By Author [ A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z |  Other Symbols ]
  By Title [ A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z |  Other Symbols ]
  By Language
all Classics books content using ISYS

Download this book: [ ASCII | HTML | PDF ]

Look for this book on Amazon

We have new books nearly every day.
If you would like a news letter once a week or once a month
fill out this form and we will give you a summary of the books for that week or month by email.

Title: Journeys Through Bookland, Vol. 8
Author: Sylvester, Charles Herbert
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Journeys Through Bookland, Vol. 8" ***

This book is indexed by ISYS Web Indexing system to allow the reader find any word or number within the document.

Transcriber's Note

Obvious typographical errors have been corrected. A list of changes is
found at the end of the book. Oe ligatures have been expanded.

The original text used both number and symbol footnotes. This usage has
been maintained in this version.

_The Tempest_]

                Through Bookland

               A NEW AND ORIGINAL
                  FOR CHILDREN

  _Author of English and American Literature_

                  VOLUME EIGHT
                  _New Edition_



  Copyright, 1922


  RINGROSE AND HIS BUCCANEERS                                        1
  DAVID CROCKETT                                                    29
  DAVID CROCKETT IN THE CREEK WAR                                   37
  AMERICA                                  _Samuel Francis Smith_   60
  THE RETREAT OF CORTÉS                     _William H. Prescott_   63
  BATTLE OF IVRY                      _Thomas Babington Macaulay_   76
  THE BATTLE OF THERMOPYLAE                                         81
  MARCO BOZZARIS                            _Fitz-Greene Halleck_   90
  A DESCENT INTO THE MAELSTROM                  _Edgar Allan Poe_   95
  PÈRE MARQUETTE                                   _Jared Sparks_  121
  THE FALL OF THE ALAMO                                            141
  THE ALHAMBRA                                _Washington Irving_  153
  HERVÉ RIEL                                    _Robert Browning_  168
  THE BATTLE OF WATERLOO                             _Lord Byron_  176
  HOW THEY TOOK THE GOLD-TRAIN                 _Charles Kingsley_  180
  A BED OF NETTLES                                  _Grant Allen_  209
  WASHINGTON IRVING                                                216
  THE KNICKERBOCKER HISTORY OF NEW YORK       _Washington Irving_  224
  THE BATTLE OF TRAFALGAR                        _Robert Southey_  284
  CASABIANCA                                     _Felicia Hemans_  313
  THE ROMANCE OF THE SWAN'S NEST     _Elizabeth Barrett Browning_  315
  THE COTTER'S SATURDAY NIGHT                      _Robert Burns_  319
  CHARLES AND MARY LAMB                                            328
  DREAM CHILDREN: A REVERY                         _Charles Lamb_  335
  READING SHAKESPEARE                                              346
  THE TEMPEST, A TALE FROM SHAKESPEARE    _Charles and Mary Lamb_  348
  THE TEMPEST                               _William Shakespeare_  364
  STUDIES FOR _The Tempest_                                        468

  PRONUNCIATION OF PROPER NAMES                                    489

For Classification of Selections, see General Index, at end of Volume X


  PROSPERO AND MIRANDA (Color Plate)   _Arthur Henderson_ FRONTISPIECE
  WE ROWED AWAY DOWN THE RIVER                _Herbert N. Rudeen_    3
  A BATTLE AT LONG RANGE COMMENCED            _Herbert N. Rudeen_   21
  A CROSS WITH SEVERAL LETTERS BESIDE IT      _Herbert N. Rudeen_   25
  I SAID FAREWELL TO MY WIFE AND CHILDREN         _R. F. Babcock_   39
  I FOUND A DEER THAT HAD JUST BEEN KILLED        _R. F. Babcock_   45
  PILOTED BY FRIENDLY INDIANS (Color Plate)       _R. F. Babcock_   48
  THE ATTACK ON THE FORT                          _R. F. Babcock_   55
  BATTLE ON THE CAUSEWAY                            _Louis Grell_   69
  "CHARGE FOR THE GOLDEN LILIES NOW"                _Louis Grell_   79
  THEIR LAST ENCOUNTER                        _Herbert N. Rudeen_   89
  THE TURK AWOKE                             _Iris Weddell White_   92
  THE GIFT OF THE CALUMET                         _R. F. Babcock_  129
  AT THE PORTAGE                                  _R. F. Babcock_  137
  ON THE MISSISSIPPI (Color Plate)                _R. F. Babcock_  138
  THE MEXICANS STORM THE FORT                       _Louis Grell_  146
  THE DEFENDERS FIRING FROM WINDOWS                 _Louis Grell_  148
  THE GATE OF JUSTICE                            _G. H. Mitchell_  154
  THE COURT OF LIONS                             _G. H. Mitchell_  157
  THE HALL OF ABENCERRAGES                       _G. H. Mitchell_  160
  THEY FOLLOW IN A FLOCK                            _Louis Grell_  172
  BUT HARK!                                  _Iris Weddell White_  177
  "DO NOT SHOOT TILL I DO"                          _Louis Grell_  188
  SOLEMNLY HE APPROACHED, STAFF IN HAND             _Louis Grell_  197
  WASHINGTON IRVING (Halftone)                                     216
  HERE THEY REFRESHED THEMSELVES               _Arthur Henderson_  238
  WILLIAM THE TESTY                            _Arthur Henderson_  265
                                               _Arthur Henderson_  267
                                               _Arthur Henderson_  274
  "I SHALL YET HAVE TO BEAT THEM!"            _Herbert N. Rudeen_  286
                                              _Herbert N. Hedden_  303
  HE FELL UPON HIS FACE                       _Herbert N. Rudeen_  305
  AN OLD QUARTERMASTER HAD SEEN HIM FIRE      _Herbert N. Rudeen_  309
  LITTLE ELLIE SITS ALONE (Color Plate)        _Arthur Henderson_  316
  TH' EXPECTANT WEE-THINGS                    _Herbert N. Rudeen_  321
  ROUND THE INGLE                             _Herbert N. Rudeen_  325
  CHARLES LAMB (Halftone)                                          328
  ROAMING ABOUT THAT HUGE MANSION             _Herbert N. Rudeen_  339
  HE WOULD MOUNT A METTLESOME HORSE           _Herbert N. Rudeen_  341
  WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE (Halftone)                                   346
  FERDINAND LEAPED                           _Iris Weddell White_  353
  TELL YOUR PITEOUS HEART                    _Iris Weddell White_  371
  ANTONIO AND SEBASTIAN PLOTTING             _Iris Weddell White_  403
  PRAY YOU WORK NOT SO HARD                  _Iris Weddell White_  421
  CERES ENTERS, AT IRIS' CALL                _Iris Weddell White_  439
  STEPHANO AND TRINCULO QUARREL              _Iris Weddell White_  448
  WHERE THE BEE SUCKS, THERE SUCK I          _Iris Weddell White_  455
  LOOK DOWN, YOU GODS, ON THIS COUPLE        _Iris Weddell White_  461


Just two days after we took possession of the town of Santa Maria, we
departed thence on Saturday, April 17th, 1680. We all embarked in
thirty-five canoes, which we had taken while lying at anchor at the
front of the town. Thus we sailed, or rather rowed, down the river in
quest of the South Sea upon which Panama is seated. Our prisoners, the
Spaniards, begged very earnestly that they might be permitted to go with
us and not be left to the mercy of the Indians, who would show them no
favor and whose cruelty they so much feared, but we had such difficulty
in finding boats for ourselves that we could assist them little.
However, they found soon after either logs or old canoes, so that they
were able to come along with us.

It was my misfortune to have a canoe which was very heavy and
consequently sluggish. Because of this we were left behind the rest a
little way, there being only four men beside myself in the boat. As the
tide fell it left several shoals of sand naked, and hence we, not
knowing the location of the channel amongst such a variety of streams,
steered for over two miles into a shoal where we were forced to lie by
until high water came. As soon as the tide began to turn, we rowed away,
but in spite of all our endeavors, we could neither find nor overtake
our companions. At ten o'clock, when the tide became low, we stuck an
oar in the sands and by turns slept in our canoe, where we were pierced
to the skin by the showers that fell in the night.

The next morning, as soon as the day had come, we rowed away down the
river in pursuit of our people, and after going about two leagues we
were so fortunate as to overtake them at an Indian landing place, where
they had been taking in water. They told us that we would not find water
again for six days, and that we must without fail fill our jars.
Although we made what haste we could, by the time our jars were filled
our friends had all departed and were already out of sight. Such is the
nature of the pirates; they care not in the least whom they lose or
leave behind.

We rowed after them as fast as we possibly could, but all in vain, for
here in the mouth of the river the islands were so numerous that it was
very easy for us to lose them a second time. After much trouble and toil
we did at last find the mouth of the river, but here the tide was again
coming in, so that though we were within a stone's throw from the mouth
of the river, we could not go through it, but were forced to put ashore
and wait for better water. Accordingly we hauled our canoe close by the
bushes and fastened it to a tree which the tide had almost covered.


As soon as the tide began to turn, we rowed away again, crossing the
Gulf of Miguel. Here we had a very hard time fighting the waves, which
dashed against our canoe and might easily have filled and overwhelmed
it, for the boat was nearly twenty feet long and not over one and a half
broad where it was widest. At dark we landed on an island where we had
the most sorrowful resting place I ever experienced in my whole life. It
rained impetuously all night long, in so much that we were wet from head
to foot and had not one dry thread about us; and so violent was the
rain that we could not keep any fire going to warm or dry ourselves. Not
one minute's sleep did we get during the whole night, and our plight was
indeed an awful one, remote from our companions and wholly destitute of
all human comfort. As morning broke, our plight was little relieved, for
a vast sea surrounded us on one side, and on the other we could see
nothing but high mountains and rocks. Our boat was but an eggshell, and
we had few clothes to defend us from the weather. In fact, not one of us
at that time had a shoe to his foot.

Wet and cold as we were, however, we put forth to sea and rowed away,
passing several islands. In the open sea the smallness of our vessel put
us again in deadly peril, and it always required one man and sometimes
two to bail out the water that came over the sides of the boat. When we
had struggled for some time with these difficulties, and when we were
near one of the smaller islands, a huge wave overturned our boat and we
were all forced to swim for our lives, but did manage to get to shore,
where soon our canoe was thrown after us. All our bread and fresh water
were spoiled, but as our guns were lashed to the boat and were kept in
waxed cases, we lost none of them. Our first business was to take them
out and clean them.

Scarcely had this been done when we saw another boat suffering from the
same misfortune at a little distance from us. The persons thus cast
ashore proved to be six Spaniards from the garrison at Santa Maria who
had followed us to escape the Indians. Presently they joined us, and we
built a fire, broiled our meat on the coals, and all ate amicably
together. We were suffering terribly for water, as we had none to drink
and knew not where to get any. Fortunately our canoe was thrown on edge
and very little injured, but the one on which the Spaniards came split
itself against the rocks, being old and slender, and was broken into a
hundred pieces.

My company was now much discouraged and wished to return, but after much
persuasion I induced them to go forward at least one day longer, saying
I would then be willing to do whatever they saw fit. About the time they
concluded to follow me, our watchman espied an Indian, who as soon as he
knew he had been seen, ran hastily to the woods. Immediately I sent two
of my companions after him. Finding he was one of our friendly Indians,
they followed him along the shore to where seven more of his companions
with a great canoe were resting on the seashore. By means of signs I
asked him what had become of my companions, and the Indians assured us
that if we would take their boat instead of our own, we would overtake
our friends before morning.

We were rejoicing over this news when the Indians noticed that six of
the men of our company did not seem to be of the same language and kind
as ourselves. We told them they were _Wankers_, which is the name the
Indians commonly give to the Spaniards. Their next question was, "May we
kill those Spaniards?" I answered them, "By no means; I will not consent
to have it done." To this the Indians seemed to consent, but after a
little while, when my back was turned, some of my company, thinking to
oblige the Indians, beckoned to them to kill the Spaniards. Perceiving
their danger, the Spaniards made a great outcry, which I heard, and I
turned around in time to save their lives. Although I was able to
accomplish this, I could not prevent them, however, from taking one of
the Spaniards as a slave. To the others, however, I gave the canoe in
which I came and bade them to get away as speedily as possible in order
to save their lives from the Indians.

Then joining company with the Indians we entered a very large canoe,
which was able to carry at least twenty men more easily than our canoe
could carry five. Moreover the Indians had also fitted a good sail to
the canoe, so that, having a fresh breeze, we set sail and moved rapidly
away, to the infinite joy and comfort of our hearts. In one place we ran
into a heavy sea, which was caused by a strong current and the heavy
winds, and many times our boat was filled with spray. Again at night it
rained heavily for several hours and was very dark.

About nine o'clock we discovered two fires on the shore of the mainland.
The Indians began to shout and to cry out joyously that these fires were
made by their companions. Accordingly we made for the shore as fast as
we could drive, but as soon as we had reached it about sixty Spaniards,
armed with clubs and other arms, rushed out into the breakers, laid hold
of our canoe on both sides and pulled it out of the water. Thus were we
all taken and made prisoners. I laid hold of my gun, thinking to defend
myself, but it was all in vain, for four or five of them stopped and
overpowered me. The Indians leaped overboard and got away very nimbly
into the woods, though my companions were too much amazed to make any
attempt to escape.

Our captors could speak neither French nor English, but I was able to
talk, in Latin, with one of them who seemed more intelligent than the
rest, and from him I learned that these were Spaniards who had been put
ashore by our other boats for fear that some of them might escape and
warn Panama that we were on our way to capture it. For this reason the
Spaniards were much rejoiced at taking us, and they designed to treat us
very severely for plundering their town of Santa Maria.

But even while the Spaniard was talking to me, there came in a poor
wretch that I had saved from the Indians. When he reported how kindly I
had treated him and the rest of his companions, the captain rose from
his seat and embraced me, saying, "You Englishmen are very friendly
enemies and good people, but the Indians are rogues and a treacherous
nation. Come and sit by me and eat of the victuals which your companions
left us when they turned from shore." For the kindness I had shown their
countrymen, the Spaniards agreed to give us our lives and liberty, but
it was only after long persuasion that I could induce them to spare the
lives of the Indians. However, I accomplished this and was bidden to
take my canoe and go in God's name, with the wish that we might be as
fortunate as we had been generous.

Having found the Indians, we took our departure soon after, although the
Spaniards invited us to stay with them longer. All that night it rained
very hard and we found no place where we could land. About ten o'clock
the next morning, however, after a night of rowing and paddling, we
espied a canoe coming toward us at great speed. The men in it proved to
be of our old English company, who supposed us to be Spaniards and were
coming to attack us. They had given me and my companions up for lost,
but now we were all mutually rejoiced, and were soon reunited on the
shore of a deep bay which lay concealed behind a point of rocks.

On the morning of the second day after, that is, on the twenty-third of
April, the day sacred to Saint George, our patron of England, we came
before sunrise within view of the city of Panama, which makes a pleasant
show to vessels that are at sea. At that time there lay at anchor near
the Island of Perico, which is distant about two leagues from Panama,
five great ships and three smaller men-of-war called _The Little Fleet_.
The latter, it appeared, had been suddenly manned with a design to fight
us and prevent us from making any further attempts upon the city or

Accordingly, as soon as they spied us, they instantly weighed anchor and
came directly to meet us. Two of our boats were very heavy and could not
row as fast as the canoes, and accordingly we were already far in
advance. There were five canoes in this company, and among them only
thirty-six men in a very unfit condition to fight, being tired and worn
with so much rowing. The enemy sailed toward us directly before the
wind, and we feared greatly lest they should run us down. So we rowed
straight up into the "wind's eye," as the sailors say, and got close to
windward of them. While we were doing this, other of our boats in which
were thirty-two more men overtook us, so that altogether we were
sixty-eight men engaged in the fight that day.

In the three vessels of the Little Fleet that opposed us were altogether
two hundred and seventy-eight men, of whom more than two hundred were
native Spaniards, the rest being Indians or Mulattoes. The commanders of
these ships had issued orders that no quarter was to be given to any of
the buccaneers. But such bloody commands as these seldom or never

The canoe of Captain Sawkins and that wherein I was were much to the
leeward of the rest. The third of the Spanish ships came between us two
and fired on me to the windward and on Captain Sawkins to the leeward,
wounding with these broadsides four men in the Captain's canoe and one
in mine. Nevertheless, he paid so dear for his passage between us that
he was not very quick in coming about again and trying it a second time;
for with our first volley we killed several of his men upon the decks.
Thus we got to the windward of the enemy as our other canoes had already
done. At this moment the Admiral of the Little Fleet came up with us
suddenly, scarcely giving us time to charge, and thinking to pass by us
with as little damage as the first of his ships had received, or even
less. But it fell out much worse for him, for we were so fortunate as to
kill the man at the helm, so that his ship ran into the wind and her
sails lay "a-back" as the mariners say. This gave us time to come up
under the stern of his vessel, and firing continually into the vessel we
killed as many as came to the helm, and cut in two his mainsail and

At this time the third Spanish vessel was seen coming up to the aid of
the Admiral's ship. Captain Sawkins left the latter to our four canoes
and rowed away to meet the oncoming Spaniards. The dispute or fight
between them was very hot, as they lay close together, and fought from
one side of the deck to the other, both giving and receiving death as
fast as they could charge. Meanwhile the first ship tacked about and
came up to relieve the Admiral. We determined to prevent this design,
and two of our canoes, Captain Springer's and my own, stood out to meet
the new arrival, who made direct upon the Admiral, who stood upon the
quarter-deck waving at him with a handkerchief what to do. But we met
him in the middle of his way, and came so close to him that if he had
not turned his course, we should have been on board him. As it was, we
killed so many of his crew that the vessel had scarcely men enough left
alive and unwounded to carry her off. Fortunately for them, the wind
sprang up fresh, and they were able to sail away and save their lives.

Having put to flight the vessel which was to relieve the Admiral, we
turned about and with a loud halloo joined our friends in the other
boat, and came so close under the stern of the Admiral's ship that we
wedged up the rudder and at the same time killed both the Admiral and
the chief pilot. Seeing how disabled their ship was, and disheartened by
the slaughter, for at least two-thirds of their men had been killed and
many others wounded, they cried for quarter, which had several times
been offered them, but had been always stoutly denied. So we took
possession of the Admiral's ship and put on board all our wounded men,
including Captain Harris, who had been shot through both his legs. As
soon as this was done, we instantly sent some of our ships to go and aid
Captain Sawkins, who had been fighting against the second Spanish ship.
Indeed, to give our enemies their due, no men in the world ever fought
more bravely than these same Spaniards.

Coming up close under the Spaniard's side, we gave him a full volley of
shot and expected to have a like return from him, but of a sudden we saw
his men that were abaft the mast, blown up in the air, some of them
falling into the deck and others into the sea. This disaster was no
sooner seen by their valiant Captain than he leaped overboard, and in
spite of all our shot succeeded in rescuing some of his men, although he
was much burned in both his hands himself. But while he was rescuing
these men to reinforce the ship and renew the fight, another jar of
powder took fire and blew up several others upon the forecastle.

Under cover of the smoke from these explosions. Captain Sawkins led his
men on board and took the ship. Soon after I went on board myself, and
indeed, such a miserable sight I never saw in my life. For not one man
was to be found but was either killed, desperately wounded or horribly
burned with powder, in so much that their black skins were turned white
in several places where the powder had torn it from their flesh and

Having compassionated their misery, I afterwards went on board the
Admiral's ship, and here what I saw did much astonish me, and would
scarcely be believed by others than ourselves who saw it. There were
found on this ship only twenty-five men alive, where before the fight
there were four-score and six. And out of these twenty-five men, only
eight were able to bear arms, all the rest being desperately wounded,
and by their wounds totally unable to make any resistance. Their blood
ran down the decks in whole streams, and scarcely one place in the ship
was free from blood.

Having once possessed ourselves of two vessels of the little fleet,
Captain Sawkins asked the prisoners how many men there were on the
largest ship that we could see lying in the harbor of Perico, and also
how many were upon the smaller ships. Peralta, the heroic captain of the
second vessel, tried to dissuade Sawkins from attacking the Spanish
vessels at anchor, saying in the biggest one alone there were three
hundred and fifty men, and that all the other vessels would be found too
well provided for defense against the small number of the buccaneers.
One of the Spaniards, however, who lay dying on the deck, told Captain
Sawkins that there was not a single man on board any one of the great
ships in the harbor, for they had all been drawn away to fight on the
ships of the Little Fleet. Believing the dying man's story, we sailed
into the harbor and went on board the ships, finding, as we had been
told, not one person there. They had set on fire the biggest ship and
made a hole in her hull, but we put out the flames and stopped the leak.
All our wounded were then placed on this ship, which for a time became
our hospital.

Having counted up our own loss and damages, we found eighteen of our men
killed and twenty-two wounded.

The three captains against whom we fought were esteemed by the Spaniards
as the bravest in the South Seas, nor was this reputation undeserved by
them, as may easily be seen from the story of this bloody battle. We
began the fight about a half hour after sunrise, and by noon had
finished the battle. While Captain Peralta was our prisoner, he would
often break out and say: "Surely you Englishmen are the valiantest in
the whole world, and always design to fight in the open; while all other
nations have invented all kinds of ways to barricade themselves and
fight as close as possible"; and yet notwithstanding, we killed more of
the enemy than they have of us.

The journal of Basil Ringrose is a very interesting document, and we
should enjoy following it to the end if we had the space and if it were
not for the fact that he devotes so much space to information that is
valuable chiefly to a sailor. Accordingly it seems best to give a brief
summary of his journal in our own words:

Captain Peter Harris, whom Ringrose calls "a brave and stout soldier and
a valiant Englishman, born in the county of Kent," died of his wounds,
and they buried him with the usual honors of war--a volley from all
their guns.

The buccaneers captured the five ships that lay near the Island of
Perico and divided the spoils among themselves. Within the next two or
three days, however, dissensions arose among them, and Captain Coxon,
taking with him a large number of men together with most of the Indian
allies, deserted the expedition and returned. During this time Captain
Sharp was absent, and after the departure of Coxon, Captain Sawkins was
chosen to command. For some weeks the buccaneers remained in the Bay of
Panama, capturing vessels and ravaging the adjacent islands.

While they were at Taboga, the governor of Panama sent a message to
Captain Sawkins inquiring why he came to this locality. Captain Sawkins
replied, "We came to assist the Indian King of Darien, who is the true
lord of Panama and all the country round about. Since we came so far,
there seems to be no reason why we should not have some satisfaction.
Accordingly, if you will send us five hundred pieces of eight for each
man and a thousand for each commander and will promise no longer to
annoy the Indians or deprive them of their liberty, we will go away
peaceably: otherwise, we will stay here, get what we can and cause all
the damage possible to you."

In answer to this, the governor inquired by messenger--"From whom do you
have your commission and to whom shall I complain for the damages which
you have already done?"

The reply of Captain Sawkins to this message was prompt and decisive,
for he said, "All my company have not yet arrived, but as soon as they
come, we will visit you at Panama and bring our commissions on the
muzzles of our guns, at which time you may read them as plain as the
flame of gunpowder can make them."

On the 22nd of May, Captains Sawkins and Sharp took with them about
sixty men and attacked the town of Pueblo Nueva. The buccaneers found
that the inhabitants of this town were well prepared for the defense.
They had cut down great trees and laid them across the narrow river
which led to their town in such a way as to prevent the ascent of any

Sawkins and his followers landed at the mouth of the river and made
their way by land until they reached some heavy breastworks which had
been thrown up by the Spaniards. With undaunted courage, Sawkins stormed
the defenses, and was killed at the head of his men. His loss was a sad
one to the pirates, because they regarded him as their most valiant
leader, and because, next to Captain Sharp, he was best beloved by them.
In fact, his loss meant the desertion of a number more of the
buccaneers, who left their companions and returned over land, as Captain
Coxon and his officers had done.

Thus all the adventurers who wished to remain in the South Seas and
still further ravage the coast of South America, elected Captain Sharp
commander-in-chief, and vowed themselves to be faithful to him in all
things. A large number, however, of the pirates deserted, preferring the
dangers of land travel in the rainy season to continued adventure in the
South Seas.

Basil Ringrose was among those who were tired of the expedition and
wished to return home, but he finally decided to remain with Captain
Sharp because of the great difficulties he foresaw in returning by the
shorter way.

It was the last day of May when the mutineers departed, and it was on
the sixth of June, a dark and rainy day, that they set sail on the long
and adventurous voyage. Almost from the start they met with most
vexatious delays which gave an opportunity for the Spanish on shore to
send ahead news of their coming. In consequence of this, they were
almost everywhere expected, and most of the towns which were unable to
defend themselves succeeded in concealing their wealth, provisions and
supplies so that the buccaneers were unable to seize treasures of any
great value. As a whole, the voyage was a disappointment, but from time
to time the adventurers succeeded in taking sufficient food and
occasionally gold and silver in such quantities that the voyage was
somewhat profitable to those who survived.

The journal of Ringrose is full of interesting little details, which
show how exciting the trip must have been, and how great were the perils
and privations of its followers.

In one place we find them anchored for four or five days, trying to dry
their sails so that they could be able to take them down and repair the
hull of their ship, yet all the time the rain fell in such torrents that
they were unable to work. At another place he tells of killing a snake
which was fourteen inches in circumference and eleven feet in length. On
this part of the coast they saw every day whales and grampuses, which
often came and dived under the ship, and although the men fired at them
several times, the bullets rebounded from their tough skins. At this
place, too, the best food consisted of Indian conies, snakes, oysters,
periwinkles, a few small turtles and a variety of small fish.

Again, we find some of the most valuable of the men dying from malignant
fevers, and all suffering from want of provisions. For a long time they
had nothing but flour and water, and then again they were able to revel
in small particles of meat, with a good supply of sugar which they took
from some of the mills along the coast. Now and then they seized a flock
of goats, and then for days the feasting was continuous, while the
surplus flesh was salted and stored away for future use.

On the 24th of August they discovered a vessel some distance from them,
and because of the darkness, ran very close to it before they were
discovered. When they were within hail, they called in Spanish to the
ship and commanded it to lower its sails. "Not we," replied the
Spaniards; "we will soon make you lower your own." The pirates
immediately fired upon them, and they responded at a lively rate from
their own guns. For half an hour or more the fight was very brisk, and
undoubtedly would have lasted much longer had not the buccaneers been
fortunate enough to kill the man at the helm, after which no one of the
Spaniards dared to take his place, and the ship drifted aimlessly. About
the same time another lucky shot tore off the mainsail, and seeing their
helpless condition, the Spaniards begged for quarter and gave up their
ship. Afterwards they declared that they fought the pirates only out of
bravado, for they had agreed on a wager before they left shore to do so
in case they met with Captain Sharp. Although the fight was short, the
pirates themselves had suffered considerable damage to their ship, and
several of their men were sadly wounded.

The captain of the captured vessel gave the buccaneers a great deal of
information as to what had happened after they left Panama, and also as
to the preparations which were being made to defend the towns against
the adventurers, and to capture the vessel if possible whenever it

At Tumbes they heard that this was the first settlement made by the
Spanish after Panama, and that at the time of the settlement a priest
went ashore with a cross in his hand, while ten thousand Indians
gathered on the hillsides and stood watching him. As he landed, two
lions came out of the woods toward him, but when he laid the cross
gently over their backs, they fell down and worshiped him; moreover, two
tigers following did the same thing. The Indians seeing these wonderful
things recognized the power of the Christian religion and at once
embraced it.

By the end of October they were near the Fort of Hilo on the coast of
Peru, far south of the equator. Here at night they anchored about two
miles from the village, while they sent four canoes with fifty men in
them to seize and plunder the town. In the morning they discovered by
the flags which the men had put out, that the town was in the hands of
the English. Accordingly, all the men that could be spared from the ship
landed and learned that the enemy had been put to flight after a few
volleys had been exchanged. In the town they secured great quantities of
pitch and tar, besides oil, wine, flour and several other kinds of
provisions. Most of the Spaniards had fled to the hills, and the pirates
were afraid that at any moment they might be attacked. About sixty men
were sent out to search the valley and the country round about the town.
The whole region was found to be very pleasing, thickly set with groves
of figs, olives, oranges, lemons and other fruits. About four miles up
the valley appeared a great sugar factory, where sugar, oil and molasses
were found in abundance. The mill was deserted, and the pirates were
unable to capture any of the inhabitants, though from time to time the
Spaniards were seen marching along the hilltops whence they tumbled down
great stones and fired at random among the buccaneers.

At the sugar factory, under a flag of truce, the Spaniards promised to
deliver eighty beef cattle at the port the next day by noon as a ransom
for the building. Captain Sharp accordingly sent word that no violence
was to be offered to those who brought the beeves down to the ship.

The next morning, the Spaniards, bearing a flag of truce, came to
Captain Sharp and told him that sixteen of the cattle were already at
the port, and the rest would be there the next morning. Accordingly, the
raiders began their retreat to the sea, expecting to re-embark on the
ship. Ringrose thought that at least twenty men should be left behind at
the sugar house for a lookout to keep watch of the Spaniards, but he was
overruled on this and all went on to the port, where, however, no cattle
were found, nor was there evidence that any effort had been made to
bring them. The next morning Captain Sharp went again to the hills and
met the Spaniards, who promised that the cattle would certainly be there
by night, and accordingly it was decided to wait one day more. The next
morning the experience was repeated, but that day passed without any of
the beeves appearing, and on the following morning the pirates marched
to the village and burned not only the sugar mill but all of the
buildings round about, breaking the machinery and destroying all of the
oil and other provisions which they could not carry away.

This done, they returned to the port by a new route over the mountains,
and in doing so escaped an ambuscade which would inevitably have
destroyed them all. As it was, they reached the shore only to find more
than three hundred cavalrymen charging upon them from the north. As
quickly as possible the buccaneers threw themselves into a posture of
defense and charged to meet the advancing horsemen. The horsemen
retreated as the pirates advanced, with the intention of leading the
latter away from the village and the rocks near the port. Detecting the
stratagem, the pirates returned to the port, and a battle at long range
commenced, which lasted the entire day. Meanwhile the Spaniards had been
receiving continuous reinforcements, and appeared in numbers on the
hills on all sides, so that the pirates, fearing they would be
overpowered by force of numbers, resolved that night to escape and sail
away from the coast which had brought them so much trouble.
Nevertheless, they had gathered a great quantity of provisions, which
were very acceptable under the circumstances.


Early in December the buccaneers had another series of exciting
experiences at the town of La Serena. Here a force was landed and sent
toward the city, but it quickly discovered that the inhabitants had been
warned of the approach of the pirates and were rallying to defend
themselves, led by a troop of a hundred Spanish horse. The advance guard
of the buccaneers, however, was able to rout the Spaniards and drive
them from the town. At a short distance away, however, the cavalry
rallied, and appeared ready to offer battle in a more favorable place,
but the pirates brought up their reinforcements, and when they offered
to attack the Spaniards, the latter fled again. A third time they formed
and a third time retreated. This method of fighting they continued until
the English were drawn far away from the town, which was evidently the
plan of the Spaniards, although they lost three of their officers and
several horses. The buccaneers, abandoning the chase, crossed the green
fields and waded the irrigating streams which enclosed them, finding
here and there a house, but all destitute of both inhabitants and
provisions. The Spaniards had taken good care that little should be left
for the pirates. Near the town they found fine fruit orchards and
gardens, and regaled themselves with strawberries, which are described
as being big as walnuts and very delicious to the taste. In fact,
everything about the place pleased them, excepting the fact that most of
the valuables had been transported and hidden. It appeared, too, that
the Spaniards, fearing a revolt among their Chilian slaves, had killed
nearly all of them. Nevertheless a few were found who served as guides
and showed the pirates where much plate and many kinds of valuable goods
had been stored away.

The buccaneers spent that night in the village, and the next morning the
Spaniards came bearing a flag of truce and offered to treat with their
conquerors. The buccaneers finally agreed to depart, providing a ransom
of ninety-five thousand pieces of eight was paid. This was promised by
the inhabitants, and it was agreed that it should be paid the next day.

That night an earthquake shook the surrounding country and badly
frightened the pirates, who were sleeping in one of the largest
churches. Moreover, during the night the Spaniards turned the mountain
streams through the streets of the town, apparently hoping to drive out
the buccaneers, or at least to prevent the burning of the town.

Until noon the next day the pirates waited for the ransom, but when it
did not appear they were satisfied that the Spaniards had never intended
to pay it, and accordingly the buccaneers burned the town and retreated
to the coast. Here they found that the Spaniards had tried to burn the
ship by rather an extraordinary stratagem. They took the hide of a
horse, blew it up till it floated like a great bladder, and upon it put
a man who paddled himself under the stern of the ship. Here he crammed
oakum, brimstone and other combustibles between the rudder and the
sternpost, and set the whole on fire. In a few moments the vessel was
covered with smoke, and in the confusion the Spaniard escaped. However,
his plot was not successful, for the pirates had the good fortune to
discover the cause of the fire and put it out before any serious damage
was done.

Three weeks later, the pirates visited the island of Juan Fernandez,
where they spent several days and where they celebrated their Christmas
holiday by firing three volleys of shot. They found an abundance of
goats on the island and were able to replenish their larder. The water
supply was excellent, but at one time when Ringrose with nine of his
companions in two canoes had landed to fill their jars, a storm came up
which prevented them from returning to the ship. The wind grew so
violent that the ship itself was forced to sail out into the open sea.
About noon, Ringrose and his companions tried to follow the ship, but
were driven back upon the shore by a raging sea. Early in the evening
they tried a second time, and got some little distance from land, but
the waves were so violent that they were forced to throw overboard all
their jars of water to lighten their boats. Even then they were unable
to reach their ship, but went ashore in the darkness and hauled up their
canoes. They were unable to rest where they landed because of the great
numbers of noisy seals that troubled them exceedingly. Therefore they
went higher up into the islands, kindled a fire and spent a wet, hungry
and uncomfortable night. All about them were the nests and roosting
places of a multitude of birds, one of which fell down into their fire
and was killed. Early the next morning they put to sea again, and
finally found their ship half a league from them at anchor in a bay
which furnished them a better anchorage than any they had previously
discovered. More days were spent in taking on water, chopping wood,
catching fish and killing goats. Terrible storms struck them, and the
death of one of their mates made the stay an unhappy one.

Here they were told the story of a man who was cast upon this island,
the only one saved from a large ship, and who lived five years there
before any one came to carry him off. This was probably Alexander
Selkirk, from whose adventures on the island Defoe wrote his _Robinson
Crusoe_. Ringrose tells us that he on a trip into the island one day
found cut in the bark of a tree a cross with several letters beside it,
and that on the same tree he cut his own name with a cross above it. On
the twelfth of January, seeing three ships which appeared to be
men-of-war sailing toward them, they hurriedly left the island,
abandoning there one of their Indian allies because he could not be
found in time. Thus a second Man Friday was deposited upon Robinson
Crusoe's island.


While at the island, some of the buccaneers mutinied, deposed Captain
Sharp, and chose Watling to be their commander. When they left the
island they went directly to the coast and made a second attempt upon
the town of Arica, but they were beaten off with a great loss of men,
among the killed being Captain Watling. After their return to the ship,
Sharp was again chosen captain, and remained as such until the end of
the voyage.

It seems that about the first of February, Ringrose was taken sick, and
that thereafter he was unable to keep a constant diary, so that our
accounts of the remainder of the voyage are brief and broken.

In March, sick and discouraged by the misfortunes they had met, the
buccaneers decided not to continue the voyage, but to land, abandon
their ship and return home across the continent. For one reason and
another, however, they delayed leaving the ship, and continued to work
their way north until about the middle of April. Forty-seven of the men
who had been discontented all along were then put ashore, while the rest
of the party decided to remain loyal to Captain Sharp, and to go home
around the southern part of the continent. Before the mutineers were put
ashore, the ship had come north almost to the equator, so that the
journey of the deserters was materially lessened. Two of the mutineers
reached the Isthmus, crossed it and subsequently published some brief
accounts of their experiences.

Sharp's vessel cruised about in the vicinity of the equator, raiding
small towns and capturing Spanish vessels, and piling up a large amount
of treasure, until the end of August, when the buccaneers turned south
with a determination to make the voyage home as quickly as possible.

About the twentieth of September they passed the Tropic of Capricorn,
and by the middle of October they were almost opposite the Straits of
Magellan. On this voyage they had kept most of the time far away from
the coast, and had landed only when necessary to re-stock their ship
with water and provisions.

In the wildest kind of weather they searched the rocky coast, trying to
find the opening into the Strait of Magellan, but were unable to do so.
Provisions ran low, and many times they feared actual starvation little
less than destruction by storms and hidden rocks. Most of them were
sick, and all were discouraged. At last they abandoned the idea of going
through the straits, and sailed south around Tierra del Fuego through
rain and fogs and frost.

About the middle of November they were able to turn their course to the
north, and from that time we find them working steadily forward, till,
on the twenty-eighth of January, they sighted the island of Barbados.
Here they were told that peace was declared between Spain and England,
but as they saw one of the British men-of-war lying at anchor, they did
not dare to put into the harbor, fearing they would be seized as
pirates, for throughout their whole expedition they had had no
commission. Still they were overjoyed to see some of their countrymen
again and to talk with them, as they did with the mariners on some of
the small vessels that were putting out from the island.

They set free at this place a negro who had served them as shoemaker,
giving him his liberty because he had worked so faithfully. Besides
this, they presented Captain Sharp with a mulatto body servant as a mark
of the respect and admiration they had for his skill in conducting them
through so many dangerous adventures. Then they divided the last of
their prize money and started a fund for the celebration of their
return. As a nucleus, there were a hundred pieces of eight, prize money
which they could not divide satisfactorily. To this they added the price
of a little Spanish dog which they had found on one of their prizes, and
which they had fed and cared for to the present time. Captain Sharp
bought the dog, paying forty pieces of eight for him, with the
understanding that the money should go into the "jollification fund."

On the thirtieth of January they sighted the island of Antigua, and sent
a canoe on shore to get tobacco and find out whether the governor would
permit them to come into port. They found everybody excepting the
governor willing and anxious to see them, but the latter flatly denied
them entry. Accordingly, the ship was given to those of the pirates who
had lost all their money at play, while the remainder separated
themselves into two groups and took passage for England.

Ringrose and thirteen of his companions reached England on the
twenty-sixth of March. There they were tried for piracy in the South
Seas, at the instigation of the Spanish ambassador, but were not
convicted. On the most serious charge they were released on the plea of
self-defense, as it was claimed that the Spaniards had fired first upon
them. Three of Sharp's crew were tried at Jamaica. One pleaded guilty
and was hanged, but the other two fought their cases in court and were
finally acquitted for lack of evidence.


[1-1] This selection is taken from _The Dangerous Voyage and Bold
Attempts of Captain Bartholomew Sharp and Others_, written in 1685 by
Basil Ringrose, one of the pirates who sailed with Captain Sharp.

The expedition was organized with a general design to pillage and
plunder on the Isthmus of Darien and the continent of South America. At
the original rendezvous there were seven ships containing four hundred
and seventy-seven men under the command of experienced pirate captains.
The natural leaders were Captains Coxon, Sawkins and Sharp. At first the
expedition met with comparatively little opposition, and they captured
the town of Santa Maria, but the plunder was so small here that they
were dissatisfied with what they were doing and decided again to take
and plunder Panama. It is at this point that we take up the narrative of

Where the account appears in the first person, it is practically as it
came from the pen of Ringrose, though omissions have been made and
occasionally the phraseology has been changed.


Unique among the characters in American history and one of the most
interesting men of pioneer days was David Crockett, who was born on the
17th of August, 1786, in the backwoods district of what has since become
the State of Tennessee. His father, who was of Irish parentage, during
his youth lived with his parents in Pennsylvania, but afterwards moved
to North Carolina and thence into the Tennessee country. David's
grandparents were both murdered in their own house by the Creek Indians.
At the same time, one uncle of David's was badly wounded, and a second,
a younger one, who was deaf and dumb, was captured by the Creeks and
kept in captivity for seventeen years, when he was met and recognized by
an elder brother, who purchased him from the Indians that held him.
Hearing of such atrocities must have affected the young David, and
undoubtedly accounts for some of the fierce hatred which the
backwoodsman felt for the Creeks, and the callous way in which he looked
upon their sufferings when later he fought against them with the militia
from his neighborhood.

David had five brothers and three sisters; his father was a poor man who
tried farming and other pioneer occupations, who built a mill and lost
it in a freshet just as it was completed, and who finally established a
little roadhouse or tavern on one of the Tennessee trails. So poor were
they that much schooling was impossible for the children, yet David was
sent at the proper time, and applied himself diligently for a few days
to his letters. However, he was so unfortunate as to quarrel with one of
his older companions who little realized the savage nature of the
newcomer. That night Davy lay in wait for the larger boy and set upon
him so fiercely and beat him so unmercifully that he was soon ready to
cry for quarter. On the way home Davy persuaded his brothers to say
nothing about the fight, and the next morning instead of going to
school, he ran off into the woods, where he stayed until the children
returned at night. He kept this up for several days, fearing to return
to school and take the whipping he knew he must get from his teacher. In
the end his father heard that he was playing truant, and tried to force
the boy back to school. Davy refused to go, and when his father tried to
punish him, ran away from home and engaged himself to a drover. He was
fifteen years old before he returned to his home, and then he had
changed so much that his parents did not recognize him, and it was some
time before one of his sisters discovered who he really was. They
received him joyfully, and thereafter, until he reached his majority, he
worked faithfully for his father, paying off the latter's indebtedness
and assisting the family in every possible way.

His life during this time was that of a backwoods boy, working hard and
finding his recreation in hunting, fishing and the sports of the border.
It was during this time that he acquired the over-powering taste for
hunting in the woods, that lasted all his life. During these years, too,
he developed that sturdy manhood which carried him through many trying
ordeals. Though he never had schooling, and his conversation and
writings were lacking in grammar, yet his speech was full of a sharp,
rude wit, and his ideas were characterized by shrewd common sense.

Davy's motto, adopted early in life, was, "Be sure you are right, then
go ahead,"--words that his own career made famous.

When the Creek War broke out, Crockett volunteered, and he served as
soldier and spy till peace was declared. His experiences there we will
let him tell himself, as he wrote them in his autobiography. (See page

After his return from the Creek War, he was elected to Congress in 1826
and in 1828. He was defeated in 1830 and re-elected in 1832. When he was
first elected he knew very little about the government, and was totally
ignorant of his duties as a member of Congress, but here again his good
common sense and bright mind came to his aid; and although he worked
under great disadvantages, yet he won respect and admiration from the
other law-makers. He was always a curious and noticeable figure in
Washington, both on account of his dress, which was similar to that of
his backwoods companions, and because of his manner, which was as
strange as his clothes. Such a man could not help being noticed, and on
a trip which he made to Philadelphia, New York and Boston, he was
received everywhere kindly and added not a little to his fame.

He was defeated at the close of his third term in Congress, and being
stirred by the exciting news that came from Texas, he left his home in
Tennessee and went West to join those men who were fighting the Mexicans
in an endeavor to make Texas really a free and independent state.

He kept a journal during this trip, and in it he describes very
entertainingly his companions and their experiences. Among them were
three curious characters: a bee hunter, who was well known through Texas
and who left his wife Kate at Nacogdoches; a fierce old man, who had
been a pirate and had abandoned the sea for more exciting events on
shore; and a quaint gambler, whom Crockett picked up near the
Mississippi and persuaded to abandon the petty shell game by which he
was getting small sums from the people he met on the way. The real name
of this man Crockett never told, but assigned to him the nickname

We shall tell of the fall of the Alamo in another place (page 141), but
Crockett's connection with it is so intimate that we must borrow a
little from his diary.

We find him writing at San Antonio on the nineteenth of February in high
spirits, although he confesses to a shortage of provisions, but hopes to
satisfy his appetite with fighting if in no other way. On the
twenty-third the enemy came in sight, and the little garrison resolved
to defend the Alamo to the last extremity. They made a large national
flag of thirteen stripes, red and white alternately on a blue ground,
with a large white star in the center, and between the points the word
"Texas." When the flag was raised, the bee hunter sang in his
wonderfully mellow voice the following patriotic song, that roused the
enthusiasm of his hearers to the highest pitch:

    "Up with your banner, Freedom,
      The champions cling to thee;
    They'll follow where'er you lead 'em,
      To death, or victory;--
    Up with your banner, Freedom.
    Tyrants and slaves are rushing
      To tread thee in the dust;
    Their blood will soon be gushing,
      And stain our knives with rust;--
    But not thy banner, Freedom.
    While stars and stripes are flying,
      Our blood we'll freely shed;
    No groan will 'scape the dying,
      Seeing thee o'er his head;--
    Up with your banner, Freedom."

For the next nine days, Crockett gives an account of their privations
and sufferings, their brave and successful defense, and the marked
execution they were able to make among the Mexicans who showed
themselves within range. On the third of March they had given up all
hopes of receiving assistance from without, and had promised to fight to
the last extremity, and in dying kill as many of their foes as possible.

His entry for the fourth of March is substantially as follows: "Shells
have been falling into the fort like hail during the day, but without
effect. About dusk this evening we saw a man running toward the fort
pursued by about a dozen Mexican cavalry. The bee hunter immediately
recognized him as the old pirate who had gone to Goliad for assistance,
and calling to two others, the bee hunter sallied out of the fort to the
relief of the old man, I following close after. Before we reached him
the Mexicans were close upon his heels. He stopped suddenly, turned
short upon his pursuers, discharged his rifle, and saw one of his
enemies fall from his horse. After running a short distance again, the
old pirate, finding that he would be taken and cut to pieces, turned
fiercely, and to the amazement of the enemy clubbed his gun and dashed
among them like a wounded tiger. By the time we reached him, his
pursuers had fled like sparrows, and in the ardour of the moment we
followed them some distance, not seeing that our retreat was cut off by
another detachment of cavalry. Nothing was to be done but to fight our
way through. We were all of the same mind. They were about twenty in
number and stood their ground while we dashed among them, and for about
five minutes a bloody conflict ensued. Then a detachment was seen coming
from the fort to our relief, and the Mexicans scampered away, leaving
eight of their men dead upon the field. We did not escape unscathed, for
both the pirate and the bee hunter were mortally wounded, and I received
a saber cut across the forehead.

"The old man died without speaking as soon as we entered the fort. We
bore my young friend to his bed, dressed his wounds, and I watched
beside him. He lay without complaint or manifesting pain, until about
midnight, when he spoke. I asked him what he wanted. 'Nothing,' he
replied with a sigh that seemed to rend his heart, and his eyes filled
with tears as he continued his 'Poor Kate of Nacogdoches; her words
were prophetic, Colonel,' Then he sang in a low voice,--

    'But toom' cam' the saddle, all bluidy to see,
    And hame cam' the steed, but hame never cam' he.'

"He spoke no more, and a few minutes afterward died. Poor Kate, who will
tell this to thee?"

The last entry in Crockett's diary bears date March fifth. It is as

"Pop, pop, pop! Bom, bom, bom! throughout the day.----No time for
memorandums now.----Go ahead!----Liberty and independence forever!"

Before daybreak the next morning, the final assault was made on the
Alamo, and when Santa Ana entered in person, after the terrible
butchery, only six men, among whom was Colonel Crockett, were found
alive. The Colonel stood alone in an angle of the fort, the barrel of
his broken rifle in his right hand, and in his left a huge Bowie knife
dripping blood. Across his forehead was a terrible gash, while around
him lay a barrier of dead Mexicans who had fallen at his hands. At his
feet lay the body of his friend Thimblerig with his knife driven to the
hilt in the throat of a Mexican, and his left hand clenched in his hair.

"General Castrillon was brave and not cruel, and disposed to save the
prisoners. He marched them up to that part of the fort where stood Santa
Ana and his murderous crew. The steady, fearless step and undaunted
tread of Colonel Crockett, on this occasion, together with the bold
demeanour of the hardy veteran, had a powerful effect on all present.
Nothing daunted, he marched up boldly in front of Santa Ana, and looked
him sternly in the face, while Castrillon addressed 'his
Excellency,'--'Sir, here are six prisoners I have taken alive; how shall
I dispose of them?' Santa Ana looked at Castrillon fiercely, flew into a
violent rage, and replied, 'Have I not told you before how to dispose of
them? Why do you bring them to me?' At the same time his brave officers
plunged their swords into the bosoms of their defenceless prisoners.
Colonel Crockett, seeing the act of treachery, instantly sprung like a
tiger at the ruffian chief, but before he could reach him a dozen swords
were sheathed in his indomitable heart; and he fell, and died without a
groan, a frown on his brow, and a smile of scorn and defiance on his
lips. Castrillon rushed from the scene, apparently horrorstruck, sought
his quarters, and did not leave them for several days, and hardly spoke
to Santa Ana after."

