scornfully, and treated his pretensions as absurd); and with whom, meeting him on the course, Raikes shook hands very cordially, and insisted upon bringing him up to Lady Raikes's carriage, to take refreshment.

There could have been no foundation for the wicked rumor, that Zuleika had looked sweetly upon Vincent before Raikes had carried her off. Lady Raikes received Mr. Vincent with the kindest and frankest smile; shook hands with him with perfect politeness and indifference, and laughed and talked so easily with him, that it was impossible there could have been any previous discomfort between them.

Not very far off from Lady Raikes's carriage, on the hill, there stood a little black brougham—the quietest and most modest equipage in the world, and in which there must have been nevertheless something very attractive, for the young men crowded around this carriage in numbers; and especially that young reprobate Dolly Trotter was to be seen, constantly leaning his great elbows on the window, and poking his head into the carriage. Lady Raikes remarked that, among other gentlemen, her husband went up and spoke to the little carriage, and when he and Dolly came back to her, asked who was in the black brougham.

For some time Raikes could not understand which was the brougham she meant—there was so many broughams. "The black one with the red blinds was it? Oh, that—that was a very old friend—yes, old Lord Cripplegate, was in the brougham: he had the gout, and he couldn't walk."

As Raikes made this statement he blushed as red as a geranium; he looked at Dolly Trotter in an imploring manner, who looked at him, and who presently went away from his sister's carriage bursting with laughter. After making the above statement to his wife, Raikes was particularly polite and attentive to her, and did not leave her side; nor would he consent to her leaving the carriage. There were all sorts of vulgar people about: she would be jostled in the crowd: she could not bear the smell of the cigars—she knew she couldn't (this made Lady Raikes wince a little): the sticks might knock her darling head off; and so forth.

Raikes is a very accomplished and athletic man, and, as a bachelor, justly prided himself upon shying at the sticks better than any man in the army. Perhaps, as he passed the persons engaged in that fascinating sport, he would have himself liked to join in it; but he declined his favorite entertainment, and came back faithfully to the side of his wife.

As Vincent talked at Lady Raikes's side, he alluded to this accomplishment of her husband. "Your husband has not many accomplishments," Vincent said (he is a man of rather a sardonic humor), "but in shying at the sticks he is quite unequalled: he has quite a genius for it. He ought to have the sticks painted on his carriage, as the French marshals have their bâtons. Hasn't he brought you a pincushion or a jack-in-the-box, Lady Raikes? and has he begun to neglect you so soon? Every father with a little boy at home" (and he congratulated her ladyship on the birth of that son and heir) "ought surely to think of him, and bring him a soldier, or a monkey, or a toy or two."

"Oh, yes," cried Lady Raikes, "her husband must go. He must go and bring back a soldier, or a monkey, or a dear little jack-in-the-box, for dear little Dolly at home."

So away Raikes went; indeed nothing loth. He warmed with the noble sport: he was one of the finest players in England. He went on playing for a delightful half-hour; (how swiftly, in the blessed amusement, it passed away!) he reduced several of the sticksters to bankruptcy by his baculine skill; he returned to the carriage laden with jacks, wooden apples and soldiers, enough to amuse all the nurseries in Pimlico.[Pg 199]

During his absence Lady Raikes, in the most winning manner, had asked Mr. Vincent for his arm, for a little walk; and did not notice the sneer with which he said that his arm had always been at her service. She was not jostled by the crowd inconveniently; she was not offended by the people smoking (though Raikes was forbidden that amusement); and she walked up on Mr. Vincent's arm, and somehow found herself close to the little black brougham, in which sat gouty old Lord Cripplegate.

Gouty old Lord Cripplegate wore a light blue silk dress, a lace mantle and other gimcracks, a white bonnet with roses, and ringlets as long as a chancellor's wig, but of the most beautiful black hue. His lordship had a pair of enormous eyes, that languished in a most killing manner; and cheeks that were decorated with delicate dimples; and lips of the color of the richest sealing-wax.

"Who's that?" asked Lady Raikes.

"That," said Mr. Vincent, "is Mrs. Somerset Montmorency."

"Who's Mrs. Somerset Montmorency?" hissed out Zuleika.

"It is possible you have not met her in society, Mrs. Somerset Montmorency doesn't go much into society," Mr. Vincent said.

"Why did he say it was Lord Cripplegate?"

Vincent, like a fiend, burst out laughing.

"Did Raikes say it was Lord Cripplegate? Well, he ought to know."

"What ought he to know?" asked Zuleika.

"Excuse me, Lady Raikes," said the other, with his constant sneer; "there are things which people had best not know. There are things which people had best forget, as your ladyship very well knows. You forget; why shouldn't Raikes forget? Let by-gones be by-gones. Let's all forget, Zulei—I beg your pardon. Here comes Raikes. How hot he looks! He has got a hat full of jack-in-the-boxes. How obedient he has been! He will not set the Thames on fire—but he's a good fellow. Yes; we'll forget all: won't we?" And the fiend pulled the tuft under his chin, and gave a diabolical grin with his sallow face.

Zuleika did not say one word about Lord Cripplegate when Raikes found her and flung his treasures into her lap. She did not show her anger in words, but in an ominous, boding silence; during which her eyes might be seen moving constantly to the little black brougham.

When the Derby was run, and Voltigeur was announced as the winner, Sir Joseph, who saw the race from the box of his carriage—having his arm around her ladyship, who stood on the back seat, and thought all men the greatest hypocrites in creation (and so a man is the greatest hypocrite of all animals, save one)—Raikes jumped up and gave a "Hurrah!" which he suddenly checked when his wife asked, with a deathlike calmness, "And pray, sir, have you been betting upon the race, that you are so excited?"

"Oh no, my love; of course not. But you know it's a Yorkshire horse, and I—I'm glad it wins; that's all," Raikes said; in which statement there was not, I am sorry to say, a word of truth.

Raikes wasn't a betting man any more. He had forsworn it: he would never bet again. But he had just, in the course of the day, taken the odds in one little bet; and he had just happened to win. When his wife charged him with the crime, he was about to avow it. "But no," he thought; "it will be a surprise for her. I will buy her the necklace she scolded me about at Lacy and Gimcrack's; it's just the sum. She has been sulky all day. It's about that she is sulky now. I'll go and have another shy at the sticks." And he went away, delighting himself with this notion, and with the idea that at last he could satisfy his adorable little Zuleika.

As Raikes passed Mrs. Somerset Montmorency's brougham, Zuleika remarked how that lady beckoned to him, and how Raikes went up to her. Though he did not remain by the carriage two minutes, Zuleika was ready to take an affidavit that he was there for half an hour; and was saluted by a satanical grin from Vincent, who by this time had returned to her carriage side, and was humming a French tune, which says that "on revient toujours à ses premi-è-res amours, à se-es premières amours."

"What is that you are singing? How dare you sing that?" cried Lady Raikes, with tears.

"It's an old song—you used to sing it," said Mr. Vincent. "By the way, I congratulate you. Your husband has won six hundred pounds. I heard Betterton say so, who gave him the odds."

"He is a wretch! He gave me his word of honor that he didn't bet. He is a gambler—he'll ruin his child! He neglects his wife for that—that creature! He calls her Lord Crick—crick—ipplegate," sobbed her ladyship, "Why did I marry him?"

"Why, indeed!" said Mr. Vincent.

As the two were talking, Dolly Trotter, her ladyship's brother, came up to the carriage; at which, with a scowl on his wicked countenance, and indulging inwardly in language which I am very glad not to be called upon to report, Vincent retired, biting his nails, like a traitor, and exhibiting every sign of ill-humor which the villain of a novel or of a play is wont to betray.

"Don't have that fellow about you, Zuly," Dolly said to his darling sister. "He is a bad one. He's no principle: he—he's a gambler, and every thing that's bad."

"I know others who are gamblers," cried out Zuleika. "I know others who are every thing that's bad, Adolphus," Lady Raikes exclaimed.

"For heaven's sake, what do you mean?" said Adolphus, becoming red and looking very much frightened.

"I mean my husband," gasped the lady. "I shall go home to papa. I shall take my dear little blessed babe with me and go to[Pg 200] papa, Adolphus. And if you had the spirit of a man, you would—you would avenge me, that you would."

"Against Joe!" said the heavy dragoon; "against Joe, Zuly? Why, hang me if Joe isn't the greatest twump in Chwistendom. By Jove he is!" said the big one, shaking his fist; "and if that scoundwel, Vincent, or any other wascal, has said a word against him, by Jove—"

"Pray stop your horrid oaths and vulgar threats, Adolphus," her ladyship said.

"I don't know what it is—you've got something against Joe. Something has put you against him; and if it's Vincent, I'll wring his—"

"Mercy! mercy! Pray cease this language." Lady Raikes said.

"You don't know what a good fellow Joe is," said the dragoon. "The best twump in England, as I've weason to say, sister: and here he comes with the horses. God bless the old boy!"

With this, honest Sir Joseph Raikes took his seat in his carriage; and tried, by artless blandishments, by humility, and by simple conversation, to coax his wife into good humor; but all his efforts were unavailing. She would not speak a word during the journey to London; and when she reached home, rushed up to the nursery and instantly burst into tears upon the sleeping little Adolphus's pink and lace cradle.

"It's all about that necklace, Mrs. Prince," the good-natured Baronet explained to the nurse of the son and heir. "I know it's about the necklace. She rowed me about it all the way down to Epsom; and I can't give it her now, that's flat. I've no money. I won't go tick, that's flat; and she ought to be contented with what she has had; oughtn't she, Prince?"

"Indeed she ought, Sir Joseph; and you're an angel of a man, Sir Joseph; and so I often tell my lady, Sir Joseph," the nurse said: "and the more you will spile her, the more she will take on, Sir Joseph."

But if Lady Raikes was angry at not having the necklace, what must have been her ladyship's feelings when she saw in the box opposite to her at the Opera, Mrs. Somerset Montmorency, with that very necklace on her shoulders for which she had pined in vain! How she got it? Who gave it her? How she came by the money to buy such a trinket? How she dared to drive about at all in the Park, the audacious wretch! All these were questions which the infuriate Zuleika put to herself, her confidential maid, her child's nurse, and two or three of her particular friends; and of course she determined that there was but one clue to the mystery of the necklace, which was that her husband had purchased it with the six hundred pounds which he had won at the Derby, which he denied having won even to her, which he had spent in this shameful manner. Nothing would suit her but a return home to her papa—nothing would satisfy her but a separation from the criminal who had betrayed her. She wept floods of tears over her neglected boy, and repeatedly asked that as yet speechless innocent, whether he would remember his mother when her place was filled by another, and whether her little Adolphus would take care that no insult was offered to her untimely grave?

The row at home at length grew so unbearable, that Sir Joseph Raikes, who had never had an explanation since his marriage, and had given into all his wife's caprices—that Sir Joseph, we say, even with his 'eavenly temper, he broke out into a passion; and one day after dinner, at which only his brother-in-law Dolly was present, told his wife that her tyranny was intolerable, and that it must come to an end.

Dolly said he was "quite wight," and backed up Raikes in every way.

Zuleika said they were a pair of brutes, and that she desired to return to Sir Ajax.

"Why, what the devil is urging you?" cried the husband; "you drive me mad, Zuleika."

"Yes; what are you at, Zuleika? You dwive him cwazy," said the brother.

Upon which Zuleika broke out. She briefly stated that her husband was a liar; that he was a gambler; that he had deceived her about betting at Epsom, and had given his word to a lie; that he had deceived her about that—that woman,—and given his word to another lie; and that, with the fruits of his gambling transactions at Epsom, he had purchased the diamond necklace, not for her, but for that—that person! That was all—that was enough. Let her go home and die in Baker Street, in the room which, she prayed Heaven, she never had quitted! That was her charge. If Sir Joseph Raikes had any thing to say he had better say it.

Sir Joseph Raikes said, that she had the most confounded jealous temper that ever a woman was cursed with; that he had been on his knees to her ever since his marriage, and had spent half his income in administering to her caprices and extravagancies; that as for these charges, they were so monstrous, he should not condescend to answer them; and as she chose to leave her husband and her child, she might go whenever she liked.

Lady Raikes upon this rang the bell, and requested Hickson the butler to tell Dickson her maid to bring down her bonnet and shawl; and when Hickson quitted the dining-room, Dolly Trotter began:

"Zuleika," said he, "you are enough to twy the patience of an angel; and, by Jove, you do! You've got the best fellow for a husband (a sneer from Zuleika) that ever was bullied by a woman, and you tweat him like a dawg. When you were ill, you used to make him get up of a night to go to the doctor's. When you're well, you plague his life out of him. He pays your milliner's bills, as if you were a duchess, and you have but to ask for a thing and you get it."

"Oh, yes, I have necklaces!" said Zuleika.

"Confound you, Zuly! had'nt he paid three hundwed and eighty for a new cawwiage for[Pg 201] you the week before? Hadn't he fitted your dwawing-woom with yellow satin at the beginning of the season? Hadn't he bought you the pair of ponies you wanted, and gone without a hack himself, and he gettin' as fat as a porpoise for want of exercise, the poor old boy? And for that necklace, do you know how it was that you didn't have it, and that you were very nearly having it, you ungwateful little devil you? It was I prevented you! He did win six hundwed at the Derby; and he would have bought your necklace, but he gave me the money. The governor said he never would pay another play-debt again for me; and bet I would, like a confounded, gweat, stooped fool: and it was this old Joe—this dear old twump—who booked up for me, and took me out of the hole, like the best fellow in the whole world, by Jove! And—and I'll never bet again, so help me——! And that's why he couldn't tell—and that's why he wouldn't split on me—and that's why you didn't have your confounded necklace, which old Cwipplegate bought for Mrs. Montmowency, who's going to marry her, like a confounded fool for his pains!"

And here the dragoon being blown, took a large glass of claret; and when Hickson and Dickson came down stairs, they found her ladyship in rather a theatrical attitude, on her knees, embracing her husband's big hand, and calling down blessings upon him, and owning that she was a wretch, a monster, and a fiend.

She was only a jealous, little spoiled fool of a woman; and I am sure those who read her history have never met with her like, or have ever plagued their husbands. Certainly they have not, if they are not married: as, let us hope, they will be.

As for Vincent, he persists in saying that the defence is a fib from beginning to end, and that the Trotters were agreed to deceive Lady Raikes. But who hasn't had his best actions misinterpreted by calumny? And what innocence or good will can disarm jealousy?

Very different from Thackaray is the genial Mrs. S. C. Hall, from whom we have


"I could not have believed it!" exclaimed Mrs. Pierce Bradshaw. "I could not have believed it!" she repeated, over and over again; and she fell into a fit of abstraction.

Her husband, who had been glancing wearily over a magazine, turning leaf after leaf without reading, or perhaps seeing even the heading of a page, at length said, "I could!"

"You have large faith, my dear," observed the lady.

"Fortunately for Selina, I had no faith in him," was the reply.

Mrs. Pierce Bradshaw was not an eloquent person; she never troubled her husband or any one else with many words; so she only murmured, in a subdued tone, "Fortunately, indeed!"

"What a fellow he was!" said Mr. P. Bradshaw, as he closed the magazine. "Do you remember how delighted you were with him the evening of the tableaux at Lady Westrophe's? There was something so elegant and dignified in his bearing; so much ease and grace of manner; his address was perfect—the confidence of a well-bred gentleman, subdued almost, but not quite, into softness by the timidity of youth. This was thrown into strong relief by the manners of the young men of the family, whose habits and voices might have entitled them to take the lead, even now, in the go-a-head school, which then was hardly in existence—at all events in England."

"You were quite as much taken with him as I was."

"No, my dear, not quite. Edward Layton was especially suited for the society of ladies. His tastes and feelings are—or were at that time—all sincerely refined; he was full of the impulse of talent, which he never had strength to bring forth: his thoughts were ever wandering, and he needed perpetual excitement, particularly the excitement of beauty and music, to bring them and keep them where he was. He was strongly and strangely moved by excellence of any kind, so that it was excellence; and the only thing I ever heard him express contempt for was wealth!—yes wealth!"

"I could not have believed it," said Mrs. Pierce Bradshaw again.

"That particular night it was whispered he was engaged to Lelia Medwin. When she sung, he stood like a young Apollo at her harp, too entranced to turn over the leaves of music, his eyes overflowing with delight, and the poor little girl so bewitched by his attentions that she fancied every whisper a declaration of love."

"Shameful!" said Mrs. Pierce Bradshaw.

"Then her mother showed every one what a lovely sketch he had made of Lelia's head, adding, that indeed it was too lovely; but then, he was a partial judge."

"She was a silly woman," observed the lady.

"She would not have been considered so if they had been married," replied the gentleman. "Mammas have no mercy on each other in those delicate manœuvrings. Well, he waltzed with her always; and bent over her—willow-fashion; looked with her at the moon; and wrote a sonnet which she took to herself, for it was addressed 'To mine own dear ——;' and then when, about eight weeks afterwards, we met him at the déjeúner at Sally Lodge, he was as entranced with Lizzie Grey's guitar as he had been with Lelia's harp, sketched her little tiger head for her grandmamma, waltzed with her, bent over her willow-fashion, looked with her at the moon, and wrote another sonnet, addressed 'To the loved one.'"

"Such men——" exclaimed Mrs. Pierce Bradshaw. She did not finish the sentence, but looked as if such men ought to be exterminated. And so they ought!

"There was so much about him that I liked: his fine talents, good manners, excellent[Pg 202] position in society, added to his good nature, and——"

"Good fortune," added Mrs. Pierce Bradshaw.

"No, Mary," said her husband, quietly, "I never was a mammon worshipper. This occurred, if you remember, before the yellow pestilence had so completely subverted London, that the very aristocracy knelt and worshipped the golden calf; and no blame to the calf to receive the homage, whatever we may say of those who paid it.

"I did not mean that as a reproof, Pierce," replied his wife, most truly. "I think it quite natural to like young men of fortune—we could not get on without them, you know; and it would be very imprudent—very imprudent, indeed—to invite any young man, however excellent. When we want to get these young girls, our poor nieces, off, I declare it is quite melancholy. Jane is becoming serious since she has grown so thin; and I fear the men will think Belle a blue, she has so taken to the British Museum. Oh, how I wish people would live, and bring up, and get off their own daughters! Four marriageable nieces, with such farthing fortunes, are enough to drive any poor aunt distracted!"

This was the longest speech Mrs. Bradshaw ever made in her life, and she sighed deeply at its conclusion.

"You may well sigh!" laughed the gentleman; "for the case seems hopeless. But I was going to say, that as I knew him better, I was really going to take the young gentleman a little to task on the score of his philandering. Lelia was really attached to him, and had refused a very advantageous offer for his sake; but the very next week, at another house, I found him enchained by a sparkling widow—correcting her drawings, paying the homage of intelligent silence and sweet smiles to her wit, leaning his white-gloved hand upon her chair, and looking in her eyes with his most bewitching softness. The extent of this flirtation no one could anticipate; but the sudden appearance of Lady Di' Johnson effected a total change. She drove four-in-hand, and was a dead shot—the very antipodes of sentiment. We said her laugh would drive Edward Layton distracted, and her cigarette be his death. But, no! the magnificence of her tomboyism caught his fancy. He enshrined her at once as Diana, bayed the moon with hunting-songs, wrote a sonnet to the chase, and then, with his own hands, twisted it into a cigarette, with which her ladyship puffed it to the winds of heaven, while wandering with the Lothario amid a grove of fragrant limes. The miracle was, that at breakfast the next morning Lady Di' was subdued, voted driving unfeminine, and asked Edward to take the reins for her after lunch. You remember we left them there; and I next met him at Killarney, giving his chestnut locks to the breeze, his arm to the oar, and his eyes to a lady of blue-stocking celebrity, who, never having had many lovers, was inclined to make the most of the present one. Circumstances rendered me acquainted with some facts relating to his 'flirtations,' if his soft and sentimental ways could be called by such a name. I had seen poor Lelia at Baden-Baden; and I dare say you can recall what we heard of another love of his nearer home. Well, I encountered my Hero of Ladies that very evening, wandering amid the ruined aisles of Mucross Abbey. I saw that his impressible nature had taken a thoughtful, if not a religious tone, from the scene. And he commenced the conversation by declaring, that 'He was a great fool.'"

"Knave, rather," said Mrs. Pierce Bradshaw.

"No," replied her husband; "not a knave, but a singular example of a man whose feelings and susceptibilities never deepen into affection—unstable as water—tossed hither and thither for want of fixed principles, and suffering intensely in his better moods from the knowledge of the weakness he has not the courage to overcome. I was not inclined to let him spare himself, and did not contradict his opinion that he was a 'fool,' but told him he might be what he pleased himself, as long as he did not make fools of others."

"'I tell every woman I know that I am not a marrying man,' he replied.

"'That,' I said, 'does not signify as long as you act the lover, each fair one believing you will revoke in her favor.'

"'I give you my honor,' he exclaimed, 'as a man and a gentleman, I never entertained for twenty-four hours the idea of marrying any woman I ever knew.'"

"The villain!" exclaimed the lady. "I hope, Pierce, you told him he was a villain!"

"No; because I knew the uncertainty of his disposition: but I lectured him fully and honestly, and yet said nothing to him so severe as what he said of himself. I told him he would certainly be caught in the end by some unworthy person, and then he would look back with regret and misery upon the chances he had lost, and the unhappiness he had caused to those whose only faults had been in believing him true when he was false."

"'Better that,' he answered, 'than marrying when he could not make up his mind.'

"'Then why play the lover?'

"'He only did so while infatuated—he was certain to find faults where he imagined perfection.'"

"What assurance!" said Mrs. Pierce Bradshaw.

"'I am sure,' I said, 'Lelia was very charming. Lelia Medwin was an excellent, amiable little creature, with both good temper and good sense.'

"'That was it,' he said: 'only fancy the six-foot-one-and-three-quarters wedded to bare five feet! The absurdity struck me one night as we were waltzing and whirling past a looking-glass; I was obliged to bend double, though I never felt it till I saw it.'"

"Really, I have not patience," observed Mrs.[Pg 203] Bradshaw. "And so her feelings were to be trampled upon because she was not tall enough to please him! Why did he not think of that before?"

"'But there was Lizzy Grey, related to half the aristocracy, with a voice like an angel.'

"'A vixen,' he said, 'though of exquisite beauty—could have torn my eyes out for the little attention I paid Mrs. Green.'

"'Little attention!' I repeated; 'more than little.'

"'Her wit was delicious,' he replied; 'but she was a widow! Only fancy the horror of being compared with 'My dear first husband!'

"'Then your conquest of Lady Di' Johnson! How badly you behaved to her!'

"'She was magnificent on horseback; and her cigarette as fascinating as the fan of a Madrid belle, or the tournure of a Parisian lady. They were her two points. But when she relinquished both, I believe in compliment to me, she became even more commonplace than the most commonplace woman.'"

"The puppy!" muttered the lady: "the dreadful puppy! I could not have believed it!"

Mr. Bradshaw did not heed the interruption, but continued:

"'And who,' I inquired, 'was the Lady of the Lake? I do not mean of this lake, for I see her reign is already over—your passion expired with the third chapter of her novel, which I know she read to you by moonlight—but the fair Lady of Geneva, whose betrothed called you out?'

"'Her father was a sugar-boiler,' was the quiet reply: 'a sugar-boiler, or something of the kind. What would my aristocratic mother say to that? Of course I could have had no serious intention there. Indeed I never had a serious intention for a whole week.'

"'But, my dear fellow, when presents are given, and letters written, and locks of hair and vows exchanged——'

"'No, no!' he exclaimed; 'no vows exchanged! I never broke my word to a woman yet. It was admiration for this or that—respect, esteem, perhaps a tender bewilderment—mere brotherly love. And in that particular instance her intended got angry at my civility. I know I was wrong; and, to confess the truth, I am ashamed of that transaction—it taught me a lesson; and, but for the confounded vacillation of my taste and temper, I might perhaps have been a Benedick before this. You may think it puppyism, if you please; but I am really sorry when I make an impression, and resolve never to attempt it again: but the next fine voice, or fine eyes——'

"'Or cigarette,' I suggested; and then I said as much as one man can say to another, for you know a woman can say much more to a man in the way of reproof than he would bear from his own sex; but he silenced me very quickly by regrets and good resolutions. It was after that our little niece, Selina, made an impression upon him."

"I did not know all you have now told me," expostulated his wife. "I own I thought it would have been a good match for Selina; and he was evidently deeply smitten before he knew she was your niece. I managed it beautifully; but you cut the matter short by offending him."

"There, say no more about it," said the sensible husband; "you thought your blue-eyed, fair-haired, doll-like favorite, could have enchained a man who had escaped heart-whole from the toils of the richest and rarest in the land. It really is fearful to see how women not only tolerate, but pursue this sort of men. You call them 'villains,' and I know not what, when you are foiled; but if you succeed, you temper it; they have been a little wild, to be sure—but then, and then, and then—you really could not refuse your daughter; and add, "Men are such creatures that if the world knew but all, he is not worse than others."

"For shame, Pierce! how can you?" said the lady.

"I told him then," continued Mr. Bradshaw, "that he would take 'the crooked stick at last;' but that he should not add a tress of Selina's hair to his collection, to be turned over by his wife one of those days. Of course he was very indignant, and we parted; but I did not think my prophecy would come true so soon. I have long since given up speculating how marriages will turn out, for it is quite impossible to tell. If women could be shut up in a harem, as in the East, a man who was ashamed of his wife might go into society without her; but for a refined and well-educated gentleman, as Edward Layton certainly is, to be united to the widow of a sugar-boiler!—yes, absolutely!—who is an inch shorter than pretty Lelia and more tiger-headed than Lizzy Grey, and who declares she hates music, although her dear first husband took her hoften to the Hopera—who adds deformity to shortness, talks loudly of the hinfluence of wealth, and compares the presentations at the Mansion House, that she has seen, to those at St. James's which she has not yet seen! Verily, Edward Layton has had his reward!"

Bulwer Lytton contributes to the "Keepsake" an essay, characteristic of his earlier rather than of his later style:


Certainly there is truth in the French saying, that there is no ill without something of good. What state more pitiable to the eye of a man of robust health than that of the Confirmed Valetudinarian? Indeed, there is no one who has a more profound pity for himself than your Valetudinarian; and yet he enjoys two of the most essential requisites for a happy life; he is never without an object of interest, and he is perpetually in pursuit of hope.

Our friend Sir George Malsain is a notable case in point: young, well born, rich, not ill educated, and with some ability, they who knew him formerly, in what were called his "gay days," were accustomed to call him[Pg 204] "lucky dog," and "enviable fellow." How shallow is the judgment of mortals! Never was a poor man so bored—nothing interested him. His constitution seemed so formed for longevity, and his condition so free from care, that he was likely to have a long time before him:—it is impossible to say how long that time seemed to him. Fortunately, from some accidental cause or other, he woke one morning and found himself ill; and, whether it was the fault of the doctor or himself I cannot pretend to say, but he never got well again. His ailments became chronic; he fell into a poor way. From that time life has assumed to him a new aspect. Always occupied with himself, he is never bored. He may be sick, sad, suffering, but he has found his object in existence—he lives to be cured. His mind is fully occupied; his fancy eternally on the wing. Formerly he had travelled much, but without any pleasure in movement: he might as well have stayed at home. Now, when he travels, it is for an end; it is delightful to witness the cheerful alertness with which he sets about it. He is going down the Rhine;—for its scenery? Pshaw! he never cared a button about scenery; but he has great hopes of the waters at Kreuznach. He is going into Egypt;—to see the Pyramids? Stuff! the climate on the Nile is so good for the mucous membrane! Set him down at the dullest of dull places, and he himself is never dull. The duller the place the better; his physician has the more time to attend to him. When you meet him he smiles on you, and says, poor fellow, "The doctor assures me that in two years I shall be quite set up." He has said the same thing the last twenty years, and will say it the day before his death!...

What a busy, anxious, fidgety creature Ned Worrell was? That iron frame supported all the business of all society! Every man who wanted any thing done, asked Ned Worrell to do it. And do it Ned Worrell did! You remember how feelingly he was wont to sigh,—"Upon my life I'm a perfect slave." But now Ned Worrell has snapped his chain; obstinate dyspepsia, and a prolonged nervous debility, have delivered him from the carks and cares of less privileged mortals. Not Ariel under the bough is more exempt from humanity than Edward Worrell. He is enjoined to be kept in a state of perfect repose, free from agitation, and hermetically shut out from grief. His wife pays his bills, and he is only permitted to see his banker's accounts when the balance in his favor is more than usually cheerful. His eldest daughter, an intelligent young lady, reads his letters, and only presents to him those which are calculated to make a pleasing impression. Call now on your old friend, on a question of life and death, to ask his advice, or request his interference—you may as well call on King Cheops under the Great Pyramid. The whole houseguard of tender females block the way.

"Mr. Worrell is not to be disturbed on any matter of business whatever," they will tell you. "But, my dear ma'am, he is trusted to my marriage settlement; his signature is necessary to a transfer of my wife's fortune from those cursed railway shares. To-morrow they will be down at zero. We shall be ruined!"

"Mr. Worrell is in a sad, nervous way, and can't be disturbed, sir." And the door is shut in your face!

It was after some such occurrence that I took into earnest consideration a certain sentiment of Plato's, which I own I had till then considered very inhuman; for that philosopher is far from being the tender and sensitive gentleman generally believed in by lovers and young ladies. Plato, in his "Republic," blames Herodicus (one of the teachers of that great doctor Hippocrates) for showing to delicate, sickly persons, the means whereby to prolong their valetudinary existence, as Herodicus himself (naturally a very rickety fellow) had contrived to do. Plato accuses this physician of having thereby inflicted a malignant and wanton injury on those poor persons;—nay, not only an injury on them, but on all society. "For," argues this stern, broad-shouldered Athenian, "how can people be virtuous who are always thinking of their own infirmities?" And therefore he opines, that if a sickly person cannot wholly recover health and become robust, the sooner he dies the better for himself and others! The wretch, too, might be base enough to marry, and have children as ailing as their father, and so injure, in perpetuo, the whole human race. Away with him!

But, upon cool and dispassionate reflection, it seemed to me, angry as I was with Ned Worrell, that Plato stretched the point a little too far; and certainly, in the present state of civilization, so sweeping a condemnation of the sickly would go far towards depopulating Europe. Celsus, for instance, classes amongst the delicate or sickly the greater part of the inhabitants of towns, and nearly all literary folks (omnesque pene cupidi literarum). And if we thus made away with the denizens of the towns, it would be attended with a great many inconveniencies as to shopping, &c., be decidedly injurious to house property, and might greatly affect the state of the funds; while, without literary folks, we should be very dull in our healthy country-seats, deprived of newspapers, novels, and "The Keepsake." Wherefore, on the whole, I think Herodicus was right; and that sickly persons should not only be permitted but encouraged to live as long as they can.

That proposition granted, if in this attempt to show that your confirmed Valetudinarian is not so utterly miserable as he is held to be by those who throw physic to the dogs—and that in some points he may be a decided gainer by his physical sufferings—I have not wholly failed—then I say, with the ingenious Author who devoted twenty years to a work "On the Note of the Nightingale,"—"I have not lived in vain!"

[Pg 205]




Continued from Page 44.


Reader, can you go back for twenty years? You do it every day. You say, "Twenty years ago I was a boy—twenty years ago I was a youth—twenty years ago I played at peg-top and at marbles—twenty years ago I wooed—was loved—I sinned—I suffered!" What is there in twenty years that should keep us from going back over them? You go on so fast, so smoothly, so easily on the forward course—why not in retrogression? But let me tell you: it makes a very great difference whether Hope or Memory drives the coach.

But let us see what we can do. Twenty years before the period at which the last chapter broke off, Philip Hastings, now a father of a girl of fifteen, was a lad standing by the side of his brother's grave. Twenty years ago Sir John Hastings was the living lord of these fine lands and broad estates. Twenty years ago he passed, from the mouth of the vault in which he had laid the clay of the first-born, into the open splendor of the day, and felt sorrow's desolation in the sunshine. Twenty years ago, he had been confronted on the church-yard path by a tall old woman, and challenged with words high and stern, to do her right in regard to a paltry rood or two of land. Twenty years ago he had given her a harsh, cold answer, and treated her menaces with impatient scorn.

Do you remember her, reader? Well, if you do, that brings us to the point I sought to reach in the dull flat expanse of the far past; and we can stand and look around us for awhile.

That old woman was not one easily to forget or lightly to yield her resentments. There was something perdurable in them as well as in her gaunt, sinewy frame. As she stood there menacing him, she wanted but three years of seventy. She had battled too with many a storm—wind and weather, suffering and persecution, sorrow and privation, had beat upon her hard—very hard. They had but served to stiffen and wither and harden, however. Her corporeal frame, shattered as it seemed, was destined to outlive many of the young and fair spirit-tabernacles around it—to pass over, by long years, the ordinary allotted space of human life; and it seemed as if even misfortune had with her but a preserving power. It is not wonderful, however, that, while it worked thus upon her body, it should likewise have stiffened and withered and hardened her heart.

I am not sure that conscience itself went untouched in this searing process. It is not clear at all that even her claim upon Sir John Hastings was not an unjust one; but just or unjust his repulse sunk deep and festered.

Let us trace her from the church-yard after she met him. She took her path away from the park and the hamlet, between two cottages, the ragged boys at the doors of which called her "Old Witch," and spoke about a broom-stick.

She heeded them little: there were deeper offences rankling at her heart.

She walked on, across a corn-field and a meadow, and then she came upon some woodlands, through which a little sandy path wound its way, round stumps of old trees long cut down, amidst young bushes and saplings just springing up, and catching the sunshine here and there through the bright-tinted foliage overhead. Up the hill it went, over the slope on which the copse was scattered, and then burst forth again on the opposite side of wood and rise, where the ground fell gently the other way, looking down upon the richly dressed grounds of Colonel Marshall, at the distance of some three miles.

Not more than a hundred yards distant was poor man's cottage, with an old gray thatch which wanted some repairing, and was plentifully covered with herbs, sending the threads of their roots into the straw. A little badly cultivated garden, fenced off from the hill-side by a loose stone wall, surrounded the house, and a gate without hinges gave entrance to this inclosed space.

The old woman went in and approached the cottage door. When near it she stopped and listened, lifting one of the flapping ears of her cotton cap to aid the dull sense of hearing. There were no voices within; but there was a low sobbing sound issued forth as if some one were in bitter distress.

"I should not wonder if she were alone," said the old woman; "the ruffian father is always out; the drudging mother goes about this time to the town. They will neither stay at home, I wot, to grieve for him they let too often into that door, nor to comfort her he has left desolate. But it matters little whether they be in or out. It were better to talk to her first. I will give her better than comfort—revenge, if I judge right. They must play their part afterwards."

Thus communing with herself, she laid her hand upon the latch and opened the door. In an attitude of unspeakable grief sat immediately before her a young and exceedingly beautiful girl, of hardly seventeen years of age. The wheel stood still by her side; the spindle had fallen from her hands; her head was bowed down as with sorrow she could not bear up against; and her eyes were dropping tears like rain.

The moment she heard the door open she started, and looked up with fear upon her face, and strove to dash the tears from her eyes; but the old woman bespoke her softly, saying, "Good even, my dear; is your mother in the place?"[Pg 206]

"No," replied the girl; "she has gone to sell the lint, and father is out too. It is very lonely, and I get sad here."

"I do not wonder at it, poor child," said the old woman; "you have had a heavy loss, my dear, and may well cry. You can't help what is past, you know; but we can do a good deal for what is to come, if we but take care and make up our minds in time."

Many and strange were the changes of expression which came upon the poor girl's face as she heard these few simple words. At first her cheek glowed hot, as with the burning blush of shame; then she turned pale and trembled, gazing inquiringly in her visitor's face, as if she would have asked, "Am I detected?" and then she cast down her eyes again, still pale as ashes, and the tears rolled forth once more and fell upon her lap.

The old woman sat down beside her, and talked to her tenderly; but, alas! very cunningly too. She assumed far greater knowledge than she possessed. She persuaded the poor girl that there was nothing to conceal from her; and what neither father nor mother knew, was told that day to one comparatively a stranger. Still the old woman spoke tenderly—ay, very tenderly; excused her fault—made light of her fears—gave her hope—gave her strength. But all the time she concealed her full purpose. That was to be revealed by degrees. Whatever had been the girl's errors, she was too innocent to be made a party to a scheme of fraud and wrong and vengeance at once. All that the woman communicated was blessed comfort to a bruised and bleeding heart; and the poor girl leaned her head upon her old companion's shoulder, and, amidst bitter tears and sobs and sighs, poured out every secret of her heart.

But what is that she says, which makes the old woman start with a look of triumph?

"Letters!" she exclaimed; "two letters: let me see them, child—let me see them! Perhaps they may be more valuable than you think."

The girl took them from her bosom, where she kept them as all that she possessed of one gone that day into the tomb.

The old woman read them with slow eyes, but eager attention; and then gave them back, saying, "That one you had better destroy as soon as possible—it tells too much. But this first one keep, as you value your own welfare—as you value your child's fortune, station, and happiness. You can do much with this. Why, here are words that may make your father a proud man. Hark! I hear footsteps coming. Put them up—we must go to work cautiously, and break the matter to your parents by degrees."

It was the mother of the girl who entered; and she seemed faint and tired. Well had the old woman called her a drudge, for such she was—a poor patient household drudge, laboring for a hard, heartless, idle, and cunning husband, and but too tenderly fond of the poor girl whose beauty had been a snare to her.

She seemed somewhat surprised to see the old woman there; for they were of different creeds, and those creeds made wide separation in the days I speak of. Perhaps she was surprised and grieved to see the traces of tears and agitation on her daughter's face; but of that she took no notice; for there were doubts and fears at her heart which she dreaded to confirm. The girl was more cheerful, however, than she had been for the last week—not gay, not even calm; but yet there was a look of some relief.

Often even after her mother's entrance, the tears would gather thick in her eyes when she thought of the dead; but it was evident that hope had risen up: that the future was not all darkness and terror. This was a comfort to her; and she spoke and looked cheerfully. She had sold all the thread of her and her daughter's spinning, and she had sold it well. Part she hid in a corner to keep a pittance for bread from her husband's eyes; part she reserved to give up to him for the purchase of drink: but while she made all these little arrangements, she looked somewhat anxiously at the old woman, from time to time, as if she fain would have asked, "What brought you here?"

The crone was cautious, however, and knew well with whom she had to deal. She talked in solemn and oracular tones, as if she had possessed all the secrets of fate, but she told nothing, and when she went away she said in a low voice but authoritative manner, "Be kind to your girl—be very kind; for she will bring good luck and fortune to you all." The next day she laid wait for the husband, found and forced him to stop and hear her. At first he was impatient, rude, and brutal; swore, cursed, and called her many and evil names. But soon he listened eagerly enough: looks of intelligence and eager design passed between the two, and ere they parted they perfectly understood each other.

The man was then, on more than one day, seen going down to the hall. At first he was refused admission to Sir John Hastings; for his character was known. The next day, however, he brought a letter written under his dictation by his daughter, who had been taught at a charitable school of old foundation hard by; and this time he was admitted. His conversation with the Lord of the Manor was long; but no one knew its import. He came again and again, and was still admitted.

A change came over the cottage and its denizens. The fences were put in order, the walls were repaired, the thatch renewed, another room or two was added; plenty reigned within; mother and daughter appeared in somewhat finer apparel; and money was not wanting.

At the end of some months there was the cry of a young child in the house. The neighbors were scandalized, and gossips spoke censoriously[Pg 207] even in the father's ears; but he stopped them fiercely, with proud and mysterious words; boasted aloud of what they had thought his daughter's shame; and claimed a higher place for her than was willingly yielded to her companions. Strange rumors got afloat, but ere a twelvemonth had passed, the father had drank himself to death. His widow and her daughter and her grandson moved to a better house, and lived at ease on money none knew the source of, while the cottage, now neat and in good repair, became the dwelling of the old woman, who had been driven with scorn from Sir John's presence. Was she satisfied—had she sated herself? Not yet.


There was a lady, a very beautiful lady indeed, came to a lonely house, which seemed to have been tenanted for several years by none but servants, about three years after the death of Sir John Hastings. That house stood some miles to the north of the seat of that gentleman, which now had passed to his son; and it was a fine-looking place, with a massive sort of solemn brick-and-mortar grandeur about it, which impressed the mind with a sense of the wealth and long-standing of its owners.

The plural has slipped from my pen, and perhaps it is right; for the house looked as if it had had many owners, and all of them had been rich.

Now, there was but one owner,—the lady who descended from that lumbering, heavy coach, with the two great leathern wings on each side of the door. She was dressed in widow's weeds, and she had every right to wear them. Though two-and-twenty only, she stood there orphan, heiress, and widow. She had known many changes of condition, but not of fate, and they did not seem to have affected her much. Of high-born and proud parentage, she had been an only child for many years before her parents' death. She had been spoiled, to use a common, but not always appropriate phrase; for there are some people who cannot be spoiled, either because the ethereal essence within them is incorruptible, or because there is no ethereal essence to spoil at all. However, she had been spoiled very successfully by fate, fortune, and kind friends. She had never been contradicted in her life; she had never been disappointed—but once. She had travelled, seen strange countries—which was rare in those days with women—had enjoyed many things. She had married a handsome, foolish man, whom she chose—few knew rightly why. She had lost both her parents not long after; got tired of her husband, and lost him too, just when the loss could leave little behind but a decent regret, which she cultivated as a slight stimulant to keep her mind from stagnating. And now, without husband, child, or parents, she returned to the house of her childhood, which she had not seen for five long years.

Is that all her history? No, not exactly all. There is one little incident which may as well be referred to here. Her parents had entered into an arrangement for her marriage with a very different man from him whom she afterwards chose,—Sir Philip Hastings; and foolishly they had told her of what had been done, before the young man's own assent had been given. She did not see much of him—certainly not enough to fall in love with him. She even thought him a strange, moody youth; but yet there was something in his moodiness and eccentricity which excited her fancy. The reader knows that he chose for himself; and the lady also married immediately after.

Thus had passed for her a part of life's pageant; and now she came to her own native dwelling, to let the rest march by as it might. At first, as she slowly descended from the carriage, her large, dark, brilliant eyes were fixed upon the ground. She had looked long at the house as she was driving towards it, and it seemed to have cast her into a thoughtful mood. It is hardly possible to enter a house where we have spent many early years, without finding memory suddenly seize upon the heart and possess it totally. What a grave it is! What a long line of buried ancestors may not the present always contemplate there.

Nor are there many received into the tomb worth so much respect as one dead hour. All else shall live again; lost hours have no resurrection.

There were old servants waiting around, to welcome her, new ones attending upon her orders; but for a moment or two she noticed no one, till at length the old housekeeper, who knew her from a babe, spoke out, saying, "Ah, madam! I do not wonder to see you a little sad on first coming to the old place again, after all that has happened."

"Ah, indeed, Arnold," replied the lady, "many sad things have happened since we parted. But how are you, Goody? You look blooming:" and walking into the house, she heard the reply in the hall.

From the hall, the old housekeeper led her lady through the house, and mightily did she chatter and gossip by the way. The lady listened nearly in silence; for Mrs. Arnold was generous in conversation, and spared her companion all expense of words. At length, however, something she said seemed to rouse her mistress, and she exclaimed with a somewhat bitter laugh, "And so the good people declared I was going to be married to Sir Philip Hastings?"

"Mr. Hastings he was then, madam," answered the housekeeper; "to be sure they did. All the country around talked of it, and the tenants listened at church to hear the banns proclaimed."

The lady turned very red, and the old woman went on to say, "Old Sir John seemed quite sure of it; but he reckoned without his host, I fancy."

"He did indeed," said the lady with an uncheerful[Pg 208] smile, and there the subject dropped for the time. Not long after, however, the lady herself brought the conversation back to nearly the same point, asked after Sir Philip's health and manner of living, and how he was liked in the neighborhood, adding, "He seemed a strange being at the time I saw him, which was only once or twice—not likely to make a very pleasant husband, I thought."

"Oh dear, yes, madam, he does," answered Mrs. Arnold, "many a worse, I can assure you. He is very fond of his lady indeed, and gives up more to her than one would think. He is a little stern, they say, but very just and upright; and no libertine fellow, like his brother who was drowned—which I am sure was a providence, for if he was so bad when he was young, what would he have been when he was old?"

"Better, perhaps," replied her mistress, with a quiet smile; "but was he so very wicked? I never heard any evil of him."

"Oh dear me, madam! do not you know?" exclaimed the old woman; and then came the whole story of the cotter's daughter on the hill, and how she and her father and old Mother Danby—whom people believed to be a witch—had persuaded or threatened Sir John Hastings into making rich people of them.

"Persuaded or threatened Sir John Hastings!" said the lady in a tone of doubt. "I knew him better than either of his sons; and never did I see a man so little likely to yield to persuasion or to bow to menace;" and she fell into a deep fit of musing, which lasted long, while the old housekeeper rambled on from subject to subject, unlistened to, but very well content.

Let us dwell a little on the lady, and on her character. There is always something to interest, something to instruct, in the character of a woman. It is like many a problem in Euclid, which seems at first sight as plain and simple as the broad sunshine; but when we come to study it, we find intricacies beneath which puzzle us mightily to resolve. It is a fine, curious, delicate, complicated piece of anatomy, a woman's heart. I have dissected many, and I know the fact. Take and lay that fibre apart—take care, for heaven's sake! that you do not tear the one next to it; and be sure you do not dissever the fragments which bind those most opposite parts together! See, here lies a muscle of keen sensibility; and there—what is that? A cartilage, hard as a nether millstone. Look at those light, irritable nerves, quivering at the slightest touch; and then see those tendons, firm, fixed, and powerful as the resolution of a martyr. Oh, that wonderful piece of organization! who can describe it accurately?

I must not pretend to do so; but I will give a slight sketch of the being before me.

There she stands, somewhat above the usual height, but beautifully formed, with every line rounded and flowing gracefully into the others. There is calmness and dignity in the whole air, and in every movement; but yet there is something very firm, very resolute, very considerate, in the fall of that small foot upon the carpet. She cannot intend her foot to stay there for ever; and yet, when she sets it down, one would be inclined to think she did. Her face is very beautiful—every feature finely cut—the eyes almost dazzling in their dark brightness. How chaste, how lovely the fine lines of that mouth. Yet do you see what a habit she has of keeping the pearly teeth close shut—one pure row pressed hard against the other. The slight sarcastic quiver of the upper lip does not escape you; and the expanded nostril and flash of the eye, contradicted by the fixed motionless mouth.

Such is her outward appearance, such is she too within—though the complexion there is somewhat darker. Much that, had it been cultivated and improved, would have blossomed into womanly virtue; a capability of love, strong, fiery, vehement, changeless—not much tenderness—not much pity,—no remorse—are there. Pride, of a peculiar character, but strong, ungovernable, unforgiving, and a power of hate and thirst of vengeance, which only pride can give, are there likewise. Super-add a shrewdness—a policy—a cunning—nay, something greater—something approaching the sublime—a divination, where passion is to be gratified, that seldom leads astray from the object.

Yes, such is the interior of that fair temple, and yet, how calm, sweet, and promising it stands.

I have omitted much perhaps; for the human heart is like the caldron of the witches in Macbeth, and one might go on throwing in ingredients till the audience became tired of the song. However, what I have said will be enough for the reader's information; and if we come upon any unexplained phenomena, I must endeavor to elucidate them hereafter.

Let us suppose the lady's interview with her housekeeper at an end—all her domestic arrangements made—the house restored to its air of habitation—visits received and paid. Amongst the earliest visitors were Sir Philip and Lady Hastings. He came frankly, and in one of his most happy moods, perfectly ignorant that she had ever been made aware of there having been a marriage proposed between himself and her; and she received him and his fair wife with every appearance of cordiality. But as soon as these visits and all the ceremonies were over, the lady began to drive much about the country, and to collect every tale and rumor she could meet with of all the neighboring families. Her closest attention, however, centred upon those affecting the Hastings' race; and she found the whole strange story of the cottage girl confirmed, with many another particular added. She smiled when she heard this—smiled blandly—it seemed to give her pleasure. She would[Pg 209] fain have called upon the girl and her mother too. She longed to do so, and to draw forth with skill, of which she possessed no small share, the key secret of the whole. But her station, her reputation, prevented her from taking a step which she knew might be noised abroad and create strange comments.

She resolved upon another move, however, which she thought would do as well. There would be no objection to her visiting her poorer neighbors, to comfort, to relieve; and she went to the huts of many. At length one early morning, on a clear autumn day, the carriage was left below on the high road, and the lady climbed the hill alone towards the cottage, where the girl and her parents formerly lived. She found the old woman, who was now its occupant, busily cooking her morning meal; and sitting down, she entered into conversation with her. At first she could obtain but little information; the old woman was in a sullen mood, and would not speak of any thing she did not like. Money was of no avail to unlock her eloquence.

She had never asked or taken charity, the old woman said, and now she did not need it.

The lady pondered for a few minutes, considering the character of her ancient hostess, trying it by her experience and intuition; and thus she boldly asked her for the whole history of young John Hastings and the cottage girl.

"Tell me all," she said, "for I wish to know it—I have an interest in it."

"Ay?" said the old woman, gazing at her, "then you are the pretty lady Sir Philip was to have married, but would not have her?"

"The same," replied the visitor, and for an instant a bright red spot arose upon her cheek—a pang like a knife passed through her heart.

That was the price she paid for the gratification of her curiosity. But it probably was gratified, for she stayed nearly an hour and a half in the cottage—so long, indeed, that her servants, who were with the carriage, became alarmed, and one of the footmen walked up the hill. He met his lady coming down.

"Poor thing," she said, as if speaking of the old woman she had just left, "her senses wander a little; but she is poor, and has been much persecuted. I must do what I can for her. Whenever she comes to the house, see she is admitted."

The old woman did come often, and always had a conference with the lady of the mansion; but here let us leave them for the present. They may appear upon the stage again.


"My Dear Sir Philip:

"I have not seen you or dear Lady Hastings for many months; nor your sweet Emily either, except at a distance, when one day she passed my carriage on horseback, sweeping along the hill-side like a gleam of light. My life is a sad, solitary one here; and I wish my friends would take more compassion upon me and let me see human faces oftener—especially faces that I love.

