The Project Gutenberg eBook of The International Monthly, Volume 5, No. 4, April, 1852

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Title: The International Monthly, Volume 5, No. 4, April, 1852

Author: Various

Release date: February 21, 2011 [eBook #35345]

Language: English

Credits: Produced by Joshua Hutchinson, Josephine Paolucci and the
Online Distributed Proofreading Team at
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[Pg 433]


Of Literature, Art, and Science.

Vol. V. NEW-YORK, APRIL 1, 1852. No. IV.

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.




A steadily growing reputation for almost twenty years, justified by the gradually increasing evidence of those latent, exhaustless, ever-unfolding energies which belong to genius, has inwoven the name of Simms with the literature of America, and made it part of the heirloom which our age will give to posterity. Asking and desiring nothing to which he could not prove himself justly entitled, he has wrested a reputation from difficulty and obstacle, and conquered an honorable acknowledgment from opposition and indifference. Even if we had not proofs of genius in the treasury of thought and imagination constituted by his writings, still the nobility of the example of energy, perseverance, and high-toned hopefulness, which he has given, would deserve a grateful homage.

William Gilmore Simms is the second, and only surviving, of three brothers, sons of William Gilmore Simms, and Harriet Ann Augusta Singleton. His father was of a Scotch-Irish family, and his mother of a Virginia stock, her grandparents having removed to South Carolina long before the Revolution, in which they took an active part on the Whig side. He was born on the 17th of April, 1806. His mother died when he was an infant. His father, failing in business as a merchant, removed first to Tennessee, and then to Mississippi. While in Tennessee he volunteered and held a commission in the army of Jackson (in Coffee's brigade of mounted men), which scourged the Creeks and Seminoles after the massacre of Fort Mims. Our author, left to the care of a grandmother, remained in Charleston, where he received an education which circumstances rendered exceedingly limited.[Pg 434] He was denied a classical training, but such characters stand little in need of the ordinary aids of the schoolmaster, and, with indomitable application, he has not only stored his mind with the richest literature, but has received an unsolicited tribute to his diligence and acquisitions, in the degree of Doctor of Laws, conferred upon him by the respectable University of Alabama.

At first it was designed that he should study medicine, but his inclination led him to the law. He was admitted to the bar of South Carolina when twenty-one, practised for a brief period, and became part proprietor of a daily newspaper, which, taking ground against nullification, ruined him—swallowing up a small maternal property, and involving him in a heavy debt which hung upon and embarrassed him for a long time after. In 1832, he first visited the North, where he published Atalantis. Martin Faber followed in 1834, and periodically the long catalogue of his subsequent performances.

There are few writers who have exhibited such versatility of powers, combined with vigor, originality of copious and independent ideas, and that faculty of condensation which frequently by a single pregnant line suggests an expansive train of reflection. As a poet, he unites high imaginative powers with metaphysical thought—by which we mean that large discourse of reason which generalizes, and which seizes the universal, and perceives its relations to individual phenomena of nature and psychology. His poems abound in appropriate, felicitous, and original similes. His keen and fresh perception of nature, furnishes him with beautiful pictures, the truthfulness and clearness of which are admirably presented in the lucid language with which they are painted, and, in his expression of deep personal feelings, we find a noble union of sad emotion and manliness of tone. He draws from a full treasury of varied experience, active thought, close observation, just and original reflection, and a spirit which has drank deeply and lovingly from the gushing founts of nature. His inspiration is often kindled by the sunny and luxuriant scenery of the beautiful region to which he was born, and besides the freshness and glow which this imparts to his descriptive poetry, it makes him emphatically the poet of the South. Not only has he sung her peculiar natural aspects with the appreciation of a poet and the feeling of a son, but he has a claim to her gratitude for having enshrined in melodious verse her ancient and fading traditions.

Mr. Simms commenced writing verses at a very early period. At eight years of age he rhymed the achievements of the American navy in the last war with Great Britain. At fifteen, he was a scribbler of fugitive verse for the newspapers, and before he was twenty-one he had published two collections of miscellaneous poetry, which his better taste and prudence subsequently induced him to suppress. Two other volumes of poems followed, in a more ambitious vein, which are also now beyond the reach of the collector, and were issued while he was engaged in the occupations of a newspaper editor and a student and practitioner of law. These volumes were followed by Atalantis, a poem which has been highly praised by the best critics of our time.

As a prose writer, his vigorous, copious, and original ideas are clothed in a manly, flexible, pure, and lucid style. His first production, Martin Faber, succeeded Atalantis. It was the initial of a series of tales, which we may describe as of the metaphysical and passionate or moral imaginative class. These, with two or more volumes of shorter tales, are numerous, and perhaps among the most original of his writings. They comprise Martin Faber and other Tales, Castle Dismal, Confessions, or the Blind Heart, Carle Werner and other Tales, and the Wigwam and Cabin. There are other compositions belonging to this category, and, it may be, not inferior in merit to any of these, which have appeared in periodicals and annuals, but have not yet been collected by their author.

The first novel of Mr. Simms belonged to our border and domestic history. This was Guy Rivers; and to the same class he has contributed largely, in Richard Hurdis, Border Beagles, Beauchampe, Helen Halsey, and other productions. In historical romance, he has written The Yemassee, the Damsel of Darien, Pelayo, and Count Julian, each in two volumes. The scenes of the two last are laid in Europe. His romances founded on our revolutionary history, are The Partisan, Mellichampe, and The Kinsmen. In biography and history, he is the author of The Life of Marion; The Life of Captain John Smith, founder of Virginia; a History of South Carolina; a Geography of the same State; a Life of Bayard; and a Life of General Greene.

It is impossible to enumerate accurately his poetical productions, as many, published in periodicals, have never been printed together; but the collection of his poems now in course of publication at Charleston, will supply a desideratum to the lovers of genuine American letters and art. Atalantis, Southern Passages and Pictures, Donna Florida, Grouped Thoughts and Scattered Fancies, Areytos, Lays of the Palmetto, The Cassique of Accube and other Poems, Norman Maurice, and The City of the Silent, constituting distinct volumes, are, however, well known.

The orations of Mr. Simms, which have been published, comprise one delivered before the Erosophic Society of the Alabama University, entitled, The Social Principle—the true source of National Permanence; another before the town council and citizens of Aiken, South Carolina, on the Fourth of July, 1844, entitled, The Sources of American Independence; and one delivered before literary societies in Georgia, entitled Self-development.[Pg 435]

As a writer of criticism, Mr. Simms is known by numerous articles contributed to periodicals; by a review of Mrs. Trolloppe, in the American Quarterly, and of Miss Martineau in the Southern Literary Messenger (both subsequently republished in pamphlets, and received with general approval), as well as by many others of equal merit—a selection from which, wholly devoted to American topics, has been published in two volumes, under the title of Views and Reviews in American History and Fiction.

Scarcely a production of Mr. Simms has been unmarked by a cordial reception from the best literary journals; and the praise of the London Metropolitan and Examiner—the former when under the conduct of Thomas Campbell, the latter of Albany Fonblanque—was generously bestowed, especially on Atalantis; of which the Metropolitan said, "What has the most disappointed us is, that it is so thoroughly English: the construction, the imagery, and, with a very few exceptions, the idioms of the language, are altogether founded on our own scholastic and classical models;" and Fonblanque, in reviewing a tale by Simms, entitled, Murder will Out, said, "But all we intended to say about the originality displayed in the volume has been forgotten in the interest of the last story of the book, Murder will Out. This is an American ghost story, and, without exception, the best we ever read. Within our limits, we could not, with any justice, describe the whole course of its incident, and it is in that, perhaps, its most marvellous effect lies. It is the rationale of the whole matter of such appearances, given with fine philosophy and masterly interest. We never read any thing more perfect or more consummately told."

But the testimony of the critical press, or even of the successful sale of an author's works, is not so suggestive of merit as the fact that his productions have entered into the popular mind; and this tribute Mr. Simms has received in the fact that in regions which he has identified with legends created for them by his own genius, localities of his different incidents are pointed out with a sincere belief in their historical verity. The dramatic powers manifested in his novels, have been still more largely displayed in his Norman Maurice, a play of singular originality, in design, character, and execution, the nervous language and felicitous turns of expression in which remind us of the best of the old dramatists. We have heretofore expressed in the International a conviction that Norman Maurice is the best American drama that has yet been published—the most American, the most dramatic, the most original.

As a member of the Legislature of his native State, and on various public occasions, Mr. Simms has vindicated a title to fame as an orator; and a recent nomination for the presidency of the South Carolina College, although he declined being a candidate, is an evidence of the impression which his ability, information, and high character have produced on his fellow citizens.

His intense intellectual activity, united with a habitually reflective and philosophical mode of thought, and unwearied laboriousness, enable him to accomplish an almost incredible amount of literary labor. The catalogue of his works which is subjoined, gives but an inadequate idea of what he has really performed; for multifarious productions, many of them of the highest order in their respective classes, are scattered in the pages of periodicals, or still in manuscript; while the unceasing demands on his pen, with his arduous editorship, prevent him from accomplishing many fruitful designs, whose inception he has hinted in various ways. To his intellectual gifts, he unites a brave, generous nature, a kindly, and strong heart, a genial, impulsive, yet faithful and determined disposition, warm affection and friendship, a spirit to do and to endure, and a soul as much elevated above the petty envies and jealousies which too often deform the genus irritabile, as it is in large sympathy with the beautiful, the true, the just—with humanity and with nature.



1. Lyrical and other Poems: 18mo, pp. 208, Charleston, Ellis & Noufvillle, 1827.

2. Early Lays: 12mo. pp. 108, Charleston, A. E. Miller, 1827.

3. The Vision of Cortes, and other Poems: Charleston, J. S. Burgess.

4. The Tri-Color, or Three Days of Blood in Paris, 1830: Charleston.

5. Atalantis, a Story of the Sea: New-York, J. & J. Harper, 1832.

6. Martin Faber, a Tale: New-York, J. & J. Harper, 1833.

7. The Book of My Lady, a Melange: Phila., Key & Biddle, 1833.

8. Guy Rivers, a Tale of Georgia: 2 vols. 12mo., New-York, Harper & Brothers, 1834.

9. The Yemassee, a Romance of Carolina: 2 vols., New-York, Harper & Brothers, 1835.

10. The Partisan, a Tale of the Revolution: 2 vols., New-York, Harper & Brothers, 1836.

11. Mellichampe, a Legend of the Santee: 2 vols., New-York, Harper & Brothers, 1836.

12. Martin Faber, and other Tales: a new edition, 2 vols., New-York, Harper & Brothers, 1836.

13. Pelayo, a Story of the Goth: 2 vols., New-York, Harper & Brothers, 1838.

14. Carl Werner, an Imaginative Story, with other Tales of the Imagination: 2 vols., New-York, George Adlard, 1838.

15. Richard Hurdis, or the Avenger of Blood, a Tale of Alabama: 2 vols., Philadelphia, Carey & Hart, 1838.

16. Southern Passages and Pictures: 1 vol., New-York, G. Adlard, 1839.

17. The Damsel of Darien: 2 vols., Philadelphia, Lea & Blanchard.

18. Border Beagles, a Tale of Mississippi: 2 vols., Philadelphia, Carey & Hart, 1840.

19. The Kinsman, or the Black Riders of the Congaree: 2 vols., Philadelphia, Lea & Blanchard, 1841.

20. Confession, or the Blind Heart: 2 vols., Philadelphia, Lea & Blanchard.

21. Beauchampe, or the Kentucky Tragedy, a Tale of Passion: 2 vols., Philadelphia, Lea & Blanchard, 1842.

22. History of South Carolina: 1 vol. 12mo., Charleston, Babcock & Co.

23. Geography of South Carolina: 1 vol. 12mo., Charleston, Babcock.

24. Life of Francis Marion: 1 vol., New-York, J. & H. G. Langley.

25. Life of Capt. John Smith, the Founder of Virginia: 1 vol., New-York, Langley.

26. Count Julian: 2 vols. 8vo., New-York, Taylor & Co., 1845.

27. The Wigwam and the Cabin: 2 vols., New-York, Wiley & Putnam.

28. Views and Reviews in American History, Literature and Art: 2 vols., New-York, Wiley & Putnam, 1846.

29. Life of Chev. Bayard: 1 vol., New-York, Harper & Brothers, 1848.

30. Donna Florida: 1 vol. 18mo., Charleston, Burgess & James, 1848.

31. Grouped Thoughts and Scattered Fancies, a Collection of Sonnets: 1 vol. 18mo., Richmond, McFarlane.

32. Slavery in the South: 1 vol 8vo., Richmond, McFarlane, 1831.

33. Araytos, or the Songs of the South: 1 vol, 12mo., Charleston, John Russell, 1846.

34. Lays of the Palmetto, a Tribute to the South Carolina Regiment in the War with Mexico: 12mo., Charleston, John Russell, 1848.

35. Atalantis, a Story of the Sea, with the Eye and Wing (Poems chiefly Imaginative): 1 vol. 12mo., Carey & Hart, 1848.

36. Life of Nathaniel Greene: 12 mo., New-York, Coolidge & Bro., 1849.

37. Supplement to Writings of Shakspeare, Edited with Notes: (First collected edition) 1 vol. 8vo., New-York, Coolidge & Brothers.

38. The Social Principle, the true Secret of National Permanence, an Oration: 1842.

39. The Sources of American Independence, an Oration: 1844.

40. Self Development, an Oration: 1847.

41. Castle Dismal, a Novelette: 1 vol. 12mo., Burgess & Stringer.

42. Helen Halsey, 1 vol, 12mo., New-York, Burgess & Stringer.

43. Katherine Walton, or the Rebel of Dorchester, a Romance of the Revolution: A. Hart, Philadelphia, 1851.

44. The Golden Christmas; a Chronicle of St. John's, Berkeley: Charleston, Walker & Richards, 1852.

[Pg 436]



It were well if not only William B. Astor, Stephen Whitney, the heirs of Peter Stuyvesant (of blessed memory), and others who own real estate in this city, and likewise all mayors, common councilmen, and others in authority, were endued with more taste, with a higher regard to the general interest, and a juster sense of the matters that pertain to a good administration, so that it might be said in after times that the beneficence of the Creator (who in things natural has done more for ours than for any other city), had been seconded by the pious wisdom of the creature, and Manhattan pointed to as in all respects the metropolis of the world. Why not? If the very stones in the streets of London, Paris, and Vienna, were turned to pure gold, they would not purchase for those cities advantages that should be compared with such as we already possessed by our beautiful island—a giant mosaic, set in emerald, studding the bosom of Nature.

Whatever may be said by our excellent neighbor, the minister of the dingy-looking red brick meeting-house round the corner, it is not less a work of piety to create any work of beauty—a beautiful house, or shop, or poem, for example—than to teach a class in the Sunday school,—which doctrine may be incidentally fortified from Jonathan Edwards's Theory of True Virtue, and more directly from the best philosophies of later years. It is ordered that the dignity of human nature shall in a great degree be dependent upon a sympathetic association with what is admirable. It was Hazlitt, we believe,—certainly it was some one who appreciatingly recognized the highest earthly ministry,—who said it was impossible to entertain an angry feeling in the presence of a lovely woman's portrait,—which, done fitly, is the highest accomplishment of art. Whatever is beautiful or sublime has the same purifying and ennobling tendency. The beggars do shrewdly who sit in front of Stewart's. The same person who would give a shilling there, would as likely as not steal a penny from the hat of the blind man round the corner, where those detestable red bricks so outrage every principle known to a builder fit to handle the trowel. There is nothing more offensive than this custom of making of different materials the various fronts of the same edifice. It may be allowable to construct the rear of a house, or a side that is to be built against speedily, of a cheaper stone; but to make the face upon one street of marble, and the face around the corner of brick, as in the case of Stewart's store, and the Society Library, is an outrage as ridiculous as it would be to make alternate gores of a woman's skirt of Petersham and Brussels lace. Bricks are very respectable; we say nothing in their dispraise; but to any man of taste, an edifice is much more beautiful built entirely of bricks than it is with but one of two exposed parts of marble; and let us say to the affluent merchant to whom New-York is indebted for the structure just mentioned, that until he paints[Pg 437] his bricks on Reade-street, so that they correspond as nearly as may be with his fronts on Chambers-street and Broadway, his store will indicate but a shabby gentility, an unnatural association of tow cloth and satin, copper and silver, poverty and riches, which should blush in the face of the most inferior exhibition of consistency. With the abolition of this strong contrast, the observer who goes down Broadway will contemplate with delight the classical air of this most imposing Palace of Trade that has yet been erected in the cities of the United States. How easily Broadway, for the money that its piles of brick and stone will have cost in ten years, might be made the most splendid street in Christendom, by a mere observance of the principles of taste and unity!


In a little hamlet of five or fifteen hundred inhabitants, great buildings are out of place. In a city like ours, every thing should be in keeping, and the predominant principle should be the gigantesque. If the lot-holders from Bowling Green to the New Park would but consider the matter, with intelligent reference not only to the glory of the city but to their own profit; if each separate square were built as if it were one edifice (as, without any blending of property, it might be very easily), though these squares were all of plain brick, and no more costly than the well-known row of stores in William-street, what an imposing spectacle they would present! But if one block were like the Astor House, the next like Stewart's (except only the Reade street front), the next a row of free-stone, the next one of brick, the next one of granite,—here a Gothic, there a Byzantine, then a Corinthian, then, if you please, as plain a front as that of the New-York Hotel—with here and there a church, library, lyceum, or art gallery, of a style less suitable for shops or dwellings,—and there would be nothing in the world to compare with Broadway. But this running of democracy into the ground, this whim of every vulgar fellow who owns a front of twenty feet, that he must illustrate his independence by building on it in his own peculiar way, is baulking Providence, and for the full cost of magnificence confining us to tricksy meanness. Two or three years ago rose the chaste and simple front of 349 Broadway, in a row of decayed brick shops, which, it was hoped would give place to an entire range in imitation of the initial structure. But since then, the owner of a couple of adjoining lots—a Connecticut man probably—has caused to be put up two stores of a different style, not of half the value of continuations of the less expensive edifice which they join. If instead of this patchwork, now planted here for half a century, there had been an extension of uniform stores from corner to corner—though either Beck's or the building we have mentioned had been the model—the single splendid edifice would have been a pride and boast of the city, and the separate stores would have been of much greater value than the best can be now. It is as revolting (and much[Pg 438] more vexatious, for its publicity) as the worst case of Saxon and Congo amalgamation. A magnificent pile has been erected in Wall-street on the corner west of the Exchange; but some person, ignorant, it is to be hoped for his soul's sake, of the true obligations of morality applicable in the case, has built, at the same time, at the same cost, of the same height, and without any conceivable justifying reason, an utterly incongruous basket of offices, as if for the special purpose of vexing the eyes of men who have instincts of decency.


The imposing edifice on the corner of Broadway and White-street, of which a view is presented on a preceding page, is one of the improvements of the city made during the last year. In the great carpet-house of Peterson & Humphrey are offered the productions of the best looms in the world, in a variety and profusion probably unequalled elsewhere in America. The principal saloon is like a street, and it is almost always thronged with people.

Not far from the store of Peterson & Humphrey—at 359 Broadway—is the new and beautiful building erected by the well-known confectioners, Thompson & Son. This was opened to the public but a few weeks ago, and it is the most splendid establishment of the kind in America. The several sales during the last three quarters of a century of the ground upon which it is built, illustrate the rapid increase of value in real estate in this city during that period. The lot formed a part of the De Peyster farm, and was called pasture ground. On the death of Major De Peyster, the farm was divided, and this lot, then thirty-two feet wide, was on the 13th of December, 1784, sold for £100 New-York currency; in 1789 it was sold for £150; in 1805 for $1500; in 1820 for $4000; in 1825 for $11,000; and in 1850 it was bought by Mr. Thompson for $60,000, and he has expended $50,000 in the erection of the building with which it is now occupied, and which is twenty-eight feet wide, one hundred and ninety feet deep, and sixty-two feet high. It is built in a very rich style, of Paterson stone, similar to that used in Trinity church. The architects were Field and Correja, and the decorations in fresco are by Rossini. Mr. Thompson, senior, has been a quarter of a century in the business for which he has erected this new edifice, and in which he has accumulated his fortune.[Pg 439] In 1820 there were but one or two houses of the kind in New-York, and these were of limited capacity and in every way inferior to Taylor's, Weller's, or Thompson's, of the present day. These are among the most luxurious and comfortable resorts for ladies and gentlemen who visit the city but for a part of a day, or who have not time or inclination to go to houses in distant parts of the town, to lunch or dine, or for those who come down Broadway to do shopping, and need a resting place, or enjoy an exchange for gossip.


The next of the Palaces of Trade recently erected in the city, for which we have now room for any description, is the great silk house of the well-known merchants, Bowen & McNamee, constituting one of the most attractive features of the lower part of Broadway. It is built of white marble, and the style of architecture is Elizabethan, and peculiarly elaborate and effective. The building is thirty-seven and a half feet wide, one hundred and forty-seven deep, and four stories high; and each story consists of a single unbroken hall, lined with the richest English, German, French, Italian and Indian goods. The architect was Mr. Joseph C. Wells, and his plans were used in all the minutest details of ornament and furniture. It is regarded, we believe, as the greatest triumph of its kind of which our commercial metropolis has to boast; indeed in magnificence of design, beauty of execution, and perfect adaptation to its purposes, there is nothing superior to it, probably, among the buildings devoted to trade in all the world.

It was said by Jefferson that the genius of Architecture would never make her abode in America; but the new edifices in New-York, of which we have described some prominent specimens, may lead others to a different conclusion. And we are of opinion that the progress of this country, in the last quarter of a century, has been less conspicuous in any thing else than in this noble art, little as it is now understood, much as it is still disregarded. In some recent speculations on the subject, the Tribune observes:

"There is no American architecture, unless the Lowell factories may be regarded as such. Our churches are small and imperfect imitations of a miscellaneous Gothic, and our exchanges, colleges, lyceums, banks and custom-houses affect the Greek, with as much propriety as our merchants, professors and clerks would indue themselves with the Athenian costume. There is no hope of the churches and banks. They are nothing if not Gothic and Grecian. We shall not discuss the probable character of our architecture. It is clear that New-York will build brick houses, and in blocks. But beauty costs no more than ugliness, and although every man has the right to build a house of that appearance which best pleases himself, yet every citizen is bound to have at heart the beauty of the city. He cannot escape it. His pride compels it; and therefore every man who builds a house ought to consult, to some extent, the general effect of his building, and as he would not paint it blue or black, he should no less consider its form than its color.

"Cheapness and convenience will, of course,[Pg 440] be the first principles in our building, beauty and picturesqueness will be secondary. The point is to combine these without much compromising either. At present our cities are the unhandsomest in the world. The street architecture is monotonous and heavy. The houses, compared with those of other capitals, are low, but they are not light. Paris and the Italian cities have always a festal air. Vienna is brilliant. Even grim old Rome seems waiting to be gay. You do not immediately see the reason of this. The houses are high, the streets narrow, shutting out the sky, and the swarms of passengers do not explain the charm. But if you look narrowly you will see that the difference of effect produced, arises, not so much from any essential architectural superiority; because the mass of building in any city is of about the same general character—but that it is due to the "broken and various lines which every where meet the eye, relieving the heavy gravity of the smooth fronts which with us are entirely unrelieved. Sometimes, indeed, a street is built with regard to its architectural beauty, as the Rue de Rivoli, in Paris, of which the harmony is uniformity and not monotony. One side of this street is the garden of the Tuileries, and the other is like a prolonged palace front. The northern side of the Boulevards des Italiens is truly picturesque, but for directly the contrary reason—the infinite variety of line presented.


"It is to these lines of gallery and balcony which break and lighten the mass of building, that we must look for a hint of very feasible improvement. If any city reader wishes an illustration of this fact, let him observe how the iron verandah upon the Collamore House redeems the otherwise bald, dead weight of that building. Then let him cast his eye up Broadway to the long front of Niblo's Hotel—unrelieved and blank—and consider the cheerful effect of a continuous gallery along each story, or separate balconies at every window, as on the beautiful Chiaja at Naples. On the other hand let him ask his Metropolitan pride how it would like a street of such edifices as the City Assembly Rooms on the site of Tattersalls? So, also, in dwelling-houses, the balcony which is now confined to the parlor floor might occasionally be carried up through the other stories, and this, in narrow streets, with a peculiarly happy effect, as is seen in such streets of foreign cities, where the style, if elaborated in lattices and bay-windows, becomes romantic and poetic.

"Greater variety in the mouldings of doors and windows, and in the designs of porticoes, might easily be obtained, with an infinite gain of grace to the city. The Broadway Theatre illustrates this, for it is certainly one of the most impressive buildings upon that street. The question, it must be remembered, is not one of art, so much as of picturesqueness and effect. The galleries and balconies, &c., are only a subterfuge. If an edifice is intrinsically beautiful and well-proportioned, it claims no such accessories, as Stewart's building, which, although a simple square mass, yet from the admirable proportion, rather than the material, is as stately and imposing as many a foreign palace. But where there is no regard—as is the usual case—to the dignity or propriety of form, there we must take advantage of an alleviation, and obtain lightness, gayety, and variety as we best can.

"There is, however, one point peculiar to American, or more properly to New-York building, which calls for the determined and constant censure of every man who values human life. We mean the flimsy style of building arising from the frenzied haste with which we do every thing. This has long been our reproach. Scarcely a year passes that we do not record some disaster of this kind, often involving a melancholy waste of life. 'Is it strong?' is a question constantly asked of a new building, and a question which, in any civilized community, it should be as unnecessary to ask, as whether the public wells are poisoned.

"We know many who will not pass under buildings now going up or recently erected.[Pg 441] A friend walked down Broadway one morning, while a building was in course of erection on the site of the present Waverly House, and returning in the afternoon found that it had all tumbled down. Our readers have not forgotten the frightful fall of a block in Twenty-first street last spring. One is curious to know if nothing is ever to be done—if the city means to take no security for the lives of the citizens in this matter. It would be very easy to prevent this flimsy building, and even were it very difficult it should be effectually done. This, too, is a matter in which every citizen is interested.

"Stores and Warehouses have their own proprieties. Warehouses properly avoid even the appearance of lightness. They are devoted to heavy storage. No life, save of bales and boxes,—and not of the contents of bales and boxes—is associated with them. Security is the first and only thing we demand of them, provided the structures are not painfully disproportioned. So with Prisons. In fact, in architecture, the ornament must depend upon the use, must be developed from the use. For the same reason that balconies become a dwelling-house they disfigure a warehouse. Stores again should partake, in their appearance, of the intrinsic character and associations of shops. When shop-keeping becomes royal, it should be royally housed, as in Stewart's building.

"The theme unravels itself endlessly. It is one of those common interests of constantly recurring importance which it is always worth while to talk about. Because there is no American architecture, there is no occasion for making our buildings mere piles of brick and mortar, punctured here and there for light—and because we are a commonsense, go-ahead people, there is no need that our houses should offend the eye; but—for that reason—great need that they should please it.

"Lorenzo of Florence was the magnificent, not because he was rich, but because he knew the use of riches."

Despite all drawbacks, our city is growing wonderfully in splendor as well as in size; and perhaps no previous season has promised so many improvements in Broadway, uptown, or by the different parks, as the present. Surpassing already any metropolis in the world in the number and magnificence of our hotels, we are to have in occupancy within a few weeks the splendid St. Nicholas and the gigantic Metropolitan, besides half a dozen of inferior pretensions, which will yet surpass the best in other cities; and new churches, and galleries, and public halls, are talked of, in number and capacity, as in beauty, sufficient for all the possible contingencies of a great capital, increasing in wealth, and power, and beauty, with such unexampled rapidity. The power and magnificence of New-York have been built up by her merchants, whose private enterprise, public spirit, and intelligence and taste, are especially conspicuous in the new edifices devoted to trade, of which we have given descriptions.



Herman Hooker is one of the most able and peculiar writers in religion and religious philosophy now living in America. Indeed, we are inclined to doubt whether the Episcopal Church in the United States embraces another author whose name will be as long or as respectfully remembered in the Christian world. If he is not mentioned in "every day's report," it is because he adds to genius an unobtrusive modesty, as rare as are the admirable qualities with which in his case it is associated.

Dr. Hooker is a native of Poultney, Rutland county, Vermont. He was graduated at Middlebury College in 1825, and soon after entered upon the study of divinity at the Presbyterian Theological Seminary in Princeton. He subsequently took orders in the Episcopal Church, and acquired considerable reputation as a preacher; but at the end of a few years ill health compelled him to abandon the pulpit, and he has since resided in Philadelphia. The distinction of Doctor in Divinity was conferred upon him three or four years ago by Union College.

Dr. Hooker published in 1835 The Portion of the Soul, or Thoughts on its Attributes and Tendencies as Indications of its Destiny; in the same year Popular Infidelity, which in later editions is entitled, The Philosophy of Unbelief, in Morals and Religion, as discernible in the Faith and Character of Men; in 1846, The Uses of Adversity and the Provisions of Consolation; in 1848, The Christian Life a Fight of Faith; and soon after, Thoughts and Maxims, a book worthy of Rochefoucauld for point, of Herbert for piety, and Bacon for wisdom.

Upon meeting with qualities like Dr. Hooker's in one not known among the popular authors of the country, we are prompted to say with Wordsworth, "Strongest minds are often those of whom the world hears least," or in the bolder words of Henry Taylor, "The world knows nothing of its greatest men." It is surprising that a voice like his should have awakened no echoes. He deserves a place among the first religious writers of the age: for he has been faithful to the great mission laid upon the priesthood, which is, not to labor upon "forms, modes, shows," of devotion, nor to dispute of systems, schools, and theories of faith, but to be witnesses of a law above the world, and prophets of a consolation that is not of mortality. When we take up one of his books, we could imagine that we had fallen upon one of those great masters in divinity, who in the seventeenth century illustrated the field of moral relations and affections with a power and splendor peculiar to that age. These great writers possessed an apprehension of spiritual subjects, sensitive, yet profoundly rational; a vision on which the rays of a higher consciousness streamed in lustre so transcending that the light of earth seemed like a shadow thrown[Pg 443] across its course; which differed from inspiration in degree rather than in kind. The resemblance of Dr. Hooker to these great authors is obviously not an affectation. It is not confined to style, but reaches to the constitution and tone of the mind. His productions indicate the same temper of deep thoughtfulness upon man's estate and destiny; the same union of a personal sympathy with a judicial superiority, which suffers in all the human weaknesses which it detects and condemns; the same earnest sense of their subjects as realities, clear, present and palpable; the same quick feeling, toned into dignity by pervading, essential wisdom; and that direct cognizance of the substances of religion, which does not deduce its great moral truths as consequences of an assumed theory, but seizes them as primary elements that verify themselves and draw the theories after them by a natural connection. Fretted and wearied with metaphysical theologies; vexed by the self-illustration, the want of candor, the fierceness, the ungenial and unsatisfying hollowness of popular religionism, we turn with a grateful relief to this soothing and impressive system which speculates not, wrangles not, reviles not, but, while it every where testifies of the degradation we are under, touches our spirits to power and purity by the constant exhortation of "sursem corda!"

The style of Dr. Hooker abounds in spontaneous interest and unexpected graces. It seems to result immediately from his character, and to be an inseparable part of it. It is free from all the commonplaces of fine writing; has nothing of the formal contrivance of the rhetorician, the balanced period, the pointed turn, the recurring cadence. Yet the charms of a genuine simplicity, of a directness almost quaint, of primitive gravity, and calm, native good sense, renders it singularly agreeable to a cultivated taste. Undoubtedly there is in spiritual sensibility something akin to genius, and like it tending to utterance in language significant and beautiful. We meet at times in Dr. Hooker's writings with phrases of the rarest felicity and of great delicacy and expressiveness; in which we know not whether most to admire the vigor which has conceived so striking a thought, or the refinement of art which has fixed it in words so beautifully exact.




See with what pomp the golden sun goes down
Behind yon purple mountain!—far and wide
His mellow radiance streams; the steep hill-side
Is clothed with splendor, and the distant town
Wears his last glory like a blazing crown.
We cannot see him now, and yet his fire
Still lingers on the city's tallest spire,—
Chased slowly upward by the gathering frown
Of the approaching darkness. God of light!
Thou leavest us in gloom,—but other eyes
Watch thy faint coming now in distant skies:—
There drooping flowers spring up, and streams grow bright,
And singing birds plume their moist wings for flight,
And stars grow pale and vanish from the sight!


The Hon. Henry Cope has lately published in London a Ride across the Rocky Mountains, to California—a book abounding in striking adventure and description, and illustrating in its general tone the spirit of an English gentleman. Its temper and good sense may be inferred from the following specimen, on the never-failing subject of Society in New-York:

"Any observations I might be tempted to make on New-York, or even, I am inclined to think, on any of the civilized parts of the states, would probably be neither novel nor interesting. I am not ambitious of circulating more 'American notes,' nor do I care to follow in the footsteps of Mrs. Trollope. Enough has been written to illustrate the singularities of second-rate American society. Good society is the same all over the world. General remarks I hold to be fair play. But to indulge in personalities is a poor return for hospitality; and those Americans who are most willing to be civil to foreigners, receive little enough encouragement to extend that civility, when, as is too often the case, those very foreigners afterwards attempt to amuse their friends on one side of the Atlantic, at the expense of a breach of good faith to their friends on the other. Every one has his prejudices: I freely confess I have mine. I like London better than New-York, but it does not, therefore, follow that I dislike New-York, or Americans either. I have a great respect for almost every thing American—I do not mean to say that I have any affection for a thorough bred Yankee, in our acceptation of the term; far from it, I think him the most offensive of all bipeds in the known world. Yankee snobs too I hate—such as infest Broadway, for instance, genuine specimens of the genus, according to the highest authorities. The worst of New-York is its superabundance of snobbism. The snob here is a snob "sui generis" quite beyond the capacities of the old world. There is no mistaking him. He is cut out after the most approved pattern. If he differs from the original, or whatever that might have been, it must be in a surpassing excellence of snobbism which does credit to the progressive order of things. Tuft-hunting is a sport he pursues with delight to himself, but without remorse or pity for his victim. It is necessary for the object of his persecutions to be constantly on the alert. He is frequently seen prowling about in white kid gloves, patent leather boots, and Parisian hat. Whenever this is the case, he must be considered dangerous and bloody-minded, for in all probability he is meditating a call. Often he has been known to run his prey to ground in the Opera or other public places, and there to worry them within less than an inch of their good temper. Offensive as he is, generally speaking, he sometimes acts on the defensive; for, not very well convinced of his own infallibility, he is particularly susceptible of affronts, to which his assumed consequence not unfrequently makes him liable. Baits are often proffered by these swell-catchers to lure the unwary. Such as an introduction to the nymphs of the corps de ballet; the entré to all the theatres, private gambling-houses, &c., &c. But beware of such seductions."

[Pg 444]





A morning at Là Morgue is hardly as agreeable as a day at the Louvre, yet it is not without a certain fascination. Let but the influence once fasten on you, and it will be very hard to shake it off. At one period I confess it was to me almost irresistible, and I shudder sometimes when I recollect how punctually every morning at the same hour I took my place on one side of that fearful room—not for the purpose of inspecting the bodies of the suicides (I rarely turned to look at them), but to regard the countenances of the anxious ones who came to realize the worst, or to take hope till the morrow. Literally there are no spectators in that dismal solitude—if we except an occasional visit from the foreign sight-hunter, who comes in charge of a valet, and passes in and out and away to the "next place." In London or in New-York, an establishment so public would be thronged with persons eager to gratify a prurient curiosity. Not so in Paris. The French possess a sensibility so refined—it may be called a species of delicacy—that they cannot enjoy such a spectacle, can scarcely endure it: and if the tourist will bring the subject to mind, he will recollect that while his guide pointed out the entrance, he himself declined going into the apartment.

I know not how it happened, but, as I have remarked, the habit of visiting this spot every morning, was fastened on me. Never shall I forget some of the faces I encountered there. One image is impressed on me indelibly; it is that of a woman of middle age, with a very pale face, and having the appearance of one struggling with some wearing sorrow, who for two weeks in succession came in daily, and walking painfully up to the partition, looked intently through the lattice work, and turned and went away. I never before felt so strong an impulse to accost a person, without yielding to it. Indeed I had resolved to speak to her on the morning of the fifteenth day, but she did not come and I never saw her again. Who was she? did her fears prove groundless? what became of her? An old man I remember to have seen—a very old man, feeble and decrepit, who came once only, looked at the dead, shook his head despairingly, and tottered away: I know not if he discovered the object of his search. Young girls who had quarrelled with their lovers, and lovers who in moments of jealousy had been cruel to their sweethearts, would look anxiously in, and generally with relieved spirits pass out, almost smilingly, resolving no doubt to make all up before night should again tempt to suicide. Another incident I cannot omit, although it is impossible to recall it without a dreadful pang. One morning a pretty fair-haired child, not more than four years old, came running in, and clasping the wooden bar with one hand, pointed with her little finger through the opening, and with a tone of innocent curiosity said, "There's mamma!" The same moment two or three rushed in, and seizing the unconscious orphan, carried her hastily away. She had wandered after some of the family, and heard enough as they came from the fatal place to lead her to suppose her lost mamma was there, and so she ran to see. What could be the circumstances so untoward,[Pg 445] that even the child could not bind the mother to life?

A long chapter might be written of the occurrences at my singular rendezvous, but I had no design, when I began, of alluding to them, and I will only remark here that, leaving Paris some time after for the south of Europe, I got rid of this nightmare impulse, and although I returned the following season I never again entered La Morgue....

It was in the spring when I came back. The foliage was deep and green, and in the Jardin des Plants, which was near my quarters, the various flowers and shrubs and trees filled the atmosphere with fragrance, and tempted us to frequent strolls along its avenues.

"Come with me at six o'clock," said my friend Partridge, "and you shall see an apparition."


"I will not tell you, till we are on the Spot."

"I will go, but hope the rendezvous will be an agreeable one." Just then, I know not why, I thought of La Morgue, and shuddered.

"The most agreeable in all Paris."

This conversation took place in the Hospital de Notre Dame de Pitie, just as we were finishing our morning occupation of following the celebrated Louis through the fever wards. Partridge was my room-mate, and generally a fellow traveller, but I had left him behind in my late tour, to devote himself more entirely to his medical pursuits, while I, to my shame be it spoken, began to tire of the lectures of Broussais, and the teachings of Majendie; and, even now that I had returned, was tempted every day to slip across to the Rue Vivienne, where were staying some fascinating strangers, whose acquaintance I had made en route, and who had begun to engross me too much for any steady progress in my studies; at least so thought Partridge, who shook his head and said it would not do for a student to cross the Seine—he ought to stay in his own quartier; that I had had too much recreation as it was—I should forget the little I know, and as for the Rue Vivienne, and the Boulevard des Italiens, the Rue de la Paix, &c., I must break off all such associations or be read out of the community. I was glad, therefore, to appease my friend by consenting to go with him—I knew not where—and see an apparition.

Accordingly a few minutes before six, we started together on the strange adventure. We passed down the street which leads to the Jardin des Plants, and entering through the main avenue, walked nearly its entire length, when my companion turned into a narrow path, almost concealed by the foliage, which brought us into a small open space. Here he motioned me to stop, and pointing to a rustic bench we both sat down. At the same moment, the chimes from a neighboring chapel pealed the hour of six, and while I was still listening to them, my friend seized my arm and exclaimed in a whisper, "Look!" I cast my eyes across to the other side, and beheld a figure advancing slowly toward us. It was that of a young girl, in appearance scarcely seventeen. Her form was light and graceful, simply draped in a loose robe of white muslin. On her head she wore a straw hat, in which were placed conspicuously a bunch of fresh spring blossoms. The gloves and mantelet seemed to have been forgotten. Her demeanor was one of gentleness and modesty. She cast her eyes around as if expecting to meet a companion, and then quietly sat down on a rude seat not very far from where we were. I remained for ten minutes patiently waiting a demonstration of some kind, either from my companion or the strange appearance near us. But now I began to yield to the influence of the scene. The sun was declining, and cast a mellow and saddening light over the various objects around. Gradually as I gazed on the motionless form of the maiden, I felt impressed with awe, which was heightened by the solemn manner of my friend, who appeared as much under the charm as myself. At length I whispered to him, "For Heaven's sake tell me what does all this mean?" A low "Hush," with an expressive gesture to enforce quiet, was the only response. I made no further attempt to interrupt the silence, but sat spell-bound, always looking at the figure, until I was positively afraid to take my eyes from it. Again the chimes began their peal for the completion of the last quarter. It was seven o'clock. The moment they ceased, the girl rose from her seat, glanced slowly, sadly, earnestly around, pressed her hand across her eyes, and proceeded in the path toward us. We both stood up as she came near; my friend lifted his hat from his head in the most respectful manner as the maiden passed, while she in return gazed vacantly on him, and walking slowly by, disappeared in the direction opposite that from which she came. We did not remain, but proceeded with a quickened pace to our lodgings. Arrived there, I asked for an explanation of what we had witnessed.

"Do you remember," said Partridge, "Alfred Dervilly?"

"Perfectly well. He was your room-mate after I left you last summer, and twenty times I have been on the point of inquiring for him, but something at each moment prevented. Where is he?"


"Dead! How, when?"

"Killed by the apparition yonder."

"Nonsense! Do not talk any more in riddles. Out with what you have to say about Dervilly and the apparition, as you call it, and this afternoon's adventure."

"Bien, let us light the candles, fasten the doors, close the windows, and take a fresh cigar."

This was soon done, and accommodating[Pg 446] himself to his seat in a comfortable manner, my companion commenced:

"Yes—you recollect Dervilly of course, and must remember that before you left us we used to joke him about a fair unknown, who was engaging so much of his time."

"I had forgotten—but I now recall the circumstance; I remember, I was walking with him near the 'Garden,' and he made some trivial excuse to leave me and turn into it. You afterwards told me he had an appointment there, but I thought little of it."

"Well, I will give you the story as I now have it, quite complete, for I was partly in Dervilly's confidence, and was with him during his illness and when he died. He was born in Louisiana, of French parents, who, after spending some years in America, returned to their native country. He spoke English fluently, as you know, and when you deserted me we became very intimate. Then it was I learned how deeply the poor fellow was in love, actually in love. No mere transitory emotion—no momentary passion for an adventure—no affair of gallantry, was this: his very being was absorbed—he became wholly changed—it seemed as if he had bound himself, body and soul, to some spirit of another world. I never saw, never read, of so engrossing a feeling. At last he confessed to me. He said he had met, a few months before, at the house of a former friend of his family, who had been of considerable consequence under the previous reign, but was now reduced, and lived in obscurity, a creature of most exquisite shape and feature, who proved on acquaintance to be possessed with a loveliness of character, a modesty, an irresistible charm of manner, which took him captive. Dervilly became completely enamored with Emilie de Coigny. This he discovered to be her name, but on inquiring of the persons at whose house he first met her, he could get no satisfactory information; indeed a very singular reserve, as poor Dervilly thought, was maintained whenever her name was mentioned, so that he could not, in fact, glean the slightest particulars about her. This did not prevent him from confessing his passion, for the girl came frequently to this house, and their acquaintance ripened very fast. Emilie de Coigny felt for the first time that her heart was occupied, and all that restlessness of spirit caused by the unconscious longing of the affections laid at rest, and Alfred Dervilly became the sole object of her thoughts and of her hopes, if hopes she had. All this, I repeat, Emilie de Coigny felt; but, singular to say, she hesitated to confess what was in her heart, even when her lover passionately entreated; it seemed as if something stood between her and happiness, to which she feared to allude. It is not easy to deceive the heart, and Dervilly knew, despite the apparent calmness of Emilie, despite her sometimes cold demeanor, that he was loved in return. But one thing troubled and perplexed him; one thing filled him with vague fears and apprehensions, and checked the ecstatic feelings which were ready to overflow his heart. A mystery hung about this beautiful girl; she claimed no one for her friend, she spoke of no acquaintances, she never alluded to parents, or to brother or sister, or other relation; she made no mention of her home. Besides, a strange sadness, strange in one so young, seemed to possess her, and to pervade her spirit, and while contemplating that imperturbable countenance, Dervilly at times felt an awe come over him for which he could not account, and which for moments subdued even the force of his passion. It appeared to him then, as if he were under a spell; but presently, when a gentle smile illumined her face, her eyes would be turned on him so lovingly, and her look express, as plainly as look could, that all her trust was in him and in him only. Dervilly would forget every thing in the raptures of such moments; indeed in his ecstasy he would be driven almost to madness; for of all characters," continued Partridge, "hers was the one to set a youth of ardent temperament absolutely crazy. So matters advanced, or rather I should say, so time advanced, while affairs did not. It was at this period," said my friend, "that Dervilly gave me his confidence. Our intimacy had gradually increased from the hour of your leaving us, and at length he unbosomed himself completely. My first impression, after hearing his story, was that the pretty mademoiselle was no more nor less than an arrant flirt; that her charms were magnified to a lover's vision, and that the mystery which attended her would turn out to be no mystery at all—so I treated the case lightly, laughed at his description, called Mademoiselle Emilie a coquette, and added, a little seriously, that it was a shame for her to trifle with so warm-hearted a fellow. You know how grating are the disparaging remarks of a friend about one in whom we confess to ourselves a deeper interest than we care to acknowledge. What I had said was kindly intended, but it touched Dervilly to the quick. 'I did not think you capable,' he exclaimed, 'of thus making light of my confidence—I find I was deceived—you are at liberty to make as much sport of me as you will. I have learned a lesson which I shall take care to remember.' 'You must not speak so,' I said,' I really was not serious. I take back every word. I would not wound you for the world—forgive me.' Then we shook hands, and Dervilly assured me I had misjudged his Emilie; he would ask her permission to introduce me, and I should see for myself. The permission was never accorded, although Dervilly urged to Mademoiselle de Coigny, that I was his best and almost his only friend. She was unyielding; she would not see me. Meanwhile his passion increased with every impediment—yet he gained no assurance of its being returned, save what his[Pg 447] heart whispered to him. In the Jardin des Plants they were accustomed to meet daily, when the weather was propitious—so much Emilie yielded to her lover—and spend an hour together; and if they could not meet in the open air, they repaired to the house where they first became acquainted. On one occasion Dervilly, unable to bear suspense any longer, seized her hand, and passionately pledged himself, his existence, his soul, his all to Emilie de Coigny; he swore his fate was indissolubly linked with hers, that their destiny could not be severed, and he demanded from her an avowal of the truth of what he said. The violence of Dervilly alarmed her; she drew her hand from his, and looking him steadily in the face, inquired:

"'What has prompted Monsieur to this sudden show of feeling?'

"'Do you ask what?' exclaimed Dervilly; 'it is you. Are you not answered? How can I resist what is inevitable? how curb myself when all hold is lost? Are you then so cruel? Dieu merci! be not so deadly calm—it means the worst for me—be angry, vexed, any thing, but look not on me with that glazed look—it maddens me.'

"'Monsieur Dervilly,' said Emilie, without change of tone or manner, 'what you have said, if it means any thing, means every thing; it means all a maiden longs to hear from lips that are beloved. To respond, I must be assured how far your judgment will confirm what now seems to be a mere passionate ebullition. Excuse me,' she continued, as Dervilly made an impatient gesture; 'I have heard and read of similar protestations which had little true significance.'

"'I accept any conditions,' interrupted the young man, 'and will bless you from the depths of my soul for naming any, even the hardest; yes, the hardest—I care not what, so that they are from you.' The girl regarded Dervilly as if she would search his very nature. 'You are silent—speak; I can no longer contain myself,' exclaimed he, wildly.

"'Monsieur,' once more observed Mademoiselle de Coigny, 'you know not to whom you address yourself; should I tell you, you would retract all those strong words, and hasten to escape in the least humiliating way possible.'

"'Never. Heaven is my witness, never! I care not who you are; I will never seek to know; when you choose, you shall inform me. You need never tell me. I say, I care not, so that you are mine.'

"'And you will be mine for ever?' said the girl, slowly.

"'For ever.'

"'I am yours—yours,' and Emilie de Coigny sunk into the arms of her lover.

"In one instant the fortunes of Dervilly were changed—from despair he was raised to a condition of delicious joy. His raptures were so unnatural, that I cautioned him against such violent indulgence of them. But he was too excited to listen to me. Indeed, I feared he would lose his reason. It seemed as if more than ordinary passion had possession of him, and that it was inspired by something unearthly; and, without ever having seen the girl, I began to attribute to her a supernatural influence. Besides, Dervilly confessed he knew as little of his affianced as before, and that occasionally the same icy look would be turned on him, as it were quite inadvertently, and hold him spell-bound with horror, while it still served to increase his frenzy beyond all bounds. Then, her endearing smiles, her truthful and confiding love, her absolute reliance, her entire dependence, on Dervilly, made him so frantic with happiness, that he lost all capacity to reason.

"The summer passed away, but Dervilly had learned nothing more of the history of his betrothed; she still avoided the subject, and, when he alluded to it, she would beg him to desist, and hide her face in his bosom and weep.

"Strange thoughts at last found their way into his brain, fearful surmises began to disturb his peace, and, when absent from Emilie, he would resolve at their next interview, to insist on knowing all. But when the time came, and he met, turned on him, the open and innocent look of the maiden's clear eyes, which expressed so earnestly how entirely her soul rested on his, all courage failed him, and he could not go on.....

"One evening," continued Partridge, after a pause, and with the tone of a person approaching an unpleasant subject, "One evening, after dinner—I think it was the first week in September—when the day had been excessively sultry, I strolled into the large garden, which you recollect belonged to our old lodgings in the Rue d' Enfer and after a while sat down in the summer-house. Presently little Sophie Lecomte came running out to me, and I remained amusing myself with the child's prattle till it was dark. The moon shone brightly, and I did not perceive how late it was, until reminded of the hour by finding that Sophie was fast asleep in my lap. I rose and carried her into the house, and went quietly to my room. I seated myself near the window without lighting the candles, feeling that the glare would not just then harmonize with my feelings. The truth is, I was thinking of you, and of that romantic passage across the Apennines, and of the fair stranger, and so forth. I sat by the window, the moonlight streaming across the room, over the top of the old chapel, the windows and doors open, and every thing still except the monotonous chirping of a single cricket, louder than that of any French cricket I ever heard before, and which sung the very same song I used to hear when a boy from under the large kitchen[Pg 448] hearthstone at home. I began to feel a little lonely, and so started up, and stamped with my feet in order to silence the solitary insect, or arouse the rest of the family, but the old one only sung the harder, and the others would not wake, and I sat down again, and half closed my eyes in order to lose myself, if I could, in some pleasant revery. My eyes were half closed, the perfume from the graperies filled the room, and had a pleasant effect upon my senses, and thus I began to forget where I was and what was about me. Presently I heard a rapid unsteady step along the corridor; it grew more rapid and more unsteady; I raised my head, and at that instant Dervilly hurried into the room. 'I knew it—I knew it,' he exclaimed, wildly; 'one of the sirens sent from hell! I have sold myself, body and soul!—I am lost—lost. Ah! I knew it—I knew it.' Shocked and surprised as I was by such an extraordinary scene, I did not forget that Dervilly was of a most nervous and excitable temperament. I rose, took hold of him kindly, and asked him what had happened. As I placed my hand on his head, I perceived that the veins were distended, and that the carotid and temporal arteries were throbbing violently. I hastened to strike a light, while he continued to repeat nearly the words I have just mentioned, in a wild and incoherent manner. I could now see his countenance, and it seemed as if the destroyer had been ravaging it. His cap was gone. His hair, which was usually so neatly arranged, was tossed over his face in twisted locks; his eyes were fixed, and bloodshot, and sparkling.

"'My dear friend, you are ill—you are excited—let me bring you to your bed' (we occupied the large room in common, with a small bedroom for each, leading from it); with this I took his arm, and gently urged him to his apartment.

"'Not there, not there!' he cried vehemently; 'Have I not lain there, night after night, thinking of her?—have I not dreamed there happy dreams, and seen dear delightful visions? Not there—never—never again!'

"'You shall not,' I said, endeavoring to humor him; 'you shall lie in my bed, and I will watch by you till you are better.'

"The young man burst into tears. This action evidently relieved him, and made him more rational, for he took my arm and I assisted him to bed, and tried to soothe him; but he soon relapsed into an excited fever. Shortly after, he called me to him, and throwing his arms closely around me, exclaimed, 'Partridge, we were born in the same land; I implore you, by that one common tie, not to leave me an instant; I am a doomed wretch; but save me, save me from the fiend, as long as it is possible.'

"I now became very much alarmed. My first impulse was to administer an opiate; but the case seemed so critical that I determined to send at once for Louis, whose sympathy for the students, you know, is universal. I called to young Stabb, who occupied the next room, and he set off immediately. After a few minutes Dervilly dozed a little; and then he started up, and gazed around, as if attempting to discern some object.

"'Do you wish for any thing?' I said. He took no notice of my question, but continued to glance piercingly in every direction.

"'What do you see?' I asked.

"'La Morgue!' he exclaimed, with a shudder, and pointing into the other room—'La Morgue!'

"He continued to gaze madly in the same way, still holding his arm outstretched, while his whole frame seemed convulsed with terror; but I could gain no clue to the catastrophe which had fallen so terribly on the ill-fated sufferer.

"It seemed to me an age—it really was but an hour—before Stabb returned. He was accompanied by Louis. It was the great Louis whose skill as a physician, and especially in the treatment of fevers, is world renowned. I had 'followed' him during the whole of your absence; had become, as a matter of course, one of his warmest admirers; and was fortunate enough to secure his friendship. He also knew Dervilly. Hearing them enter, I stepped into the principal room, to meet him. 'Mon Dieu! Monsieur Partridge, quel est le mal?' said Louis, with great feeling. 'Monsieur Dervilly was at the hospital in the morning, and I met him as late as six o'clock this afternoon, passing into the Jardin des Plants.'

"'God only knows,' I replied. 'Something horrible has suddenly befallen him.' And I gave an account of what had occurred since Dervilly came to his rooms. Louis was silent for a moment, and then began to question me very minutely about him, while Stabb went in to keep watch over the poor fellow.—Among other things, I mentioned his love affair; and believing it to be my duty to do so, I told Louis, briefly, all Dervilly had confided to me. He listened with great attention, and after I had concluded, we passed into the little chamber where Dervilly lay. He started up with violence as we came in, as if a severe paroxysm were about to follow. He stared wildly on seeing Louis, and seizing his hand, he exclaimed, 'Ah, mon Professeur, you are a very great man, and you are very kind to come to me, but your knowledge avails nothing here,' touching his forehead. Suddenly he extended his finger, and cried again, 'La Morgue—La Morgue.'

"'What see you in La Morgue?' said Louis, tenderly.

"'See? Her, her!' screamed Dervilly.

"'Who, mon enfant? said the Professor, very gently.

"'Who, but the fiend—the fiend! She has my soul—lost, lost for ever.'

"'You should not speak so harshly of Mademoiselle[Pg 449] de Coigny,' continued Louis, in a soothing tone.

"'Pronounce not that name: a bait, a trap, a wile of Satan; repeat it, and I will tear you piecemeal!' cried the maniac.

"'But, mon pauvre enfant, what does she at La Morgue?'

"'She? the fiend—the fiend—sits perched on the top of the wooden rail all night, watching—watching—and when some of the corpses show signs of life, sails down, and sits upon, and strangles them. Keep me away from there. Ah, mon Professeur, do not let me go there, to lie on the board, and have her bending over me, eyeing me, watching me, ready to strangle me. There again! keep those glazed eyes away—keep them away, I say—'

"All this time Louis was making a minute examination of Dervilly's symptoms.

"The latter presently seemed aware of what he was doing, for he exclaimed, 'The usual symptoms, eh, mon Professeur; strongly marked, n'est ce pas? Act promptly and decisively, as you say sometimes. Let blood—let blood—appliquez des sangsues—ha, ha, ha! that's what we call bleeding, both general and local, ha, ha, ha! then come on with your cold applications: ice, ice, a mountain of ice piled round about the head! follow up with cathartics, refrigerant diaphoretics, after depleting blister!—say you not so?—blisters to the nape of the neck—blisters behind the ears—shave the scalp—I forgot that—shave the scalp—strange I had not thought of it,—and the hair. Mon Professeur, I know you will think me very foolish, but—save the hair—I shan't have another growth—save the hair. Where was I?—ah, the blisters—that will pretty nearly do for me—keep every thing quiet, very quiet—after a while, digitalis and nitre—digitalis and nitre, mon Professeur—have I not said my lesson well?'

"Louis stood perfectly still, regarding the poor fellow with a mournful interest. As Dervilly paused, he took off his spectacles, and wiped his eyes. 'Ah, Monsieur Louis, you talk very eloquently about medical science, but I baffle you; I am sure of it. Call the class together—Ah, Notre Dame de Pitie—call the class together; voila la clinique. Thus being thus, it must necessarily be thus. That's a wise saying, mon Professeur. Call the class together; propound why of necessity you can do nothing? because of a necessity nothing can be done. Call the class together; be active—vigorously antiphlogistic; time is precious—the patient in danger. Purgatives—I doubt as to purgatives. What think you?' And Dervilly paused, and cast on Louis a look so naturally inquiring, that the latter replied, as it were, involuntarily, 'Moi aussi je doute.' And it was so; with all his genius, all his knowledge, all his experience, and all his skill, the great practitioner stood, while minute after minute was lost, apparently hesitating what to do. At last he called me into the other room. 'Is it not possible to find Mademoiselle de Coigny?' he inquired.

"'I have no means of knowing where to seek her,' I replied. At the same time I remembered she was in the habit of visiting the house in which Dervilly first met her, and fortunately knew the street and number.

"'Let her be sent for instantly,' said Louis. 'Do not go yourself; you may be of service here.' Accordingly I gave Stabb the direction, and instructed him to procure Mademoiselle de Coigny's address, if possible; but if he were unsuccessful in this, to communicate the fact of Dervilly's alarming illness, and beg that Mademoiselle might be immediately summoned.

"We returned to the sick room, and Louis, seating himself in a chair, remained lost in thought for nearly a quarter of an hour, while I did what I could, to pacify the sufferer. I could not help wondering that a man, so prompt and so efficient, should lose a moment when the least delay was to be avoided; and as I was reflecting on this, Louis rose so suddenly from his seat that I was startled. 'There is but one course, and the poor boy has very accurately defined it. Let his head be shaved, and pillowed in ice; bleed him at once—if he faints, all the better.' 'No danger of that,' shouted Dervilly. 'No syncope with me but the last syncope—no syncope—ha, ha, ha! double the ounces—you are timid—no syncope, I say—' He continued the whole time raving, much in the manner I have described. The room was kept quite dark, and no one was permitted to come in. Louis did not leave the bedside the entire night. Dervilly never slept for an instant. On one occasion he threw himself close on one side, and screamed, 'Take her away—take her away!'

"'What is it?' I asked.

"'Do you not see her?' he shrieked, 'sitting on the bed, looking into my eyes; take her away, take her away!'

"I need not detail to you," continued Partridge, "the whole of these fearful scenes. Late in the evening Stabb returned; he had found the house; and although he could not obtain Mademoiselle de Coigny's address, he was promised that his message should be communicated early in the morning.

"'It will be too late,' said Louis, mournfully.

"What a long night it was. The morning dawned at last, but it brought no change to poor Dervilly. I had sent for his nearest relative, who lived over on the Boulevard Poissonnière, and was awaiting his arrival with considerable anxiety. It was not later than nine. Stabb, the good fellow, had relieved me from my watch, and I was in the sitting-room, in my large arm-chair, still anxious and fearful, when there came a slight tap at the door; it opened—and Emilie de Coigny stood before me. Ah, how beautiful she was,[Pg 450] yet how terrified! It was not terror of excitement—mere surface passion—but from the depths of her soul. She was stirred by intense emotion. 'Tell me,' she said, coming earnestly up to me, 'tell me where he is, and what has happened to him!' I put my finger on my lips to prevent her from saying more, and led her to the further corner of the room; but she would not sit down; she begged to be told every thing at once; and I, in a low voice, gave Mademoiselle do Coigny a minute account of all I had witnessed. When I came to Dervilly's exclamation, 'La Morgue—La Morgue,' the young girl became suddenly very pale, her fortitude forsook her, and she murmured faintly, 'He saw me go in—he saw me go in.' I must admit I was, for the moment, not a little tremulous. I recollected stories of devils taking possession of the dead bodies of virgins, in order to lure young men to perdition. I thought of the tale of the German student, who, on retiring with his bride, beheld her head roll from her body (she had been guillotined that morning), leaving him wedded to the foul fiend. In spite of me, I looked on the pale stricken creature before me as in one way or another connected with the adversary, and holding a commission from the Prince of the Power of the Air. I had little time for thought on the subject, for Mademoiselle de Coigny insisted on seeing Dervilly. I hesitated, but she was decided. She threw aside her pretty straw hat, and a light shawl, and stepped toward the apartment where her lover lay. She passed the threshold before he saw her. She called him by his name, 'Alfred.' He turned, and as his eyes fell on her, he uttered mad exclamations; crouching frantically in the furthest corner of the bed. 'Avaunt,' he screamed; 'vampyre—devil—owl of hell—come no nearer, (she still advanced, calling to him tenderly); I know that syren voice; it has damned and double damned me.—Partridge! Stabb! take her away, or,' he continued, in a fierce tone, 'I will do second execution on her.'

"Poor girl—it was too much—she swooned away....

"You may imagine that it was a terrible scene," continued Partridge. "I set to work immediately for her recovery, having first carried her out of the room where Dervilly lay. She opened her eyes at last, but what a look of anguish was in them! 'Is he better?' she asked in a faint tone. I shook my head. 'Tell me,' she exclaimed, 'will he die? oh, will he, must he die?'

"'He is very sick, Mademoiselle.'

"'I have killed him, I have killed him,' she cried.

"'Pardon me', said I, 'Monsieur Dervilly is in great danger; still if we knew the cause of this dreadful attack we might gain some advantage by it.'

"'Ah, it is my work,' murmured the fair mystery to herself, without heeding my observation; 'I have done it, and if he dies, I am a murderer—his murderer.' She appeared no way disposed to betray her secret, and I did not press the subject. Presently Louis came in. He made his inquiries of me, and then went to the patient. There was no change, except in the increase of fatal symptoms. The delirium was more furious, the pulse hard, full, frequent, and vibrating. The most vigorous course was adopted; two other students were called in to assist Stabb and myself, and every means used to give effect to the prescribed treatment.

"As for Mademoiselle de Coigny, she remained in the sitting-room, the picture of intense anguish. I urged her to retire, but she shook her head. I now begged her to tell me what had caused this strange attack, but she was silent. At length I went and called Madame Lecomte—you recollect what a kind-hearted creature she was—and told her briefly the little I knew of the unfortunate girl. She answered the summons at once, and in the most gentle manner endeavored to persuade Mademoiselle de Coigny to go with her. It was in vain. She would not leave the room. Occasionally, through the day, she would step to Dervilly's bedside, and in the softest, sweetest, gentlest tone I ever heard, say, 'Alfred.' The effect was always the same as at first—exciting the poor fellow to still deeper paroxysms, and more violent exclamations. On the fourth day he died; the symptoms becoming more and more aggravating, until coma supervened to delirium. During the whole period of his sickness Mademoiselle de Coigny never left the house—scarcely the room—Madame Lecomte on two or three occasions almost forcing the wretched girl away to her own apartments. When poor Dervilly sunk into that deep lethargic slumber, so much dreaded by the physician, because so fatal, she came almost joyfully into his chamber, and threw her arms tenderly around him, 'He sleeps at last,' she said, 'is it not well?'

"I would have given the world for the freedom of bursting into tears, so deeply was I affected by that hopeful, trustful question. What could I do, but shake my head mournfully and hasten out of the place.... He died, and made no sign; not a word, not a look, not the slightest pressure of the hand, for the one he loved so tenderly, and who watched so anxiously for some slight token. 'Oh,' I exclaimed to myself, as the hardness of such a fate was impressed on me, 'God is just, there is a hereafter, these two must meet again.' ... Emilie de Coigny left the room where her dead lover lay, only when he himself was borne to his last resting-place. She followed him to the spot where he was buried in Pere la Chaise, and remained standing by it after every one else had come away. In this position she was found—standing over the grave—late at night by her friends—some members of the family I have mentioned—who[Pg 451] sought her out. She left that splendid city of the dead bereft of reason, and so she has ever since continued. When the day is fine, she invariably keeps her fancied engagement with her lover at the appointed place in the Jardin des Plants; she patiently sits the hour, and retires sadly, as you saw her. When the weather is forbidding, she goes to her friend's house and waits the same period, never showing the least symptom of impatience, but, on the contrary, evincing the signs of a bruised but most gentle spirit." ...

Here Partridge paused, as if at the end of his story.

"Is that all?" said I.

"That is all," he responded.

"Surely not," I continued; "you have said nothing about the strange mystery which killed our poor friend, and which, as it seems to me, is the main point, in the story."

"True enough—it is singular I should have left it out, but it is explained in a word. These same friends of Mademoiselle de Coigny gave me the information. It appears that on one inclement night, as the keeper of the Morgue was returning from an official visit to the Chief of Police, toward his own quarters, which are adjoining and over the dead room—he stumbled over something which a flash of lightning at the instant showed to be the body of a man. He was quite dead, but, nestled down close by his side, with one of her little hands on his face, was a child, about two years of age. Jean Maurice Sorel, although long inured to repulsive sights, had not grown callous to misery. By birth he was considerably above his somewhat ignominious office; he had narrowly escaped with his life when Louis XVI. was brought to the scaffold, for some indiscreet expressions that savored too much of royalty; but in the tumults which succeeded, he had, he scarcely knew how, through some influence with the chief of one of the departments, been appointed to this repulsive duty. But as I have said, his heart was just as kind as ever, after many years discharge of it; and Jean Maurice Sorel, instead of repining at his lot, blessed God daily that he had the means of supporting a wife and children, while so many of his old friends had literally starved to death. Such was the person who stumbled over the body of the dead man, and discovered the living child beside it. He called at once for assistance, and had the corpse conveyed to his house, while he carried the little girl in his arms. She was too young to give any information about herself, but on searching the pockets of the deceased, several papers were found which disclosed enough to satisfy Jean Maurice Sorel that in the wasted, attenuated form before him, he beheld his once friend and benefactor the Marquis de Coigny, who, he supposed, had perished by the guillotine in the revolution. The papers permitted no doubt of the fact that the little girl was his granddaughter and only descendant, and she was commended to the care of the kind-hearted when death should overtake him.

"The old Marquis was buried, and the little Emilie adopted into the family of the good Jean Maurice. Her education was conducted in a manner far superior to that of his own children, and the choicest garments of those which fell to him were selected to be made over for her. Perhaps unwisely, her history was explained to her, so that she lived all her life with the sense that she belonged in a different sphere—not that she was ungrateful or unamiable—quite the contrary—she was sweet tempered, affectionate and gentle, and loved by Jean Maurice and all his family with a devoted fondness: but the world had charms for her which the world withheld; she felt that she never could become an object of love where she could love in return, and so she repined at her destiny. By accident she made the acquaintance of the family where Dervilly first met her. They had known her father and her grandfather, and she loved them for that. She resisted for a long time the feeling for her lover which she perceived was taking strong hold of her, and when she could resist no longer, she yet delayed to tell him what a home she inhabited. This was her pride—her weakness—and how terribly did she pay the penalty! Day after day (so I was told), she resolved to explain all, but she procrastinated, till her lover, no longer able to restrain his anxiety, and full of excitements and fears and perturbations, followed her at some little distance, just at twilight, and saw or fancied he saw her enter La Morgue. It was too much for his nervous temperament. His brain caught fire—he came home raving with delirium—and DIED! Now you have the whole."




"Sin vos, y sin Dios y mi."
The motto that with trembling hand I write,
And deep is traced upon this heart of mine,
In olden time a loyal Christian knight
Bore graven on his shield to Palestine.
"Sin vos," it saith, "if I am without thee,"
Beloved! whose thought surrounds me every where—
"Sin Dios," I am without God, "y mi,"
And in myself I have no longer share.
Where pealed the clash of war, the mighty din,
Where trump and cymbal crashed along the sky;
High o'er the "Il Allah!" of the Moslemin,
"God and my lady!" rang his battle-cry.
His white plume waved where fiercest raged the flight,
His arm was strong the Paynim's course to stem:
His foot was foremost on the sacred height,
To plant the Cross above Jerusalem.
False proved the lady, and thenceforth the knight,
Casting aside the buckler and the brand,
Lived, an austere and lonely anchorite,
In a drear mountain-cave in Holy Land.
There, bowed before the Crucifix in prayer,
He would dash madly down his rosary,
And cry "Beloved!" in tones of wild despair,
"I have lost God, and self, in losing thee!"
And I, if thus my life's sweet hope were o'er,
An echo of the knight's despair must be;
Thus I were lost, if loved by thee no more,
For, ah! myself and heaven are merged in thee.

[Pg 452]




"Know, then, that in the year 1743, in the city of Palermo, the family of Signor Pietro Balsamo, a shopkeeper, were exhilarated by the birth of a boy. Such occurrences have now become so frequent, that, miraculous as they are, they occasion little astonishment;" and, it may be well to add, that, except in some curious cases, there is no longer that exhilaration now felt, but, as in Ireland, a leaden sense of future woe. We are not told by the parents that any strange or miraculous appearance attended or preceded this advent, though one cannot but believe that the future Archimagus and his followers must have had a more or less distinct opinion upon this point. Not to lose time in speculation, we learn that "we have here found in the Count Alessandro di Cagliostro (the above-named boy), pupil of the sage, Altholas—foster-child of the Scherif of Mecca—probable son of the last king of Trebizond; named also Acharat, and unfortunate child of nature; by profession, healer of diseases, abolisher of wrinkles, friend of the poor and impotent, grand-master of the Egyptian Mason lodge of High Science, spirit summoner, gold cork, grand cophta, prophet, priest, and thaurmaturgic moralist and swindler; really a liar of the first magnitude; thorough-paced in all provinces of lying, what one may call their king."

Under the common tent, the great canopy of life, it would not be fair to prejudge the mind of the reader upon so grave a thing as character, which we are now considering—it might be best to let each come to an after-thought respecting it—upon our caustic and noble author let the blame, if any, hang, while we now proceed to dip in, here and there, to his magic page.

As the boy grows, we learn, that "as he skulks about there, plundering, pilfering, playing dog's-tricks, with his finger in every mischief, he already gains character. Shrill housewives of the neighborhood, whose sausages he has filched, whose weaker sons maltreated, name him Beppo Maldetto, and indignantly prophecy that he will be hanged—a prediction which the issue has signally falsified." We also may learn, what, in the treatment of our whole subject it is extremely important to remember, that, in the "boy," a "brazen impudence developes itself, the crowning gift," &c. "To his astonishment," though, "he finds that even here he is in a conditional world, and if he will employ his capability of eating (or enjoying) must first, in some measure, work and suffer. Contention enough hereupon; but now dimly arises, or reproduces itself, the question. Whether there were not a shorter road—that of stealing!"

But how he was entered into the convent, and under the convent apothecary proceeded to learn certain arts and mysteries of the retorts and alembics (which lucky knowledge, after that, came to use), while he was learning his other trade of monkery and mass-chanting, we will omit. It is enough to know, that he would not answer for the convent, and was again afloat on the wide sea of existence. That he floated is certain; for "he has a fair cousin living in the house with him, and she again has a lover. Beppo stations himself as go-between; delivers letters; fails not to drop hints that a lady to be won or kept must be generously treated; that such and such a pair of ear-rings, watch, or sum of money, would work wonders: which valuables, adds the wooden Roman biographer, he then appropriated furtively." Slowly but certainly he makes his way: "tries his hand at forging" theatre tickets—a will even, "for the benefit of a certain religious house;" and, further on, can tell fortunes, and show visions in a small way—all these inspirations are vouchsafed him, or, rather, these things he is permitted to do, and others not to be mentioned here.

It is well to note, that in all times, and among all peoples, there is a deep and profound conviction that there is not only a "short and certain" way of getting to heaven, and to know the eternal truths, but also that these earthly treasures do exist, in untold quantity, in the elements; and if one could only discover the secret by which the gases could be condensed into solid gold, or the gnomes be persuaded or compelled to give them up, ready solidified to hand, it would at least save time and be satisfactory. It is only curious, as a matter of speculation, to know what we shall eat when the lucky age arrives, and spirits will do our bidding in this matter of gold and diamonds. The "boy," as he grew, discovered this world-wide capacity; and who should have this power of setting the "spirits" to work but he?

"Walking one day in the fields with a certain ninny of a goldsmith, named Marano, Beppo begins in his oily voluble way to hint that treasures often lay hid; that a certain treasure lay hid there (as he knew by some pricking of his thumbs, divining rod, or other talismanic monition), which treasure might, by the aid of science, courage, secrecy, and a small judicious advance of money, be fortunately lifted. The gudgeon takes—advances, by degrees, to the length of 'sixty gold ounces'—sees magic circles drawn in the wane or the full of the moon, blue (phosphorous) flames arise—split twigs auspiciously quiver—and at length demands, peremptorily, that the treasure be dug!"

Alas! why is it that the "spirits" so often fail us at our sorest need? Do they deceive us; and, if not, who does? The treasure vanishes, or does not appear, "the conditions are imperfect," and the "ninny of a goldsmith" being roughly handled by these spiritual[Pg 453] visitants, threatens to stiletto the adept; who, overcome with the ingratitude of the world, concludes to quit;—at least, in the words of his Inquisition biographer, "he fled from Palermo, and overran the whole earth."

We may see how he has grown—how, as in ordinary mortals, he advances step by step—even he, the favorite son of the higher intelligences, learns as he goes. How is it, then, that we can have no full-grown inspiration; that we know of no perfection—that we only go on towards it? Can it be that prophets and priests really do learn, and that even now, men may grow into the future? Might not a more thorough and scientific seminary for this purpose be established than any we now have—theologic, thaumaturgic, theosophic, or other variety? It is a question easier asked than answered.