It is only fair to say that the account which we have quoted above is
denied by some authorities, who say that Crockett was killed before ever
Santa Ana entered the Alamo.




I was living ten miles below Winchester when the Creek warriors
commenced their open hostilities by a most bloody butchery at Fort
Mimms. There had been no war among us for so long that but few who were
not too old to bear arms knew anything about the business. I for one had
often thought about war and had often heard it described, and I did
verily believe in my own mind that I couldn't fight at all; but my
after-experience convinced me that this was all a notion, for when I
heard of the mischief which was done at the fort, I instantly felt like
going, and I had none of the dread of dying that I expected to feel.

In a few days a general meeting of the militia was called for the
purpose of raising volunteers; and when the day arrived for that
meeting, my wife, who had heard me say I meant to go to war, began to
beg me not to turn out. It was mighty hard to go against her arguments,
but my countrymen had been murdered, and I knew that the next thing
would be that the Indians would be scalping the women and children all
about there if we didn't put a stop to it. I reasoned the case with her
as well as I could, and told her that if every man would wait till his
wife got willing to let him go to war, there would be no fighting done
until we would all be killed in our houses; that I was as able to go as
any man in the world; and that I believed it was a duty I owed to my
country. Whether she was satisfied with this reasoning or not, she
didn't tell me; but seeing I was bent on it, all she did was to cry a
little and to turn about to her work. The truth is my dander was up and
nothing but war should bring it right again.

I went to Winchester where a muster was to be. When the men were
paraded, a lawyer by the name of Jones addressed us; informing us he
wished to raise a company, and that then the men should meet and elect
their officers. I believe I was about the second or third man that
stepped out; but on marching up and down the regiment a few times we
found we had a large company.

We volunteered for sixty days, as it was supposed our services would not
be longer needed. A day or two after this we met and elected Mr. Jones
our Captain, and also elected our other officers. We then received
orders to start on the next Monday week; the time arrived, I took a
parting farewell of my wife and two little boys, mounted my horse and
set sail to join my company. Expecting only to be gone a short time, I
took no more clothing with me than I supposed would be necessary; so
that if I got into an Indian battle, I might not be pestered with any
unnecessary plunder to prevent my having a fair chance with them. We all
met and went ahead till we passed Huntsville and camped at a large
spring called Beaty's Spring. Here we stayed several days, in which time
the troops began to collect from all quarters. At last we mustered
about thirteen hundred strong; all mounted volunteers and all determined
to fight, judging from myself, for I felt wolfish all over. I verily
believe the whole army was of the real grit.


While we remained at the spring, a Major Gibson came and wanted some
volunteers to go with him across the Tennessee River and into the Creek
nation to find out the movements of the Indians. He came to my Captain
and asked for two of his best woodsmen and such as were best with the
rifle. The Captain pointed me out to him, and said he would be security
that I would go as far as the major would himself, or any other man.

I willingly engaged to go with him, and asked him to let me choose my
own mate to go with me, which he said he would let me do. I chose a
young man by the name of George Russell, son of old Major Russell of
Tennessee. I called him out, but Major Gibson said he thought he hadn't
beard enough to please him--he wanted men, not boys. I must confess I
was a little wrathy with this, for I know'd George Russell and I know'd
there was no mistake in him and I didn't think that courage ought to be
measured by the beard; for here a goat would have the preference over a
man. I told the major he was on the wrong scent; that Russell could go
as far as he could, and I must have him along. He saw I was a little
wrathy and said I had the best chance of knowing, and agreed it should
be as I wanted it.

We took our camp equipage and mounted our horses; and thirteen in
number, including the major, we cut out. We crossed the Tennessee River
and then traveled about seven miles further, and took up camp for the
night. The next morning, Major Gibson and myself concluded we should
separate and take different directions to see what discoveries we could
make; so he took six of the men and I five. We were to meet that evening
where the roads came together, fifteen miles the other side of the
house of a Cherokee Indian named Dick Brown.

I and my men then started and went on to the place of meeting, but Major
Gibson was not there. We waited till almost dark, but still he didn't
come. We left the Indian trail a little distance and turning into the
head of a hollow, we struck up camp. We stayed next morning till after
breakfast; but in vain, for still the major didn't come.

We started ahead and went about twenty miles to the house of a man by
the name of Radcliff. He was a white man, but had married a Creek woman,
and lived just in the edge of a Creek nation. He had two sons, large,
likely fellows; and a great deal of potatoes and corn; so we fed our
horses and got dinner with him. But he was bad scared all the time; he
told us that there had been ten painted warriors at his house only an
hour before, and if we were discovered there, they would kill us, and
his family with us. I replied to him, that my business was to hunt for
just such fellows as he had described, and I was determined not to go
back until I had done it.

Our dinner being over we saddled up our horses and made ready to start;
but some of my small company I found were disposed to return. I told
them if we were to go back we should never hear the last of it; and I
was determined to go ahead. I know'd some of them would go with me and
the rest were afraid to go back by themselves; and so we pushed on to
the camp of some friendly Creeks, which was distant about eight miles.
The moon was about at the full, and the night was clear; we therefore
had the benefit of her light from night to morning, and I knew if we
were placed in such danger as to make retreat necessary, we could travel
by night as well as in the daytime. It was after dark when we got to the
camp, where we found about forty men, women and children.

They had bows and arrows, and I turned to shooting with their bows by
the pine light. In this way we amused ourselves very well for a while,
but at last a negro, who had been talking to the Indians, came to me and
told me they were very much alarmed, for the _Red Sticks_, as they
called the war party of the Creeks, would come and find us there; and if
so, we should all be killed. I directed him to tell them that I would
watch, and if one would come that night, I should carry the skin of his
head home to make me a moccasin. When he made this communication, the
Indians laughed aloud.

At about ten o'clock that night, we all concluded to try to sleep a
little, but that our horses might be ready for use, we tied them up with
their saddles on them and put everything in readiness in case in the
night our quarters should get uncomfortable. We laid down with our guns
in our arms, and I had just gotten into a dozing sleep when I heard the
sharpest scream that ever escaped the throat of a human creature. It was
more like a wrathy painter[42-1] than anything else. The negro
understood, and he sprang to me, for though I heard the noise well
enough, yet I wasn't wide awake enough to get up; so the negro caught me
and said the Red Sticks was coming. I arose quickly then and asked what
was the matter. Our negro talked with the Indian, who had just fetched
the scream, and learned from him that he had come into camp as a runner,
and said that the war party had been crossing the Coosa River all day at
the Ten Islands and was going then to meet Jackson. This news very much
alarmed the friendly Indians, who were in the camp, and they were all
off in ten minutes.

I felt bound to make this intelligence known as soon as possible to the
army which we had left; and so we all mounted our horses and put out in
a long lope to make our way back to that place. We were about sixty-five
miles off. We went on to the Cherokee town we had visited on our way
out, having called at Radcliff's, who was off with his family. At the
town we found large fires burning, but not a single Indian was to be
seen. They were all gone, and it appeared we must be in great danger. We
therefore stayed only a short time in the light of the fires about the
town, preferring the light of the moon and the shade of the woods.

We pushed on till we got again to old Mr. Brown's, which was still about
thirty miles from where we had left the main army. When we got there,
the chickens were just at the first crowing for day. We fed our horses,
got a morsel to eat ourselves, and again cut out.

About ten o'clock in the morning we reached the camp, and I reported to
Colonel Coffee the news. He didn't seem to mind my report a bit, and
this raised my dander higher than ever; but I know'd I had to be on my
best behavior, and so I kept it all to myself; though I was so mad that
I was burning inside like a tar-kiln, and I wonder that the smoke
hadn't been pouring out of me at all points. Major Gibson hadn't yet
returned, and we all began to think he was killed.

The next day, though, the major got in, and brought a worse tale than I
had, though he stated the same facts as far as I went. This seemed to
put our colonel all into a fidget; and it convinced me clearly of one of
the hateful ways of the world. When I made my report, it wasn't believed
because I was no officer: I was no great man, but just a poor soldier;
but when the same thing was reported by Major Gibson! why, then it was
all as true as preaching, and the Colonel believed it, every word.

He therefore ordered breastworks to be thrown up nearly a quarter of a
mile along; and sent an express to General Jackson, requesting him to
push on like the very mischief, for fear we should all be cooked up to a
cracklin before they could get there. "Old Hickory-face" made a forced
march on getting the news, and on the next day he and his men got into
camp with their feet all blistered from the effects of their swift
journey. The volunteers therefore stood guard all together to let them

About eight hundred of the volunteers, and of that number I was one,
were sent on through Huntsville so as to get on the Indians in another
direction. After we passed Huntsville, we struck the Tennessee River at
Melton's Bluff. The river is here about two miles wide, and has so rough
a bottom in many places as to be dangerous. At this place we left some
of the horses with their feet held fast in the crevices of the rocks;
their riders went on foot.


We pushed on till we got to what was called the Black Warrior's town,
which stood near the very spot where Tuscaloosa now stands. This Indian
town was a large one, but when we arrived we found the Indians had all
left it, scared off no doubt by our arrival. There was a large field of
corn standing out with a pretty good supply in some cribs. Without delay
we secured the corn as well as a fine quantity of dried beans, which
were very acceptable to us. Then we burned the town and left the place.

The next day we were entirely out of meat. I went to Colonel Coffee, who
was then in command of us, and asked his leave to hunt when we marched.
He gave me leave, but told me to take mighty good care of myself. I
turned aside to hunt, and had not gone far when I found a deer that had
just been killed, for his flesh was still warm and smoking. From this I
was sure that the Indians who had killed it had been gone only a few
minutes, and though I was never much in favor of one hunter stealing
from another, yet meat was so scarce in camp, I just took up the deer on
my horse before me and carried it on till night.

I could have sold it for almost any price I would have asked, but this
wasn't my rule either in peace or war. Whenever I had anything and saw a
fellow-being suffering, I was more anxious to relieve him than to
benefit myself; and this is one of the true secrets of my being a poor
man to this day. I gave all my deer away except a small part I kept for
myself and just sufficient to make a good supper for my mess. We had to
live mostly on parched corn.

The next night I told my mess I would again try for some meat; so I took
my rifle and cut out, but hadn't gone far when I discovered a large gang
of hogs. I shot one of them down in his tracks, and the rest broke
directly toward the camp. In a few minutes the guns began to roar as bad
as if the whole army had been in an Indian battle, and the hogs to
squeal as bad as the pig did when the devil turned barber. I shouldered
my hog and went on to camp, and when I got there I found they had killed
a good many hogs and a fine fat cow into the bargain. The next morning
we marched on to a Cherokee town and gave the inhabitants an order on
Uncle Sam for the cow and the hogs we had killed.

The next day we met the main army and all went on to Radcliff's. There
we found he had hid all his provisions, and learned that, when I was out
as a spy, he had sent a runner to the Indian camp with the news that the
Red Sticks were crossing at Ten Islands in order to scare me and my men
away with a false alarm. To make some atonement for this, we took the
old scoundrel's two big sons with us, and made them serve through the

We marched to the Ten Islands on the Coosa River, where we established a
fort and sent out spy companies. They soon made prisoners of Bob Catala
and his warriors, and in a few days brought news of some Indians in a
town about eight miles off. So we mounted our horses, and put out for
that town under the direction of two friendly Creeks.

When we got near the town, we divided, one of our pilots going with each
division. Thus we passed on each side of the town, keeping near to it
until our lines met at both sides. We then closed up at both ends so as
to surround it completely, and sent Captain Hammond to bring on the
affray. When he came near the town, the Indians saw him, raised a yell
and came running at him like so many red devils. The main army was now
formed in a hollow square around the town, to which Hammond retreated
till the Indians came within reach. We then gave them a fire and they
returned it, after which they ran back into their town, when we began to
close on it. The Indians soon saw they were on our property, and wanted
us to take them prisoners. Their squaws and children would run and take
hold of us as they could, and give themselves up. I saw seven squaws at
a time holding on to the hunting-shirt of one man. We took all prisoners
that came out to us in this way. I saw some warriors, however, run into
a house until I counted forty-six of them. We pursued them until we got
near the house, when we saw a squaw sitting in the door. She placed her
feet against the bow she had in her hand, took an arrow, raised her
feet, drew with all her might and let the arrow fly at us, killing
Lieutenant Moore, I believe. His death so enraged us all that she was
fired on, and at least twenty balls were blown through her. This was the
first man I ever saw killed with a bow and arrow. We now shot them down
like dogs, and then set the house on fire, burning it with the forty-six
warriors inside.

I remember seeing an Indian boy, who was shot down near the house. His
arm and thigh were broken, and he was so near the burning house that his
flesh was fairly cooking. In this situation he was still trying to crawl
along, but not a murmur escaped him, though he was only twelve years
old. When an Indian's dander is up, he would sooner die than make a
noise, or ask for quarter.


The number that we took prisoners being added to the number we killed
amounted to one hundred and eighty-six, while five of our men were
killed. We then returned to our fort, but no provisions had yet
reached us, and we had been for some time on half rations. For several
days we remained there almost starving, as all our beef was gone. Then
we commenced eating beef hides, and consumed every scrap we could lay
our hands on, before we received orders for marching.

We crossed the Coosa River, and when we had come near to Fort Taladega,
we met eleven hundred painted warriors, the very choice of the Creek
nation, who had shut up the friendly Indians in the fort, and threatened
that if they did not come out and fight against the whites, they would
lose their fort, ammunition and provisions. The friendly Indians had
asked three days to consider their answers, and had immediately started
a runner to Captain Jackson, and it was the receipt of this message that
had caused us to come over.

The Creeks from their spies had discovered us coming, and told the
friendly Indians that we had a great many fine horses and blankets and
guns and everything else, and if they would come out and help whip
Captain Jackson, they should share the plunder. This they promised to

About an hour after sunrise in the morning, piloted by some friendly
Indians, we came near the fort and divided as we had done in our former
battle; so as to form around the Indians, as before, a hollow square.
This time we sent Major Russell and Captain Evans with their companies
to bring on the battle.

When they got near the fort, they saw that the top of it was lined with
friendly Indians crying out as loud as they could roar--"How-de-do,
brothers! How-de-do!" They kept this up till Major Russell had passed
by the fort and was moving on toward the besiegers.

The Creeks had concealed themselves under the bank of a branch that run
partly around the fort, in the manner of a half moon. They were all
painted as red as scarlet, and were just as naked as they were born.
Russell could not see them, and was going right into their circle;
although the friendly Indians on the top of the fort were trying every
plan to show him his danger. He could not understand them, but at last
two of them jumped from the fort, ran and took his horse by the bridle,
and pointing, told him there were thousands of Creeks lying under the
bank. This brought his company to a halt.

At the same moment the Creeks fired on them and came rushing forth from
their hiding place like a cloud of Egyptian locusts, and screaming like
all the young devils had been turned loose with the old devil at their
head. Russell's company jumped from their horses and hurried into the
fort, while their horses ran up to our line, which by this time was come
into full view.

The warriors came yelling on until they were within shot of us, when we
fired and killed considerable of them. They then broke like a gang of
steers, and ran across to the other line, where they were again fired
on. And so we kept them running from one line to the other, constantly
under a heavy fire, until we had killed upwards of four hundred of them.
They fought with guns and also with their bows and arrows, but at length
they made their escape through a part of our line, which was made up of
drafted militia. We lost fifteen of our men, as brave fellows as ever
lived or died. We buried them all in one grave, and started back to our
fort, but before we got there two more of our men died with wounds they
had received.

We now remained at the fort a few days, but as no provisions came, we
were all liable to perish. The weather also began to get very cold, our
clothes were nearly worn out, and our horses getting very feeble and
poor; so we proposed to General Jackson to let us return home, get fresh
horses and fresh clothing, and so be prepared for another campaign. The
sixty days for which we had enlisted had long gone out. The General,
however, issued his orders against it. Nevertheless, we began to fix for
a start home, but the General placed his cannon on a bridge we had to
cross, and ordered out his regulars and drafted men to keep us from
passing. But when the militia started to guard the bridge, they would
shout back to us to bring their knapsacks along when we came, for they
wanted to go as bad as we did. We moved on till we reached the bridge,
where the General's men were all strung along on both sides, but we all
had our flints ready picked, and our guns ready, so that if we were
fired upon, we might fight our way through or all die together. When we
came still nearer the bridge, we heard the guards cocking their guns,
and we did the same; but not a gun was fired nor a life lost. When we
had passed the bridge, no further attempt was made to stop us. The
General said we were the worst volunteers he had ever seen. That we
would volunteer and go out and fight, and then that we would volunteer
and go home again in spite of the devil.

After we had procured fresh horses and a more suitable supply of
clothing, a few of us pushed on to the army again. I joined Major
Russell's company of spies and overtook General Jackson, where we
established Fort Williams. Then we pushed on to the Horseshoe bend of
the Tallapoosa River, where we began to find Indian signs in plenty.

Here we struck up camp for the night; but about two hours before day we
heard our guard firing and were all up in little or no time. We mended
up our camp fires and then fell back into the dark, expecting to see the
Indians pouring in, and intending, when they should do so, to shoot them
by the light of our own fires. It so happened, however, that the Indians
did not rush in as we expected, but commenced a fire on us as we were.
This we returned and continued to shoot as well as we could in the dark,
guided only by the flash of the Indians' guns. When day broke, the
Indians disappeared, but they had killed four of our men and wounded
several. Whether we killed any of the Indians or not, we could not tell,
for it is their custom to carry off their dead whenever they can. We
buried ours all in one grave and laid logs over them and set them afire,
so that the savages might not find them when they returned, as we knew
they would do, to scalp the slain.

We made some horse-litters for our wounded, and took up our retreat. We
had to cross a large creek, and when about half our men were over, the
Indians commenced firing and kept it up very warmly. They hid themselves
behind a large log and could kill one of our men, who were in open
ground and exposed, with almost every shot. At this trying moment two
of our colonels left their men, and by a _forced march_ crossed the
creek out of the reach of the fire. Here Governor Carroll distinguished
himself by a greater bravery than I ever saw in any other man. In truth,
I believe that if it hadn't been for Carroll, we should all have been
genteelly licked that time; with part of our men on one side of the
creek and part on the other, and the Indians all the time pouring it in
on us as hot as fresh mustard is to sore skin. I know I was mighty glad
when the savages quit us, for I began to think there was one behind
every tree in the woods.

Soon after this, an army was raised to go to Pensacola, and I determined
to go again with them, for I wanted a small taste of British fighting
and supposed I would find it there. I joined old Major Russell again and
followed on after the main army with about a hundred and thirty men in
our company. We crossed the river near where I had crossed when I first
went out; then we passed through the Choctaw and Chickasaw nations to
what is called the Cut-off at the junction of the Tom Bigby with the
Alabama River.

This place is near the old Fort Mimms where the Indians committed the
great butchery at the commencement of the war. The fort was built right
in the middle of a large old field; and before the massacre the people
had been there so long and lived so quietly that they didn't apprehend
any danger at all, and had therefore become quite careless. A small
negro boy, whose business it was to bring up the calves at milking time,
had been out for that purpose, and on coming back he said he saw a great
many Indians. At this the inhabitants took alarm, closed their gates
and put out guards who continued to watch for a few days. Finding that
no attack was made, they concluded the little negro had lied, and again
threw their gates open and sent out their hands to work their fields.
The same boy set out again on the same errand, and returned in great
haste and alarm, and informed them he had seen the Indians as thick as
trees in the woods. He was not believed, but was tied up to receive a
flogging for the supposed lie. In fact he was actually getting badly
licked at the very moment when the Indians came in a troop. They were
loaded with rails with which they stopped all the portholes of the fort
on one side, and then they fell to cutting down the picketing. Those
inside the fort had only the bastion to shoot from, and as fast as one
Indian would fall, another would catch up his ax and chop away until
they succeeded in cutting down enough of the picketing to permit them to
enter. Then they rushed through and immediately commenced scalping
without regard to age or sex. Having forced the inhabitants up to one
side of the fort, they carried on the work as a butcher would in a
slaughter pen.

[Illustration: THE ATTACK ON THE FORT]

This scene was partly described to me by a young man who was in the fort
when it happened. He said that he saw his father and mother, his four
sisters and the same number of brothers all butchered in the most
shocking manner, and that he made his escape by running over the heads
of the crowd to the top of the fort, and then jumped off and ran into
the woods. He was closely pursued by several Indians until he came to a
small bayou, across which there was a log. He knew the log was hollow
on the under side, so he slipped off and hid himself. He said he heard
the Indians walk over him, back and forward several times. Nevertheless
he remained quiet there until night, when he came out and finished his

We left our horses at the Cut-off and hurried on foot over the eighty
miles to Pensacola, where our arrival was hailed with great applause;
though we were a little after the feast, for they had taken the town and
fort before we got there. The next morning we started back toward old
Fort Mimms, where we remained two or three days until General Jackson
and the main army set out for New Orleans; while we, under the command
of Major Russell, turned south to attack the Indians on the Scamby

At Fort Montgomery, about a mile and a half from old Fort Mimms, we
remained for some days, where we supplied ourselves pretty well with
beef by killing wild cattle, which had formerly belonged to the people
who had perished in the fort. At last we moved out on the Scamby River,
near which we camped a thousand men, of whom about two hundred were
Chickasaw and Choctaw Indians. The Indians had all along proposed to
cross the river, and thinking it might be well for them to do so, Major
Russell and I with fifteen other men went with them, and early the next
morning set out from the river bank. We soon came to a place where the
whole country was covered with water, and it looked like a sea. We
didn't stop for this, but just put in like so many spaniels and waded
on, sometimes up to our armpits, until we reached the pine hills about a
mile and a half away. Here we struck up a fire to warm ourselves, for
it was cold and we were chilled through. Again we moved on, keeping our
spies out; two to our left near the bank of the river, two straight
before us, and five others on our right.

We had gone in this way about six miles up the river, when our spies on
the left came to us, leaping about like so many old bucks, and informed
us that they had discovered a camp of Creek Indians and that we must
kill them. Here we paused for a few minutes, and the prophets pow-wowed
over their men awhile and then got out their paint and painted them all
according to their custom when going into battle. Then they brought
their paint to old Major Russell and said to him, that as he was an
officer he must be painted too. He agreed, and they painted him just as
themselves. We let the Indians understand that we white men would first
fire on the camp and then fall back so as to give the Indians a chance
to rush on them and scalp them. The Chickasaws marched on our left hand
and the Choctaws on our right, and thus we moved on till we came in
hearing of the camp. On nearer approach we found they were on an island,
and we could not get to them.

While we were chatting about this matter we heard some guns fired, and
in a very short time after a keen whoop. With that we all broke like
quarter-horses for the firing. There we met our two front spies, who
said they had met two Creeks who were out hunting their horses, and as
there was a large cluster of green bay bushes exactly between them, they
were within a few feet of meeting before either was discovered. Our
spies, speaking in the Shawnee tongue, said they were escaping from
General Jackson, who was at Pensacola, and that they wanted to know
where they could get something to eat. The Creeks told them that nine
miles up the Conaker River was a large camp of Creeks where they had
cattle and plenty to eat; and that their own camp was on an island about
a mile off, just below the mouth of the Conaker. Then the four struck up
a fire, smoked together, shook hands and parted. One of the Creeks had a
gun, but the other had none. As soon as they had parted, our Choctaws
turned around and shot down the one that had the gun. When the other
started to run off, they snapped at him several times, but as the gun
missed fire, they ran after him and one of them clubbed him to death
with the gun. In doing so they broke the gun, but they fired off the one
the Creek had had, and raised a whoop of victory. When we reached them
they had cut off the heads of both the Indians and stood ready to scalp

Moving on, we came to where a Spaniard, together with a woman whom we
supposed to be his wife, and four children, had all been killed and
scalped. It was now late evening, and we came down to the river bank
opposite the Indian camp, where some friendly Creeks who were with us
said they would decoy the Indians from the island. Although they could
not call the Indians over, they did succeed in learning that a canoe
belonging to the Indians was on our side of the river. Soon we found it,
and forty of our warriors crossed over to take the camp. When they
arrived they found only one man in the camp, and he escaped; but they
captured two squaws and ten children.

For some time after this we marched about, and had several skirmishes
with the Indians, in which we killed several of them. We suffered most
from lack of food, and were very hard put to it to keep soul and body
together; but by hunting a great deal, we managed to live till we met
some East Tennessee troops who were on the road to Mobile, and my
youngest brother was with them. They had plenty of corn and provisions,
and I remained with them until next morning.

Nothing more that is worthy of the reader's attention transpired till I
was safely landed at home once more with my wife and children. I found
them, however, doing well, and though I was only a rough sort of a
backwoodsman, they seemed mighty glad to see me, however little the
quality folks might suppose it. For I do reckon we love as hard in the
backwoods country as any people in creation.


[42-1] The name _painter_ is a corruption of _panther_, and is applied
in the United States to the cougar or American lion.




     NOTE.--This poem, which is now considered by many to be the great
     national hymn of the United States, was sung first at a Fourth of
     July celebration for children in the Park Street Church, Boston.

     The author was born in Boston in 1808, and graduated from Harvard
     University in the same class with Oliver Wendell Holmes. When Smith
     wrote _America_ he was a student in the Andover Theological
     Seminary. Many years after they had left college, Dr. Holmes at a
     reunion of his class read his famous poem _The Boys_. In it he
     alludes to Samuel Francis Smith as follows:

    "He chanted a song for the brave and the free;
    Just read on his medal 'My country, of thee.'"

    My country, 'tis of thee,
    Sweet land of liberty,
      Of thee I sing;
    Land where my fathers died,
    Land of the pilgrims' pride,
    From every mountain side
      Let freedom ring.

    My native country, thee--
    Land of the noble free--
      Thy name I love;
    I love thy rocks and rills,
    Thy woods and templed hills,
    My heart with rapture thrills
      Like that above.

    Let music swell the breeze,
    And ring from all the trees
      Sweet freedom's song;
    Let mortal tongues awake;
    Let all that breathe partake;
    Let rocks their silence break--
      The sound prolong.

    Our fathers' God, to thee,
    Author of liberty,
      To thee we sing:
    Long may our land be bright,
    With freedom's holy light;
    Protect us by thy might,
      Great God, our King.

     Perhaps few who know _America_ and who sing it well understand it

     There are a few historical allusions in it. Who were the pilgrims?
     Why did the pilgrims take pride in the land? Does the author mean
     Puritans when he says pilgrims?

     The first stanza turned into prose might read something as follows:
     I sing of thee, my own country, the sweet land of liberty. Let all
     the people who live in this land where our fathers died, in this
     land which was the pilgrims' pride, sing songs of freedom till they
     ring from every mountain side.

     In the second stanza the poet in his religious fervor thinks of the
     hills as being like temples. He calls America the land of the noble
     free, meaning the noble freemen. Sometimes this line is printed
     with a comma after the word _noble_. Then the line means land of
     the noble man, the free man. The stanza as a whole might be
     rendered into prose after this manner: I love thee, my country,
     thou land of the noble free, and I love thy name; I love, too, thy
     rocks, rills, woods and templed hills, and my heart thrills with
     rapture like that which is felt by the angels above.

     The meaning of the third stanza is clearer if we put it into prose
     as follows: Let music swell grandly on the breeze, and let the
     sweet song of freedom ring from all the trees; let every human
     being sing the song; let all living things join in the chorus. Let
     even the rocks break the silence and prolong the music with their

     The last stanza means this: O Thou great God, who protected our
     fathers in the wilderness and who created for them and their
     descendants the liberty we enjoy, to Thee we offer this devout song
     and prayer: "Through all the coming centuries may our land be free,
     and do Thou, great God our King, protect us by Thy far-reaching

     We should learn to think of a song like this as a unit, a perfect
     whole, and the following summary will aid us in so doing:

     First stanza--I sing this song about my country, and may such songs
     of freedom ring everywhere within it.

     Second stanza.--I love my country and every good thing in it

     Third stanza.--Let every one join in songs of freedom.

     Fourth stanza.--We sing praises to God, and ask Him to protect us,
     and keep freedom forever ours.




There was no longer any question as to the expediency of evacuating the
capital. The only doubt was as to the time of doing so, and the route.
The Spanish commander called a council of officers to deliberate on
these matters. It was his purpose to retreat on Tlascala, and in that
capital to decide according to circumstances on his future operations.
After some discussion, they agreed on the causeway of Tlacopan as the
avenue by which to leave the city. It would, indeed, take them back by a
circuitous route, considerably longer than either of those by which
they had approached the capital. But, for that reason, it would be less
likely to be guarded, as least suspected; and the causeway itself, being
shorter than either of the other entrances, would sooner place the army
in comparative security on the mainland.

There was some difference of opinion in respect to the hour of
departure. The daytime, it was argued by some, would be preferable,
since it would enable them to see the nature and extent of their danger,
and to provide against it. Darkness would be much more likely to
embarrass their own movements than those of the enemy, who were familiar
with the ground. A thousand impediments would occur in the night, which
might prevent them acting in concert, or obeying, or even ascertaining,
the orders of the commander. But, on the other hand, it was urged that
the night presented many obvious advantages in dealing with a foe who
rarely carried his hostilities beyond the day. The late active
operations of the Spaniards had thrown the Mexicans off their guard, and
it was improbable they would anticipate so speedy a departure of their
enemies. With celerity and caution, they might succeed, therefore, in
making their escape from the town, possibly over the causeway, before
their retreat should be discovered; and, could they once get beyond that
pass of peril, they felt little apprehension for the rest.

The general had already superintended the construction of a portable
bridge to be laid over the open canals in the causeway. This was given
in charge to an officer named Magarino, with forty soldiers under his
orders, all pledged to defend the bridge to the last extremity. The
bridge was to be taken up when the entire army had crossed one of the
breaches, and transported to the next. There were three of these
openings in the causeway, and most fortunate would it have been for the
expedition, if the foresight of the commander had provided the same
number of bridges. But the labor would have been great, and the time was

At midnight the troops were under arms, in readiness for the march. Mass
was performed by Father Olmedo, who invoked the protection of the
Almighty through the awful perils of the night. The gates were thrown
open, and, on the first of July, 1520, the Spaniards for the last time
sallied forth from the walls of the ancient fortress, the scene of so
much suffering and such indomitable courage.

The night was cloudy, and a drizzling rain, which fell without
intermission, added to the obscurity. The great square before the palace
was deserted, as, indeed, it had been since the fall of Montezuma.
Steadily, and as noiselessly as possible, the Spaniards held their way
along the great street of Tlacopan, which so lately had resounded to the
tumult of battle. All was now hushed in silence; and they were only
reminded of the past by the occasional presence of some solitary corpse,
or a dark heap of the slain, which too plainly told where the strife had
been hottest. As they passed along the lanes and alleys which opened
into the great street, or looked down the canals, whose polished surface
gleamed with a sort of ebon lustre through the obscurity of the night,
they easily fancied they discerned the shadowy forms of their foe
lurking in ambush, and ready to spring on them. But it was only fancy;
and the city slept undisturbed even by the prolonged echoes of the tramp
of horses, and the hoarse rumbling of the artillery and baggage trains.
At length, a lighter space beyond the dusky line of buildings showed the
van of the army that it was emerging on the open causeway. They might
well have congratulated themselves on having thus escaped the dangers of
assault in the city itself, and that a brief time would place them in
comparative safety on the opposite shore. But the Mexicans were not all

As the Spaniards drew near the spot where the street opened on the
causeway, and were preparing to lay the portable bridge across the
uncovered breach which now met their eyes, several Indian sentinels, who
had been stationed at this, as at the other approaches to the city, took
alarm and fled, rousing their countrymen by their cries. The priests,
keeping their night watch on the summit of the _teocallis_, instantly
caught the tidings and sounded their shells, while the huge drum in the
desolate temple of the war-god sent forth those solemn tones, which,
heard only in seasons of calamity, vibrated through every corner of the
capital. The Spaniards saw that no time was to be lost. The bridge was
brought forward and fitted with all possible expedition. Sandoval was
the first to try its strength, and, riding across, was followed by his
little body of cavalry, his infantry, and Tlascalan allies, who formed
the first divisions of the army. Then came Cortes and his squadrons,
with the baggage, ammunition wagons, and a part of the artillery. But
before they had time to defile across the narrow passage, a gathering
sound was heard, like that of a mighty forest agitated by the winds. It
grew louder and louder, while on the dark waters of the lake was heard a
plashing noise, as of many oars. Then came a few stones and arrows
striking at random among the troops. They fell every moment faster and
more furious, till they thickened into a terrible tempest, while the
very heavens were rent with the yells and war cries of myriads of
combatants, who seemed all at once to be swarming over land and lake!

The Spaniards pushed steadily on through this arrowy sleet, though the
barbarians, dashing their canoes against the sides of the causeway,
clambered up and broke in upon their ranks. But the Christians, anxious
only to make their escape, declined all combat except for
self-preservation. The cavaliers, spurring forward their steeds, shook
off their assailants, and rode over their prostrate bodies, while the
men on foot with their good swords or the butts of their pieces drove
them headlong again down the sides of the dike.

But the advance of several thousand men, marching, probably, on a front
of not more than fifteen or twenty abreast, necessarily required much
time, and the leading files had already reached the second breach in the
causeway before those in the rear had entirely traversed the first. Here
they halted, as they had no means of effecting a passage, smarting all
the while under unintermitting volleys from the enemy, who were
clustered thick on the waters around this second opening. Sorely
distressed, the vanguard sent repeated messages to the rear to demand
the portable bridge. At length the last of the army had crossed, and
Magarino and his sturdy followers endeavoured to raise the ponderous
frame-work. But it stuck fast in the sides of the dike. In vain they
strained every nerve. The weight of so many men and horses, and above
all of the heavy artillery, had wedged the timbers so firmly in the
stones and earth, that it was beyond their power to dislodge them. Still
they laboured amidst a torrent of missiles, until, many of them slain,
and all wounded, they were obliged to abandon the attempt.

The tidings soon spread from man to man, and no sooner was their
dreadful import comprehended, than a cry of despair arose, which for a
moment drowned all the noise of conflict. All means of retreat were cut
off. Scarcely hope was left. The only hope was in such desperate
exertions as each could make for himself. Order and subordination were
at an end. Intense danger produced intense selfishness. Each thought
only of his own life. Pressing forward, he trampled down the weak and
the wounded, heedless whether it were friend or foe. The leading files,
urged on by the rear, were crowded on the brink of the gulf. Sandoval,
Ordaz, and the other cavaliers dashed into the water. Some succeeded in
swimming their horses across. Others failed, and some, who reached the
opposite bank, being overturned in the ascent, rolled headlong with
their steeds into the lake. The infantry followed pell-mell, heaped
promiscuously on one another, or struck down by the war clubs of the
Aztecs; while many an unfortunate victim was dragged half-stunned on
board their canoes, to be reserved for a protracted, but more dreadful


The carnage raged fearfully along the length of the causeway. Its
shadowy bulk presented a mark of sufficient distinctness for the enemy's
missiles, which often prostrated their own countrymen in the blind fury
of the tempest. Those nearest the dike, running their canoes alongside,
with a force that shattered them to pieces, leaped on the land, and
grappled with the Christians, until both came rolling down the side of
the causeway together. But the Aztec fell among his friends, while his
antagonist was borne away in triumph to the sacrifice. The struggle was
long and deadly. The Mexicans were recognized by their white cotton
tunics, which showed faint through the darkness. Above the combatants
rose a wild and discordant clamor, in which horrid shouts of vengeance
were mingled with groans of agony, with invocations of the saints and
the Blessed Virgin, and with the screams of women; for there were
several women, both natives and Spaniards, who had accompanied the
Christian camp. Among these, one named Maria de Estrada is particularly
noticed for the courage she displayed, battling with broadsword and
target like the staunchest of the warriors.

The opening in the causeway, meanwhile, was filled up with the wreck of
matter which had been forced into it, ammunition wagons, heavy guns,
bales of rich stuffs scattered over the waters, chests of solid ingots,
and bodies of men and horses, till over this dismal ruin a passage was
gradually formed, by which those in the rear were enabled to clamber to
the other side. Cortes, it is said, found a place that was fordable,
where, halting, with the water up to his saddle girths, he endeavoured
to check the confusion, and lead his followers by a safer path to the
opposite bank. But his voice was lost in the wild uproar, and finally,
hurrying on with the tide, he pressed forward with a few trusty
cavaliers, who remained near his person, to the van; but not before he
had seen his favorite page, Juan de Salazar, struck down, a corpse, by
his side. Here he found Sandoval and his companions, halting before the
third and last breach, endeavouring to cheer on their followers to
surmount it. But their resolution faltered. It was wide and deep; though
the passage was not so closely beset by the enemy as the preceding ones.
The cavaliers again set the example by plunging into the water. Horse
and foot followed as they could, some swimming, others with dying grasp
clinging to the manes and tails of the struggling animals. Those fared
best, as the general had predicted, who traveled lightest; and many were
the unfortunate wretches, who, weighed down by the fatal gold which they
loved so well, were buried with it in the salt floods of the lake.
Cortes, with his gallant comrades, Olid, Morla, Sandoval, and some few
others, still kept in the advance, leading his broken remnant off the
fatal causeway. The din of battle lessened in the distance; when the
rumor reached them, that the rearguard would be wholly overwhelmed
without speedy relief. It seemed almost an act of desperation; but the
generous hearts of the Spanish cavaliers did not stop to calculate
danger, when the cry for succour reached them. Turning their horses'
bridles, they galloped back to the theatre of action, worked their way
through the press, swam the canal, and placed themselves in the thick of
the mêlée on the opposite bank.

The first grey of the morning was now coming over the waters. It showed
the hideous confusion of the scene which had been shrouded in the
obscurity of night. The dark masses of combatants, stretching along the
dike, were seen struggling for mastery, until the very causeway on which
they stood appeared to tremble, and reel to and fro, as if shaken by an
earthquake; while the bosom of the lake, as far as the eye could reach,
was darkened by canoes crowded with warriors, whose spears and
bludgeons, armed with blades of "volcanic glass," gleamed in the morning

The cavaliers found Alvarado unhorsed, and defending himself with a poor
handful of followers against an overwhelming tide of the enemy. His good
steed, which had borne him through many a hard fight, had fallen under
him. He was himself wounded in several places, and was striving in vain
to rally his scattered column, which was driven to the verge of the
canal by the fury of the enemy, then in possession of the whole rear of
the causeway, where they were reinforced every hour by fresh combatants
from the city. The artillery in the earlier part of the engagement had
not been idle, and its iron shower, sweeping along the dike, had mowed
down the assailants by hundreds. But nothing could resist their
impetuosity. The front ranks, pushed on by those behind, were at length
forced up to the pieces, and, pouring over them like a torrent,
overthrew men and guns in one general ruin. The resolute charge of the
Spanish cavaliers, who had now arrived, created a temporary check, and
gave time for their countrymen to make a feeble rally. But they were
speedily borne down by the returning flood. Cortes and his companions
were compelled to plunge again into the lake, though all did not escape.
Alvarado stood on the brink for a moment, hesitating what to do.
Unhorsed as he was, to throw himself into the water, in the face of the
hostile canoes that now swarmed around the opening, afforded but a
desperate chance of safety. He had but a second for thought. He was a
man of powerful frame, and despair gave him unnatural energy. Setting
his long lance firmly on the wreck which strewed the bottom of the lake,
he sprung forward with all his might, and cleared the wide gap at a
leap! Aztecs and Tlascalans gazed in stupid amazement, exclaiming, as
they beheld the incredible feat, "This is truly the _Tonatiuh_,--the
child of the Sun!"--The breadth of the opening is not given. But it was
so great, that the valorous Captain Diaz, who well remembered the place,
says the leap was impossible to any man. Other contemporaries, however,
do not discredit the story. It was, beyond doubt, a matter of popular
belief at the time; it is to this day familiarly known to every
inhabitant of the capital; and the name of the _Salto de Alvarado_,
"Alvarado's Leap," given to the spot, still commemorates an exploit
which rivaled those of the demi-gods of Grecian fable.

Cortes and his companions now rode forward to the front, where the
troops, in a loose, disorderly manner, were marching off the fatal
causeway. A few only of the enemy hung on their rear, or annoyed them by
occasional flights of arrows from the lake. The attention of the Aztecs
was diverted by the rich spoil that strewed the battle-ground;
fortunately for the Spaniards, who, had their enemy pursued with the
same ferocity with which he had fought, would, in their crippled
condition, have been cut off, probably, to a man. But little molested,
therefore, they were allowed to defile through the adjacent village of


The Spanish commander there dismounted from his jaded steed, and sitting
down on the steps of an Indian temple, gazed mournfully on the broken
files as they passed before him. What a spectacle did they present! The
cavalry, most of them dismounted, were mingled with the infantry, who
dragged their feeble limbs along with difficulty; their shattered mail
and tattered garments dripping with the salt ooze, showing through their
rents many a bruise and ghastly wound; their bright arms soiled, their
proud crests and banners gone, the baggage, artillery, all, in short,
that constitutes the pride and panoply of glorious war, forever lost.
Cortes, as he looked wistfully on their thinned and disordered ranks,
sought in vain for many a familiar face, and missed more than one dear
companion who had stood side by side with him through all the perils of
the Conquest. Though accustomed to control his emotions, or, at least,
to conceal them, the sight was too much for him. He covered his face
with his hands, and the tears which trickled down revealed too plainly
the anguish of his soul.


[63-*] NOTE.--Hernando Cortes, the conqueror of Mexico, sailed from
Cuba, which he had assisted in subduing, for the mainland, where he
landed in the spring of 1519. After tarrying on the coast for a time,
and founding the city of Vera Cruz, he started inland, passing first
through the country of the Tlascalans, who were easily induced to submit
to him, and who became his most faithful native allies. By November,
1519, the Spaniards had reached the city of Mexico, the capital of the
Aztecs, and here they established themselves.

The chief of the Aztecs, Montezuma, determined not to offer serious
opposition to the Spaniards, but Cortes was distrustful of the Aztecs,
and managed to secure possession of Montezuma, whom he kept as a
hostage. Called from the city of Mexico by an expedition which had been
sent against him from Cuba, Cortes returned as soon as possible, only to
find that the Aztecs had adopted a more aggressive policy. His men were
surrounded and attacked as soon as they entered the city, and the
attacks were kept up from day to day. Finally, when Montezuma died, it
became clear to Cortes that a longer stay in the city would be
impossible. This extract from Prescott's _The Conquest of Mexico_ tells
the story of the retreat.




     NOTE.--When Henry of Navarre became king of France as Henry IV, he
     found that a part of his subjects, under the duke of Mayenne,
     refused to submit to him. On March 14, 1590, he won over his
     enemies a splendid victory at Ivry. In his speech to his soldiers
     before the battle he called upon them to rally to his white plume,
     if at any time they lost sight of the standard.

    Now glory to the Lord of Hosts, from whom all glories are!
    And glory to our Sovereign Liege, King Henry of Navarre!
    Now let there be the merry sound of music and the dance,
    Through thy cornfields green and sunny vines, oh! pleasant land of
    And thou, Rochelle, our own Rochelle, proud city of the waters,
    Again let rapture light the eyes of all thy mourning daughters.
    As thou wert constant in our ills, be joyous in our joy,
    For cold, and stiff, and still are they who wrought thy walls annoy.
    Hurrah! hurrah! a single field hath turned the chance of war;
    Hurrah! hurrah! for Ivry and King Henry of Navarre.

    Oh! how our hearts were beating, when, at the dawn of day,
    We saw the army of the League drawn out in long array;
    With all its priest-led citizens, and all its rebel peers,
    And Appenzel's stout infantry, and Egmont's Flemish spears,
    There rode the brood of false Lorraine, the curses of our land,
    And dark Mayenne was in the midst, a truncheon in his hand;
    And as we looked on them, we thought of Seine's empurpled flood,
    And good Coligni's hoary hair all dabbled with his blood;
    And we cried unto the living God, who rules the fate of war,
    To fight for his own holy name and Henry of Navarre.

    The King is come to marshal us, in all his armor drest,
    And he has bound a snow-white plume upon his gallant crest;
    He looked upon his people, and a tear was in his eye,
    He looked upon the traitors, and his glance was stern and high.
    Right graciously he smiled on us, as rolled from wing to wing,
    Down all our line, in deafening shout, "God save our lord, the King."
    "And if my standard-bearer fall, as fall full well he may--
    For never saw I promise yet of such a bloody fray--
    Press where ye see my white plume shine, amidst the ranks of war,
    And be your oriflamme to-day the helmet of Navarre."

    Hurrah! the foes are moving. Hark to the mingled din
    Of fife, and steed, and trump, and drum, and roaring culverin!
    The fiery Duke is pricking fast across St. Andre's plain,
    With all the hireling chivalry of Guelders and Almayne.
    Now by the lips of those ye love, fair gentlemen of France,
    Charge for the golden lilies now, upon them with the lance!
    A thousand spurs are striking deep, a thousand spears in rest,
    A thousand knights are pressing close behind the snow-white crest;
    And in they burst, and on they rushed, while like a guiding star,
    Amidst the thickest carnage blazed the helmet of Navarre.


    Now, God be praised, the day is ours! Mayenne hath turned his rein,
    D'Aumale hath cried for quarter, the Flemish Count is slain,
    Their ranks are breaking like thin clouds before a Biscay gale;
    The field is heaped with bleeding steeds, and flags and cloven mail;
    And then we thought on vengeance, and all along our van,
    "Remember St. Bartholomew," was passed from man to man;
    But out spake gentle Henry then, "No Frenchman is my foe;
    Down, down with every foreigner, but let your brethren go."
    Oh! was there ever such a knight in friendship or in war,
    As our sovereign lord, King Henry, the soldier of Navarre.

    Ho! maidens of Vienna,--ho! matrons of Luzerne,
    Weep, weep, and rend your hair for those who never shall return.
    Ho! Philip, send for charity, thy Mexican pistoles,
    That Antwerp monks may sing a mass for thy poor spearmen's souls.
    Ho! gallant nobles of the League, look that your arms be bright;
    Ho! burghers of St. Généviève, keep watch and ward to-night;
    For our God hath crushed the tyrant, our God hath raised the slave,
    And mocked the counsel of the wise and the valor of the brave.
    Then glory to his holy name from whom all glories are;
    And glory to our sovereign lord, King Henry of Navarre.


For some time the Greeks had known that danger was threatening them, and
in 480 B. C. they learned that it was well-nigh at their gates. Xerxes,
the "Great King," whose heralds when announcing a decree began with the
words, "All people and nations and languages," whose resources both of
men and of treasures were more than could be estimated, was gathering
his forces to proceed against Greece; and many were the rumors as to the
size of his army.

"There were twelve hundred and seven great ships; and in each ship there
were two hundred rowers and thirty fighting men. Also he had of smaller
ships, having fifty oars or under, three thousand, and in each of these,
taking one with another, there were eighty men. Therefore the whole
number of the men that served on the ships was five hundred and
seventeen thousand and six hundred. Of foot soldiers there were
seventeen hundred thousand, and of horsemen eighty thousand, and of
Arabs riding on camels and of Libyans that fought from chariots twenty
thousand. There were also one hundred and twenty ships of Greeks that
dwelt in Thrace and in the islands thereof, and in these twenty and four
thousand men. To these must be added foot soldiers of the Thracians, the
Pæonians, the Macedonians, and others. And the sum of the whole was two
million six hundred and forty-one thousand six hundred and ten. And of
all this great host there was none fitter to be the ruler for beauty and
great stature than King Xerxes himself. Of those that followed the camp,
and of the crews of the provision ships and other vessels of transport,
the number was more rather than less than the number of the fighting
men. As for the women that ground the corn, and others that came with
the army, and the horses and beasts of burden, and dogs, their number
can not be told."

What could the Greeks do against so many? And yet when the envoys of
King Xerxes came to the Greek states, demanding from each earth and
water, as a sign that Xerxes was lord of land and sea, all the states
but Thessaly, which Xerxes would enter first, refused. The Greek states
were not always on friendly terms one with another; but the great danger
that threatened them now united them in one common object--to repel the
Persian invader and to save their temples and their idols from
desecration. A council, at which were present deputies from all the
Greek states, was held on the Isthmus of Corinth, and plans for defense
were considered.