"But I know that you are very inexorable in these respects, and, sufficient to yourself, cannot readily conceive how a lone woman can pine for the society of other more loving friends than books or nature. I must, therefore, attack the only accessible point I know about you, meaning your compassion, which you never refuse to those who really require it. Now I do require it greatly; for I am at this present engaged in business of a very painful and intricate nature, which I cannot clearly understand, and in which I have no one to advise me but a country attorney, whose integrity as well as ability I much doubt. To whom can I apply so well as to you, when I need the counsel and assistance of a friend, equally kind, disinterested, and clear-headed? I venture to do so, then, in full confidence, and ask you to ride over as soon as you can, to give me your advice, or rather to decide for me, in a matter where a considerable amount of property is at stake, and where decision is required immediately. I trust when you do come you will stay all night, as the business is, I fear, of so complicated a nature, that it may occupy more than one day of your valuable time in the affairs of

Your faithful and obliged servant,
Caroline Hazleton."

"Is Mrs. Hazleton's messenger waiting?" asked Sir Philip Hastings, after having read the letter and mused for a moment.

The servant answered in the affirmative; and his master rejoined, "Tell him I will not write an answer, as I have some business to attend to; but I beg he will tell his mistress that I will be with her in three hours."

Lady Hastings uttered a low-toned exclamation of surprise. She did not venture to ask any question—indeed she rarely questioned her husband on any subject; but when any thing excited her wonder, or, as was more frequently the case, her curiosity, she was accustomed to seek for satisfaction in a somewhat indirect way, by raising her beautiful eyebrows with a doubtful sort of smile, or, as in the present instance, by exclaiming, "Good gracious! Dear me!" or giving voice to some other little vocative, with a note of interrogation strongly marked after it.

In this case there was more than one feeling at the bottom of her exclamation. She was surprised; she was curious; and she was, moreover, in the least degree in the world, jealous. She had her share of weaknesses, as I have said; and one of them was of a kind less uncommon than may be supposed. Of her husband's conduct she had no fear—not the slightest suspicion. Indeed, to have entertained any would have been impossible—but she could not bear to see him liked, admired, esteemed, by any woman—mark me, I say by any woman; for no one could feel more triumphant joy than she did when she saw him duly appreciated by men. She was a great[Pg 210] monopolizer: she did not wish one thought of his to be won away from her by another woman; and a sort of irritable feeling came upon her even when she saw him seated by any young and pretty girl, and paying her the common attentions of society. She was too well bred to display such sensations except by those slight indications, or by a certain petulance of manner, which he was not close observer enough of other people's conduct to remark.

Not to dwell too long on such things, Sir Philip Hastings, though perfectly unconscious of what was going on in her heart, rarely kept her long in suspense, when he saw any signs of curiosity. He perhaps might think it a point of Roman virtue to spoil his wife, although she had very little of the Portia in her character. On the present occasion, he quietly handed over to her the letter of Mrs. Hazleton; and then summoned a servant and gave orders for various preparations.

"Had not I and Emily better go with you?" asked Lady Hastings, pointing out to him the passage in the letter which spoke of the long absence of all the family.

"Not when I am going on business," replied her husband gravely, and quitted the room.

An hour after, Philip Hastings was on horseback with a servant carrying a valise behind him, and riding slowly through the park. The day was far advanced, and the distance was likely to occupy about an hour and a half in travelling; but the gentleman had fallen into a reverie, and rode very slowly. They passed the park gates; they took their way down the lane by the church and near the parsonage. Here Sir Philip pulled in his horse suddenly, and ordered the man to ride on and announce that he would be at Mrs. Hazleton's soon after. He then fastened his horse to a large hook, put up for the express purpose on most country houses of that day in England, and walked up to the door. It was ajar, and without ceremony he walked in, as he was often accustomed to do, and entered the little study of the rector.

The clergyman himself was not there; but there were two persons in the room, one a young and somewhat dashing-looking man, one or two and twenty years of age, exceedingly handsome both in face and figure; the other personage past the middle age, thin, pale, eager and keen-looking, in whom Sir Philip instantly recognized a well known, but not very well reputed attorney, of a country town about twenty miles distant. They had one of the large parish books before them, and were both bending over it with great appearance of earnestness.

The step of Sir Philip Hastings roused them, and turning round, the attorney bowed low, saying, "I give you good day, Sir Philip. I hope I have the honor of seeing you well."

"Quite so," was the brief reply, and it was followed by an inquiry for the pastor, who it seemed had gone into another room for some papers which were required.

In the mean time the younger of the two previous occupants of the room had been gazing at Sir Philip Hastings with a rude, familiar stare, which the object of it did not remark; and in another moment the clergyman himself appeared, carrying a bundle of old letters in his hand.

He was a heavy, somewhat timid man, the reverse of his predecessor in all things, but a very good sort of person upon the whole. On seeing the baronet there, however, something seemed strangely to affect him—a sort of confused surprise, which, after various stammering efforts, burst forth as soon as the usual salutation was over, in the words, "Pray, Sir Philip, did you come by appointment?"

Sir Philip Hastings, as the reader already knows, was a somewhat unobservant man of what was passing around him in the world. He had his own deep, stern trains of thought, which he pursued with a passionate earnestness almost amounting to monomania. The actions, words, and even looks of those few in whom he took an interest, he could sometimes watch and comment on in his own mind with intense study. True, he watched without understanding, and commented wrongly; for he had too little experience of the motives of others from outward observation, and found too little sympathy with the general motives of the world, in his own heart, to judge even those he loved rightly. But the conduct, the looks, the words of ordinary men, he hardly took the trouble of remarking; and the good parson's surprise and hesitation, passed like breath upon a mirror, seen perhaps, but retaining no hold upon his mind for a moment. Neither did the abrupt question surprise him; nor the quick, angry look which it called up on the face of the attorney attract his notice; but he replied quietly to Mr. Dixwell, "I do not remember having made any appointment with you."

The matter was all well so far; and would have continued well; but the attorney, a meddling fellow, had nearly spoiled all, by calling the attention of Philip Hastings more strongly to the strangeness of the clergyman's question.

"Perhaps," said the man of law, interrupting the baronet in the midst, "Perhaps Mr. Dixwell thought, Sir Philip, that you came here to speak with me on the business of the Honorable Mrs. Hazleton. She told me she would consult you, and I can explain the whole matter to you."

But the clergyman instantly declared that he meant nothing of the kind; and at the same moment Sir Philip Hastings said, "I beg you will not, sir. Mrs. Hazleton will explain what she thinks proper to me, herself. I desire no previous information, as I am now on my way to her. Why my good friend here should suppose I came by appointment, I cannot tell. However, I did not; and it does not matter. I only wish, Mr. Dixwell, to say, that I hear the old woman Danley is ill and dying. She is a papist, and the foolish people about fancy she is a witch. Little help or comfort will she obtain[Pg 211] from them, even if they do not injure or insult her. As I shall be absent all night, and perhaps all to-morrow, I will call at her cottage as I ride over to Mrs. Hazleton's and inquire into her wants. I will put down on paper, and leave there, what I wish my people to do for her; but there is one thing which I must request you to do, namely, to take every means, by exhortation and remonstrance, to prevent the ignorant peasantry from troubling this poor creature's death-bed. Her sad errors in matters of faith should only at such a moment make us feel the greater compassion for her."

Mr. Dixwell thought differently, for though a good man, he was a fanatic. He did not indeed venture to think of disobeying the injunction of the great man of the parish—the man who now held both the Hastings and the Marshal property; but he would fain have detained Sir Philip to explain and make clear to him the position—as clear as a demonstration in Euclid to his own mind—that all Roman Catholics ought to be, at the very least, banished from the country for ever.

But Sir Philip Hastings was not inclined to listen, and although the good man began the argument in a solemn tone, his visitor, falling into a fit of thought, walked slowly out of the room, along the passage, through the door, and mounted his horse, without effectually hearing one word, though they were many which Mr. Dixwell showered upon him as he followed.

At his return to his little study, the parson found the young man and the lawyer, no longer looking at the book, but conversing together very eagerly, with excited countenances and quick gestures. The moment he entered, however, they stopped, the young man ending with an oath, for which the clergyman reproved him on the spot.

"That is very well, Mr. Dixwell," said the attorney, "and my young friend here will be much the better for some good admonition; and for sitting under your ministry, as I trust he will, some day soon; but we must go I fear directly. However, there is one thing I want to say; for you had nearly spoiled every thing to-day. No person playing at cards—"

"I never touch them," said the parson, with a holy horror in his face.

"Well, others do," said the attorney, "and those who do never show their hand to their opponent. Now, law is like a game of cards—"

"In which the lawyer is sure to get the odd trick," observed the young man.

"And we must not have Sir Philip Hastings know one step that we are taking," continued the lawyer. "If you have conscience, as I am sure you have, and honor, as I know you have, you will not suffer any thing that we have asked you, or said to you, to transpire; for then, of course, Sir Philip would take every means to prevent our obtaining information."

"I do not think it," said the parson.

"And justice and equity would be frustrated," proceeded the attorney, "which you are bound by your profession to promote. We want nothing but justice, Mr. Dixwell: justice, I say; and no one can tell what card Sir Philip may play."

"I will trump it with the knave," said the young man to himself; and having again cautioned the clergyman to be secret, not without some obscure menaces of danger to himself, if he failed, the two gentlemen left him, and hurried down, as fast as they could go, to a small alehouse in the village, where they had left their horses. In a few minutes, a well known poacher, whose very frequent habitation was the jail or the cage, was seen to issue forth from the door of the alehouse, then to lead a very showy looking horse from the stable, and then to mount him and take his way over the hill. The poacher had never possessed a more dignified quadruped than a dog or a donkey in his life; so that it was evident the horse could not be his. That he was not engaged in the congenial but dangerous occupation of stealing it, was clear from the fact of the owner of the beast gazing quietly at him out of the window while he mounted; and then turning round to the attorney, who sat at a table hard by, and saying, "he is off, I think."

"Well, let him go," replied the lawyer, "but I do not half like it, Master John. Every thing in law should be cool and quiet. No violence—no bustle."

"But this is not a matter of law," replied the younger man, "it is a matter of safety, you fool. What might come of it, if he were to have a long canting talk with the old wretch upon her death-bed?"

"Very little," replied the attorney, in a calm well-assured tone, "I know her well. She is as hard as a flint stone. She always was, and time has not softened her. Besides, he has no one with him to take depositions, and if what you say is true, she'll not live till morning."

"But I tell you, she is getting frightened, as she comes near death!" exclaimed the young man. "She has got all sorts of fancies into her head; about hell, and purgatory, and the devil knows what; and she spoke to my mother yesterday about repentance, and atonement, and a pack of stuff more, and wanted extreme unction, and to confess to a priest. It would be a fine salve, I fancy, that could patch up the wounds in her conscience; but if this Philip Hastings were to come to her with his grave face and solemn tone, and frighten her still more, he would get any thing out of her he pleased."

"I don't think it," answered the lawyer deliberately; "hate, Master John, is the longest lived passion I know. It lasts into the grave, as I have often seen in making good men's wills when they were dying—sanctified, good men, I say. Why I have seen a man who has spent half his fortune in charity, and built[Pg 212] alms-houses, leave a thoughtless son, or a runaway daughter, or a plain-spoken nephew, to struggle with poverty all his life, refusing to forgive him, and comforting himself with a text or a pretence. No, no; hate is the only possession that goes out of the world with a man: and this old witch, Danby, hates the whole race of Hastings with a goodly strength that will not decay as her body does. Besides Sir Philip is well-nigh as puritanical as his father—a sort of cross-breed between an English fanatic and an old Roman cynic. She abominates the very sound of his voice, and nothing would reconcile her to him but his taking the mass and abjuring the errors of Calvin. Ha! ha! ha! However, as you have sent the fellow, it cannot be helped. Only remember I had nothing to do with it if violence follows. That man is not to be trusted, and I like to keep on the safe side of the law."

"Ay, doubtless, doubtless," answered the youth, somewhat thoughtfully; "it is your shield; and better stand behind than before it. However, I don't doubt Tom Cutter in the least. Besides, I only told him to interrupt them in their talk, and take care they had no private gossip; to stick there till he was gone, and all that."

"Sir Philip is not a man to bear such interruption," said the attorney, gravely; "he is as quiet looking as the deep sea on a summer's day; but there can come storms, I tell you, John, and then woe to those who have trusted the quiet look."

"Then, if he gets in a passion, and mischief comes of it," replied the young man, with a laugh, "the fault is his, you know, Shanks."

"True," answered the attorney, meditating, "and perhaps, by a little clever twisting and turning, we might make something of it if he did, were there any other person concerned but this Tom Cutter, and we had a good serviceable witness or two. But this man is such a rogue that his word is worth nothing; and to thrash him—though the business of the beadle—would be no discredit to the magistrate. Besides, he is sure to give the provocation, and one word of Sir Philip's would be worth a thousand oaths of Tom Cutter's, in any court in the kingdom."

"As to thrashing him, that few can do," replied the youth; "but only remember, Shanks, that I gave no orders for violence."

"I was not present," replied the attorney, with a grin; "you had better, by a great deal, trust entirely to me, in these things, Master John. If you do, I will bring you safely through, depend upon it; but if you do not, nobody can tell what may come. Here comes Folwell, the sexton. Now hold your tongue, and let me manage him, sir. You are not acquainted with these matters."


Did you ever examine an ant-hill, dear reader? What a wonderful little cosmos it is—what an epitome of a great city—of the human race! See how the little fellows run bustling along upon their several businesses—see how some get out of each other's way, how others jostle, and others walk over their fellows' heads! But especially mark that black gentleman, pulling hard to drag along a fat beetle's leg and thigh, three times as large as his own body. He cannot get it on, do what he will; and yet he tugs away, thinking it a very fine haunch indeed. He does not perceive, what is nevertheless the fact, that there are two others of his own race pulling at the other end, and thus frustrating all his efforts.

And thus it is with you, and me, and every one in the wide world. We work blindly, unknowing the favoring or counteracting causes that are constantly going on around us, to facilitate or impede our endeavors. The wish to look into futurity is vain, irrational, almost impious; but what a service would it be to any man if he could but get a sight into Fate's great workshop, and see only that part in which the events are on the anvil that affect our own proceedings. Still, even if we did, we might not understand the machinery after all, and only burn or pinch our fingers in trying to put pieces together which fate did not intend to fit.

In the mean time—that is to say while the attorney and his companion were talking together at the alehouse—Sir Philip Hastings rode quietly up the hill to the cottage I have before described, and therefore shall not describe again, merely noticing that it now presented an appearance of neatness and repair which it had not before possessed. He tied his horse to the palings, walked slowly up the little path, gazing right and left at the cabbages and carrots on either side, and then without ceremony went in.

The cottage had two tenants at this time, the invalid old woman, and another, well-nigh as old but less decrepit, who had been engaged to attend upon her in her sickness. How she got the money to pay her no one knew, for her middle life and the first stage of old age had been marked by poverty and distress; but somehow money seems to have a natural affinity for old age. It grows upon old people, I think, like corns; and certainly she never wanted money now.

There she was, lying in her bed, a miserable object indeed to see. She was like a woman made of fungus—not of that smooth, putty-like, fleshy fungus which grows in dank places, but of the rough, rugged, brown, carunculated sort which rises upon old stumps of trees and dry-rot gate-posts. Teeth had departed nearly a quarter of a century before, and the aquiline features had become more hooked and beaky for their loss; but the eyes had now lost their keen fire, and were dull and filmy.

The attorney was quite right. Hate was the last thing to go out in the ashes where the spark of life itself lingered but faintly. At[Pg 213] first she could not see who it was entered the cottage; for the sight now reached but a short distance from her own face. But the sound of his voice, as he inquired of the other old woman how she was going on, at once showed her who it was, and hate at least roused "the dull cold ear of death."

For a moment or two she lay muttering sounds which seemed to have no meaning; but at length she said, distinctly enough, "Is that Philip Hastings?"

"Yes, my poor woman," said the baronet; "is there any thing I can do for you?"

"Come nearer, come nearer," she replied, "I cannot see you plainly."

"I am close to you, nevertheless," he answered. "I am touching the bed on which you lie."

"Let me feel you," continued she—"give me your hand."

He did as she asked him; and holding by his hand, she made a great struggle to raise herself in bed; but she could not, and lay exhausted for a minute before she spoke again.

At length, however, she raised her voice louder and shriller than before—"May a curse rest upon this hand and upon that head!" she exclaimed; "may the hand work its own evil, and the head its own destruction! May the child of your love poison your peace, and make you a scoff, and a by-word, and a shame! May the wife of your bosom perish by——"

But Sir Philip Hastings withdrew his hand suddenly, and an unwonted flush came upon his cheek.

"For shame!" he said, in a low stern tone, "for shame!"

The next moment, however, he recovered himself perfectly; and turning to the nurse he added, "Poor wretch! my presence only seems to excite evil feelings which should long have passed away, and are not fit counsellors for the hour of death. If there be any thing which can tend to her bodily comfort that the hall can supply, send up for it. The servants have orders. Would that any thing could be done for her spiritual comfort; for this state is terrible to witness."

"She often asks for a priest, your worship," said the nurse. "Perhaps if she could see one she might think better before she died."

"Alas, I doubt it," replied the visitor; "but at all events we cannot afford her that relief. No such person can be found here."

"I don't know, Sir Philip," said the old woman, with a good deal of hesitation; "they do say that at Carrington, there is—there is what they call a seminary."

"You do not mean a papist college!" exclaimed the baronet, with unfeigned surprise and consternation.

"Oh, dear, no sir," replied the nurse, "only a gentleman—a seminary—a seminary priest, I think they call it; a papist certainly; but they say he is a very good gentleman, all but that."

Sir Philip mused for a minute or two, and then turned to the door, saying, "Methinks it is hard that a dying woman cannot have the consolations of the rites of her own faith—mummery though they be. As a magistrate, my good woman, I can give no authority in this business. You must do as you think fit. I myself know of no priest in this neighborhood, or I should be bound to cause his apprehension. I shall take no notice of your word, however, and as to the rest, you must, as I have said, act as you think fit. I did not make the laws, and I may think them cruel. Did I make them, I would not attempt to shackle the conscience of any one. Farewell," and passing through the door, he remounted his horse and rode away.

It was in the early autumn time of the year, and the scene was peculiarly lovely. I have given a slight description of it before, but I must pause and dwell upon it once more, even as Sir Philip Hastings paused and dwelt upon its loveliness at that moment, although he had seen and watched it a thousand times before. He was not very impressible by fine scenery. Like the sages of Laputa, his eyes were more frequently turned inwards than outwards; but there was something in that landscape which struck a chord in his heart, that is sure to vibrate easily in the heart of every one of his countrymen.

It was peculiarly English—I might say singularly English; for I have never seen any thing of exactly the same character anywhere else but in Old England—except indeed in New England, where I know not whether it be from the country having assimilated itself to the people, or from the people having chosen the country from the resemblance to their own paternal dwelling place, many a scene strikes the eye which brings back to the wandering Englishman all the old, dear feelings of his native land, and for a moment he may well forget that the broad Atlantic rolls between him and the home of his youth.

But let me return to my picture. Sir Philip Hastings sat upon his horse's back, very nearly at the summit of the long range of hills which bisected the county in which he dwelt. I have described, in mentioning his park, the sandy character of the soil on the opposite slope of the rise; but here higher up, and little trodden by pulverizing feet, the sandstone rock itself occasionally broke out in rugged maps, diversifying the softer characteristics of the scene. Wide, and far away, on either hand, the eye could wander along the range, catching first upon some bold mass of hill, or craggy piece of ground, assuming almost the character of a cliff, seen in hard and sharp distinctness, with its plume of trees and coronet of yellow gorse, and then, proceeding onward to wave after wave, the sight rested upon the various projecting points, each softer and softer as they receded, like the memories of early days, till the last lines of the wide sweep left the mind doubtful whether[Pg 214] they were forms of earth or clouds, or merely fancy.

Such was the scene on either hand, but straightforward it was very different, but still quite English. Were you ever, reader, borne to the top of a very high wave in a small boat, and did you ever, looking down the watery mountain, mark how the steep descent, into the depth below, was checkered by smaller waves, and these waves again by ripples? Such was the character of the view beneath the feet of the spectator. There was a gradual, easy descent from the highest point of the whole county down to a river-nurtured valley, not unbroken, but with lesser and lesser waves of earth, varying the aspect of the scene. These waves again were marked out, first by scattered and somewhat stunted trees, then by large oaks and chestnuts, not undiversified by the white and gleaming bark of the graceful birch. A massive group of birches here and there was seen; a scattered cottage, too, with its pale bluish wreath of smoke curling up over the tree-tops. Then, on the lower slope of all, came hedgerows of elms, with bright, green rolls of verdant turf between; the spires of churches; the roofs and white walls of many sorts of man's dwelling-places, and gleams of a bright river, with two or three arches of a bridge. Beyond that again appeared a rich wide valley—I might almost have called it a plain, all in gay confusion, with fields, and houses, and villages, and trees, and streams, and towns, mixed altogether in exquisite disorder, and tinted with all the variety of colors and shades that belong to autumn and to sunset.

Down the descent, the eye of Sir Philip Hastings could trace several roads and paths, every step of which he knew, like daily habits. There was one, a bridle-way from a town about sixteen miles distant, which, climbing the hills almost at its outset, swept along the whole range, about midway between the summit and the valley. Another, by which he had come, and along which he intended to proceed, traversed the crest of the hills ere it reached the cottage, and then descended with a wavy line into the valley, crossing the bridle-path I have mentioned. A wider path—indeed it might be called a road, though it was not a turnpike—came over the hills from the left, and with all those easy graceful turns which Englishmen so much love in their highways, and Frenchmen so greatly abhor, descended likewise into the valley, to the small market-town, glimpses of which might be caught over the tops of the trees. As the baronet sat there on horseback, and looked around, more than one living object met his eye. To say nothing of some sheep wandering along the uninclosed part of the hill, now stopping to nibble the short grass, now trotting forward for a sweeter bite,—not to notice the oxen in the pastures below, there was a large cart slowly winding its way along an open part of the road, about half a mile distant, and upon the bridle-path which I have mentioned, the figure of a single horseman was seen, riding quietly and easily along, with a sauntering sort of air, which gave the beholder at once the notion that he was what Sterne would have called a "picturesque traveller," and was enjoying the prospect as he went.

On the road that came over the hill from the left, was another rider of very different demeanor, going along at a rattling pace, and apparently somewhat careless of his horse's knees.

The glance which Sir Philip Hastings gave to either of them was but slight and hasty. His eyes were fixed upon the scene before him, feeling, rather than understanding, its beauties, while he commented in his mind, after his own peculiar fashion. I need not trace the procession of thought through his brain. It ended, however, with the half uttered words,

"Strange, that such a land should have produced so many scoundrels, tyrants, and knaves!"

He then slowly urged his horse forward, down the side of the hill, soon reached some tall trees, where the inclosures and hedgerows commenced, and was approaching the point at which the road he was travelling, crossed the bridle-path, when he heard some loud, and as it seemed to him, angry words, between two persons he could not see.

"I will soon teach you that;" cried a loud, coarse tongue, adding an exceedingly blasphemous oath, which I will spare the reader.

"My good friend," replied another milder voice, "I neither desire to be taught any thing, just now, nor would you be the teacher I should chose, if I did, though perchance, in case of need, I might give you a lesson, which would be of some service to you."

Sir Philip rode on, and the next words he heard were spoken by the first voice, to the following effect; "Curse me, if I would not try that, only my man might get off in the mean time; and I have other business in hand than yours. Otherwise I would give you such a licking in two minutes, you would be puzzled to find a white spot on your skin for the next month."

"Two minutes would not detain you long," replied the calmer voice, "and, as I have never had such a beating, I should like to see, first, whether you could give it, and secondly, what it would be like."

"Upon my soul, you are cool!" exclaimed the first speaker with another oath.

"Perfectly," replied the second; and, at the same moment, Sir Philip Hastings emerged from among the trees, at the point where the two roads crossed, and where the two speakers were face to face before his eyes.

The one, who was in truth the sauntering traveller whom he has seen wending along the[Pg 215] bridle-path, was a tall, good-looking young man, of three or four and twenty years of age. In the other, the Baronet had no difficulty in recognizing at once, Tom Cutter, the notorious poacher and bruiser, whom he had more than once had the satisfaction of committing to jail. To see him mounted on a very fine powerful horse, was a matter of no slight surprise to Sir Philip; but, naturally concluding that he had stolen it, and was making off with his prize for sale to the neighboring town, he rode forward and put himself right in the way, determined to stop him.

"Ay, ay! Here is my man!" cried Tom Cutter, as soon as he saw him. "I will settle with him first, and then for you, my friend."

"No, no, to an old proverb, first come must be first served," replied the traveller, pushing his horse forward a few steps.

"Keep the peace, in the King's name!" exclaimed Sir Philip Hastings. "I, as a magistrate, charge you, sir, to assist me in apprehending this man!—Thomas Cutter, get off that horse!"

The only reply was a coarse and violent expletive, and a blow with a thick heavy stick, aimed right at Sir Philip's head. The magistrate put up his arm, which received the blow, and was nearly fractured by it; but at the same moment, the younger traveller spurred forward his horse upon the ruffian, and with one sweep of his arm struck him to the ground.

Tom Cutter was upon his feet again in a moment. He was accustomed to hard blows, and like the immortal hero of Butler, could almost tell the quality of the stick he was beat withal. He was not long in discovering, therefore, that the fist which struck him was of no ordinary weight, and was directed with skill as well as with vigor; but he was accustomed to make it his boast, that he had never taken a licking "from any man," which vanity caused him at once to risk such another blow, in the hope of having his revenge.

Rushing upon the young stranger then, stick in hand, he prepared to knock him from his horse; for the other appeared to have no defensive arms, but a slight hazel twig, pulled from a hedge.

"He will jump off the other side of his horse," thought Tom Cutter; "and then, if he do, I'll contrive to knock the nag over upon him. I know that trick, well enough."

But the stranger disappointed him. Instead of opposing the horse between him and his assailant, he sprung with one bound out of the saddle, on the side next to the ruffian himself, caught the uplifted stick with one hand, and seized the collar of the bruiser's coat with the other.

Tom Cutter began to suspect he had made a mistake; but, knowing that at such close quarters the stick would avail him little, and that strength of thews and sinews would avail him much, he dropped the cudgel, and grappled with the stranger in return.

It was all the work of a moment. Sir Philip Hastings had no time to interfere. There was a momentary struggle, developing the fine proportions and great strength and skill of the wrestlers; and then, Tom Cutter lay on his back upon the ground. The next instant, the victor put his foot upon his chest, and kept the ruffian forcibly down, notwithstanding all is exclamations of "Curse me, that isn't fair! When you give a man a fall, let him get up again!"

"If he is a fair fighter, I do," replied the other; "but when he plays pirate, I don't—" Then turning to Sir Philip Hastings, who had by this time dismounted, he said, "What is to be done with this fellow, sir? It seems he came here for the express purpose of assaulting you, for he began his impertinence, with asking if you had passed, giving a very accurate description of your person, and swearing you should find every dog would have his day."

"His offence towards myself," replied the Baronet, "I will pass over, for it seems to me, he has been punished enough in his own way; but I suspect he has stolen this horse. He is a man of notoriously bad character, who can never have obtained such an animal by honest means."

"No, I didn't steal him, I vow and swear," cried the ruffian, in a piteous tone; for bullies are almost always cravens; "he was lent to me by Johny Groves—some call him another name; but that don't signify.—He lent him to me, to come up here, to stop your gab with the old woman, Mother Danty; and mayhap to give you a good basting into the bargain. But I didn't steal the horse no how; and there he is, running away over the hill-side, and I shall never catch him; for this cursed fellow has well nigh broken my back."

"Served you quite right, my friend," replied the stranger, still keeping him tightly down with his foot. "How came you to use a cudgel to a man who had none? Take my advice, another time, and know your man before you meddle with him."

In the mean time Sir Philip Hastings had fallen into a profound reverie, only repeating to himself the words "John Groves." Now the train of thought which was awakened in his mind, though not quite new, was unpleasant to him; for the time when he first became familiar with that name was immediately subsequent to the opening of his father's will, in which had been found a clause ordering the payment of a considerable sum of money to some very respectable trustees, for the purpose of purchasing an annuity in favor of one John Groves, then a minor.

There had been something about the clause altogether which the son and heir of Sir John Hastings could not understand, and did not like. However, the will enjoined him generally to make no inquiry whatsoever into the motives of any of the bequests, and with his usual stern rigidity in what he conceived right, he had not only asked no questions, but had[Pg 216] stopped bluntly one of the trustees, who was about to enter into some explanations. The money was paid according to directions received, and he had never heard the name of John Groves from that moment till it issued from the lips of the ruffian upon the present occasion.

"What the man says may be true," said Sir Philip Hastings, at length; "there is a person of the name he mentions. I know not how I can have offended him. It may be as well to let him rise and catch his horse if he can; but remember, Master Cutter, my eye is upon you; two competent witnesses have seen you in possession of that horse, and if you attempt to sell him, you will hang for it."

"I know better than to do that," said the bruiser, rising stiffly from the ground as the stranger withdrew his foot; "but I can tell you, Sir Philip, others have their eyes upon you, so you had better look to yourself. You hold your head mightily top high, just now: but it may chance to come down."

Sir Philip Hastings did not condescend to reply, even by a look; but turning to the stranger, as if the man's words had never reached his ear, he said, "I think we had better ride on, sir. You seem to be going my way. Night is falling fast, and in this part of the country two is sometimes a safer number to travel with than one."

The other bowed his head gravely, and remounting their horses they proceeded on the way before them, while Tom Cutter, after giving up some five minutes to the condemnation of the eyes, limbs, blood, and soul of himself and several other persons, proceeded to catch the horse which he had been riding as fast as he could. But the task proved a difficult one.



[24] Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1850, by G. P. R. James, in the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the United States for the Southern District of New York.


"Eidolon, or the Trial of a Soul, and other Poems," is the title of a new volume of verses from the press of Pickering, written by Walter R. Cassels, a student of the school of Shelley, and Keats, and Tennyson, and Browning. A favorable specimen of his abilities is offered in the following description of Cyprus:

Amid it riseth Olympus,
Stately and grand as the throne of the gods,
And the island sleeps 'neath its shadow
Like a fair babe 'neath the care of its father.
Streams clear as the diamond
Evermore wander around it,
Like the vein'd tide through our members,
Quick with the blessings of beauty,
And health and verdurous pleasure,
Filling with yellow sheaves
And plenty the bosom of Ceres;
Calling forth flowers from the slumbering earth,
Like thoughts from the dream of a poet,
Till the island throughout is a garden,
The child and the plaything of summer.
"In luscious clusters the fruit hangs
In the sunshine, melting away
From swetness to sweetness;
The grapes clustering 'mid leaves,
That give their bright hue to the eye
Like the setting of rubies;
The nectarines and pomegranates
Glowing with crimson ripeness,
And the orange trees with their blossoms
Yielding sweet odor to every breeze,
As the incense flows from the censer.
"The air is languid with pleasure and love,
Lulling the senses to dreams Elysian,
Making life seem a glorious trance,
Full of bright visions of heaven,
Safe from the touch of reality,
Toil none—woe none—pain,
Wild and illusive as sleep-revelations.
Time to be poured like wine from a chalice
Sparking and joyous for aye,
Drain'd amid mirth and music,
The brows circled with ivy,
And the goblets at last like a gift
Thrust in the bossom of slumber.
"Thus are the people of Cyprus;
Young men and old making holiday,
Decking them daintily forth
In robes of Sidonian purple;
The maidens all beauteous, but wanton,
Foolishly flinging youth's gifts,
Its jewels—its richest adornment,
Like dross on the altar of pleasure;
Letting the worm of mortality
Eat out their hearts till they bear
Only the semblance of angels."




Continued from page 60.


We left young Rovero in despair, yielding to the stupefaction which overpowered him, just as the singer leaned over his bed to be assured that he was asleep. La Felina looked at him for some time in silence, with pity in her eyes. "Why does he love me?" said she; "what have I done? why should this poor lad love one who scarcely knew him?"

Rovero moved. "Heavens! is the effect of the narcotic over? Will he awaken?"

"Felina!" murmured Taddeo.

"My name ever on his lips and in his heart. Yes! I was right in avoiding another interview: this letter tells all." She took a paper from her bosom. "But if he resist my prayer, if he shrink from the duty imposed on him by honor and humanity! He alone can accomplish it—all my hope is in him!"

She approached the table, and by the pale moonlight looked at the flask of Massa wine. A single glass had been taken from it. "One glass!" said she, "only one glass? His sleep cannot be long. This torpor will terminate before any one enters his cell. But Lippiani the turnkey is devoted to me, and will see nothing."

Drawing near the bed she took out of her fine hair a long gold pin, with which to fasten the letter on his pillow, so that his eyes would rest on it when he awoke. While Felina's face was near Rovero's as she put the letter beneath his head, her warm breath hung on his lips; they pressed hers, and, terrified, she sprang from his side.[Pg 217]

The prisoner dreamed of happiness, and doubted not that his fancy was realized. Whether this kiss had overcome his torpor, or whether, as La Felina thought, the narcotic had been taken in such small quantity that it had produced but a slight effect, Taddeo tossed on his bed. The singer, terrified at these signs, which were the precursors of his awakening, disappeared by the secret passages through which she had entered. An hour rolled by before Taddeo could triumph over his sleep. His heavy eyes shut together in spite of himself, and his eyelashes rested on each other. All sensation was lost in general lassitude. In the first disorder of his mind, he asked himself if he had not again dreamed of the appearance of La Felina. Had he not seen her approaching his bed just as he sunk to sleep, he would have been sure of it. He shuddered at the thought that he had lost the opportunity so anxiously expected. At last he recovered his strength, and attempted to rise. As he did so, his hand touched La Felina's letter on the pillow. When he drew out the diamond-headed pin which fastened it, he no longer doubted that he had actually seen her. Having been unable to rouse him, she had written to him. He felt angry with himself. He would have given ten years of his life to regain that one lost hour. He went to the tall window of the chapel to invoke a single ray of the moon to enable him to read the lines which had been traced by the hand of the woman he worshipped. This consolation was denied him. The moon was hidden by clouds, and the completest obscurity pervaded the prison. What Taddeo suffered during the time till day, which it seemed to him would never dawn, may be fancied, but not described. His fate was in his own hands, yet it was unknown. Ardently clasping to his heart and to his lips the perfumed paper on which Felina had written, his heart became intoxicated. He passionately kissed the sheet on which the singer had left her words, and a sad presentiment of misfortune took possession of him. He almost feared the coming of day, the light of which would reveal to him his fate.

Day dawned, at first feeble, then brighter, and still brighter, and finally brilliant and clear. He opened the letter, and his eyes glanced over it with tender earnestness. A livid pallor overcast his features, a nervous tremor shook him. The lines traced by La Felina he could not read; and overcome by despair, he sank to his seat. The keeper entered. "Signor," said he to Taddeo, "the person who visited you three days ago asks permission to see you again."

"Who is he?" said Taddeo—his voice choked with grief.

"The Marquis de Maulear."

The name recalled to the prisoner his mother and Aminta. This memory soothed his wounded heart. "My mother, my sister," thought he; "but for their tenderness what now would be my life! Show the Marquis in."

While the keeper was absent, he hurried to the bed, examined it anxiously as if in search for something which had escaped his observation. Seizing the letter, he read anxiously the last lines, approached the bed, and discovered the mysterious deposit La Felina had placed under the pillow. He took it and concealed it carefully in his clothing; and with an accent which betrayed the contest in his crushed heart, he said aloud, as if he wished some one to hear him, "You judged me correctly, Felina; misfortune will not make me unjust; I will do what you ask!"

A cry of joy echoed beneath the vault of the old chapel. Taddeo turned. The cry had penetrated his heart. But he was alone. Just then Henri de Maulear entered.

"Yesterday evening, Signor Rovero, confiding your promise, I informed the minister that, consulting with prudent reflections, you would accept the pardon offered by the King. You are free, and can now accompany me."

"Let us hurry to my mother, Monsieur," said Taddeo, casting one last look on the chapel walls, which had shut up so much sorrow, happiness and torment. He followed the Marquis. An hour afterwards two gentlemen on noble English steeds—the best the stables of the Marquis afforded—rode toward Sorrento. One of these riders, Rovero, was melancholy, so that even the French amiability of the Marquis could not divert him from gloomy meditations. Ever and anon a smile hung on his lips, till chased away by some painful memory. The Marquis de Maulear, satisfied that Taddeo concealed a secret from him, avoided any allusion to it, with the delicacy and good taste which above all things fears indiscretion. He feigned to attribute to the reserve of a new acquaintance his companion's coldness and absence of mind. For his own part, delighted at being able to restore this prodigal son to the parental roof, anxious to see her whom he loved (to whom, relying on Taddeo's promise, he had gone the evening before to announce her brother's return), he could scarcely repress his delight.

"Signor," said he to Taddeo, at a moment when the state of the road forced them to slacken their pace, "we have arranged all: we have left the festivities and pleasures of Naples, and have nothing to say of your suffering and captivity."

"Not one word, Monsieur, if you please, either of what I have passed through, or of the sufferings of my friends."

"I think your mother and sister know nothing of what you have undergone. Had they, their suffering and alarm would have been great. But do not flatter yourself that the arrest of Count Monte-Leone is unknown to them. One of the Neapolitan papers informed them yesterday of that fact; and I do not hide from you, that in my presence, your[Pg 218] mother deplored your unfortunate intimacy with one so adventurous and rash."

"And what said Aminta?" asked Rovero anxiously, as if struck by a thought, which hitherto had escaped him.

"Signorina said nothing," observed Maulear, with an air of surprise; "and he heard the news with the most perfect indifference."

"To him she is unchanged," murmured Rovero.

Low as was the tone in which this was uttered, Maulear heard it, and could not repress the question, which he put with great anxiety, "To whom is the Signorina always the same?"

"To him—to the Count," said Taddeo. "I confide to you almost a family secret. Count Monte-Leone deeply loves my sister. He never told me so, but it is the case. If he be restored to liberty, as his friends hope, it will be a good match for Aminta."

Every word of Rovero fell like a drop of boiling oil on the heart of Maulear.

"My father," said Taddeo, "left us but a moderate fortune. Perhaps some day we may be rich—richer than the Monte-Leone—for we are the only heirs of the Roman Cardinal Justiniani, my mother's brother, who, as eldest son, inherited all the property of my maternal grandfather. As yet, however, our fortune in small, though sufficient for my tastes and ideas. But my mother and sister have other notions; and the marriage of Aminta and Count Monte-Leone would assure her a magnificent and brilliant portion."

"But if your sister does not love Count Monte-Leone?"

"Her refusal would make two persons unhappy; first the Count of Monte-Leone, and in the second place——"

"And in the second place?" said Maulear.


"Yourself!" said Maulear, with surprise; "Are you intent on their marriage?"

"Yes," replied Taddeo, with emotion; "now, all my happiness depends on it."

Maulear was amazed at these singular words. Scarcely had they been uttered, when Taddeo spurred his horse sharply, and rode toward the house of his mother, which he saw a few hundred yards distant. Henri followed him, troubled, and for the first time, with a care-marked brow, paused at Aminta's door. A fond mother clasped her son to her bosom, with that pleasure which a mother only knows. Aminta, entirely recovered from her accident, kissed her brother affectionately.

"My son," said Madame Rovero to Taddeo, as she clasped the hand of Maulear, "beyond all doubt the Marquis has told you what we owe him."

"The Marquis has only told me how devoted he was to you."

"Well," said Aminta, "I will be less discreet." With exquisite grace she told Taddeo all that had passed.

"Ah, Monsieur," said he, opening his arms to the Marquis, "I would I could find some dearer name than friend to give you."

Aminta blushed, and looked down. Maulear saw the motion, and a gentle hope stole over him. The name which Taddeo could not think of, perhaps, suggested itself to Aminta. It was the name Maulear was so anxious to give Rovero.

Aminta's brother wished to see the courageous child who had so heroically sacrificed himself for her. All followed Signora Rovero to the room of the invalid. He was better. The great inflammation of his face had disappeared, and his eyes had returned to their orbits. Apparently he was rapidly recovering; but the cruel prediction of the physician seemed about to be verified: He will live, but will never speak again. Only harsh and broken sounds escaped the invalid's lips.

Aminta, who had become Scorpione's nurse as soon as she was able to leave her room, had already learned to discriminate between the modulations of his voice. A kind of mute groan called her to him; a hiss expressed pain or impatience; but when his violent and almost savage nature was excited, a terrible bellowing was heard, and the bravest heart might quail at the inhuman sound. Tonio was asleep when the visitors entered his room, but he awoke, and without seeming surprised at the curious faces that surrounded his bed, looked at them earnestly.

He first recognized Taddeo, and a contraction of his lips, which, bent from their deformity, might have been called a smile, testified his pleasure at the visit. Aminta's presence always produced a strange effect on Scorpione, which his inability to speak enhanced. His eyes, of pale green, became suddenly lighted up with a peculiar and gentle languor, which was so tender that they seemed almost attractive. This singular magnetism had a novel effect on the invalid. But his brow soon became contracted; a violent storm seemed to agitate his heart; and the hissing was heard.

"What is the matter?" asked Taddeo. Aminta said she did not know. He had perhaps some new suffering, or something put him out of humor. Following the direction of Tonio's eyes, she saw they rested sparkling and bright on those of Maulear. Aminta quailed, and Henri, who saw her tremble, hurried to sustain her. He thought the strength of the young convalescent needed this aid. But at the moment when the girl accepted the arm of Maulear, Scorpione rose and uttered the horrible cry by which he expressed his impotent fury. All shuddered as they heard him. Aminta let go Maulear's arm, and quickly sought, by gesture and words, to soothe the Cretin, as she would appease an angry child. He became soothed at once, and Signora Rovero left him, followed by Taddeo, Maulear, and Aminta; but Aminta did not take Maulear's arm.[Pg 219]


A feeling of uneasiness had suddenly taken possession of Maulear while in the presence of Aminta and Tonio. But he had not remarked the smile of happiness which played on the features of the invalid when Aminta, with the most natural air in the world, took the arm of her mother instead of his own.

"Signor," said Aminta's mother to the Marquis, as they went into the hall, "do not suffer this festival in honor of the return of my son to be celebrated without your presence. Share our family meal, and be satisfied that in doing so you will gratify us all."

The offer delighted Maulear, and time flew by with the rapidity love only confers on it when passed in the presence of loved ones.

About dinner time two strangers came to the villa, the Count Brignoli and his son. The Count was an old minister of war of Murat, and had been a colleague of Taddeo's father. He was one of the best friends of Rovero's widow and daughter. A country neighbor, he often visited them. His son Gaetano had been educated and brought up with Aminta, and a close friendship had been the consequence. Gaetano was twenty years of age, and his features bore the imprint of masculine and impressive Neapolitan beauty, deficient neither in the dark locks nor black though somewhat glassy eye, which is as it were the ordinary seal of the countenances of the men of the south.

The arrival of these visitors displeased Maulear. The beauty of Gaetano struck him unpleasantly. The intimacy between Aminta and the young man, though thus explained, wounded him. During the whole day he fancied that he discovered a thousand of those little trifles which a lover treasures up so carefully, and also that Aminta seemed happy in his presence. His anxiety had begun to pass away, when a new circumstance revived it. Aminta, who was a perfect musician, went to the piano, and sang some of those charming canzonets which are so sweet and touching, like the flowers of this country of melody. The voice of Aminta found an echo in the heart of Maulear, and his ecstasy was at its height, when Gaetano joined her and sang the charming duo from Romeo é Julietta, the chef-d'œuvre of Zingarelli. The jealous Maulear, as he heard this passionate music, could not believe that art alone inspired the singer. He trembled when he thought, that as Julietta loved Romeo, Aminta might adore Gaetano.

Unable to repress the agitation which took possession of him, Maulear left the saloon at the end of the duo, to superintend the preparations for his departure. The night was dark, and pale lightning shot through the sky, foreboding a storm. The Marquis could not repress his mortification. The voices of Aminta and the young Italian, blended together, followed him wherever he went "People," thought he, "only sing thus when they are linked together by love. Art alone cannot give so passionate an expression to their tones. Indeed, what sentiment can be more natural? Educated together, always near each other, their affection cannot but have grown up with them, so that now they perceive the effect without being aware of the cause. They love each other because they were born to do so, as birds mate in the spring because it is the season of love. The spring of Gaetano and Aminta is come. How can I, a stranger to this young girl, hope to please her? Her real preserver was not I, but the unfortunate Tonio. Her gratitude to me then must be very feeble. Besides, does gratitude lead to love?"

As he indulged in these painful reflections, his eyes became fixed on the skies, already damascened with black clouds. He strode rapidly across the court of the villa until he saw in front of him Gaetano Brignoli. Maulear could not repress a sentiment of anger at seeing him, and one of those emotions inconsiderately indulged in, and which reflection often punishes, though too late, took possession of him.

"Signor," said he to the young man, "you love the Signorina Aminta Rovero." Gaetano, surprised at the sudden rencontre in the dark, and yet more amazed at the excited tone of the Marquis, looked at him, and in his dark black eyes shone neither anger nor indignation, but only astonishment at the question.

"I have the honor to ask you," said Maulear, now become more calm, having more command of himself, and blushing at his first uncivil question, "if you do not (and it is very natural) feel a deep and tender affection for your childhood's friend, the Signorina Aminta Rovero?"

"If I love Aminta?" replied Gaetano. "Ah! Monsieur, who would not love her! Do you know a more beautiful girl in Naples? Do you know any one more cultivated and refined than she?"

"Certainly not," said the Marquis, with a voice of half-stifled emotion.

"She is my childhood's friend, the companion of my sports. With her I received my first lessons in music. The divine art I adore. You all know we accord, exactly. I often sing false, my teacher tells me, but she never does."

To hear one the heart loves and adores, spoken of with qualification and familiarity by a stranger, is often an acute pain to a lover, so acute, that even the familiarity of a brother with a sister often causes distress to certain minds. Some jealous souls think this a robbery of friendship, and a profanation of their idol.

Maulear, wounded that the cherished name of Aminta should be so cavalierly treated by Gaetano, replied with ill-disguised temper,

"I understand, Signor, that there is nothing false, even musically speaking, in the sentiments[Pg 220] expressed by you to Signora Rovero. Perhaps this is an exception to your usual habits, as your professor says. But were he to find fault with the correctness of your tones, he could not censure the sincerity of the passion breathed through them."

"Is not that true?" said Gaetano, really flattered at Maulear's compliment. "It is exalted, distinct, and intense. It is of a good school, and of the lofty style of Tacchinardi."

"Ah! Signor," replied Maulear impatiently, "you know as well as I do, that no artist, however skilful and great, can express love as lovers do."

"The fact is," continued Gaetano, "that Zingarelli must have loved some Julietta, when he wrote his Romeo."

"And you," answered Maulear, "must adore Signorina Aminta, to play so well the part of Romeo!"

"Certainly," said Gaetano, smiling; "and I know very few tenors in San Carlo who sing that duo as I do. All must confess that there is no Julietta like her."

Maulear was amazed, and could make no reply. The young man either was sincere, and had not understood him, or he had affected not to do so, assuming the remarks of his companion to refer to the singer, and not to the lover. He positively refused to become Maulear's confidant, and by his adroitness and tact made himself understood. The result of all this was, that Maulear remained in a cruel state of doubt in relation to the sentiments Gaetano entertained for Aminta, and, what was yet more painful, in relation to those of Aminta for Gaetano.

"Excuse me, Marquis," said the young man to Maulear, "our conversation is so unexpected, that I, in my surprise, forgot a commission with which I was charged by Signora Rovero. I sought you to inform you of it, when our conversation was diverted to something else. Signora Rovero, fancying that you were superintending the preparations for your departure, wishes you to postpone them until to-morrow, as the night is dark and the road difficult and dangerous. Look," said he, "at these large drops of rain, which are the avant-couriers of a violent storm."

"Indeed," said Maulear, "I will then accompany you to the ladies."

When they returned to the room, they found Signora Rovero talking with the Count Brignoli, and Taddeo, with his head on his hand, lost in sad meditation. Leaning on the back of his chair, was the poetic figure of Aminta. Her long black curls fell over her brother's brow, and when he looked up to see what it was that hung over him, she leaned her face towards his until their lips met.

"Brother," said she, "I closed your eyes on purpose that I might hide what I see in them."

"What do you see there, my dear sister?"

"I see," said she, "by their sadness and languor, that my brother has three pieces of a heart. Two he keeps for my mother and myself, but the third—"

"Is for none," said Taddeo, rising.

"Very well, very well, Monsieur," said Aminta, piqued. "No one asks you for your secret. We take an interest only in those we love—and I love you no more."

"My good sister," said Taddeo, clasping her hands with emotion, "love me, love me better than ever, for I have more need of your affection." Aminta threw herself in his arms.

"What is all that?" said their mother, looking around.

"A family drama," said Gaetano, who had just come in with Maulear.

"Yes, Gaetano," said Signora Rovero, "and a happy scene of that drama; for I know of no family more fortunate than mine."

Aminta drew near to Maulear, and her manner was so kind, and she paid such attention to her guest, that Maulear felt his uneasiness pass away and his confidence return. Just then the storm burst in all its fury. The wind whistled violently among the tall trees of the park. Signora Rovero kept her three guests. A night passed beneath the same roof with Aminta, gratified every wish of the Marquis, and promised him an opportunity on the next day to declare himself to the Rose of Sorrento, and confirm or dissipate his jealous doubts.

Signora Rovero wished to discharge every duty of hospitality to her guest, and escorted him herself to the room he was to occupy. "This room," said she to Maulear, "was long occupied by my dear daughter; but after the death of her father we altered our arrangements, and Aminta is now in my own room. Since that time it has been occupied by our young friend Gaetano Brignoli. I have to-night placed him elsewhere, to be able to give you the best room."

Maulear quivered with joy at the idea of occupying the room in which she he adored had slept, and it was with a kind of veneration that he took possession of it. The room was on the first story, in the right wing of the villa, and looked on a terrace covered with flowers, and communicating with all the rooms of the first floor. It was possible to reach, in two ways, the rooms of the first story—from the interior of the building, and from the exterior by this elegant terrace. But Maulear did not observe that night the situation of his room.