"The Beppic Hegira brings us down in European history to somewhere about the period of the peace of Paris"—(a.d. ——), supervening upon which is a portentous time—"the multitudinous variety of quacks that, along with Beppo, overran all Europe during that same period—the latter half of the last century. It was the very age of impostors, cut-purses, swindlers, double gaugers, enthusiasts, ambiguous persons, quacks simple, quacks compound, crack-brained or with deceit prepense, quacks and quackeries of all colors and kinds. How many mesmerists (so speaks this strange author), magicians, cabalists, Swedenborgians, illuminati, crucified nuns, and devils of Loudun! To which the Inquisition biographer adds vampyres, sylphs, rosicrucians, free-masons, and an et cetera. Consider your Schropfers, Cagliostros, Casanovas, Saint Germains, Dr. Grahams, the Chevalier d'Eon, Psalmanazar, Abbé Paris, and the Ghost of Cock-lane!—as if Bedlam had broken loose!"

The great, the inexplicable, the mysterious Beppo, being now fairly afloat, let us try to comprehend how he has begun to touch upon the edge of those trade winds, which shall drive him along toward the golden Indies, Ophir, and the land of promise, for which the men of this world do so hunger and thirst.

He married a beautiful Seraphina, afterward countess, graceful and lady-like, once the daughter of a girdle-maker, and named Lorenza Feliciani. Every one, simple or sedate, knows that it is best to hunt in couples. What one has not the other may have. So Seraphina had beauty, lightness, buoyancy, and could float up her count when the demons and harpies of a certain troublesome devil, called law or justice, seemed bent upon his swift destruction. Could she not, too, "enlist the sympathies of admiring audiences"—by her sweet smiles and "artless ways," gain belief, and "a wish to believe?" More than that, could she not turn the heads of young and old? "noble" perhaps, perhaps "ignoble"—"moneyed do-nothings" (so says this writer), whereof in this vexed earth there are many, ever lounging about such (?) places—scan and comment on the foreign coat-of-arms—ogle the fair foreign woman, who timidly recoils from their gaze, timidly responds to their reverences, as in halls and passages they obsequiously throw themselves in her way. Ere long, one moneyed do-nothing (from amid his tags, tassels, sword-belts, fop-tackle, frizzled hair, without brains beneath it) is heard speaking to another—"Seen the countess?—divine creature that!" Indeed, one cannot but wonder that any should question the unity of the race, at least, of those known as "civilized." In a small way, or in a large way, how this thing ever goes on—on church steps, on Broadways, in Metropolitan Halls, Congresses, the Palais-Royal, at home and abroad! And men do yet call this "reverence for the sex," and holy sentiment; and indulge in hallelujahs to that hoary myth, "a gentleman of the old school;" while women—God help us—women loving it, hate those who, hating it, hate hollowness and hell. With slight imagination, then, one may see how important an element this "divine creature" must have become in any conjuration or mystic "renovation of the universe," which the high mystagogue might be impressed to set on foot. Enough, that she helped and learned the arts of prophecy and perfection faster than her master! But we read—alas! alas!—"As his seraphic countess gives signs of withering, and one luxuriant branch of industry will die and drop off, others must be pushed into budding." He, the indefatigable count, is not idle. "Faded dames of quality (over all Europe, all creation) have many wants: the count has not studied in the convent laboratory, or pilgrimed to the Count St. Germain, in Westphalia, to no purpose. With loftiest condescension he stoops to impart somewhat of his supernatural secrets—for a consideration. Rowland's Kalydor is valuable; but what to the beautifying water of Count Alessandro! He that will undertake to smooth wrinkles, and make withered, green parchment into a fair carnation skin, is he not one whom faded dames of quality will delight to honor? Or, again, let the beautifying-water succeed or not, have not such dames (if calumny may in aught be believed) another want? This want, too, the indefatigable Cagliostro will supply—for a consideration. For faded gentlemen of quality the count likewise has help. Not a charming countess alone, but a "wine of Egypt" (Cantharides not being unknown to him), sold in drops, more precious than nectar; which, what faded gentlemen of quality will not purchase with any thing short of life. Consider, too, what may be done with potions, washes, charms, love-philters, among a class of mortals idle from their mother's womb," &c., &c.

It is well to know, once for all, that the count, chief-priest of his order—which yet[Pg 454] thrives, and if not great, deserves to be called for its number, Legion—made money out of this his enterprising trade; that he was enabled to pay his way; to ride post with the ever potent "voucher of respectability, a coach-and-four," with out-riders and beef-eaters, and couriers and lackeys, and the other paraphernalia which the greedy tooth of man desires—which helps one forward so far toward happiness, provided always that "there is no heaven above and no hell beneath," of which let each first make sure; and more than all, let such as wish to travel this road, take great courage from the contemplation of this one model.

We must hasten to the year 1776, a year rather noted in our annals, and in that of England, perhaps, independently of this the "first visit" of the famed Count Cagliostro to its shores, which happened then. Should it have so chanced that he had lived now, would he have stopped there does the reader think? Having an insight into their national character, and finding "great greed and need," and but small heed, what might he not have done on this transatlantic shore, whose free people can so nobly cherish even its Barnum, its——, its——! But let names go. We make the most of what we have, and if not equal to the greatest, the fault rests not on our shoulders. We are not responsible for the past, if for the present or future.

'Twas in England that the master developed most bravely the art of prophecy; perhaps finding there a demand for his supply—such, according to some, being the only law of God or man. It is enough to know that he does a trade in foretelling the lucky lottery numbers by means of his "occult science," whereby at least he put money in his purse, and satisfied good-natured men that as there were gulls, and necessarily a guller, he above all others deserved praise and not blame; the whole thing, this life, being really a juggle, and the smartest fellow of course the best juggler. As man goes on he developes, so many think—so did Cagliostro, and in his growth he reaches to masonry—Egyptian masonry—and in "sworn secrecy" finds a new Talisman, for which men will pay five guineas each. He resolves to "free it from all vile ingredients, and make it a new Evangile." "No religion is excluded from the Egyptian society"—for is it not certain that religion pays? Charity too, pays, as we shall see by-and-by. No religion is tabooed—none—all who admit the existence of a God, and the immortality of the soul, may, for the small sum of five guineas, be certain to gain "perfection by means of a physical and moral regeneration." He promises them by the former or physical to find the prime matter or philosopher's stone, and the acacia which consolidates in man the forces of the most vigorous youth, and renders him immortal; and by the latter or moral, to procure them a Pentagon which shall restore man to his primitive state of innocence, lost by his original sin. It must be understood that this masonry was founded by Enoch and Elias, had been corrupted by the Egyptian priests, but was now restored to its pristine vigor by its last and greatest Grand Cophta, and includes not only men but women, of whom the Countess Seraphina is Cophtess.

We cannot do better than to gain some insight into the forms and symbolic practices of these worshippers; and especially will those who desire to practise this or any short and easy way to perfection or happiness, be glad to learn what has been done, and thus be encouraged to begin.

In the Essai sur les Illuminés, printed in Paris in 1789, are the following details quoted by this before-mentioned known author.[1] These bear an air of truth and probability which will win for them easy admission. Many of them are not unlike what we have seen amongst us during the few past years.

"They take a young lad or a girl who is in the state of innocence: such they call the Pupil or Colomb: the Venerable communicates to him the power he would have had before the fall of man; which power consists mainly in commanding the pure spirits: these spirits are to the number of seven. It is said they surround the shrine, and that they govern the seven planets. Their names are Arael, Michael, Raphael, Gabriel, Uriel, Zobiachel, Anachiel." Nothing certainly can begin more favorably. We learn that "she the Colomb," can act in two ways, either behind a curtain, behind a hieroglyphically-painted screen with table and three candles, or before the Caraffe and showing face. If the miracle fail it can only be because she is not "in the state of innocence." An accident must be guarded against. Surely our mystic professors, both clerical and lay, will take heed to these things. Much may be learned.

Cagliostro accordingly (it is his own story) brought a little boy into the lodge, son of a nobleman there. He placed him on his knees before a table, whereon stood a bottle of pure water, and behind this some lighted candles. He made an exorcism round the boy, put his hand on head, and both in this attitude addressed their prayers to God for the happy accomplishment of the work. Having then bid the child look into the bottle, directly the child cried that he saw a garden. Knowing hereby that Heaven assisted him [why this is so proven he does not explain], Cagliostro took courage, and bade the child ask of God the grace to see the Archangel Michael. At first the child said, "I see something white; I know not what it is." Then he began jumping and stamping like a possessed creature, and cried, "Now, I see a child like myself, which seems to have something angelical (!)" All the assembly and Cagliostro himself remained speechless with emotion.... [How like this is to what we at this day have[Pg 455] seen.] The child being anew exorcised with the hands of the Venerable on his head, and the customary prayers addressed to Heaven, he looked into the bottle, and said he saw his sister at that moment coming down stairs, and embracing one of her brothers. That appeared impossible, the brother in question being then hundreds of miles off. However Cagliostro felt not disconcerted; said they might send to the country-house, where the sister was, and see—if they chose!

Do some still doubt? Time nor paper will allow us to allay that doubt. We must, as rapidly as we can, introduce what may yet be useful in certain cases of the like kind, either in whole or in part. It is the introduction of a novice into the holy Mysteries.

"The recipiendary is led by a darksome path into a large hall, the ceiling, the walls, the floor of which are covered by a black cloth, sprinkled over with red flames and menacing serpents; three sepulchral lamps emit from time to time a dying glimmer, and the eye half distinguishes, in this lugubrious den, certain wrecks of mortality suspended by funeral crapes; a heap of skeletons forms in the centre a sort of altar; on both sides of it are piled books; some contain menaces against the perjured; others the deadly narrative of the vengeance which the invisible spirit has exacted; of the infernal evocations for a long time pronounced in vain.

"Eight hours elapse. Then phantoms, trailing mortuary vails, slowly cross the hall and sink in caverns, without audible noise of trapdoors or of falling. You notice only that they are gone by a fetid odor exhaled from them.

"The novice remains four and twenty hours in this gloomy abode, in the midst of a freezing silence. A rigorous fast has already weakened his thinking faculties. Liquors prepared for the purpose first weary and at length wear out his senses. At his feet are placed three cups, filled with a drink of a greenish color. Necessity lifts them to his lips: involuntary fear repels them.

"At last appear two men: looked upon as the ministers of Death. These gird the pale brow of the recipiendary with an auroral-colored-ribbon dipped in blood, and full of silvered characters mixed with our lady of Loretto. He receives a copper crucifix, of two inches length: to his neck are hung a sort of amulets wrapped in violet cloth. He is stripped of his clothes; which two ministering brethren deposit on a funeral pile, erected at the other end of the hall. With blood on his naked body are traced crosses. In this state of suffering and humiliation, he sees approaching with large strides five Phantoms armed with swords, and clad in garments dropping blood. Their faces are vailed: they spread a velvet carpet on the floor; kneel there, pray; and remain with outstretched hands crossed on their breasts, and faces fixed on the ground in deep silence. An hour passes in this painful attitude. After which fatiguing trial, plaintive cries are heard; the funeral pile takes fire, yet casts only a pale light; the garments are thrown on it and burnt. A colossal and almost transparent figure rises from the very bosom of the pile. At sight of it the five prostrated men fall into convulsions insupportable to look on: the too faithful image of those foaming struggles wherein a mortal, at hand-grips with a sudden pain, ends by sinking under it.

"Then a trembling voice pierces the vault, and articulates the formula of those execrable oaths that are to be sworn: my pen falters: I think myself almost guilty to retrace them."

Strange as it may seem, we stop here with Monsieur the Author. Strange too that some deny the reality of all this—and tell of magic lanterns and science—stranger still that men are who believe all—all—'tis to them a spasmodic miracle, and he is an infidel of course who doubts. Strange too is it, that men do not see here the monstrous power of what is called Symbolism, and that they should not help nor hinder; who say, Let the world go—who cares! Men live and women too who say, "There's something in it"—there must be! and is there not? Figure now all this boundless cunningly devised agglomerate of royal arches, deaths' heads, hieroglyphically painted screens, "columns in the state of innocence, with spacious masonic halls—dark, or in the favorablest theatrical light-and-dark: Kircher's magic lantern, Belshazzar handwritings (of phosphorus), plaintive tones, gong-beatings, hoary head of a supernatural Grand Cophta emerging through the gloom—and how it all acts, not only directly through the foolish senses of men, but also indirectly connecting itself with Enoch and Elias, with philanthropy, immortality," &c. Let such as will now say there is nothing in it—something there is, for a thoughtful man to consider well of, asking himself what also does this of clairvoyance, and spiritual knockings, and Jenny-Lind manias, and Jerkers—truly mean? and what kind of a person am I who have had part and lot with these?

But the lofty science of Egyptian Masonry flourishes, lodges are established over Europe, and the Grand Master travels hither and thither, "mounts to the seat of the Venerable, and holds high discourse, hours long, on masonry, morality, universal science, divinity, and things in general," with a "sublimity, and emphasis and unction," proceeding it appears "from the special inspiration of the Holy Ghost." He is received with shouts and exultation—every where the great heart of man thrills at the coming of this mystic symbol, which contains—cunningly enfolded, as their eyes can and do see—every virtue, every greatness—is he not indeed the Incarnation of these, and therefore to be worshipped; such gift of reverence is in the heart of man, and to such things does he again and again bow down![Pg 456]

To go on. Cheers, and the ravishment of thronging audiences can make him maudlin; render him louder in eloquence of theory; and "philanthropy," "divine science," "depth of unknown worlds," "finer feelings of the heart"—and so shall draw tears from most asses of sensibility. "The few reasoning mortals scattered here and there, that see through him, deafened in the universal hub-bub, shut their lips in sorrowful disdain, confident in the grand remedy, Time." So says our author, and can we blame him? Will the reader allow the current of this prosperity to be checked for one moment by a certain Count M.? One of the chosen few at Warsaw, who having spent the night with the "dear Master," in conversing with spirits, had returned to the country to transmute metals perhaps—perhaps to do other mighty works. Count M. seems to have been afflicted with doubts, to have supposed that by sleight-of-hand the "sweet Master" had substituted the crucible with melted ducats, for the other—carefully filled with red lead, "smelted and set to cool," "and now found broken and hidden among these bushes"—the whole golden crucible standing in its place. "Neither does the Plenagon or Elixir of Life, or whatever it was, prosper better—our sweet master enters into expostulation—swears by his great God, and his honor, that he will finish the work and make us happy." In vain—"the shreds of the broken crucible lie there before your eyes"—and the usurper has its place. That "resemblance of a sleeping child, grown visible in the magic cooking of our Elixir, proves to be an inserted rosemary leaf. The Grand Cophta cannot be gone too soon."

Already it has been said that "Charity pays," philanthropy, benevolence, all these—sometimes? if one sows his bread on the waters shall he not expect its return after many or after few days?—the sooner the better for your Cagliostros, your Barnums. Shout it daily to an envious world—"Am I not a charitable man? If I have done wrong myself (as who has not?) has not a great deal of good grown out of my wickedness? I have therefore done my share, for which if the world has paid me in 'praise and pudding,' it is no more than it has done before, and will do again!" Take courage!

Cagliostro doctors—heals—the poor, for nothing!—even gives them alms—does a great deal of good—who but he? At Strasburg in the year 1783 (year of our peace with England), he "appears in full bloom and radiance, the envy and admiration of the world. In large hired hospitals, he with open drug-box (containing 'Extract of Saturn'), and even with open purse, relieves the suffering poor; unfolds himself lamblike, angelic, to a believing few, of the rich classes. Medical miracles have at all times been common, but what miracle is this of an occidental or oriental Serene-highness that 'regardless of expense,' employs himself in curing sickness, in illuminating ignorance?" We at the present day know nothing like it; the mere giving of a few surplus hundreds or thousands to certain Slavery, Anti-Slavery, Peace, Temperance or other societies, is benevolence of the "rocking chair" species—is not to be mentioned with this, of the self-denying Cagliostro's diving into cellars, and mounting into garrets, to seek and to save—at the risk of not only life but comfort—the first of which happily was not thus sacrificed:—nor indeed on the whole was comfort lost sight of, as the "coach-and-four with liveries and sumptuosities bears witness." There is often profound wisdom in this thing called public or newspaper charity. Does it—or does it not—pay?

The favorite of the gods, he who holds high discourse with spirits, and to whom is opened the hidden secret of earth and heaven, finds ready acceptance—backed as he is by charities, by elegancies: finds acceptance with the poor, the ignorant to whom he ministers—but also "with a mixture of sorrow and indignation" it is recorded, among the great—and not only they, but among the learned, "even physicians and naturalists." It does not seem worth while to expend sorrow and indignation upon this fact, not at all new, as we now fifty years farther along have discovered; for we can show our physicians and naturalists, and also our priests and prophets, in small crowds with whom marvels find acceptance. We shall see more of them by and by.

But one among the rich and great, was the Cardinal Prince Count Rohan, Archbishop of Strasburg. "Open-handed dupe," as some term him—now out of favor with the Queen Marie Antoinette (after that beheaded and called unfortunate). Banished from his beloved Paris and the sunshine of royalty, what should he do but to regain his pedestal? necessary no doubt, for the glory of God, and his church; necessary at least for the Count Rohan. Cagliostro is all powerful—he will help the Cardinal Prince—not only by philters and charms, but by prophecies from the gods, who speaking through their earthly oracle, will of course (it paying best), promise success and not failure. The Archbishop tries all things, and at last the far-famed "diamond necklace," upon the queen, which no woman's heart can withstand, not even the queen's. Sad to tell, the miserable queen knew nothing of the necklace; and only the Md'lle De la Motte, styled countess, by superior arts had outjuggled Cagliostro himself, Cardinal Rohan, queen and all: the diamonds were gone—the queen's character blackened, cardinal, cophta, and countess, all in the Bastille, where they lay some nine months (year 1781), disastrous months, when "high science" wasted itself in eating out its own heart. Cagliostro escaped, was let go—but a plundered, banished, suspected high priest, was quite another thing from a golden cophta, with[Pg 457] the foreign coat-of-arms, serene countess—and open purse relieving the unfortunate.

Cagliostro now flits to England, to Bale, to Brienne, to Aix, to Turin, he wanders hither and thither; we cannot follow him. The end of all, the lofty and the low, must come—that seems drawing near to Cagliostro too—but how? not in ruddy splendor as of departing day, not quiet, serene, as of nature sinking to rest—rather like the disastrous death of the bleeding shark it seems: his brethren, his friends—- sharks of his own kind, of all kinds, high and low—rush upon the wounded shark, as to a banquet to which they were bidden. He is exiled here, he is persecuted there—imprisonment, despair, degradation haunt him—the houseless, unfortunate—now vagabond, once renovator of the human race, and friend of lords and friend of gods and princes. Such is gratitude! such is popular favor! a thing to be bought and bargained for, to be given when not needed. Such, no doubt, Cagliostro decided!

He is sore bested, and begins "to confess himself to priests," for a man must do something in his extremity. It avails him not; he is at last in the gripe of the holy Inquisition at Rome, "in the year of our Lord, 1789, December 29," and must match himself with a power which this world knows something of: face to face, hand to hand, at last. Have they juggles equal to his juggles, miracles equal to his—high science equal to his—legions of angels equal to his?—enough that they have dungeons, and sbirri—and in his case, hearts harder than the nether mill-stone—not to be softened "by demands for religious books"—assertions of the divinity of the Egyptian Masonry—promises of wonderful revelations—oaths, flatteries, or any of the mystic paraphernalia of the now powerless professor and prophet: they will not let him out! but rather will introduce him to a new art, that of becoming a Christian, and get him, the toughest in a tough time, into heaven as they best can. Did they find Loyola's twenty days sufficient, and was the article then turned out of hand complete for that other state? The Inquisition biographer does not dwell upon this, it was perhaps as well. We learn at last that he died in the year 1795, and went, the writer says, "Whither no man knows!" So ended a Magician!

New Haven, Feb., 1852.


[1] T. Carlyle.




Bitter words are easy spoken;
Not so easily forgot;
Hearts it may be can be broken—
Mine cannot!
When thou lovest me I adore thee;
Hating, I can hate thee too;
But I will not bow before thee—
Will not sue!
Even now, without endeavor,
Thou hast wounded so my pride,
I could leave thee, and for ever—
Though I died!




The cabinet remained in deliberation at the Ministry of War, situated at the corner of the square called the Hof. The tide of insurrection now rose to an unconquerable height. The nearest shots of the retiring cannons, the advancing shouts of the infuriated people, warned the ministers that all defence was rapidly becoming hopeless. The building itself still offered some means of resistance, and there were two cannons in the court; but at that crisis was issued a written order, signed by Latour and Wessenberg, "to cease the fire at all points," and given to officers for distribution.[3] It was in vain. The popular torrent rolled on toward the seat of government, which was destined ere long to be disgraced by atrocious crime. The minister of war, Count Latour, prepared for defence. The military on guard in front of the war office were withdrawn into the yards, with two pieces of artillery loaded with grape. The gates were closed, the military distributed to the different threatened points, and the cannons directed towards the two gates; soon the scene of battle had reached the Bogner Gasse, immediately under the windows of the war department; the ministers in consultation heard the cry, "The military retreat." The great square of the Hof was soon cleared, the soldiers retiring by the way of the Freyung. The guards and academic legion pursuing; the military commander's quarters in the Freyung are soon captured. The retiring military not being able to escape through the Schotten-Thor, as they had expected, that gate being closed and barricaded, they cut their way through the Herrn Gasse.

So intent were the respective combatants, either in retreat or pursuit, that the whole tempest of war swept over the Hof, and left that square, for a short time, deserted and silent.

But that stillness was but of short duration; a few moments only had elapsed, when a number of straggling guards, students, and people, came stealing silently from the Graben, through the Bogner, Naglus, and Glosken Gasse, on to the Hof, and removed the dead and the wounded into the neighboring[Pg 458] dwellings, and into the deserted guard-house in the war department. These were soon followed by a fierce and noisy mob, armed with axes, pikes, and iron bars, which halted before the war office, and began to thunder at its massive doors.

The officer of ordnance in vain attempted to communicate to the crowd the order of the ministry, that all firing should cease. A member of the academic legion, from the window, over the gateway, waved with a white handkerchief to the tumultuous masses, and, exhibiting the order signed by Latour and Wessenberg, read its contents to the crowd.

But a pacification was not to be thought of; the people were too excited, their fury could only be appeased by blood; that delayed measure was not sufficient; they made negative gesticulations, and summoned the student to come down and open the portals to their admission. The tumult increased from minute to minute; the closed doors at length gave way under the axes of the mob, and the people streamed in, led by a man "in a light gray coat."

The secretary of war, having by this time abandoned the idea of defence, on the ground either that it was useless or impolitic, no shots were fired or active resistance offered; but the orderlies with their horses retired to the stables, and the grenadiers into an inner court. At first only single individuals entered, and their course was not characterized by violence; then groups, proceeding slowly, listening, and searching; and, at last the tumultuous masses thundered in the rear.

Ere long the cry rung on the broad staircase, "Where is Latour? he must die!" At this moment the ministers and their followers in the building, with the exception of Latour himself, found means to escape, or mingled with the throng. The deputies, Smolka, Borrosch, Goldmark, and Sierakowski, who had undertaken to guarantee protection to the threatened ministers, arrived in the hope of restraining the mob. The numerous corridors and cabinets of the war office (formerly a monastery of the Jesuits) were filled with the crowd; the tide of insurrection now rose to an uncontrollable height; and the danger of Latour became every moment more imminent.

The generals who were with him, perceiving the peril, entreated him to throw himself upon the Nassau regiment or the Dutch Meister grenadiers, and retreat to their barracks. He scorned the proposal, denied the danger, and even refused, for some time, to change his uniform for a civilian's dress, until the hazard becoming more evident, he put on plain clothes, and went up into a small room in the roof of the building, where he soon after signed a paper declaring that, with his majesty's consent, he was ready to resign the office of minister of war. A Tecnicker, named Ranch,[4] who, it was said, had come to relieve the secretary of war, was seized and hung in the court by his own scarf, but fortunately cut down by a National Guard before life was extinct. The mob rushed into the private apartment of the minister, but plundered it merely of the papers, which were conveyed to the university. They came with a sterner purpose. The act of resignation, exhibited to the crowd by the deputy Smolka, was scornfully received by the people, while the freshness of the writing, the sand adhering still to the ink, betrayed the proximity of the hand which had just traced it. Meanwhile, the crowd had penetrated the corridors of the fourth story, and were not long in discovering the place of Latour's concealment. Hearing their approach, and recognizing the voice of Smolka, vice-president of the assembly, who was doubtless anxious to protect him, Latour came out of his retreat.

They descended together from the fourth story by a narrow stairway, on the right-hand side of the building, and entered the yard by the pump. At each successive landing place, the tumult and the crowd increased; but the descent was slow, and rendered more and more difficult by the numbers which joined the crowd at every turn of the stairs. At length they reached the court below, and Count Latour, although he had been severely pressed, was still unhurt; but here the populace, which awaited them, broke in upon the group that still clustered around Latour, and dispersed it. In vain did the deputies, Smolka and Sierakowski, endeavor to protect the minister; in vain did the Count Leopold Gondrecourt attempt to cover him by the exposure of his own body. A workman struck the hat from his head; others pulled him by his gray locks, he defending himself with his hands, which were already bleeding. At length a ruffian, disguised as a Magyar, gave him, from behind, a mortal blow with a hammer, the man in the gray coat cleft his face with a sabre, and another plunged a bayonet into his heart. A hundred wounds followed, and, with the words, "I die innocent!" he gave up his loyal and manly spirit. A cry of exultation from the assembled crowd rent the air at this event. Every indignity was offered to his body; before he had ceased to breathe even, they hung him by a cord to the grating of a window in the court of the war office. He had been suspended there but a few minutes when, from the outrages committed on it, the body fell.

They then dragged it to the Hof, and suspended it to one of the bronze candelabras that adorn that extensive, and much frequented square, and there treated it with every indignity; it remained for fourteen hours exposed to the gaze of a mocking populace.


[2] A chapter from Mr. Stiles's forthcoming work on Austria, which we have mentioned elsewhere in this number of the International.

[3] The last order issued by the unfortunate Latour was instructed to Colonel Gustave Schindler, of the imperial engineers, an efficient officer, as well as a most amiable and accomplished gentleman, and one well and favourably known in the United States, from his kind attention to Americans who have visited the Austrian capital. The colonel was in the act of passing out of the great door of the war office, which opens on the Hof, when the mob reached that spot. Recognized by his imperial uniform, he was instantly surrounded and attacked. He received many blows on the head, inflicted by the crowd with clubs and iron bars; was most severely wounded, and would probably have been killed but for the timely interference of one of the rabble, who, riding up on horseback between the colonel and the mob, shielded him from further blow, and finally effected his escape.

[4] A student of the Polytechnic school, for brevity, usually called Tecnickers.

[Pg 459]





I hung upon your breast in pain,
And poured my kisses there like rain;
A flood of tears, a cloud of fire,
That fed and stifled wild desire,
And lay like death upon my heart,
To think that we must learn to path;
For we must part, and live apart!
Had I, that hour of dark unrest,
But plunged a dagger in your breast
And in mine own, it had been well;
For now I had been spared the hell
That racks my lone and loving heart,
To think that we must learn to part;—
For we must part, and die apart!


The shining cloud that broods above the hill,
Casts down its shadows over all the lawns,
The snowy swan is sailing out to sea,
Leaving behind a ruffled surge of light!
Lu Lu is like a cloud in memory,
And shades the ancient brightness of my mind:
A swan upon the ocean of my heart,
Floating along a path of golden thought!
The light of evening slants adown the sky,
Poured from the inner folds of western cloud;
But in the cast there is a spot of blue,
And in that heavenly spot the evening star!
The tresses of Lu Lu are like the light,
Gushing from out her turban down her neck;
And like that Eye of heaven, her mild blue eye,
And in its deeps there hangs a starry tear!


Those who love like me,
When their meeting ends
Friends can hardly be,
But less or more than friends!
With common words, and smiles,
We cannot meet, and part,
For something will prevent—
Something in the heart!
The thought of other days,
The dream of other years;
With other words, and smiles,
And other sighs and tears!
For all who love like me,
When their parting ends,
Friends must never be,
But more or less than friends!


Blow fair to-day, ye changing Winds!
And smooth the story sea;
For now ye waft a sacred bark,
And bear a friend from me.
From you he flies, ye Northern Winds,
Your Southern mates to seek;
So urge his keel until he feels
Their kisses on his cheek:
And when their tropic kisses warm,
And tropic skies impart,
Their floods of sunshine to his veins,
Their gladness to his heart—
Blow fair again, ye happy Winds!
And smooth again the sea,
For then ye'll waft the blessed bark,
And bear my friend to me!


Wind of summer, murmur low,
Where the charméd waters flow,
While the songs of day are dying,
And the bees are homeward flying,
As the breezes come and go.
Come and go, hum and blow,
Winds of summer, sweet and low,
Ere my lover sinks to rest,
While he lies upon my breast,
Kiss his forehead, pale and fair,
Kiss the ringlets of his hair,
Kiss his heavy-lidded eyes,
Where the mist of slumber lies;
Kiss his throat, his cheek, his brow,
And his red, red lips, as I do now,
While he sleeps so sound and slow,
On the heart that loves him so,
Dreaming of the sad, and olden,
And the loving, and the golden
Wind of summers long ago!


The melancholy fate of the author of The Crescent and the Cross, Canada, Darien, &c., has been stated in these pages. In Great Britain, where he was well known and highly esteemed by literary men, there have been many feeling and apparently just tributes to his memory, one of the most interesting of which is a memoir in the Dublin University Magazine, from which we transcribe the following paragraphs:

"It was during an extended tour in the Mediterranean about ten years ago, that Mr. Warburton sent some sheets of manuscript notes to Mr. Lever, at that time Editor of the Dublin University Magazine. These at once caught that gentleman's attention, and he gladly gave them publicity, under the title of "Episodes of Eastern Travel," in successive numbers of the magazine, where they were universally admired for the grace and liveliness of their style. Mr. Lever, however, soon saw that though for the purposes of his periodical these papers were extremely valuable, the author was not consulting his own best interests by continuing to give his travels to the world in that form; and, with generous disinterestedness, advised him to collect what he had already published, and the remainder of his notes, and make a book of the whole. Mr. Warburton followed his advice, entered into terms with Mr. Colburn, and published his travels under the title of 'The Crescent and the Cross.'

"Of this book it is needless for us to speak. In spite of the formidable rivalry of an 'Eothen,' which appeared about the same time, it sprang at once into public favor, and is one of the very few books of modern travels of which the sale has continued uninterrupted through successive editions to the present time. Were we to pronounce upon the secret of its success, we should lay it to its perfect right-mindedness. A changeful truth, a versatile propriety of feeling initiates the author, as it were, into the heart of each successive subject; and we find him as profoundly impressed with the genius of the Holy Land, as he is steeped, in the proper place, in the slumberous influences of the dreamy Nile, upon whose bosom he rocks his readers into a trance, to be awakened only by the gladsome originality of these melodies which come mirthfully on their ears from either bank. And, we may observe in passing, it is precisely the want of this, which prevents the indisputable power and grace of 'Eothen' from having their full effect with the public.

"Passages of beauty, almost of sublimity, stand isolated from our sympathies by the interposed cynicism of a few caustic remarks; and scenes of the world's most ancient reverence and worship become needlessly disenchanted under the spell of some skeptical sneer.

"But we must not turn aside to criticise. Since[Pg 460] the publication of the 'Crescent and the Cross,' Mr. Warburton has written, or edited, a number of works, some historical, others of fiction, of which his last romance, 'Darien,' only appeared as he was on the eve of departing on the fatal voyage. It has been remarked as a singular circumstance, that in this tale has prefigured his own fate. A burning ship is described in terms which would have served as a picture of the frightful reality he was himself doomed to witness. The coincidence, casual as it is, has imparted a melancholy interest to that story, which will long be wept over as the parting and presaging legacy of a gifted spirit, prematurely snatched away.

"These lighter effusions most probably grew out of the craving of the publishers for the prestige of his name, already found to be valuable even on title-pages; and the ready market they commanded could not but prove an excitement to continue and multiply them. This might be considered in an ulterior sense unfortunate; for we are inclined to think that the true bent of Mr. Warburton's mind, if not of his talents, was towards graver and less imaginative studies; and we know that this propensity was growing upon him with maturer years and soberer reflections.

"It is not exclusively from the bearing of his researches and the general drift of his correspondence that we infer this; though both set latterly in that direction. He had for some time been actually at work with definite objects in view. One subject which he took up warmly was a British History of Ireland; that is, a history intended to deal impartial justice between the Irish people on the one side, and the British empire on the other; reviewing the politics of successive periods, neither from the Irish nor the English side of the question, but with reference to the general interests of the whole.

"The task, would have proved an arduous one, under any circumstances—perhaps an invidious one; but what was worse, even when accomplished, the book might have turned out a dull affair. So, with a view to lightening the reading, he had proposed to embody with it memoirs of the Viceroys, thus keeping the British connection prominent, while enlivening the pages with biographical touches.

"Acting on these ideas, he had actually begun a 'History of the Viceroys' in conjunction with a literary friend, and was only deterred from prosecuting it by the apathy, or rather discouragement, of the London publishers, who felt no inclination to venture upon an Irish historical speculation. Unfortunately, neither he nor his friend could afford to pursue the task gratuitously, and it was accordingly abandoned.

"Still later, he employed himself in collecting materials for a History of the Poor—a vast theme; perhaps too vast for a single intellect to grasp. To him, however, it was a labor of love; and he had succeeded in getting together a considerable mass of curious and valuable material pour servir. His last visit to his native country had researches of this nature for one of its objects; and we are sure many persons connected with the charitable institutions of Dublin, will recollect the persevering zeal with which he visited the haunts of poverty, as well as the asylums for its relief, noting down every thing which might prove afterwards serviceable on that suggestive topic.

"With an upwelling of philanthropy so pure and perennial as this, the preliminary investigations could have been only a delight to him. Other men might be forced to them as a revolting duty; he chose the inquiry, with very dubious hopes of bettering himself by prosecuting it, because his heart was full of compassion, and he thought he might do good. We repeat, what we can state from personal knowledge, that the bent of Mr. Warburton's mind was latterly towards works of general utility; and it is with great satisfaction we learn, what we had not been aware of until the public papers announced it, that his projected visit to the New World was a mission, in which the interests of humanity were to have in him an advocate and champion.

"Into his private life we feel that, under present circumstances, it would be indelicate, as well as out of place, to enter. Surrounded as he was with all the blessings which the domestic relations can bestow, beloved by his intimates, caressed by the gifted and the good, Eliot Warburton lived the centre of a radiating circle of happiness. His personal qualities were of no common order. His society was eagerly sought after. With a fastidious lassitude of air, and an apparent disinclination to exertion, he possessed remarkable force of thought and fluency of diction; and it was no uncommon thing to see him, when he had begun to relate passages from his experience in foreign countries, or adventures in his own, the centre of a gradually increasing audience, amidst which he sat, improvisating a sort of romantic recitation, until he was completely carried away on the current of his own eloquence, and lost every sense of where he was or what he was doing, in the enthusiasm he had fanned up and saw reflected around him. This power was a peculiar gift; and he loved to exercise it. In this form many of his happiest effusions have been given utterance to; and every body who has heard him at such inspired moments has felt regret that the brilliant bursts which so delighted him, should have been stamped upon no more retentive tablets than the ears of ordinary listeners.

"Of this amiable, refined and gifted individual, we are afraid to speak as warmly as our heart would dictate. Before us lie the few hasty lines—but not too hurried to be the channel of a parting kindness—scrawled to us on the first day of this year—the last day the writer was ever to pass in England. They are, perhaps, amongst the latest words he ever wrote. 'I am off,' they run 'for the West Indies to-morrow. But I have accomplished your affair.' Oh, vanity of human purpose! Man proposes—God disposes. We were next to hear of him, standing on the deck of the burning vessel in the Atlantic, alone with the captain, after every other soul had disappeared, surveying—we feel convinced, with a courage of a lion—the awful twofold death close before him, and which he had in probability deliberately preferred to an early relinquishment of his companions to their fate. It is a fine picture—one that shall every hang framed with his image in our memory; helping us to believe that

"'——Lycidas our sorrow is not dead.
Sunk though he be beneath the watery flood,'—

But that he hath mounted to a higher sphere—

"'Through the dear might of Him that walked the waves.'"

[Pg 461]


Of the interesting papers in the February Dublin University Magazine, we have read none with more satisfaction than the biographical sketch and portrait of one of the most distinguished Irishmen of his own or any age, the gifted and pure minded author of Gustavus Vasa and The Fool of Quality, Henry Brooke. Of his literary fate it might be said that the most unfortunate thing he did was to assert the patriotism of Dean Swift; and the most unfortunate thing was to be left out of Doctor Johnson's "Lives of the Poets." Trials had he to undergo, although not absolutely driven to the wall, like many children of "the fatal dowry," and those of Irish complexion, in particular; but he bravely bore up against them. Those who deem that relatives may live more happily apart, and that friendship is best preserved in full dress, may look at the picture of Henry Brooke, the poet and politician, and Robert Brooke, the painter, with their wives and children, not less than twenty, living together in perfect peace and amity at Daisy Park, in the flattest part of Kildare, where, in those dull seats and distant times, a family breeze might now and then have been looked on in the Irish sense as a "convenience and a comfort." "While Henry wrote," says the biographer, "Robert painted, and sold his pictures; and thus these two loving brothers, having lost their property, made a right and manful use of their intellectual gifts, and supported their large families by the sweat of their brows."

"In his politics, Brooke was of the old whig school; and, had he lived in 1829, he would probably have been an emancipator. He was a right-minded, ardent Irishman in his love for fatherland; hated oppression; idolized liberty; wrote most keenly against Poyning's infamous laws; mourned over the misrule and misgovernment of his country, under the tyranny and rapacity of the Stuart dynasty; admired King William, and was an exulting Protestant; yet greatly loved his Roman Catholic neighbors, and would preserve to them their properties, though he disliked their principles, and deprecated their ascendency."

Dr. Johnson's feelings respecting Brooke are accounted for, not improbably, as follows:

"It may be asked why did Dr. Johnson exclude Brooke from his 'Lives of the Poets,' where so many names of little note are to be found? In 1739, Johnson had written in Brooke's praise in his 'Complete Vindication,' and twenty years afterwards, when the learned Dr. Campbell showed a spirited 'Prospectus of a History of Ireland' written by him, to the great moralist, he read it with much pleasure and praise, saying that 'every line breathed the true fire of genius.' It is recorded that, on this occasion, Johnson lamented that 'the vanity of Irishmen, even if their patriotism were extinct, did not enable Brooke to carry his design into execution.' In Johnson's letter to Charles O'Connor we have his mind on the subject. To Brooke he appears never to have written; there had been an ancient quarrel between them. They had argued and disagreed; and the traditionary story in Brooke's family bears so heavily on the manner of the philosopher, and is so flattering to the courtesy of the poet, that we should prefer not to write it down. Brooke was at all times strangely careless of fame; independent to a fault, and more proud than vain; and though much urged by his friends to humble himself, yet he could not be induced to 'bow down' to the cap of this literary Gesler, much as he regarded his learning and noble intellect. This dislike of the Doctor continued during his life; and Boswell narrates that on the occasion of a play being read to him (it was Brooke's Gustavus Vasa) and a circle of friends, on coming to the line—

"Who rules o'er free men should himself be free!'

the company applauded, but Johnson said it might as well be said—

"'Who drives fat oxen should himself be fat—'

a stupid and inapt verbal sophism, and unworthy of his great and good mind; but such was often his way. In this fashion one might string endless parodies on the line, and equally inapplicable; for example:—

"'Who keeps a madhouse should himself be mad!'

"Mr. Brooke's elegant and honest mind probably had in view that word of Scripture which saith, 'he that ruleth his own spirit is better than he who taketh a city'—(Prov. xvi. 32.)

"By this unhappy difference Brooke lost his Johnsonian niche in the temple of biographical fame. Yet we must remember that a better fate was his,—'his record is on high,'—and his spirit with that Saviour who loved him and made him what he was. Faults and inconsistency were in him, no doubt, but still we know not of any of whom it could be so well and suitably said—

"'His life was gentle, and the elements
So mixed him, that Nature might stand up
And say to all the world, 'This was a man.'"


From the Westminster Review.

Among the historians who have attained a high and deserved reputation in the United States, within the last few years, we are inclined to yield the first place to George Bancroft. His great work on the history of the United States has been brought down from the commencement of American colonization to the opening of the Revolutionary War, to which subject it is understood that he intends devoting the three succeeding volumes. His researches in the public offices of England, while he was Minister of the United States at the Court of St. James, have brought to light a great mass of documentary evidence on the antecedents and course of the Revolution, which have not yet been made public. With his critical sagacity in sifting evidence, his hound-like instinct in scenting every particle of testimony that can lead him on the right-track, and his plastic skill in moulding the most confused and discordant materials into a compact, symmetrical, and truthful narrative, he cannot fail to present the story of that great historical drama with a freshness, accuracy, and artistic beauty, worthy of the immortal events which it commemorates.[Pg 462] Mr. Bancroft is now exclusively occupied in the completion of this work. He pursues it with the drudging fidelity of a mechanical laborer, combined with the enthusiasm of a poet and the comprehensive wisdom of a statesman. With strong social tastes, he gives little time to society. His favorite post is in his library, where he labors the live-long day in the spirit of the ancient artist, Nulla dies sine linea. His experience in political and diplomatic life, no less than his rare and generous culture, and his singular union of the highest mental faculties, enable us to predict with confidence that this work will be reckoned among the genuine masterpieces of historical genius. The volumes of the History of the United States already published, are well known to intelligent readers both in Great Britain and America. They are distinguished for their compact brevity of statement, their terse and vigorous diction, their brilliant panoramic views, and the boldness and grace of their sketches of personal character. A still higher praise may be awarded to this history for the tenacity with which it clings to the dominant and inspiring idea of which it records the development. Whoever reads it without comprehending the standpoint of the author, is liable to disappointment. For it must be confessed that as a mere narrative of events, the preference may be given to the productions of far inferior authors. But it is to be regarded as an epic in prose of the triumph of freedom. This noble principle is considered by Mr. Bancroft as an essential attribute of the soul, necessarily asserting itself in proportion to the spiritual supremacy which has been achieved. The history, then, is devoted to the illustration of the progress of freedom, as an out-birth of the spontaneous action of the soul. It is in this point of view that the remarkable chapters on the Massachusetts Pilgrims, the Pennsylvania Quakers, and the North American Indians, were written; and their full purport, their profound significance, can only be appreciated by readers whose minds possess at least the seeds of sympathy and cognateness with this sublime philosophy. The chapter on the Quakers is a pregnant psychological treatise. Sparkling all over with the electric lights of a rich humanitary philosophy, it invests the theologic visions of Fox and Barclay with a radiance and beauty which have been ill-preserved in the formal and lifeless organic systems of their successors. The parallel run by the historian between William Penn and John Locke is one of the most characteristic productions of his peculiar genius. Original, subtle, suggestive, crowded with matter and frugal of words, it brings out the distinctive features of the spiritual and mechanical schools in the persons of two of their 'representative men,' with a breadth and reality which is seldom found in philosophical portraitures. Mr. Bancroft was the son of an eminent Unitarian clergyman in Worcester, Massachusetts. He was born about the beginning of the present century, and is consequently a little more than fifty years of age. He graduated at Harvard University, with distinguished honors, before he had completed his fifteenth year. Soon after he sailed for Europe, and continued his studies at the German Universities, returning to his own country just before the attainment of his majority. Devoting himself for several years to literary and educational pursuits, he acquired a brilliant reputation as a poet, critic, and essayist; and at a subsequent period, entering the career of politics, he has signalized himself by his attachment to democratic ideas, and the eloquence and force with which on all occasions he has sustained the principles with the prevalence of which he identifies the progress of humanity.

From the Athenæum.

The further this work proceeds, the more do we feel that it must take its place as an essentially satisfactory history of the United States. Mr. Bancroft is thoroughly American in thought and in feeling, without ceasing to have those larger views and nobler sympathies which result from cosmopolitan rather than from local training. His style is original and national. It breathes of the mountain and the prairie—of the great lakes and wild savannahs of his native land. A strain of wild and forest-like music swells up in almost every line. The story is told richly and vividly. It has hitherto been thought by Americans themselves, even more than by Europeans, that the story of the English colonies presented but a dreary and lifeless succession of petty squabbles between the settlers and the crown officers—of unintelligible persecutions of each other on the ground of differences of opinion in religion. Mr. Bancroft has shown how ill founded has been this impression. In his hands American history is full of fine effects. Steeped in the colors of his imagination, a thousand incidents hitherto thought dull appear animated and pictorial. Between Hildreth and Bancroft the difference is immense. In the treatment of the former, dates, facts, events are duly stated—the criticism is keen, the chronology indisputable,—but the figures do not live, the narrative knows no march. The latter is all movement. His men glow with human purposes,—his story sweeps on with the exulting life of a procession.

Yet because Mr. Bancroft contrives to bring out the more romantic aspects of his theme, it is not to be supposed that he fails in that strict regard to truth—truth of character as well as of incident—which is the historian's first duty, and without which all other qualities are useless. Of all American writers who have written on the history of their own country, we would pronounce him to be the most conscientious. His former volumes were remarkable for the amplitude[Pg 463] and accuracy of their references. The authorities cited were often recondite and obscure,—yet it was evident that they had been sifted carefully and critically. The same may be said of the volume before us.

Careful research had enabled Mr. Bancroft to throw new light on several points connected with the settlement and early history of his country. As his dates approach nearer to the present time, the sources of new information open on him in abundance. The MS, additions to our knowledge of the times treated of in these volumes are considerable; but they are spread pretty fairly over the entire narrative—lending a new light to the events and adding a new trait to the characters—rather than thrown into masses. The effect produced is more that of greater roundness and completion than of absolute change in old historical verdicts. We quote one out of innumerable instances of these minute but characteristic additions. The historian is speaking of the Duke of Newcastle,—whose ignorant government of the colonies was one of the chief sources of their discontent:—

"For nearly four-and-twenty years he remained minister for British America; yet to the last, the statesman, who was deeply versed in the statistics of elections, knew little of the continent of which he was the guardian. He addressed letters, it used to be confidently said, to 'the island of New England,' and could not tell but that Jamaica was in the Mediterranean. Heaps of colonial memorials and letters remained unread in his office; and a paper was almost sure of neglect unless some agent remained with him to see it opened. His frivolous nature could never glow with affection, or grasp a great idea, or analyze complex relations. After long research, I cannot find that he ever once attended seriously to an American question, or had a clear conception of one American measure."

Walpole had told us that Newcastle did not know where Jamaica was:—the amusing address "Island of New England" Mr. Bancroft finds referred to in a manuscript letter of J. Q. Adams. It serves to suggest that what is usually thought to be a joke of Walpole's was probably the literal truth:—the man who is sufficiently innocent of geography to make New England an island, would have no difficulty in confounding the East and West Indies.

In this volume we first meet with the great character who is to be the hero of the Revolution now looming before the reader. Mr. Bancroft treats us to no full-length portrait of George Washington:—instead of a picture he presents us with the man. Washington comes before us at twenty-one,—in the chamber of Governor Dinwiddie, of Virginia; from whom he is accepting a perilous but most important mission—to cross the forests, rivers, and mountains which separate Williamsburg and Lake Erie, in the depths of a severe winter, and there endeavor to detach the Delaware Indians from the French alliance. All the elements of Washington's greatness—his courage, hardihood, military prescience, and merciful disposition—are stamped indelibly on this the first act of his public life:—

"In the middle of November, with an interpreter and four attendants, and Christopher Gist as a guide, he left Will's Creek, and following the Indian trace through forest solitudes, gloomy with the fallen leaves, and solemn sadness of late autumn, across mountains, rocky ravines, and streams, through sleet and snows, he rode in nine days to the fork of the Ohio. How lonely was the spot, where, so long unheeded of men, the rapid Allegheny met nearly at right angles 'the deep and still' water of the Monongahela! At once Washington foresaw the destiny of the place. 'I spent some time,' said he, 'in viewing the rivers;' 'the land in the Fork has the absolute command of both.' 'The flat, well-timbered land all around the point lies very convenient for building.' After creating in imagination a fortress and a city, he and his party swam their horses across the Allegheny, and wrapt their blankets around them for the night, on its northwest bank. From the Fork the chief of the Delawares conducted Washington through rich alluvial fields to the pleasing valley at Logstown. There deserters from Louisiana discoursed of the route from New Orleans to Quebec, by way of the Wabash and the Maumee, and of a detachment from the lower province on its way to meet the French troops from Lake Erie, while Washington held close colloquy with the half-king; the one anxious to gain the west as a part of the territory of the ancient dominion, the other to preserve it for the Red Men. 'We are brothers,' said the half-king in council; 'we are one people; I will send back the French speech-belt, and will make the Shawnees and the Delawares do the same.' On the night of the twenty-ninth of November, the council-fire was kindled an aged orator was selected to address the French the speech which he was to deliver was debated and rehearsed; it was agreed that, unless the French would heed this third warning to quit the land, the Delawares also would be their enemies; and a very large string of black and white wampun was sent to the Six Nations as a prayer for aid. After these preparations, the party of Washington, attended by the half-king, and envoys of the Delawares, moved onwards to the post of the French at Venango. The officers there avowed the purpose of taking possession of the Ohio; and they mingled the praises of La Salle with boasts of their forts at Le Bœuf and Erie, at Niagara, Toronto, and Frontenac. 'The English,' said they, 'can raise two men to our one; but they are too dilatory to prevent any enterprise of ours.' The Delawares were intimidated or debauched; but the half-king clung to Washington like a brother, and delivered up his belt as he had promised. The rains of December had swollen the creeks. The messengers could pass them only by felling trees for bridges. Thus they proceeded, now killing a buck and now a bear, delayed by excessive rains and snows, by mire and swamps, while Washington's quick eye discerned all the richness of the meadows. At Waterford, the limit of his journey, he found Fort Le Bœuf defended by cannon. Around it stood the barracks of the soldiers, rude log-cabins, roofed with bark. Fifty birch-bark canoes,[Pg 464] and one hundred seventy boats of pine, were already prepared for the descent of the river, and materials were collected for building more. The Commander, Gardeur de St. Pierre, an officer of integrity and experience, and, for his dauntless courage, both feared and beloved by the Red Men, refused to discuss questions of right. 'I am here,' said he, 'by the orders of my general, to which I shall conform with exactness and resolution.' And he avowed his purpose of seizing every Englishman within the Ohio Valley. France was resolved on possessing the great territory which her missionaries and travellers had revealed to the world. Breaking away from courtesies, Washington hastened homewards to Virginia. The rapid current of French Creek dashed his party against rocks; in shallow places they waded, the water congealing on their clothes; where the ice had lodged in the bend of the rivers, they carried their canoe across the neck. At Venango, they found their horses, but so weak, the travellers went still on foot, heedless of the storm. The cold increased very fast; the paths grew 'worse by a deep snow continually freezing.' Impatient to get back with his despatches, the young envoy, wrapping himself in an Indian dress, with gun in hand and pack on his back, the day after Christmas quitted the usual path, and, with Gist for his sole companion, by aid of the compass, steered the nearest way across the country for the Fork. An Indian, who had lain in wait for him, fired at him from not fifteen steps' distance, but, missing him, became his prisoner. 'I would have killed him,' wrote Gist, 'but Washington forbade.' Dismissing their captive at night, they walked about half a mile, then kindled a fire, fixed their course by the compass, and continued travelling all night, and all the next day, till quite dark. Not till then did the weary wanderers 'think themselves safe enough to sleep,' and they encamped, with no shelter but the leafless forest-tree. On reaching the Allegheny, with one poor hatchet and a whole day's work, a raft was constructed and launched. But before they were half over the river, they were caught in the running ice, expecting every moment to be crushed, unable to reach either shore. Putting out the setting-pole to stop the raft, Washington was jerked into the deep water, and saved himself only by grasping at the raft-logs. They were obliged to make for an island. There lay Washington, imprisoned by the elements; but the late December night was intensely cold, and in the morning he found the river frozen. Not till he reached Gist's settlement, in January, 1754, were his toils lightened."

Washington reported the state of affairs on the Lakes,—and active measures were consequently adopted. Of the rapid and brilliant development of his military genius, we are not now to trace the progress; but it is scarcely possible to read without a shudder of "the hair-breadth 'scapes" of the young man whose life was of such inestimable consequence to his country. Thus, in the battle fought by Braddock—to whom Washington acted as aide-de-camp—against the French and Indians in 1755, he appeared to others as well as to himself to bear a charmed life. In this action, says Mr. Bancroft,—

"Of eighty-six officers, twenty-six were killed—among them, Sir Peter Halket,—and thirty-seven were wounded, including Gage and other field officers. Of the men, one half were killed or wounded. Braddock braved every danger. His secretary was shot dead; both his English aids were disabled early in the engagement, leaving the American alone to distribute his orders. 'I expected every moment,' said one whose eye was on Washington, 'to see him fall.' Nothing but the superintending care of Providence could have saved him. An Indian chief—I suppose a Shawnee—singled him out with his rifle, and bade others of his warriors do the same. Two horses were killed under him; four balls penetrated his coat. 'Some potent Manitou guards his life,' exclaimed the savage. 'Death,' wrote Washington, 'was levelling my companions on every side of me, but, by the all-powerful dispensations of Providence, I have been protected.' 'To the public,' said Davis, a learned divine, in the following month, 'I point out that heroic youth, Colonel Washington, whom I cannot but hope Providence has preserved in so signal a manner for some important service to his country.' 'Who is Mr. Washington?' asked Lord Halifax, a few months later. 'I know nothing of him,' he added, 'but that they say he behaved in Braddock's action as bravely as if he really loved the whistling of bullets.'"

Thus opened that career of glory, moderation, and success—thus, at the period of nascent manhood were exhibited the marking traits of that serene and devoted character—which have placed the name of Washington on the noblest and loftiest pedestal in the Temple of Fame.

Leaving for a while the only figure in that scene of miserable and savage warfare on which the mind can dwell with any degree of trust and satisfaction, we will move to the north-east of the English settlements, and follow the story of the unhappy people of Acadia. Mr. Bancroft has drawn a touching picture of the homely virtues and obscure happiness of this rural population before the interference of the British officers changed their joy into wailing, and endowed their simple annals with a dark and tragic interest:—

"After repeated conquests and restorations, the treaty of Utrecht conceded Acadia, or Nova Scotia, to Great Britain. Yet the name of Annapolis, the presence of a feeble English garrison, and the emigration of hardly five or six English families, were nearly all that marked the supremacy of England. The old inhabitants remained on the soil which they had subdued, hardly conscious that they had changed their sovereign. They still loved the language and the usages of their forefathers, and their religion was graven upon their souls. They promised submission to England; but such was the love with which France had inspired them, they would not fight against its standard or renounce its name. Though conquered they were French neutrals. For nearly forty years from the peace of Utrecht they had been forgotten or neglected, and had prospered in their seclusion. No tax-gatherer counted their folds, no magistrate dwelt in their hamlets. The parish priests made their records and regulated their successions. Their little disputes were settled among themselves, with scarcely an instance[Pg 465] of an appeal to English authority at Annapolis. The pastures were covered with their herds and flocks; and dikes, raised by extraordinary efforts of social industry, shut out the rivers and the tide from alluvial marshes of exuberant fertility. The meadows, thus reclaimed, were covered by richest grasses, or fields of wheat, that yielded fifty and thirty fold at the harvest. Their houses were built in clusters, neatly constructed and comfortably furnished, and around them all kinds of domestic fowls abounded. With the spinning-wheel and the loom, their women made, of flax from their own fields, of fleeces from their own flock, coarse, but sufficient clothing. The few foreign luxuries that were coveted could be obtained from Annapolis or Louisburgh, in return for furs, or wheat, or cattle. Thus were the Acadians happy in their neutrality and in the abundance which they drew from their native land. They formed, as it were, one great family. Their morals were of unaffected purity. Love was sanctified and calmed by the universal custom of early marriages. The neighbors of the community would assist the new couple to raise their cottage, while the wilderness offered land. Their numbers increased, and the colony, which had begun only as the trading station of a company, with a monopoly of the fur trade, counted, perhaps, sixteen or seventeen thousand inhabitants."

The transfer of this colony from French to English rule could not fail to be productive of some untoward results. The native priests feared the introduction among them of heretical opinions:—the British officers treated the people with insolent contempt. "Their papers and records" says our historian, "were taken from them" by their new masters:—

"Was their property demanded for the public service? 'they were not to be bargained with for the payment.' The order may still be read on the Council records at Halifax. They must comply, it was written, without making any terms, 'immediately,' or 'the next courier would bring an order for military execution upon the delinquents.' And when they delayed in fetching firewood for their oppressors, it was told them from the governor, 'If they do not do it in proper time, the soldiers shall absolutely take their houses for fuel.' The unoffending sufferers submitted meekly to the tyranny. Under pretence of fearing that they might rise in behalf of France, or seek shelter in Canada, or convey provisions to the French garrisons, they were ordered to surrender their boats and their firearms; and, conscious of innocence, they gave up their barges and their muskets, leaving themselves without the means of flight, and defenceless. Further orders were afterwards given to the English officers, if the Acadians behaved amiss to punish them at discretion; if the troops were annoyed, to inflict vengeance on the nearest, whether the guilty one or not,—'taking an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.'"

There is no reason to believe that these atrocious orders were not executed in the spirit in which they had been conceived. But worse remained to come:—

"The Acadians cowered before their masters, hoping forbearance; willing to take an oath of fealty to England; in their single-mindedness and sincerity, refusing to pledge themselves to bear arms against France. The English were masters of the sea, were undisputed lords of the country, and could exercise clemency without apprehension. Not a whisper gave a warning of their purpose till it was ripe for execution. But it had been 'determined upon' after the ancient device of Oriental despotism, that the French inhabitants of Acadia should be carried away into captivity to other parts of the British dominions. * * France remembered the descendants of her sons in the hour of their affliction, and asked that they might have time to remove from the peninsula with their effects, leaving their lands to the English; but the answer of the British Minister claimed them as useful subjects, and refused them the liberty of transmigration. The inhabitants of Minas and the adjacent country pleaded with the British officers for the restitution of their boats and their guns, promising fidelity, if they could but retain their liberties, and declaring that not the want of arms, but their conscience, should engage them not to revolt. 'The memorial,' said Lawrence in Council, 'is highly arrogant, insidious and insulting.' The memorialists, at his summons, came submissively to Halifax. 'You want your canoes for carrying provisions to the enemy,' said he to them, though he knew no enemy was left in their vicinity. 'Guns are no part of your goods,' he continued, 'as by the laws of England all Roman Catholics are restrained from having arms, and are subject to penalties if arms are found in their houses. It is not the language of British subjects to talk of terms with the Crown, or capitulate about their fidelity and allegiance. What excuse can you make for your presumption in treating this government with such indignity as to expound to them the nature of fidelity? Manifest your obedience by immediately taking the oaths of allegiance in the common form before the Council.' The deputies replied that they would do as the generality of the inhabitants should determine; and they merely entreated leave to return home and consult the body of their people. The next day, the unhappy men, foreseeing the sorrows that menaced them, offered to swear allegiance unconditionally."

But it was now too late. The savage purpose had been formed. That the cruelty might have no excuse, it happened that while the scheme was under discussion letters arrived leaving no doubt that all the shores of the Bay of Fundy were in the possession of the British. It only remained to be fixed how the exportation should be effected:—

"To hunt them into the net was impracticable; artifice was therefore resorted to. By a general proclamation, on one and the same day, the scarcely conscious victims, 'both old men and young men, as well as all the lads of ten years of age,' were peremptorily ordered to assemble at their respective posts. On the appointed 5th of September, they obeyed. At Grand Pré, for example, 418 unarmed men came together. They were marched into the church, and its avenues were closed, when Winslow, the American commander, placed himself in their centre, and spoke:—'You are convened together to manifest to you His Majesty's[Pg 466] final resolution to the French inhabitants of this his province. Your lands, and tenements, cattle of all kinds, and live stock of all sorts, are forfeited to the crown, and you yourselves are to be removed from this his province. I am, through his Majesty's goodness, directed to allow you liberty to carry off your money and household goods, as many as you can, without discommoding the vessels you go in.' And he then declared them the King's prisoners. Their wives and families shared their lot; their sons, 527 in number, their daughters, 576; in the whole, women and babes and old men and children all included, 1,923 souls. The blow was sudden; they had left home but for the morning, and they never were to return. Their cattle were to stay unfed in the stalls, their fires to die out on their hearths. They had for that first day even no food for themselves or their children, and were compelled to beg for bread. The 10th of September was the day for the embarkation of a part of the exiles. They were drawn up six deep, and the young men, 161 in number, were ordered to march first on board the vessel. They could leave their farms and cottages, the shady rocks on which they had reclined, their herds and their garners; but nature yearned within them, and they would not be separated from their parents. Yet of what avail was the frenzied despair of the unarmed youth? They had not one weapon; the bayonet drove them to obey; and they marched slowly and heavily from the chapel to the shore, between women and children, who kneeling, prayed for blessings on their heads, they themselves weeping, and praying, and singing hymns. The seniors went next; the wives and children must wait till other transport vessels arrived. The delay had its horrors. The wretched people left behind were kept together near the sea, without proper food or raiment, or shelter, till other ships came to take them away; and December with its appalling cold had struck the shivering, half-clad, broken-hearted sufferers before the last of them were removed. 'The embarkation of the inhabitants goes on but slowly,' wrote Monckton, from Fort Cumberland, near which he had burned three hamlets, 'the most part of the wives of the men we have prisoners are gone off with their children, in hopes I would not send off their husbands without them.' Their hope was vain. Near Annapolis, a hundred heads of families fled to the woods, and a party was detached on the hunt to bring them in. 'Our soldiers hate them,' wrote an officer on this occasion, 'and if they can but find a pretext to kill them, they will.' Did a prisoner seek to escape, he was shot down by the sentinel. Yet some fled to Quebec; more than 3,000 had withdrawn to Miramichi and the region south of the Ristigouche; some found rest on the banks of the St. John's and its branches; some found a lair in their native forests; some were charitably sheltered from the English in the wigwams of the savages. But 7,000 of these banished people were driven on board ships, and scattered among the English colonies, from New Hampshire to Georgia alone; 1,020 to South Carolina alone. They were cast ashore without resources; hating the poor-house as a shelter for their offspring, and abhorring the thought of selling themselves as laborers. Households, too, were separated; the colonial newspapers contained advertisements of members of families seeking their companions, of sons anxious to reach and relieve their parents, of mothers mourning for their children. The wanderers sighed for their native country; but to prevent their return, their villages, from Annapolis to the isthmus, were laid waste. Their old homes were but ruins. In the district of Minas, for instance, 250 of their houses, and more than as many barns, were consumed. The live stock which belonged to them, consisting of great numbers of horned cattle, hogs, sheep, and horses, were seized as spoils and disposed of by the English officials. A beautiful and fertile tract of country was reduced to a solitude. There was none left round the ashes of the cottages of the Acadians but the faithful watch-dog, vainly seeking the hands that fed him. Thickets of forest-trees choked their orchards; the ocean broke over their neglected dikes, and desolated their meadows."

Nor were the woes of this ill-treated people ended:

"Relentless misfortune pursued the exiles whereever they fled. Those sent to Georgia, drawn by a love for the spot where they were born as strong as that of the captive Jews, who wept by the side of the rivers of Babylon for their own temple and land, escaped to sea in boats, and went coasting from harbor to harbor; but when they had reached New England, just as they would have set sail for their native fields, they were stopped by orders from Nova Scotia. Those who dwelt on the St. John's were torn once more from their new homes. When Canada surrendered, hatred with its worst venom pursued the 1,500 who remained south of the Ristigouche. Once more those who dwelt in Pennsylvania presented a humble petition to the Earl of Loudoun, then the British Commander in-Chief in America; and the cold-hearted peer, offended that the prayer was made in French, seized their five principal men, who in their own land had been persons of dignity and substance, and shipped them to England, with the request that they might be kept from ever again becoming troublesome by being consigned to service as common sailors on board ships of war."

And so it was throughout:—"We have been true," said they in one of their petitions, "to our religion, and true to ourselves; yet nature appears to consider us only as the objects of public vengeance."—"I know not," writes Mr. Bancroft, "if the annals of the human race keep the records of wounds so wantonly inflicted, so bitter and so perennial as fell upon the French inhabitants of Acadia."

American history has at least one element of peculiar character. The voyage of the Pilgrim Fathers—the settlement of the Virginia cavaliers—the foundation of Pennsylvania,—though all events of profound moral interest, as well as productive of fine pictorial effects, are not without parallels more or less close in the varied tale of ancient and modern colonization. But that which is distinctive and peculiar in the story of American civilization is, its struggle against the Red Men. Settlers, it is true, have often found themselves in strange company. In Africa the Greek colonizer elbowed the swarthy Ethiop. In South[Pg 467] America the Spaniard stood beside the Peruvian and the Carib. Dutchmen have encountered the Malay and the Dyak. For two centuries English settlers have had to deal with the uncivilized races of the East and West—from the Bushmen of the Cape to the savages of New Zealand. But none of these races present the same attractive features as the brethren of the Iroquois and the Mohicans. About these latter there are points of romantic and chivalric interest. Though not free from the vices of the savage, they often exhibit virtues which might shame the European. There is something of dignity in their aspect and bearing. They are seldom without a natural and original poetic sense,—and their language has a wild Ossianic music. They are bold in metaphor and apt in natural illustration. A group of actors on the scene having characteristics so peculiar and so attractive as the Red Skin is invaluable to a historian whose tendency is to see events and note character under their most pictorial aspects.

The part taken by the Indians in that war between the French and English in America which ended in the conquest of Quebec and the expulsion of the Lilies from Canada is narrated at great length by Mr. Bancroft,—and the atrocious nature of the conflict is well brought out. At the commencement of the war, we are allowed a glimpse at a curious war-council:

"'Brothers,' said the Delawares to the Miamis, 'we desire the English and the Six Nations to put their hands upon your heads, and keep the French from hurting you. Stand fast in the chain of friendship with the Government of Virginia.' 'Brothers,' said the Miamis to the English, 'your country is smooth; your hearts are good; the dwellings of your governors are like the spring in its bloom.' 'Brothers,' they added to the Six Nations, holding aloft a calumet ornamented with feathers, 'the French and their Indians have struck us, yet we kept this pipe unhurt;' and they gave it to the Six Nations, in token of friendship with them and with their allies. A shell and a string of black wampum were given to signify the unity of heart; and that, though it was darkness to the westward, yet towards the sun-rising it was bright and clear. Another string of black wampum announced that the war-chiefs and braves of the Miamis held the hatchet in their hand, ready to strike the French. The widowed Queen of the Piankeshaws sent a belt of black shells intermixed with white. 'Brothers,' such were her words, 'I am left a poor, lonely woman, with one son, whom I commend to the English, the Six Nations, the Shawnees, and the Delawares, and pray them to take care of him.' The Weas produced a calumet. 'We have had this feathered pipe,' said they, 'from the beginning of the world; so that when it becomes cloudy, we can sweep the clouds away. It is dark in the west, yet we sweep all clouds away towards the sun-rising, and leave a clear and serene sky.' Thus, on the alluvial lands of Western Ohio, began the contest that was to scatter death broadcast through the world. All the speeches were delivered again to the Deputies of the Nations, represented at Logstown, that they might be correctly repeated to the head Council at Onondaga. An express messenger from the Miamis hurried across the mountains, bearing to the shrewd and able Dinwiddie, the Lieutenant-Governor of Virginia, a belt of wampum, the scalp of a French Indian, and a feathered pipe, with letters from the dwellers on the Maumee and on the Wabash. 'Our good brothers of Virginia,' said the former, 'we must look upon ourselves as lost, if our brothers, the English, do not stand by us and give us arms.' 'Eldest brother,' pleaded the Picts and Windaws, 'this string of wampum assures you, that the French King's servants have spilled our blood, and eaten the flesh of three of our men. Look upon us and pity us, for we are in great distress. Our chiefs have taken up the hatchet of war. We have killed and eaten ten of the French and two of their negroes. We are your brothers; and do not think this is from our mouth only; it is from our very hearts.' Thus they solicited protection and revenge."

The Duke of Newcastle was unequal to the task of driving the soldiers of France from Canada or from the valley of the Mississippi. The North and South were both in the hands of France. The route of the Ohio and the Mississippi had been discovered by adventurers and missionaries of that nation; and a few years of quiet possession of the territory would have allowed French statesmen to consolidate their power in those regions, and to draw a strong cordon around the entire group of English colonies on the Atlantic sea-board. But Pitt's genius was brought to bear at a critical moment on the arrangement of this great question—and he conceived the project of breaking the Mississippi line and attacking the enemy in their strongholds on the St. Lawrence. Three expeditions were fitted out. Amherst and Wolfe were ordered to join the fleet under Boscawen, destined to act against Louisburgh—Forbes was sent to the Ohio Valley—Abercrombie was intrusted with the command against Crown Point and Ticonderoga, though Lord Howe was sent out with the last named as the real soul of the enterprise. Mr. Bancroft writes:

"None of the officers won favor like Lord Howe and Wolfe. Both were still young. To high rank and great connections Howe added manliness, humanity, capacity to discern merit, and judgment to employ it. As he reached America, he entered on the simple austerity of forest warfare. James Wolfe, but thirty-one years old, had already been eighteen years in the army; was at Dettingen and Fontenoy, and had won laurels at Laffeldt. Merit made him at two-and-twenty a lieutenant-colonel, and his active genius improved the discipline of his battalion. He was at once authoritative and humane, severe, yet indefatigably kind; modest, but aspiring and secretly conscious of ability. The brave soldier dutifully loved and obeyed his widowed mother, and his gentle nature saw visions of happiness in scenes of domestic love, even while he kindled at the prospect of glory, as 'gunpowder at fire.'"

On the 28th of May the expedition reached Halifax.—

[Pg 468]

"For six days after the British forces on their way from Halifax to Louisburgh, had entered Chapeau Rouge Bay, the surf, under a high wind, made the rugged shore inaccessible, and gave the French time to strengthen and extend their lines. The sun still dashed heavily, when, before daybreak, on the 8th of June, the troops, under cover of a random fire from the frigates, attempted disembarking. Wolfe, the third brigadier, who led the first division, would not allow a gun to be fired, cheered on the rowers, and, on coming to shoal water, jumped into the sea; and, in spite of the surf, which broke several boats and upset more, in spite of the well-directed fire of the French, in spite of their breastwork and rampart of felled trees, whose interwoven branches made one continued wall of green, the English landed, took the batteries, drove in the French, and on the same day invested Louisburgh. At that landing, none was more gallant than young Richard Montgomery; just one-and-twenty; Irish by birth; an humble officer in Wolfe's brigade; but also a servant of humanity, enlisted in its corps of immortals. The sagacity of Wolfe honored him with well-deserved praise, and promotion to a lieutenancy. On the morning of the 12th, an hour before dawn, Wolfe, with light infantry and Highlanders, took by surprise the light-house battery on the north-east side of the entrance to the harbor; the smaller works were successively carried. On the 23d, the English battery began to play on that of the French on the island near the centre of the mouth of the harbor. Science, sufficient force, union among the officers, heroism, pervading mariners and soldiers, carried forward the siege, during which Barre by his conduct secured the approbation of Amherst and the confirmed friendship of Wolfe. Of the French ships in the port, three were burned on the 21st of July; in the night following the 25th, the boats of the squadron, with small loss, set fire to the Prudent, a seventy-four, and carried off the Bienfaisant. Boscawen was prepared to send six English ships into the harbor. But the town of Louisburgh was already a heap of ruins; for eight days, the French officers and men had had no safe place for rest; of fifty-two cannon opposed to the English batteries forty were disabled. The French had but five ships of the line and four frigates. It was time for the Chevalier de Drucour to capitulate. The garrison became prisoners of war, and, with the sailors and marines, in all 5,637, were sent to England. On the 27th of July, the English took possession of Louisburgh, and, as a consequence, of Cape Breton and Prince Edward's Island. Thus fell the power of France on our eastern coast. Halifax being the English naval station, Louisburgh was deserted. The harbor still offers shelter from storms; the coast repels the surge: but a few hovels only mark the spot which so much treasure was lavished to fortify, so much heroism to conquer. Wolfe, whose heart was in England, returned home with the love and esteem of the army. His country was full of exultation; the trophies were deposited with pomp in the cathedral of St. Paul's; the churches gave thanks; Boscawen, himself a member of parliament, was honored by a unanimous tribute from the House of Commons. New England, too, triumphed; for the praises awarded to Amherst and Wolfe recalled the heroism of her own sons."

This success inspired Pitt to still greater efforts. He resolved to annex the "boundless north," as it was then called, to the British empire in America; and early in the spring Wolfe again went out,—this time, to conquer Quebec and find a soldier's grave. Many of his companions in arms were then and afterwards famous men:—Jervis, afterwards the renowned Earl St. Vincent, James Cook, the navigator, George Townshend, Barre, and Colonel Howe.