There were two narrow passes through which Xerxes would have to come
before he should find himself in Greece proper, and it was evident that
it was at such places as these that the few Greeks could best withstand
the numerous Persians. To Tempe, therefore, the northernmost of these
passes, a body of troops was hastily despatched, but they soon returned
declaring that the defense of the pass was out of the question. All
agreed then that the best plan would be to guard Thermopylae, which led
from Thessaly into Locris. To-day a swampy plain almost three miles
broad lies between Mount Oeta and the Maliac Gulf, but in ancient
times there was but a stretch of sand not more than fifty feet wide at
its broadest part, and in some places so narrow that a single wagon
could scarce pass along it. The Greek fleet was posted off the coast to
prevent the Persians from landing men beyond the pass, and a company was
at once gathered for the defense of Thermopylae and put under the
command of Leonidas, King of Sparta.

"Now, the Greeks that abode the coming of the Persians in this place
were these--three hundred Spartans, heavy-armed men; and men of Tegea
and Matinea a thousand, from each five hundred, and from Orchomenus one
hundred and twenty, and from the rest of Arcadia a thousand. From
Corinth there came four hundred, and from Phlius two hundred, and from
Mycenae eighty. So many came from the Peloponnesus; of the Boeotians
there came seven hundred from Thespiae and four hundred from Thebes.
Besides these there had come at the summons the Locrians of Opus with
all the men that they had, and a thousand Phocians."

All of the Greeks knew that they were setting out on a dangerous
enterprise, but to the Spartans it meant more than that. Leonidas
himself felt that he was going to his death, for the oracle at Delphi
had foretold that Sparta should be saved if one of her kings should
perish, and Leonidas was more than willing to make this sacrifice for
his state. His three hundred followers, trained from childhood to look
upon death as infinitely preferable to defeat, had, with that courage
which has made their name an epithet indicating the highest sort of
bravery, celebrated their funeral games before setting out. When they
came to the pass of Thermopylae, they found a new cause for fear. This
was the path which led over the mountains, and which made possible a
descent of the enemy to the rear of those stationed in the pass.
However, Leonidas was assured that this mountain track was practically
unknown, and that the entrance to it was very difficult to find; so when
he had sent a band of Phocians to guard it, he thought little more about
it. Many of the soldiers, however, felt that they were being subjected
to danger unnecessarily, and insisted that they be allowed to retreat to
the Isthmus of Corinth. As this would have guarded only the Peloponnesus
and have left the other states at the mercy of the Persians, Leonidas
determined that they should remain where they were and await the onset
of the enemy.

While they lay encamped in the pass, a scout sent by Xerxes rode up to
see how strong the enemy were, and how they were employing their time.
In front of and on the walls were a number of the Greeks engaging in
games and combing out their long hair. Surprised to see so few men, and
to see those few busying themselves in such an apparently unnecessary
way, the scout rode back and made his report to the Persian king. Now
there was in the camp of Xerxes one Demaratus, who had formerly been
King of Sparta, but who had been driven out and had joined himself to
the Persian court. Xerxes sent for him and, describing to him what he
considered the foolishness of the Greeks, asked what it might mean. In
reply Demaratus said, "Thou hast heard from me, O King, the truth
concerning these men before this, even when we were first beginning this
war; but when thou heardest it thou didst laugh at me, though I told
thee that which I knew would surely come to pass. For indeed, O King, I
strive always with my whole heart to tell thee the truth. Hear,
therefore, yet again what I say. These men are come hither to contend
with us for the pass; and this they now prepare to do; and they have
this custom among them, that when they are about to put their lives in
peril they adorn their heads with exceeding care. Know, also, O King,
that if thou canst subdue these men, and such others of their nation as
have been left behind in Sparta, there is no nation upon the earth that
will abide thy coming or lift up a hand against thee; for this city that
thou now fightest against is the most honorable in all Greece, and these
men are the bravest."

Incredulously Xerxes asked, "In what manner will these men, being so
few, as we know them to be, fight with my great army?"

Demaratus replied, "O King, deal with me as with a liar if everything
fall not out even as I have said."

After this, Xerxes allowed four days to pass, thinking that perhaps the
Greeks would come to their senses and flee. "But on the fifth day,
seeing that they were not departed, but as it seemed to him, were full
of impudence and folly, he grew angry, and sent against them the Medes
and the Cissians, giving them a command that they should take these
Greeks alive and bring them before him. But when these men came up and
fell upon the Greeks, many of them were slain. Then others came up into
their places and ceased not from fighting, though indeed they suffered a
very grievous slaughter, so that it was manifest to all men, and more
especially to the King, that though he had very many that bore arms, yet
had he but few men of war. And this battle endured throughout the whole

For two days the troops of Xerxes, even his great Ten Thousand, who were
known as the Immortals, hurled themselves upon the Greeks, but they
accomplished nothing, for they fought in a narrow place, where their
greater numbers were of no help to them; and their spears were shorter
than those of the Greeks, so that they were easily thrust through before
they could come close enough to harm an enemy. Three times, it is said,
while his troops were being driven backward, did Xerxes spring in
despair from his throne at the sight of the peril of his army.

But on the evening of the second day there came to the camp of the
Persian King a man named Ephialtes. On being ushered into the presence
of Xerxes, this man admitted that he was a Greek, and proposed that for
a great reward he should lead the Persian army over the hidden mountain
path, and bring them to the rear of the Greek defenders. Of course
Xerxes accepted the offer, and sent off one of his generals with a
detachment to follow Ephialtes over the mountain path. In the morning
the Phocians who had been set to guard this path were awakened by the
sound of rustling in the underbrush and rushed from their camp only to
see a detachment of Persian soldiers close upon them. Resolving to sell
their lives dearly, they fled to the top of the mountain, where they
thought that they might have the advantage of position over their
enemies; but the Persians, paying no attention to them, passed on down
the mountain to fall upon the brave defenders of Thermopylae.

The Greeks in the pass knew when morning dawned of the danger that
awaited them, for Megistias the soothsayer told of it, and certain
messengers running before the Persians confirmed his prophecy. "Then the
Greeks held a council, considering what they should do; and they were
divided; for some would not leave the post where they had been set, and
others were very eager to depart. And when the council was broken up,
some departed, going each to their own cities, and others made ready to
abide in the pass with Leonidas. Some say, indeed, that Leonidas sent
away them that departed, having a care for their safety; but it did not
become him and the Spartans that were with him, he said, to leave their
post that they had come to keep at the first. And indeed it seems fit to
be believed that Leonidas, seeing that the others were faint-hearted and
would not willingly abide the peril, bade them go, but that he himself
held it to be a shameful thing to depart. For he knew that he should get
for himself great glory by abiding at his post, and that the prosperity
of Sparta should not be destroyed."

The allies, therefore, with the exception of the Thespians and the
Thebans, departed, and the brave remainder prepared themselves for their
death. Hitherto, Leonidas had stood on the defensive in order to spare
the lives of his men, but now, knowing that death must come, he desired
only to work as great havoc among the Persians as possible, and he
therefore marched his men out before the wall and fell upon the vanguard
of the Persian army. It does not seem strange that the hired soldiers
should have feared to meet this little band of Greeks, and indeed it is
told that the Persian captains were obliged to go behind their troops
and with whips scourge them to the fight. Many of the Persians were
forced into the sea and so died; some were trodden under foot, and
thousands fell by the hands of the Greeks. But it was not only the
Persians who fell in this fierce struggle; Leonidas was one of the first
who was slain, and many other Spartans fell with him.

But the death of their leader did not demoralize the Greeks--it only
made them more reckless and more desperate. At length they saw that the
end was close at hand; the "Immortals," who had come in the night over
the mountain, had arrived, and were ready to fall upon their rear.
Closely pressed by the Persians, they drew back to the narrowest part of
the pass, where they had fought on the preceding days, and there made
their last stand. Their spears were broken, their swords were dulled;
but even had their weapons been still of the best, it would have availed
them little, for the Persians, all too well acquainted now with the
Greek daring, refused to close with their enemies. In their well-nigh
useless armour, which had been hacked from their limbs during their
earlier encounters, the Greeks stood on a little hillock and braved the
shower of Persian arrows and javelins. By the time the sun went down
there remained not one of all the Grecian band, but before their death
they had succeeded in slaying twenty thousand of the enemy. Xerxes
inquired of Demaratus, in whose word he had come to have more confidence
since witnessing the events of the last three days, whether there were
many more men at Sparta like these; and when he was told that there were
thousands, he realized that perhaps even his mighty army might not be a
match for them. That all Greeks were not like the Spartans who had
fallen at Thermopylae; that all Greek leaders were not as brave and as
devoted as Leonidas--these facts Xerxes did not realize. The struggle
which had proved so fatal to so many of his men had shown him that he
was not so irresistible, and had thereby done much for the Greeks.


Where the Greeks fell they were buried, and in after years pillars were
set up to commemorate their bravery. One, in honor of those who fell
before the allies were sent away, bore the words:

    "Four times a thousand men from Pelops' land
    Three thousand times a thousand did withstand."

While over the Spartans by themselves there stood another column which
bore the words,

    "Go tell the Spartans, thou that passeth by,
    That here, obedient to their law, we lie."



     NOTE.--Marco Bozzaris, a Greek patriot of Suli, threw himself heart
     and soul into the Greek struggle for freedom. On August 20, 1823,
     he led a night attack against the Turks, who were encamped on the
     site of ancient Platæa. The Greek army was but a handful in
     comparison with that of the Turks, but the Turks were thrown into
     utter confusion, and the attacking party won a complete victory.
     Bozzaris, however, was killed in the final attack.

    At midnight, in his guarded tent,
      The Turk was dreaming of the hour
    When Greece, her knee in suppliance bent,
      Should tremble at his power.
    In dreams, through camp and court, he bore
    The trophies of a conqueror;
      In dreams his song of triumph heard;
    Then wore his monarch's signet-ring,
    Then pressed that monarch's throne--a king;
    As wild his thoughts, and gay of wing,
      As Eden's garden bird.

    At midnight, in the forest shades,
      Bozzaris ranged his Suliote band,--
    True as the steel of their tried blades,
      Heroes in heart and hand.
    There had the Persian's thousands stood,
    There had the glad earth drunk their blood,
      On old Platæa's day;
    And now there breathed that haunted air
    The sons of sires who conquered there,
    With arms to strike, and soul to dare,
      As quick, as far, as they.

    An hour passed on, the Turk awoke;
      That bright dream was his last;
    He woke--to hear his sentries shriek,
    "To arms! they come! the Greek! the Greek!"
    He woke--to die midst flame, and smoke,
    And shout and groan, and sabre-stroke,
      And death-shots falling thick and fast
    As lightning from the mountain-cloud;
    And heard, with voice as trumpet loud,
      Bozzaris cheer his band:
    "Strike--till the last armed foe expires;
    Strike--for your altars and your fires;
    Strike--for the green graves of your sires,
      God, and your native land!"

[Illustration: THE TURK AWOKE]

    They fought--like brave men, long and well;
      They piled that ground with Moslem slain:
    They conquered--but Bozzaris fell,
      Bleeding at every vein.
    His few surviving comrades saw
    His smile when rang their proud hurrah,
      And the red field was won;
    Then saw in death his eyelids close
    Calmly, as to a night's repose,
      Like flowers at set of sun.
    Come to the bridal chamber, death,
      Come to the mother's, when she feels,
    For the first time, her first-born's breath;
      Come when the blessed seals
    That close the pestilence are broke,
    And crowded cities wail its stroke;
    Come in consumption's ghastly form,
    The earthquake shock, the ocean storm;
    Come when the heart beats high and warm,
    With banquet song and dance and wine,--
    And thou art terrible; the tear,
    The groan, the knell, the pall, the bier,
    And all we know, or dream, or fear
      Of agony, are thine.

    But to the hero, when his sword
      Has won the battle for the free,
    Thy voice sounds like a prophet's word,
    And in its hollow tones are heard
      The thanks of millions yet to be.
    Come when his task of fame is wrought;
    Come with her laurel-leaf, blood-bought;
      Come in her crowning hour,--and then
    Thy sunken eye's unearthly light
    To him is welcome as the sight
      Of sky and stars to prisoned men;
    Thy grasp is welcome as the hand
    Of brother in a foreign land;
    Thy summons welcome as the cry
    That told the Indian isles were nigh
      To the world-seeking Genoese,
    When the land-wind, from woods of palm,
    And orange-groves, and fields of balm,
      Blew o'er the Haytian seas.
    Bozzaris! with the storied brave
      Greece nurtured in her glory's time,
    Rest thee; there is no prouder grave,
      Even in her own proud clime.
    She wore no funeral weeds for thee,
      Nor bade the dark hearse wave its plume,
    Like torn branch from death's leafless tree,
    In sorrow's pomp and pageantry,
      The heartless luxury of the tomb.

    But she remembers thee as one
    Long loved, and for a season gone.
    For thee her poet's lyre is wreathed,
    Her marble wrought, her music breathed;
    For thee she rings the birthday bells;
    Of thee her babes' first lisping tells;
    For thine her evening prayer is said
    At palace couch and cottage bed.
    Her soldier, closing with the foe,
    Gives for thy sake a deadlier blow;
    His plighted maiden, when she fears
    For him, the joy of her young years,
    Thinks of thy fate, and checks her tears.
      And she, the mother of thy boys,
    Though in her eye and faded cheek
    Is read the grief she will not speak,
      The memory of her buried joys,--
    And even she who gave thee birth,--
    Will, by her pilgrim-circled hearth,
      Talk of thy doom without a sigh;
    For thou art freedom's now, and fame's,--
    One of the few, the immortal names
      That were not born to die.



We had now reached the summit of the loftiest crag. For some minutes the
old man seemed too much exhausted to speak.

"Not long ago," said he at length, "and I could have guided you on this
route as well as the youngest of my sons; but, about three years past,
there happened to me an event such as never happened before to mortal
man--or at least such as no man ever survived to tell of--and the six
hours of deadly terror which I then endured have broken me up body and
soul. You suppose me a _very_ old man--but I am not. It took less than a
single day to change these hairs from a jetty black to white, to weaken
my limbs, and to unstring my nerves, so that I tremble at the least
exertion, and am frightened at a shadow. Do you know I can scarcely look
over this little cliff without getting giddy?"

The "little cliff," upon whose edge he had so carelessly thrown himself
down to rest that the weightier portion of his body hung over it, while
he was only kept from falling by the tenure of his elbow on its extreme
and slippery edge--this "little cliff" arose, a sheer, unobstructed
precipice of black shining rock, some fifteen or sixteen hundred feet
from the world of crags beneath us. Nothing would have tempted me to
within half a dozen yards of its brink. In truth, so deeply was I
excited by the perilous position of my companion, that I fell at full
length upon the ground, clung to the shrubs around me, and dared not
even glance upward at the sky--while I struggled in vain to divest
myself of the idea that the very foundations of the mountain were in
danger from the fury of the winds. It was long before I could reason
myself into sufficient courage to sit up and look out into the distance.

"You must get over these fancies," said the guide, "for I have brought
you here that you might have the best possible view of the scene of that
event I mentioned--and to tell you the whole story with the spot just
under your eye.

"We are now," he continued in that particularizing manner which
distinguished him--"we are now close upon the Norwegian coast--in the
sixty-eighth degree of latitude--in the great province of Nordland--and
in the dreary district of Lofoden. The mountain upon whose top we sit is
Helseggen, the Cloudy. Now raise yourself up a little higher--hold on to
the grass if you feel giddy--so--and look out, beyond the belt of vapor
beneath us, into the sea."

I looked dizzily, and beheld a wide expanse of ocean, whose waters wore
so inky a hue as to bring at once to my mind the Nubian geographer's
account of the _Mare Tenebrarum_. A panorama more deplorably desolate no
human imagination can conceive. To the right and left, as far as the eye
could reach, there lay outstretched, like ramparts of the world, lines
of horridly black and beetling cliff, whose character of gloom was but
the more forcibly illustrated by the surf which reared high up against
it its white and ghastly crest, howling and shrieking forever. Just
opposite the promontory upon whose apex we were placed, and at a
distance of some five or six miles out at sea, there was visible a
small, bleak-looking island; or, more properly, its position was
discernible through the wilderness of surge in which it was enveloped.
About two miles nearer the land arose another of smaller size, hideously
craggy and barren and encompassed at various intervals by a cluster of
dark rocks.

The appearance of the ocean, in the space between the more distant
island and the shore, had something very unusual about it. Although at
the time so strong a gale was blowing landward that a brig in the remote
offing lay to under a double-reefed trysail, and constantly plunged her
whole hull out of sight, still there was here nothing like a regular
swell, but only a short, quick, angry cross dashing of water in every
direction--as well in the teeth of the wind as otherwise. Of foam there
was little except in the immediate vicinity of the rocks.

"The island in the distance," resumed the old man, "is called by the
Norwegians Vurrgh. The one midway is Moskoe. That a mile to the
northward is Ambaaren. Yonder are Islesen, Hotholm, Keildhelm, Suarven,
and Buckholm. Farther off--between Moskoe and Vurrgh--are Otterholm,
Flimen, Sandflesen, and Stockholm. These are the true names of the
places--but why it has been thought necessary to name them at all, is
more than either you or I can understand. Do you hear anything? Do you
see any change in the water?"

We had now been about ten minutes upon the top of Helseggen, to which we
had ascended from the interior of Lofoden, so that we had caught no
glimpse of the sea until it had burst upon us from the summit. As the
old man spoke, I became aware of a loud and gradually increasing sound,
like the moaning of a vast herd of buffaloes upon an American prairie;
and at the same moment I perceived that what seamen term the _chopping_
character of the ocean beneath us, was rapidly changing into a current
which set to the eastward. Even while I gazed this current acquired a
monstrous velocity. Each moment added to its speed--to its headlong
impetuosity. In five minutes the whole sea as far as Vurrgh was lashed
into ungovernable fury; but it was between Moskoe and the coast that the
main uproar held its sway. Here the vast bed of the waters, seamed and
scarred into a thousand conflicting channels, burst suddenly into
frenzied convulsion--heaving, boiling, hissing--gyrating in gigantic and
innumerable vortices, and all whirling and plunging on to the eastward
with a rapidity which water never elsewhere assumes except in
precipitous descents.

In a few minutes more, there came over the scene another radical
alteration. The general surface grew somewhat more smooth, and the
whirlpools one by one disappeared, while prodigious streaks of foam
became apparent where none had been seen before. These streaks, at
length, spreading out to a great distance, and entering into
combination, took unto themselves the gyratory motion of the subsided
vortices, and seemed to form the germ of another more vast.
Suddenly--very suddenly--this assumed a distinct and definite existence
in a circle of more than a mile in diameter. The edge of the whirl was
represented by a broad belt of gleaming spray; but no particle of this
slipped into the mouth of the terrific funnel, whose interior, as far as
the eye could fathom it, was a smooth, shining and jet-black wall of
water, inclined to the horizon at an angle of some forty-five degrees,
speeding dizzily round and round with a swaying and sweltering motion,
and sending forth to the wind an appalling voice, half-shriek,
half-roar, such as not even the mighty cataract of Niagara ever lifts up
in its agony to Heaven.

The mountain trembled to its very base, and the rock rocked. I threw
myself upon my face, and clung to the scant herbage in an excess of
nervous agitation.

"This," said I at length, to the old man--"this _can_ be nothing else
than the great whirlpool of the Maelstrom."

"So it is sometimes termed," said he. "We Norwegians call it the
Moskoe-strom, from the island of Moskoe in the midway."

The ordinary accounts of this vortex had by no means prepared me for
what I saw. That of Jonas Ramus, which is perhaps the most
circumstantial of any, cannot impart the faintest conception of either
the magnificence, or of the horror of the scene--or of the wild,
bewildering sense of _the novel_ which confounds the beholder. I am not
sure from what point of view the writer in question surveyed it, nor at
what time; but it could neither have been from the summit of Helseggen,
nor during a storm. There are some passages of this description,
nevertheless, which may be quoted for their details, although their
effect is exceedingly feeble in conveying an impression of the

"Between Lofoden and Moskoe," he says, "the depth of the water is
between thirty-five and forty fathoms; but on the other side, toward Ver
(Vurrgh) this depth decreases so as not to afford a convenient passage
for a vessel, without the risk of splitting on the rocks, which happens
even in the calmest weather. When it is flood, the stream runs up the
country between Lofoden and Moskoe with a boisterous rapidity, but the
roar of its impetuous ebb to the sea is scarce equaled by the loudest
and most dreadful cataracts--the noise being heard several leagues off,
and the vortices or pits are of such an extent and depth, that if a ship
comes within its attraction it is inevitably absorbed and carried down
to the bottom and there beat to pieces against the rocks, and when the
water relaxes the fragments thereof are thrown up again. But these
intervals of tranquillity are only at the turn of the ebb and flood, and
in calm weather, and last but a quarter of an hour, its violence
gradually returning. When the stream is most boisterous, and its fury
heightened by a storm, it is dangerous to come within a Norway mile of
it. Boats, yachts, and ships have been carried away by not guarding
against it before they were within its reach. It likewise happens
frequently that whales come too near the stream, and are overpowered by
its violence, and then it is impossible to describe their howlings and
bellowings in their fruitless struggles to disengage themselves. A bear
once, attempting to swim from Lofoden to Moskoe, was caught by the
stream and borne down, while he roared terribly, so as to be heard on
shore. Large stocks of firs and pine trees, after being absorbed by the
current, rise again broken and torn to such a degree as if bristles grew
upon them. This plainly shows the bottom to consist of craggy rocks,
among which they are whirled to and fro. This stream is regulated by the
flux and reflux of the sea--it being constantly high and low water every
six hours. One morning, in the year 1645, it raged with such noise and
impetuosity that the very stones of the houses on the coast fell to the

In regard to the depth of the water, I could not see how this could have
been ascertained at all in the immediate vicinity of the vortex. The
"forty fathoms" must have reference only to portions of the channel
close upon the shore either of Moskoe or Lofoden. The depth in the
center of the Moskoe-strom must be immeasurably greater; and no better
proof of this fact is necessary than can be obtained from even the
sidelong glance into the abyss of the whirl which may be had from the
highest crag of Helseggen. Looking down from this pinnacle upon the
howling Phlegethon below, I could not help smiling at the simplicity
with which the honest Jonas Ramus records, as a matter difficult of
belief, the anecdotes of the whales and the bears; for it appeared to
me, in fact, a self-evident thing that the largest ship of the line in
existence coming within the influence of that deadly attraction could
resist it as little as a feather the hurricane, and must disappear
bodily and at once.

The attempts to account for the phenomenon now wore a very different and
unsatisfactory aspect. The idea generally received is that this, as well
as three smaller vortices among the Ferroe Islands, "have no other cause
than the collision of waves rising and falling at flux and reflux
against a ridge of rocks and shelves, which confines the water so that
it precipitates itself like a cataract; and thus the higher the flood
rises the deeper must the fall be, and the natural result of all is a
whirlpool or vortex, the prodigious suction of which is sufficiently
known by lesser experiments." These are the words of the Encyclopædia
Britannica. Kircher and others imagine that in the center of the channel
of the Maelstrom is an abyss penetrating the globe, and issuing in some
very remote part--the Gulf of Bothnia being somewhat decidedly named in
one instance. This opinion, idle in itself, was the one to which, as I
gazed, my imagination most readily assented; and, mentioning it to the
guide, I was rather surprised to hear him say that, although it was the
view almost universally entertained of the subject by the Norwegians, it
nevertheless was not his own. As to the former notion, he confessed his
inability to comprehend it; and here I agreed with him--for, however
conclusive on paper, it becomes altogether unintelligible, and even
absurd, amid the thunder of the abyss.

"You have had a good look at the whirl now," said the old man, "and if
you will creep round this crag so as to get in its lee, and deaden the
roar of the water, I will tell you a story that will convince you I
ought to know something of the Moskoe-strom."

I placed myself as desired, and he proceeded.

"Myself and my two brothers once owned a schooner-rigged smack of about
seventy tons burthen, with which we were in the habit of fishing among
the islands beyond Moskoe, nearly to Vurrgh. In all violent eddies at
sea there is good fishing at proper opportunities if one has only the
courage to attempt it, but among the whole of the Lofoden coastmen, we
three were the only ones who made a regular business of going out to the
islands, as I tell you. The usual grounds are a great way lower down to
the southward. There fish can be got at all hours, without much risk,
and therefore these places are preferred. The choice spots over here
among the rocks, however, not only yield the finest variety, but in far
greater abundance, so that we often got in a single day what the more
timid of the craft could not scrape together in a week. In fact, we made
it a matter of desperate speculation--the risk of life standing instead
of labor, and courage answering for capital.

"We kept the smack in a cove about five miles higher up the coast than
this; and it was our practice, in fine weather, to take advantage of the
fifteen minutes' slack to push across the main channel of the
Moskoe-strom, far above the pool, and then drop down upon anchorage
somewhere near Otterholm, or Sandflesen, where the eddies are not so
violent as elsewhere. Here we used to remain until nearly time for slack
water again, when we weighed and made for home. We never set out upon
this expedition without a steady side wind for going and coming--one
that we felt sure would not fail us before our return--and we seldom
made a miscalculation upon this point. Twice during six years we were
forced to stay all night at anchor on account of a dead calm, which is a
rare thing indeed just about here; and once we had to remain on the
grounds nearly a week, starving to death, owing to a gale which blew up
shortly after our arrival, and made the channel too boisterous to be
thought of. Upon this occasion we should have been driven out to sea in
spite of everything (for the whirlpools threw us round and round so
violently that at length we fouled our anchor and dragged it) if it had
not been that we drifted into one of the innumerable cross
currents--here to-day and gone to-morrow--which drove us under the lee
of Flimen, where, by good luck, we brought up.

"I could not tell you the twentieth part of the difficulties we
encountered 'on the grounds'--it is a bad spot to be in, even in good
weather--but we made shift always to run the gauntlet of the
Moskoe-strom itself without accident; although at times my heart has
been in my mouth when we happened to be a minute or so behind or before
the slack. The wind sometimes was not as strong as we thought it at
starting, and then we made rather less way than we could wish, while the
current rendered the smack unmanageable. My eldest brother had a son
eighteen years old, and I had two stout boys of my own. These would have
been of great assistance at such times in using the sweeps, as well as
afterward in fishing, but somehow, although we ran the risk ourselves,
we had not the heart to let the young ones get into the danger--for,
after all is said and done, it _was_ a horrible danger, and that is the

"It is now within a few days of three years since what I am going to
tell you occurred. It was on the tenth day of July, 18--, a day which
the people of this part of the world will never forget--for it was one
in which blew the most terrible hurricane that ever came out of the
heavens; and yet all the morning, and indeed until late in the
afternoon, there was a gentle and steady breeze from the southwest,
while the sun shone brightly, so that the oldest seaman among us could
not have foreseen what was to follow.

"The three of us--my two brothers and myself--had crossed over to the
islands about 2 o'clock P. M., and had soon nearly loaded the smack with
fine fish, which, we all remarked, were more plentiful that day than we
had ever known them. It was just seven _by my watch_ when we weighed and
started for home, so as to make the worst of the Strom at slack water,
which we knew would be at eight.

"We set out with a fresh wind on our starboard quarter, and for some
time spanked along at a great rate, never dreaming of danger, for indeed
we saw not the slightest reason to apprehend it. All at once we were
taken aback by a breeze from over Helseggen. This was most
unusual--something that had never happened to us before--and I began to
feel a little uneasy without exactly knowing why. We put the boat on the
wind, but could make no headway at all for the eddies, and I was put
upon the point of proposing to return to the anchorage, when, looking
astern, we saw the whole horizon covered with a singular copper-colored
cloud that rose with the most amazing velocity.

"In the meantime the breeze that had headed us off fell away, and we
were dead becalmed, drifting about in every direction. This state of
things, however, did not last long enough to give us time to think about
it. In less than a minute the storm was upon us--in less than two the
sky was entirely overcast--and what with this and the driving spray it
became suddenly so dark that we could not see each other in the smack.

"Such a hurricane as then blew it is folly to attempt describing. The
oldest seaman in Norway never experienced anything like it. We had let
our sails go by the run before it cleverly took us; but, at the first
puff both our masts went by the board as if they had been sawed off--the
mainmast taking with it my youngest brother, who had lashed himself to
it for safety.

"Our boat was the lightest feather of a thing that ever sat upon water.
It had a complete flushed deck, with only a small hatch near the bow,
and this hatch it had always been our custom to batten down when about
to cross the Strom, by way of precaution against the chopping seas. But
for this circumstance we should have foundered at once--for we lay
entirely buried for some moments. How my elder brother escaped
destruction I cannot say, for I never had an opportunity of
ascertaining. For my part, as soon as I had let the foresail run, I
threw myself flat on deck, with my feet against the narrow gunwale of
the bow, and with my hands grasping a ring-bolt near the foot of the
fore-mast. It was mere instinct that prompted me to do this--which was
undoubtedly the very best thing I could have done--for I was too much
flurried to think.

"For some moments we were completely deluged, as I say, and all this
time I held my breath, and clung to the bolt. When I could stand it no
longer I raised myself upon my knees, still keeping hold with my hands,
and thus got my head clear. Presently our little boat gave herself a
shake, just as a dog does in coming out of the water, and thus rid
herself in some measure of the seas. I was now trying to get the better
of the stupor that had come over me, and to collect my senses so as to
see what was to be done, when I felt somebody grasp my arm. It was my
elder brother, and my heart leaped for joy, for I had made sure that he
was overboard--but the next moment all this joy was turned to
horror--for he put his mouth close to my ear, and screamed out the word

"No one will ever know what my feelings were at that moment. I shook
from head to foot, as if I had had the most violent fit of the ague. I
knew what he meant by that one word well enough--I knew what he wished
to make me understand. With the wind that now drove us on we were bound
for the whirl of the Strom, and nothing could save us!

"You perceive that in crossing the Strom _channel_, we always went a
long way up above the whirl, even in the calmest weather, and then had
to wait and watch carefully for the slack--but now we were driving right
upon the pool itself, and in such a hurricane as this! 'To be sure,' I
thought, 'we shall get there just about the slack--there is some little
hope in that'--but in the next moment I cursed myself for being so great
a fool as to dream of hope at all. I knew very well that we were doomed
had we been ten times a ninety-gun ship.

"By this time the first fury of the tempest had spent itself, or perhaps
we did not feel it so much as we scudded before it, but at all events
the seas, which at first had been kept down by the wind and lay flat and
frothing, now got up into absolute mountains. A singular change, too,
had come over the heavens. Around in every direction it was still as
black as pitch, but nearly overhead there burst out, all at once, a
circular rift of clear sky--as clear as I ever saw, and of a deep bright
blue--and through it there blazed forth the full moon with a luster that
I never before knew her to wear. She lit up everything about us with the
greatest distinctness--but, O God, what a scene it was to light up!

"I now made one or two attempts to speak to my brother--but, in some
manner which I could not understand, the din had so increased that I
could not make him hear a single word, although I screamed at the top of
my voice in his ear. Presently he shook his head, looking as pale as
death, and held up one of his fingers as if to say '_listen_!'

"At first I could not make out what he meant--but soon a hideous thought
flashed upon me. I dragged my watch from its fob. It was not going. I
glanced at its face by the moonlight, and then burst into tears as I
flung it far away into the ocean. _It had run down at seven o'clock! We
were behind the time of the slack, and the whirl of the Strom was in
full fury!_

"When a boat is well built, properly trimmed, and not deep laden, the
waves in a strong gale, when she is going large, seem always to slip
from beneath her--which appears very strange to a landsman--and this is
what is called _riding_, in sea-phrase. Well, so far we had ridden the
swells very cleverly, but presently a gigantic sea happened to take us
right under the counter, and bore us with it as it rose--up--up--as if
into the sky. I would not have believed that any wave could rise so
high. And then down we came with a sweep, a slide, and a plunge, that
made me feel sick and dizzy, as if I was falling from some lofty
mountain-top in a dream. But while we were up I had thrown a quick
glance around--and that one glance was all sufficient. I saw our exact
position in an instant. The Moskoe-strom whirlpool was about a quarter
of a mile dead ahead--but no more like the everyday Moskoe-strom, than
the whirl as you now see it is like a mill-race. If I had not known
where we were, and what we had to expect, I should not have recognized
the place at all. As it was, I involuntarily closed my eyes in horror.
The lids clenched themselves together as if in a spasm.

"It could not have been more than two minutes afterward until we
suddenly felt the waves subside, and were enveloped in foam. The boat
made a sharp half turn to larboard, and then shot off in its new
direction like a thunderbolt. At the same moment the roaring noise of
the water was completely drowned in a kind of shrill shriek--such a
sound as you might imagine given out by the waste-pipes of many thousand
steam-vessels letting off their steam all together. We were now in the
belt of surf that always surrounds the whirl; and I thought of course
that another moment would plunge us into the abyss--down which we could
only see indistinctly on account of the amazing velocity with which we
were borne along. The boat did not seem to sink into the water at all,
but to skim like an air-bubble upon the surface of the surge. Her
starboard side was next the whirl, and on the larboard arose the world
of ocean we had left. It stood like a huge writhing wall between us and
the horizon.

"It may appear strange, but now, when we were in the very jaws of the
gulf, I felt more composed than when we were only approaching it. Having
made up my mind to hope no more, I got rid of a great deal of that
terror which unmanned me at first. I suppose it was despair that strung
my nerves.

"It may look like boasting--but what I tell you is truth--I began to
reflect how magnificent a thing it was to die in such a manner, and how
foolish it was in me to think of so paltry a consideration as my own
individual life in view of so wonderful a manifestation of God's power.
I do believe that I blushed with shame when this idea crossed my mind.
After a little while I became possessed with the keenest curiosity about
the whirl itself. I positively felt a _wish_ to explore its depths, even
at the sacrifice I was going to make; and my principal grief was that I
should never be able to tell my old companions on shore about the
mysteries I should see. These, no doubt, were singular fancies to occupy
a man's mind in such extremity, and I have often thought since that the
revolutions of the boat around the pool might have rendered me a little

"There was another circumstance which tended to restore my
self-possession, and this was the cessation of the wind, which could
not reach us in our present situation--for, as you saw yourself, the
belt of surf is considerably lower than the general bed of the ocean,
and this latter now towered above us, a high, black, mountainous ridge.
If you have never been at sea in a heavy gale you can form no idea of
the confusion of mind occasioned by the wind and spray together. They
blind, deafen, and strangle you, and take away all power of action or
reflection. But we were now, in a great measure, rid of these
annoyances--just as death-condemned felons in prison are allowed petty
indulgences, forbidden them while their doom is yet uncertain.

"How often we made the circuit of the belt it is impossible to say. We
careered round and round for perhaps an hour, flying rather than
floating, getting gradually more and more into the middle of the surge,
and then nearer and nearer to its horrible inner edge. All this time I
had never let go of the ring-bolt. My brother was at the stern, holding
on to a small empty water-cask which had been securely lashed under the
coop of the counter, and was the only thing on deck that had not been
swept overboard when the gale first took us. As we approached the brink
of the pit he let go his hold upon this, and made for the ring, from
which, in the agony of his terror, he endeavored to force my hands, as
it was not large enough to afford us both a secure grasp. I never felt
deeper grief than when I saw him attempt this act--although I knew he
was a madman when he did it--a raving maniac through sheer fright. I did
not care, however, to contest the point with him. I knew it could make
no difference whether either of us held on at all, so I let him have
the bolt, and went astern to the cask. This there was no great
difficulty in doing, for the smack flew round steadily enough, and upon
an even keel, only swaying to and fro with the immense sweeps and
swelters of the whirl. Scarcely had I secured myself in my new position
when we gave a wild lurch to starboard, and rushed headlong into the
abyss. I muttered a hurried prayer to God, and thought all was over.

"As I felt the sickening sweep of the descent I had instinctively
tightened my hold upon the barrel, and closed my eyes. For some seconds
I dared not open them, while I expected instant destruction, and
wondered that I was not already in my death-struggles with the water.
But moment after moment elapsed. I still lived. The sense of falling had
ceased; and the motion of the vessel seemed much as it had been before
while in the belt of foam, with the exception that she now lay more
along. I took courage, and looked once again upon the scene.

"Never shall I forget the sensations of awe, horror, and admiration with
which I gazed about me. The boat appeared to be hanging, as if by magic,
midway down, upon the interior surface of a funnel vast in
circumference, prodigious in depth, and whose perfectly smooth sides
might have been mistaken for ebony but for the bewildering rapidity with
which they spun around, and for the gleaming and ghastly radiance they
shot forth, as the rays of the full moon, from that circular rift amid
the clouds which I have already described, streamed in a flood of golden
glory along the black walls, and far away down into the inmost recesses
of the abyss.

"At first I was too much confused to observe anything accurately. The
general burst of terrific grandeur was all that I beheld. When I
recovered myself a little, however, my gaze fell instinctively downward.
In this direction I was able to obtain an unobstructed view from the
manner in which the smack hung on the inclined surface of the pool. She
was quite upon an even keel--that is to say, her deck lay in a plane
parallel with that of the water--but this latter sloped at an angle of
more than forty-five degrees, so that we seemed to be lying upon our
beam-ends. I could not help observing, nevertheless, that I had scarcely
more difficulty in maintaining my hold and footing in this situation
than if we had been upon a dead level, and this, I suppose, was owing to
the speed at which we revolved.

"The rays of the moon seemed to search the very bottom of the profound
gulf; but still I could make out nothing distinctly, on account of a
thick mist in which everything there was enveloped, and over which there
hung a magnificent rainbow, like that narrow and tottering bridge which
Mussulmen say is the only pathway between Time and Eternity. This mist
or spray was no doubt occasioned by the clashing of the great walls of
the funnel as they all met together at the bottom, but the yell that
went up to the heavens from out of that mist I dare not attempt to

"Our first slide into the abyss itself, from the belt of foam above, had
carried us a great distance down the slope, but our farther descent was
by no means proportionate. Round and round we swept--not with any
uniform movement--but in dizzying swings and jerks, that sent us
sometimes only a few hundred yards--sometimes nearly the complete
circuit of the whirl. Our progress downward at each revolution was slow
but very perceptible.

"Looking about me upon the wide waste of liquid ebony on which we were
thus borne, I perceived that our boat was not the only object in the
embrace of the whirl. Both above and below us were visible fragments of
vessels, large masses of building timber and trunks of trees, with many
smaller articles, such as pieces of house furniture, broken boxes,
barrels, and staves. I have already described the unnatural curiosity
which had taken the place of my original terrors. It appeared to grow
upon me as I drew nearer and nearer to my dreadful doom. I now began to
watch, with a strange interest, the numerous things that floated in our
company. I _must_ have been delirious, for I even sought _amusement_ in
speculating upon the relative velocities of their several descents
toward the foam below. 'This fir tree,' I found myself at one time
saying, 'will certainly be the next thing that takes the awful plunge
and disappears'--and then I was disappointed to find that the wreck of a
Dutch merchant ship overtook it and went down before. At length, after
making several guesses of this nature, and being deceived in all, this
fact--the fact of my invariable miscalculation--set me upon a train of
reflection that made my limbs again tremble, and my heart beat heavily
once more.

"It was not a new terror that thus affected me, but the dawn of a more
exciting _hope_. This hope arose partly from memory, and partly from
present observation. I called to mind the great variety of buoyant
matter that strewed the coast of Lofoden, having been absorbed and then
thrown forth by the Moskoe-strom. By far the greater number of the
articles were shattered in the most extraordinary way--so chafed and
roughened as to have the appearance of being stuck full of
splinters--but then I distinctly recollected that there were _some_ of
them which were not disfigured at all. Now I could not account for this
difference except by supposing that the roughened fragments were the
only ones which had been _completely absorbed_--that the others had
entered the whirl at so late a period of the tide, or, for some reason,
had descended so slowly after entering, that they did not reach the
bottom before the turn of the flood came, or of the ebb, as the case
might be. I conceived it possible, in either instance, that they might
thus be whirled up again to the level of the ocean, without undergoing
the fate of those which had been drawn in more early, or absorbed more
rapidly. I made also three important observations. The first was that,
as a general rule, the larger the bodies were, the more rapid their
descent; the second, that, between two masses of equal extent, the one
spherical and the other _of any other shape_, the superiority in speed
of descent was with the sphere; the third, that between two masses of
equal size, the one cylindrical and the other of any other shape, the
cylinder was absorbed the more slowly. Since my escape I have had
several conversations on this subject with an old schoolmaster of the
district, and it was from him that I learned the use of the words
'cylinder' and 'sphere.' He explained to me--although I have forgotten
the explanation--how what I observed was in fact the natural
consequence of the forms of the floating fragments, and showed me how it
happened that a cylinder swimming in a vortex offered more resistance to
its suction, and was drawn in with greater difficulty than an equally
bulky body of any form whatever.

"There was one startling circumstance which went a great way in
enforcing these observations and rendering me anxious to turn them to
account, and this was that at every revolution we passed something like
a barrel, or else the yard or the mast of a vessel, while many of these
things which had been on our level when I first opened my eyes upon the
wonders of the whirlpool were now high up above us, and seemed to have
moved but little from their original station.

"I no longer hesitated what to do. I resolved to lash myself securely to
the water-cask upon which I now held, to cut it loose from the counter,
and to throw myself with it into the water. I attracted my brother's
attention by signs, pointed to the floating barrels that came near us,
and did everything in my power to make him understand what I was about
to do. I thought at length that he comprehended my design, but, whether
this was the case or not, he shook his head despairingly, and refused to
move from his station by the ring-bolt. It was impossible to reach him,
the emergency admitted of no delay, and so, with a bitter struggle, I
resigned him to his fate, fastened myself to the cask by means of the
lashings which secured it to the counter, and precipitated myself with
it into the sea without another moment's hesitation.

"The result was precisely what I had hoped it might be. As it is myself
who now tell you this tale--as you see that I _did_ escape--and as you
are already in possession of the mode in which this escape was effected,
and must therefore anticipate all that I have further to say, I will
bring my story quickly to conclusion. It might have been an hour or
thereabout after my quitting the smack, when, having descended to a vast
distance beneath me, it made three or four wild gyrations in rapid
succession, and bearing my loved brother with it, plunged headlong at
once and forever into the chaos of foam below. The barrel to which I was
attached sunk very little farther than half the distance between the
bottom of the gulf and the spot at which I leaped overboard, before a
great change took place in the character of the whirlpool. The slope of
the sides of the vast funnel became momently less and less steep. The
gyrations of the whirl grew gradually less and less violent. By degrees
the froth and the rainbow disappeared, and the bottom of the gulf seemed
slowly to uprise. The sky was clear, the winds had gone down, and the
full moon was setting radiantly in the west, when I found myself on the
surface of the ocean, in full view of the shores of Lofoden, and above
the spot where the pool of the Moskoe-strom _had been_. It was the hour
of the slack--but the sea still heaved in mountainous waves from the
effects of the hurricane. I was borne violently into the channel of the
Strom, and in a few minutes was hurried down the coast into the
'grounds' of the fishermen. A boat picked me up, exhausted from fatigue
and (now that the danger was removed) speechless from the memory of its
horror. Those who drew me on board were my old mates and daily
companions, but they knew me no more than they would have known a
traveler from the spirit-land. My hair, which had been raven-black the
day before, was as white as you see it now. They say, too, that the
whole expression of my countenance had changed. I told them my
story--they did not believe it. I now tell it to _you_, and I can
scarcely expect you to put more faith in it than did the merry fishermen
of Lofoden."

     _A Descent into the Maelstrom_ is a remarkable example of forcible
     description as well as of artistic skill in the setting.

     I. The first third of the story is an introduction to the main
     tale. The story itself might seem to be sufficiently exciting, but
     it would have much less power if it began where the old man
     commences to tell the tale. Notice what Poe throws into his

     1. He represents the tale as told to himself by an old man with
     white hair, weakened limbs and unstrung nerves that tremble at the
     least exertion. The old man claims to be frightened at a shadow,
     yet he is able to throw himself down to rest with the weightier
     portion of his body hanging over a precipice and held back from the
     slippery edge of the cliff of black shining rock, some sixteen
     hundred feet high, merely by the power of his elbows thrust into
     the earth. The position is so perilous that the hearer throws
     himself at full length upon the ground, clinging to the shrubs
     around him and scarcely daring to glance upward at the sky. Besides
     the precarious position in which the men are placed, fierce winds
     that seem to shake the very foundations of the mountain cause
     thrills of terror to the onlooker.

     2. The guide points out the scene of his terrible experience.

     3. The author describes the sea, the islands and the location of
     the whirlpool.

     4. Then follows a description of the water in the conflicting

     5. Suddenly the circular whirlpool appears, and from the awful
     height the observers are able to look down into the mouth of the
     terrific funnel.

     6. More description follows, showing what happens to objects caught
     within the fierce grasp of the revolving waters.

     7. Reference is made to ancient accounts of the whirlpool.

     8. He makes some effort to explain the causes which would produce
     such fearful currents so furiously in action, but finds himself
     unable to arrive at a satisfactory explanation.

     Such sights, such a discussion, such a perilous position in which
     to listen, make the hearer susceptible to the slightest impression.

     II. The story proper is told in the most convincing, matter-of-fact
     way, yet we are conscious all the time that the language of the old
     man is rather that of a trained writer than of an ignorant
     fisherman, and here Poe sacrifices the personality of his hero to
     vividness of incident. What he wishes to accomplish is to impress
     us with a terrible experience. He does not care to make us see the
     narrator as a man, yet the story is not devoid of touches of strong
     human interest; if it were it would be less powerful. The fisherman
     and his brothers will not take with them their sons on their
     perilous fishing trip. The youngest brother is carried away in the
     first blast of the tempest with the mainmast to which he had bound
     himself. The oldest brother selfishly drives our hero from the ring
     in the deck.

     There are remarkable touches of realism in the story. It was just
     seven by the old man's watch when they started for home; later,
     when the tempest is upon them, it is discovered that the watch had
     run down at seven o'clock, and they are behind the time of the
     slack water in the whirlpool.

     III. Vividly descriptive phrases abound in the narration, and
     figures of speech give powerful interest to the imagination.

     "We came with a sweep, a slide, and a plunge, that made me feel
     sick and dizzy, as if I was falling from some lofty mountain-top in
     a dream."

     "The roaring noise of the water was completely drowned in a kind of
     shrill shriek--such a sound as you might imagine given out by the
     waste-pipes of many thousand steam-vessels letting off their steam
     all together."

     "How foolish it was in me to think of so paltry a consideration as
     my own individual life in view of so wonderful a manifestation of
     God's power."

     "We were now, in a great measure, rid of these annoyances--just as
     death-condemned felons in prison are allowed petty indulgences,
     forbidden them while their doom is yet uncertain."

     IV. It is meant that our interest should center in the story
     itself. Accordingly, when the narrator has finished his tale the
     story is finished. We are not further interested in the listener,
     or in the old man.

     V. It is almost unnecessary to say that the tale is pure fiction,
     and an example of brilliant exaggeration. As a matter of fact the
     maelstrom is a whirlpool lying where Poe places it, and it has been
     made noted by many other accounts than this of Poe, most of which
     are exaggerated, but none of them so brilliant in execution as
     Poe's. The difference between high tide and low tide in this
     vicinity is very great, and every twelve hours vast masses of water
     must be moved into the fiord and out again through narrow channels
     and rough rocks. The currents resulting are dangerous to
     navigation, and there are numerous whirlpools and eddies besides
     the great maelstrom itself. Ordinarily, however, ships traverse the
     passage without danger; but when in conjunction with high tide the
     winds blow fiercely, the sea for miles around becomes highly
     perilous to small vessels.


_By_ JARED SPARKS[121-1]

It is generally believed that the Mississippi River was first discovered
by Ferdinand de Soto, as early as 1541. The accounts of his expedition
in Florida are so highly exaggerated, so indefinite, and in many parts
so obviously false, that little more can be inferred from them, than
that he passed far into the country, had many combats with the natives,
and finally died in the interior. The probability is so strong, however,
that he and his party actually crossed the Mississippi, that it has
usually been assumed as a historical fact.

The first Europeans, however, who are certainly known to have discovered
and explored this river, were two Frenchmen, Father Marquette[121-2] and
M. Joliet, in the year 1673. Marquette was a native of Picardy, and
Charlevoix calls him "one of the most illustrious missionaries of New
France," adding, that he travelled widely, and made many discoveries
besides that of the Mississippi. He had resided some time in Canada, and
attained a proficiency in the languages of the principal native tribes
who resided in the regions bordering on the Upper Lakes. The first
settlement of the old town of Michillimackinac, in 1671, is ascribed to
his exertions and influence.