The early days of March having been colder than those of February, after a strange season, which well-nigh had deposed winter from its throne, and the injury Aminta had received not having permitted her to leave her room, during his previous visits the Marquis had not examined the residence of Signora Rovero. The terrace on which his window opened was therefore completely unknown to him.

For about two hours after Maulear had[Pg 221] been conducted to the old room of Aminta by Signora Rovero, he was so agitated by the events of the evening that he could not consent to seek repose. Love, hope, and jealousy, disputed for the possession of his heart. Seated in a vast arm-chair, near the hearth, the fire on which flickered faintly, the eyes of Maulear were mechanically directed to one of the windows of his room, by the beating of the rain against it. All at once he saw, or thought he saw, a white figure on the other side of the window pause for a few instants, as if it sought to enter his room. Maulear fancied himself under the influence of a dream. He rubbed his eyes, to be sure that he was awake, and that his sight did not deceive him. He hurried towards the window and opened it hastily. But as he moved, and his steps were heard, the nocturnal visitor disappeared, and Maulear lost sight of it amid the shadows of night. For a moment he thought it some aerial being, flitting through space, and coming, like the djinns of the East, to watch by night over the faithful believer. But his poetry gave way to material evidence, and the sight of the terrace, of whose existence he had had no suspicion, proved that the djinn was really a human being, who for some unknown motive had wandered across it, and was by no means so unreal as he had supposed. The idea of crime and theft occurred to him. He was about to follow the person who fled, when he saw on the terrace, before his window, an object which he immediately picked up, and examined by the light of his lamp. It was a veil of white lace, at that time the ordinary dress of Neapolitan women, a vaporous cloud in which they framed their features, the relic of a fashion imported from France, and made illustrious by the pencil of our Irabey, the great portrayer of the grace and beauty of the empire.

"It is beyond doubt some love-scrape," thought Maulear, "interrupted by my occupying this bedroom; and the heroine of the adventure, having come to the window to ascertain whether or not I slept, has fled, losing a portion of her drapery, like a frightened sheep running through thorns." When, however, he had examined the veil more closely, Maulear observed its elegance and richness, and began to think which of the inmates of the villa was likely to wear such a one. Was this the headdress of a chambermaid? If not, who else but Aminta could wear it, unless indeed her mother did? Lost in conjectures, the Marquis was roused by hearing a door in the same corridor on which his room was, open. He listened. Two persons spoke in a low tone; and walking with such precaution that it was evident they had no disposition to be overheard. Such an occurrence, in a house usually so silent and calm, excited Maulear's curiosity so much, that he resolved to know who the mysterious personages were.

Silently leaving his room, he went down the long corridor through which those he wished to follow had preceded him. A faint light from a dark lantern, borne by one of the strangers, fell on the path in front of them, and was a guide to Maulear. Thus they descended the principal staircase of the villa, crossed the ground floor, and entered the front court. A puff of wind just then put out the lantern, as the person who bore it was attempting to brighten its flame.

"Fool!" said one of the two men to his companion. "How can I saddle my horse now?"

"It is already saddled," said the other.

"Then I have nothing to do but mount!"

"And you will not have occasion to use the spur," said the man with the lantern, "for he is wild, from having been three weeks in his stable." As the two speakers thus communed, they entered the second courtyard of the villa. Maulear had followed them thither, hidden in the deep shadow. A horse, ready saddled, was waiting there. One of the two men sprang lightly into the saddle, and the other, as he opened a gate into the fields, through which the horseman rode, said, in a voice full of fear, "May God protect you in this terrible midnight storm, Signor Taddeo. Beware of the road down the ravine, and be careful whom you meet."


Maulear, uneasy and disturbed by what he had seen, returned to his room. What could induce Taddeo thus to leave his mother's house, alone, at midnight, and in a storm? Could it be that, so recently liberated, he was about to begin again that life of plot and sedition which already had cost him his liberty? A deep interest united Maulear to Taddeo. The love he felt toward the sister, made him devoted to the brother, and the new dangers which might befall the young man seriously affected Maulear. The night passed away without his being able to sleep. In addition to fear on account of Taddeo, his heart was yet agitated by the emotions of the previous day; but above all, he thought of the woman who had stood at his window, and whose appearance he could not forget. A terrible idea then occurred to him. The room he occupied had been that of Gaetano Brignoli. Had this young girl, apparently so pure and modest, had the White Rose of Sorrento, any secret amour or intrigue? The young man who had seen the companion of her infancy might know of it. Could this charming flower be already scorched by the hot breath of passion? Maulear reproached himself as with a crime, for the mental profanation of his divinity.

The morning meal assembled together all the family and guests. Taddeo participated in it as naturally as if he had passed the whole night in the villa, and not a word was said of his nocturnal expedition. He was not so melancholy and moody as he had been on the[Pg 222] previous night, and a careful observer might have marked on his features the satisfaction following the performance of a painful duty. The Brignoli bade adieu to Signora Rovero immediately after breakfast, and returned to their villa. Maulear was delighted at their departure.

"Marquis," said Taddeo, "permit me to treat you as a friend, and ask a favor of you—a favor that will require you to renounce the brilliant saloons of Naples, whose chief ornaments are the attachés of the French embassy, to lead for a time a retired country-life with my mother and sister?"

"If that be the favor you ask of me," said Maulear with joy, "you confer one on me. I accept your proposition with gratitude."

"What are you thinking of, brother? How can you propose such an exile to the Marquis? Our life in the country is so sad and melancholy; what can we offer him as a compensation for the amusements he would sacrifice?"

"Where would be the merit of the service, unless its performance cost some sacrifice?" said Taddeo. "In one word, this is the state of affairs. An obligation, my honor imposes on me, requires me for at least a week to be absent from Sorrento. The trial of Count Monte-Leone will begin in a few days, and I must be present at it. It is said," added he, with hesitation and a significant glance at the Marquis, "that the Count's partisans will on that occasion be active. His enemies too are numerous, and as he is known to have come to this house, I cannot feel satisfied unless some courageous and energetic man replaces me, and deigns to watch over the two dear beings I am forced to leave. This, Marquis, is what I expect from you."

"My heart, my arm, my life, are all at the ladies' disposal. You may rely on me."

Aminta looked down, for the first consecration made by Maulear was evidently intended for her. Taddeo did not remark it, and clasped with gratitude the hand of his new friend. Signora Rovero, terrified at the idea of losing her son again, looked sadly at him.

"I do not know what is going on," said she with emotion, and with that instinct which reveals to a mother the danger of a beloved son. "I shudder, however, Taddeo, when I see you surrounded by danger. You do not like the government, I know, for by the fall of Murat a brilliant career was closed before you, for your father was one of his greatest favorites. But in your father's name I, your mother, his widow, whose hope and support you are, beseech you not to expose the life which does not belong to you alone. Remember, my child, your sister and myself have no other support in life than yourself, and that my weak and failing existence could not withstand your loss."

Taddeo grew pale, for the association with which he was affiliated might expose him to all the dangers of which his mother was apprehensive. He concealed his agitation by caresses and iterations of love, mentally resolving to turn aside in time from his sad career, as if those who involve themselves in perdition can pause in the rapid descent down the declivity to sorrow and death, whither the sturdiest champions are hurried to be entombed in the grave they have dug for themselves.

"You will go then to Naples?" said Signora Rovero to her son. "God grant that Monte-Leone recover his liberty, since he is your friend! But, Taddeo, do not trust to his adventurous mind; he is a hurricane, enveloping all in his path. Heaven grant he may not bear you away with him."

This conversation on this subject, so painful to the mother and annoying to the son, ended here.

"Will you deign, Signorina," said the Marquis to Aminta, "to accept me as a guest for a few days?"

"Certainly, if you are not afraid of our retreat. Besides," added she, with a smile, "one must have suffered as much as Leonora's lover, not to be happy in the paradise of Sorrento."

Maulear remembered the words he had written on the wall of Tasso's house. But before he could express his astonishment and joy, Aminta was gone. Just then it was announced to Maulear, that his horse waited him at the gate of the park.

"We will accompany you thither (my sister and I)," said Taddeo.

Signora Rovero called Aminta to her, and added: "The air is keen, my child: cover your head with your lace veil. It becomes you."

Maulear turned quickly toward Aminta with his mind full of fear and surprise—

"I am afraid I have lost my veil. I looked for it this morning, but could not find it." Aminta seemed annoyed. Her emotion was perceived at once by Maulear, who said to himself: "What mystery is this? why conceal it from me?" The coincidence of a veil being found by him, and of Aminta having lost one, made him keenly anxious: he was terrified, confounded, and so excited, that he could scarcely speak to Taddeo and Aminta as he crossed the park with them.

"Remember," said Rovero to him, "that my mother and sister will expect you here in a few days."

"In a few days," said Aminta, giving the Marquis her sweetest smile.

"In a few days," replied Maulear, as he mounted his horse, and cast on the young girl a look of doubting love. He then galloped off, and soon disappeared in the long road to Sorrento.

When he returned to Naples, the whole city was busy with the approaching trial of Monte-Leone, who was so beloved by one portion of the community and so unpopular with the other. The nobility of the two Sicilies deplored the errors of the Count, and regretted[Pg 223] that one of the most illustrious of the great names of Naples should embrace and defend so plebeian a cause; one in their eyes so utterly without interest as that of popular rights. But it was wounded at the idea that a peer should die by the hand of the executioner. The old leaven of independence, innate in all the aristocracies of Europe; the feudal aspirations which Louis XI. and Richelieu had so completely annihilated and subdued in France, yet germinated in the minds of the nobles of Naples. They loved the king because he maintained their privileges, and had re-established the rights of their birth. They would have revolted had he touched them. From pride of birth they would have applauded the execution of a plebeian conspirator, but were prepared to cry out en masse against that of Monte-Leone, because he was one of themselves.

The people looked on the illustrious prisoner as a defender of their rights, and sympathized with him. To sharpen this sympathy, the adepts of the Italian vente everywhere represented their chief as a martyr to his love of the people, and a victim of monarchy. Most injurious charges were everywhere circulated against Fernando IV. It was said that he had inherited the hatred of Carlos III. to the Monte-Leoni, and sought to follow out on the son the vengeance to which the father had fallen a victim. Nothing was omitted that could stimulate the favor of the superstitious and impressionable people of Naples. The same executioner, block and axe, which had been used at the father's death, by a strange fatality, would come in play again at the murder of the son. The imprisonment of the son at the Castle Del Uovo, where the father had died, gave something of plausibility to this story. But what most excited public curiosity was the strange incident which had taken place at Torre-del-Greco. All were impatient for its explanation. The double and impossible presence of the Count at the house of Stenio Salvatori, and within the fifty locks of the Castle Del Uovo, his contest with his enemy, the wound he was accused of having given him, his ubiquity at the same hour in different places, produced a thousand incredible versions, a thousand bets on this wonderful fact, unrivalled in the judicial annals of Naples.

The name of Monte-Leone was so closely and intimately linked with the destiny of the Marquis de Maulear, with his friendship to Taddeo, and his love of Aminta, that he partook of the general interest inspired by the Count, and as a man of honor hoped for acquittal, notwithstanding the influence it might exert on his happiness.

To lose confidence in one we love, is the greatest agony possible. The four days, therefore, which separated him from Aminta, were four centuries to Maulear. Like the majority of rich young men of our times, yielding at an early age to liaisons, he had formed an erroneous and unjust opinion of women in general. The withered myrtles he had often gathered, the passing amours in which almost all the men of his rank, fortune and appearance indulge, had distorted his mind in relation to a sex, the least respectable portion of which alone he was acquainted with. But the young Marquis had exalted sentiments, and his high spirit turned aside from vulgar, common pleasures. His first loves, or not to profane that word, his first indulgences, had for their object those women who lead astray an ardent mind or passionate natures; those women who, betrayed into marriage, seek elsewhere a recompense for their misfortunes or the deceptions practised upon them, and fancy they can find it in the inexperience and youth of young men, whom chance throws in their way. The latter proudly, and at first eagerly, accepting their conquests, soon discover, that often they are not heroes. They become themselves the accomplices of the criminal devices, the studied falsehoods, employed by married women to abuse those on whom they depend. In either case they see each other insensibly change, and in spite of themselves conceive an aversion to those pleasures, even in sharing which they blush. The idol becomes a mere woman, and the hero of these adventures fancies himself right in estimating all women by a few exceptions, and becomes an atheist in love because he has sacrificed to false gods.

This deplorable theory had taken possession of Maulear. His naturally pure sentiments, the poetry of his heart, had been dissipated in ephemeral indulgences. The Countess of Grandmesnil, the guardian of the young man, fearing lest a serious passion should contravene his father's views,—encouraged him in his liaisons, or at least she did nothing to induce him to abandon them. Under this sad opinion, which is unfortunately too common in our days, that female virtue is but a name, and that the most prudent only need opportunity to go astray, Maulear came to Naples, where we must say much success in gallantry fortified his faith in these detestable principles.

His meeting with one so pure as Aminta had wrought a complete change in his ideas. He saw woman under a new aspect, as we dream of her at twenty, when the young soul first awakes. He suffered intensely when suspicion gnawed at his heart. "What," said he, yet under the influence of the pernicious theories of his youth, "not one woman worthy of respect! Even this young girl, apparently so modest and pure, unworthy the confidence I reposed in her." The recollection of the chaste and maidenly appearance of Aminta soon put such ideas to flight, and Maulear thenceforth had but one idea, but one desire. He sought to clear up the strange mystery of his nocturnal vision, and extricate himself from his cruel perplexity.

On the day appointed for his return to Sorrento, as the clock struck ten, he stopped his[Pg 224] horse at the garden gate where four days before he had left Aminta. The gate was open. He entered the orange grove which lay between it and the house. A secret hope told him he would find Aminta there. He was not mistaken. She sat beneath a rustic porch, which served as a portal to the prettiest cottage imaginable. This building, constructed of the slightest material, had windows closed with gayly-covered verandahs, and served to shelter walkers from the heat of the summer's sun. It was Aminta's favorite retreat, and thither she came in the morning to paint her sisters, the white Bengal roses, the red cactus and the graceful clematides, which surrounded her charming retreat. There in the evening, pensive and reflective, the young girl suffered her glance to stray over the vast horizon of the sea gilded by the sun's expiring rays. On the day we speak of, Maulear found her reading, or rather seeming to read, for her book rested on her knee, her ivory brow supported by her hand. Her eyes, lifted up to heaven, seemed to ask the realization of some gentle dream inspired doubtless by the author. Perhaps the nature of the dream might have been devised by the book—Tasso's Divine Poem! Maulear glided rather than walked to her, so fearful was he of destroying the beautiful tableau presented to him by chance. Then he paused some moments behind a screen of leaves, and looked at the beautiful dreamer, in mute but passionate adoration. As he scanned her girlish form, becoming intoxicated with her modest charms, Maulear blushed at his suspicions, and resolved to abandon them. God did not make such angels for men to distrust, and Aminta, beautiful as the heavenly beings, must be pure and spiritual as they.

He left his concealment, and approached Aminta. She moved when she saw him, for he had surprised her in a dream. The dreams of young girls are treasures to be concealed from the profane in the most profound sanctuary of the heart. Aminta advanced a step or two towards Maulear, thus testifying her wish to return to the villa. But the Marquis, afraid of losing this favorable opportunity to see her for a short time alone, begged her to be seated, and took his place beside her, making, as an excuse, an allusion to the fatigue of riding rapidly from Naples to Sorrento.

Aminta sat down, but with an embarrassment which Maulear could not but see. "You have kept your promise, Signor," said she, seeking to disguise her trouble by speaking first.

"How could I not keep my promise?" said Maulear. "It was to see you again."

"We know what such devotion must cost you," Aminta replied, speaking aloud, as if her words were not intended only for Maulear. "Both my mother and myself are very grateful to you."

"Signorina," said Maulear, with an effort, for he was afraid of wasting in commonplaces moments in which every word he uttered had a priceless value, "I did not think, as I wrote on the wall of Tasso's house the simple lines you deigned to read and remember, that I thus wrote out my horoscope, and divined the happiness fate marked out for me at Sorrento."

"Happiness?" said Aminta, and she trembled as she spoke. "You must refer to the service you have rendered me."

"I speak," said Maulear, unable to restrain himself, "of a new and strange feeling to me, full of pleasure and pain, of hope and fear. I speak of a love, which will be the pride and joy of my existence, if it be shared; which will bring despair and torment, if she who inspires it rejects it."

"Pray be silent," said Aminta, rising and looking with fear around her.

"Ah, you have understood me," said Maulear, attributing to his confession Aminta'a emotion.

The young girl was silent. Her eyes turned towards the door of the hut, as if she feared some one would open it.

"What I say here, Signorina, with nought near me but the passing cloud and flying bird, I wish to repeat to those who love you—before your mother and brother, whom I would look on as my own. It is for you to tell me whether I shall speak to them or be silent."

Just then a faint noise was heard in the summer-house.

Maulear did not perceive it, for Aminta, more and more disturbed by the mysterious noise, had suffered the Marquis to take her hand, and the latter, interpreting this favor as his heart wished, fell on his knees before the young girl, who, overcome with emotion, sat down.

"Aminta," said he, passionately, "since the first day I saw you, my soul, my life, have been your own. If you but will it, your life shall be my own—my own, to make every hour of your life one of joy and pleasure—mine, in adoring you as we do the saints in heaven."

Maulear, with his eyes fixed on Aminta's, sought an echo to the outpourings of his soul. His lips were on Aminta's hand, when, between the young girl and himself, he saw a hideous head, made yet more horrid by the agony it expressed. Aminta suddenly withdrew, and Maulear experienced that terror of which the bravest are sensible when they tread on a reptile.

"Scorpione!" said the Marquis.

This name, on the lips of the Marquis at such a time, made such an impression, that a stream of blood, mingled with white froth, burst from his lips, and fell at Aminta's feet.

"Help, Signor!" said she to Maulear, "help, I pray you, for this unfortunate man! This is the first time he has gone out since that cruel day. See, he dies!"

"What is the meaning of all this?" said Maulear to himself, as he hurried towards[Pg 225] the villa. "Twice my being with Aminta has exercised the same effect on this unfortunate being. Can she love him? Can he be jealous?"


The trial of Count Monte-Leone, which had been so anxiously looked for, and had given rise to so many disputes about the curious story which occupied both the high and low of Naples, was about to begin.

The Duke of Palma had not been able to make good his promise to the prisoner, and bring him promptly before his judges. The incident at Torre-del-Greco made a new inquiry necessary, and the examinations, researches, and inquiries of every kind it led to daily, retarded the trial, much to the regret of the king and his minister of police, who were aware of the extent to which the public imagination was excited, and feared its consequences. Monte-Leone began to feel grave apprehensions in relation to the dangerous game he had played. On the evening of his excursion, faithful to his word, the Count had presented himself again to the keeper of the Castle del Uovo in the costume in which he had left it, and the pious wicket-keeper, when he saw the false assistant jailer, who had gone out on the previous evening, return with a trembling and uncertain step, read a long lecture on intemperance and the results of drunkenness, deplorable faults, especially to be regretted in one of his profession, where, added the turnkey proudly, one needs morality, reason, and vigilance especially, to unravel the plots of the prisoners confided to him, and to triumph over their detestable mania for liberty.

When Pietro on that evening, palpitating as he was with fear, saw Monte-Leone, whom he waited for at the postern of the castle, return, his joy was so great that he was ready to clasp the Count's neck. The latter was not much flattered by his transports.

"Well," said the head-jailer, "you are a noble and true gentleman. A scoundrel in your place would have escaped, and put his keeper in trouble. You are of a good race, of a noble and generous blood, you have paid me well, and have been unwilling to hang the father of a family. Now," added he, "do not let us talk together, or even look at each other. Our looks may be watched and interpreted."

From that time Pietro became more brutal, more savage and stern than ever. The visit of the minister of police justly enough increased the terror of the jailer. He had from public rumor heard of the terrible episode at Torre-del-Greco, though he did not precisely understand the motives of the prisoner. He was aware that he had become an accomplice of his crime, and shuddered more and more at its probable results. Whenever, therefore, the Count sought to ask him any question, Pietro exhibited such terror, and his countenance was so complete a picture of fright, that Monte-Leone at last ceased to speak to him. No news from without, nothing enlightened the Count in relation to the consequences of his daring conduct, and for the first time he despaired of the result. One morning his door opened as usual at meal time; but instead of withdrawing, the keeper approached Monte-Leone kindly, his ugly face, on account of the complaisance which lit it up, seeming yet more horrid. He said:

"Excellence, the great day approaches, and we must arrange some little details about which the High Court will no doubt be ill-mannerly enough to question us!"

"You can speak then," replied Monte-Leone, with surprise.

"To-day is not yesterday. Then and ever since your escape, my gossip, the Headsman, who lives up there as you know, distrusts me. I learn from his assistant, who is a friend of mine, that the story of the cell undermined by the sea has made him fancy I wish to deprive him of his perquisites. I know that while he waters his flowers on the platform he keeps an eye and ear open for all that passes here. Besides, he would not be at all sorry to obtain my place for his first assistant—a promising lad who becomes his son-in-law to-day."

"Ah!" said Monte-Leone, "the executioner's daughter is to be married."

"A love match. He wished to postpone the wedding until after your affaire, as he calls it, for on such cases he always has large perquisites, and would be able largely to increase the bride's portion. The young girl, however, was in love, and was unwilling to wait for you. The worthy father then determined to make her happy, and I have just seen all the party set out for the church of Santa-Lucia. The executioner, his wife, the bride, and the little executioners, all in their best garb. The procession was so imposing, they might have been taken for a family of turnkeys. Lest, however, the people should disturb the ceremony by a volley of stones, they set out early, at five o'clock. As, therefore, we have no inquisitive neighbors, I am come to have an understanding with your excellency, in order that I may not be compromised in the trial."

"So be it!" said the Count, "let us have an understanding. In the first place, have they any suspicions?"

"Of whom?"

"Of you to be sure, for unless I have wings and flew out of the window to Torre-del-Greco, no one but you can have opened the prison gate to me."

"That is true, then," said Pietro, "you went to Torre-del-Greco to stab Stenio Salvatori. I really would not have believed it, for it seems that twenty thousand piasters is too large a sum for the pleasure of a poniard thrust—in the arm too! After all, though, we Neapolitans regard nothing valuable compared with revenge!"

"It matters little to you whether it was for revenge or another purpose. All I wish is, for[Pg 226] you alone to know that I was away for twelve hours. As neither you or I will mention it, I am at ease."

"You are right in the main, your Excellency. But we have placed our heads in the balance, and I am determined yours shall not outweigh mine. The hand of justice weighs heavily, especially on the poor. It would be very bad if now, when I am prepared to live happily and pleasantly on the proceeds of our little operation, I were called on to dangle at the end of a rope, to the great delight of the dealers in ice-water and macaroni, whom the people of Naples on that day would enrich. Few would miss the entertainment which would be given at my expense."

"What makes you fear this?" asked the Count.

"One idea. They might take it into their heads to examine separately all the inhabitants of the castle. First your Excellency, as its principal guest, then your humble servant, the gate-keeper, and even my assistant Crespo. If all did not tell the same story the Grand Judge would see some trick."

"You think so?" said the Count, moodily.

"I know so," said Pietro. "The Grand Judge, as the child's story-book says of ogres, loves fresh meat, and would see a spot on the brow of an angel. Now, I am not exactly an angel—and if he saw a spot, your excellency's head might be safe, but for want of a chicken he might twist my neck. The jailer would be the victim, and my friend the executioner would have to do with me. I know him. He would be enthusiastic in the operation, to make a vacancy in my place. He is bound up in his family."

For an instant the Count had not heard the jailer. One single name inspired him with the greatest terror, for it recalled one of the participators in his escape. This man held in his own hands his own and his accomplice's escape. Pietro had not foreseen all. This assistant, the character and dress of whom he had assumed, this Crespo, this mole, would be summoned before the magistrate. The keeper had seen and spoken to him, had opened the gate of the castle to suffer him to pass out, or at least fancied he had. What then would the man say? With great emotion, then, Monte-Leone said,

"The danger does not come from the place you apprehend. One witness, however, may ruin all."

"Of whom do you speak?" said Pietro, trembling.

"Of Crespo," said the Count.

"Ah—what have you to fear of Crespo?"

"Have you gained him over?"

"No. I was spared the trouble. At this moment the poor fellow is probably in the other world."

"Have you killed him?" said the Count, with terror.

"For what does your excellency take me? One may yield to the prayers of a prisoner, and secure a fortune by permitting him a few hours' exercise, yet be no murderer. If Crespo dies, it is in consequence of his unfortunate passion."

"Was he in love?"

"No. He was fond of water-rats."

"Horrible appetite."

"Not at all," said the jailer. "Crespo says the animal is very savory, especially when fat as those in the ditches of the castle are. The waters bear hither all the offal of Naples, and the rats live like canons."

"And Crespo eats them?"

"He has a passion for game of that kind, and does nothing but hunt them. He makes some very ingenious traps to catch them with. I do not molest him, because the taste is so innocent, and besides, saves me the expense of several cats."

"But how came that passion to endanger Crespo's life?"

"Ah—one is not always lucky. Perhaps the last rats Crespo ate, had feasted on arsenic—rats are so whimsical. The poor devil, perhaps, was poisoned in that manner. Rather an expensive taste. Unfortunately, the lesson will do him no good."

After this touching funeral oration, the jailer took out a blue and torn handkerchief, and dried his eyes. The Count shuddered at this story. He understood the atrocious plan adopted by Pietro to get rid of a dangerous witness, and forgetful of his own safety, said,

"Perhaps, if you hurry for a physician, the poor man may yet be saved."

"Bah! do you think the Governor would let one of his officers die without assistance? The doctor, however, was too late; and when I came hither, Crespo was dying."

Notwithstanding his firmness, the horror of Monte-Leone at the wretch was so great that he hastened to terminate the conversation. The quasi complicity in a crime committed in cold blood, and with premeditation; was odious to him.

"Do not fear lest my examination should compromise you. I will be prudent. Now, one word more, or if you please to consider it so, one favor more—when will I be tried?"

"In two days. To-night they will come to take you to Castello Capuano, where the supreme court will meet."

Pietro left, and Monte-Leone relapsed into a profound reverie. The drama was about to begin. What the Count hitherto had done, was as it were but a prelude, an exposition, or rather a skilful introduction. On the eve of the event he did not quail, but like a sagacious tactician asked himself if he had been guilty of no neglect, if he had taken advantage of all the circumstances. One thing alone made him uneasy. When he returned to the Etruscan villa, to assume the clothes of the assistant-jailer, he saw with terror that he had lost the great emerald, the chef-d'œuvre of Benvenuto, the family ring, so long celebrated and so well known. He readily enough fancied[Pg 227] that it had been lost during his rapid flight, and did not suspect that it had fallen into the hands of his enemies. Reassured on this point, he waited patiently for the hour when, as the jailer said, they would come to take him to Castello Capuano. It came at last, and Monte-Leone was glad of it, for it seemed to bring him nearer to liberty. It was about midnight when the Governor came to the Count's cell, accompanied by the worthy jailer and several officers.

"Excellency," said he to Monte-Leone, "I have an order from the Duke of Palma, minister of police, to take you to Castello Capuano, to be tried."

"I am ready to obey the orders of the Duke," said Monte-Leone, "late as the hour and bad as the weather are. But, Signor, the Duke treats me like those curious monsters, who travel by night to avoid the anxious eyes of the public, and to enhance the profits received from their exhibition."

"Signor, the Duke of Palma," said the Governor, piqued by this irony in relation to his patron, "has a more exalted object than exciting or allaying the curiosity of the people of Naples. He wishes to prevent any demonstration of your numerous partisans in your favor. Such conduct would certainly injure your cause."

The sarcasm of the Count had made the Governor say too much. He had revealed to Monte-Leone the interest he had excited, and the efforts which might be made to save him. To a man like Monte-Leone nothing was lost, and like a skilful geometer, he knew how to take advantage of the errors of his adversary.

"Let us go, Signor," said Monte-Leone to the Governor. "I am impatient to make an acquaintance with the new castle which the king honors me with. Let me change once or twice again, and I will be able to publish a statistical account of all the dungeons in the kingdom, for the information of his majesty's beloved subjects."

An hour after this scene the Count was in a room of Castello Capuano, appropriated to the reception of great and distinguished criminals to be tried by the high court.

On the next day, a man of cold and ascetic air waited on Monte-Leone. This person was Felippo San Angelo, the ogre of whom Pietro had spoken, the terror of all criminals, the Grand Judge of Naples. If the morale of the Judge had been calumniated by Pietro, his physique bore a strong analogy to that of certain beasts of prey to which carnivorous appetite is attributed. His nose was hooked like an eagle's, his brow was prominent, oblong and bald, his lips were thin and fixed as if he had never smiled, his body was long and attenuated, and he never met the glance of those with whom he spoke.

"Signor," said the Grand Judge, "I am come to announce to you, as the law requires, that you will appear before the court on the day after to-morrow. You will be allowed to choose an advocate, and, as Grand Judge of the Kingdom, I come to invite you to do so."

"I am deeply sensible of your Excellency's consideration," said Monte-Leone, "but I must say, the first act of your justice is unjust. If my enemies have had two months to prepare their accusation, it is cruel to allow me but two days to prepare my defence."

"This is the provision of the laws which regulate at Naples the special courts, like the one which is to try you, Signor Comte. I do not make the law, but only administer it."

"But, Excellency, a man of your character should not administer an unjust law; nothing should compel him to do so."

"Signor," said the Grand Judge, much annoyed at finding himself unexpectedly drawn into such a discussion, "the legislator gives us the text of law, we find the interpretation. Your judges, the chief of whom I am, have carefully studied them, and if we have assumed on our honor and conscience their application, it is because we think them just. We do not permit the accused to contest their forms. When a man is unfortunately brought before a court, he must submit."

"I do, Excellency," said Monte-Leone, "I will even court their severity, and will not take advantage of the very short time allowed me to choose a defender. For humanity's sake alone I address you as I do. It seems to me, however, that it is necessary that I should know, in the first place, of what I am accused; and I wait until it please your Excellency to tell me."

"You are charged, Signor, with two capital crimes. First, of having, on the night of the 20th December, 1815, conspired against the security of the state, near the ruins of Pompeii, where you presided over a secret society, the object of which is the overthrow of royalty. You are, in the second place, accused of having attempted to assassinate Stenio Salvatori, of Torre-del-Greco, to avenge yourself on account of his testimony."

"Is this all?" asked Monte-Leone.

"It is, Signor," said the Grand Judge; "I think such charges are important enough to induce you to remember that you must now choose your counsel."

"You are right, Signor," said Monte-Leone. "For such a cause a skilful advocate is required, one who shall be able to impress your heart with the conviction of my innocence, for on his word depends my life or death."

"Find such a one, then, Signor," said the Grand Judge. "Believe me, however, the most eloquent advocate has less influence over a conscientious judge than the facts of the case, the light which illumines them, and which it is their duty to make brilliant in our eyes, rather than seek an opportunity to display their fluency and their political opinions, or, worse yet, to produce public or private scandal—"

"You are right, Signor, but the person who will speak in my behalf is neither eloquent[Pg 228] nor skilful, yet the most famous pleas, the most powerful defences of Naples, will not produce so much effect as the words of that man."

"You, Signor, alone," said the Grand Judge, "can choose your defender. But let me know his name—"

"That can only be revealed at the trial."

"But you do not know, Signor, you thus deprive yourself of a precious right to all who are accused, secured them by law, the right of communicating with their defenders."

"That right I waive. The man who will defend me will know his grave mission only when called on in the face of the supreme tribunal to fulfil it."

The Grand Judge looked with amazement at Monte-Leone. "Why, Signor, cannot he be informed of his grave duty?"

"God forbid he should!"


"Because in that case I would lose my cause." The Count laughed.

"Act then, Signor, as you please. Strange and whimsical as your conduct is, I have no authority to speak of its advantages and disadvantages."

He bowed to Monte-Leone and withdrew.

"He is mad," said he, as he was leaving Castello Capuano.

"He is a fool," said Monte-Leone, as the Grand Judge left. "He did not understand that one defends himself from the effects of a crime committed, but not when no crime has been committed."


The appointed day came at last, and all Naples assumed a strange and unusual air. One subject of interest took possession of all the city, one idea occupied it, and from the Senator to the Lazzarone all had one name on their lips. Monte-Leone, Count Monte-Leone.

"Monte-Leone, the people's friend," said some.

"Monte-Leone, the conspirator," said others.

"Monte-Leone, the assassin of Stenio Salvatori," said the enemies of the Count.

"Monte-Leone, the victim of Fernando," said the enemies of the King.

As all this was going on around the prison, calm and thoughtful Monte-Leone waited for the hour of trial.

Castello Capuano, usually called la Vicaria, had been for several centuries the palace of the Kings and Viceroys, until Pedro de Toledo abandoned for a more splendid palace, that of the existing Kings, and devoted la Vicaria or Castello Capuano to the civil and criminal courts of the realm. Nothing can be more sad and melancholy than the portion of the palace in which the prisons are. As if to enhance this appearance, the outside of the prison was hung with iron cages, in which were the heads and hands of persons who had been executed. These relics of humanity, long before dried up, and the skeletons of which alone remained, rattled in the night wind horribly, and filled with superstitious terror the minds of belated travellers returning through the Porta Capuano, from which the Castle took its name, to Naples.

La Vicaria was then from an early hour in the morning besieged by a numerous crowd, awaiting the opening of its gates to rush into the hall of audience. The doors were opened. The hall was instantly occupied by a crowd of curious persons, who everywhere in Europe are attracted by criminal trials. It is a matter of surprise that in France women, and especially those of rank, are attracted in numbers sufficient sometimes to form a majority of the audience. But the reason is, that women are nervous and impressionable, and that they constantly require excitement. They are not often careful in the selection of these emotions, provided there are violent shocks, revulsions of feeling, terror, hope, surprise. Such are the fruits of criminal trials. The head of the prisoner becomes a shuttlecock between the advocate and magistrate. The varied chances of such a scene offer great and real interest, effacing all the fictions of tragedy. There, far more than on the stage, women take delight in the dark dramas, and are the first to resent the terrible effect of the denouements.

The beautiful women of Naples did not fail to add to the interest of the representation of this drama, the hero of which possessed the admiration of all and the good graces of many. Some of the upper seats were occupied by women of high rank, who did not dare to show themselves publicly at this strange spectacle, and came, like beggars, to enjoy a scene which they would be ashamed to have acknowledged. Places, too, had been reserved for the patrician women, near the bench of the judges and advocates. These cold, careless creatures, attracted by mere curiosity, were not the most numerous of the agitated crowd. The private friends of the Count, his partisans, the members of the society of which he was the chief, formed an imposing mass agitated by the most tumultuous sentiments. Two hearts beat violently, and, though in different places, a skilful clock-maker would have declared that one was not faster than the other by a single second. These two hearts were full of the same object, desired the same thing, pursued the same end. One sentiment united both, and they were equally tortured by hope and fear.

One of these was a woman dressed in black, and having a half disclosed, fresh and beautiful face. A fine and delicately gloved hand was placed upon her heart as if to restrain its pulsations. Her other hand, from time to time, was passed beneath her veil, to bear to her lips an exquisitely embroidered and perfumed handkerchief. She sat alone on one of the remote benches. For a long time she remained motionless, but suddenly seeming anxious to avoid observation, she approached, as[Pg 229] nearly as possible, the front of the recess in which the bench on which she had been sitting was placed. She then cast a quick, anxious glance on the crowd which filled every portion of the court-room, returned, and became again motionless, and apparently calm as she had been before.

The other actor in this silent scene, was a young man with a pale and agitated countenance, which betrayed the anxiety of his mind, and the deep interest he took in the events of the day. Yet not to the place reserved for the judges, nor the doors through which the prisoner would be led, did he look. Suspiciously examining every bench in the hall, perceiving (so to speak) the mass of spectators, the long lines of which rose one above another, he examined the most remote, even, without perceiving what he was evidently so anxious to find. At last, by a sudden start, he attracted the attention of those near him,—a half-stifled cry burst from his lips; he had perceived the lonely woman on the remote bench.

"Do you know that lady?" said a young man who sat upon the advocates' bench.

"I know her?" said he, "not at all."

"Excuse me, you seemed surprised when you saw her."

"The fact was, I had not remarked those seats; they are real opera boxes."

"Look again, Signor, the lady amuses herself strangely."

"I see nothing, sir," said the pale young man, who still kept his eyes fixed upon the lady.

"Three times," said the first speaker, "she has placed her hand upon her hair, as if she would point out to somebody a diamond pin which shines amid her jetty locks like a star in a stormy sky."

"You think so?"

"I am sure of it, it is a signal—and see, she has taken her pin from her hair, and is imploring. Ah! sir, what a pretty Venus hand. One kiss on her hand, and I would die content!"

"To be sure," said the other mechanically, and without knowing what he said.

"It is some intrigue," said the gossiper, "the women of our country go everywhere, to the church, to the court, and to the theatre. It would be odd if it were the judge's wife. They who always condemn others, sometimes must atone for it."

"Speak lower, Signor, speak lower; you may compromise her."

"True, true, but by St. Januarius, see what she is about now;" he spoke lower.

"What!" said the young man.

"She has placed her finger upon her pin, and looks this way, as if she was interrogating you."

"You are mistaken; besides, how can you see under a veil which way she looks?"

"There is no doubt about it, it is intended for us, and she wishes to speak either to you or to me."

Looking towards the person of whom they spoke, for the purpose of giving more force to his asseveration, he was amazed to see her white hand holding the diamond pin to her lips. The scene we have been so long describing had taken place in a few seconds. Prompt as was the reply of the young man to the interrogatory of the woman, his companion had perceived it. The latter being a man of good taste, and perfectly expert in the telegraphs of love, was persuaded that he had interfered in some love affair, and hastened to say to the hero of the adventure,

"Do not be afraid, sir, I have seen nothing. Well-bred people, such as you and I are, never speak of secrets we thus become acquainted with—and I am ready to maintain with my lip and with my sword, that you have not the slightest acquaintance with the lady there."

"Thank you, sir," said the young man; "your conduct proves you to be a gentleman."

Just then all the assemblage became full of eager expectation at the entrance of the High Court, preceded by the President.

"The court is opened—produce the prisoner," said the Grand Judge.

The agitation became stronger. Women stood up in their chairs, men climbed up on the banisters, and others, vexed at not being able to see, protested against the appropriation of seats by the legs and boots of those in front of them. The disorder was quickly put an end to by the imperious voice of the Grand Judge, who threatened to have the hall cleared if order were not at once restored, and the respect due to the court maintained. All became immediately quiet; the audience sat down, those in the rear ceased to complain, and many an eye was fixed on Count Monte-Leone.

The Count sat in the lofty seat reserved for him, an arm-chair replaced the stool used by vulgar criminals. The respect due to rank and birth was religiously observed in this aristocratic tribunal. The noble, if found guilty, was certainly sentenced to death, as the merest commoner—the form of trial, though, always exhibited respect for illustrious names, which was most gratifying to the people. The fact was, at that time people believed in social superiority, had faith in their God, king and nobles, and though they demanded that their nobles should be punished, did not expect them to die like common people; the difference was the difference between the rope and the sabre. That very difference, however, between the two deaths—the terrible theatrical effect of the latter, made a great impression on the masses.

The public accuser arose, and pronounced an eloquent harangue against Monte-Leone, as guilty of two crimes, the nature of which the Grand Judge had already described to him in prison.

First crime: Conspiracy against the State, in having presided at the secret venta of Pompeia, as chief of a society, having for its object the overturning of the monarchy.



[25] Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1860, by Stringer & Townsend, in the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the United States for the Southern District of New-York.

[Pg 230]

From Graham's Magazine.



At her window, Jessie Carol,
As the twilight dew distils,
Pushes back her heavy tresses,
Listening toward the northern hills.
"I am happy, very happy,
None so much as I am blest;
None of all the many maidens
In the Valley of the West,"
Softly to herself she whispered;
Paused she then again to hear
If the step of Allen Archer,
That she waited for, were near.
"Ah, he knows I love him fondly!—
I have never told him so!—
Heart of mine be not so heavy,
He will come to-night, I know."
Brightly is the full moon filling
All the withered woods with light,
"He has not forgotten surely—
It was later yesternight!"
Shadows interlock with shadows—
Says the maiden, "Woe is me!"
In the blue the eve-star trembles
Like a lily in the sea.
Yet a good hour later sounded,—
But the northern woodlands sway!—
Quick a white hand from her casement
Thrust the heavy vines away.
Like the wings of restless swallows
That a moment brush the dew,
And again are up and upward,
Till we lose them in the blue,
Were the thoughts of Jessie Carol,—
For a moment dim with pain,
Then with pleasant waves of sunshine,
On the hills of hope again.
"Selfish am I, weak and selfish,"
Said she, "thus to sit and sigh;
Other friends and other pleasures
Claim his leisure well as I.
Haply, care or bitter sorrow
'Tis that keeps him from my side,
Else he surely would have hasted
Hither at the twilight tide.
Yet, sometimes I can but marvel
That his lips have never said,
When we talked about the future,
Then, or then, we shall be wed!
Much I fear me that my nature
Cannot measure half his pride,
And perchance he would not wed me
Though I pined of love and died.
To the aims of his ambition
I would bring nor wealth nor fame.
Well, there is a quiet valley
Where we both shall sleep the same!"
So, more eves than I can number,
Now despairing, and now blest,
Watched the gentle Jessie Carol
From the Valley of the West.
Down along the dismal woodland
Blew October's yellow leaves,
And the day had waned and faded,
To the saddest of all eves.
Poison rods of scarlet berries
Still were standing here and there,
But the clover blooms were faded,
And the orchard boughs were bare.
From the stubble fields the cattle
Winding homeward, playful, slow,
With their slender horns of silver
Pushed each other to and fro.
Suddenly the hound upspringing
From his sheltering kennel, whined,
As the voice of Jessie Carol
Backward drifted on the wind,
Backward drifted from a pathway
Sloping down the upland wild,
Where she walked with Allan Archer,
Light of spirit as a child!
All her young heart wild with rapture
And the bliss that made it beat—
Not the golden wells of Hybla
Held a treasure half so sweet!
But as oft the shifting rose-cloud,
In the sunset light that lies,
Mournful makes us, feeling only
How much farther are the skies,—
So the mantling of her blushes,
And the trembling of her heart,
'Neath his steadfast eyes but made her
Feel how far they were apart.
"Allan," said she, "I will tell you
Of a vision that I had—
All the livelong night I dreamed it,
And it made me very sad.
We were walking slowly, seaward,
In the twilight—you and I—
Through a break of clearest azure
Shone the moon—as now—on high;
Though I nothing said to vex you,
O'er your forehead came a frown,
And I strove, but could not soothe you—
Something kept my full heart down;
When, before us, stood a lady
In the moonlight's pearly beam,
Very tall and proud and stately—
(Allan, this was in my dream!—)
Looking down, I thought, upon me,
Half in pity, half in scorn,
Till my soul grew sick with wishing
That I never had been born.
'Cover me from woe and madness!'
Cried I to the ocean flood,
As she locked her milk-white fingers
In between us where we stood,—
All her flood of midnight tresses
Softly gathered from their flow,
By her crown of bridal beauty,
Paler than the winter snow.
Striking then my hands together,
O'er the tumult of my breast,—
All the beauty waned and faded
From the Valley of the West!"
In the beard of Allan Archer
Twisted then his fingers white,
As he said, "My gentle Jessie,
You must not be sad to-night;
You must not be sad, my Jessie—
You are over kind and good,
And I fain would make you happy,
Very happy—if I could!"
Oft he kissed her cheek and forehead,
Called her darling oft, but said,
Never, that he loved her fondly,
Or that ever they should wed;
But that he was grieved that shadows
Should have chilled so dear a heart;
That the time foretold so often
Then was come—and they must part!
Shook her bosom then with passion,
Hot her forehead burned with pain,
But her lips said only, "Allan,
Will you ever come again?"
And he answered, lightly dallying
With her tresses all the while,
Life had not a star to guide him
Like the beauty of her smile;
And that when the corn was ripened
And the vintage harvest prest,
She would see him home returning
To the Valley of the West.
When the moon had veiled her splendor,
And went lessening down the blue,
And along the eastern hill-tops
Burned the morning in the dew,
They had parted—each one feeling
That their lives had separate ends;
They had parted—neither happy—
Less than lovers—more than friends.
For as Jessie mused in silence,
She remembered that he said,
Never, that he loved her fondly,
Or that ever they should wed.
'Twas full many a nameless meaning
My poor words can never say,
Felt without the need of utterance,
That had won her heart away.
O the days were weary! weary!
And the eves were dull and long,
With the cricket's chirp of sorrow,
And the owlet's mournful song.
But in slumber oft she started
In the still and lonesome nights,
Hearing but the traveller's footstep
Hurrying toward the village lights.
So, moaned by the dreary winter—
All her household tasks fulfilled—
Till beneath the last year's rafters
Came the swallows back to build.
Meadow-pinks, like flakes of crimson,
Over all the valleys lay,
And again were oxen ploughing
Up and down the hills all day.
Thus the dim days dawned and faded
To the maid, forsaken, lorn,
[Pg 231] Till the freshening breeze of summer
Shook the tassels of the corn.
Ever now within her chamber
All night long the lamp-light shines,
But no white hand from her casement
Pushes back the heavy vines.
On her cheek a fire was feeding,
And her hand transparent grew—
Ah, the faithless Allan Archer!
More than she had dreamed was true.
No complaint was ever uttered,
Only to herself she sighed,—
As she read of wretched poets
Who had pined of love and died.
Once she crushed the sudden crying
From her trembling lips away,
When they said the vintage harvest
Had been gathered in that day
Often, when they kissed her, smiled she,
Saying that it soothed her pain,
And that they must not be saddened—
She would soon be well again!
Thus nor hoping nor yet fearing,
Meekly bore she all her pain.
Till the red leaves of the autumn
Withered from the woods again;
Till the bird had hushed its singing
In the silvery sycamore,
And the nest was left unsheltered
In the lilac by the door;
Saying, still, that she was happy—
None so much as she was blest—
None, of all the many maidens
In the Valley of the West.
Down the heath and o'er the moorland
Blows the wild gust high and higher,
Suddenly the maiden pauses
Spinning at the cabin fire,
And quick from her taper fingers
Falls away the flaxen thread,
As some neighbor entering, whispers,
"Jessie Carol lieth dead."
Then, as pressing close her forehead
To the window-pane, she sees
Two stout men together digging
Underneath the church-yard trees.
And she asks in kindest accents,
"Was she happy when she died?"—
Sobbing all the while to see them
Void the heavy earth aside;
Or, upon their mattocks leaning,
Through their fingers numb to blow,
For the wintry air is chilly,
And the grave-mounds white with snow;
And the neighbor answers softly,
"Do not, dear one, do not cry:
At the break of day she asked us
If we thought that she must die;
And when I had told her, sadly,
That I feared it would be so,
Smiled she, saying, ''Twill be weary
Digging in the churchyard snow!'
'Earth,' I said, 'was very dreary—
That its paths at best were rough;
And she whispered, she was ready,
That her life was long enough.
So she lay serene and silent,
Till the wind, that wildly drove,
Soothed her from her mortal sorrow,
Like the lullaby of love."
Thus they talked, while one that loved her
Smoothed her tresses dark and long,
Wrapped her white shroud down, and simply
Wove her sorrow to this song:
Sweetly sleeps she: pain and passion
Burn no longer on her brow—
Weary watchers, ye may leave her—
She will never need you now!
While the wild spring bloomed and faded,
Till the autumn came and passed,
Calmly, patiently, she waited—
Rest has come to her at last!
Never have the blessed angels,
As they walked with her apart,
Kept pale Sorrow's battling armies
Half so softly from her heart
Therefore, think not, ye that loved her,
Of the pallor hushed and dread,
Where the winds, like heavy mourners,
Cry about her lonesome bed,
But of white hands softly reaching
As the shadow o'er her fell,
Downward from the golden bastion
Of the eternal citadel.

[From "The Memorial," just published by Putnam.]



Some years ago, I was detained unexpectedly in Calais for an entire week. It was with difficulty I could occupy the time. For a while my chief resource was to inspect the different faces which daily presented themselves at the Hotel de Meurice, where one could see every variety of features belonging to every country, age, sex, and condition. I grew tired of this presently, for I had been on the continent a considerable period, and had seen the human species under as many different phases as could well be imagined. Therefore, when the third day brought with it one of those disagreeable storms peculiar to the coast—half drizzle, half sleet and rain—it found me weary of the amusement of attending on new arrivals and departures, and of the nameless petty doings by which time, in a bustling hotel, is attempted to be frittered away. A misty, dreary, damp, offensive day! An out-and-out tempest, a thorough right-down drenching rain, would have been in agreeable contrast with the previous hot, dusty, sunny weather; but this—it seemed absolutely intolerable! I was, besides, in no particular condition to be pleased. I was neither setting out upon a tour, nor returning from one, but had been interrupted in my progress and forced to stand still at this most uninteresting spot. I came down, and with a bad grace, to order breakfast.

"Garçon, Café—œufs a la coque—biftek—rotie—vite!"

I was about repeating this in a louder tone, for the waiter seemed engrossed with something more important than attending to my wants, when I heard a quiet voice behind me—

"Garçon, Café—œufs a la coque—biftek—rotie—vite!"

I turned angrily upon the speaker, doubtful of the design of this repetition of my order.

The reader will perceive that my breakfast was a substantial one; indeed, such a breakfast as an American, who had not so far lost himself in "European society" as to forget his appetite, would be very likely to call for. The idea that I was watched, doubtless made me a little suspicious, or sensitive, or irritable; at any rate, I turned, as I have said, angrily upon the speaker. He was a slightly made, elderly man, at least fifty, with pleasant features, a calm appearance, and quiet manners—a person evidently at home with the world. I recollected at the same moment, that the stranger had been at the hotel ever since my arrival there, although I had not, from his unobtrusive habit, given him more than a passing notice. His appearance at once dispelled the frown which I had brought to bear upon him; but when he answered my stare with a respectful yet half[Pg 232] familiar bow, I could have sworn that it came from an old acquaintance. I need not say that I returned the salutation cordially. At the same time my new friend rose, came towards me, and held out his hand.