"On the 26th of June, the whole armament arrived, without the least accident, off the Isle of Orleans, on which, the next day, they disembarked. A little south of west the cliff of Quebec was seen distinctly, seemingly impregnable, rising precipitously in the midst of one of the grandest scenes in nature. To protect this guardian citadel of New France, Montcalm had of regular troops no more than six wasted battalions; of Indian warriors few appeared, the wary savages preferring the security of neutrals; the Canadian militia gave him the superiority in numbers; but he put his chief confidence in the natural strength of the country. Above Quebec, the high promontory on which the upper town is built expands into an elevated plain, having towards the river the steepest acclivities. For nine miles or more above the city, as far as Cape Rouge, every landing-place was intrenched and protected. The river St. Charles, after meandering through a fertile valley, sweeps the rocky base of the town, which it covers by expanding into sedgy marshes. Nine miles below Quebec, the impetuous Montmorenci, after fretting itself a whirlpool route, and leaping for miles down the steps of a rocky bed, rushes with velocity towards the ledge, over which, falling two hundred and fifty feet, it pours its fleecy cataract into the chasm. As Wolfe disembarked on the Isle of Orleans, what scene could be more imposing? On his left lay at anchor the fleet with the numerous transports; the tents of his army stretched across the island; the intrenched troops of France, having their centre at the village of Beanport, extended from the Montmorenci to the St. Charles; the city of Quebec, garrisoned by five battalions, bounded the horizon. At midnight on the 28th, the short darkness was lighted up by a fleet of fire-ships, that, after a furious storm of wind, came down with the tide in the proper direction. But the British sailors grappled with them and towed them free of the shipping. The river was Wolfe's; the men-of-war made it so; and, being master of the deep water, he also had the superiority on the south-shore of the St. Lawrence. In the night of the 29th, Monckton, with four battalions, having crossed the south channel, occupied Point Levi; and where the mighty current, which below the town expands as a bay, narrows to a deep stream of but a mile in width, batteries of mortars and cannon were constructed. The citizens of Quebec, foreseeing the ruin of their houses, volunteered to pass over the river and destroy the works; but, at the trial, their courage failed them, and they retreated. The English, by the discharge of red-hot balls and shells, set on fire fifty houses in a night, demolished the lower town, and injured the upper. But the citadel was beyond their reach, and every avenue from the river to the cliff was too strongly intrenched for an assault."

[Pg 469]

The summer was going rapidly, and as yet no real progress had been made. Wolfe was eager for action,—and he pursued his researches into the nature of the formidable position with extraordinary eagerness:—

"He saw that the eastern bank of the Montmorenci was higher than the ground occupied by Montcalm, and, on the 9th of July, he crossed the north channel and encamped there; but the armies and their chiefs were still divided by the river precipitating itself down its rocky way in impassable eddies and rapids. Three miles in the interior, a ford was found; but the opposite bank was steep, woody, and well intrenched. Not a spot on the line of the Montmorenci for miles into the interior, nor on the St. Lawrence to Quebec, was left unprotected by the vigilance of the inaccessible Montcalm. The General proceeded to reconnoitre the shore above the town. In concert with Saunders, on the 18th of July, he sailed along the well-defended bank from Montmorenci to the St. Charles: he passed the deep and spacious harbor, which, at four hundred miles from the sea, can shelter a hundred ships of the line; he neared the high cliff of Cape Diamond, towering like a bastion over the waters, and surmounted by the banner of the Bourbons; he coasted along the craggy wall of rock that extends beyond the citadel; he marked the outline of the precipitous hill that forms the north bank of the river,—and every where he beheld a natural fastness, vigilantly defended, intrenchments, cannon, boats, and floating batteries guarding every access. Had a detachment landed between the city and Cape Rouge, it would have encountered the danger of being cut off before it could receive support. He would have risked a landing at St. Michael's Cove, three miles above the city, but the enemy prevented him by planting artillery and a mortar to play upon the shipping. Meantime, at midnight, on the 28th of July, the French sent down a raft of five-stages, consisting of nearly a hundred pieces; but these, like the fire-ships a month before, did but light up the river, without injuring the British fleet. Scarcely a day passed but there were skirmishes of the English with the Indians and Canadians, who were sure to tread stealthily in the footsteps of every exploring party. Wolfe returned to Montmorenci. July was almost gone, and he had made no effective advances. He resolved on an engagement. The Montmorenci, after falling over a perpendicular rock, flows for three hundred yards, amidst clouds of spray and rainbow glories, in a gentle stream to the St. Lawrence. Near the junction, the river may, for a few hours of the tide, be passed on foot. It was planned that two brigades should ford the Montmorenci at the proper time of the tide, while Monckton's regiments should cross the St. Lawrence in boats from Point Levi. The signal was made, but some of the boats grounded on a ledge of rocks that runs out into the river. While the seamen were getting them off, and the enemy were firing a vast number of shot and shells, Wolfe, with some of the navy officers as companions, selected a landing-place; and his desperate courage thought it not yet too late to begin the attack. Thirteen companies of grenadiers, and two hundred of the second battalion of the Royal Americans, who got first on shore, not waiting for support, ran hastily towards the intrenchments, and were repulsed in such disorder that they could not again come into line; though Monckton's regiment had arrived, and had formed with the coolness of invincible valor. But hours hurried by; night was near; the clouds of midsummer gathered heavily, as if for a storm; the tide rose; and Wolfe, wiser than Frederic at Colin, ordered a timely retreat."

In this unsuccessful attempt Wolfe lost 400 men. On the tortures of a body wasted by fever and a mind preyed on by its own restless energy, we will not dwell. Wolfe reckoned on assistance from the corps of Amherst,—but this did not arrive. At last he perceived that his fate rested in his own hands alone,—and he conceived the daring plan of attack which has given to his name the soldier's immortality. We extract Mr. Bancroft's account of the brilliant attack which cost our young hero his life and the French their dominions in Northern America:—

"Every officer knew his appointed duty, when, at one o'clock in the morning of the 13th September, Wolfe, with Monckton and Murray, and about half the forces, set off in boats, and without sail or oars, glided down with the tide. In three-quarters of an hour the ships followed, and, though the night had become dark, aided by the rapid current, they reached the cove just in time to cover the landing. Wolfe and the troops with him leaped on shore; the light infantry, who found themselves borne by the current a little below the intrenched path, clambered up the steep hill, staying themselves by the roots and boughs of the maple and spruce and ash trees that covered the precipitous declivity, and, after a little firing, dispersed the picket which guarded the height. The rest ascended safely by the pathway. A battery of four guns on the left was abandoned to Colonel Howe. When Townshend's division disembarked, the English had already gained one of the roads to Quebec, and, advancing in front of the forest, Wolfe stood at daybreak with big invincible battalions on the plains of Abraham, the battle-field of empire. 'It can be but a small party come to burn a few houses and retire,' said Montcalm, in amazement, as the news reached him in his intrenchments the other side of the St. Charles; but, obtaining better information,—'Then,' he cried, 'they have at last got to the weak side of this miserable garrison; we must give battle and crush them before mid-day.' And before ten, the two armies, equal in numbers, each being composed of less than five thousand men, were ranged in presence of one another for battle. The English, not easily accessible from intervening shallow ravines, and rail fences, were all regulars, perfect in discipline, terrible in their fearless enthusiasm, thrilling with pride at their morning's success, commanded by a man whom they obeyed with confidence and love. The doomed and devoted Montcalm had what Wolfe had called but 'five weak French battalions,' of less than two thousand men, 'mingled with disorderly peasantry,' formed on ground which commanded the position of the English. The French had three little pieces of artillery, the English one or two. The two armies cannonaded each other for nearly an hour; when Montcalm, having summoned Bougainville to his aid, and despatched messenger[Pg 470] after messenger for De Vaudreuil, who had fifteen hundred men at the camp, to come up, before he should be driven from the ground, endeavored to flank the British and crowd them down the high bank of the river. Wolfe counteracted the movement by detaching Townshend with Amherst's regiment, and afterwards a part of the Royal Americans, who formed on the left with a double front. Waiting no longer for more troops, Montcalm led the French army impetuously to the attack. The ill-disciplined companies broke by their precipitation and the unevenness of the ground; and fired by platoons, without unity. The English, especially the forty-third and forty-seventh, where Monckton stood, received the shock with calmness; and after having, at Wolfe's command, reserved their fire till their enemy was within forty yards, their line began a regular, rapid, and exact discharge of musketry. Montcalm was present every where, braving danger, wounded, but cheering by his example. The second in command, De Sennezergues, an associate in glory at Ticonderoga, was killed. The brave but untried Canadians, flinching from a hot fire in the open field, began to waver; and, so soon as Wolfe, placing himself at the head of the twenty-eighth and the Louisburgh grenadiers, charged with bayonets, they every where gave way. Of the English officers, Carleton was wounded; Barre, who fought near Wolfe, received in the head a ball which destroyed the power of vision of one eye, and ultimately made him blind. Wolfe, also, as he led the charge, was wounded in the wrist, but still pressing forward, he received a second ball; and, having decided the day, was struck a third time, and mortally, in the breast. 'Support me,' he cried to an officer near him: 'let not my brave fellows see me drop.' He was carried to the rear, and they brought him water to quench his thirst. 'They run, they run,' spoke the officer on whom he leaned. 'Who run?' asked Wolfe, as his life was fast ebbing. 'The French,' replied the officer, 'give way every where.' 'What,' cried the expiring hero, 'do they run already? Go, one of you, to Colonel Burton; bid him march Webb's regiment with all speed to Charles River to cut off the fugitives.' Four days before, he had looked forward to early death with dismay. 'Now, God be praised, I die happy.' These were his words as his spirit escaped in the blaze of his glory. Night, silence, the rushing tide, veteran discipline, the sure inspiration of genius had been his allies; his battle-field, high over the ocean-river, was the grandest theatre on earth for illustrious deeds; his victory, one of the most momentous in the annals of mankind, gave to the English tongue and the institutions of the Germanic race the unexplored and seemingly infinite West and North. He crowded into a few hours actions that would have given lustre to length of life; and filling his day with greatness, completed it before its noon."

In that terrible action fell also "the hope of New France." In attempting to rally a body of fugitive Canadians in a copse near St. John's Gate, Montcalm was mortally wounded.

We have quoted enough from this volume to show how varied and stirring are the subjects with which Mr. Bancroft here deals.


[5] History of the American Revolution. By George Bancroft. Vol. I. Boston, Little & Brown, 1852.

From the London Literary Gazette



If there be one of life's affairs in which woman has a peculiar right to have her wishes considered and her veto respected, it is that of emigration. For, in the arduous task of establishing a new home in a half-settled country, let man do what he will to alleviate, on her fall the burthen and heat of the day. Hers are the menial toils, the frequent anxieties, the lingering home-sickness, the craving after dear friends' faces and a beloved native land. Hers, too, the self-imposed duty and unselfish effort to hide regret under cheerful smiles, when the weary brother or husband returns at evening from toil in field and forest. Blessed and beautiful are the smiles of the sad-hearted, worn to wile away another's cares!

Love in a cottage has long been jeered at, and depicted as flying out of the window. It seems miraculous to behold the capricious little deity steadfastly braving, for many a long year, the chilly atmosphere of a log-hut in an American forest. In the year 1832, Mrs. Moodie (here better remembered as Miss Susanna Strickland, sister of the well-known historian of the English and Scottish Queens) accompanied her husband, a half-pay subaltern, to the backwoods of Canada. Many were her misgivings, and they did not prove unfounded. Long and cruel was the probation she underwent, before finding comparative comfort and prosperity in the rugged land where at first she found so much to embitter her existence. Nobly did she bear up under countless difficulties and sufferings, supported by an energy rare in woman, and by her devoted attachment to the husband of her choice. For some years her troubles were not occasional, but continual and increasing. Her first installation in a forest home could hardly have been more discouraging and melancholy than it was:

"The place we first occupied was purchased of Mr. C——, a merchant, who took it in payment of sundry large debts, which the owner, a New England loyalist, had been unable to settle. Old Joe H—, the present occupant, had promised to quit it with his family at the commencement of sleighing; and as the bargain was concluded in the month of September, and we were anxious to plough for fall wheat, it was necessary to be upon the spot. No house was to be found in the immediate neighborhood save a small dilapidated log tenement, on an adjoining farm (which was scarcely reclaimed from the bush), that had been some months without an owner. The merchant assured us that this could be made very comfortable until such time as it suited H—to remove."

With singular want of caution, Mr. and Mrs. Moodie neglected to visit this "log tenement" before signing an agreement to rent it. On a rainy September day they proceed to take possession:[Pg 471]

"The carriage turned into a narrow, steep path, overhung with lofty woods, and after laboring up it with considerable difficulty, and at the risk of breaking our necks, it brought us at length to a rocky upland clearing, partially covered with a second growth of timber, and surrounded on all sides by the dark forest. 'I guess,' quoth our Yankee driver, 'that at the bottom of this 'ere swell, you'll find yourself to hum;' and plunging into a short path cut through the wood, he pointed to a miserable hut, at the bottom of a steep descent, and cracking his whip, exclaimed, 'It's a smart location that. I wish you Britishers may enjoy it.' I gazed upon the place in perfect dismay, for I had never seen such a shed called a house before. 'You must be mistaken; that is not a house, but a cattle-shed, or pig-sty.' The man turned his knowing keen eye upon me, and smiled, half humorously, half maliciously, as he said, 'You were raised in the old country, I guess; you have much to learn, and more perhaps than you'll like to know, before the winter is over.'"

The prophet of evil spoke truly. It was a winter of painful instruction for the inexperienced young woman, and her not very prudent husband. We might fill columns with a bare list of their vexations and disasters. Amongst the former, not the least arose from the borrowing propensities of their neighbors. They had 'located' in a bad neighborhood, in the vicinity of a number of low Yankee squatters, "ignorant as savages, without their courtesy and kindness." These people walked unceremoniously at all hours into their wretched dwelling, to criticise their proceedings, make impertinent remarks, and to borrow—or rather to beg or steal, for what they borrowed they rarely returned. The most extraordinary loans were daily solicited or demanded; and Mrs. Moodie, strange and timid in her new home, and amongst, these semi-barbarians—her husband, too, being much away at the farm—for some time dared not refuse to acquiesce in their impudent extortions. Here is a specimen of the style of these miscalled 'borrowings.' On the first day of their arrival, whilst they were yet toiling to exclude wind and rain from the crazy hovel, which their baggage and goods filled nearly to the roof, a young Yankee 'lady' squeezed herself into the crowded room:

"Imagine a girl of seventeen or eighteen years of age, with sharp, knowing-looking features, a forward impudent carnage, and a pert flippant voice, standing upon one of the trunks, and surveying all our proceedings in the most impertinent manner. The creature was dressed in a ragged, dirty, purple stuff gown, cut very low in the neck, with an old red cotton handkerchief tied over her head; her uncombed, tangled locks falling over her thin, inquisitive face in a state of perfect nature. Her legs and feet were bare, and in her coarse, dirty, red hands she swung to and fro an empty glass decanter."

The mission of this squalid nymph was not to borrow but to lend. She "guessed the strangers were fixin' there," and that they'd want a glass decanter to hold their whisky, so she had brought one over. "But mind—don't break it," said she; "'tis the only one we have to hum, and father says it's so mean to drink out of green glass"—a sentiment worthy of a colonel of hussars. Although quite pleased by such disinterested kindness and attention, Mrs. Moodie declined the decanter, on the double ground of having some of her own, and of not drinking whisky. The refusal was unavailing. The lady in ragged purple set down the bottle on a trunk, as firmly as if she meant to plant it there, and took herself off. The next morning cleared up the mystery of her perseverance. "Have you done with that 'ere decanter I brought across yesterday?" said the 'cute damsel, presenting herself before Mrs. Moodie with her bare red knees peeping through her ragged petticoats, and with face and hands innocent of soap. The English lady returned the bottle, with the remark that she had never needed it.

"'I guess you won't return it empty,' quoth the obliging neighbor; 'that would be mean, father says. He wants it filled with whisky.'"

The hearty laugh which this solution of the riddle provoked from the inmates of the log-house offended the female Yankee, who tossed the decanter from hand to hand and glared savagely about her. But the ridicule was insufficient to deter her from the whisky hunt. When assured there was none in the place, she demanded rum, and pointed to a keg, in which she said she smelt it. Her keen olfactories had not deceived her. The rum, she was told, was for the workmen:

"'I calculate,' was the reply, 'when you've been here a few months, you'll be too knowing to give rum to helps. But old-country folks are all fools, and that's the reason they get so easily sucked in, and be so soon wound up. Cum, fill the bottle, and don't be stingy. In this country we all live by borrowing. If you want any thing, why, just send and borrow from us.'"

When the decanter was filled and delivered to this saucy mendicant, Mrs. Moodie ventured to petition for a little milk for her infant, but Impudence in purple laughed in her face, and named an exorbitant price at which she would sell it her, for cash on delivery. It seems incredible that, after this ingratitude, Mrs. Moodie continued her 'lendings' to the family of which her new acquaintance was a distinguished ornament.

"The very day our new plough came home, the father of this bright damsel, who went by the familiar name of Old Satan, came over to borrow it (though we afterwards found out that he had a good one of his own). The land had never been broken up, and was full of rocks and stumps, and he was anxious to save his own from injury; the consequence was, that the borrowed implement came home unfit for use, just at the very time we wanted to plough for fall wheat. The same happened to a spade and trowel, bought in order to plaster the house. Satan asked the loan of them for one hour, for the same purpose, and we never saw them again."

[Pg 472]

The other neighbors were no better. One Yankee dame used to send over her son, a hopeful youth, Philander by name, almost every morning, to borrow the bake-kettle, in which hot cakes were cooked for breakfast. One day, when Mrs. Moodie was later than usual in rising, she heard from her bedroom the kitchen latch lifted. It was Philander, come for the kettle.

"I (through the partition): 'You can't have it this morning. We cannot get our breakfast without it,' Philander: 'No more can the old woman to hum,' and, snatching up the kettle, which had been left to warm on the hearth, he rushed out of the house, singing at the top of his voice, 'Hurrah for the Yankee boys!' When James (the servant) came home for his breakfast, I sent him across to demand the kettle, and the dame very coolly told him, that when she had done with it I might have it; but she defied him to take it out of her house with her bread in it."

Since the request of the drover who begged his comrade to lend him a bark of his dog, we have not heard of queerer loans than some of those solicited of Mrs. Moodie:—

"Another American squatter was always sending over to borrow a small-tooth comb, which she called a vermin destroyer; and once the same person asked the loan of a towel, as a friend had come from the States to visit her, and the only one she had, had been made into a best 'pinny' for the child: she likewise begged a sight in the looking-glass, as she wanted to try on a new cap, to see if it were fixed to her mind. This woman must have been a mirror of neatness when compared with her dirty neighbors. One night I was roused up from my bed for the loan of a pair of 'steelyards.' For what purpose, think you, gentle reader? To weigh a new-born infant. The process was performed by tying the poor squalling thing up in a small shawl, and suspending it to one of the hooks. The child was a fine boy, and weighed ten pounds, greatly to the delight of the Yankee father. One of the drollest instances of borrowing I have ever heard of was told me by a friend. A maid-servant asked her mistress to go out on a particular afternoon, as she was going to have a party of her friends, and wanted the loan of the drawing-room."

Traits such as these exhibit, more vividly than volumes of description, the sort of savages amongst whom poor Mrs. Moodie's lot was cast. They had all the worst qualities of Yankee and Indian—the good ones of neither. They had neither manners, heart, nor honesty. The basest selfishness, cunning, and malignity were their prominent characteristics. A less patient and good-tempered person than Mrs. Moodie would, however, have had little difficulty in getting rid of the troublesome and intrusive borrowers. They could not bear a sharp rebuke, and, more than once, a happy and pointed retort rid her, for weeks, or even for ever, of the pestilent presence of one or other of them. An English farmer, settled near at hand, to whom she mentioned her annoyances, laughed—as well he might—at her easy-going toleration. "Ask them sharply what they want," he said, "and, failing a satisfactory answer, bid them leave the house. Or—a better way still—buy some small article of them, and bid them bring the change." Mrs. Moodie tried the latter plan, and with no slight success.

"That very afternoon, Miss Satan brought me a plate of butter for sale. The price was three and nine pence; twice the sum, by-the-bye, that it was worth. 'I have no change,'—giving her a dollar—'but you can bring it to me to-morrow.' Oh! blessed experiment! for the value of one quarter dollar I got rid of this dishonest girl for ever. Rather than pay me, she never entered the house again."

The strange names of some of the farmers and squatters in Mrs. Moodie's neighborhood exceed belief. Amongst the substantial yeomen thereabouts were Solomon Sly, Reynard Fox, and Hiram Dolittle. Ammon and Ichabod were two hopeful Canadian youths, the former of whom—a child of tender years—was in the habit of hideously swearing at his father, and then scampering across the meadow, and defying the pursuit of his pursy progenitor. This is another family of which Mrs. Moodie gives amusing glimpses, in a style sufficiently masculine, but therefore all the better adapted to the subject:—

"The conversation was interrupted by a queer-looking urchin of five years old, dressed in a long-tailed coat and trowsers, popping his black shock head in at the door and calling out, 'Uncle Joe! You're wanted to hum.' 'Is that your nephew?' 'No! I guess it's my woman's eldest son,' said uncle Joe, rising; 'but they call me Uncle Joe. 'Tis a spry chap that—as cunning as a fox. I tell you what it is—he will make a smart man. Go home, Ammon, and tell your ma that I am coming.' 'I won't,' said the boy; 'you may go hum and tell her yourself. She has wanted wood cut this hour, and you'll catch it!' Away ran the dutiful son, but not before he had applied his forefinger significantly to the side of his nose, and, with a knowing wink, pointed in the direction of hum. Uncle Joe obeyed the signal, drily remarking that he could not leave the barn door without the old hen clucking him back. At this period we were still living in Old Satan's log house, and anxiously looking out for the first snow to put us in possession of the good substantial log dwelling occupied by Uncle Joe and his family, which consisted of a brown brood of seven girls and this highly-prized boy."

The names of the squatter ladies were of a far superior description to those to which their brothers answered. Looking down upon the Old Testament, their godfathers had resorted for suggestions to the Italian Opera, the heathen mythology, and the Minerva press. She of the purple garment was called Emily. This was quiet enough. But her associates were Cinderellas, Minervas, and Almerias; and Amanda was the baptismal appellation of one of Ammon's sisters.

Old Joe, it will be remembered, had agreed to quit, when winter set in, the house belonging to the farm which Mr. Moodie had purchased. But even in civilized and lawyer-ridden England possession is held to be nine[Pg 473] points of the law, and in Canada the other tenth is thrown in. Old Joe's mother, an abominable Yankee Hecate, grinned like a whole bag-full of monkeys when informed that her son was expected to dis-locate as soon as sleighing began.

"'Joe,' she guessed, 'would take his own time. The house was not built which was to receive him; and he was not the man to turn his back upon a warm hearth to camp in the wilderness. It was neither the first snow nor the last frost that would turn Joe out of his comfortable home.'"

Mrs. Hecate spoke a true word. Frost came, sledges ran, thaw began—not an inch budged Joe. The sun gained power, a soft south wind fanned the frozen earth, the snow disappeared—still the reckless, dishonest scamp made no sign of removing, and replied with abuse to the remonstrances of those to whom his dwelling belonged. In the States, and with a brother Yankee, his obstinacy might have led to revolver and rifle work. The English emigrants patiently waited, to their own great inconvenience. Joe reckoned he shouldn't move till his 'missus' was confined—an interesting event which was expected to come off in May. About the middle of that month the Joe family was increased by a sturdy boy, whereupon its chief declared his intention of turning out in a fortnight, if all went well. Mrs. Moodie did not believe him—he had lied so often before; but he was determined to take her in at last, as he had done at first, for this time he was as good as his word. On the last day of May they went, bag and baggage, and Mrs. Moodie sent over her Scotch maid-servant and Irish serving-man to clear out the dwelling, which she justly expected would be in bad enough condition. But her expectations were far exceeded by the reality. The malignity of these people, who from her had received nothing but kindness and good offices, was degrading to human nature. Presently the Irishman returned, panting with indignation:

"'The house,' he said, 'was more filthy than a pig-sty.' But that was not the worst of it; Uncle Joe, before he went, had undermined the brick chimney, and let all the water into the house. 'Oh! but if he comes here agin,' he continued, grinding his teeth and doubling his fist, 'I'll thrash him for it. And thin, Ma'arm, he has girdled round all the best graft apple-trees, the murtherin' owld villain, as if it would spile his digestion our ating them.'

"John and Bell scrubbed at the house all day, and in the evening they carried over the furniture, and I went to inspect our new dwelling. It looked beautifully clean and neat. Bell had whitewashed all the black, smoky walls, and boarded ceilings, and scrubbed the dirty window-frames, and polished the fly-spotted panes of glass, until they actually admitted a glimpse of the clear air and the blue sky. Snow-white-fringed curtains, and a bed with furniture to correspond, a carpeted floor, and a large pot of green boughs on the hearthstone, gave an air of comfort and cleanliness to a room which, only a few hours before, had been a loathsome den of filth and impurity. This change would have been very gratifying, had not a strong, disagreeable odor almost deprived me of my breath as I entered the room. It was unlike any thing I had ever smelt before, and turned me so sick and faint, that I had to cling to the door-post for support.

"'Where does this dreadful smell come from?'

"'The guidness knows, ma'am; John and I have searched the house from the loft to the cellar, but we canna find out the cause of the stink.'

"'It must be in the room, Bell, and it is impossible to remain here, or to live in the house, until it is removed.'

"Glancing my eyes all round the place, I spied what seemed to me a little cupboard, over the mantel-shelf, and I told John to see if I was right. The lad mounted upon a chair, and pulled open a small door, but almost fell to the ground with the dreadful stench which seemed to rush from the closet.

"'What is it, John?' I cried from the open door.

"'A skunk! ma'arm, a skunk! Sure, I thought the devil had scorched his tail, and left the grizzled hair behind him. What a strong perfume it has!' he continued, holding up the beautiful but odious little creature by the tail.

"'By dad! I know all about it now. I saw Ned Layton, only two days ago, crossing the field with Uncle Joe, with his gun on his shoulder, and this wee bit baste in his hand. They were both laughing like sixty. 'Well, if this does not stink the Scotchman out of the house,' said Joe, 'I'll be content to be tarred and feathered;' and thin they both laughed until they stopped to draw breath.'

"I could hardly help laughing myself; but I begged Monaghan to convey the horrid creature away, and putting some salt and sulphur into a tin plate, and setting fire to it, I placed it on the floor in the middle of the room, and closed all the doors for an hour, which greatly assisted in purifying the house from the skunkification. Bell then washed out the closet with strong ley, and in a short time no vestige remained of the malicious trick Uncle Joe had played off upon us."

The smell of skunk and Yankee eradicated, there still was much to be done before the house could be deemed habitable. It swarmed with mice, which all the night long performed fantastical dances over the faces and pillows of the new comers. The old logs which composed the walls of the dwelling were alive with bugs and large black ants, and the fleas upon the floor were as thick as sand-grains in the desert. With the warm weather, then just setting in, came legions of mosquitoes, that rose in clouds from the numerous little streams intersecting the valley. But in spite of all these discomforts, summer was felt to be a blessing, and "roughing it" in the woods was far less painful than in the season of snow, and frost, and storm.

"The banks of the little streams abounded with wild strawberries, which, although small, were of a delicious flavor. Thither Bell and I, and the baby, daily repaired to gather the bright red berries of nature's own providing. Katie, young as she was, was very expert at helping herself, and we used to seat her in the middle of a fine bed,[Pg 474] whilst we gathered farther on. Hearing her talking very lovingly to something in the grass, which she tried to clutch between her white hands, calling it 'pitty, pitty,' I ran to the spot and found it was a large garter-snake that she was so affectionately courting to her embrace. Not then aware that this formidable looking reptile was perfectly harmless, I snatched the child up in my arms, and ran with her home, never stopping until I reached the house and saw her safely seated in her cradle."

Sixteen years elapsed after the departure of Joe and his brood from her neighborhood before Mrs. Moodie heard any thing of their fate. A winter or two ago, tidings of them reached her through one who had lived near them. Hecate, almost a centenarian, occupied a corner of her son's barn. She could not dwell in harmony under the same roof with her daughter-in-law. The lady in purple and her sisters were married and scattered abroad. Joe himself, who could neither read nor write, had turned itinerant preacher. No account was given of the hopeful Ammon.

Mrs. Moodie's work, unaffectedly and naturally written, though a little coarse, will delight ladies, please men, and even amuse children. On our readers' account we regret our inability to make further extracts from its amusing pages. The book is one of great originality and interest.


[6] Roughing it in the Bush; or, Life in Canada. 2 vols. Bentley.

From the London Literary Gazette.


Many causes are combining to give great importance to the States of Central America. Their own fertility and natural advantages, the commerce of the Pacific, and the gold of California, unite to attract the earnest attention of enterprising men and politicians towards them. At the present moment, the appearance of this full and able account of Nicaragua is peculiarly well-timed. The writer of it describes himself as "late chargé d'affaires of the United States to the Republics of Central America." His official position has evidently enabled him to get at much information that would otherwise have been inaccessible. His name is well and favorably known to ethnologists and antiquarians by his researches into the history of the aboriginal monuments of the United States, and by his very curious, though somewhat fanciful, essay on "The Serpent Symbol, and the Worship of the Reciprocal Principles of Nature in America." The bias and extent of his studies make him a very competent person to investigate the antiquities of Nicaragua. The chapters devoted to this subject in the work before us are full of interest, and highly to be valued for the abundance of fresh observations they contain. Like many American archæologists and historians, Mr. Squier is inclined to over-estimate the peculiarities and antiquity of the aborigines of the New World. If we understand rightly, he claims for them an independent origin. His ethnology is of the romantic school, and rather loose. His imagination gets the better of his reasoning, and his "organ of wonder," to speak in the manner of phrenologists, is over-developed. His habits of mind and training do not seem to be such as to qualify him for strict scientific research. He is more of the littérateur than the philosopher. His writings are, in consequence, very amusing, but require to be dealt with cautiously. The facts must be winnowed from the fancies with which they are mingled, if we wish to use them for scientific purposes.

Imaginative men are usually warm lovers and fierce haters. Our American envoy's appreciation of female charms is so intense, that he cannot pass a pretty woman without inscribing a memorandum respecting her in his note-book, afterwards to be printed more at length with additional expressions of admiration. A pair of black eyes cannot sparkle behind a lattice without being duly recorded. His affection for the ladies is only equalled by his dislike of the "Britishers." The handsomest girl and the ugliest idol could scarcely distract his thought from the vices and crimes of England and the English. If he is to be trusted, the whole population of Central America regards every Englishman as a bitter enemy. He paints us in the blackest hues, and prophesies the fall of England with undisguised delight. Bluster about Britain is the prominent fault of the book, and one for which the writer will, when he knows more about us, be ashamed of himself. Every day it is becoming more and more the interest of Englishmen and Americans to pull together. Consanguinity and the love of constitutional liberty are strong ties. They may be forgotten for a time, but in the end must work uppermost. Recent events have done much to remind us of our near relationship with our transatlantic cousins, and them of the Anglo-Saxon blood to which they owe their pre-eminence among the nations of the New World. The grasping and interfering qualities that bring down upon us the unmitigated censures of Mr. Squier are quite as prominently manifested in the doings of his countrymen; and whilst in one chapter he censures our meddlings with, and claims upon, the Mosquito shore, in another he anticipates something very like the annexation of all Central America to the United States.

The Mosquito country, about which we have seen of late so many very unsatisfactory paragraphs in our newspapers, is a thinly populated and most unhealthy tract on the Atlantic sea-board of Central America. It is inhabited by a mixed breed of Indians and Negroes, supposed to be ruled by a semi-civilized individual, who rejoices in the entomological title of King of the Mosquitoes, one by no means inappropriate, considering the amount of small annoyance we have endured through disputes about his territory.[Pg 475] He is supposed to be under British protection; it is difficult to understand exactly why. The main purpose we have in view seems to be the securing a proper supply of the peculiar hard woods of this region. Britons at home generally make peace over their mahogany; abroad they seem to pick quarrels over it.

Central America includes an era of 150,000 square miles. Under Spanish dominion it was divided into the provinces of Guatemala, Honduras, San Salvador, Nicaragua, and Costa Rica. These became independent states in 1821, and subsequently united to form the "Republic of Central America." They separated again, in 1839, into so many distinct republics. Nicaragua, Honduras, and San Salvador have recently confederated. The entire region of Central America presents very marked and important physical features. These are the great plain, six thousand feet above the sea, upon which stands the city of Guatemala; the high plain forming the centre of Honduras and part of Nicaragua; and the elevated country of Costa Rica. Between the two latter lies the basin of the Nicaraguan Lakes, with broad and undulating verdant slopes broken by steep volcanic cones, and a few ranges of hills along the shores of the Pacific, intermingled with undulating plains. Of the two great lakes, the lesser, Managua, is one hundred and fifty-six feet, and the larger, Nicaragua, one hundred and twenty-eight feet above the Pacific ocean. The former is fifty or sixty miles in length by thirty-five wide, the latter above a hundred miles long by fifty wide. On or near their western borders are the chief cities of the country. Enormous isolated volcanic cones rise to the height of from 4000 to 7000 feet in their neighborhood or on the islands that stud them. Numerous remains of antiquity, ruins of temples, and deserted monolithic idols, give interest to their precincts, whilst the scenery is described as being surpassingly grand and beautiful. The sole outlet is the river San Juan, a magnificent stream flowing from the southeastern extremity of Lake Nicaragua, for a length of about ninety miles, into the Atlantic. The climate is generally healthy, more especially towards the Pacific side. Nicaragua is inhabited by a population of about 260,000, one-half of which, or more, is composed of mixed breeds, Indians, in great part civilized, coming next in number, then whites, of whom there are about 25,000, and, lastly, some 15,000 Negroes. They live chiefly in towns, and cultivate the soil, which is very productive, and capable of supporting a much larger population. The natural resources of Nicaragua appear to be very great. Sugar, cotton, coffee, indigo, tobacco, rice, and maize, are the chief productions. There is, besides, great mineral wealth. In ancient times the aborigines appear to have occupied considerable cities, and to have attained a civilization comparable with that of the Mexicans. Indeed, Mr. Squier has proved, by philological and other evidence, that a Mexican colony did exist in Nicaragua at the period of the discovery of the country in the fifteenth century. This had been surmised before, but not clearly made out.

Much interest attaches to the population of Nicaragua, on account of the large proportion of families of Indian blood, pure and mixed, of whom it is made up. The qualities which enabled the ancient Indian people of Mexico, Central America, and Peru, to become civilized nations after a peculiar fashion, are not extinct, and seem to be retained and re-developed in proportion to the prevalence of Indian over Spanish blood. The Indians of Nicaragua are remarkable for industry and docility; they are unobtrusive, hospitable, and brave, although, fortunately for themselves, not warlike. They make good soldiers, yet have no morbid taste for the military profession. The men are agriculturists; the women occupy themselves with the weaving of cotton, and make fabrics of good quality and tasteful design. It is interesting to find the Tyrian dye still employed in their manufactures. They procure it from a species of Murex inhabiting the shores of the Pacific. They take the cotton thread to the sea-side, where, having gathered together a sufficient quantity of shell-fish, they patiently squeeze over the cotton the coloring fluid, at first pellucid and colorless, from the animals, one by one. At first the thread is pale blue, but on exposure to the atmosphere becomes of the desired purple. This color is so prized that purple thread dyed by cheaper and speedier methods, imported from Europe, cannot supplant the native product. With mingled humanity and thrift they replace the whelks in their native element, after these shell-fish have yielded up the precious liquor for which they were originally gathered. The Indian population also exclusively manufacture variegated mats and hammocks from the Pita, a species of Agave, and are as skilful as their ancient ancestors in the making of pottery. They do not use the potter's wheel. Politically they enjoy equal privileges with the whites, and all positions in church and state are open to them. Among them are men of decided talent. Physically they are a smaller and paler race than the Indians of the United States, but are well developed and muscular. Their women are not unfrequently pretty, and when young are often very finely formed.

Happily in Nicaragua no distinctions of caste are recognized, or, at any rate, they have no influence. Such of the people as claim to be of pure Spanish blood are, in most instances, evidently partly of Indian descent. The Sambos, or offspring of Indian and Negro parents, are a fine race of people, taller and stronger than the Indians.

Mr. Squier's admiration for the gentler (in Nicaragua we can scarcely say the fair) sex, has led him to picture very vividly the charms[Pg 476] and appearance of the ladies he encountered during his travels. The following is a precise and tempting description:

"The women of pure Spanish stock are very fair, and have the embonpoint which characterizes the sex under the tropics. Their dress, except in a few instances where the stiff costume of our own country had been adopted, was exceedingly loose and flowing, leaving the neck and arms exposed. The entire dress was often pure white, but generally the skirt, or nagua, was of some flowered stuff, in which case the guipil (anglicè, vandyke) was white, heavily trimmed with lace. Satin slippers, a red or purple sash wound loosely round the waist, and a rosary sustaining a little golden cross, with a narrow golden band or a string of pearls extending around the forehead and binding the hair, which often fell in luxuriant waves upon their shoulders, completed a costume as novel as it was graceful and picturesque. To all this, add the superior attractions of an oval face, regular features, large and lustrous black eyes, small mouth, pearly white teeth, and tiny hands and feet, and withal a low but clear voice, and the reader has a picture of a Central American lady of pure stock. Very many of the women have, however, an infusion of other families and races, from the Saracen to the Indian and the Negro, in every degree of intermixture. And as tastes differ, so many opinions as to whether the tinge of brown, through which the blood glows with a peach-like bloom, in the complexion of the girl who may trace her lineage to the caziques upon one side, and the haughty grandees of Andalusia and Seville on the other, superadded, as it usually is, to a greater lightness of figure and animation of face,—whether this is not a more real beauty than that of the fair and more languid señora, whose white and almost transparent skin bespeaks a purer ancestry. Nor is the Indian girl, with her full, little figure, long, glossy hair, quick and mischievous eyes, who walks erect as a grenadier beneath her heavy water-jar, and salutes you in a musical, impudent voice as you pass—nor is the Indian girl to be overlooked in the novel contrasts which the 'bello sexo' affords in this glorious land of the sun."

The Nicaraguan ladies occupy themselves with smoking and displaying little feet in satin slippers when daily they go to church and back. In the early evening they occasionally pay visits, and if a number of both sexes happen to assemble at the same house a dance is improvised, though regular parties or balls are rare and ceremonial.

At festival seasons the Nicaraguans have some curious customs, apparently derived from their ancient heathen worship.

In some of the Nicaraguan towns, especially in Leon, the pernicious practice of burying the dead within the walls of city churches is persisted in, even as in London, and, just as with us, against the opposition of all sensible persons, including the government itself. Fees to the church and attendant officials are at the root of the evil, and give it a vitality that defies all attempts at eradication. The priests of Leon have evaded all edicts about this nuisance, and have improved upon the practice of our metropolitan parishes; for, not content with the revenues they derive from funerals, they charge according to the length of time (from ten to twenty-five years) the dead are to be permitted by them to rest in their graves. When the purchased time is up, the bones and the earth derived from the decomposed corpses are removed and sold to the manufacturers of nitre! The least warlike of citizens may thus in the end become a defender of his country, when converted into a constituent of gunpowder. The most quiet and unambitious of mortals may complete his career by making a noise in the world, when fired off from a mortar. Assuredly this is a very novel and original method of shooting churchyard rubbish, and we recommend a fair consideration of it to our vested parochial authorities.

Mr. Squier claims to be the first person who has described the ancient monuments of Nicaragua, or, indeed, to have indicated their existence. Excellent and numerous plates and cuts of these very interesting though rather frightful relics are given in his work. Hitherto the antiquities of the northern portion of Central America only have been explored, and are familiar to us through the researches of Stephens and of Catherwood. The Indians still reverence the shrines and statues of their ancient gods, and are apt to conceal their knowledge about their localities and existence. Those described by our traveller have mostly suffered dilapidation through the religious zeal of the conquerors. They appear to differ among themselves somewhat in degree of antiquity, but there is no good reason—this is the conclusion to which Mr. Squier comes—for supposing that they were not made by the nations found in possession of the country. The structures in or about which, they were originally placed were probably of wood, and great mounds and earthworks, like the teocallis of Mexico, were associated with them.

A section of Mr. Squier's work is devoted to an elaborate dissertation on the proposed interoceanic canal, illustrated by an excellent map. We recommend these chapters to the consideration of all who are interested upon this important subject. Like most parts of his book it is defaced by not a few sneers at, and misstatements about, the English. About the bad taste of these outbursts we shall not say more. That they should come from a man who is professionally a diplomatist, is evidence of his indiscretion and unfitness for his political calling. As an amusing traveller and diligent antiquarian, however, we can do Mr. Squier full honor, and were glad to see the just compliment lately paid to him in London, when our Antiquarian Society elected him an honorary member.

[This interesting and important work of our countryman is reviewed in a flattering manner in most of the great organs of critical opinion in England, and its sale there, as well as in this country, has been very large for one so costly.]


[7] Nicaragua; its People, Scenery, Monuments, and the Proposed Inter-oceanic Canal. By E. G. Squier. New-York: Appletons.

[Pg 477]

From the Dublin University Magazine.



Lady Randolph took leave of Lilias at the door of her room, and she having, with infinite trepidation, declined the services of the lady's maid, who seemed to her rather more awful and stately than the lady herself, soon remained alone in the magnificent apartment which had been assigned to her. She looked all around it with a glance of some disquietude, for the vastness of the room, and the dark oak furniture, made it look very gloomy. She contemplated the huge bed, which bore an unpleasant resemblance to a hearse, with the utmost awe; it seemed to her that there was room for a dozen concealed robbers within the massive folds of the sombre curtains, and the reflection of her own figure in the tall mirrors, looked strangely like a white ghost wandering stealthily to and fro; the only gleam of comfort that shone in upon her, was from the glimpse of the midnight sky that could be seen through the chinks of the window-shutters. As the night was not cold she went and threw the window open, feeling that the companionship of the stars would destroy all these fantastic fancies; and very soon her sense of loneliness and oppression passed away, for there came a soft wind that lifted the curls of her long fair hair, and kissed her cheek caressingly, and she could not help believing it was a breeze from the Irish hills that bore to her the blessing of her kind old grandfather; gayly as ever she closed the window and went to sit down, wondering if ever she should feel inclined to sleep again after the excitement of the last two days. She had unbound her hair and let it fall around her like a golden veil, when, suddenly, a sound came floating towards her, on the still night air, which irresistibly attracted her attention.

It was a sound of music, deep solemn music, rising with a power and richness of melody she had never heard before; whence it came, or how it was produced, she could not conceive, for it seemed to her unpractised ear not to proceed from one instrument, but from many, and yet there was through it all a unity of harmony which could result from the influence of a single mind alone: now, it swelled out into soft thunders that vibrated through the long passages up to the very roof of her vaulted room, and deep into her beating heart, then it died away to a whisper faint as the sigh of a child, only to rise again more glorious than before; and, over all, heard distinct as the lark in heaven at morning's dawn, there thrilled a voice of such unearthly sweetness that she could not believe it belonged to an inhabitant of this world.

Lilias had one of those sensitive passionate souls over whom music has an uncontrollable power; but as yet she had heard no other instrument than an antique harpsichord of her grandmother's, and such singing as the village girls regaled her with when they stood at work in the fields. No wonder, then, that this wonderful strain had an effect upon her like that of enchantment; it seemed to take possession of her whole soul, and absorb every faculty. She became, as she listened, utterly unconscious of all things, save that this entrancing melody drew her towards it with an irresistible attraction; the sound was so distant, yet so clear, she could not tell if even it were within the house at all; but she did not ponder on its position, or on the nature of it; only, like one who walks in sleep, she rose mechanically on her feet to go to it. If her mind, steeped in that marvellous melody, could reflect at all, it was to conclude that she had fallen asleep and was dreaming, so that she had no thought but the longing not to awake from a dream so beautiful. Slowly drawn by the sweet sounds, as by invisible chains, she moved towards the door and opened it; then, sweeter, louder than before, floating into her very soul, came that angel voice, with the full swelling chords that seemed, as it were, to clothe it, filling her with a sense of enjoyment so intense, that she would have felt constrained to follow after it, even had she known it would lure her to some murderous precipice, like the dangerous sirens in the haunted woods of Germany.

Truly there was a strange fascination in this soft and sublime music, filling the quiet night as with a soul, whose breathing was melody. And Lilias yielded without a thought, or effort, to the entrancing power, which, like a mesmeric influence, drew her imperiously towards it, panting and breathless, as though she feared the sounds would die before she reached them—every faculty concentrated in the sense of hearing. She hastened rapidly along the passages down the wide staircase, and, guided by the deepening, volume of the strain, reached the door of the great hall, which stood open. She passed within it, and at once discerned, that from this room proceeded the wonderful harmony, which had so allured her, the instrument whose solemn tones formed the accompaniment was evidently the magnificent organ, which stood at the further end of the hall; and, as she had never heard one before, it is not to be wondered at that now, when a hand endowed with extraordinary skill drew forth its full power, she should have been enraptured; but it was not so much the majesty of sound, swelling from the noblest instrument in the world, that had so won the very soul within her as the voice, sounding almost celestial to her ears, which still was thrilling with unutterable sweetness through the echoing hall. However glorious those deep low chords, it was yet only the metal which gave them forth; but there was a spirit[Pg 478] in that voice which touched her own spirit, and never again could her young soul be free and independent as it had been before that mysterious contact.

A little while only does the new-created child of dust stand lonely upon earth, as Adam stood in Eden before he woke from his deep sleep to meet the living glance of Eve—a little while in the passionless ignorance of youth, and then is the mortal being free—free from thought, from affection, from desire; but soon, through all the wild tumult and turmoil of the world, he hears the voice calling to him, which demands the surrender of his whole being in one deep human love, and no sooner is that whisper heard echoing in the depths of his heart than, straightway, he yields up the sweet empire of his life's affections; and henceforward, whether he is blest in close companionship, or divided by some gulf impassable, over which, most vain and mournfully, he stretches out the longing arms that only grasp the vacant air, still never more is he alone, or free, for he must live in another's life, and, even in death, desire another's grave.

And was it to be thus with Lilias! the gentle, single-hearted child?

As she stood at the door of the hall, the words which that angel voice was breathing into music came with a strange, deep meaning on her ears. There was no light save that of the moon, which streamed in long, soft rays from the one large window, and reached even the gilded fluting of the organ, yet, through the dim shadows, she could perceive that a musician sat before it. The face only was visible to her in that half light; the upturned face, with the dark hair falling round it, and the deep gray eyes made luminous by the living soul that was shining through them. Never had she looked on him who sat there before, nor could she tell if in truth that countenance had any beauty; only there was upon it now a spiritual loveliness emanating from the solemn thoughts that moved him, which entered into her heart and there abode, to fade only when itself should moulder beneath the coffin lid.

And now, still drawn onwards by the voice, her noiseless feet went down the hall, till, by the side of the unconscious musician, she knelt down meekly, for it seemed to her as though adoring reverence were the needful homage of one who could create such harmony; and there, in breathless rapture, with parted lips, and folded hands, she remained all motionless, till the soft music died away, as if those sounds had been withdrawn again into the heaven to which they belonged.

Then he turned, and his eyes fell upon the kneeling figure by his side; he started violently, and remained mute with surprise, his heart well nigh stopping in its beating with astonishment; almost it seemed to him as if his music had drawn down an angel from the regions of perpetual melody; so fair and spotless did she seem, the moonlight falling on her soft white robes, and weaving her floating hair into a golden tissue with the mingling of its own bright rays. Speechless he remained gazing with the earnest wish that this pure vision might not pass away into a dream. But meantime the cessation of music had unbound the chains that held her young soul captive, and when the sweet face turned towards him the childlike features, solemn with intensity of feeling, he saw that they were human eyes which met his own, eyes that could weep for sorrow, and grow beautiful with tenderness, for now a timid glance stole into them, and a faint smile to the parted lips. Unconsciously, he let his hands fall softly on her head and said:

"Where have you come from? who are you?"

"Lilias," she answered, simply, as a child that tells its name when asked.

"Lily, indeed," he said, "most fair and lovely as the snow-white lilies are; but no such gentle vision ever came to me before in these dark hours, though I have been here lonely, night by night. I thought at first it was a spirit kneeling there; and it is scarce less marvellous to me that a human being should visit me in my solitude, than that some merciful angel should come to cheer me. How is it, then, that you are here?"

"The music seemed to call me and I came," she said; "it was so very beautiful it drew my whole soul after it; but I know I should not have ventured here at such an hour, and now I will go back, only——"

She hesitated, and looked up pleadingly into the eyes that were turned with such admiring wonder on her——

"You live in this house?" she asked.

"I do," he replied, and then bowed his head as though the answer were one of shame.

"Then will you promise me," she said, "that I shall hear these glorious sounds once more? I feel as though I could have no rest till I may listen to them yet again, and to the voice that was as a soul within them. May I come here to-morrow, and will you bestow on me the greatest pleasure I have ever known, for, indeed, I never felt such deep enjoyment as in hearing that solemn strain?"

"Most gladly would I—most gladly see you again, sweet Lily; since that is your sweet name; but do you know who I am?"

"No, excepting that I think you will be my friend,—at least I shall hope it,—for the soul that could utter that divine song must be so worthy of all friendship."

These gentle words seemed literally to make him tremble, as another might to hear the ravings of passion.

"Oh do not speak so softly to me," he said, "I am unused to kindness, and it unmans me; besides, soon you will know all, and then you will neither have the will nor power to befriend me, and it were better for me not[Pg 479] to have the hope of your future sympathy, thus given for a moment and then withdrawn."

"But why withdrawn?" she said, with her gaze of innocent surprise.

"You are Sir Michael's niece, are you not, the child of his favorite brother—his heiress probably?"

"I am his niece, but not his heiress surely; there are so many worthier heirs, are you not one of them?"

"I! I am Hubert Lyle." He seemed to expect that at the sound of that name she would recoil in fear or indignation, but she only repeated the words "Hubert Lyle," and then shook her head gently to intimate that it was an unknown sound to her; he smiled with pleasure to hear his name so softly spoken by the lips of one who seemed to him the purest, sweetest vision that ever had blest his eyes on earth. "I see you have not yet learned all the secrets of this house," he said, "but it will not be long before Sir Michael's niece shall have been taught that there is one beneath this roof whom she must hate, hate even with a deadly animosity. I think it will be a hard lesson for such a gentle nature;" he added almost pityingly. A new light seemed to break in upon her.

"Oh, is it possible?" she exclaimed; "was it then of you that my uncle spoke with such a bitter animosity, as it makes me shiver to think one human being should ever have the power to feel towards another?"

"I am, indeed, the object of his abhorrence."

"But unjustly," she exclaimed, fixing her candid eyes steadily on his face. "I know, I feel, you have not deserved this cruel hatred."

"Not at your uncle's hands, indeed, not, I think, at those of any human being, for I know that wilfully I have injured none; but, doubtless, this discipline is all too little for my deserts, as I must seem unto no mortal sight, and so it must be borne patiently." This humanity touched Lilias to the very heart, her voice trembled with eagerness as she said:

"But do not speak as though I or any other could ever share in the wrong he does you; rather is it our part to make you forget it, as you have forgiven it, by our friendship justly and gladly granted to you."

"Most innocent child," he said, "it is plain you never yet have listened to the voice of your worldly interest; but when that world shall have taught you the value of Sir Michael's favor, then will even this guileless heart be moved to feel or simulate a due abhorrence for his enemy."

"Never!" she exclaimed, lifting up her childlike head with a noble dignity, and throwing back the long hair that she might stand face to face with him to whom she spoke. "Listen, I do not know you; as yet I cannot tell if in very deed you are worthy of the loyal true-hearted friendship, which it is a blessing to give and to receive from our fellow-creatures; but my heart tells me you are so, even to the very uttermost, for I think that none could be otherwise, and dare to sing such solemn strains before high heaven at dead of night; and if it be so—if indeed you are worthy of the esteem and sympathy of all who can distinguish between right and wrong—then is it your lawful due, of which I would not dare defraud you, for it were high treason against the truth and majesty of goodness. If we are bound to adore perfection in its eternal Source and Essence, so is it our very duty and service to pay tribute to the faint reflection of that spirit in the frail human creature; and neither my uncle, nor any other on this earth, has a right to ask of me, or shall compel me, to act a lie against the sovereign virtue I am sworn to worship loyally, by withholding the homage of my friendship to all that are good and true of heart."

"Pray heaven no taint from this bad world may ever reach your soul," were the words that burst from the lips of Hubert Lyle. "Yes, keep—keep your pure wisdom and your noble principle; blessed is he who taught them to you; but, alas! if ever I were worthy of the gift of your esteem on the basis of that rectitude of which you speak, could even your beautiful philosophy stand the test to which it would be put before you could give to me the name of friend. The darkness covers me and you do not yet know what I am—how smitten of heaven as well as hunted down of men; how, by the very decree of nature, repugnant in their sight, not less than hated for another's sake. But I will not deceive you; none could look upon your face and hide one shadow of the bitterest truth: come, and let me show you what I am, and do not fear to shrink away from me when you have seen that sight. I hope for nothing else from any on this earth, for the gentlest look that human eyes have ever had for me, has been one of sorrowing pity."

He took her by the hand, and led her slowly down the hall towards the window, where the moonlight was streaming with a full clear radiance. Through the shadows they went solemnly hand in hand, and a sensation of awe took possession of her; she felt as if he were leading her to the threshold of a new life; strange and unknown feelings were stirring at her heart, and a deep instinct whispering there, seemed to tell her that what he was about to reveal would have an influence on her whole future existence. He dropped her hand when they passed within the circle of light, and, placing himself where the beams fell brightest, he turned and looked upon her. Then she saw that he was smitten indeed, and that heaven had laid a load upon his mortal frame, heavy, as that which man had built upon his shrinking soul. Hubert Lyle was hopelessly and fearfully deformed. It would seem as though it were[Pg 480] designed for him that he should be crushed both in body and in spirit, for his neck was bowed as by an iron power, and the sadness of a life's long humiliation was stamped on that upturned face; unlike the countenance of many who are deformed in body, there was no beauty on it save in the deep, thoughtful eyes, and the pale forehead, whence dark masses of hair were swept aside.

Oh, how the heart of Lilias trembled as she looked upon him and read the measure of his twofold suffering. An outcast, by deformity, from the common race of man, and trodden down in soul by unmerited contumely or hate. How to the very depths was stirred within her that well of tenderness and pity for the oppressed which gushes in every woman's heart, as she saw in his whole aspect the evidence of a resolute and noble endurance, a patient meekness, untinged by a trace of bitterness! She could have wept over him, for she was one of those unhappily gifted whose soul is like a sensitive plant, and shrinks from the touch of sufferings in others with an exquisite susceptibility. Her natural delicacy, however, taught her that she must hide from him how deeply his infirmity had moved her; he must see in her no evidence of the insulting pity to which alone he seemed accustomed. He had spoken of her shrinking away from him; she drew nearer, and lifting up her eyes, smiled one quiet, gentle smile, as though in token that she had seen nought to surprise or grieve her; that look was balm to him, used only to the half-averted glance of sad repugnance which we are wont to cast on an unsightly object. His voice shook with mingled eagerness and delight as he said:

"Could you indeed take such a deformed wretch as I am by the hand, and stand forth before all the world to acknowledge him your friend?"

"Is it, then, the perishable, mortal body that we love and hold communion with, in those who are mercifully given to be our friends?" she answered; "the frame that shall be a thing of dust and worms so soon? Is it not the indestructible soul to which we give our sympathy, and is not that sympathy immortal as itself? for nothing good and pure that ever was created can have power to perish, though it be only the subtle feeling of a human heart; and so the friendship which is given by one deathless spirit to another is a link between them for their eternity of life, and what has it to do with the outward circumstances of our brief sojourn here?" She paused, and then anxious to dispel the sort of solemnity which had gained on both of them, she said, playfully:

"You have not yet found a good reason why I should not some day be your friend; but I think I shall soon give you little cause to wish for my acquaintance, if I keep you any longer in conversation at this strange hour of the night. I must go; for, indeed, I have lingered too long; but, no doubt, we shall meet again." He did not seek to detain her; he felt that he ought not; but he knew that the smile so sweet and kindly with which she had looked on his unsightly frame would linger like a sunbeam in his memory; and that, yet more, the words of pure, calm wisdom she had uttered would never depart from his sad heart; for the faith she had shown in that one deep truth, that all things good, and beautiful, and worth the having, are created for eternity, and in no sense to be influenced by the accidents (so to speak) of this mere outward life, had suddenly lightened the load of his deformity, which so long had crushed down his entire being, and made him feel that it was his undying soul which stood face to face with hers—no less immortal—and that he, the actual ego the very self, had nought to do with this poor frame, the magnet, as he long had deemed it, of the world's hate and scorn, but, in truth, only the temporary clothing, soon to be put off, and now unworthy of a thought: he had felt this, as regards the life which was to come, when he should be disembarrassed of his mortal body; but he had not understood what a deep joy the truth of this principle could cast even into this present existence. None had taught him, by the sweet teaching of entire sympathy, that all true affection is but planted in the germ here, and has its full fruition only in eternity.

These thoughts rose like morning light on his soul, as he stood gazing, thoughtfully, upon her; whilst she, now that the enthusiasm, which had been called forth by the expression of her own bright faith had died away, had yielded to her womanly timidity, and stood half shy, half embarrassed, not knowing how to take leave of the companion she had so strangely encountered. He saw this, and, with a ready courtesy, opened the door for her, and bade her good night, thanking her gently for the sweet words of comfort she had spoken. She expressed a hope once more that they should meet again, and so vanished from his sight. The white figure passing away into the shadows, like some fair dream into the darkness of a deeper sleep. He remained standing on the spot where she left him, clasping his hands tightly on his breast. "Meet again!" he repeated thoughtfully, echoing the words she had uttered. "I will not desire it; I will not seek it: surely it were the greatest peril that ever has crossed my path. How have I labored for peace these many years, and have attained it only by stripping my life of every hope and wish connected with this world. I have so veiled my eyes to its allurements, from which I am for ever exiled, that all the living things within it have become to me as moving shadows in the twilight; whilst my own soul has been bathed in the sunlight of an eternal hope; but if the smile of these sweet eyes came falling on my heart again—if the spirit that looked through[Pg 481] them be, indeed, as beautiful as I believe it—if, day by day, I saw the outward loveliness, and felt the inward beauty, infinitely fairer, it could not fail, but I should grow to love her. I—I—the deformed outcast! Oh! could my worst enemy—could even he who hates the very ground on which I walk, desire for me a deeper curse than that I should bring upon myself, if ever I made room in this my soul for human love. It must not be; I can and will avoid her. I will believe that I have slept and woke again; and this night shall be to me but as one in which I have dreamt a brighter dream than usual."

He resumed his habitual composure as these thoughts passed through his mind; the resolute calm, which was the habitual expression of his face, returned to it, and quietly he left that old hall where the first scene in the drama of Lilias Randolph's life had been enacted.

She soon was lying in a tranquil slumber—the deep sleep of an innocent heart that is altogether at rest; but through all her dreams that night, there went a voice whose echo was to haunt her soul for evermore.


Lilias, like most blythe young spirits, never could sleep after the morning beams came to visit her eyelids; and, despite the unusual excitement of the preceding night, she was roaming through the house at a very early hour, looking bright and fresh as the day-dawn itself. She passed through the old hall with timid steps, though it was now deserted by the musician, with whom her thoughts had been busy ever since she awoke. Deep was the pity that had sprung to life, never more to die in her young heart for him: not a barren pity, but active, tender, woman-like, that would take no rest till it had found some means of ministering to his happiness. For the present it expended itself in an earnest desire to discover all concerning him, and most especially whether, amongst all the inhabitants of Randolph Abbey, he had no friend to counterbalance the animosity of his one known enemy. To see him again likewise, not once but often, was a determination which she could not fail to form after the conversation she had held with him; her generous spirit was in some sense bound to this, and it did but deepen her longing to draw near to one so doubly stricken. Occupied with these thoughts, Lilias passed through the drawing-room to a verandah which opened from it, and where she could enjoy the fresh air whilst sheltered from the sun. There were couches placed there, and as Lilias moved towards one of them, she was startled by perceiving a motionless figure extended upon it.

It was Aletheia, apparently in a profound slumber; but to Lilias she seemed like a corpse laid out for burial, so pale, so rigid was her face. The cold, white hands were folded on her breast as in dumb supplication, and they were scarce stirred by her slow breathing, or the dull, heavy beating of her heart. Her countenance bore an expression of extreme fatigue, and it seemed plain to Lilias that she had been walking to a great distance. Her hair, matted with dew, was clinging wet to her temples, and her bonnet lay on the ground beside her. Lilias gazed at her with a feeling almost of awe, wondering what was the secret of this strange cousin's life, and a slight movement which she made awoke Aletheia. Slowly the eyelids rose over those sad eyes, and revealed, as the power of thought stole into them, a depth of pain, of mute entreaty, which seemed to indicate an imploring desire that she might not be commanded to take up the burden of returning life. She tried to close them again, but in vain; the light sleep was altogether broken, and, raising herself up, with a heavy sigh she turned a look of involuntary reproach on Lilias.

"I am so sorry I awoke you," said the latter, breathlessly. "I did not mean it, indeed; you were not resting well; but I am afraid you did not wish to be awakened."

"No," said the low voice of Aletheia, which seemed ever to come from her lips without stirring them, "for it is the only injury any one can do to me."

"An injury!" said Lilias, in her innocent surprise, "to wake on this bright morning and beautiful world."

"Bright and beautiful," said Aletheia, musingly, "how these words are like dreams of long, long ago. My days have no part in them now; but think no more of having awakened me, it matters nothing; and it would have been strange, indeed, if such as you had known how many are roused to the morning light with the one cry in their heart—'must I, must I live again?'"

"I cannot conceive it," said Lilias; "I always wish there were no night, it seems so sad to go away and shut one's eyes on all one loves and admires."

"Yet, believe me, to some sleep is precious—more precious even than death, for all it seems so like an angel of rest and mercy; the brief forgetfulness of sleep is certain, whilst in death the soul feels there is no oblivion."

It was to the gay, young Lilias, as though Aletheia were speaking in an unknown tongue; her unclouded spirit understood none of these things; but in spite of her prejudice against this strange person, she felt struck with pity as she saw her sitting there with the wet hair clinging to her cold, white cheek.

"You are very tired; I am afraid," she said, "you have walked a long distance."

Aletheia started, and the pale lips grew paler, as she exclaimed, almost passionately—

"You have been watching me!"

"No, indeed," said Lilias, distressed at the idea, "how could you think me capable of[Pg 482] it? I did not see you until I came into the verandah; but I guessed you had gone out early, because your clothes are all wet with dew."

Aletheia rose up.

"Lilias, you are come to live in the same house with me, and therefore is it necessary I should make to you one prayer. I do beseech you, as you hope that men will deal mercifully with your life, grant me the only mercy they can give to mine—leave me alone; forget that I exist; live as if I did not, or were dead. I ask nothing but this, to be unmolested and forgotten."

She turned to go into the room as she spoke, but she was stopped by the appearance of Gabriel, who was creeping, with his quiet, stealthy step, towards her; his blue eyes, usually so soft, glowing with the intensity of his ardent gaze. She paused and looked at him sadly.

"Gabriel, you heard what I said to Lilias just now; it is nothing new to you; you know well and deeply what is my one desire—the petition I make to all. Why, then, will you live, as it were in my shadow—why will you persecute me?" He made no answer, but by folding his hands in mute appeal and bowing his head humbly over them. She passed him in silence, and went into the house. He followed softly after her, and Lilias was left alone.

The poor child drew a long breath, and felt at the moment an intense desire to be at liberty amongst the Connaught hills again, where the thoughts and words of the rough country people seemed free and fresh as the winds that blew there; all seemed so strange and mysterious in this house; she had been brought suddenly into contact with that deep human passion of which she knew nothing, and felt as if she were in the midst of some entangled web, where nothing plain or regular was to be seen. Her momentary wish to escape, however, died away, as the recollection came upon her, borne as it were, by the wings of memory, of the one sweet haunting voice, and solemn strain. Nor was she long left to her own reflections; Sir Michael, who so rarely left his own rooms, came in search of her, and fairly monopolized her during the whole of the day. He persuaded her to stay with him in his laboratory, and seemed to take infinite pleasure in hearing her talk of all that had been joy to her in her past life.

And truly it was a strange sight to see her in that dark little den, with her innocent face and her fair white robes, sitting so fearlessly at the feet of the old man, telling him stories of Irish banshees, and sunny nooks in her native valley, where her nurse said the fairies danced all night long. To hear her talk, and to have her sweet presence, was to Sir Michael as though some fresh breeze were passing over his withered soul; and the tones of her voice were so like those of his long-lost brother, that at times he could dream they were side by side again, both young, full of hope that was to bear fruit, for him at least, in bitterest despair, and with passions yet unchained from the depth of his heart. The first pleasure he had tasted for years was in Lilias's society, and he inwardly determined to enjoy as much of it henceforward as was possible—a resolution which we may so far anticipate as to mention he rigidly kept, to the sore discomfiture of poor little Lilias.

He had a deeper motive for it in the movement of jealousy he had witnessed in his beautiful wife, when he took his niece in his arms the day before. Indifferent as she was to him, she was too thorough a woman to relish the idea, that the sole and undivided dominion she had maintained over his heart was to be diminished by the entrance even of the most natural affection. She need have had no fears; the passion of a life was not now to be tempered by any such influence. Lilias was to him simply an occupation for his restless mind; she preserved him from thinking, better than his chemical experiments, and, above all, she gave him the exquisite delight of feeling that he had power to move his scornful wife even yet; so Lilias was doomed from that day to be his constant companion.

He did not suppose she would like it, though he did not guess, as she sat by his side, how restlessly her poor little feet were longing to be away bounding on the soft, green grass; but he resolved to compensate her for her daily imprisonment by making her his heiress: a determination subject to any change of circumstances that might cause him to alter it, which he did not conceal either from her or the rest of the family.

We are anticipating, however; the first day of Lilias's probation is not yet over. Very wearily it passed, because her eager mind was bent on seeing Hubert Lyle; and not only did her uncle never mention his name, but she found no opportunity of asking any one who and what he was, and where she could meet with him again. It was not till the evening that she found the family once more assembled, and as she gazed round amongst them all with this object in her thoughts, she felt there was but one who inspired her with any confidence, or to whom she could speak freely. This was Walter, with his fine frank countenance and winning smile; and she was very glad when they found themselves accidentally alone in the music-room, where Sir Michael left them, after listening, with evident pleasure, to her sweet voice singing like a bird in the sky.

Lilias turned round hastily to Walter, with such a pair of speaking eyes, that he laughed gayly, and answered them at once——

"How can I help you? I see you have a great deal to say."

"Oh, yes, cousin Walter; I have been longing to speak to you; you are the only one in all this house I am not afraid of. I want you to tell me so many things!"[Pg 483]

"And what things, dear Lilias? This is rather vague."

"Oh, every thing about every body, they are all so mysterious."

"Well, so they are," he said laughing: "I find them so myself. I can quite fancy how you feel, like a poor little fly, caught in some great web, and surrounded by spiders of all kinds and dimensions, each weaving their separate snares."

"Precisely; and now I want you to explain all the spiders to me; you must classify them, and tell me which are venomous, and which are not," she said, laughing along with him.

"I wish I could," answered Walter, "but they are quite beyond me—they are not in my line at all, I assure you. I never could keep a secret in my life; but I will do my best to enlighten you. I can tell you certain peculiarities at all events. Suppose we make a sort of catechism of it; you shall question and I shall answer."

"Very well," said Lilias, entering into the spirit of his gayety, "and so to begin—Why does Lady Randolph look so strangely at Sir Michael, and always seem anxious to go out of the room whenever he comes in?"

"Because she hates him," replied Walter.

"How very strange; people seem to hate a good deal at Randolph Abbey; but is it always their nearest relations, as in this case?"

"Why no; as you proceed in your catechism I doubt not we shall have occasion to mention certain hatreds in this household, which are in no sense affected by natural ties."

"Well to proceed," said Lilias; "why does Gabriel hour after hour keep his eyes fixed on Aletheia, with a strange look which makes me fancy he thinks she would die if he were to cease gazing on her?"

"Because he loves her," answered Walter.

"But she does not love him," exclaimed Lilias, with a woman's instinct.

"Most certainly not."

"There is so much I have to ask about her. Tell me why it is that she has such imploring eyes. I never, on a human face, saw an expression of such mute entreaty; I saw it once in the wistful look of a poor deer which they killed on our Irish hills. I remember so well when it lay wounded, and the gamekeeper came near with the knife, it lifted up its great brown eyes with just such a dumb beseeching gaze, but that was only for a moment. It soon died, poor thing; and with Aletheia, that mournful supplication seems stamped on her countenance, as though her very life were to be spent in it."

"Ah! if you ask me about Aletheia," said Walter, "I am powerless at once. I can tell you nothing of her; she is a greater mystery in herself than all the rest put together; this only seems plain to me, that her existence is, for some unexplicable reason, one living agony."

"If I thought so I should be so angry with myself for having felt prejudiced against her, which, I confess, I have done, for a reason I could not name to you. She is so cold and statue-like, I thought she seemed lost to all human feeling; but if it be suffering, and not insensibility, which makes her move about amongst us as if she had been dead, and forced unwillingly to live again, I should try to overcome the sort of awe with which she has inspired me."

"I believe it matters little how you feel respecting her, for you will never conquer her impenetrable reserve; even poor Gabriel, who seems fascinated by her to a marvellous extent, has ever struggled vainly against her implacable calm. It is seldom, I think, that one human being can so lavish all his sympathies upon another, as he has done on her, without gaining some sign of life at least; but he tells me it is as though the living soul within her were cased in iron; he cannot draw it out of the dungeon where she seems to have buried it, to meet even for a moment his own ardent spirit."

"But I hardly wonder at this, if she does not love him," said Lilias.

"You mistake me," replied Walter: "I do not expect that she should return his affection; but she seems utterly unaware of its existence; she appears ever to be so intent in listening to some voice we cannot hear, that all human words are unheeded by her; those deep, beseeching eyes of hers are ever gazing out, as though the world and all the things of it, were but moving shadows for her, because of the greatness of some one thought which is alone reality to her; yet that there lives a most burning soul within that statue of ice, I can no more doubt than that the snows of Etna hide, but do not quench its fiery heart."

"And does no one know the secret of her life?" asked Lilias.

"No one, that I am aware of—none at least, now living; that her father did, whose idol she was, I have reason to think from some remarks of Sir Michael's; he himself knows possibly somewhat more than we do, though assuredly not the real truth, nor more than some external peculiarities of her position. I have heard, however, that before she would consent to come here, even for six months, and that with the chance of being chosen as the heiress, she made certain conditions with her uncle respecting the liberty she was to be allowed. I presume this to refer chiefly to a strange visit which she receives one day in every month, on which day alone I believe has any human being seen her moved."

"And who is this visitor?" exclaimed Lilias.

"That is more than I can tell you; and all I know of him is that I have heard his sharp quick step, which certainly is the step of a man, going across the hall to the library, where Aletheia receives him; and an hour or so later I have heard the same tread as he[Pg 484] leaves the house; then the galloping of his horse sounds for a moment on the gravel, and that is all that any one at Randolph Abbey hears of the only friend she seems to possess."

"Does even Gabriel not know him?"

"He may have seen him; but he does not know him, I am sure; it is quite wonderful how little knowledge he has acquired concerning Aletheia, considering the means he has taken to penetrate her secret—means which, I confess to you, I should have scorned to employ, even though, like him, my dearest interests were at stake; for instance, he has actually more than once tracked her in her mysterious morning walks."

"What! does she walk every day," said Lilias, in astonishment; "I found her this morning lying quite exhausted in the verandah. She must have been to a great distance; surely she does not do the same every day?"

"Every day, so far as I know, she does walk to precisely the same spot, and that several miles distance; it is certainly beyond her strength, for she is often in a state of frightful exhaustion when she returns; but even in the coldest spring mornings she used to leave the house, long before it was light, to make this pilgrimage; it seems she wishes to avoid the observation she would incur later in the day."

"Then it was cruel of Gabriel to follow her."

"It was; but I think he is often maddened to find how his great love comes beating up against the rock of her impenetrable calm, like waves upon the shore, leaving no trace behind."

"Do you know," said Lilias, with a wondering look in her cloudless eyes, "I think Gabriel has his mysteries too, like every one else in this strange house. I can understand his watching Aletheia, if his whole heart is for ever turning to her, as you describe; but it is not her alone, for in the short time I have know him, I am sure he has managed to find out more about me than ever I knew myself; those soft blue eyes of his seem to look so stealthily into one's soul. I am convinced he could tell you every thing I have done and said the whole of this day. You know Sir Michael made me stay with him ever since morning, but I never passed out of this room without meeting Gabriel in the passage."

"That I can easily believe. I always feel as if Gabriel acted in this delectable abode the part of a cat watching innumerable mice; he has an anomalous sort of character; but one of his qualities is sufficiently distinct, which is a very acute penetration; he can divine the most intricate affairs from the smallest possible indications. For my own part, I make not the slightest attempt to conceal my innermost thoughts from him; happily I have nothing to hide, but if I had, I should let him know it at once; it would save all trouble, as he would infallibly find it out."

"But what do you mean by an anomalous character?" asked Lilias.

"A sort of double nature; he seems to me to have naturally good impulses on which some guiding hand has ingrafted a calculating disposition that sorely warps them; he has no control whatever over his passions, yet the most perfect over his outward words and actions, whereby he effectually conceals them when he so pleases. Certain it is, that he has an indomitable will to which every thing else is subservient; but much of this inconsistency of his character may be attributed to his position; here he is the nephew of Sir Michael Randolph—the possible heir of Randolph Abbey; but he was educated by a person whom we know to be of low station, and I believe must be equally so in mind."

"His mother?" asked Lilias.

"Yes; I know nothing of her, nor does he ever allude to his past life. I do not even know where she lives; he is simply ashamed of her, I presume, and I sometimes think we should have the key-stone to Gabriel's character in a violent ambition, were it not so neutralized by his not less violent love for Aletheia. Dear Lilias, why do you start so, what do you see?"

"He is there," she said, half frightened, and glancing to the open door through which, with his soft steps, Gabriel was gliding.