The Indians had given many accounts of a great river at the west, which
flowed southwardly, and which they called _Mississipy_, as the word is
written by Marquette. It became a matter of curious speculation, what
course this river pursued, and at what place it disembogued itself into
the sea. There were three opinions on this subject. First, that it ran
towards the southwest, and entered the Gulf of California; secondly,
that it flowed into the Gulf of Mexico; and thirdly, that it found its
way in a more easterly direction, and discharged itself into the
Atlantic Ocean somewhere on the coast of Virginia. The question was not
less important in a commercial and political view, than interesting as a
geographical problem.

To establish the point, and to make such other discoveries as
opportunities would admit, M. de Frontenac, the governor of Canada,
encouraged an expedition to be undertaken. The persons to whom it was
intrusted, were M. Joliet, then residing at Quebec, and Father
Marquette, who was at Michillimackinac, or in the vicinity of that
place. Marquette wrote an account of his tour, and voyage down the
Mississippi, which was sent to France, and published eight years
afterwards in Paris. From this account the following particulars are
chiefly taken. In some parts the translation is nearly literal, and all
the prominent facts are retained.

On the 13th of May, 1673, Father Marquette and M. Joliet, with five
other Frenchmen, embarked in two canoes, with a small provision of
Indian corn and smoked meat, having previously acquired from the Indians
all the intelligence they could afford respecting their proposed

The first nation[123-4] through which they passed, was the _Folles
Avoines_ (Wild Rice),[123-5] so called from the grain of that name,
which abounds in the rivers and marshy lands. This plant is described as
growing about two feet above the water, resembling European oats, and is
gathered by the savages during the month of September. The ears are
dried, separated from the chaff, and prepared for food either by
pounding into meal, or simply boiling the grain in water.

The natives, having been made acquainted by Father Marquette with his
design of visiting the most remote nations, and preaching to them the
Gospel, did their utmost to dissuade him from it, representing the
cruelty of some of the tribes, and their warlike state, the dangerous
navigation of the river, the dreadful monsters that were found in it,
and, finally, the excessive heat of the climate.

He thanked them for their good advice, but declined following it;
assuring them, that, to secure the success of his undertaking, he would
gladly give his life; that he felt no fear of the monsters they
described; and that their information would only oblige him to keep more
on his guard against surprise. After having prayed, and given them some
instructions, he parted from them, and arrived at the _Bay of
Puans_,[124-6] now called Green Bay, where considerable progress had
been made by the French priests in the conversion of the Indians.

The name of this bay has a less unpleasant meaning in the Indian, than
in the French language, signifying also _salt bay_, which induced Father
Marquette to make strict researches for salt springs in this vicinity,
but without success. He concluded, therefore, that the name was given to
it in consequence of the ooze and mud deposited there, from whence, as
he thought, arise vapors, that produce frequent and violent thunder
storms. He speaks of this bay as about thirty leagues long and eight
leagues wide at its entrance, gradually contracting towards its head,
where the flux and reflux of the tides, much like those of the sea, may
be easily observed.

Leaving this bay, they ascended the river, since known as Fox River,
that empties into it. At its mouth, he says, the river is broad and
deep, and flows gently; but, as you advance, its course is interrupted
by rapids and rocks; which he passed, however, in safety. It abounds
with bustards,[125-7] ducks, and teal, attracted by the wild rice, which
grows there.

Approaching the village of _Maskoutins_,[125-8] or _nation of fire_, he
had the curiosity to taste the mineral water of a stream in its
vicinity. The village consisted of three several nations, namely,
_Miamis_, _Maskoutins_, and _Kikabeaux_. The first were the most
friendly and liberal, and the finest looking men. Their hair was long
over their ears. They were good warriors, successful in their
expeditions, docile, and fond of instruction. They were so eager to
listen to Father Allouez,[125-9] when he was among them, that they
allowed him no repose, even in the night. The Maskoutins and Kikabeaux
were coarser, and less civilized; their wigwams were constructed of
rushes (birch bark being scarce in this country), and might be rolled up
in bundles and carried where they pleased.

In visiting these people, Father Marquette was much gratified at seeing
a large cross erected in the center of the village, decorated with
thank-offerings to the Great Spirit, for their success during the last
winter. The situation of the village was striking and beautiful, it
being built on an eminence, whence the eye overlooked on all sides a
boundless extent of prairie, interspersed with groves and forests. The
soil was good, producing abundantly Indian corn, grapes, and plums.

Immediately on their arrival, Father Marquette and M. Joliet assembled
the chiefs, and explained to them the objects of their expedition,
expressing their determination to proceed at all risks, and making them
some presents. They requested the assistance of two guides, to put them
in their way; which request the natives readily granted, returning for
their presents a mat, which served them as a bed during the voyage. The
next day, being the 10th of June, the two Miamis, their guides, embarked
with them in sight of all the inhabitants of the village who looked with
astonishment on the hardihood of seven Frenchmen in undertaking such an

They knew that within three leagues of the Maskoutins was a river, which
discharged itself into the Mississippi; and further, that their course
must be west southwest; but so many marshes and small lakes intervened,
that the route was intricate; the more so, as the river was overgrown
with wild rice, which obstructed the channel to such a degree, that it
was difficult to follow it. On this account their guides were necessary,
who conducted them safely to a portage, which was about two thousand
seven hundred paces across.[126-10] The guides aided them in
transporting their canoes over the portage to the river, which ran
towards the west, and then they left them and returned.

The travellers quitted the waters, which flow towards Quebec, five or
six hundred leagues from that place, and embarked on an unknown
stream.[127-11] This river was called _Mescousin_ (Wisconsin). It was
very broad, but its bottom was sandy, and the navigation was rendered
difficult by the shoals.[127-12] It was full of islands, overgrown with
vines; and the fertile banks through which it flowed were interspersed
with woods, prairies, and groves of nut, oak, and other trees. Numbers
of bucks and buffaloes were seen, but no other animals. Within thirty
leagues of their place of embarkation, they found iron mines, which
appeared abundant and of a good quality. After continuing their route
for forty leagues, they arrived at the mouth of the river, in forty-two
degrees and a half of latitude;[127-13] and on the 17th of June, they
entered with great joy the waters of the Mississippi.

This river derives its source from several lakes in the north. At the
mouth of the Mescousin its channel was narrow, and it flowed onwards
with a gentle current. On the right was seen a chain of high
mountains,[127-14] and on the left fertile fields interrupted by
islands in many places. They slowly followed the course of the stream to
the south and southwest, until, in forty-two degrees of
latitude,[128-15] they perceived a sensible change in the surrounding
country. There were but few hills and forests. The islands were covered
with beautiful trees.[128-16]

From the time of leaving their guides, they descended the two rivers
more than one hundred leagues, without discovering any other inhabitants
of the forest, than birds and beasts. They were always on their guard,
kindling a fire on the shore towards evening, to cook their food, and
afterwards anchoring their canoes in the middle of the stream during the
night. They proceeded thus for more than sixty leagues[128-17] from the
place where they entered the Mississippi, when, on the 25th of June,
they perceived on the bank of the river the footsteps of men, and a
well-beaten path leading into a beautiful prairie. They landed, and,
leaving the canoes under the guard of their boatmen, Father Marquette
and M. Joliet set forth to make discoveries. After silently following
the path for about two leagues, they perceived a village, situate on the
margin of a river, and two others on a hill, within half a league of
the first. As they approached nearer, they gave notice of their arrival
by a loud call. Hearing the noise, the Indians came out of their cabins,
and, having looked at the strangers for a while, they deputed four of
their elders to talk with them, who slowly advanced. Two of them brought
pipes ornamented with feathers, which, without speaking, they elevated
towards the sun, as a token of friendship. Gaining assurance from this
ceremony, Father Marquette addressed them, inquiring of what nation they
were. They answered, that they were Illinois, and, offering their pipes,
invited the strangers to enter the village; where they were received
with every mark of attention, conducted to the cabin of the chief, and
complimented on their arrival by the natives, who gathered round them,
gazing in silence.


After they were seated, the calumet[130-18] was presented to them, and
while the old men were smoking for their entertainment, the chief of all
the Illinois tribes sent them an invitation to attend a council at his
village. They were treated by him with great kindness, and Father
Marquette, having explained to him the motives of this voyage, enforcing
each part of his speech with a present, the chief in reply expressed his
approbation; but urged him, in the name of the whole nation, not to
incur the risks of a further voyage, and rewarded his presents by the
gift of a calumet.

The council was followed by a feast, consisting of four courses, from
each of which they were fed with much ceremony; and afterwards they were
conducted in state through the village, receiving many presents of
girdles and garters from the natives. The following day, they took leave
of the chief, promising to return in four moons, and were accompanied to
their canoes, with every demonstration of joy, by more than six hundred

Before leaving this nation, Father Marquette remarked some of their
peculiarities. The name _Illinois_, in the native language, signifies
_men_, as if implying thereby, that other tribes are brutes in
comparison, which in some sense Father Marquette thought to be true, as
they were more civilized than most of the tribes. Their language, on the
borders of the river, was a dialect of the _Algonquin_, and was
understood by Father Marquette. In the form of their bodies the Illinois
were light and active. They were skilful in the use of arms, brave, but
mild and tractable in disposition. They were entirely ignorant of the
use of leather, and iron tools, their weapons being made of stone, and
their clothing of the skins of wild beasts. The soil was rich and
productive, and game abundant.

After this peaceful interview with the natives, the voyagers embarked
again, and passed down the stream, looking out for the river
_Pekitanoni_ (Missouri), which empties into the Mississippi from the

They observed high and steep rocks, on the face of which were the
figures of two monsters, which appeared as if painted in green, red, and
blue colors; frightful in appearance, but so well executed, as to leave
Father Marquette in doubt, whether they could be the work of savages,
they being also at so great a height on the rocks as to be inaccessible
to a painter.[131-19]

As they floated quietly down a clear and placid stream, conversing about
the figures they had just passed, they were interrupted by the sound of
rapids before them; and a mass of floating timber, trunks and branches
of trees, was swept from the mouth of the Pekitanoni with such a degree
of violence, as to render the passage dangerous. So great was the
agitation, that the water was thereby made very muddy, and it did not
again become clear.[132-20] The Pekitanoni is described as a large river
flowing into the Mississippi from the northwest, with several villages
on its banks.

At this place Father Marquette decided, that, unless the Mississippi
altered its previous course, it must empty its waters into the Gulf of
Mexico; and he conjectured from the accounts of the natives, that, by
following the stream of the Pekitanoni, a river would be discovered,
which flowed into the Gulf of California.[132-21]

About twenty leagues south of the Pekitanoni, and a little more to the
southeast, they discovered the mouth of another river, called
_Ouabouskigou_ (Ohio), in the latitude of thirty-six degrees; a short
distance above which, they came to a place formidable to the savages,
who, believing it the residence of a demon, had warned Father Marquette
of its dangers. It proved nothing more than a ledge of rocks, thirty
feet high, against which the waves, being contracted by an island, ran
with violence, and, being thrown back with a loud noise, flowed rapidly
on through a narrow and unsafe channel.

The Ouabouskigou came from the eastward, where the country was thickly
inhabited by the tribe of _Chuouanons_, a harmless and peaceful people,
much annoyed by the Iroquois, who were said to capture them as slaves,
and kill and torture them cruelly.

A little above the entrance of this river were steep banks, in which the
boatmen discovered iron ore, several veins of which were visible, about
a foot in thickness, portions of it adhering to the flint-stones; and
also a species of rich earth, of three different colors, namely, purple,
violet and red, and a very heavy red sand, some of which, being laid on
an oar, left a stain during fifteen days. They here first saw tall
reeds, or canes, growing on the shores, and began to find the
_maringouins_ (mosquitoes) very troublesome; the attacks of which, with
the heat of the weather, obliged the voyagers to construct an awning of
the sails of their canoes.

Shortly afterwards they saw savages armed with muskets, waiting their
approach on the bank of the river. While the boatmen prepared for a
defence, Father Marquette presented his calumet and addressed them in
Huron, to which they gave no answer, but made signals to them to land,
and accept some food. They consequently disembarked, and, entering their
cabins, were presented with buffalo's meat, bear's oil, and fine plums.
These savages had guns, hatchets, knives, hoes and glass bottles for
their gunpowder. They informed Father Marquette, that he was within ten
days' journey of the sea; that they purchased their goods of Europeans,
who came from the east, that these Europeans had images and beads,
played on many instruments, and were dressed like himself; and that they
had treated them with much kindness. As they had no knowledge of
Christianity, the worthy Father gave them what instruction he could, and
made them a present of some medals. Encouraged by the information
received from these savages, the party proceeded with renewed ardor on
their voyage, between banks covered with thick forests, that intercepted
their view of the prairies; in which, however, they heard at no great
distance the bellowing of buffaloes. They also saw quails upon the
shores, and shot a small parrot.

They had nearly reached the thirty-third degree of latitude,[134-22]
steering toward the south, when they discovered a village on the river's
side, called _Metchigamea_. The natives, armed with bows and arrows,
clubs, and tomahawks, prepared to attack them; some in canoes, trying to
intercept their course, others remaining on shore. Father Marquette in
vain presented his calumet of peace. They were ready to attack, when the
elders, perceiving at last the calumet, commanded the young warriors to
stop, and, throwing their arms at the feet of the strangers, as a sign
of peace, entered their canoes, and constrained them to land, though not
without some uneasiness.

As the savages were not acquainted with any of the six languages spoken
by Father Marquette, he addressed them by signs, until an old man was
found, who understood a little Illinois. Through this interpreter, he
explained their intention of going to the borders of the sea, and gave
the natives some religious instruction. In reply they answered that
whatever information he desired might be obtained at _Akamsca_
(Arkansas), a village ten leagues lower down the river; and presented
them with food. After passing a night of some anxiety, they embarked the
following morning with their interpreter; a canoe with ten savages
preceding them. About half a league from Akamsca, they were met by two
canoes full of Indians, the chief of whom presented his calumet, and
conducted them to the shore, where they were hospitably received and
supplied with provisions. Here they found a young man well acquainted
with the Illinois language, and through him Father Marquette addressed
the natives, making them the usual presents, and requesting information
from them respecting the sea. They answered, that it was within five
days' journey of Akamsca, that they knew nothing of the inhabitants on
its borders, being prevented by their enemies from holding intercourse
with these Europeans; that their knives and other weapons were purchased
partly from the eastern nations, and partly from a tribe of Illinois, to
the westward; that the armed savages whom the travellers had met, were
their enemies; that they were continually on the river between that
place and the sea; and that, if the voyagers proceeded further, great
danger might be apprehended from them. After this communication, food
was offered, and the rest of the day was spent in feasting.

These people were friendly and hospitable, but poor, although their
Indian corn produced three abundant crops in a year, which Father
Marquette saw in its different stages of growth. It was prepared for
food in pots, which, with plates and other utensils, were neatly made of
baked earth by the Indians. Their language was so very difficult, that
Father Marquette despaired of being able to pronounce a word of it.
Their climate in winter was rainy, but they had no snow, and the soil
was extremely fertile.

During the evening the old men held a secret council. Some of them
proposed to murder the strangers, and seize their effects. The chief,
however, overruled this advice, and, sending for Father Marquette and M.
Joliet, invited them to attend a dance of the calumet, which he
afterwards presented to them as a sign of peace.

The good Father and his companions began now to consider what further
course they should pursue. As it was supposed that the Gulf of Mexico
extended as far north as thirty-one degrees and forty minutes, they
believed themselves not to be more than two or three days' journey from
it,[136-23] and it appeared to them certain, that the Mississippi must
empty itself into that gulf, and not into the sea through Virginia, at
the eastward, because the coast of Virginia was in the latitude of
thirty-four degrees, at which they had already arrived; nor yet into the
Gulf of California, at the southwest, because they had found the course
of the river to be invariably south. Being thus persuaded that the main
object of their expedition was attained; and considering, moreover, that
they were unable to resist the armed savages, who infested the lower
parts of the river, and that, should they fall into the hands of the
Spaniards, the fruits of their voyage and discoveries would be lost,
they resolved to proceed no further, and, having informed the natives
of their determination and rested another day, they prepared for their

[Illustration: AT THE PORTAGE]

After a month's navigation on the Mississippi, having followed its
course from the forty-second to the thirty-fourth degree of latitude,
they left the village of Akamsca, on the 17th of July, to return up the
river. They retraced their way, slowly ascending the stream, until, in
about the thirty-eighth degree of latitude, they turned into another
river (Illinois), which abridged their route and brought them directly
to Lake _Illinois_ (Michigan). They were struck with the fertility of
the country through which that river flowed, the beauty of the forests
and prairies, the variety of the game, and the numerous small lakes and
streams which they saw. The river was broad and deep, and navigable for
sixty-five leagues, there being, in the season of spring and part of the
summer, only half a league of portage between its waters and those
flowing into Lake Illinois. On its banks they found a village, the
inhabitants of which received them kindly, and, on their departure,
extorted a promise from Father Marquette to return and instruct
them.[138-24] One of the chiefs, accompanied by the young men, conducted
them as far as the lake; whence they proceeded to the Bay of Puans,
where they arrived near the end of September, having been absent about
four months.[138-25]

[Illustration: ON THE MISSISSIPPI]

Such is the substance of Father Marquette's narrative; and the whole of
it accords so remarkably with the descriptions of subsequent travellers,
and with the actual features of the country through which he passed, as
to remove every doubt of its genuineness. The melancholy fate of the
author, which followed soon afterwards, was probably the reason why his
expedition was not in a more conspicuous manner brought before the

In addition to this narrative, nothing is known of Marquette, except
what is said of him by Charlevoix. After returning from this last
expedition, he took up his residence, and pursued the vocation of a
missionary, among the Miamis in the neighborhood of Chicago.[139-27]
While passing by water along the eastern shore of Lake Michigan towards
Michillimackinac, he entered a small river, on the 18th of May,
1675.[139-28] Having landed, he constructed an altar, performed mass,
and then retired a short distance into the wood, requesting the two men,
who had charge of his canoe, to leave him alone for half an hour. When
the time had elapsed, the men went to seek for him and found him dead.
They were greatly surprised, as they had not discovered any symptoms of
illness; but they remembered, that, when he was entering the river, he
expressed a presentiment that his voyage would end there. To this day
the river retains the name of _Marquette_. The place of his grave, near
its bank, is still pointed out to the traveller; but his remains were
removed the year after his death to Michillimackinac.[140-29]


[121-1] Jared Sparks was born in 1789, and was one of the most
industrious of our early historians, for he collected documents, edited
them, and wrote untiringly on American biography. Some of his work is
not considered very reliable, but he contributed a great deal of
valuable information in rather a pleasing way. This sketch of
Marquette's expedition is particularly interesting, as he followed so
closely the report of the great missionary.

[121-2] Father Marquette, the famous Jesuit explorer and missionary, was
born in France in 1637. He was sent as a missionary to Canada, and in
1668 founded the mission of Sault Sainte Marie. In 1673, when he was
ordered by Count Frontenac to join Joliet and find and explore the
Mississippi, he was in charge of a new mission at Mackinaw.

[123-3] "The joy that we felt at being selected for This Expedition
animated our Courage, and rendered the labor of paddling from morning to
night agreeable to us."--MARQUETTE.

[123-4] The wild rice people were the Menominees, who lived on the river
that now bears that name and which forms part of the boundary between
Wisconsin and Michigan. Father Marquette went out of his way to see
these friendly Indians, whose name Menominee means simply _wild rice_.

[123-5] This wild rice still grows in the streams and lakes of northern
Wisconsin and Michigan, still clogs the courses of the rivers and is
still gathered by the scattered Indians of that vicinity.

[124-6] The name _puans_ in French signifies _ill-smelling_.

[125-7] There are no bustards in North America. The writer probably saw
wild geese with the ducks.

[125-8] It is not known certainly where this village was located, but it
may have been near the present city of Berlin or Princeton.

[125-9] Father Allouez arrived at the Sault Sainte Marie in 1668, and
was engaged in missionary work between lakes Superior and Michigan. It
is probable that he had visited the Indians the year before.

[126-10] The Fox and Wisconsin river systems approach within a mile and
a half of each other at Portage, Wisconsin. The land is low and swampy,
and in flood times the current sometimes sets from one river into the
other. The government constructed a canal across this narrow divide,
which, you see. Marquette described and measured quite accurately.

[127-11] Marquette writes: "Thus we left the Waters flowing to Quebec,
four or five hundred leagues from here, to float on those that would
thenceforth take us through strange lands. Before embarking thereon, we
began all together a new devotion to the blessed Virgin Immaculate,
which we practiced daily, addressing to her special prayers to place
under her protection, both our persons and the success of our voyage;
and, after mutually encouraging one another, we entered our Canoes."

[127-12] Now, as then, the shifting sand bars make navigation of the
Wisconsin difficult and impracticable, although the government has spent
large sums of money in trying to improve it.

[127-13] The latitude Marquette gives is about right. 43° is practically

[127-14] "High mountains," as we now understand the phrase, is an
exaggerated term to apply to the bold bluffs about three or four hundred
feet high on the Iowa side of the Mississippi, south of McGregor.

[128-15] This is a little south of Savanna, Ill., if Marquette's
latitude is right.

[128-16] Sparks has not given us the whole of the famous journal. Among
other interesting things in this connection Marquette writes: "When we
cast our nets into the water we caught sturgeon, and a very
extraordinary kind of fish. It resembles the trout, with this
difference, that its mouth is larger. Near its nose--which is smaller,
as are also the eyes--is a large bone, shaped like a woman's
corset-bone, three fingers wide and a cubit long, at the end of which is
a disk as wide as one's hand. This frequently causes it to fall backward
when it leaps out of the water." This was the paddle fish, or spoonbill

[128-17] This was in about 41° latitude.

[130-18] The _calumet_ was a pipe that usually consisted of a bowl of
red stone and a long reed stem. In this the Indians smoked tobacco,
passing the pipe from one to another in token of peace and friendship.
To hold up the calumet was a signal of peace.

[131-19] These monsters Marquette further described thus: "They are as
large as a Calf, they have Horns on their heads like those of deer, a
horrible look, red eyes, a beard like a tiger's, a face somewhat like a
man's, a body covered with scales, and so long a tail that it winds all
around the body, passing above the head and going back between the legs,
ending in a fish's tail." These figures were on the face of a bluff near
Alton, Ill.

[132-20] What Father Marquette did not understand was, that the Missouri
brought the mud from far to the northwest and poured it into the clearer
waters of the Mississippi. The character of the rivers has not changed
in this respect.

[132-21] To us this seems a curious supposition, and Father Marquette
had little idea what it would mean to the hardy explorer who should go
up the Missouri, cross the mountains and find the head waters of the
Colorado. Trace such a route on a map of the United States, and read an
account of the Lewis and Clark Expedition.

[134-22] This was near the mouth of the Saint Francis River, in

[136-23] As a matter of fact, they were more than seven hundred miles
from the gulf.

[138-24] This village was called Kaskaskia, and was situated about seven
miles below the present city of Ottawa. There was another Kaskaskia to
the south and west that became more famous.

[138-25] This journey must have been about twenty-five hundred miles
long, and when we consider the smallness of the party, the frailty of
their two boats and the savage wildness of both the country and its
inhabitants, the accomplishment seems one of the greatest in the history
of American exploration.

[139-26] In this connection it is interesting to know that Joliet, who
was really the explorer in charge of the expedition, spent the winter
preparing a full report of his journey, which he illustrated with
carefully drawn maps, and in the spring started for Quebec with them. In
passing through La Chine Rapids his canoe was wrecked, and Joliet barely
escaped with his life. His precious reports and maps were lost in the
rushing waters. Father Marquette's comparatively brief journal and his
map form the only original records of the expedition, and they are
preserved at St. Mary's College, Montreal. The humble priest who sought
only to carry his religion to the savages becomes the historian, while
the ambitious explorer is hardly remembered in connection with the
wonderful journey.

[139-27] Always delicate, his health was grievously broken by his severe
labors and privation, and his efforts to keep his promise to the
Illinois were attended by terrible sufferings. The winter was passed in
a bleak hut, and on his return journey he was not able to walk much of
the time.

[139-28] This river was the one on which the city of Ludington,
Michigan, is now built.

[140-29] The final resting place of the bones of Marquette is the little
village of Saint Agnace, in the mainland of the northern peninsula of
Michigan, west of Mackinac Island. A simple monument in the midst of a
little park marks his grave.



Texas began its struggle for independence from Mexico in September,
1835, driven to it by the fact that under the rule of the new republic
their treatment was little better than it had been while Mexico herself
was under the Spanish control. No sooner, however, had the Texans
declared their independence than General Cos led a large detachment into
the state and determined to drive out of it those Americans who had
settled there. The Mexican general met with so fierce a resistance that
he was compelled to take refuge behind the walls of the Alamo in San
Antonio de Bexar.[141-1] He had seventeen hundred men, but in spite of
this fact the two hundred and sixteen Texans under General Burlison
stormed the place, captured the Mexican general and sent him under
parole to his brother-in-law, the famous Santa Ana.[141-2]

A garrison of about a hundred and sixty men under the joint command of
Colonel Travis[142-3] and Colonel Bowie[142-4] was in the Alamo in
February of 1836. About this time there came to the Alamo David
Crockett[142-5] of Tennessee, a famous hunter, warrior and politician,
who had already represented his district in Congress, where he
distinguished himself by his rough and powerful oratory.

On the afternoon of February 22nd, a large force of Mexicans under
General Santa Ana arrived at San Antonio, and the next morning demanded
an unconditional surrender of the fort and its garrison. Although the
Texans were taken almost completely by surprise, Travis answered the
demand with a cannon shot, and the Mexicans raised the red flag which
signified "no quarter."

The next morning the following proclamation was issued by Colonel

  "To the people of Texas and
    all Americans of the world.
            "Commandancy of the Alamo, Bexar,
                        "February 24, 1836.

"Fellow Citizens and Compatriots,--I am besieged by a thousand or more
of the Mexicans under Santa Ana. I have sustained a continued
bombardment and cannonade for twenty-four hours and have not lost a man.
The enemy have demanded a surrender at discretion; otherwise the
garrison is to be put to the sword if the fort is taken. I have answered
the summons with a cannon shot, and our flag still waves proudly from
the walls. I shall never surrender or retreat. Then I call on you in the
name of liberty, patriotism, and everything dear to the American
character, to come to our aid with all despatch. The enemy are receiving
reënforcements daily, and will no doubt increase to three or four
thousand in four or five days. Though this call may be neglected, I am
determined to sustain myself as long as possible, and die like a soldier
who never forgets what is due to his own honour and that of his country.
Victory or death!

  "(Signed) W. BARRETT TRAVIS,
          "Lieut.-Col. Com't."

When the Mexicans were first seen in San Antonio the defenders of the
Alamo were thrown into a panic, for no one dreamed that enemies were in
the vicinity; yet no one of the hardy garrison thought of flight, and
after the first surprise was over, order was quickly restored and
everything put in readiness for a bitter contest. The possible conflict
of authority between Colonel Bowie and Colonel Travis was prevented by
the fact that the former had been stricken with pneumonia and was lying
in the hospital, a very sick man.

It was soon found that the siege lines of the enemy were not so close
but that messengers might be sent through. One or two privates were
despatched to bring assistance, but none succeeded in doing so. On the
twenty-ninth of February it was resolved to send Captain Seguin, who
spoke Spanish fluently, and who might by his own personal influence
accomplish what the simple messages alone seemed unable to do. Seguin
had no horse of his own, so he went to Colonel Bowie and borrowed his
equipment, though the latter was so ill that he scarcely recognized the
man who made the request. After a perilous ride, in which they were
fired upon by the Mexicans, Seguin and his single aid succeeded in
reaching the camp of volunteers which was forming at Gonzales. Here he
induced thirty-six men to leave the camp and proceed to the Alamo, which
they entered, thus raising the number of defenders to about a hundred
and ninety. On the third of March,[144-6] Travis sent another courier
with a letter to his governor. In this he stated the situation calmly,
urged him to assist him, and closed with the following words: "The
bearer of this will give your honorable body a statement more in detail,
should he escape through the enemies' lines. _God and Texas! Victory or

For about ten days Travis held the little fort under a storm of cannon
balls, which really were more alarming than destructive, for few, if
any, of the defenders were killed or wounded. Travis felt that they had
been almost miraculously preserved, and in all the hardy company was
born a feeling that they could not lose in this terribly one-sided
contest. Every day they looked to the northward, hoping to see relief
coming, and every night turned in disappointment to the little rest that
was allowed them. They fought manfully, wasting no ammunition and making
every shot count. Until the final assault, the execution done by the
guns was overwhelmingly in favor of the Texans.

The Mexicans had fixed on the morning of the sixth of March for the
final assault. Their infantry met, between midnight and dawn, at
convenient distances from the fort, in four columns. To each column was
assigned a commanding officer with a second to take his place in case
the first was disabled. Some of the columns were provided with scaling
ladders, axes and other implements by which they might mount the wall or
open breaches in it. The cavalry was stationed at different points
surrounding the fort, so that they would be able to cut off any
fugitives who might escape from the fort. The attack was probably led by
General Castrillon, a Spaniard, who had already had a brilliant military


It is not thought that Santa Ana engaged personally in the assault, as
it is known that before the advance was made, he was stationed with
several bands of music and a batterv about five hundred yards south of
the Alamo, and that from this point he gave the bugle-signal for the
advance. At double-quick time the columns advanced simultaneously
against the little fort, one rushing through a breach which had already
been made in the walls at the north, a second storming the chapel and a
third scaling the west barrier.

General Cos, who had been captured by the Texans the year before and who
was released on parole, broke his word of honor and led the storming
column against the chapel. All this had been so planned that the several
columns should reach the walls of the fort just as the coming dawn gave
light enough to guide their movements. When the hour came, the bugle
sounded, and the Mexicans, maddened by their losses and determined to
avenge themselves on this courageous little troop, rushed forward to the
walls while their bands played the assassin music that signified "no

It is difficult to give an orderly account of the conflict which
followed, but some incidents stand out boldly. General Cos was repulsed
from the chapel, and the column which attacked the north wall was badly
cut before it succeeded in making an entrance. Here at the breach they
met Colonel Travis in person, and here after the action he was found
dead with a bullet hole through his head, and by his side a Mexican
officer pierced to the heart by a sword still held in the hand of the
dead Texan. On the west side the walls were scaled, and after bitter
fighting the garrison, driven from the outer defenses, took refuge in
the low barracks and other buildings, where, being more united, they
could fight to better advantage. However, there was no easy means of
communication between the buildings, and thus the surviving Texans soon
were broken up into small groups, fighting desperately against the
overwhelming numbers of the Mexicans. There was no need of leadership,
however, or of direction from officers. The Mexicans purposed to allow
no quarter, and nothing remained for the Texans except that each man
should fight to the last, doing as great execution as he could before
finally falling under the weight of numbers.


Again and again the enemy charged upon the little buildings, while from
the windows and loop-holes the crack of rifles and the whiz of bullets
showed that the living defenders were still active. It is not
exaggerating to say that the assailants fell in heaps, for around each
little building and before the long barracks the carnage was dreadful.
One by one, however, the buildings were carried at the point of the
bayonet, and the little groups of Texans broken up and destroyed.

The last point to yield was the chapel, which seems to have been held by
a somewhat larger force than any of the other buildings. However, after
the parade grounds were cleared and the other companies destroyed, it
was possible to burn the most of the fort and thus batter it down and
kill its brave defenders.

It is said that toward the close of the struggle in the chapel,
Lieutenant Dickinson was seen to leap from one of the windows with a
small child in his arms, and that both were shot as they leaped. This
was perhaps the last act in the great tragedy, for if any were alive in
the chapel after the lieutenant made his attempted escape, they were
quickly bayonetted where they stood.

With the dead and dying strewn around, Santa Ana entered the fort. What
he saw there, we cannot attempt to describe, but a few things we must
mention. In his own room they found Colonel Bowie dead in his bed, where
he had lain too sick to rise; but he had had strength to use his
weapons, for four Mexicans had fallen, shot to death in the room, while
a fifth lay across the bed with the Colonel's terrible knife sticking in
his heart. Near the door of the magazine it is said that they found
Major Evans, the master of ordnance, shot down with a burning match in
his hand, before he could fire the powder and blow the fort and his
enemies into the air.


Upon a high platform in one corner, there was a small cannon which was
turned upon the Mexicans in the fort and did terrible execution. Who
handled it is not exactly known, but near it were found the bodies of
David Crockett and five of his companions. It is said, though possibly
without much foundation, that when Santa Ana stepped into the courtyard
he found Crockett and his companions still fighting.

Concealed in one of the rooms under some mattresses, five men were
found, and under a bridge crossing an irrigating ditch another was
discovered. All these were immediately shot by the orders of Santa Ana,
and so hastily and excitedly was it all done that a Mexican was killed
with them by accident. The wife of Lieutenant Dickinson, a negro servant
of Travis, and a few Mexican women were the only human beings whose
lives were spared.

Thus fell the Alamo. In thinking of this bloody tragedy, we must
remember that these were simple citizens, bound together by no tie save
their affection for one another and their loyalty to a state of whose
independence they were as yet ignorant, for though Texas was then the
"Lone Star State," no intimation of the Texas declaration of
independence had reached Travis or his devoted followers. According to
the report of General Santa Ana, the action lasted but thirty minutes
from the time the enemy entered the walls till the resistance was
completely quelled.

So many false reports have been made of the number engaged in this
struggle that it is impossible even now to tell definitely. We do know
that the number of Texans was less than two hundred, and it is probable
that about twenty-five hundred Mexicans were engaged in the assault. All
the Texans were killed, and from the various accounts we are led to
infer that about five hundred Mexicans fell, a number which shows that
the defense of the Texans was indeed fierce and bloody.

The history of our country does not show any incident of greater bravery
or more heroic self-sacrifice, and it is hardly to be conceived that
such a defense will ever be excelled. This was no disciplined force
fighting under trained officers, but a group of simple, manly men, not
agreeing in all things, but united with the one idea of fighting against
cruelty and oppression.

On the Capitol grounds at Austin, Texas, a monument was erected in 1891
to the heroes of the Alamo. On it is this inscription:

    "Thermopylæ had her messenger of defeat:
    The Alamo had none."


[141-1] At this time San Antonio had a population of about seven
thousand Mexicans, a small proportion of whom were favorable to the
Texan cause. The majority had no particular leaning toward either side,
but were willing to make the best terms they could. The San Antonio
River separated the town from the Alamo village and fort, or mission, as
it was originally called. The Alamo proper was a stone structure built
during the first settlement of that locality by the Spaniards, who
intended it as a refuge for the colonists in case of attacks by the
hostile Indians. A wall two and a half feet thick and eight feet high
surrounded the stone structure and enclosed an area of two or three
acres. It wras so large that it could not have been properly garrisoned
by less than a thousand men, and the walls were not thick enough to make
it a strong fortification.

[141-2] Santa Ana was one of the most famous of Mexican soldiers and
politicians. He was prominent as a leader in the expulsion of the
Spaniards, and finally became president of the republic. When Texas
seceded, he advanced into that territory, but after his victory at the
Alamo was decisively defeated and captured at San Jacinto by General
Houston. After he had recognized the independence of Texas, he was
released, and twice afterwards he served as president of Mexico.

During our war with that country, the Mexicans under his command were
several times defeated, and Santa Ana resigned his commission. In 1853
he was for the last time made president, but before his term expired he
was for a third time driven from his country in disgrace.

[142-3] William B. Travis, after serving as a scout, had been appointed
lieutenant-colonel and sent by the Texan governor to relieve Colonel
Neill at the Alamo. The volunteers there were not willing to accept
Travis as higher than second in command, but wished to elect their own
colonel. In response to this feeling, Neill issued an order for the
election of a lieutenant-colonel, and was about to make his departure,
but the Texans seeing his purpose resented it and threatened Neill's
life unless he yielded to their demands. Accordingly, under his
direction James Bowie was elected full colonel, and when Travis reached
the garrison he found Bowie in full command. Travis brought with him a
company of regular recruits, but it was evident that trouble might soon
arise between the rival commanders.

[142-4] This Colonel Jas. Bowie had been a popular leader of the Texans,
and had already defeated a large Mexican force. It is said that in one
of his battles he broke his sword, but fought so desperately and
successfully with the stump that afterwards he designed from the broken
blade the terrible knife, which was known during the Mexican War and the
Rebellion as the "Bowie knife."

[142-5] David Crockett is so interesting a character that a longer
account of him is given on page 29 of this volume.

[144-6] The people of Texas assembled in a general convention at
Washington on the Brazos River, and issued their declaration of
independence from Mexico on the second of March, 1836. That same day,
General Sam Houston called attention to the perilous position of the
garrison at the Alamo, saying, "Independence is declared; it must be
maintained. Immediate action united with valor alone can achieve the
great work." This "immediate action" was too late for the brave men in
the Alamo.




     NOTE.--The Alhambra is now a beautiful ruin, but at one time it was
     the great fortified palace of the Moors and the place where they
     made their last stand against the Christian Spaniards. From its
     beautiful courts the Moorish defenders were at last driven, and
     with their departure the Mohammedan faith ceased as a power in

     The palace occupied but a portion of the space within the walls of
     the fortress, which in the time of the Moors was capable of
     containing an army of forty thousand men.

     After the kingdom had passed into the hands of the Christians, the
     castle was occasionally inhabited by the Castilian monarchs. Early
     in the eighteenth century, however, it was abandoned as a court
     residence, its beautiful walls became desolate, and some of them
     fell to ruin, the gardens were destroyed, and the fountains ceased
     to play.

     In 1829 Washington Irving lived for some time within the walls of
     the Alhambra and studied its history and the legends of Spain.
     These he has embodied in a charming book, from which we draw a
     description of the Alhambra.

We now found ourselves in a deep, narrow ravine, filled with beautiful
groves, with a steep avenue and various footpaths winding through it,
bordered with stone seats and ornamented with fountains. To our left, we
beheld the towers of the Alhambra beetling above us; to our right, on
the opposite side of the ravine, we were equally dominated by rival
towers on a rocky eminence. These, we were told, were the Torres
Vermejos, or Vermilion towers, so called from their ruddy hue. No one
knows their origin. They are of a date much anterior to the Alhambra.
Some suppose them to have been built by the Romans; others, by some
wandering colony of Phoenicians. Ascending the steep and shady avenue,
we arrived at the foot of a huge square Moorish tower, forming a kind
of barbican, through which passed the main entrance to the fortress.
This portal is called the Gate of Justice, from the tribunal held within
its porch during the Moslem domination, for the immediate trial of petty
causes; a custom common to the Oriental nations, and occasionally
alluded to in the sacred Scriptures.

[Illustration: THE GATE OF JUSTICE]

The great vestibule, or porch of the gate, is formed by an immense
Arabian arch of the horseshoe form, which springs to half the height of
the tower. On the keystone of this arch is engraven a gigantic hand.
Within the vestibule, on the keystone of the portal, is engraven, in
like manner, a gigantic key. Those who pretend to some knowledge of
Mohammedan symbols affirm that the hand is the emblem of doctrine, and
the key of faith; the latter, they add, was emblazoned on the standard
of the Moslems when they subdued Andalusia, in opposition to the
Christian emblem of the cross.

It was a tradition handed down from the oldest inhabitants, and which
our informant had from his grandfather, that the hand and key were
magical devices on which the fate of the Alhambra depended. The Moorish
king who built it was a great magician, and, as some believed, had sold
himself to the devil, and had laid the whole fortress under a magic
spell. By this means it had remained standing for several hundred years,
in defiance of storms and earthquakes, while almost all the other
buildings of the Moors had fallen to ruin and disappeared. The spell,
the tradition went on to say, would last until the hand on the outer
arch should reach down and grasp the key, when the whole pile would
tumble to pieces, and all the treasures buried beneath it by the Moors
would be revealed.

After passing through the barbican we ascended a narrow lane, winding
between walls, and came on an open esplanade within the fortress, called
the Plaza de los Algibes, or Place of the Cisterns, from great
reservoirs which undermine it, cut in the living rock by the Moors, for
the supply of the fortress. Here, also, is a well of immense depth,
furnishing the purest and coldest of water, another monument of the
delicate taste of the Moors, who were indefatigable in their exertions
to obtain that element in its crystal purity.

In front of the esplanade is the splendid pile commenced by Charles V,
intended, it is said, to eclipse the residence of the Moslem kings. With
all its grandeur and architectural merit, it appeared to us like an
arrogant intrusion, and passing by it we entered a simple,
unostentatious portal, opening into the interior of the Moorish palace.

The transition was almost magical; it seemed as if we were at once
transported into other times and another realm, and were treading the
scenes of Arabian story. We found ourselves in a great court paved with
white marble and decorated at each end with light Moorish peristyles. It
is called the court of the Alberca. In the center was an immense basin,
or fish-pool, a hundred and thirty feet in length by thirty in breadth,
stocked with goldfish, and bordered by hedges of roses. At the upper end
of this court rose the great tower of Comares.

From the lower end, we passed through a Moorish archway into the
renowned Court of Lions. There is no part of the edifice that gives us a
more complete idea of its original beauty and magnificence than this;
for none has suffered so little from the ravages of time. In the center
stands the fountain famous in song and story. The alabaster basins still
shed their diamond drops, and the twelve lions which support them cast
forth their crystal streams as in the days of Boabdil. The court is laid
out in flower-beds, and surrounded by light Arabian arcades of open
filigree work, supported by slender pillars of white marble.

[Illustration: THE COURT OF LIONS]

The architecture, like that of all the other parts of the palace, is
characterized by elegance rather than grandeur, bespeaking a delicate
and graceful taste, and a disposition to indolent enjoyment. When we
look upon the fairy tracery of the peristyles and the apparently fragile
fretwork of the walls, it is difficult to believe that so much has
survived the wear and tear of centuries, the shocks of earthquakes, the
violence of war, and the quiet, though no less baneful, pilferings of
the tasteful traveler. It is almost sufficient to excuse the popular
tradition that the whole is protected by a magic charm.

On one side of the court a portal richly adorned opens into a lofty hall
paved with white marble, and called the Hall of the Two Sisters. A
cupola or lantern admits a tempered light from above, and a free
circulation of air. The lower part of the walls is incrusted with
beautiful Moorish tiles, on some of which are emblazoned the escutcheons
of the Moorish monarchs: the upper part is faced with the fine stucco
work invented at Damascus, consisting of large plates cast in molds and
artfully joined, so as to have the appearance of having been laboriously
sculptured by the hand into light relievos and fanciful arabesques,
intermingled with texts of the Koran, and poetical inscriptions in
Arabian and Celtic characters. These decorations of the walls and
cupolas are richly gilded, and the interstices paneled with lapis lazuli
and other brilliant and enduring colors. Above an inner porch is a
balcony which communicated with the women's apartment. The latticed
balconies still remain, from whence the dark-eyed beauties of the harem
might gaze unseen upon the entertainments of the hall below.

It is impossible to contemplate this once favorite abode of Oriental
manners without feeling the early associations of Arabian romance, and
almost expecting to see the white arm of some mysterious princess
beckoning from the balcony, or some dark eye sparkling through the
lattice. The abode of beauty is here, as if it had been inhabited but
yesterday--but where are the Zoraydas and Linderaxas!

On the opposite side of the Court of Lions is the hall of the
Abencerrages, so called from the gallant cavaliers of that illustrious
line, who were here perfidiously massacred. There are some who doubt the
whole truth of this story, but our humble attendant, Mateo, pointed out
the very wicket of the portal through which they are said to have been
introduced, one by one, and the white marble fountain in the center of
the hall, where they were beheaded. He showed us also certain broad,
ruddy stains in the pavement, traces of their blood, which, according to
popular belief, can never be effaced. Finding we listened to him with
easy faith, he added that there was often heard at night, in the Court
of the Lions, a low, confused sound, resembling the murmurings of a
multitude; with now and then a faint tinkling, like the distant clank of
chains. These noises are probably produced by the bubbling currents and
tinkling falls of water, conducted under the pavement through the pipes
and channels to supply the fountains; but according to the legend of the
son of the Alhambra, they are made by the spirits of the murdered
Abencerrages, who nightly haunt the scene of their suffering, and invoke
the vengeance of Heaven on their destroyer.


From the Court of Lions we retraced our steps through the court of the
Alberca, or great fish-pool, crossing which, we proceeded to the tower
of Comares, so called from the name of the Arabian architect. It is of
massive strength and lofty height, domineering over the rest of the
edifice and overhanging the steep hillside, which descends abruptly to
the banks of the Darro. A Moorish archway admitted us into a vast and
lofty hall, which occupies the interior of the tower and was the grand
audience chamber of the Moslem monarchs, thence called the hall of
Ambassadors. It still bears the traces of past magnificence. The walls
are richly stuccoed and decorated with arabesques, the vaulted ceilings
of cedar wood, almost lost in obscurity from its height, still gleam
with rich gilding and the brilliant tints of the Arabian pencil. On
three sides of the saloon are deep windows, cut through the immense
thickness of the walls, the balconies of which look down upon the
verdant valley of the Darro, the streets and convents of the Albaycin,
and command a prospect of the distant Vega. I might go on to describe
the other delightful apartments of this side of the palace; the Tocador
or toilet of the Queen, an open belvedere on the summit of the tower,
where the Moorish sultanas enjoyed the pure breezes from the mountain
and the prospect of the surrounding paradise; the secluded little patio
or garden of Lindaraxa, with its alabaster fountain, its thickets of
roses and myrtles, of citrons and oranges; the cool halls and grottoes
of the baths, where the glare and heat of the day are tempered into a
self-mysterious light and a pervading freshness.

An abundant supply of water, brought from the mountains by old Moorish
aqueducts, circulates throughout the palace, supplying its baths and
fish-pools, sparkling in jets within its halls, or murmuring in channels
along the marble pavements. When it has paid its tribute to the royal
pile, and visited its gardens and pastures, it flows down the long
avenue leading to the city, trinkling in rills, gushing in fountains,
and maintaining a perpetual verdure in those groves that embower and
beautify the whole hill of the Alhambra.

While the city below pants with the noon-tide heat, and the parched Vega
trembles to the eye, the delicate airs from the Sierra Nevada play
through the lofty halls, bringing with them the sweetness of the
surrounding gardens. Everything invites to that indolent repose, the
bliss of Southern climes; and while the half-shut eyes look out from
shaded balconies upon the glittering landscape, the ear is lulled by the
rustling of groves and the murmur of running streams.

The reader has had a sketch of the interior of the Alhambra, and may be
desirous of a general idea of its vicinity. The morning is serene and
lovely; the sun has not gained sufficient power to destroy the freshness
of the night; we will mount to the summit of the tower of Comares, and
take a bird's-eye view of Granada and its environs.

Come, then, worthy reader and comrade, follow my steps into this
vestibule ornamented with rich tracery, which opens to the hall of
Ambassadors. We will not enter the hall, however, but turn to the left,
to this small door, opening in the wall. Have a care! here are steep
winding steps and but scanty light. Yet, up this narrow, obscure and
winding staircase the proud monarchs of Granada and their queens have
often ascended to the battlements of the tower to watch the approach of
Christian armies or to gaze on the battles in the Vega. At length we are
upon the terraced roof, and may take breath for a moment, while we cast
a general eye over the splendid panorama of city and country, of rocky
mountain, verdant valley and fertile plain; of castle, cathedral,
Moorish towers and Gothic domes, crumbling ruins and blooming groves.

Let us approach the battlements and cast our eyes immediately below.
See--on this side we have the whole plan of the Alhambra laid open to
us, and can look down into its courts and gardens. At the foot of the
tower is the Court of the Alberca with its great tank or fish-pool
bordered with flowers; and yonder is the Court of Lions, with its famous
fountain, and its light Moorish arcades; and in the center of the pile
is the little garden of Lindaraxa, buried in the heart of the building,
with its roses and citrons and shrubbery of emerald green.

That belt of battlements studded with square towers, straggling round
the whole brow of the hill, is the outer boundary of the fortress. Some
of the towers, you may perceive, are in ruins, and their massive
fragments are buried among vines, fig-trees and aloes.

Let us look on this northern side of the tower. It is a giddy height;
the very foundations of the tower rise above the groves of the steep
hillside. And see, a long fissure in the massive walls shows that the
tower has been rent by some of the earthquakes which from time to time
have thrown Granada into consternation; and which, sooner or later, must
reduce this crumbling pile to a mere mass of ruin. The deep, narrow glen
below us, which gradually widens as it opens from the mountains, is the
valley of the Darro; you see the little river winding its way under
embowered terraces and among orchards and flower gardens. It is a stream
famous in old times for yielding gold, and its sands are still sifted
occasionally in search of the precious ore. Some of those white
pavilions which here and there gleam from among groves and vineyards
were rustic retreats of the Moors, to enjoy the refreshment of their

The airy palace with its tall white towers and long arcades, which
breast yon mountain, among pompous groves and hanging gardens, is the
Generaliffe, a summer palace of the Moorish kings, to which they
resorted during the sultry months, to enjoy a still more breezy region
than that of the Alhambra. The naked summit of the height above it,
where you behold some shapeless ruins, is the Silla del Moro, or seat of
the Moor; so called from having been a retreat of the unfortunate
Boabdil during the time of an insurrection, where he seated himself and
looked down mournfully upon his rebellious city.