"I am quite sure," he said, "that you are an American—perhaps a New Englander; I am both; why, then, should not countrymen beguile an unpleasant day in company? Excuse me—I did hear your order just now, and as it suited my own taste, I proposed to myself that we should breakfast together;—we may trust to François; he has been here, to my knowledge, more than twenty years, and pleases every body."

I pressed the hand of my new acquaintance—acknowledged myself to be from New Hampshire—gave my name, and received in return—"Philip Belcher."

We sat down to the same table, and very soon François appeared with a well-served breakfast.

"Pray," said I, "what can one do to relieve the monotony of this intolerable place? If the country about were agreeable—nay, if it were bearable! but as it is, I repeat, what is to be done?"

"Done!" said Mr. Belcher, rather sharply, "a hundred things! Put on your Mackintosh and overshoes; come with me to the Courtgain, and see the fishermen putting to sea, their boats towed out by their wives and daughters; a sight, I will be bound, you have not beheld, although you may have coursed Europe over, and been at Calais half a dozen times."

Mr. Belcher proceeded in this vein, detailing many things that could be seen to advantage even in Calais; but as he suggested nothing which interested me so much as he himself did, I had the boldness to tell him so, and that my curiosity was excited to know more of him.

"There is nothing in my history that can amuse a stranger; indeed, it is without incident or marvel. To be sure, I am alone in the world, but I have never been afflicted, or suffered misfortune, within my recollection. My parents died when I was very young; my father and mother were both only children; a small property which the former left was carefully invested, and faithfully nursed during my minority, by a scrupulous and honest lawyer, in no way connected with us, but whom my father named as executor in his will, and my guardian. Ill health prevented my getting on at school. I can't say that I was an invalid, but my constitution was delicate and my temperament nervous. I tried to make some progress in the study of a profession, under my excellent guardian, but was forced to give it up as too trying to my nerves. The excitement of a court-room I could not endure for a day, much less for a lifetime. Before I was twenty-five, my income had so much increased that I could afford to travel. I have gained in this way my health, which, however, would become impaired should I return to a sedentary life; so, as a matter of necessity, I have wandered about the world. You see my story is soon told."

I found Mr. Belcher was not in the habit of talking about himself, and I liked him the better for it. Without pressing for a more particular account, I led the conversation to treat of the different countries he had visited, referring, by the way, to some principal objects of attraction. Here I touched an idiosyncrasy of my new friend.

"I never formed," he said, "any distinct 'plan' of travel. I never 'did' Paris in eight days, nor the gallery of the Louvre in half an hour, as they have been done by an acquaintance. I never opened a guide-book in my life; I never employed a commissionere, a valet, a courier, a cicerone, or a dragoman. My pleasure has been to let the remarkable—the beautiful—the interesting—burst upon me without introduction, and I have found my account in it. I have quitted the Val d'Arno, turned off from the Lake of Como, passed to the wrong side of Lake Leman and its romantic castles, pursuing my way, regardless of these well-worn attractions, while I beheld rarer—at least familiar scenes—and enjoyed with zest what was fresh and unhackneyed. No everlasting 'route'—no mercenary and dishonest landlords—no troops of travellers, travelling that they may become 'travelled'—but in place of all this, I saw every thing naturally—the country in its simplicity—the inhabitants in their simplicity—while, I trust, I have preserved my own simplicity. Indeed, I rather prefer what your tourist calls an 'uninteresting region.'"

"For that reason," I remarked, pleasantly, "you have come here to Calais to spend a few weeks; you must enjoy the barren sand-plain which extends all the way from this to St. Omer. How picturesque are those pollards scattered along the road, with here and there a superannuated windmill, looking like an ogre with three arms and no legs: then, to relieve the dreariness of the place, you have multitudes of miserable cabins, grouped into more miserable villages, to say nothing of the chateaux of dingy red, in which painters of the brick-dust school so much delight. Really, Mr. Belcher, you will have a capital field here!"

My new acquaintance shook his head a little seriously, as if deprecating further pleasantry.

"You are like the rest of them, I fear," he remarked, "a surface traveller; at least you will force me to believe so if you go on in this way. But come," he continued, "the storm threatens to last the morning; if you wish, I will help to make away with part of it, by recounting a little adventure which happened to me hard by those very pollards, which you are pleased to abuse so freely."

It is needless to add that I joyfully assented to the proposal, and was soon seated in Mr. Belcher's room before a cheerful fire—for[Pg 233] he had managed even in Calais to procure one—when he commenced as follows:

"I think it was during the first season I was on the continent, that I visited St. Omer. After spending a day or two in that place, I concluded to walk to Calais, and set out one morning accordingly.

"The weather was fine; but after I had been a few hours on the road, the wind began to blow directly in my face, and soon enveloped me in a cloud of sand from which there seemed no escape, and which threatened actually to suffocate me. To avoid this I left the highway, but keeping what I supposed to be in the general direction of the road, I struck out into the adjacent fields. There was nothing for a considerable distance to repay me for this detour, except that I thus was rid of the sand. The country was barren and uninteresting, the cottages little better than hovels, and the whole scene uninviting. But I pushed on, not a whit discouraged; indeed my spirits rose as the prospect darkened, and like a valiant general invading a country for the purpose of conquering a peace, I resolved in some way to force an adventure before I reached Calais. I trudged along for hours, stopping occasionally for a draught of sour wine and a bit of bread. I made no inquiry about the main road, for I preferred to know nothing of it. In this way I proceeded, until it was almost night, when I spied, some half a mile distant, a cluster of trees surrounding a small tenement. I turned at once toward the spot, and coming up to it, found a cottage not differing in size or structure from those I had seen on the way, except that it appeared even more antiquated. It was, however, in perfect repair, and finely shaded by a variety of handsome trees, and flanked on one side by a neat garden. The door stood open and I entered. There was no one in the room. I called, but received no answer. I strayed out into the garden and walked through it. At the lower end was a small inclosure covered over at the top as if to protect it from the weather, and fenced on each side with open wire-work, looking through which, I beheld a small grave, overspread with mosses, and strewed with fresh-gathered white flowers. It bore no name or inscription, except the following simple but pathetic line;

"Enfant cherie, avec toi mes beaux jours sont passes.—1794."

Surprised by the appearance of fresh flowers upon a tomb which had been so long closed over its occupant, I turned, hoping to find some explanation of the mystery, in what I might see elsewhere, But there was nothing near to attract one's attention, nor was any person within sight.

"After taking a glance around, I returned to the cottage, and walking in, sat down to wait the arrival of the occupants. In a few minutes, I heard voices from the side of the house opposite the garden, and soon two persons, of the peasant class, evidently husband and wife, came in. The man was strong and robust, with the erect form and martial appearance acquired only by military service, and which the weight of nearly sixty years had not seemed to impair. His countenance was frank and manly, and his step firm. The woman appeared a few years younger, while the air of happy contentment which beamed in her face, put the ordinary encroachments of time at defiance. Altogether, I had never seen a couple so fitted to challenge observation and interest. They both stopped short on seeing me.

"I hastened to explain my situation, as that of a belated traveller, attracted by the sight of the cottage; and told them I was both hungry and tired, and desirous of the hospitality of their roof. I was made welcome at once.

"Louis Herbois, for that was his name, gave me a bluff, soldierly greeting, while Agathe, his wife, smiled her acquiescence. Supper was soon laid; I ate with a sharpened appetite, which evidently charmed my host, who encouraged me at intervals, as I began to flag.

"Supper concluded, I was glad to accept the offer of a bed—for I was exhausted with fatigue.

"I had been so engrossed with the repast, that curiosity was for the time suspended, and it was not again in action until I had said good-night to my entertainers, and found myself in the room where I was to sleep. This was an apartment of moderate size; the furniture was old and common, but neither dilapidated nor out of order; the bed was neatly covered; around the room were scattered several books of interest, and in one corner was a neat writing-desk, of antiquated appearance, with silver mounting, and handsomely inlaid; while some small articles of considerable value placed on a table in another corner, indicated at least occasional denizens very different from the peasant and his wife. Yet this could not be a rural resort for any family belonging to the town. There were but two other apartments in the house, and these were occupied. Nevertheless, I reasoned, these things can never have been brought here by the worthy people I have seen; and then—the little grave in the garden? who has watched the tomb for so many years, preserving the moss so green and the flowers so fresh—cherishing an affection which has triumphed over time? How intense, how sacred, how strange must be such devotion! I decided that some persons besides my host were concerned, in some way, in the history of the little dwelling, and with this conclusion I retired; and so, being fatigued by my day's travel, I soon fell asleep.

"I awoke about sunrise. Going to the window, I put aside the curtain, and looked out into the garden. Louis Herbois and his wife were there, renewing the garlands with fresh flowers, and watering the moss which was spread over the grave. It must be their own child, thought I, and yet—no—I will step[Pg 234] out and ask them, and put an end to the mystery. I met the good people coming in: they inquired if I had rested well, and said that breakfast would soon be ready. 'You do not forget your little one,' I said to the old fellow, at the same time pointing towards the inclosure. 'Monsieur mistakes,' replied he, crossing himself devoutly. 'Some dear friend, I suppose?' He looked at me earnestly: 'On voit bien, Monsieur, que vous etes un homme comme il faut. After you have breakfasted, you shall hear the story. 'Ah, there is then a story,' said I to myself, as I followed Louis Herbois into the cottage, where Agathe had preceded us, and sat down to an excellent breakfast. When it was concluded I asked for the promised narration. 'Let me see,' said Louis, 'Agathe, how long have we been married?' Agathe, matron as she was, actually blushed at the question, yet answered readily, without stopping to compute the time. 'Yes; true; very well;' resumed Louis. 'You must know, Monsieur, that my father was a soldier, and enrolled me, at an early age, in the same company with himself. Having been detailed, soon after, on service to one of the provinces, I was so severely wounded that I was thought to be permanently unfitted for duty, and was honorably dismissed with a life pension. Owing to the care and skill of a famous surgeon who attended me, and whom I was fortunate enough to interest, I was at last cured of my wounds, and very soon after I wandered away here, for no better reason, I believe, than that Agathe was in the neighborhood; for we had known each other from the time we were children. Very soon she and I were married, and we took this little place, and were as blessed as possible.

"'In the mean time, great changes were going on at Paris. The revolution had begun, and soon swept every thing before it. But it did not matter with us. We rose with the birds, and went to rest with the sun, and no two could have been happier: am I not right, Agathe?' The old lady put her hand affectionately upon the shoulder of her husband, but said nothing. 'And we have never ceased being happy: we are always happy, are we not Agathe?' The tears stood in Agathe's eyes, and Louis Herbois went on. 'Well, the revolution was nothing to me, they were mad with it, and killed the king, and slew each other, until our dear Paris became a bedlam—still, as I said, it was nothing to me. To be sure, I went occasionally to Calais, where I heard a new language in every body's mouth, and much talk of Les hommes suspects, Mandats d'arrets, with shouts of Abas les aristocrates, and Vive la Republique—but I did not trouble myself about any of it; Agathe and I worked together in the field, and in the garden, and in the house—always together—always happy. One morning we went out to prune our vines, the door of the house was open, just as you found it yesterday; why should we ever shut the door? we were honest, and feared nobody; we stood—Agathe here on this side holding the vine; I, with my knife, on the other side, bending over to lop a sprout from it; when down came two young people—lad and lass—upon us, as fast as they could run; out of breath—agitated—and as frightened as two wood-pigeons. The young man flew to me, and catching hold of my arm begged me, pour l'amour de Dieu, to secrete his wife somewhere—anywhere—out of the reach of the gens-d'armes, who were pursuing them. I felt in ill-humor, for I had cut my finger just then; besides, I did not relish the mention of the gens-d'armes, so I replied plainly, that I would have nothing to do with persons who were suspects. Why should I thrust my own neck into the trap? they had better go about their business, and not trouble poor people. Bah! such a speech was not like Louis Herbois! but out it came, Heaven knows how, and no sooner had I finished than up runs the young creature, and seizing my moustache she cries, "My brave fellow, hie away, and crop off all this; none but men have a right to it; God grant you were not born in France; no Frenchman could give such an answer to a man imploring protection for his wife. Look at my husband—did he ask aid for himself? Do you think he would turn you off in this way, had you sought his assistance to save her?" pointing to Agathe, who stood trembling all the while like an aspen. "Ah! you have made a mistake, I see you repent, be quick; what will you do with us?" And she held me tight by the moustache until I should answer, while the husband stared upon me in a sort of breathless agony. I took another look at the little creature, while she kept fast hold of me, and saw that she was——eh bien! I see you understand me,' said Louis, interrupting himself, as he glanced towards his wife. 'My heart knocked loud enough, believe me, and there the dear little thing stood, her hand, as I was telling you, clenched fast in my moustache—ha! ha! ha!—and looking so full into my eyes, with her own clear bright blue gazers. "Mon Dieu—mon Dieu! Agathe we must help these pauvres enfans." "You are a Frenchman—I thought so," cried the little one, letting go my moustache and clapping her hands. "Oh! hasten, hasten, or we are lost!" "All in good time," said I, "for—" "No no," interrupted she, "they are almost upon us: in a moment we may be captured, and then Albert, oh, Albert, what will become of you?" So saying, she threw her arms about her husband, and clung to him as if nothing should part them. "Voilà bien les femmes; to the devil with my caution; come with me, and I will put you in a place where the whole Directory shall not find you, unless they pull my cottage down stone by stone." I hurried them to the house, and hid them in a private closet which, following out my soldier-like propensities, I had constructed in one end of the room, in a marvellously curious way. Not a soul but Agathe knew of[Pg 235] it, and I disliked to give up the secret, but I hurried the young people in, and arranged the place, and went back to the vines and cut away harder than ever. In two minutes, up rode three dragoons with drawn swords, as fine looking troopers as one would ask for. I saw them reconnoitre the cottage, then spying me, they came towards us at a gallop. "What have you done with the Comte and Comtesse de Choissy?" said the leading horseman. "You had better hold your tongue," I retorted, "than be clattering away at random. What the devil do I know of the Comte and Comtesse de Choissy, as you call them?" "Look, you," said the dragoon, laying his hand on my shoulder; "the persons for whom I seek, are escaped prisoners; they were seen to come in the direction of this cottage; our captain watched them with his glass, and he swears they are here." "And look you, Monsieur Cavalier, I am an old soldier, as you see, if scars and hard service can prove one, and it seems to me you should take an old soldier's word. I have said all I have to say; there is my house, the doors are open—look for yourself: come Agathe, we must finish our morning's work." So saying, I set at the vines harder than ever. I looked neither one way nor the other, but kept clipping, clipping, thus standing between the dragoons and poor Agathe, who was frightened terribly, although she tried to seem as busy as I. The rider who was spokesman, stared for a minute without saying a word, and then broke out into a loud laugh. "An old soldier indeed!—a regular piece of steel! one has but to point a flint at you, and the sparks fly." He turned to his men: "Our captain was mistaken, evidently; this is a bon camarade; we may trust to him. We will take a turn through the cottage and push forward." With that he bid me good morning, and after looking around the house the party made off.

"'"Well, Agathe, what's to be done now?" said I, when the dragoons were fairly out of sight. "We have made a fine business of it." "Ah, Louis," said she, "let us not think of the danger; we have saved two innocent lives, for innocent I know they are: what if we have perilled our own? Heaven will reward us." Nothing more was said, though we both thought a great deal, but we kept at our work as if nothing had happened. It was a long time before I dared let the fugitives come from their hiding-place; for I was afraid of that cursed glass of Monsieur le Capitaine. When I did open it I found my prisoners nearly dead with suspense. We held a council as to the best means for their concealment—for who would have had the heart to turn the young people adrift?—and it was finally settled that the comte and his wife should dress as peasants, and take what other means were necessary to alter their appearance, that they might pass as such without suspicion. This was no sooner resolved than carried out. Agathe was as busy as a bee, and in a few minutes had a dress ready for Victorine—we were to call her by her first name—who was now as lively as a creature could be, running about the room, looking into the glass, and making fun of her husband, who had in the mean time pulled on some of my clothes. After this, the young comte explained to me that his father had died a short time before, leaving him his title and immense estates, which, however, should he die childless, would pass to an uncle, a man unscrupulous and of bad reputation. This uncle was among the most conspicuous of the revolutionists. Through his agency the Comte de Choissy and his young wife, with whom he had been but a twelvemonth united, were arrested, and shortly after sentenced to death. They escaped from prison and the guillotine by the aid of a faithful domestic, and were almost at Calais when they discovered that they were pursued. By leaving the road and sending the carriage forward, they managed to gain the few moments which saved them. Their principal fear now was from the wicked designs of the uncle, for the Directory had too much on their hands to hunt out escaped prisoners who were not specially obnoxious. For some days the young people did not stir from the house, but were ever ready to resort to their hiding-place on the first alarm. There were, however, no signs of the gens-d'armes in the neighborhood. I went to Calais in a little while, and found, after much trouble, the old servant who was in the carriage when the comte and his wife deserted it. He had been permitted to pass on without being molested, so alert were the soldiers in pursuit of the fugitives; and he had brought the few effects which he could get together for his master on leaving Paris to a safe place; and to prevent suspicion, he himself had taken service with a respectable traiteur. By degrees, I managed to bring off every thing belonging to my guests, and we fitted up the little room in which you passed the night, as comfortably as possible, without having it excite remark from any one casually entering it. "Albert" was industrious, aiding me at my work, no matter what I was doing, and "Victorine," too, insisted upon helping my wife in whatever she did, here, there, and everywhere, the liveliest, the merriest, the most innocent creature I ever set eyes upon. But for all that, one could see that time hung heavy on the comte. He became thoughtful and triste, and like every man out of his proper place, he was restless and uneasy. Not so the dear wife: she declared she had never been so happy, that she had her Albert all to herself: wanted nothing more: if she but knew how to requite us, she would not wish the estates back again—she would live where she was, forever. Then her husband would throw his arms around her, and call her by endearing names, which would make the little thing look so serious, but at the same time so calm and satisfied and angel-like, that it seemed as if the divine soul of the Holy Virgin had taken possession of her, as[Pg 236] she turned her eyes up to her husband and met his, looking lovingly down....'

"Here Louis Herbois stopped, and felt for his handkerchief, and blew his nose until the walls resounded, and wiped his eyes as if trying to remove something that was in them, and proceeded—

"'Any one to have seen her at different times would have sworn I had two little women for guests instead of one: so full of fun and mischief and all sorts of pranks; so lively, running hither and yon, teasing me, amusing Agathe, rallying her husband; but on the occasions I mention, so subdued, so thoughtful so—different from her other self: Ciel! she had all our hearts.

"'Several months passed, much in the same manner. The comte by degrees gained courage, and often ventured away from the house. Twice he had been to the town, but his wife was in such terror during his absence, that he promised her he would not venture again. He continued meanwhile moody and ill at ease; it would be madness to leave his place of concealment; this he knew well enough; still he could not bring himself to be patient. Do not think, Monsieur, that the Comte de Choissy failed to love his wife just as ever: that was not it at all. A man is a man the world about; the comte felt as any body would feel who finds himself rusting away like an old musket, which has been tossed aside into some miserable cock-loft. I had seen the world and knew how it was with him. But what could be done? In Paris things were getting worse and worse. At first we had le Côté Gauche; les Montagnards; les Jacobines: then came les Patriotes de '93; and after that, les Patriotes par excellence, who were succeeded by les Patriotes plus patriotes que les patriotes: and then the devil was let loose in mad earnest; for what with les Bonnets-Rouges, les Enragés, les Terroristes, les Beveurs de Sang, and les Chevaliers du Poignard, Paris was converted into a more fitting abode for Satan than his old-fashioned country residence down below. Pardon Monsieur! I am getting warm; but it always stirs my blood when I recall those days. I see, too, I am getting from my story. Well: I tried to comfort the comte with such scraps of philosophy as I had picked up in my campaigns—for in the army, you must know, one learns many a good maxim—but I did little by that. The sweet young comtesse was the only one who could make him cheerful, and smile, and laugh, and seem happy in a natural way, for he loved her as tenderly as a man ever loved; besides, the comtesse had now a stronger claim than ever upon her husband. I fancy I can see her sitting there, her face bent over, employing her needle upon certain diminutive articles, whose use it is very easy to understand. Do you know, when she was at work on these, that she was serious—never playful—always serious; wearing the same expression as when she received from her husband a tender word? No: nothing could make her merry then. I used to sit and wonder how the self-same person could become so changed all in one minute. How the comte loved to look at her! his eyes were upon her wherever she was; not a word she spoke, not a step she took, not a motion of hers escaped him. Well, the time came at last, and by the blessing of God and the Holy Virgin, as beautiful a child as the world ever welcomed, was placed by my Agathe in the arms of the comtesse. Perhaps,' added Louis Herbois, in a lower voice, while speech seemed for the instant difficult, 'perhaps I have remembered this the better, because God willed it that we ourselves should be childless. When Agathe took the infant and laid it in the mother's bosom, the latter regarded it for a moment with an expression of intense fondness; then, raising her eyes to her husband, who stood over her, she laughed for joy.

"'Mother and daughter prospered apace. The little girl became the pet of the house; we all quarelled for her; but each had to submit in turn. How intelligent! what speaking eyes! what knowing looks! what innocently mischievous ways! mother and child! I wish you could have seen them. I soon marked a striking change: the young comtesse was now never herself a child. A gentle dignity distinguished her—new-born, it would seem—but natural. I am making my story a long one, but I could talk to you the whole day in this way. So, the months passed on—and the revolution did not abate; and the comte was sick at heart, and the comtesse was, as ever, cheerful, content, happy, and the little one could stand alone by a chair and call out to us all, wherever we were. The comte, notwithstanding his promise, could not resist his desire to learn more of what was going on than I could inform him of. I seldom went away, for when hawks are abroad, it is well to look after the brood: and as I had nothing to gain, and every thing to lose, by venturing out, I thought it best to stay at home. The comte, on the contrary, was anxious to know every thing. He had made several visits to Calais, first obtaining his wife's consent, although the agony she suffered seemed to fill his heart with remorse; this, however, was soon smothered by his renewed and unconquerable restlessness. One morning he was pleading with her for leave to go again, answering her expressions of fear with the fact that he had been often already without danger. "There is always a first time," said my Agathe, who was in the room. "And there is always a last time, too," said I, happening to enter at that moment. I did not know what they were talking about, and the words came out quite at random. The comtesse turned pale. "Albert," she said, "content yourself with your Victorine and our babe: go not away from us." The infant was standing by its mother's knee, and without understanding what was said, she repeated, "Papa—not go. The comte hesitated: "What a foreboding company—croakers[Pg 237] every one of you—away with such presentiments of evil. Go I will, to show you how foolish you have all been;" and with that he snatched a kiss from his wife and the little one, and started off. The former called to him twice, "Albert, Albert!" and the baby in imitation, with its little voice said, "Papa, papa!" but the comte did not hear those precious tones of wife or child, and in a few minutes he was out of sight. I cannot say what was the matter with me; my spirit was troubled; the comtesse looked so desponding, and Agathe so triste, that I knew not what to do with myself. I did nothing for an hour, then I spoke to Agathe: "Wife, I am going across to the town." She said, "Ah, Louis, I almost wish you would go. See how the comtesse suffers. I am sure I shall feel easier myself." Then I told her to say nothing of where I had gone, and away I went. It did not take me long, for it seemed as if I ought to hasten. I got into the town, and having walked along till I came to the Rue de Paris, I was about turning down it when I saw a small concourse of people on the opposite corner; I crossed over and beheld the Comte de Choissy in the custody of four gens-d'armes, and surrounded by a number of "citizens." My first impulse was to rush to his assistance, but I reflected in time, and contented myself with joining the crowd. One of the soldiers had gone for a carriage, and the remainder were questioning him; the comte, however, would make no reply, except, "You have me prisoner, I have nothing to say, do what you will." I waited quietly for an opportunity of showing myself to him, but he did not look toward me. Presently I said to the man next me, "Neighbor, you crowd something too hard for good fellowship." The comte started a very little at the sound of my voice, but he did not immediately look up. Shortly he raised his head and fixed his eyes on me for an instant only, and then turned them upon others of the company with a look as indifferent as if he were a mere spectator. What a courageous dog! by Heaven, he never changed an iota, nor showed the slightest possible mark of recognition; still, I knew well enough he did recognize me, but I got no sign of it, neither did he look towards me again. Soon the carriage came up and he was hurried in by the gens-d'armes, and off they drove! I made some inquiries, and found that the comte was known, and that they were taking him to Paris.

"'It seems that he had been observed by a spy of the uncle during one of his visits to the town, and although he was not tracked to his home—for he was always very cautious in his movements—yet a strict watch was kept for his next appearance. I went to see the old domestic, but he knew not so much as I. My steps were next turned homeward. What a walk that was for me? How could I enter my house the bearer of such tidings! "Bon Dieu! ah, bon Dieu," I exclaimed, "ayez pitie!" and I stopped under a hedge and got down on my knees and said a prayer, and then I began crying like a child. I said my prayer again, and walked slowly on; then I saw the house, and Agathe in the garden, and the comtesse with the little one standing in the door—looking—looking. I came up—"Albert—where is Albert? where is my husband?" I made no answer. "Tell me," she said, almost fiercely, taking hold of my arm. I opened my mouth and essayed to speak, but although my lips moved I did not get out a syllable. I thought I might whisper it, so I tried to do so, but I could not whisper! The comtesse shrieked, the child began to cry, and Agathe came running in. "Come with me," said I to my wife, and I went into our chamber and told her the whole, and bid her go to the comtesse and tell the truth, for I could not. My dear Agathe went out half dead. I sat still in my chamber; presently the door opened, and the comtesse stood on the threshold. Her eyes were lighted up with fire, her countenance was terribly agitated, her whole frame trembled: "And you are the wretch base enough to let him be carried off to be butchered before your eyes without lifting voice or hand against it, without interposing one word—one look, one thought! Cowardly recreant!" she screamed, and fell back in the arms of my wife in violent convulsions; the infant looked on with wondering eyes and followed us as we laid the comtesse on the bed, and then put her little hand on her mother's cheek, and said softly, "Mamma." In a few minutes the comtesse began to recover. She opened her eyes with an expression of intense pain, gave a glance at Agathe and me, and then observing her child, she took it, and pressed it to her breast and sobbed. Shortly she spoke to me, and oh, with what a mournful voice and look: "Louis, forgive me; I said I knew not what; I was beside myself. You have never merited aught from me but gratitude; will you forgive me?" I cried as if I were a baby. Agathe too went on so that I feared she could never be reconciled to the dreadful calamity—for myself, I was well nigh mad. I could but commend the comtesse to the Great God and hasten out of her sight. Five wretched and wearisome days were spent. The character of the comtesse meantime displayed itself. Instead of sinking under the weight of this sorrowful event, she summoned resolution to endure it. She was devoted to her child; she assumed a cheerful air when caressing it; she even tried to busy herself in her ordinary occupations; but I could not be deceived, I knew the iron had entered her soul. All these heroic signs were only evidences of what she really suffered. Did I not watch her closely? and when the comtesse, folding her infant to her breast, raised her eyes to heaven as if in gratitude that it was left to her, I fancied there was an expression which seemed to say, "Why were not all taken?" The little one, unconscious of its loss, would talk in intervals about "papa;"[Pg 238] and when the mother, pained by the innocent prattle, grew sad of countenance, the child would creep into her lap, and putting its slender fingers upon her eyes, her lips, and over her face, would say, "Am I not good, mamma? I am not naughty; I am good, mamma."

"'Five days were passed in this way; on the morning of the sixth, we were startled by the comtesse, who, in manifest terror came to us holding her child, which was screaming as if suffering acute pain: its eyes were bloodshot and gleamed with an unnatural brilliancy, its pulse rapid, and head so hot that it almost burned me to feel of it. Presently it became quiet for a few minutes, but soon the screams were renewed. Alas! what could we do? Agathe and I tried every thing that occurred to us, but to no purpose: the pains in the head became so intense that the poor thing would shriek as if some one was piercing her with a knife, then she would lay in a lethargy, and again start and scream until exhausted. Not for a moment did the comtesse allow her darling to be out of her arms. For two days and two nights she neither took rest nor food; absorbed wholly in her child's sufferings, she would not for a moment be diverted from them. Agathe too watched night and day. On the third night the child appeared much easier, and the comtesse bade Agathe go and get some rest. She came and laid down for a little time and at last fell asleep; when she awoke it was daylight; she knocked at the door of the comtesse—all was still;—she opened it and went in. The comtesse, exhausted by long watching, had fallen asleep in her chair, with her little girl in her arms. The child had sunk into a dull lethargic state never to be broken. Alas! Monsieur—alas! the little one was dead! Agathe ran and called me. I came in. What a spectacle!... Which of us should arouse the unhappy comtesse? or should we disturb her? Were it not better gently to withdraw the dead child and leave the mother to her repose? We thought so. I stepped forward, but courage failed me. I did not dare furtively to abstract the precious burden from the jealous arms which even in slumber were clasped tightly around it. Oh! my God!... While we were standing the comtesse opened her eyes: her first motion was to draw the child closer to her heart—then to look at us—then at the little one. She saw the whole. She had endured so much that this last stroke scarcely added to her wretchedness. She allowed me to take the child, and Agathe to conduct her to the couch and assist her upon it. She had held out to the point of absolute exhaustion, and when once she had yielded she was unable to recall her strength. She remained in her bed quite passive, while Agathe nursed her without intermission. I dug a little grave in the garden yonder, and Agathe and I laid the child in it. The mother shed no tears; when from her bed she saw us carry it away she looked mournfully on, and as we went out she whispered, "Mes beaux jours sont passés." Soon the grave was filled up and flowers scattered over it, and we came back to the cottage. As I drew near her room I beheld the comtesse at the window, supporting herself by a chair, regarding the grave with an earnest longing gaze which I cannot bear to recall. As I passed, her eye met mine,—such a look of quiet enduring anguish, which combined in one expression a world of untold agonies! Oh! I never could endure a second look like that. I rushed into the house: Agathe was already in. I called to her to come to me, for I could not enter that room again. "Wife," I said, "I am going to Paris. Do not say one word. God will protect us. Comfort the comtesse. Agathe, if I never return, remember—it is on a holy errand—adieu." I was off before Agathe could reply. I ran till I came to the main road, there I was forced to sit down and rest. At last I saw a wagoner going forward; part of the way I rode with him, and a part I found a faster conveyance. At night I walked by myself.

"'I had a cousin in Paris, Maurice Herbois, with whom in old times I had been on companionable terms. He was a smith, and had done well at the trade until the revolution broke out, since then I had heard nothing from him. He was a shrewd fellow, and I thought he would be likely to keep near the top of the wheel. But I had a perilous time after getting into Paris before I could find him. I learned as many of the canaille watchwords by heart as I could. I thought they would serve me if I was questioned; but my dangers thickened, until I was at last laid hold of, for not giving satisfactory answers, as un homme sans aveu, and was on the point of being conveyed to a maison d'arret, when I mentioned the name of Maurice Herbois as a person who could speak in my favor. "What," said one, "le Citoyen Herbois?" "The very same," said I, "and little thanks will you get from him for slandering his cousin with a charge of incivisme." There was a general shout at this, and off we hurried to find Maurice. I had answered nothing of whence I came or where I was going, which was the reason I had at length got into trouble. I knew Maurice to be a true fellow, revolution or no revolution, and so determined to hold my peace till I should meet him. I found that he had been rapidly advanced by the tide of affairs, which had set him forward whether he would or no. Indeed Maurice was no insignificant fellow at any rate. The noise of the men who carried me along, soon brought him out. I spoke first: "Maurice, my dear cousin, I am glad to find you; but before we can shake hands, you must first certify my—loyalty," I was about to say, but bit my tongue, and got out "civisme." "My friends," said Maurice, "this is my cousin Louis Herbois, once a valiant soldier, now a brave and incorruptible citoyen. He is trustworthy;[Pg 239] he comes to visit me; I vouch for him." This was so satisfactory, that we were greeted with huzzas, and then I went in with Maurice. I need not tell you how much passed between us. In short, we talked till our tongues were tired. I found my cousin as I expected, true as a piece of his own steel. He had been carried along, in spite of himself, in the course of revolution, and had become a great man as the best chance of saving his head. I told him my whole story, and the object of my visit. "A fruitless errand, Louis," said he; "I know the case; and where personal malice is added to the ordinary motive for prosecution, there is no escape. Poor fellow, I wish I could help him; but the uncle, he is in power: ah! there is no help for it." Suddenly a new thought struck him. "Louis, did you come by the Hotel de Ville?" "Yes." "What was going on?" "I looked neither right nor left; I don't know." "Well, what did you hear?" "I heard a cry of Vive Tallien! with strange noises, and shouts, and yells; and somebody said that the National Guards were disbanding, and had forsaken Robespierre; and the people were surrounding the Hotel de Ville." "Then, Dieu merci, there is hope. You are in the nick of time; let us out. If Robespierre falls, you may rescue the comte. He is in the Rue St. Martin; in the same prison is Madame de Fontenay, the friend of Tallien, whom Robespierre has incarcerated. The former will proceed thither as soon as Robespierre is disposed of, to free Madame; there will be confusion and much tumult. I know the keeper: I must be cautious; but I will discover where the comte and the lady are secured. Then I will leave you with the jailer; the crisis cannot be delayed another day. Wait till you hear them coming, then shout Vive Tallien! run about, dance around like a crazy man—hasten the jailer to release Madame, and do you manage to rescue the comte—then be off instantly; don't come here again; strike into the country while the confusion prevails. Come; let us go this minute." And I did go. I found Maurice's introduction potent with the keeper, and what was better, I found the keeper to be an old companion in arms, who had belonged to the same company with me. We embraced; we were like two brothers; nothing could have happened better. I learned from him all I cared to know. I staid hour after hour; just as I was in despair at the delay, I heard the expected advance. I found my fellow-soldier understood what it meant. I began to shout Vive Tallien! as loud as I could cry. In a fit of enthusiasm I snatched the keys from the hands of the keeper, as if to liberate the lady, while my comrade opened the doors to the company. I hied first to the comte's room. In one instant the door was unlocked. "Quick!" I whispered; "follow me—do as I do. Shout, huzza; jump this way and that—but stick close to me." In another minute I had unbolted the door of Madame de Fontenay, making as much noise as I could get from my lungs—the comte keeping very good time to my music. So, while we were shouting Vive Tallien! at the top of our voices, Tallien himself rushed in with a large party. I took the opportunity to gain the street, and without so much as thanking my comrade for his attentions, I glided into an unfrequented lane, the comte at my heels; and I did not stop, nor look around, nor speak, till I found myself under cover of an old windmill near St. Denis, where I used to play when I was a boy. There I came to a halt, and seizing the comte in my arms, I embraced him a thousand times. I look some provisions from my pouch, which my cousin had provided, and bade him eat, for we should stand in need of food. We then proceeded, avoiding the main road, and getting a ride whenever we could, but never wasting a moment—not a moment. I told the comte what had happened, and that he must hasten if he would see his wife alive. At last we came near our house. The comte could scarcely contain himself; he ran before me: I could not keep up with him. How my heart was filled with foreboding!—how I dreaded to come nearer!—but apprehension was soon at an end. There was my little cottage, and in the doorway, leaning for support against the side, stood the comtesse, gazing on vacancy—the picture of despair and desolation. At the sight of her husband, she threw out her hands and tried to advance: she was too feeble, and would have fallen had he not the same moment folded her in his arms.

"'Bien Monsieur!' continued Louis Herbois, after clearing his voice, 'the worst of the story is told. The comtesse was gradually restored to health, and the comte was content to remain quietly with us till the storm swept past; but the lady never recovered the bright spirits which she before displayed, and the comte himself could never speak of the little one whom he kissed for the last time on that fatal morning, without the deepest emotion. It seems to have been destined that this should be their only affliction. The uncle was beheaded in one of the sudden changes of parties the succeeding year, and in due time the comte regained his estates. Sons and daughters were born to them, and their family have grown up in unbroken numbers. The comte and comtesse can scarcely yet be called old, their health and vigor remain, and they enjoy still those blessings which a kind Providence is pleased to bestow on the most favored. But the Comtesse de Choissy will never forget the child which lies there. Twice a year, accompanied by the comte, she visits the cottage. She lays with her own hands fresh flowers over the little grave, and waters the moss which overspreads it; and the tears stand in her eyes when she looks upon the spot where we buried her first-born. We have engaged that every morning we will renew the flowers, and preserve the mosses always green. It is a[Pg 240] holy office, consecrated by holy feelings. Ah! life is a strange business: we may not be always serious, we cannot be always gay. God grant, Monsieur, that in heaven we may all be happy!'

"I have given you the whole story," said Mr. Belcher, after a short pause; "but look, the sun is out; let us go to the Courtgain."

[From Fraser's Magazine.]




"Hold on a minute," said Harry, as they were about to take the stage, after a very fair three-o'clock dinner at Constantinople (the Occidental, not the Oriental city of that name); "there goes an acquaintance of ours whom you must know. He has arrived by the Westfield train, doubtless."

Away sped Benson after the acquaintance, arm-in-arm with whom he shortly returned, and, with all the exultation of an American who has brought two lions into the same cage, introduced M. le Vicomte Vincent Le Roi to the honorable Edward Ashburner.

Ashburner was rather puzzled at Le Roi, whose personal appearance did not in any way answer, either to his originally conceived idea of a Frenchman, or to the live specimens he had thus far met with. The Vicomte looked more like an Englishman, or perhaps like the very best kind of Irishman. He was a middle-sized man, of thirty or thereabout, with brown hair and a florid complexion; and very quietly dressed, his clothes being neither obtrusively new nor cut with any ultra-artistic pretension. Except his wearing a moustache and (of course) not speaking English, there was nothing continental about his outward man, or the first impression he gave of himself. Fortunately, he was also bound for the Springs, so that Ashburner would have abundant opportunity to study his character, if so disposed.

The stage in which our tourists were to embark was not unlike a French diligence, except that it had but one compartment instead of three; in which compartment there were three seats, and on each seat more or less room for three persons, and two more could sit with the driver. All the baggage was carried on the top. The springs were made like coach-springs, or C-springs, as they are always called in America (just as in England a pilot-coat is called a P-jacket), only they were upright and perpendicular to the axletree instead of curving; and the leathern belts connected with them, on which the carriage swung, were of the thickest and toughest description. As the party, with the addition of Le Roi, amounted to eight, Benson managed, by a little extra expenditure of tin and trouble, to secure the whole of one vehicle, and for the still greater accommodation of the ladies and child, the gentlemen were to sit on the box two at a time by turns. Benson's first object was to get hold of the reins, for which end he began immediately to talk around the driver about things in general. From the price of horses they diverged to the prospects of various kinds of business, and thence slap into the politics of the country. The driver was a stubborn Locofoco, and Benson did not disdain to enter into an elaborate argument with him. Ashburner, who then occupied the other box-seat, was astonished at the man's statistical knowledge, the variety of information he possessed upon local topics, and his accurate acquaintance with the government and institutions of his country. It occurred to him to prompt Benson, through the convenient medium of French, to sound him about England and European politics. This Harry did, not immediately, lest he might suspect the purport of their conversational interlude, but by a dexterous approach to the point after sufficient preliminary; and it then appeared that he had lumped "the despotic powers of the old world" in a heap together, and supposed the Queen of England to be on a par with the Czar of Russia as regarded her personal authority and privileges. However, when Benson set him right as to the difference between a limited and an absolute monarchy, he took the information in very good part, listened to it attentively, and evidently made a mental note of it for future reference.

The four-horse team was a good strong one, but the stage with its load heavy enough, and the roads, after the recent storm, still heavier, besides being a succession of hills. The best they could do was to make six miles an hour, and they would not have made three but for a method of travelling down-hill, entirely foreign to European ideas on the subject. When they arrived at the summit there was no talk of putting on the drag, nor any drag to put on, but away the horses went, first at a rapid trot, and soon at full gallop; by which means the equipage acquired sufficient momentum to carry it part of the way up the next hill before the animals relapsed into the slow walk which the steepness of the ascent imposed upon them. Indeed this part of the route would have been a very tedious one (for the country about was almost entirely devoid of interest), had it not been for Le Roi, who came out in great force. He laughed at every thing and with every body; told stories, and good ones, continuously, and only ceased telling stories to break forth into song. In fine, he amused the ladies so much, that when he took his turn on the box they missed him immediately, and sent Benson outside again on the first opportunity; whereat the Vicomte, being very much flattered, waxed livelier and merrier than ever, and kept up a constant fire of jest and ditty. As to Ashburner, who had a great liking for fresh air, and an equal horror of a small child in a stage-coach, he remained outside the whole[Pg 241] time; for which the fair passengers set him down as an insensible youth, who did not know how to appreciate good company; until the evening becoming somewhat chilly by comparison with the very hot day they had undergone, both he and Harry took refuge in the interior, and a very jolly party they all made.

While they were outside together, Benson had been giving Ashburner some details about Le Roi—in fact, a succinct biography of him; for be it noted, that every New-Yorker is able to produce off-hand a minute history of every person, native or foreign, at all known in society: for which ability he is indebted partly to the inquisitive habits of the people, partly to their communicative disposition, partly to their remarkable memory of small particulars, and partly to a fine imagination and power of invention, which must be experienced to be fully appreciated. Benson, we say, had been, telling his friend the story of his other friend or acquaintance; how he was of good family and no fortune; how he had written three novels and three thousand or more feuilletons; how he had travelled into some out-of-the-way part of Poland, where no one had ever been before or since, and about which he was, therefore, at liberty to say what he pleased; how, besides his literary capabilities, such as they were, he played, and sang, and danced, and sketched—all very well for an amateur; how he was altogether a very agreeable and entertaining man, and, as such, was supposed to have been sent out by a sort of mutual-benefit subscription-club, which existed at Paris for the purpose of marrying its members to heiresses in different countries. Ashburner had once heard rumors of such a club in Germany, but was never able to obtain any authentic details concerning it, or to determine whether it was any thing more than a traveller's traditionary legend. Even Benson was at fault here, and, indeed, he seemed rather to tell the club part of the story as a good joke, than to believe it seriously himself.

As they approached the termination of their journey, their talk naturally turned more and more on the Springs. The Vicomte was in possession of the latest advices thence; the arrivals and expected arrivals, and the price-current of stock: that is, of marriageable young gentlemen, and all other matters of gossip; how the whole family of the Robinsons was there in full force, with an unlimited amount of Parisian millinery; how Gerard Ludlow was driving four-in-hand, and Lowenberg had given his wife no end of jewelry; how Mrs. Harrison, who ought not to have been (not being of our set), nevertheless was the great lioness of the season; how Miss Thompson, the belle expectant, had renounced the Springs altogether, and shut herself up at home somewhere among the mountains—all for unrequited love of Hamilton White, as was charitably reported; last, but not least, how Tom Edwards had invented six new figures for the German cotillon. Ashburner did not at first altogether understand the introduction of this personage into such good company, supposing from his familiar abbreviation and Terpsichorean attributes that he must be the fashionable dancing-master of Oldport, or perhaps of New-York; but he was speedily given to understand that, on the contrary, Mr. Edwards was a gay bachelor of good family and large fortune, who, in addition to gambling, intriguing, and other pleasant little propensities, had an insatiable passion for the dance, and was accustomed to rotate morning, noon, and night, whenever he was not gambling, &c. as aforesaid. "And," continued Benson, "I'll lay you any bet you please, that the first thing we see on arriving at our hotel, will be Tom Edwards dancing the polka; unless, indeed, he happen to be dancing the Redowa."

"Very likely," said Mrs. Benson, "seeing we shall arrive there at ten o'clock, and this is a ball-night."

Both Harry and his wife were right; they arrived at half-past ten, just as the ball was getting into full swing. On the large portico in front of the large hotel opened a large room, with large windows down to the floor,—the dining-room of the establishment, now cleared for dancing purposes. All the idlers of Oldport, male and female, black and white, congregated at these windows and thronged the portico; and almost into the very midst of this crowd our party was shot, baggage and all. While Ashburner was looking out of a confused heap of people and luggage, he heard one of the assistant loafers say to another, "Look at Mr. Edwards!" Profiting by the information not originally intended for him, he followed the direction of the speaker's nose, and beheld a little showily-dressed man flying down the room with a large showily-dressed woman, going the poursuite of the Redowa at a terrific rate. So that, literally, the first thing he saw in Oldport was Tom Edwards dancing. But there was no opportunity to make a further study of this, "one of the most remarkable men among us," for the party had to look up their night quarters. Benson had dispatched in advance to Mr. Grabster, proprietor of the Bath Hotel at Oldport Springs, a very particular letter, stating the number of his party, the time he meant to be there, and the number of rooms he wanted, and had also sent his horses on ahead; but though the animals had arrived safe and found stable-room, there was no preparation for their master. Ashburner, at the request of the ladies, followed Benson into the office (for the Bath Hotel being, nominally at least, the first house in the place, had its bar-room and office separate), and found Harry in earnest expostulation with a magnificently-dressed individual, whom he took for Mr. Grabster himself, but who turned out to be only that high and mighty gentleman's head book-keeper. The letter had been dispatched so long beforehand that, even at the rate of American country posts, it ought to have arrived,[Pg 242] but no one knew any thing about it. Both the young men suspected—uncharitably, perhaps, but not altogether unnaturally—that Mr. Grabster and his aids, finding a prospect of a full season, had not thought it worth their while to trouble themselves about the application, or to keep any rooms. Ashburner suggested trying another hotel, but the roads were muddy, and vehicles scarce at that time of night, so that altogether there seemed a strong probability of their being compelled to "camp out" on the portico. But it was not in Benson "to give it up so." He possessed, as we have already hinted, that faculty so alarmingly common in his country, which polite people call oratory, and vulgar ones the "gift of the gab;" and he was not the man to throw away the opportunity of turning any of his gifts to account. Warming with his subject, he poured out upon the gorgeously-attired Mr. Black such a flood of conciliatory and expostulatory eloquence, that that gentleman absolutely contrived to find some accommodation for them. The ladies, child, and servants were huddled together into one tolerably large room, in the third story. Benson had a sort of corner-cupboard in the fourth, that might, perhaps, have accommodated a mouse with a small family; and to Ashburner and Le Roi were assigned two small chambers in the fifth. As to the baggage, that was all piled up in the office, with the exception of a few indispensable articles. Supper was out of the question, there being no room to eat it in because of the dancers. The ladies did not want supper; they only regretted not being able to unpack their trunks, and dress for the ball then and there going on; their eyes lighted up at the sound of the music, and their little feet began to beat the floor incontinently. The gentlemen took a drink all round by way of substitute for something more solid. Ashburner had mounted to his dormitory—no small journey—and was sitting on his bed, wishing he had some contrivance for pulling off all his clothes at once without the trouble of removing them piece by piece, when he heard in the passage the voice of Le Roi, quantum mutatus ab illo! The Vicomte had sworn up all his own language, and was displaying a knowledge of English expletives that quite surprised his fellow-traveller. On investigation, the cause of his wrath proved to be this: a semi-civilized Irish waiter had shown him to No. 296, in accordance with Mr. Black's directions. But Mr. Black, in the multiplicity of his affairs, had forgotten that No. 296 was already tenanted, to wit, by a Western traveller, who did, indeed, intend to quit it by an early stage next morning, but had not the least idea of giving up his quarters before that time; and accordingly, as if from a presentiment that some attempt would be made to dislodge him, had, in addition to the ordinary not very strong fastenings of the door, so barricaded it with trunks and furniture, that it could have stood a considerable amount of siege. The waiter had gone off, leaving Le Roi to shift for himself. Bells were scarce in the upper stories of the Bath Hotel, nor was there any light throughout the long corridor, except the one tallow candle which his useless guide had deposited on the floor. Utterly upset at the idea of having to tramp down four pair of stairs and back again in search of accommodation, the unlucky Gaul was seeking a momentary relief in the manner above stated, when Ashburner came to the rescue. His bed happened to be rather a large one—so large, comparatively, that it was a mystery how it had ever found its way into the little room, the four walls of which seemed to have grown or been built up around it; and this bed he instantly proposed to share with Le Roi for the night. The Frenchman mercied, and couldn't think of such a thing for five minutes, edging into the room and pulling off his coat and boots all the time; then he gave a glorious exemplification of cessanta causa, for all his rage vanished in a moment, and he was the same exuberantly good-natured and profusely loquacious man that he had been all day. On he streamed in a perpetual flow of talk long after both were in bed, until Ashburner began to feel as a man might to whom some fairy had given a magical instrument, which discoursed sweet music at first, but could never be made to stop playing. And when at length the Vicomte, having lighted on the subject of women, poured out an infinity of adventures with ladies of all countries, of all which stories Vincent Le Roi was, of course, the hero, his fellow-traveller, unable to help being disgusted at his vanity and levity, turned round to the wall, and without considering whether he was acting in accordance with bienseance, fell fast asleep in the midst of one of the most thrilling narratives.

When Ashburner awoke next morning, the first thing he was conscious of was Le Roi talking. It required very little exercise of the imagination to suppose that he had been going on uninterruptedly all night. Afterwards he became aware of a considerable disturbance, evidently originating in the lower story of the house, but sufficiently audible all over it, which he put down to the account of numerous new arrivals. By the time they had completed their toilettes (which did not take very long, for the room being just under the roof, was of a heat that made it desirable for them to evacuate it as soon as possible), Benson made his appearance. He had obtained possession of his baggage, and arrayed himself in the extreme of summer costume:—a white grass-cloth coat, about the consistency of blotting-paper, so transparent that the lilac pattern of his check shirt was distinctly visible through the arms of it; white duck vest, white drilled trousers, long-napped white hat, a speckled cravat to match his shirt, and highly varnished shoes, with red and white striped silk stockings,—altogether very fresh and innocent-looking. He came to show them the principal spring, which was not far from the hotel—just a[Pg 243] pleasant walk before breakfast, though it was not likely they would meet many people so early, on account of last night's ball.

"I am afraid your quarters were not very comfortable," said Harry, as the three strolled arm-in-arm down a sufficiently sandy road; "but we shall have better rooms before dinner to-day."

"The house must be very full," Ashburner remarked; "and were there not a great many arrivals this morning? From the noise I heard, I thought at least fifty people had come."