"Of course, considering whom we were speaking of," said Walter, laughingly, "it is an invariable rule, you know. Come along, Gabriel," he added, turning to his cousin, "I need not mention that we were discussing you, as by the simple rule of cause and effect, it was that circumstance which produced your appearance."

"Not by my overhearing you," said Gabriel, quickly.

"My dear fellow, there was not the least occasion for that; you were obeying a mysterious law, which is summarily stated in a proverb quite unfit for ears polite; but your arrival is most opportune; your services will be very available to Lilias and myself; allow me to offer you a chair, and invest you at once with your office."

"And how am I to be made useful?" said Gabriel, attempting, by a forced smile, to sympathize in Walter's playful manner of viewing the subject.

"Why, you must know," and he laid an emphasis on the word must, for Lilias's behoof, "that Miss Lilias Randolph and I have begun a course of moral dissection of the inhabitants of this house, in which she acts the part of a young and very inexperienced surgeon, and I that of a most grave and potent doctor. We had just finished you off, and were proceeding to the dismemberment of the rest of the family; in this interesting study I think you can materially assist us, seeing you have some very sharp and subtle instrument for this species of anatomy."

"I was not aware I possessed any such,"[Pg 485] said Gabriel; "it would ill befit me in my position to make myself a judge of any here."

"Now don't begin to be humble and make us ashamed of ourselves. I consider it quite an important matter to Lilias that she should know her ground here so far as possible; so let us parade the remainder of our dear relations before her as fast as we can."

A strange smile passed over Gabriel's face, as if he doubted that the gentle Lilias, and the frank-hearted Walter, would discover much concerning that intricate ground on which they stood; but he made no remark, and simply said—

"And who stands next on the list after my unworthy self?"

"That is for Lilias to determine; we wait your orders, lady dear."

"You are learning to speak Irish," she said, smiling.

"A most likely consummation," murmured Gabriel.

"Oh! I could say better things than that in Irish," said Walter, coughing off the slight confusion his cousin's remark had produced; "but you must really tell us whom you mean to propose for our inspection, or this council of war will last till midnight."

"This council for the preliminaries of war," said the low voice of Gabriel, giving an unpleasant aspect of truth to an expression which Walter had carelessly used with no special meaning.

For a moment Lilias made no answer; the thought which had been present with her throughout the whole of this conversation, and that which had alone, indeed, given it any interest for her, was, that she might obtain some information respecting Hubert Lyle; yet now that the time was come when she must name him or lose her opportunity, she felt, in a lower degree, something of that unwillingness to broach the subject, which we have to mention any secret act of self-devotion. The solemn music which had been the means of leading her into his presence; the unearthly serenity with which his soul had looked at her through those eyes that reminded her of the still waters of some unruffled lake, where only the glory of heaven is reflected; and above all, his infirmity, so meekly borne, had invested him with a sacredness in her mind which made her feel as if it was almost a profanation to speak of him to indifferent ears. With a slight trembling in the voice, which did not escape the quick perception of Gabriel, she said, "There is yet one of whom I would inquire—Hubert Lyle." Both her cousins started at the name, but Gabriel instantly repressed his astonishment, while Walter as freely gave vent to his.

"Is it possible you have heard of him already? who can have been bold enough to mention him?" he said.

"Why, I have not only heard of him, I have seen him."

"Seen him!" even Gabriel exclaimed at this. Lilias looked up with a smile.

"I think he must be the most mysterious of all," she said, "you seem so surprised."

"You would not wonder at that if you knew more of the 'secrets of this prison-house,'" said Walter, "which you must know is no inapt quotation as regards Hubert Lyle, for he certainly acts, in some sense, the part of Hamlet."

"Without Hamlet's soul," said Gabriel, softly.

"Without Hamlet's madness, rather, I should say; for I cannot doubt, from all I have heard, that Hubert has a noble soul, though not one which would lead him, like the Prince of Denmark, to make to himself an idol of the principle of vengeance."

"And Lilias is waiting meanwhile to tell us where she saw him," said Gabriel.

"Is it Lilias or you who are waiting?" said Walter, laughing; "for my part, I frankly confess that my curiosity is greatly excited, so pray tell us."

And she did so at once, for there was not a thought of guile in this young girl's heart. She told how, in the quiet night, she had heard a solemn voice of music that had called her spirit with an irresistible allurement; and how she had risen up and followed where it led, till it had brought her into the presence of him of whom they spoke; but she went no farther; she said nothing of the conversation which had drawn those stranger souls more closely together than weeks of ordinary intercourse could have done; for she felt that Lyle had been surprised into speaking of his private feelings; and the subject of his infirmity was one she could not have brought herself to mention; the sympathy with which he had inspired her was of that nature which made her feel as sensitive as she would have done had the affliction been her own. Yet, though she did not enter into details, the deep interest she felt for him gave a soft tremulousness to her voice, which was duly noticed by Gabriel, as he sat looking intently at her with the keen gaze which his meek eyes knew so well how to give from under their long lashes.

"And now," said she, "tell me who and what he is, he seems to occupy so strange a position in this house?"

"Not more strange than cruel," said Walter; "he is the son of Lady Randolph, by her first husband; she had been engaged to Sir Michael before she met Mr. Lyle, who was his first cousin, but she had never cared for him, and yielded at once to the intense passion which sprung up between Mr. Lyle and herself; she married him, and from that hour Sir Michael hated him with such a hate, I believe, as this world has rarely seen. When his rival died, he transferred this miserable, bitter feeling to the son, Hubert, simply because the widow had, in like manner, turned all the deep love she had felt for the dead[Pg 486] husband on the living son—not for his own merits, for poor Hubert has few attractions, but solely because he bears his father's name, and looks at her with his father's eyes. I believe she has even the cruelty to tell him so. She worships so the memory of her early love, that she will not have it thought her heart could spare any affection, even to her child, were he not his son also. It has always seemed to me the saddest fate for her unhappy son, to be thus the object of such vehement hate, and no less powerful love, and yet to feel that he has neither deserved the one, nor gained the other, in his own person, but solely as the representative of a dead man who can feel no more."

"Miserable, indeed," said Lilias, folding her hands as though she would have asked mercy for him; "how cruel! how cruel! but his mother, how could she marry Sir Michael when she so loved, and still loves, another? this seems to me a fearful thing."

"Starvation is more so," muttered Gabriel.

"Starvation!" exclaimed Lilias.

"Yes," said Walter; "Mrs. Lyle and her son were actually left in such destitution at her husband's death, that she certainly married Sir Michael for no other purpose but to procure a home for herself and her child. How it came to pass that she was in this extreme poverty, I know not; report says that it was the result of Sir Michael's persecution of Mr. Lyle in his lifetime; but I can hardly believe this of our uncle."

"No, indeed," said Lilias.

"One thing is certain, that it sorely diminished Sir Michael's delight in marrying the woman he had loved so long, to find that he must submit to the continual presence of her son in the house; but she forced him to enter into a solemn agreement that Hubert was always to reside with them, and he agreed, on condition that he crossed his path as seldom as possible. This part of the arrangement is almost overdone by poor Lyle, who is, I believe, like most persons afflicted with personal infirmity, singularly sensitive and full of delicate feeling. He never leaves his own rooms except to go to his mother's apartments, unless Sir Michael happens to be absent, when Lady Randolph generally forces him to make his appearance among us. I believe his only amusement is playing on the organ half the night, as you found him."

"And do none of you ever go to see him, and try to comfort him," exclaimed Lilias; "do none befriend him in all this house?"

"You forget," said Gabriel, hastily, evidently desirous to prevent Walter from answering till he had spoken himself, "that any one who sought out Hubert Lyle, and made a friend of him, would incur Sir Michael's displeasure to such a degree that he would strike him at once off the list of his heirs, and the penalty of his philanthropy would be nothing less than the loss of Randolph Abbey." As he said this he bent his eyes with the most ardent gaze on Lilias, that he might read to her inmost soul the effect of his speech; but it needed not so keen a scrutiny; the indignation with which it had filled her sent the color flying to her cheek, and kindled a fire in her clear eyes seldom seen within them.

"And who," she exclaimed, "could dare withhold their due tribute of charity and sympathy to a suffering fellow-creature for the sake of the fairest lands that ever the world saw! who could be so base, for the love of his own interest, as to pander to an unjust hatred, the evil passion of another, and join with the oppressor in persecuting one who is guiltless of all save deep misfortune! Can there be any such?" she added, in her turn fixing her gaze upon Gabriel. A triumphant smile passed over his lips; her answer seemed precisely what he had hoped it would be; but Walter anxiously exclaimed:

"Pray do me the justice to believe that I would not act so, Lilias; I never should have thought of the motive Gabriel assigned as a reason for not visiting Hubert; but, to tell the truth, I have no desire to do so, because I believe him, from all I have heard, to be a poor morbid visionary, who desires nothing so much as solitude, and with whom I should not have an idea in common."

"Nor should I be deterred from showing him any kindness for this reason, I trust," said Gabriel, with his meekest voice; "I merely wished to place you in possession of facts with which I thought it right you should be acquainted in case Hubert should afford you the opportunity of intercourse which he has not granted to us; for it is one of the noble traits of his fine character, that he will not risk our incurring Sir Michael's displeasure for his sake. He is the more generous in this, that, from his relationship to our uncle, he would be heir-at-law after us four. But in fact I believe there exists not a more high-minded and amiable man than he is, in no sense meriting the misfortunes that have fallen upon him; and his dignified, unmurmuring endurance of them could never be attributed to insensibility, for he is singularly gifted; his wonderful musical talent is the least of his powers."

"Why, Gabriel," said Walter, looking round in great surprise, "I never heard you say so much in praise of Hubert before;—or, indeed, of any one," he added, sotto voce.

"I know him, perhaps, better than you do," said Gabriel, watching, with delight the softened expression of Lilias's face, which proved to him how artfully his words had been calculated to produce the effect he desired. He read in her thoughtful eyes, as easily as he would have done in a page of fair writing, how she was quietly determining in that hour that she would seek by every means in her power to become the friend of this unfortunate man, and teach him how sweet a solace there may be even in human[Pg 487] sympathy, and that, all the more, because her worldly prospects would be endangered thereby. It would prove to Hubert that her friendship had at least the merit of sincerity, since, in her humility, she imagined it could possess no other;—but Gabriel had no time to say more, for Sir Michael at this moment joined them, and Lilias, rising up, said she believed it was late, and turned to go into the other drawing-room. Sir Michael looked sharply at the trio, and, as Walter followed his cousin, he turned to Gabriel with considerable irritation—

"How came you here, sir; I left those two together?"

"They invited me to join them, or I should not have intruded," said Gabriel, with his customary meekness, but a smile curled his lips, which he could not repress. Sir Michael saw and understood it at once; he paused for a moment in thought, and then deciding, apparently like Walter, that it was no use to conceal any thing from Gabriel, and more advantageous to be open with him at once, he said—

"Gabriel, understand me, if your quick eyes have divined any of my plans, it will work you no good to thwart them."

"But, possibly, it might avail me were I to further them," said the nephew, very softly.

"It might," said Sir Michael; "the broad lands of Randolph Abbey could, with little loss, furnish a handsome compensation to the person who should assist me in placing therein, the heirs I desire to choose."

Gabriel's reply was merely a significant look of acquiescence, and the old man, bestowing on him a smile of approbation such as he had never before vouchsafed him, went away well pleased. He was firmly convinced that he had enlisted in support of the plan that was already a favorite one with him, the individual amongst all his heirs who he was the most positively resolved should never inherit the Abbey, both because he rather disliked him personally, and because he could not forgive him his mother's low birth. Could he have seen the sneer with which Gabriel looked after him, he would have been somewhat unpleasantly enlightened as to the real value of the ally he had obtained.


Very strange was the contrast between the splendid drawing-room, blazing with light and heat, where the Randolph family were assembled, and the small room in the other wing of the house which was occupied by Hubert Lyle. It contained barely the furniture necessary for his use, and this was by his own desire, for it was already sufficiently bitter to him to eat the bread dealt out so grudgingly, and at least he would not be beholden to his stepfather for more than the actual necessaries of existence.

Sorely against his proud mother's wish, he had chosen for his sitting-room one of the very meanest and poorest in the house, with a single window, low and narrow, which looked out on a deserted part of the grounds. Hubert liked it all the better for this, as there was no flower-garden or green-house near to bring the head-gardener, with his trim, mathematical mind, amongst the wild beauties of nature. The grass was left in this part to come up against the very wall of the house, and the ivy and honeysuckle which grew round the window were allowed to penetrate almost into the room. Fortunately, the noble trees which filled the park stood somewhat apart in this place, and their arching branches formed at this moment a sort of framework to the most glorious picture that ever is given to mortal eyes to look upon—the lucid sky of night, filled as it were to overflowing with radiant worlds, each hanging in its own atmosphere of glory.

It was no wonder that Hubert turned from the low, dark room, so dimly lit with its single candle, to look upon this the bright landscape of the skies. Within, the scene was certainly uninviting. The heavy deal table, the scanty supply of chairs, the plain writing-desk, evidently many years in use, were the only objects on which the eye could rest, excepting a few books and a small piano, the gift of Aletheia, with which, greatly to his astonishment, she had presented him one day—for she was as completely a stranger to him as she was to all the rest of the family, and had always avoided intercourse with him as much as she did with every one else. This thoughtful act of kindness on her part, however, produced no increased acquaintance between them, as she shrank from hearing his expressions of gratitude on that occasion, and, indeed, they seldom met. Aletheia was never in Lady Randolph's rooms, where alone Hubert was to be met, excepting at rare intervals, when Sir Michael was absent.

Hubert sat now at the window; he had laid down his heavy head upon the wooden ledge, and his hands fell listlessly on his knee. He seemed full of anxious thoughts, and sighed very deeply more than once. From time to time, apparently with a violent effort, he looked up and gazed fixedly on the tranquil stars, seeming to drink in their pure glory, as though he sought to steep his soul in this light of higher spheres; but ever a sort of trembling passed over his frame, and he would sink down again oppressed and weary. This was most unlike Hubert Lyle's usual condition. He was a man of the most ardent and sensitive feelings; but, at the same, possessed of that moral strength and truthfulness of soul which can only belong to a great character—by this last expression, we mean that he was what few are in this world, neither a deceiver nor deceived. He did not deceive himself in any case, nor would he allow life to deceive him; he saw things as they really were, and he permitted not the bright coloring[Pg 488] of hope or imagination to deck them with false apparel; he did not live as most men do, figuring to himself that he was as it were the centre of the universe, and that all around him thought of him and felt for him as he did for himself. He weighed himself in the balance not of his own self-love, but of other men's judgment, and rated himself accordingly. Thus, in the earlier days of his maturity, he constrained his spirit to rise up and look his position in the face. And truly it was one which might have appalled a less feeling heart than his.

His outward circumstances were as bitter as could well be to a high-minded man. He was a dependent on the grudging charity of one who abhorred him; and though he would right thankfully have gone out from these inhospitable doors, even to starve, in preference, yet was he bound to endure existence within them, by a promise which his mother had extorted from him as a condition of their marriage, that he never would leave Randolph Abbey without her consent. This marriage he knew was to save her from a blighting penury which was killing her; and, moreover, she concealed from him that cruel hatred of Sir Michael, which was the only heritage his dead father left him, and, thinking no evil, he had given them the promise which bound him as with an iron chain to abide under the roof of his unprovoked enemy. But heavier even than unjust hatred was the weight upon soul and body of his own deformity; for if the first shut up one human heart from him, and turned its power of affection to gall for his sake, the other cast him out for ever from the love of all human kind. He knew that his unsightly frame could call forth no other feeling from them but a cold, most often a contemptuous pity.

And yet, when he looked out into the world—the dark, tumultuous, agonizing world—that very sea of human hearts, all beating up upon the stony shores of a life, against which they are for ever broken and shattered, he saw passing through the midst of it all a soft, pure light, shedding warmth and brightness even on the dreariest scenes, and causing men to forget all pain, and privation, and misery—a light to which the saddest eyes turned with a joyous greeting, and on which the gaze of the dying lingered mournfully, till the coffin-lid for ever shut it out from their fond longing. And he knew that this one blessed thing, which could overcome the strong, fierce evils of life, like the maid in the pride of her purity, before whom the lion would turn and flee, was called Human Love in the doting hearts of men—Human Love—the one sole, unfailing joy of our merely mortal existence. And was it for him? Should he ever have any share in it? Was its sweetness ever to be for his hungry and thirsty heart? Never! The seal was set upon him in his repulsive appearance, that he was to be an outcast from his fellow-men; his deformity was as a burden bound upon his back, with which he was driven out into the wilderness, there to abide in utter solitude of soul. The promise of life was abortive for him ere yet he had begun it.

Hubert Lyle understood all this at once; he saw how it stood with him, and how it was to be, on to the very door of the grave; so he folded his hands upon his breast and bowed down his head; he accepted his destiny, for he felt that this was not the all of existence. He knew how strangely sweet beyond the tomb shall seem all the bitterness of this life; he saw that the earth was to be to his soul what it is to the outward eyes on a starry winter's night. We know what a contrast there is in that hour between the world above and the world below: the one lies so dark and cold, full only of black shadows and the howling of mournful winds, while the lucid sky that overhangs it, replete with brightness and glory, teems with radiant stars, which are the type of those eternal and glorious hopes that cluster for us on the outskirts of the heaven of revelation. And so it was to be for him: his spirit was to walk in this world as in a bleak and sunless desert; but it was to be for ever canopied over with one bright and boundless thought, wherein were set immutable and numberless, the starlike hopes of one eternity.

Thus was he to live, wholly independent of earth, and indifferent to it. But no man can walk free while there are chains upon his hands and feet, and he felt that he was bound to his fellow-creatures by two ropes, as it were, of iron: the longing to love, and to be beloved. Of these he must free himself, tearing them off his shrinking flesh as a prisoner would his manacles. And he did so. He taught himself to look upon all human beings as not of his kind. Even when every nerve and fibre in his frame cried out that they were bone of his bone and flesh of his flesh, he learned to consider them inaccessible for him as the angels in heaven. Yes, even far more; for he trusted that yet a little while, and these holy ones should be his dear companions; and so he held communion with them now. But with men he dared not hazard so much as to give them a place in his thoughts, for he knew that the dream of their friendship would become the longing for it, and the longing in his case must turn to agony; so it came to pass that his strong will, his stern resignation, compassed that which one might have believed well nigh unattainable to flesh and blood. He divested himself of all earthly inclinations and desires, all natural wishes and sympathies, and lived in this world as though he were utterly alone in it, and sole representative of a race, differing from those angelic friends whom only he consented to know as the living population of the universe—a solitary being placed on this earth as in a desert place, where he was commanded, for his own needful discipline, to abide, till the world of[Pg 489] spirits should be revealed to him, and he entering there should find a home and loving friends.

It was for this cause that Hubert shunned all intercourse with the Randolph family, as he did with all others—a resolution strengthened in their case by the generous motives Gabriel had assigned to him; for whatever might have been the reasons of this latter for pronouncing his eulogium, he had said no more than the truth in his account of his character.

When Hubert Lyle had gone through the mental process we have detailed, very deep was the calm that entered into his soul. It became like the pure waters of a deep still well, walled in and protected from all sights and sounds of the world without, and with the light and the glory of heaven alone mirrored within it.

And why, then, was the quiet now gone from his heart, and the repose from his eyes? Why did he look up with that earnest gaze to the evening sky, as though some shadow had come over its brightness? It was because the terror had come upon him, that the greatest enemy he ever could know in this life was about to rise up from its deathlike torpor and assail him—even his own human nature; he felt that all those natural feelings and passions which he had crushed down deep into his heart as unto a grave, were now stirring themselves like men that had been buried alive, and were waking in torture; they would live, they were bursting the cerements of that strong heart. How were they to be beaten to death again? There—rampant and fierce was the craving for sympathy, for love. There, sickening in its intensity, was the yearning to give and to receive that greatest of earthly gifts, the blessing of a mutual pure affection; the heart moulded from dust reasserted its birthright, and cried out for its kindred dust. It was not that these feelings were as yet at work with any definite object within Hubert Lyle, it was but the shadow and the prophecy of them that lay upon him, like a thick cloud charged with lightning.

And all this had been done by the murmur of one voice, one sweet voice, speaking in the accents of that tender sympathy which never before had sounded in the cold, joyless region of his life, whispering hope to him. He was not so mad as to love Lilias Randolph, whom he had seen but for one half-hour, but her tenderness, her generous, loving kindness, had aroused the slumbering nature within him, and he felt that were he much in contact with one so pure, so gentle, so noble, as she seemed to him, he might come to love. Oh! how madly, how miserably to love! he, the deformed cripple! Was not this a frenzy against which he had armed all the powers of his being? what tyrant, what enemy could be more fearful to him than an earthly love? what would it do for him but crush and torture him, and hold up far off the cup of this world's joy, where his parched lips could not reach, and he dying of thirst? Was it a presentiment that made him feel as if the spirit he had so chained down were rebelling against him, and required but the master-touch of some kindly and winning child of earth to abandon itself to unutterable madness? But, at all events, whatever were the source of this terror which had come upon him, whether it were a foreshadowing of future evil, or the warning of his good angel, it cannot pass unheeded. He must, with a strong will, compel his spirit to realize in all the bitterness of detail the truth of his exile from mankind, his needful isolation, as decreed by the seal of that deformity which made him an unsightly object in their eyes.

He would force himself to remember that the music of human voices, however softly they might greet him, must be for him like those melodies of nature when wind and stream make the air musical, to which we listen with pleasure, but in which we have no part; and the aspect of goodness and gentleness, so lovely in the fallen child of Adam, must be to him like the light of a star shining far off in regions unattainable. Yet, while he felt within himself the courage thus to act, were he brought in contact again with her, whose sweet face had come beaming in so strangely on the darkness of his perpetual solitude, his very soul shrank from the struggle, and the longing so often before experienced to quit this house, where he was so unwelcome, returned upon him with redoubled force.

Whilst he was still sitting thinking on these things, his head resting on his clasped hands, there was a sound of rustling silks in the passage—the door opened, a measured, stately step went through the room, and Lady Randolph stood by the side of her deformed son. He looked up.

"Dear mother, I am so glad you have come, I was wishing at this very moment to speak to you."

There was an expression of displeasure and annoyance on her beautiful face as she looked at him.

"It cost me no small effort to come, I can tell you, Hubert; it is so wretched to find you here in this miserable room, with every thing so mean and neglected round you. You seem ever to do what you can to render your own appearance uninviting, crouching down there with your matted hair and melancholy face."

There was little of the accents of love in these words, and a slight shiver seemed to agitate the frame of Hubert as he felt at that moment that he was repulsive even to the mother who bore him; but he lifted his dark gray eyes to her face with the sweet, patient smile which filled his countenance at times with a spiritual beauty, and said gently:

"I did not expect you at this hour, or I should have tried to make both my little[Pg 490] den and myself look more cheerful in your honor."

There was something in his expression which touched with an intense power a never-slumbering memory. She flung her arms round his neck and bent over him.

"Oh, my Henry—my Henry—it was his eyes that looked at me just now, as they have often looked in their tenderness, for ever perished—his eyes that I kissed in death with my poor heart broken—broken—as it is to this day—his eyes sealed up now with the horrible clog of his deep grave—oh, my Henry—my Henry—come back to me!"

She pressed the head of her son close to her beating heart and wept. He waited till she was more composed; then, gently disengaging himself, he made her sit down beside him, and held her hand in both his own.

"Dear mother," he said very gently, "it is my father whom you love in me and not myself; when I do not wear this passing likeness of him, which at times only draws your heart to me, there remains nothing in myself to win your affections, and you do not love me."

"It is true," she answered calmly; "living I loved him only—dead, it is his memory alone which I adore."

"Then I think you cannot refuse the prayer I have to make to you this day," said Hubert, not the least flush of indignation tinging his pale cheek at this unfeeling announcement; "I think it cannot in truth be any pleasure to you to see in me the marred and hateful resemblance of that which was so beautiful, and so dear; better surely to feed on his image pure and unchanged in the depths of your heart, and never have it brought so painfully before you in my miserable person." He paused a moment whilst she looked wondering at him, and then, suddenly, he exclaimed, with a passionate burst of feeling, "Mother, let me go—let me go—from this house, where my presence is abhorred by some and sought by none; nothing has kept me here but my fatal promise to you: I would I had died ere I made it; but it will cost you nothing to part from me, and you know not what it may cost me to stay here; it is cruel to keep me—let me go."

"Let you go! Hubert think what you are saying, you would go to starve!"

"It matters not! better so than to live on here. Mother, you would have had no power to detain me in this place but for that rash promise; not even your wishes should have kept me. I beseech you release me from it."


He almost writhed as she spoke, yet he went on—

"Do not keep me because you fancy I should starve; no man does who has energy and perseverance. I have a head and hands to labor with, and how far sweeter were the worst of toil than the bitter bread of charity."

"But do you know," said Lady Randolph almost fiercely, "that I could not give you the means of buying that bread one day, I am so utterly in Sir Michael's power. He succeeded in laying hold of me because I was poverty-stricken beyond what flesh and blood could bear, and now by the same means he binds me down; he never has relaxed his hold; every thing is his; I could not command a shilling. These very baubles with which he loads me are not my own." And she tore the bracelets from her arms and flung them down. "He calls them family jewels on purpose to keep me to the veriest trifle in his power.

"Mother, mother," exclaimed Hubert, "do you think, though he placed the wealth of millions in your hands, that I would not rather perish than touch it; it is too much already that I have been so long indebted to him for the roof that shelters me; but I do not fear that I could gain enough for my own living, if only you will let me go from this Egyptian bondage."

"Hubert, what is it that has excited you in this manner? I never saw you so unlike yourself; you are usually so calm and so enduring. Was it your unfortunate meeting with Sir Michael last night? Was he more than usually insulting?"

"No, it was not that," said Hubert gently. "I am so used to his bitter words that I could not feel more pained than I have ever been; but it matters not that you should be wearied with the detail of all the thoughts that have made me at this time so desirous to leave Randolph Abbey; dear mother, let it suffice you that I do implore you to release me from my promise."

"Hubert, I tell you no a thousand times. I will not see you starved to death for any Quixotic fancy; and, besides, do you think any power on this earth would induce me to gratify my worst enemy, my life-long enemy, whom chiefly I hate because he has the power to call me wife—that dear name I so loved to hear from the beloved lips that are choked up with dust? Do you think I would gratify him by giving him that which he has labored for, by the persecution of my own dearest husband, even to the death, and of myself to worse than death, a life with him? Do you know that the one thing he has always desired has been to obtain possession of me without having you for ever before his eyes as the living monument of that buried love which was his torturer, and to which I am faithful still? And do you think that to brighten even your life, much less to peril it, I would grant him this his heart's desire, and put it out of my power to show him, in every caress I lavish upon you, my poor deformed son, how I adored your father?"

Hubert let her hand fall, and his features assumed an expression of severity.

"Mother, forgive me that as your son I venture to judge you; but this is unworthy, most unworthy."[Pg 491]

She seemed almost awed by his rebuke, but hastily throwing her arms round him, she said more gently:

"Hubert, forgive me; but I cannot—cannot part with you, the last shattered fragment of my ruined happiness. You do not know what it is to me to see you; to hear your voice coming to me like an echo from the grave, telling of departed love; to find in your eyes at times a glance as from the light of the past. It was such joy, such deep, deep joy when he lived, and my happiness was hid in his true heart, that often I think I never, never could have been so blest: and in truth that it is all a dream, too unutterably sweet to have been true; life seems to faint within me at that thought, for it is something to feel, barren and desolate as my existence is now, that I have loved and been loved as once I was; and, Hubert, it is your presence alone that makes all this reality to me. His kiss has been upon your lips—his voice has called you his dear son. Ah! take not from me those last relics of him."

She laid her head upon his breast in a passion of weeping. He raised her tenderly, and said with a calm voice:

"Mother, it is not my vocation in this world to give pain to others for the sake of my own will or pleasure: take comfort, I will never more trouble you concerning this matter; I will not ask again to leave you."

Silently she pressed her lips to his forehead, and then, as if ashamed that even her own son should have seen her so moved, she rose up without speaking and left the room.


[8] Continued from page 387.

From Bentley's Miscellany.


A magnificent saloon, dazzling with oriental splendor, and brilliant with Arabic decorations, was allotted to Sol's reception; and there she was immediately attended by six Moorish damsels, who came to receive her orders. Fatigued by the length of her journey, and covered with the dust of the road, she begged for water to refresh herself, and a room where she might repose. Scarcely were the words pronounced when she beheld around her vessels of silver, brought to her by six other damsels, clothed in white, and offering her that for which she had asked with respect and humility. They brought her clothes of the finest cambric, fragrant essences of Arabia, and exquisitely-worked garments of divers colors, and of the highest value, all of which the humble Sol rejected, scarcely accepting from them even those things which were indispensable to her, and declining to change her dress. But one of the ladies of the court, seeing this, told her that she had received orders to clothe her according to the custom of the country, for which purpose she had collected together these garments for her choice. Sol, nevertheless, after expressing her gratitude, endeavored to excuse herself, but the request was pressed upon her with so much urgency, that she found it impossible to decline; and, at length, among the many varieties of dress prepared for her express use, selected one of a black hue, bordered with white, as indicative of the sadness of her heart; when, after a place of rest had been pointed out to her, she was left alone.

All the women who had been employed about the young Hebrew repeated to the wives of the imperial prince the warmest praises of her extreme beauty and amiability. The emperor himself visited the house of his son, and inquiring with minute curiosity into all the incidents that have been related, and listening with delight to the praises heaped upon his young captive, he renewed his commands that she should be treated with gentleness, that every thing which could flatter her sight, or gratify her wishes, should be given her, and that nothing should be denied her by which her mind could be favorably impressed previously to the interview which he proposed to have with her on the day following,—saying, as he departed, that the moment of her conversion by his means would be an epoch in his life, which he would mark by the most princely magnificence to all that had contributed to it. All promised the most punctual compliance with the commands of the emperor and the prince, and all vied with one another in inventing every expedient to effect the object which the most subtle arts could have recourse to. During the night the wearied maiden slept profoundly, while the Moorish women in attendance watched her in silence, anxious not to disturb her slumbers, and not venturing to move from their posts.

Morning dawned at last. The nightingale, the goldfinch, and the swift-flying bunting, announced the rising of the orb of day; the flowers unclosed their buds in the transparent morning ray, wafting forth their delicious odors, and perfuming with their fragrance the tranquil abode where breathed this innocent and lovely maiden. This abode was within a small gallery, decorated with crystal; and surrounded by vast shrubberies of the laurel, cypress, and myrtle, whose dark foliage mingled with the fragrant boughs of the citron and lemon. Through occasional vistas might be remarked, amid these labyrinths of eternal green, the deep mulberry-colored branches of the towering spice-tree, while the rose, the jessamine, and the mallow, crowned the raised terraces in sweet luxuriance, seeming to vie with the tall cassia, and darkening the bowers where the sunlight had been allowed to penetrate by the abundance of their white and crimson bloom. The blue-bell, the white lily, and the lily of the valley, blossomed beneath, shedding their perfume on the lower earth, as though too lowly to mingle with the clouds of fragrance emitted by the loftier plants, above which in their turn the ambitious woodbine exalted its gay festoons; and[Pg 492] in the more distant shades of the garden, the green sward spread a soft and variegated carpet over the ground, spangled with plants of the dwarf violet, and aromatic spikenard. It was upon these scenes that the eyes of the fair Hebrew unclosed, after her long and profound sleep. So fair a sight filled her with a tranquil and serene pleasure; the warbling of the singing birds that fluttered amid the branches around her, or flew here and there amid the flowery mazes of the garden, were heard with delight, and while she watched them she envied them their liberty.

It was with surprise and admiration that the young Jewess examined the embellishments of this gallery, which were, indeed, a triumph of art and ingenuity. Again and again did she admire it, reclining on her couch. One of the Moorish ladies, seeing her attention thus engaged, addressed her, with an affectionate salutation. Sol replied in accents of kindness, and entered into conversation with her, speaking with innocent admiration of the picturesque beauty of the landscape she beheld from this gallery.

A black slave, clothed in white, came to give notice to Sol that the kaidmia[9] waited to receive her. With haste, therefore, she took leave of the Moorish ladies, and placed herself under the conduct of that officer. She was at once conducted into the presence of the emperor, who received her in a magnificent hall, sitting on an ottoman of crimson velvet, richly fringed with gold. Opposite to him was a cushion, which he desired the young Hebrew to occupy, and commanded his slaves to serve esfa,[10] and tea with the herb luisa.[11] Having thus, by every demonstration of kindness and affability, prepared her to converse with him—the emperor told Sol, he had long since heard of her mental acquirements and talents, and was not ignorant of the arguments she had used in the palace of his son, nor of her obstinate refusal to embrace the Law of the Prophet; but that he looked upon that merely as a morbid feeling of her mind, arising from delusion, and trusted that when he should have argued awhile with her, she would not long continue in her present opinion.

"Thou art called Sol," proceeded the emperor, "is it not so?"

The young Jewess replied in the affirmative.

"Well, then, beloved Sol," said he, "I have prepared a boon beyond all the powers of thine imagination to conceive. Since first I heard of thy beauty and virtue from Arbi Esid, the governor of Tangier, I decided that thou shouldst become the enchantress of my court. I saw thee enter Fez; and was delighted with all I saw; I heard thee speak in the palace of my son, and was charmed with all I heard. I was beside thee, though unseen, and I rejoiced with the Prophet, over so fair a captive. This morning, while thou wast conversing upon the state of men by birth, I was in the garden; the Tolva,[12] who accompanied me, said to me, 'this Jewess will indeed be a noble Mahometan!' At that moment, I had decided to reward thy beauty by giving thee in marriage to my nephew,—a handsome, rich, and brave youth; I had determined to bestow upon thee a diamond, whose value exceeds all the riches that any prince can possess; see, beautiful Sol, these are indeed gifts worthy to be appreciated, and thou wilt not, I am certain, disappoint me."

"My lord," replied Sol, "I must confess, that in my present condition, nothing can attract or fix my attention: and my mind is tormented by the remembrance of my parents and of my brother."

"Thy parents and thy brother," said the emperor, "shall be sent for immediately after thy recantation."

"Say, rather," exclaimed Sol, "after my death, for never can I become a Mahometan!"

"Innocent creature!" said the emperor, "who has urged you to this temerity? Reflect but for an instant; then consider if you would renounce my favor, and embrace Death as an alternative! Resolve quickly; or I would even grant delay, if you desire it."

"My Lord," said Sol, "I am well aware that you have distinguished me in a manner of which I am undeserving; the offers that you have made me are, indeed, worthy of so great a prince; but I, a miserable Jewess, cannot accept them. I have determined never to change my creed; if this resolve should merit death, I will patiently submit; order, then, my execution, and the God of justice, knowing my innocence, will avenge my blood."

"Unhappy girl!" exclaimed the emperor; "you were not born to be so beautiful, yet so unfortunate! From this moment I abandon you: my pride forbids me to persuade you further; yet I leave you with sorrow—the laws of my realm must judge you, and already I foresee that your blood will be poured out upon the earth!"

So speaking, and casting a compassionate glance upon Sol, the monarch departed with a measured and thoughtful step.

The afflicted Sol remained immovable, but gave way to a torrent of tears. Before long the kaidmia appeared and desired her to follow him, which she did without opposition. The emperor, although he had decreed that the cadi, as superior judge of the law, should try her cause, had urged upon him to withhold the extreme penalties of the law till every means had been tried that persuasion[Pg 493] and mildness could suggest. To the house of this magistrate she was now conducted, with this especial recommendation from the emperor, in consequence of which, instead of being sent to the prison, a room in the cadi's own house was set apart for her, where he could be near her continually, and frequently engage her in conversation; yet all these marks of kindness did the young Sol receive as part of her martyrdom, and now thought on nothing but death, as the means of her wished-for release.

The Jew who had accompanied the captive maiden at the request of her parents, had written news of all these events to Tangier. In Fez they excited a very great sensation; and, especially among the resident Jews, who showed their interest in all that passed whenever they could do so without injuring the success of the means devised to save the victim, of which they never lost sight for a moment. But they were now, although they knew it not, engaged in a hopeless undertaking; for the Moors had entered into a compact, having for its object the conversion of Sol, and from this there was no escape. The cadi, a zealous servant of the emperor, conducted his task with masterly subtlety; six hours were almost daily occupied by him in arguments and entreaties to the young Jewess; but all was vain, the steadfast maiden, firm in her resolution, adhered to the law of her fathers, and listened with reluctance to all the exhortations of the cadi. He admired her fortitude of spirit, while he pitied her fate, knowing that unless she became a proselyte, her sentence must inevitably be pronounced. In order to hasten the crisis, however, he concerted a scheme to surprise her into a decision by which she might either escape, or fall into his snare.[13]

One morning early, after nine days had been spent in useless persuasion, the cadi entered the apartment of Sol: "My daughter," said he, "I bring you news of consolation; I, that have beheld you with eyes of compassion, that would weep over your death as for that of a daughter, have sought the Jajamins[14] of your creed; with them I have considered your present position; they assure me that your fear of forfeiting the glories which are to come, which causes you to reject the laws of the Prophet, is groundless; they ensure you that future glory, on the word of their conscience, provided that your life is not thus forfeited. I wish the emperor to remain unacquainted with the step I have thus taken for your sole benefit, my dear daughter, and from motives of kindness and affection only. You will be visited by the Jajamins, who will repeat what you now hear from my lips; and thus, convinced of the truth, you will give me the delight of your conversion, and of your rescue from death. But I perceive you are but little affected by this news!"

Sol had not ceased, during this conversation, to regard the cadi with a serious expression of countenance, which very clearly indicated the state of mental vacillation produced by his words; nevertheless, she answered only, that she was beyond measure anxious to speak to the Jajamins, on whose judgment would probably depend her final determination.

Now this plot, so far from being undertaken without the knowledge of the emperor, had been concerted between himself and the cadi; and by his desire the latter informed the Jajamins, that unless they succeeded in the conversion of the young Hebrew, she would suffer death, and they would be exposed to the emperor's rigorous displeasure. This threat produced the desired effect upon the Jajamins, who came to Sol prepared by every means in their power to change her resolution.

On the ensuing day, when she received their visit, they professed to her their wish to console her in her affliction, and to hear from her own lips the reasons why she had negatived the urgent wishes of the emperor; adding, that this mission was a part of their duty, to which they much desired to conform.

The beautiful Jewess listened with attention to this exordium; and replied, though with many sighs, in the following terms:—"God, who was concealed from our view by the dense cloud which no human sight could penetrate, delivered the Tables of the Law to Moses on the Mountain of the Desert. He prompts my heart to remain faithful to those laws, imposed on the people of Israel. More than once have I read in those sacred books of the horrible persecutions endured by the Israelites who violated that law; I have studied the prophecies of our Patriarchs, and have observed their gradual fulfilment. Mahomet was but a false innovator, a renegade from the primitive law;[15] neither to his laws nor to the future pleasures of his paradise, can I lend an ear; faithful to my own rites, the name of the only true God remains engraven on my heart; to whom Abraham offered his son Isaac in sacrifice; and I, a daughter of Abraham, would make sacrifice of my life to the same God. He ordains fidelity, and I will keep His commandments as a faithful Hebrew ought to keep them. Can any one on earth oppose the decree written by the right hand of the Most High?"

The Jajamins listened attentively to the reasons of the youthful Sol, and urged, in reply, arguments full of hope; but perceiving that Sol, with an indescribable firmness, set[Pg 494] these all aside, one of them at length addressed her as follows: "Our law imposes on us, as a duty, after God, to respect the king. The king's will is that you should wear the turban; and his will is sacred upon earth. I dare not advise otherwise, for I should then lift up my counsel against the law of the country that gives us a home. Besides, there are certain circumstances of human life which are of such exigency, that the God of Abraham looks upon them with leniency and toleration. As, for instance, young maiden, the unforeseen and impending danger of your present situation. You have parents—a brother; Jews, in great numbers, reside in this vast empire; and all these will, on your account, be exiled, persecuted, and ill-used. While, on the contrary, your conversion will not only liberate yourself from death, but will avert these threatening ills to them, and will bring down upon them honors and privileges; and we will, in the name of God, insure your future glory, and save your conscience, by taking on ourselves the responsibility of the act."

The young Jewess listened in expressive silence, but without any visible emotion, to the foregoing address. At the close of it she arose, and expressed herself thus:

"I respect your words, wise men of our faith; but if our laws impose respect—after God, to the king—the king cannot violate the precepts of the One God. I am resolved to sacrifice my life on the altar of my faith. To myself only can this resolve be fatal: my parents and kindred will be strengthened, and protected, and freed from the fury of that fanaticism by which I suffer. I will not, even in outward appearance, accede to the terms proposed. I will lay down my head to receive the axe of the executioner, and the remembrance of my death and constancy will excite only remorse in those who have oppressed me. Pardon me, if I have offended you; and, I pray you, tell my parents that they live in my heart. Entreat the cadi to molest me by no further importunities. My determination is fixed, and all further attempts to shake it will be vain."

The tone of firmness in which she spoke convinced the jajamins that there was no hope; and they left her, overwhelmed with surprise.

The cadi, who had listened to the whole conference from another apartment, went to meet the anxious and unsuccessful jajamins.

"I know all," said he; "I have heard every thing. Your mission is fulfilled, and I shall report your fidelity to the emperor. Fear nothing, therefore, but rely upon my word."

He then dismissed them, and going at once to his office, he took the papers that related to the cause of the young Sol, and added to them a transcript of her late contumelious expressions respecting the Law of the Prophet, which he represented as being blasphemed by her, and sentenced her, in consequence, to public execution. He next repaired to the palace of the emperor, and after reporting to him the result of the late conference with the jajamins, he handed to him the sentence of death. The emperor was much moved, and showed symptoms of surprise and concern.

"How!" said he; "is there no remedy? Must this Jewess die?"

"My lord," answered the cadi, "by the law she stands condemned; and there is no remedy."

"Well, then," said the emperor, "but one more hope remains. I command that preparations for the execution be made with the utmost publicity; that all the troops of Fez, and at the intermediate stations, be assembled, and that nothing may be omitted which can make the spectacle an imposing one. Let her be awe-stricken; let her even be partially wounded before her head be finally severed. Perchance the sight of her own blood, flowing down, may produce some effect upon her, and we may, at the last moment, accomplish her conversion by intimidation. Leave me; I am sorely displeased at the fate of this young Hebrew—lovely as her name. And, mark me, strain every point, neglect nothing. We may yet gain her over. Alas! may Alà protect her!" And the emperor turned away with manifest signs of heavy displeasure.

The cadi well perceived how greatly his royal master was grieved at the idea of Sol's death: but there was now no remedy. The law, barbarous and unjust as it was, was final; and her death was, therefore, inevitable. Before her execution, nevertheless, he paid her a final visit, when he found her kneeling in prayer, and displayed to her the writ of execution.

"Behold," said he, "your sentence. Your head will roll on the ground, and the dust of the earth shall be dyed with your blood. Your tomb shall be covered with maledictions, and amidst them will your last end be remembered. Yet, fair Sol, there is a remedy; think yet upon it. To-morrow, at this very hour, I will return, either to present you, crowned with the jessamine flowers, to the emperor, or to lead you to your death."

With these words he departed, leaving the young Hebrew still in the position in which he had found her upon his entrance, and from which she stirred not, but remained in a contemplative ecstasy commending her soul fervently to her Creator.

It was soon publicly known in Fez that the day approached when the beautiful young Jewess was to be beheaded for blaspheming the name of the Prophet. The Moors, whose religious fanaticism is great beyond comparison, looked upon this execution as an occasion for rejoicings. The Jews, powerless to remedy it, were overcome by the deepest feelings of despondency: unwilling to remain entirely passive, they commenced a subscription, ready to be invested in any way that might[Pg 495] best suit the emergency. The parents and relations, who were in Tangier, whose efforts to save this beloved victim would have been unavailing, even had they been capable of devising any means for her rescue, were plunged into despair; their hopes had suffered shipwreck upon the rock of a relentless fatality, and they, like the young maiden herself, had no consolation but those imparted from heaven. The afflicted Sol spent the whole day in meditation, she refused all food, and looked anxiously for the hour which would end her life. That fatal hour arrived at length. With a trembling step, the cadi entered her apartment, and found her, as before, in prayer. He was much agitated, and could speak to her only with the utmost difficulty. At length he said:—

"Sol—beautiful Sol! the arbiters of life and death may meet together. Behold me here! Know you wherefore I am come?"

"I do know it," replied the maiden.

"And have you determined upon your fate?" asked the cadi.

Rising from the ground, and with firmness, Sol answered:—"I have determined. Lead me to the place where I am to shed my blood."

"Unhappy girl!" said the cadi, "never, till my death, will thine image leave my memory!" He then desired a soldier to handcuff and lead her to the prison.

The authorities of Fez, at the emperor's desire, having determined to give the scene as much publicity as possible, resolved that the execution should take place upon the Soco—a large square in Fez, where the market is held. The previous day, too, having been one of the weekly market days, when the concourse of persons was always very considerable, the news had circulated far and wide, and but little else was talked of. Very early in the morning, a strong picquet of soldiers had been posted on the Soco, in order to excite attention, and attract more spectators; but so numerous was the crowd that this precaution was scarcely necessary. The Jews who resided in Fez, when they saw that hope was at an end, went to the emperor and proffered the large sum they had collected, as was previously stated, in exchange for the permission to inter the remains of the young Sol after her execution; to which the emperor offered no opposition.

The dreadful moment had now arrived, when the fair victim was to be conducted from her prison to the place of execution. Till it arrived, her devotions had been uninterrupted, and the executioners, sent to fetch her, found her still praying to that Eternal Being in whom her faith was centred, that He would endow her with strength and fortitude to receive the bitter cup that awaited her. When the door of her prison opened, she saw the executioners enter without manifesting any emotion or surprise, but looked meekly towards them, waiting for the fulfilment of their mission. But these men, whose nature is hardened to the most savage cruelty, after intimating to her that they were come to conduct her to death, tied around her neck a thick rope, by which they commenced dragging her along as though she were a wild beast. The lovely young girl, wrapped in her haïque,[16] her eyes fixed on the earth, which she moistened with her bitter tears, followed them with faltering steps. As she passed, compassion, grief, tenderness, and every painful emotion of the heart, might be traced in the countenances of the Jews; but among the Mahometans there were no visible relentings of humanity. The Moors, of all sects and ages, who crowded the streets, rent the air with their discordant rejoicings. "She comes!" they cried; "she comes, who blasphemed the name of the Prophet. Let her die for her impiety!"

From the prison to the Soco, the crowds every minute augmented, though the square formed by the troops prevented their penetrating to the scaffold. Every alley and lane was crowded, and amid the most extreme confusion the executioner arrived with Sol at the appointed spot. The pen refuses to describe the incidents of the few succeeding moments. Some few, even amongst the Moors, were moved, and wept freely and bitterly. The executioner[17] unsheathed his sharp scimetar, and whirled it twice or thrice in the air, as a signal for silence, when the uproar of the Moors was hushed. The beautiful Sol was then directed to kneel down,—at which moment she begged for a little water to wash her hands. It was immediately brought, when she performed the ablution required by the Jewish custom before engaging in prayer. The spectators were anxiously observant of all the actions of the victim. Lifting her eyes to heaven, and amid many tears, she recited the Semà (the prayer offered by those of her nation before death), and then, turning to the executioners, "I have finished," said she, "dispose of my life;" and, fixing her gaze upon the earth, she knelt to receive the fatal stroke.

The scene had by this time begun to change its aspect. The vast concourse of people, seeing Sol's meek gentleness, could not but be moved; many wept, and all felt a degree of compassion for her faith. The executioner, then, seizing the arms of the victim, and twisting them behind her back, bound them with a rope, and whirling his sword in the air, laid hold of the long hair of Sol's head, and wounded her slightly, as he had been commanded, yet so that the blood flowed instantly from the wound, dyeing her breast and garments.

But Sol, turning her face to the cruel executioner, replied—

"There is yet time," said they to her; "be converted, your life may yet be spared."[Pg 496]

"Slay me, and let me not linger in my sufferings; dying innocently, as I do, the God of Abraham will judge my cause."

These were her last words, at the close of them the scimetar descended upon her fair neck, and the courageous maiden was no more.

The Jews had paid six Moors to deliver to them the corpse with the blood-stained earth on which it lay, immediately after the execution of the sentence. This was accordingly done, and the remains, wrapped in a fine linen cloth, were deposited in a deep sepulchre of the Jewish cemetery by the side of those of a learned and honored sage of the law of Moses. Amidst tears and sighs was the Hebrew martyr buried. Even some of the Moors followed her, mourning to her grave, and still visit her tomb, and venerate her resting place as that of a true and faithful martyr to the creed she held.


[9] Or "captain of a hundred," centurion. From the Arabic kaid, a leader or chief, mia, a hundred. The Kaidmia is adjutant of the empire.

[10] A kind of sweetmeat prepared for the emperor and persons of high rank, composed of milk, sugar, butter, and cinnamon.

[11] A herb like sweet marjoram, usually accompanying tea in Morocco.

[12] A learned professor of the law. It is the common practice in Arabia to have whispering-galleries and watch-rooms in most houses, so that what passes in one apartment may be overheard in another.

[13] It may here be mentioned, that the Moorish law cannot force a Jew to change his religion; this conversion must be voluntary. The cadi could not, therefore, condemn Sol to death, because she refused to become a Mahometan, unless she had made use of some expressions impugning the law of Mahomet. This will be seen by the sequel.

[14] The Jajamins or Hajamins are Jews invested with certain dignities—Anglicè, "wise men," and respected as such.

[15] On these words was the sentence of Sol framed, impeaching, as they did, the Mahometan creed.

[16] The haïque, a sort of bonded cloak, is worn in Africa by the Jews as well as the Moors.

[17] All Moorish executions are performed with a sword.

From Chambers's Edinburgh Journal.



Robert Jackson, the son of a small landed proprietor of limited income but respectable character in Lanarkshire, was born in 1750, at Stonebyres, in that county. He received his education first at the barony school of Wandon, and afterwards under the care of Mr. Wilson, a teacher of considerable local celebrity at Crawford, one of the wildest spots in the Southern Highlands. He was subsequently apprenticed to Mr. William Baillie, in Biggar; and in 1766 proceeded, for the completion of his professional training, to the university of Edinburgh, at that time illustrated and adorned by the genius and learning of such men as the Monros, the Cullens, and the Blacks.

In pursuing his studies at this favored abode of science and literature, young Jackson is said to have evinced all that purity of morals and singleness of heart which characterised him in after-life, and to have resisted the allurements of dissipation by which, in those days especially, the youthful student was tempted to wander from the paths of virtuous industry. His circumstances were, however, distressingly narrow; and not only was he forced to forego the means of professional improvement open only to the more opulent student; but in order to meet the expenses of the winter-sessions, he was obliged to employ the summer, not in the study but in the practice of his profession. He engaged himself as medical officer to a Greenland whaler, and in two successive summers visited, in that capacity, "the thrilling regions of thick-ribbed ice;" returning on each occasion with a recruited purse and a frame strengthened and invigorated by exposure and exercise. During these expeditions he occupied his leisure with the study of the Greek and Roman languages, and the careful and repeated perusal of the best authors in both.

His third winter-sessions at Edinburgh having passed away, he was induced to go out and seek his fortune in Jamaica, and accordingly proceeded thither in a vessel commanded by one Captain Cunningham, who had previously been employed as master of a transport at the siege of Havannah. It is far from improbable that it was from his conversations with this individual that Jackson derived those hints, of which at a future time he availed himself, respecting the transmission of troops by sea without injury to their health; but it is quite certain his conviction of the enormous value of cold-water affusions as a curative agent in the last stage of febrile affections, was imbibed from this source.

Arriving in Jamaica, he in 1774 became assistant to an eminent general practitioner at Savana-la-Mar, Dr. King, who was also in medical charge of a detachment of the first battalion of the 50th regiment. This latter he consigned to Jackson's care; and well worthy of the trust did our young adventurer, though but twenty-four years of age, approve himself—visiting three or four times a day the quarters of the troops to detect incipient disease, and studying with ardor and intelligent attention the varied phenomena of tropical maladies. Four years thus passed profitably away, and they would have been as pleasant as profitable, but for one circumstance. The existence of slavery and its concomitant horrors, appears to have made a deep impression on Jackson's mind, and, at last, to have produced in him such sentiments of disgust and abhorrence, that he resolved on quitting the island altogether, and, as the phrase is, trying his luck in North America, where the revolutionary war was then raging. This resolution—due perhaps, as much to his love of travel as to the motive assigned—was not altogether unfortunate, for shortly after his departure, October 3, 1780, Savana-la-Mar was totally destroyed, and the surrounding country for a considerable distance desolated, by a terrible hurricane and sweeping inroad of the sea, in which Dr. King, his family and partner, together with numbers of others, unhappily perished.

The law of Jamaica forbade any one to leave the island without having given previous notice of his intention, or having obtained the bond of some respectable person as security for such debts as he might have outstanding. Jackson, when he embarked for America, had no debts whatever, and was, moreover, ignorant of the law, with whose requirements therefore he did not comply. Nor did he become aware of his mistake until, when off the easternmost point of the island, the master of the vessel approached him and said: "We are now, sir, off Point-Morant; you will therefore have the goodness to favor me with your security-bond. It is a mere legal form, but we are obliged to respect it." Finding this "legal form" had not been complied with, the master then, in[Pg 497] spite of Jackson's protestations and entreaties, set him on shore, and the vessel continued on her voyage. What was to be done? Almost penniless, landed on a part of the coast where he knew not a soul, Jackson well-nigh gave himself up to despair. There was a vessel for New-York loading, it was true, at Lucea; but Lucea was 150 miles distant, on the westernmost side of the island, and not to be reached by sea, whilst our adventurer's purse would not suffer him to hire a horse. No choice was left him but to walk, and that in a country where the exigencies of the climate make pedestrianism perilous in the extreme to the white man. Having reached Kingston, which was in the neighborhood, in a boat, and obtained the necessary certificate, he started on his dangerous expedition, and on the first day walked eighteen miles, being sheltered at night in the house of a benevolent planter. The next day he pushed on for Rio Bueno, which he had almost reached, when, overcome by thirst, he stopped by the way to refresh himself, and imprudently standing in an open piazza exposed to a smart easterly breeze, whilst his lemonade was preparing, contracted a severe chill that almost took from him the power of motion, and left him to crawl along the road slowly and with pain, until he reached his destination.

Having finally arrived, friendless and moneyless, in New-York, then in the occupation of the British, he endeavored first to obtain a commission in the New-York volunteers, and afterwards employment as mate in the Naval Hospital. In his endeavors, he was kindly assisted by a Jamaica gentleman, a fellow-passenger, whose regard during the voyage he had succeeded in conciliating by his amiable manners and evident abilities; but his efforts were all in vain, and poor Jackson, familiar with poverty from childhood, began now to experience the misery of destitution. In truth, starvation stared him in the face, and a sense of delicacy withheld him from seeking from his Jamaica friend the most trifling pecuniary assistance. In this, his state of desperation, he determined upon passing the British lines, and endeavoring to obtain amongst the insurgents the food he had hitherto sought in vain; resolving, however, under no circumstances to bear arms against his native country. Whilst moodily and slowly walking towards the British outposts to carry into execution this scheme, having in one pocket a shirt, and in another a Greek Testament and a Homer, he was met half-way by a British officer, who fixed his eyes steadily on him in passing. Jackson in his agitation thought he read in the glance a knowledge of his purpose and a disapprobation of it. Struck by the incident, he turned back, and, after a moment's reflection, resolved on offering himself as a volunteer in the first battalion of the 71st regiment (Sutherland Highlanders), then in cantonment near New-York. Arriving at the place, he presented himself to the notice of Lieutenant-Colonel (afterwards Sir Archibald) Campbell, who, having first ascertained that he was a Scotsman, inquired to whom he was known at New-York. Jackson replied, to no one; but that a fellow-passenger from Jamaica would readily testify to his being a gentleman. "I require no testimony to your being a gentleman," returned the kind-hearted colonel. "Your countenance and address satisfy me on that head. I will receive you into the regiment with pleasure; but then I have to inform you, Mr. Jackson, that there are seventeen on the list before you, who are of course entitled to prior promotion." The next day, at the instance of Colonel Campbell, the regimental surgeon, Dr. Stuart, appointed Jackson acting hospital or surgeon's mate—a rank now happily abolished in the British army; for those who filled it, whatever might be their competency or skill, were accounted and treated no better than drudges. Although discharging the duties that now devolve on the assistant-surgeon, they were not, like him, commissioned, but only warrant-officers, and therefore had no title to half-pay.

Dr. Stuart, who appears to have been a man superior to vulgar prejudice, and to have appreciated at once the extent of Jackson's acquirements and the vigor of his intellect, relinquished to him, almost without control, the charge of the regimental hospital. Here it was that this able young officer began to put in practice that amended system of army medical treatment which since his time, but in conformity with his teachings, has been so successfully carried out as to reduce the mortality amongst our soldiery from what it formerly was—about fifteen per cent—to what it is now, about two and a half per cent.

In the army hospitals, at the period Jackson commenced a career that was to eventuate so gloriously, there was no regulated system of diet, no classification of the sick. What are now well known as "medical comforts," were things unheard of; the sick soldier, like the healthy soldier, had his ration of salt-beef or pork, and his allowance of rum. The hospital furnished him with no bedding; he must bring his own blanket. Any place would do for a hospital. That in which Jackson began his labors had originally been a commissary's store; but happily its roof was water-tight—an unusual occurrence—and its site being in close proximity to a wood, our active surgeon's mate managed, by the aid of a common fatigue party, to surround the walls with wicker-work platforms, which served the patients as tolerably comfortable couches. A further and still more important change he effected related to the article of diet. He suggested, and the suggestion was adopted—honor to the courageous humanity which did not shrink from so righteous an innovation!—that instead of his salt ration and spirits, which he could not consume, the sick soldier should be supplied[Pg 498] with fresh meat, broth, &c.; and that, as the quantity required for the invalid would be necessarily small, the quarter-master should allow the saving on the commuted ration to be expended in the common market on other comforts, such as sago, &c., suitable for the patient. Thus proper hospital diet was furnished, without entailing any additional expense on the state.[18]

Indefatigable in the discharge of his interesting duties, Mr. Jackson speedily obtained the confidence of his military superiors, who remarked with admiration not only his intelligent zeal in performing his hospital functions, but his calmness, quickness of perception, and generous self-devotion when in the field of battle. On one occasion, although suffering at the time from severe indisposition, he remained, under a heavy fire, succoring the wounded, in spite of the remonstrances of the officers present. On another, having observed the British commander, Colonel (afterwards General) Tarleton, in danger of falling into the hands of the enemy, who had routed the royalist troops, he galloped up to the colonel—whom a musket-ball had just dismounted-pressed him to mount his own horse and escape, whilst he himself, with a white handkerchief displayed, quietly proceeded in the direction of the advancing foe, and surrendered himself at once. The American commander, who did not know what to make of such conduct, asked him who he was? He replied: "I am assistant surgeon in the 71st regiment. Many of the men are wounded, and in your hands. I come, therefore, to offer my services in attending them." He was accordingly sent to the rear as a prisoner; but was well treated, and spent the first night of his captivity in dressing his soldiers' wounds, taking off his shirt, and tearing it up into bandages for the purpose. He afterwards did the same good office for the American sufferers; and when the wounded English could be exchanged, Washington sent him back, not only without exchange, but even without requiring his parole. At a subsequent period during the same unhappy war, when the British under Lord Cornwallis were in full retreat, the sick and wounded were placed in a building—which the colonists, on their approach, began to riddle with shot. Several surgeons, not caring to incur the risk of entering so exposed an edifice, agreed to cast lots who should go in and see to the invalids; but Jackson, with characteristic nerve and simplicity, at once stepped forward: "No, no," said he, "I will go and attend to the men!" He did so, and returned unhurt.

After this we find him a prisoner in the hands of the Americans and French at Yorktown, Virginia. As on the former occasion, he was treated with all imaginable kindness; and, being released on parole, returned to Europe early in 1782, and proceeded by way of Cork, Dublin, and Greenock to Edinburgh, where he abode for a short time. Thence he started for London: and, desirous of testing the best way of sustaining physical strength during long marches, and urged perhaps also by economical considerations, he resolved to make the journey on foot. His West Indian and American experience had taught him that spare diet consisted best with pedestrian efficiency, and it was accordingly his practice, during this long walk, to abstain from animal food until the close of day, nor often then to partake of it. He would walk some fourteen miles before breakfast—a meal of tea and bread; rest then for an hour or an hour and a half; then pace on until bedtime—a salad, a tart, or sometimes tea and bread, forming his usual evening fare. He found that on this diet he arose every morning at dawn with alacrity, and could prosecute without inconvenience his laborious undertaking. By way of experiment he twice or thrice varied his plan—dining on the road off beefsteaks, and having a draught of porter in the course of the afternoon; but the result justified his anticipations. The stimulus of the beer soon passing off, lassitude succeeded the temporary strength it had lent him; and, worse than all, his disposition to early rising sensibly diminished.

His stay in London, which he reached in this primitive fashion, was not long. His kind friend Dr. Stuart, who had exchanged into the Royal Horse-Guards, gave him the shelter of his roof; but so poor was Mr. Jackson, that, although ardently desirous of improving himself in his profession, he was unable to attend any one of the medical schools with which London abounds.

The peace of 1783 having opened the continent to the curiosity of the British traveller, Jackson curtly announced to his friends, that "he was going to take a walk." His poverty allowed him no other mode of locomotion; so off he set on the grand tour, carrying with him a map of France, a bundle of clothes, and a scanty supply of money. Crossing the Channel, he reached Calais, a place which Horace Walpole, writing from Rome, declared had astonished him more than any thing he had elsewhere seen, but in which our adventurer found nothing more astonishing than a superb Swiss regiment. He proceeded to Paris, and thence through Switzerland, by Geneva and Berne, into Germany, at a town of which—Günz in Suabia—he met with a comical enough adventure.

On entering the town he was challenged by a soldier, who, having learned he had no passport, carried him before a magistrate, by whom he was forthwith condemned as a vagabond,[Pg 499] and remitted to the custody of a recruiting sergeant. This worthy, in turn, introduced him to the commanding officer, who politely gave our traveller the choice of serving his Imperial and Apostolic Majesty, the Emperor of Germany, either in his cavalry or his infantry forces. But Jackson, strangely insensible to the honor, flatly refused to serve his Majesty in these or any other ways, and desired to be at once set free, and suffered to continue his journey. The officer, doubtless, amazed at such presumption, desired the sergeant to convey him to the barracks, where he was placed in a large room, in which were congregated some two hundred or so involuntary recruits like himself—harmless travellers, who, being destitute of passports, the emperor forcibly enlisted into his service. Jackson found his co-mates in misfortune very dirty, very ragged, but perfectly civil and good-tempered. Having a little recovered his serenity—for it is easy to see, though our hero is described as a man of placid demeanor and somewhat Quakerly appearance, he could be not a little fiery at times—he sat down and wrote to the commanding officer, entreating leave to sleep at an inn, and proffering the deposit of all his money as a pledge for his reappearance next morning. The reply was an order that he should surrender his writing materials. At seven o'clock, the appointed sleeping hour, the sergeant returned and gave the signal for bed by rapping with his cane on the floor, which was speedily covered by a number of dirty bags of mouldy straw—the regulation mattresses, it would seem, for involuntary recruits. Jackson—peppery again—refused to lie down, but was at last compelled to do so, and between two of the dirtiest fellows of the lot, each of whom had a leg chained to an arm. The next morning, at his own request, he was brought before the commandant of the town, who had only arrived late the preceding evening, and whom he found seated in his bedroom, "with all his officers standing round him receiving orders," says Jackson, "with more humility than orderly-sergeants." The commandant repeated the offer of "cavalry or infantry;" adding that a war was about to commence with the Turks, and that good-behavior would insure promotion. However, finding Jackson obstinately persistent in his refusal, he quietly observed, in conclusion, that the emperor, as a matter of rule and of right, "impressed" into his army all such as entered his dominions without certificates of character. "The order was so tyrannical," declares our détenu, "that I could not contain myself. 'Put me in chains, if you please,' I said, 'but I tell you, all Germany shall not make me carry a musket for the emperor.'" This impetuous burst of indignation seems to have alarmed the pglegmatic commandant, who accordingly let our adventurer go, counselling him, however, to write to the English ambassador at Vienna for a passport, lest he should get into further trouble.

Jackson passed through the Tyrol into Italy, every where indulging his love of scenery and still greater love of adventure; studying with all the acuteness of his countrymen the varied characters of the people he met with, and in his correspondence with home friends, sketching them in language striking for its force, its propriety, and originality. Some of his remarks on men and manners are conceived in a truly Goldsmithian vein, whilst all testify at once to the goodness of his heart and the quickness of his perceptions. At Venice he says that he felt it to be "such a feast of enjoyment as seldom falls to the lot of man, and never to the lot of any but a poor man, who has nothing conspicuous about him to attract the notice of the crowd," to possess such facilities as he did for learning what the people of foreign countries really were.

At Albenga, in Piedmont, Jackson arrived one night, tired, hungry, and drenched with rain. Intending to put up at the "Albergo di San Dominico," which he had been informed was the best inn, he went by accident to the convent of the same name, and entering, called loudly to be shown to a private room. "Instead of telling me I was wrong," he says, "the young brethren looked waggish, and began to laugh: when a man is cold and hungry, he can ill brook being the sport of others;" so accordingly—peppery again—he shook his stick angrily at the young monks. And at last one of the most courteous and demure of the number, coming forward, said that although theirs was not exactly a public house, still the stranger was heartily welcome to walk in, rest, and refresh himself. Discovering his mistake, Jackson of course lost no time in making his bow, his apologies, and acknowledgments.

He returned to England by way of France, having but six sous in his pockets when he reached Bordeaux, where an English merchant, a total stranger, advanced him a few pounds. On the road, he was frequently taken for an Irishman, and not seldom for an Irish priest; under which impression, many civilities were paid him by the simple inhabitants of the country he traversed. Ultimately he landed at Southampton, with just four shillings in his possession: his once black coat having turned a rusty brown, his hat shovel-shaped by ill-usage, and his whole aspect so comical, that the mob hooted him, under the belief that he was a Methodist preacher. Proceeding inland on foot, in the direction of Southampton, he overtook a poor man walking along the road, whose looks of unutterable misery induced our traveller to stop and inquire what ailed him. He told Jackson he had a son and daughter dying of a disorder apparently contagious, and that no physician would attend them, as he was too poor to[Pg 500] pay the fees. Jackson at once offered his services, which were gratefully accepted. He saw his patients, and prescribed for them, and his heart was touched by their simple expressions of gratitude. "Their thankfulness," he says, "for a thing that would perhaps do them no good, gave me more pleasure than a fee of, I believe, twenty guineas, much in need of it as I was." The night had gathered in before he reached Winchester, where, at a respectable inn, he partook of such refreshment as his means afforded, and then desired to be shown to his bedroom. The answer was, that the house contained no bedroom for such as he, and he was finally driven out with the coarsest abuse into the streets. The hour was ten o'clock, the month December, and the severity of the weather may be guessed from the fact, that the snow lay deep on the ground. After wandering about for some time, he at last obtained shelter in a small house in the outskirts of the city. The next day he fared little better. "On Sunday morning," he relates, "I was sixty-four miles from London, and had only one shilling in my pocket. I was hungry, but durst not eat; thirsty, and I durst not drink, for fear of being obliged to lie all night at the side of a hedge in a cold night in December. After dark, I travelled over to Bagshot; was denied admittance into some of the public-houses, ill used in others." He sought in vain permission even to lie in a barn; but a laborer he fortunately fell in with conducted him to a house, where, at the sacrifice of his last shilling, he secured at length a bed. The next day—foot-sore, penniless and starving—he entered London. After remaining there a brief space—January, 1784—in spite of the inclement season, he set off, again on foot, to Perth—a journey that occupied him three weeks, as he was detained on the way by some friends whom he visited. At Perth, where his old regiment then lay previous to its disbandment, he amused himself by studying Gaelic, and the controversy respecting Ossian and his poems. Quitting Perth, he travelled, still on foot, through the Highlands, the inhabitants of which he was, in the first instance, disposed to class with savages; but when he had observed the originality of conception, the breadth of humor, and the elevated sentiments which mark the Celt, his opinions underwent a total revolution. He was especially delighted with a ragged old reiver or cattle-lifter whom he encountered, and who had given shelter to the Young Chevalier in the braes of Glenmoriston after the battle of Culloden.

On his return to Edinburgh, Jackson married a lady of fortune, the daughter of Dr. Stephenson, and niece of his old friend Colonel Francis Shelley, of the 71st regiment; and was enabled by this accession to his means once again to visit Paris, where he not only resumed his medical studies, but acquired the mastery of several languages, Arabic amongst the rest. Having graduated M. D. at Leyden, he came back again to England, and commenced practice at Stockton-upon-Tees, in Durham. Although his reputation speedily became considerable, especially in cases of fever, he seems scarcely to have liked his new avocation. He found solace, however, in his favorite study of language, which he pursued with unremitting ardor—constantly reading through the Greek and Latin classics, and not only rendering himself familiar with the best works of the modern continental authors, but also with the literature of the Arabic, Persian, Hebrew, and Gaelic tongues. The Bostan of Saadi is said to have been one of his most favorite poems.

On the war breaking out in 1793, Dr. Jackson—who, in 1791, had published a valuable work on the fevers of Jamaica and continental America—applied for employment as army-physician; but Mr. Hunter, the director-general of the medical department of the army, considering none eligible for such employment who had not served as staff or regimental surgeon, or apothecary to the forces, Jackson agreed to accept, in the first instance, the surgeoncy of the 3d Buffs, on the understanding, that at a future time, he should be nominated physician as he desired. Mr. Hunter, however, ever, died soon after this; and his promise was not fulfilled by the Board which succeeded him in the medical direction of the army, and which appears to have pursued Dr. Jackson with uniform hostility.

Returning to England with the troops, it was offered to him to accompany, in the capacity of chief medical officer, Sir Ralph Abercromby's expedition against some of the West India islands; and although no employment could possibly have been more agreeable to his taste, he, much to Sir Ralph's chagrin, declined the flattering proposal, on the grounds, that lower terms had been offered to him than to another professional man. Nothing but a sense of professional delicacy, it is plain, governed him in this transaction, for he immediately afterwards embarked (April, 1796) as second medical officer in another expedition to San Domingo. During his abode in this island, he was unwearied in enlarging his acquaintance with tropical diseases—observing the rule he had followed in Holland of noting down by the patient's bedside the minutest particulars of every case he attended, the effects of the treatment pursued, and whatever else might shed light on the intricacies of pathological science. He also gave a larger practical operation to the scheme he had years before devised of amending the dietaries of military hospitals.

After the evacuation of San Domingo in 1798, our physician paid a visit to the United States, where he was received with signal distinction, his reputation having preceded him. The latter part of the year found him again at Stockton, publishing a work on contagious[Pg 501] and endemic fevers, "more especially the contagious fever of ships, jails, and hospitals, vulgarly called the yellow-fever of the West Indies;" together with "an explanation of military discipline and economy, with a scheme for the medical arrangements of armies." He undertook, about this time, by desire of Count Woronzow, the Russian ambassador, the medical charge of seventeen hundred Russian soldiers, who were stationed in the Channel Islands in a sad state of disease and disorganization; and so admirably did he acquit himself, and so perfect were the hospital provisions he made, that (1800) the commander-in-chief nominated him physician and head of the army-hospital depôt at Chatham—as he says, "without any application or knowledge on his part." This appointment was the cause of his subsequent misfortunes.

At Chatham, with the warm approbation of Major-General Hewett, commanding the depôt, he introduced that system of hospital reform form which had elsewhere operated so successfully. The changes he effected, as soon as they were made, became known to the Medical Board, and were publicly approved of by one of its members. However, shortly afterwards, an epidemic broke out in the depôt (then removed to the Isle of Wight), arising from the fact, that the barracks were overcrowded with young recruits, but which the medical board ascribed to Jackson's innovations, and reported so to the Horse-Guards. The commander-in-chief directed an inquiry to take place before a medical board impannelled for the purpose, and the result of that inquiry may be guessed from a communication made by the War-Office to the commandant of the depôt. This states "the unanimous opinion of the board to have exculpated Dr. Jackson from all improper treatment of diseases in the sick," and the commander-in-chief's gratification, "than an opportunity has thus been given to that most zealous officer of proving his fitness for the important situation in which he is placed." The result of this wretched intrigue, however, was that Jackson, disgusted with the whole affair, requested to be placed on half-pay, to which request the Duke of York, with marked reluctance, at last (March 1803) acceded.

In his retirement at Stockton, Jackson put forth two valuable works, one on the medical economy of armies, and another on that of the British army in particular, and was much gratified by an offer to accompany, as military secretary, General Simcoe, just appointed commander-in-chief in India. The general's sudden death, however, put an end to this plan; and Jackson continued at Stockton, addressing frequent representations to government on the defective medical arrangements in the military service—representations the very receipt of which were not acknowledged by Mr. Pitt, to whom they were forwarded. The Peninsular war commencing, Dr. Jackson was again named Inspector of Hospitals, but was not, thanks to the persevering enmity of the Medical Board, sent on foreign service, although he volunteered to sink his rank, and go in any capacity. The Board even succeeded, by calumnious statements, that he had purchased his diploma—statements he readily confuted—in preventing his appointment to the Spanish liberating army; although the British government had formally requested him to accept such an appointment, and agreed to give credentials testifying to his capacity and trustworthiness. This last appointment led him, in an unguarded moment—peppery to the last—to inflict a slight personal chastisement on the surgeon-general, for which he was imprisoned six months in the King's Bench.