A murmuring sound of water now and then rises from the valley. It is
from the aqueduct of yon Moorish mill nearly at the foot of the hill.
The avenue of trees beyond is the Alameda along the bank of the Darro, a
favorite resort in evenings, and a rendezvous of lovers in the summer
nights, when the guitar may be heard at a late hour from the benches
along its walks. At present there are but a few loitering monks to be
seen there, and a group of water carriers from the fountain of

You start! 'Tis nothing but a hawk we have frightened from his nest.
This old tower is a complete brooding-place for vagrant birds. The
swallow and martlet abound in every chink and cranny, and circle about
it the whole day long; while at night, when all other birds have gone to
rest, the moping owl comes out of its lurking place and utters its
boding cry from the battlements. See how the hawk we have dislodged
sweeps away below us, skimming over the tops of the trees, and sailing
up to ruins above the Generaliffe.

Let us leave this side of the tower and turn our eyes to the west. Here
you behold in the distance a range of mountains bounding the Vega, the
ancient barrier between Moslem Granada and the land of the Christians.
Among the heights you may still discern warrior towns, whose gray walls
and battlements seem of a piece with the rocks on which they are built;
while here and there is a solitary atalaya or watch-tower, mounted on
some lofty point, and looking down as if it were from the sky, into the
valleys on either side. It was down the defiles of these mountains, by
the pass of Lope, that the Christian armies descended into the Vega. It
was round the base of yon gray and naked mountain, almost insulated from
the rest, and stretching its bald, rocky promontory into the bosom of
the plain, that the invading squadrons would come bursting into view,
with flaunting banners and the clangor of drums and trumpets. How
changed is the scene! Instead of the glittering line of mailed warriors,
we behold the patient train of the toilful muleteer, slowly moving along
the skirts of the mountain.

Behind that promontory is the eventful bridge of Pinos, renowned for
many a bloody strife between Moors and Christians; but still more
renowned as being the place where Columbus was overtaken and called back
by the messenger of Queen Isabella just as he was departing in despair
to carry his project of discovery to the court of France.

Behold another place famous in the history of the discoverer; yon line
of walls and towers, gleaming in the morning sun in the very center of
the Vega; the city of Santa Fe, built by the Catholic sovereigns during
the siege of Granada, after a conflagration had destroyed their camp. It
was to these walls that Columbus was called back by the heroic queen,
and within them the treaty was concluded that led to the discovery of
the Western World.

Here, toward the south, the eye revels on the luxuriant beauties of the
Vega, a blooming wilderness of grove and garden, and teeming orchards,
with the Xenil winding through it in silver links and feeding
innumerable rills, conducted through ancient Moorish channels, which
maintain the landscape in perpetual verdure. Here are the beloved bowers
and gardens and rural retreats for which the Moors fought with such
desperate valor.

Beyond the embowered region of the Vega you behold, to the south, a line
of arid hills down which a long train of mules is slowly moving. It was
from the summit of one of those hills that the unfortunate Boabdil cast
back his last look upon Granada and gave vent to the agony of his soul.
It is the spot famous in song and story, "The last sigh of the Moor."

Now raise your eyes to the snowy summit of yon pile of mountains,
shining like a white summer cloud on the blue sky. It is the Sierra
Nevada, the pride and delight of Granada; the source of her cooling
breezes and perpetual verdure, of her gushing fountains and perennial
streams. It is this glorious pile of mountains that gives to Granada
that combination of delights so rare in a southern city: the fresh
vegetation and the temperate airs of a northern climate, with the
vivifying ardor of a tropical sun, and the cloudless azure of a southern
sky. It is this aërial treasury of snow, which, melting in proportion to
the increase of the summer heat, sends down rivulets and streams through
every glen and gorge of the Alpuxarras, diffusing emerald verdure and
fertility throughout a chain of happy and sequestered valleys.

These mountains may well be called the glory of Granada. They dominate
the whole extent of Andalusia, and may be seen from its most distant
parts. The muleteer hails them as he views their frosty peaks from the
sultry level of the plain; and the Spanish mariner on the deck of his
bark, far, far off on the bosom of the blue Mediterranean, watches them
with a pensive eye, thinks of delightful Granada, and chants in low
voice some old romance about the Moors.

But enough, the sun is high above the mountains, and is pouring his full
fervor upon our heads. Already the terraced roof of the town is hot
beneath our feet; let us abandon it, and descend and refresh ourselves
under the arcades by the fountain of the Lions.



     NOTE.--This poem of Browning's furnishes its own historical
     setting; it gives date and places and names. All, in fact, that it
     does not tell us is that the battle at Cape la Hogue was a part of
     the struggle between England and France undertaken because Louis
     XIV of France would not acknowledge William III as king of England.

     The poem is written in characteristic Browning style. You have read
     in the earlier volumes _An Incident of the French Camp_, _How They
     Brought the Good News from Ghent to Aix_, and _the Pied Piper of
     Hamelin_, and are therefore familiar with Browning's custom of
     leaving out words, using odd, informal words which another man
     might think out of place in poetry, and employing strange,
     sometimes jerky, meters.

    On the sea and at the Hogue, sixteen hundred ninety-two,
    Did the English fight the French--woe to France!
    And, the thirty-first of May, helter-skelter thro' the blue,
    Like a crowd of frightened porpoises a shoal of sharks pursue,
      Came crowding ship on ship to Saint Malo on the Rance,
    With the English fleet in view.

    'Twas the squadron that escaped, with the victor in full chase;
      First and foremost of the drove, in his great ship, Damfreville;
      Close on him fled, great and small,
      Twenty-two good ships in all;
    And they signalled to the place,
    "Help the winners of a race!
      Get us guidance, give us harbor, take us quick or, quicker still,
      Here's the English can and will!"

    Then the pilots of the place put out brisk and leapt on board;
      "Why, what hope or chance have ships like these to pass?" laughed
    "Rocks to starboard, rocks to port, all the passage scarred and scored,
    Shall the 'Formidable' here with her twelve and eighty guns
      Think to make the river-mouth by the single narrow way,
    Trust to enter where 'tis ticklish for a craft of twenty tons,
      And with flow at full beside?
      Now, 'tis slackest ebb of tide.
      Reach the mooring? Rather say,
    While rock stands or water runs,
    Not a ship will leave the bay!"

    Then was called a council straight.
    Brief and bitter the debate:
    "Here's the English at our heels; would you have them take in tow
    All that's left us of the fleet, linked together stern and bow,
    For a prize to Plymouth Sound?
    Better run the ships aground!"
      (Ended Damfreville his speech).
    Not a minute more to wait!
      "Let the Captains all and each
      Shove ashore, then blow up, burn the vessels on the beach!
    France must undergo her fate.

    Give the word!" But no such word
    Was ever spoke or heard;
      For up stood, for out stepped, for in struck amid all these--
    A captain? A lieutenant? A mate--first, second, third?
      No such man of mark, and meet
      With his betters to compete!
      But a simple Breton sailor pressed by Tourville for the fleet,
    A poor coasting-pilot he, Hervé Riel the Croisickese.

    And, "What mockery or malice have we here?" cries Hervé Riel:
      "Are you mad, you Malouins? Are you cowards, fools, or rogues?
    Talk to me of rocks and shoals, me who took the soundings, tell
    On my fingers every bank, every shallow, every swell
      'Twixt the offing here and Grève where the river disembogues?
    Are you bought by English gold? Is it love the lying's for?
      Morn and eve, night and day,
      Have I piloted your bay,
    Entered free and anchored fast at the foot of Solidor.
      Burn the fleet and ruin France? That were worse than fifty Hogues!
      Sirs, they know I speak the truth! Sirs, believe me there's a way!
    Only let me lead the line,
      Have the biggest ship to steer,
      Get this 'Formidable' clear,
    Make the others follow mine,
    And I lead them, most and least, by a passage I know well,
      Right to Solidor past Grève,
        And there lay them safe and sound;
      And if one ship misbehave,
      Keel so much as grate the ground,
    Why, I've nothing but my life--here's my head!" cries Hervé Riel.

    [Illustration: THEY FOLLOW IN A FLOCK]

    Not a minute more to wait.
    "Steer us in, then, small and great!
      Take the helm, lead the line, save the squadron!" cried its chief.
    Captains, give the sailor place!
      He is Admiral, in brief.
    Still the north-wind, by God's grace!
    See the noble fellow's face,
    As the big ship with a bound,
    Clears the entry like a hound,
    Keeps the passage as its inch of way were the wide sea's profound!
      See, safe thro' shoal and rock,
      How they follow in a flock,
    Not a ship that misbehaves, not a keel that grates the ground.
      Not a spar that comes to grief!
    The peril, see, is past,
    All are harbored to the last,
    And just as Hervé Riel hollas "Anchor!"--sure as fate
    Up the English come, too late!

    So, the storm subsides to calm:
      They see the green trees wave
      On the heights o'erlooking Grève.
    Hearts that bled are stanched with balm.
    "Just our rapture to enhance,
      Let the English rake the bay,
    Gnash their teeth and glare askance,
      As they cannonade away!
    'Neath rampired Solidor pleasant riding on the Rance!"
    How hope succeeds despair on each captain's countenance!
    Out burst all with one accord,
      "This is Paradise for Hell!
        Let France, let France's King
        Thank the man that did the thing!"
    What a shout, and all one word,
        "Hervé Riel!"
    As he stepped in front once more,
      Not a symptom of surprise
      In the frank blue Breton eyes,
    Just the same man as before.

    Then said Damfreville, "My friend,
    I must speak out at the end,
      Though I find the speaking hard.
    Praise is deeper than the lips:
    You have saved the King his ships,
      You must name your own reward.
    'Faith our sun was near eclipse!
    Demand whate'er you will,
    France remains your debtor still.
    Ask to heart's content and have! or my name's not Damfreville."

    Then a beam of fun outbroke
    On the bearded mouth that spoke,
    As the honest heart laughed through
    Those frank eyes of Breton blue:
    "Since I needs must say my say,
      Since on board the duty's done,
      And from Malo Roads to Croisic Point, what is it but a run?--
    Since 'tis ask and have, I may--
      Since the others go ashore--
    Come! A good whole holiday!
      Leave to go and see my wife, whom I call the Belle Aurore!"
    That he asked and that he got--nothing more.

    Name and deed alike are lost:
    Not a pillar nor a post
      In his Croisic keeps alive the feat as it befell;
    Not a head in white and black
    On a single fishing smack,
    In memory of the man but for whom had gone to wrack
      All that France saved from the fight whence England bore the bell.
    Go to Paris: rank on rank
      Search the heroes flung pell-mell
    On the Louvre, face and flank!
      You shall look long enough ere you come to Hervé Riel.
    So, for better and for worse,
    Hervé Riel, accept my verse!
    In my verse, Hervé Riel, do thou once more
    Save the squadron, honor France, love thy wife, the Belle Aurore!




    There was a sound of revelry by night,
      And Belgium's capital had gathered then
      Her Beauty and her Chivalry, and bright
      The lamps shone o'er fair women and brave men;
      A thousand hearts beat happily; and when
      Music arose with its voluptuous swell,
      Soft eyes looked love to eyes which spake again,
      And all went merry as a marriage bell;
    But hush! hark! a deep sound strikes like a rising knell!

      Did ye not hear it?--No; 'twas but the wind,
      Or the car rattling o'er the stony street;
      On with the dance! let joy be unconfined;
    No sleep till morn, when Youth and Pleasure meet
      To chase the glowing Hours with flying feet--
      But, hark!--that heavy sound breaks in once more
      As if the clouds its echo would repeat;
      And nearer, clearer, deadlier that before!
    Arm! Arm! it is--it is--the cannon's opening roar!

[Illustration: BUT, HARK!]

      Within a windowed niche of that high hall
      Sate Brunswick's fated chieftain; he did hear
      That sound the first amidst the festival,
      And caught its tone with Death's prophetic ear.
      And when they smiled because he deemed it near,
      His heart more truly knew that peal too well
      Which stretched his father on a bloody bier,
      And roused the vengeance blood alone could quell:
    He rushed into the field, and, foremost, fighting, fell.

      Ah! then and there was hurrying to and fro,
      And gathering tears, and tremblings of distress,
      And cheeks all pale, which but an hour ago
      Blushed at the praise of their own loveliness;
      And there were sudden partings, such as press
      The life from out young hearts, and choking sighs
      Which ne'er might be repeated; who could guess
      If ever more should meet those mutual eyes,
    Since upon night so sweet such awful morn could rise!

      And there was mounting in hot haste: the steed,
      The mustering squadron, and the clattering car,
      Went pouring forward with impetuous speed,
      And swiftly forming in the ranks of war;
      And the deep thunder peal on peal afar;
      And near, the beat of the alarming drum
      Roused up the soldier ere the morning star;
      While thronged the citizens with terror dumb,
    Or whispering, with white lips--"The foe! They come! They come!"

      And wild and high the "Cameron's gathering" rose!
      The war-note of Lochiel, which Albyn's hills
      Have heard, and heard, too, have her Saxon foes:--
      How in the noon of night that pibroch thrills,
      Savage and shrill! But with the breath which fills
      Their mountain-pipe, so fill the mountaineers
      With the fierce native daring which instills
      The stirring memory of a thousand years,
    And Evan's, Donald's fame rings in each clansman's ears!

      And Ardennes waves above them her green leaves,
      Dewy with nature's tear-drops, as they pass,
      Grieving, if aught inanimate e'er grieves,
      Over the unreturning brave,--alas!
    Ere evening to be trodden like the grass
      Which now beneath them, but above shall grow
      In its next verdure, when this fiery mass
      Of living valor, rolling on the foe
    And burning with high hope, shall moulder cold and low.

      Last noon beheld them full of lusty life,
      Last eve in Beauty's circle proudly gay,
      The midnight brought the signal-sound of strife,
      The morn the marshalling in arms,--the day
      Battle's magnificently-stern array!
      The thunder-clouds close o'er it, which when rent
    The earth is covered thick with other clay,
      Which her own clay shall cover, heaped and pent,
    Rider and horse,--friend, foe,--in one red burial blent.



A fortnight or more has passed in severe toil;[180-3] but not more
severe than they have endured many a time before. Bidding farewell once
and forever to the green ocean of the eastern plains, they have crossed
the Cordillera; they have taken a longing glance at the city of Santa
Fé, lying in the midst of rich gardens on its lofty mountain plateau,
and have seen, as was to be expected, that it was far too large a place
for any attempt of theirs. But they had not altogether thrown away their
time. Their Indian lad[181-4] has discovered that a gold-train is going
down from Santa Fé toward the Magdalena; and they are waiting for it
beside the miserable rut which serves for a road, encamped in a forest
of oaks which would make them almost fancy themselves back again in
Europe, were it not for the tree-ferns which form the undergrowth; and
were it not, too, for the deep gorges opening at their very feet; in
which, while their brows are swept by the cool breezes of a temperate
zone, they can see far below, dim through their everlasting vapor-bath
of rank hot steam, the mighty forms and gorgeous colors of the tropic

They have pitched their camp among the tree-ferns, above a spot where
the path winds along a steep hill-side, with a sheer cliff below of many
a hundred feet. There was a road there once, perhaps, when
Cundinamarca[181-5] was a civilized and cultivated kingdom; but all
which Spanish misrule has left of it are a few steps slipping from their
places at the bottom of a narrow ditch of mud. It has gone the way of
the aqueducts, and bridges, and post-houses, the gardens and the
llama-flocks of that strange empire. In the mad search for gold, every
art of civilization has fallen to decay, save architecture alone; and
that survives only in the splendid cathedrals which have risen upon the
ruins of the temples of the Sun.

And now, the rapid tropic vegetation has reclaimed its old domains, and
Amyas and his crew are as utterly alone, within a few miles of an
important Spanish settlement, as they would be in the solitudes of the
Orinoco or the Amazon.

In the meanwhile, all their attempts to find sulphur and nitre have been
unavailing; and they have been forced to depend after all (much to
Yeo's[182-6] disgust) upon their swords and arrows. Be it so:
Drake[182-7] took Nombre de Dios and the gold-train there with no better
weapons; and they may do as much.

So, having blocked up the road above by felling a large tree across it,
they sit there among the flowers chewing coca, in default of food and
drink, and meditating among themselves the cause of a mysterious roar,
which has been heard nightly in their wake ever since they left the
banks of the Meta. Jaguar it is not, nor monkey: it is unlike any sound
they know; and why should it follow them? However, they are in the land
of wonders; and, moreover, the gold-train is far more important than any

At last, up from beneath there was a sharp crack and a loud cry. The
crack was neither the snapping of a branch, nor the tapping of a
woodpecker; the cry was neither the scream of the parrot, nor the howl
of the monkey,--

"That was a whip's crack," said Yeo, "and a woman's wail. They are close
here, lads!"

"A woman's? Do they drive women in their gangs?" asked Amyas.

"Why not, the brutes? There they are, sir. Did you see their basnets

"Men!" said Amyas in a low voice, "I trust you all not to shoot till I
do. Then give them one arrow, out swords, and at them! Pass the word

Up they came, slowly, and all hearts beat loud at their coming.

First, about twenty soldiers, only one-half of whom were on foot; the
other half being borne, incredible as it may seem, each in a chair on
the back of a single Indian, while those who marched had consigned their
heavier armor and their arquebuses into the hands of attendant slaves,
who were each pricked on at will by the pikes of the soldier behind

"The men are made to let their ordnance out of their hands."

"Oh, sir, an Indian will pray to an arquebus not to shoot him; be sure
their artillery is safe enough," said Yeo.

"Look at the proud villains," whispered another, "to make dumb beasts of
human creatures like that!"

"Ten shot," counted the businesslike Amyas, "and ten pikes."

Last of this troop came some inferior officer, also in his chair, who,
as he went slowly up the hill, with his face turned toward the gang
which followed, drew every other second the cigar from his lips, to
inspirit them with those ejaculations which earned for the Spaniards of
the sixteenth century the uncharitable imputation of being the most
abominable swearers of all Europeans.

"The blasphemous dog!" said Yeo, fumbling at his bowstring, as if he
longed to send an arrow through him. But Amyas had hardly laid his
finger on the impatient veteran's arm, when another procession followed,
which made them forget all else.

A line of Indians, Negroes, and Zambos, naked, emaciated, scarred with
whips and fetters, and chained together by their left wrists, toiled
upwards, panting and perspiring under the burden of a basket held up by
a strap which passed across their foreheads. Yeo's sneer was but too
just; there were not only old men and youths among them, but women;
slender young girls, mothers with children running at their knee; and,
at the sight, a low murmur of indignation rose from the ambushed
Englishmen, worthy of the free and righteous hearts of those days, when
Raleigh could appeal to man and God, on the ground of a common humanity,
in behalf of the outraged heathens of the New World; when Englishmen
still knew that man was man, and that the instinct of freedom was the
righteous voice of God; ere the hapless seventeenth century had
brutalized them also, by bestowing on them, amid a hundred other bad
legacies, the fatal gift of negro-slaves.

But the first forty, so Amyas counted, bore on their backs a burden
which made all, perhaps, but him and Yeo, forget even the wretches who
bore it. Each basket contained a square package of carefully corded
hide; the look whereof friend Amyas knew full well.

"What's in they, captain?"

"Gold!" And at that magic word all eyes were strained greedily forward,
and such a rustle followed, that Amyas, in the very face of detection,
had to whisper--

"Be men, be men, or you will spoil all yet!"

The last twenty, or so, of the Indians bore larger baskets, but more
lightly freighted, seemingly with manioc, and maize-bread, and other
food for the party; and after them came, with their bearers and
attendants, just twenty soldiers more, followed by the officer in
charge, who smiled away in his chair, and twirled two huge mustachios,
thinking of nothing less than of the English arrows which were itching
to be away and through his ribs. The ambush was complete; the only
question how and when to begin?

Amyas had a shrinking, which all will understand, from drawing bow in
cold blood on men so utterly unsuspicious and defenseless, even though
in the very act of devilish cruelty--for devilish cruelty it was, as
three or four drivers armed with whips, lingered up and down the slowly
staggering file of Indians, and avenged every moment's lagging, even
every stumble, by a blow of the cruel manati-hide, which cracked like a
pistol-shot against the naked limbs of the silent and uncomplaining

Suddenly the casus belli,[186-8] as usually happens, arose of its own

The last but one of the chained line was an old gray-headed man,
followed by a slender graceful girl of some eighteen years old, and
Amyas' heart yearned over them as they came up. Just as they passed, the
foremost of the file had rounded the corner above; there was a bustle,
and a voice shouted, "Halt, Señors! there is a tree across the path!"

"A tree across the path?" bellowed the officer, while the line of
trembling Indians, told to halt above, and driven on by blows below,
surged up and down upon the ruinous steps of the Indian road, until the
poor old man fell groveling on his face.

The officer leaped down, and hurried upward to see what had happened. Of
course, he came across the old man.

"Grandfather of Beelzebub, is this a place to lie worshiping your
fiends?" and he pricked the prostrate wretch with the point of his

The old man tried to rise; but the weight of his head was too much for
him; he fell again, and lay motionless.

The driver applied the manati-hide across his loins, once, twice, with
fearful force; but even that specific was useless.

"Gastado, Señor Capitan," said he, with a shrug. "Used up. He has been
failing these three months!"

"What does the intendant mean by sending me out with worn-out cattle
like these? Forward there!" shouted he. "Clear away the tree, Señors,
and I'll soon clear the chain. Hold it up, Pedrillo!"

The driver held up the chain, which was fastened to the old man's wrist.
The officer stepped back, and flourished round his head a Toledo blade,
whose beauty made Amyas break the Tenth Commandment on the spot.

The man was a tall, handsome, broad-shouldered, high-bred man; and Amyas
thought that he was going to display the strength of his arm, and the
temper of his blade, in severing the chain at one stroke.

Even he was not prepared for the recondite fancies of a Spanish
adventurer, worthy son or nephew of those first conquerors, who used to
try the keenness of their swords upon the living bodies of Indians, and
regale themselves at meals with the odor of roasting caciques.

The blade gleamed in the air, once, twice, and fell: not on the chain,
but on the wrist which it fettered. There was a shriek, a crimson
flash--and the chain and its prisoner were parted indeed.

One moment more, and Amyas's arrow would have been through the throat of
the murderer, who paused, regarding his workmanship with a satisfied
smile; but vengeance was not to come from him.

Quick and fierce as a tiger-cat, the girl sprang on the ruffian, and
with the intense strength of passion, clasped him in her arms and leaped
with him from the narrow ledge into the abyss below.

There was a rush, a shout; all faces were bent over the precipice. The
girl hung by her chained wrist: the officer was gone. There was a
moment's awful silence; and then Amyas heard his body crashing through
the tree-tops far below.

[Illustration: "DO NOT SHOOT TILL I DO"]

"Haul her up! Hew her to pieces! Burn the witch!" and the driver,
seizing the chain, pulled at it with all his might, while all springing
from their chairs, stooped over the brink.

Now was the time for Amyas! Heaven had delivered them into his hands.
Swift and sure, at ten yards off, his arrow rushed through the body of
the driver, and then, with a roar as of a leaping lion, he sprang like
an avenging angel into the midst of the astonished ruffians.

His first thought was for the girl. In a moment, by sheer strength, he
had jerked her safely up into the road; while the Spaniards recoiled
right and left, fancying him for the moment some mountain giant or
supernatural foe. His hurrah undeceived them in an instant, and a cry of
"English! Dogs!" arose, but arose too late. The men of Devon had
followed their captain's lead: a storm of arrows left five Spaniards
dead, and a dozen more wounded, and down leapt Salvation Yeo, his white
hair streaming behind him, with twenty good swords more, and the work of
death began.

The Spaniards fought like lions; but they had no time to fix their
arquebuses on the crutches; no room, in that narrow path, to use their
pikes. The English had the wall of them; and to have the wall there, was
to have the foe's life at their mercy. Five desperate minutes, and not a
living Spaniard stood upon those steps; and certainly no living one lay
in the green abyss below. Two only, who were behind the rest, happening
to be in full armor, escaped without mortal wound, and fled down the
hill again.

"After them! Michael Evans and Simon Heard; and catch them, if they run
a league."

The two long and lean Clovelly men, active as deer from forest training,
ran two feet for the Spaniard's one; and in ten minutes returned, having
done their work; while Amyas and his men hurried past the Indians, to
help Cary and the party forward, where shouts and musket shots announced
a sharp affray.

Their arrival settled the matter. All the Spaniards fell but three or
four, who scrambled down the crannies of the cliff.

"Let not one of them escape! Slay them as Israel slew Amalek!" cried
Yeo, as he bent over; and ere the wretches could reach a place of
shelter, an arrow was quivering in each body, as it rolled lifeless down
the rocks.

"Now then! Loose the Indians!"

They found armorers' tools on one of the dead bodies, and it was done.

"We are friends," said Amyas. "All we ask is, that you shall help us
carry this gold down to the Magdalena, and then you are free."

Some few of the younger groveled at his knees, and kissed his feet,
hailing him as the child of the Sun: but the most part kept a stolid
indifference, and when freed from their fetters, sat quietly down where
they stood, staring into vacancy. The iron had entered too deeply into
their soul. They seemed past hope, enjoyment, even understanding.

But the young girl, who was last of all in the line, as soon as she was
loosed, sprang to her father's body, speaking no word, lifted it in her
thin arms, laid it across her knees, kissed the fallen lips, stroked the
furrowed cheeks, murmured inarticulate sounds like the cooing of a
woodland dove, of which none knew the meaning but she, and he who heard
not, for his soul had long since fled. Suddenly the truth flashed on
her; silent as ever, she drew one long heavy breath, and rose erect,
the body in her arms.

Another moment, and she had leaped into the abyss. They watched her dark
and slender limbs, twined closely round the old man's corpse, turn over,
and over, and over, till a crush among the leaves, and a scream among
the birds, told that she had reached the trees; and the green roof hid
her from their view.

"Brave lass!" shouted a sailor.

"The Lord forgive her!" said Yeo. "But, your worship, we must have these
rascals' ordnance."

"And their clothes, too, Yeo, if we wish to get down the Magdalena
unchallenged. Now listen, my masters all! We have won, by God's good
grace, gold enough to serve us the rest of our lives, and that without
losing a single man; and may yet win more, if we be wise, and He thinks
good. But oh, my friends, do not make God's gift our ruin, by
faithlessness, or greediness, or any mutinous haste."

"You shall find none in us!" cried several men. "We know your worship.
We can trust our general."

"Thank God!" said Amyas. "Now then, it will be no shame or sin to make
the Indians carry it, saving the women, whom God forbid we should
burden. But we must pass through the very heart of the Spanish
settlements, and by the town of Saint Martha itself. So the clothes and
weapons of these Spaniards we must have, let it cost us what labor it
may. How many lie in the road?"

"Thirteen here, and about ten up above," said Cary.[191-9]

"Then there are near twenty missing. Who will volunteer to go down over
the cliff, and bring up the spoil of them?"

"I, and I, and I"; and a dozen stepped out, as they did always when
Amyas wanted anything done; for the simple reason, that they knew that
he meant to help at the doing of it himself.

"Very well, then, follow me. Sir John,[192-10] take the Indian lad for
your interpreter, and try and comfort the souls of these poor heathens.
Tell them that they shall all be free."

"Why, who is that comes up the road?"

All eyes were turned in the direction of which he spoke. And, wonder of
wonders! up came none other than Ayacanora[192-11] herself, blow-gun in
hand, bow on back, and bedecked in all her feather garments, which last
were rather the worse for a fortnight's woodland travel.

All stood mute with astonishment, as, seeing Amyas, she uttered a cry of
joy, quickened her pace into a run, and at last fell panting and
exhausted at his feet.

"I have found you!" she said; "you ran away from me, but you could not
escape me!" And she fawned round Amyas, like a dog who has found his
master, and then sat down on the bank, and burst into wild sobs.

"God help us!" said Amyas, clutching his hair, as he looked down upon
the beautiful weeper. "What am I to do with her, over and above all
these poor heathens?"

But there was no time to be lost, and over the cliff he scrambled; while
the girl, seeing that the main body of the English remained, sat down on
a point of rock to watch him.

After half-an-hour's hard work, the weapons, clothes, and armor of the
fallen Spaniards were hauled up the cliff, and distributed in bundles
among the men; the rest of the corpses were thrown over the precipice,
and they started again upon their road toward the Magdalena, while Yeo
snorted like a war-horse who smells the battle, at the delight of once
more handling powder and ball.

"We can face the world now, sir! Why not go back and try Santa Fé, after

But Amyas thought that enough was as good as a feast, and they held on
downwards, while the slaves followed, without a sign of gratitude, but
meekly obedient to their new masters, and testifying now and then by a
sign or a grunt, their surprise at not being beaten, or made to carry
their captors. Some, however, caught sight of the little calabashes of
coca which the English carried. That woke them from their torpor, and
they began coaxing abjectly (and not in vain), for a taste of that
miraculous herb, which would not only make food unnecessary, and enable
their panting lungs to endure the keen mountain air, but would rid them,
for a while at least, of the fallen Indian's most unpitying foe, the
malady of thought.

As the cavalcade turned the corner of the mountain, they paused for one
last look at the scene of that fearful triumph. Lines of vultures were
already streaming out of infinite space, as if created suddenly for the
occasion. A few hours and there would be no trace of that fierce fray,
but a few white bones amid untrodden beds of flowers.

And now Amyas had time to ask Ayacanora the meaning of this her strange
appearance. He wished her anywhere but where she was: but now that she
was here, what heart could be so hard as not to take pity on the poor
wild thing? And Amyas as he spoke to her had, perhaps, a tenderness in
his tone, from very fear of hurting her, which he had never used before.
Passionately she told him how she had followed on their track day and
night, and had every evening made sounds, as loud as she dared, in hopes
of their hearing her, and either waiting for her, or coming back to see
what caused the noise. Amyas now recollected the strange roaring which
had followed them.

"Noises? What did you make them with?"

Ayacanora lifted her finger with an air of most self-satisfied mystery;
and then drew cautiously from under her feather cloak an object at which
Amyas had hard work to keep his countenance.

"Look!" whispered she, as if half afraid that the thing itself should
hear her. "I have it--the holy trumpet!"

There it was, a handsome earthen tube some two feet long, neatly glazed,
and painted with quaint grecques and figures of animals; a relic
evidently of some civilization now extinct.

Brimblecombe rubbed his little fat hands. "Brave maid! you have cheated
Satan this time," quoth he; while Yeo advised that the idolatrous relic
should be forthwith "hove over cliff."

"Let be," said Amyas. "What is the meaning of this, Ayacanora? And why
have you followed us?"

She told a long story, from which Amyas picked up, as far as he could
understand her, that that trumpet had been for years the torment of her
life; the one thing in the tribe superior to her; the one thing which
she was not allowed to see, because, forsooth, she was a woman. So she
determined to show them that a woman was as good as a man; and hence her
hatred of marriage, and her Amazonian exploits. But still the
Piache[195-12] would not show her that trumpet, or tell her where it
was: and as for going to seek it, even she feared the superstitious
wrath of the tribe at such a profanation. But the day after the English
went, the Piache chose to express his joy at their departure; whereon,
as was to be expected, a fresh explosion between master and pupil, which
ended, she confessed, in her burning the old rogue's hut over his head,
from which he escaped with loss of all his conjuring-tackle, and fled
raging into the woods, vowing that he would carry off the trumpet to the
neighboring tribe. Whereon, by a sudden impulse, the young lady took
plenty of coca, her weapons, and her feathers, started on his trail, and
ran him to earth just as he was unveiling the precious mystery. At which
sight (she confessed), she was horribly afraid, and half inclined to
run: but, gathering courage from the thought that the white men used to
laugh at the whole matter, she rushed upon the hapless conjurer, and
bore off her prize in triumph; and there it was!

"I hope you have not killed him?" said Amyas.

"I did beat him a little; but I thought you would not let me kill him."

Amyas was half amused with her confession of his authority over her: but
she went on,

"And then I dare not go back to the Indians; so I was forced to come
after you."

"And is that, then, your only reason for coming after us?" asked stupid

He had touched some secret chord--though what it was he was too busy to
inquire. The girl drew herself up proudly, blushing scarlet, and said--

"You never tell lies. Do you think that I would tell lies?"

On which she fell to the rear, and followed them steadfastly, speaking
to no one, but evidently determined to follow them to the world's end.

They soon left the high road; and for several days held on downwards,
hewing their path slowly and painfully through the thick underwood. On
the evening of the fourth day, they had reached the margin of a river,
at a point where it seemed broad and still enough for navigation. For
those three days they had not seen a trace of human beings, and the spot
seemed lonely enough for them to encamp without fear of discovery, and
begin the making of their canoes. They began to spread themselves along
the stream, in search of the soft-wooded trees proper for their purpose;
but hardly had their search begun, when, in the midst of a dense
thicket, they came upon a sight which filled them with astonishment.
Beneath a honey-combed cliff, which supported one enormous cotton-tree,
was a spot of some thirty yards square sloping down to the stream,
planted in rows with magnificent banana-plants, full twelve feet high,
and bearing among their huge waxy leaves clusters of ripening fruit;
while, under their mellow shade, yams and cassava plants were
flourishing luxuriantly, the whole being surrounded by a hedge of orange
and scarlet flowers. There it lay, streaked with long shadows from the
setting sun, while a cool southern air rustled in the cotton-tree, and
flapped to and fro the great banana leaves; a tiny paradise of art and
care. But where was its inhabitant?


Aroused by the noise of their approach, a figure issued from a cave in
the rocks, and, after gazing at them for a moment, came down the garden
towards them. He was a tall and stately old man, whose snow-white beard
and hair covered his chest and shoulders, while his lower limbs were
wrapt in Indian-web. Slowly and solemnly he approached, a staff in one
hand, a string of beads in the other, the living likeness of some old
Hebrew prophet, or anchorite of ancient legend. He bowed courteously to
Amyas (who of course returned his salute), and was in act to speak, when
his eye fell upon the Indians, who were laying down their burdens in a
heap under the trees. His mild countenance assumed instantly an
expression of the acutest sorrow and displeasure; and, striking his
hands together, he spoke in Spanish--

"Alas! miserable me! Alas! unhappy Señors! Do my old eyes deceive me,
and is it one of those evil visions of the past which haunt my dreams by
night: or has the accursed thirst for gold, the ruin of my race,
penetrated even into this my solitude? Oh, Señors, Señors, know you not
that you bear with you your own poison, your own familiar fiend, the
root of every evil? And is it not enough for you to load yourselves with
the wedge of Achan, and partake his doom, but you must make these
hapless heathens the victims of your greed and cruelty, and forestall
for them on earth those torments which may await their unbaptized souls

"We have preserved, and not enslaved these Indians, ancient Señor," said
Amyas proudly; "and to-morrow will see them as free as the birds over
our heads."

"Free? Then you cannot be countrymen of mine! But pardon an old man, my
son, if he has spoken too hastily in the bitterness of his own
experience. But who and whence are you? And why are you bringing into
this lonely wilderness that gold--for I know too well the shape of those
accursed packets, which would God that I had never seen!"

"What we are, reverend sir, matters little, as long as we behave to you
as the young should to the old. As for our gold, it will be a curse or
blessing to us, I conceive, just as we use it well or ill; and so is a
man's head, or his hand, or any other thing; but that is no reason for
cutting off his limbs for fear of doing harm with them; neither is it
for throwing away those packages, which, by your leave, we shall deposit
in one of these caves. We must be your neighbors, I fear, for a day or
two; but I can promise you that your garden shall be respected, on
condition that you do not inform any human soul of our being here."

"God forbid, Señor, that I should try to increase the number of my
visitors, much less to bring hither strife and blood, of which I have
seen too much already. As you have come in peace, in peace depart. Leave
me alone with God and my penitence, and may the Lord have mercy on you!"

And he was about to withdraw, when, recollecting himself, he turned
suddenly to Amyas again:

"Pardon me, Señor, if, after forty years of utter solitude, I shrink at
first from the conversation of human beings, and forget, in the habitual
shyness of a recluse, the duties of a hospitable gentleman of Spain. My
garden, and all which it produces, is at your service. Only let me
entreat that these poor Indians shall have their share; for heathens
though they be, Christ died for them; and I cannot but cherish in my
soul some secret hope that He did not die in vain."

"God forbid!" said Brimblecombe. "They are no worse than we, for aught I
see, whatsoever their fathers may have been; and they have fared no
worse than we since they have been with us, nor will, I promise you."

The good fellow did not tell that he had been starving himself for the
last three days to cram the children with his own rations; and that the
sailors, and even Amyas, had been going out of their way every five
minutes, to get fruit for their new pets.

A camp was soon formed; and that evening the old hermit asked Amyas,
Cary, and Brimblecombe to come up into his cavern.

They went; and after the accustomed compliments had passed, sat down on
mats upon the ground, while the old man stood, leaning against a slab of
stone surmounted by a rude wooden cross, which served him as a place of

       *       *       *       *       *

The talk lasted long into the night,[200-13] but Amyas was up long
before daybreak, felling the trees; and as he and Cary walked back to
breakfast, the first thing which they saw was the old man in his garden
with four or five Indian children round him, talking smilingly to them.

"The old man's heart is sound still," said Will. "No man is lost who is
still fond of little children."

"Ah, Señors!" said the hermit as they came up, "you see that I have
begun already to act upon your advice."

"And you have begun at the right end," quoth Amyas; "if you win the
children, you win the mothers."

"And if you win the mothers," quoth Will, "the poor fathers must needs
obey their wives, and follow in the wake."

The old man only sighed. "The prattle of these little ones softens my
hard heart, Señors, with a new pleasure; but it saddens me, when I
recollect that there may be children of mine now in the world--children
who have never known a father's love--never known aught but a master's

"God has taken care of these little ones. Trust that He has taken care
of yours."

That day Amyas assembled the Indians, and told them that they must obey
the hermit as their king, and settle there as best they could: for if
they broke up and wandered away, nothing was left for them but to fall
one by one into the hands of the Spaniards. They heard him with their
usual melancholy and stupid acquiescence, and went and came as they were
bid, like animated machines; but the negroes were of a different temper;
and four or five stout fellows gave Amyas to understand that they had
been warriors in their own country, and that warriors they would be
still; and nothing should keep them from Spaniard-hunting. Amyas saw
that the presence of these desperadoes in the new colony would both
endanger the authority of the hermit, and bring the Spaniards down upon
it in a few weeks; so making a virtue of necessity, he asked them
whether they would go Spaniard-hunting with him.

This was just what the bold Coromantees wished for; they grinned and
shouted their delight at serving under so great a warrior, and then set
to work most gallantly, getting through more in the day than any ten
Indians, and indeed than any two Englishmen.

So went on several days, during which the trees were felled, and the
process of digging them out began; while Ayacanora, silent and moody,
wandered into the woods all day with her blow-gun, and brought home at
evening a load of parrots, monkeys, and curassows; two or three old
hands were sent out to hunt likewise; so that, what with the game and
the fish of the river, which seemed inexhaustible, and the fruit of the
neighboring palm-trees, there was no lack of food in the camp. But what
to do with Ayacanora weighed heavily on the mind of Amyas. He opened his
heart on the matter to the old hermit, and asked him whether he would
take charge of her. The latter smiled, and shook his head at the notion.
"If your report of her be true, I may as well take in hand to tame a
jaguar." However, he promised to try; and one evening, as they were all
standing together before the mouth of the cave, Ayacanora came up
smiling with the fruit of her day's sport; and Amyas, thinking this a
fit opportunity, began a carefully-prepared harangue to her, which he
intended to be altogether soothing, and even pathetic,--to the effect
that the maiden, having no parents, was to look upon this good old man
as her father; that he would instruct her in the white man's religion
and teach her how to be happy and good, and so forth; and that, in
fine, she was to remain there with the hermit.

She heard him quietly, her great dark eyes opening wider and wider, her
bosom swelling, her stature seeming to grow taller every moment, as she
clenched her weapons firmly in both her hands. Beautiful as she always
was, she had never looked so beautiful before; and as Amyas spoke of
parting with her, it was like throwing away a lovely toy; but it must be
done, for her sake, for his, perhaps for that of all the crew.

The last words had hardly passed his lips, when, with a shriek of
mingled scorn, rage, and fear, she dashed through the astonished group.

"Stop her!" was Amyas' first word; but his next was, "Let her go!" for
springing like a deer through the little garden, and over the
flower-fence, she turned, menacing with her blow-gun the sailors, who
had already started in her pursuit.

"Let her alone, for Heaven's sake!" shouted Amyas, who, he scarce knew
why, shrank from the thought of seeing those graceful limbs struggling
in the seamen's grasp.

She turned again, and in another minute her gaudy plumes had vanished
among the dark forest stems, as swiftly as if she had been a passing

All stood thunderstruck at this unexpected end to the conference.

At last Amyas spoke--

"There's no use in standing here idle, gentlemen. Staring after her
won't bring her back. After all, I'm glad she's gone."

But Ayacanora did not return; and ten days more went on in continual
toil at the canoes without any news of her from the hunters. Amyas, by
the bye, had strictly bidden these last not to follow the girl, not even
to speak to her, if they came across her in their wanderings. He was
shrewd enough to guess that the only way to cure her sulkiness was to
out-sulk her; but there was no sign of her presence in any direction;
and the canoes being finished at last, the gold, and such provisions as
they could collect, were placed on board, and one evening the party
prepared for their fresh voyage.

They determined to travel as much as possible by night, for fear of
discovery, especially in the neighborhood of the few Spanish settlements
which were then scattered along the banks of the main stream. These,
however, the negroes knew, so that there was no fear of coming on them
unawares; and as for falling asleep in their night journeys, "Nobody,"
the negroes said, "ever slept on the Magdalena; the mosquitoes took too
good care of that." Which fact Amyas and his crew verified afterwards as
thoroughly as wretched men could do.

The sun had sunk; the night had all but fallen; the men were all on
board; Amyas in command of one canoe, Cary of the other. The Indians
were grouped on the bank, watching the party with their listless stare,
and with them the young guide, who preferred remaining among the
Indians, and was made supremely happy by the present of a Spanish sword
and an English ax; while, in the midst, the old hermit, with tears in
his eyes, prayed God's blessing on them.

"I owe to you, noble cavaliers, new peace, new labor, I may say, new
life. May God be with you, and teach you to use your gold and your
swords better than I used mine."

The adventurers waved their hands to him.

"Give way, men," cried Amyas; and as he spoke the paddles dashed into
the water, to a right English hurrah! which sent the birds fluttering
from their roosts, and was answered by the yell of a hundred monkeys,
and the distant roar of the jaguar.

About twenty yards below, a wooded rock, some ten feet high, hung over
the stream. The river was not there more than fifteen yards broad; deep
near the rock, shallow on the farther side; and Amyas's canoe led the
way, within ten feet of the stone.

As he passed, a dark figure leapt from the bushes on the edge, and
plunged heavily into the water close to the boat. All started. A jaguar?
No; he would not have missed so short a spring. What then? A human
being? A head rose panting to the surface, and with a few strong
strokes, the swimmer had clutched the gunwale. It was Ayacanora!

"Go back!" shouted Amyas. "Go back girl!"

She uttered the same wild cry with which she had fled into the forest.

"I will die, then!" and she threw up her arms. Another moment, and she
had sunk.

To see her perish before his eyes! who could bear that? Her hands alone
were above the surface. Amyas caught convulsively at her in the
darkness, and seized her wrist.

A yell rose from the negroes: a roar from the crew as from a cage of
lions. There was a rush and a swirl along the surface of the stream; and
"Caiman![205-14] caiman!" shouted twenty voices.

Now, or never, for the strong arm! "To larboard, men, or over we go!"
cried Amyas, and with one huge heave, he lifted the slender body upon
the gunwhale. Her lower limbs were still in the water, when, within
arm's length, rose above the stream a huge muzzle. The lower jaw lay
flat, the upper reached as high as Amyas's head. He could see the long
fangs gleam white in the moonshine; he could see for one moment, full
down the monstrous depths of that great gape, which would have crushed a
buffalo. Three inches, and no more, from that soft side, the snout
surged up--

There was the gleam of an ax from above, a sharp ringing blow, and the
jaws came together with a clash which rang from bank to bank. He had
missed her! Swerving beneath the blow, his snout had passed beneath her
body, and smashed up against the side of the canoe, as the striker,
over-balanced, fell headlong overboard upon the monster's back.

"Who is it?"

"Yeo!" shouted a dozen.

Man and beast went down together, and where they sank, the moonlight
shone on a great swirling eddy, while all held their breaths, and
Ayacanora cowered down into the bottom of the canoe, her proud spirit
utterly broken, for the first time, by the terror of that great need,
and by a bitter loss. For in the struggle, the holy trumpet, companion
of all her wanderings, had fallen from her bosom; and her fond hope of
bringing magic prosperity to her English friends had sunk with it to the
bottom of the stream.

None heeded her; not even Amyas, round whose knees she clung, fawning
like a spaniel dog: for where was Yeo?

Another swirl; a shout from the canoe abreast of them, and Yeo rose,
having dived clean under his own boat, and risen between the two.

"Safe as yet, lads! Heave me a line, or he'll have me after all."

But ere the brute reappeared, the old man was safe on board.

"The Lord has stood by me," panted he, as he shot the water from his
ears. "We went down together: I knew the Indian trick, and being
upper-most, had my thumbs in his eyes before he could turn: but he
carried me down to the very mud. My breath was nigh gone, so I left go,
and struck up: but my toes tingled as I rose again, I'll warrant. There
the beggar is, looking for me, I declare!"

And true enough, there was the huge brute swimming slowly round and
round, in search of his lost victim. It was too dark to put an arrow
into his eye; so they paddled on, while Ayacanora crouched silently at
Amyas's feet.

"Yeo!" asked he, in a low voice, "what shall we do with her?"

"Why ask me, sir?" said the old man, as he had a very good right to ask.

"Because, when one don't know oneself, one had best inquire of one's
elders. Besides, you saved her life at the risk of your own, and have a
right to a voice in the matter, if any one has, old friend."

"Then, my dear young captain, if the Lord puts a precious soul under
your care, don't you refuse to bear the burden He lays on you."

Amyas was silent awhile; while Ayacanora, who was evidently utterly
exhausted by the night's adventure, and probably by long wanderings,
watchings, and weepings which had gone before it, sank with her head
against his knee, fell fast asleep, and breathed as gently as a child.

At last he rose in the canoe, and called Cary alongside.

"Listen to me, gentlemen, and sailors all. You know that we have a
maiden on board here, by no choice of our own. Whether she will be a
blessing to us, God alone can tell: but she may turn to the greatest
curse which has befallen us ever since we came out over Bar three years
ago. Promise me one thing, or I put her ashore the next beach; and that
is, that you will treat her as if she were your own sister."


[180-1] This selection is abridged from the twenty-fifth chapter in
_Westward Ho!_ Charles Kingsley's great novel of adventure.

In the story are related the adventures of Amyas Leigh, a large,
powerful and exceedingly vigorous man from Devonshire, who follows the
life of the sea during the days of Queen Elizabeth. Like many of the men
of his age, he becomes absorbed with the notion that in South America is
the great city of Manoa, whose wealth in gold and jewels far exceeds
that of Mexico and Peru.

After an exciting voyage, enlivened by conflicts with Spanish ships, the
survivors land on the coast of South America and proceed inward in
search of Manoa. Besides the dangers from Spaniards and natives, they
meet with all the perils of the wilderness: disease and death at the
hands of the Spaniards, Indians and wild animals thinning their ranks to
less than half; yet the spirits of Amyas never falter, and the remnant
of his force follow him with a devotion that is wonderful.

[180-2] Charles Kingsley, an English clergyman, was born in 1819 and
entered Cambridge University in 1838. Ten years later he published the
first of his stories, and in 1855, _Westward Ho!_ Next to this book
probably ranks his _Hypatia_, which he published in 1855, and which
tells a thrilling tale of the struggles of Christianity with the Greek
faith in the fifth century. He was a successful clergyman and became
Canon of Westminster. He visited the United States in 1874, but his
health was even then failing, and a year later he died.