"No; I glanced at the book, and there were not a dozen names on it. Hallo!" and Benson swore roundly in Spanish, apparently forgetting that his friend understood that language.

Ashburner looked up, and saw meeting them a large Frenchman and a small Irish boy. The Frenchman had an immense quantity of hair of all sorts on his face, nearly hiding his features, which, as what was visible of them had a particularly villainous air, was about the best thing he could have done to them; and on his head he carried a something of felt, which indisputably proved the proposition that matter may exist without form. The Irish youth sported a well-meant, but not very successful attempt at a moustache, and a black cloth cap pitched on one side of his head. In other respects, they were attired in the usual costume of an American snob; that is to say, a dress-coat and full suit of black at seven in the morning. Ashburner noticed that Benson spit ostentatiously while passing them; and after passing he swore again, this time in downright English.

Le Roi had seen in his acquaintance with European watering-places, a goodly amount of scamps and blacklegs, and Ashburner was not without some experience of the sort, so that they were not disposed to be curious about one blackguard more or less in a place of the kind; but these two fellows had such a look of unmitigated rascality, that both the foreigners glanced inquiringly at their friend, and were both on the point of asking him some questions, when he anticipated their desire.

"God forgive me for swearing, but it is too provoking to meet these loafers in respectable quarters. The ancients used to think their journey spoiled if they met an unclean animal on starting, and I feel as if my whole stay here would go wrong after meeting these animals the first thing in the first morning."

"Mais qu'est ce qu'ils sont donc, ces vaut-riens?" asked Le Roi.

"The Frenchman is a deported convict, who is doing us the honor to serve out his time here; the Irishman is a refugee, I believe. They have come here to report for The Sewer."

They cooled their virtuous indignation in the spring, and were returning.

"Hallo, Benson! Hallo! I thought that was you!" shouted somebody, a quarter of a mile off, from the hotel steps.

"Ah," said Harry, "I understand now why you heard so much noise this morning. Bird Simpson has arrived."

Mr. Simpson, popularly known as "the bird" (why no one could tell exactly, but people often get such names attached to them for some inexplicable reason), came on a half-run to meet them. He was a tall, showy, and rather handsome, though not particularly graceful man; very flashily got up in a blue cutaway with gilt buttons, wide blue stripes down the sides of his white trousers, a check shirt of enormous crimson pattern, and a red and white cravat; no waistcoat, and wide embroidered braces, the work of some lady friend. He seemed to have dressed himself on the principle of the tricolor, and to have carried it out in his face—his cheeks being very red, his eyes very blue, and his hair very white. After having pump-handled Benson's arm for some time, he made an attack on Le Roi, whom he just knew by name, and inquired if he had just come de l'autre côte, meaning the other side of the Atlantic, according to a common New-York idiom; but the Vicomte not unnaturally took it to mean from the other side of the road, and gave a corresponding answer in English as felicitous as Mr. Simpson's French. Then he digressed upon Ashburner, whom he saw to be an Englishman, in so pointed a manner, that Benson was obliged to introduce them; and the introduction was followed by an invitation on Simpson's part to the company to take a drink, which they did, somewhat to the consternation of the Frenchman, who knew not what to make of iced brandy and mint before breakfast. Then Simpson, having primed himself for the morning meal, set about procuring it, and his departure visibly relieved Benson, who was clearly not proud of his acquaintance. Le Roi also went after his breakfast, taking care to get as far as possible from the corner of the room where Simpson was.

"There," said Benson, "is a very fair specimen of 'second set.' He is B, No. 1, rather a great man in his own circle, and imports French goods. To hear him talk about French actresses and eating-houses, you would think him a ten-years' resident of that city, instead of having been there perhaps four times in his life, a week each time. But you know we Americans have a wonderful faculty of seeing a great deal in a little time. Just so with Italy; he was there two months, and professes to know all about the country and the people. But he doesn't know the set abroad or at home. Sometimes you meet him at a ball, where he does his duty about supper time; but you will never see him dancing with, or talking to, the ladies who are 'of us.' Nevertheless, they will avail themselves of his services sometimes, when they want to buy silks at wholesale prices, or to have something smuggled for them; for he is the best-natured man in the world. And, after all, he is not more given to scandal than the exquisites, and is a great deal honester and truer. Once I caught a fever[Pg 244] out on the north-eastern boundary, and had not a friend with me, or any means of getting help. This man nursed me like a brother, and put himself to no end of trouble for me until we could fetch Carl on. I would certainly rather have been under such an obligation to some other men I know than to Simpson; but having incurred it, I do not think it can be justly paid off with a 'glad-to-know-you-when-I'm-at-Bath-again' acquaintance; and I feel bound to be civil to him, though he does bother me immensely at times with his free-and-easy habits,—walking into my parlor with his hat on and cigar in his mouth; chaffing me or my wife in language about as elegant as an omnibus driver's; or pawing ladies about in a way that he takes for gallantry. Talking of ladies, I wish mine would show themselves for breakfast. Ah, here are two men you must know; they are good types of two classes of our beaux—the considerably French and the slightly English—the former class the more numerous, you are probably aware. Mr. White, Mr. Ashburner—Mr. Ashburner, Mr. Sumner."

Hamilton White was a tall, handsome man, some few years on the wrong side of thirty, broader-shouldered and deeper-chested than the ordinary American model, elaborately but very quietly dressed, without any jewelry or showy patterns. There was something very Parisian in his get-up and manner, yet you would never take him for a Frenchman, still less for a Frenchified-Englishman. But he had the look of a man who had lived in a gay capital, and quite fast enough for his years: his fine hair was beginning to go on the top of his head, and his face wanted freshness and color. His manner, slightly reserved at first, rapidly warmed into animation, and his large dark eyes gave double expression to whatever he said. His very smallest talk was immensely impressive. He would tell a stranger that he was happy to make his acquaintance with an air that implied all the Spaniard's mi casa a la disposicion de usted, and meant about as much; and when you saw him from the parquet of the Opera talking to some young lady in the boxes, you would have imagined that he was making a dead set at her, when in fact he was only uttering some ordinary meteorological observation. Apart from his knack of looking and talking sentiment, he had no strongly-marked taste or hobby: danced respectably, but not often; knew enough about horses to pick out a good one when he wanted a mount for a riding-party; drank good wine habitually, without being pedantic about the different brands of it; and read enough of the current literature of the day to be able to keep up a conversation if he fell among a literary circle. He was not a marrying man, partly because his income, sufficient to provide him with all bachelor luxuries, was not large enough to support a wife handsomely; partly because that a man should tie himself to one woman for life was a thing he could not conceive, much less practice: but he very much affected the society of the softer sex, and was continually amusing himself with some young girl or young wife. He rather preferred the latter—it was less compromising; still he had no objection to victimize an innocent débutante, and leave her more or less broken-hearted. (It must be observed, however, for the credit of American young ladies, that they are not addicted to dying of this complaint, so often fatal in novels; many of Hamilton's victims had recovered and grown absolutely fat upon it, and married very successfully.) Wherever there was a fiancée, or a probable fiancée, or a married belle with an uxorious husband,—in short, wherever he could make himself look dangerous and another man jealous or foolish, he came out particularly strong; at the same time, being adroit and not over belligerent, he always contrived to stop or get out of the way in time if the other party showed open signs of displeasure.

Frank Sumner was rather shorter than White, rather younger, and rather more dressed. He had the same broad shoulders, which in America, where most of the beaux are either tall and thin or short and thin, find favor with the ladies; just as blondes create a sensation in southern countries, because they are so seldom seen. In almost all other particulars, the two men were totally unlike, and Sumner might have passed for an English gentleman put into French clothes. He was reserved in his conversation, and marked in the expression of his likes and dislikes. With no more intention of marrying than White, he took care never to make love to any woman, and if any woman made love to him, he gave her no encouragement. He was not richer than White, not so good-looking, and certainly not so clever, but more respected and more influential; for the solid and trustworthy parts of his character, backed by a bull-dog courage and an utter imperturbability, got the better in the long run of the other's more brilliant qualities.

Some of these things Ashburner observed for himself, some of them Benson told him after White and Sumner, who did not ask the stranger to take a drink, had passed on. He had noticed that the latter's manner, though perfectly civil, was very cold compared with the empressement which the former had exhibited.

"He doesn't like your countrymen," said Harry, "and nothing can vex him more than to be told, what is literally the truth, that he resembles an Englishman in many respects. I believe it is about the only thing that can vex him. What an immovable man it is! I have seen a woman throw a lighted cigar into his face, and another cut off one end of his moustache (that was when we were both younger, and used to see some queer scenes abroad), and a servant drop half a tureen of soup over him, and none of these things stirred him. Once at Naples, I recollect, he set our chimney on fire. Such a time we had of it; every one[Pg 245] in the house tumbling into our room, from the piccolo, with no coat and half a pair of pants, to the proprietor in his dressing-gown and spectacles—women calling on the Virgin, men running after water—and there sat Frank, absolutely radiating off so much coolness, that he imparted a portion of it to me, and we sat through the scene as quietly as if they had only been laying the cloth for dinner. A rum pair they must have thought us! The day before we had astonished the waiter by lighting brandy over a pudding. I suppose we left them under the impression that the Anglo-Saxons had a propensity to set fire to every thing they came in contact with."

"It is very odd that so many of your people should be afraid of resembling us, and take the French type for imitation in preference to the English. The original feeling of gratitude to France for having assisted you in the war of independence, does not seem sufficient to account for it."

"Certainly not; for that feeling would naturally diminish in succeeding generations, whereas the Gallicism of our people is on the increase,—in fact its origin is of comparatively recent date. But we really are more like the French in some senses. Politically the American is very Anglo-Saxon. So he is morally; but socially, so far as you can separate society from morals, he is very French. The Englishman's first idea of his duty in society is non-interference; the Frenchman's and American's, amusement. An Englishman does not think it his business to endeavor to amuse the company in which he happens to be; an Englishwoman does not think it her duty to make any attempt to entertain a man who is introduced to her. A Frenchman will rather talk trash, knowing that he is talking trash, than remain silent and let others remain silent. So will an American. But an Englishman, unless he is sure of saying something to the point, will hold his tongue. The imperturbable self-possession of the English gentleman is generally understood by us, any more than it is by the French. His minding his own business is attributed to selfish indifference. The picture that half our people form of an Englishman is, a heavy, awkward man, very badly dressed, courageous, and full of learning; but devoid of all the arts and graces of life, and caring for nobody but himself. It is a great pity that there is not a better understanding; but, unfortunately, the best Englishmen who come here seldom stay long enough to be appreciated, and the best Americans who go to England seldom stay there long enough to appreciate the country. Whenever an American chances to stay some years among you, he ends by liking England very much; but it is very seldom that he has any provocation, unless compelled by business, to stay some years, for acquaintances are harder to make in London than in any other city, while it has less resources for a man without acquaintances than any other city—besides being so dear. But here come the ladies at last; now for breakfast."

Breakfast was the best managed meal at the Bath Hotel. The table d'hôte began at half past seven, but fresh relays of rolls and eggs, ham, chops, and steaks, were always to be obtained until half-past ten or eleven by those who had interest with the waiters. After breakfast the company went to work promenading. There was a very wide hall running through the hotel, and up and down this, and up and down the two broadest sides of the portico, all the world walked—"our set" being conspicuous from the elegance of their morning costume. One side of the portico was devoted to the gentlemen and their cigars, and there Ashburner and Benson took a turn, leaving with the ladies Le Roi and a small beau or two who had joined them. Suddenly Benson pressed his friend's arm.

"Here comes really 'one of the most remarkable men'—the very god of the dance; behold Tom Edwards!"

Ashburner beheld a little man, about five feet and a half high. If he could have stood on his bushy black beard it would have lifted him full three inches higher. Besides this beard he cherished a small moustache, very elaborately curling-tongsed at the ends into the shape of half a lyre. Otherwise he had not much hair on his head, but what he had was very carefully brushed. His features were delicate, and not without intelligence, but terribly worn by dissipation. To look at his figure, you would take him for a boy of nineteen; to look at his face, for a man of thirty: he was, probably, about half way between the two ages. Every thing about him was wonderfully neat: a white coat and hat like Benson's; cream-colored waistcoat and pearl-colored trousers; miraculously small feet in resplendent boots, looking more like a doll's extremities than a man's; a fresh kid glove on one of his little hands, and on the other a sapphire ring, so large that Ashburner wondered how the little man could carry it, and thought that he should, like Juvenal's dandies, have kept a lighter article for summer wear. Then he had a watch-chain of great balls of blue enamel, with about two pounds of chatelaine charms dependent therefrom; and delicate little enamelled studs, with sleeve-buttons to match. Altogether he was a wonderful lion, considering his size. Even Benson had not the courage to stop and introduce his friend until he passed the great dancer more than once, in silent admiration, and with a respectful bow.

And as they passed he detailed to Ashburner, with his usual biographical accuracy, the history of Tom Edwards, which he had begun in the stage-coach. Tom had been left in his infancy with a fortune and without a father, to be brought up by relatives who had an unlucky preference of Parisian to American life. Under their auspices and those of other Mentors, whom he found in that gay[Pg 246] capital, his progress was so rapid, that at a very early age he was known as the banker of two or three distinguished lorettes, and the pet pupil of the renowned Cellarius. Indeed, he had lived so much in the society of that gentleman and his dancing girls, that he took the latter for his standard of female society, and had a tendency to behave to all womankind as he behaved to them. To married ladies he talked slightly refined double-entendre: to young ladies he found it safest to say very little, his business and pleasure being to dance with them; if they did not dance, he gave them up for uncivilized beings, and troubled himself no further about them. Of old people of either sex he took no further notice than to order them out of the way when they impeded the polkers, or dance bodily over them when they disobeyed. Still it must be said, in justice to him, that dancing was not his sole and all-absorbing pursuit. Having an active turn of mind and body, he found leisure for many other profitable amusements. He was fond of that noble animal, the horse, gambled habitually, ate and drank luxuriously,—in short, burned his candle at a good many ends: but the dance was, though not his sole, certainly his favorite passion; and he was never supremely happy but when he had all the chairs in the house arranged in a circle, and all the boys and women of "our set" going around them in the German cotillon, from noon to midnight at a (so-called) matinée, or from midnight to daybreak at a ball.

"And now," said Benson, "I think my cousin Gerard must be up by this time; he and Edwards are generally the last to come down to breakfast. Perhaps we shall find him at the ten-pin alley; I see the ladies are moving that way."

To the ten-pin alley they went. Down stairs, men were playing, coat off and cigar in mouth; while others waited their turn, with feet distributed in various directions. Above, all was decorum; the second story being appropriated to the ladies and their cavaliers. And very fond of the game the ladies were, for it afforded them an opportunity of showing off a handsome arm, and sometimes a neat ankle. Gerard was not there; they had to wait some time for alleys: altogether Benson was a little bored, and whispered to his friend that he meant to console himself by making a little sensation.

"By your play?" asked Ashburner.

"No, but by taking off my coat."

"Why, really, considering the material of your coat, I think it might as well be on as off. Surely you can't find it an impediment?"

"No, but I mean to take it off for fun,—just to give the people here something to talk about; they talk so much about so little. They will be saying all over by to-morrow that Mr. Benson was in the ladies' room half undressed."

After an hour's rolling they turned hotelwards again, and as they did so a very spicy phaeton, with gray wheelers and black leaders, drove up to the door. A tall, handsome man, handed out a rather pretty and very showily-dressed little woman; and Ashburner recognized Gerard Ludlow.

It was not the first time he had seen Gerard. They had travelled half over Greece together, having accidentally fallen upon the same route. As the Honorable Edward had all the national fear of compromising himself, and Gerard was as proud and reserved as any Englishman, they went on together for days without speaking, although the only Anglo-Saxons of the party. At last, Ludlow having capsized, horse and all, on a particularly bad road, Ashburner took the liberty of helping to pick him up, and then they became very good friends. Gerard was at that time in the full flush of youth and beauty, and the lion of the Italian capital which he had made his headquarters, where it was currently reported that a certain very desirable countess had made desperate love to him, and that a rich nobleman (for there are some rich noblemen still left on the continent) had tried very hard to get the handsome foreigner for a son-in-law. Knowing this and some other similar stories about him, Ashburner was a little curious to see Mrs. Ludlow, and confessed himself somewhat disappointed in her; he found her rather pretty, and certainly not stupid; lively and agreeable in her manners, like most of her countrywomen; but by no means remarkably distinguished either for beauty or wit. Benson explained to him that his cousin "had married for tin."

"But Ludlow always talked of his father as a rich man, and his family as a small one. I should have supposed money about the last thing he would have married for."

"Yes, he had prospects of the best; but he wanted ready money and a settled income. He was on a small allowance; he knew the only way to get a handsome one was to marry, and that the more money his wife brought, the more his father would come down with. So as Miss Hammersley had eight thousand a year, old Ludlow trebled it; and Gerard may build as many phaetons as he likes. I don't mean to say that the match is an uncongenial one—they have many tastes alike; but I do mean to say that love had nothing to do with it."

"Well, I used to think that in your unsophisticated Republican country, people married out of pure love; but now it looks as if the fashionables, at least, marry for money about as often as we do."

"They don't marry for any thing else," replied Benson, using one of the slang phrases of the day.[26]

While the two friends were gossiping, Sumner and Le Roi had carried off the ladies;[Pg 247] and an assemblage of juvenile beaux and young girls, and some few of the younger married women, had extemporized a dance in the largest of the public parlors, which they kept up till two o'clock, and then vanished—to dress, as it appeared, for the three o'clock dinner. Benson's party had obtained their apartments at last,—a parlor and two bedrooms for the ladies on the first floor, and chambers for the three men in the second story, of a recently built wing, popularly known as "the Colony," where most of the gay bachelors, and not a few of the young married men, slept. At dinner the ladies presented themselves as much dressed as they could be without being décolletées; and the men had doffed their grass-cloth or linen garments, and put on dress-coats, or, at least, black coats. Ashburner was a good-looking young man enough, and had sufficient vanity to take notice, in the course of the morning, that he was an object of attention; at dinner many looks were directed towards him, but with an expression of disappointment which he did not exactly understand at the time, but afterwards learned the reason of from his friend. Though making no pretensions to the title of exquisite, he happened to have a very neat shooting-jacket, unexceptionable in material and fit; and "our set," having approved of this, were curious to see what sort of costume he would display at dinner. When, therefore, he came to table,

Avec les mêmes bas et la même cravate,

and the shooting-jacket unchanged, they were visibly disappointed. Benson, to keep him in countenance, had retained his white coat, on the plea of its being most wanted then, as they were in the hottest part of the day, which excuse did not enable him to escape some hints from his sister-in-law, and a direct scolding from his wife.

Our Englishman thought the dinner hardly worth so much dressing for. The dishes, so far as he had an opportunity of judging, were tolerably cooked; but their number was not at all proportionate to that of the guests; in short, it was a decided case of short commons, and the waiters were scarce to match. There were but two parties well attended to. One was the family of an old gentleman from the South, who was part owner of the building, and who, besides this advantage, enjoyed the privilege of letting his daughter monopolize the piano of the public parlor half the day, to sing Italian arias shockingly out of tune, much to the disgust of the boarders generally, and especially of the dancing set, who were continually wanting the instrument themselves for polking purposes. The other was——the reporters of The Sewer; who had a choice collection of dishes and waiters always at their command. To be sure they had their end of the table to themselves, too, for not a person sat within three chairs of them on either side; but this they, no doubt, accepted as a complimentary acknowledgment of their formidable reputation. Every one else was famished. The married women grumbled, and scolded their husbands—those convenient scapegoats of all responsibility; the young ladies tried to look very sentimental, and above all such vulgar anxiety as that of meat and drink, but only succeeded in looking very cross; the men swore in various dialects at the waiters whenever they could catch them flying, and the waiters being used to it didn't mind it; and Ashburner, as a recollection of a former conversation flitted across his mind, could not help letting off a tu quoque at his friend.

"I say, Benson," quoth he, "is this one of the hotels that are so much better than ours, and that our people ought to take a lesson from?"

Harry looked half-a-dozen bowie-knives at him. Besides the natural irritation produced by hunger, his wife and sister-in-law had been whipping him over each other's shoulders for the last half-hour, and now this last remark made him ready to boil over. For a few seconds his face wore an expression positively dangerous, but in another moment the ridiculous side of the case struck him. With a good-humored laugh he called for some wine—the only thing one was sure to get, as it was an extra, and a pretty expensive one, too, on the hills—and they drowned their hunger in a bumper of tolerable champagne.

The fact was, that the Bath Hotel had been a most excellent house three or four summers previous, and the "enterprising and gentlemanly" landlord (to borrow an American penny-a-liner's phrase) having made a fortune, as he deserved, had sold out his lease, with the good-will and fixtures of the establishment, to Mr. Grabster. The latter gentleman was originally a respectable farmer and market-gardener in the vicinity of Oldport; and having acquired by his business a fair sum of money, was looking about for some speculation in which to invest it. He commenced his new profession with tolerably good intentions, but having as much idea of keeping a hotel as he had of steering a frigate, and finding a balance against him at the end of the first season from sheer mismanagement, he had been endeavoring ever since to make up for it by screwing his guests in every way. People naturally began to complain. Two courses were open to him—to improve his living, or to tip an editor to puff him. He deemed the latter course the cheaper, and bought The Sewer, which, while uttering the most fulsome adulation of every thing connected with the Bath Hotel, frightened the discontented into silence through dread of its abuse. Ludlow, and some of the other exclusives, had, in the beginning of the present season, contrived a remedy, which, for the time, was perfectly successful. They held a private interview with the cook, and made up a weekly contribution for him, on condition of their having the best of every thing, and enough of it, for dinner; and the waiters were similarly[Pg 248] retained. For a time this worked to a marvel, and the subscribers were as well fed as they could desire. But the other guests began to make an outcry against the aristocracy and exclusiveness of private dishes on a public table, and the servants soon hit upon a compromise of their own, which was to take the money without rendering the quid pro quo. This, of course, soon put an end to the payments, and things were on the old starvation footing again.

After dinner, every body who had horses rode or drove. The roads about Oldport were heavy and sandy, and terrible work the dust made with the ladies' fine dresses and the gentlemen's fine coats.

"Rather different from the drives about Baden-Baden," said Benson.

"Yes; but I suppose we must console ourselves on moral grounds, and remember, that there we owe the beautiful promenades to the gambling-table, while here we are without the roads, and also without the play."

"Ah, but isn't there play here! only all sub rosâ. Wait a while, and you'll find out."

And Ashburner did find out before many nights, when the footsteps and oaths of the young gamblers returning at four in the morning to their rooms in the "Colony," woke him out of his first sleep. After the drive, tea—still at the table-d'hôte—and after tea, dressing for the ball, which this night was at the Bellevue House, appropriately so called from commanding a fine view of nothing. As the Bellevue was not a fashionable hotel (although the guests were sufficiently fed there), some of the exclusive ladies had hesitated about "assisting" on the occasion; but the temptation of a dance was too strong to be resisted, and they all ultimately went. Le Roi accompanied the Bensons in the all-accommodating Rockaway. The Bellevue had a "colony," too, in the second story of which was the ballroom. As they ascended the stairs, the lively notes of La Polka Sempiternelle, composée par Josef Bungel, et dédiée à M. T. Edwards, reached their ears; and hardly were they over the threshold when Edwards himself hopped up before them, and without other preface or salutation than a familiar nod, threw his arm round Mrs. Benson's waist, and swung her off in the dance; while Sumner, who had simultaneously presented himself to Miss Vanderlyn, took similar possession of her.

"Do you dance?"

"No, I thank you."

While Benson asked the question, Le Roi dived at a girl and whirled her away: almost before Ashburner had answered it, his friend shot away from him, making point at a young married lady in the distance; and his bow of recognition ended in the back-step of the polka, as the two went off together at a killing pace. In five seconds from the time of entrance, Ashburner was left standing alone at one end of the room, and his companions were twirling at the other. For so habituated were the dancers to their fascinating exercise, that they were always ready to go at the word, like trained horses. And certainly the dancing was beautiful. He had never seen gentlemen move so gracefully and dexterously in a crowded room as these young Americans did. Le Roi and Röwenberg, who, by virtue of their respective nationalities, were bound to be good dancers, looked positively awkward alongside of the natives. As to the ladies, they glided, and swam, and realized all the so-often-talked-of-and-seldom-seen "poetry of motion." Indeed Ashburner thought they did it too well. He thought of Catiline's friend, commemorated by Sallust, who "danced better than became a modest woman." He thought some of their displays were a little operatic, and that he had seen something like them at certain balls in Paris—not the balls of the Faubourg St. Germain. He thought that the historian's aphorism might be extended to the male part of the company,—and that they danced better than became intelligent men. He thought—but as he prudently kept thoughts to himself, and as some of his foreign prejudice may have been at the bottom of them, we will not stop to record them all. By and by there was a quadrille for the benefit of the million, during which the exclusives rested, and Ashburner had full opportunity of observing them. The first thing that struck him was the extreme youth of the whole set, and more especially of the masculine portion of it. Old men there were none. The old women, that is to say, the mammas and aunts, were stuck into corners out of the way, and no one took any notice of them. Hamilton White was quite an old beau by comparison—almost superannuated. Sumner would have been nearly off the books but for his very superior dancing. Even Benson seemed a middle-aged man compared with the majority of "our set," who averaged between boys of seventeen and young men of twenty-four. And the more juvenile the youth, the larger and stiffer was his white tie. Some of these neck-fastenings were terrific to behold, standing out a foot on each side of the wearer. All the Joinvilles that Ashburner had ever seen, on all the gents in London or elsewhere, faded into insignificance before these portentous cravats. He could not help making some observations on this fashion to Benson, as he encountered him promenading with a fair polkiste.

"Did you ever notice the whiffletrees of my team-trotting wagon, how they extend on each side beyond the hubs of the wheels? They serve for feelers in a tight place: wherever you clear your whiffletrees, you can clear your wheels; and these cravats are built on the same principle—wherever you clear your tie, you can clear your partner."

By one in the morning the democracy of the ballroom had had enough of four hours'[Pg 249] dancing and looking on. "Our set" was left in full possession of the floor. Forthwith they seized upon all the chairs, and the interminable German cotillon commenced. It lasted two hours—and how much longer Ashburner could not tell. When he went away at three, the dancers looked very deliquescent, but gave no symptoms of flagging. And so ended his first day's experience of an American watering-place.


[26] This is the strongest American (slang) way of putting an affirmation; and, probably, the strongest instance of it on record is that of a Bowery boy, who, when asked by a clergyman, "Wilt thou have this woman?" replied, "I won't have any one else."

[From the Dublin University Magazine.]




Continued from page 75.



Lucille had not, therefore, gained by her marriage the position to which her ambition aspired. She had made several ineffectual efforts to dissolve the spell of isolation which seemed to seclude the intercourse of the Chateau des Anges from all human ken and visitation as absolutely as the palace of a merman. With the exception, however, of a few visits from the great ladies who resided in the neighborhood, no casual beams from the brilliant world of rank and fashion without penetrated the dismal shadows of her gorgeous abode.

She was dissatisfied, angry, and resolved upon the earliest fitting occasion to rebel against the selfish tyranny which consigned her to solitude and monotony.

She had hitherto gained nothing by those little expedients, hints, and even entreaties, which are sometimes found so effectual in like cases. The old fermier-general was just as smiling and as promising as the Chateau des Anges itself, but, alas! as absolutely impenetrable. An iron will encountered and repressed all her shifts and struggles. She chafed and coaxed alike in vain. Whether the bird sang or fluttered, the bars of her cage were immovable.

Under these circumstances, no very cordial feelings began to animate the fiery girl respecting her resolute and reserved old helpmate.

Meanwhile the humble cottage in the park of Charrebourg was deserted, and permitted to fall to decay, for the old visconte, and even Marguerite, had been removed to the establishment at Des Anges, and so, in process of time, the little walks were overgrown with grass, the fences spread and straggled, dark green plants clambered to the roof, and weeds showed themselves over the tiled vestibule and even ventured into the inner chambers. Thus time and nature, in mournful alliance, began their obliterating work. But there were some plants and flowers which grew outside what had been for so long Mademoiselle Lucille de Charrebourg's window. They had been the objects of her care, and Gabriel!—sweet but sorrowful remembrance!—had been, in those happy times, privileged to tend them for her. Poor Gabriel was now desolate indeed, but he pleased himself with dressing those flowers, and watering, and weeding them day by day, just as if she were there; and he would then sit on the bank that bounded the bowling-green, and watch the desolate casement where he used so often to see that face that too probably was never more to beam on him. And thus hours would glide away, and, young as he was, he came to live chiefly in the past.

And generally when he rose, and with an effort, and many a backward look, lingeringly departed, he would strengthen his sinking heart with some such reflection as this:—

"She did not love the fermier-general—it was the visconte who made her marry him. This Monsieur Le Prun—what was he at first but a roturier—no better than myself—and made his own money—fortune may yet befriend me also. I have energies, and resolution, and courage, for her sake, to dare ten thousand deaths. I'll not despair. And then the old fellow can't live very long—a few years—and so who knows yet what may befall?"

There was one beautiful rose which grew close to the window, and which Lucille herself had planted, and this tree Gabriel came gradually to regard as connected by some sweet and silent sympathy with the features and feelings of its mistress. When it drooped, she, he thought, was sick or in sorrow; when, on the contrary, it was covered with blossoms and fresh leaves, she was full of smiles and health; when a rough gust tore its slender sprays, some vexation and disappointment had fretted her; and when again it put forth new buds and sprouts, these were forgotten, and time had gathered round her new hopes and delights. Thus this tree became to him an object of strangely tender interest, and he cherished the fancy that, in tending and guarding it, he was protecting the fortunes and the happiness of poor Lucille.

Meanwhile, as a sort of beginning of that great fortune that awaited him, he obtained employment as an under-gardener at the Chateau de Charrebourg, which had just been let to a wealthy noble, whose millions had elevated him (like Monsieur le Prun) from the bourgeoisie to his present rank.

But we must return to the Chateau des Anges. Lucille's apartments were situated at a side of the chateau overlooking a small court communicating with the greater one at the front of the building; and this narrow area was bounded by a lofty wall, which separated the other pleasure-grounds from the park.

It was night; Lucille and her gentle companion, Julie, had been chatting together, as young-lady friends will do, most confidentially. The little maiden had detailed all her sadness and alarms. Her married companion had been fluent and indignant upon her wrongs and disappointments. Each felt a sort of[Pg 250] relief, and drawn as it were into a securer intimacy, by the absence of Monsieur le Prun, who was that night necessarily absent upon business.

The conversation had now shifted to Julie's engagement.

"And so, I suppose, I must marry him. Is it not a cruel tyranny to compel one who desires nothing but to live and die among good Christians, in the quiet of a convent, to marry a person whom she does not or cannot love?"

"Yes, Julie, so it seems; but you may yet be happier so married, than leading the life you long for. Remember, Julie, he is not a man who has outlived the warmth, and tenderness, and trust of youth. He is still capable of a generous passion, and capable of inspiring one. There is no grief like the tyranny of one whom law and not love has made your master."

As they conversed, some cases of Lucille's lay open on the table before her companion, who had been amusing herself in girlish fashion by the varied splendor and exquisite taste of the jewelry they contained.

"This brooch," she said, taking up a miniature in enamel, representing some youthful tradition of Monsieur le Prun's person, set round with diamonds, "is set very like mine, but I hate to look at it."

"It represents, then——"

"The Marquis. Yes."

"The world calls him handsome, I am told."

"Yes, but somehow, if he be so, I can't perceive it; he does not please me."

"Well, then, bring me the miniature, and I will pronounce between you and the world."

With a melancholy smile Julie ran to her own apartment, hard by, and in a few minutes returned. With curiosity all alive, Lucille took the brooch and looked at it.

"Well, what say you?" asked Julie, who stood behind her chair, gazing at the trinket over her shoulder. Lucille was silent, although nearly a minute had elapsed.

"He certainly has the noble air," she continued; but still Lucille offered no criticism.

On a sudden she put down the miniature sharply on the table, and said, abruptly, "It is time to go to rest; let us go to bed."

She rose and turned full round on Julie as she spoke. Her face was pale as death, and her eyes looked large and gleaming. Her gaze was almost wild.

"Are you ill?" said Julie, frightened, and taking her hand, which was quite cold.

"O, no, no," said Lucille quickly, with a smile that made her pallor and her dilated stare more shocking. "No, no, no—tired, vexed, heart-sick of the world and of my fate."

Julie, though shocked and horrified, thought she had never seen Lucille look so handsome before. She was an apparition terrible, yet beautiful as a lost angel.

"You are, after all, right," she said suddenly. "I—I believe I am ill."

The windows of the apartment descended to the floor, and opened upon a balcony. She pushed the casement apart, and stood in the open air. Julie had hurried to her assistance, fearing she knew not what, and stood close by her. Never was scene so fitted to soothe the sick brain, and charm the senses with its sad and sweet repose. The pure moon, high in the deep blue of the heavens, shed over long rows of shimmering steps, and urns, and marble images—over undulating woodlands, and sheets of embowered and sleeping water, and distant hills, a mournful and airy splendor.

It seemed as though nature were doing homage to so much beauty. The old forest wafted from his broad bosom a long hushed sigh as she came forth; the moon looked down on her with a serene, sad smile; and the spirits of the night-breeze sported with her tresses, and kissed her pale lips and forehead.

At least five minutes passed in silence. Lucille, on a sudden, said—

"So, at the end of a year you will be married?"

It seemed to Julie that the countenance that was turned upon her gleamed with an expression of hatred which froze her. But the moonlight is uncertain, and may play wild freaks with the character of an excited face.

"Yes, dear Lucille; alas! yes," she answered, in a tone that was almost deprecatory.

"Well, well, I am better now," she said, after a second interval. "My head, Julie—my poor head!"

"Have you a pain there, dear Lucille?"

"Yes, yes, it's all there," she said, abstractedly; and, returning, she kissed her gentle companion, bade her good night, and was alone.

Julie was strangely perplexed by the scene which had just occurred. She could account for it upon no theory but the supposition that some flickering vein of insanity was shooting athwart her reason, and as suddenly disappeared. As soon as she was partially composed, she kneeled down at the bedside, and prayed long and fervently; and for far the greater part of the time poor Lucille was the sole theme of her supplications. At last she lay down, and composed herself to sleep. Spite of the unpleasant images with which her mind was filled, slumber ere long overpowered her. But these painful impressions made teasing and fantastic shapes to themselves. Her pillow was haunted, and strange dreams troubled her slumbering senses. From one of these visions she awoke with a start, and found herself sitting upright in her bed, with her heart beating fast with terror. A burst of passionate wailing from Lucille's apartments thrilled her with a sort of terror at the same moment. In hushed uncertainty she listened for a repetition of the sound; but in vain. She was prompted to go and try whether she needed any help or comfort; but something again withheld her; and, after another interval of somewhat excited reflection, she once more gradually fell asleep. Again, however, hateful visions tormented her. She dreamed that a[Pg 251] phantom, said to have haunted the chateau for ages, and known by the familiar title of "La Belle Colombe," was pursuing her from chamber to chamber, dressed in her accustomed shroud of white; and had at last succeeded in chasing her into a chamber from which there was no second door of escape—when she awoke with a start; and, behold! there was a light in the room, and a female form, dressed in white, standing between the bedside and the door. For some moments she fancied that she saw but the continuation of her dream, and awaited the further movements of the figure with the fascination of terror. But gradually her senses reported more truly, and she perceived that the figure in white was indeed Lucille—pale, haggard; while with one she held the candlestick, with the other she motioned slowly towards the bed, which she was approaching with breathless caution, upon tiptoe. With an effort Julie succeeded in calling her by name, almost expecting as she did so to see the whole apparition vanish into air.

"Awake, awake; how softly you breathe, Julie!" said Lucille, drawing close to the bedside, and drawing the curtains.

"Yes, dear Lucille; can I do any thing for you?"

"No, no—nothing but——"

"How do you feel now?—are you better?"

"Yes, better than I desire to be."

"But why are you here, dear Lucille? Has any thing—frightened you?"

"Ha! then you heard it, did you?"

"Heard it? What?"

"Why, how long have you been awake—did you—did you hear music—singing?"

"No, no; but in truth, dear Lucille, I thought I heard you weeping."

"O, nonsense; who minds a girl's weeping. But you heard nothing else?"

"No, indeed."

Lucille appeared greatly relieved by this assurance. She stooped over her and kissed her; and it was not until her face was thus brought near that Julie could perceive how worn and wan with weeping it was.

"I have been dreaming, then; yes, yes, I suspected as much—dreaming," she said; and, as she reached her own room, she muttered—

"Well, God be thanked, she did not hear it. But what can it mean? What madness and crime can have conjured up these sounds? What can it mean but guilt, danger, and despair?"


It seemed to Julie that Lucille was moody and abstracted next morning. Sometimes for a few moments she talked and smiled as before, but this was fitfully, and with an effort. She appeared like one brooding over some wrong that had taken possession of her thoughts, or some dark and angry scheme which engrossed her imagination. She soon left Julie and retired to her own apartments.

When Monsieur Le Prun returned, some time after noon, not finding his young wife in her usual chamber, he went up stairs to wish her good day in her own suite of rooms.

He was surprised at the sullen and stormy countenance with which she greeted him. She had not yet ventured to rebel against his authority, although she had frequently hinted her remonstrances and wrongs. But there was now a darkness charged with thunder on her brow, and the fermier-general began seriously (in nautical phrase) to look out for squalls.

"Good-day, my pretty wife."

"Good-day, sir."

"Are you well to-day?"


"Hey? that's a pity; what ails you, my charming little wife?"


"Solitude! pooh, pooh! why, there is Julie."

"Julie has her young lover to think of."

"And when you weary of her," he continued, resolved not to perceive the slight but malicious emphasis, "you have got your own sweet thoughts to retire upon."

"My thoughts are ill company, sir."

"Well, as it seems to me, the pretty child is out of temper to-day," he said, with evident chagrin.

"Perhaps I am—it is natural—I should be a fool were I otherwise."

"Par bleu! what new calamity is this?" he asked, with a smile and a shrug.

"Nothing new, sir."

"Well, what old calamity?"

The past night had wrought a change in Lucille; and, little as she had ever liked M. Le Prun, she now felt a positive hatred of him, and she answered with a gloomy sort of recklessness—

"Sir, I am a prisoner."

"Tut, tut! pretty rogue."

"Yes, a prisoner; your prisoner."

"A prisoner on parole, perhaps; but provided, pretty captive, you don't desert me, you may wander where you will."

"Pshaw! that is nonsense," she said sharply.

"Nonsense!" he repeated, testily; "it is no such thing, madame; you have the handsomest equipages in France. Pray, when did I refuse you carriages, or horses, or free egress from this place? par bleu! or lock the gates, madame? Treated as you are, how can you call yourself a prisoner?"

"What advantage in carriages, and horses, and open gates, when we are surrounded by a desert?"

"A desert? what do you mean?"

"There is not a soul to speak to."

"Not a soul—why, you are jesting; pray, is the Marquise de Pompignaud nobody? is the Conte de la Perriere nobody?"

"Worse than nobody, monsieur: I should prefer a desert to a wilderness haunted by such creatures."

"Sacre! what does the child want?"

"What every wife in France commands—society, sir."[Pg 252]

"Well, I say you have got it: independently of your immediate domestic circle, you have a neighborhood such as ought to satisfy any reasonable person. There are persons fully as well descended as yourself, and others nearly as rich as I am, all within easy visiting distance."

"The rich are all plebeians, and the nobles are all poor; there is and can be in a group so incongruous no cordiality, no gayety, no splendor; in a word, no such society as the last descendant of the Charrebourgs may reasonably aspire to."

"It is fully as numerous and respectable, notwithstanding, as the society which the last descendant of the Charrebourgs enjoyed in the ancestral park where first I had the honor of making her acquaintance."

"Yes; but not such as with my birth and beauty I might and must have commanded, sir."

"Well, what do you expect? These people won't give fêtes."

"Bring me to Paris, sir; I wish to take my place among the noble society, where I may meet my equals; and at court, where I may, like all my ancestry, see my sovereign. Here, sir, my days fly by in melancholy isolation; I am kept but to amuse your leisure; this, sir, is not indulgence—it is selfish and tyrannical."

Monsieur Le Prun looked angrier and uglier than ever she had seen him before. His eyes looked more black and prominent, and his face a great deal paler. But he did not trust himself with an immediate answer; and his features, as if in the effort to restrain the retort his anger prompted, underwent several grotesque and somewhat ghastly contortions.

His handsome wife, meanwhile, sat sullen and defiant, daring, rather than deprecating, the menaced explosion of his wrath.

Their matrimonial bickerings, however, were not so soon to reach their climax. Monsieur Le Prun contrived to maintain a silent self-command—thrust his hands into his pockets, walked to the window humming an air, and after a few moments' pause, turned abruptly and left the room.

Near the stair-head he met old Marguerite on her way to Lucille's apartments. He signed to her to follow him, and entered a chamber there. She perceived the unmistakable traces of angry excitement in his face—always sinister in an old man, but in one so powerful, and about whom she had heard so many dark rumors, full of vague terrors. As soon as he had closed the door, he said to her—

"I hope they make you comfortable here, Marguerite?"

"Yes, sir, very comfortable," she replied, with a low courtesy, and trembling a good deal.

"Well, Marguerite, I suppose you would wish to make a suitable return. Now, some vile miscreant meddler, who has got the ear of your young mistress, has been endeavoring to make her unhappy in her present secluded situation—I think I could place my hand upon the culprit; but at all events, do you lose no opportunity henceforward of cheering her, and reconciling your young mistress, to this most suitable residence."

It was perfectly plain from his looks, that Monsieur Le Prun suspected her of being the "meddler" in question; but before she could muster presence of mind to attempt her exculpation, he was gone. The interview was like an ugly, flitting dream. His angry face and menacing croak had scared her senses but for a moment; the apparition had vanished, and, with a heart still beating fast, she went stealthily on her way.

Now Julie perceived that a change had taken place in Lucille—she was anxious and excited, and appeared morbidly and passionately eager to share in those amusements which before she had desired with comparative moderation.

"Julie, I will mix in the world; I will meet people and associate with my equals—I am resolved upon it. If Monsieur Le Prun persists in refusing my reasonable wishes, it will perchance be the worse for himself."

Such sentences she used to utter amidst blushes and pallor, and with a fire and agitation that painfully perplexed her gentle, but now somewhat estranged, little companion.

Her conduct, too, became eccentric and capricious; sometimes she appeared sullen and reserved—sometimes, at moments, as if animated with a positive hatred of her unoffending companion. Then, again, she would relent, and, in an agony of compunction, entreat her to be reconciled.

It happened, not unfrequently, that business compelled Monsieur Le Prun to pass the night from home. Upon one of these occasions Lucille had gone early to her bed, and old Marguerite, at her special desire, sat beside her.

"Well, Marguerite," said her young mistress, "I am going to exact the fulfilment of a promise you made me long ago, when first you came home, and before you became afraid of Monsieur Le Prun. You told me, then, that you knew some stories of him—come, what are they?"

"Hey dear, bless the pretty child!—did I though?"

"Yes, yes, Marguerite; and you must tell them now—I say you must—I will have them. Nay, don't be afraid; I'll not tell them again, and nobody can overhear us here."

"But, my pretty pet, these stories——"

"Then there are stories—see, you can't deny it any longer; tell them, tell them to me all."

"Why, they are nothing but a pack of nonsense. You would laugh at me. It is only about monsieur's father, and the wonderful coach they say he left to his son."

"Well, be it what it may, let me have it."

"Well, then, my pretty bird, you shall have it as they told it to myself."

She looked into the next apartment, and[Pg 253] having satisfied herself that it was vacant, and shut the door of communication, she prepared for her narrative.

We have clipped the redundancies and mended the inaccuracies of honest Marguerite's phraseology; but the substance and arrangement of the story is recorded precisely as she gave it herself.

"Monsieur's father, they say, began with a very little money, madame, and he made it more by—by—in short, by usury; I beg pardon, but they say so, madame; and so finding as he grew old that he had a great deal of gold, and wishing to have some one of his own flesh and blood to leave it to, when he should be dead and buried, he bethought him of getting a wife. He must have been a shrewd man, I need not tell you, to have made so much money, so he was determined not to make his choice without due consideration. Now there was a farmer near them, who had a pretty and innocent daughter, and after much cautious inquiry and patient study of her character, old money-bags resolved that she was excellently suited for his purpose."

"She was young and pretty, and he old and ugly, but rich; well, what followed?"

"Why, she, poor thing, did not want to marry him at all; for though he was rich, he had a very ill name in the country, and she was afraid of him; but her father urged her, and the old man himself spoke her fair, and between them they overpowered her fears and scruples, and so she was married."

"Poor thing!" said Lucille, unconsciously.

"Well, madame, he married, and brought her home to his desolate old house, and there, they say, he treated her harshly; and, indeed he might there safely use her as he pleased, for there was not another house for a great way round to be seen: and nobody but his own creatures and dependents, who, they said, were just as bad as himself, could hear her cries, or witness his barbarities."

Lucille sat up in the bed, and listened with increased interest.

"Poor thing! it was there, in the midst of sufferings and cruelties, that she gave birth to a child, who is now Monsieur Le Prun, the great fermier-general; but her health, and indeed her heart, was broken; and, some rumor having reached her relations, that she was sick and unhappy, a cousin of hers, who, they said, was in love with her in their early days, brought the village physician with him to see her, though it was full three leagues and a half away."

"The cousin loved her; poor fellow, he was true," said Lucille, with a blush of interest.

"Ay, so they say; but Monsieur Le Prun, who was a jealous curmudgeon, would not admit him; but he did allow the physician to see her (himself standing by), because he was always glad to have the use of any body's skill for nothing—which, more than any love he bore his poor wife, was the reason of his letting him prescribe for her. Well, of course, she could not send any message to her friends, nor tell how she was treated, for old Le Prun was at her bedside; but the physician saw that she was ill, and he said to the old miser—'Your wife can't walk, and she must have air; let her drive every day in your coach.' 'I have no such thing,' said old Le Prun. 'But you are rich,' said the physician, 'you can afford to buy one; and it is your duty to do so for your wife, who will die else.' 'Let her die, then, for me—the devil may send her a coach to ride in, as they say he sent me my money; but I'll not waste my gold on any such follies.' So the physician went away, disappointed and disgusted, and her poor cousin was not able to effect any good on her behalf; but it seems the words of Monsieur Le Prun did not fall quite to the ground—they were heard in the quarter to where they were directed. That evening closed in clouds, and before twelve o'clock at night, they say, there came on such another thunder-storm as never was heard in the neighborhood, before or since. Nothing but thunder, roaring and crashing, peal upon peal, till the old house shook and trembled to its very base; and the blue lightning glared at every window, and split along the pavement in streams of livid fire; and all this time the rain was beating straight down in an incessant and furious deluge."

"And so, I suppose, the devil came in the midst of the tempest, and took him away bodily in a flash of lightning?"

"No, no, my pretty bird, not so fast. There was an old negro servant of his, a fellow just as wicked as himself, who was sitting in the kitchen, cursing the rain that was battering in huge drops down the chimney, and putting out the wood at which he was warming his shins, when, in the midst of the dreadful hubbub of the tempest, what should he hear but the rush of a great equipage, and wheels and horses clattering over the pavement, amidst the shouts of men and the sound of horns. Up jumped the black, and, listening, he heard a loud voice shouting through the storm, as if to summon some one to the door. Though they say he was a courageous old sinner, his heart failed him, for such sounds had not visited the old house within the memory of man in the day time, much less in the dead of night; and, instead of going to the door, he hurried away to the chamber where old Le Prun was cowering, screwed up in the middle of a great old fauteuil, and more frightened at the tempest than he would have cared to confess. So he told him of the sounds he had just heard, and he and his master mounted together to a small room in a gable over the hall-door, and from the casement of this they commanded a view of the paved court in front. It was so dark, however, that they could see nothing; and the thunder still echoing in loud explosions, and the rain battering at the windows, prevented[Pg 254] their distinctly hearing the words which the voice was shouting outside. 'Shall we open the casement and ask him what they want?' said the old negro. 'Let it alone,' said his old master, shoving his arm back again, with a curse. At the same moment a vivid flash of lightning, or rather several in almost continuous succession, shed for some seconds a blue, pulsating illumination over the scene, and then they saw before their eyes a coach, with a team of horses and outriders, in the style of a royal equipage, drawn up before the hall door; and all the postillions and outriders were sitting motionless, with their whips pointing to the house, as if they were signing to the inhabitants to come out: and some one was looking from the window, and cried, in a tone like the shriek of the wind—'The coach that Monsieur Le Prun ordered this morning.' In the quivering blue light the whole thing looked like a smoky shadow, and was swallowed in darkness in a moment. Then came the bellowing thunder-burst, and a wild scream of winds rushed whooping, and sighing, and hissing through the tree-tops, and died away in the unknown distance. The two old sinners, master and man, crept away from the window, and stumbled their way back again to the chamber which Monsieur Le Prun had occupied before, and which, being in the rear of the house, and most remote from the sight that had scared them, was preferred by them to any other. In the morning a coach, of first-rate workmanship in all respects, was standing in front of the hall door, just where they had seen it on the night before, but no sign of horse, rider, or owner. For several days it remained in the same position, no one caring to touch it; but at the end of that time, having grown accustomed to its presence, and gradually less and less in awe of it, they lodged it in the coach-house; and so, after a considerable time, the old usurer's instincts prevailed, and he resolved to make trial of the vehicle, with a view to sell it in Paris. At first the horses snorted, and reared, and shyed, when they were attempted to be harnessed to it, but in a little while they too became reconciled to it, and Monsieur Le Prun made an experimental trip in it himself. Whatever passed upon that occasion, it certainly determined him against parting with it. And, it was said, whenever he was thenceforward in doubt about any purchase, or meditating any important financial coup, he invariably took a solitary drive in this preternaturally-acquired vehicle; and, in the course of that drive, his doubts, whatever they may have been, were invariably resolved, and some lucky purchase or successful operation upon 'Change was sure to follow. It was said that upon these occasions Monsieur Le Prun was always heard to converse with some companion in the coach; and the driver once avowed that, having been delayed by an accident on the road, as the darkness came on, he distinctly saw two shadowy outriders spurring duly in their van, and never lost sight of them until, with hair standing on end, and bathed in a cold sweat, he drew up in the court before his master's house."