But the triumph of his enemies was not of long duration. In 1810 the Board was dissolved, and the control of the medical department vested in a director-general, with three principal inspectors subordinate to him. Then did Jackson return to active service, and from 1811 to 1815 was employed in the West Indies; his reports from whence embracing every topic relating to medical topography, to sanitary arrangements, and to the observed phenomena of tropical disease, are, it is not too much to say, invaluable. His hints as to the choice of sites for barracks, the propriety of giving to soldiers healthy employment and recreation, as a means of averting sickness, his suggestions as to the treatment of fevers and other endemic diseases, may be found in the various works he has published, embodying the fruits of his West Indian experience.

In 1819, he was sent by government to Spain, where the yellow-fever had broken out, and his report upon its characteristics has been universally admitted to supply the fullest information on the subject that had hitherto been communicated to the public. He availed himself of his presence in that part of Europe to pay a visit to Constantinople and the Levant; and, retaining his energy to the last, when a British force was sent to Portugal in 1827, he desired permission to accompany it. The sands of his life, however, were then fast running out, and on the 6th of April in the same year he died, after a short illness, at Thursby, near Carlisle, in the seventy-seventh year of his age. Thus closed a long career of usefulness; for it is not too much to say, that few men of his time labored harder to benefit his fellow-creatures than did Dr. Robert Jackson.

Spanish Names.—A Spanish journal gives the following singular names as those of two employés in the Finance department at Madrid:—Don Epifanio Mirurzururdundua y Zengotita, and Don Juan Nepomuceno de Burionagonatotorecagogeazcoecha. The journal would have done well to have given some directions as to the pronunciation.


[18] The late Admiral Sir Edward Codrington, when in command, during the war, of a frigate on the coast of Calabria, finding sickness appear amongst his crew, purchased on his own responsibility some bullocks, for the purpose of supplying them with fresh meat. Lord Collingwood having heard of this, and considering it a breach of discipline, sent for Codrington, and addressed him: "Captain Codrington, pray have you any idea of the price of a bullock In this place?" "No, my lord," was the reply, "I have not; but I know well the value of a British sailor's life!"

[Pg 502]

From Dicken's Household Words.


When a saying has passed into a national proverb, it is regarded as having received the "hall-mark" of the people, with respect to its prudence or practical wisdom. Proverbs deal only with realities, generally of the most homely and every-day kind, and are always supposed to comprise the most sage advice, or the most broad worldly truth, within the least possible compass.

Now, while we admit that proverbs are for the most part true, and useful in their teaching, and that they very often inculcate excellent maxims, we must at the same time enter our protest against the infallibility of most of them. Numbers will be found, on the least examination (which is seldom given to them) to be one-sided truths; others, inculcate an utterly selfish conduct, under the guise of prudence or worldly wisdom; and some of them are absolutely false, or only of the narrowest application. The majority of the proverbs, of all modern nations, originate with the people, and with the humbler classes (we must except the Chinese and Arabic, which are evidently the product of their sages), as witnessed by the homeliness of the allusions, and the frequent vulgarity, but, in all cases, the actual experience of life and its ordinary occurences with regard to men and things. They are full of corn, with a proportionate quantity of chaff and straw. Let us no longer, therefore, take all these "sayings" for granted; let us rather take them to task a little, for their revision and our own good.

Proverbs being the common property of all mankind, and often to be traced to very remote geographical sources, we shall observe no national classification; but string a few together now and then from Arabia and China, from Spain, Italy, France, or England, just as they may occur. So, now to our first string.

Honesty is the best policy. This is true in the higher sense; but doubtful in the sense usually intended. It is true as to the general good, but not usually for the individual, except in the long run. (We pass over the obvious truth, that it is better policy to earn a guinea, than to steal one, because the proverb has a far wider range of meaning than that.) To be a "politic," clever fellow, a vast deal more humoring of prejudices, errors, and follies, is requisite, than at all assorts with true honesty of character. If, however, we regard this proverb only on its higher moral ground, then, of course, we must at once admit its truth. The reader will probably be surprised, as we were, to find that it comes from the Chinese, and will be found in the translation of the novel of "Iu-Kiao-Li."

A leap from a hedge is better than a good man's prayer. (Spanish.) The leap (of a robber) from his lurking-place, being preferable to asking charity, and receiving a blessing, is one of those proverbs, the impudent immorality of which is of a kind that makes it impossible to help laughing. Its frank atrocity amounts to the ludicrous. It is an old Spanish proverb, and occurs in "Don Quixote"—of course in the mouth of Sancho.

A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush. The extreme caution ridiculed by this proverb is of a kind which one would hardly have expected to be popular in a commercial country. If this were acted upon, there would be an end of trade and commerce, and all capital would lie dead at the banker's—as a bird who was held safe. The truth is, our whole practice is of a directly opposite kind. We regard a bird in the hand as worth only a bird; and we know there is no chance of making it worth two birds—not to speak of the hope of a dozen—without letting it out of the hand. Inasmuch, however, as the proverb also means to exhort us not to give up a good certainty for a tempting uncertainty, we do most fully coincide in its prudence and good sense. It is identical with the French "Mieux vaut un 'tiens' que deux 'tu l'auras,'"—one "take this" is better than two "thou shalt have it;"—identical also with the Italian: E meglio un uovo oggi, che una gallina domani; an egg to-day is better than a hen to-morrow. It owes its origin to the Arabic—"A thousand cranes in the air, are not worth one sparrow in the fist."

Enough is as good as a feast. The best comment on this proverb that occurs to us was the reply made by Rooke, the composer (a man who had a fund of racy Irish wit in him), at a time when he was struggling with considerable worldly difficulties. "How few are our real wants!" said a consoling friend; "of what consequence is a splendid dinner? Enough is as good as a feast."—"Yes," replied Rooke, "and therefore a feast is as good as enough—and I think I prefer the former."

Love me, love my dog. At first sight this has a kindly appearance, as of one whose interest in a humble friend was as great as any he took in himself; but, on looking closer into it, we fear it involves a curious amount of selfish encroachment upon the kindness of others—a sort of doubling of the individuality, with all its exactions. My dog (in whatever shape) may be an odious beast; or, at best, one who either makes himself, or, whose misfortune it is to be, very disagreeable to certain people; but, never mind—what of that, if he is my dog? Society could not go on if this were persisted it.

Set a beggar on horseback, and he'll ride to the devil. The direction in which he will ride depends entirely on the character of the beggar—or poor man suddenly risen to power. Some sink over the other side of the horse, and drop into utter sloth and pampered sensualism; but others do their best to ride well, and sometimes succeed. Masaniello and Rienzi did not ride long in the best way; but several patriots, who have rapidly[Pg 503] risen from obscurity to power, have set noble examples.

Throw him into a river, and he will rise with a fish in his mouth. (Arabic.) Some men are so fortunate that nothing can sink them. Where another man would drown they find fish or pearls.

The monkey feared transmigration, lest he should become a gazelle. (Arabic.) The matchless conceit of some people, and utter ignorance of themselves, either as to appearance or abilities, are finely expressed in the above.

The baker's wife went to bed hungry. (Arabic.) How often is it seen, that those who follow a profession or trade, are among the last to display a special benefit from their calling! Our proverb, that "Shoemakers' wives are the worst shod," seems to be derived from the same source.

Chat échaudé craint l'eau froide; the scalded cat fears (even) cold water. This is a better version of the English proverb of "A burnt child dreads the fire." That the proverb is by no means of general application, the experience of every one can avouch. It would be the saving of many a child, of whatever age, who having been burnt should entertain a salutary dread of the fire ever after. But it is not so; witness how many are burnt—i.e., ruined, wounded, shot, drowned, made ridiculous, who had all been previously well warned by "burning their fingers" with losses, injuries by land and sea, and failures in attempts involving dangerous chances.

Crom a boo; I will burn. This Irish proverb, or saying, may serve in many respects as an adverse commentary on the preceding. There are people who are never at rest when they are out of hot water—nor contented when they are in. "I will burn" is the motto of the Duke of Leinster. It would do capitally for Mr. Smith O'Brien. Perhaps, however, it should not be read as a resolution to suffer, but as a threat to inflict a burning. Still, the vagueness of this threat—a dreadful announcement with no definite object—would render it equally applicable.

Bis dat qui cito dat; he gives double who gives promptly. The truth of this is well illustrated by the converse it suggests; that he who long delays and tantalizes before giving, earns less gratitude than scorn. It requires more generosity and a finer mind to confer a favor in the best way, than to confer double the amount of the favor in itself.

What I gain afore I lose ahint. (Scotch.) To be engrossed with a fixed object, is to forget what is going on all around us. I am closely engaged with what is passing before my eyes, while I am deceived and injured behind my back. This quaint old proverb has been ludicrously illustrated by a characteristic story. A Highlander, in a somewhat scanty kilt, was crossing a desolate moor one winter's night, and being very cold, he hastened to a light he saw at no great distance. It turned out to be a decomposed cod's head, which sent forth phosphoric gleams. He stooped down to try and warm his hands at it; but finding the bleak winds whistling all round his legs, he made the sage observation above, which has passed into a proverb.

Entfloh'nes Wort, geworf'ner Stein, die kommen nimmermehr herein; the hasty word, and hasty stone, can never be recalled. How truthful, how home to the mark, does this proverb fly; how excellent is the warning and the self-command it inculcates!

To-day a fire, to-morrow ashes. (Arabic.) Violent passions are the soonest exhausted; to-day all-powerful, to-morrow nothing, or the consequences.

Reading the psalms to the dead. (Arabic.) This is the original of our "Preaching to the dead," to express the fruitlessness of exhortations, applications, or petitions, to certain insensible people.

Follow the owl, she will lead thee to ruin. (Arabic.) A most picturesque proverb, giving its own scenery with it. But it strikes one as curious that this should come from the East which seems so familiar to our apprehensions. Not only are the habits of the owl the same, but the owl is equally regarded as the symbol of a purblind fool. Yet, on the other hand, the owl of classic times was a type of wisdom.

Two of a trade can never agree. It is curious, and, in most instances, highly gratifying, to see how many of these sayings of our ancestors are becoming falsified by the great advances made, of late years, in social feelings and arrangements. Trades' unions, co-operative societies—in fact, all our great companies prove how well two of a trade can agree; and so do all combinations of masters or of workmen. Yes, it will be said, but they "agree," and co-operate for their mutual interests, and they do not agree with those opposed to them. Of course not; the sensible thing, therefore, is obvious, to enlarge the sphere of good understanding and reciprocal fair dealing in matters of business, and thus to supersede the bad feeling and injury of greedy rivalries and selfish antagonisms.

There was a wife who always took what she had, and never wanted. (Scotch.) A good practical advice, showing the importance of using what you possess, instead of hoarding it, or reserving it, even when most needed, for some possible contingency, which may never occur. It seems to refer chiefly to articles of dress, clothing, domestic utensils, or other household matters.

Dat Deus immiti cornua curta bovi; God curtails the power to do evil in those who desire to do it.

There is honor among thieves. This is, no doubt, quite true, though you must be a thief yourself to derive much benefit from it. They stand by their order. The suggestion is—since there is honor towards each other among the most unprincipled classes, surely Mr. Sweepstakes, and Mr. Moses Battledore, who[Pg 504] are both respectable members of society, and belong to clubs, would not cheat me. But this does not logically follow; for we by no means know how far the respectable individual makes his view of his own interest an excuse to himself for an occasional exception to the code of morality he professes. There's honor among thieves; and there are thieves (here and there) among honorably-connected men, "all honorable men." Life is a "mingled yarn" of good and evil; and society is a motley aggregate of all sorts of yarns.

A rose-bud fell to the lot of a monkey. (Arabic.) The monkey appreciated the rose-bud quite as much as swine appreciate the pearls which are said to be cast before them.

Of what use to a fool is all the trouble he gives himself? (Chinese.) None whatever; but his folly may cause a vast deal of trouble to people of sense. One false move of an utterly incompetent man in office, and the force of the saying becomes very expansive.

There are no lies so wicked as those which have some foundation. (Chinese.) A saying which is but too true, and which ought to be universally understood in society, as some protection against slander.

Many preparations before the sour plum sweetens. (Chinese.) Great results do not hastily ripen; great and important changes must undergo a gradual process.

Spare the rod and spoil the child. This seems to be derived from the old Spanish proverb, which we find in Don Quixote, "He loves thee well who makes thee weep." They are unkindly and dangerous maxims, which tend to inculcate severity, and to justify harsh treatment upon the plea of future advantage. We readily admit that nothing can well be worse than a "spoilt child," nor can a more injurious system exist than that of pampering or spoiling—except the direct opposite, that of frequently causing tears.

A tea-spoonful of honey is worth a pound of gall. An indiscriminate use of the sweets of life is a stupidity and an injury; but the judicious use of them is of far more service in the production of good results, than the bitter lessons which are often considered to be of most advantage. It is better to soften the heart than to harden it. "A soft word turneth away wrath."

What the ant collects in a year, the priest eats up in a night. (Arabic.) The tithe-taxes, and other revenues of the state-clergy, derived from the industry of the working classes, are not very tenderly dealt with in this proverb.

The walls have ears. (Arabic.) This is one of the many instances of our homeliest proverbs in every-day use, being derived from the East. No doubt the saying, that "Little pitchers have great ears" (in allusion to the sharpness of hearing in children), is also derived from the domestic utensils of foreign countries in ancient times. The British Museum contains many such little pitchers, as well as the Foundling Hospital.

The ox that ploughs must not be muzzled. (Arabic.) The laborer ought to be allowed freedom of speech, or at least free breathing. We have a nautical saying akin to this—"A sailor never works well if he does not grumble."

Three united men will ruin a town. (Arabic.) The power of combination was never more excellently expressed.

He begins the quarrel who gives the second blow. (Spanish.) There are but few who possess the requisite degree of wise and kindly forbearance and magnanimous self-command implied in this saying. To strike again, or rather (as the blow is figurative) to retort an angry word, is natural to most men; to preserve a reproving silence, or administer a dignified rebuke, is in the power only of great characters, and not with them at all times. But it is quite possible, as we live in a very pugnacious world, that such forbearance should not be thrown away upon every one, or the small majority of the magnanimous would soon be beaten out of existence. The above proverb, we believe, is originally Spanish, and, coming from a people so proverbially revengeful, seems very extraordinary, and only to be accounted for as the result of an abstract thought of some lofty-minded hidalgo, speculating on friendship. Don Quixote might have said it.

A stitch in time saves nine. One of the most sensible and practical of all proverbs, as every body's experience can avouch. Yet, in defiance of all their own experience, how many people we often see who constantly neglect the stitch in time! They do not forget it, or overlook it; and when they do, if you point it out to them, they still neglect it.

Chi non sa niente, non dubita di niente; he who knows nothing, doubts of nothing. The converse is equally true. He who knows much, is careful how he doubts of any thing. This is peculiarly inculcated, at the present time, by the extraordinary discoveries and success of science.

From the Ladies' Companion.


We have no means of telling how long a period elapsed from that primal time when the "evening and the morning made the first day," ere man's ingenuity devised a means of calculating the passing by of those precious moments of which his duration is composed, in order to economize them to the purposes of life. Shadows by day and stars at night appear to have indexed the flight of time for the ancient Hebrews; though it is very evident that long before the sun-dial of Ahaz was made memorable by the Prophet Isaiah, the Chaldeans, accustomed to calculate eclipses, and other astronomical phenomena, must have been in possession of some much more accurate instrument for its computation.[Pg 505]

Days, months, and years, are constantly referred to in the books of the Old Testament, but nothing is said of more minute divisions of time, save that of the day into the natural ones of morning, noon, eventide, and night, until Judea became tributary to Rome, when three of the Evangelists, in describing the crucifixion, and the supernatural darkness subsequent to that event, remark that it lasted from the sixth hour to the ninth; and it is on record, that the Clepsydra, or water-clock, (said by Vitrivius to have been invented by one Ctesibius of Alexandria, in the reign of Ptolemy Evergetes), was introduced at Rome by P. Cornelius Scipio Nasica, in the 595th year of the city, and consequently many years before the birth of Christ. This simple time-keeper was so constructed, that the water issued, drop by drop, through a hole in the vessel, and fell into another, in which a light floating body marked the height of the water as it rose, and by this means the time that had elapsed. These instruments, we are told, were set full of water in the courts of judicature, and by them the lawyers pleaded; in order, as Phavorinus tells us, to prevent babbling, and cause those who spoke to be brief in their speeches. Hour, or sand-glasses, are also said to have originated at Alexandria, and to have been introduced into domestic use amongst the Romans eight years afterwards, or 158 years before the Christian era.

The earliest attempt at measuring time in this country appears to have been on the part of Alfred the Great, by means of waxen tapers. The exact period when those direct ancestors of our subject, clocks, or, as they were primitively called, horologes, came into use, is one of those things over which time has cast so thick a veil, that not even the researches of the encyclopædists can penetrate it. By some, the invention of clocks with wheels is ascribed to Pacificus, archdeacon of Verona, as early as the ninth century. And though we read that clocks (without water) were set up in churches toward the end of the twelfth, the author of the "Divina Commedia" is the first writer on record, who distinctly applies the term horologium to a clock that struck the hours; and he was born 1265, and died 1321.

In 1288, during the reign of the 1st Edward, the English Justinian, as he has been called, it is said that a fine levied on a lord chief justice was applied to the purpose of furnishing the famous clock-house near Westminster Hall with an horologe, which it is farther stated was the work of an English artist.

Mention is also made of the setting up of a clock in Canterbury Cathedral about the same period, and in that of Wells in 1325. So that those three Dutch horologiers, from Delft, who came over (as Rymer tells us) at the invitation of Edward III. in 1368, were not, as some imagined, the introducers of the art, though they very possibly helped us to improve it. Up to the time when Henry de Wic astonished the Emperor Charles V. with those seemingly living toys with which he was wont to surround himself after dinner, and watch the beating and revolving of their curious machinery, those rude prototypes of our subject, which are said to have resembled small table clocks rather than watches, and yet were true specimens, we imagine, since they continued going in a horizontal position, which is the only mechanical distinction between a watch and clock—up to this period, we were about to say, clocks appear to have endured a very ascetic existence, living in tall houses, built on purpose for them, or shut up in church towers and monastic buildings—

"Fell sickerer[19] was his crowning in his loge,
As is a clock, or any abbey orloge,"

wrote Chaucer in the fourteenth century. And it is not until nearly the end of the fifteenth that we find them domesticated in houses.

From a description of some, which appear in an inventory of articles in the king's palaces of Westminster and Hampton Court, copied by Strutt, the pendules of the period must have been equally ornate with those in modern drawing-rooms, and much more curious. Thus one, we are told, not only showed the course of the planets, and the days of the year, but was richly gilt, and enamelled, and ornamented with the king's (Henry the Eighth's) coat of arms; it also possessed a chime.

Speaking of this monarch reminds us, that previous to the scattering of the treasures of Strawberry Hill, there was preserved in the library there a little clock, of silver gilt, the gift of Henry, on the morning of his marriage, to the ill-fated Anne Boleyn. It was elaborately chased and engraved, and adorned with fleurs-de-lys, and other heraldic devices, and had on the top a lion supporting the arms of England. The gilded weights represented true-lovers-knots, inclosing the initials of Henry and Anne; and one bore the inscription, "The most happye," the other the royal motto. Though more than three hundred years had passed since the tragic ending of time with its original possessor, it was still going when the ivory hammer of the famous Robins struck it down to another new and more fortunate owner, About this period watches are said to have been in use; and in the Holbein chamber of the collection just mentioned, a bust of the royal wife-slayer, carved in box-wood, represented him with a dial suspended on his breast. The earliest watch known was one in Sir Ashton Lever's Museum, which bore date 1541; but from various imperfections in the workmanship, they were not very generally used till towards the end of Elizabeth's reign.

Shakspeare frequently mentions the clock, and in "Twelfth Night" he makes Malvolio—"While exclaim, in his babblings of fancied greatness[Pg 506] I, perchance, wind up my watch, or play with some rich jewel," an expression that would lead us to suppose that they were even then regarded rather as toys or ornaments than things of necessary use.

Archbishop Parker, in 1575, left by will to the Bishop of Ely his staff of Indian cane, with a watch in the top of it; a position that savors more of whim than utility. Yet the excellence of some of these ancient timekeepers is remarkable; for Derham, in his "Artificial Clockmaker," mentions a watch of Henry VIII., which was in order in 1714, and of which Dr. Demanbray had often heard Sir Isaac Newton and Demoivre speak; and the old wooden-framed clock of Peterborough Cathedral, which, instead of the usual key or winch, is wound up by long handles or spikes—a sufficient proof of its antiquity—still strikes, says Denison, upon a bell of considerable size.

Guy Fawkes carried a watch in a more practical spirit than Malvolio or Archbishop Parker; Stowe tells us, one was found upon him which he and Percy had bought the day before, "to try conclusions for the long and short burning of the touch-wood with which he had prepared to give fire to the train of powder;" a proof that even in the third year of the reign of James I. watches were not commonly worn, or the circumstance would not have been mentioned.

In the next reign, however, we find the London "Clock-Makers' Company," incorporated 1631—a sign of the increased use of these instruments, and the growing importance of their manufacture; and as this charter prohibits the importation of clocks, watches, and alarms, it proves that we had even then artists sufficiently skilful in the various manipulations requisite in the construction of these articles, to render us independent of foreign workmanship.

It is a singular feature in the history of this branch of art, that it has remained until very lately concentrated in the metropolis; besides which, Liverpool and Coventry are said to be the only places in England where a complete watch can be manufactured. At the latter place the business has only been introduced since the commencement of the present century, but the number of persons employed are said to equal the number in London.

But before passing from this event in the history of our subject (the incorporation of a company for the protection of their manufacture in the reign of Charles I.), we may as well describe a watch of the period, which a few years before the publication of the "Encyclopædia Londinensis" (in 1811) had been in the possession of the proprietor. It was dug up but a few years previously, near the site of the ancient castle of Winchester, where it had probably lain from the time of Cromwell, who, it is well known, destroyed that edifice. It was of an octagon form, and had no minute hand; a piece of catgut supplied the place of a chain; it required winding up every twelve hours, had no balance spring, and appeared never to have had one; and it shut like a hunting-watch without any glass.

But to compensate for this interior rudeness in its construction, the lid and bottom of the case, as well as the dial-plate, were of silver, very neatly engraved, with pieces of Scripture history in the centre, and in the compartments the four Evangelists, and St. Peter, St. Paul, St. James, and St. Jude: it had no date.

The reign of Charles II., who (like his namesake the emperor, in whose time they first appeared) is said to have been very partial to these instruments, was remarkable for the improvements made in them. Spring pocket-watches were invented by Hooke, 1658; and repeaters were introduced, one of the first of which Charles sent as a present to Louis XIV. of France. According to some authorities, reproduced would be the juster phrase here, for it is stated in "Memoirs of Literature," that some of the most ancient watches were strikers, and that such having been stolen both from Charles V. and Louis XI. whilst they were in a crowd, the thief was detected by their striking the hour!

Perhaps the most remarkable repeating watch extant, is that in the Academy of Sciences at St. Petersburg, and which, like the old Nuremberg watches, is about the size of an egg: within is represented the holy sepulchre, with the sentinels, and the stone at the mouth; and while the spectator is admiring this curious piece of mechanism, the stone is suddenly removed, the sentinels drop down, the angels appear, the women enter the tomb, and the same chant is heard which is performed in the Greek Church on Easter Eve.

Germany, by the way, has always been famous for the manufacture of clocks and watches, these latter claiming Nuremberg for their birthplace; and from this circumstance, and their oval shape, Dopplemayer tells us they were originally known as Nuremberg animated eggs.

At present this branch of horometry is chiefly to be found on the other side of the Alps, at or near Geneva, and at Chaux de Fond, in the principality of Neufchatel, where vast numbers of watches are manufactured. But the wooden clocks, which tick on every cottage wall, and which are erroneously called Dutch, are in fact German, and are nearly all made in the Black Forest, the village of Freyburg being the centre of the manufacture, whence it is said 180,000 wooden clocks on an average are yearly exported.

The Swiss, or Geneva watches, as they are commonly called, owing to the poverty of the workmen, the employment of women, and the subdivision of labor, which is carried to even a greater extent than with us, sell at a much lower price than those made in England;[Pg 507] but an English watch has hitherto been a desideratum in every part of the world. Here, at present, the term watch-maker is no longer applicable, every portion of the instrument being the work of a different artisan, and the separate parts are often sent hundreds of miles, to meet in the metropolis, and make a whole of excellent workmanship. There are innumerable places in which some branch or other of the manufacture is carried on; but the best movements are made at Prescot, in Lancashire, while the town of Whitchurch, in Hampshire, is employed wholly in making hands. In London, Clerkenwall Green has long been the resort of artificers employed in the various nice and delicate manipulations requisite in the construction of our subject: here, slide-makers, jewellers, motion-makers, wheel-cutters, cap-makers, dial-plate-makers, the painter, the case-maker, the joint-finisher, the pendent-maker, the engraver, the piercer, the escapement-maker, the spring-maker, the chain-maker, the finisher, the gilder, the fusee-cutter, the hand-maker, the glass-maker, and pendulum spring wire-drawer, are all located; for, owing to the minute division of labor, which tends greatly to facilitate its execution after the movements (which have previously passed through thirteen workmen's hands in the provinces) are received in town, the watch progresses through those of these other twenty-one artificers before it comes forth complete.

Owing to this delicate and varied workmanship, materials originally not worth sixpence are frequently converted into watches worth a hundred pounds and more, so costly may their appendages be made. But in all these different branches of a business which maintains thousands of families, the only part of it which falls to women in this country is the polishing of the cases, which the casemakers' wives are sometimes employed to do.

Perhaps no object of man's ingenuity has been made the exponent of so many grave morals as the watch. Poets and philosophers have managed that its beatings should be only a little less gloomy to the imagination than the associations of a passing bell; but Paley has thrown a glory round this gloom, and aggrandized it from a peevish reminder of passing time into a fair argument of a Creator's presence, in the delicate and wonderful machinery of nature, which could no more come by chance than could this little instrument have been formed without a contriver.

What the author of the "Old Church Clock" has said of that branch of our subject, may be equally applied to this—"there is no dead thing so like a living one." Day by day, year by year, its iron heart throbs on, some of them surviving, as we have seen, for centuries, though they are said to beat 17,160 times in an hour. Well would it be for us if the time-keeper in our bosoms, beating momently the escape of our allotted term, acted as lightly on the frame; but all its emotions help to wear this out.

In the dawn of its appearance, in an age when every science that set men wondering was in some degree regarded as the work of magic, what a sensation must these "animated eggs" have occasioned, and how suggestive! unless the fanciful belief of some of the early fathers of the church, who averred that gems and precious metals were first made known to mortals by fallen angels, who also inspired the desire to profit by, and be adorned with them, had any thing to do with the tabooing of evil by holy signatures—how suggestive are the quaint gravings of saints and scriptural subjects on the cover of the watch dug up at Winchester, of the antique custom of inscribing trinkets with sacred symbols, and so converting them into amulets; a custom which the Greeks and Romans borrowed from the Egyptians, and which the early Christians perpetuated after them.

We have seen the watch, originally oval, take an octagon form; after which it subsided into its present shape, the only variation being in size, and degrees of roundness.

At present watches are frequently made not thicker than a crown piece, and yet perform their functions with exactness; nay, there are some with perfect works, compressed into a smaller compass than a shilling! A friend of the writer's saw one, not long since, set in a ring, the hands and figures being composed of brilliants, upon a dial of blue enamel; and at the recent exhibition one filled the place usually occupied by a seal at the end of a pencil-case, and another appeared as an appendage to a lady's bracelet. There was also a large silver watch, such as mariners are fond of wearing, immersed in a vase of water, and yet impervious to any ill effects.

Our subject is one which grows under our hands, and we might go on ad libitum describing their different idiosyncracies; for watches, like individuals, have their several temperaments and ways of going. We have all met with fast watches and slow ones, and some (a disposition they are apt to contract from their wearers) are very irregular—varieties of character, which so puzzled their first owner, the Emperor Charles V., who amused himself on his retirement to the monastery of St. John, by endeavoring to keep in order these by-gone companions of his dinner-table, that they produced a reflection on the absurdity of his attempts to keep together the powers of Europe, when even these little pieces of mechanism baffled him.

American women have less courtesy than any others in the world. A thousand rules of deference are established by concessions of the other sex, which they enforce with ungracious arrogance, as if they were but recognitions of "inalienable rights." This is their offence to all well-bred Europeans.—Correspondent London Morning Post.


[19] Sickerness—steady, secure.

[Pg 508]

From Sharpe's Magazine.




New-Year's day and the Benediction of the Waters provide the inhabitants of St. Petersburg with two great national festivals, in which all classes share in the pleasures and devotion of the sovereign. The first is an imperial fête, the second an imposing religious ceremony.

On New-Year's day, in virtue of an old and touching custom by which the Emperor and Empress of Russia are designated by their poorest subjects Father and Mother, these potentates at the commencement of the year receive their children as their own invited guests. Their family being too vast to invite by name, they adopt the simple but efficacious plan of scattering about the streets of their capital twenty-five thousand cards of invitation, indicative that they will be at home to such a number of their children. These cards bear no address, but they give admission to the bearers to the splendid saloons of the Winter Palace without the slightest distinction of rank or wealth.

It was thus that the Emperor Alexander, according to custom, kept the first day of the year 1825, the last he was ever destined to see. The rumor of the conspiracy that embittered the closing months of his life and reign, though it had reached his ears and troubled his repose, did not appear to him any reason for depriving his subjects of their annual visit to their sovereign. From these unknown guests the Russian Autocrat felt assured he had nothing to fear. With them he was not only popular but adored. He therefore directed the Master of the Police to order no alteration in the usual costume of the male part of the company, whom he was to admit in masks according to custom on these occasions. In the darkest annals of barbarism, despotic sovereigns dreaded and often found the dagger of the assassin in the hands of some member of their own family. Civilization, however limited, changes the objects of suspicion to the aristocracy, who are always, under these unfortunate constitutions, of the military profession. Now the want of the counterpoise of the middle classes creates this secret but perpetual warfare between the absolute monarch and the nobility—the nobility who in free countries are the natural bulwark of the throne. In Russia the Autocrat is never afraid of the multitude, with whom he holds a twofold claim to their veneration, as supreme pontiff, or head of the Church, and Czar.

The cards of invitation, being transferable, are, as a matter of course, purchaseable; and among his masked guests who were privileged to shake hands with Alexander, some cowardly assassin might take that opportunity to murder the sovereign; yet he, with a firm but touching reliance on God, ordered at seven o'clock on the New-Year's evening, the gates of the Winter Palace to be thrown open as usual, to his motley company.

No extra precautions were taken by the police; the sentinels were on duty, according to custom, at the palace gates, but the Emperor was without any guards in the interior of the imperial residence, vast as the Tuileries. In the absence of all precaution or even regulations for the behavior of an undisciplined crowd, it was surprising what natural politeness effected. Veneration for the presence of the sovereign was alone sufficient to produce good breeding; there was no pushing nor striving, nor clamor, and the entrance was made with as little noise as if gratitude for the favor accorded to the guests had induced each to give a precautionary admonition to his neighbor.

While the thronging thousands were gaining admission to his palace, the Emperor Alexander was seated by the Empress in the Hall of St. George in the midst of the imperial family, when the door was opened to the sound of music, for the saloons were filled with his visitors, and a grand coup d'œil of grandees, peasants, princesses, and grisettes was discerned. At this moment the Emperor advanced and gave his hand to the English, French, Spanish, and Austrian ambassadors, the representatives of their several sovereigns. He then moved alone to the door, that his guests might behold in their sovereign and host the father of his people. It was a moment anarchy was said to have dedicated to his assassination, and that parricidal and regicidal act could have been easily effected at such a juncture had it really been in contemplation. Alexander was no longer in appearance a melancholy and suffering invalid, he looked happy and smiling; and if his smile was counterfeited, he wore the mask ably and well. The instant the Autocrat appeared, the motley group made a forward movement, and then a precipitate retreat. The danger vanished with them. The Emperor regarded the retiring waves of this human sea with imperturbable serenity, a remarkable feature in his character, a moral re-action, which a courageous mind can alone bestow, and which he had shown on several trying occasions. One of these was at a ball given by M. Caulincourt, Duke of Vicenza, the French Ambassador; the other was at a fête at Zakret, near Wilna.

The ball was at its height, when the ambassador was informed that the house was on fire; fearful that the news of the conflagration might occasion more ill consequences than the fire itself, he posted an aide-de-camp at every door, and ordered his people to keep the misfortune a profound secret, after which he communicated the accident in a low voice to the Emperor, and assured him that no one should be permitted to withdraw till he and the imperial family were in perfect safety; he was going to see the fire extinguished, and[Pg 509] he hoped the efforts made to get it under would be successful; adding, that even if a report should circulate in the saloons as to this startling fact, no one would credit it while they saw the Emperor and his family still there.

"Very well, then, I will remain," coolly remarked the Emperor; and when Caulincourt returned some time after to announce the extinction of the fire, he found the Russian Autocrat dancing a polonaise.

The guests of the ambassador heard on the morrow that their festivities had been kept over the mouth of a volcano.

At the fête held at Zakret not only the life but the empire of Alexander was at stake. In the middle of the dance he was apprised that the advanced guard of a guest he had forgotten to invite had passed the Niemen. This was the Emperor Napoleon, his old host at Erfurth, who might momentarily be expected to enter the hall, followed by six hundred thousand dancers. Alexander gave his orders with great coolness, chatting while he issued them with his aide-de-camps. He walked about, praised the manner in which the saloons were lighted, which he declared was only second to the beautiful moonlight, supped, and remained till dawn. His gay manner and the serenity of his countenance prevented the guests from even suspecting the nature of the communication he had received, and the entrance of the French into the city was the first intimation the inhabitants had received of their approach.

He was in imminent peril in this Polish city, from which his great self-command delivered him. His retreat at early morning was made before the approach of an enemy he had hitherto found invincible. Very different might have been the result of Napoleon's campaign in Russia, if the inhabitants of Wilna had known during the fête of Zakret of his vicinity.

These incidents naturally occurred to the guests of the Emperor Alexander, during this New-Year's day festival, when they beheld him approach alone to show himself to the multitude, amongst whom he had reason to believe many conspirators, or even assassins lurked. If such indeed were there, the calm serenity of his countenance disarmed them, and none dared raise an arm against the life he fearlessly trusted, if not to their loyalty at least to their honor.

Indeed the suffering and melancholy Emperor, the last time he received his people, seemed to have shaken off his lassitude and depression, and appeared full of life and energy, traversing with rapidity the immense saloons of the Winter Palace. He led off the sort of galoppe peculiar to the Russian Court, which, however, terminated about nine o'clock.

At ten, the illuminations of the Hermitage being finished, those persons who had cards for the spectacle went there. Twelve negroes, superbly arrayed in rich oriental costumes, kept the doors of the theatre, to admit or restrain the crowd, and examine the authenticity of the vouchers of the guests. Here the admission was not promiscuous, a certain number alone being allowed to be present at the banquet.

Upon entering the theatre, the spectators found themselves in a land of enchantment—a vast hall encircled with tubes of crystal, bent in every possible way, meeting at top in order to form the ceiling, united by silver threads of imperceptible fineness, behind which hung 10,000 colored lamps, whose light, reflected and refracted by these transparent columns, illuminated the gardens, groves, flowers, cascades, and fountains, like an enchanted landscape, which seen across this veil of light resembled the poetical phantasm of a dream. The splendid illuminations cost twelve thousand roubles, and lasted two months.

At eleven a flourish of musical instruments announced the arrival of the Emperor, who entered with the Empress and the imperial family, the ambassadors, the ambassadresses, the officers of the household, and the ladies in waiting, who all took their places at the middle supper-table; two other tables were filled by six hundred guests, mostly composed of the first-class nobility. The Emperor alone remained standing, moving about the tables, conversing by turns with his numerous guests.

Nothing could exceed the magnificent effect produced by the banquet, and the appearance of the court; the sovereign and his officers and nobility covered with gold and embroidery, the Empress and her ladies glittering with diamonds and splendid velvets, tissues, and satins. No other fête in Europe could produce such a grand coup d'œil as the New-Year's fête at the Hermitage. At the conclusion of the banquet the Court returned to the Saloon of St. George, where the music struck up a polonaise, which was led off by the Emperor. This dance was his farewell to his guests, for as soon as it was finished he withdrew. The departure of their sovereign gave pleasure to those loyal subjects who trembled for his personal safety; but the courageous and ever paternal confidence reposed in his subjects by Alexander, turned away from him every murderous weapon. No one could resolve to assassinate a kind father in the midst of his children, for as such the Emperor had received his numerous guests.

The second annual fête was of a religious character, "The Benediction of the Waters," to which the recent disastrous calamity of the most terrible inundation on record in Russia, the preceding year, had given deeper solemnity. The preparations were made with an activity tempered by care, which denoted the national character to be essentially religious. Upon the Neva a great pavilion was erected of a circular form, pierced with eight[Pg 510] openings, decorated by four paintings, crowned with a cross; to this pavilion access was given by a jetty forming the hermitage. The temporary edifice, on the morning of the ceremony, was to have its pavement of ice cut through in order to permit the Patriarch to reach the water. The cold was already twenty degrees below zero, when at nine o'clock in the morning the whole population of St. Petersburg assembled themselves on the frozen waters of the Neva, then a solid mass of crystal. At half-past eleven the Empress and Grand-Duchesses took their places in the glass balcony of the Hermitage, and their appearance announced to the crowd that the Te Deum was concluded. The whole corps of the Imperial Guards, amounting to forty thousand men, marched to the sound of martial music and formed in line of battle on the river, from the hotel of the French embassy to the fortress. The palace gates opened as soon as this military evolution was effected, and the banners, sacred pictures, and the choristers of the chapel, appeared preceding the Patriarch and his clergy; then came the pages and the colors of the different regiments of guards, borne by their proper officers; then the Emperor, supported by the Grand-Dukes Nicholas and Michael, followed by the officers of his household, his aide-de-camps and generals. As soon as the Emperor reached the door of the pavilion, which was nearly filled with priests and banners, the Patriarchs gave the signal, and the sweet solemn chant of more than a hundred voices rose to heaven, unaccompanied by music indeed, yet forming a divine harmony hardly to be surpassed on earth. During the prayer, which lasted twenty minutes, the Emperor stood bareheaded, dressed in his uniform, without fur or any defence from the piercing cold, running more risk by this disregard to climate, than if he had faced the fire of a hundred pieces of artillery in the front of battle. The spectators, enveloped in fur mantles and caps, presented a complete contrast to the religious imprudence of their rash sovereign, who had been bald from his early youth.

As soon as the second Te Deum was concluded, the Patriarch took a silver cross from the hand of the young chorister, and encircled by the kneeling crowd, plunged it through the opening made in the ice into the waters below. He then filled a vase up with the consecrated element, which he presented to the Emperor. After this ceremonial of blessing the waters, came the benediction of the standards, which were reverently inclined towards the Patriarch for that purpose. A sky-rocket was immediately let off from the pavilion, and its silvery smoke was answered by a terrible explosion, for the whole artillery of the fortress gave from their metallic throats a loud Te Deum, and these salvos were heard three times during the benediction of the standards; at the third, the Emperor commenced his return to the palace.

He was more melancholy than usual, for during this religious ceremony he felt no need of courage or presence of mind; he was secured by the natural veneration of a superstitious people. He knew it, and, therefore, wore no mask in the semblance of a joyless smile.

On the same day, this imposing ceremonial is used at Constantinople, only the winter is a mere name and the water has no ice. The Patriarch stands on the deck of a vessel, and drops his silver cross into the calm blue waves of the Bosphorus, which a skilful diver restores to him before it reaches the bottom. To these religious ceremonies succeed sports and pastimes of all kinds. Booths and barracks are erected on the frozen Neva from quay to quay, Russian mountains, down which sledges slide with inconceivable velocity, and the Carnival commences with as much zest as in cities enjoying a southern temperature. Plays are performed on the ice, and curious pantomimes, in which a marmot performs the part of a baby very cleverly, while the man who shows him off under the character of the good father of the family, finds resemblances in this black-nosed imp to all his supposed human relatives, to the infinite delight of the spectators.

Sleighing on the ice is, as in Canada, a favorite diversion with the Russians, whose sledges are lined with fur and ornamented with silver bells and ribbons of every color. Sometimes a wind loaded with vapor puts an end to these diversions by rendering the ice unsafe, in which case they are interdicted by the police, and the sports and pastimes of the people are transferred to terra firma; but the Carnival is considered to come to an abrupt conclusion if this misfortune occurs at its commencement, for the Neva is to the inhabitants of St. Petersburg what Vesuvius is to the Neapolitans, and the absence of the ice robs their Saturnalia of its greatest attraction. In countries where the Greek religion is the national standard of faith, Lent is preceded by the same unbounded festivity as in those which are Roman Catholic; but the Court does not display in these days so much barbarous magnificence as in those earlier times when civilization was unknown. The Carnival was, however, held during the last century by Anna Ivanovna, in a style surpassing that of her ancestors. This pleasure-loving princess, the daughter of the elder brother of Peter the Great, covered her usurpation of a throne she had snatched not only from the decendants of her mighty uncle, but also from her own elder sister and niece, by conducing to the popular amusements of her people, who in their turn forgot her defective title to the throne. This popular female sovereign founded the largest bell in the world, and gave the most magnificent Carnival ever held in Russia. Thus she maintained her sway by the aid of pleasure and devotion, a twofold cord her subjects[Pg 511] never broke. In 1740 Anna Ivanovna resolved to surpass every preceding Carnival by her unique manner of providing her people with amusement during this merry season. It was customary for the sovereign of Russia to be attended by a dwarf, who united the privileged character of a jester to the tiny proportions of a little child. This empress possessed two of these diminutive personages, and she chose for her own amusement and that of her loving subjects, that they should be married during this Carnival, and "whether nature did this match contrive," or it was the consequence of her own despotic will, cannot be known without a peep into the jealously guarded archives of Russia; but the nuptials of these sports of nature was the ostensible cause of the fête. This the Autocrat gave on a new and splendid scale. She directed her governors to send her two natives of the hundred districts they ruled in her name, clothed in their national costume, and with the animals they were accustomed to use on their journeys. The idea was certainly a brilliant one, and worthy of the sovereign lady of so many nations, tongues, and languages.

Anna Ivanovna was punctually obeyed, and at the appointed time a motley procession, including the purest types of the Caucasian race and the ugliest of the Mongolian, astonished the eyes of the Empress, who had scarcely known the greater part of these distant tribes by name. There she beheld the Kamtchadale with his sledge drawn by dogs, the Russian Laplander with his reindeer, the Kalmuck with his cows, the Tartar on his horse, and the native of Bochara with his camel, the Ostiak on his clogs. Then for the first time, the beautiful Georgian and Circassian, with their dark ringlets and unrivalled features, looked with astonishment upon the red hair of the Finlander. The gigantic Cossack of the Ukraine eyed with contempt the pigmy Samoiede—and in fact, for the first time were brought into contact by the will of their sovereign lady, who classed each race under one of four banners, representing spring, summer, autumn, and winter; and these two hundred persons, during eight days, paraded the streets of St. Petersburg, to the infinite delight of the population, who had never seen the power of the throne displayed in a manner so agreeable to their taste before.

Upon the wedding day of her dwarfs, these important personages had been attended to the altar by this singular national procession, where they plighted their faith in the presence of the Empress and all her Court, after which they heard Mass, and then, accompanied by their numerous escort, took possession of the palace prepared for them by the direction of their imperial mistress. This palace was not the least fanciful part of the fête. It was entirely composed of ice, and resembled crystal in its brilliancy and fine cutting and polish. This beautiful fabric was fifty-two feet in length and twenty in width; the roof, the floor, the furniture, chandeliers, and even the nuptial bed, were formed of the same cold, glittering, and transparent materials. The doors, the galleries, and the fortifications,—even the six pieces of cannon that guarded this magical palace, were of ice; one of these, charged with a single ice-bullet, and fired by the aid of a pound of powder, perforated at seventy paces a plank of twelve inches thickness. This was done to salute the bridal party, and welcome them home. The most curious piece of mechanism, and which pleased the Russians the most, was a colossal elephant, mounted by an armed Persian, and led by twelve slaves. This gigantic beast threw from his trunk a column of water by day, and at night a stream of fire, uttering from time to time roars which were heard from one end of St. Petersburg to the other. These noble roars were produced by twelve Russians concealed in the body and legs of the phantom elephant, whose costly housings hid the men whose noise so delighted their countrymen. This Carnival of the fête-loving feany male usurper has never been surpassed by Russian sovereign, though, with the exception of the assembly of her distant subjects, its taste was barbarous enough.

From Household Words.


It is a great idea—too large to be arrived at but by degrees—that the fleece of sheep can clothe nations of men. The fleece of a sheep, when pulled and spread out, looks much larger than while covering the mutton; but still it is with a sort of despair that we think of the quantity required, and of the dressing and preparation necessary, for clothing fifteen million of men in one country, and double the number in another (to say nothing of the women), and of the number of countries, each containing its millions, which are incessantly demanding the fleeces of sheep to clothe their inhabitants. We remember the hill-sides of our own mountainous districts; and the wide grassy plains of Saxony; and the boundless table lands of Thibet, and the valleys of Cashmere, all speckled over with flocks; we think of the Australian sheep-walks, where there are flocks of such unmanageable size, that the whole sheep is boiled down for tallow; we think of Prince Esterhazy's reply to the question of an English nobleman, when shown vast flocks, and asked how his sheep in Hungary would compare in number with these,—that his shepherds outnumbered the Englishman's sheep; we think of these things, and by degrees begin to understand how wool enough may be produced to furnish the broadcloths and flannels of the world. But the most strong and agile imagination is confounded when the material of silk is considered in the same way. Compare a caterpillar with a sheep; compare the cocoon[Pg 512] of a silkworm (the achievement of its life) with the annual fleece of a sheep; and the supply of silk for the looms of Europe, Asia, and America, seems a mere miracle. The marvel is the greater, not the less, when one is in a silk-growing region, attending to the facts and appearances, than when trying to conceive of them at home. In Lombardy, we travel from day to day, during the whole month of May, between rows of mulberry trees, where the peasants are busy providing food for the worms; a man in the tree stripping off the leaves, and two women below with sacks, to carry home the foliage. We see what tons of leaves per mile must be thus gathered daily for weeks together; we go into houses in every village to inspect the worm; we mount to the flat roofs of the dwellings, and find in each countless multitudes of the worms; we pass on, from country to country, till we mount to the hamlets, perched on the rocky shelves of the Lebanon; and we find every where the insect secreting its gum, or spinning it forth as silk; we remember that the same process is going forward in the heart of our Indian Peninsula, and throughout China; we look at the broad belt round the globe where the little worm is forming its cocoons; and still we find it impossible to imagine how enough silk is produced to supply the wants of the world, from the brocade of the Asiatic potentate to the wedding ribbon of the English dairy-maid. Nowhere is the speculation more difficult than in a dye-house at Coventry.

Probably there was as much wonder excited by the same thought, when King Henry VIII. wore the first pair of silk stockings brought to England from Spain; and when Francis I. looked after the mulberry trees in France, and fixed some silk weavers at Lyons; and when our Queen Mary passed a law forbidding servant-maids to wear ribbons on bonnets; and when monarch after monarch passed acts to teach how silk should be boiled, and whence it should be brought, and who should, and who should not, wear it when wrought; but the perplexity and amazement of king, lords, and commons could hardly, at any time, have exceeded that of the humblest visitor of to-day in any dye-house at Coventry. We know something of the fact of this astonishment; for we have been noting the wonders that are to be found on the premises of Messrs. Leavesley and Hands at Coventry.

On entering, we see, ranged along the counters, half round the room, bundles of glossy silk, of the most brilliant colors. Blues, rose-colors, greens, lilacs, make a rainbow of the place. It is only two days since this silk was brought in in a very different condition. The throwster (to throw, means to twist or twine), after spinning the raw silk, imported from Italy, Turkey, Bengal, and China, into thread fit for the loom, sent it here in bundles, gummy, harsh, dingy; except, indeed, the Italian, which looks, till washed, like fragments of Jason's fleece. If bundles, and regiments of bundles, like these, come into one dye-house every few days, to be prepared for the weaving of ribbons alone, and for the ribbon-weaving of a single town, it is overwhelming to think of the amount of production required for the broad silk-weaving of England, of Europe, of the world. Of the silk dyed at Coventry, about eighty per cent. is used for the ribbon-weaving of the city and neighborhood; and the quantity averages six tons and a half weekly. Of the remaining twenty per cent., half is used for the manufacture of fringes; and the other half goes to Macclesfield, Congleton, and Derby.

The harsh gummy silk that comes in from the throwing mills is boiled, wrung out, and boiled again. If it wants bleaching, there is a sort of open oven of a house; a vault in the yard where it is "sulphured." The heat, and the sensation in the throat, inform us in a moment where we have got to. When the hanks come forth from this process, every thread is separated from its neighbor, and the whole bundle is soft, dry, and glossy. Then follows the dyeing. To make the silk receive the colors, it is dipped in a mordant in some diluted acid, or solution of metal which enables the color to bite into the fibre. To make pinks of all shades, the silk is dipped in diluted tartaric acid for the mordant, and then in a decoction of safflower for the hue. To make plum-color or puce, indigo is the dye, with a cochineal. To make black, nitrate of iron first; then a washing follows; and then a dipping in logwood dye, mixed with soap and water. For a white, pure enough for ribbons, the silk has to pass through the three primary colors, yellow, red, and blue. The dipping, wringing, splashing, stirring, boiling, drying, go on vigorously, from end to end of the large premises, as may be supposed, when the fact is mentioned that the daily consumption of water amounts to one hundred thousand gallons. A reservoir, in the middle of the yard, formerly supplied the water; but it proved insufficient, or uncertain; and now it is about to be filled up, and an Artesian well is opened to the depth of one hundred and ninety-five feet. The dyeing sheds are paved with pebbles or bricks, crossed with gutters, and variegated with gay puddles. Stout brick-built coppers are stationed round the place. Above each copper are cocks, which let in hot and cold water from the pipes that travel round the walls of the sheds. There are wooden troughs for the dye; and to these troughs the water is conveyed by spouts. The silk hangs down into the dye from poles, smoothly turned and uniform, which are laid across the troughs by the dozen or more at once. These staves are procured from Derby. They cost from six shillings to twenty-four shillings per dozen, and constitute an independent subsidiary manufacture. The silk hanks being suspended[Pg 513] from those poles, two men, standing on either side the trough, take up two poles, souse, and shake, and plunge the silk, and turn that which had been uppermost under the surface of the liquor, and pass on to the next two. When done enough, the silk is wrung out and pressed, and taken to the drying-house. The heat in that large chamber is about one hundred degrees. On entering it, everybody begins to cough. The place is lofty and large. The staves, which are laid across beams, to contain the suspended silk, make little movable ceilings here and there. This chamber contains five or six hundred-weights of silk at once. Our minds glance once more towards the spinning insects on hearing this; and we ask again, how much of their produce may be woven into fabrics in Coventry alone? We think we must have made a mistake in setting down the weekly average at six tons and a half. But there was no mistake. It is really so.

While speaking of weight, we heard something which reminded us of King Charles I.'s opinions about some practices which were going forward before our eyes. It appears, that the silk which comes to the dye-house is heavy with gum, to the amount of one-fourth of its weight. This gum must be boiled out before the silk can be dyed. But the manufacturers of cheap goods require that the material shall not be so light as this process would leave it. It is dipped in well-sugared water, which adds about eight per cent. to its weight. Many tons of sugar per year are used as (what the proprietor called) "the silk-dyer's devil's dust." It was this very practice which excited the wrath of our pious King Charles, in all his horror of double-dealing. A proclamation of his, of the date of 1630, declares his fears of the consequences of "a deceitful handling" of the material, by adding to its weight in dyeing, and ordains that the whole shall be done as soft as possible; that no black shall be used but Spanish black, "and that the gum shall be fair boiled off before dyeing." He found, in time, that he had meddled with a matter that he did not understand, and had gone too far. Some of the fabrics of his day required to be made of "hard silk;" and he took back his orders in 1638, having become, as he said, "better-informed."

From trough to trough we go, breathing steam, and stepping into puddles, or reeking rivulets rippling over the stones of the pavement; but we are tempted on, like children, by the charm of the brilliant colors that flash upon the sight whichever way we turn. What a lilac this is! Is it possible that such a hue can stand? It could not stand even the drying, but for the alkali into which it is dipped. It is dyed in orchil first, and then made bluer, and somewhat more secure, by being soused in a well-soaped alkaline mixture. That is a good red brown. It is from Brazil wood, with alum for its mordant. This is a brilliant blue; indigo, of course? Yes, sulphate of indigo, with tartaric acid. Here are two yellows: how is that? One is much better than the other; moreover, it makes a better green; moreover, it wears immeasurably better. But what is it? The inferior one is the old-fashioned turmeric, with tartaric acid. And the improved yellow? Oh! we perceive. It is a secret of the establishment, and we are not to ask questions about it. But among all these men employed here, are there none accessible to a bribe from a rival in the art? There is no saying; for the men cannot be tempted. They do not know, any more than ourselves, what this mysterious yellow is. But why does it not supersede the old-fashioned turmeric? It will, no doubt; and it is gaining rapidly upon it; but it takes time to establish improvements. The improvement in greens, however, is fast recommending the new yellow. This deep amber is a fine color. We find it is called California, which has a modern sound in it. This Napoleon blue (not Louis Napoleon's) is a rich color. It gives a good deal of trouble. There is actually a precipitation of metal, of tin, upon every fibre, to make it receive the dye; and then it has to be washed; and then dipped again, before it can take a darker shade; and afterwards washed again, over and over, till it is dark enough; when it is finally soused in water which has fuller's earth in it, to make it soft enough for working and wear. What is doing with that dirty-white bundle? It is silk of a thoroughly bad color. Whether it is the fault of the worm, or of the worm's food, or what, there is no saying—that is the manufacturer's affair. He sent it here. It is now to be sulphured, and dipped in a very faint shade of indigo, curdled over with soap. This will improve it, but not make it equal to a purer white silk. Next, the wet hanks have to be squeezed in the Archimedean press, and then hung up in that large, hot drying-room.

One serious matter remains unintelligible to us. Plaid ribbons—that is, all sorts of checked ribbons—have been in fashion so long now, that we have had time to speculate (which we have often done), on how they can possibly be made. About the colors of the warp (the long way of the ribbon), we are clear enough. But how, in the weft, do the colors duly return, so as to make the stripes, and therefore the checks, recur at equal distances? We are now shown how this was done formerly, and how it is done now. Formerly, the hanks were tied very tightly, at equal distances, and the alternate spaces closely wrapped round with paper, or wound round with packthread. This took up a great deal of time. We were shown a much better plan. A shallow box is made, so as to hold within it the halves of several skeins of silk; these halves being curiously twisted, so as to alternate with the other halves when the hanks are shaken back into[Pg 514] their right position for winding. One half being within the box, and the other hanging out, the lid is bolted down so tight that the dye cannot creep into the box; and the out-hanging silk is dipped. So much can be done at once, that the saving of time is very great, and, judging by the prodigious array of plaid ribbons that we saw in the looms afterwards, the value of the invention is no trifle. The name of this novelty is the Clouding Box.

We see a bundle of cotton. What has cotton to do here? It is from Nottingham—very fine and well twisted. It is a pretty pink, and it costs one shilling and sixpence per pound to dye. But what is it for? Ah! that is the question! It is to mix in with silk, to make a cheap ribbon. Another pinch of devil's dust!

There is a calendering process employed in the final preparation of the dried silk, by which, we believe, its gloss is improved; but it was not in operation at the time of our visit. We saw, and watched with great curiosity, a still later process—more pretty to witness than easy to achieve—the making up of the hanks. This is actually the most difficult thing the men have to learn in the whole business. Of course, therefore, it is no matter for description. The twist, the insertion of the arm, the jerk, the drawing of the mysterious knot, may be looked at for hours and days, without the spectator having the least idea how the thing is done. We went from workman to workman—from him who was making up the blue, to him who was making up the red—we saw one of the proprietors make up several hanks at the speed of twenty in four minutes and a half, and we are no more likely to be able to do it, than if we had never entered a dye-house. Peeping Tom might spy for very long before he would be much the wiser; when done, the effect is beautiful. The snaky coils of the polished silk throw off the light like fragments of mirrors.

Another mysterious process is the marking of the silk which belongs to each manufacturer. The hanks and bundles are tied with cotton string; and this string is knotted with knots at this end, at that end, in the middle, in ties at the sides, with knots numbering from one to fifteen, twenty, or whatever number may be necessary; and the manufacturer's particular system of knots is posted in the books with his name, the quantity of silk sent in, the dye required, and all other particulars.

We were amused to find that there is a particular twist and a particular dye for the fringe of brown parasols. It is desired that there should be a claret tint on this fringe, when seen against the light; and here, accordingly, we find the claret tint. The silk is somewhat dull, from being hard twisted; it is to be made more lustrous by stretching, and we accompany it to the stretching machine. There it is suspended on a barrel and movable pin; by a man's weight applied to a wheel, the pin is drawn down, the hank stretches, and comes out two or more inches longer than it went in, and looking perceptibly brighter. A hank of bad silk snaps under this strain; a twist that will stand it is improved by it.

Looking into a little apartment, as we return through the yard, we find a man engaged in work which the daintiest lady might long to take out of his hands. He is making pattern-cards and books. He arranges the shades of all sorts of charming colors, named after a hundred pretty flowers, fruits, and other natural productions,—his lemons, lavenders, corn flowers, jonquils, cherries, fawns, pearls, and so forth; takes a pinch of each floss, knots it in the middle, spreads it at the ends, pastes down these ends, and, when he has a row complete, covers the pasted part with slips of paper, so numbered as that each number stands opposite its own shade of color. A pattern-book is as good as a rainbow for the pocket. This looks like a woman's work; but there are no women here. The men will not allow it. Women cannot be kept out of the ribbon-weaving; but in the dye-house they must not set foot, though the work, or the chief part of it, is far from laborious, and requires a good eye and tact, more than qualities less feminine. We found many apprentices in the works, receiving nearly half the amount of wages of their qualified elders. The men earn from ten shillings to thirty shillings a week, according to their qualifications. Nearly half of the whole number earn about fifteen shillings a week at the present time.

And, now, we are impatient to follow these pretty silk bundles to the factory, and see the weaving. It is strange to see, on our way to so thoroughly modern an establishment, such tokens of antiquity, or reminders of antiquity, as we have to pass. We pass under St. Michael's Church, and look up, amazed, to the beauty and loftiness of its tower and spire; the spire tapering off at a height of three hundred and twenty feet. The crumbling nature of the stone gives a richness and beauty to the edifice, which we would hardly part with for such clear outlines as those of the restored Trinity Church, close at hand. And then, at an angle of the market-place, there is Tom, peeping past the corner,—looking out of his window, through his spectacles, with a stealthy air, which, however ridiculous, makes one thrill, as with a whiff of the breeze which stirred the Lady Godiva's hair, on that memorable day, so long ago. It is strange, after this, to see the factory chimney, straight, tall, and handsome, in its way, with its inlaying of colored bricks, towering before us, to about the height of a hundred and thirty feet. No place has proved itself more unwilling than Coventry to admit such innovations. No place has made a more desperate resistance to the introduction of steam[Pg 515] power. No place has more perseveringly struggled for protection, with groans, menaces, and supplications. Up to a late period, the Coventry weavers believed themselves safe from the inroads of steam power. A Macclesfield manufacturer said, only twenty years ago, before a Committee of the House of Commons, that he despaired of ever applying power-looms to silk. This was because so much time was employed in handling and trimming the silk, that the steam power must be largely wasted. So thought the weavers, in the days when the silk was given out in hanks or bobbins, and woven at home, or, when the work was done by handloom weavers in the factory—called the loom-shop. The day was at hand, however, when that should be done of which the Macclesfield gentleman despaired. A small factory was set up in Coventry by way of experiment, in the use of steam power, in 1831. It was burned down during a quarrel about wages,—nobody knows how or by whom. The weavers declared it was not their doing; but their enmity to steam power was strong enough to restrain the employers from the use of it. It was not till every body saw that Coventry was losing its manufacture,—parting with it to places which made ribbons by steam,—that the manufacturers felt themselves able to do what must be done, if they were to save their trade. The state of things now is very significant. About seventy houses in Coventry make ribbons and trimmings, (fringes and the like.) Of these, four make fringes and trimmings, and no ribbons; and six or eight make both. Say that fifty-eight houses make ribbons alone. It is believed that three-fourths of the ribbons are made by no more than twenty houses out of these fifty-eight. There are now thirty steam powerloom factories in Coventry, producing about seven thousand pieces of ribbons in the week, and employing about three thousand persons. It seems not to be ascertained how large a proportion of the population are employed in the ribbon manufacture: but the increase is great since the year 1838, when the number was about eight thousand, without reckoning the outlying places, which would add about three thousand to the number. The total population of the city was found, last March, to amount to nearly thirty-seven thousand. So, if we reckon the numbers employed in connection with the throwing-mills and dye-houses, we shall see what an ascendency the ribbon manufacture has in Coventry.

At the factory we are entering, the preparatory processes are going forward at the top and the bottom of the building. In the yard is the boiler fire, which sets the engine to work; and, from the same yard, we enter workshops, where the machinery is made and repaired. The ponderous work of the men at the forge and anvils contrasts curiously with the delicacy of the fabric which is to be produced by the agency of these masses of iron and steel. Passing up a step-ladder, we find ourselves in a long room, where turners are at work, making the wooden apparatus required, piercing the "compass boards," for the threads to pass through, and displaying to us many ingenious forms of polished wood. While the apparatus is thus preparing below, the material of the manufacture is getting arranged, four stories overhead. There, under a skylight, women and girls are winding the silk from the hanks, upon the spools, for the shuttles. Here we see, again, the clouded silk, which is to make plaid ribbons, and the bright hues which delighted our eyes at the dyeing-house. This is easy work,—many of the women sitting at their reels; and the air is pure and cool. The great shaft from the engine, passing through the midst of the building, carries off the dust, and affords excellent ventilation. Besides this, the whole edifice is crowned by an observatory, with windows all round; and no complete ceilings shut off the air between this chamber and the rooms of two stories below. In clear weather, there is a fine view from this pinnacle, extending from the house, gardens, and orchard of the Messrs. Hamerton below, over the spires of Coventry, to a wide range of country beyond.

Descending from the long room, where the winding is going on, we find ourselves in an apartment which it does one good to be in. It is furnished with long narrow tables, and benches put there for the sake of the work-people, who may like to have their tea at the factory, in peace and quiet. They can have hot water, and make themselves comfortable here. Against the door hangs a list of books, read, or to be read, by the people: and a very good list it is. Prints, from Raffaelle's Bible, plainly framed, are on the walls. In the middle of the room, on, and beside, a table, are four men and boys, preparing the "strapping" of a Jacquard loom for work. The cords, so called, are woven at Shrewsbury. We next enter a room where a young man is engaged in the magical work of "reading in from the draught." The draught is the pattern of the intended ribbon, drawn and painted upon diced paper,—like the patterns for carpets that we saw at Kendal, but a good deal larger, though the article to be produced here is so much smaller. The young man sits, as at a loom. Before him hangs the mass of cords he is to tie into pattern, close before his face, like the curtain of a cabinet piano. Upreared before his eyes is his pattern, supported by a slip of wood. He brings the line he has to "read in" to the edge of this wood, and then, with nimble fingers, separates the cords, by threes, by sevens, by fives, by twelves, according to the pattern, and threads through them the string which is to tie them apart. The skill and speed with which he feels out his cords, while his eyes are fixed on his pattern, appear very remarkable; but when we come to consider, it is not so complicated a[Pg 516] process as playing at sight on the piano. The reader has to deal thus with one chapter, or series, or movement, of his pattern. A da capo ensues: in other words, the Jacquard cards are tied together, to begin again; and there is a revolution of the cards, and a repetition of the pattern, till the piece of ribbon is finished. In the same apartment is the press in which the Jacquard cards are prepared; just in the way which may be seen wherever silk or carpet weaving, with Jacquard looms, goes forward.

All the preparations having been seen—the making of the machinery, the filling of the spools, the drawing and "reading in" of the pattern, and the tying of the cords or strapping, we have to see the great process of all, the actual weaving. We certainly had no idea how fine a spectacle it might be. Floor above floor is occupied with a long room in each, where the looms are set as close as they can work, on either hand, leaving only a narrow passage between. It may seem an odd thing to say; but there is a kind of architectural grandeur in these long lofty rooms, where the transverse cords of the looms and their shafts and beams are so uniform, as to produce the impression that symmetry, on a large scale, always gives. Looking down upon the details, there is plenty of beauty. The light glances upon the glossy colored silks, depending, like a veil, from the backs of the looms, where women and girls are busy piercing the imperfect threads with nimble fingers. There seems to be plenty for one person to do; for there are thirteen broad ribbons, or a greater number of narrow ones, woven at once, in a single loom; yet it may sometimes be seen that one person can attend the fronts, and another the backs of two looms. In the front we see the thirteen ribbons getting made. Usually, they are of the same pattern, in different colors. The shuttles, with their gay little spools, fly to and fro, and the pattern grows, as of its own will. Below is a barrel, on which the woven ribbon is wound. Slowly revolving, it winds off the fabric as it is finished, leaving the shuttles above room to ply their work.

The variety of ribbons is very great, though in this factory we saw no gauzes, nor, at the time of our visit, any of the extremely rich ribbons which made such a show at the Exhibition. Some had an elegant and complicated pattern, and were woven with two shuttles (called the double-batten weaving) which came forward alternately, as the details of the rich flower or leaf required the one or the other. There were satin ribbons, in weaving which only one thread in eight is taken up,—the gloss being given by the silk loop which covers the other seven. On entering, we saw some narrow scarlet satin ribbons, woven for the Queen. Wondering what Her Majesty could want with ribbon of such a color and quality, we were set at ease by finding that it was not for ladies, but horses. It was to dress the heads of the royal horses. There were bride-like, white-figured ribbons, and narrow flimsy black ones, fit for the wear of the poor widow who strives to get together some mourning for Sundays. There were checked ribbons, of all colors and all sizes in the check. There were stripes of all varieties of width and hue. There were diced ribbons, and speckled, and frosted. There were edges which may introduce a beautiful harmony of coloring; as primrose with a lilac edge, green with a purple edge, rose color and brown, puce and amber, and so on. The loops of pearl or shell edges are given by the silk being passed round horse-hairs, which are drawn out when the thing is done. There are belts,—double ribbons,—which have other material than silk in them; and there are a good many which are plain at one edge, and ornamented at the other. These are for trimming dresses. One reason why there are so few gauzes, is that the French beat us there. They grow the kind of silk that is best for that fabric, and labor is cheap with them; so that any work in which labor bears a large proportion to the material, is peculiarly suitable for them.

We have spent so much time among the looms, that it is growing dusk in their shadows, though still light enough in the counting house for us to look over the pattern-book, and admire a great many patterns, most, till we see more. Young women are weighing ribbons in large scales; and a man is measuring off some pieces, by reeling. He cuts off remnants, which he casts into a basket, where they look so pretty that, lest we should be conscious of any shop-lifting propensities, we turn away. There is a glare now through the window which separates us from the noisy weaving room. The gas is lighted, and we step in again, just to see the effect. It is really very fine. The flare of the separate jets is lost behind the screens of silken threads, which veil the backs of the looms, while the yellow light touches the beams, and gushes up to the high ceiling in a thousand caprices. Surely the ribbon manufacture is one of the prettiest that we have to show.

If the Coventry people were asked whether their chief manufacture was in a flourishing state, the most opposite answers would probably be given by different parties equally concerned. Some exult, and some complain, at this present time. As far as we can make out, the state of things is this. From the low price of provisions, multitudes have something more to spare from their weekly wages than formerly, for the purchase of finery: and the demand for cheap ribbons has increased wonderfully. As always happens when any manufacture is prosperous, the operatives engage their whole families in it. We may see the father weaving; his wife, on the verge of her confinement, winding in another room, or, perhaps, standing behind a loom, piecing the whole day long. The little girls[Pg 517] fill the spools; the boys are weaving somewhere else. The consequences of this devotion of whole households to one business, are as bad here as among the Nottingham lace-makers, or the Leicester hosiers. Not only is there the misery before them of the whole family being adrift at once, when bad times come, but they are doing their utmost to bring on those bad times. Great as is the demand, the production has, thus far, much exceeded it. The soundest capitalists may be heard complaining that theirs is a losing trade. Less substantial capitalists have been obliged to get rid of some of their stock at any price they could obtain: and those ribbons, sold at a loss, intercept the sales of the fair-dealing manufacturer. This cannot go on. Prosperous as the working-classes of Coventry have been, for a considerable time, a season of adversity must be within ken, if the capitalists find the trade a bad one for them. We find the case strongly stated, and supported by facts, in a tract, on the Census of Coventry, which has lately been published there. It might save a repetition of the misery which the Coventry people brought upon themselves formerly—by their tenacity about protective duties, and their opposition to steam power—if they would, before it is too late, ponder the facts of their case, and strive, every man in his way, to yield respect to the natural demand for the great commodity of his city; and to take care that the men of Coventry shall be fit for something else than weaving ribbons.

From the Examiner.


Niebuhr was born pre-eminently gifted, was trained by intellectual and tender parents, and his whole career is one story of the progress made by a mind which united extraordinary powers with untiring industry. But Niebuhr was not only born to achieve greatness. He achieved love and friendship in every relation of his life, he was a high-minded and in the purest sense of the word an earnest man. In intellect he was a giant among us; but in him the intellect was not a statue raised above the moral life, on which it trod as on a pedestal, a block of mere stone-mason's work; his heart had not been used up in the making of his brains, or his soul cleared out a sacrifice to make room for a new stock of understanding. We may yield our minds up to admire Niebuhr unreservedly, and it is pleasant therefore to get a Life of him in English, so full as this is of the actual man, as he poured out portions thereof to his bosom friends, and wherein the large lumps of true Niebuhr gold are contained in a biographic deposit which itself is a long way removed from dross. The quiet, unaffected way in which this work has been done by the English writer of the book before us, her elegant simplicity of style, her thorough mastery of the subject, enable us to pass from Life to Letters, and from Letters back to Life, without any sense but of a perfect harmony between both. The two volumes are of a kind that can be read through from the beginning to the end with unremitting pleasure. We strongly suspect that Niebuhr, at the age of twelve, would have bewildered with his knowledge some few of our university professors. Here is part of a sketch, representing him when he was not very far removed from long clothes:

How keenly alive he was to poetical impressions appears from a letter of Boje's written in 1783: "This reminds me of little Niebuhr. His docility, his industry, and his devoted love for me procure me many a pleasant hour. A short time back I was reading 'Macbeth' aloud to his parents without taking any notice of him, till I saw what an impression it made upon him. Then I tried to render it all intelligible to him, and even explained to him how the witches were only poetical beings. When I was gone, he sat down (he is not yet seven years old), and wrote it all out on seven sheets of paper without omitting one important point, and certainly without any expectation of receiving praise for it; for, when his father asked to see what he had written, and showed it to me, he cried for fear he had not done it well. Since then he writes down every thing of importance that he hears from his father or me. We seldom praise him, but just quietly tell him where he has made any mistake, and he avoids the fault for the future.

"The child's character early exhibited a rare union of the faculty of poetical insight with that of accurate practical observation. The amusements he contrived for himself afford an illustration of this. During the periods of his confinement to the house, before he was old enough to have any paper given him, he covered with his writings and drawings the margins of the leaves of several copies of Forskaal's works, which were used in the house as waste paper. Then he made copy books for himself, in which he wrote essays, mostly on political subjects. He had an imaginary empire called Low-England, of which he drew maps, and he promulgated laws, waged wars, and made treaties of peace there. His father was pleased that he should occupy himself with amusements of this kind, and his sister took an active part in them. There still exist among his papers many of his childish productions; among others, translations and interpretations of passages of the New Testament, poetical paraphrases from the classics, sketches of little poems, a translation of Poncet's Travels in Ethiopia, an historical and geographical description of Africa, written in 1787 (the two last were undertaken as presents to his father on his birth-day), and many other things mostly written during these years."

Here is Niebuhr, at the age of thirty-four, Professor in Berlin, after he had retired from official trusts which had imposed as many toils upon him as would have made an enormously active life for one of the most ancient tenants of our English pension list to look back upon:

[Pg 518]

"Niebuhr's relinquishment of office, in 1810, forms an important epoch in his life. He was now thirty-four years of age, and since his twentieth year (with the exception of the sixteen months passed in England and Scotland), had been actively engaged in the public service. During this period he had indeed never lost sight of his philological researches, but he had only been able to devote to them his few hours of leisure; now, it was to be seen whether he could find satisfaction in the life of a student, after years passed in the midst of the great world, and surrounded by exciting circumstances. How far he had, however, turned these leisure hours to account, may be judged by the following memorandum, found, with many others of a similar kind, among his papers, and written most probably in Copenhagen about 1803:

"Works which I have to complete: 1. Treatise on Roman Domains. 2. Translation of El Wakidi 3. History of Macedon. 4. Account of the Roman Constitution at its various Epochs. 5. History of the Achæan Confederation, of the Wars of the Confederates, and of the Civil Wars of Marius and Sylla, 6. Constitutions of the Greek States. 7. Empire of the Caliphs."

"No detailed outlines of these, or any of his other literary undertakings are to be found; but it must not be inferred that such memoranda contain mere projects, towards whose execution no steps were ever taken. That Niebuhr proposed any such work to himself, was a certain sign that he had read and thought deeply on the subject, but he was able to trust so implicitly to his extraordinary memory, that he never committed any portion of his essays to paper, till the whole was complete in his own mind. His memory was so wonderfully retentive, that he scarcely ever forgot any thing which he had once heard or read, and the facts he knew remained present to him at all times, even in their minutest details.