[180-3] The party landed on the coast of South America, and in the
preceding chapter is told the story of their stay in a hospitable Indian
village where they rested and prepared themselves for two weeks of hard

[181-4] This Indian lad was rescued from the Spaniards by Amyas and is
devoted to the latter. He acts as interpreter, and his keen sight and
familiarity with the southern wilderness make him of great value to the

[181-5] Cundinamarca was the central province in what is now the
Republic of Colombia. Its streams are tributary to the Orinoco, though
it extends westward into the Andes. It derived its name from a native
American goddess, and before the Spaniards devastated the region it was
one of the chief centers of Indian civilization in South America.

[182-6] Salvation Yeo is a big white-haired man, older than Amyas, who
spent his early life in wild adventure with Drake and other sailors in
the Southern Seas. After incredible sufferings while in the hands of the
Spaniards, Salvation becomes a most ardent and devoted Christian, but
with a fierce hatred of the Spaniards and all things Spanish that makes
his acts strangely inconsistent.

[182-7] This is Sir Francis Drake, the discoverer of the Pacific Ocean,
a leader in many thrilling expeditions and exciting conflicts with the

[186-8] _Casus belli_ means _cause of war_.

[191-9] Will Cary is the lieutenant and right-hand man of Amyas.

[192-10] Sir John Brimblecombe is the chaplain of the expedition.

[192-11] Ayacanora is a beautiful Indian princess whom the Spaniards met
in the Indian village described in the preceding chapter. She seems
quite different from others of the tribe, and is thought to be a
descendant from one of the light-skinned Peruvian Incas, whom the
Spaniards had almost entirely extinguished. Much later in the story she
is discovered to be of real white descent, and at the end of the book
she becomes the wife of Amyas.

[195-12] The _Piache_ is the chief medicine man of the tribe of Indians
among whom Ayacanora was regarded as a powerful princess.

[200-13] The old hermit proves to be one of the survivors of Pizarro's
company. He took part in the destruction of native civilization and was
guilty of all the cruelties and barbarities that his race practiced. He
is living now in the wilderness in an effort to atone for his terrible

[205-14] A _caiman_, or _cayman_, is a species of alligator.




Reaching my hand into the hedgerow to pick a long, lithe, blossoming
spray of black byrony--here it is, with its graceful climbing stem, its
glossy, heart-shaped leaves and its pretty greenish lily flowers--I have
stung myself rather badly against the nettles that grow rank and tall
from the rich mud in the ditch below. Nothing soothes a nettle sting
like philosophy and dock-leaf; so I shall rub a little of the leaf on my
hand and then sit awhile on the Hole Farm gate here to philosophize
about nettles and things generally, as is my humble wont. There is a
great deal more in nettles, I believe, than most people are apt to
imagine; indeed, the nettle-philosophy at present current with the
larger part of the world seems to me lamentably one-sided. As a rule,
the sting is the only point in the whole organization of the family over
which we ever waste a single thought. This is our ordinary human
narrowness; in each plant or animal we interest ourselves about that one
part alone which has special reference to our own relations with it, for
good or for evil. In a strawberry, we think only of the fruit; in a
hawthorn, or the flowers; in a deadly nightshade, of the poisonous
berry; and in a nettle, of the sting. Now, I frankly admit at the
present moment that the nettle sting has an obtrusive and unnecessarily
pungent way of forcing itself upon the human attention; but it does not
sum up the whole life-history of the plant in its own one peculiarity
for all that. The nettle exists for its own sake, we may be sure, and
not merely for the sake of occasionally inflicting a passing smart upon
the meddlesome human fingers.

However, the sting itself, viewed philosophically, is not without
decided interest of its own. It is one, and perhaps the most highly
developed, among the devices by which plants guard themselves against
the attacks of animals. Weeds and shrubs with juicy, tender leaves are
very apt to be eaten down by rabbits, cows, donkeys and other
herbivores. But if any individuals among such species happen to show any
tendency to the development of any unpleasant habit, which prevents the
herbivores from eating them, then those particular individuals will of
course be spared when their neighbors are eaten, and will establish a
new and specially protected variety in the course of successive
generations. It does not matter what the peculiarity may be, provided
only it in any way deters animals from eating the plant. In the arum, a
violently acrid juice is secreted in the leaves, so as to burn the mouth
of the aggressor. In the dandelion and wild lettuces, the juice is
merely bitter. In houndstongue and catmint it has a nauseous taste. Then
again, in the hawthorn and the blackthorn, some of the shorter branches
have developed into stout, sharp spines, which tear the skin of would-be
assailants. In the brambles, the hairs on the stem have thickened into
pointed prickles, which answer the same purpose as the spines of their
neighbors. In the thistles, the gorse and the holly, once more, it is
the angles of the leaves themselves, which have grown into needle-like
points so as to deter animals from browsing upon them. But the nettle
probably carries the same tendency to the furthest possible limit. Not
content with mere defense, it is to some extent actively aggressive. The
hairs which clothe it have become filled with a poisonous, irritating
juice, and when any herbivore thrusts his tender nose into the midst of
a clump, the sharp points pierce his naked skin, the liquid gets into
his veins in the very neighborhood of the most sensitive nerves, and the
poor creature receives at once a lifelong warning against attacking
nettles in future.

The way in which so curious a device has grown up is not, it seems to
me, very difficult to guess. Many plants are armed with small sharp
hairs which act as a protection to them against the incursions of ants
and other destructive insects. These hairs are often enough more or less
glandular in structure, and therefore liable to contain various waste
products of the plant. Suppose one of these waste products in the
ancestors of the nettle to be at first slightly pungent, by accident, as
it were, then it would exercise a slightly deterrent effect upon
nettle-eating animals. The more stinging it grew, the more effectual
would the protection be; and as in each generation the least protected
plants would get eaten down, while the more protected were spared, the
tendency would be for the juice to grow more and more stinging till at
last it reached the present high point of development. It is noticeable,
too, that in our warrens and wild places, most of the plants are thus
more or less protected in one way or another from the attacks of
animals. These neglected spots are overgrown with gorse, brambles,
nettles, blackthorn, and mullein, as well as with the bitter spurges,
and the stringy inedible bracken. So, too, while in our meadows we
purposely propagate tender fodder plants, like grasses and clovers, we
find on the margins of our pastures and by our roadsides only protected
species; such as thistles, houndstongue, cuckoo-pint, charlock, nettles
(once more), and thorn bushes. The cattle or the rabbits eat down at
once all juicy and succulent plants, leaving only these nauseous or
prickly kinds, together with such stringy and innutritious weeds as
chervil, plantain, and burdock. Here we see the mechanism of natural
selection at work under our very eyes.

But the sting certainly does not exhaust the whole philosophy of the
nettle. Look, for example, at the stem and leaves. The nettle has found
its chance in life, its one fitting vacancy, among the ditches and
waste-places by roadsides or near cottages; and it has laid itself out
for the circumstances in which it lives. Its near relative, the hop, is
a twisting climber; its southern cousins, the fig and the mulberry, are
tall and spreading trees. But the nettle has made itself a niche in
nature along the bare patches which diversify human cultivation; and it
has adapted its stem and leaves to the station in life where it has
pleased Providence to place it. Plants like the dock, the burdock, and
the rhubarb, which lift their leaves straight above the ground, from
large subterranean reservoirs of material, have usually big, broad,
undivided leaves, that overshadow all beneath them, and push boldly out
on every side to drink in the air and the sunlight. On the other hand,
regular hedgerow plants, like cleavers, chervil, herb Robert, milfoil,
and most ferns, which grow in the tangled shady undermath of the bank
and thickets, have usually slender, bladelike, much-divided leaves, all
split up into little long narrow pushing segments, because they cannot
get sunlight and air enough to build up a single large respectable
rounded leaf.

The nettle is just halfway between these two extremes. It does not grow
out broad and solitary like the burdock, nor does it creep under the
hedges like the little much-divided wayside weeds; but it springs up
erect in tall, thick, luxuriant clumps, growing close together, each
stem fringed with a considerable number of moderate-sized, heart-shaped,
toothed and pointed leaves. Such leaves have just room enough to expand
and to extract from the air all the carbon they need for their growth,
without encroaching upon one another's food supply (for it must always
be borne in mind that leaves grow out of the air, not, as most people
fancy, out of the ground), and so without the consequent necessity for
dividing up into little separate narrow segments. Accordingly, this type
of leaf is very common among all those plants which spring up beside the
hedgerows in the same erect shrubby manner as the nettles.

Then, again, there is the flower of the nettle, which in most plants is
so much the most conspicuous part of all. Yet in this particular plant
it is so unobtrusive that most people never notice its existence in any
way. That is because the nettle is wind-fertilized, and so does not
need bright and attractive petals. Here are the flowering branches, a
lot of little forked antler-like spikes, sticking out at right angles
from the stem, and half concealed by the leaves of the row above them.
Like many other wind-fertilized flowers, the stamens and pistils are
collected on different plants--a plan which absolutely insures
cross-fertilization, without the aid of the insects. I pick one of the
stamen-bearing clusters, and can see that it is made up of small
separate green blossoms, each with four tiny leaf-like petals, and with
four stamens doubled up in the center. I touch the flowers with the tip
of my pocket knife, and in a second the four stamens jump out
elastically as if alive, and dust the white pollen all over my fingers.
Why should they act like this? Such tricks are not uncommon in
bee-fertilized flowers, because they insure the pollen being shed only
when a bee thrusts his head into the blossom; but what use can this
device be to the wind-fertilized nettle? I think the object is somewhat
after this fashion. If the pollen were shed during perfectly calm
weather, it would simply fall upon the ground, without reaching the
pistils of neighboring plants at all. But by having the stamens thus
doubled up, with elastic stalks, it happens that even when ripe they do
not open and shed the pollen unless upon the occurrence of some slight
concussion. This concussion is given when the stems are waved about by
the wind; and then the pollen is shaken out under circumstances which
give it the best chance of reaching the pistil.

Finally, there is the question of fruit. In the fig and mulberry the
fruit is succulent, and depends for its dispersion upon birds and
animals. In the nettle it takes the form of a tiny, seed-like, flattened
nut. Why is this, again? One might as well ask, why are we not all Lord
Chancellors or Presidents of the Royal Academy. Each plant and each
animal makes the best of such talents as it has got, and gets on by
their aid; but all have not the same talents. One survives by dint of
its prickles; another by dint of its attractive flowers; a third by its
sweet fruit; a fourth by its hard nut-shell. As regards stings, the
nettle is one of the best protected plants; as regards flower and fruit,
it is merely one of the ruck. Every plant can only take advantage of any
stray chances it happens to possess; and the same advantageous
tendencies do not show themselves in all alike. It is said that once a
certain American, hearing of the sums which Canova got for his
handicraft, took his son to the great man's studio, and inquired how
much he would ask to make the boy a sculptor. But there is no evidence
to show that that aspiring youth ever produced an Aphrodite or a


During the course of the revolution that changed the British colonies in
America into the United States, there was born in the city of New York
the first great writer of this new nation, Washington Irving. The
parents of Irving had been in America but twenty years, the father being
Scotch and the mother English, yet they sympathized so fully with the
colonists that they spent much of their time and means in caring for the
soldiers held as prisoners by the British.

The mother was unusually warm-hearted and charitable, but the father,
though a kind and conscientious man, was very strict, especially in
dealing with his children. He seemed to feel that nearly every kind of
amusement that young people delighted in was sinful, and he held up
before his children such sober ways of living that Washington at least
came to think that everything pleasant was wicked. No amount of
sternness, however, could keep the five boys of the family and their
three sisters wholly out of mischief, nor hinder them from having many a
harmless good time.

[Illustration: Washington Irving 1783-1859]

After spending two years in a primary school, Washington was sent when
six years old to a school kept by a soldier who had fought in the
Revolution, a man who dealt most harshly with disorderly pupils. Though
Washington was always breaking rules, he was so honest in admitting
the wrong done that the teacher had a particular liking for him, and
would call him by the envied title of "General." To bear this title, as
well as the name of the foremost American of that time, and to have
received a blessing from the great Washington himself, was honor enough
for one boy.

Though it was not till several years later that he first went to the
theater, yet when he was about ten he was fond of acting the part of
some warrior knight of whom he had read, and would challenge one of his
companions to a duel in the yard, where they would fight desperately
with wooden swords. About this time, too, he came upon _Robinson Crusoe_
and _Sindbad the Sailor_, and thus was awakened a great delight in books
of travel and adventure. Most pleasing of all was _The World Displayed_,
a series of volumes in which one could read of voyages to the most
distant parts of the world. How exciting it was to read these books
under cover of his desk at school, or in bed at night by the light of
candles smuggled into his room! It is no wonder that he grew to wish
with all his heart that he could go to sea, and that he haunted the
wharves watching the out-going vessels.

When only fifteen years old, Washington finished his schooling. In later
life he was always very sorry that he had not been sent to college at
this time. Within a year he began the study of law, but he went at his
work in such a half-hearted way that although he passed his examination
in 1806, he was really very poorly fitted for his calling.

The last two years of this time had been passed in Europe, where he had
been sent to recover his health; and it is safe to say that thoughts of
his legal studies troubled young Irving but little during this
interesting trip. If as a boy he had been thrilled merely in reading of
voyages and travels, what was now his pleasure in journeying through one
strange scene after another and meeting with such exciting adventures as
that which befell him on the way from Genoa to Sicily, when the vessel
on which he was sailing was boarded by pirates. On this occasion, as he
could translate the questions of the attacking party and could answer
these men in their own tongue, he was forced to go on the pirate ship,
among an evil-looking crew, armed with stilettos, cutlasses and pistols,
and act as interpreter before the captain. As it turned out that the
booty was too small to be worth taking, Irving and his companions
escaped without hurt. In the course of his further travels he found
especial delight in the works of art at Rome, and in attending the
theater and opera in Paris and London.

In January, 1807, several months after his return to America, Irving,
with one of his brothers and a friend, began to publish _Salmagundi_, a
magazine containing humorous articles on the social life of New York.
This became so popular that twenty numbers were issued. Having found so
much of interest in the life of his native city, Irving next wrote a
comic _History of New York, by Diedrich Knickerbocker_, dealing with the
early period when the city was ruled by the Dutch. The novel way in
which this work was announced would do credit to the most clever
advertiser. About six weeks before the book was published, appeared this
notice in the _Evening Post_:


"Left his lodgings some time since, and has not since been heard of, a
small elderly gentleman, dressed in an old black coat and cocked hat, by
the name of Knickerbocker. As there are some reasons for believing he is
not entirely in his right mind, and as great anxiety is entertained
about him, any information concerning him left either at the Columbian
Hotel, Mulberry Street, or at the office of this paper, will be
_thankfully_ received.

"P. S.--Printers of newspapers would be aiding the cause of humanity by
giving an insertion to the above.--Oct. 25."

Almost two weeks later a notice signed _A Traveler_, told that the old
man had been seen resting by the road over which the Albany stage coach
passed. Then in ten days followed this amusing letter to the editor of
the _Post_:

"Sir:--You have been good enough to publish in your paper a paragraph
about Mr. Diedrich Knickerbocker, who was missing so strangely from his
lodgings some time since. Nothing satisfactory has been heard of the old
gentleman since; but a _very curious kind of a written book_ has been
found in his room in his own handwriting. Now I wish you to notice him,
if he is still alive, that if he does not return and pay off his bill
for board and lodging, I shall have to dispose of his Book, to satisfy
me for the same."

Needless to say, the book was issued in due time, and it was warmly
welcomed not only in the United States but in England.

This year of great literary success was also one of the saddest in
Irving's life. He had become deeply attached to Matilda Hoffman,
daughter of one of the lawyers under whom he had studied, and was
looking forward to the time when she should become his wife. The death
of the young girl in 1809 caused a grief so deep that Irving almost
never spoke of it. He remained true to the memory of this early love
throughout his life, and never married.

By this time it had become plain that Irving could write with far more
effect than he could ever hope to practice law. Yet the idea of using
his pen in order to earn a living, not merely for his own amusement, was
so distasteful to him that he put aside the thought of a literary
career. Had he not had two kind and indulgent brothers, it might have
gone hard with him at this time; but he was given a one-fifth share in
their business, and being only a silent partner was allowed to spend his
time in whatever ways he pleased.

In 1815, however, it became necessary for him to take his brother
Peter's place for a time at the head of that part of the business which
was carried on in Liverpool. Though he was a loyal American, he found
England so much to his liking that there is no telling how long after
his brother's recovery he would have kept on living in his half-idle way
in his pleasant surroundings, had not the business in which he was
interested failed in 1818. Thus roused to effort, he began publishing in
1819 the highly popular _Sketch Book_, by Geoffrey Crayon, a series of
stories and essays in the first number of which appeared, with others,
_Rip Van Winkle. The Legend of Sleepy Hollow_ was contained in a later
issue. _Bracebridge Hall_ and _Tales of a_ _Traveller_, of the same
nature as the _Sketch Book_, followed soon afterward, all three being
sent to America and being published also in England.

A new and more serious kind of work opened before Irving in 1826 when he
was invited to Madrid by the United States minister, to make a
translation of Navarrete's _Voyages of Columbus_. Instead of
translating, however, he wrote a valuable original work entitled the
_Life and Voyages of Christopher Columbus_. Thus was awakened his deep
interest in the romantic history and legends of Spain. He traveled about
the country, staying for several weeks in the celebrated palace of the
Alhambra, studied rare old books, and as a result produced several other
works upon Spanish subjects. Of these _The Conquest of Granada_ was
written before he left Spain and _The Alhambra_ was completed in England
after his return in 1829 to fill the office of secretary of legation.

In 1824 Irving had written to a friend in America concerning New York:
"There is a charm about that little spot of earth; that beautiful city
and its environs, that has a perfect spell over my imagination. The bay,
the rivers and their wild and woody shores, the haunts of my boyhood,
both on land and water, absolutely have a witchery over my mind. I thank
God for my having been born in so beautiful a place among such beautiful
scenery; I am convinced I owe a vast deal of what is good and pleasant
in my nature to the circumstance." It was not, however, until 1832 that
he was able to return to his much-loved birthplace. Then, after
seventeen years' absence, during which he had become a very famous
writer, he was welcomed with the warmest greetings and the highest
honors of his townspeople.

It was not long before he made a tour through the far West,--through the
wilds of Missouri and Arkansas. From a point in the latter region he
wrote of his party as "depending upon game, such as deer, elk, bear, for
food, encamping on the borders of brooks, and sleeping in the open air
under trees, with outposts stationed to guard us against any surprise by
the Indians." The beautiful scenery and exciting events that marked this
trip now part of the volume of _Crayon Miscellany_.

Having been a wanderer for a good many years, Irving now began to wish
for a home. Accordingly he bought a little estate near Tarrytown on the
Hudson River, and had the cottage on this land made over into "a little
nookery somewhat in the Dutch style, quaint, but unpretending." In the
first years spent in this pleasant home he contributed articles to the
_Knickerbocker Magazine_, later collected and published under the title
of _Wolfert's Roost_, and wrote _Abbotsford_ and _Newstead Abbey_, now
part of the volume of _Crayon Miscellany_.

So smoothly did the home life at Sunnyside flow along that Irving was
none too well pleased to separate himself from it in 1842 when appointed
minister of the United States to Spain. Nevertheless, he looked upon
this event as the "crowning hour" of his life.

During the thirteen years that remained to him after returning to
Sunnyside in 1846, he produced the _Life of Mahomet and his Successors_,
a _Life of Goldsmith_, an author whom he especially admired and
appreciated, and a biography of his celebrated namesake, which, though
entitled a _Life of Washington_, is nothing less than a history of the
Revolution. In the very year this last great work was completed, Irving
died, surrounded by the household to whom he had become so much endeared
(November 28, 1859).

In his writings Washington Irving has shown himself so gentle and
unpretentious and so large-hearted, that his words concerning Oliver
Goldsmith seem to apply with equal fitness to himself: "There are few
writers for whom the reader feels such personal kindness." These same
qualities were revealed also day by day in the smallest incidents of his
life. Perhaps they were never more simply illustrated than on the
occasion when he was traveling in a railway car behind a woman with two
small children and a baby who was being constantly disturbed by the
older children's efforts to climb to a seat by the window. Having taken
in the situation, Irving began lifting first one and then the other of
the little ones into his lap, allowing each just three minutes at the
window, and this he continued until they had had enough, and the
grateful mother had enjoyed a needed rest. Apparently he bore ill-will
toward no one, and his ever-ready humor helped him to view the lives of
others without harshness. Thus it is not only as a great literary
artist, but as an American of the most worthy type, that he has won
lasting honor.




_A History of New York by Diedrich Knickerbocker_ was published in 1809.
Nearly forty years later Washington Irving, the real author, says it was
his purpose in the history to embody the traditions of New York in an
amusing form, to illustrate its local humors, customs and peculiarities
in a whimsical narrative, which should help to bind the heart of the
native inhabitant to his home. He adds:

"In this I have reason to believe I have in some measure succeeded.
Before the appearance of my work the popular traditions of our city were
unrecorded; the peculiar and racy customs and usages derived from our
Dutch Progenitors were unnoticed, or regarded with indifference, or
adverted to with a sneer. Now they form a convivial currency, and are
brought forward on all occasions: they link our whole community together
in good humor and good fellowship; they are the rallying-points of home
feeling, the seasoning of our civic festivities, the staple of local
tales and local pleasantries; and are so harped upon by our writers of
popular fiction that I find myself almost crowded off the legendary
ground which I was the first to explore by the host who have followed
in my footsteps.

"I dwell on this head because, at the first appearance of my work, its
aim and drift were misapprehended by some of the descendants of the
Dutch worthies, and because I understand that now and then one may still
be found to regard it with a captious eye. The far greater part,
however, I have reason to flatter myself, receive my good-humored
picturings in the same temper in which they were executed; and when I
find, after a lapse of nearly forty years, this haphazard production of
my youth still cherished among them; when I find its very name become a
'household word' and used to give the home stamp to everything
recommended for popular acceptation, such as Knickerbocker societies;
Knickerbocker insurance companies; Knickerbocker steamboats;
Knickerbocker omnibuses; Knickerbocker bread; and Knickerbocker ice; and
when I find New Yorkers of Dutch descent priding themselves upon being
'genuine Knickerbockers,' I please myself with the persuasion that I
have struck the right chord; that my dealings with the good Dutch times,
and the customs and usages derived from them, are in harmony with the
feelings and humors of my townsmen; that I have opened a vein of
pleasant associations and quaint characteristics peculiar to my native
place, and which its inhabitants will not willingly suffer to pass away;
and that, though other histories of New York may appear of higher claims
to learned acceptation, and may take their dignified and appropriate
rank in the family library, Knickerbocker's history will still be
received with good-humored indulgence, and be thumbed and chuckled over
by the family fireside."

To give color to his fancy, Irving created the fanciful character of
Diedrich Knickerbocker, whom he describes as follows:

"He was a small, brisk-looking old gentleman, dressed in a rusty black
coat and a pair of olive velvet breeches and a small cocked hat. He had
a few gray hairs plaited and clubbed behind. The only piece of finery
which he bore about him was a bright pair of square silver shoe buckles,
and all his baggage was contained in a pair of saddle bags which he
carried under his arm."

He was "a very worthy good sort of an old gentleman, though a little
queer in his ways. He would keep in his room for days together, and if
any of the children cried or made a noise about his door he would bounce
out in a great passion, with his hands full of papers and say something
about 'deranging his ideas'."

According to the tale which Irving invented he resided for some time at
the Independent Columbian Hotel, and from this place he disappeared,
leaving his bills unpaid. However, in the saddle bag which he didn't
take from his room the landlord found the manuscript of the _History of
New York_, and published it in order to secure pay for the old
gentleman's board.

The book met with marked success, and shortly after its publication a
large part of New York was laughing at its humorous details, and
Irving's estimate of its popularity as given above was modest indeed.

The history consists of eight books, the first of which, in irony of
some histories which had previously been published, gives a description
of the world and a history of its creation, and in brief, the story of
Noah and the discovery of America, and a dissertation on the origin of
the American Indian.

The second book contains an account of Hudson's discovery of the river
that bears his name and of the settlement of New Amsterdam.

A book is given to each of the first two Dutch governors, and three
books to the rule of Peter Stuyvesant. The history then terminates with
the surrender of New Amsterdam to the British.

The selections which appear here have been chosen for their rich humor
rather than for their historical value, although, in his quaint way,
Irving gives us a picture of the early Dutch settlers that is in many
respects remarkably true to life. His exaggerations are usually so
noticeable that it is not difficult to separate truth from fiction.


It was some three or four years after the return of the immortal
Hendrick that a crew of honest, Low Dutch colonists set sail from the
city of Amsterdam for the shores of America.

The ship in which these illustrious adventurers set sail was called the
_Goede Vrouw_, or Good Woman, in compliment to the wife of the president
of the West India Company, who was allowed by everybody (except her
husband) to be a sweet-tempered lady. It was in truth a most gallant
vessel, of the most approved Dutch construction, and made by the ablest
ship carpenters of Amsterdam, who it is well known always model their
ships after the fair forms of their countrywomen. Accordingly, it had
one hundred feet in the beam, one hundred feet in the keel, and one
hundred feet from the bottom of the sternpost to the tafferel.

The architect, who was somewhat of a religious man, far from decorating
the ship with pagan idols, such as Jupiter, Neptune, or Hercules (which
heathenish abominations I have no doubt occasion the misfortunes and
shipwreck of many a noble vessel)--he, I say, on the contrary, did
laudably erect for a head a goodly image of Saint Nicholas, equipped
with a low, broad-brimmed hat, a huge pair of Flemish trunk hose, and a
pipe that reached to the end of the bow-sprit. Thus gallantly furnished,
the stanch ship floated sideways, like a majestic goose, out of the
harbor of the great city of Amsterdam, and all the bells that were not
otherwise engaged rang a triple bobmajor on the joyful occasion.

The voyage was uncommonly prosperous, for, being under the especial care
of the ever-revered Saint Nicholas, the Goede Vrouw seemed to be endowed
with qualities unknown to common vessels. Thus she made as much leeway
as headway, could get along very nearly as fast with the wind ahead as
when it was apoop, and was particularly great in a calm; in consequence
of which singular advantages she made out to accomplish her voyage in a
very few months, and came to anchor at the mouth of the Hudson a little
to the east of Gibbet Island.

Here, lifting up their eyes, they beheld, on what is at present called
the Jersey shore, a small Indian village, pleasantly embowered in a
grove of spreading elms, and the natives all collected on the beach
gazing in stupid admiration at the Goede Vrouw. A boat was immediately
dispatched to enter into a treaty with them, and, approaching the shore,
hailed them through a trumpet in the most friendly terms; but so
horribly confounded were these poor savages at the tremendous and
uncouth sound of the Low Dutch language that they one and all took to
their heels, and scampered over the Bergen hills; nor did they stop
until they had buried themselves, head and ears, in the marshes on the
other side, where they all miserably perished to a man, and their bones,
being collected and decently covered by the Tammany Society of that day,
formed that singular mound called Rattlesnake Hill which rises out of
the center of the salt marshes a little to the east of the Newark

Animated by this unlooked-for victory, our valiant heroes sprang ashore
in triumph, took possession of the soil as conquerors in the name of
their High Mightinesses the Lords States General, and, marching
fearlessly forward, carried the village of Communipaw by storm,
notwithstanding that it was vigorously defended by some half a score of
old squaws and pappooses. On looking about them they were so transported
with the excellencies of the place that they had very little doubt the
blessed Saint Nicholas had guided them thither as the very spot whereon
to settle their colony. The softness of the soil was wonderfully adapted
to the driving of piles; the swamps and marshes around them afforded
ample opportunities for the constructing of dykes and dams; the
shallowness of the shore was peculiarly favorable to the building of
docks--in a word this spot abounded with all the requisites for the
foundation of a great Dutch city. On making a faithful report,
therefore, to the crew of the Goede Vrouw, they one and all determined
that this was the destined end of their voyage. Accordingly they
descended from the Goede Vrouw, men, women, and children, in goodly
groups, as did the animals of yore from the ark, and formed themselves
into a thriving settlement, which they called by the Indian name

The crew of the Goede Vrouw being soon reinforced by fresh importations
from Holland, the settlement went jollily on, increasing in magnitude
and prosperity. The neighboring Indians in a short time became
accustomed to the uncouth sound of the Dutch language, and an
intercourse gradually took place between them and the newcomers.

A brisk trade for furs was soon opened: the Dutch traders were
scrupulously honest in their dealings, and purchased by weight,
establishing it as an invariable table of avoirdupois that the hand of a
Dutchman weighed one pound and his foot two pounds.

It is true the simple Indians were often puzzled by the great
disproportion between bulk and weight, for let them place a bundle of
furs, never so large, in one scale, and a Dutchman put his hand or foot
in the other, the bundle was sure to kick the beam--never was a package
of furs known to weigh more than two pounds in the market of Communipaw!

The Dutch possessions in this part of the globe began now to assume a
very thriving appearance, and were comprehended under the general title
of Nieuw Nederlandts, on account, as the sage Vander Douck observes, of
their great resemblance to the Dutch Netherlands; which indeed was truly
remarkable, excepting that the former were rugged and mountainous, and
the latter level and marshy. About this time the tranquility of the
Dutch colonists was doomed to suffer a temporary interruption. In 1614,
Captain Sir Samuel Argal, sailing under a commission from Dale, governor
of Virginia, visited the Dutch settlements on Hudson River and demanded
their submission to the English crown and Virginian dominion. To this
arrogant demand, as they were in no condition to resist it, they
submitted for the time, like discreet and reasonable men.

Oloffe Van Kortlandt, a personage who was held in great reverence among
the sages of Communipaw for the variety and darkness of his knowledge,
had originally been one of a set of peripatetic philosophers who had
passed much of their time sunning themselves on the side of the great
canal of Amsterdam in Holland, enjoying, like Diogenes, a free and
unencumbered estate in sunshine. His name Kortlandt (Shortland or
Lackland) was supposed, like that of the illustrious Jean Sansterre, to
indicate that he had _no land_; but he insisted, on the contrary, that
he had great landed estates somewhere in Terra Incognita, and he had
come out to the New World to look after them. He was the first great
land speculator that we read of in these parts.

Like all land speculators, he was much given to dreaming. Never did
anything extraordinary happen to Communipaw but he declared that he had
previously dreamt it, being one of those infallible prophets who predict
events after they have come to pass.

As yet his dreams and speculations had turned to little personal profit,
and he was as much a lackland as ever. Still, he carried a high head in
the community; if his sugar-loaf hat was rather the worse for wear, he
set it off with a taller cock's tail; if his shirt was none of the
cleanest, he pulled it out the more at the bosom; and if the tail of it
peeped out of a hole in his breeches, it at least proved that it really
had a tail and was not mere ruffle.

The worthy Van Kortlandt urged the policy of emerging from the swamps of
Communipaw and seeking some more eligible site for the seat of empire.
Such, he said, was the advice of the good Saint Nicholas, who had
appeared to him in a dream the night before, and whom he had known by
his broad hat, his long pipe, and the resemblance which he bore to the
figure on the bow of the Goede Vrouw.

This perilous enterprise was to be conducted by Oloffe himself, who
chose as lieutenants or coadjutors Mynheers Jacobus Van Zandt, Abraham
Hardenbroeck, and Winant Ten Broeck--three indubitably great men, but of
whose history, although I have made diligent inquiry, I can learn but
little previous to their leaving Holland.

Had I the benefit of mythology and classic fable, I should have
furnished the first of the trio with a pedigree equal to that of the
proudest hero of antiquity. His name, Van Zandt--that is to say, _from
the sand_, or, in common parlance, from the dirt--gave reason to suppose
that, like Triptolemus, the Cyclops, and the Titans, he had sprung from
Dame Terra, or the earth! This supposition is strongly corroborated by
his size, for it is well known that all the progeny of mother earth were
of a gigantic stature; and Van Zandt, we are told, was a tall, raw-boned
man, above six feet high, with an astonishingly hard head.

Of the second of the trio but faint accounts have reached to this time,
which mention that he was a sturdy, obstinate, worrying, bustling little
man, and, from being usually equipped in an old pair of buckskins, was
familiarly dubbed Hardenbroeck; that is to say, Tough Breeches.

Ten Broeck completed this junto of adventurers. It is a singular but
ludicrous fact--which, were I not scrupulous in recording the whole
truth, I should almost be tempted to pass over in silence as
incompatible with the gravity and dignity of history--that this worthy
gentleman should likewise have been nicknamed from what in modern times
is considered the most ignoble part of the dress; but in truth the
small-clothes seem to have been a very dignified garment in the eyes of
our venerated ancestors.

The name of Ten Broeck, or, as it was sometimes spelled, Tin Broeck, has
been indifferently translated into Ten Breeches and Tin Breeches.
Certain elegant and ingenious writers on the subject declare in favor of
_Tin_, or rather _Thin_, Breeches; whence they infer that the original
bearer of it was a poor but merry rogue, whose galligaskins were none of
the soundest, and who, peradventure, may have been the author of that
truly philosophical stanza:

    "Then why should we quarrel for riches,
      Or any such glittering toys?
    A light heart and _thin pair of breeches_
      Will go through the world, my brave boys!"

The more accurate commentators, however, declare in favor of the other
reading, and affirm that the worthy in question was a burly, bulbous
man, who, in sheer ostentation of his venerable progenitors, was the
first to introduce into the settlement the ancient Dutch fashion of ten
pair of breeches.

Such was the trio of coadjutors chosen by Oloffe the Dreamer, to
accompany him in this voyage into unknown realms; as to the names of his
crews, they have not been handed down by history.

And now the rosy blush of morn began to mantle in the east, and soon the
rising sun, emerging from amid golden and purple clouds, shed his
blithesome rays on the tin weathercocks of Communipaw. It was that
delicious season of the year when Nature, breaking from the chilling
thralldom of old winter, like a blooming damsel from the tyranny of a
sordid old father, threw herself, blushing with ten thousand charms,
into the arms of youthful spring. Every tufted copse and blooming grove
resounded with the notes of hymeneal love. The very insects, as they
sipped the dew that gemmed the tender grass of meadows, joined in the
joyous epithalamium, the virgin bud timidly put forth its blushes, "the
voice of the turtle was heard in the land," and the heart of man
dissolved away in tenderness.

No sooner did the first rays of cheerful Phoebus dart into the
windows of Communipaw than the little settlement was all in motion.
Forth issued from his castle the sage Van Kortlandt, and, seizing a
conch-shell, blew a far-resounding blast, that soon summoned all his
lusty followers. Then did they trudge resolutely down to the waterside,
escorted by a multitude of relatives and friends, who all went down, as
the common phrase expresses it, "to see them off."

The good Oloffe bestowed his forces in a squadron of three canoes, and
hoisted his flag on board a little round Dutch boat, shaped not unlike a
tub, which had formerly been the jolly-boat of the Goede Vrouw. And now,
all being embarked, they bade farewell to the gazing throng upon the
beach, who continued shouting after them even when out of hearing,
wishing them a happy voyage, advising them to take good care of
themselves, not to get drowned, with an abundance other of those sage
and invaluable cautions generally given by landsmen to such as go down
to the sea in ships and adventure upon the deep waters. In the
meanwhile, the voyagers cheerily urged their course across the crystal
bosom of the bay and soon left behind them the green shores of ancient

They coasted by Governor's Island, since terrible from its frowning
fortress and grinning batteries. They would by no means, however, land
upon this island, since they doubted much it might be the abode of
demons and spirits, which in those days did greatly abound throughout
this savage and pagan country.

Just at this time a shoal of jolly porpoises came rolling and tumbling
by, turning up their sleek sides to the sun and spouting up the briny
element in sparkling showers. No sooner did the sage Oloffe mark this
than he was greatly rejoiced. "This," exclaimed he, "if I mistake not,
augurs well; the porpoise is a fat, well-conditioned fish, a burgomaster
among fishes; his looks betoken ease, plenty, and prosperity; I greatly
admire this round fat fish, and doubt not but this is a happy omen of
the success of our undertaking." So saying, he directed his squadron to
steer in the track of these alderman fishes.

Turning, therefore, directly to the left, they swept up the strait
vulgarly called the East River. And here the rapid tide which courses
through this strait, seizing on the gallant tub in which Commodore Van
Kortlandt had embarked, hurried it forward with a velocity unparalleled
in a Dutch boat navigated by Dutchmen; insomuch that the good Commodore,
who had all his life long been accustomed only to the drowsy navigation
of canals, was more than ever convinced that they were in the hands of
some supernatural power, and that the jolly porpoises were towing them
to some fair haven that was to fulfill all their wishes and

Thus borne away by the resistless current, they doubled that boisterous
point of land since called Corlear's Hook, and leaving to the right the
rich winding cove of the Wallabout, they drifted into a magnificent
expanse of water, surrounded by pleasant shores whose verdure was
exceedingly refreshing to the eye. While the voyagers were looking
around them on what they conceived to be a serene and sunny lake, they
beheld at a distance a crew of painted savages busily employed in
fishing, who seemed more like the genii of this romantic region, their
slender canoe lightly balanced like a feather on the undulating surface
of the bay.

At sight of these the hearts of the heroes of Communipaw were not a
little troubled. But, as good fortune would have it, at the bow of the
commodore's boat was stationed a very valiant man, named Hendrick Kip
(which, being interpreted, means _chicken_, a name given him in token of
his courage). No sooner did he behold these varlet heathens than he
trembled with excessive valor, and although a good half mile distant he
seized a musketoon that lay at hand, and, turning away his head, fired
it most intrepidly in the face of the blessed sun. The blundering weapon
recoiled and gave the valiant Kip an ignominious kick, which laid him
prostrate with uplifted heels in the bottom of the boat. But such was
the effect of this tremendous fire that the wild men of the woods,
struck with consternation, seized hastily upon their paddles and shot
away into one of the deep inlets of the Long Island shore.

This signal victory gave new spirits to the voyagers, and in honor of
the achievement they gave the name of the valiant Kip to the surrounding
bay, and it has continued to be called Kip's Bay from that time to the
present. The heart of the good Van Kortlandt--who, having no land of his
own, was a great admirer of other people's--expanded to the full size of
a peppercorn at the sumptuous prospect of rich, unsettled country around
him, and falling into a delicious reverie he straightway began to riot
in the possession of vast meadows of salt marsh and interminable patches
of cabbages. From this delectable vision he was all at once awakened by
the sudden turning of the tide, which would soon have hurried him from
this land of promise, had not the discreet navigator given the signal to
steer for shore, where they accordingly landed hard by the rocky heights
of Bellevue--that happy retreat where our jolly aldermen eat for the
good of the city and fatten the turtle that are sacrificed on civic


Here, seated on the green sward, by the side of a small stream that ran
sparkling among the grass, they refreshed themselves after the toils of
the seas by feasting lustily on the ample stores which they had provided
for this perilous voyage.

By this time the jolly Phoebus, like some wanton urchin sporting on
the side of a green hill, began to roll down the declivity of the
heavens; and now, the tide having once more turned in their favor, the
Pavonians again committed themselves to its discretion, and, coasting
along the western shores, were borne toward the straits of Blackwell's

And here the capricious wanderings of the current occasioned not a
little marvel and perplexity to these illustrious mariners. Now would
they be caught by the wanton eddies, and, sweeping around a jutting
point, would wind deep into some romantic little cave, that indented the
fair island of Manna-hata; now were they hurried narrowly by the very
basis of impending rocks, mantled with the flaunting grape-vine and
crowned with groves which threw a broad shade on the waves beneath; and
anon they were borne away into the mid-channel and wafted along with a
rapidity that very much discomposed the sage Van Kortlandt, who as he
saw the land swiftly receding on either side, began exceedingly to doubt
that terra firma was giving them the slip.

Wherever the voyagers turned their eyes a new creation seemed to bloom
around. No signs of human thrift appeared to check the delicious
wildness of Nature, who here reveled in all her luxuriant variety. Those
hills, now bristled, like the fretful porcupine, with rows of poplars
(vain upstart plants! minions of wealth and fashion!), were then adorned
with the vigorous natives of the soil--the hardy oak, the generous
chestnut, the graceful elm--while here and there the tulip tree reared
its majestic head, the giant of the forest. Where now are seen the gay
retreats of luxury--villas half buried in twilight bowers, whence the
amorous flute oft breathes the sighings of some city swain--there the
fish-hawk built his solitary nest on some dry tree that overlooked his
watery domain. The timid deer fed undisturbed along those shores now
hallowed by the lover's moonlight walk and printed by the slender foot
of beauty; and a savage solitude extended over those happy regions where
now are reared the stately towers of the Joneses, the Schermerhornes,
and the Rhinelanders.

Ah! witching scenes of foul delusion! Ah! hapless voyagers, gazing with
simple wonder on these Circean shores! Such, alas! are they, poor easy
souls who listen to the seductions of a wicked world--treacherous are
its smiles, fatal its caresses. He who yields to its enticements
launches upon a whelming tide, and trusts his feeble bark among the
dimpling eddies of a whirlpool! And thus it fared with the worthies of
Pavonia, who, little mistrusting the guileful scene before them, drifted
quietly on until they were aroused by an uncommon tossing and agitation
of their vessels. For now the late dimpling current began to brawl
around them and the waves to boil and foam with horrific fury. Awakened
as if from a dream, the astonished Oloffe bawled aloud to put about, but
his words were lost amid the roaring of the waters. And now ensued a
scene of direful consternation. At one time they were borne with
dreadful velocity among tumultuous breakers; at another hurried down
boisterous rapids. Now they were nearly dashed upon the Hen and Chickens
(infamous rocks!--more voracious than Scylla and her whelps), and anon
they seemed sinking into yawning gulfs that threatened to entomb them
beneath the waves. All the elements combined to produce a hideous
confusion. The waters raged, the winds howled, and as they were hurried
along several of the astonished mariners beheld the rocks and trees of
the neighboring shores driving through the air!

At length the mighty tub of Commodore Van Kortlandt was drawn into the
vortex of that tremendous whirlpool called the Pot, where it was whirled
about in giddy mazes until the senses of the good commander and his crew
were overpowered by the horror of the scene and the strangeness of the
revolution. How the gallant squadron of Pavonia was snatched from the
jaws of this modern Charybdis has never been truly made known, for so
many survived to tell the tale, and, what is still more wonderful, told
it in so many different ways, that there has ever prevailed a great
variety of opinions on the subject.

As to the commodore and his crew, when they came to their senses they
found themselves stranded on the Long Island shore. The worthy
commodore, indeed, used to relate many and wonderful stories of his
adventures in this time of peril--how that he saw specters flying in the
air and heard the yelling of hobgoblins, and put his hand into the pot
when they were whirled round, and found the water scalding hot, and
beheld several uncouth-looking beings seated on rocks and skimming it
with huge ladles; but particularly he declared, with great exultation,
that he saw the losel porpoises, which had betrayed them into this
peril, some broiling on the Gridiron and others hissing on the

These, however, were considered by many as mere fantasies of the
commodore while he lay in a trance, especially as he was known to be
given to dreaming, and the truth of them has never been clearly
ascertained. It is certain, however, that to the accounts of Oloffe and
his followers may be traced the various traditions handed down of this
marvelous strait--as how the devil has been seen there sitting astride
of the Hog's Back and playing on the fiddle, how he broils fish there
before a storm, and many other stories in which we must be cautious of
putting too much faith. In consequence of all these terrific
circumstances the Pavonian commander gave this pass the name of
_Hellegat_, or, as it has been interpreted, _Hell-Gate_,[242-1] which it
continues to bear at the present day.

The darkness of the night had closed upon this disastrous day, and a
doleful night was it to the shipwrecked Pavonians, whose ears were
incessantly assailed with the raging of the elements and the howling of
the hobgoblins that infested this perilous strait. But when the morning
dawned the horrors of the preceding evening had passed away--rapids,
breakers, whirlpools had disappeared, the stream again ran smooth and
dimpling, and, having changed its tide, rolled gently back toward the
quarter where lay their much-regretted home.

The woe-begone heroes of Communipaw eyed each other with rueful
countenances; their squadron had been totally dispersed by the late

I forbear to treat of the long consultation of Oloffe with his remaining
followers, in which they determined that it would never do to found a
city in so diabolical a neighborhood. Suffice it in simple brevity to
say that they once more committed themselves, with fear and trembling,
to the briny element, and steered their course back again through the
scenes of their yesterday's voyage, determined no longer to roam in
search of distant sites, but to settle themselves down in the marshy
regions of Pavonia.

Scarce, however, had they gained a distant view of Communipaw when they
were encountered by an obstinate eddy which opposed their homeward
voyage. Weary and dispirited as they were, they yet tugged a feeble oar
against the stream, until, as if to settle the strife, half a score of
potent billows rolled the tub of Commodore Van Kortlandt high and dry on
the long point of an island which divided the bosom of the bay.

Oloffe Van Kortlandt was a devout trencherman. Every repast was a kind
of religious rite with him, and his first thought on finding himself
once more on dry ground was how he should contrive to celebrate his
wonderful escape from Hell-Gate and all its horrors by a solemn banquet.
The stores which had been provided for the voyage by the good housewives
of Communipaw were nearly exhausted, but in casting his eyes about the
commodore beheld that the shore abounded with oysters. A great store of
these was instantly collected; a fire was made at the foot of a tree;
all hands fell to roasting and broiling and stewing and frying, and a
sumptuous repast was soon set forth.

On the present occasion the worthy Van Kortlandt was observed to be
particularly zealous in his devotions to the trencher; for, having the
cares of the expedition especially committed to his care, he deemed it
incumbent on him to eat profoundly for the public good. In proportion as
he filled himself to the very brim with the dainty viands before him,
did the heart of this excellent burgher rise up toward his throat, until
he seemed crammed and almost choked with good eating and good nature.
And at such times it is, when a man's heart is in his throat, that he
may more truly be said to speak from it and his speeches abound with
kindness and good fellowship. Thus, having swallowed the last possible
morsel and washed it down with a fervent potation, Oloffe felt his heart
yearning and his whole frame in a manner dilating with unbounded
benevolence. Everything around him seemed excellent and delightful, and,
laying his hands on each side of his capacious periphery, and rolling
his half closed eyes around on the beautiful diversity of land and water
before him, he exclaimed, in a fat, half-smothered voice, "What a
charming prospect!" The words died away in his throat, he seemed to
ponder on the fair scene for a moment, his eyelids heavily closed over
their orbits, his head drooped upon his bosom, he slowly sank upon the
green turf, and a deep sleep stole gradually over him.

Van Kortlandt awoke from his sleep greatly instructed, and he aroused
his companions and told them that it was the will of Saint Nicholas that
they should settle down and build the city here. With one voice all
assented to this.

The great object of their perilous expedition, therefore, being thus
happily accomplished, the voyagers returned merrily to Communipaw, where
they were received with great rejoicings.

It having been solemnly resolved that the seat of empire should be
removed from the green shores of Pavonia to the pleasant island of
Manna-hata, everybody was anxious to embark under the standard of Oloffe
the Dreamer, and to be among the first sharers of the promised land. A
day was appointed for the grand migration, and on that day little
Communipaw was in a buzz and bustle like a hive in swarming-time. Houses
were turned inside out and stripped of the venerable furniture which had
come from Holland; all the community, great and small, black and white,
man, woman and child, was in commotion, forming lines from the houses to
the water-side, like lines of ants from an ant-hill; everybody laden
with some article of household furniture, while busy housewives plied
backward and forward along the lines, helping everything forward by the
nimbleness of their tongues.

By degrees a fleet of boats and canoes were piled up with all kinds of
household articles--ponderous tables; chests of drawers resplendent with
brass ornaments; quaint corner cupboards; beds and bedsteads; with any
quantity of pots, kettles, frying-pans and Dutch ovens. In each boat
embarked a whole family, from the robustious burgher down to the cats
and dogs and little negroes. In this way they set off across the mouth
of the Hudson, under the guidance of Oloffe the Dreamer, who hoisted his
standard on the leading boat.