"And what happened to old Le Prun?"

"When they returned from one of their drives, taken, Heaven bless us! for the purpose of consulting the Evil One, so to speak, face to face, they found old Le Prun quite dead, sitting back in his wonted attitude, and with his arm slung in the embroidered strap."

"And what has become of the wonderful coach?"

"That I have never heard; but they say that Monsieur Le Prun, the fermier-general, has it in one of his houses, either in the country or in Paris, and that, whenever he wants to consult the familiar demon of the family, he takes a drive in it alone; and this, they say, has been the cause of his great successes and his enormous fortune."

"I should like to ride in that coach myself," said Lucille.

"Heaven and all the saints forbid!"

"I want to know my destiny, Marguerite. Were I sure that all my days were to pass as at present, I would rather die than live."

"Oh, but sure my pretty bird would not ask her fortune of—of—"

"Yes, of any one—of any spirit, good or evil, that could tell it. I am weary of my life, Marguerite. I would rather beg or work with my liberty, and the friends I like, than see my days glide by in this dull, wealthy house, without interest, or hope, or—or love."

"But never desire, while you live, my child, the visits of the Evil One. Once asked for, it is said he never refuses them."

"Say you so? then I invite him with all my heart," she said, with a bitter pleasantry; "he can't be a great deal worse than the society I have sometimes had to share; and, if he discloses the futurity that awaits me, he will have been the most instructive companion that fortune ever lent me."

"Chut! madame, listen."

"What is the matter, Marguerite?"

"Did not you hear?"


"There—there again; blessed Virgin shield us!"

"Psha! Marguerite; it is nothing but the moths flying against the window-panes; I have heard that little tapping a hundred times."

"Well, well, maybe so; but say your prayers, my dear, and ask forgiveness for your foolish words."

"No, Marguerite; for in truth I do wish my fortune were read to me, and care not by whom."

"Hey, what's that? Chut! in Heaven's name hold thy mad tongue," she cried, in the irritation of panic; "surely that is no moth. May the saints guard your bed, my child. You heard it, did you not?"

"Hum—yes—there was a sound."[Pg 255]

"I should think so, par bleu! something a size or two larger than a moth, too."

"It was a spray of one of the plants swung by the breeze against the window."

"Ma foi! it was no such thing, my sweet pet; no, no, something with a pair of wings fluttered up against it."

Had the old woman, in her trepidation, had leisure to study the countenance of her young mistress, she would have perceived that her cheeks were flushed with crimson. But she was too busy with her medley of prayers and protestations, and too fully preoccupied with the idea of an unearthly visitation.

"Well, well, Marguerite, be it as you say; I'll not dispute the point; but leave me now; I'm tired, and would sleep. Good night."

After the old woman had withdrawn some minutes, Lucille rose from her bed. She had only been partially undressed; and throwing on her dressing-gown, and putting her little ivory feet into her slippers, she glided to her chamber-door, which she secured, and then cautiously, and almost fearfully, stepped to the window, which she pushed open, and stood upon the balcony.

With a beating heart, and a cheek that momentarily changed color, she looked all along the edges of the court, and over the tall plants, and under the shadow of the lofty jessamine-covered wall. She listened with breathless and excited suspense—she waited for some minutes; but, having watched and listened in vain, she pressed her hand on her heart, and, with a deep and trembling sigh, turned back again. It was at this moment she saw something white, no bigger than a playing-card, lie at her feet. She picked it up, entered her room, and trembling violently, closed the window again, and was alone.


The next morning came with sunshine, and the merry carols of all the sylvan choirs. It would have meetly ushered in a day of rejoicing; but joy seemed to have bid an eternal adieu to the luxurious solitudes of the Chateau des Anges.

Julie that morning remarked that Lucille remained unusually late in her own rooms. Fearing that she might be ill, she ventured to visit her in her apartments. It was past twelve o'clock when she knocked at her door. There was no answer; and she knocked repeatedly, but without success. At last she opened the door, but Lucille was not as usual in that room. She walked through it, and the apartment beyond it, without seeing her; but in her dressing-room, which lay beyond that again, she found her.

She was sitting in a loose morning-robe; her head was supported by her hand, and the open sleeve of heavy silk had fallen back from her white round arm. An open letter lay upon the table under her gaze. She had evidently been weeping, and was so absorbed either in her own reflections or the contents of the letter, that she did not perceive the entrance of Julie.

The visitor paused; but feeling that every moment of her undiscovered presence added to the awkwardness of her situation, she called Lucille by name.

At the sound of her name she started from her seat, and stood, pale as death, with all her dark hair shaken wildly about her shoulders, and her eyes gleaming with a malign terror upon the intruder. At the same moment she had clutched the letter, and continued to crumple it in her hand with a spasmodic eagerness.

Julie was almost as much confounded as Lucille. Both were silent for a time.

"I beg your pardon, dear Lucille; I fear my unperceived intrusion startled you."

"Yes, yes; I suppose I am nervous. I am not well. Oh, God! you did startle me very much."

To do her justice, she looked terrified; every vestige of color had fled from her face, even from her lips, and her eyes continued gleaming wildly and fixedly on her.

"Why did you come, then—what do you want of me?" she said, at last, excitedly, and even angrily.

"I came to ask how you are, Lucille—I feared you were ill."

"I—I ill? You know I was not ill," she said hurriedly and impatiently, and either forgetting or despising her own excuse of but a moment before. "You came—you came for a purpose, Julie—yes, yes—do not deny it—there is perfidy enough already."

"You wrong me, Lucille; I told you the simple truth—why should I deceive you?"

"Why—why? Because the world is full of deceit, full of falsehood and treason—they are every where, every where."

She turned away, and Julie perceived that she was weeping.

She was pained and puzzled—nay, she was crossed every moment by the horrid fear that Lucille's mind was unsettled. Her strange agitation seemed otherwise unaccountable.

"Lucille—dear Lucille—surely you will not be angry with your poor little friend—surely you believe Julie."

She looked at her for a moment, and said—

"Yes, Julie, I do believe you;" and so saying, she kissed her. "But—but I am utterly, and I fear irremediably miserable."

"But what is the cause of your wretchedness, my dear Lucille?"

"This place—this solitude oppresses me; I cannot endure the isolation to which I am unnaturally and tyrannically condemned. Oh, Julie! there are circumstances, secrets, miseries, I dare not tell you; fate is weaving round me a net, to all eyes but my own invisible. But why do you look at me with those strange glances? Do not believe that I am guilty, because I am miserable—do not dare to touch me with such a thought."

She stamped her little foot furiously on the[Pg 256] floor at these words, while her cheek and eye kindled with excitement. It speedily subsided, however, into a deep and sullen gloom, and she continued—

"I scarce know myself, Julie, what I am, or what I may be; but my heart is as full of tumult, of suffering, of hatred, as hell itself. I will at least be free—my captivity in this magician's prison shall terminate—I will not endure it. It shall end soon, one way or another—I will liberate myself."

Lucille spoke with something more than passion—it was fierceness; and her gentle companion was filled with vague alarms. She had, as feeble natures often have, an instinctive appreciation of the superior energy and daring of her more fiery companion, and knew that she would, too probably, take some violent and irreparable step in furtherance of her resolution. It was, therefore, with feelings of anxiety and fear that she left her to the solitary influence of her own angry and excited thoughts.

Monsieur Le Prun did not arrive till night. As he and the Count de Blassemare rolled homeward, side by side in his carriage, under the uncertain moonlight, between the lordly rows of forest-trees that, like files of gloomy Titans, kept perennial guard along the approaches of the chateau, or, as Lucille has not unaptly styled it, "the magician's prison," they talked pretty much as follows:

"Le Prun, my good friend, you are jealous—jealous, by all the imps in true love's purgatory," said Blassemare.

"Not jealous, but cautious."

"A nice distinction."

"Why, when one has reached our time of life——"

"Ours! you might be my father."

"Well, I can't deny it, for nobody knows how old you are. But at my years a man with a young wife must exercise precaution. Par bleu! we are neither of us fools, and I need not tell you that."

"Why, yes, we have had our experiences—I as a spectator—you as——"

"Of course—therefore this threatened irruption of frivolity and vice—"

"Say of youth and beauty; the other qualities—frivolity and vice—may coexist with age and ugliness, and, therefore, harmlessly."

"Well, what you will, it does not please me. But, under existing circumstances, with my application pending, you know it was impossible to deny the marchioness her whim."

"Of course; and so for a single night the Chateau des Anges becomes a fairy palace. Well, what harm—you can't apprehend that a single fête, however gay and spirited, will—ruin you."

"Why, no; after all, it is, as you say, but a single fête, and then extinguish the lights, and lock the doors, and so the Chateau des Anges becomes as sober as before."

"And I wager a hundred crowns you will tell Madame Le Prun that you have given this fête entirely on her account."

"I thought of that," he replied, with a grin; "but it would not be wise."

"Why so?"

"Because it would make a precedent."

"And will you never again indulge her fancy for society?"

"By —— my good friend, never. She fancies she has a great deal of spirit, and will contrive to rule me; but she does not know Etienne Le Prun—she does not know him—I will treat her like what she is—a child."

"And she will treat you, perhaps, like——"

"Like what?"

"Like what you are—a bridegroom of seventy."

"If she dares. Ay, Blassemare, I have just as little trust as you in what conventionality calls the virtue of the sex. I rely upon my own strong will—the discipline I can put in force, and their salutary fears."

There was here a pause of more than a minute in the dialogue; each appeared to have enough to think of, and the carriage was driving nearly at a gallop under the funereal shadow of the dense and lofty trees. With a fierce start, Monsieur Le Prun cried, suddenly—

"What do you mean?"


"Why do you say that?"


"You said—Bluebeard."


"Ay!—what the devil did you mean by that?"

"Upon my soul, I said no such thing," said Blassemare, with a hollow, satirical laugh.

Monsieur Le Prun glanced over his shoulder once or twice, and then hummed to himself for a time.

"Seriously," he repeated, "did you not call me by that name?"

"I!—no; I always call things by their name, and yours is gray."

"Hem!—what is he driving in this shadow for? Tell him to keep in the moonlight—one would think he wanted to break our necks."

Monsieur Le Prun, it was evident, had become fidgety and fanciful.

A few minutes' rapid driving brought the carriage to the hall-door of the chateau, and its wealthy, but, perhaps, after all, not very much to be envied, master conducted his familiar imp, Blassemare, into a saloon, where supper awaited them.

"I don't myself understand these things, Blassemare, but you will be my stage-manager, and get up the spectacle in the best style."

"Why, yes. I don't see why I should not lend a hand, that is to say, if nothing happens to call me away," said Blassemare, who delighted in such affairs, but liked a little importance also.

"How soon is it to take place?"

"She said in about three weeks."

"Ha! very good."[Pg 257]

And the Count de Blassemare was instantaneously translated, in spirit, among feu d'artifice, water-works, arches, colored lamps, bands, and all the other splendors and delectations of an elaborate fête.

"I remember," said Le Prun, abruptly dispelling these happy and gorgeous visions with his harsh tones, "when I was at school, reading about Socrates and those invisible demons that were always hovering at his ears; it was devilish odd, Blassemare. But to be sure those were good-natured devils; ay, that is true, and meant him no harm."

"By my faith, I forget all about it; but what the devil connection have these demons, blue, black, or red, with your fête?"

"I sometimes think, Blassemare, you are a worse fellow than I am, for you have no qualms of conscience."

"No qualms of stomach, no fumes of indigestion; as for conscience, it is an infirmity of which we both stand equally acquitted."

"I did not speak of it in a good sense," said Le Prun, gloomily; "it may be remorse or superstition, but I fancy the man who has none of it is already dead, and under his coffin-lid, so far as his spiritual chances are concerned."

"Faith, it is a treat, Le Prun, to hear you talk religion. When do you mean to take orders? I should so like to see you, my buck, in a cassock and cowl begging meal, and telling your beads, and calling yourself brother Ambrose."

"I have not good enough in me for that," he replied, in a tone which might be earnest, or might be a sneer; "besides, I dare say that the grand melange of rapture and diablerie they call religion is altogether true; but par bleu! my good fellow, there is something more than this life—agencies, subtler and more powerful mayhap than those our senses are commonly cognizant of. I say I have had experience of this truth, and of them. You laugh! and I suppose will laugh on, until that irresistible old gentleman-usher, DEATH, presents you to other realities face to face."

"Well, so be it. If they have faces, I suppose they have mouths, and can laugh, and chat, and so, egad I'll make the best of them; it is one comfort, we shall all understand religion then, and need not plague our heads about it any further. But, in the mean time, suppose we have a game of piquet."

"Agreed! call for cards, and, by the time you have got them, I will return."

Le Prun took a candle, and opening a door which led through a passage to a back stair communicating with Lucille's apartments, he directed his steps thither for the purpose of announcing his arrival, and ascertaining at the same time the state of his wife's temper.

He tapped at the door, and, having received permission to enter, did so to the manifest surprise of the occupants of the chamber, who had expected to see one of the servants.

Julie, who was in the very middle of a story about the Marquis de Secqville, her intended husband, (to which Lucille was listening, as she leaned pensively back in her rich fauteuil, with downcast eyes,) suspended her narrative.

"Well, sir?"

"Well, madame?"

Such was the curt and menacing greeting exchanged between the fermier-general and his wife.

"You appear dissatisfied," he said, after an interval, and having taken a chair.

"I am so."

"This is tiresome, ma femme."

"Yes, insupportably; this, and every thing else that passes here."

"It appears to me, you are somewhat hard to please."

"Quite the reverse. I ask but to mix in human society."

"You have society enough, madame."

"I have absolutely none, sir."

"I can't say what society you enjoyed in the Parc de Charrebourg, madame," he began, in an obvious vein of sarcasm. And as he did so, he thought he observed her eyes averted, and her color brighten for a moment. He did not suffer this observation to interrupt him, but he laid it up in the charnel of his evil remembrances, and continued: "I don't know, I say, what society you there enjoyed. It may have been very considerable, or it may have been very limited: it was possibly very dull, or possibly very delightful, madame. But if you had any society there whatever, it was private, secret; it was neither seen nor suspected, madame, and, therefore, you must excuse me if I can't see what sacrifice, in point of society, you have made in exchanging your cottage in the Parc de Charrebourg for a residence in the Chateau des Anges."

"Sir, I have made sacrifices—I have lost my liberty, and gained you."

"I see, my pretty wife, it will be necessary that you and I should understand one another," he said, tranquilly, but with a gloom upon his countenance that momentarily grew darker and darker.

"That is precisely what I desire," replied his undaunted helpmate.

"Leave us, Julie," said the fermier-general, with a forced calmness.

Julie threw an imploring glance at Lucille as she left the room, for she held her uncle in secret dread. As she glided through the door her last look revealed them seated at the little table; he—ugly: black, and venomous; she—beautiful, and glittering in gay colors. It was like a summer fly basking unconsciously within the pounce of a brown and bloated spider.

"Depend upon it, madame, this will never do," he began.

"Never, sir," she repeated emphatically.

"Be silent, and listen as becomes you," he almost shouted, with a sudden and incontrollable explosion of rage, while the blood mounted to his discolored visage. "Don't fancy, madame, that I am doting, or that you can manage[Pg 258] me with your saucy coquetry or sulky insolence. I have a will of my own, madame, under which, by Heaven, I'll force yours to bend, were it fifty times as stubborn as ever woman's was yet. You shall obey—you shall submit. If you will not practise your duty cheerfully, you shall learn it in privation and tears; but one way or another, I'll bring you to act, and to speak, and to think as I please, or I'm not your husband."

"Well, sir, try it: and in the mean time, I expect——"

"What do you expect?" he thundered.

"I expect to receive a counterpart of this," she said, with deliberate emphasis, holding the magic vial steadily before his eyes.

For a second or two, the talisman appeared powerless, but only for so long. On a sudden his gaze contracted—he became fascinated, petrified—his face darkened, as if a tide of molten lead were projected through every vessel—and a heavy dew of agony stood in beads upon his puckered forehead. With all this horror was mingled a fury, if possible, more frightful still; every fibre of his face was quivering; the hand that was clenched and drawn back, as if it held a weapon to be hurled into her heart, was quivering too; his mouth seemed gasping in vain for words or voice; he resembled the malignant and tortured victim of a satanic possession; and this frightful dumb apparition was imperceptibly drawing nearer and nearer to her.

A sudden revulsion broke the horrid spell of which he was the slave; like one awaking from a nightmare, conscience-stricken, he uttered a trembling groan of agony, and with one hand upon his breast, the other clutched upon his forehead, he hurried, speechless, like a despairing, detected criminal, from the room.


Julie, who had heard high words as she traversed the apartments which lay en suite, paused in the lobby at the stair-head—a sort of œil de bœuf, to which several corridors converged, and with a lofty lantern-dome above, from which swung a cluster of rose-colored lamps.

Here she sat down upon a sofa, ill at ease on account of the scene which was then going on so near her; and, in the midst of her reverie, raising her eyes suddenly, she saw Monsieur Le Prun, the thick carpets rendering his tread perfectly noiseless, gliding by her with a countenance guilty and terrible beyond any thing that fancy had ever seen.

Without appearing to see her, like a spectre from the grave he came, passed, and vanished, leaving her frozen with horror, as if she had beheld a phantom from the dead and damned.

With steps winged with hideous alarm she sped through the intervening chambers to that in which she had left Lucille.

She was standing with an ashy smile of triumph on her face, and in her hand was still mechanically grasped the queer little vial with its four spires of gold.

Monsieur Le Prun had recovered his self-possession to a certain extent by the time he reached the apartment where he had left Blassemare. But that observant gentleman did not fail to perceive, at a glance, that something had occurred to agitate his patron profoundly.

"Egad," he thought, "I should not be surprised if the girl were taken at disadvantage by his abrupt visit, and that the venerable Adonis saw something to justify his jealousy. A husband has no right to surprise his wife. Le Prun," he continued carelessly aloud, "I wonder why Nature, who has been so bounteous to the sex, has not furnished husbands, like certain snakes, with rattles to their tails, to give involuntary warning of their approach."

Le Prun poured out a glass of cold water and drank it. Blassemare observed, as he did so, that his hand trembled violently. The fermier-general was silent, and his flippant Mercury did not care just then to hazard any experiment upon his temper.

"Blassemare!" he exclaimed, abruptly arresting his glass, and eyeing his companion with a sort of brutal rage, "I ought to run you through the body, sir, where you stand, for your accursed perfidy."

"What! me?—by my soul, sir, I don't understand you," he replied, at once offended and amazed. "Why the devil should you murder me?"

"You have broken your word with me!"

"In what respect?"

"Exactly where it was most vitally needful to keep it, sir."

"Deuce take me if I know what you mean."

"You do—you do—a thousand curses! You must know it."

"But hang me if I do."

"You have suffered that calumny to reach her ears."

"What calumny?"

"She must have seen her."


"She must have spoken with her."

"Do say, plainly, what it is all about?"

"About that—that d—— woman; there, is that intelligible? She is at large, sir, in spite of all I've said—in spite of all you undertook, sir; and she has been filling my wife's ears with those hell-born lies that have been whispered to you, sir, and which it was your business to have suppressed and extinguished. By ——, Blassemare, you deserve my curses and my vengeance."

As he concluded, he struck the glass upon the table with a force that shivered it to pieces.

"Monsieur le Prun," said Blassemare, coolly, "I deprecate no man's vengeance, and fear no man's sword; but whatever be the ground of your present convictions, it is utterly fallacious. The person in question has never stirred[Pg 259] abroad—you mean the sister of course—since your marriage, except under close and trustworthy attendance; and the other—that you know is out of the question."

"There has been mismanagement somewhere, or else some new device of infernal malice; I say the thing has been misconducted, with the same cursed blundering that has always attended that affair; and I would rather my wife were in her coffin than have seen what I have seen to-night."

"What! in her coffin!" echoed Blassemare, with a sort of fiendish satire.

"Ay, sir, in her coffin!" said Le Prun, with a black defiance which made Blassemare shrug his shoulders and become silent.

The chill and the smell of death seemed to him to have come with these words into the room. But he would not on any account have betrayed his sensations; on the contrary, he pointed gayly to the cards, and looked a smiling interrogatory towards the fermier. But that excellent gentleman was in no mood for picquet. He declined the challenge gloomily and peremptorily.

"Ma foi! you suffer trifles to plague you strangely," said Blassemare, as they parted for the night. "What on earth does it signify after all? Thwart a woman, and she will strive to vex you—there's nothing new in that; why should not Madame Le Prun share the pretty weaknesses of her sex? On the other hand, indulge her, and she will flatter as much as she teased before. You are too sensitive, too fond, and, therefore, exaggerate trifles. Good night."

Monsieur Le Prun withdrew, and Blassemare muttered—

"Remorseless old criminal! I shall keep my eye close upon you, and if I see any sign of the sort——"

He set his teeth together, smiled resolutely and threateningly, and nodded his head twice or thrice in the direction of the door through which the fermier-general had just disappeared.

The violent explosion we have just described was not followed by any very decisive results. The fermier-general and his wife had not been upon very pleasant terms for some time previous to the scene which had so fearfully agitated the millionaire; and, whatever may have been the immediate promptings of his anger, his temper had cooled down sufficiently, before the morning, to enable him to carry the matter off, like a man of the world, with a tolerable grace. Whatever change for the worse had taken place in his feelings towards his wife, he was able to suppress the manifestation of it: but, as we have said, their relations had of late been by no means cordial, and Monsieur Le Prun did not think it necessary to affect any warmer sentiment toward his wife, nor any abatement of the sinister estrangement which had been gradually growing between them.

Meanwhile the preparations for the fête proceeded at the Chateau des Anges upon a scale worthy of the rarity of the occasion and the vastness of the proprietor's fortune.

All these were carried on by Blassemare, who indulged his gallantry by consulting the beautiful young wife of the fermier-general upon every detail of the tasteful and magnificent arrangements as they proceeded.

Monsieur Le Prun had a special object in gratifying the great lady who had insisted upon this sacrifice. Blassemare had, therefore, a carte blanche in the matter. There were to be musicians from Paris, bands of winged instruments among the trees, galleys and singers upon the waters, illuminated marquees and fanciful grottoes, feu d'artifice, and colored lamps of every dye, in unimaginable profusion, theatricals, gaming, feasting, dancing—in a word, every imaginable species of gayety, revelry, and splendor.

As these grand projects began to unfold themselves, Lucille's ill-temper began to abate. Her interest was awakened, and at last she became pleased, astonished, and even delighted.

Now at length she hoped that the long-cherished object of her wishes was about to be supplied, and that she was indeed to emerge from her chrysalis state, and enjoy, among the sweets and gayeties of life, the glittering freedom for which she felt herself so fitted, and had so long sighed in vain; and which, moreover, as the reader may have suspected, she desired also in furtherance of certain secret and cherished aspirations.

Monsieur de Blassemare found his æsthetic and festive confidences most encouragingly received by the handsome and imperious Madame Le Prun. The subject of his consultations delighted her; and knowing well the close relation in which he stood with her husband, she perhaps thought it no such bad policy to secure him, by a little civility, in her interest. She little imagined, perhaps, engrossed as she was with other images, to what aspiring hopes she was thus unconsciously introducing the Sieur de Blassemare. That gentleman was proud of his bonnes fortunes; and the rapid chemistry of his vanity instantaneously transmuted the lightest show of good-humor, in a handsome woman, into the faint but irrepressible evidences of a warmer sentiment of preference.

Perfectly convinced of the reality of the penchant he believed himself to have inspired, you may be sure the lively scoundrel was not a little flattered at his imaginary conquest. He debated, therefore, in his self-complacent reveries, whether he should take prompt advantage of the weakness of his victim, or pique her by the malice of suspense. He chose the latter tactique, and, with a happy self-esteem, reserved the transports of his confession to reward the longings and agitations of a protracted probationary ordeal.

Thus Blassemare was in his glory, superintending the preparations for a fête, which left him nothing in prodigality and magnificence[Pg 260] to desire; enjoying, at the same time, the delightful consciousness of having placed, without an effort, the prettiest woman in France at his feet, and the piquant sense, beside, of his little treason against old Le Prun.

Thus matters proceeded; but, strange to say, while the evening for which all these preparations were being made was still more than a week distant, Madame Le Prun, whose impatience of even that brief delay had been unspeakable, on a sudden lost all her interest in the affair. Such, alas! is the volatility, the caprice, of women. The object for sake of which she had led poor Le Prun a dog's life for so long, was now presented to her, and she turned from it with indifference, if not with disgust. This would, indeed, have been very provoking to Le Prun himself, had he been just then upon speaking terms with his wife; but not happening to be so, and being in no mood to talk about her further to his gay familiar, Blassemare, he was wholly ignorant of those feminine fluctuations of interest and of liking which Blassemare himself did not fully comprehend. The change was so abrupt as to excite his surprise. Her apathy, too, was unaccompanied by ill-temper, and was obviously so genuine, that he could hardly believe it affected merely to pique him. We are disposed to think there was a powerful, but mysterious, cause at work in this change.

It was just about this time that one night, Julie, having sat up rather later than usual, and intending to bid Lucille good night, if she were still awake, entered her suite of apartments, and approached her dressing-room door. She heard her rush across the floor, as she did so, and, with a face of terror, she emerged from the door and stood before it, as if to bar ingress to the room.

Julie was disconcerted and agitated by this apparition; and Lucille was evidently, from whatever cause, greatly terrified. The two girls confronted one another with pale and troubled looks. Lucille was white with fear, and, alas! as it seemed to her companion, with the agitation of guilt. Julie looked at her all aghast.

"Good night, Julie, good night," she whispered, hurriedly.

"Good night," answered she; "I fear I have interrupted—I mean, startled you."

"Good night, good night," repeated Lucille.

As Julie retreated across the lobby, she was overtaken by Lucille, who placed her hand upon her shoulder.

"Julie, will you hate me if I tell you all?" she said, in great agitation, as she hurried with her into her apartment.

"Hate you, Lucille! How could I hate my dear friend and companion?"

"Friend, O yes, friend; what a friend I have proved to you!"

"Come, come, you must not let yourself be excited; you know you are my friend, my only friend and confidante, and you know I love you."

Lucille covered her face with her hands and sobbed or shuddered violently. Julie embraced and kissed her tenderly; but, in the midst of these caresses, her unhappy friend threw her arms about her neck, and, looking earnestly in her face for a few seconds, drew her passionately to her heart and kissed her, murmuring as she did so—

"No, no; she never could forgive me."

And, so saying, she mournfully betook herself away, leaving Julie a prey to all manner of vague and perplexing alarms.

Whatever was the cause of Lucille's profound mental agitation, it was an impenetrable mystery to Julie. Blassemare obviously did not know what to make of it; and as the fête drew near without eliciting any corresponding interest on her part, Julie, who had observed with pleasure the delight with which at first she had anticipated the event, was dismayed and astonished at the change. As often as she had endeavored to recall her to the topic so strangely approached, and inexplicably recoiled from, upon the occasion we have just described, Lucille repulsed her curiosity, or at least evaded it with entire and impenetrable secrecy. Finding, therefore, that the subject was obviously distasteful to her, she forbore to return to it, and contented herself with recording the broken conversation of the night in question among the other unexplained mysteries of her life.

"Well, Lucille," she said to her one day, as they were walking upon the terrace together, and interrupting by the remark a long and gloomy silence, "you do not seem to enjoy the prospect of the gay night which my uncle has prepared, now that it approaches, half so much as you did in the distance."

"Enjoy it? no, no."

"But you longed for such an occasion."

"Perhaps, Julie, I had reasons; perhaps it was not all caprice."

"But do you not still enjoy the prospect? surely it has not lost all its charms?"

"I say, Julie, I had reasons—that is, perhaps I had—for wishing it. I have none now."

"Well, but it seems to me it positively depresses you. Surely, if it were merely indifferent, it need not distress you."

"Ah, Julie, Julie, we are strange creatures; we know not ourselves, neither our strength nor our weakness, our good nor our evil, until time and combinations solve the problem, and show us the sad truth."

"It seems to me," said Julie, with a gentle smile, "you take a wondrous moral tone in treating of a ball, my pretty sage; and, notwithstanding all you say, I suspect you like a fête as well as most young women."

"Julie, when I tell you honestly I hate it—that I would gladly be hidden in the roof or the cellar of the loneliest tower in the chateau upon that evening, you will cease to suspect me of so poor a dissimulation. Honestly, then, and sadly, these crowded festivities, I expected but a short time since with so much[Pg 261] delight, are now not only indifferent to me, but repulsive. I no longer wish to meet and mix with people; the idea, on the contrary, depresses, nay, even terrifies me."

"Lucille, you are hiding something from me."

"Hiding!—no, nothing—that is, nothing but my own thoughts, the images of my reflections; nothing, dear Julie, that it would not render you unhappy to hear. Why should I throw upon your mind the gloom and shadows of my own?"

"But perhaps your troubles are fantastic and unreal; and, were you to confide in me, I might convince you that they are so."

"Julie, they are real."

"So thinks every body who is haunted by chimeras."

"These are none. Oh, Julie! would I could tell you all. The agony of the relation would be in some sort recompensed by having one human being to tell my thoughts to. But it cannot be; it is quite, quite impossible."

"This impossibility is also one of the imagination."

"No, no, Julie; the effort to repose this confidence would destroy all confidence between us. I have said enough—let us speak of other matters. My innermost grief, be it what it may, I must endure alone. Julie, it is a hard condition; but I must and will—alone."

Here they were interrupted by Blassemare, who gayly joined them, with a prayer that they would resolve a momentous difficulty, by deciding upon the best site for one of his principal batteries of fireworks; and so, with little good-will, they surrendered themselves for a quarter of an hour to the guidance and the light sarcastic conversation of the master of the revels, with whom for the present we shall leave them.


At length the eventful night arrived—a beautiful, still, star-lit night. You may fancy the splendor of the more than royal festivities. What a magnificent levee of gayety, rank, and beauty! What unexampled illuminations!—what fantastic and inexhaustible ingenuity of pyrotechnics! How the gorgeous suites of salons laughed with the brilliant crowd! How the terraces, arched and lined with soft-colored lamps, re-echoed with gay laughter or murmured flatteries! What an atmosphere it was of rosy hues, of music, and ceaseless hum of human enjoyment! For miles around, the wandering peasants beheld the wide, misty, prismatic circle that overarched the enchanted ground, and heard the silver harmonies and drumming thunders of the orchestras floating over the woods, and filling the void darkness with sounds of unseen festivities. In such a scene all are in good-humor—all wear their best looks. Each finds his appropriate amusement. The elegant gamester discovers his cards and his companions; the garrulous find listeners; the gossip retails, and imbibes, from a hundred sources, all the current scandal; vanity finds incense—beauty adoration; the young make love, or dance, or in groups give their spirits play in pleasantries, and raillery, and peals of animated laughter; their elders listen to the music, or watch the cards, or in a calmer fashion converse; while all, each according to his own peculiar taste, find whatever pleases their palate best. Whatever is rarest, most fantastic—things only dreamed of—the epicurean connoisseur has only to invoke, and, at a touch of the magic wand of Mammon, it is there before him. Wines, too,—what-not, est-est, tokay, and all the rest, flowing from the inexhaustible tap of the same Mephistopheles, with his golden gimlet. All the demons of luxury riot there, and at your nod ransack the earth for a flavor or a flask; and place it before you, almost before your wish is uttered. It is, indeed, the Mahomet's paradise of all true believers in the stomach, and worshippers of Bacchus. Thus in a realized dream all eddies on in a delicious intoxication, and each is at once the recipient of enjoyment and the dispenser of good-humor, imbibing through every sense enchanted fare, reflecting smiles, and radiating hilarity. Each, indeed, becomes, as it were, a single glowing particle in the genial and brilliant mass, and tends to keep alive the general fire, from which he derives and to which returns at once light and geniality. It is admitted that he who has discovered the grand arcanum, and has the philosopher's stone in his waistcoat-pocket, is, so to speak, ex officio, a magician. But M. Le Prun had no need of any such discoveries. He had the gold itself, and was, therefore, a ready-made magician, and as such was worshipped accordingly with an oriental fanaticism.

Monsieur le Prun had, like other favorites of fortune in the latter days of the monarchy, purchased his patent of noblesse. Every body knew that he was a parvenu; and rumor, as she is wont in such cases, had adorned his early history with so many myths and portents, that Niebuhr himself could hardly have distinguished between the fable and the truth. It was said and believed that he was a foundling—a Gipsy's son, a wandering beggar, a tinker. Others had seen him in rags, selling pencils at the steps between the Pont-Neuf and the Pont-au-Change. Others, again, maintained that he had for years filled the canine office of guide to an old blind mendicant, whose beat was about the Rue de Bauboug; and were even furnished with a number of pleasant anecdotes about his hardships and adroitness, while in this somewhat undignified position. Indeed, the varieties of positions though which good Mother Gossip sent him were such, and so interminable, that a relation of half of them would alone make a library of fiction. But fortune had consecrated this mean and smutty urchin. He stood now worshipped in the awful glory of his millions, pedestalled on his money-bags, gilded from head to heel; and[Pg 262] what could the proudest noblesse upon earth do but forget and forgive the rags and hunger of his infancy, and come together, from the east and from the west, to drink of the cup of his enchantments, and cry, "Long live King Solomon in all his glory?"

"She is beautiful as a divinity," exclaimed the gallant old Marquess de Fauteuil, who had just completed an admiring survey of the fair Madame le Prun.

"Pretty—yes; but she has the manners of a petite moine," said the Duchess de la Cominade, an old flame of the marquis, who, in spite of her marriage and her mistakes, conceived her claims upon his devotions unabated.

"And her little gossip, too, Le Prun's niece, is a charming creature—an exquisitely contrived contrast. By my word, this place deserves its name—is it not truly the Chateau des Anges?"

"Who is that young person whom Le Prun is leading towards them? He is the only man I have seen to-night whose dress is perfect; and he looks like a hero of romance."

"That?—eh? Why that is the Marquis de Secqville."

"What! the horrid man who enslaves us all? I have not seen him for years—how very handsome he is!"

"Yes; and I fancy that melancholy air assists him very much in vanquishing the gentle sex. I once had a little vein of that myself."

"So you had," murmured the duchess, with a tender smile of memory, and a little sigh. "But is it not a madness of poor Le Prun to present that terrible man to his handsome young wife?"

"He is to marry the niece—the affair is concluded. Poor little thing! she looks so frightened; see—a little fluttered pigeon of Venus—it becomes her very much."

Meanwhile Le Prun and the marquis were approaching Lucille and Julie, who were seated together close to a window which opened to the floor, and admitted the soft summer air, charged with such sounds and perfumes as might have hovered among the evergreen groves of Calypso's island.

"He is coming," said Julie, "he is coming with my uncle."

"Who?" asked Lucille, looking coldly on the advancing figures.

"My—my fiancé, the Marquis de Secqville," whispered Julie, in trembling haste, blushing, and dropping her eyes.

"Oh, then, I must observe him carefully," said Lucille, with an arch smile.

"Do, and tell me honestly what you think of him."

"Ha! little rogue, I see you are not quite so indifferent as you pretend."

"My heart is indifferent—but—but he is very handsome—don't you think so?"

"Hush! here he is."

"I have the happiness, madame, to present Monsieur le Marquis de Secqville, with whom, as you are aware, we are about to have the honor of being nearly allied."

So said Monsieur le Prun, with a smile of conjugal affection, which may, or may not, have been genuine.

"I was not until now aware of the full extent of the honor and the happiness involved in that alliance," said the marquis, with a glance of respectful admiration.

Madame le Prun acknowledged this little speech with a slight bow, and a cold and haughty smile.

"You have been in the south lately?"

"Yes, madame, with my regiment at Avignon."

"So he says," interrupted the fermier-general, with a cunning leer; "but his colonel swears he never saw him there."

"Then either you or your colonel must be wrong," said Madame le Prun, drily.

"No, no, madame; but Monsieur le Prun likes a jest at my expense."

"Not at all," said Le Prun, laughing; "I protest D'Artois, his colonel, vows he has not seen him for six months at least."

"They are in a conspiracy to quiz me."

"Then you were at Avignon?"

"No such thing, I tell you; the fellow was about some mischief—ha! ha! ha!"

"He is resolved to laugh at me."

"Yes, yes, I say he is a mischievous fellow—the most dangerous dog in France; and so shy that, by my word, it requires a shrewd fellow like myself to discover his rogueries."

"And so he deserves not only all my sins, but a great deal more."

"Stay—here is the Visconte de Charrebourg. Visconte, this is the Marquis de Secqville, my future nephew."

The old visconte looked closely and dubiously for a moment in the young man's face. The marquis, on the contrary, seemed to have some little difficulty in suppressing a smile.

"But that I know I have not had the honor of meeting you before, I should——but no doubt it is a family likeness. I knew your father when he was about your age, and a very handsome fellow, by my faith. Is his brother, the Conte de Cresseron, still living?"

The old gentleman drew the marquis away before he had had time to pay his devoirs to Julie, who had shrunk at his approach into the background, and left the little group to themselves.

"What do you think of him?" whispered Julie, resuming her place by Lucille.

"He is pretty well."

"Monsieur le Marquis is a handsome man," said Blassemare, who at that moment joined them; and, addressing Lucille, "You have seen him before?"

"I?—no. He has just been presented to me for the first time."

"And you think him——"

"Rather handsome—indeed, decidedly handsome; but, somehow, his melancholy spoils him. But I forgot, Julie—I ask your pardon,[Pg 263] my pretty niece, for criticising your hero. Remember, however, I admit his beauty, though I can't admire him."

There is no truth of which we have been reminded with such unnecessary reiteration, as the pretty obvious fact that every human enjoyment must, sooner or later, come to an end. The fête at the Chateau des Anges had no exemption from this law of nature and necessity. Musicians, cooks, artists, and artisans of all sorts, gradually disappeared. At length the last equipage whirled down the great avenue, and a stillness and void, more mournful from the immediate contrast, supervened.

The windows were closed—the yawning servants betook themselves to their beds, and the angel of sleep waved his downy wings over the old chateau. The genius of Blassemare was of that electric sort which is not easily unexcited. He could no more have slept than he could have transformed himself into one of the stone Tritons of the fountain by which in the moonlight he now stood alone. Blassemare had had a magnificent triumph; so well-contrived an entertainment had never, perhaps, been known before; and, like certain great generals, he felt desirous to visit the field of his victory after the heat of action was over.

Monsieur Le Prun was also wide awake and astir from other causes. No vein of Blassemare's excitement—not even jealousy, nor conscience, nor any mental malady—kept him waking. The cause of his vigilance was, simply, his late supper and an indigestion.

Now it happened that both these worthies were walking unconsciously almost side by side—Le Prun along the summit, and Blassemare along the base, of the beautiful terrace which stretched in front of the windows of the chateau.

There was a little receding court which lay in front of Madame Le Prun's windows, which were furnished with a heavy stone balcony. On the side opposite was a high wall, which divided the pleasure-grounds from the wild, wooded park that lay immediately beyond, and in this was a door with a private key and a spring lock.

Now it happened that both Monsieur Le Prun and the Sieur de Blassemare, as they approached this point, amid the fumes of expiring lamps and the wreck of fireworks, heard certain sounds of an unexpected sort. These were, in fact, human voices, conversing in earnest but suppressed tones—so low, indeed, that were it not for the breathless stillness of the night they would have been unheard.

"Sacre!" muttered Le Prun, looking up like a toothless old panther.

"Ma foi! what's this?" whispered Blassemare, whose jealousy was also alarmed.

The sounds continued—the eavesdroppers quickened their paces. Le Prun was, however, unfortunately a little asthmatic, as sometimes happens to bridegrooms of a certain age, and, spite of all his efforts to hold it in, he could not contain a burst of coughing.

Its effect was magical. There supervened an instantaneous silence, followed by the dropping of a heavy body upon the ground, as it seemed, under Madame Le Prun's windows. The descent was, however, unfortunately made; a dog, evidently hurt, raised a frightful yelping, making the night additionally hideous. Blassemare hurried up the steps, and at the top encountered Le Prun, running and panting, with his sword drawn. There was a sound, as of hastily closing the casement above the balcony—a light gleamed from it for an instant, and was extinguished—and, at the same moment, they beheld the dim figure of a man hurrying across the court, and darting through the opposite door, which shut with a crash behind him.

"Thieves! robbers!" shouted Le Prun, dashing at the door.

"Robbers! thieves!" cried a shrill voice of alarm from Madame Le Prun's casement.

"Horns! antlers!" halloed Blassemare.

"Robbers! robbers!"

"Thieves! thieves!"

The lady screamed, Le Prun bawled, Blassemare laughed.

"He is gone, however," said the latter, as soon as the explosion had a little subsided. "Suppose we get the key, madame. Please throw us yours from the window. I promise to pink the burglar through the body. Quick—quick!"

"Ay, ay," thundered Le Prun, "the key! the key!"

Madame Le Prun was too much excited to get it in an instant. She ran here, and flew there—she screamed and rummaged. Le Prun stormed. A key was at last thrown out, amid prayers and imprecations. How provoking!—it was a wrong one. Another effort—a new burst of execration from Le Prun—another fit of laughter from Blassemare—more screaming and pressing from the window—and all accompanied by the sustained yelping of the injured lap-dog.

"Here it is—this must be it," and another key clangs and jingles on the ground.

"Yes, this time it is the right key." The door flies open—Le Prun rushes puffing among the bushes. Blassemare sees something drop glittering to the ground as the door opens—a button and a little rag of velvet; he says nothing, but pockets it, and joins the moonlight chase.

It is all in vain. Le Prun, perspiring and purple, his passion as swollen as his veins, knowing not what to think, but fearing every thing, staggered back, silent and exhausted; Blassemare also silent—no longer laughing—abstracted, walks with knit brows, and compressed lips, beside him.

"Of course," said Blassemare, "you have the fullest reliance upon the honor of your wife?"

Monsieur Le Prun growled an inarticulate curse or two, and Blassemare whistled a minuet.

"Come, my dear Le Prun," he resumed, "let us be frank; you are uneasy."[Pg 264]

"About what?"

"Madame Le Prun."

"She is not injured?"

"No, but——"

"Ah, she's in league with the thieves, may be?" said Le Prun, with an agitated sneer.

"Precisely so," answered Blassemare, with a cold laugh.

"I know what you think, and I know what I think," replied Le Prun, with suppressed fury.

His suspicions were all awake; he was bursting with rage, and looked truly infernal.

"On the faith of a gentleman," said Blassemare, with a changed tone, "I cannot be said to think any thing about the affair. I have my doubts, but that is all. We men are naturally suspicious; but, after all, there are such things as thieves and housebreakers."

Le Prun said nothing, but looked black and icy as the north wind.

"At all events," said Blassemare, "we men of the world know how to deal with affairs of this sort; so long as any uncertainty exists, put ostensibly the best possible construction upon it. Thus much is due to one's dignity in the eyes of the public; and in private we may prosecute inquiries unsuspected, and with the greater likelihood of success."

"I know the world as well as you, Blassemare. I'm sick of your tone of superiority and advice. I know when to respect and when to defy the world. A man can no more make a fortune without tact than he can lose one without folly."

"Well, well," said Blassemare, who was used to an occasional rebuff, and regarded a gruff word from his principal no more than he did the buzz of a beetle, "I know all that very well; but you, robust fellows, with millions at your back, are less likely to respect those subtle and delicate influences which sometimes, notwithstanding, carry mischief with them, than we poor, sensitive valetudinarians, without a guinea in our pockets; and if you will permit me, I will, when I return to-day, sift the matter for you. I understand woman; it is an art in itself, though not, perhaps, a very high one. A careless conversation with Madame Le Prun will let me further into the mystery, than a year spent in accumulating circumstantial evidence. You may rely on the result."

The fermier-general uttered something between a growl and a grunt, which might or might not convey assent; and, waving Blassemare towards the house, walked along the terrace alone; and sat himself down upon the steps at the further end.

The mental torpor which supervenes under sudden disasters was not, in the case of the fermier-general, without its dreamy groups of ugly images in prospect. As the light broke, and the darkness began to melt eastward into soft crimson mists and streaks of amber, Monsieur Le Prun rose stiffly from his hard, cold seat, and, with the slow step of a man irresolute and oppressed with profound wrath and mortification, began to return homeward.

"Robbers!—thieves!" he muttered bitterly. "How glibly the traitress echoed the cry! The rascal Blassemare gave the true alarm—she did not echo that. D—— her, and d——him! Robbers, indeed! Thieves!—very like. I know what they came a thieving for. Upon her balcony—talking in murmurs—the candle extinguished in such a devil of a hurry—the ready cry of 'Thieves'—the spring door open for his flight—and the long delay to find the key. Bah! what proofs are wanting?"

He heard just at this point a cracked voice singing a gay love verse from an open window. He knew the voice; every association connected with the performance and the performer jarred upon his nerves.

It was indeed the Visconte de Charrebourg, some of whose early gayety had returned with his good fortune. He had, such was the pride of his rich son-in-law, a little household of his own, and kept his state and his own exorbitantly early hours in a suite of rooms assigned him, through one of whose windows, arrayed in a velvet cap and gown of brocade, he was rivalling the lark and greeting the rising sun, and, while sipping his chocolate in the intervals, moved, with the nimble irregularity of idle and active-minded age, about his apartment.

"Well, sir, a pleasant affair this!" cried a harsh voice, interrupting his cheery occupation; and on looking round he saw the purple and sinister face of the fermier-general looming through the window.

"What affair?" asked the visconte, in unfeigned astonishment, for he had been quite certain that his worthy son-in-law was quietly in his bed.

"Your daughter's conduct."

"What of her?"

"Just this—she is a ——!" and, with the term of outrage, Le Prun uttered a forced laugh of fury.

"I cannot have heard you aright: be kind enough to repeat that."

There was a certain air of pomp and menace in this little speech, which drove Le Prun beyond all patience. He repeated the imputation in language still grosser. This was an insult which the ancient blood of the Charrebourgs could not tolerate, and the visconte taunted him with the honor which one of his house had done him in mingling their pure blood with that of a "roturier." Then came the obvious retort, "beggar," and even "trickster," retaliated by a torrent of scarcely articulate scorn and execration, and an appeal to the sword, which, with brutal contempt, (while at the same time, nevertheless, he recoiled instinctively a foot or two from the window,) the wealthy plebeian retorted by threatening to arrest him for the sums he had advanced. Le Prun had the best of it; he left the outraged visconte quivering and shrieking like an old woman in a frenzy. It was some comfort to have wrapt another in the hell-fire that tormented himself.[Pg 265]

[From the Examiner.]


We may—we do differ from Mazzini in many of his political views, and in our estimate of what may be the wisest policy for Italian liberals in existing circumstances. We think that he seeks to impart to politics a mathematical precision of which they are not susceptible, and does not sufficiently regard a principle the correctness of which has been admitted by himself, that the fact of a thing being true in principle cannot give the right of suddenly enthroning it in practice. But his errors are all on the large and generous side. He is too apt to attribute to society the precise convictions and spirit he feels within himself, and so to expect impossibilities, by impossible means. But there is a power of reasoning in Mazzini, an unsullied moral purity, a chivalrous veracity and frankness, an utter abnegation of self, and a courage that has stood the severest trials, which command not only respect but veneration. He belongs to the martyr age of Italian liberalism, and possesses himself the highest qualities of the martyr.

His declared object in publishing the small volume[27] before us is to correct public opinion in England as to the Italian movement in which he took part. But it is a statement of principles rather than a narrative of details. It is always dignified in tone, often singularly eloquent, and substantially it contains little which would be likely to draw forth an expression of willing disagreement from any well-educated, high-minded, liberal Englishman.

Mr. Mazzini thus declares his reasons


The Italian tradition is eminently republican. In England, the aristocratic element has a powerful influence, because it has a history: well or ill, it has organized society: it has created a power, snatched from royalty, by conquering guarantees for the rights of the subject; it has founded in part the wealth and the influence of England abroad. The monarchical element has still great influence over the tendencies of France, because it also claims an important page in the national history; it has produced a Charlemagne, a Louis XI., a Napoleon; it has contributed to found the unity of France; it has shared with the communes the risks and the honors of the struggle against feudalism; it has surrounded the national banner with a halo of military glory. What is the history of the monarchy and of the aristocracy of Italy? What prominent part have they played in the national development? What vital element have they supplied to Italian strength, or to the unification of the future existence of Italy? The history of our royalty in fact commences with the dominion of Charles V., with the downfall of our liberties; it is identified with servitude and dismemberment; it is written on a foreign page, in the cabinets of France, of Austria, and of Spain. Nearly all of them the issue of foreign families, viceroys of one or other of the great powers, our kings do not offer the example of a single individual redeeming by brilliant personal qualities the vice of subalternity, to which his position condemned him; not a single one who has ever evinced any grand national aspiration. Around them in the obscurity of their courts, gather idle or retrograde courtiers, men who call themselves noble, but who have never been able to constitute an aristocracy. An aristocracy is a compact independent body, representing in itself an idea, and from one extremity of the country to another, governed, more or less, by one and the same inspiration: our nobles have lived upon the crumbs of royal favor, and if on some rare occasions they have ventured to place themselves in opposition to the monarch, it has not been in the cause of the nation, but of the foreigner, or of clerical absolutism. The nobility can never be regarded as an historical element: it has furnished some fortunate Condottieri, powerful even to tyranny, in some isolated town; it has knelt at the feet of the foreign emperors who have passed the Alps or crossed the sea. The original stock being nearly everywhere extinct, the races have become degenerated amidst corruption and ignorance. The descendants of our noble families at Genoa, at Naples, at Venice, and at Rome, are, for the most part specimens of absolute intellectual nullity. Almost every thing that has worked its difficult way in art, in literature, or in political activity, is plebeian.