"His wife and his sister once playfully took up Gibbon, and asked him questions from the table of contents about the most trivial things, by way of testing his memory. They carried on the examination till they were tired, and gave up all hope of even detecting him in a momentary uncertainty, though he was at the same time engaged in writing on some other subject. He was once conversing with a party of Austrian officers about Napoleon's Italian campaigns. Some dispute arose respecting the position of different corps in the battle of Marengo. Niebuhr described exactly how they were placed, and the progress of the action. The officers contradicted him; but on maps being brought he was found to be in the right, and to know more of the details of the conflict than the very officers who had been present. One day, when he was talking with Professor Welcker of Bonn, the conversation happened to turn on the weather, and Niebuhr quoted the results of barometrical observations in the different years, as far back as 1770, with perfect accuracy. This power was not a merely mechanical faculty; it was intimately connected with the power of instantaneously seizing on all the relations of any fact placed before him, and with his wonderful imagination; his imagination, however, was that of an historian, not of a poet—it was not creative, but enabled him to form from the most various, and apparently inadequate sources, distinct and truthful pictures of scenes, actions, and characters. Hence his keen delight in travels: hence, too, his habit of pronouncing judgment on the men of other countries and of past times, with all the warmth of a fellow-countryman and a contemporary.

"With his warm affections, and clear-sighted moral sense, it was impossible for him to form such opinions on past or present history, coolly standing aloof, as it were, and regarding the subject with calm superiority; he could not but condemn and despise all that was pernicious and base; he could not but love and reverence, with his whole heart, whatever was noble and beautiful. Such opinions and feelings he expressed with the utmost frankness, sometimes even with vehemence, when prudence would have counselled more guarded language."

Here is Professor Niebuhr holding up a bright example to our friends who fear to look ridiculous in rifle clubs:

"On the evacuation of Berlin by the French in February, 1813, Niebuhr shared in the national rejoicings, and not less in the enthusiasm displayed in the preparations for the complete re-conquest of freedom. When the Landwehr was called out, he refused to evade serving in it, as he could take no other part in the war. His wish was to act as secretary to the general staff; but if this were not possible, he meant to enter the service as a volunteer with some of his friends. For this purpose he went through the exercises, and when the time came for those of his age to be summoned, sent in his name as a volunteer to the Landwehr. He would have preferred entering a regular regiment, and applied to the King for permission to do so; but this request was refused by him, and he added that he would give him other commissions more suited to his talents.

"Niebuhr's friends in Holstein could hardly trust their eyes when he wrote them word that he was drilling for the army, and that his wife entered with equal enthusiasm into his feelings. The greatness of the object had so inspired Madame Niebuhr, who was usually anxious, even to a morbid extent, at the slightest imaginable peril for the husband in whom she might truly be said to live, that she was willing and ready to bring even her most precious treasure as a sacrifice to her country."

Hitherto we have quoted the biography, but on this point, and at a time when we are seeking to forearm ourselves against the chance of evil, it may edify us to hear Niebuhr himself speak on the theme of ball practice. Niebuhr, it should be remembered, writes at a time when two volumes of his great work, the "History of Rome," had been appreciated by the public:

"I come from an employment in which you will hardly be able to fancy me engaged—namely, exercising. Even before the departure of the French, I began to go through the exercise in private, but a man can scarcely acquire it without companions. Since the French left, a party of about twenty of us have been exercising in a garden, and we have already got over the most difficult part of the training. When my lectures are concluded, which they will be at the beginning of next week, I shall try to exercise with regular recruits during the morning, and as often as possible practice shooting at a mark..... By the end of a month I hope to be as well drilled as any recruit who is considered to have finished his training. The heavy musket[Pg 519] gave me so much trouble at first, that I almost despaired of being able to handle it; but we are able to recover the powers again that we have only lost for want of practice. I am happy to say that my hands are growing horny; for as long as they had a delicate bookworm's skin, the musket cut into them terribly."

And now let us give a view of Niebuhr as Professor in Bonn, together with a few well-written notes upon his character:

"We have seen that, at Berlin, Niebuhr delivered his lectures verbatim from written notes. At Bonn, on the contrary, his only preparation consisted in meditating for a short time on the subject of his lecture, and referring to authorities for his data, when he found it necessary, and he brought no written notes with him to the lecture-room. His success in imparting his ideas varied greatly at different times, as it depended almost entirely on his mental and physical condition at the moment. He always felt a certain difficulty in expressing himself. He grasped his subject as a whole, and it was not easy to him to retrace the steps by which he had arrived at his results. Hence his style was harsh and often disjointed; and yet he possessed a species of eloquence whose value is of a high order—that of making the expression the exact reflection of the thought—that of embodying each separate idea in an adequate, but not redundant form. The discourse was no dry, impersonal statement of facts and arguments, or even opinions; the whole man, with his conceptions, feelings, moral sentiments, nay passions too, was mirrored forth in it. Hence Niebuhr not merely informed and stimulated the minds of his hearers, but attracted their affections. That he did this in an eminent degree, was not indeed owing to his lectures alone, but also to his kind and generous conduct. All who deserved it were sure of his sympathy and assistance, whether oppressed by intellectual difficulties, or pecuniary cares. During the first year, he delivered his lectures without remuneration; afterwards, on its being represented to him that this would be injurious to other professors who could not afford to do the same, he consented to take fees, but employed them in assisting poor scholars and founding prizes. He often, however, still remitted the fee privately, when he perceived that a young man could not well afford it, and never took any from friends.

"But those who were admitted to his domestic circle were the class most deeply indebted to him. His interest in all subjects of scientific or moral importance was always lively; and it was impossible to be in his company without deriving some accession of knowledge and incentive to good. From his associates he only required a warm and pure heart and a sincere love of knowledge, with a freedom from affectation or arrogance. Where he found these, he willingly adapted himself to the wants and capacities of his companions; would receive objections mildly, and take pains to answer them, even when urged by mere youths, and weigh carefully every new idea presented to him. He was fond of society, and while his irritability not seldom gave rise to slight misunderstandings and even temporary estrangements in the circle of his acquaintance, there were some friends with whom he always remained on terms of unbroken intimacy, among whom may be named Professors Brandis, Arndt, Nitzsch, Bleek, Näke, Welcker, and Hollweg. He enjoyed wit in others, and in his lighter moods racy and pointed sayings escaped him not unfrequently.

"His intercourse was not confined to literary circles. In all the civil affairs of the town and neighborhood he took an active interest from principle as well as inclination, for he considered a man as no good citizen who refused to take his share of the public business of the neighborhood in which he lived; and the loss which left so great a blank in the world of letters, was also deeply regretted by his fellow-townsmen of Bonn. Niebuhr's mode of life at Bonn was very regular, and his habits simple. He hated show and unnecessary luxury in domestic life. He loved art in her proper place, but could not bear to see her degraded into the mere minister of outward ease. His life in his own family showed the erroneousness of the assertion that a thorough devotion to learning is inconsistent with the claims of family affection. He liked to hear of all the little household occurrences, and his sympathy was as ready for the little sorrows of his children as for the misfortunes of a nation. He was in the habit of rising at seven in the morning, and retiring at eleven. At the simple one o'clock dinner, he generally conversed cheerfully upon the contents of the newspapers which he had just looked through. The conversation was usually continued during the walk which he took immediately afterwards. The building of a house, or the planting of a garden, had always an attraction for him, and he used to watch the measuring of a wall, or the breaking open of an entrance, with the same species of interest with which he observed the development of a political organization. The family drank tea at eight o'clock, when any of his acquaintance were always welcome. But during the hours spent in his library, his whole being was absorbed in his studies, and hence he got through an immense amount of work in an incredibly short time."

Finally, here is the death of the immortal historian:

"The last political occurrence in which Niebuhr was strongly interested, was the trial of the ministers of Charles the Tenth; it was indirectly the cause of his death. He read the reports in the French journals with eager attention; and as these newspapers were much in request at that time, from the universal interest felt in their contents, he did not in general go to the public reading-rooms where he was accustomed to see the papers daily, until the evening. On Christmas Eve and the following day, he was in better health and spirits than he had been for a long while, but on the evening of the 25th of December he spent a considerable time waiting and reading in the hot news-room, without taking off his thick fur cloak, and then returned home through the bitter frosty night air, heated in mind and body. Still full of the impression made on him by the papers, he went straight to Classen's room, and exclaimed, 'That is true eloquence! You must read Sauzet's speech; he alone declares the true state of the case; that this is no question of law, but an open battle between hostile powers! Sauzet must be no common man! But,' he added immediately, 'I have taken a severe chill, I must go to bed.' And from the couch which he then sought, he never rose again, except for one hour, two days afterwards, when he was forced to return to it[Pg 520] quickly with warning symptoms of his approaching end.

"His illness lasted a week, and was pronounced, on the fourth day, to be a decided attack of inflammation on the lungs. His hopes sank at first, but rose with his increasing danger and weakness; even on the morning of the last day he said, 'I may still recover.' Two days before, his faithful wife, who had exerted herself beyond her strength in nursing him, fell ill and was obliged to leave him. He then turned his face to the wall, and exclaimed with the most painful presentiment, 'Hapless house! To lose father and mother at once!' And to the children he said, 'Pray to God, children! He alone can help us!' And his attendants saw that he himself was seeking comfort and strength in silent prayer. But when his hopes of life revived, his active and powerful mind soon demanded its wonted occupation. The studies that had been dearest to him through life, remained so in death; his love to them was proved to be pure and genuine by its unwavering perseverance to the last. While he was on his sick bed, Classsen read aloud to him for hours the Greek text of the Jewish History of Josephus, and he followed the sense with such ease and attention, that he suggested several emendations in the text at the moment; this may be called an unimportant circumstance, but it always appeared to us one of the most wonderful proofs of his mental powers. The last learned work in which he was able to testify his interest, was the description of Rome by Bunsen and his friends, which had just been sent to him; the preface to the first volume was read aloud to him, and called forth expressions of pleasure and approbation. He also asked for light reading to pass the time, but our attempts to satisfy him were unsuccessful. A friend proposed the 'Briefe eines Verstorbenen,' which was then making a great sensation; but he declined it, faying he feared that its levity would jar upon his feelings. One of Cooper's novels was recommended to him, and excited his ridicule by its extraordinary verbiage; he was much amused by trying an experiment he proposed, which consisted in taking one period at hap-hazard on each page; and by the discovery that this mode of reading did little violence to the connection of the story. The 'Colnishe Zeitung' was read aloud to him up to the last day, with extracts from the French and other journals. He asked for them expressly, only twelve hours before his death, and gave his opinion half in jest about the change of ministry in Paris. But on the afternoon of the 1st of January, 1831, he sank into a dreamy slumber; once on awakening, he said that pleasant images floated before him in sleep; now and then he spoke French in his dreams; probably he felt himself in the presence of his departed friend De Serre. As the night gathered, consciousness gradually faded away; he woke up once more about midnight, when the last remedy was administered; he recognized in it a medicine of doubtful operation, never resorted to but in extreme cases, and said in a faint voice, 'What essential substance is this? Am I so far gone?' These were his last words; he sank back on his pillow, and within an hour his noble heart had ceased to beat."

"Niebuhr's wife died nine days after him, on the 11th of the same month, about the same hour of the night. She died, in fact, of a broken heart, though her disease was, like his, an inflammation of the chest. She could shed no tears, though she longed for them, and prayed God to send them; once her eyes grew moist, when his picture was brought to her at her own request, but they dried again, and her heavy heart was not relieved. She had her children often with her, particularly her son, and gave them her parting counsels. And so her loving and pure soul went home to God. Both rest in one grave, over which the present King of Prussia has erected a monument to the memory of his former instructor and counsellor. The children were placed under the care of Madame Hensler, at Kiel."

Our copious extracts from the biographic portion of the work will amply satisfy the mind of any one who needs more than report to convince him of the tact and good taste which have presided over the transformation of Madame Hensler's Lebensnachrichten into a readable and interesting book, which is likely to be read for years as the best English record of a life that will be looked back upon with interest by all posterity.


[20] The Life and Letters of Barthold George Niebuhr; with Essays on his Character and Influence, by the Chevalier Bunsen and Professors Brandis and Loebell. Two volumes. Chapman & Hall.

From Household Words.


The concentrated wisdom of nations used formerly to be sought for in their proverbs; we look for it now-a-days in their newspapers. Whether we always find what we seek, in this respect, may be a question; but something is sure to turn up in them that will repay the search, though the leading article, the records of parliament and of law, or even the letters of "our own correspondent," may fail to disclose it. The "intelligent" reader will at once see that we point to the advertising columns, but we are not going to inflict an epitome of the first and second pages of the Times, or present an abstract of its Supplement, characteristic of our country as the result might prove. We purpose to go somewhat further afield, and tread upon ground hitherto unbroken. A file of South American newspapers has suggested to us that it might prove amusing, if not instructive, to describe the wants and wishes, the habits of life, and something of the pervading tone of society, in certain parts of that hemisphere, as shown in the advertisements of the periodical journals. We have selected the city of Buenos Ayres for this illustration, and turn at once to our file.

The political feature is absent here, for where men have always arms in their hands to establish a new "Constitution," or destroy an old one, they look elsewhere than to a newspaper advertisement for the arena wherein to exhibit their valor or patriotism. Their "London Tavern," their "Town Hall," their "Copenhagen Fields," or "Bull-ring," are to be found on their wide-spreading Pampas, or in the fastnesses of their Sierras, with the lasso at the saddle-bow, the sharp spur on the heel, the trabrigo (carbine) in the holster,[Pg 521] and the lance or sabre in the grasp. These politicians have no time for reading or writing advertisements, nor would it answer any very useful purpose if they did. The only attempt that is ever made to catch the patriotic eye, is where a formal notice is issued by the authorities, touching taxes, or a muster of militia for some peaceful end; on these occasions, a "Viva la Federation!" (Long live the Confederation!) appears at the head of the advertisement announcing the fact; and when it has a quasi-military character attached to it, the portrait of an infantry soldier under arms, in white tights, Hessian boots, crossbelts, stiff stock, and ponderous chako (none of them very pleasant things to think of in latitude thirty-four degrees south, with the thermometer ninety-six in the shade), is invariably added. But the confederation is not appealed to merely because the nature of the advertisement may seem to require it; we find the same heart-stirring refresher associated with ass's milk, live turtle, runaway slaves—with everything, indeed, that has an interest for the community, portable or edible, necessary to its comfort, or serviceable to its desires.

But if liberty has very little claim on the advertising columns of a newspaper in Buenos Ayres, there is a large set-off in favor of slavery. The papers teem with notices concerning that portion of the people who have the misfortune not to belong to themselves. And here it may be desirable to advert to a feature which is essential to the success of an advertisement in South America; it must be pictorial. Our own country newspapers, and most of the continental ones,—those of our Parisian friends in particular,—show us what can be done in this way; but they do not elaborate their subject after the manner of the Buenos-Ayreans. With them the advertisement must have a double chance; they who can read may enjoy the advantages of a liberal education in plain type;—they who have not been introduced to the schoolmaster may gather the meaning of the "noticia" from the greater or less striking resemblance of the object advertised to the woodcut which illustrates it. It is true, a difficulty may sometimes arise in the latter case, owing to an economical employment of the same block to represent a great variety of actions; the same slave is always in the attitude of a fugitive, whether he be described as running away with all his might, or quietly standing still to be sold; the same horse is always in a high trotting condition, whether he be supposed to career across the plain, or hold up a foot to be shod; the same bull has always his head bent down, with the same mischievous poke of the horns, whether he be advertised for slaughter or recommended for sport.

A cook who might make a pudding with quick-lime instead of flour, and instead of a bath-brick send in a real one, would not accord with the notions of an English housewife. Female slaves who are to be sold, are represented as like to Atalanta, as the males are to Hippomenes. They, too, attired in a long night-gown, which has very much the look of impeding their flight, are always bolting with a bundle, which probably contains the bonnet they never appear in, or the shoes they are not supposed to wear. In like manner, if you wish to buy (se desca comprar) a slave, of either sex, you do so with your eyes open; for the great probability that the new purchase will vanish on the first favorable opportunity, is vividly get forth in the woodcut that speaks for all. The prices are tolerably high,—a boy, as we have seen, fetches nine hundred dollars; a woman-servant (una criada), fifteen hundred; and a man in the prime of his age,—for manual labor,—eighteen hundred, or two thousand. What a fortune Louis Napoleon might make, if he could establish a market-value for those whom he proscribes! M. Thiers would then be worth four hundred pounds!

The next step is to religion,—or, at least, to its forms and ceremonies. We see the vignette of an altar-table, covered with a fair cloth, whereon stand a crucifix, and a pair of long waxen tapers, in full blaze, a holy-water pot, and a sprinkling-brush, are placed beside the table, beneath which is spread a handsome carpet. So much for the emblem; now for the text:

"Doña Agustina Lopez de Rosas, the citizens Don Prudencio and Don Gervacio Ortiz de Rosas, and others, brothers, wife, and sons of the deceased Don Leon Ortiz de Rosas (Q.E.P.D.), invite those gentlemen who, by accident, have not received notes of invitation, to accompany them to pray to God for mercy on the soul of the aforesaid deceased, in the Cathedral Church, at ten o'clock of the 20th of March current, by which they will feel under infinite obligation."

The next is a more than half-obliterated impression of an image of the sun, partly obscured by clouds, with the obligato crucifix in the midst, headed "Ave Maria;"—it is the third advertisement (tercer aviso), and is addressed by the Superiors (Mayordomos) of the most Holy Rosary to all faithful and devout sons of the most holy Mary.

The text of this address we need not give; the substance will be sufficient. It tells the history of the completion of the two naves and other parts of the church of the Patriarch San Domingo, which have been painted, whitewashed, and otherwise decorated, in the sight of all the faithful (à la vista de todos los fieles), and—to make a long story short—money is wanted to make it what the priests wish it, and' therefore the superiors intend to stand daily in the chief porch to receive subscriptions, the smallest sums being—as in England, and every where else—most gratefully received.

The mortuary advertisements are not absolutely a transition "from praying to purse-taking;"[Pg 522] only a variety of the same general mode of dealing. We select two of these:—In the first, we behold a lady in the full-dress evening costume of the Empire, with a very short waist, and very little drapery above it, leaning pensively against a funereal monument; an embroidered pocket-handkerchief being placed beneath one elbow, to protect it from the cold marble; in her left hand she carries a substantial wooden cross, which is held so as to fall over the shoulder; a weeping willow on the opposite side to the mourning lady balances the composition. Below the picture is the announcement that "Funereal letters (Esquelas de Funerales) of every tasteful description, engraved as well as lithographic, and at a very moderate price, are to be obtained at the printing-office of the Mercantile Gazette, in the street of Cangallo, No. 75, where designs of all kinds maybe seen." The second is more sombre in outward show, but less applicable to the general business of the advertiser. It is headed, "Interesting to all whom it may concern." (Interesante à quienes conguenga.) We have here a very black tree, a very black tombstone, and a very black sky; the outline of the two former relieved by gleams of light from a very full moon; and having gazed our fill on these melancholy objects, are told that—"In the street of Victory, at No. 63-1/2, at all hours of the day, an individual is to be met with who undertakes to supply every description of cards or notes of invitation, whether for funerals or any other kind of entertainment; he undertakes at the same time to serve those gentlemen who may honor him with their orders, with the very best goods, &c.," after the approved fashion of advertisers all over the globe.

Natural history affords the Buenos-Ayreans great scope for their artistical genius. Don Federico Costa announces a grand spectacle of wild beasts; and that there may be no mistake about what he has to show, he heralds his collections with the full-length portrait of an Uran-utan (Orangutan), which he describes as a native of Africa. This interesting animal is seated on a bank, with a large stick in one hand, looking over his shoulder, and displays an endless amount of fingers and toes; the greater the number, the nearer, in Don Federico's opinion, the creature's approach to humanity. There is a wonderful bit of shadow thrown from one of the Uran-utan's legs, which puts one in mind of the footprint that so startled Robinson Crusoe; and, indeed, the general appearance of the animal is not unlike some of the earlier portraits of that renowned mariner, only nature has done for the Uran-utan what art and goat-skins accomplished for the solitary of Juan Fernandez.

The moral attributes of Don Federico's pet are strongly insisted upon in the advertisement,—his excellent disposition, the ingenuity of his mind, and (included in "la moral") the surprising dexterity with which he scoops out the contents of a cocoa-nut "in a manner most pleasing (muy agradáble) to the beholders." His companions in captivity are porcupines, tiger-cats, ounces, armadillos, and a number of animals bearing local names, besides divers snakes of different colors, two thousand well-preserved insects, and, finally, (por último,) a collection of antiquities from Mexico. The price of admission is two reales—the universal shilling; and children, in Buenos Ayres, as in London, are admitted for half-price.

A livelier turtle than that which is figured for the edification of the gourmands who frequent the Hotel of Liberty in the street of the 25th of May, it would be difficult to find even in the celebrated cellars of Leadenhall-street. If we were wholly unacquainted with the domestic habits of these scaly delicacies, we might easily imagine, from the picture here given, that the way a turtle gets over the ground is by flying, his outstretched feet and flippers serving him for wings. This advertisement is brief,—on the principle that good wine needs no bush. We are merely informed that turtle-soup, cutlets, and broiled fins, are to be had from mid-day till sunset. There is no occasion for the hotel proprietor to waste his money in commending wares such as these. The picture and the hour of consummation would have been enough.

It is well that invalids should be told, that at No. 76, in the Street of Maipú, the milk of an ass "recently confined" is always on sale; but the woodcut attached to the advertisement makes the fact appear doubtful; for a sturdier male animal than the "burro" there depicted, was never painted by Morland or Gainsborough. This, however, may arise from the necessity which exists for one of a sort doing duty for all. But there is another singularity in this advertisement. With no line to indicate a fresh subject, as is the case in every other instance, the portrait of the ass is always followed by the words "Long live the Confederation! Death to the Unitarians!" These lines have puzzled us; and we hesitate to give the only explanation that strikes us: something disrespectful, in short, to the Confederation of Buenos Ayres.

It is not only the slaves that run away in that part of South America: the infection extends to dogs, horses, and oxen, all of which, like Caliban, seem for ever on the look out to "have a new master, get a new man," to hunt, ride, or drive them. There is a daily column, headed "Perdida," in which long-tailed horses, with flowing manes, pointers in immovable attitudes, for ever pointing, and sinister-looking bulls—thorough-paced gamblers, always ready for pitch-and-toss—are advertised as having left their owners, who strive to win them back by rewards varying twenty to fifty dollars. In all these cases the missing animals are described as[Pg 523] having "disappeared" (desaparecido)—a mild term for "stolen;" it being the Spanish custom to refrain from "wounding ears polite"—except when the blood is up; then, indeed, they may take the field against Uncle Toby's army, that swore so terribly in Flanders.

This delicate mode of appealing to the consciences of thieves—which, carried fairly out, would probably bear a strong resemblance in the end to the politeness of Mr. Chucks—is extended to property of all kinds. A large watch, of the genus turnip, the hands pointing to half-past eleven, the time, perhaps, when the robbery is supposed to have taken place, and accompanied by the expressive word "Ojo" (look sharp) thrice repeated, indicates, what the advertisement soon plainly tells, that from No. 69, in Emerald-street, there have "disappeared" a valuable lot of articles, which give a very good idea of the turn-out of a well-mounted horseman in South America. There are, first, several pairs of large silver spurs—and a pair of Spanish spurs, when melted down, would make a decent service of plate,—quite enough for a "testimonial" to ourselves; and then come braided headstalls and bridles, with twisted chains and cavessons of silver; the reins hung with silver-bells, and decorated with silver bosses, and the bits and curbs heavily mounted with the same costly metal. This robbery has been evidently "a put-up thing," for there is no word of housebreaking,—merely a disappearance; and all silversmiths, pawnbrokers, and the public in general, are entreated (se suplica à los, &c.) to detain the article, if offered, and a reward of two hundred dollars will be given. Perhaps the gentlemen who caused the horses to disappear have taken this mode of procuring caparisons!

Quack-medicine vendors are not wanting in Buenos Ayres to render important services to humanity. Two magnificent cut-glass decanters, gigantic in proportion to a tree of wondrous virtues which stands between them, are stated to be full of a healing medicine, which will do the business of all whom the faculty have given up or are otherwise incurable, as effectually as Parr's Life Pills or Holloway's Ointment. The chief establishment for the sale of this elixir is very carefully pointed out; and for the benefit of future travellers we may mention, that it is to be found at No. 496 in the street of Cangallo, and in the very last door on the left-hand side, behind the windmill; and that in the court-yard of the house there is a garden filled with statues, of which the originals are probably defunct; but whether the elixir out of the two large decanters had any thing to do with this apotheosis, we refrain from conjecturing.

The preceding advertisements are the most noticeable for embellishment and style. The ordinary kind of wants are set forth with woodcuts and text of a less striking kind, but almost all are illustrated. Wine has a barrel for its sign; music, a violin; travelling, a carriage; gardening, a flower-pot; upholstery, a chair; the cobbler's mystery, a top-boot; the hatter's, a beaver; and the letter of lodgings, a house full of windows. Not all of them are confined to the Spanish language, for there are many English merchants and traders; and to accommodate the last, a notice like the following recommends the aforementioned Street of Piety:

"To Det. To roms in altos one Squaz from the Place of Victory."

The author of this announcement certainly had not achieved a victory over the English language.

From the London Examiner.


The greatest novelty now in Paris is a speech. Any specimen of oratory that the police will first allow to be spoken, and then to be printed, is quite an attraction. Indeed there is but one remaining chance of perpetrating a speech, and that is by achieving your election as a member of the Institute, or being appointed as an old member to welcome the newly-elected academician. These are the only legitimate opportunities for making one's voice heard in public that M. Bonaparte's code has left to the Frenchman.

In pursuance of this solitary permission on the part of the authorities, the Paris journals have contained reports of two remarkable speeches, the one uttered by Count Montalembert on his being elected to the seat in the Academy, rendered vacant by the death of M. Droz; the other spoken by M. Guizot, in the form of an address of welcome to the new academician, M. de Montalembert. Now in the speeches of these, the first authorized orators of the new despotic regime, we find so little to awaken the susceptibilities of even M. Bonaparte's police, that we have heard with unaffected wonder of the scissors of the censorship having been applied even to them. The philosophy of the speeches is terribly Conservative. M. Bonaparte himself could have desired no other. If his highness the President had embraced the two academicians after their speeches, and decorated them with the Grand Cordon of his new Order, it would have been but a tribute justly due to these lay preachers of absolutism.

Eulogy of Droz was the theme which afforded Count Montalembert the opportunity to ventilate his opinions, as M. Guizot's theme was the eulogy of Montalembert. Montalembert depicted how Droz, who had reached youth at the commencement of the great revolution, joined in all its theories, its hopes, and its excesses, anathematizing kings and priests, and believing in the happy and final reign of pure democracy; and how all this the same Droz lived to unlearn and to correct, and to settle down as quiet and as[Pg 524] arrant a Conservative as ever supported monarchic government and a restored church. This is the true path of repentance, exclaimed Montalembert, and the only road to wisdom.

The compliment to tergiversation, which M. Montalembert thus paid to Droz, M. Guizot applied to Montalembert himself, whom he (M. Guizot) had remembered commencing his political career in full opposition, thundering against corrupt majorities, against kingly influence, and even against that want of spirit which preferred being at peace with neighbors to provoking them. But all that sort of constitutional opposition leads, as the people have seen, to the triumph of socialism; and so all wise people, like M. Montalembert, naturally become sick of it, and abandon it, betaking themselves for a preference to the old political religion of legitimacy and worship of absolutism. Of all the national disgraces inflicted upon France by M. Bonaparte's triumph, we know of none greater than such a hymn to servility, such anathemas and farewells to constitutional freedom, uttered by these two Talleyrands of the professorial and ecclesiastical schools, who have been changing principles all their lives, and now proclaim at last that absolutism is the only anchor to hold by.

On one point M. Montalembert impugned the philosophy of M. Droz, and in doing so impugned not less the opinion of M. Thiers, and most of the eminent men who have written histories or judgments upon the great events of the Revolution. Droz, relating these events in after life, saw in their march and series the influence of stern necessity. Such was the congregated mass of evils of all kinds produced by the long misgovernment of the despotism and corrupt regime of the Bourbons, that a catastrophe like that of the Great Revolution was, according to Droz, not to be avoided. No human power could stop it, no moderation, no wisdom. In its path men were like the mere vegetable growth of a valley down which a torrent comes in inundation, sweeping all before it.

But M. Montalembert, for his own part, has another way of viewing the events of the Revolution. He denies the doctrine of fatalism or of necessity. He will not allow that the follies of the monarchy drew down after them the crimes of the Republic as a natural consequence. He sees in all those events, on the contrary, a direct intervention of Providence, who inflicted the sufferings of the Revolution upon the French simply as retribution for their crimes and a punishment for their sins. Providence, in the imagination of Count Montalembert, is a Nemesis with sword and scourge in hand, exercising its chief duty in castigating humanity; and thus doth the French Academy in the middle of the nineteenth century proclaim the philosophy of history.

M. Guizot avoided the recognition of any assertion so extravagant as this, and so very unfair to poor Jaques Bonhomme. The crimes of the old monarchy were confined to the court, the clergy, the aristocracy, and the financiers; whereas the poor peasant was ground to poverty, yet a proverbially honest and cheerful fellow amidst his ignorance and privations. But, according to Montalembert, Providence sent the Revolution to punish the crimes of duchesses; and this Revolution decimated, arrested, and sent to perish all over the world poor Jaques Bonhomme. Was this justice? M. Guizot did not, as we say, endorse this portion of the Montalembert philosophy. But he warned the Count of having in his early life made one grand mistake, in allying religion with liberalism, and putting the names of both combined on the banners of opposition. M. Guizot could hardly mean that religion, like fortune, should be always on the side of the greatest number of battalions. For should not this be the creed of M. Bonaparte, rather than of his illustrious Academicians?

From Household Words.


Those who visit the metal works of Birmingham naturally desire to know where the metals come from; and especially the precious metals. Among the materials shown to the visitor, are drawers full of the brightest and cleanest gold; and ingots of silver, pure, or slightly streaked with copper. We have handled to-day an ingot which contains, to ninety-two ounces ten pennyweights of silver, seven ounces ten pennyweights of copper. We ask whether the gold comes from California; but we find that it has just arrived—from a much nearer place—from a refinery next door. We hear high praises of the Californian gold. It is so pure that some of it can be used, without refining, for second-rate articles. Some small black specks may be detected in it, certainly, though they are so few and so minute, that the native gold is wrought in large quantities. But what is this neighboring refinery? Whence does it obtain the metals it refines? Let us go and see.

It is a strange murky place; a dismal inclosure, with ugly sheds, and yards not more agreeable to the eye. Its beauties come out by degrees, as the understanding opens to comprehend the affairs of the establishment. In the sheds, are ranges of musty-looking furnaces; some cold and gaping, others showing, through crevices, red signs of fire within. There are piles of blocks of coal, of burnt ladles and peels, and rivulets of black refuse, which has flowed out from the furnaces into safe beds of red sand. In a special shed, is a black moist-looking heap of what appears to be filth, battened into the shape of a large compost bed. A man is filling a barrow with[Pg 525] this commodity, and smoothing it down with loving care. And well he may; for this despicable-looking dirt is the California of the concern! Here is their gold mine, and their silver mine, and their copper mine. In another shed, is a mill-stone on edge, revolving with the post to which it is fixed, to crush the material which is to be calcined. In the yard, we see heaps of scoriæ—the shining, heavy, glassy-looking fragments, which tell tales of the prodigious heat to which they have been subjected. We see picks, and more ladles, and lanterns, and a most sordid-looking bonfire. A heap of refuse is burning on the stones; old rags, fragments of shoes, cinders, dust, and nails—the veriest sweepings that can be imagined. Something precious is there; but the mass must be burned to become manageable. The ashes will be swept up for the refinery.

But what is it that yields gold, and silver, and copper, and brass? What is that heap of dirt in the special shed? It is the sweepings of the Birmingham manufactories.

What economy! In all goldsmiths' shops every effort is made to save all the filings, and the minutest dust of the metals used. The floors are swept, and every thing recoverable is picked up. Yet the imperceptible loss is so valuable to the refiners, that they pay, and pay high, for the scrapings, sweepings, and picking of the work-rooms. A cart load of dirt is taken from a fork-and-spoon manufactory to the refinery, and paid for on the instant; and the money thus received is one of the regular items in the books of the concern. Perhaps it pays the wages of one of the workmen. Another establishment receives two hundred pounds a year for its sweepings. It is worth noting these methods in concerns which are flourishing, and which have been raised to a prosperous condition by pains and care; less flourishing people may be put in the way of similar methods. For instance, how good it would be for farmers if, instead of thinking there is something noble in disregard of trifling economy, they could see the wisdom and beauty of an economy which hurts nobody, but benefits every body! It would do no one any good to throw away these scattered particles of precious metal, while their preservation affords a maintenance to many families. In the same way, the waste of dead leaves, of animal manure, of odds and ends of time, of seed, of space in hedges, in the great majority of farms, does no good, and gives no pleasure to any body; while the same thrift on a farm that we see in a manufactory, would sustain much life, bestow much comfort, narrow no hearts, and expand the enjoyment of very many.

We must take care of our eyes when the ovens are opened—judging by the scarlet rays that peep out, here and there, from any small crevice. Prodigious! What a heat it is, when, by the turn of a handle, a door of the furnace is raised! The roasting, or calcining, to get rid of the sulphur, is going on here. The whole inside—walls, roof, embers, and all—are a transparent salmon-color. As a shovel, inserted from the opposite side, stirs and turns the burning mass, the sulphur appears above—a little blue flame, and a great deal of yellow smoke. We feel some of it in our throats. We exclaim about the intensity of the heat, declaring it tremendous. But we are told that it is not so; that, in fact, "it is very cold—that furnace;" which shows us that there is something hotter to come.

The Refiner's Test is pointed out to us;—a sort of shovel, with a spout, lined throughout with a material of burnt bones, the only substance which can endure unchanged the heat necessary for testing the metals. Of this material are made the little crucibles that we see in the furnaces, which our conductor admits to be "rather warm." There they are, ranged in rows, so obscured by the mere heat, which confounds every thing in one glow, that their circular rims are only seen by being looked for. Yet, one little orifice, at the back of this furnace, shows that even this heat can be exceeded. That orifice is a point of white heat, revealed from behind. We do not see the metal in the crucibles; but we know that it is simmering there.

One more oven is opened for us—the assay furnace, which is at a white heat. As the smallest quantities of metal serve for the assay, the crucibles are here on the scale of dolls' tea-things. The whole concern of that smallest furnace looks like a pretty toy; but it is a very serious matter—the work it does, and the values it determines.

The metals, which run down to the bottom, in the melting furnaces, are separated (the gold and silver by aquafortis), and cast in moulds, coming out as ingots; or, in fragments, of any shape they may have pleased to run into. Some of the gold fragments are of the cleanest and brightest yellow. Other, no less pure, are dark and brownish. They are for gilding porcelain. Lastly, we see a pretty curiosity. In the counting-house, a little glass chamber is erected upon a counter, with an apparatus of great beauty—a pair of scales, thin and small to the last degree, fastened by spider-like threads to a delicate beam, which is connected with an index, sensitive enough to show the variation of the hundredth part of a grain. The glass walls exclude atmospheric disturbance. Behind the rusty-looking doors were the white glowing crucibles; within the drawers was the yellow gold; and, hidden in its glass house, was the fairy balance.

Now, we will follow some of the gold and silver to a place where skilled hands are ready to work it curiously.

First, however, we may as well mention, in confidence to our readers, that our feelings are now and then wounded by the injustice of the world to the Birmingham manufacturers. We observe with pain, that the very virtues of Birmingham manufacture are made[Pg 526] matters of reproach. Because the citizens have at their command extraordinary means of cheap production, and produce cheap goods accordingly, the world jumps to the conclusion that the work must be deceptive and bad. Fine gentlemen and ladies give, in London shops, twice the price for Birmingham jewelry that they would pay, if no middlemen stood, filling their pockets uncommonly fast, between them and the manufacturer; and they admire the solid value and great beauty of the work; but, as soon as they know where the articles were wrought, they undervalue them with the term "Brummagem." In the Great Exhibition there was a certain case of gold-work and jewelry, rich and thorough in material and workmanship. The contents of that case were worth many hundred pounds. A gentleman and lady stopped to admire their contents. The lady was so delighted with them that she supposed they must be French. The gentleman reminded her that they were in the British department. After a while, they observed the label at the top of the case, and instantly retracted their admiration. "Oh!" said the gentleman, pointing to the label, "these are Brummagem ware—shams!" Whatever may have been Brummagem-gold-beating in ancient times, and in days of imperfect art when long wars impeded the education of English taste, it is mere ignorance to keep up the censure in these times. It is merely accepting and retailing vulgar phrases without any inquiry, which is the stupidest form of ignorance. Perhaps some of the prejudice may be removed by a brief account of what a Birmingham manufacture of gold chains is at this day.

Twenty years ago, the making of gold chains occupied a dozen or twenty people in Birmingham. Now, the establishment we are entering, alone, employs probably eight times that number. Formerly, a small master undertook the business in a little back shop: drew out his wire with his own hands; cut the devices himself; soldered the pieces himself; in short, worked under the disadvantage of great waste of time, of effort, and of gold. Into the same shop more and more machinery has been since introduced as it was gradually devised by clever heads. This machinery is made on the spot, and the whole is set to work by steam. Few things in the arts can be more striking than the contrast between the murky chambers where the forging and grinding—the Plutonic processes of machine-making—are going on, and the upper chambers, light and quiet, where the delicate fingers of women and girls are arranging and fastening the cobweb links of the most delicate chain-work. The whole establishment is most picturesque. While in some speculative towns in our island great warehouses and other edifices have sprung up too quickly, and are standing untenanted, a rising manufacture like this cannot find room. In the case before us, more room is preparing. A large steam-engine will soon be at work, and the processes will be more conveniently connected. Mean time, house after house has been absorbed into the concern. There are steps up here, and steps down there; and galleries across courts; and long ranges of low-roofed chambers; and wooden staircases, in yards;—care being taken, however, to preserve in the midst an isolated, well-lighted chamber, where part of the stock is kept, where some high officials abide, and where there are four counters or hatches, where the people present themselves outside, to receive their work. All this has grown out of the original little back-shop.

Below, there is a refinery. It is for the establishment alone; but, just like that we have already described—only on a smaller scale. First, the rolling-mill shows us its powers by a speedy experiment;—it flattens a halfpenny, making it oblong at the first turn, and, by degrees, with the help of some annealing in the furnace, drawing it out into a long ribbon of shining copper, which is rolled up, tied with a wire, and presented to us as a curiosity. Next, we see coils of thick round wire, of a dirty white, which we can hardly believe to be gold. It is gold, however, and is speedily drawn out into wire. Then, there are cutting, and piercing, and snipping machines—all bright and diligent; and the women and girls who work them are bright and diligent too. Here, in this long room, lighted with lattices along the whole range, the machines stand, and the women sit, in a row—quiet, warm, and comfortable. Here we see sheets of soft metal (for solder) cut into strips or squares; here, again, a woman is holding such a strip to a machine, and snipping the metal very fine, into minute shreds, all alike. These are to be laid or stuck on little joins in the chain-work, or clasps, or swivel hinges, where soldering is required. Next, we find a dozen workwomen, each at her machine, pushing snips of gold into grooves, where they are pierced with a pattern, or one or two holes of a pattern, and made to fall into a receiver below. Each may take about a second of time. Farther on, slender gold wire is twisted into links by myriads. At every seat the counter is cut out in a semicircle, whereby room is saved, and the worker has a free use of her arms. Under every such semicircle hangs a leathern pouch, to catch every particle that falls, and to hold the tools. On shelves every where are ranges of steel dies; and larger pieces of the metal, for massive links or for clasps, or for watch-keys and other ornaments, are stamped from these. On the whole, we may say, that in these lower rooms the separate pieces are prepared for being put together elsewhere.

That putting together appears to novices very blinding work; but, we are assured that it becomes so easy, by practice, that the girls could almost do it with their eyes shut. In[Pg 527] such a case we should certainly shut ours; for they ache with the mere sight of such poking and picking, and ranging of the white rings—all exactly like one another. They are ranged in a groove of a plate of metal, or on a block of pumice-stone. When pricked into a precise row, they are anointed, at their points of junction, with borax. Each worker has a little saucer of borax, wet, and stirred with a camel-hair pencil. With this pencil she transfers a little of the borax to the flattened point of a sort of bodkin, and then anoints the links where they join. When the whole row is thus treated, she turns on the gas, and, with a small blow-pipe, directs the flame upon the solder. It bubbles and spreads in the heat, and makes the row of links into a chain. There would be no end of describing the loops and hoops, and joints and embossings, which are soldered at these gas-pipes, after being taken up by tiny tweezers, and delicately treated by all manner of little tools. Suffice it, that here every thing is put together, and made ready for the finishing. In the middle of one room is a counter, where is fixed the machine for twisting the chains—with its cog-wheels, and its nippers, whereby it holds one end of a portion of chain, while another is twisted, as the door-handle fixes the schoolboy's twine, while he knots or loops his pattern, or twists his cord. Here, a little girl stands, and winds a plain gold chain into this or that pattern, which depends upon the twisting.

These ornaments of precious metal do not look very ornamental at present; being of the color of dirty soap-suds, and tossed together in heaps on the counters. We are now to see the hue and brightness of the gold brought out. We take up a chain, rather massive, and reminding us of some ornament we have somewhere seen; but it is so rough! and its flakes do not appear to fit upon each other. A man lays it along the length of his left hand, and files it briskly; as he works, the soapy white disappears, the polish comes out, the parts fit together, and it is, presently, one of those flexible, scaly, smooth, glittering chains that we have seen all our lives. Of course, the filings are dropped carefully into a box, to go to the refinery. There is, here, a home-invented and home-made apparatus for polishing and cutting topazes, amethysts, bloodstones and the like, into shield shapes, for seals, watch-keys, and ornaments of various kinds. The strongest man's arm must tire; but steam and steel need no consideration—so there go the wheels and the emery, smoothing and polishing infallibly; with a workman to apply the article, and a boy to drop oil when screw or socket begins to scream. This polishing and filing was such severe work, in the lapidary department, in former days, that the nervous energy of a man's arm was destroyed—a serious grief to both worker and employer. At this day, it is understood that the lapidary is past work at forty, from the contraction of the sinews of the wrist, consequent on the nature of his labor. The period of disablement depends much on the habits of the men; but, sooner or later, it is looked for as a matter of course. Here, the wear and tear is deputed to that which has no nerve. As the proprietor observes, it requires no sympathy.

It may be asked how there comes to be any lapidary department here? Do we never see gold chains the links whereof are studded with turquoises, or garnets, or little specks of emerald? Are there no ruby drops to ladies' necklaces?—no jewelled toys hanging from gentlemen's watch-guards? We see many of these pretty things here; besides cameos for setting.

After the delicate little filings (which must be done by hand) are all finished, the articles must be well washed, dried in box-wood sawdust, and finally hand-polished with rouge. The people in one apartment look grotesque enough—two women powdered over with rouge, and men of various dirty hues, all dressed alike, in an over-all garment of brown holland. A washerwoman is maintained on the establishment expressly to wash these dresses on the spot—her soap-suds being preserved, like all the other washes, for the sake of the gold-dust contained in them. Her wash-tubs are emptied, like every thing else, into the refinery.

In the final burnishing room, we observe a row of chemists's globes—glass vases filled with water, ranged on a shelf. A stranger might guess long before he would find out what these are for. They are to reflect a concentrated blaze from the gas-lights in the evening, to point out specks and dimnesses, to the eyes and fingers of the burnishers. What curious finger-ends they have—those women who chafe the precious metals into their last degree of polish! They are broad—the joint so flexible that it is bent considerably backwards when in use; and the skin has a peculiar smoothness: more mechanical, we fancy, than vital. However that may be, the burnish they produce is strikingly superior to any hitherto achieved by friction with any other substance.

In departing, the sense of contrast comes over us once more. We have just seen all manner of elegancies in ornament, from the classical and dignified to the minute, fanciful, and grotesque; in going out, we give a look to the unfinished engine-house, and the smiths' shop. All this hard work; all those many dwellings thrown into one establishment; all these scores of men, and women, and children, busy from year's end to year's end; all those diggers far away in California; all those lapidaries in Germany; all those engineers in their studies; all those ironmasters in their markets; all those miners in the bowels of the earth—all are enlisted in making gold chains; and some of us have no more knowledge and no more thought than to call the[Pg 528] product "Brummagem shams!" Well! the price charged for them in London shops, where they are as good as French, is something real; and it is a real comfort to think how swingingly some fine folks pay, though the bulk of the profit comes, not to the manufacturer, but to the middlemen. Of these middlemen there are always two; the factor and the shopkeeper—often more. Their intervention is very useful, of course, or they would not exist; but somebody or other makes a prodigious profit of Birmingham jewelry, after it has left the manufacturer's hands. It was only yesterday that we saw, among a rich heap of wonderful things, a pair of elegant bracelets—foreign pebbles, beautifully set. We were told the wholesale price they were to be sold for; which was half the shop price. The transference to the London shop was to cost as much as the whole of the previous processes: from the digging of the silver and the collecting of the pebbles, through all the needful voyages and travels, to the burnishing and packing at Birmingham!

We have seen, however, something which may throw a little light on the prejudice against Birmingham jewelry. It is not conceivable that any one should despise such an establishment as we have been describing. But, we found ourselves, the other day, passing through a little dwelling where the housewife, with a baby on her arm, and where more than half-a-dozen children were housed; and then crossing a little yard, and mounting a flight of substantial brick steps with a stout hand-rail, and entering the most curious little work-room we ever were in. It would just hold four or five people, without allowing them room to turn round more than one at a time. In one corner, was a very small stove. A lattice-window ran along the whole front, and made it pleasant, light, and airy. A work-bench or counter was scalloped out, in the same way as in larger establishments, so as to accommodate three workers in the smallest possible space. The three workers had each his stool, his leathern pouch on his knees, and his gas-pipe. A row of tools bristled along the whole length of the lattice; and there was another row on a shelf behind. The principal workman was the father of those many children below. One son was at work at his elbow, and the remaining workman was an apprentice. This working jeweller was as thorough a gentleman, according to our notions, as anybody we have seen for a long time past. Tall, stout, and handsome; collar white and stiff; apron white and sound; his whole dress in good repair; his voice cheerful as his face; his manner open and courteous; his information exactly what we wanted. We could not help wishing that some rural grandee, who avows that he hates all manufacturers, could see this fair specimen of an English handicraftsman. As for his work, he told us he supplies the factors to order. It would not answer for him to keep a stock. The factors would not buy what he should offer, but dictate to him what he shall make. Fashions change incessantly, and he has only to keep up with them as well as he can. It is not for him to invent new patterns and get steel dies made for them; but to get the same steel dies that other makers are procuring. These dies are, of course, for the metallic part of his work. The boxes of lockets and hair brooches (now vehemently in fashion), and devices, and colored stones, he procures at "the French shops" in the town; and he showed us some variety of these, ready for setting. Then came out the "Brummagem" feature of the case; showing us how the gold setting that he was preparing—perforating and filing—was to be backed by a blue stone. He observed that it was not thought worth while to get costly stones for a purpose like that; for blue glass would do as well. I certainly thought so, considering that the stone was to be only the back-ground of his work. Of the specimens I saw in that airy little workshop, some were in excellent taste, and all, I believe, of good workmanship. These small masters are as punctilious about employing only regularly qualified workmen, as any members of any guild in the country. Their journeymen must all have served an apprenticeship; not only because they are thus best fitted for their business, but because the value of apprenticeship is thus kept up; and these small capitalists will not part with the advantage of having journeymen, under the name of apprentices, completely under their command during the last two or three years of their term.

One of the most remarkable sights, to those who knew Birmingham a quarter of a century ago, is such a manufacture as that of Messrs. Parker and Acott's ever-pointed pencils. Those of us whose fathers were in business in the days of the war, when the arts were not flourishing, may remember the bulky pocket-book, with its leather strap (always shabby after the first month), and its thick cedar pencil, which always wanted cutting; always blackening whatever came near it; always getting used up; the lead turning to dust at the most critical point of a memorandum. There was a fine trade in cedar pencils at Keswick in those days. It seemed a tale too romantic to be true, when we were told of ever-pointed pencils. First, we, of course, refused to believe in their existence;—what improvement have we not refused to believe in? Then, when we found there was a screw in the case, and that the pencil was not ever-pointed by a vital action of its own, we were sure we should not like it. We grew humble, and were certain we could never learn to manage it. And now, what have we not arrived at? We are so saucy as to look beyond our improved pencils; beyond pen and ink; beyond our present[Pg 529] need of a cumbrous apparatus to carry about with us; ink that will spill and spot; leads that will break and use up; pens, paper, syllables, letters, pot-hooks, dots and crossings, and all the process of writing. Perhaps the electric telegraph has spoiled us: enabling us to imagine some process by which thoughts may record themselves; some brief and complete method of making "mems," without the complicated process of writing down hundreds of letters, and scores of syllables, to preserve one single idea. All this, however, is as romantic now as ever-pointed pencils seemed to be at first; and instead of dreaming of what is not yet achieved, let us look at the reality before our eyes.

Here is something wonderful enough, on our very entrance. Here is a silver pencil-case, neat and serviceable, though not of the most elegant form; handsome enough to have been praised for its looks, thirty years ago. This pencil-case carries two feet of lead. It is intended to be the commercial traveller's joy and treasure. It will last him his life, unless he take an unconscionable amount of orders. Unscrewing the top, we see that the upper end of the tube is divided into compartments,—which look like the mouth of a revolver; and here, protected from each other, the leads are bestowed, safe—despite their great length, through their owner's roughest travelling.

Some drawers in a counter are pulled out. One is divided into compartments, each of which holds a handful of something different from all the rest. This drawer contains one hundred gross of pencil-cases in parts; the tube, the rack and barrel, the propelling wire, the slide, the top, the various chambers, and screws, and niceties. In another drawer, there is a dazzling and beautiful heap of pure amethysts and topazes from far countries, of vast aggregate value: and, farther on, we see the elegant onyx and white cornelian from South America (a very recent importation), and the sardonyx, now in high favor for seals and the tops of pencil-cases. Its delicate layer of white upon red, (or the reverse,) the undermost color coming out in the engraving, makes it singularly fit for the purpose. Then, there is a paperful of small turquoises, which are poured out and handled like a sample of lentils. These are from Persia; and they have to be re-cut in England, the Persian tools being of the roughest. Then, there are bloodstones, and pebbles out of number, and pints of glittering fragments of Californian gold; rich materials tossed together, to be drawn out for use at the bidding of capricious fashion; for, fashion seems to be as capricious here, among these stones and ores that have required cycles of ages to compose, as in the milliner's shop, where the materials are drawn from the pods of a season and the insects of a summer. On shelves against the walls, are ranged rows and piles of steel dies,—that pretty and costly piece of apparatus, which we find in almost all these manufactories—together with the inexhaustible stamping and cutting machines, the blow-pipe, the borax, and soft metal for solder, the pumice-stone and wirebed, the turning wheel, the circular saw, and the bath of diluted aquafortis, and the pan of box-wood sawdust, in which the pretty things are dried when they come out of "pickle." From buttons to epergnes, we find this apparatus every where. The steel dies are an everlasting study: the block, like the conical weight of a pair of warehouse scales, seeming very large for the little figure indented in the upper surface. Here, in this manufactory, the figures are of the bugle, a favorite form of watch-key—the deer's foot, (a pretty study for the same purpose,) and a large variety of patterns—the tulip, the acanthus, and other foliage, flowers or fruit, climbing up the summit of the pencil-case, as if it were a little Corinthian capital.

And now for the process. The silver or gold comes from the rolling-mill, and is passed in slips through a series of draw-plates, each smaller than the last, and finally through the one which is to give it its fluted or other pattern. Soldering at the joint, filing away the roughness left by the solder, washing in an aquafortis bath come next. A slit for the slide is then made; the rims and screws and slides are added, and you have a pencil-case complete. We observed that a large proportion of the tops are hexagonal, or of some angular form, to prevent their rolling off the table.

Some of the pencil-cases are so small, and some of the watch-keys are so elaborate, that it requires a moment's consideration to decide which is which; and again, ladies' crochet-needles, of gold, diversely ornamented, are very like pencil-cases. Some of each kind are specked over with turquoise or garnets; and all appear to be designed for ornament, rather than for use. It is quite a relief to turn the eye upon a shovelful of the yellow sawdust, where substantial pencil-cases, fit for manly fingers, are drying. On the whole, perhaps, the most striking feature is the prodigious extent of the production. We ask where all these can possibly go; for a pencil-case is a thing which lasts half a century, as the manufacturer himself observes. These do not go to America; for, in such things, the Americans are our chief rivals. They supply their own wants, and a good deal more. We send our pencil-cases and trinkets over a good part of the world, however; and the caprice of fashion causes a great adventitious demand at home. In reply to our remark about this vast production, the manufacturer observes, "Yes, we cut up gold and silver as the year comes in, and as the year goes out." Something of a change, this, since the old days of cedar pencils!

Here is a steel die with an elegant pyramidal pattern; the half of a watch-key. We[Pg 530] see the inch of metal stamped; and then another inch, for the other half: and then the filing and snipping of the edges; and then the laying in of the solder inside; and the binding together of the two halves with wire; and the repose on the bed of wire on the pumice-stone, to be broiled red-hot; and the neat cleaning when cool; the polishing, and the leaving certain parts of the pattern dead, while others are burnished; and the firing of the steel cylinder at the point, and the turning of the rims. All this for a watch-key! But, we are shown another, which does not look like anything very studied; and we are told, and are at once convinced, that it consists of no less than thirteen parts. Other keys, which look more fanciful, consist of ten, eight, or seven. None are the simple affair that a novice would suppose, now that we require the convenience of being able to wind up our watches without twisting the chain or ribbon with every turn of the key.

But we must leave these niceties; the little pistols, the deers feet, the bugle-horns, and all the dainty fancies embodied in watch-keys and knick-knacks. Here, as elsewhere, every atom is saved, of sweeping and wash; and we now find ourselves, writer and readers, like the materials of which we have been speaking, brought back, after all these various processes, to the refinery from which we set out.





It is observed by a very pleasant writer—read now-a-days only by the brave pertinacious few who still struggle hard to rescue from the House of Pluto the souls of departed authors, jostled and chased as those souls are by the noisy footsteps of the living—it is observed by the admirable Charron, that "judgment and wisdom is not only the best, but the happiest portion God Almighty hath distributed amongst men; for though this distribution be made with a very uneven hand, yet nobody thinks himself stinted or ill-dealt with, but he that hath never so little is contented in this respect."[22]

And, certainly, the present narrative may serve in notable illustration of the remark so drily made by the witty and wise preacher. For whether our friend Riccabocca deduce theories for daily life from the great folio of Machiavel; or that promising young gentleman, Mr. Randal Leslie, interpret the power of knowledge into the art of being too knowing for dull honest folks to cope with him; or acute Dick Avenel push his way up the social ascent with a blow for those before, and a kick for those behind him, after the approved fashion of your strong New Man; or Baron Levy—that cynical impersonation of Gold—compare himself to the Magnetic Rock in the Arabian tale, to which the nails in every ship that approaches the influence of the loadstone fly from the planks, and a shipwreck per day adds its waifs to the Rock: questionless, at least, it is, that each of those personages believed that Providence had bestowed on him an elder son's inheritance of wisdom. Nor, were we to glance towards the obscurer parts of life, should we find good Parson Dale deem himself worse off than the rest of the world in this precious commodity—as, indeed, he had signally evinced of late in that shrewd guess of his touching Professor Moss;—even plain Squire Hazeldean took it for granted that he could teach Audley Egerton a thing or two worth knowing in politics; Mr. Stirn thought that there was no branch of useful lore on which he could not instruct the squire; and Sprott, the tinker, with his bag full of tracts and lucifer matches, regarded the whole framework of modern society, from a rick to a constitution, with the profound disdain of a revolutionary philosopher. Considering that every individual thus brings into the stock of the world so vast a share of intelligence, it cannot but excite our wonder to find that Oxenstiern is popularly held to be right when he said, "See, my son, how little wisdom it requires to govern states;"—that is, men! That so many millions of persons, each with a profound assurance that he is possessed of an exalted sagacity, should concur in the ascendency of a few inferior intellects, according to a few, stupid, prosy, matter-of-fact rules as old as the hills, is a phenomenon very discreditable to the spirit and energy of the aggregate human species! It creates no surprise that one sensible watch-dog should control the movements of a flock of silly grass-eating sheep; but that two or three silly grass-eating sheep should give the law to whole flocks of such mighty sensible watch-dogs—Diavolo! Dr. Riccabocca, explain that, if you can! And wonderfully strange it is, that notwithstanding all the march of enlightenment, notwithstanding our progressive discoveries in the laws of nature—our railways, steam-engines, animal magnetism, and electro-biology—we have never made any improvement that is generally acknowledged, since men ceased to be troglodytes and nomads, in the old-fashioned gamut of flats and sharps, which attunes into irregular social jog-trot all the generations that pass from the cradle to the grave;—still, "the desire for something we have not" impels all the energies that keep us in movement, for good or for ill, according to the checks or the directions of each favorite desire.

A friend of mine once said to a millionaire,[Pg 531] whom he saw for ever engaged in making money which he never seemed to have any pleasure in spending, "Pray, Mr.——, will you answer me one question: You are said to have two millions, and you spend £600 a-year. In order to rest and enjoy, what will content you?"

"A little more," answered the millionaire.

That "little more" is the mainspring of civilization. Nobody ever gets it!

"Philus," saith a Latin writer, "was not so rich as Lælius; Lælius was not so rich as Scipio; Scipio was not so rich as Crassus: and Crassus was not so rich—as he wished to be!" If John Bull were once contented, Manchester might shut up its mills. It is the "little more" that makes a mere trifle of the National Debt!—Long life to it!

Still, mend our law-books as we will, one is forced to confess that knaves are often seen in fine linen, and honest men in the most shabby old rags; and still, notwithstanding the exceptions, knavery is a very hazardous game; and honesty, on the whole, by far the best policy. Still, most of the Ten Commandments remain at the core of all the Pandects and Institutes that keep our hands off our neighbors' throats, wives, and pockets; still, every year shows that the parson's maxim—quieta non movere—is as prudent for the health of communities as when Apollo recommended his votaries not to rake up a fever by stirring the Lake Camarina; still people, thank Heaven, decline to reside in parallelograms; and the surest token that we live under a free government is, when we are governed by persons whom we have a full right to imply, by our censure and ridicule, are blockheads compared to ourselves! Stop that delightful privilege, and, by Jove! sir, there is neither pleasure nor honor in being governed at all! You might as well be—a Frenchman!


The Italian and his friend are closeted together.

"And why have you left your home in ——shire? And why this new change of name?"

"Peschiera is in England."

"I know it."

"And bent on discovering me; and, it is said, of stealing from me my child."

"He has the assurance to lay wagers that he will win the hand of your heiress. I know that too; and therefore I have come to England—first to baffle his design—for I do not think your fears are exaggerated—and next to learn from you how to follow up a clue which, unless I am too sanguine, may lead to his ruin, and your unconditional restoration. Listen to me. You are aware that, after the skirmish with Peschiera's armed hirelings sent in search of you, I received a polite message from the Austrian government, requesting me to leave its Italian domains. Now, as I hold it the obvious duty of any foreigner, admitted to the hospitality of a state, to refrain from all participation in its civil disturbances, so I thought my honor assailed at this intimation, and went at once to Vienna to explain to the Minister there (to whom I was personally known), that though I had, as became man to man, aided to protect a refugee, who had taken shelter under my roof, from the infuriated soldiers at the command of his private foe, I had not only not shared in any attempt at revolt, but dissuaded, as far as I could, my Italian friends from their enterprise; and that because, without discussing its merits, I believed, as a military man and a cool spectator, the enterprise could only terminate in fruitless bloodshed. I was enabled to establish my explanation by satisfactory proof; and my acquaintance with the Minister assumed something of the character of friendship. I was then in a position to advocate your cause, and to state your original reluctance to enter into the plots of the insurgents. I admitted freely that you had such natural desire for the independence of your native land, that, had the standard of Italy been boldly hoisted by its legitimate chiefs, or at the common uprising of its whole people, you would have been found in the van, amidst the ranks of your countrymen; but I maintained that you would never have shared in a conspiracy frantic in itself, and defiled by the lawless schemes and sordid ambition of its main projectors, had you not been betrayed and decoyed into it by the misrepresentations and domestic treachery of your kinsman—the very man who denounced you. Unfortunately, of this statement I had no proof but your own word. I made, however, so far an impression in your favor, and, it may be, against the traitor, that your property was not confiscated to the State, nor handed over, upon the plea of your civil death, to your kinsman."

"How, I do not understand. Peschiera has the property?"

"He holds the revenues but of one half upon pleasure, and they would be withdrawn, could I succeed in establishing the case that exists against him. I was forbidden before to mention this to you; the Minister, not inexcusably, submitted you to the probation of unconditional exile. Your grace might depend upon your own forbearance from farther conspiracies—forgive the word. I need not say I was permitted to return to Lombardy. I found, on my arrival, that—that your unhappy wife had been to my house, and exhibited great despair at hearing of my departure."

Riccabocca knit his dark brows, and breathed hard.

"I did not judge it necessary to acquaint you with this circumstance, nor did it much affect me. I believed in her guilt—and what could now avail her remorse, if remorse she felt? Shortly afterwards I heard that she was no more."[Pg 532]

"Yes," muttered Riccabocca, "she died in the same year that I left Italy. It must be a strong reason that can excuse a friend for reminding me even that she once lived!"

"I come at once to that reason," said L'Estrange gently. "This autumn I was roaming through Switzerland, and, in one of my pedestrian excursions amidst the mountains, I met with an accident, which confined me for some days to a sofa at a little inn in an obscure village. My hostess was an Italian; and as I had left my servant at a town at some distance, I required her attention till I could write to him to come to me. I was thankful for her cares, and amused by her Italian babble. We became very good friends. She told me she had been servant to a lady of great rank, who had died in Switzerland; and that, being enriched by the generosity of her mistress, she had married a Swiss innkeeper, and his people had become hers. My servant arrived, and my hostess learned my name, which she did not know before. She came into my room greatly agitated. In brief, this woman had been servant to your wife. She had accompanied her to my villa, and known of her anxiety to see me, as your friend. The government had assigned to your wife your palace at Milan, with a competent income. She had refused to accept of either. Failing to see me, she had set off towards England, resolved upon seeing yourself; for the journals had stated that to England you had escaped."

"She dared!—shameless! And see, but a moment before, I had forgotten all but her grave in a foreign soil—and these tears had forgiven her," murmured the Italian.

"Let them forgive her still," said Harley, with all his exquisite sweetness of look and tone. "I resume. On entering Switzerland, your wife's health, which you know was always delicate, gave way. To fatigue and anxiety succeeded fever, and delirium ensued. She had taken with her but this one female attendant—the sole one she could trust—on leaving home. She suspected Peschiera to have bribed her household. In the presence of this woman she raved of her innocence—in accents of terror and aversion, denounced your kinsman—and called on you to vindicate her name and your own."

"Ravings indeed! Poor Paulina!" groaned Riccabocca, covering his face with both hands.

"But in her delirium there were lucid intervals. In one of these she rose, in spite of all her servant could do to restrain her, took from her desk several letters, and reading them over, exclaimed piteously, 'But how to get them to him?—whom to trust? And his friend is gone!' Then an idea seemed suddenly to flash upon her, for she uttered a joyous exclamation, sat down, and wrote long and rapidly; inclosed what she wrote, with all the letters, in one packet, which she sealed carefully, and bade her servant carry to the post, with many injunctions to take it with her own hand, and pay the charge on it. 'For, oh!' said she (I repeat the words as my informant told them to me)—'for, oh, this is my sole chance to prove to my husband that, though I have erred, I am not the guilty thing he believes me; the sole chance, too, to redeem my error, and restore, perhaps, to my husband his country, to my child her heritage.' The servant took the letter to the post; and when she returned, her lady was asleep, with a smile upon her face. But from that sleep she woke again delirious, and before the next morning her soul had fled." Here Riccabocca lifted one hand from his face, and grasped Harley's arm, as if mutely beseeching him to pause. The heart of the man struggled hard with his pride and his philosophy; and it was long before Harley could lead him to regard the worldly prospects which this last communication from his wife might open to his ruined fortunes. Not, indeed, till Riccabocca had persuaded himself, and half persuaded Harley, (for strong, indeed, was all presumption of guilt against the dead,) that his wife's protestations of innocence from all but error had been but ravings.

"Be this as it may," said Harley, "there seems every reason to suppose that the letters inclosed were Peschiera's correspondence, and that, if so, these would establish the proof of his influence over your wife, and of his perfidious machinations against yourself. I resolved, before coming hither, to go round by Vienna. There I heard with dismay that Peschiera had not only obtained the imperial sanction to demand your daughter's hand, but had boasted to his profligate circle that he should succeed; and he was actually on his road to England. I saw at once that could this design, by any fraud or artifice, be successful with Violante, (for of your consent, I need not say, I did not dream,) the discovery of this packet, whatever its contents, would be useless: his end would be secured. I saw also that his success would suffice for ever to clear his name; for his success must imply your consent, (it would be to disgrace your daughter, to assert that she had married without it,) and your consent would be his acquittal. I saw, too, with alarm, that to all means for the accomplishment of his project he would be urged by despair; for his debts are great, and his character nothing but new wealth can support. I knew that he was able, bold, determined, and that he had taken with him a large supply of money, borrowed upon usury;—in a word, I trembled for you both. I have now seen your daughter, and I tremble no more. Accomplished seducer as Peschiera boasts himself, the first look upon her face, so sweet yet so noble, convinced me that she is proof against a legion of Peschieras. Now, then, return we to this all-important[Pg 533] subject—to this packet. It never reached you. Long years have passed since then. Does it exist still? Into whose hands would it have fallen? Try to summon up all your recollections. The servant could not remember the name of the person to whom it was addressed; she only insisted that the name began with a B, that it was directed to England, and that to England she accordingly paid the postage. Whom, then, with a name that begins with B, or (in case the servant's memory here misled her) whom did you or your wife know, during your visit to England, with sufficient intimacy to make it probable that she would select such a person for her confidant?"

"I cannot conceive," said Riccabocca, shaking his head. "We came to England shortly after our marriage. Paulina was affected by the climate. She spoke not a word of English, and indeed not even French as might have been expected from her birth, for her father was poor, and thoroughly Italian. She refused all society. I went, it is true, somewhat into the London world—enough to induce me to shrink from the contrast that my second visit as a beggared refugee would have made to the reception I met with on my first—but I formed no intimate friendships. I recall no one whom she could have written to as intimate with me."

"But," persisted Harley, "think again. Was there no lady well acquainted with Italian, and with whom, perhaps, for that very reason, your wife became familiar?"

"Ah, it is true. There was one old lady of retired habits, but who had been much in Italy. Lady—Lady—I remember—Lady Jane Horton."

"Horton—Lady Jane!" exclaimed Harley; "again! thrice in one day—is this wound never to scar over?" Then, noting Riccabocca's look of surprise, he said, "Excuse me, my friend; I listen to you with renewed interest. Lady Jane was a distant relation of my own; she judged me, perhaps harshly—and I have some painful associations with her name; but she was a woman of many virtues. Your wife knew her?"

"Not, however, intimately—still, better than any one else in London. But Paulina would not have written to her; she knew that Lady Jane had died shortly after her own departure from England. I myself was summoned back to Italy on pressing business; she was too unwell to journey with me as rapidly as I was obliged to travel; indeed, illness detained her several weeks in England. In this interval she might have made acquaintances. Ah, now I see; I guess. You say the name began with B. Paulina, in my absence, engaged a companion; it was at my suggestion—a Mrs. Bertram. This lady accompanied her abroad. Paulina became excessively attached to her, she knew Italian so well. Mrs. Bertram left her on the road, and returned to England, for some private affairs of her own. I forget why or wherefore; if, indeed, I ever asked or learned. Paulina missed her sadly, often talked of her, wondered why she never heard from her. No doubt it was to this Mrs. Bertram that she wrote!"

"And you don't know the lady's friends or address?"


"Nor who recommended her to your wife?"


"Probably Lady Jane Horton?"

"It may be so. Very likely."

"I will follow up this track, slight as it is."

"But if Mrs. Bertram received the communication, how comes it that it never reached—O, fool that I am, how should it! I, who guarded so carefully my incognito!"

"True. This your wife could not foresee; she would naturally imagine that your residence in England would be easily discovered. But many years must have passed since your wife lost sight of this Mrs. Bertram, if their acquaintance was made so soon after your marriage; and now it is a long time to retrace—long before even your Violante was born."

"Alas! yes. I lost two fair sons in the interval. Violante was born to me as the child of sorrow."

"And to make sorrow lovely! how beautiful she is!"

The father smiled proudly.

"Where, in the loftiest house of Europe, find a husband worthy of such a prize?"

"You forget that I am still an exile—she still dowerless. You forget that I am pursued by Peschiera; that I would rather see her a beggar's wife—than—Pah, the very thought maddens me, it is so foul. Corpo di Bacco! I have been glad to find her a husband already."

"Already! Then that young man spoke truly?"

"What young man?"

"Randal Leslie. How! You know him?" Here a brief explanation followed. Harley heard with attentive ear, and marked vexation, the particulars of Riccabocca's connection and implied engagement with Leslie.

"There is something very suspicious to me in all this," said he. "Why should this young man have so sounded me as to Violante's chance of losing fortune if she married an Englishman?"

"Did he? O, pooh! excuse him. It was but his natural wish to seem ignorant of all about me. He did not know enough of my intimacy with you to betray my secret."

"But he knew enough of it—must have known enough to have made it right that he should tell you I was in England. He does not seem to have done so."

"No—that is strange; yet scarcely strange—for, when we last met, his head was full of[Pg 534] other things—love and marriage. Basta! youth will be youth."

"He has no youth left in him!" exclaimed Harley, passionately. "I doubt if he ever had any. He is one of those men who come into the world with the pulse of a centenarian. You and I never shall be as old—as he was in long-clothes. Ah, you may laugh; but I am never wrong in my instincts. I disliked him at the first—his eye, his smile, his voice, his very footstep. It is madness in you to countenance such a marriage; it may destroy all chance of your restoration."

"Better that than infringe my word once passed."

"No, no," exclaimed Harley; "your word is not passed—it shall not be passed. Nay, never look so piteously at me. At all events, pause till we know more of this young man. If he be worthy of her without a dower, why, then, let him lose you your heritage. I should have no more to say."

"But why lose me my heritage?"

"Do you think the Austrian government would suffer your estates to pass to this English jackanapes, a clerk in a public office? O, sage in theory, why are you such a simpleton in action?"

Nothing moved by this taunt, Riccabocca rubbed his hands, and then stretched them comfortably over the fire.

"My friend," said he, "the heritage would pass to my son—a dowry only goes to the daughter."

"But you have no son."

"Hush! I am going to have one; my Jemima informed me of it yesterday morning; and it was upon that information that I resolved to speak to Leslie. Am I a simpleton now?"

"Going to have a son," repeated Harley, looking very bewildered; "how do you know it is to be a son?"

"Physiologists are agreed," said the sage positively, "that where the husband is much older than the wife, and there has been a long interval without children before she condescends to increase the population of the world—she (that is, it is at least as nine to four)—she brings into the world a male. I consider that point, therefore, as settled, according to the calculations of statistics and the researches of naturalists."

Harley could not help laughing, though he was still angry and disturbed.

"The same man as ever; always the fool of philosophy."

"Cospetto!" said Riccabocca, "I am rather the philosopher of fools. And talking of that, shall I present you to my Jemima?"

"Yes; but in turn I must present you to one who remembers with gratitude your kindness, and whom your philosophy, for a wonder, has not ruined. Some time or other you must explain that to me. Excuse me for a moment; I will go for him."

"For him;—for whom? In my position I must be cautious; and—"

"I will answer for his faith and discretion. Meanwhile, order dinner, and let me and my friend stay to share it."

"Dinner? Corpo di Bacco!—not that Bacchus can help us here. What will Jemima say?"

"Henpecked man, settle that with your connubial tyrant. But dinner it must be."

I leave the reader to imagine the delight of Leonard at seeing once more Riccabocca unchanged, and Violante so improved; and the kind Jemima, too. And their wonder at him and his history, his books and his fame. He narrated his struggles and adventures with a simplicity that removed from a story so personal the character of egotism. But when he came to speak of Helen, he was brief and reserved.

Violante would have questioned more closely; but, to Leonard's relief, Harley interposed.

"You shall see her whom he speaks of, before long, and question her yourself."

With these words, Harley turned the young man's narrative into new directions; and Leonard's words again flowed freely. Thus the evening passed away, happily to all save Riccabocca. But the thought of his dead wife rose ever and anon before him; and yet when it did, and became too painful, he crept nearer to Jemima, and looked in her simple face, and pressed her cordial hand. And yet the monster had implied to Harley that his comforter was a fool—so she was, to love so contemptible a slanderer of herself, and her sex.

Violante was in a state of blissful excitement; she could not analyze her own joy. But her conversation was chiefly with Leonard; and the most silent of all was Harley. He sat listening to Leonard's warm, yet unpretending eloquence—that eloquence which flows so naturally from genius, when thoroughly at its ease, and not chilled back on itself by hard, unsympathizing hearers—listened, yet more charmed, to the sentiments less profound, yet no less earnest—sentiments so feminine, yet so noble, with which Violante's fresh virgin heart responded to the poet's kindling soul. Those sentiments of hers were so unlike all he heard in the common world—so akin to himself in his gone youth! Occasionally—at some high thought of her own, or some lofty line from Italian song, that she cited with lighted eyes and in melodious accents—occasionally he reared his knightly head, and his lips quivered, as if he had heard the sound of a trumpet. The inertness of long years was shaken. The Heroic, that lay deep beneath all the humors of his temperament, was reached, appealed to; and stirred within him, rousing up all the bright associations connected with it, and long dormant. When he rose to take leave, surprised at the lateness of the hour, Harley said, in a tone that bespoke the sincerity of the compliment, "I thank you for the happiest[Pg 535] hours I have known for years." His eye dwelt on Violante as he spoke. But timidity returned to her with his words—at his look; and it was no longer the inspired muse, but the bashful girl that stood before him.