As the little squadron from Communipaw drew near to the shores of
Manna-hata, a sachem at the head of a band of warriors appeared to
oppose their landing. Some of the most zealous of the pilgrims were for
chastising this insolence with powder and ball, according to the
approved mode of discoverers; but the sage Oloffe gave them the
significant sign of Saint Nicholas, laying his finger beside his nose
and winking hard with one eye, whereupon his followers perceived that
there was something sagacious in the wink. He now addressed the Indians
in the blandest terms, and made such tempting display of beads,
hawks'-bells, and red blankets that he was soon permitted to land, and a
great land speculation ensued. And here let me give the true story of
the original purchase of the site of this renowned city about which so
much has been said and written. Some affirm that the first cost was but
sixty guilders. The learned Dominie Heckwelder records a tradition that
the Dutch discoverers bargained for only so much land as the hide of a
bullock would cover; but that they cut the hide in strips no thicker
than a child's finger, so as to take in a large portion of land and to
take in the Indians into the bargain. This, however, is an old fable
which the worthy Dominie may have borrowed from antiquity. The true
version is, that Oloffe Van Kortlandt bargained for just so much land as
a man could cover with his nether garments. The terms being concluded,
he produced his friend Mynheer Ten Broeck as the man whose breeches were
to be used in measurement. The simple savages, whose ideas of a man's
nether garments had never expanded beyond the dimensions of a
breech-clout, stared with astonishment and dismay as they beheld this
burgher peeled like an onion, and breeches after breeches spread forth
over the land until they covered the actual site of this venerable city.

This is the true history of the adroit bargain by which the island of
Manhattan was bought for sixty guilders; and in corroboration of it I
will add that Mynheer Ten Breeches, for his services on this memorable
occasion, was elevated to the office of land measurer, which he ever
afterward exercised in the colony.

The land being thus fairly purchased of the Indians, a circumstance very
unusual in the history of colonization, and strongly illustrative of the
honesty of our Dutch progenitors, a stockade fort and a trading-house
were forthwith erected on an eminence, the identical place at present
known as the Bowling Green.

Around this fort a progeny of little Dutch-built houses, with tiled
roofs and weathercocks, soon sprang up, nestling themselves under its
walls for protection, as a brood of half-fledged chickens nestles under
the wings of the mother hen. The whole was surrounded by an inclosure of
strong palisadoes to guard against any sudden irruption of the savages.
Outside of these extended the cornfields and cabbage-gardens of the
community, with here and there an attempt at a tobacco-plantation; all
covering those tracts of country at present called Broadway, Wall
street, William street and Pearl street.

I must not omit to mention that in portioning out the land a goodly
"bowerie" or farm was allotted to the sage Oloffe in consideration of
the service he had rendered to the public by his talent at dreaming; and
the site of his "bowerie" is known by the name of Kortlandt (or
Courtlandt) street to the present day.

And now, the infant settlement having advanced in age and stature, it
was thought high time it should receive an honest Christian name.
Hitherto it had gone by the original Indian name Manna-hata, or, as some
will have it, "The Manhattoes"; but this was now decried as savage and
heathenish, and as tending to keep up the memory of the pagan brood that
originally possessed it. Many were the consultations held upon the
subject without coming to a conclusion, for, though everybody condemned
the old name, nobody could invent a new one. At length, when the council
was almost in despair, a burgher, remarkable for the size and squareness
of his head, proposed that they should call it New Amsterdam. The
proposition took everybody by surprise; it was so striking, so apposite,
so ingenious. The name was adopted by acclamation, and New Amsterdam the
metropolis was thenceforth called. Still, however, the early authors of
the province continued to call it by the general appellation of "The
Manhattoes," and the poets fondly clung to the euphonious name of
Manna-hata; but those are a kind of folk whose tastes and notions should
go for nothing in matters of this kind.

Having thus provided the embryo city with a name, the next was to give
it an armorial bearing or device. As some cities have a rampant lion,
others a soaring eagle, emblematical, no doubt, of the valiant and
high-flying qualities of the inhabitants, so after mature deliberation a
sleek beaver was emblazoned on the city standard as indicative of the
amphibious origin and patient and persevering habits of the New


It was in the year of our Lord 1629 that Mynheer Wouter Van Twiller was
appointed governor of the province of Nieuw Nederlandts, under the
commission and control of their High Mightinesses the Lords States
General of the United Netherlands and the privileged West India Company.

The renowned Wouter (or Walter) Van Twiller was descended from a long
line of Dutch burgomasters, who had successively dozed away their lives
and grown fat upon the bench of magistracy in Rotterdam, and who had
comported themselves with such singular wisdom and propriety that they
were never either heard or talked of; which, next to being universally
applauded, should be the object of ambition of all magistrates and
rulers. There are two opposite ways by which some men make a figure in
the world--one by talking faster than they think, and the other by
holding their tongues and not thinking at all. By the first many a
smatterer acquires the reputation of a man of quick parts; by the other
many a dunderpate, like the owl, the stupidest of birds, comes to be
considered the very type of wisdom. This, by the way, is a casual
remark, which I would not for the universe have it thought I apply to
Governor Van Twiller. It is true he was a man shut up within himself,
like an oyster, and rarely spoke except in monosyllables; but then it
was allowed he seldom said a foolish thing. So invincible was his
gravity that he was never known to laugh or even to smile through the
whole course of a long and prosperous life. Nay, if a joke were uttered
in his presence that set light-minded hearers in a roar, it was observed
to throw him into a state of perplexity. Sometimes he would deign to
inquire into the matter, and when, after much explanation, the joke was
made as plain as a pike-staff, he would continue to smoke his pipe in
silence, and at length, knocking out the ashes, would exclaim, "Well! I
see nothing in all that to laugh about."

The person of this illustrious old gentleman was formed and
proportioned, as though it had been molded by the hands of some cunning
Dutch statuary, as a model of majesty and lordly grandeur. He was
exactly five feet, six inches in height and six feet, five inches in
circumference. His head was a perfect sphere, and of such stupendous
dimensions that Dame Nature with all her sex's ingenuity would have been
puzzled to construct a neck capable of supporting it; wherefore she
wisely declined the attempt, and settled it firmly on the top of his
backbone just between the shoulders. His body was oblong and
particularly capacious at bottom; which was wisely ordered by
Providence, seeing that he was a man of sedentary habits and very averse
to the idle labor of walking. His legs were short, but sturdy in
proportion to the weight they had to sustain, so that when erect he had
not a little the appearance of a beer-barrel on skids. His face, that
infallible index of the mind, presented a vast expanse, unfurrowed by
any of those lines and angles which disfigure the human countenance with
what is termed expression. Two small gray eyes twinkled feebly in the
midst, like two stars of lesser magnitude in a hazy firmament, and his
full-fed cheeks, which seemed to have taken toll of everything that went
into his mouth, were curiously mottled and streaked with dusky red, like
a spitzenberg apple.

In his council he presided with great state and solemnity. He sat in a
huge chair of solid oak, hewn in the celebrated forest of The Hague,
fabricated by an experienced timmerman of Amsterdam, and curiously
carved about the arms and feet into exact imitations of gigantic eagle's
claws. Instead of a scepter he swayed a long Turkish pipe, wrought with
jasmine and amber, which had been presented to a stadtholder of Holland
at the conclusion of a treaty with one of the petty Barbary powers. In
this stately chair would he sit and this magnificent pipe would he
smoke, shaking his right knee with a constant motion, and fixing his eye
for hours upon a little print of Amsterdam which hung in a black frame
against the opposite wall of the council-chamber. Nay, it has even been
said that when any deliberation of extraordinary length and intricacy
was on the carpet the renowned Wouter would shut his eyes for full two
hours at a time, that he might not be disturbed by external objects; and
at such times the internal commotion of his mind was evinced by certain
regular guttural sounds, which his admirers declared were merely the
noise of conflict made by his contending doubts and opinions.


The very outset of the career of this excellent magistrate was
distinguished by an example of legal acumen that gave flattering
presage of a wise and equitable administration. The morning after he had
been installed in office, and at the moment that he was making his
breakfast from a prodigious earthen dish filled with milk and Indian
pudding, he was interrupted by the appearance of Wandle Schoonhoven, a
very important old burgher of New Amsterdam, who complained bitterly of
one Barent Bleecker, inasmuch as he refused to come to a settlement of
accounts, seeing that there was a heavy balance in favor of the said
Wandle. Governor Van Twiller, as I have already observed, was a man of
few words; he was likewise a mortal enemy to multiplying writings or
being disturbed at his breakfast. Having listened attentively to the
statement of Wandle Schoonhoven, giving an occasional grunt as he
shoveled a spoonful of Indian pudding into his mouth, either as a sign
that he relished the dish or comprehended the story, he called unto him
his constable, and, pulling out of his breeches pocket a huge
jack-knife, dispatched it after the defendant, as a summons, accompanied
by his tobacco-box as a warrant.

This summary process was as effectual in those simple days as was the
seal ring of the great Haroun Alraschid among the true believers. The
two parties being confronted before him, each produced a book of
accounts written in a language and character that would have puzzled any
but a High Dutch commentator or a learned decipherer of Egyptian
obelisks. The sage Wouter took them one after the other, and, having
poised them in his hands and attentively counted over the number of
leaves, fell straightway into a very great doubt, and smoked for half an
hour without saying a word; at length, laying his finger beside his nose
and shutting his eyes for a moment with the air of a man who had just
caught a subtle idea by the tail, he slowly took his pipe from his
mouth, puffed forth a column of tobacco-smoke, and with marvelous
gravity and solemnity pronounced--that, having carefully counted over
the leaves and weighed the books, it was found that one was just as
thick and as heavy as the other; therefore it was the final opinion of
the court that the accounts were equally balanced; therefore Wandle
should give Barent a receipt, and Barent should give Wandle a receipt;
and the constable should pay the costs.

This decision, being straightway made known, diffused general joy
throughout New Amsterdam, for the people immediately perceived that they
had a very wise and equitable magistrate to rule over them. But its
happiest effect was that not another lawsuit took place throughout the
whole of his administration, and the office of constable fell into such
decay that there was not one of those losel scouts known in the province
for many years.


The houses of the higher class were generally constructed of wood,
excepting the gable end, which was of small black and yellow Dutch
bricks, and always faced on the street, as our ancestors, like their
descendants, were very much given to outward show, and were noted for
putting the best leg foremost. The house was always furnished with
abundance of large doors and small windows on every floor, the date of
its erection was curiously designated by iron figures on the front, and
on the top of the roof was perched a fierce little weathercock, to let
the family into the important secret which way the wind blew. These,
like the weathercocks on the tops of our steeples, pointed so many
different ways that every man could have a wind to his mind; the most
stanch and loyal citizens, however, always went according to the
weathercock on the top of the governor's house, which was certainly the
most correct, as he had a trusty servant employed every morning to climb
up and set it to the right quarter.

In those good days of simplicity and sunshine a passion for cleanliness
was the leading principle in domestic economy and the universal test of
an able housewife--a character which formed the utmost ambition of our
unenlightened grandmothers. The front door was never opened except on
marriages, funerals, New Year's days, the festival of Saint Nicholas, or
some such great occasion. It was ornamented with a gorgeous brass
knocker, curiously wrought, sometimes in the device of a dog, and
sometimes of a lion's head, and was daily burnished with such religious
zeal that it was ofttimes worn out by the very precautions taken for its
preservation. The whole house was constantly in a state of inundation
under the discipline of mops and brooms and scrubbing brushes; and the
good housewives of those days were a kind of amphibious animal,
delighting exceedingly to be dabbling in water, insomuch that an
historian of the day gravely tells us that many of his townswomen grew
to have webbed fingers like unto a duck; but this I look upon to be a
mere sport of fancy, or, what is worse, a willful misrepresentation.

The grand parlor was the sanctum-sanctorum where the passion for
cleaning was indulged without control. In this sacred apartment no one
was permitted to enter excepting the mistress and her confidential maid,
who visited it once a week for the purpose of giving it a thorough
cleaning and putting things to rights, always taking the precaution of
leaving their shoes at the door and entering devoutly in their stocking
feet. After scrubbing the floor, sprinkling it with fine white sand,
which was curiously stroked into angles, and curves, and rhomboids with
a broom--after washing the windows, rubbing and polishing the
furniture, and putting a new bunch of evergreen in the fireplace--the
window shutters were again closed to keep out the flies, and the room
carefully locked up until the revolution of time brought round the
weekly cleaning day.

As to the family, they always entered in at the gate, and most generally
lived in the kitchen. To have seen a numerous household assembled round
the fire one would have imagined that he was transported back to those
happy days of primeval simplicity which float before our imagination
like golden visions. The fireplaces were of a truly patriarchal
magnitude, where the whole family, old and young, master and servant,
black and white--nay, even the very cat and dog--enjoyed a community of
privilege and had each a right to a corner. Here the old burgher would
sit in perfect silence, puffing his pipe, looking in the fire with
half-shut eyes, and thinking of nothing for hours together; the goede
vrouw on the opposite side would employ herself diligently in spinning
yarn or knitting stockings. The young folks would crowd around the
hearth, listening with breathless attention to some old crone of a negro
who was the oracle of the family, and who, perched like a raven in a
corner of the chimney, would croak forth for a long winter afternoon a
string of incredible stories about New England witches, grisly ghosts,
horses without heads, and hair-breadth escapes and bloody encounters
among the Indians.

In those happy days a well-regulated family always rose with the dawn,
dined at eleven, and went to bed at sunset. Dinner was invariably a
private meal, and the fat old burghers showed incontestable signs of
disapprobation and uneasiness at being surprised by a visit from a
neighbor on such occasions. But, though our worthy ancestors were thus
singularly adverse to giving dinners, yet they kept up the social bonds
of intimacy by occasional banquetings called tea-parties.

These fashionable parties were generally confined to the higher
classes--or noblesse--that is to say, such as kept their own cows and
drove their own wagons. The company commonly assembled at three o'clock
and went away about six, unless it was in winter time, when the
fashionable hours were a little earlier, that the ladies might get home
before dark. The tea-table was crowned with a huge earthen dish well
stored with slices of fat pork fried brown, cut up into morsels, and
swimming in gravy. The company, being seated round the genial board and
each furnished with a fork, evinced their dexterity in launching at the
fattest pieces in this mighty dish--in much the same manner as sailors
harpoon porpoises at sea, or our Indians spear salmon in the lakes.
Sometimes the table was graced with immense apple pies or saucers full
of preserved peaches and pears; but it was always sure to boast an
enormous dish of balls of sweetened dough, fried in hog's fat, and
called doughnuts, or olykoeks--a delicious kind of cake at present
scarce known in this city, except in genuine Dutch families.

The tea was served out of a majestic delft teapot ornamented with
paintings of fat little Dutch shepherds and shepherdesses tending pigs,
with boats sailing in the air, and houses built in the clouds, and
sundry other ingenious Dutch fantasies. The beaux distinguished
themselves by their adroitness in replenishing this pot from a huge
copper tea-kettle which would have made the pigmy macaronies of these
degenerate days sweat merely to look at it. To sweeten the beverage a
lump of sugar was laid beside each cup, and the company alternately
nibbled and sipped with great decorum, until an improvement was
introduced by a shrewd and economic old lady, which was to suspend a
large lump directly over the tea-table by a string from the ceiling, so
that it could be swung from mouth to mouth--an ingenious expedient which
is still kept up by some families in Albany, but which prevails without
exception in Communipaw, Bergen, Flatbush, and all our uncontaminated
Dutch villages.

At these primitive tea-parties the utmost propriety and dignity of
deportment prevailed. No flirting nor coquetting; no gambling of old
ladies nor hoyden chattering and romping of young ones; no
self-satisfied struttings of wealthy gentlemen with their brains in
their pockets; nor amusing conceits and monkey divertisements of smart
young gentlemen with no brains at all. On the contrary, the young ladies
seated themselves demurely in their rush-bottomed chairs and knit their
own woollen stockings, nor ever opened their lips excepting to say _Yah,
Mynheer_, or _Yah ya, Vrouw_, to any question that was asked them,
behaving in all things like decent, well-educated damsels. As to the
gentlemen, each of them tranquilly smoked his pipe and seemed lost in
contemplation of the blue and white tiles with which the fireplaces were
decorated, whereon sundry passages of Scripture were piously portrayed:
Tobit and his dog figured to great advantage; Haman swung conspicuously
on his gibbet; and Jonah appeared most manfully bouncing out of the
whale, like Harlequin through a barrel of fire.

The parties broke up without noise and without confusion. They were
carried home by their own carriages--that is to say, by the vehicles
Nature had provided them--excepting such of the wealthy as could afford
to keep a wagon. The gentlemen gallantly attended their fair ones to
their respective abodes, and took leave of them with a hearty smack at
the door, which as it was an established piece of etiquette, done in
perfect simplicity and honesty of heart, occasioned no scandal at that
time, nor should it at the present: if our greatgrandfathers approved of
the custom, it would argue a great want of reverence in their
descendants to say a word against it.

In this dulcet period of my history, when the beauteous island of
Manna-hata presented a scene the very counterpart of those glowing
pictures drawn of the golden reign of Saturn, there was, as I have
before observed, a happy ignorance, an honest simplicity, prevalent
among its inhabitants, which, were I even able to depict, would be but
little understood by the degenerate age for which I am doomed to write.
Even the female sex, those arch innovators upon the tranquillity, the
honesty, and gray-beard customs of society, seemed for a while to
conduct themselves with incredible sobriety and comeliness.

Their hair, untortured by the abominations of art, was scrupulously
pomatumed back from their foreheads with a candle, and covered with a
little cap of quilted calico which fitted exactly to their heads. Their
petticoats of linsey-woolsey were striped with a variety of gorgeous
dyes, though I must confess these gallant garments were rather short,
scarce reaching below the knee; but then they made up in the number,
which generally equalled that of the gentlemen's small-clothes; and,
what is still more praiseworthy, they were all of their own manufacture,
of which circumstance, as may well be supposed, they were not a little

These were the honest days in which every woman stayed at home, read the
Bible, and wore pockets--ay, and that too of a goodly size, fashioned
with patchwork into many curious devices and ostentatiously worn on the
outside. These, in fact, were convenient receptacles where all good
housewives carefully stored away such things as they wished to have at
hand, by which means they often came to be incredibly crammed; and I
remember there was a story current when I was a boy that the lady of
Wouter Van Twiller once had occasion to empty her right pocket in search
of a wooden ladle, when the contents filled a couple of corn baskets,
and the utensil was discovered lying among some rubbish in one corner.
But we must not give too much faith to all these stories, the anecdotes
of those remote periods being very subject to exaggeration.

Besides these notable pockets, they likewise wore scissors and
pincushions suspended from their girdles by red ribbons, or among the
more opulent and showy classes by brass, and even silver,
chains--indubitable tokens of thrifty housewives and industrious
spinsters. I cannot say much in vindication of the shortness of the
petticoats: it doubtless was introduced for the purpose of giving the
stockings a chance to be seen, which were generally of blue worsted with
magnificent red clocks, or perhaps to display a well-turned ankle and a
neat, though serviceable foot, set off by a high-heeled leathern shoe
with a large and splendid silver buckle. Thus we find that the gentle
sex in all ages have shown the same disposition to infringe a little
upon the laws of decorum in order to betray a lurking beauty or gratify
an innocent love of finery.

From the sketch here given it will be seen that our good grandmothers
differed considerably in their ideas of a fine figure from their
scantily dressed descendants of the present day. A fine lady in those
times waddled under more clothes, even on a fair summer's day, than
would have clad the whole bevy of a modern ball-room. Nor were they the
less admired by the gentlemen in consequence thereof. On the contrary,
the greatness of a lover's passion seemed to increase in proportion to
the magnitude of its object, and a voluminous damsel, arrayed in a dozen
of petticoats, was declared by a Low Dutch sonneteer of the province to
be radiant as a sunflower and luxuriant as a full-blown cabbage. Certain
it is that in those days the heart of a lover could not contain more
than one lady at a time; whereas the heart of a modern gallant has often
room enough to accommodate half a dozen. The reason of which I conclude
to be, that either the hearts of the gentlemen have grown larger or the
persons of the ladies smaller; this, however, is a question for
physiologists to determine.

But there was a secret charm in these petticoats which no doubt entered
into the consideration of the prudent gallants. The wardrobe of a lady
was in those days her only fortune, and she who had a good stock of
petticoats and stockings was as absolutely an heiress as is a Kamschatka
damsel with a store of bear skins or a Lapland belle with a plenty of
reindeer. The ladies, therefore, were very anxious to display these
powerful attractions to the greatest advantage; and the best rooms in
the house, instead of being adorned with caricatures of Dame Nature in
water colors and needlework, were always hung round with abundance of
homespun garments, the manufacture and the property of the females--a
piece of laudable ostentation that still prevails among the heiresses of
our Dutch villages.

The gentlemen, in fact, who figured in the circles of the gay world in
these ancient times corresponded, in most particulars, with the
beauteous damsels whose smiles they were ambitious to deserve. True it
is their merits would make but a very inconsiderable impression upon the
heart of a modern fair; they neither drove their curricles nor sported
their tandems, for as yet those gaudy vehicles were not even dreamt of,
neither did they distinguish themselves by their brilliancy at the
table, and their consequent renconters with watchmen, for our
forefathers were of too pacific a disposition to need those guardians of
the night, every soul throughout the town being sound asleep before nine
o'clock. Neither did they establish their claims to gentility at the
expense of their tailors, for as yet those offenders against the pockets
of society and the tranquility of all aspiring young gentlemen were
unknown in New Amsterdam; every good housewife made the clothes of her
husband and family, and even the goede vrouw of Van Twiller himself
thought it no disparagement to cut out her husband's linsey-woolsey

Not but what there were some two or three youngsters who manifested the
first dawning of what is called fire and spirit, who held all labor in
contempt, skulked about docks and market-places, loitered in the
sunshine, squandered what little money they could procure at hustle-cap
and chuck-farthing, swore, boxed, fought cocks, and raced their
neighbors' horses; in short, who promised to be the wonder, the talk,
and abomination of the town, had not their stylish career been
unfortunately cut short by an affair of honor with a whipping-post.

Far other, however, was the truly fashionable gentleman of those days.
His dress, which served for both morning and evening, street and
drawing-room, was a linsey-woolsey coat, made, perhaps, by the fair
hands of the mistress of his affections, and gallantly bedecked with
abundance of large brass buttons; half a score of breeches heightened
the proportions of his figure; his shoes were decorated by enormous
copper buckles; a low-crowned, broad-brimmed hat overshadowed his burly
visage; and his hair dangled down his back in a queue of eel-skin.

Thus equipped, he would manfully sally forth with pipe in mouth to
besiege some fair damsel's obdurate heart--not such a pipe, good reader,
as that which Acis did sweetly tune in praise of his Galatea, but one
of true Delft manufacture and furnished with a charge of fragrant
tobacco. With this would he resolutely set himself down before the
fortress, and rarely failed, in the process of time, to smoke the fair
enemy into a surrender upon honorable terms.

Happy would it have been for New Amsterdam could it always have existed
in this state of lowly simplicity; but alas! the days of childhood are
too sweet to last! Cities, like men, grow out of them in time, and are
doomed alike to grow into the bustle, the cares, and miseries of the


Wilhelmus Kieft, who in 1634 ascended the gubernatorial chair (to borrow
a favorite though clumsy appellation of modern phraseologists), was of a
lofty descent, his father being inspector of windmills in the ancient
town of Saardam; and our hero, we are told, when a boy made very curious
investigations into the nature and operation of these machines, which
was one reason why he afterward came to be so ingenious a governor. His
name according to the most authentic etymologists, was a corruption of
Kyver--that is to say, a _wrangler_ or _scolder_--and expressed the
characteristic of his family, which for nearly two centuries had kept
the windy town of Saardam in hot water, and produced more tartars and
brimstones than any ten families in the place; and so truly did he
inherit this family peculiarity that he had not been a year in the
government of the province before he was universally denominated
William the Testy. His appearance answered to his name. He was a brisk,
wiry, waspish little old gentleman; such a one as may now and then be
seen stumping about our city in a broad-skirted coat with huge buttons,
a cocked hat stuck on the back of his head, and a cane as high as his
chin. His face was broad but his features were sharp, his cheeks were
scorched into a dusky red by two fiery little gray eyes; his nose
turned up, and the corners of his mouth turned down, pretty much like
the muzzle of an irritable pug-dog.

[Illustration: WILLIAM THE TESTY]

I have heard it observed by a profound adept in human physiology that if
a woman waxes fat with the progress of years, her tenure of life is
somewhat precarious, but if haply she withers as she grows old she lives
forever. Such promised to be the case with William the Testy, who grew
tough in proportion as he dried. He had withered, in fact, not through
the process of years, but through the tropical fervor of his soul, which
burnt like a vehement rushlight in his bosom, inciting him to incessant
broils and bickerings.

Wilhelmus Kieft was a great legislator on a small scale, and had a
microscopic eye in public affairs. He had been greatly annoyed by the
factious meetings of the good people of New Amsterdam, but, observing
that on these occasions the pipe was ever in their mouth, he began to
think that the pipe was at the bottom of the affair, and that there was
some mysterious affinity between politics and tobacco smoke. Determined
to strike at the root of the evil, he began, forthwith, to rail at
tobacco as a noxious, nauseous weed, filthy in all its uses; and as to
smoking, he denounced it as a heavy tax upon the public pocket, a vast
consumer of time, a great encourager of idleness, and a deadly bane to
the prosperity and morals of the people. Finally, he issued an edict
prohibiting the smoking of tobacco throughout the New Netherlands.
Ill-fated Kieft! Had he lived in the present age and attempted to check
the unbounded license of the press, he could not have struck more sorely
upon the sensibilities of the million. The pipe, in fact, was the great
organ of reflection and deliberation of the New Netherlander. It was his
constant companion and solace: was he gay, he smoked; was he sad, he
smoked; his pipe was never out of his mouth; it was a part of his
physiognomy; without it his best friends would not know him. Take away
his pipe? You might as well take away his nose!


The immediate effect of the edict of William the Testy was a popular
commotion. A vast multitude, armed with pipes and tobacco boxes and an
immense supply of ammunition, sat themselves down before the governor's
house and fell to smoking with tremendous violence. The Testy William
issued forth like a wrathful spider, demanding the reason of this
lawless fumigation. The sturdy rioters replied by lolling back in their
seats and puffing away with redoubled fury, raising such a murky cloud
that the governor was fain to take refuge in the interior of his

A long negotiation ensued through the medium of Antony the Trumpeter.
The governor was at first wrathful and unyielding, but was gradually
smoked into terms. He concluded by permitting the smoking of tobacco,
but he abolished the fair long pipes used in the days of Wouter Van
Twiller, denoting ease, tranquillity and sobriety of deportment; these
he condemned as incompatible with the dispatch of business; in place
whereof he substituted little captious short pipes, two inches in
length, which he observed could be stuck in one corner of the mouth or
twisted in the hat-band, and would never be in the way. Thus ended this
alarming insurrection, which was long known by the name of The Pipe
Plot, and which, it has been somewhat quaintly observed, did end, like
most plots and seditions, in mere smoke.

But mark, O reader! the deplorable evils which did afterward result. The
smoke of these villainous little pipes, continually ascending in a cloud
about the nose, penetrated into and befogged the cerebellum, dried up
all the kindly moisture of the brain, and rendered the people who used
them as vaporish and testy as the governor himself. Nay, what is worse,
from being goodly, burly, sleek-conditioned men, they became, like our
Dutch yeomanry who smoke short pipes, a lantern-jawed, smoke-dried,
leathern-hided race.

Nor was this all. From this fatal schism we may date the rise of parties
in Nieuw Nederlandts. The rich burghers, who could afford to be lazy,
adhered to the ancient fashion and were known as _Long Pipes_; while the
lower order were branded with the plebeian name of _Short Pipes_.


Peter Stuyvesant was the last, and, like the renowned Wouter Van
Twiller, the best, of our ancient Dutch governors, Wouter having
surpassed all who preceded him, and Pieter or Piet, as he was sociably
called by the old Dutch burghers, who were ever prone to familiarize
names, having never been equalled by any successor. He was, in fact, the
very man fitted by Nature to retrieve the desperate fortunes of her
beloved province, had not the fates, those most potent and unrelenting
of all ancient spinsters, destined them to inextricable confusion.

To say merely that he was a hero would be doing him great injustice: he
was in truth a combination of heroes; for he was of a sturdy, raw-boned
make like Ajax Telamon, with a pair of round shoulders that Hercules
would have given his hide for (meaning his lion's hide) when he
undertook to ease old Atlas of his load. He was, moreover, as Plutarch
describes Coriolanus, not only terrible for the force of his arm, but
likewise of his voice, which sounded as though it came out of a barrel;
and, like the self-same warrior, he possessed a sovereign contempt for
the sovereign people, and an iron aspect which was enough of itself to
make the very bowels of his adversaries quake with terror and dismay.
All this martial excellency of appearance was inexpressibly heightened
by an accidental advantage with which I am surprised that neither Homer
nor Virgil have graced any of their heroes. This was nothing less than a
wooden leg, which was the only prize he had gained in bravely fighting
the battles of his country, but of which he was so proud that he was
often heard to declare he valued it more than all his other limbs put
together; indeed, so highly did he esteem it that he had it gallantly
enchased and relieved with silver devices, which caused it to be related
in divers histories and legends that he wore a silver leg.

Like that choleric warrior Achilles, he was somewhat subject to
extempore bursts of passion, which were rather unpleasant to his
favorites and attendants, whose perceptions he was apt to quicken, after
the manner of his illustrious imitator, Peter the Great, by anointing
their shoulders with his walking-staff.

He was, in fact, the very reverse of his predecessors, being neither
tranquil and inert like Walter the Doubter, nor restless and fidgeting
like William the Testy, but a man of such uncommon activity and decision
of mind that he never sought nor accepted the advice of others,
depending bravely upon his single head, as would a hero of yore upon his
single arm, to carry him through all difficulties. To tell the simple
truth, he wanted nothing more to complete him as a statesman than to
think always right, for no one can say but that he always acted as he
thought. He was never a man to flinch when he found himself in a scrape,
but to dash forward through thick and thin, trusting by hook or by crook
to make all things straight in the end. In a word, he possessed in an
eminent degree that great quality in a statesman called perseverance by
the polite, but nicknamed obstinacy by the vulgar. A wonderful salve for
official blunders, since he who perseveres in error without flinching
gets the credit of boldness and consistency, while he who wavers in
seeking to do what is right gets stigmatized as a trimmer. This much is
certain--and it is a maxim well worthy the attention of all legislators
great and small who stand shaking in the wind, irresolute which way to
steer--that a ruler who follows his own will pleases himself, while he
who seeks to satisfy the wishes and whims of others runs great risk of
pleasing nobody. There is nothing, too, like putting down one's foot
resolutely when in doubt, and letting things take their course. The
clock that stands still points right twice in the four and twenty hours,
while others may keep going continually and be continually going wrong.

Nor did this magnanimous quality escape the discernment of the good
people of Nieuw Nederlandts; on the contrary, so much were they struck
with the independent will and vigorous resolution displayed on all
occasions by their new governor that they universally called him
Hard-Koppig Piet, or Peter the Headstrong--a great compliment to the
strength of his understanding.


"Now had the Dutchmen snatched a huge repast," and, finding themselves
wonderfully encouraged and animated thereby, prepared to take the field.
Expectation, says the writer of the Stuyvesant manuscript--expectation
now stood on stilts. The world forgot to turn round, or rather stood
still, that it might witness the affray, like a round-bellied alderman
watching the combat of two chivalrous flies upon his jerkin. The eyes
of all mankind, as usual in such cases, were turned upon Fort Christina.
The sun, like a little man in a crowd at a puppet-show, scampered about
the heavens, popping his head here and there, and endeavoring to get a
peep between the unmannerly clouds that obtruded themselves in his way.
The historians filled their inkhorns; the poets went without their
dinners, either that they might buy paper and goose-quills or because
they could not get anything to eat; Antiquity scowled sulkily out of its
grave to see itself outdone, while even Posterity stood mute, gazing in
gaping ecstasy of retrospection on the eventful field.

The immortal deities, who whilom had seen service at the "affair" of
Troy, now mounted their feather-bed clouds and sailed over the plain, or
mingled among the combatants in different disguises, all itching to have
a finger in the pie. Jupiter sent off his thunderbolt to a noted
coppersmith to have it furbished up for the direful occasion. The noted
bully Mars stuck two horse-pistols into his belt, shouldered a rusty
firelock, and gallantly swaggered at the elbow of the Swedes as a
drunken corporal; while Apollo trudged in their rear as a bandy-legged
fifer, playing most villainously out of tune.

On the other hand, the ox-eyed Juno, who had gained a pair of black eyes
overnight in one of her curtain lectures with old Jupiter, displayed her
haughty beauties on a baggage wagon; while Vulcan halted as a
club-footed blacksmith lately promoted to be a captain of militia. All
was silent awe or bustling preparation: War reared his horrid front,
gnashed loud his iron fangs, and shook his direful crest of bristling

And now the mighty chieftains marshalled out their hosts. Here stood
stout Risingh, firm as a thousand rocks, incrusted with stockades, and
intrenched to the chin in mud batteries. He was a gigantic Swede, who,
had he not been rather knock-kneed and splay-footed, might have served
for the model of Samson or a Hercules. He was no less rapacious than
mighty, and withal as crafty as he was rapacious, so that there is very
little doubt that had he lived some four or five centuries since he
would have figured as one of those wicked giants who took a cruel
pleasure in pocketing beautiful princesses and distressed damsels when
gadding about the world, and locking them up in enchanted castles
without a toilet, a change of linen, or any other convenience; in
consequence of which enormities they fell under the high displeasure of
chivalry, and all true, loyal, and gallant knights were instructed to
attack and slay outright any miscreant they might happen to find above
six feet high; which is doubtless one reason why the race of large men
is nearly extinct, and the generations of latter ages are so exceedingly
small. His valiant soldiery lined the breastworks in grim array, each
having his mustachios fiercely greased and his hair pomatumed back, and
queued so stiffly that he grinned above the ramparts like a grisly
death's head.

There came on the intrepid Peter, his brows knit, his teeth set, his
fists clinched, almost breathing forth volumes of smoke, so fierce was
the fire that raged within his bosom. His faithful squire Van Corlear
trudged valiantly at his heels, with his trumpet gorgeously bedecked
with red and yellow ribbons, the remembrances of his fair mistress at
the Manhattoes. Then came waddling on the sturdy chivalry of the Hudson.
There were the Van Wycks, and the Van Dycks, and the Ten Eycks; the Van
Nesses, the Van Tassels, the Van Grools, the Van Hoesens, the Van
Giesons, and the Van Blarcoms; the Van Warts, the Van Winkles, the Van
Dams; the Van Pelts, the Van Rippers and the Van Brunts. There were the
Van Hornes, the Van Hooks, the Van Bunschotens; the Van Gelders, the Van
Arsdales, and the Van Bummels; the Vander Belts, the Vander Hoofs and
the Vander Voorts, the Vander Lyns, the Vander Pools and the Vander
Spiegles. There came the Hoffmans, the Hooghlands, the Hoppers, the
Cloppers, the Ryckmans, the Dyckmans, the Hogebooms, the Rosebooms, the
Oothouts, the Quakenbosses, the Roerbacks, the Garrebrantzes, the
Bensons, the Brouwers, the Waldrons, the Onderdonks, the Varra Vangers,
the Schermerhorns, the Stoutenburghs, the Brinkerhoffs, the Bontecous,
the Knickerbockers, the Hockstrassers, the Ten Breecheses, and the Tough
Breecheses, with a host more of worthies whose names are too crabbed to
be written, or if they could be written it would be impossible for man
to utter--all fortified with a mighty dinner, and, to use the words of a
great Dutch poet:

    "Brimful of wrath and cabbage."


For an instant the mighty Peter paused in the midst of his career, and,
mounting on a stump, addressed his troops in eloquent Low Dutch,
exhorting them to fight like _duyvels_, and assuring them that if they
conquered they should get plenty of booty; if they fell they should
be allowed the satisfaction, while dying, of reflecting that it was in
the service of their country, and after they were dead of seeing their
names inscribed in the temple of renown, and handed down, in company
with all the other great men of the year, for the admiration of
posterity. Finally, he swore to them, on the word of a governor (and
they knew him too well to doubt it for a moment), that if he caught any
mother's son of them looking pale or playing craven, he would curry his
hide till he made him run out of it like a snake in spring-time. Then,
lugging out his trusty saber, he branished it three times over his head,
ordered Van Corlear to sound the charge, and, shouting the words, "Saint
Nicholas and the Manhattoes!" courageously dashed forward. His warlike
followers, who had employed the interval in lighting their pipes,
instantly stuck them into their mouths, gave a furious puff, and charged
gallantly under cover of the smoke.

The Swedish garrison, ordered by the cunning Risingh not to fire until
they could distinguish the whites of their assailants' eyes, stood in
horrid silence on the covert-way until the eager Dutchmen had ascended
the glacis. Then did they pour into them such a tremendous volley that
the very hills quaked around, and certain springs burst forth from their
sides which continue to run unto the present day. Not a Dutchman but
would have bitten the dust beneath that dreadful fire had not the
protecting Minerva kindly taken care that the Swedes should, one and
all, observe their usual custom of shutting their eyes and turning away
their heads at the moment of discharge.

The Swedes followed up their fire by leaping the counterscarp and
falling tooth and nail upon the foe with furious outcries. And now might
be seen prodigies of valor unmatched in history or song. Here was the
sturdy Stuffel Brinkerhoff branishing his quarter-staff, like the giant
Blanderon his oak tree (for he scorned to carry any other weapon), and
drumming a horrific tune upon the hard heads of the Swedish soldiery.
There were the Van Kortlandts, posted at a distance, like the Locrian
archers of yore, and plying it most potently with the long-bow, for
which they were so justly renowned. On a rising knoll were gathered the
valiant men of Sing-Sing, assisting marvelously in the fight by chanting
the great song of Saint Nicholas; but as to the Gardeniers of Hudson,
they were absent on a marauding-party, laying waste the neighboring

In a different part of the field were the Van Grolls of Antony's nose,
struggling to get to the thickest of the fight, but horribly perplexed
in a defile between two hills by reason of the length of their noses. So
also the Van Bunschotens of Nyack and Kakiat, so renowned for kicking
with the left foot, were brought to a stand for want of wind in
consequence of the hearty dinner they had eaten and would have been put
to utter rout, but for the arrival of a gallant corps of voltigeurs,
composed of the Hoppers, who advanced nimbly to their assistance on one
foot. Nor must I omit to mention the valiant achievements of Antony Van
Corlear, who for a good quarter of an hour waged stubborn fight with a
little pursy Swedish drummer, whose hide he drummed most magnificently,
and whom he would infallibly have annihilated on the spot but that he
had come into the battle with no other weapon but his trumpet.

But now the combat thickened. On came the mighty Jacobus Varra Vanger
and the fighting men of the Wallabout; after them thundered the Van
Pelts of Esopus, together with the Van Rippers and the Van Brunts,
bearing down all before them; then the Suy Dams and the Van Dams,
pressing forward with many a blustering oath at the head of the warriors
of Hell-Gate, clad in their thunder-and-lightning gaberdines; and lastly
the standard-bearers and body-guards of Peter Stuyvesant, bearing the
great beaver of the Manhattoes.

And now commenced the horrid din, the desperate struggle, the maddening
ferocity, the frantic desperation, the confusion and self-abandonment of
war. Dutchman and Swede, commingled, tugged, panted, and blowed. The
heavens were darkened with a tempest of missiles. Bang! went the
guns--whack! went the broadswords--thump! went the cudgels--crash! went
the musket-stocks--blows, kicks, cuffs, scratches, black eyes, and
bloody noses swelling the horrors of the scene! Thick thwack, cut and
hack, helter-skelter, higgledy-piggledy, hurly-burly, head over heels,
rough and tumble! Dunder and blixum! swore the Dutchmen; splitter and
splutter! cried the Swedes; storm the works! shouted Hardkoppig Pieter;
fire the mine! roared stout Risingh; tanta-ra-ra-ra! twanged the trumpet
of Antony Van Corlear--until all voice and sound became unintelligible,
grunts of pain, yells of fury, and shouts of triumph mingling in one
hideous clamor. The earth shook as if struck with a paralytic
stroke--trees shrunk aghast and withered at the sight--rocks burrowed in
the ground like rabbits--and even Christina Creek turned from its course
and ran up a hill in breathless terror!

Long hung the contest doubtful, for though a heavy shower of rain, sent
by the "cloud-compelling Jove," in some measure cooled their ardor, as
doth a bucket of water thrown on a group of fighting mastiffs, yet did
they but pause for a moment, to return with tenfold fury to the charge.
Just at this juncture a vast and dense column of smoke was seen slowly
rolling toward the scene of battle. The combatants paused for a moment,
gazing in mute astonishment, until the wind, dispelling the murky cloud,
revealed the flaunting banner of Michael Paw, the patroon of Communipaw.
That valiant chieftain came fearlessly on at the head of a phalanx of
oyster-fed Pavonians and a corps de reserve of the Van Arsdales and Van
Bummels, who had remained behind to digest the enormous dinner they had
eaten. These now trudged manfully forward, smoking their pipes with
outrageous vigor, so as to raise the awful cloud that has been
mentioned; but marching exceedingly slow, being short of leg and of
great rotundity in the belt.

And now the deities who watched over the fortunes of the Nederlandters
having unthinkingly left the field and stepped into a neighboring tavern
to refresh themselves with a pot of beer, a direful catastrophe had
well-nigh ensued. Scarce had the myrmidons of Michael Paw attained the
front of battle, when the Swedes instructed by the cunning Risingh,
levelled a shower of blows full at their tobacco-pipes. Astounded at
this assault and dismayed at the havoc of their pipes, these ponderous
warriors gave way and like a drove of frightened elephants broke through
the ranks of their own army. The little Hoppers were borne down in the
surge; the sacred banner emblazoned with the gigantic oyster of
Communipaw was trampled in the dirt; on blundered and thundered the
heavy-sterned fugitives, the Swedes pressing on their rear and applying
their feet _a parte poste_ of the Van Arsdales and the Van Bummels with
a vigor that prodigiously accelerated their movements, nor did the
renowned Michael Paw himself fail to receive divers grievous and
dishonorable visitations of shoe-leather.

But what, O Muse! was the rage of Peter Stuyvesant when from afar he saw
his army giving way! In the transports of his wrath he sent forth a roar
enough to shake the very hills. The men of the Manhattoes plucked up new
courage at the sound, or, rather, they rallied at the voice of their
leader, of whom they stood more in awe than of all the Swedes in
Christendom. Without waiting for their aid the daring Peter dashed,
sword in hand, into the thickest of the foe. Then might be seen
achievements worthy of the days of the giants. Wherever he went the
enemy shrank before him; the Swedes fled to right and left or were
driven, like dogs, into their own ditch; but as he pushed forward singly
with headlong courage the foe closed behind and hung upon his rear. One
aimed a blow full at his heart; but the protecting power which watches
over the great and good turned aside the hostile blade and directed it
to a side-pocket, where reposed an enormous iron tobacco-box endowed,
like the shield of Achilles, with supernatural powers, doubtless from
bearing the portrait of the blessed Saint Nicholas. Peter Stuyvesant
turned like an angry bear upon the foe, and seizing him as he fled by an
immeasurable queue, "Ah, caterpillar!" roared he, "here's what shall
make worm's meat of thee!" So saying, he whirled his sword and dealt a
blow that would have decapitated the varlet, but that the pitying steel
struck short and shaved the queue forever from his crown. At this moment
an arquebusier levelled his piece from a neighboring mound with deadly
aim; but the watchful Minerva, who had just stopped to tie up her
garter, seeing the peril of her favorite hero, sent old Boreas with his
bellows, who as the match descended to the pan gave a blast that blew
the priming from the touch-hole.

Thus waged the fight, when the stout Risingh, surveying the field from
the top of a little ravelin, perceived his troops banged, beaten, and
kicked by the invincible Peter. Drawing his falchion and uttering a
thousand anathemas, he strode down to the scene of combat with some such
thundering strides as Jupiter is said by Hesiod to have taken when he
strode down the spheres to hurl his thunderbolts at the Titans.

When the rival heroes came face to face each made a prodigious start in
the style of a veteran stage champion. Then did they regard each other
for a moment with the bitter aspect of two furious tom-cats on the point
of a clapper-clawing. Then did they throw themselves into one attitude,
then into another striking their swords on the ground first on the right
side, then on the left; at last at it they went with incredible
ferocity. Words cannot tell the prodigies of strength and valor
displayed in this direful encounter--an encounter compared to which the
far-famed battles of Ajax with Hector, of Æneas with Turnus, Orlando
with Rodomont, Guy of Warwick with Colbrand the Dane, or of that
renowned Welsh knight Sir Owen of the mountains with the giant Guylon,
were all gentle sports and holiday recreations. At length the valiant
Peter, watching his opportunity, aimed a blow, enough to cleave his
adversary to the very chine; but Risingh nimbly raising his sword,
warded it off so narrowly that glancing on one side, it shaved away a
huge canteen in which he carried his liquor: thence, pursuing its
trenchant course, it severed off a deep coat-pocket stored with bread
and cheese; which provant, rolling among the armies, occasioned a
fearful scrambling between the Swedes and Dutchmen, and made the general
battle to wax ten times more furious than ever.

Enraged to see his military stores laid waste, the stout Risingh,
collecting all his forces, aimed a mighty blow full at the hero's crest.
In vain did his fierce little cocked hat oppose its course. The biting
steel clove through the stubborn ram-beaver, and would have cracked the
crown of any one not endowed with supernatural hardness of head; but the
brittle weapon shivered in pieces on the skull of Hardkoppig Piet,
shedding a thousand sparks like beams of glory round his grizzly visage.

The good Peter reeled with the blow, and, turning up his eyes, beheld a
thousand suns, beside moons and stars, dancing about the firmament. At
length, missing his footing by reason of his wooden leg, down he came
on his seat of honor with a crash which shook the surrounding hills, and
might have wrecked his frame had he not been received into a cushion
softer than velvet which Providence had benevolently prepared for his

The furious Risingh, in despite of the maxim, cherished by all true
knights, that "fair play is a jewel," hastened to take advantage of the
hero's fall; but as he stooped to give a fatal blow, Peter Stuyvesant
dealt him a thwack over the sconce with his wooden leg, which set a
chime of bells ringing triple bobmajors in his cerebellum. The
bewildered Swede staggered with the blow, and the wary Peter seizing a
pocket-pistol which lay hard by, discharged it full at the head of the
reeling Risingh. Let not my reader mistake: it was not a murderous
weapon loaded with powder and ball, but a little sturdy stone pottle
charged to the muzzle with a double dram of true Dutch courage, which
the knowing Antony Van Corlear carried about him by way of replenishing
his valor and which had dropped from his wallet during his furious
encounter with the drummer. The hideous weapon sang through the air, and
true to its course as was the fragment of a rock discharged at Hector by
bully Ajax, encountered the head of the gigantic Swede with matchless

This heaven-directed blow decided the battle. The ponderous pericranium
of General Jan Risingh sank upon his breast, his knees tottered under
him, a death-like torpor seized upon his frame, and he tumbled to the
earth with such violence that old Pluto started with affright, lest he
should have broken through the roof of his infernal palace.

His fall was the signal of defeat and victory: the Swedes gave way, the
Dutch pressed forward; the former took to their heels, the latter hotly
pursued. Some entered with them, pell-mell, through the sally-port;
others stormed the bastion, and others scrambled over the curtain. Thus
in a little while the fortress of Fort Christina, which, like another
Troy, had stood a siege of full ten hours, was carried by assault
without the loss of a single man on either side. Victory, in the
likeness of a gigantic ox-fly, sat perched upon the cocked hat of the
gallant Stuyvesant, and it was declared by all the writers whom he hired
to write the history of his expedition that on this memorable day he
gained a sufficient quantity of glory to immortalize a dozen of the
greatest heroes in Christendom!


[242-1] This is a narrow strait in East River, between Manhattan and
Long Island. It is dangerous by reason of numerous rocks, shelves, and
whirlpools. These have received sundry appellations, such as the
Gridiron, Frying-pan, Hog's Back, Pot, etc.




     NOTE.--The great naval hero of England is Horatio, Viscount Nelson,
     who was born in September, 1758, in a country village of Norfolk.
     Under the guardianship of his uncle, Captain Suckling, he entered
     the navy as a midshipman when he was but twelve years old, and he
     was promoted rapidly. By the time war broke out with France in 1793
     he had risen so high that he was made commander of the sixty-four
     gun ship _Agamemnon_. In 1797 he was made rear-admiral, and he
     received other honors for conspicuous gallantry in action. In an
     unsuccessful attack on Santa Cruz, in the island of Teneriffe,
     Nelson lost his right arm. The first of his very great achievements
     was the destruction of the French fleet in the Battle of Aboukir
     Bay, in 1798; the last was the famous Battle of Trafalgar, the
     account of which we quote from Southey's _Life of Nelson_. He had
     been made, in 1803, Commander in Chief of the Mediterranean fleet,
     and on his flagship _Victory_ had spent two years watching the
     French and hampering their movements. He prevented Napoleon from
     invading England.