In Italy the initiative of progress has always belonged to the people, to the democratic element. It is through her communes that she has acquired all she has ever had of liberty: through her workmen in wool or silk, through her merchants of Genoa, Florence, Venice, and Pisa, that she has acquired her wealth; through her artists, plebeian and republican, from Giotto to Michael Angelo, that she has acquired her renown; through her navigators,—plebeian,—that she has given a world to humanity; through her Popes—sons of the people even they—that until the twelfth century she aided in the emancipation of the weak, and sent forth a word of unity to humanity. All her memories of insurrection against the foreigner are memories of the people: all that has made the greatness of our towns, dates almost always from a republican epoch: the educational book, the only book read by the inhabitant of the Alps or the Transteverin who can read, is an abridgment of the history of the Ancient Roman Republic. This is the reason why the same men who have so long been accused of coldness, and who had in fact witnessed with indifference the aristocratic and royal revolutions of 1820 and 1821, arose with enthusiasm and with a true power of self-sacrifice at the cry of St. Mark and the Republic, God and the People! These words contained for them a guarantee. They awoke in them, even unconsciously to themselves, the all-powerful echo of a living past, a confused recollection of glory, of strength, of conscience, and of dignity.

With such elements how would it be possible to found a monarchy surrounded with an aristocracy? How can one speak of a balance of powers, where there are but two forces—foreign absolutism, and the people? How could one organize a constitutional monarchy where the aristocracy is without a past, and where royalty inspires neither affection nor respect?

It will surprise many candid readers to find Mr. Mazzini repeatedly declaring in this book[Pg 266] that the republican, or, as he calls it, the national party, are not responsible for the disunion, which, at a time when the whole nation was armed against the foreigners and might have driven them from the country, turned its forces against its own citizens. He gives proof that his own advice was for union till the day of victory, and not till then for discussion as to what party should reap its fruits. Whether to monarch, or to people, he affirms that he was ready to submit; he asserts repeatedly that it was only after having been betrayed that the national party set up for themselves; and he expresses his belief that even now, when a union of princes has been seen to be impossible, the leadership of a single prince would be accepted by all, supposing such a fitting leader could be found. He thus describes


They have said, and they say again, without taking advantage of the favorable position in which events have placed them:—Let the nation arise; let her make herself mistress of her own territory; then, the victory once gained, let her freely decide who shall reap the fruits. Monarch or People, we will submit ourselves to the power she herself shall organize. Is it possible that so moderate and rational a proposition should be the object of such false interpretations, in a country which reveres the idea of right and of self-government? Is it possible that its leaders should be the object of so much calumny?

It is time that these calumnies should cease. It matters little to us, who act as our conscience dictates, without troubling ourselves as to the personal result; and to whom faith and exile have given the habit of looking higher than the praise or blame of this earth. But it should be recognized as most important by all who believe that political questions agitated by whole nations, are questions eminently religious. For religion, to all those who see more in it than the mere materialism of forms and formulæ, is not only a thought of heaven, but the impulse which seeks to apply that thought, as far as possible to government on earth, our rule of action for the good of all, and for the moral development of humanity. Politics then are like religion—sacred; and all good men are bound to see them morally respected. Every question has a right to serious, calm, and honest discussion. Calumny should be the weapon of those only who have to defend not ideas, but crimes.

It is immoral to say to men who have preached clemency throughout the whole of their political career, who have initiated their rule by the abolition of capital punishment, who, when in power, never signed a single sentence of exile against those who had persecuted them, nor even against the known enemies of their principle.—"You are the sanguinary organizers of terror, men of vengeance and of cruelty." It is immoral to ascribe to them views which they never had, and to choose to forget that they have, through the medium of the press here and elsewhere, attracted and refuted those communistic systems and exclusive solutions which tend to suppress rather than to transform the elements of society; and to say to them, "You are communists, you desire to abolish property." It is immoral to accuse of irreligion and impiety men who have devoted their whole lives to the endeavor to reconcile the religious idea, betrayed and disinherited by the very men who pretend to be its official defenders, with the National movement. It is immoral to insinuate accusations of personal interest and of pillage, against men who have serenely endured the sufferings of poverty, and whose life, accessible to all, has never betrayed either cupidity or the desire of luxury. It is immoral continually to proclaim, as the act of a whole party, the death of a statesman killed by an unknown hand, under the influence of the irritation produced by his own acts and by the attacks of another political party, many months before the Republican party recommenced its activity.

Mr. Mazzini charges no direct treachery against Carlo Alberto. He declares him to have been himself the victim of the weakness which caused others as well as himself so much loss and misery. For the impossible political project of a Kingdom of the North he was content to surrender the grand reality of a United People which fate had placed within his hands.


Genius, love, and faith were wanting in Charles Albert. Of the first, which reveals itself by a life entirely, logically, and resolutely devoted to a great idea, the career of Charles Albert does not offer the least trace; the second was stifled in him by the continual mistrust of men and things, which was awakened by the remembrance of an unhappy past; the last was denied him by his uncertain character, wavering always between good and evil, between to do and not to do, between daring and not daring. In his youth, a thought, not of virtue, but of Italian ambition—the ambition however which may be profitable to nations—had passed through his soul like lightning; but he recoiled in affright, and the remembrance of this one brilliant moment of his youth presented itself hourly to him, and tortured him like the incessant throbbing of an old wound, instead of acting upon him as an excitement to a new life. Between the risk of losing, if he failed, the crown of his little kingdom, and the fear of the liberty which the people, after having fought for him, would claim for themselves, he went hesitating on, with this spectre before his eyes, stumbling at every step, without energy to confront these dangers, without the will or power to comprehend that to become King of Italy he must first of all forget that he was King of Piedmont. Despotic from rooted instinct, liberal from self-love, and from a presentiment of the future, he submitted alternately to the government of Jesuits, and to that of men of progress. A fatal disunion between thought and action, between the conception and the faculty of execution, showed itself in every act. Most of those who endeavored to place him at the head of the enterprise, were forced to agree to this view of his character. Some of those intimate with him went so far as to whisper that he was threatened with lunacy. He was the Hamlet of Monarchy.

A characteristic passage of the volume has relation to


The war between the two principles was general in Europe—the enthusiasm excited by the movements[Pg 267] in Italy, especially the Lombard insurrection and the prodigies of the five days, was immense; and Italy could, had she willed it and known how, have drawn thence sufficient force to counterbalance all the strength of hostile reaction. But to do this, it was necessary, whatever the mean policy of the Moderates might fear, to give to the movement a character so audaciously national as to alarm our enemies, and to offer the most powerful element of support to our friends. Both felt the time was ripe, and began to believe that Italy would be but Italy, and not the Kingdom of the North. I remember the consoling words Lamartine addressed to me, at his house, on the eve of my departure for Italy, and in presence, amongst others, of Alfred de Vigny, and of the same Forbin Janson whom I was afterwards to meet preaching the papal restoration, and getting up various petty conspiracies and ridiculous intrigues at Rome.

"The hour has struck for you," said the minister, "and I am so firmly convinced of it, that the first words with which I have charged Monsieur d'Harcourt for the Pope are these; Holy Father, you know that you ought to be the President of the Italian Republic." But Monsieur d'Harcourt had quite other things to say to the Pope, on the part of that faction which involved Lamartine in its snares whilst he imagined that he could control it. For myself I attached no importance, except as a symptom, to these words of Lamartine, a man of impulse and of noble instincts, but unstable in belief, without energy for a fixed purpose, and without real knowledge of men and things. He was indeed the echo of a tendency all-powerful, in those moments of excitement, upon the French mind; and every re-awakening nationality, every political programme, which, if not absolutely republican, was like that, at least, of the Italian constituent, would have compelled the support of the most hesitating government in France.

From great things great things are born. The dwarfish conception of the Moderates froze up all souls, and imposed an utter change of politics upon France. The Italian People was an ally more than sufficiently powerful to preserve the Republic from all danger of a foreign war; a Kingdom of the North, in the hands of princes little to be relied upon, and hostile, by long tradition, to the Republicans of France, did but add a dangerous element to the league of kings. The French nation became silent, and left its government free to exist without any foreign policy, and to leave the destinies of the republic to the impenetrable future.

The incidents described in most detail are those immediately preceding and following the fatal surrender of Milan; and it is impossible not to be struck by the contrast of the royal and the republican party, assuming the statement to be in all respects correct. But passing this ignominious period, there ought to be small difference of opinion in a free and educated country as to where the right lay in the subsequent Roman struggle. What sensible or honest Protestant would not sympathize with the indignant eloquence of this earnest Italian protesting against the flimsy oratory of a Jesuit Frenchman?


"You base your argument upon the void; you discuss that which was, not that which is. The Papacy is dead, choked in blood and mire; dead, because it has betrayed its own mission of protection to the weak against the oppressor; dead, because for three centuries and a half it has prostituted itself with princes; dead, because in the name of egotism and before the palaces of all the corrupt, hypocritical, and skeptical governments, it has for the second time crucified Christ; dead, because it has uttered words of faith which it did not itself believe; dead, because it has denied human liberty and the dignity of our immortal souls; dead, because it has condemned science in Galileo, philosophy in Giordano Bruno, religious aspiration in John Huss and Jerome of Prague, political life by an anathema against the rights of the people, civil life by Jesuitism, the terrors of the inquisition, and the example of corruption, the life of the family by confession converted into a system of espionage, and by division introduced between father and son, brother and brother, husband and wife; dead, for the princes, by the treaty of Westphalia; dead, for the peoples, with Gregory XI., in 1378, and with the commencement of the schism; dead, for Italy, since 1530, when Clement VII. and Charles V., the Pope and the Emperor, signed an infamous compact, and extinguished, at Florence, the dying liberties of Italy, as to-day you have attempted to extinguish her rising liberties in Rome; dead, because the people has risen, because Pius IX. has fled, because the multitude curses him, because those very men who for fifteen years have made war upon the priests, in the name of Voltaire, now hypocritically defend them, because you and yours defend them, with intolerance and by force of arms, and declare that the Papacy and liberty cannot live side by side? You ask Victor Hugo to point out to you an idea which has been worshipped for eighteen centuries. It is that idea which you have declared irreconcilable with the Papacy, and which was breathed into humanity by God; the idea which has withdrawn from Catholicism the half of the Christian world, the idea which has snatched from you Lammennais and the flower of the intellects of Europe, the idea of Christ, that pure, holy, and sacred liberty which you invoked for Poland some years back, which Italy invokes for herself to-day, under the form, and with the guarantee of nationality, and which you cannot pretend to be good for one country and bad for another, unless you believe it a part of religion to create a pariah people in the bosom of humanity."

Very admirably, too, and nobly written, are Mr. Mazzini's later remarks on the republican and anti-papal administration of Rome, and the coldness it met with in England and elsewhere. We must admit that it is hard for a people to struggle, suffer, and bleed alone, yet hold themselves in this temperate attitude. It is not generous, as Mr. Mazzini too truly complains, in a nation having the enjoyment and the consciousness of liberty herself, to wait until the hour of victory has sounded for another nation before she stretches out a sister's hand towards her.


I affirm that with the exception of Ancona, where the triumvirate were obliged energetically to repress certain criminal acts of political vengeance, the republican cause was never sullied by the[Pg 268] slightest excess; that no censorship was assumed over the press before the siege, and that no occasion arose for exercising it during the siege. Not a single condemnation to death or exile bore witness to a severity which it would have been our right to have exercised, but which the perfect unanimity which reigned amongst all the elements of the state rendered useless. I affirm that, except in the case of three or four priests, who had been guilty of firing upon our combatants, and who were killed by the people during the last days of the siege, not a single act of personal violence was committed by any fraction of the population against another, and that if ever there was a city presenting the spectacle of a band of brothers pursuing a common end, and bound together by the same faith, it was Rome under the republican rule. The city was inhabited by foreigners from all parts of the world, by the consular agents, by many of your countrymen; let any one of them arise and under the guarantee of his own signature deny, if he can, the truth of what I say. Terror now reigns in Rome; the prisons are choked with men who have been arrested and detained without trial; fifty priests are confined in the castle of St. Angelo, whose only crime consists in their having lent their services in our hospitals; the citizens, the best known for their moderation, are exiled; the army is almost entirely dissolved, the city disarmed, and the "factious" sent away even to the last man; and yet France dares not consult in legal manner the will of the populations, but re-establishes the papal authority by military decree. I do not believe that since the dismemberment of Poland there has been committed a more atrocious injustice, a more gross violation of the eternal right which God has implanted in the peoples, that of appreciating and defining for themselves their own life, and governing themselves in accordance with their own appreciation of it. And I cannot believe that it is well for you or for Europe that such things can be accomplished in the eyes of the world, without one nation arising out of its immobility to protest in the name of universal justice. This is to enthrone brute force, where, by the power of reason, God alone should reign; it is to substitute the sword and poniard for law—to decree a ferocious war without limit of time or means between oppressors rendered suspicious by their fears, and the oppressed abandoned to the instincts of reaction and isolation. Let Europe ponder upon these things. For if the light of human morality becomes but a little more obscured, in that darkness there will arise a strife that will make those who come after us shudder with dread.

The balance of power in Europe is destroyed. It consisted formerly in the support given to the smaller states by the great powers: now they are abandoned. France in Italy, Russia in Hungary, Prussia in Germany, a little later perhaps in Switzerland; these are now the masters of the continent. England is thus made a nullity; the "celsa sedet in Eolus in arce," which Canning delighted to quote, to express the moderating function which he wished to reserve for his country, is now a meaningless phrase. Let not your preachers of the theory of material interests, your speculators upon extended markets deceive themselves; there is history to teach them that political influence and commercial influence are closely bound together. Political sympathies hold the key of the markets; the tariff of the Roman Republic will appear to you, if you study it, to be a declaration of sympathy towards England to which your government did not think it necessary to respond.

And yet, above the question of right, above the question of political interest, both of which were of a nature to excite early the attention of England, there is, as I have said, another question being agitated at Rome of a very different kind of importance, and which ought to have aroused all those who believe in the vital principle of religious reformation—it is that of liberty of conscience. The religious question which broods at the root of all political questions showed itself there great and visible in all its European importance. The Pope at Gaeta was the theory of absolute infallible authority exiled from Rome for ever; and exiled from Rome was to be exiled from the world. The abolition of the temporal power evidently drew with it, in the minds of all those who understood the secret of the papal authority, the emancipation of men's minds from the spiritual authority. The principle of liberty and of free consent, elevated by the Constituent Assembly into a living active right, tended rapidly to destroy the absolutist dogma which from Rome aims more than ever to enchain the universe. The high aristocracy of the Roman Catholic clergy well know the impossibility of retaining the soul in darkness, in the midst of light inundating the intelligence of men; for this reason they carried off their Pope to Gaeta; for this reason they now refuse all compromise. They know that any compromise would be fatal to them; that they must re-enter as conquerors, or not at all. And in the same way that the aristocracy of the clergy felt this inseparability of the two powers, the French government, in its present reactionary march, has felt that the keystone of despotism is at Rome—that the ruin of the spiritual authority of the middle ages would be the ruin of its own projects—and that the only method of securing to it a few more years of existence was to rebuild for it a temporal domination.

England has understood nothing of this. She has not understood what there was of sublime and prophetic in this cry of emancipation, in this protestation in favor of human liberty, issuing from the very heart of ancient Rome, in the face of the Vatican. She has not felt that the struggle in Rome was to cut the Gordian knot of moral servitude against which she has long and vainly opposed her Bible Societies, her Christian and Evangelical Alliances; and that there was being opened, had she but extended a sisterly hand to the movement, a mighty pathway for the human mind. She has not understood that one bold word, "respect for the liberty of thought," opposed to the hypocritical language of the French government, would have been sufficient to have inaugurated the era of a new religious policy, and to have conquered for herself a decisive ascendency upon the continent.

The writer of such passages as these may nevertheless be of good heart. Though we may not think him exactly qualified to conduct to a successful issue practical political movements in the existing state of Italian society, we think him qualified for something far higher and nobler. Like Knox and Wicliffe, Huss and Luther, Mr. Mazzini is no maker of ephemeral arrangements and compromises; but like them he is the uncompromising[Pg 269] asserter of principles, and the creator of a national sentiment, that will in time give law to the makers of such arrangements. Looking to the yet weak and timid condition of public opinion in Italy—looking to the narrow provincial views which still hamper general society—above all, looking to the limited power of its princes and prelates, and to the imbecile and demoralized characters of its Pio Nonos and Antonellis, we must confess that we see no hope of any immediate political settlement, the attainment of which need make it worth while for Mr. Mazzini to compromise or abandon for a moment his most extreme political opinions. Nothing is to be accomplished at present; and he is therefore more usefully employed in rallying his party by fervent reiteration of his principles, and in forming a pure and elevated public sentiment alike by his precepts and his example.

How masterly is this sketch of the career of


A Pope arose, by his tendencies, his progressive instincts and his love of popularity, an exception to the Popes of later times: to whom Providence, as if to teach mankind the absolute powerlessness of the institution, opened, in the love and in the illusions of the people, the path to a new life. So great is the fascination exercised by great memories—so great is the power of ancient customs—so feverish, in these multitudes who are said to be agitated by the breath of anarchy, is the desire for authority as the guide and sanction of their progress, that a word of pardon and tolerance from the Pope's lips sufficed to gather round him, in an enthusiasm and intoxication of affection, friends and enemies, believers and unbelievers, the ignorant and the men of thought. One long cry, the cry of millions ready to make themselves martyrs or conquerors at his nod, saluted him as their father and benefactor, the regenerator of the Catholic faith and of humanity. The experience of three ages and the inexorable logic of ideas, were at once forgotten; writers, powerful by their intellect and doctrines, until then dreaded as adversaries, employed themselves in founding around that One man systems destined to prepare for him the way to a splendid initiative. The many advocates of liberty of conscience, weary of the spectacle of anarchy revealed by the Protestant sects, remained in doubt. The few believers in the future church remained silent and thoughtful. It might be that history had decided too rashly, it might be amongst the secrets of Providence that an institution, which had for ten centuries at least given life and movement to Europe, should rise again, reconciled with the life and movement of humanity, from its own tomb. The minds of the whole civilized world hung, troubled and excited, upon the word which was to issue from the Vatican.

And where now is Pius IX.?

In the camp of the enemy: irrevocably disjoined from the progressive destinies of humanity; irrevocably adverse to the desires, to the aspirations which agitate his people and the people of believers. The experiment is complete. The abyss between Papacy and the world is hollowed out. No earthly power can fill it up.

Impelled by the impulses of his heart to seek for popularity and affection, but drawn on by the all-powerful logic of the principle that he represents, to the severity of absolute dictatorship; seduced by the universal movement of men's minds, by living examples in other countries, by the spirit of the age, to feel, to understand the sacred words of progress, of people, of free brotherhood, but incapable of making himself their interpreter; fearful of the consequences, and trembling like one who feels himself insecure, lest he should see the people, raised to a new consciousness of its own faculties and of its own rights, question the authority of the pontificate—Pius IX. vacillated contemptibly between the two paths presented to him, muttered words of emancipation, which he neither knew how nor intended to make good, and promises of country and independence to Italy which his followers betrayed by conspiring with Austria. Then, struck with sudden terror, he fled before the multitudes who cried aloud to him courage; he sheltered himself under the protection of a Prince whom he despised—the executioner of his subjects; he imbibed his tendencies, and in order to revenge himself for the quiet with which Rome, provoked in vain to a civil war, was organizing a new government, he solicited foreign aid; and he who had, from a horror of bloodshed, shortly before endeavored to withdraw Roman assistance from the Lombard struggle, agreed that French, Austrian, Neapolitan, and Spanish bayonets should rebuild his throne. He now wanders amidst the fallacies of secret protocols, the servant of his protectors, the servant of all except of duty and of the wish of those who hoped in him, turning to the frontiers of Rome and yet not expecting to re-enter there, and as if kept back by the phantoms of the slain. The Louis XVI. of Papacy, he has destroyed it for ever. The cannon ball of his allies discharged against the Vatican, gave the last blow to the institution.

Whilst these things were happening, a Prince was pursuing in the north of our peninsula a similar course, accompanied by the same hopes, by the same illusions and delusions of the people. He was saluted by the title of the Sword of Italy. The choicest spirits from all parts pointed out to him Austria and the Alps, and suspended, in order to make the last trial of monarchy, the propagandism of their most cherished ideas. He was preceded by the encouragement of all Europe, and followed by a numerous and valiant army. Where died Charles Albert?

Thus has Providence shown to our people, desirous of the right, but lukewarm in faith and too credulous in the illusions of the old world, the powerlessness of monarchy to insure the safety of Italy, and the irreconcilability of papacy with the free progress of humanity. The dualism of the middle ages is henceforward a mere form without life or soul; the Guelph and Ghibelline insignia are now those of the tomb. Neither Pope, nor King! God and the people only shall henceforth disclose to us the regions of the future.

Future times—nay the present will do ample justice to Mazzini, as well as to Pio Nono. In the first will be frankly recognized one of those iron men who are able to beard tyranny and profligacy even while they stand alone, the apostles of reformation, the originators and heralds of after change. In the other—but the words just quoted anticipate as it seems to us, and in no ungenerous spirit, the verdict and language of history.


[27] Royalty and Republicanism in Italy; or Notes and Documents relating to the Lombard Insurrection, and to the Royal War of 1848. By Joseph Mazzini. Charles Gilpin.

[Pg 270]

[From the Keepsake for 1851.]



Sleep!—the ghostly winds are blowing;
No moon's abroad; no star is glowing;
The river is deep, and the tide is flowing
To the land where you and I are going!
We are going afar,
Beyond moon or star,
To the land where the sinless angels are!
I lost my heart to your heartless sire;
('Twas melted away by his looks of fire;)
Forgot my God, and my father's ire,
All for the sake of a man's desire:—
But now we'll go
Where the waters flow,
And make us a bed where none shall know.
The world is cruel; the world's untrue;
Our foes are many; our friends are few;
No work, no bread, however we sue!
What is there left for us to do—
But fly—fly,
From the cruel sky,
And hide in the deepest deeps—and die!

[From the Ladies' Companion.]



If there be one thing more than another in the nice balance of tastes and prejudices (for I do not speak here of principles) which incline us now to the elegance of Charles, now to the strength of Cromwell,—which disgust us alternately with the license of the Cavaliers and the fanaticism of the Roundheads; it would be the melancholy ruin of cast-down castles and plundered shrines, that meet our eyes all over our fair land, and nowhere in greater profusion than in this district, lying as it does in the very midst of some of the most celebrated battles of the Civil Wars. To say nothing of the siege of Reading, which more even than the vandalism of the Reformation completed the destruction of that noble abbey, the third in rank and size in England, with its magnificent church, its cloisters, and its halls, covering thirty acres of buildings,—and such buildings! within the outer courts;—to say nothing of that most reckless barbarity just at our door—we in our little village of Aberleigh lie between Basting-House to the south, whose desperately defended walls offer little more now than a mere site,—and Donnington to the west, where the ruined Gatehouse upon the hill alone remains of that strong fortress, which overlooked the well-contested field of Newbury,—and Chalgrove to the north, where the reaper, as he binds his sheaf, still pauses to tell you the very place where Hampden fell; every spot has a history! Look at a wooden spire, and your companion shakes his head, and says that it has been so ever since the Cavaliers were blown up in the church tower! Ask the history of a crumbling wall, and the answer is pretty sure to be, Cromwell! That his Highness the Lord Protector did leave what an accomplished friend of mine calls "his peculiar impressions" upon a great many places in our neighborhood is pretty certain; on so many, that there is no actual or authentic catalogue of all; and in some cases there is nothing but general tradition, and the nature of the "impressions" in question, to vouch for the fact of their destruction at that period.

Amongst these, one of the edifices that must have been best worth preserving, and is even now most interesting to see, is the grand old castellated mansion, which in the reign of Elizabeth belonged to one of her favorite courtiers, and was known as Master Comptroller's House, at Grays.

The very road to it is singularly interesting. Passing through the town, which increases in growth every day, until one wonders when and where it will stop, and looking with ever fresh admiration at the beautiful lacework window of the old Friary, which I long to see preserved in the fitliest manner, by forming again the chief ornament of a church, and then driving under the arch of the Great Western Railway, and feeling the strange vibration of some monster train passing over our heads,—a proceeding which never fails to make my pony show off his choicest airs and graces, pricking up his pretty ears, tossing his slender head, dancing upon four feet, and sometimes rearing upon two,—we arrive at the long, low, picturesque old bridge, the oldest of all the bridges that cross the Thames, so narrow that no two vehicles can pass at once, and that over every pier triangular spaces have been devised for the safety of foot passengers. On the centre arch is a fisherman's hut, occupying the place once filled by a friar's cell, and covering a still existing chapel, dedicated to the Virgin Mary, now put to secular uses—a dairy or a cellar.

A little way down the river is one of the beautiful islands of the Thames, now a smooth and verdant meadow, edged round with old willow pollards calmly reflected in the bright, clear waters, but giving back in the twelfth century a far different scene. Here was fought a wager of battle between Robert de Montford, appellant, and Henry de Essex, hereditary Standard-bearer of the kings of England, defendant, by command, and in the presence of Henry the Second. The story is told very minutely and graphically by Stowe. Robert de Montford at length struck down his adversary, "who fell," says the old historian, "after receiving many wounds; and the King, at the request of several noblemen, his relations, gave permission to the monks to inter the body, commanding that no further violence should be offered to it. The monks took up the vanquished knight, and carried him into the abbey, where he revived. When he recovered from his wounds, he was received into the community, and assumed the habit of the order, his lands being forfeited to the King." I have always thought that this story would afford excellent scope to some great novelist, who might give a fair and accurate picture of monastic life, and, indeed, of the monastic orders, as landlords, neighbors, teachers, priests, without any mixture of controversial theology, or inventing any predecessors of Luther or Wicliffe. How we should have liked to have heard[Pg 271] all about "The Monastery," about the "Abbot" and Father Eustace, untroubled by Henry Warden or John Knox! From the moment that they appear, our comfort in the book vanishes, just as completely as that of the good easy Abbot Boniface himself. There we are in the middle of vexed questions, with the beautiful pile of Melrose threatening every moment to fall about our ears!

Our business now, however, is to get over the bridge, which after the excitement of one dispute with a pugnacious carrier, and another with a saucy groom, whose caracoling horse had well nigh leaped over the parapets on either side; after some backing of other carriages, and some danger of being forced back to our own, we at last achieve, and enter unscathed, the pleasant village of Caversham.

To the left, through a highly ornamented lodge, lies the road to the ancient seat of the Blounts, another house made famous by Pope, where the fair ladies of his love, the sisters Martha and Teresa, lived and died. A fine old place it is; and a picturesque road leads to it, winding through a tract called the Warren, between the high chalk-cliffs, clothed with trees of all varieties, that for so many miles fence in the northern side of the Thames, and the lordly river itself, now concealed by tall elms, now open and shining in the full light of the summer sun. There is not such a flower bank in Oxfordshire as Caversham Warren.

Our way, however, leads straight on. A few miles further, and a turn to the right conducts us to one of the grand old village churches, which give so much of character to English landscape. A large and beautiful pile it is. The tower half clothed with ivy, standing with its charming vicarage and its pretty vicarage-garden on a high eminence, overhanging one of the finest bends of the great river. A woody lane leads from the church to the bottom of the chalk-cliff, one side of which stands out from the road below, like a promontory, surmounted by the laurel hedges and flowery arbors of the vicarage-garden, and crested by a noble cedar of Lebanon. This is Shiplake church, famed far and near for its magnificent oak carving, and the rich painted glass of its windows, collected, long before such adornments were fashionable, by the fine taste of the late vicar, and therefore filled with the very choicest specimens of mediæval art, chiefly obtained from the remains of the celebrated Abbey of St. Bertin, near St. Omers, sacked during the first French Revolution. In this church Alfred Tennyson was married. Blessings be upon him! I never saw the great Poet in my life, but thousands who never may have seen him either, but who owe to his poetry the purest and richest intellectual enjoyment, will echo and re-echo the benison.

A little way farther, and a turn to the left leads to another spot consecrated by genius,—Woodcot, where Sir Edward Bulwer Lytton passed the earlier years of his married life, and wrote several of his most powerful novels. I have always thought that the scenery of Paul Clifford caught some of its tone from that wild and beautiful country, for wild and beautiful it is. The terrace in the grounds commands a most extensive prospect; and beneath a clump of trees on the common behind the house, is the only spot where on a clear day Windsor may be seen on one side, and Oxford on the other,—looking almost like the domes, and towers, and pinnacles that sometimes appear in the clouds—a fairy picture that the next breeze may waft away! This beautiful residence stands so high, that one of its former possessors, Admiral Fraser (grandfather to that dear friend of mine who is the present owner), could discover Woodcot Clump from the mast of his own ship at Spithead, a distance of sixty miles.

Wyfold's Court, another pretty place a little farther on, which also belonged once to a most dear friend, possesses the finest Wych-elms in England. Artists come from far and near to paint these stately trees, whose down-dropping branches and magnificent height are at once so graceful and so rich. They are said always to indicate ecclesiastical possession, but no trace of such dependency is to be found in the title-deeds, or in the tenure by which in feudal times the lands were held,—that of presenting a rose to the King, should he pass by a certain road on a May-day.

And now we approach Rotherfield Grays,—its bowery lanes, its wild rugged commons, and its vast beech woods, from the edge of which projects every here and there a huge cherry-tree, looking, in the blossoming springtime, as if carved in ivory, so exquisite is the whiteness, casting upon the ferny-turf underneath showers of snowy petals that blanch the very ground, and diffusing around an almond-like odor, that mingles with the springing thyme and the flowering gorse, and loads the very air with heavy balm.

Exquisite is the pleasantness of these beech woods, where the light is green from the silky verdure of the young leaves, and where the mossy wood-paths are embroidered with thousands of flowers, from the earliest violet and primrose, the wood-anemone, the wood-sorrel, the daffodil, and the wild hyacinth of spring, to the wood-vetch, the woodroof, the campanulas, and the orchises of summer;—for all the English orchises are here: that which so curiously imitates the dead oak leaf, that again which imitates the human figure; the commonest but most pretty bee orchis, and the parallel ones which are called after the spider, the frog, and the fly. Strange freak of nature this, in a lower order of creation, to mimic her own handyworks in a higher!—to mimic even our human mimicry!—for that which is called the man orchis is most like the imitation of a human figure that a child might cut from colored paper. Strange, strange mimicry! but full of variety, full of beauty, full of odor. Of all the fragrant blossoms that haunt the woods, I know none so exquisite as that night-scented[Pg 272] orchis which is called indifferently, the butterfly or the lily of the valley. Another glory of these woods, an autumnal glory, is the whole fungus tribe, various and innumerable as the mosses; from the sober drab-colored fungi, spotted with white, which so much resemble a sea-egg, to those whose deep and gorgeous hues would shame the tinting of an Indian shell. Truffles, too, are found beneath the earth; and above it are deposited huge masses of the strange compound called in modern geological phrase Agglomerate. Flint and coral, and gravel, and attrited pebbles enter into the combination of this extraordinary natural conglomeration, which no steel, however hardened, can separate, and which seems to have been imitated very successfully by the old builders in their cements and the substances used in the filling up of their grandest structures, as may be seen in the layers which unite the enormous slabs of granite in the Roman walls at Silchester, as well as in the works of the old monkish architects at Reading Abbey. Another beauty of this country is to be found in the fields,—now of the deep-red clover, with its shining crimson tops, now of the gay and brilliant saintfoin (the holy hay), the bright pink of whose flowery spikes gives to the ground the look of a bed of roses.

And now we reach the gate that admits us down a steep descent to the Rectory-house, a large substantial mansion, covered with Banksia roses, and finely placed upon a natural terrace,—a fertile valley below, and its own woods and orchard-trees above.

My friend the rector, raciest of men, is an Oxford divine of the old school; a ripe scholar; one who has travelled wide and far, and is learned in the tongues, the manners, and the literature of many nations; but who is himself English to the backbone in person, thought, and feeling. Orthodox is he, no doubt. Nowhere are church and schools, and parish visitings, better cared for; but he has a knack of attending also to the creature comforts of all about him, of calling beef and blankets in aid of his precepts, which has a wonderful effect in promoting their efficacy. Mansion and man are large alike, and alike overflowing with hospitality and kindliness. His original and poignant conversation is so joyous and good-humored, the making every body happy is so evidently his predominant taste, that the pungency only adds to the flavor of his talk, and never casts a moment's shade over its sunny heartiness.

Right opposite the Rectory terrace, framed like a picture by the rarest and stateliest trees, stands the object of my pilgrimage, Grays' Court, a comparatively modern house, erected amongst the remains of a vast old castellated mansion, belonging first to the noble family of Gray, who gave their name not merely to the manor, but to the district; then to the house of Knollys; and latterly to the Stapletons, two venerable ladies of that name being its present possessors.

All my life I had heard of Grays' Court; of the rich yet wild country in which it is placed; of the park so finely undulated, and so profusely covered by magnificent timber; of the huge old towers which seem to guard and sentinel the present house; of the far extended walls, whose foundations may yet be traced, in dry seasons, among the turf of the lawn; of the traditions which assign the demolition of those ancient walls to the wars of the Commonwealth; and of the strange absence of all documentary evidence upon the subject.

Another cause for my strong desire to see this interesting place, is to be found in its association with one of those historical personages in whom I have always taken the warmest interest. Lord Essex (whose mother was the famous Lettice Knollys, who had had for her second husband another of Queen Elizabeth's favorites, Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester), when confined in London, a prey to the tyranny of Elizabeth, petitioned, in one of those eloquent letters to the Virgin Queen which will always remain amongst the earliest and finest specimens of English prose, to be allowed to repair, for the benefit of his health, "to Master Comptroller's house at Grays." Ah! we can fancy, when looking over this lovely valley, with its woods, its verdure, its sweep of hills, its feeling of the near river, we can well fancy how the poet-heart of the great Earl must have longed to leave the trial, the turmoil, the jangling, the treachery, the weary fears, the bitter humiliations of his London captivity, and to taste once more the sweet air, the pleasant sights, the calmness and the quiet of the country. Hope and comfort must have come with the thought. One of the prettiest pictures that I know, is an extract from a contemporary letter, in the first volume of Mr. Craik's most interesting book, the "Romance of the Peerage," telling of the Earl and Countess, during one of the daily visits that she was at one time permitted to pay him when he was a prisoner in Essex House, walking together in the garden, "now he, now she, reading one to the other." The whole taste and feeling of the man, the daily habit of his life, is shown in this little circumstance. And this is the brave soldier who, when examined before the Privy Council, a council composed of open enemies and treacherous friends, had been kept nearly all the day kneeling at the bottom of the table. Tyranny drove him into madness, and then exacted the full penalty of the wild acts which that madness prompted. But Essex was a man in advance of his age; the companion as well as the patron of poets; the protector of papist and puritan; the fearless asserter of liberty of conscience! He deserved a truer friend than Bacon, a more merciful judge than Elizabeth.

To the house of Knollys belongs another interesting association, that strangest of genealogical romances, the great case of the Banbury peerage. The cause was decided (if decided it can be called even now) by evidence[Pg 273] found in the parish register of Rotherfield Grays.

The place has yet another attraction in its difficulty of access; the excellent ladies of the Court admitting few beyond their own immediate connections and nearest friends. One class, to be sure, finds its way there as if by instinct—the poor, who, as the birds of the air detect the grain under the surface in the newly sown ground, are sure to find out the soil where charity lies germinating. Few excepting these constant visitors are admitted. But, besides the powerful introduction of our mutual friend the rector, a nephew of theirs, and his most sweet and interesting wife, had for some time inhabited the house which had been the home of my own youth, so that my name was not strange to them; and they had the kindness to allow me to walk over their beautiful grounds and gardens, to see their charming Swiss dairy, with its marbles and its china, and, above all, to satisfy my curiosity by looking over the towers which still remain of the old castle,—piles whose prodigious thickness of wall and distance from each other give token of the immense extent and importance of the place. It is said to have been built round two courts. Alnwick and Windsor rose to my thoughts as I contemplated these gigantic remains, and calculated the space that the original edifice must have covered. One of these towers is still occupied by the well of the castle, a well three hundred feet deep, which supplies the family with water. It will give some idea of the scale of the old mansion, to say that the wheel by which the water is raised, is twenty-five feet in diameter. Two donkeys are employed in the operation. One donkey suffices for the parallel but much smaller well at Carisbrook, where the animal is so accustomed to be put in for the mere purpose of exhibiting the way in which the water is raised to the visitors who go to look at the poor king's last prison, that he just makes the one turn necessary to show the working of the machine, and then stops of his own accord. The donkeys at Grays, kept for use and not for show, have not had a similar opportunity of displaying their sagacity.

One cannot look at the place without a feeling of adaptedness. It is the very spot for a stronghold of the Cavaliers: a spot where Lovelace and Montrose might each have fought and each have sung, defending it to the last loaf of bread and the last charge of powder, and yielding at last to the irresistible force of Cromwell's cannonade.

[From the Keepsake for 1851.]


Come not, when I am dead,
To drop thy foolish tears upon my grave,
To trample round my fallen head,
And vex the unhappy dust thou wouldst not save.
There let the wind sweep, and the plover cry;
But go thou by.
Child, if it were thine error or thy crime
I care no longer, being all unblest;
Wed whom thou wilt; but I am sick of time,
And I desire to rest.
Pass on, weak heart, and leave me where I lie.
Go by—go by!

[From Blackwood's Magazine.]




Continued from page 120.


In spite of all his Machiavellian wisdom, Dr. Riccabocca had been foiled in his attempt to seduce Leonard Fairfield into his service, even though he succeeded in partially winning over the widow to his views. For to her he represented the worldly advantages of the thing. Lenny would learn to be fit for more than a day-laborer; he would learn gardening, in all its branches—rise some day to be a head gardener. "And," said Riccabocca, "I will take care of his book learning, and teach him whatever he has a head for."

"He has a head for every thing," said the widow.

"Then," said the wise man, "every thing shall go into it."

The widow was certainly dazzled; for, as we have seen, she highly prized scholarly distinction, and she knew that the parson looked upon Riccabocca as a wondrous learned man. But still, Riccabocca was said to be a Papist, and suspected to be a conjuror. Her scruples on both these points, the Italian, who was an adept in the art of talking over the fair sex, would no doubt have dissipated, if there had been any use in it; but Lenny put a dead stop to all negotiations. He had taken a mortal dislike to Riccabocca; he was very much frightened by him—and the spectacles, the pipe, the cloak, the long hair, and the red umbrella; and said so sturdily, in reply to every overture, "Please, sir, I'd rather not; I'd rather stay along with mother"—that Riccabocca was forced to suspend all further experiments in his Machiavellian diplomacy. He was not at all cast down, however, by his first failure; on the contrary, he was one of those men whom opposition stimulates. And what before had been but a suggestion of prudence, became an object of desire. Plenty of other lads might no doubt be had, on as reasonable terms as Lenny Fairfield; but the moment Lenny presumed to baffle the Italian's designs upon him, the special acquisition of Lenny became of paramount importance in the eyes of Signor Riccabocca.

Jackeymo, however, lost all his interest in the traps, snares, and gins which his master proposed to lay for Leonard Fairfield, in the more immediate surprise that awaited him on learning that Dr. Riccabocca had accepted an invitation to pass a few days at the Hall.

"There will be no one there but the family," said Riccabocca. "Poor Giacomo, a little chat in the servants' hall will do you good: and the squire's beef is more nourishing, after all, than the sticklebacks and minnows. It will lengthen your life."

"The Padrone jests," said Jackeymo, statelily, "as if any one could starve in his service."

"Um," said Riccabocca. "At least, faithful[Pg 274] friend, you have tried that experiment as far as human nature will permit;" and he extended his hand to his fellow-exile with that familiarity which exists between servant and master in the usages of the continent. Jackeymo bent low, and a tear fell upon the hand he kissed.

"Cospetto!" said Dr. Riccabocca, "a thousand mock pearls do not make up the cost of a single true one! The tears of women, we know their worth; but the tear of an honest man—fie, Giacomo!—at least I can never repay you this! Go and see to our wardrobe."

So far as his master's wardrobe was concerned, that order was pleasing to Jackeymo; for the Doctor had in his drawers suits which Jackeymo pronounced to be as good as new, though many a long year had passed since they left the tailor's hands. But when Jackeymo came to examine the state of his own clothing department, his face grew considerably longer. It was not that he was without other clothes than those on his back—quantity was there, but the quality! Mournfully he gazed on two suits, complete in the three separate members of which man's raiments are composed: the one suit extended at length upon his bed, like a veteran stretched by pious hands after death; the other brought piecemeal to the invidious light—the torso placed upon a chair, the limbs dangling down from Jackeymo's melancholy arm. No bodies long exposed at the Morgue could evince less sign of resuscitation than those respectable defuncts. For, indeed, Jackeymo had been less thrifty of his apparel—more profusus sui—than his master. In the earliest days of their exile, he preserved the decorous habit of dressing for dinner—it was a respect due to the Padrone—and that habit had lasted till the two habits on which it necessarily depended had evinced the first symptoms of decay; then the evening clothes had been taken into morning wear, in which hard service they had breathed their last.

The Doctor, notwithstanding his general philosophical abstraction from such household details, had more than once said, rather in pity to Jackeymo, than with an eye to that respectability which the costume of the servant reflects on the dignity of the master, "Giacomo, thou wantest clothes; fit thyself out of mine!"

And Jackeymo had bowed his gratitude, as if the donation had been accepted; but the fact was, that that same fitting out was easier said than done. For though—thanks to an existence mainly upon sticklebacks and minnows—both Jackeymo and Riccabocca at that state which the longevity of misers proves to be most healthful to the human frame, viz., skin and bone—yet, the bones contained in the skin of Riccabocca all took longitudinal directions; while those in the skin of Jackeymo spread out latitudinally. And you might as well have made the bark of a Lombardy poplar serve for the trunk of some dwarfed and pollarded oak, in whose hollow the Babes of the Wood could have slept at their ease, as have fitted out Jackeymo from the garb of Riccabocca. Moreover, if the skill of the tailor could have accomplished that undertaking, the faithful Jackeymo would never have had the heart to avail himself of the generosity of his master. He had a sort of religious sentiment too, about those vestments of the Padrone. The ancients, we know, when escaping from shipwreck, suspended in the votive temple the garments in which they had struggled through the wave. Jackeymo looked on those relics of the past with a kindred superstition. "This coat the Padrone wore on such an occasion. I remember the very evening the Padrone last put on those pantaloons!" And coat and pantaloons were tenderly dusted, and carefully restored to their sacred rest.

But now, after all, what was to be done? Jackeymo was much too proud to exhibit his person, to the eyes of the Squire's butler, in habiliments discreditable to himself and the Padrone. In the midst of his perplexity the bell rang, and he went down into the parlor.

Riccabocca was standing on the hearth, under his symbolical representation of the "Patriæ Exul."

"Giacomo," quoth he, "I have been thinking that thou hast never done what I told thee, and fitted thyself out from my superfluities. But we are going now into the great world; visiting once begun, Heaven knows where it may stop! Go to the nearest town and get thyself clothes. Things are dear in England. Will this suffice?" And Riccabocca extended a £5 note.

Jackeymo, we have seen, was more familiar with his master than we formal English permit our domestics to be with us. But in his familiarity he was usually respectful. This time, however, respect deserted him.

"The Padrone is mad!" he exclaimed; "he would fling away his whole fortune if I would let him. Five pounds English, or a hundred and twenty-six pounds Milanese![28] Santa Maria! Unnatural Father! And what is to become of the poor Signorina? Is this the way you are to marry her in the foreign land?"

"Giacomo," said Riccabocca, bowing his head to the storm, "the Signorina to-morrow; to-day, the honor of the house. Thy small-clothes, Giacomo. Miserable man, thy small-clothes!"

"It is just," said Jackeymo, recovering himself, and with humility; "and the Padrone does right to blame me, but not in so cruel a way. It is just—the Padrone lodges and boards me, and gives me handsome wages, and he has a right to expect that I should not go in this figure."

"For the board and the lodgment, good," said Riccabocca. "For the handsome wages, they are the visions of thy fancy!"

"They are no such thing," said Jackeymo, "they are only in arrear. As if the Padrone could not pay them some day or other—as if[Pg 275] I was demeaning myself by serving a master who did not intend to pay his servants! And can't I wait? Have I not my savings, too? But be cheered, be cheered; you shall be contented with me. I have two beautiful suits still. I was arranging them when you rang for me. You shall see, you shall see."

And Jackeymo hurried from the room, hurried back into his own chamber, unlocked a little trunk which he kept at his bed head, tossed out a variety of small articles, and from the deepest depth extracted a leathern purse. He emptied the contents on the bed. They were chiefly Italian coins, some five-franc pieces, a silver medallion inclosing a little image of his patron saint—San Giacomo—one solid English guinea, and two or three pounds' worth in English silver. Jackeymo put back the foreign coins, saying prudently, "One will lose on them here;" he seized the English coins and counted them out. "But are you enough, you rascals?" quoth he angrily, giving them a good shake. His eye caught sight of the medallion—he paused; and after eyeing the tiny representation of the saint with great deliberation, he added, in a sentence which he must have picked up from the proverbial aphorisms of his master:

"What's the difference between the enemy who does not hurt me, and the friend who does not serve me? Monsignore San Giacomo, my patron saint, you are of very little use to me in the leathern bag. But if you help me to get into a new pair of small-clothes on this important occasion, you will be a friend indeed. Alla bisogna, Monsignore." Then, gravely kissing the medallion, he thrust it into one pocket, the coins into the other, made up a bundle of the two defunct suits, and, muttering to himself, "Beast, miser that I am, to disgrace the Padrone, with all these savings in his service!" ran down stairs into his pantry, caught up his hat and stick, and in a few moments more was seen trudging off to the neighboring town of L——.

Apparently the poor Italian succeeded, for he came back that evening in time to prepare the thin gruel which made his master's supper, with a suit of black—a little threadbare, but still highly respectable—two shirt fronts, and two white cravats. But, out of all this finery, Jackeymo held the small-clothes in especial veneration; for as they had cost exactly what the medallion had sold for, so it seemed to him that San Giacomo had heard his prayer in that quarter to which he had more exclusively directed the saint's attention. The other habiliments came to him in the merely human process of sale and barter; the small-clothes were the personal gratuity of San Giacomo!


Life has been subjected to many ingenious comparisons: and if we do not understand it any better, it is not for want of what is called "reasoning by illustration." Amongst other resemblances, there are moments when, to a quiet contemplator, it suggests the image of one of those rotatory entertainments commonly seen in fairs, and known by the name of "whirligigs or roundabouts," in which each participator of the pastime, seated on his hobby, is always apparently in the act of pursuing some one before him, while he is pursued by some one behind. Man, and woman too, are naturally animals of chase; the greatest still finds something to follow, and there is no one too humble not to be an object of prey to another. Thus, confining our view to the village of Hazeldean, we behold in this whirligig Dr. Riccabocca spurring his hobby after Lenny Fairfield; and Miss Jemima, on her decorous side-saddle, whipping after Dr. Riccabocca. Why, with so long and intimate a conviction of the villany of our sex, Miss Jemima should resolve upon giving the male animal one more chance of redeeming itself in her eyes, I leave to the explanation of those gentlemen who profess to find "their only books in woman's looks." Perhaps it might be from the over-tenderness and clemency of Miss Jemima's nature; perhaps it might be that, as yet, she had only experienced the villany of man born and reared in those cold northern climates; and in the land of Petrarch and Romeo, of the citron and myrtle, there was reason to expect that the native monster would be more amenable to gentle influences, less obstinately hardened in his iniquities. Without entering farther into these hypotheses, it is sufficient to say, that on Signor Riccabocca's appearance in the drawing-room, at Hazeldean, Miss Jemima felt more than ever rejoiced that she had relaxed in his favor her general hostility to man. In truth, though Frank saw something quizzical in the old-fashioned and outlandish cut of the Italian's sober dress; in his long hair, and the chapeau bras, over which he bowed so gracefully, and then pressed it, as if to his heart, before tucking it under his arm, after the fashion in which the gizzard reposes under the wing of a roasted pullet; yet it was impossible that even Frank could deny to Riccabocca that praise which is due to the air and manner of an unmistakable gentleman. And certainly as, after dinner, conversation grew more familiar, and the Parson and Mrs. Dale, who had been invited to meet their friend, did their best to draw him out, his talk, though sometimes a little too wise for his listeners, became eminently animated and agreeable. It was the conversation of a man who, besides the knowledge which is acquired from books and life, had studied the art which becomes a gentleman—that of pleasing in polite society. Riccabocca, however, had more than this art—he had one which is often less innocent,—the art of penetrating into the weak side of his associates, and of saying the exact thing which hits it plump in the middle, with the careless air of a random shot.

The result was, that all were charmed with him; and that even Captain Barnabas postponed[Pg 276] the whist-table for a full hour after the usual time. The Doctor did not play—he thus became the property of the two ladies, Miss Jemima and Mrs. Dale.

Seated between the two, in the place rightfully appertaining to Flimsey, who this time was fairly dislodged, to her great wonder and discontent, the Doctor was the emblem of true Domestic Felicity, placed between Friendship and Love.

Friendship, as became her, worked quietly at the embroidered pocket-handkerchief, and left Love to its more animated operations. "You must be very lonely at the Casino," said Love, in a sympathizing tone.

"Madam," replied Riccabocca, gallantly, "I shall think so when I leave you."

Friendship cast a sly glance at Love—Love blushed or looked down on the carpet, which comes to the same thing. "Yet," began Love again—"yet solitude, to a feeling heart—"

Riccabocca thought of the note of invitation, and involuntarily buttoned his coat, as if to protect the individual organ thus alarmingly referred to.

"Solitude, to a feeling heart, has its charms. It is so hard even for us, poor ignorant women, to find a congenial companion—but for you!" Love stopped short, as if it had said too much, and smelt confusedly at its boquet.

Dr. Riccabocca cautiously lowered his spectacles, and darted one glance, which, with the rapidity and comprehensiveness of lightning, seemed to envelope and take in it, as it were, the whole inventory of Miss Jemima's personal attractions. Now, Miss Jemima, as I have before observed, had a mild and pensive expression of countenance, and she would have been positively pretty had the mildness looked a little more alert, and the pensiveness somewhat less lackadaisical. In fact, though Miss Jemima was constitutionally mild, she was not de natura pensive; she had too much of the Hazeldean blood in her veins for that sullen and viscid humor called melancholy, and therefore this assumption of pensiveness really spoilt her character of features, which only wanted to be lighted up by a cheerful smile to be extremely prepossessing. The same remark might apply to the figure, which—thanks to the same pensiveness—lost all the undulating grace which movement and animation bestow on the fluent curves of the feminine form. The figure was a good figure, examined in detail—a little thin, perhaps, but by no means emaciated—with just and elegant proportions, and naturally light and flexible. But that same unfortunate pensiveness gave the whole a character of inertness and languor; and when Miss Jemima reclined on the sofa, so complete seemed the relaxation of nerve and muscle, that you would have thought she had lost the use of her limbs. Over her face and form, thus defrauded of the charms Providence had bestowed on them, Dr. Riccabocca's eye glanced rapidly; and then moving nearer to Mrs. Dale—"Defend me" (he stopped a moment, and added,) "from the charge of not being able to appreciate congenial companionship."