"And when shall I see you again?" asked Riccabocca disconsolately, following his guest to the door.

"When? Why, of course, to-morrow. Adieu! my friend. No wonder you have borne your exile so patiently,—with such a child!"

He took Leonard's arm, and walked with him to the inn where he had left his horse. Leonard spoke of Violante with enthusiasm. Harley was silent.


The next day a somewhat old-fashioned, but exceedingly patrician, equipage stopped at Riccabocca's garden-gate. Giacomo, who, from a bedroom window, had caught sight of it winding towards the house, was seized with undefinable terror when he beheld it pause before their walls and heard the shrill summons at the portal. He rushed into his master's presence, and implored him not to stir—not to allow any one to give ingress to the enemies the machine might disgorge. "I have heard," said he, "how a town in Italy—I think it was Bologna—was once taken and given to the sword, by incautiously admitting a wooden horse, full of the troops of Barbarossa, and all manner of bombs and Congreve rockets."

"The story is differently told in Virgil," quoth Riccabocca, peeping out of the window. "Nevertheless, the machine looks very large and suspicious; unloose Pompey."

"Father," said Violante, coloring, "it is your friend, Lord L'Estrange; I hear his voice."

"Are you sure?"

"Quite. How can I be mistaken?"

"Go, then, Giacomo; but take Pompey with thee—and give the alarm if we are deceived."

But Violante was right; and in a few moments Lord L'Estrange was seen walking up the garden, and giving the arm to two ladies.

"Ah," said Riccabocca, composing his dressing-robe round him, "go, my child, and summon Jemima. Man to man; but, for Heaven's sake, woman to woman."

Harley had brought his mother and Helen, in compliment to the ladies of his friend's household.

The proud Countess knew that she was in the presence of Adversity, and her salute to Riccabocca was only less respectful than that with which she would have rendered homage to her sovereign. But Riccabocca, always gallant to the sex that he pretended to despise, was not to be outdone in ceremony; and the bow which replied to the curtsey would have edified the rising generation, and delighted such surviving relicts of the old Court breeding as may linger yet amidst the gloomy pomp of the Faubourg St. Germain. These dues paid to etiquette, the Countess briefly introduced Helen, as Miss Digby, and seated herself near the exile. In a few moments the two elder personages became quite at home with each other; and really, perhaps, Riccabocca had never, since we have known him, showed to such advantage as by the side of his polished, but somewhat formal visitor. Both had lived so little with our modern, ill-bred age! They took out their manners of a former race with a sort of pride in airing once more such fine lace and superb brocade. Riccabocca gave truce to the shrewd but homely wisdom of his proverbs—perhaps he remembered that Lord Chesterfield denounces proverbs as vulgar;—and gaunt though his figure, and far from elegant though his dressing-robe, there was that about him which spoke undeniably of the grand seigneur—of one to whom a Marquis de Dangeau would have offered a fauteuil by the side of the Rohans and Montmorencies.

Meanwhile, Helen and Harley seated themselves a little apart, and were both silent—the first from timidity; the second, from abstraction. At length the door opened, and Harley suddenly sprang to his feet—Violante and Jemima entered. Lady Lansmere's eyes first rested on the daughter, and she could scarcely refrain from an exclamation of admiring surprise; but then, when she caught sight of Mrs. Riccabocca's somewhat humble, yet not obsequious mien—looking a little shy, a little homely, yet still thoroughly a gentlewoman, (though of your plain rural kind of that genus)—she turned from the daughter, and with the savoir vivre of the fine old school, paid her first respects to the wife; respects literally, for her manner implied respect,—but it was more kind, simple, and cordial than the respect she had shown to Riccabocca;—as the sage himself had said, here "it was Woman to Woman." And then she took Violante's hand in both hers, and gazed on her as if she could not resist the pleasure of contemplating so much beauty. "My son," she said softly, and with a half sigh—"my son in vain told me not to be surprised. This is the first time I have ever known reality exceed description!"

Violante's blush here made her still more beautiful; and as the Countess returned to Riccabocca, she stole gently to Helen's side.

"Miss Digby, my ward," said Harley pointedly, observing that his mother had neglected her duty of presenting Helen to the ladies. He then reseated himself, and conversed with Mrs. Riccabocca; but his bright quick eye glanced ever at the two girls. They were about the same age—and youth was all that, to the superficial eye, they seemed to have in common. A greater contrast could not well be conceived; and, what is strange, both gained by it. Violante's brilliant lovelieness seemed yet more dazzling, and Helen's fair[Pg 536] gentle face yet more winning. Neither had mixed much with girls of her own age; each took to the other at first sight. Violante, as the less shy, began the conversation.

"You are his ward—Lord L'Estrange's?"


"Perhaps you came with him from Italy?"

"No, not exactly. But I have been in Italy for some years."

"Ah! you regret—nay, I am foolish—you return to your native land. But the skies in Italy are so blue—here it seems as if nature wanted colors."

"Lord L'Estrange says that you were very young when you left Italy; you remember it well. He, too, prefers Italy to England."

"He! Impossible!"

"Why impossible, fair skeptic?" cried Harley, interrupting himself in the midst of a speech to Jemima.

Violante had not dreamed that she could be overheard—she was speaking low; but, though visibly embarrassed, she answered distinctly—

"Because in England there is the noblest career for noble minds."

Harley was startled, and replied with a slight sigh, "At your age I should have said as you do. But this England of ours is so crowded with noble minds, that they only jostle each other, and the career is one cloud of dust."

"So, I have read, seems a battle to the common soldier, but not to the chief."

"You have read good descriptions of battles, I see."

Mrs. Riccabocca, who thought this remark a taunt upon her daughter-in-law's studies, hastened to Violante's relief.

"Her papa made her read the history of Italy, and I believe that is full of battles."

Harley.—"All history is, and all women are fond of war and of warriors. I wonder why."

Violante, (turning to Helen, and in a very low voice, resolved that Harley should not hear this time.)—"We can guess why—can we not?"

Harley, (hearing every word, as if it had been spoken in St. Paul's Whispering Gallery.)—"If you can guess, Helen, pray tell me."

Helen, (shaking her pretty head, and answering with a livelier smile than usual.)—"But I am not fond of war and warriors."

Harley to Violante.—"Then I must appeal at once to you, self-convicted Bellona that you are. Is it from the cruelty natural to the female disposition?"

Violante, (with a sweet musical laugh.)—"From two propensities still more natural to it."

Harley.—"You puzzle me: what can they be?"

Violante.—"Pity and admiration; we pity the weak, and admire the brave."

Harley inclined his head, and was silent.

Lady Lansmere had suspended her conversation with Riccabocca to listen to this dialogue. "Charming!" she cried. "You have explained what has often perplexed me. Ah, Harley, I am glad to see that your satire is foiled: you have no reply to that."

"No; I willingly own myself defeated—too glad to claim the Signorina's pity, since my cavalry sword hangs on the wall, and I can have no longer a professional pretence to her admiration."

He then rose, and glanced towards the window. "But I see a more formidable disputant for my conqueror to encounter is coming into the field—one whose profession it is to substitute some other romance for that of camp and siege."

"Our friend Leonard," said Riccabocca, turning his eye also towards the widow. "True; as Quevedo says wittily, 'Ever since there has been so great a demand for type, there has been much less lead to spare for cannon-balls.'"

Here Leonard entered. Harley had sent Lady Lansmere's footman to him with a note, that prepared him to meet Helen. As he came into the room, Harley took him by the hand, and led him to Lady Lansmere.

"The friend of whom I spoke. Welcome him now for my sake, ever after for his own;" and then, scarcely allowing time for the Countess's elegant and gracious response, he drew Leonard towards Helen. "Children," said he, with a touching voice, that thrilled through the hearts of both, "go and seat yourselves yonder, and talk together of the past. Signorina, I invite you to renewed discussion upon the abstruse metaphysical subject you have started; let us see if we cannot find gentler sources for pity and admiration than war and warriors." He took Violante aside to the window. "You remember that Leonard, in telling you his history last night, spoke, you thought, rather too briefly of the little girl who had been his companion in the rudest time of his trials. When you would have questioned more, I interrupted you, and said, 'You should see her shortly, and question her yourself.' And now what think you of Helen Digby? Hush, speak low. But her ears are not so sharp as mine."

Violante—"Ah! that is the fair creature whom Leonard called his child-angel? What a lovely innocent face!—the angel is there still."

Harley, (pleased both at the praise and with her who gave it.)—"You think so, and you are right. Helen is not communicative. But fine natures are like fine poems—a glance at the first two lines suffices for a guess into the beauty that waits you, if you read on."

Violante gazed on Leonard and Helen as they sat apart. Leonard was the speaker, Helen the listener; and though the former had, in his narrative the night before, been indeed brief as to the episode in his life connected with the orphan, enough had been said to interest Violante in the pathos of their[Pg 537] former position towards each other, and in the happiness they must feel in their meeting again—separated for years on the wide sea of life, now both saved from the storm and shipwreck. The tears came into her eyes. "True," she said very softly, "there is more here to move pity and admiration than in"—She paused.

Harley.—"Complete the sentence. Are you ashamed to retract? Fie on your pride and obstinacy."

Violante.—"No; but even here there have been war and heroism—the war of genius with adversity, and heroism in the comforter who shared it and consoled. Ah! wherever pity and admiration are both felt, something nobler than mere sorrow must have gone before: the heroic must exist."

"Helen does not know what the word heroic means," said Harley, rather sadly; "you must teach her."

Is it possible, thought he as he spoke, that a Randal Leslie could have charmed this grand creature? No "Heroic" surely, in that sleek young placeman. "Your father," he said aloud, and fixing his eyes on her face, "sees much, he tells me, of a young man, about Leonard's age, as to date; but I never estimate the age of men by the parish register; and I should speak of that so-called young man as a contemporary of my great-grandfather; I mean Mr. Randal Leslie. Do you like him?"

"Like him?" said Violante slowly, and as if sounding her own mind. "Like him—yes."

"Why?" asked Harley, with dry and curt indignation.

"His visits seem to please my dear father. Certainly, I like him."

"Hum. He professes to like you, I suppose?"

Violante laughed, unsuspiciously. She had half a mind to reply, "Is that so strange!" But her respect for Harley stopped her. The words would have seemed to her pert.

"I am told he is clever," resumed Harley.

"O, certainly."

"And he is rather handsome. But I like Leonard's face better."

"Better—that is not the word. Leonard's face is as that of one who has gazed so often upon heaven; and Mr. Leslie's—there is neither sunlight nor starlight reflected there."

"My dear Violante!" exclaimed Harley, overjoyed; and he pressed her hand.

The blood rushed over the girl's cheek and brow; her hand trembled in his. But Harley's familiar exclamation might have come from a father's lips.

At this moment, Helen softly approached them, and looking timidly into her guardian's face, said, "Leonard's mother is with him: he asks me to call and see her. May I?"

"May you! A pretty notion the Signorina must form of your enslaved state of pupilage, when she hears you ask that question. Of course you may."

"Will you take me there?"

Harley looked embarrassed. He thought of the widow's agitation at his name; of that desire to shun him, which Leonard had confessed, and of which he thought he divined the cause. And, so divining, he too shrank from such a meeting.

"Another time, then," said he, after a pause.

Helen looked disappointed, but said no more.

Violante was surprised at this ungracious answer. She would have blamed it as unfeeling in another. But all that Harley did was right in her eyes.

"Cannot I go with Miss Digby?" said she, "and my mother will go too. We both know Mrs. Fairfield. We shall be so pleased to see her again."

"So be it," said Harley; "I will wait here with your father till you come back. Oh, as to my mother, she will excuse the—excuse Madame Riccabocca, and you too. See how charmed she is with your father. I must stay to watch over the conjugal interests of mine."

But Mrs. Riccabocca had too much good old country breeding to leave the Countess; and Harley was forced himself to appeal to Lady Lansmere. When he had explained the case in point, the Countess rose and said—

"But I will call myself, with Miss Digby."

"No," said Harley, gravely, but in a whisper. "No—I would rather not. I will explain later."

"Then," said the Countess aloud, after a glance of surprise at her son, "I must insist on your performing this visit, my dear Madam, and you, Signorina. In truth, I have something to say confidentially to—"

"To me," interrupted Riccabocca. "Ah, Madame la Comtesse, you restore me to five-and-twenty. Go, quick—O jealous and injured wife; go, both of you, quick; and you, too, Harley."

"Nay," said Lady Lansmere, in the same tone, "Harley must stay, for my design is not at present upon destroying your matrimonial happiness, whatever it may be later. It is a design so innocent that my son will be a partner in it."

Here the Countess put her lips to Harley's ear, and whispered. He received her communication in attentive silence; but when she had done, pressed her hand, and bowed his head, as if an assent to a proposal.

In a few minutes, the three ladies and Leonard were on their road to the neighboring cottage.

Violante, with her usual delicate intuition, thought that Leonard and Helen must have much to say to each other; and ignorant, as Leonard himself was, of Helen's engagement to Harley, began already, in the romance natural to her age, to predict for them happy and united days in the future. So she took[Pg 538] her step-mother's arm, and left Helen and Leonard to follow.

"I wonder," she said, musingly, "how Miss Digby became Lord L'Estrange's ward, I hope she is not very rich, nor very high-born."

"La, my love," said the good Jemima, "that is not like you; you are not envious of her, poor girl?"

"Envious! Dear mamma, what a word! But don't you think Leonard and Miss Digby seem born for each other? And then the recollections of their childhood—the thoughts of childhood are so deep, and its memories so strangely soft!" The long lashes drooped over Violante's musing eyes as she spoke. "And therefore," she said after a pause "therefore I hoped that Miss Digby might not be very rich, nor very high-born."

"I understand you now, Violante," exclaimed Jemima, her own early passion for match-making instantly returning to her; "for as Leonard, however clever and distinguished, is still the son of Mark Fairfield the carpenter, it would spoil all if Miss Digby was, as you say, rich and high-born. I agree with you—a very pretty match—a very pretty match, indeed. I wish dear Mrs. Dale were here now she is so clever in settling such matters."

Meanwhile Leonard and Helen walked side by side a few paces in the rear. He had not offered her his arm. They had been silent hitherto since they left Riccabocca's house.

Helen now spoke first. In similar cases it is generally the woman, be she ever so timid, who does speak first. And here Helen was the bolder: for Leonard did not disguise from himself the nature of his feelings, and Helen was engaged to another; and her pure heart was fortified by the trust reposed in it.

"And have you ever heard more of the good Dr. Morgan, who had powders against sorrow, and who meant to be so kind to us—though," she added, coloring, "we did not think so then?"

"He took my child-angel from me," said Leonard, with visible emotion; "and if she had not returned, where and what should I be now? But I have forgiven him. No, I have never met him since."

"And that terrible Mr. Burley?"

"Poor, poor Burley! He, too, is vanished out of my present life. I have made many inquiries after him; all I can hear is that he went abroad, supposed as a correspondent to some journal. I should like so much to see him again, now that perhaps I could help him as he helped me."

"Helped you—ah!"

Leonard smiled with a beating heart, as he saw again the dear, prudent, warning look, and involuntarily drew closer to Helen. She seemed more restored to him and to her former self.

"Helped me much by his instructions; more, perhaps, by his very faults. You cannot guess, Helen—I beg pardon, Miss Digby—but I forgot that we are no longer children: you cannot guess how much we men, and, more than all perhaps, we writers, whose task it is to unravel the web of human actions, owe even to our own past errors; and if we learn nothing by the errors of others, we should be dull indeed. We must know where the roads divide, and have marked where they lead to, before we can erect our sign-posts; and books are the sign-posts in human life."

"Books!—And I have not yet read yours. And Lord L'Estrange tells me you are famous now. Yet you remember me still—the poor orphan child, whom you first saw weeping at her father's grave, and with whom you burdened your own young life, over-burdened already. No, still call me Helen—you must always be to me—a brother! Lord L'Estrange feels that; he said so to me when he told me that we were to meet again. He is so generous, so noble. Brother!" cried Helen, suddenly, and extending her hand, with a sweet but sublime look in her gentle face—"brother, we will never forfeit his esteem; we will both do our best to repay him? Will we not—say so?"

Leonard felt overpowered by contending and unanalyzed emotions. Touched almost to tears by the affectionate address—thrilled by the hand that pressed his own—and yet with a vague fear, a consciousness that something more than the words themselves was implied—something that checked all hope. And this word "brother," once so precious and so dear, why did he shrink from it now?—why could he not too say the sweet word "sister?"

"She is above me now and evermore," he thought, mournfully; and the tones of his voice, when he spoke again, were changed. The appeal to renewed intimacy but made him more distant; and to that appeal itself he made no direct answer; for Mrs. Riccabocca, now turning round, and pointing to the cottage which came in view, with its picturesque gable ends, cried out—

"But is that your house, Leonard? I never saw any thing so pretty."

"You do not remember it then," said Leonard to Helen, in accents of melancholy reproach "there where I saw you last! I doubted whether to keep it exactly as it was, and I said, No! the association is not changed because we try to surround it with whatever beauty we can create: the dearer the association, the more the Beautiful becomes to it natural.' Perhaps you don't understand this—perhaps it is only we poor poets who do."

"I understand it," said Helen, gently. She looked wistfully at the cottage.

"So changed—I have so often pictured it to myself—never, never like this; yet I loved it, commonplace as it was to my recollection; and the garret, and the tree in the carpenter's yard."[Pg 539]

She did not give these thoughts utterance. And they now entered the garden.


Mrs. Fairfield was a proud woman when she received Mrs. Riccabocca and Violante in her grand house; for a grand house to her was that cottage to which her boy Lenny had brought her home. Proud, indeed, ever was Widow Fairfield; but she thought then in her secret heart, that if ever she could receive in the drawing-room of that grand house the great Mrs. Hazeldean, who had so lectured her for refusing to live any longer in the humble tenement rented of the Squire, the cup of human bliss would be filled, and she could contentedly die of the pride of it. She did not much notice Helen—her attention was too absorbed by the ladies who renewed their old acquaintance with her, and she carried them all over the house, yea, into the very kitchen; and so, somehow or other, there was a short time when Helen and Leonard found themselves alone. It was in the study. Helen had unconsciously seated herself in Leonard's own chair, and she was gazing with anxious and wistful interest, on the scattered papers, looking so disorderly (though, in truth, in that disorder there was method, but method only known to the owner), and at the venerable, well-worn books, in all languages, lying on the floor, on the chairs—any where. I must confess that Helen's first tidy woman-like idea was a great desire to arrange the latter. "Poor Leonard," she thought to herself—"the rest of the house so neat, but no one to take care of his own room and of him!"

As if he divined her thought, Leonard smiled, and said, "It would be a cruel kindness to the spider, if the gentlest hand in the world tried to set its cobweb to rights."

Helen.—"You were not quite so bad in the old days."

Leonard.—"Yet even then, you were obliged to take care of the money. I have more books now, and more money. My present housekeeper lets me take care of the books, but she is less indulgent as to the money."

Helen, (archly.)—"Are you as absent as ever?"

Leonard.—"Much more so, I fear. The habit is incorrigible, Miss Digby—"

Helen.—"Not Miss Digby—sister, if you like."

Leonard, (evading the word that implied so forbidden an affinity.)—"Helen, will you grant me a favor? Your eyes and your smile say 'yes.' Will you lay aside, for one minute, your shawl and bonnet? What! can you be surprised that I ask it? Can you not understand that I wish for one minute to think you are at home again under this roof?"

Helen cast down her eyes, and seemed troubled; then she raised them, with a soft angelic candor in their dovelike blue, and, as if in shelter from all thoughts of more warm affection, again murmured "brother," and did as he asked her.

So there she sat, amongst the dull books, by his table, near the open window—her fair hair parted on her forehead—looking so good, so calm, so happy! Leonard wondered at his own self-command. His heart yearned to her with such inexpressible love—his lips so longed to murmur—"Ah, as now so could it be for ever! Is the home too mean?" But that word "brother" was as a talisman between her and him.

Yet she looked so at home—perhaps so at home she felt!—more certainly than she had yet learned to do in that stiff stately house in which she was soon to have a daughter's rights. Was she suddenly made aware of this—that she so suddenly arose—and with a look of alarm and distress on her face—

"But—we are keeping Lady Lansmere too long," she said, falteringly. "We must go now," and she hastily took up her shawl and bonnet.

Just then Mrs. Fairfield entered with the visitors, and began making excuses for inattention to Miss Digby, whose identity with Leonard's child-angel she had not yet learned.

Helen received these apologies with her usual sweetness. "Nay," she said, "your son and I are such old friends, how could you stand on ceremony with me?"

"Old friends!" Mrs. Fairfield stared amazed, and then surveyed the fair speaker more curiously than she had yet done. "Pretty, nice spoken thing," thought the widow; "as nice spoken as Miss Violante, and humbler-looking-like—though, as to dress, I never see any thing so elegant out of a picter."

Helen now appropriated Mrs. Riccabocca's arm; and after a kind leave-taking with the widow, the ladies returned towards Riccabocca's house.

Mrs. Fairfield, however, ran after them with Leonard's hat and gloves, which he had forgotten.

"'Deed, boy," said she kindly, yet scoldingly, "but there'd be no more fine books, if the Lord had not fixed your head on your shoulders. You would not think it, marm," she added to Mrs. Riccabocca, "but sin' he has left you, he's not the 'cute lad he was; very helpless at times, marm!"

Helen could not resist turning round, and looking at Leonard, with a sly smile.

The widow saw the smile, and catching Leonard by the arm, whispered, "But, where before have you seen that pretty young lady? Old friends!"

"Ah, mother," said Leonard, sadly, "it is a long tale; you have heard the beginning, who can guess the end?"—and he escaped. But Helen still leant on the arm of Mrs. Riccobocca, and, in the walk back, it seemed to Leonard as if the winter had resettled in the sky.

Yet he was by the side of Violante, and she spoke to him with such praise of Helen! Alas! it is not always so sweet as folks say,[Pg 540] to hear the praises of one we love. Sometimes those praises seem to ask ironically, "And what right hast thou to hope because thou lovest? All love her."


No sooner had Lady Lansmere found herself alone with Riccabocca and Harley than she laid her hand on the exile's arm, and, addressing him by a title she had not before given him, and from which he appeared to shrink nervously, said—"Harley, in bringing me to visit you, was forced to reveal to me your incognito, for I should have discovered it. You may not remember me, in spite of your gallantry. But I mixed more in the world than I do now, during your first visit to England, and once sat next to you at dinner at Carlton House. Nay, no compliments, but listen to me. Harley tells me you have cause for some alarm respecting the designs of an audacious and unprincipled—adventurer, I may call him; for adventurers are of all ranks. Suffer your daughter to come to me, on a visit, as long as you please. With me, at least, she will be safe; and if you, too, and the—"

"Stop, my dear madam," interrupted Riccabocca, with great vivacity, "your kindness overpowers me. I thank you most gratefully for your invitation to my child; but—"

"Nay," in his turn interrupted Harley, "no buts. I was not aware of my mother's intention when she entered this room. But since she whispered it to me, I have reflected on it, and am convinced that it is but a prudent precaution. Your retreat is known to Mr. Leslie—he is known to Peschiera. Grant that no indiscretion of Mr. Leslie's betray the secret; still I have reason to believe that the Count guesses Randal's acquaintance with you. Audley Egerton this morning told me he had gathered that, not from the young man himself, but from questions put to himself by Madame di Negra; and Peschiera might, and would, set spies, to track Leslie to every house that he visits—might and would, still more naturally, set spies to track myself. Were this man an Englishman, I should laugh at his machinations; but he is an Italian, and has been a conspirator. What he could do, I know not; but an assassin can penetrate into a camp, and a traitor can creep through closed walls to one's hearth. With my mother, Violante must be safe; that you cannot oppose. And why not come yourself?"

Riccabocca had no reply to these arguments, so far as they affected Violante; indeed, they awakened the almost superstitious terror with which he regarded his enemy, and he consented at once that Violante should accept the invitation proffered. But he refused it for himself and Jemima.

"To say truth," said he simply, "I made a secret vow, on re-entering England, that I would associate with none who knew the rank I had formerly held in my own land. I felt that all my philosophy was needed, to reconcile and habituate myself to my altered circumstances. In order to find in my present existence, however humble, those blessings which make all life noble—dignity and peace—it was necessary for poor, weak human nature, wholly to dismiss the past. It would unsettle me sadly, could I come to your house, renew a while, in your kindness and respect—nay, in the very atmosphere of your society—the sense of what I have been; and then (should the more than doubtful chance of recall from my exile fail me) to awake, and find myself for the rest of life—what I am. And though, were I alone, I might trust myself perhaps to the danger—yet my wife: she is happy and contented now; would she be so, if you had once spoiled her for the simple position of Dr. Riccabocca's wife? Should I not have to listen to regrets, and hopes, and fears that would prick sharp through my thin cloak of philosophy? Even as it is, since in a moment of weakness I confided my secret to her, I have had 'my rank' thrown at me—with a careless hand, it is true—but it hits hard, nevertheless. No stone hurts like one taken from the ruins of one's own home; and the grander the home, why, the heavier the stone! Protect, dear madam—protect my daughter, since her father doubts his own power to do so. But—ask no more."

Riccabocca was immovable here. And the matter was settled as he decided, it being agreed that Violante should be still styled the daughter of Dr. Riccabocca.

"And now, one word more," said Harley. "Do not confide to Mr. Leslie these arrangements; do not let him know where Violante is placed—at least, until I authorize such confidence in him. It is sufficient excuse, that it is no use to know unless he called to see her, and his movements, as I said before, may be watched. You can give the same reason to suspend his visits to yourself. Suffer me, meanwhile, to mature my judgment on this young man. In the mean while also, I think that I shall have means of ascertaining the real nature of Peschiera's schemes. His sister has sought to know me; I will give her the occasion. I have heard some things of her in my last residence abroad, which make me believe that she cannot be wholly the Count's tool in any schemes nakedly villanous; that she has some finer qualities in her than I once supposed; and that she can be won from his influence. It is a state of war; we will carry it into the enemy's camp. You will promise me, then, to refrain from all further confidence to Mr. Leslie."

"For the present, yes," said Riccabocca, reluctantly.

"Do not even say that you have seen me, unless he first tell you that I am in England, and wish to learn your residence. I will give him full occasion to do so. Pish! don't hesitate; you know your own proverb[Pg 541]

'Boccha chiusa, ed occhio aperto
Non fece mai nissun deserto.'

'The closed mouth and the open eye,' &c."

"That's very true," said the Doctor, much struck. "Very true. 'In bocchac hiusa non c'entrano mosche.' One can't swallow flies if one keeps one's mouth shut. Corpo di Bacco! that's very true!"

Harley took aside the Italian.

"You see if our hope of discovering the lost packet, or if our belief in the nature of its contents, be too sanguine, still, in a few months it is possible that Peschiera can have no further designs on your daughter—possible that a son may be born to you, and Violante would cease to be in danger, because she would cease to be an heiress. Indeed, it may be well to let Peschiera know this chance; it would, at least, make him delay all his plans while we are tracking the document that may defeat them for ever."

"No, no! for heaven's sake, no!" exclaimed Riccabocca, pale as ashes. "Not a word to him. I don't mean to impute to him crimes of which he may be innocent. But he meant to take my life when I escaped the pursuit of his hirelings in Italy. He did not hesitate, in his avarice, to denounce a kinsman; expose hundreds to the sword, if resisting—to the dungeon, if passive. Did he know that my wife might bear me a son, how can I tell that his designs might not change into others still darker, and more monstrous, than those he now openly parades, though, after all, not more infamous and vile? Would my wife's life be safe? Not more difficult to convey poison into my house, than to steal my child from my hearth. Don't despise me; but when I think of my wife, my daughter, and that man, my mind forsakes me: I am one fear."

"Nay, this apprehension is too exaggerated. We do not live in the age of the Borgias. Could Peschiera resort to the risks of a murder, it is for yourself that you should fear."

"For myself!—I! I!" cried the exile, raising his tall stature to its full height. "Is it not enough degradation to a man who has borne the name of such ancestors, to fear for those he loves! Fear for myself! Is it you who ask if I am a coward?"

He recovered himself as he felt Harley's penitential and admiring grasp of the hand.

"See," said he, turning to the Countess with a melancholy smile, "how even one hour of your society destroys the habits of years. Dr. Riccabocca is talking of his ancestors!"


Violante and Jemima were both greatly surprised, as the reader may suppose, when they heard, on their return, the arrangements already made for the former. The Countess insisted on taking her at once, and Riccabocca briefly said, "Certainly, the sooner the better." Violante was stunned and bewildered. Jemima hastened to make up a little bundle of things necessary, with many a woman's sigh that the poor wardrobe contained so few things befitting. But among the clothes she slipped a purse, containing the savings of months, perhaps of years, and with it a few affectionate lines, begging Violante to ask the Countess to buy her all that was proper for her father's child. There is always something hurried and uncomfortable in the abrupt and unexpected withdrawal of any member from a quiet household. The small party broke into still smaller knots. Violante hung on her father, and listened vaguely to his not very lucid explanations. The Countess approached Leonard, and according to the usual mode of persons of quality addressing young authors, complimented him highly on the books she had not read, but which her son assured her were so remarkable. She was a little anxious to know where Harley had met with Mr. Oran, whom he called his friend; but she was too high-bred to inquire, or to express any wonder that rank should be friends with genius.

She took it for granted that they had formed their acquaintance abroad.

Harley conversed with Helen. "You are not sorry that Violante is coming to us? She will be just such a companion for you as I could desire; of your own years too."

Helen, (ingenuously.)—"It is hard to think I am not younger than she is."

Harley.—"Why, my dear Helen?"

Helen.—"She is so brilliant. She talks so beautifully. And I—"

Harley.—"And you want but the habit of talking, to do justice to your own beautiful thoughts."

Helen looked at him gratefully, but shook her head. It was a common trick of hers, and always when she was praised.

At last the preparations were made—the farewell was said. Violante was in the carriage by Lady Lansmere's side. Slowly moved on the stately equipage with its four horses and trim postillions, heraldic badges on their shoulders, in the style rarely seen in the neighborhood of the metropolis, and now fast vanishing even amidst distant counties.

Riccabocca, Jemima, and Jackeymo continued to gaze after it from the gate.

"She is gone," said Jackeymo, brushing his eyes with his coat-sleeve. "But it is a load off one's mind."

"And another load on one's heart," murmured Riccabocca. "Don't cry, Jemima; it may be bad for you, and bad for him that is to come. It is astonishing how the humors of the mother may affect the unborn. I should not like to have a son who has a more than usual propensity to tears."

The poor philosopher tried to smile; but it was a bad attempt. He went slowly in and shut himself up with his books. But he could not read. His whole mind was unsettled. And though, like all parents, he had been[Pg 542] anxious to rid himself of a beloved daughter for life, now that she was gone but for a while, a string seemed broken in the Music of Home.


The evening of the same day, as Egerton, who was to entertain a large party at dinner, was changing his dress, Harley walked into his room.

Egerton dismissed his valet by a sign, and continued his toilet.

"Excuse me, my dear Harley, I have only ten minutes to give you. I expect one of the royal dukes, and punctuality is the stern virtue of men of business, and the graceful courtesy of princes."

Harley had usually a jest for his friend's aphorisms; but he had none now. He laid his hand kindly on Egerton's shoulder—"Before I speak of my business, tell me how you are—better?"

"Better—nay, I am always well. Pooh! I may look a little tired—years of toil will tell on the countenance. But that matters little—the period of life has passed with me when one cares how one looks in the glass."

As he spoke, Egerton completed his dress, and came to the hearth, standing there, erect and dignified as usual, still far handsomer than many a younger man, and with a form that seemed to have ample vigor to support for many a year the sad and glorious burden of power.

"So now to your business, Harley."

"In the first place, I want you to present me, at the first opportunity, to Madame di Negra. You say she wished to know me."

"Are you serious?"


"Well, then, she receives this evening. I did not mean to go; but when my party breaks up"—

"You can call for me at 'The Travellers.' Do!

"Next—you knew Lady Jane Horton better even than I did, at least in the last year of her life." Harley sighed, and Egerton turned and stirred the fire.

"Pray, did you ever see at her house, or hear her speak of, a Mrs. Bertram?"

"Of whom?" said Egerton, in a hollow voice, his face still turned towards the fire.

"A Mrs. Bertram; but heavens! my dear fellow, what is the matter? Are you ill?"

"A spasm at the heart—that is all—don't ring—I shall be better presently—go on talking. Mrs.—— why do you ask?"

"Why! I have hardly time to explain; but I am, as I told you, resolved on righting my old Italian friend, if Heaven will help me, as it ever does help the just when they bestir themselves; and this Mrs. Bertram is mixed up in my friend's affairs."

"His! How is that possible?"

Harley rapidly and succinctly explained. Audley listened attentively, with his eyes fixed on the floor, and still seeming to labor under great difficulty of breathing.

At last he answered, "I remember something of this Mrs.—Mrs.—Bertram. But your inquiries after her would be useless. I think I have heard that she is long since dead; nay, I am sure of it."

"Dead!—that is most unfortunate. But do you know any of her relations or friends? Can you suggest any mode of tracing this packet if it came to her hands?"


"And Lady Jane had scarcely any friend that I remember, except my mother, and she knows nothing of this Mrs. Bertram. How unlucky! I think I shall advertise. Yet, no. I could only distinguish this Mrs. Bertram from any other of the same name, by stating with whom she had gone abroad, and that would catch the attention of Peschiera, and set him to counterwork us."

"And what avails it?" said Egerton. "She whom you seek is no more—no more!" He paused, and went on rapidly—"The packet did not arrive in England till years after her death—was no doubt returned to the post-office—is destroyed long ago."

Harley looked very much disappointed. Egerton went on in a sort of set mechanical voice, as if not thinking of what he said, but speaking from the dry practical mode of reasoning which was habitual to him, and by which the man of the world destroys the hopes of an enthusiast. Then starting up at the sound of the first thundering knock at the street door, he said, "Hark! you must excuse me."

"I leave you, my dear Audley. Are you better now?"

"Much, much—quite well. I will call for you, probably between eleven and twelve."


If any one could be more surprised at seeing Lord L'Estrange at the house of Madame di Negra that evening than the fair hostess herself, it was Randal Leslie. Something instinctively told him that this visit threatened interference with whatever might be his ultimate projects in regard to Riccabocca and Violante. But Randal Leslie was not one of those who shrink from an intellectual combat. On the contrary, he was too confident of his powers of intrigue, not to take a delight in their exercise. He could not conceive that the indolent Harley could be a match for his own restless activity and dogged perseverance. But in a very few moments fear crept on him. No man of his day could produce a more brilliant effect than Lord L'Estrange, when he deigned to desire it. Without much pretence to that personal beauty which strikes at first sight, he still retained all the charm of countenance, and all the grace of manner which had made him in boyhood the spoiled darling of society. Madame di Negra had collected but a small circle round her, still it was of the élite of the great world; not, indeed, those more precise[Pg 543] and reserved dames du chateau, whom the lighter and easier of the fair dispensers of fashion ridicule as prudes; but, nevertheless, ladies were there, as unblemished in reputation as high in rank; flirts and coquettes, perhaps—nothing more; in short, "charming women"—the gay butterflies that hover over the stiff parterre. And there were ambassadors and ministers, and wits and brilliant debaters, and first-rate dandies (dandies, when first-rate, are generally very agreeable men). Amongst all these various persons, Harley, so long a stranger to the London world, seemed to make himself at home with the ease of an Alcibiades. Many of the less juvenile ladies remembered him, and rushed to claim his acquaintance, with nods, and becks, and wreathed smiles. He had ready compliments for each. And few indeed were there, men or women, for whom Harley L'Estrange had not appropriate attraction. Distinguished reputation as a soldier and scholar, for the grave; whim and pleasantry for the gay; novelty for the sated; and for the more vulgar natures, was he not Lord L'Estrange, unmarried, heir to an ancient earldom, and some fifty thousand a-year?

Not till he had succeeded in the general effect—which, it must be owned, he did his best to create—did Harley seriously and especially devote himself to his hostess. And then he seated himself by her side; and as if in compliment to both, less pressing admirers insensibly slipped away and edged off.

Frank Hazeldean was the last to quit his ground behind Madame di Negra's chair; but when he found that the two began to talk in Italian, and he could not understand a word they said, he too—fancying, poor fellow, that he looked foolish, and cursing his Eaton education that had neglected, for languages spoken by the dead, of which he had learned little, those still in use among the living, of which he had learned naught—retreated towards Randal, and asked wistfully, "Pray, what age should you say L'Estrange was? He must be devilish old, in spite of his looks. Why, he was at Waterloo!"

"He is young enough to be a terrible rival," answered Randal, with artful truth.

Frank turned pale, and began to meditate dreadful bloodthirsty thoughts, of which hair-triggers and Lord's Cricket-ground formed the staple.

Certainly there was apparent ground for a lover's jealousy. For Harley and Beatrice now conversed in a low tone, and Beatrice seemed agitated, and Harley earnest. Randal himself grew more and more perplexed. Was Lord L'Estrange really enamored of the Marchesa? If so, farewell to all hopes of Frank's marriage with her! Or was he merely playing a part in Riccabocca's interest; pretending to be the lover, in order to obtain an influence over her mind, rule her through her ambition, and secure an ally against her brother? Was this finesse compatible with Randal's notions of Harley's character? Was it consistent with that chivalric and soldierly spirit of honor which the frank nobleman affected, to make love to a woman in a mere ruse de guerre? Could mere friendship for Riccabocca be a sufficient inducement to a man, who, whatever his weaknesses or his errors, seemed to wear on his very forehead a soul above deceit, to stoop to paltry means, even for a worthy end? At this question, a new thought flashed upon Randal—might not Lord L'Estrange have speculated himself upon winning Violante?—would not that account for all the exertions he had made on behalf of her inheritance at the court of Vienna—exertions of which Peschiera and Beatrice had both complained? Those objections which the Austrian government might take to Violante's marriage with some obscure Englishman would probably not exist against a man like Harley L'Estrange, whose family not only belonged to the highest aristocracy of England, but had always supported opinions in vogue amongst the leading governments of Europe. Harley himself, it is true, had never taken part in politics, but his notions were, no doubt, those of a high-born soldier, who had fought, in alliance with Austria, for the restoration of the Bourbons. And this immense wealth—which Violante might lose if she married one like Randal himself—her marriage with the heir of the Lansmeres might actually tend only to secure. Could Harley, with all his own expectations, be indifferent to such a prize?—and no doubt he had learned Violante's rare beauty in his correspondence with Riccabocca.

Thus considered, it seemed natural to Randal's estimate of human nature, that Harley's more prudish scruples of honor, as regards what is due to women, could not resist a temptation so strong. Mere friendship was not a motive powerful enough to shake them, but ambition was.

While Randal was thus cogitating, Frank thus suffering, and many a whisper, in comment on the evident flirtation between the beautiful hostess and the accomplished guest, reached the ears both of the brooding schemer and the jealous lover, the conversation between the two objects of remark and gossip had taken a new turn. Indeed, Beatrice had made an effort to change it.

"It is long, my lord," said she, still speaking Italian, "since I have heard sentiments like those you address to me; and if I do not feel myself wholly unworthy of them, it is from the pleasure I have felt in reading sentiments equally foreign to the language of the world in which I live." She took a book from the table as she spoke: "Have you seen this work?"

Harley glanced at the title-page. "To be sure I have, and I know the author."

"I envy you that honor. I should so like also to know one who has discovered to me[Pg 544] deeps in my own heart which I had never explored."

"Charming Marchesa, if the book has done this, believe me that I have paid you no false compliment—formed no overflattering estimate of your nature; for the charm of the work is but in its simple appeal to good and generous emotions, and it can charm none in whom those emotions exist not!"

"Nay, that cannot be true, or why is it so popular?"

"Because good and generous emotions are more common to the human heart than we are aware of till the appeal comes."

"Don't ask me to think that! I have found the world so base."

"Pardon me a rude question; but what do you know of the world?"

Beatrice looked first in surprise at Harley, then glanced round the room with significant irony.

"As I thought; you call this little room 'the world.' Be it so. I will venture to say, that if the people in this room were suddenly converted into an audience before a stage, and you were as consummate in the actor's art as you are in all others that please and command—"


"And were to deliver a speech full of sordid and base sentiments, you would be hissed. But let any other woman, with half your powers, arise and utter sentiments sweet and womanly, or honest and lofty—and applause would flow from every lip, and tears rush to many a worldly eye. The true proof of the inherent nobleness of our common nature is in the sympathy it betrays with what is noble wherever crowds are collected. Never believe the world is base;—if it were so, no society could hold together for a day. But you would know the author of this book? I will bring him to you."


"And now," said Harley rising, and with his candid winning smile, "do you think we shall ever be friends?"

"You have startled me so, that I can scarcely answer. But why would you be friends with me?"

"Because you need a friend. You have none?"

"Strange flatterer!" said Beatrice, smiling, though very sadly; and looking up, her eye caught Randal's.

"Pooh!" said Harley, "you are too penetrating to believe that you inspire friendship there. Ah, do you suppose that, all the while I have been conversing with you, I have not noticed the watchful gaze of Mr. Randal Leslie? What tie can possibly connect you together I know not yet; but I soon shall."

"Indeed! you talk like one of the old Council of Venice. You try hard to make me fear you," said Beatrice, seeking to escape from the graver kind of impression Harley had made on her, by the affectation, partly of coquetry, partly of levity.

"And I," said L'Estrange, calmly, "tell you already, that I fear you no more." He bowed, and passed through the crowd to rejoin Audley, who was seated in a corner, whispering with some of his political colleagues. Before Harley reached the minister, he found himself close to Randal and young Hazeldean.

He bowed to the first, and extended his hand to the last. Randal felt the distinction, and his sullen, bitter pride was deeply galled—a feeling of hate towards Harley passed into his mind. He was pleased to see the cold hesitation with which Frank just touched the hand offered to him. But Randal had not been the only person whose watch upon Beatrice the keen-eyed Harley had noticed. Harley had seen the angry looks of Frank Hazeldean, and divined the cause. So he smiled forgivingly at the slight he had received.

"You are like me, Mr. Hazeldean," said he. "You think something of the heart should go with all courtesy that bespeaks friendship—

"The hand of Douglas is his own."

Here Harley drew aside Randal. "Mr. Leslie, a word with you. If I wished to know the retreat of Dr. Riccabocca, in order to render him a great service, would you confide to me that secret?"

"That woman has let out her suspicions that I know the exile's retreat," thought Randal; and with rare presence of mind, he replied at once—

"My Lord, yonder stands a connection of Dr. Riccabocca's. Mr. Hazeldean is surely the person to whom you should address this inquiry."

"Not so, Mr. Leslie; for I suspect that he cannot answer it, and that you can. Well, I will ask something that it seems to me you may grant without hesitation. Should you see Dr. Riccabocca, tell him that I am in England, and so leave it to him to communicate with me or not; but perhaps you have already done so?"

"Lord L'Estrange," said Randal, bowing low, with pointed formality, "excuse me if I decline either to disclaim or acquiesce in the knowledge you impute to me. If I am acquainted with any secret intrusted to me by Dr. Riccabocca, it is for me to use my own discretion how best to guard it. And for the rest, after the Scotch earl, whose words your lordship has quoted, refused to touch the hand of Marmion, Douglas could scarcely have called him back in order to give him—a message!"

Harley was not prepared for this tone in Mr. Egerton's protégé, and his own gallant nature was rather pleased than irritated by a haughtiness that at least seemed to bespeak independence of spirit. Nevertheless, L'Estrange's suspicions of Randal were too strong[Pg 545] to be easily set aside, and therefore he replied, civilly, but with covert taunt—

"I submit to your rebuke, Mr. Leslie, though I meant not the offence you would ascribe to me. I regret my unlucky quotation yet the more, since the wit of your retort has obliged you to identify yourself with Marmion, who, though a clever and brave fellow, was an uncommonly—tricky one." And so Harley, certainly having the best of it, moved on, and joining Egerton, in a few minutes more both left the room.

"What was L'Estrange saying to you?" asked Frank. "Something about Beatrice, I am sure."

"No; only quoting poetry."

"Then, what made you look so angry, my dear fellow? I know it was your kind feeling for me. As you say, he is a formidable rival. But that can't be his own hair. Do you think he wears a toupet? I am sure he was praising Beatrice. He is evidently very much smitten with her. But I don't think she is a woman to be caught by mere rank and fortune! Do you? Why can't you speak?"

"If you do not get her consent soon, I think she is lost to you," said Randal slowly; and, before Frank could recover his dismay, glided from the house.


Violante's first evening at the Lansmeres, had seemed happier to her than the first evening, under the same roof, had done to Helen. True that she missed her father much—Jemima somewhat; but she so identified her father's cause with Harley, that she had a sort of vague feeling that it was to promote that cause that she was on this visit to Harley's parents. And the Countess, it must be owned, was more emphatically cordial to her than she had ever yet been to Captain Digby's orphan. But perhaps the real difference in the heart of either girl was this, that Helen felt awe of Lady Lansmere, and Violante felt only love for Lord L'Estrange's mother. Violante, too, was one of those persons whom a reserved and formal person, like the Countess, "can get on with," as the phrase goes. Not so poor little Helen—so shy herself, and so hard to coax into more than gentle monosyllables. And Lady Lansmere's favorite talk was always of Harley. Helen had listened to such talk with respect and interest. Violante listened to it with inquisitive eagerness—with blushing delight. The mother's heart noticed the distinction between the two, and no wonder that the heart moved more to Violante than to Helen. Lord Lansmere, too, like most gentlemen of his age, clumped all young ladies together, as a harmless, amiable, but singularly stupid class of the genus-Petticoat, meant to look pretty, play the piano, and talk to each other about frocks and sweethearts. Therefore this animated, dazzling creature, with her infinite variety of look and play of mind, took him by surprise, charmed him into attention, and warmed him into gallantry. Helen sat in her quiet corner, at her work, sometimes listening with mournful, though certainly unenvious, admiration at Violante's vivid, yet ever unconscious, eloquence of word and thought—sometimes plunged deep into her own secret meditations. And all the while the work went on the same, under the small noiseless fingers. This was one of Helen's habits that irritated the nerves of Lady Lansmere. She despised young ladies who were fond of work. She did not comprehend how often it is the resource of the sweet womanly mind, not from want of thought, but from the silence and the depth of it. Violante was surprised, and perhaps disappointed, that Harley had left the house before dinner, and did not return all the evening. But Lady Lansmere, in making excuse for his absence, on the plea of engagements, found so good an opportunity to talk of his ways in general—of his rare promise in boyhood—of her regret at the inaction of his maturity—of her hope to see him yet do justice to his natural powers, that Violante almost ceased to miss him.

And when Lady Lansmere conducted her to her room, and kissing her cheek tenderly, said, "But you are just the person Harley admires—just the person to rouse him from melancholy dreams, of which his wild humors are now but the vain disguise"—Violante crossed her arms on her bosom, and her bright eyes, deepened into tenderness, seemed to ask, "He melancholy—and why?"

On leaving Violante's room, Lady Lansmere paused before the door of Helen's; and, after musing a little while, entered softly.

Helen had dismissed her maid; and, at the moment Lady Lansmere entered, she was kneeling at the foot of the bed, her hands clasped before her face.

Her form, thus seen, looked so youthful and childlike—the attitude itself was so holy and so touching, that the proud and cold expression on Lady Lansmere's face changed. She shaded the light involuntarily, and seated herself in silence, that she might not disturb the act of prayer.

When Helen rose, she was startled to see the Countess seated by the fire; and hastily drew her hand across her eyes. She had been weeping.

Lady Lansmere did not, however, turn to observe those traces of tears, which Helen feared were too visible. The Countess was too absorbed in her own thoughts; and as Helen timidly approached, she said—still with her eyes on the clear low fire—"I beg your pardon, Miss Digby, for my intrusion; but my son has left it to me to prepare Lord Lansmere to learn the offer you have done Harley the honor to accept. I have not yet spoken to my lord; it may be days before I find a fitting occasion to do so; meanwhile, I feel assured that your sense of propriety will make you agree with me, that it is due to[Pg 546] Lord L'Estrange's father, that strangers should not learn arrangements of such moment in his family, before his own consent be obtained."

Here the Countess came to a full pause; and poor Helen, finding herself called upon for some reply to this chilling speech, stammered out, scarce audibly—

"Certainly, madam, I never dreamed of—"

"That is right, my dear," interrupted Lady Lansmere, rising suddenly, and as if greatly relieved. "I could not doubt your superiority to ordinary girls of your age, with whom these matters are never secret for a moment. Therefore, of course, you will not mention, at present, what has passed between you and Harley, to any of the friends with whom you may correspond."

"I have no correspondents—no friends, Lady Lansmere," said Helen, deprecatingly, and trying hard not to cry.

"I am very glad to hear it, my dear; young ladies never should have. Friends, especially friends who correspond, are the worst enemies they can have. Good night, Miss Digby. I need not add, by the way, that, though we are bound to show all kindness to this young Italian lady, still she is wholly unconnected with our family; and you will be as prudent with her as you would have been with your correspondents—had you had the misfortune to have any."

Lady Lansmere said the last words with a smile, and pressed a reluctant kiss (the step-mother's kiss) on Helen's bended brow. She then left the room, and Helen sat on the seat vacated by the stately unloving form, and again covered her face with her hands, and again wept. But when she rose at last, and the light fell upon her face, that soft face was sad indeed, but serene—serene, as if with some inward sense of duty—sad, as with the resignation which accepts patience instead of hope.


[21] Continued from page 411.

[22] Translation of Charron on Wisdom. By G. Stanhope, D.D., late Dean of Canterbury (1729). A translation remarkable for ease, vigor, and (despite that contempt for the strict rules of grammar, which was common enough amongst writers at the commencement of the last century) for the idiomatic raciness of its English.

From Household Words.


"Light a room with spermaceti, anoint your face with the same substance, and you will seem to all beholders to have the head of a sperm whale upon your shoulders." "When you would have men in the house seem to be without heads: take yellow brimstone with oil, and put it in a lamp and light it, and set it in the midst amongst men, and you shall see a wonder." These are two out of a large mass of facts which form a compact body of ancestral wisdom. They lie before us in a venerable volume, whose grave frontispiece is adorned with the portraitures of Alexis, Albertus Magnus, Dr. Reade, Raymond Lully, Dr. Harvey, Lord Bacon, and Dr. John Wecker. John Wecker, Doctor in Physic, first compiled the book, and Dr. R. Read augmented and enlarged it. "A like work never before was in the English tongue." It was printed in the year 1661, for Simon Miller, at the Starre in St. Paul's Church Yard, and it is entitled, "Eighteen Books of the Secrets of Art and Nature, being the Summe and Substance of Naturall Philosophy, Methodically Digested." The book is one of considerable size and pretension, written by wise doctors in the good old time, two hundred years ago. Let us not be conceited and harp only on the strings provided to our fingers in the nineteenth century. For a few minutes, at least, it will not do us harm to get a little scientific information from our ancestors. We shall glean, therefore, some random facts out of the harvest-field of Doctors Mead and Wecker, selecting, of course, most characteristic, those which our forefathers may call exclusively their own.

The volume opens with scientific information on the subject of Angels and Devils, including, of course, the fact that "Witches kill children, and divers cattle, which we find by various experience, and by relation of others that are worthy to be believed. But if you will say they are mere delusions of the Devil, whereby he makes foolish women mad that are entangled by him, that they believe they do those things which neither they nor the devil can do; if we can so avoid it, we may as well deny any thing else, be it never so evident. "—If you deny that, you may deny any thing—is a phrase not yet dead. Applied two hundred years ago to the experience concerning witches, it has been industriously employed to the present day, and is employed still on behalf of a great many fresh delusions. As for the gentleman, whom truth is said to shame, he claimed his distinct chapter in the minds of old physicians, because, as the book before us has it, he "can cause many diseases, of the reasons whereof we are ignorant. Also he can do this, or that; being subtile, he can easily pass through all parts of the body, which he can bind, pull back, or torment otherwise."

Passing on now, as we follow the march of high philosophy, to secrets of the sun and moon; it may be worth while to understand, as our forefathers taught, that "it is easie to guess at the fortune of every year by the stars, if a man consider twelve, nineteen, eight, four, and thirty." Somebody wants to know what luck he will have in 1853. Let him consider 1841 (twelve years back), let him consider 1834 (nineteen years back), and, for the eight, four, thirty, let him look back to the years 1845, 1849, and 1823. Let him reflect on the nature of his fortune in each of those years, look up his old diaries, combine their results, and that will give him the character of his fate in 1853. Jupiter is somehow at the bottom of this, but we are too modern and ignorant to understand the author's explanation.

Among secrets concerning fire, are those two facts connected with spermaceti and brimstone already stated. Any one living in the country, whom the croaking of the frogs[Pg 547] may trouble of a night, will doubtless be glad to hear of a remedy: "Take the fat of a crocodile, and make it up with wax while in the sun, and make a candle of it, and light it in the place where frogs are, and when they see that they will presently cease crying." Where crocodile's fat cannot be had, "the fat of a dolphin" will do. Prescriptions abound, by the use of which men may appear to wear the heads of asses, horses, dogs, or to resemble elephants. There is a receipt also for making "a faire light, that the house may seem all full of serpents so long as the wick doth burn." But we pass over these pleasant methods of illumination, simply remarking, that if our wise ancestors were right, the volume now before us would procure a sudden fortune to the lessees of Vauxhall. By the use of some dozen kinds of cunningly prepared lamps, the Royal Gardens might in good faith be chronicled in its bills as a "scene of enchantment." At one turn of a walk, all visitors would show their heads, and at another, none; in another grove they would be elephants, and in another they would look like angels. The Rotunda might be lighted for a diabolical effect, and the Dark Walk illuminated brilliantly with dolphin's fat, funeral cloth and Azemat, whose light makes every body invisible. This, again, is no bad hint for a country tallow-chandler, who supplies light to the ladies of a solemn village, where he is annoyed by the neglect of any gayeties that would create large orders for composite or sperm: "To make women rejoice mightily. Make candles of the fat of hares, and light them, and let them stand awhile in the middle where women are: they will not be so merry as to dance; yet sometimes that falls out also."

"It is a wonder that some report how that the tooth of a badger, or his left foot bound to a man's right arm will strengthen the memory." Boys, who have lessons to learn, may like to know that fact; and teachers, who have idle pupils, must not flog, but feed them upon cresses. "Cresses eaten make a man industrious." Young ladies, who believe in their ancestors, will thank us for repeating their opinion that the use of a ring, which was lain for a certain time in a sparrow's nest, will procure love. Nor need any dread the penalties of matrimony, since the man who carries with him a hartshorn "shall alwaies have peace with his wife:" and also, "the heart of a male quail, carried by the man, and the heart of a female quail, by the woman, will cause that no quarrels can ever arise between them." The man who carries a quail's heart in his pocket may face his wife, and never have to feel his own heart quailing underneath his ribs.

Old Parr dined probably upon serpents, not, as is commonly reported, upon pills. "It is known that stags renew their age by eating serpents; so the phœnix is restored by the nest of spices shee makes to burn in. The pelican hath the same virtue, whose right foot, if it be put under hot dung, after three months a pelican will be bred from it. Wherefore some physicians, with some confections, made of a viper and hellebore, and of some of the flesh of these creatures, do promise to restore youth, and sometimes they do it." If the Zoological Society has proper respect for our ancestors, they will not delay to sow a hot-bed with pelicans' feet. Young shoots of pelican would be much more appropriate beside the gravel-walks than your mere vegetable pelargonium.

In the way of practice of medicine, we moderns say that any thing like scientific principles, on which one can depend, have only been attained in our own lifetime. "Doctors differed," and bumped against each other, only because all alike were feeling through the dark. In our own day there is light enough to keep doctors from differing very grossly,—gross difference springing generally more from the want of knowledge in an individual, than in the profession generally. Although there is yet a vast deal to be learned. In the first century, Asclepiades dubbed the medical system of Hippocrates, "a cold meditation of death." Under Nero there arose a Dr. Thessalus, who taught that Nature was the guide to follow and obey in all diseases; and, therefore, under his system patients were simply to be liberally and rapidly supplied with every thing they fancied. Paracelsus, in the sixteenth century, looked for a patient's symptoms in the stars; so we must not be surprised if the "Secrets in Physic and Surgery," published among the other secrets in this volume now before us, contain odd information. Here is a nice cure for a quartan ague, which might tickle a patient's stomach sooner than his fancy: "Seven wig-lice of the bed, wrapped in a great grape husk, and swallowed down alive before the fit." Another cure is effected when the patient eats the parings of his nails and toes, mingled with wax. There are many remedies against the Plague; but that one which is recommended as "The Best Thing against the Plague," is for a man to wash his mouth with vinegar and water before he goes out, drinking also a spoonful of the liquor; then to press his nose and stop his breath, so that "by the vapor and steam held in your mouth, the brain be moistened." In the following prescription we believe entirely: "For Melancholy. It is no small remedy to cure melancholy, to rub your body all over with nettles."

Book Five contains secrets for beautifying the human body. The following receipt, which comes first, for giving people a substantial look, seems to be somewhat too efficacious to be often tried: "To make men fat. If you mingle with the fat of a lizard, salt-petre and cummin and wheat-meal, hens fatted with this meat will be so fat, that men that eat of them, will eat until they burst."[Pg 548] A degree of fatness in hens equal to this will never be communicated by our degenerate modern agriculturists. For the hair-dyes, favored by our forefathers, we cannot, however, say much, for we must differ in taste very decidedly. Recipes are given for obtaining, not only black, but white hair, yellow hair, red hair, and "To make your hair seem GREEN." Nobody in these days will use a course of the distilled water of capers to make his hair look like a meadow; and even, if any body among us, too fastidious as we now are, wanted yellow hair, we do not think that he would consent to rub into his head for that purpose honey and the yolk of eggs. There are also in this part of the work some ungallant recommendations of substances, which a man may chew in order that, presently breathing near a lady's cheek, he may discolor it, and so detect her artifice, if she should happen to be painted. Among "secrets for beautifying the body," we cannot but think this also indicative of an odd taste; "If you would change the color of children's eyes, you shall do it thus; with the ashes of the small nut-shells, with oil you must anoint the forepart of their head; it will make the whites of children's eyes black; do it often!"

Concerning wine, it is worth knowing, that to cure a man of drunkenness, you should put eels into his wine. Delightful dreams will visit the couch of him who has eaten moderately, for supper, of a horse's tongue, and taken balm for salad. This is "A means to make a man sleep sweetly," which we recommend to the attention of all restless people, who have proper faith in their forefathers. As we have passed over a good many pages, and come to the "secrets of asses," we may put down, à propos to nothing, that "If an ass have a stone bound to his tail he cannot bray."

The following may be tried in a few months by ladies in the country, who rise early on a fine spring morning; they may thus earn the delight of exhibiting to their friends one of the prettiest balloon ascents that any body can conceive: "In May, fill an egg-shell with May-dew, and set it in the hot sun at noon-day, and the sun will draw it up."

The secrets of gardening, known to our forefathers, annihilate all claim in Sir Joseph Paxton to the commonest consideration. They taught how to get the blue roses by manuring with indigo, or green roses by digging verdigris about the roots. They taught the whole art of perfuming fruit, by steeping the seeds of the future tree in oil of spike, or rose-water and musk. If, say our ancestors, you would have peaches, plums, or cherries without any stone, you have only, when the tree is a twig, to pick out all the pith before you set it. To get your filbert-trees to bear you fruit all kernel, you have only to crack a nut, and sow the kernel only, covered with a little wool. And very much more marvellous, in the annals of gardening, is the receipt for getting peach-trees that bear fruit covered with inscriptions: "When you have eaten the peach, steep the stone two or three days in water, and open it gently, and take the kernal out of it(!) and write something within the shell with an iron graver, what you please, yet not too deep, then wrap it in paper and set it; whatever you write in the shell you shall find written in the fruit." Such shrewd things mingled with the more ordinary knowledge of our ancestors upon affairs of gardening.

It will be seen that for many of these "facts" there was a "reason" close at hand. Our forefathers were wise enough to know that every thing required properly accounting for. Thus, for example, in "the secrets of metals:" "Some report that a candle lighted of man's fat, and brought to the place where the treasures are hid, will discover them with the noise; and when it is near them it will go out. If this be true, it ariseth from sympathy; for fat is made of blood, and blood is the seat of the soul and spirits, and both these are held by the desire of silver and gold, so long as a man lives; and therefore they trouble the blood; so here is sympathy."

If a man would prevent hail from coming down, he is to walk about his garden, with a crocodile—stuffed, of course—and hang it up in the middle. Pieces of the skin of a hippopotamus, wherever they are buried, keep off storms. A thunder-storm also can be put to rout by firing cannons at it; "for by the force of the sound moving the air, the exhalations are driven upward." (In the same way, the plague was said to yield before a cannonade.) "Some who observe hail coming on, bring a huge looking-glass, and observe the largeness of the cloud, and by that remedy,—whether objected against, or despised by it, or it is displeased with it; or whether, being doubled, it gives way to the other" (in some way or other one must find out a reason), "they suddenly turn it off and remove it." An owl stuck up in the fields, with its wings spread, served also as a scare-crow to the tempests. As lightning conductor on a roof, it was thought wise to put an egg-shell, out of which a chicken had been hatched on Ascension-day. Thunderbolt stones were said to sweat during a storm, which was not thought a more wonderful "fact" than the perspirations streaming out of glass windows "in winter when the stove is hot." Our ancestors were far too wise to be surprised at any thing.

Secrets of alchemy, magic, and astrology are, of course, very profound; we pass over these and many more; among secrets of cookery we pause, shuddering. Whipping young pigs to death, to make them tender eating, used to be quite bad enough; and some of our own hidden devices in the meat trade are, even now, equally revolting; but here we meet with a device of the wise ancestors,[Pg 549] which may, perhaps, stand at the head of all culinary horrors. Remembering that these cooks were also apt at roasting men, we will inflict this illustration on our readers: "To roast a Goose alive. Let it be a duck or goose, or some such lively creature; but a goose is best of all for this purpose; leaving his neck, pull off all the feathers from his body, then make a fire round about him, not too wide, for that will not roast him; within the place set here and there small pots full of water, with salt and honey mixed therewith, and let there be dishes set full of roasted apples, and cut in pieces in the dish, and let the goose be basted with butter all over, and larded to make him better meat, and he may roast the better; put fire to it; do not make too much haste, when he begins to roast, walking about, and striving to fly away; the fire stops him in, and he will fall to drink water to quench his thirst; this will cool his heart, and the other parts of his body, and, by this medicament, he looseneth his belly and grows empty. And when he roasteth and consumes inwardly, always wet his head and heart with a wet sponge; but when you see him run madding and stumble, his heart wants moisture, take him away, set him before your guests, and he will cry as you cut off any part from him, and will be almost eaten up before he be dead; it is very pleasant to behold."

Degenerate moderns would most certainly be unable to enjoy such hospitality, and would be cured as thoroughly of any appetite as if their host had employed another of the secrets of our ancestors. "That guests may not eat at table, do this: You must have a needle that dead people are often sewed up in their winding-sheet; and at beginning of supper secretly stick this under the table; this will hinder the guests from eating, that they will rather be weary to sit, than desirous to eat; take it away when you have laughed at them awhile."

Take it away, we must say now to the old book. As we have said, our specimens, drawn from an immense mass of the same kind, do not represent the sole character of the volume. It states, also, a very large number of facts, confirmed and explained in the present day, being a fair transcript of the average standard of opinion among learned doctors upon a great number of things. Have we not made a little progress since those good old times, and would it be a pleasant thing to get them back again? To come home to every man's breakfast-table, we may ask the public to decide between the coffee now made, and the coffee of the good old times. In a somewhat expensive book, addressed only to wealthy readers, Drs. Read and Weckir disclose this secret of good coffee, for the ladies and gentlemen of 1660:—"Take the berry, put it in a tin pudding-pan, and when bread hath been in the oven about half-an-hour, put in your coffee; there let it stand till you draw your bread; then beat it and sift it; mix it thus: first boyl your water about half-an-hour; to every quart of water put in a spoonful of the pouder of coffee; then let it boyl one-third away; clear it off from the setlings; and the next day put fresh water; and so add every day fresh water, so long as any setlings remain. Often Tryed."

Authors and Books.

Arthor Schopenhauer, of Berlin, has recently published Parerga und Paralipomena, or little Philosophical Writings, in which, according to a Leipsic reviewer, "the author asserts that his philosophy is not merely the only advance in that department since the days of Kant, but that his system bears the same relation to all earlier philosophy, that the New Testament bears to the Old. In addition to this, he attempts to solve the problem, how can it be possible that he has ever been as unknown to the literary and scientific world as the Man in the Moon, while the absurdest and most ridiculous theories, such, for example, as those of Fichte, Schelling, and Hegel, have been so generally accepted. But as he, in spite of the most earnest endeavors, can find no internal ground for this unaccountable blindness of the public, he seeks it in another direction. These impudent sophists, it seems, have had no other ground than simply that of making money! With the hocus-pocus of common charlatans they have carried their wares to market, and as candidates and teachers of philosophy generally spring up from the same effort, there resulted an alliance of charlatans whose object it was on the one side to raise themselves to heaven, and on the other to suppress all true thinking, so that the public might be prevented, by a just consideration of their own worthlessness." "Such accusations as those," continues our reviewer, "awaken an unfavorable impression, which is not in the least diminished by continued boasting and grandiloquence, and a clumsy roughness of style, which not unfrequently falls into downright burlesque. The work itself is an odd mixture of actual recollections and arbitrary fancies, of explanations and superstitions, which force us to regret that many really admirable thoughts which occasionally surprise the reader in an assembly of trivialities and paradoxes, must inevitably be lost. Those philosophers certainly provoke sharp criticism when we separate their truly[Pg 550] scientific contents from their visions and dispositions, and it would perhaps be more in accordance with the spirit of the age to return more earnestly to Kant than most of the more recent philosophers are accustomed to do. Still nothing is in the least gained for the negative aim of criticism, when the critic makes it such an easy matter to cast away, without further consideration, all of the latest advances in philosophy, because he believes that he has detected errors in their pretended fundamental thoughts, without first ascertaining whether these fundamental thoughts are really the leading principle of the system, and when he on his own side falls into suppositions which have certainly received long since a satisfactory refutation from the later philosophy; as, for example, in the Kantean opposition of things in themselves, and their appearances. The positive, with which Herr Schopenhauer believes that he has enriched science, the derivation of united spiritual functions from the will, and the correction of the course of the world, by the idea that the true aim of life is to scorn it, might with greater propriety be classed in the sphere of 'visions and dispositions,' which he so fiercely attacks, than in that of science. The discussions which fill these two volumes, and are spread out over every imaginable subject, even to ghosts, the possibility of whose existence is admitted, have naturally a very varied character, and can only, by a continued polemic, and a fragmentary system of examination harmonizing therewith, be brought into unity."

The second part of Wachsmuth's Allgemeine Culturgeschichte (History of Civilization, for so we venture to translate the word Cultur), which indicates more strictly all referring to those social influences which refine, form, and educate society, has recently appeared. The volume referred to contains The Middle Ages, and is highly spoken of for the skilful manner in which the author has treated the influence exerted by the Byzantine and Mohammedan races. Another historical work of importance is the fourth and concluding volume containing the tenth and twelfth books of Hammer Purgstall's Life of Cardinal Khlesl, compiled from contemporary documents. In it we have the last diplomatic acts of the Cardinal, of the intrigues of the Grand Dukes Ferdinand and Maximilian relative to him, and of his consequent arrest and abduction. The eleventh book details his imprisonment in Innspruck and in the Abbey St. Georgenberg, the negotiations with the Pope relative to him, and his delivery to the latter on the 24th October, 1622. In the twelfth we have the details of his residence in Rome, of the part he took in instituting the Propaganda, his return home after an absence of ten years, his subsequent clerical exertions, and his testament. The conclusion gives a parallel drawn between Khlesl, Wolsey, and Ximenes—a description of his personal appearance and an explanation of the exertions of power brought to bear against him, with the final judgment that those truly to blame were the grand dukes and not Khlesl, and that the Cardinal, if not entirely devoid of blame, was still a great character, and one of the most illustrious statesmen of Austria. Another new historical work is the Laben des Herzogs von Sachsen-Gotha und Altenburg, Freiderich II. Ein Bei trazzur Geschichte Gotha's beim Wechsel d. 17, und 18, Jahrh. Herausgegeben nach dessen Tode von Dr. Ad. Moritz Schulze, Director d. Burgerschule zu Gotha (or Life of the Duke of Saxe Gotha and Altenburg, Frederic the II.) A contribution to the history of Gotha during the changes of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Published after the death of the author by Dr. Ad. Moritz Schulze, director of the Citizen School of Gotha, this work appears to be well and warmly, though impartially written.

In theology, we observe the publication, by Albert Wessel von Hengel, of Commentarius Perpetuus in Prioris Pauli ad Corinthios Epistolæ Caput Quintum Decimum cum Epistola ad Winerum, Theol. Lips. Haag. (Bœdeker in Rotterdam). In this book we perceive that the important fifteenth chapter of the Letter to the Corinthians is philologically treated with true Dutch thoroughness and remarkable erudition, but that the results to which he comes are often untenable, and that a satisfactory decision as to the proposed dogmatic questions, such as advanced theological science requires, is not given. The peculiar views of the author as to the aim or object of the chapter have also had an effect on the explanation of many passages. It is asserted, for instance, a la Bush, that Paul does not speak of the resurrection of the body, but that he means by this resurrection the return of all men into life, or immortality; and regarding this, has in view only those who admit Christ, and their future happiness; and that even verse forty-nine contains only a comparison of the moral condition of Christians in this and a better life. Yet notwithstanding this he finds himself compelled to admit, by the fifty-second verse, that the same bodies which we have here on earth, again return to life. By the παρουσια of Christ (v. 23) he understands earthly life, and by οι του Χριστου εν τη παρουσια αυτου, those Christians who already believed on him while yet on earth, and by the τειος, not the end of the world with its universal resurrection and judgment, but the resurrection of the later Christians. The oft-repeated σπειρεται (v. 43) he translates by it is begotten or generated, and understands it as referring to an entry into earthly life, and that the χοικοσ of the forty-seventh verse refers to the earthly disposition or inclination, and the εξ ουρνου and επουρανιοσ to that of the heavenly.[Pg 551]

Among recent books of travel we have A Journey to Persia and the country of the Koords, and the preceding sketch, Souvenirs of the Danube and Bosphorus, by Moritz Wagner. The Journey to Persia contains much curious information and observation of a country but little known to the outer world, while in the Souvenirs we have bitter complaints and merciless revelations relative to the Metternich policy in the East, and the conduct and character of the Austrian diplomatic representative by the Porte. Many curious facts are also given relative to the present condition of Turkey, the personal appearance of the Sultan and divers Constantinopolitan dignitaries and foreign ambassadors. The commendatory characteristic of this work appears to consist in the fact, that the author, unlike the great majority of those who are elevated to constant familiarity with men of high standing and influence, is remarkably independent and unselfish in his views, and invariably speaks bold plain truth, even of individuals in whose power it actually lies to do him very decided injury. No person desirous of being au courant as to the great political world of the present day, should be ignorant of this work.

A work has recently been published at Ratisbon, entitled. Die Katholischon Missionen, Geschildert aus der Neuzeit, Miteinem Anhange, Zwei Missionen in dem Jahr 1716 und 1718 (Catholic Missions, Sketched from recent times, with a supplement; Two Missions in the years 1716 and 1718). Of this performance a German review remarks, that it was once believed that the power of the Jesuits was for ever broken, but lo! they again lift their heads in power. "Missions are one of the means by which they act upon the people—a number of Jesuits repair to a certain place, and day after day its inhabitants are preached to, taught, confessions heard, and mass read festally." The book is a eulogium of Catholicism, and especially of the Jesuits, as its truest representatives, with occasional passes at democracy, the unbelievers, the administration, and bureaucracy. It praises Catholicism as the only means whereby the revolution can be restrained; it tells of devotions to the heart of the Virgin Mary and her medals, and of the plenary remission which the missions bring. It exalts the obedience of the Jesuits to their superiors, and praises the principle that they, without any will of their own, should be perinde ac cadaver—like a corpse. According to this book, the consequences of these missions are incalculable, and the love bestowed upon them by the Jesuits truly affecting. It well-nigh appears the same as if one were reading Chateaubriand's praises of the Patres. Only that history, for the past three hundred years, has given a somewhat strong contrast to this ideal. The best parts of the book are sketches of life in the Bagnos of Toulon and Brest.

At Berlin, the Scientific Society (Winenschaftlicher Vereins) have been giving a course of lectures to a large and aristocratic audience, invited by members of the society. Their success has brought out the Evangelical Society, in another course of a more theological and religious nature. In the first-named society, Professor Brandes lately lectured upon the Mormons; but it seems that the majority of the elegant gentlemen and ladies, did not fully appreciate his efforts for their instruction, for want of the necessary elementary knowledge. "When the doctor rose and announced his subject, the question was at once whispered in all parts of the hall," "Who are the Mormons?" The ladies in the most brilliant costume were generally the most eager in this inquiry. But unfortunately they got no satisfaction; the common reply of the gentleman appealed to being, "I am sorry to say I have forgotten." Some, more learned than others, however, assured their lovely companions that the Mormons were an Indian tribe of America, closely connected with, if not directly descended from, the Hurons, so frequently mentioned in Cooper's novels. Another amusing misunderstanding recently occurred in the same course. The lectures are not generally announced before-hand, but one day the newspapers got hold of the subject, and informed all the world that Professor Diterici would read a lecture upon Pera and the desert festivals. A great crowd of ladies was the consequence, all agog to hear about the picturesque costumes and strange ways of Pera, the national festivals of the Bedouins, and, perhaps, to have a glimpse at the mysteries of the seraglio. How great was the disappointment of the fashionable auditory when the learned doctor rose and began his discourse upon Petra, the Fastness of the Desert. That evening the ladies went home in very ill humor.