"Oh, I did not say that!" cried Miss Jemima.

"Pardon me," said the Italian, "if I am so dull as to misunderstand you. One may well lose one's head, at least, in such a neighborhood as this." He rose as he spoke, and bent over Frank's shoulder to examine some Views of Italy, which Miss Jemima (with what, if wholly unselfish, would have been an attention truly delicate) had extracted from the library in order to gratify the guest.

"Most interesting creature, indeed," sighed Miss Jemima, "but too—too flattering!"

"Tell me," said Mrs. Dale gravely, "do you think, love, that you could put off the end of the world a little longer, or must we make haste in order to be in time?"

"How wicked you are!" said Miss Jemima, turning aside.

Some few minutes afterwards, Mrs. Dale contrived it so that Dr. Riccabocca and herself were in a farther corner of the room, looking at a picture said to be by Wouvermans.

Mrs. Dale.—"She is very amiable, Jemima, is she not?"

Riccabocca.—"Exceedingly so. Very fine battle-piece!"

Mrs. Dale.—"So kind-hearted."

Riccabocca.—"All ladies are. How naturally that warrior makes his desperate cut at the runaway!"

Mrs. Dale.—"She is not what is called regularly handsome, but she has something very winning."

Riccabocca, with a smile.—"So winning, that it is strange she is not won. That gray mare in the foreground stands out very boldly!"

Mrs. Dale, distrusting the smile of Riccabocca, and throwing in a more effective grape charge.—"Not won yet; and it is strange!—she will have a very pretty fortune."


Mrs. Dale.—"Six thousand pounds, I dare say—certainly four."

Riccabocca, suppressing a sigh, and with his wonted address.—"If Mrs. Dale were still single, she would never need a friend to say what her portion might be; but Miss Jemima is so good that I am quite sure it is not Miss Jemima's fault that she is still—Miss Jemima!"

The foreigner slipped away as he spoke, and sat himself down beside the whist-players.

Mrs. Dale was disappointed, but certainly not offended.—"It would be such a good thing for both," muttered she, almost inaudibly.

"Giacomo," said Riccabocca, as he was undressing, that night, in the large, comfortable, well-carpeted English bedroom, with that great English four-posted bed in the recess which seems made to shame folks out of single-blessedness—"Giacomo, I have had this evening the offer of probably six thousand pounds—certainly of four thousand."

"Cosa meravigliosa!" exclaimed Jackeymo—"miraculous[Pg 277] thing!" and he crossed himself with great fervor. "Six thousand pounds English! why, that must be a hundred thousand—blockhead that I am!—more than a hundred and fifty thousand pounds Milanese!" And Jackeymo, who was considerably enlivened by the Squire's ale, commenced a series of gesticulations and capers, in the midst of which he stopped and cried, "But not for nothing?"

"Nothing! no!"

"These mercenary English!—the Government wants to bribe you."

"That's not it."

"The priests want you to turn heretic."

"Worse than that," said the philosopher.

"Worse than that! O Padrone! for shame!"

"Don't be a fool, but pull off my pantaloons—they want me never to wear these again!"

"Never to wear what!" exclaimed Jackeymo, staring outright at his master's long legs in their linen drawers—"never to wear—"

"The breeches," said Riccabocca, laconically.

"The barbarians!" faltered Jackeymo.

"My nightcap!—and never to have any comfort in this," said Riccabocca, drawing the cotton head-gear; "and never to have any sound sleep in that," pointing to the four-posted bed. "And to be a bondsmen and a slave," continued Riccabocca, waxing wroth; "and to be wheedled and purred at, and pawed, and clawed, and scolded, and fondled, and blinded, and deafened, and bridled, and saddled—bedevilled and—married."

"Married!" said Jackeymo, more dispassionately—"that's very bad, certainly; but more than a hundred and fifty thousand lire, and perhaps a pretty young lady, and—"

"Pretty young lady!" growled Riccabocca, jumping into bed and drawing the clothes fiercely over him. "Put out the candle, and get along with you—do, you villainous old incendiary!"


It was not many days since the resurrection of those ill-omened stocks, and it was evident already to an ordinary observer, that something wrong had got into the village. The peasants wore a sullen expression of countenance; when the Squire passed, they took off their hats with more than ordinary formality, but they did not return the same broad smile to his quick, hearty "Good day, my man." The women peered at him from the threshold or the casement, but did not, as was their wont (at least the wont of the prettiest), take occasion to come out to catch his passing compliment on their own good looks, or their tidy cottages. And the children, who used to play after work on the site of the old stocks, now shunned the place, and, indeed, seemed to cease play altogether.

On the other hand, no man likes to build, or rebuild, a great public work for nothing. Now that the Squire had resuscitated the stocks, and made them so exceedingly handsome, it was natural that he should wish to put somebody into them. Moreover, his pride and self-esteem had been wounded by the Parson's opposition; and it would be a justification to his own forethought, and a triumph over the Parson's understanding, if he could satisfactorily and practically establish a proof that the stocks had not been repaired before they were wanted.

Therefore, unconsciously to himself, there was something about the Squire more burly, and authoritative, and menacing, than heretofore. Old Gaffer Solomons observed, "that they had better moind well what they were about, for that the Squire had a wicked look in the tail of his eye—just as the dun bull had afore it tossed neighbor Barnes's little boy."

For two or three days these mute signs of something brewing in the atmosphere had been rather noticeable than noticed, without any positive overt act of tyranny on the one hand, or rebellion on the other. But on the very Saturday night in which Dr. Riccabocca was installed in the four-posted bed in the chintz chamber, the threatened revolution commenced. In the dead of that night, personal outrage was committed on the stocks. And on the Sunday morning, Mr. Stirn, who was the earliest riser in the parish, perceived, in going to the farmyard, that the knob of the column that flanked the board had been feloniously broken off; that the four holes were bunged up with mud; and that some jacobinical villain had carved, on the very centre of the flourish or scroll work, "Dam the stoks!" Mr. Stirn was much too vigilant a right-hand man, much too zealous a friend of law and order, not to regard such proceedings with horror and alarm. And when the Squire came into his dressing-room at half-past seven, his butler (who fulfilled also the duties of valet) informed him with a mysterious air, that Mr. Stirn had something "very particular to communicate, about a most howdacious midnight 'spiracy and 'sault."

The Squire stared, and bade Mr. Stirn be admitted.

"Well!" cried the Squire, suspending the operation of stropping his razor.

Mr. Stirn groaned.

"Well, man, what now!"

"I never knowed such a thing in this here parish afore," began Mr. Stirn, "and I can only 'count for it by s'posing that them foreign Papishers have been semminating"—

"Been what?"


"Dissemminating, you blockhead—disseminating what?"

"Damn the stocks," began Mr. Stirn, plunging right in medias res, and by a fine use of one of the noblest figures of rhetoric.

"Mr. Stirn!" cried the Squire, reddening, "did you say 'Damn the stocks?'—damn my new handsome pair of stocks!"

"Lord forbid, sir; that's what they say:[Pg 278] that's what they have digged on it with knives and daggers, and they have stuffed mud in its four holes, and broken the capital of the elewation."

The Squire took the napkin off his shoulder, laid down strop and razor; he seated himself in his arm-chair majestically, crossed his legs, and, in a voice that affected tranquillity, said—

"Compose yourself, Stirn; you have a deposition to make, touching an assault upon—can I trust my senses?—upon my new stocks. Compose yourself—be calm. NOW! What the devil is come to the parish?"

"Ah, sir, what indeed?" replied Mr. Stirn: and then laying the forefinger of the right hand on the palm of the left, he narrated the case.

"And whom do you suspect? Be calm now, don't speak in a passion. You are a witness, sir—a dispassionate, unprejudiced witness. Zounds and fury! this is the most insolent, unprovoked, diabolical—but whom do you suspect, I say?"

Stirn twirled his hat, elevated his eyebrows, jerked his thumb over his shoulder, and whispered—"I hear as how two Papishers slept at your honor's last night."

"What, dolt! do you suppose Dr. Rickeybockey got out of his warm bed to bung up the holes in my new stocks?"

"Noa; he's two cunning to do it himself, but he may have been semminating. He's mighty thick with Parson Dale, and your honor knows as how the Parson set his face agin the stocks. Wait a bit, sir—don't fly at me yet. There be a boy in this here parish"—

"A boy!—ah fool, now you are nearer the mark. The Parson write 'Damn the stocks,' indeed! What boy do you mean?"

"And that boy be cockered up much by Mister Dale; and the Papishers went and sat with him and his mother a whole hour t'other day; and that boy is as deep as a well; and I seed him lurking about the place, and hiding hisself under the tree the day the stocks was put up—and that ere boy is Lenny Fairfield."

"Whew," said the Squire, whistling, "you have not your usual senses about you to-day, man. Lenny Fairfield—pattern boy of the village. Hold your tongue. I dare say it is not done by any one in the parish, after all; some good-for-nothing vagrant—that cursed tinker, who goes about with a very vicious donkey—whom, by the way, I caught picking thistles out of the very eyes of the old stocks! Shows how the tinker brings up his donkeys! Well, keep a sharp look-out. To-day is Sunday; worst day of the week, I'm sorry and ashamed to say, for rows and depredations. Between the services, and after evening church, there are always idle fellows from all the neighboring country about, as you know too well. Depend on it, the real culprits will be found gathering round the stocks, and will betray themselves: have your eyes, ears, and wits about you, and I've no doubt we shall come to the rights of the matter before the day's out. And if we do," added the Squire, "we'll make an example of the ruffian!"

"In course," said Stirn; "and if we don't find him, we must make an example all the same. That's where it is, sir. That's why the stock's ben't respected: they has not had an example yet—we wants an example."

"On my word, I believe that's very true; and the first idle fellow you catch in any thing wrong we'll clap in, and keep him there for two hours at least."

"With the biggest pleasure, your honor—that's what it is."

And Mr. Stirn, having now got what he considered a complete and unconditional authority over all the legs and wrists of Hazeldean parish, quoad the stocks, took his departure.


"Randal," said Mrs. Leslie, on this memorable Sunday—"Randal, do you think of going to Mr. Hazeldean's?"

"Yes, ma'am," answered Randal. "Mr. Egerton does not object to it; and as I do not return to Eaton, I may have no other opportunity of seeing Frank for some time. I ought not to fail in respect to Mr. Egerton's natural heir!"

"Gracious me!" cried Mrs. Leslie, who, like many women of her cast and kind, had a sort of worldliness in her notions, which she never evinced in her conduct—"gracious me!—natural heir to the old Leslie property!"

"He is Mr. Egerton's nephew, and," added Randal, ingenuously letting out his thoughts, "I am no relation to Mr. Egerton at all."

"But," said poor Mrs. Leslie, with tears in her eyes, "it would be a shame in the man, after paying your schooling and sending you to Oxford, and having you to stay with him in the holidays, if he did not mean any thing by it."

"Any thing, mother—yes—but not the thing you suppose. No matter. It is enough that he has armed me for life, and I shall use the weapons as seems to me best."

Here the dialogue was suspended, by the entrance of the other members of the family, dressed for church.

"It can't be time for church! No! it can't!" exclaimed Mrs. Leslie. She was never in time for any thing.

"Last bell ringing," said Mr. Leslie, who, though a slow man, was methodical and punctual. Mrs. Leslie made a frantic rush at the door, the Montfydget blood being now in a blaze—whirled up the stairs—gained her room, tore her best bonnet from the peg, snatched her newest shawl from the drawers, crushed the bonnet on her head, flung the shawl on her shoulders, thrust a desperate pin into its folds, in order to conceal a buttonless yawn in the body of her gown, and then flew back like a whirlwind. Meanwhile the family were already out of doors, in waiting; and just as the bell ceased, the procession moved from the shabby house to the dilapidated church.[Pg 279]

The church was a large one, but the congregation was small, and so was the income of the Parson. It was a lay rectory, and the great tithes had belonged to the Leslies, but they had been long since sold. The vicarage, still in their gift, might be worth a little more than £100 a year. The present incumbent had nothing else to live upon. He was a good man, and not originally a stupid one; but penury and the anxious cares for wife and family, combined with what may be called solitary confinement for the cultivated mind, when, amidst the two-legged creatures round, it sees no other cultivated mind with which it can exchange an extra-parochial thought—had lulled him into a lazy mournfulness, which at times was very like imbecility. His income allowed him to do no good to the parish, whether in work, trade, or charity; and thus he had no moral weight with the parishioners beyond the example of his sinless life and such negative effect as might be produced by his slumberous exhortations. Therefore his parishioners troubled him very little; and but for the influence which in hours of Montfydget activity, Mrs. Leslie exercised over the most tractable—that is, the children and the aged—not half-a-dozen persons would have known or cared whether he shut up his church or not.

But our family were seated in state in their old seignorial pew, and Mr. Dumdrum, with a nasal twang, went lugubriously through the prayers; and the old people who could sin no more, and the children who had not yet learned to sin, croaked forth responses that might have come from the choral frogs in Aristophanes. And there was a long sermon apropos to nothing which could possibly interest the congregation—being, in fact, some controversial homily, which Mr. Dumdrum had composed and preached years before. And when this discourse was over, there was a loud universal grunt, as if of release and thanksgiving, and a great clatter of shoes—and the old hobbled, and the young scrambled, to the church door.

Immediately after church, the Leslie family dined; and, as soon as dinner was over, Randal set out on his foot journey to Hazeldean Hall.

Delicate and even feeble though his frame, he had the energy and quickness of movement which belongs to nervous temperaments; and he tasked the slow stride of a peasant, whom he took to serve him as a guide for the first two or three miles. Though Randal had not the gracious open manner with the poor which Frank inherited from his father, he was still (despite many a secret hypocritical vice, at war with the character of a gentleman) gentleman enough to have no churlish pride to his inferiors. He talked little, but he suffered his guide to talk; and the boor, who was the same whom Frank had accosted, indulged in eulogistic comments on that young gentleman's pony, from which he diverged into some compliments on the young gentleman himself. Randal drew his hat over his brows. There is a wonderful tact and fine breeding in your agricultural peasant; and though Tom Stowell was but a brutish specimen of the class, he suddenly perceived that he was giving pain. He paused, scratched his head, and glancing affectionately towards his companion, exclaimed—

"But I shall live to see you on a handsomer beastis than that little pony, Master Randal; and sure I ought, for you be as good a gentleman as any in the land."

"Thank you," said Randal. "But I like walking better than riding—I am more used to it."

"Well, and you walk bra'ly—there ben't a better walker in the county. And very pleasant it is walking; and 'tis a pretty country afore you, all the way to the Hall."

Randal strode on, as if impatient of these attempts to flatter or to soothe; and, coming at length into a broader lane, said—"I think I can find my way now. Many thanks to you, Tom;" and he forced a shilling into Tom's horny palm. The man took it reluctantly, and a tear started to his eye. He felt more grateful for that shilling than he had for Frank's liberal half-crown; and he thought of the poor fallen family, and forgot his own dire wrestle with the wolf at his door.

He stayed lingering in the lane till the figure of Randal was out of sight, and then returned slowly. Young Leslie continued to walk on at a quick pace. With all his intellectual culture, and his restless aspirations, his breast afforded him no thought so generous, no sentiment so poetic, as those with which the unlettered clown crept slouchingly homeward.

As Randal gained a point where several lanes met on a broad piece of waste land, he began to feel tired, and his step slackened. Just then a gig emerged from one of these by-roads, and took the same direction as the pedestrian. The road was rough and hilly, and the driver proceeded at a foot's-pace; so that the gig and the pedestrian went pretty well abreast.

"You seem tired, sir," said the driver, a stout young farmer of the higher class of tenants, and he looked down compassionately on the boy's pale countenance and weary stride. "Perhaps we are going the same way, and I can give you a lift?"

It was Randal's habitual policy to make use of every advantage proffered to him, and he accepted the proposal frankly enough to please the honest farmer.

"A nice day, sir," said the latter, as Randal sat by his side. "Have you come far?"

"From Rood Hall."

"Oh, you be young Squire Leslie," said the farmer, more respectfully, and lifting his hat.

"Yes, my name is Leslie. You know Rood, then?"

"I was brought up on your father's land, sir. You may have heard of Farmer Bruce?"

Randal.—"I remember, when I was a little boy, a Mr. Bruce, who rented, I believe, the[Pg 280] best part of our land, and who used to bring us cakes when he called to see my father. He is a relation of yours?"

Farmer Bruce.—"He was my uncle. He is dead now, poor man."

Randal.—"Dead! I am grieved to hear it. He was very kind to us children. But it is long since he left my father's farm."

Farmer Bruce, apologetically.—"I am sure he was very sorry to go. But, you see, he had an unexpected legacy——"

Randal.—"And retired from business?"

Farmer Bruce.—"No. But, having capital, he could afford to pay a good rent for a real good farm."

Randal, bitterly.—"All capital seems to fly from the lands of Rood. And whose farm did he take?"

Farmer Bruce.—"He took Hawleigh, under Squire Hazeldean. I rent it now. We've laid out a power o' money on it. But I don't complain. It pays well."

Randal.—"Would the money have paid as well, sunk on my father's land?"

Farmer Bruce.—"Perhaps it might, in the long run. But then, sir, we wanted new premises—barns, and cattle-sheds, and a deal more—which the landlord should do; but it is not every landlord as can afford that. Squire Hazeldean's a rich man."


The road now became pretty good, and the farmer put his horse into a brisk trot.

"But which way be you going, sir? I don't care for a few miles more or less, if I can be of service."

"I am going to Hazeldean," said Randal, rousing himself from a reverie. "Don't let me take you out of your way."

"Oh, Hawleigh Farm is on the other side of the village, so it be quite my way, sir."

The farmer then, who was really a smart young fellow—one of that race which the application of capital to land has produced, and which, in point of education and refinement, are at least on a par with the squires of a former generation—began to talk about his handsome horse, about horses in general, about hunting and coursing; he handled all these subjects with spirit, yet with modesty. Randal pulled his hat still lower down over his brows, and did not interrupt him till past the Casino, when, struck by the classic air of the place, and catching a scent from the orange-trees, the boy asked abruptly—"Whose house is that?"

"Oh, it belongs to Squire Hazeldean, but it is let or lent to a foreign Mounseer. They say he is quite the gentleman, but uncommonly poor."

"Poor," said Randal, turning back to gaze on the trim garden, the neat terrace, the pretty belvidere, and (the door of the house being open) catching a glimpse of the painted hall within—"poor; the place seems well kept. What do you call poor, Mr. Bruce?"

The farmer laughed. "Well, that's a home question, sir. But I believe the Mounseer is as poor as a man can be who makes no debts and does not actually starve."

"As poor as my father?" asked Randal, openly and abruptly.

"Lord, sir! your father be a very rich man compared to him."

Randal continued to gaze, and his mind's eye conjured up the contrast of his slovenly, shabby home, with all its neglected appurtenances! No trim garden at Rood Hall, no scent from odorous orange blossoms. Here poverty at least was elegant—there, how squalid! He did not comprehend at how cheap a rate the luxury of the Beautiful can be effected. They now approached the extremity of the Squire's park pales! and Randal, seeing a little gate, bade the farmer stop his gig, and descended. The boy plunged amid the thick oak groves; the farmer went his way blithely, and his mellow merry whistle came to Randal's moody ear as he glided quick under the shadow of the trees.

He arrived at the Hall, to find that all the family were at church; and, according to the patriarchal custom, the church-going family embraced nearly all the servants. It was therefore an old invalid housemaid who opened the door to him. She was rather deaf, and seemed so stupid that Randal did not ask leave to enter and wait for Frank's return. He therefore said briefly that he would just stroll on the lawn, and call again when church was over.

The old woman stared, and strove to hear him; meanwhile Randal turned round abruptly, and sauntered towards the garden side of the handsome old house.

There was enough to attract any eye in the smooth greensward of the spacious lawn—in the numerous parterres of varying flowers—in the venerable grandeur of the two mighty cedars, which threw their still shadows over the grass—and in the picturesque building, with its projecting mullions and heavy gables; yet I fear that it was with no poet's nor painter's eye that this young old man gazed on the scene before him.

He beheld the evidence of wealth—and the envy of wealth jaundiced his soul.

Folding his arms on his breast, he stood a while, looking all around him with closed lips and lowering brow; then he walked slowly on, his eyes fixed on the ground, and muttered to himself——

"The heir to this property is little better than a dunce; and they tell me I have talents and learning, and I have taken to my heart the maxim, 'Knowledge is power.' And yet, with all my struggles, will knowledge ever place me on the same level as that on which this dunce is born? I don't wonder that the poor should hate the rich. But of all the poor, who should hate the rich like the pauper gentleman? I suppose Audley Egerton means me to come into Parliament, and be a Tory like himself. What! keep things as they are![Pg 281] No; for me not even Democracy, unless there first come Revolution. I understand the cry of a Marat—'More blood!' Marat had lived as a poor man, and cultivated science—in the sight of a prince's palace."

He turned sharply round, and glared vindictively on the poor old hall, which, though a very comfortable habitation, was certainly no palace; and with his arms still folded on his breast, he walked backwards, as if not to lose the view, nor the chain of ideas it conjured up.

"But," he continued to soliloquize—"but of revolution there is no chance. Yet the same wit and will that would thrive in revolutions should thrive in this commonplace life. Knowledge is power. Well, then, shall I have no power to oust this blockhead? Oust him—what from? His father's halls? Well, but if he were dead, who would be the heir of Hazeldean? Have I not heard my mother say that I am as near in blood to this Squire as any one, if he had no children? Oh, but the boy's life is worth ten of mine! Oust him from what? At least from the thoughts of his uncle Egerton—an uncle who has never even seen him! That, at least, is more feasible. 'Make my way in life,' sayest thou, Audley Egerton? Ay—and to the fortune thou hast robbed from my ancestors. Simulation—simulation. Lord Bacon allows simulation. Lord Bacon practised it—and—"

Here the soliloquy came to a sudden end; for as, rapt in his thoughts, the boy had continued to walk backwards, he had come to the verge where the lawn slided off into the ditch of the ha-ha—and, just as he was fortifying himself by the precept and practice of my Lord Bacon, the ground went from under him, and slap into the ditch went Randal Leslie!

It so happened that the Squire, whose active genius was always at some repair or improvement, had been but a few days before widening and sloping off the ditch just in that part, so that the earth was fresh and damp, and not yet either turfed or flattened down. Thus when Randal, recovering his first surprise and shock, rose to his feet, he found his clothes covered with mud; while the rudeness of the fall was evinced by the fantastic and extraordinary appearance of his hat, which, hollowed here, bulging there, and crushed out of all recognition generally, was as little like the hat of a decorous hard-reading young gentlemen—protegé of the dignified Mr. Audley Egerton—as any hat picked out of a kennel after some drunken brawl possibly could be.

Randal was dizzy, and stunned, and bruised, and it was some moments before he took heed of his raiment. When he did so, his spleen was greatly aggravated. He was still boy enough not to like the idea of presenting himself to the unknown Squire, and the dandy Frank, in such a trim: he resolved at once to regain the lane and return home, without accomplishing the object of his journey; and seeing the footpath right before him, which led to a gate that he conceived would admit him into the highway sooner than the path by which he had come, he took it at once.

It is surprising how little we human creatures heed the warnings of our good genius. I have no doubt that some benignant power had precipitated Randal Leslie into the ditch, as a significant hint of the fate of all who choose what is, now-a-days, by no means an uncommon step in the march of intellect—viz., the walking backwards, in order to gratify a vindictive view of one's neighbor's property! I suspect that, before this century is out, many a fine fellow will thus have found his ha-ha, and scrambled out of the ditch with a much shabbier coat than he had on when he fell into it. But Randal did not thank his good genius for giving him a premonitory tumble;—and I never yet knew a man who did!


The Squire was greatly ruffled at breakfast that morning. He was too much of an Englishman to bear insult patiently, and he considered that he had been personally insulted in the outrage offered to his recent donation to the parish. His feelings, too, were hurt, as well as his pride. There was something so ungrateful in the whole thing, just after he had taken so much pains, not only in the resuscitation, but the embellishment of the stocks. It was not, however, so rare an occurrence for the Squire to be ruffled, as to create any remark. Riccabocca, indeed, as a stranger, and Mrs. Hazeldean, as a wife, had the quick tact to perceive that the host was glum and the husband snappish; but the one was too discreet and the other too sensible, to chafe the new sore, whatever it might be; and shortly after breakfast the Squire retired into his study, and absented himself from morning service.

In his delightful Life of Oliver Goldsmith, Mr. Foster takes care to touch our hearts by introducing his hero's excuse for not entering the priesthood. He did not feel himself good enough. Thy Vicar of Wakefield, poor Goldsmith, was an excellent substitute for thee; and Dr. Primrose, at least, will be good enough for the world until Miss Jemima's fears are realized. Now, Squire Hazeldean had a tenderness of conscience much less reasonable than Goldsmith's. There were occasionally days in which he did not feel good enough—I don't say for a priest, but even for one of the congregation—"days in which (said the Squire in his own blunt way), as I have never in my life met a worse devil than a devil of a temper, I'll not carry mine into the family pew. He shan't be growling out hypocritical responses from my poor grandmother's prayer-book." So the Squire and his demon stayed at home. But the demon was generally cast out before the day was over; and, on this occasion, when the bell rang for afternoon service, it may be presumed that the Squire had reasoned or fretted himself into a proper state of mind; for he was then seen sallying forth[Pg 282] from the porch of his hall, arm-in-arm with his wife, and at the head of his household. The second service was (as is commonly the case, in rural districts) more numerously attended than the first one; and it was our Parson's wont to devote to this service his most effective discourse.

Parson Dale, though a very fair scholar, had neither the deep theology nor the archæological learning that distinguish the rising generation of the clergy. I much doubt if he could have passed what would now be called a creditable examination in the Fathers; and as for all the nice formalities in the rubric, he would never have been the man to divide a congregation or puzzle a bishop. Neither was Parson Dale very erudite in ecclesiastical architecture. He did not much care whether all the details in the church were purely gothic or not: crockets and finials, round arch and pointed arch, were matters, I fear, on which he had never troubled his head. But one secret Parson Dale did possess, which is perhaps of equal importance with those subtler mysteries—he knew how to fill his church! Even at morning service no pews were empty, and at evening service the church overflowed.

Parson Dale, too, may be considered, now-a-days, to hold but a mean idea of the spiritual authority of the Church. He had never been known to dispute on its exact bearing with the State—whether it was incorporated with the State, or above the State—whether it was antecedent to the Papacy, or formed from the Papacy, &c., &c. According to his favorite maxim, Quieta non movere (not to disturb things that are quiet), I have no doubt that he would have thought that the less discussion is provoked upon such matters, the better for both church and laity. Nor had he ever been known to regret the disuse of the ancient custom of excommunication, nor any other diminution of the powers of the priesthood, whether minatory or militant; yet for all this, Parson Dale had a great notion of the sacred privilege of a minister of the gospel—to advise—to deter—to persuade—to reprove. And it was for the evening service that he prepared those sermons, which may be called "sermons that preach at you." He preferred the evening for that salutary discipline, not only because the congregation was more numerous, but also because, being a shrewd man in his own innocent way, he knew that people bear better to be preached at after dinner than before; that you arrive more insinuatingly at the heart when the stomach is at peace. There was a genial kindness in Parson Dale's way of preaching at you. It was done in so imperceptible fatherly a manner, that you never felt offended. He did it, too, with so much art, that nobody but your own guilty self knew that you were the sinner he was exhorting. Yet he did not spare rich nor poor: he preached at the Squire, and that great fat farmer, Mr. Bullock the church-warden, as boldly as at Hodge the ploughman, and Scrub the hedger. As for Mr. Stirn, he had preached at him more often than at any one in the parish; but Stirn, though he had the sense to know it, never had the grace to reform. There was, too, in Parson Dale's sermons, something of that boldness of illustration which would have been scholarly if he had not made it familiar, and which is found in the discourses of our elder divines. Like them, he did not scruple, now and then, to introduce an anecdote from history, or borrow an allusion from some non-scriptural author, in order to enliven the attention of his audience, or render an argument more plain. And the good man had an object in this, a little distinct from, though wholly subordinate to the main purpose of his discourse. He was a friend to knowledge—but to knowledge accompanied by religion; and sometimes his references to sources not within the ordinary reading of his congregation would spirit up some farmer's son, with an evening's leisure on his hands, to ask the Parson for farther explanation, and so he lured on to a little solid or graceful instruction under a safe guide.

Now on the present occasion, the Parson, who had always his eye and heart on his flock, and who had seen with great grief the realization of his fears at the revival of the stocks; seen that a spirit of discontent was already at work amongst the peasants, and that magisterial and inquisitorial designs were darkening the natural benevolence of the Squire; seen, in short, the signs of a breach between classes, and the precursors of the ever inflammable feud between the rich and the poor, meditated nothing less than a great Political Sermon—a sermon that should extract from the roots of social truths a healing virtue for the wound that lay sore, but latent, in the breast of his parish of Hazeldean:

And thus ran—

The Political Sermon of Parson Dale.


"For every man shall bear his own burden."

Galatians, c. vi., v. 5.

"Brethren, every man has his burden. If God designed our lives to end at the grave, may we not believe that he would have freed an existence so brief from the cares and sorrows to which, since the beginning of the world, mankind has been subjected? Suppose that I am a kind father, and have a child whom I dearly love, but I know by a divine revelation that he will die at the age of eight years, surely I should not vex his infancy by needless preparations for the duties of life. If I am a rich man, I should not send him from the caresses of his mother to the stern discipline of school. If I am a poor man, I should not take him with me to hedge and dig, to scorch in the sun, to freeze in the winter's cold: why inflict hardships on his childhood, for the purpose of fitting him for manhood, when I know that he is doomed not to grow into man? But if, on the other hand, I believe my child is reserved for a more durable existence, then should I[Pg 283] not, out of the very love I bear to him, prepare his childhood for the struggle of life, according to that station in which he is born, giving many a toil, many a pain to the infant, in order to rear and strengthen him for his duties as man? So is it with our Father that is in heaven. Viewing this life as our infancy, and the next as our spiritual maturity, where, 'in the ages to come, he may show the exceeding riches of his grace,' it is in his tenderness, as in his wisdom, to permit the toil and the pain which, in tasking the powers and developing the virtues of the soul, prepare it for the earnest of our inheritance, the 'redemption of the purchased possession.' Hence it is that every man has his burden. Brethren, if you believe that God is good, yea, but as tender as a human father, you will know that your troubles in life are a proof that you are reared for an eternity. But each man thinks his own burden the hardest to bear: the poor man groans under his poverty, the rich man under the cares that multiply with wealth. For, so far from wealth freeing us from trouble, all the wise men who have written in all ages, have repeated with one voice the words of the wisest, 'When goods increase, they are increased that eat them; and what good is there to the owners thereof, saving the beholding of them with their eyes?' And this is literally true, my brethren; for, let a man be as rich as was the great King Solomon himself, unless he lock up all his gold in a chest, it must go abroad to be divided amongst others; yea, though, like Solomon, he make him great works—though he build houses and plant vineyards, and make him gardens and orchards—still the gold that he spends feeds but the mouths he employs; and Solomon himself could not eat with a better relish than the poorest mason who builded the house, or the humblest laborer who planted the vineyard. Therefore, 'when goods increase, they are increased that eat them.' And this, my brethren, may teach us toleration and compassion for the rich. We share their riches whether they will or not; we do not share their cares. The profane history of our own country tells us that a princess, destined to be the greatest queen that ever sat on this throne, envied the milk-maid singing; and a profane poet, whose wisdom was only less than that of the inspired writers, represents the man who by force and wit had risen to be a king, sighing for the sleep vouchsafed to the meanest of his subjects—all bearing out the words of the son of David—'The sleep of the laboring man is sweet, whether he eat little or much; but the abundance of the rich will not suffer him to sleep.'

"Amongst my brethren now present, there is doubtless some one who has been poor, and by honest industry has made himself comparatively rich. Let his heart answer me while I speak: are not the chief cares that now disturb him to be found in the goods he hath acquired?—has he not both vexations to his spirit and trials to his virtue, which he knew not when he went forth to his labor, and took no heed of the morrow? But it is right, my brethren, that to every station there should be its care—to every man his burden; for if the poor did not sometimes so far feel poverty to be a burden as to desire to better their condition, and (to use the language of the world) 'seek to rise in life,' their most valuable energies would never be aroused; and we should not witness that spectacle, which is so common in the land we live in—namely, the successful struggle of manly labor against adverse fortune—a struggle in which the triumph of one gives hope to thousands. It is said that necessity is the mother of invention; and the social blessings which are now as common to us as air and sunshine, have come from that law of our nature which makes us aspire towards indefinite improvement, enriches each successive generation by the labors of the last, and, in free countries, often lifts the child of the laborer to a place amongst the rulers of the land. Nay, if necessity is the mother of invention, poverty is the creator of the arts. If there had been no poverty, and no sense of poverty, where would have been that which we call the wealth of a country? Subtract from civilization all that has been produced by the poor, and what remains?—the state of the savage. Where you now see laborer and prince, you would see equality indeed—the equality of wild men. No; not even equality there; for there, brute force becomes lordship, and woe to the weak! Where you now see some in frieze, some in purple, you would see nakedness in all. Where stand the palace and the cot, you would behold but mud huts and caves. As far as the peasant excels the king among savages, so far does the society exalted and enriched by the struggles of labor excel the state in which Poverty feels no disparity, and Toil sighs for no ease. On the other hand, if the rich were perfectly contented with their wealth, their hearts would become hardened in the sensual enjoyments it procures. It is that feeling, by Divine Wisdom implanted in the soul, that there is vanity and vexation of spirit in the things of Mammon, which still leaves the rich man sensitive to the instincts of heaven, and teaches him to seek for happiness in those elevated virtues to which wealth invites him—namely, protection to the lowly and beneficence to the distressed.

"And this, my brethren, leads me to another view of the vast subject opened to us by the words of the apostle—'Every man shall bear his own burden.' The worldly conditions of life are unequal. Why are they unequal? O my brethren, do you not perceive? Think you that, if it had been better for our spiritual probation that there should be neither great nor lowly, rich nor poor, Providence would not so have ordered the dispensations of the world, and so, by its mysterious but merciful agencies, have influenced the framework and foundations of society? But if, from the remotest period of human annals, and in all the numberless experiments of government which the wit of[Pg 284] man has devised, still this inequality is ever found to exist, may we not suspect that there is something in the very principles of our nature to which that inequality is necessary and essential? Ask why this inequality! Why? as well ask why life is the sphere of duty and the nursery of virtues. For if all men were equal, if there were no suffering and no ease, no poverty and no wealth, would you not sweep with one blow the half at least of human virtues from the world? If there were no penury and no pain, what would become of fortitude?—what of patience?—what of resignation? If there were no greatness and no wealth, what would become of benevolence, of charity, of the blessed human pity, of temperance in the midst of luxury, of justice in the exercise of power? Carry the question further; grant all conditions the same—no reverse, no rise and no fall—nothing to hope for, nothing to fear—what a moral death you would at once inflict upon all the energies of the soul, and what a link between the heart of man and the Providence of God would be snapped asunder! If we could annihilate evil, we should annihilate hope; and hope, my brethren, is the avenue to faith. If there be 'a time to weep, and a time to laugh,' it is that he who mourns may turn to eternity for comfort, and he who rejoices may bless God for the happy hour. Ah! my brethren, were it possible to annihilate the inequalities of human life, it would be the banishment of our worthiest virtues, the torpor of our spiritual natures, the palsy of our mental faculties. The moral world, like the world without us, derives its health and its beauty from diversity and contrast.

"'Every man shall bear his own burden.' True; but now turn to an earlier verse in the same chapter. 'Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.' Yes; while Heaven ordains to each his peculiar suffering, it connects the family of man into one household, by that feeling which, more perhaps than any other, distinguishes us from the brute creation—I mean the feeling to which we give the name of sympathy—the feeling for each other! The herd of deer shun the stag that is marked by the gunner; the flock heedeth not the sheep that creeps into the shade to die; but man has sorrow and joy not in himself alone, but in the joy and sorrow of those around him. He who feels only for himself, abjures his very nature as man; for do we not say of one who has no tenderness for mankind that he is inhuman? and do we not call him who sorrows with the sorrowful, humane?

"Now, brethren, that which especially marked the divine mission of our Lord, is the direct appeal to this sympathy which distinguishes us from the brute. He seizes not upon some faculty of genius given but to few, but upon that ready impulse of heart which is given to us all; and in saying, 'Love one another,' 'Bear ye one another's burdens,' he elevates the most delightful of our emotions into the most sacred of his laws. The lawyer asks our Lord, 'who is my neighbor?' Our Lord replies by the parable of the Good Samaritan. The priest and the Levite saw the wounded man that fell among the thieves, and passed by on the other side. That priest might have been austere in his doctrine, that Levite might have been learned in the law; but neither to the learning of the Levite, nor to the doctrine of the priest, does our Saviour even deign to allude. He cites but the action of the Samaritan, and saith to the lawyer, 'Which now of these three, thinkest thou, was neighbor unto him that fell among the thieves? And he said, He that showed mercy unto him. Then said Jesus unto him, Go, and do thou likewise.'

"O shallowness of human judgments! It was enough to be born a Samaritan in order to be rejected by the priest, and despised by the Levite. Yet now, what to us the priest and the Levite, of God's chosen race though they were? They passed from the hearts of men when they passed the sufferer by the wayside; while this loathed Samaritan, half thrust from the pale of the Hebrew, becomes of our family, of our kindred; a brother amongst the brotherhood of Love, so long as Mercy and Affliction shall meet in the common thoroughfare of Life!

"'Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ!' Think not, O my brethren, that this applies only to almsgiving—to that relief of distress which is commonly called charity—to the obvious duty of devoting, from our superfluities, something that we scarcely miss, to the wants of a starving brother. No. I appeal to the poorest amongst ye, if the worst burdens are those of the body—if the kind word and the tender thought have not often lightened your hearts more than bread bestowed with a grudge, and charity that humbles you by a frown. Sympathy is a beneficence at the command of us all,—yea, of the pauper as of the king; and sympathy is Christ's wealth. Sympathy is brotherhood. The rich are told to have charity for the poor, and the poor are enjoined to respect their superiors. Good: I say not to the contrary. But I say also to the poor, 'In your turn have charity for the rich;' and I say to the rich, 'In your turn respect the poor.'

"'Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.' Thou, O poor man, envy not nor grudge thy brother his larger portion of worldly goods. Believe that he hath his sorrows and crosses like thyself, and perhaps, as more delicately nurtured, he feels them more; nay, hath he not temptations so great that our Lord hath exclaimed—'How hardly they that have riches enter into the kingdom of heaven?' And what are temptations but trials?—what are trials but perils and sorrows? Think not that you cannot bestow your charity on the rich man, even while you take your sustenance from his hands. A heathen writer,[Pg 285] often cited by the earliest preachers of the gospel, hath truly said—'Wherever there is room for a man, there is place for a benefit.'

"And I ask any rich brother amongst you when he hath gone forth to survey his barns and his granaries, his gardens and orchards, if suddenly, in the vain pride of his heart, he sees the scowl on the brow of the laborer—if he deems himself hated in the midst of his wealth—if he feels that his least faults are treasured up against him with the hardness of malice, and his plainest benefits received with the ingratitude of envy—I ask, I say, any rich man, whether straightway all pleasure in his worldly possessions does not fade from his heart, and whether he does not feel what a wealth of gladness it is in the power of the poor man to bestow! For all these things of Mammon pass away; but there is in the smile of him whom we have served, a something that we may take with us into heaven. If, then, ye bear one another's burdens, they who are poor will have mercy on the errors, and compassion for the griefs of the rich. To all men it was said—yes, to the Lazarus as to the Dives—'Judge not, that ye be not judged.' But think not, O rich man, that we preach only to the poor. If it be their duty not to grudge thee thy substance, it is thine to do all that may sweeten their labor. Remember, that when our Lord said, 'How hardly shall they that have riches enter into the kingdom of heaven,' he replied also to them who asked, 'Who then shall be saved?' 'The things which are impossible with men are possible with God:' that is, man left to his own temptations would fail; but strengthened by God, he shall be saved. If thy riches are the tests of thy trial, so may they also be the instruments of thy virtues. Prove by thy riches that thou art compassionate and tender, temperate and benign; and thy riches themselves may become the evidence at once of thy faith and of thy works.

"We have constantly on our lips the simple precept, 'Do unto others as ye would be done by.' Why do we fail so often in the practice? Because we neglect to cultivate that sympathy which nature implants as an instinct, and the Saviour exalts as a command. If thou wouldst do unto thy neighbor as thou wouldst be done by, ponder well how thy neighbor will regard the action thou art about to do to him. Put thyself into his place. If thou art strong, and he is weak, descend from thy strength, and enter into his weakness; lay aside thy burden for the while, and buckle on his own; let thy sight see as through his eyes—thy heart beat as in his bosom. Do this, and thou wilt often confess that what had seemed just to thy power will seem harsh to his weakness. For 'as a zealous man hath not done his duty, when he calls his brother drunkard and beast,'[29] even so an administrator of the law mistakes his object if he writes on the grand column of society, only warnings that irritate the bold, and terrify the timid: and a man will be no more in love with law than with virtue, 'if he be forced to it with rudeness and incivilities.' If, then, ye would bear the burden of the lowly, O ye great—feel not only for them, but with! Watch that your pride does not chafe them—your power does not wantonly gall. Your worldly inferior is of the class from which the apostles were chosen—amidst which the Lord of Creation descended from a throne above the seraphs."

The Parson here paused a moment, and his eye glanced towards the pew near the pulpit, where sat the magnate of Hazeldean. The Squire was leaning his chin thoughtfully on his hand, his brow inclined downwards, and the natural glow of his complexion much heightened.

"But"—resumed the Parson softly, without turning to his book, and rather as if prompted by the suggestion of the moment—"But he who has cultivated sympathy commits not these errors, or, if committing them, hastens to retract. So natural is sympathy to the good man, that he obeys it mechanically when he suffers his heart to be the monitor of his conscience. In this sympathy behold the bond between rich and poor! By this sympathy, whatever our varying worldly lots, they become what they were meant to be—exercises for the virtues more peculiar to each; and thus, if in the body each man bear his own burden, yet in the fellowship of the soul all have common relief in bearing the burdens of each other. This is the law of Christ—fulfil it, O my flock!"

Here the Parson closed his sermon, and the congregation bowed their heads.


[28] By the pounds Milanese, Giacomo means the Milanese lira.

Gleanings from the Journals.

Dr. Turnbull says in the Medical Gazette, "It has struck me that, if we could discover any substance which could be so applied as to contract the iris, one cause of the effect of shortsightedness would be remedied. The result, I am happy to say, has been most satisfactory. In the first instance I applied the extract of ginger, which was rubbed five or ten times over the whole forehead, with the view of acting upon the fifth pair of nerves. Afterwards I substituted a concentrated tincture, of the strength of one part of ginger to two parts of spirits of wine, decolorated by animal charcoal. In numerous cases this application has almost doubled the vision."

Mr. George Cruikshank has presided over a temperance meeting at Bristol. He maintained in his address that if Shakspeare were alive now, he would be of their society! "In 'Othello,' there was the character of a bad man, one Iago, who, setting himself to work the ruin of another, begins by making him drunk, and when it is first offered to him the answer is, 'Not to-night, good Iago. I have very poor and unhappy brains for drinking. I could well wish courtesy would invent some other custom of entertainment.' They would re-echo that wish, he was sure; courtesy might invent a better custom of entertainment than that of drinking"—(applause). We observe that the meeting gave three cheers for "The Bottle." A stranger to modern engravings would no doubt consider this in the last degree inconsistent.

[Pg 286]

We find in the London papers accounts of a Copying Electric Telegraph, invented by a Mr. Bakewell, who had given lectures upon it at the Russell Institution. Its object is the transmission of the handwriting of correspondents. Its advantages are, freedom from error, as the messages transmitted are fac-similes of the originals: authentication of the communications by the transmission of copies of the handwriting; increased rapidity, to such an extent that a single wire may be as effective as ten with the needle telegraph, and consequent economy in the construction of telegraphic lines of communication. The secrecy of correspondence would also be maintained in a greater degree by the copying telegraph, as it would afford peculiar facility for transmitting messages in cipher, and the telegraph clerks, instead of being compelled by their duties to read all the messages transmitted, might be forbidden from perusing any portion but the address. As an additional means of secrecy, the messages may be transmitted invisibly, by moistening the paper with diluted muriatic acid alone, the writing being rendered legible by a solution of prussiate of potass.

The "original Mrs. Partington" was a respectable old lady (says Notes and Queries), living at Sidmouth, in Devonshire. Her cottage was on the beach, and during an awful storm (November, 1824, when some fifty or sixty ships were wrecked at Plymouth) the sea rose to such a height as every now and then to invade the old lady's place of domicile; in fact, almost every wave dashed in at the door. Mrs. Partington, with such help as she could command, with mops and brooms, as fast as the water entered the house, mopped it out again; until at length the waves had the mastery, and the dame was compelled to retire to an upper story of the house. The first allusion to the circumstance was made by Lord Brougham in his celebrated speech in the House of Commons on the Reform Bill, in which he compared the Conservative opposition to the bill to be like the opposition of "Dame Partington, who endeavored to mop out the waves of the Atlantic."

It is stated that the Neapolitan Government has granted a sum of twenty thousand ducats for continuing the excavations at Pompeii.


[29] Jeremy TaylorOf Christian Prudence.

Ladies' Fashions for January.

The evening costumes of the present season are characterized by profuse trimming. The skirts of the newest dresses, excepting those composed of very rich materials, are all very fully trimmed. Corsages, whether high or low, are ornamented in some way or other. Flounces, employed to trim the skirts of ball dresses, are made somewhat fuller than heretofore. Even lace flounces, which used to be set on plain, are now gathered up in slight fulness. To add still more to the appearance of amplitude in dresses trimmed with lace, some dressmakers edge the skirts with a fontange of ribbon. With ball dresses of transparent textures, trimmed with flounces of the same, this fontange of ribbon is frequently placed at the edge of the slip worn under the dress. Tulle dresses are now fashionable for ball costume. Some pretty organdy muslins, intended for very young ladies, have just been introduced. These dresses should be made with two jupes, simply edged with a broad hem.

Cloth is adopted for morning walking dresses, redingote form, open down the front, and embroidered in arabesque pattern, in silk braid and other trimming; the sleeves are worked at bottom, and open, to admit underneath cambric or muslin sleeves tight at the wrist; the body is embroidered to match the skirts. With this redingote[Pg 287] is worn a pardessus of the same cloth, embroidered in front and at bottom with braiding of from two to two and a half inches wide.

The more showy dresses, and a little décolletées, are square in front (Louis XV. style), the body pointed, the skirt plain, and but few flounces. The colors are sombre and plain; the materials are velvet, satin, damask, watered, antique, and some plaids, for the theatres and for half dress. These dresses are always worn with open sleeves, trimmed with engageantes.

Short velvet cloaks, richly embroidered either in satin stitch, silk braid, or gimp, are in vogue, the preferred colors being burnt-bread and black. Short velvet cloaks, of the paletot shape, half tight, trimmed with lace, embroidered entirely in satin stitch, and with narrow braiding, are also worn.

On mantelets of silk, entirely embroidered velvet ribbon is worn; or stamped velvet flowers, upon the stuff, produce a very pleasing effect. The braid used for the arabesque pattern is commonly plain, or has only a thick cord, and is from half to three quarters of an inch wide. Walking boots, entirely of leather, are the most fashionable.

In the Illustrations which we give this month:

I. Is a Cap of Alencon lace, with flat bows of ribbon, and lappets of the same.

II. A Bonnet of pink satin, covered with cut black velvet. A trimming of black lace encircles the crown. The bonnet may be lined either with pink satin or with black velvet; and the under trimming consists of small pink flowers. Strings of pink satin ribbon.

III. Engageantes of India muslin, with two rows of Mechlin lace, one above the other.

IV. Velvet mantelet, with arabesque in silk braiding, a quarter of an inch wide, and satin stitch, slightly fitting to the waist; wide sleeves, and entirely embroidered.

V. (See the group of figures upon the following page.)

(I.) Evening Costume for a Bride, back view.—The headdress a wreath of white roses, mingled with orange-blossom. Back hair arranged in twists, in the style called nœud d' Apollon. Across the forehead may be worn a narrow bandeau of pearls or diamonds. Dress of white crape over white satin; front of the skirt with bouquets of the same flowers as those in the wreath. The corsage has a berthe of folds of white tulle. The sleeves slightly full, and ornamented on the shoulder with epaulettes of tulle. Necklace, a single row of pearls. (II.) Costume for an Evening Party.—Dress of brocade, the ground a dark violet color, with large bouquets of flowers in a variety of hues.[Pg 288]

A sortie de bal of cerulean blue satin, edged with a broad band of velvet of the same color, on which a braid is disposed in a zigzag pattern. The headdress of loops of narrow blue velvet ribbon fixed on each side of the head. (III.) Bride's dress suited to the Nuptial Ceremony.—Robe of white satin; the skirt ornamented with side trimmings, consisting each of a row of lace, headed by a fronce of white satin ribbon. This trimming is set on spirally up each side of the skirt, and is attached at intervals by small bows of white satin ribbon. The corsage is half high at the back, and is sloped somewhat lower in front. The front of the corsage is trimmed with rows of lace set on horizontally. On the neck is worn a chemisette of lace. The sleeves are finished at the ends with a full trimming of white satin ribbon. The under-sleeves are loose at the ends, and are edged with two rows of lace. On each arm a bracelet of gold, one of the serpent pattern, and the other fastened by a cameo snap. Bridal wreath of orange-blossom and jasmin. A very large veil of tulle illusion is fixed under the wreath instead of being thrown over it, as is sometimes customary.