A work which political students and legislators may read, with advantage, is the Wesen und Verfassung der Laadgemeinde (Nature and Constitution of the Country Towns, and of the tenure of Real Estate in Lower Saxony and Westphalia, with special regard to the Kingdom of Hanover.) It is by Mr. Stuve, recently the Prime Minister of Hanover, and is interesting, especially as exhibiting the extent to which the principle of local self-government obtains in Germany, and the probabilities and methods of its extension. For its historical view of the organization of the commune or township in Germany, it is very valuable.

The second part of the System of Ethics, by Imanuel Hermann (not Johann Gottlieb) Fichte, has recently appeared. The anticipations awakened by the first historico-critical part of the work do not appear to be satisfactorily realized by this second dogmatic division.[Pg 552]

Among the most entertaining "books of autobiography must always be reckoned The Memoirs of the Margravine of Bayreuth, daughter of Frederic William I., and sister of Frederic the Great of Prussia. They are among the chief sources of the history of the German states during the last century, and they afford the most striking, if not the most pleasing, view we have of aristocratic German manners for the same period. In the London Literary Gazette it is stated that—

"The revelations of the Princess, especially concerning the King of Prussia and his court, if true, are at least not flattering to the Prussian dynasty; and strenuous attempts have for years past been making to represent the 'Memoirs of the Margravine of Bayreuth' as a spurious work, concocted by the enemies of Prussia, for the express purpose of humiliating the descendants of Frederic William I. It so happened, that at the first publication of the book, in 1810, a rival edition was almost immediately given to the world in another part of Germany. The publishers of either book pretended to be in exclusive possession of the original MS. of the unfortunate Princess. These conflicting claims furnished the partisans of the court of Berlin with a very plausible pretext for doubting the genuineness of either. But of late, Dr. Pertz, of Berlin, when engaged in collecting still further proofs of the 'literary imposition' practised by the editors of the two MS., happened to stumble on the original autograph copy of the Princess among the books and papers of the Protonotarius Blanet, at Celle, in Hanover. Herr Blanet had the MS. from Dr. E. Spangenberg, of Celle, who died in 1833, and who bought it from Colonel Osten, who, in his turn, had received the MS. from Dr. Superville, physician to the Princess, to whom it had been presented by that lady. From a paper read by Dr. Pertz, to the Royal Academy of Sciences at Berlin, (Berlin: Keimer. London: Williams and Norgate,) it appears that, of the two existing editions, the one published at Brunswick, in 1810, is a copy, though not a faithful or complete one, of the original MS. This copy in particular wants several sheets. At all events, the question as to the genuineness of the 'Memoirs of the Margravine of Bayreuth' is now completely set at rest; for although Dr. Pertz demonstrates at some length that many important phrases and parts of phrases are wanting in the Brunswick edition, he has not ventured to affirm that any phrases or statements have been added by the editor."

A recent book of travels published at Munich is not utterly devoid of interest, though it appears to be far inferior to what we should have expected from the subject. We refer to the Errimerungen an Italien, Sicilian and Grieohenland aus den Jahren, 1826-1844 (Recollections of Greece, Italy, and Sicily, in the Years 1826-1844), by Heinrich Farmbacher. In company with the king of Bavaria, and as his secretary, Herr Farmbacher travelled twice to Sicily, once to Greece, and frequently through Italy. The descriptions of scenes and events appear in no instance to rise above mediocrity, nor do we find any of that artistic spirit and observation which might have been anticipated from an intelligent attendant of the great royal connoisseur. His anecdotes relative to the monarch himself are rare, trivial, and worthless, for it does not seem to have occurred to the royal secretary that in such a work his master to the general reader is a far more attractive individual than himself. As regards style, the book gives from time to time curious glimpses of that court lackey language so habitual to the upper class flunkies of Herr Farmbacher's description, and which it is impossible for him to entirely suppress even in writing.

The distinguished and lamented orientalist Klaproth has left behind him a large map of Central Asia, in four sheets, engraved at Paris by Berthe, the geographer. This map is the product of ten years' researches, and exhibits the topography of those vast regions, with the cities it contains, many of which have hitherto been unknown, and the names of the tribes inhabiting it. The map is based not only upon the explorations of travellers, but on the Chinese maps made by order of the Emperor Kiang-Long, and by missionaries in China and Tartary. It extends on the north to the frontiers of Siberia, including the great lake Balaton; on the south to Hindostan; on the west to the sea of Aral and Persia; and on the east to China.

Hafis is the title prefixed to a new collection of poems, by G. F. Daumer, just published at Nuremberg. Daumer is one of the most original writers in the whole scope of the present German literature. His Evangelium is especially worthy of a far greater degree of attention than it has received. It is a volume of brief poems, discussing the gravest questions with as much warmth and freshness of imagination as elevation and beauty of style. In this country Daumer is known but to the few whose acquaintance with German literature extends beyond the classic writers whose names are familiar to all the world. A Catholic critic in Germany says of him, that the epitaph once proposed for the gravestone of Voltaire will suit equally well that of Daumer. It is as follows:

"In poesi magnus,
In historia parvus,
In philosophia minimus,
In religione nullus."

Gutzkow's Ritter vom Geiste has just appeared in a second edition in Germany—no trifling success for a romance in nine stout volumes; another German litterateur has also dramatized a part of it. Gutzkow is, beyond dispute, one of the foremost among the living writers of Germany. His collected works, published some years since, in twelve volumes, have lately been increased by a thirteenth, containing several fugitive stories, and one or two plays that he has brought out at various times.[Pg 553]

We heard little of Scandinavian literature until the translations of Tegner, Frederica Bremer, Oelenschlager, and Hans Christian Andersen, called our attention to the rich treasures of intellectual activity produced under that cold northern sky. Of course constant additions are being made to this literature. Among its recent productions is a comedy by Andersen, based on a fairy story, called Hyldemöer, which has lately been performed upon the Danish stage with not very brilliant success. It is admitted to be inferior to his stories, as have been his former attempts at dramatic composition. C. Molbach announces, at Copenhagen, a Danish translation of Dante's Divina Commedia; the same author has just published a volume of original poems under the title of Twilight. A very industriously-prepared and useful work is J. H. Eoslen's General Literary Dictionary, from the year 1814 to 1840, of which the thirteenth part has just appeared. In Norway, F. M. Bugge announces a translation of the Iliad into Norwegian hexameters, to be published by subscription. A Norwegian dictionary, by Iwar Aasen is highly commended.

A very sharp controversy is now being waged by the scholars of Denmark and Schleswig. The Danes resort to philology in order to prove the right of their country to extend its government over the Germans of that Duchy, and the other party meet their onslaught with weapons equally keen, drawn also from the arsenals of dictionaries and grammars. The best of the quarrel hitherto seems to be on the side of the Schleswigers, whose great champion is one Herr Clement, a man of as much learning as talent. In a recent essay, he establishes that the original inhabitants of Schleswig were not Danes but Angles, or Frieslanders, essentially the same race as the original Saxon stock of England. In illustration of this doctrine he adduces an immense list of names of places which are the same in Schleswig and England—as, for instance, Ripen and Ripon, Ellum and Elham, Rödding and Reading, Meldorp and Milthorp, Wilstrup and Wilthorpe, &c., &c. This essay will probably be expanded into a book.

The German critics are discussing with high encomiums a volume of poems by Annette von Droste, a deceased poetess of Westphalia. It is entitled Das Religiöse Jahr (The Religious Year), and is inspired with that absolute devotion which lends so great a charm to the poems of Montgomery, the Moravians, and the mystical writers generally.

Byron's Manfred, with musical accompaniments, by R. Schumann, is about to be produced at the Weimar theatre.

Jahn, the well-known Leipsic professor, is engaged in writing a life of Beethoven.

Richard Wagner, the revolutionist, musical composer, and writer upon æsthetics, has published a new work, entitled Oper und Drama (Opera and Drama), which the German critics fall upon with considerable ferocity. They complain that while he entirely rejects the old form of the opera, he does not indicate what is the new kind of musical drama to be substituted for it. Wagner has also published Three Opera Poems, which the same critics cannot but praise for their originality, power, and inspiration. If the music of these operas is adequate to the libretti, say they, they are really new and grand productions. This would seem, also, to be proved by the fact that one of them has been brought out at Weimar, through the influence and under the direction of Liszt. The author is living in exile in Switzerland, and is engaged upon a dramatic trilogy with a prelude. He no longer professes to write operas, but musical dramas.

An attempt has been made in Germany to register the enormous number of books and pamphlets which the Germans themselves have published on their two great poets, Goethe and Schiller. A catalogue of the Goethean literature in Germany, from 1793 to 1851, has been published by Balde, at Cassel, and in London by Williams and Norgate. The Schiller literature, from 1781 to 1851, is likewise announced by the same firm.

A very excellent translation of sundry old Scottish and English ballads has just made its appearance at Munich, from the pen of W. Doenniger. It contains sixteen Scotch and seventeen English ballads, from the fourteenth to the seventeenth centuries, all rendered with great fidelity, and in the true spirit of the original. So successful is the book that a second edition of it is about to appear, with illustrations by Kaulbach, Voltzen, and other eminent artists.

The Augsburg Gazette states that the Congregation of the Index has just prohibited all the works of Eugene Sue and Proudhon; also a clerical Turin paper, called the Buona Novella; a work on animal magnetism, by Tomasi; a manual for schoolmasters, printed at Asti in 1850; and all the works of Gioberti.

A book to be read by the students of literature and by critics is Hettner's Moderne Drama, just published at Brunswick. We do not know of a profounder and keener discussion of the principles and laws of dramatic writing, or of more just and striking dramatic criticisms than it contains.

Layard's popular account of his excavations and discoveries at Nineveh has been translated into German by one of the Meissners (not the poet, we believe), and is published at Leipsic.[Pg 554]

Fraulein Friederike Friedemann has published, at Leipsic, a metrical version of Lord Byron's Corsair, which is worthy of all commendation. The gloomy hue and passionate vehemence of the original are preserved in the translation with surprising fidelity, and the rhythm is hardly less perfect than in Byron's English itself.

The last number of the Theologische Quartalschrift (Theological Quarterly), published at Tübingen, by Laupp, contains an interesting paper on the pretended objections to the historical truth of the Pentateuch, by Welte; the critical historical examination of the xxxi. xxxii. Jeremiah, by Reinke; and the Aloge, with their relations to the Montanists, by Hefele.

Mr. George Stephens, the translator of Tegner's Frithiof's Saga, and whose intimate acquaintance with the early literature of Sweden has been shown by the collection of legends of that country which he edited in conjunction with Hylten-Cavallius, and by various works superintended by him for the Svenska Fornskrift-Salskapet, (a sort of Stockholm Camden Society,) has removed to Copenhagen in consequence of his having been appointed Professor of the English Language and Literature in the University there. The subject of his first course of lectures was Chaucer's Canterbury Tales. We have in our possession the MS. translations of some very interesting ancient Swedish poems made by Mr. Stephens some five years ago, and not yet published.

The London Leader, socialist and avowedly and industriously infidel, says of Eugene Sue, not long ago the rage of half the world:

"We have to announce the third and last volume of Eugene Sue's Fernand Duplessis, wherein the memoirs of a husband are recounted with a license which only a French public could permit. Perhaps the worst thing in Sue is not his positive passion for what is criminal and odious, so much as the way in which he always contrives to render the good people odious. Much as we reprobate his pictures of vice, we think them less offensive than his pictures of virtue. How a man so essentially vulgar-minded could ever have attained the position he had once!"

M. Alfred Villefort has published at Paris a treatise on literary and artistic property in an international point of view. It not only discusses the question as a matter of principle, but gives the history of the negotiations and treaties which France has made in that respect with the nations.

Among the pleasant books recently published in France is Arsene Houssaye's volume of stories, Les Filles d'Eve, very piquant and French in its treatment. A translation is announced in this city by Redfield.

The literary event of the month at Paris is the publication of the third volume of Louis Blanc's History of the French Revolution. Of all the works written upon that memorable epoch, none is more marked by originality of thought and power of treatment than this, and we can only hope that the present volume, which we have not yet seen, may prove equal to its predecessors. Its table of contents is as follows: Attitude of Property toward the Revolution, Attitude of the Gospel toward the Revolution, Tableau of the Constituent Assembly, First Labors of the Constituent Assembly, Administration of Necker, People Starving, Treasury Empty, A New Power, Journalism, Faction of the Count de Provence, The Fifteen Complots, The Women of Versailles, The King brought to Paris, The Court at the Tuileries, Municipal and Military Organization of the Bourgeoisie, The Wealth of the Clergy Denounced, War of the Bourgeoisie on the Clergy, The Authority of the Parliaments Discussed, War of the Bourgeoisie on the Parliaments, The Ambition of Mirabeau, Complots of the Luxembourg, New Organization of the Kingdom. The Leader mentions that Mr. Blanc undertakes to prove that Egalité was not at the bottom of those conspiracies with which his name has been associated, but that the real culprit was the Comte de Provence, afterwards Louis XVIII.

M. Edmond Texier, one of the most fresh and agreeable of that race of literary butterflies, the feuilletonists of Paris, is publishing a large work upon that great capital, which promises to be as readable as its exterior is splendid. It is to be ornamented with some two thousand engravings on wood, representing all the prominent and famous public edifices and places which not only figure so largely in history, but are so splendid in themselves. The title of M. Texier's work is the Tableau de Paris. It appears in parts.

The publication of the magnificent work, the Catacombs de Rome, for which the French National Assembly voted $40,000, will shortly commence, under the direction of a commission nominated by the Government, consisting of Messrs. Ampere (now in the United States), Ingres, Prosper, Merinice, and Vitel, all members of the Institute. The work will contain exact copies of the architecture, mural paintings, inscriptions, figures, symbols, sepulchres, lamps, vases, rings, instruments, in a word, of every thing belonging to, or connected with, the primitive Christians, which by the most diligent search, exercised during many years, have been brought to light in the catacombs of ancient Rome. Its enormous price, between $250 and $300, will, however, keep it out of the hands of all but the wealthy. Another work on the same subject and of similar character is announced in Rome, under the direction of the ecclesiastical government.[Pg 555]

A volume purporting to contain thirty hitherto unpublished Letters of Shelley, appeared a few weeks ago from the press of Moxon, in London, edited by Robert Browning. It appears from an article in the Athenæum that these—letters, and many others recently sold to publishers and autograph collectors, are forgeries. The book referred to is of course suppressed. The Athenæum inquires:

"From whom did Mr. Moxon buy these letters? They were bought at Sotheby & Wilkinson's, at large prices. From whom did Messrs. Sotheby and Wilkinson receive them for sale? 'We had them from Mr. White, the bookseller in Pall Mall, over against the Reform Club.' Off runs the gentle man-detective. 'From whom did you, Mr. White, obtain these letters?' 'I bought them of two women—I believed them to be genuine, and I paid large prices for them in that belief.' Such are the words supposed to have been spoken by Mr. White. The two women would appear to have been like the man in a clergyman's band, but with a lawyer's gown, who brought Pope's letters to Curll.

"It is proper to say thus early that there has been of late years, as we are assured, a most systematic and wholesale forgery of letters purporting to be written by Byron, Shelley, and Keats,—that these forgeries carry upon them such marks of genuineness as have deceived the entire body of London collectors,—that they are executed with a skill to which the forgeries of Chatterton and Ireland can lay no claim,—that they have sold at public auctions, and by the hands of booksellers, to collectors of experience and rank—and that the imposition has extended to a large collection of books bearing not only the signature of Lord Byron, but notes in many of their pages—the matter of the letters being selected with a thorough knowledge of Byron's life and feelings, and the whole of the books chosen with the minutest knowledge of his tastes and peculiarities.

"But the 'marvel' of the forgery is not yet told. At the same sale at which Mr. Moxon bought the Shelley letters were catalogued for sale a series of (unpublished) letters from Shelley to his wife, revealing the innermost secrets of his heart, and containing facts, not wholly dishonorable facts to a father's memory, but such as a son would wish to conceal. These letters were bought in by the son of Shelley, the present Sir Percy Shelley—and are now proved, we are told, to be forgeries. To impose on the credulity of a collector is a minor offence compared with the crime of forging evidence against the dead, and still minor as, in one instance, against the fidelity of a woman.

"The forgery of Chatterton injured no one but an imaginary priest; the forgery of Ireland made a great poet seem to write worse than Settle could have written; but this forgery blackens the character of a great man, and, worse still, traduces female virtue.

"Mr. Moxon is not the only publisher taken in. Mr. Murray has been a heavy sufferer, though not to the same extent. Mr. Moxon has printed his Shelley purchases; Mr. Murray—wise through Mr. Moxon's example—will not publish his Byron acquisitions."

These forgeries seem to us to have been very clumsily executed.

The London Athenæum contains a very interesting letter from Mr. Payne Collier, in which he gives an account of the discovery of a copy of the second folio edition of Shakspeare, with numerous important corrections of the text, apparently by some learned contemporary actor, whose memory of parts, or access to original MSS., enabled him to restore all the readings vitiated by careless transcription or printing. Mr. Collier has such faith in these errata that he does not hesitate to avow that he would have adopted a large portion of them in his own edition of Shakspeare, had they been known to him when that was printed. Of the several instances he offers, this will serve as a specimen:

"An embarrassment meets us in the very outset of Measure for Measure,—where the Duke, addressing Escalus, observes, in the ordinary reading:

"'Of government the properties to unfold
Would seem in me t' affect speech and discourse;
Since I am put to know, that your own science
Exceeds, in that, the lists of all advice
My strength can give you: then, no more remains,
But that to your sufficiency as your worth is able,
And let them work.'

—The meaning is pretty evident; but the expression of that meaning is obscure and corrupt,—as indeed the measure alone would establish. Various conjectural modes of setting the passage right have been proposed; and perhaps what follows from my corrected folio of 1632 has no better foundation,—but, at all events, it restores both the sense and the metre, and may, for aught we know, give the very words of Shakspeare:

"'Of government the properties to unfold
Would seem in me t' affect speech and discourse;
Since I am apt to know, that your own science
Exceeds (in that) the lists of all advice
My strength can give you; Then, no more remains
But add to your sufficiency your worth,
And let them work.'

—How 'that' in the old editions came to be printed for add and how 'is able' came to be foisted in, most unnecessarily and awkwardly, at the end of the same line, it is not easy to explain. The third line is also much cleared by the substitution of apt for 'put,'—which was an easy misprint: 'Apt to know' is an expression of every-day occurrence."

Sir James Stephen, whose excellent Lectures on the History of France have been so well received, proposes to deliver, at Cambridge, a series of twenty lectures on the Diplomatic History of France during the reign of Louis XIV., comprising a review of the treaties of Westphalia, of the Pyrenees, of Breda, of the Triple Alliance, of Aix-la-Chapelle, of Nimeguen, of Ryswick, and of Utrecht.

Miss Charlotte Vandenhoff, whose professional tour in the United States will be remembered by old play-goers, has written a piece under the title of Woman's Heart, possessing considerable poetical merits, and herself sustained the character of the heroine in its representation.

Mr. Carlyle, is engaged upon a new work in history, but its subject is not disclosed, nor its extent.[Pg 556]

Mrs. Robinson, who left New-York several months ago to visit her relations in Germany, writes from Berlin to the Athenæum, under date of February 2, as follows:

"A work appeared in London last summer with the following title: Talvi's History of the Colonization of America, edited by William Hazlitt, in two volumes. It seems proper to state that the original work was written under favorable circumstances in German, and published in Germany. It treated only of the colonization of New England: and that only stood on its title-page. The above English publication, therefore, is a mere translation, and it was made without the consent or knowledge of the author. The very title is a misnomer; all references to authorities are omitted; and the whole work teems with errors, not only of the press, but also of translation,—the latter such as could have been made by no person well acquainted with the German and English tongues. For the work in this form, therefore, the author can be in no sense whatever responsible.


From a more recent number of the Athenæum it appears that Mr. Hazlitt is not himself the translator of the original work; and the responsibility, not only of the translation, but of all the faults charged which might seem more especially editorial, is transferred by him to another. Mr. Hazlitt, we believe, is a son of the great critic of the last age.

There are connected with the newspapers a considerable number of weak-minded and absurd persons, who delight in strange coincidences and the most inconceivable relations, and who, for a certain consciousness they have of their own slight claims to consideration are anxious to find on every occasion, some indication of regard for their vocation, as if credit won by any journalist or writer were portion of a common fund of respectability from which they could draw a dividend. In no other way can we account for the thousand-and-one articles in which the appointments of Dr. Layard and Mr. D'Israeli have been referred to as "honor," "homage," &c., to literature. Dr. Layard was selected by Lord Granville to be an Under-Secretary of State, because he had shown himself in the admirable manner in which he discharged certain important diplomatic functions in the East, better fitted, in Lord Granville's opinion, than any other person for the new duties to which it was proposed to summon him. Mr. D'Israeli has long been one of the most conspicuous and astute politicians in England, and owes his present office solely to his activity and eminence in affairs. There was as little of "recognition of the claims of literature" in either case, as there was praise of fiddlesticks or Carolina potatoes. It would not be a whit more ridiculous to say that the French people, remembering the happy genius displayed by Napoleon Bonaparte in his "Supper of Beaucaire," chose him to be their emperor.

In the new British ministry are an unusual number of book-makers. The most conspicuous in authorship is the now Right Honorable Benjamin D'Israeli, "the wondrous boy who wrote Alroy, in rhyme and prose, only to show how long ago victorious Judah's lion banner rose." Sir Emerson Tennent, Sir Edward Sugden, Lord John Manners, Mr. Whiteside, the Earl of Malmesbury, Lord de Roos, are all known as authors, as well as politicians. The Duke of Northumberland also is favorably known as a zealous promoter of arts and learning.

The author of Life in Bombay and the Neighboring Stations, pays the following testimony to the abilities of the manœuvring mammas of Bombay: "The bachelor civilians are always the grand aim; for, however young in the service they may be, their income is always vastly above that of the military man, to say nothing of the noble provision made by the fund for their widows and children. We remember being greatly amused, soon after our arrival in the country, at overhearing a lady say, in reference to her daughter's approaching marriage with a young civilian: 'Certainly, I could have wished my son-in-law to be a little more steady; but then it is £300 a-year for my girl, dead or alive!'"

A volume of brilliant French criticism will be published in a few days by Charles Scribner, under the title of Anglo-American Literature and Manners, by Philarete Chasles, Professor in the College of France. Mr. Chasles, in a book of five hundred pages, considers the literature and manners of the people of the United States—their institutions, capacity for self-government, actual condition and probable future—with all the sprightly grace of a Frenchman, and with a great deal of cleverness prosecutes his industrious researches from the landing of the Mayflower to the present day. He finds in the United States neither an Utopia, nor a land worthy merely of ridicule. He does not simply condemn, like some travellers, nor give us universal and unreasonable praise, as our egotism and contentment lead us to desire, but takes a fair view of the country, its claims, position, and prospects. In the beginning of his performance he considers that the most essential thing for the founding of a new commonwealth, is moral force; this he finds in the Puritans, who possessed "sincerity, belief, perseverance, courage;" they could "wait, fight, suffer." Their energy, he thinks, comes from their Teutonic or Saxon blood; their indomitable perseverance is a fruit of Calvinism, added to which they are clannish, or mutual helpers one of another. This is the key to the philosophical, political and prophetic portion of his work. The literary part is honest criticism, freely spoken, by the aid of such light as happened to be around him. He begins with the landing of the Pilgrims, speaks of their literature, which, like all[Pg 557] other American literature down to the present day, he regards as destitute of originality. Franklin, Jonathan Edwards, and others, all lack this quality. The author of the American Cultivator has the most of it; but Franklin is made up of Fénelon, Banyan, and Addison; Edwards partakes of Hobbes, Priestley, and in his better moments of the close reasoning Descartes. He gives us then a politician, a journalist, and a gentleman, "the American Aristocrat" as he calls him, Gouverneur Morris, our minister at Paris during the old revolution. Brockden Brown is characterized as a copyist of Monk Lewis; and he comes then to Washington Irving, but while all the charms of this delightful writer are thoroughly appreciated and minutely described, it is denied that he has originality. "In some square house in Boston, he sees in thought St. James's Park: in reveries he is led through the umbrageous alleys of Kensington—he talks with Sterne—he shakes hands with Goldsmith." "It is a copy, somewhat timid, of Addison, of Steele, of Swift." You would think of him as of "a young lady of good family, a slave to propriety, never elevating her voice, never exaggerating the ton, never committing the sin of eloquence;" "a refined continuation of the style of Addison," &c. Nevertheless a dawn of freshness appears in his writings when they treat of forest scenes. This dawn advances into day in Cooper, upon whom we have an admirable critique. The author of The Spy, M. Chasles thinks, has a native vigor unknown to Irving. Paulding is dismissed with but very little consideration. Channing occupies the critic longer, but is found to be an unsatisfactory and too general reasoner. Audubon furnishes the most attractive chapter in the book, which closes with what is called the First Literary Epoch of the United States.

The next division is of the Literature of the People, and the falsely popular Literature of England and the States. One thoughtful chapter is given to the infancy and future of America; the age and despair of Europe, of emigration, and colonization. Then, the popular movements in France and England are treated of, and the education of the masses. Crabbe, Burns, Elliott, Thomas Cooper and others serve as a text. Popular literature is found to be less anarchical in America than in Europe. We have a chapter on Herman Melville; and then the Americans are viewed through the spectacles of Marryatt, Trolloppe, Dickens, and their exaggerations are noted. The force of public opinion and of the press conclude the section. Our poets have two chapters: I. Barlow, Dwight, Colton, Payne, Sprague, Dana, Drake, Pierrepont; Female Poets; and Street and Halleck. II, Bryant, Emerson, and Longfellow. Tom Stapleton, by an Irish Sunday newspaper reporter, and Puffer Hopkins, by Mr. Cornelius Matthews, one chapter; Stephens, Silliman, and others represent the travellers; a chapter is dedicated to Arnold and Andre; Haliburton's Sam Slick concludes the criticism; and the book ends with The Future of Septentrional America and the United States—what a "Bee" is, how an American village is got up, the aggregative principles of Americans, the Lowell Lectures, Democrats and Whigs—and then, far-seeing prophetic talking, conclude what the author has to say about us.

The well-known school book publishers of Philadelphia, Thomas, Cowperthwait, & Co., have just published a large duodecimo of five hundred and fifty-eight pages. The Standard Speaker, containing Exercises in Prose and Poetry, for Declamation in Schools, Academies, Lyceums, and Colleges, newly Translated or Compiled from celebrated Orators, Authors, and Popular Debaters, Ancient and Modern; a Treatise on Oratory and Elocution; and Notes Explanatory and Biographical—by Epes Sargent. This book bears abundant evidences of editorial research and labor. The original translations would form a volume of respectable size, and they are all strikingly adapted to the purpose of elocutionary practice. Some passages of fervid eloquence from Mirabeau, Robespierre and Victor Hugo are given. Ancient eloquence is also well represented in new and spirited translations. The department of British Parliamentary oratory, shows extracts from Pym, Chatham, Barre, Wilkes, Thurlow, Grattan, Pitt, Fox, Sheridan, Curran, Canning, Brougham, O'Connell, Sheil, Macaulay, Croker, Talfourd, Palmerston, Cobden, and many others, and in nine instances out of ten the exercises are compiled originally for this volume. The American department is quite rich, and while the old masterpieces of Patrick Henry, Ames, Randolph, Clay, Calhoun, Webster, Hayne, and others are retained, a large number of fresh and striking pieces are introduced from the eloquence of Congress and the American lecture room.

In its dramatic and poetical novelties the work is of course amply supplied. Mr. Sargent's editorial experience here has enabled him to add much that other compilers have entirely overlooked. In the adaptation of the exercises, great discrimination has been shown. They are of the right length, pithy, and calculated to engage the attention of the young. A new and valuable feature of the work is the introduction of notes, biographical and explanatory. In the instances of authors not contemporary the dates of their birth and death are given. An introductory treatise, comprising much practical information on the subject of elocution, gives completeness to the volume. Such is the Standard Speaker; and while it will be found to justify its title in the retention of all the standard specimens of rhetoric suitable for its purposes, it presents in its large proportion of new exercises of a high character, fresh and enduring claims to popularity.[Pg 558]

The Memoirs of Margaret Fuller Ossoli, by Ralph Waldo Emerson, William Ellery Channing, and James Freeman Clarke, published a few weeks ago by Phillips, Sampson & Co., of Boston, are generally praised in the critical journals, but in this country, where the subject was generally known in literary circles, there is a common feeling of surprise at the artistic and successful exaggeration of her capacities and virtues. The book, however, is in parts delightfully written, and the melancholy fate of the heroine gives it a character of romance apart from its merits as a biographical and critical composition. The Athenæum thus refers to some additional material for her memoirs, which, it strikes us, should have been communicated to the custodians of her reputation at an earlier day:

"We have received permission to state that poor Margaret Fuller, on the eve of that visit to the Continent which was to prove so eventful and disastrous, left in the hands of a friend in London a sealed packet, containing, it is understood, the journals which she kept during her stay in England. Margaret Fuller—as they who saw her here all know—contemplated at that time a return to England at no very distant date;—and the deposit of these papers was accompanied by an injunction that the packet should then be restored with unbroken seal into her hands. No provision was of course made for death:—and here we believe the lady in possession feels herself in a difficulty, out of which she does not clearly see her way. The papers are likely to be of great interest, and were doubtless intended for publication; but the writer had peremptorily reserved the right of revision to herself, and forbidden the breaking of the seals, on a supposition which fate has now made impossible. It seems to us, that the equity of the case under such circumstances demands only a reference to Margaret Fuller's heir, whoever that may be; and with his or her concurrence, the lady to whom these MSS. were intrusted—and who probably knows something of the author's feeling as to their contents—may very properly constitute herself literary executor to her unfortunate friend."

Of Bayard Taylor The Tribune said a few days ago:

"By the Niagara's mail we have had the pleasure of receiving letters from our friend and associate Bayard Taylor,—or as he his known among the Arabs, Taylor Bey,—dated at Khartoum, the chief city of Sennaar, situated at the confluence of the White and the Blue Nile, about half way between Cairo and the Equator. He arrived there on the 12th of January in excellent health and spirits, after a journey on camels across the Nubian Desert, during which he had sundry fortunate adventures, and received every friendly attention from the native chieftains. He was the first American ever seen so far toward Central Africa, and like a good patriot never slept without the stars and stripes floating above his tent. Every where good luck had attended him,—in truth he seems to have been born to it,—but at Khartoum especially he was received with unexpected honors. The governor of the city had presented him with a horse, and had entertained him in a banquet of genuine Ethiopic magnificence, while the commander of the troops had stationed a nightly guard of honor around his tent. In company with Dr. Knoblecher, the venerable Catholic missionary bound for the equatorial regions whom he had overtaken at Khartoum, and of Dr. Deitz, the Austrian Counsel, Mr. Taylor had also attended a banquet at the palace of the daughter of the late king of Sennaar, a very stately and ebon princess, who entertained her guests chiefly upon sheep roasted whole. Others of the first families among the Ethiopian aristocracy had also welcomed the strangers with distinguished civilities. Mr. Taylor expected to reach Cairo on his return about the 1st of April, though we should not be surprised to learn that he had changed his mind, and, in company with the Jesuit mission, plunged still farther into the mysterious country about the equator and the sources of the Nile."

Several new works by our literary women are on the eve of publication. Redfield has nearly ready Lyra and other Poems, by Alice Carey—a book containing more illustrations of unquestionable genius than any other written by a woman in America; and he will also publish soon, Isa, a Pilgrimage, a romance by Miss Caroline Cheesebro', which is likely to attract a great deal of attention. Putnam has in press, The Shield, a Story of the New World, by Miss Fenimore Cooper, whose Rural Hours, last year, commanded every where so much well-merited praise, and a new story by Miss Warner, of whose Wide, Wide World (edited in London by a "Clergyman of the Church of England"), a recent number of the Literary Gazette says:

"This American tale has met with extraordinary success across the Atlantic. Within a very short time several large impressions were disposed of, and the sale still continues to be rapid. Of the causes of this popularity, there is one which will rather operate against a similar run of favor on this side of the water. A large part of the book refers to 'the old country,' and American readers eagerly seek what pertains to English life or history. But the book has many merits, apart from the incidents of its scenery and character. The authoress writes with liveliness and elegance; her power of discriminating and presenting character is great; in describing the feelings and ways of young people, she is especially happy, and an air of cheerful piety pervades the whole work. We shall not attempt to give any idea of the story, or of its principal personages, but content ourselves with commending it as a book which will please and instruct others than the young, for whom it is chiefly intended. The authoress seems herself young, and if so, we may expect other works from a spirit so lively and communicative. Who the editor is we have no knowledge, but he has taken liberties with the original not always warranted, and to an extent greater than can be approved without previous consultation. On the whole, however, he has done his part well, and in his prefatory note justly characterizes the merits of the writer, of whom we shall gladly hear more."

Miss Warner's new book is entitled Queechy—the name of its scene, we suppose—and it is said to be very different in character from her first production.[Pg 559]

Dr. Dunglison's Medical Dictionary, of which a new and much enlarged edition has been published by Blanchard & Lea, is one of those professional works which are almost indispensable in a gentleman's library. Every person has sometimes occasion to consult a work of this kind, and there is no other in English so masterly in treatment, or so perspicuous in style. Dr. Dunglison keeps up with all the departments of the literature of his science, and, through his quick, comprehensive, and practical understanding, we have in this volume the best results of the world's experiment and study in medicine down to the beginning of the present half century.

A new and complete edition of the Poetical Works of George P. Morris will be published in October, amply and most elaborately illustrated with engravings after original designs by Robert W. Weir. The distinction of Gen. Morris is, that he is a great song writer. The naturalness, simplicity, unity, and pervading grace of his pieces, do not so much constitute their characteristic, as the exquisite music of their cadences, justifying the praise of Braham, that they sing themselves. The new edition will surpass any other in completeness, and in artistic execution will not be inferior to any volume ever published in the United States.

Mr. C. L. Brace, who has tasted in person the sweets of Austrian rule, by his imprisonment in Hungary, has in press a book of Hungarian travels, and observations upon the political situation and prospects of that country. The personal history of an American in Hungary, who enjoyed rare opportunities of intimate intercourse with the inhabitants, will be a very valuable addition to our literature, and will make a most readable and seasonable book. Of the quality of Mr. Brace's ability, and of the faithfulness of his observation and record, his letters to the New-York Tribune are satisfactory evidence. (Scribner.)

Mr. Ticknor's admirable History of Spanish Literature by no means fails of the high consideration to which it is entitled from the best critics of Europe. One of the best translations of it is in Spanish, by Don Pascual de Gayangos Y Don Enrique de Vedia (con adiciones y notas criticas), Mr. Ticknor having communicated some notes and corrections to the two translators, who have added from their own store. A second translation is coming out in Germany, also containing important additions, in part from material and suggestions furnished by the accomplished author.

Arvine's Anecdotes of Literature and the Arts is an agreeable miscellany; but the neglect of the editor to give credits in cases where he adopts entire pages from well-known books, deserves rebuke. The eighth number has been published by Gould & Lincoln of Boston, and it completes the work.

The work of Mr. Stiles, which we have noticed elsewhere in this number of the International, we understand, will be published by the Harpers, in two large octavo volumes, about the first of May. It contains a complete history of the revolutionary proceedings in the Austrian empire in 1848. Mr. Stiles witnessed much that he describes. Each section is introduced by an historical survey of the country where the events described occurred. Thus Venice, Prague, and Vienna are brought before the reader in all their past glory and recent political vicissitudes. The Hungarian war is amply chronicled. The work is moderate in tone, authentic, fresh, and abounding in interesting facts. It will be illustrated by engravings, executed in Germany, of the Emperor, Archduke John, Kossuth, and other chief characters.

Dr. A. K. Gardiner, whose clever book about Paris, under the title of Old Wine in New Bottles, is well known, has just published a noticeable lecture, delivered before the College of Physicians and Surgeons, on the History of the Art of Midwifery. It is most conclusive upon the point of the unfitness of women for any of the more delicate and important duties in obstetrics, and is a sufficient argument for the immediate abolition of the so-called "Female Colleges." We recommend it to the attention of readers who feel any interest in the subject.—(Stringer & Townsend.)

Mrs. H. C. Conant, wife of the learned Professor of Hebrew in the Rochester University, has published (through Lewis Colby, Nassau-street) another of Neander's Commentaries, done into terse and vigorous English—The Epistle of James Practically Explained. It is needless to praise the great German, and it will readily be believed, by those who are acquainted with the fine abilities and thorough scholarship of Mrs. Conant, that this translation is in all respects admirable.

We are soon to have a new dramatic poem from Mr. George H. Boker, whose Calaynos, Anne Bullen, and Ivory Carver and other Poems, have secured to him very high and well-deserved reputation as a literary artist. We do not think any sonnets written in this country are to be preferred to Mr. Boker's, and his Ballad of Sir John Franklin, published a few months ago in this magazine, is full of imagination, and is marked throughout with the nicest skill in execution.

The last work of the late Professor Stuart, a Commentary on the Book of Proverbs, has been published by M. W. Dodd, in a large duodecimo volume. It contains a full account of the principal commentaries written on this book, and the translations and paraphrases made into different languages, with a new version, and exegetical remarks. A memoir of Professor Stuart is in preparation.[Pg 560]

Mr. Richard B. Kimball, the accomplished author of St. Leger, leaves New York in a few days for a tour through Europe. No one among our younger authors has risen more rapidly in the public regard, or established a good reputation in literature upon a surer basis. Imagination, scholarship, and profound reflection, characterize nearly all his performances. The admirable story written by him for the present number of the International, we believe, is true in every essential but the name of the heroine. It is a reminiscence of Mr. Kimball's student life in Paris, where, for a time, he walked the hospitals with his friend, the well-known Dr. O. H. Partridge, now one of the most distinguished physicians of Philadelphia, who is one of the dramatis personæ of Emilie de Coigny.

Mr. John P. Kennedy pronounced, in Baltimore, on the anniversary of the birth of Washington, a very eloquent and wise discourse, in which the state of the nation with respect to possible entanglements in foreign affairs, and implications by needless artificial ties in the vicissitudes of European politics, were treated in a manner worthy of a statesman of the school of the Great Chief. The occasion was also improved in Philadelphia by the Rev. Dr. Boardman, who, in a discourse entitled Washington or Kossuth (published by Lippincott, Grambo, & Co.), discusses the same great subjects in a masterly argument for the observance of the principles of the Farewell Address.

An elaborate attack on the Society of Friends appeared lately in Dublin, and has been republished in Philadelphia, under the title of Quakerism, or the Story of My Life. It was written by a Mrs. Greer, the daughter of an eminently respectable Irish Quaker, who was herself connected with the society for forty years, and so had abundant opportunities of becoming familiar with the peculiarities of the system. But the book is vulgar, malignant, and evidently altogether undeserving of credit in regard to facts. The points obnoxious to ridicule are broadly caricatured, and the most distinguished and blameless characters are introduced in the most offensive manner, as if to gratify personal spleen or a disposition to slander.

The Neander Library, recently purchased by the University of Rochester, consists of 4,500 volumes, and the price paid was only $2,300. About 350 of the volumes are large folios, and many of the works in the collection are of the choicest and rarest editions. We observe that an attempt to show that there was even the slightest possible degree of unfairness on the part of the Rochester faculty in obtaining this library, which was much desired by a western college, has most signally failed.

We commend to our readers as the best literary journal in this country, the To Day, recently established in Boston by Charles Hale, a thoroughly educated and judicious editor.

Recent Deaths

William Ware was born at Hingham, in Massachusetts, on the third of August, 1797. He was a descendant in the fifth generation from Robert Ware, one of the earliest settlers of the colony, who came from England about the year 1644. His father was Henry Ware, D. D., many years honorably distinguished by his connection with the Divinity School at Cambridge, and the late Henry Ware, jr., D. D., was his elder brother. His only living brother is Dr. John Ware, who also shares of the literary tastes and talents of his family, and has written its history.

William Ware was graduated at Harvard University in 1816. After reading theology the usual term he was on the 18th of December, 1821, settled over the Unitarian society of Chambers street, New-York, where he remained about sixteen years. He gave little to the press except a few sermons, and four numbers of a religious miscellany called The Unitarian, until near the close of this period, when he commenced the publication in the Knickerbocker Magazine of those brilliant papers which in the autumn of 1836 were given to the world under the title of Zenobia, or the Fall of Palmyra, an Historical Romance. Before the completion of this work he had resigned his pastoral office and removed to Brookline, near Boston. The romance of Zenobia is in the form of letters to Marcus Curtius, at Rome, from Lucius Manlius Piso, a senator, who is supposed to have been led by circumstances of a private nature to visit Palmyra toward the close of the third century, to have become acquainted with the queen and her court, to have seen the City of the Desert in its greatest magnificence, and to have witnessed its destruction by the Emperor Aurelian. For the purposes of romantic fiction the subject is perhaps the finest that had not been appropriated in all ancient history; and the treatment of it, which is highly picturesque and dramatic throughout, shows that the author had been a successful student of the institutions, manners and social life of the age he attempted to illustrate.

Mr. Ware's second romance, Probus, or Rome in the Third Century, was published in the summer of 1838. It is a sort of sequel to the Zenobia, and is composed of letters purporting to be written by Piso from Rome to Fausta, the daughter of Gracchus, one of the old Palmyrene ministers. In the first work Piso meets with Probus, a Christian teacher, and is partially convinced of the truth of his doctrine; he is now a disciple, and a sharer of the persecutions which marked the last days of the reign of Aurelian. The characters[Pg 561] in Probus are skilfully drawn and contrasted, and with a deeper moral interest, from the frequent discussions of doctrine which it contains, the romance has the classical style and spirit which characterized its predecessor.

Mr. Ware's third work is entitled Julian, or Scenes in Judea, and was published in 1841. The hero is a Roman, of Hebrew descent, who visits the land of his ancestors, to gratify a liberal curiosity, during the last days of the Saviour. Every thing connected with Palestine at this period is so familiar that the ground might seem to be sacred to History and Religion; but it has often been invaded by the romancer, and perhaps never with more success than in the present instance. Although Julian has less freshness than Zenobia, it has an air of truth and sincerity that renders it scarcely less interesting.

About the time of the publication of Julian, Mr. Ware was attacked with Epilepsy, while in his pulpit, at Lexington, near Boston, and he suffered all the residue of his life from disease and apprehension; but his illness did not affect his intelligence or its activity, and he continued to devote himself to congenial studies, for several years, chiefly as editor of The Christian Examiner. For a short period he was pastor of the Unitarian society at West Cambridge, but the condition of his health did not permit a regular discharge of his functions, for which, indeed, he was scarcely fitted in any thing but a spirit of humility and piety. His tastes and capacities would have secured for him greater triumphs in any department of pictorial or plastic art, to which he was always insensibly drawn by instinct and congenial studies.

In 1848 Mr. Ware passed several months abroad, and after his return he delivered in Lectures on European Capitals the best fruits of his travel. These Lectures have recently been published in a very attractive volume, which has been favorably received in this country and in England. Among his unprinted writings is a series of Lectures on the Life, Works, and Genius of Washington Allston. He died on the 19th of February.

The romances of Mr. Ware betray a familiarity with the civilization of the ancients, and are written in a graceful, pure and brilliant style. In our literature they are peculiar, and they will bear a favorable comparison with the most celebrated historical romances relating to the same scenes and periods which have been written abroad. They have passed through many editions in Great Britain, and have been translated into German and other languages of the continent.

John Frazee, the sculptor, died at the age of sixty, on the—th of March, at the house of his daughter, in New Bedford, Massachusetts. The Evening Post remarks that "he was a man of decided talent for sculpture, but the necessity of employing himself in other occupations, prevented his attaining that skill which, under more auspicious circumstances, would have been within his reach." Mr. Frazee was born in Brunswick, N.J., and in early life was a farmer and stone-cutter. One of his first attempts at sculpture which attracted notice, was a clever female bust, a likeness of one of his own family, exhibited in the gallery of the Academy of Design. He afterwards, at the request of the bar of New-York, was employed in the mural tablet and bust of John Welles, which fills a conspicuous place in St Paul's Church. This production, with others subsequently executed, attracted the attention of the Trustees of the Boston Athenæum, and at their request, in 1834, he proceeded to Boston, and modelled a series of busts of eminent men in that city—Webster, Bowditch, Prescott, Story, J. Lowell, and T. H. Perkins. Afterwards he went to Richmond, where he produced the likeness of John Marshall, copies of which adorn the Court rooms of New York, New-Orleans, and the Capitol of Virginia. On his return he visited President Jackson, at whose house he executed an inimitable head of that extraordinary man. Among his other productions were heads of General Lafayette, in 1824, De Witt Clinton, John Jay, Bishop Hobart, Dr. Milnor, Dr. Stearns, Nathaniel Prime, George Griswold, Eli Hart, &c. The monument, however, which is destined to perpetuate his fame, is the New York Custom-House. This edifice was commenced in 1834 by another gentleman, who, when he had finished the base, abandoned the work and withdrew his plans. Mr. Frazee was obliged to commence de novo, and in 1843 had completed the work. During the erection of the Custom-House, from the dampness of its material and concomitant causes, he contracted a disorder which caused paralysis, from which he never recovered. For several years he held a subordinate post under the Collector. His last effort with the chisel was in giving the finishing touch to the bust of General Jackson, which had remained in his studio seventeen years, without an order for completion. This was in November last, and while assiduously at work, his mallet fell from his hand, and his worn-out body followed it to the floor."

John Park, M. D., died in Worcester, Massachusetts, on the 2d of March, aged seventy-eight. He was an active member of the old Federal party in Massachusetts, during the administration of Jefferson and Madison, and exerted a wide and important influence by his well-known journal, The Boston Repertory. At a subsequent period, he established a private school for young women, which acquired a celebrity second to that of no similar educational institution in the old Commonwealth. He was distinguished for his cultivated literary tastes, his uncommon purity of character, his fine social qualities, and his cordial and attractive manners. Dr. Park was the father of Mrs. L. G. Hall, wife of the Rev. Dr. Hall, of Providence, the authoress of Miriam, and other successful productions, and of Mr. John C. Park, an eminent lawyer in Boston. Mrs. Osgood and several other distinguished literary women were among his pupils.

William Thompson, of Belfast, the naturalist of Ireland, died in London on the 17th February. Mr. Thompson was born in 1805, and from earliest youth was attached to scientific and literary studies. For the last fifteen years his name has been before the world of science in connection with arduous researches on the natural history of Ireland. The numerous memoirs published by him, chiefly in scientific periodicals, and latterly in the Annals of Natural History, of which he was a warm supporter, extend in their subjects over all departments of zoology, and several are devoted to botanical investigations. He was constantly on the watch for new facts bearing on the natural history[Pg 562] of his native island, which could boast of no more truly patriotic son. At the meeting of the British Association, at Cork, he read an elaborate report on the Fauna of Ireland, since published in extenso in the Association Transactions; and it was his intention to communicate a continuation of that report at the Belfast meeting. He did not confine his inquiries to Irish subjects, but added considerably to the natural history of several parts of England and Scotland; and when Professor Forbes proceeded to the Ægean at the invitation of Captain Graves, Mr. Thompson, himself an intimate friend of that distinguished officer, accompanied him, and devoted the short time he was in the Archipelago to zoological observations, since published, chiefly on the migration of birds. His love of ornithology was intense, and the results of his labors in that department are narrated with charming details in the volumes that have been published of his great work on The Natural History of Ireland. His name is associated with many discoveries, and numerous species of new creatures have been named after him. His reputation stood equally high on the Continent and in America, and he had been elected an honorary member of several foreign societies. He numbered among his intimate friends and correspondents all the eminent naturalists of the day. His love of the fine arts was second only to his love of science, and for many years he was one of the most active promoters of tasteful pursuits, especially of painting, in Ireland. He was a gentleman of independent means, and of no profession.

Robert Reinick, deservedly the most popular of recent song writers in Germany, died at Dresden early in February. He was born at Dantzic, in 1805, and was educated an artist, but he never painted more than one picture which attained any considerable reputation. His sketches were, however, remarkable for great delicacy of feeling, and of touch, a genial humor and an endless variety of fancy. But it was his songs that first and most widely made him known to the public. Without any surprising features of genius, they were so natural, so replete with true and happy sentiment, and flowed so sweetly and melodiously in a spontaneous beauty of language, that they were every where taken up, and still remain the intimate favorites of the people, but especially of artists, to whose peculiar life and customs many of them are devoted. One of the most pleasing books ever published in Germany, was his Songs of a Painter, which was illustrated with designs from all the prominent artists of Düsseldorf. Its appearance made an epoch in the book trade, and introduced the many splendid illustrated works that have succeeded it. It is some years since we read these songs, but their naiveté, tenderness, and frolic humor are still fresh in our memory. Reinick also had a great skill in the writing of story books for children, and illustrating them with his own drawings. One of these, the Black Aunt, has been translated into English, and was published in this city some three or four years since. The poet died quite suddenly, and was snatched from a life full of happiness, amid constant artistic activity, and the love of his family, and a boundless circle of friends. All Dresden sorrowed at his death, and his funeral procession seemed to embrace the entire city.

William Henry Oxberry, comedian, was the son of the once eminent actor Oxberry, and was born in Brownlow-street, Bloomsbury, on the 21st of April, 1808. He was educated at Merchant Tailors' school; and subsequently studied with an artist and in a lawyer's office. At length he was apprenticed to a surgeon: and was asked by Sir Astley Cooper, during an examination, whether, "when he saw his father convulse the audience with laughter, he felt no ambition to tread in his shoes?" No doubt he did, for he soon after made his essay at the Rawstone-street private theatre, in the character of Abel Day, which he performed to the Captain Careless of Mr. F. Matthews. His public commencement was deferred till the 17th March, 1825, for the Olympic, in the part of Sam Swipes, in "The High Road to Marriage." He remained not long there, but took a situation under Mr. Leigh Hunt, on the Examiner. Shortly afterwards he returned to the stage, and went on a provincial tour, and finally appeared in 1832 at the Strand Theatre, as Fathom, in "The Hunchback." Since that period he was seen with credit in turn at every theatre in the metropolis. On the 11th December, 1831, he married Ellen Malcombe Lancaster. He also became manager of the English Opera-House, but was not successful. The loss of his wife was a misfortune, and his subsequent career was not prosperous. He died on the 28th of February.

The Rev. Christopher Anderson, died at Edinburgh, on the 7th of February, aged seventy. He was best known as the author of Annals of the English Bible and The History of Irish Literature. He was educated at Bristol, at the college of which Dr. Ryland was president. He intended in early life to accompany Drs. Carey, Marshman, and Ward, to India, when the Baptist Societies' Mission was established in the east; but being prevented by the state of his health he settled in Edinburgh, where he has for nearly half a century been the respected pastor of a Baptist church. In missionary work, both at home and abroad, he always took deep and active interest. He travelled much through Ireland, and knew well the state of the people. His historical narration of the various attempts to educate the Irish in their own tongue is referred to by all who are engaged in Irish education and missions. He visited Copenhagen many years ago in order to obtain the protection of the Danish Government for the Serampore mission. The king granted him an interview, received him cordially, and granted a charter of incorporation. It is from the Serampore press that the Scriptures first began to be issued in the languages of the east, and the names of Carey and the other superintendents of the Serampore mission are memorable in the records of literature as well as of the church. He published in 1845 the Annals of the English Bible, an historical account of the different English translations and editions of the Bible, a work of learning and research, lately reprinted in New-York by the Carters.

The mother of M. Thiers has expired at Batignolles, where she has long resided on a pension allowed her by her son. M. Thiers was the only child of this woman, although his father had other children by a former marriage, one of whom keeps a restaurant in Paris.[Pg 563]

The some time expected death of Thomas Moore occurred on the 26th of February, at Sloperton Cottage, near Devizes. Like Southey and Scott, the British Anacreon had for several years before his decease, quite lost his intelligence, and he lingered in seclusion, and in half slumbering unconsciousness, personally well nigh forgotten by the world. His history is little more than a history of his writings. He was deservedly popular in society, for his amiable qualities, and fascinating manners; he shared the intimacy of the greatest men and greatest writers of his age, more prolific of eminent characters than any other since that of Shakspeare, Raleigh, and Sidney; and dividing his time between the quiet charms of domestic ease, and the smiles of the most elevated classes, he may be said to have been a fortunate and happy man. As a song writer, he was doubtless unrivalled. His versification is exquisitely finished, harmonious, and musically toned. The sense is never obviously sacrificed to the sound; on the contrary, he delighted in that species of antithetical and epigramatic turn, which is generally held to excuse some roughness, and to be scarcely compatible with perfect melody of rhythm. In grace, both of thought and diction, in easy, fluent wit, in melody, in brilliancy of fancy, in warmth (but scarcely depth) of sentiment, and even in purity and simplicity, when he chose to be pure and simple, no one has been superior to Moore; but in grandeur of conception, power of thought, and above all, unity of purpose, and a high aim, he was singularly deficient, and these are necessary to the character, not of a sweet minstrel, but of a great poet.

The London Morning Chronicle furnishes a biography of Moore, which we slightly abridge. With him, says the Chronicle, is snapped the last tie, save perhaps one, represented by the veteran Rogers, which connects the present generation with the outburst of "all the talents" which signalized the opening of the century. That great kindling of genius—embracing almost all sides of imaginative literature, of criticism and philosophy—is becoming more a thing of history than of fact. Year by year, the lights are going out. Wordsworth was the last extinguished before Moore; and now, to all intents and purposes, the great galaxy which poured such a flood of light on the literature of fifty years ago—which extinguished Rosa Matilda fiction and Delia Cruscan poetry—substituted true criticism for technical carping upon philological points, and established new styles in every branch of the belles-lettres—this great constellation may now be said to have disappeared. One of the brightest, if not of the largest stars, has long been obscured, and is now quite put out. The fame of Moore is fairly a matter of discussion. It cannot, we believe, be denied that much of his serious and more ambitious verse, founded on promptings of a more luscious and florid fancy than the present tastes incline to admit, and no inconsiderable portion even of his lyric pieces,—refined to attenuation—are less read and admired than they were a score or thirty years ago. A severer and sterner school of poetry has succeeded—one of deeper feeling and more sober thought; and the representatives of those who revelled in Lalla Rookh, and delighted in the strains of Mr. Little, now generally address themselves to more staid and philosophic musings. The Irish Melodies, too—exquisite as is their word-music—fanciful as is their conception—delightful as is their playfulness, and touching as is their pathos—even the Irish Melodies, we believe are declining in popular estimation. The reasons are obvious. In the first place, the Irish Melodies are not particularly Irish; they have grace, sparkling fancy, delicious feeling; but they are too fine-spun to do the work-a-day duty of popular songs. As literary performances, nine-tenths of Burns's are inferior to Moore's; and all Dibdin's are immeasurably beneath them. Yet the probability is that When Willie Brewed, and Poor Tom Bowling, will be in the full tide of popularity, where Rich and Rare, and Oh Breathe not His Name, will be unsung and forgotten. In a certain circle, and among people of a certain reading and appreciation, Moore will live as long as the language; but his genius was delicate and acute rather than catholic and strong. He had a rich play of fancy, but none of the soaring imagination of Shelley or Byron. His mind, in fact, was a first-class second-rate. It had no pretensions to stand in the line of the giants of his time. Brightly fanciful, rather than continuously imaginative—teeming with poetic imagery—loving to sparkle along the floweriest paths, and beneath the balmiest skies—revelling always in fays and flowers—in love, and mingled intellectual and sensual pleasures—playful in the extreme, and always ready to stop to make mirth as joyous and as delightful as the passion—his muse, in his great romantic poems, is the incarnation of a charming Epicureanism; and the mirth and jolity could go a long step further. He had wit, which sparkled as brightly as it could cut deeply; and humor, and sense of the ludicrous, which could be as well, if not more effectually applied to living persons and actual things than to the creations of his own fancy; and accordingly we find him loving to turn from the etherealized voluptuousness of Loves of the Angels, or the mystic imaginings of the Epicurean, to the sharp and brilliant hittings of political and social squibs—the restless satire with which, in the Fudge Family and hundreds of ephemeral but not the less clever lays, he quizzed his political and literary opponents, abolished the Earl of Mountcashell, or shot stinging shafts through the heart of the Benthamites. It is, indeed, far from probable that Moore's political and satiric poetry, little perhaps as he thought of it at the time, will live after his more ambitious works have sunk into that chronic state of classicism, in which books are labelled with an excellent character, and shelved—turned into the category of works without which no gentleman's library is complete, and doomed, not to actual obscurity, but to honorable retirement. The last of his political squibs and short poems were given to the world in the columns of the Morning Chronicle; and referred principally to the earlier struggles of the Anti-Corn Law League—the verses having in most cases been suggested by pasting political events.

Thomas Moore died at the ripe age of seventy-two. He was born on the 28th of May, 1780, in Angier-street, Dublin, where his father, a strict Roman Catholic, carried on a grocery and spirit business. As a child, he is said to have been remarkable for personal beauty; but his appearance in after life hardly carried out the promise of infancy. He was short, with a heavy, expressive,[Pg 564] but not handsome face, which, however, lightened up wonderfully when conversing or singing his own ballads. He was educated at Dublin, and one of big first noted peculiarities was a fondness and a talent for private theatricals. Taking advantage of the boon, as it was then considered, the young Roman Catholic was entered at Trinity College. He could not, of course, obtain a degree; but some English verses tendered at an examination, in lieu of the usual Latin composition, procured a copy of the Travels of Anacharsis, as a reward. The wild times of the Irish rebellion were approaching, and the poet was naturally to be found in the ranks led by the Emmetts and Arthur O'Connor; but his treasonable lucubrations, though, as his own sister remarked, "rather strong," were passed over without any measures against the enthusiastic young champion of liberty. Politics, however, were by no means the only subject of his muse. At the age of fourteen he published poetry in a Dublin magazine, and afterwards composed many semi-burlesque pieces for private representation.

In his twentieth year, giving up republicanism for ever, Moore came to London to study at the Middle Temple, and publish his translations, or rather paraphrases, of Anacreon. As may be imagined, he attended much more to the Greek than to Coke upon Lyttleton, and permission, obtained through the friendship of Lord Moira, to dedicate the work to the Prince Regent, was the means of his introduction to those elevated circles in which he was afterwards to move and shine. His Anacreon was highly successful, and was succeeded, in 1801, by Poems and Songs, by Thomas Little. Whatever objections may be raised by the present generation to either of these works, there can be no doubt of their vivid play of fancy, their singular grace, even when verging on improprieties, and their exquisite melody of versification. His translations of the Old Greek Lover, and of Women and Wine, are probably the finest and richest versions of these often rendered songs in the English language—always excepting the rough but thoroughly racy version of the last, by quaint old Mr. Donne.

In the days of the regency, poets came in for patronage, and Mr. Moore, made registrar to the Court of Admiralty at Bermuda—as singularly appropriate an appointment as some we have seen in our own day—went out to the islands, appointed a deputy, took a glance at the United States, and came home again. He then published Sketches of Travel and Society beyond the Atlantic—a satiric work in heroic verse, vigorously written, but politically evincing a miserable short-sightedness. Soon afterwards, a savage review in the Edinburgh, of a republication of Juvenile Songs, &c., led to the celebrated rencontre between Moore and Jeffrey, at Hampstead, when the great critic, as Byron asserted, stood valiantly up:

"When Little's leadless pistol met his eye
And Bow-street myrmidons stood laughing by."

The affair was ultimately arranged, mainly through the intervention of Mr. Rogers, and at his house Moore shortly afterwards made his first acquaintance with Byron and Campbell. The long and affectionate intimacy between Moore and the author of Childe Harold, we need here only allude to. Moore had about this time married. His wife was a Miss Dyke, a woman, of strong sense and character, as well as great beauty and amiability. Their children are all dead.

A couple of political satires of no great merit—one setting forth a sober and earnest panegyric upon ignorance—were followed by the famous Two-penny Post Bag, a bundle of rollicking satire and humor. It made a great hit. Not so its author's next venture, a farce called the Blue Stocking, damned at the Lyceum. Moore's intimacy with Byron and Hunt was broken off by the outspoken tone of the Liberal, and especially by the Vision of Judgment. Moore thought his friends had gone too far. What would Carlton House say! For if, as Byron said, "Little Tommy dearly loved a lord," with how much more affection did he worship a prince of the blood royal?

The Melodies were his next, and perhaps most popular compositions. Charming as they are, and exquisitely finished as is their lyrical workmanship, we doubt whether they have the stamina and heart-rooted earnestness, which are requisite to make songs immortal. Only the strongest heart and the manliest brain produce offspring to suit all tastes and to last all time.

It was in 1812 that Moore determined to write an Indian poem. Mr. Perry, of the Morning Chronicle, accompanied the poet to the Messrs. Longman, and through his intervention the great sum of 3,000 guineas was settled on as the price of a piece of which not one word was yet written. Moore then retired to Mayfield Cottage, a desolate place in Derbyshire, and after a long and hard struggle with a coquettish muse—after a three years' retirement—he sent forth Lalla Rookh. Its success was immense; the poem ran rapidly through several editions, and Moore's fame stood upon a higher and surer pedestal than ever. The tales were the triumph of poetic lusciousness; but not a few old judges stigmatized their taste by preferring Fadladeen and his criticisms, even to the Fireworshippers, or the tribulations of the Peri. We need hardly say that the judgment of these tough critics has now a far greater number of adherents than it once commanded.

After a continental tour, Moore wrote the clever and popular Fudge Family. In the following year he met Byron in Italy, and then the latter intrusted to him his memoirs for publication. These memoirs Moore sold to Murray for two thousand guineas; but, as is well known and a good deal regretted, the purchase money was refunded, and the papers regained, and destroyed. Pecuniary difficulties connected with the misconduct of his Bermuda deputy, about this time, compelled Moore to seek a temporary refuge in Paris, and there he led a pleasant social life, such as he loved, and composed the Loves of the Angels, which is not much more than an elaborate and carefully wrought repetition of all his previous love-and-flower poetry. The whole thing is dreamy, lulling, and beautiful, but vague and misty. The words tinkle like falling fountains, and the essence of the closing fancy floats about one like perfume; but this enervating species of composition is far from high or true poetry, and accordingly the work is now far oftener alluded to than it is read. In Paris he occupied the same hotel for a long time with his intimate friend Washington Irving.

In 1825 Moore paid a visit to Scott, who pronounced the Irish melodist the "prettiest warbler" he had ever heard. One evening Scott and his[Pg 565] guest visited the theatre at Edinburgh. Soon after their unmarked entrance, the attention of the audience, which had been engrossed by the Duchess of St. Albans, was directed towards the new comers; and, according to a newspaper report, copied and published by Mr. Moore in one of his last prefaces, considerable excitement ensued. "Eh!" exclaimed a man in the pit, "eh, yon's Sir Walter, wi' Lockhart and his wife; and wha's the wee body wi' the pawkie een? Wow, but it's Tarn Moore, just." "Scott, Scott! Moore, Moore!" immediately resounded through the house. Scott would not rise; Moore did, and bowed several times, with his hand on his heart. Scott afterwards acknowledged the plaudits of his countrymen; and the orchestra, during the rest of the evening, played alternately Scotch and Irish airs.

Soon after this period, Moore was established, by the kind offices of his old and stanch friend the Marquis of Lansdowne, in Sloperton Cottage, where he passed the remainder of his days, and where he ended them. It was here that he commenced his career as a biographer, and produced successively the memoirs of Lord Edward Fitzgerald, Lord Byron, and Sheridan. The two latter are well known and highly appreciated. It was in the previous year that the poet first came out as a prose writer in the Memoirs of Captain Rock, a bitter and unfair account of—or rather commentary on—the English government of Ireland, and a curious instance of warped and twisted views in a man of the world like Moore, almost unavoidable in an Irishman writing of his country. His next serious work—he continued his squibs and sparkles of occasional verse—was the Travels of an Irish Gentleman in Search of a Religion—in which he attempted to show that the doctrines and practises of the Roman Catholic Church date from the apostolic period. The last of his prose works, and that which has attained a greater sale, we believe, than any of them, was the romance of The Epicurean. Here Moore's style, always too florid, is occasionally redeemed by passages of eloquence and natural feeling. There is much out-of-the-way learning in the book, but a pompous and cumbrous ornament overlays every thing. The book had great success, but of what Mr. Carlyle calls the "wind-bag" nature. The wind inside was very highly perfumed, and sighed with very pleasing murmurs, but it was only wind, and, as such, will ooze out presently, and the Epicurean bag will be little regarded.

From this time political and social squibs were the only literary occupations to which Mr. Moore devoted himself until, gradually and fitfully mental darkness came down on him. Of critical estimates of Moore, we have seen none to which we more perfectly agree, than one (sometimes attributed to Richard H. Dana, but) written by Professor Edward T. Channing, for the North American Review soon after that Review was established.

The best edition of Moore's works ever published in this country, is the very beautiful one in octavo, from the press of the Appletons, embracing all the revisions, introductions, notes, &c., of the author's recent ten volume edition, printed in London.

The well-known artist, Samuel Prout, died in London on the 10th of February. The Athenæum remarks that he was long and popularly known by a style of Art which he may be said to have originated,—and to the influence of his example may be ascribed the distinctive character and the successes of the English school of painters of architectural subjects. Born at Plymouth about the year 1784, like his townsmen distinguished in art, he owed little to the patronage of his native town, unless their share in the praises which he ultimately commanded may be counted to them as encouragement. In the metropolis his first patron, was Mr. Palser, the printseller, who used to take all his water color drawings at low prices, and had a ready sale for them. When Mr. Prout had arrived at distinction, he never omitted grateful mention of the advantages he had derived from the acquaintance and transactions. Mr. Prout early gained the notice of the late Mr. Ackermann; and the many drawing-books for learners, and other prints which he undertook for that gentleman, soon gave currency to his name. His transcripts of Gothic architecture at home it is superfluous to commend; and when the allied armies had made it safe to venture to the Continent, he was among the earliest of the English to travel there. His love of the picturesque was gratified amid the new and remarkable combinations of form which met his eye at Nürnberg and in many of the adjacent cities. He was among the first English artists to add to what had been already made known of Venice by Canaletto. Nor must it be forgotten that he was among the first when Senefelder's newly discovered process was imported to try his hand at it. The powers of the art of Lithography, though its processes may have been improved and amplified since,—were never better exhibited than in Mr. Prout's broad and vigorous touch. The Landscape Annual is another record of his powers. Other books of the class testify to his unwearied industry and graphic skill. For many years suffering from ill-health, Mr. Prout, in convalescent intervals, labored cheerfully at the vocation which he had so illustrated in better times.

The venerable Dr. Murray, Roman Catholic Archbishop of Dublin, died at his residence in that city on the 25th of February. The death of this excellent prelate, whose life has been a model of Christian forbearance in a country where such an example is invaluable, the journals say is deeply regretted by moderate men of all the religious denominations of the country.

Dr. M'nicholas, titular Bishop of Achonry, died about the middle of February. He was regarded as one of the ripest scholars among the Roman Catholic hierarchy of Ireland, and belonged to the advanced school of "educationists."

The London papers announce the death of Mr. Holcroft, son of the more famous Thomas Holcroft, the dramatist,—who was for many years connected with the press, and, perhaps, in that capacity most prominently known as the musical and dramatic critic of one of the leading daily papers.

M. Benchot, the editor of Voltaire's works, lately died at Paris. He devoted thirty years to studies preparatory to the execution of his undertaking, which he finally completed in 1834. He also published in 1811 a laborious work on French bibliography, which is still a standard manual.[Pg 566]

Johann Kollar, Professor of Slavonian antitiquities at the University of Vienna, died on January 24th, last, in his sixtieth year. He was born at Mursotz, in Hungary, and was educated as a Protestant clergyman; he was appointed Professor in 1849. He contributed greatly to the intellectual movement of recent years among the Austrian and Prussian Slavonians. His literary reputation was first established by Slavy dcera (The Daughter of Fame) a lyrical epic poem, published in 1824. His ideal end was the creation of an independent Slavonic literature, which should preserve his race from the ever increasing influence of German culture, by which he foresaw that it must be absorbed, unless it could be aroused to a development strictly its own. During the Hungarian war he remained an adherent of the Austrian side. He leaves two nearly finished works; the one is Slavonic Italy in Early Times; the other is upon Slavonic Mythology, and is entitled The Gods of Retra. They are written in the Bohemian or Tschechic language.

The widow of Von Kotzebue, the author of The Stranger and Pizarro (the former of which still keeps possession of the German provincial stage), who was assassinated at Mannheim by the student Sand, died at Heidelberg, on the 4th of February, at the age of 73. She was Kotzebue's third wife, and had lived for many years in strict retirement.

Baron Krudener, Russian Minister in Stockholm since 1844, died early in February.

M. Lucas de Montigny, the adopted son of Mirabeau, died in Paris, early in February. On his death-bed Mirabeau took him in his arms, and called on his friends to protect him. He left him all his papers and correspondence, and some years ago M. Lucas compiled from them eight volumes of Mémoires Biographiques of le grand homme. He naturally entertained a profound veneration for the memory of his benefactor; and, it is said, spent not less than 100,000 francs ($20,000), of his private fortune, in buying up letters and documents calculated to cast dishonor upon it. These papers he of course destroyed, and it does not appear that he left behind him any calculated to throw new light on the character or career of the tribune.

Belgian journals announce the death of a M. Smits, a great compiler of statistics, and a poet: two vocations rather dissimilar. He wrote three tragedies, called Marie de Bourgogne, Jeanne de Flandre, Elfrida, ou la Vengeance, which were applauded by his countrymen; also several poems on different subjects, and especially on the rising of the Spaniards and Greeks for liberty.

Dr. Eylert, first Bishop of Prussia, died a short time since at Potsdam, aged eighty-two. He was the author of several works on theology, and on the sciences. For a long time he was a member of the Ministry of Public Worship and Instruction.

Victor Falck, a distinguished French ornithologist, has just died at Stockholm.

Ladies Fashions for April.


The spring has brought to the several departments of fashion the usual amount of changes, but at our last advices there were many points of some consequence undecided, as for example, the length of dresses, which some authorities make greater than ever in recent years, and others less, by a few inches. Among the chief novelties we notice La Vivandiere, which, with various styles of the gilet, or waist, has been introduced into New-York by Bulpin of Broadway. The waistcoat will remain in vogue. The Parisiennes, who had begun to turn it into ridicule, still patronize it; and the provinciales need not fear to adopt it. But some conditions are necessary in order to render it becoming and stylish. The figure of the wearer should be thin, tall, and sylph-like; all others should avoid the style. Rounded, white shoulders appear to much more advantage in toilette Pompadour than in toilet Louis XIII. The corsage Louis XIII., and the waistcoat accord so well together that they are scarcely ever separated. However, some bodies a basquines are made to be worn without the waistcoat. They are then trimmed with velvet or ribbon bands, which cross the chest and fasten with buttons; the chemisette being composed of frills of English point or Valenciennes, separated by embroidered insertion.[Pg 567]


The recent fine bright weather has brought out many very elegant spring bonnets. The most fashionable are of Leghorn, which, during the approaching season, is likely to recover the favor it enjoyed some years ago. The shape of new Leghorn bonnets is elegant and becoming—the brim is wide and circular, and the crown gently sloping backwards. The bavolet at the back is made of the Leghorn itself, instead of being composed of silk or ribbon, as in bonnets of straw or other materials. The favorite style of trimming Leghorns is with fancy straw, tastefully intermingled with velvet or ribbon, of some dark rick color. On one side may be placed a small ostrich feather, of the color of the Leghorn, or shaded in the hues of the bird of Paradise. As the season advances, flowers will be employed for trimming these bonnets. Genin has introduced a great variety of new and fanciful styles from the recent Paris modes, for children, and for ladies' riding dresses. They are of Leghorn, felt, and beaver, all of which will be in vogue through April, and they are generally very tasteful and elegant.[Pg 568]

In the above figure we have a Promenade or Carriage Costume, of rich figured silk; the sleeves open at the ends, with under sleeves of white muslin; with a Leghorn bonnet, trimmed with fancy straw and violet-colored ribbon, tastefully intermingled; on one side a Leghorn colored feather, waving spirally. Under-trimming, loops of narrow ribbon in various shades of violet; and gloves of pale yellow kid. The taffetas d'Athenes is appropriate for ball dresses, and obtains generally; the ground is white, blue, or pale pink, brochees in silk of all colors in wreaths, or bouquets, forming undulating festoons round the bottoms of the triple skirts. The upper skirt is flowered over in small designs to the waist, as is also the body and sleeves. The taffetas flore has a white ground, covered with small bouquets of wild field flowers. The taffetas rose has wreaths of large roses, brochees in white silk round each skirt, and rose-buds over the top skirt and body. This toilet should be accompanied with a coiffure, of a wreath of white roses, fixed behind by a bow and long floating ends of satin ribbon, forming an elegant evening toilette for a bride. The manteaux, with hoods, continue in fashion; they are generally made of cloth. The mantelet-echarpe has been cited for its elegance and taste. It is more dressy than the manteaux, marking the waist, and descending in front in square ends. Sorties de bal, are very fanciful. Some of white cachemire, trimmed with beads, silk, and jet, with magnificent lace or deep fringe. Others of white or pink satin, edged with ruches of guipure lace, or rouleaux of marabouts. They have hoods and large Venetian sleeves.