At Portsmouth, Nelson, at length, found news of the combined fleet. Sir
Robert Calder, who had been sent out to intercept their return, had
fallen in with them on the 22nd of July, sixty leagues west of Cape
Finisterre. Their force consisted of twenty sail of the line, three
fifty-gun ships, five frigates, and two brigs: his, of fifteen line of
battle ships, two frigates, a cutter, and a lugger. After an action of
four hours he had captured an 84 and a 74, and then thought it necessary
to bring-to the squadron, for the purpose of securing their prizes. The
hostile fleets remained in sight of each other till the 26th, when the
enemy bore away.

The capture of two ships from so superior a force, would have been
considered as no inconsiderable victory a few years earlier; but Nelson
had introduced a new era in our naval history, and the nation felt,
respecting this action, as he had felt on a somewhat similar occasion.
They regretted that Nelson, with his eleven ships, had not been in Sir
Robert Calder's place; and their disappointment was generally and loudly

Frustrated as his own hopes had been, Nelson had yet the high
satisfaction of knowing that his judgment had never been more
conspicuously approved, and that he had rendered essential service to
his country by driving the enemy from those islands, where they expected
there could be no force capable of opposing them. The West India
merchants in London, as men whose interests were more immediately
benefited, appointed a deputation to express their thanks for his great
and judicious exertions. It was now his intention to rest awhile from
his labours, and recruit himself, after all his fatigues and cares, in
the society of those whom he loved. All his stores were brought up from
the _Victory_; and he found in his house at Merton the enjoyment which
he had anticipated.

Many days had not elapsed before Captain Blackwood, on his way to London
with despatches, called on him at five in the morning. Nelson, who was
already dressed, exclaimed, the moment he saw him: "I am sure you bring
me news of the French and Spanish fleets! I think I shall yet have to
beat them!"

They had refitted at Vigo, after the indecisive action with Sir Robert
Calder; then proceeded to Ferrol, brought out the squadron from thence,
and with it entered Cadiz in safety.


"Depend on it, Blackwood," he said, "I shall give M. Villeneuve a

But, when Blackwood had left him, he wanted resolution to declare his
wishes to Lady Hamilton and his sisters, and endeavored to drive away
the thought. "I have done enough," he said; "let the man trudge it who
has lost his budget."

His countenance belied his lips; and as he was pacing one of the walks
in the garden, which he used to call the quarter-deck, Lady Hamilton
came up to him, and told him she saw he was uneasy.

He smiled and said:

"No, I am as happy as possible; I am surrounded by my family; my health
is better since I have been on shore, and I would not give sixpence to
call the king my uncle?"

She replied, that she did not believe him,--that she knew he was longing
to get at the combined fleets,--that he considered them as his own
property--that he would be miserable if any man but himself did the
business, and that he ought to have them, as the price and reward of his
two years' long watching, and his hard chase.

"Nelson," said she, "however we may lament your absence, offer your
services; they will be accepted, and you will gain a quiet heart by it:
you will have a glorious victory, and then you may return here and be
happy." He looked at her with tears in his eyes--"Brave Emma! Good
Emma!--If there were more Emmas there would be more Nelsons."

His services were as willingly accepted as they were offered; and Lord
Barham, giving him the list of the navy, desired him to choose his own

"Choose yourself, my lord," was his reply: "the same spirit actuates the
whole profession: you cannot choose wrong."

Lord Barham then desired him to say what ships, and how many, he would
wish, in addition to the fleet which he was going to command, and said
they should follow him as soon as each was ready.

No appointment was ever more in unison with the feelings and judgment of
the whole nation. They, like Lady Hamilton, thought that the destruction
of the combined fleets ought properly be Nelson's work: that he, who had

    "Half around the sea-girt ball,
    The hunter of the recreant Gaul,"

ought to reap the spoils of the chase, which he had watched so long, and
so perseveringly pursued.

Unremitting exertions were made to equip the ships which he had chosen,
and especially to refit the _Victory_, which was once more to bear his

Before he left London he called at his upholsterer's, where the coffin,
which Captain Hallowell had given him, was deposited; and desired that
its history might be engraven upon the lid, saying, it was highly
probable that he might want it on his return. He seemed, indeed, to have
been impressed with an expectation that he should fall in the battle. In
a letter to his brother, written immediately after his return, he had
said: "We must not talk of Sir Robert Calder's battle--I might not have
done so much with my small force. If I had fallen in with them, you
might probably have been a lord before I wished; for I know they meant
to make a dead set at the _Victory_."

Nelson had once regarded the prospect of death with gloomy satisfaction:
it was when he anticipated the upbraidings of his wife, and the
displeasure of his venerable father. The state of his feelings now was
expressed, in his private journal, in these words:

"Friday night (Sept. 13), at half-past ten, I drove from dear, dear
Merton, where I left all which I hold dear in this world, to go to serve
my king and country. May the great God, whom I adore, enable me to
fulfil the expectations of my country! and, if it is His good pleasure
that I should return, my thanks will never cease being offered up to the
throne of His mercy. If it is His good providence to cut short my days
upon earth, I bow with the greatest submission; relying that He will
protect those so dear to me, whom I may leave behind! His will be done!
Amen! Amen! Amen!"

Early on the following morning he reached Portsmouth; and, having
despatched his business on shore, endeavoured to elude the populace by
taking a by-way to the beach; but a crowd collected in his train,
pressing forward to obtain a sight of his face;--many were in tears, and
many knelt down before him, and blessed him as he passed. England has
had many heroes, but never one who so entirely possessed the love of his
fellow-countrymen as Nelson. All men knew that his heart was as humane
as it was fearless; that there was not in his nature the slightest alloy
of selfishness or cupidity; but that, with perfect and entire devotion,
he served his country with all his heart, and with all his soul, and
with all his strength; and, therefore, they loved him as truly and as
fervently as he loved England. They pressed upon the parapet to gaze
after him when his barge pushed off, and he was returning their cheers
by waving his hat. The sentinels, who endeavoured to prevent them from
trespassing upon this ground, were wedged among the crowd; and an
officer, who, not very prudently upon such an occasion, ordered them to
drive the people down with their bayonets, was compelled speedily to
retreat; for the people would not be debarred from gazing, till the last
moment, upon the hero, the darling hero of England.

He arrived off Cadiz on the 29th of September,--his birthday. Fearing
that, if the enemy knew his force, they might be deterred from venturing
to sea, he kept out of sight of land, desired Collingwood to fire no
salute and hoist no colours, and wrote to Gibraltar, to request that the
force of the fleet might not be inserted there in the _Gazette_. His
reception in the Mediterranean fleet was as gratifying as the farewell
of his countrymen at Portsmouth: the officers, who came on board to
welcome him, forgot his rank as commander, in their joy at seeing him

On the day of his arrival, Villeneuve received orders to put to sea the
first opportunity. Villeneuve, however, hesitated when he heard that
Nelson had resumed the command. He called a council of war; and their
determination was, that it would not be expedient to leave Cadiz, unless
they had reason to believe themselves stronger by one-third than the
British force.

In the public measures of this country secrecy is seldom practicable,
and seldom attempted: here, however, by the precautions of Nelson and
the wise measures of the Admiralty, the enemy were for once kept in
ignorance: for, as the ships appointed to reinforce the Mediterranean
fleet were despatched singly--each as soon as it was ready--their
collected number was not stated in the newspapers, and their arrival was
not known to the enemy. But the enemy knew that Admiral Louis, with six
sail, had been detached for stores and water to Gibraltar. Accident also
contributed to make the French admiral doubt whether Nelson himself had
actually taken the command. An American, lately arrived from England,
maintained that it was impossible, for he had seen him only a few days
before in London, and, at that time, there was no rumour of his going
again to sea.

The station which Nelson had chosen was some fifty or sixty miles to the
west of Cadiz, near Cape Saint Mary's. At this distance he hoped to
decoy the enemy out, while he guarded against the danger of being caught
with a westerly wind near Cadiz, and driven within the Straits. The
blockade of the port was rigorously enforced; in hopes that the combined
fleet might be forced to sea by want.

There was now every indication that the enemy would speedily venture
out: officers and men were in the highest spirits at the prospect of
giving them a decisive blow, such, indeed, as would put an end to all
further contest upon the seas. Theatrical amusements were performed
every evening in most of the ships, and _God Save the King_ was the hymn
with which the sports concluded.

"I verily believe," said Nelson (writing on the 6th of October), "that
the country will soon be put to some expense on my account; either a
monument, or a new pension and honours; for I have not the smallest
doubt but that a very few days, almost hours, will put us in battle. The
success no man can ensure; but for the fighting them, if they can be got
at, I pledge myself.--The sooner the better; I don't like to have these
things upon my mind."

At this time he was not without some cause of anxiety: he was in want of
frigates--the eyes of the fleet--as he always called them--to the want
of which, the enemy before were indebted for their escape, and Bonaparte
for his arrival in Egypt. He had only twenty-three ships--others were on
the way--but they might come too late; and, though Nelson never doubted
of victory, mere victory was not what he looked to--he wanted to
annihilate the enemy's fleet. The Carthagena squadron might effect a
junction with this fleet on the one side; and, on the other, it was to
be expected that a similar attempt would be made by the French from
Brest;--in either case, a formidable contingency to be apprehended by
the blockading force. The Rochefort squadron did push out, and had
nearly caught the _Agamemnon_ and _l'Aimable_, in their way to reinforce
the British admiral. Yet Nelson at this time weakened his own fleet. He
had the unpleasant task to perform of sending home Sir Robert Calder,
whose conduct was to be made the subject of a court-martial, in
consequence of the general dissatisfaction which had been felt and
expressed at his imperfect victory.

On the 9th Nelson sent Collingwood what he called, in his dairy, the
Nelson-touch. "I send you," said he, "my plan of attack, as far as a man
dare venture to guess at the very uncertain position the enemy may be
found in: but it is to place you perfectly at ease respecting my
intentions, and to give full scope to your judgment for carrying them
into effect. We can, my dear Coll, have no little jealousies. We have
only one great object in view, that of annihilating our enemies, and
getting a glorious peace for our country. No man has more confidence in
another than I have in you; and no man will render your services more
justice than your very old friend Nelson and Bronté."

The order of sailing was to be the order of battle; the fleet in two
lines, with an advanced squadron of eight of the fastest sailing
two-deckers. The second in command, having the entire direction of his
line, was to break through the enemy, about the twelfth ship from their
rear: he would lead through the centre, and the advanced squadron was to
cut off three or four ahead of the centre. This plan was to be adapted
to the strength of the enemy, so that they should always be one-fourth
superior to those whom they cut off.

Nelson said, "My admirals and captains, knowing my precise object to be
that of a close and decisive action, will supply any deficiency of
signals, and act accordingly. In case signals cannot be seen or clearly
understood, no captain can do wrong if he places his ship alongside that
of an enemy."

One of the last orders of this admirable man was, that the name and
family of every officer, seaman, and marine, who might be killed or
wounded in action, should be, as soon as possible, returned to him, in
order to be transmitted to the chairman of the Patriotic Fund, that the
case might be taken into consideration, for the benefit of the sufferer
or his family.

About half-past nine in the morning of the 19th, the _Mars_, being the
nearest to the fleet of the ships which formed the line of communication
with the frigates in shore, repeated the signal that the enemy were
coming out of port. The wind was at this time very light, with partial
breezes, mostly from the S.S.W. Nelson ordered the signal to be made for
a chase in the southeast quarter. About two, the repeating ships
announced that the enemy were at sea.

All night the British fleet continued under all sail, steering to the
southeast. At daybreak they were in the entrance of the Straits, but the
enemy was not in sight. About seven, one of the frigates made signal
that the enemy were bearing north. Upon this the _Victory_ hove to; and
shortly afterwards Nelson made sail again to the northward. In the
afternoon the wind blew fresh from the southwest, and the English began
to fear that the foe might be forced to return to port. A little before
sunset, however, Blackwood, in the _Euryalus_, telegraphed that they
appeared determined to go to the westward,--"And that," said the admiral
in his diary, "they shall not do, if it is in the power of Nelson and
Bronté to prevent them."

Nelson had signified to Blackwood, that he depended upon him to keep
sight of the enemy. They were observed so well, that all their motions
were made known to him; and, as they wore twice, he inferred that they
were aiming to keep the port of Cadiz open, and would retreat there as
soon as they saw the British fleet: for this reason he was very careful
not to approach near enough to be seen by them during the night.

At daybreak the combined fleets were distinctly seen from the
_Victory's_ deck, formed in a close line of battle ahead, on the
starboard tack, about twelve miles to leeward, and standing to the
south. Our fleet consisted of twenty-seven sail of the line and four
frigates; theirs of thirty-three, and seven large frigates. Their
superiority was greater in size, and weight of metal, than in numbers.
They had four thousand troops on board; and the best riflemen who could
be procured, many of them Tyrolese, were dispersed through the ships.
Little did the Tyrolese, and little did the Spaniards, at that day,
imagine what horrors the wicked tyrant whom they served was preparing
for their country!

Soon after daylight Nelson came upon deck. The 21st of October was a
festival in his family; because on that day his uncle, Captain Suckling,
in the _Dreadnought_, with two other line of battle ships, had beaten
off a French squadron of four sail of the line and three frigates.
Nelson, with that sort of superstition from which few persons are
entirely exempt, had more than once expressed his persuasion that this
was to be the day of his battle also; and he was well pleased at seeing
his prediction about to be verified.

The wind was now from the west,--light breezes, with a long heavy swell.
Signal was made to bear down upon the enemy in two lines; and the fleet
set all sail. Collingwood, in the _Royal Sovereign_, led the lee-line of
thirteen ships; the _Victory_ led the weather-line of fourteen.

Having seen that all was as it should be, Nelson retired to his cabin,
and wrote this prayer:--

     "May the Great God, whom I worship, grant to my country, and for
     the benefit of Europe in general, a great and glorious victory; and
     may no misconduct in any one tarnish it; and may humanity after
     victory be the predominant feature in the British fleet! For
     myself individually, I commit my life to Him that made me, and may
     His blessing alight on my endeavours for serving my country
     faithfully! To Him I resign myself, and the just cause which is
     intrusted to me to defend. Amen, Amen, Amen."

Blackwood went on board the _Victory_ about six. He found Nelson in good
spirits, but very calm; not in that exhilaration which he had felt upon
entering into battle at Aboukir and Copenhagen; he knew that his own
life would be particularly aimed at, and seems to have looked for death
with almost as sure an expectation as for victory. His whole attention
was fixed upon the enemy. They tacked to the northward, and formed their
line on the larboard tack; thus bringing the shoals of Trafalgar and St.
Pedro under the lee of the British, and keeping the port of Cadiz open
for themselves. This was judiciously done: and Nelson, aware of all the
advantages which it gave them, made signal to prepare to anchor.

Villeneuve was a skilful seaman; worthy of serving a better master and a
better cause. His plan of defence was as well conceived, and as
original, as the plan of attack. He formed the fleet in a double line,
every alternate ship being about a cable's length to windward of her
second ahead and astern.

Nelson, certain of a triumphant issue to the day, asked Blackwood what
he should consider as a victory. That officer answered, that,
considering the handsome way in which battle was offered by the enemy,
their apparent determination for a fair trial of strength, and the
situation of the land, he thought it would be a glorious result if
fourteen were captured. He replied: "I shall not be satisfied with less
than twenty."

Soon afterwards he asked him if he did not think there was a signal
wanting. Captain Blackwood made answer that he thought the whole fleet
seemed very clearly to understand what they were about. These words were
scarcely spoken before that signal was made, which will be remembered as
long as the language, or even the memory, of England shall
endure--Nelson's last signal:--

  "_England expects every man to do his duty!_"

It was received throughout the fleet with a shout of answering
acclamation, made sublime by the spirit which it breathed and the
feeling which it expressed. "Now," said Lord Nelson, "I can do no more.
We must trust to the Great Disposer of all events, and the justice of
our cause. I thank God for this great opportunity of doing my duty."

He wore that day, as usual, his admiral's frock coat, bearing on the
left breast four stars of the different orders with which he was
invested. Ornaments which rendered him so conspicuous a mark for the
enemy, were beheld with ominous apprehensions by his officers. It was
known that there were riflemen on board the French ships, and it could
not be doubted but that his life would be particularly aimed at. They
communicated their fears to each other; and the surgeon, Mr. Beatty,
spoke to the chaplain, Dr. Scott, and to Mr. Scott, the public
secretary, desiring that some person would entreat him to change his
dress, or cover the stars: but they knew that such a request would
highly displease him. "In honour I gained them," he had said when such a
thing had been hinted to him formerly, "and in honour I will die with
them." Mr. Beatty, however, would not have been deterred by any fear of
exciting his displeasure, from speaking to him himself upon a subject in
which the weal of England as well as the life of Nelson was concerned,
but he was ordered from the deck before he could find an opportunity.

This was a point upon which Nelson's officers knew that it was hopeless
to remonstrate or reason with him; but both Blackwood, and his own
captain, Hardy, represented to him how advantageous to the fleet it
would be for him to keep out of action as long as possible; and he
consented at last to let the _Leviathan_ and the _Temeraire_, which were
sailing abreast of the _Victory_, be ordered to pass ahead. Yet even
here the last infirmity of this noble mind was indulged; for these ships
could not pass ahead if the _Victory_ continued to carry all her sail;
and so far was Nelson from shortening sail, that it was evident he took
pleasure in pressing on, and rendering it impossible for them to obey
his own orders.

A long swell was setting into the Bay of Cadiz: our ships, crowding all
sail, moved majestically before it, with light winds from the southwest.
The sun shone on the sails of the enemy; and their well-formed line,
with their numerous three-deckers, made an appearance which any other
assailants would have thought formidable; but the British sailors only
admired the beauty and the splendour of the spectacle; and, in full
confidence of winning what they saw, remarked to each other, what a
fine sight yonder ships would make at Spithead!

The French admiral, from the _Bucentaure_, beheld the new manner in
which his enemy was advancing, Nelson and Collingwood each leading his
line; and, pointing them out to his officers, he is said to have
exclaimed, that such conduct could not fail to be successful. Yet
Villeneuve had made his own dispositions with the utmost skill, and the
fleets under his command waited for the attack with perfect coolness.

Ten minutes before twelve they opened their fire. Eight or nine of the
ships immediately ahead of the _Victory_, and across her bows, fired
single guns at her, to ascertain whether she was yet within their range.
As soon as Nelson perceived that their shot passed over him, he desired
Blackwood, and Captain Prowse, of the _Sirius_, to repair to their
respective frigates; and, on their way, to tell all the captains of the
line of battle ships that he depended on their exertions; and that, if
by the prescribed mode of attack they found it impracticable to get into
action immediately, they might adopt whatever they thought best,
provided it led them quickly and closely alongside an enemy.

As they were standing on the front of the poop, Blackwood took him by
the hand, saying, he hoped soon to return and find him in possession of
twenty prizes. He replied: "God bless you, Blackwood! I shall never see
you again."

Nelson's column was steered about two points more to the north than
Collingwood's, in order to cut off the enemy's escape into Cadiz: the
lee-line, therefore, was first engaged.

"See," cried Nelson, pointing to the _Royal Sovereign_, as she steered
right for the centre of the enemy's line, cut through it astern of the
_Santa Anna_, three-decker, and engaged her at the muzzle of her guns on
the starboard side: "see how that noble fellow, Collingwood, carries his
ship into action!"

Collingwood, delighted at being first in the heat of the fire, and
knowing the feelings of his commander and old friend, turned to his
captain, and exclaimed, "Rotherham, what would Nelson give to be here!"

Both these brave officers, perhaps, at this moment thought of Nelson
with gratitude, for a circumstance which had occurred on the preceding
day. Admiral Collingwood, with some of the captains, having gone on
board the _Victory_ to receive instructions, Nelson inquired of him
where his captain was and was told, in reply, that they were not upon
good terms with each other. "Terms!" said Nelson;--"good terms with each
other!" Immediately he sent a boat for Captain Rotherham; led him, as
soon as he arrived, to Collingwood, and said, "Look, yonder are the
enemy! Shake hands like Englishmen."

The enemy continued to fire a gun at a time at the _Victory_, till they
saw that a shot had passed through her main-topgallant-sail; then they
opened their broadsiders, aiming chiefly at her rigging, in the hope of
disabling her before she could close with them.

Nelson, as usual, had hoisted several flags, lest one should be shot
away. The enemy showed no colors till late in the action, when they
began to feel the necessity of having them to strike. For this reason,
the _Santissima Trinidad_, Nelson's old acquaintance, as he used to call
her, was distinguishable only by her four decks; and to the bow of this
opponent he ordered the _Victory_ to be steered.

Meantime an incessant raking fire was kept up upon the _Victory_. The
admiral's secretary was one of the first who fell: he was killed by a
cannon-shot, while conversing with Hardy. Captain Adair, of the marines,
with the help of a sailor, endeavoured to remove the body from Nelson's
sight, who had a great regard for Mr. Scott; but he anxiously asked, "Is
that poor Scott that's gone?" and being informed that it was indeed so,
exclaimed, "Poor fellow!"

Presently a double-headed shot struck a party of marines, who were drawn
up on the poop, and killed eight of them: upon which Nelson immediately
desired Captain Adair to disperse his men round the ship, that they
might not suffer so much from being together.

A few minutes afterwards a shot struck the fore brace bits on the
quarter-deck, and passed between Nelson and Hardy, a splinter from the
bit tearing off Hardy's buckle and bruising his foot. Both stopped, and
looked anxiously at each other, each supposing the other to be wounded.
Nelson then smiled, and said, "This is too warm work, Hardy, to last

The _Victory_ had not yet returned a single gun: fifty of her men had
been by this time killed or wounded, and her main-topmast, with all her
studding sails and their booms, shot away. Nelson declared that, in all
his battles, he had seen nothing which surpassed the cool courage of
his crew on this occasion.

At four minutes after twelve she opened her fire from both sides of her
deck. It was not possible to break the enemy's line without running on
board one of their ships: Hardy informed him of this, and asked which he
would prefer.

Nelson replied: "Take your choice, Hardy, it does not signify much."

The master was then ordered to put the helm to port, and the _Victory_
ran on board the _Redoubtable_, just as her tiller ropes were shot away.
The French ship received her with a broadside; then instantly let down
her lower-deck ports, for fear of being boarded through them, and never
afterwards fired a great gun during the action. Her tops, like those of
all the enemy's ships, were filled with riflemen. Nelson never placed
musketry in his tops; he had a strong dislike to the practice, not
merely because it endangers setting fire to the sails, but also because
it is a murderous sort of warfare, by which individuals may suffer, and
a commander, now and then, be picked off, but which never can decide the
fate of a general engagement.

Captain Harvey, in the _Temeraire_, fell on board the _Redoubtable_ on
the other side. Another enemy was in like manner on board the
_Temeraire_; so that these four ships formed as compact a tier as if
they had been moored together, their heads lying all the same way. The
lieutenants of the _Victory_, seeing this, depressed their guns of the
middle and lower decks, and fired with a diminished charge, lest the
shot should pass through, and injure the _Temeraire_. And because there
was danger that the _Redoubtable_ might take fire from the lower-deck
guns, the muzzles of which touched her side when they were run out, the
fireman of each gun stood ready with a bucket of water, which, as soon
as the gun was discharged, he dashed into the hole made by the shot. An
incessant fire was kept up from the _Victory_ from both sides; her
larboard guns playing upon the _Bucentaure_ and the huge _Santissima


It had been part of Nelson's prayer that the British fleet might be
distinguished by humanity in the victory which he expected. Setting an
example himself, he twice gave orders to cease firing upon the
_Redoubtable_, supposing that she had struck, because her great guns
were silent; for, as she carried no flag, there was no means of
instantly ascertaining the fact.

From this ship, which he had thus twice spared, he received his death. A
ball fired from her mizzen-top, which, in the then situation of the two
vessels, was not more than fifteen yards from that part of the deck
where he was standing, struck the epaulette on his left shoulder,--about
a quarter after one, just in the heat of the action. He fell upon his
face, on the spot which was covered with his poor secretary's blood.
Hardy, who was a few steps from him, turning round, saw three men
raising him up.

"They have done for me at last, Hardy," said he.

"I hope not!" cried Hardy.

"Yes," he replied; "my backbone is shot through."

Yet even now, not for a moment losing his presence of mind, he observed,
as they were carrying him down the ladder, that the tiller ropes, which
had been shot away, were not yet replaced, and ordered that new ones
should be rove immediately:--then, that he might not be seen by the
crew, he took out his handkerchief, and covered his face and his
stars.--Had he but concealed these badges of honour from the enemy,
England, perhaps, would not have had cause to receive with sorrow the
news of the battle of Trafalgar.

The cockpit was crowded with wounded and dying men, over whose bodies he
was with some difficulty conveyed, and laid upon a pallet in the
midshipmen's berth. It was soon perceived, upon examination, that the
wound was mortal. This, however, was concealed from all, except Captain
Hardy, the chaplain, and the medical attendants. He himself being
certain, from the sensation in his back, and the gush of blood which he
felt momently within his breast, that no human care could avail him,
insisted that the surgeon should leave him, and attend to those to whom
he might be useful: "For," said he, "you can do nothing for me."

[Illustration: HE FELL UPON HIS FACE]

All that could be done was to fan him with paper, and frequently to
give him lemonade, to alleviate his intense thirst. He was in great
pain, and expressed much anxiety for the event of the action, which now
began to declare itself. As often as a ship struck, the crew of the
_Victory_ hurrahed, and at every hurrah a visible expression of joy
gleamed in the eyes, and marked the countenance of the dying hero. But
he became impatient to see Captain Hardy; and as that officer, though
often sent for, could not leave the deck, Nelson feared that some fatal
cause prevented him, and repeatedly cried: "Will no one bring Hardy to
me? He must be killed! He surely is dead!"

An hour and ten minutes elapsed, from the time when Nelson received his
wound, before Hardy could come to him. They shook hands in silence:
Hardy in vain struggling to suppress the feelings of that most painful,
and yet sublimest moment.

"Well, Hardy," said Nelson, "how goes the day with us?"

"Very well," replied Hardy. "Ten ships have struck, but five of their
van have tacked, and show an intention of bearing down upon the
_Victory_. I have called two or three of our fresh ships round, and have
no doubt of giving them a drubbing."

"I hope," said Nelson, "none of our ships struck."

Hardy answered, "There was no fear of that."

Then and not till then, Nelson spoke of himself.

"I am a dead man, Hardy," he said; "I am going fast; it will be all over
with me soon. Come nearer to me. My back is shot through. Beatty will
tell you so."

Captain Hardy then once more shook hands with him; and, with a heart
almost bursting, hastened upon deck. By this time all feeling below the
breast was gone, and Nelson, having made the surgeon ascertain this,
said: "You know I am gone. I know it. I feel something rising in my
breast"--putting his hand to his left side--"which tells me so." And
upon Beatty's inquiring whether his pain was very great, he replied, "So
great that I wish I was dead. Yet," said he, in a lower voice, "one
would like to live a little longer, too!"

Captain Hardy, some fifty minutes after he had left the cockpit,
returned; and, again taking the hand of his dying friend and commander,
congratulated him upon having gained a complete victory. How many of the
enemy were taken he did not know, as it was impossible to perceive them
distinctly--but fourteen or fifteen of them at least.

"That's well," cried Nelson; "but I bargained for twenty." And then, in
a stronger voice, he said, "Anchor, Hardy; anchor."

Hardy upon this, hinted that Admiral Collingwood would take upon himself
the direction of affairs.

"Not while I live, Hardy!" said the dying Nelson, ineffectually
endeavouring to raise himself from the bed; "do you anchor."

His previous order for preparing to anchor had shown how clearly he
foresaw the necessity of this. Presently, calling Hardy back, he said to
him in a low voice, "Don't throw me overboard"; and he desired that he
might be buried by his parents, unless it should please the king to
order otherwise.

Then, reverting to his private feelings: "Kiss me, Hardy," said he.
Hardy knelt down and kissed his cheek: and Nelson said, "Now I am
satisfied. Thank God, I have done my duty."

Hardy stood over him in silence for a minute or two; then knelt again,
and kissed his forehead.

"Who is that?" said Nelson; and being informed, he replied, "God bless
you, Hardy." And Hardy then left him forever.

Nelson now desired to be turned on his right side, and said: "I wish I
had not left the deck; for I shall soon be gone."

Death was, indeed, rapidly approaching. He said to his chaplain:
"Doctor, I have not been a great sinner." His articulation now became
difficult; but he was distinctly heard to say, "Thank God, I have done
my duty!" These words he had repeatedly pronounced; and they were the
last words he uttered. He expired at thirty minutes after four,--three
hours and a quarter after he had received his wound.

Within a quarter of an hour after Nelson was wounded, above fifty of the
_Victory's_ men fell by the enemy's musketry. They, however, on their
part, were not idle; and it was not long before there were only two
Frenchmen left alive in the mizzen-top of the _Redoubtable_. One of them
was the man who had given the fatal wound: he did not live to boast of
what he had done. An old quartermaster had seen him fire; and easily
recognized him, because he wore a glazed cocked hat and a white frock.
This quartermaster, and two midshipmen, Mr. Collingwood and Mr. Pollard,
were the only persons left on the _Victory's_ poop; the two midshipmen
kept firing at the top, and he supplied them with cartridges. One of the
Frenchmen, attempting to make his escape down the rigging, was shot by
Mr. Pollard, and fell on the poop. But the old quartermaster, as he
cried out, "That's he, that's he," and pointed at the other, who was
coming forward to fire again, received a shot in his mouth, and fell
dead. Both the midshipmen then fired, at the same time, and the fellow
dropped in the top. When they took possession of the prize, they went
into the mizzen-top, and found him dead; with one ball through his head,
and another through his breast.

The _Redoubtable_ struck within twenty minutes after the fatal shot had
been fired from her. During that time she had been twice on fire,--in
her fore-chains and in her forecastle. The French, as they had done in
other battles, made use, in this, of fireballs and other
combustibles--implements of destruction which other nations, from a
sense of honour and humanity, have laid aside--which add to the
sufferings of the wounded, without determining the issue of the
combat--which none but the cruel would employ, and which never can be
successful against the brave.


Once they succeeded in setting fire, from the _Redoubtable_, to some
ropes and canvas on the _Victory's_ booms. The cry ran through the ship,
and reached the cockpit; but even this dreadful cry produced no
confusion: the men displayed that perfect self-possession in danger by
which English seamen are characterized; they extinguished the flames on
board their own ship, and then hastened to extinguish them in the enemy,
by throwing buckets of water from the gangway. When the _Redoubtable_
had struck, it was not practicable to board her from the _Victory_; for,
though the two ships touched, the upper works of both fell in so much,
that there was a great space between their gangways; and she could not
be boarded from the lower or middle decks, because her ports were down.
Some of our men went to Lieutenant Quilliam, and offered to swim under
her bows and get up there; but it was thought unfit to hazard brave
lives in this manner.

What our men would have done from gallantry, some of the crew of the
_Santissima Trinidad_ did to save themselves. Unable to stand the
tremendous fire of the _Victory_, whose larboard guns played against
this great four-decker, and not knowing how else to escape them, nor
where else to betake themselves for protection, many of them leapt
overboard, and swam to the _Victory_; and were actually helped up her
sides by the English during the action.

The Spaniards began the battle with less vivacity than their unworthy
allies, but they continued it with greater firmness. The _Argonauta_ and
_Bahama_ were defended till they had each lost about four hundred men;
the _San Juan Nepomuceno_ lost three hundred and fifty. Often as the
superiority of British courage has been proved against France upon the
sea, it was never more conspicuous than in this decisive conflict. Five
of our ships were engaged muzzle to muzzle with five of the French. In
all five Frenchmen lowered their lower-deck ports, and deserted their
guns; while our men continued deliberately to load and fire, till they
had made the victory secure.

Once, amid his sufferings, Nelson had expressed a wish that he were
dead; but immediately the spirit subdued the pains of death, and he
wished to live a little longer; doubtless that he might hear the
completion of the victory which he had seen so gloriously begun. That
consolation--that joy--that triumph was afforded him. He lived to know
that the victory was decisive; and the last guns which were fired at the
flying enemy were heard a minute or two before he expired.

The total British loss in the battle of Trafalgar amounted to 1,587.
Twenty of the enemy struck,--unhappily the fleet did not anchor, as
Nelson, almost with his dying breath, had enjoined,--a gale came on from
the southwest; some of the prizes went down, some went on shore; one
effected its escape into Cadiz; others were destroyed; four only were
saved, and those by the greatest exertions. The wounded Spaniards were
sent ashore, an assurance being given that they should not serve till
regularly exchanged; and the Spaniards, with a generous feeling, which
would not, perhaps, have been found in any other people, offered the use
of their hospitals for our wounded, pledging the honour of Spain that
they should be carefully attended there. When the storm after the action
drove some of the prizes upon the coast, they declared that the English,
who were thus thrown into their hands, should not be considered as
prisoners of war; and the Spanish soldiers gave up their own beds to
their shipwrecked enemies.

It is almost superfluous to add that all the honors which a grateful
country could bestow were heaped upon the memory of Nelson. A public
funeral was decreed, and a public monument. Statues and monuments also
were voted by most of our principal cities. The leaden coffin, in which
he was brought home, was cut in pieces, which were distributed as relics
of Saint Nelson,--so the gunner of the _Victory_ called them,--and when,
at his interment, his flag was about to be lowered into the grave, the
sailors who had assisted at the ceremony, with one accord rent it in
pieces, that each might preserve a fragment while he lived.

The death of Nelson was felt in England as something more than a public
calamity: men started at the intelligence, and turned pale, as if they
had heard of the loss of a dear friend. An object of our admiration and
affection, of our pride and of our hopes, was suddenly taken from us;
and it seemed as if we had never, till then, known how deeply we loved
and reverenced him. What the country had lost in its great naval
hero--the greatest of our own, and of all former times--was scarcely
taken into the account of grief. So perfectly, indeed, had he performed
his part, that the maritime war, after the Battle of Trafalgar, was
considered at an end; the fleets of the enemy were not merely defeated,
but destroyed; new navies must be built, and a new race of seamen reared
for them, before the possibility of their invading our shores could
again be contemplated.



     NOTE.--Young Casabianca, a boy about thirteen years old, son of the
     Admiral of the _Orient_, remained at his post (in the Battle of the
     Nile) after the ship had taken fire and all the guns had been
     abandoned, and perished in the explosion of the vessel, when the
     flames had reached the powder.

    The boy stood on the burning deck,
      Whence all but him had fled;
    The flame that lit the battle's wreck
      Shone round him o'er the dead.

    Yet beautiful and bright he stood,
      As born to rule the storm;
    A creature of heroic blood.
      A proud though childlike form.

    The flames rolled on; he would not go
      Without his father's word;
    That father, faint in death below,
      His voice no longer heard.

    He called aloud, "Say, father, say,
      If yet my task be done?"
    He knew not that the chieftain lay
      Unconscious of his son.

    "Speak, father!" once again he cried,
      "If I may yet be gone!"
    And but the booming shots replied,
      And fast the flames rolled on.

    Upon his brow he felt their breath,
      And in his waving hair,
    And looked from that lone post of death
      In still yet brave despair;

    And shouted but once more aloud,
      "My father! must I stay?"
    While o'er him fast, through sail and shroud
      The wreathing fires made way.

    They wrapt the ship in splendor wild,
      They caught the flag on high,
    And streamed above the gallant child,
      Like banners in the sky.

    There came a burst of thunder sound;
      The boy,--Oh! where was _he_?
    Ask of the winds, that far around
      With fragments strewed the sea,--

    With shroud and mast and pennon fair,
      That well had borne their part,--
    But the noblest thing that perished there
      Was that young, faithful heart.



    Little Ellie sits alone
      'Mid the beeches of a meadow,
        By a stream-side on the grass,
    And the trees are showering down
      Doubles of their leaves in shadow,
        On her shining hair and face.

    She has thrown her bonnet by,
      And her feet she has been dipping
        In the shallow water's flow;
    Now she holds them nakedly
      In her hands, all sleek and dripping,
        While she rocketh to and fro.

    Little Ellie sits alone,
      And the smile she softly uses
        Fills the silence like a speech,
    While she thinks what shall be done,
      And the sweetest pleasure chooses
        For her future within reach.

    Little Ellie in her smile
      Chooses, "I will have a lover,
        Riding on a steed of steeds:
    He shall love me without guile,
      And to _him_ I will discover
        The swan's nest among the reeds.

    "And the steed shall be red roan,
      And the lover shall be noble,
        With an eye that takes the breath.
    And the lute[316-1] he plays upon
      Shall strike ladies into trouble,
        As his sword strikes men to death.

    "And the steed it shall be shod
      All in silver, housed in azure;[316-2]
        And the mane shall swim the wind;
    And the hoofs along the sod
      Shall flash onward, and keep measure,
        Till the shepherds look behind.

    "But my lover will not prize
      All the glory that he rides in,
        When he gazes in my face.
    He will say, 'O Love, thine eyes
      Build the shrine my soul abides in,
        And I kneel here for thy grace!'

    "Then, aye, then shall he kneel low,
      With the red-roan steed anear him,
        Which shall seem to understand,
    Till I answer, 'Rise and go!
      For the world must love and fear him
        Whom I gift with heart and hand.'


    "Then he will arise so pale,
      I shall feel my own lips tremble
        With a _yes_ I must not say:
    Nathless[317-3] maiden-brave, 'Farewell,'
      I will utter, and dissemble--
        'Light to-morrow with to-day!'

    "Then he'll ride among the hills
      To the wide world past the river,
        There to put away all wrong,
    To make straight distorted wills,
      And to empty the broad quiver
        Which the wicked bear along.

    "Three times shall a young foot page
      Swim the stream, and climb the mountain,
        And kneel down beside my feet:
    'Lo! my master sends this gage,[317-4]
      Lady, for thy pity's counting.
        What wilt thou exchange for it?'

    "And the first time I will send
      A white rosebud for a guerdon--[317-5]
        And the second time, a glove;
    But the third time--I may bend
      From my pride, and answer--'Pardon,
        If he comes to take my love.'

    "Then the young foot page will run--
      Then my lover will ride faster,
        Till he kneeleth at my knee:
    'I am a duke's eldest son!
      Thousand serfs do call me master,--
        But, O Love, I love but _thee_!'"...

    Little Ellie, with her smile
      Not yet ended, rose up gayly,
        Tied the bonnet, donned the shoe,
    And went homeward, round a mile,
      Just to see, as she did daily,
        What more eggs were with the two.

    Pushing through the elm-tree copse,
      Winding up the stream, light-hearted,
        Where the osier pathway leads,
    Past the boughs she stoops, and stops.
      Lo! the wild swan had deserted,
        And a rat had gnawed the reeds!

    Ellie went home sad and slow.
      If she found the lover ever,
        With his red-roan steed of steeds,
    Sooth I know not; but I know
      She could never show him--never,
        That swan's nest among the reeds.

     Mrs. Browning tells us very little of Ellie directly, yet she
     leaves us with a charming picture of an innocent, imaginative,
     romantic child. Ellie has been reading or listening to tales of
     knight-errantry, and her mind is full of them, so that the
     "sweetest pleasure ... for her future" is a lover riding straight
     out of one of the romances. That she is only a child, with a
     child's ideas, we may see from the fact that she can think, in her
     simplicity, of no greater reward for her noble lover than a sight
     of the swan's nest among the reeds, of which she alone knows.

     Mrs. Browning's purpose in writing this little story in verse was
     to show us how suddenly and how rudely unpleasant facts can break
     in upon our dreams. Ellie could never show her lover the swan's
     nest, as she had planned; and we are left with the feeling that she
     never found the lover of whom she dreamed--that all of her dream
     proved as false as the beautiful thought about the swan's nest.


[316-1] It would seem strange to us now if a soldier rode about playing
upon a lute; but in the old days of chivalry about which little Ellie
had been reading, it was looked upon as almost necessary for a knight to
be able to play and sing sweet songs to his lady.

[316-2] The saddle-cloth or housing of the medieval knights was
sometimes very large and gorgeous.

[317-3] _Nathless_ is an old word meaning _nevertheless_. Mrs. Browning
uses an occasional old word, in order to give the atmosphere of the
tales of chivalry.

[317-4] The _gage_ was a cap or glove, or some other symbol to show that
he had performed the deeds which Ellie had demanded of him.

[317-5] _Guerdon_ means _reward_.



     NOTE.--There are many homes we like to visit in imagination, even
     if we cannot really go into them. It does not matter so much if
     they are not the homes of people in our own country who live as we
     do. For instance, Robert Burns described so well for us once the
     simple little home of a poor Scotch farmer that we read his words
     again and again with pleasure. It is such a poor little place,
     low-walled, thatched-roofed, part stable, that it would be
     unpleasant to us if we did not see it full of the spirit that makes
     true homes everywhere. The hard-working old farmer, his faithful
     wife, their industrious children, the oldest girl Jenny and her
     lover, all seem to us like very real people, whose joys and griefs
     are ours as much as theirs. We should like to sit with them at
     their humble table, to join in the good old hymns, and finally to
     kneel among them while the gentle old man said the evening prayer.
     We would not notice their homely clothes, coarse hands and simple,
     unscholarly language, for their real manliness and womanliness
     would win our esteem and love.

     On the pages that follow we have printed the poem as Burns wrote
     it, except for some few stanzas it has seemed best to omit. The
     first nine stanzas contain many Scottish words and expressions, but
     after the ninth stanza, Burns uses plain English. It was a habit he
     had of writing sometimes in Scotch dialect and sometimes in fine
     English. People who have studied his work say that when he speaks
     right from his heart and because he really cannot help writing, he
     uses the dialect, but when he tries to teach a lesson, to advise
     any one, or to moralize, he always uses the English phraseology.


      November chill blaws loud wi' angry sugh;[320-1]
        The short'ning winter day is near a close;
      The miry beasts retreating frae[320-2] the pleugh;[320-3]
        The black'ning trains o' craws to their repose:
      The toil-worn cotter frae his labor goes,
        This night his weekly moil[320-4] is at an end,
      Collects his spades, his mattocks,[320-5] and his hoes,
        Hoping the morn in ease and rest to spend,
    And weary, o'er the moor, his course does hameward bend.


      At length his lonely cot appears in view,
        Beneath the shelter of an aged tree:
      Th' expectant wee-things, toddlin' stacher[320-6] thro'
        To meet their dad, wi' flichterin'[320-7] noise an' glee.
      His wee bit ingle, blinkin' bonnily,
        His clean hearth-stane, his thriftie wifie's smile,
      The lisping infant prattling on his knee,
        Does a' his weary carking[320-8] cares beguile,
    An' makes him quite forget his labour and his toil.


      Belyve,[321-9] the elder bairns come drappin' in.
        At service out, amang the farmers roun';
      Some ca'[321-10] the pleugh, some herd, some tentie[321-11] rin
        A cannie[321-12] errand to a neebor town:
      Their eldest hope, their Jenny, woman grown,
        In youthfu' bloom, love sparklin in her e'e,
      Comes hame, perhaps, to show a braw[321-13] new gown,
        Or deposit her sair-won[322-14] penny fee,
    To help her parents dear, if they in hardship be.



      Wi' joy unfeign'd, brothers and sisters meet,
        And each for other's weelfare kindly spiers:[322-15]
        The social hours, swift-wing'd, unnoticed fleet;
          Each tells the uncos[322-16] that he sees or hears;
      The parents, partial, eye their hopeful years;
        Anticipation forward points the view;
      The mother, wi' her needle an' her shears,
        Gars auld claes look amaist as weel's the new;[322-17]
    The father mixes a' wi' admonition due.


      Their master's an' their mistress's command,
        The younkers[322-18] a' are warned to obey:
      "An' mind their labours wi' an eydent[322-19] hand,
        An' ne'er, tho' out o' sight, to jauk[322-20] or play:
      An' O! be sure to fear the Lord alway!
        An' mind your duty, duly, morn an' night!
      Lest in temptation's path ye gang astray,
        Implore his counsel and assisting might:
    They never sought in vain, that sought the Lord aright!"


      But hark! a rap comes gently to the door;
        Jenny, wha kens the meaning o' the same,
      Tells how a neebor lad cam' o'er the moor,
        To do some errands and convoy her hame.[323-21]
      The wily mother sees the conscious flame
        Sparkle in Jenny's e'e,[323-22] and flush her cheek;
      With heart-struck, anxious care, inquires his name,
        While Jenny hafflins[323-23] is afraid to speak;
    Weel pleas'd the mother hears, it's nae[323-24] wild, worthless rake.


      Wi' kindly welcome, Jenny brings him ben:[323-25]
        A strappin' youth; he takes the mother's eye;
      Blythe Jenny sees the visit's no ill ta'en;[323-26]
        The father cracks[323-27] of horses, pleughs, and kye.[323-28]
      The youngster's artless heart o'erflows wi' joy,
        But blate[323-29] and laithfu',[323-30] scarce can weel behave;
      The mother, wi' a woman's wiles, can spy
        What makes the youth sae[323-31] bashfu' an' sae grave;
    Weel pleas'd to think her bairn's respected like the lave.[323-32]


    But now the supper crowns their simple board,
      The halesome parritch,[324-33] chief o' Scotia's food:
    The sowpe[324-34] their only Hawkie[324-35] does afford,
      That 'yont the hallan[324-36] snugly chows her cood;[324-37]
    The dame brings forth in complimental mood
      To grace the lad, her weel-hain'd[324-38] kebbuck[324-39] fell--
    An' aft he's prest, an' aft he ca's it guid;[324-40]
      The frugal wifie, garrulous, will tell,
    How 'twas a towmond[324-41] auld, sin' lint was i' the bell;[324-42]


      The cheerfu' supper done, wi' serious face,
        They, round the ingle, form a circle wide;
      The sire turns o'er, wi' patriarchal grace,
        The big ha'-Bible,[324-43] ance[324-44] his father's pride:
      His bonnet[324-45] rev'rently is laid aside,
        His lyart[324-46] haffets[324-47] wearing thin an' bare:
      Those strains that once did sweet in Zion glide,
        He wales[325-48] a portion with judicious care;
    And "Let us worship God!" he says, with solemn air.

[Illustration: ROUND THE INGLE]


    They chant their artless notes in simple guise;
      They tune their hearts, by far the noblest aim:
    Perhaps Dundee's wild warbling measures rise
      Or plaintive Martyrs, worthy of the name,
    Or noble Elgin beats the heav'nward flame,
      The sweetest far of Scotia's holy lays.
    Compared with these, Italian trills are tame;
      The tickl'd ears no heart-felt raptures raise;
    Nae unison hae they with our Creator's praise.


    The priest-like father reads the sacred page,
      How Abram was the friend of God on high;
    Or, Moses bade eternal warfare wage
      With Amalek's ungracious progeny;
    Or how the royal bard did groaning lie
      Beneath the stroke of Heav'n's avenging ire;
    Or Job's pathetic plaint, and wailing cry;
      Or rapt Isaiah's wild, seraphic fire;
    Or other holy seers that tune the sacred lyre.


    Perhaps the Christian volume is the theme,
      How guiltless blood for guilty man was shed;
    How He, who bore in heaven the second name,
      Had not on earth whereon to lay his head;
    How his first followers and servants sped;
      The precepts sage they wrote to many a land:
    How _he_, who lone in Patmos banished,
      Saw in the sun a mighty angel stand,
    And heard great Bab'lon's doom pronounc'd by Heaven's command.


    Then kneeling down, to Heaven's Eternal King,
      The saint, the father, and the husband prays:
    Hope "springs exultant on triumphant wing:"
      That thus they all shall meet in future days
    There ever bask in uncreated rays,
      No more to sigh, or shed the bitter tear,
    Together hymning their Creator's praise,
      In such society, yet still more dear;
    While circling time moves round in an eternal sphere.


    Compar'd with this, how poor Religion's pride,
      In all the pomp of method and of art,
    When men display to congregations wide,
      Devotion's ev'ry grace, except the heart!
    The Pow'r, incensed, the pageant will desert,
      The pompous strain, the sacerdotal stole;
    But, haply, in some cottage far apart,
      May hear, well pleased, the language of the soul;
    And in the book of life the inmates poor enroll.


    Then homeward all take off their sev'ral way;
      The youngling cottagers retire to rest:
    The parent-pair their secret homage pay,
      And proffer up to Heaven the warm request,
    That He, who stills the raven's clam'rous nest,
      And decks the lily fair in flow'ry pride,
    Would, in the way his wisdom sees the best,
      For them and for their little ones provide;
    But, chiefly, in their hearts with grace divine preside.


[320-1] _Sugh_ means a hollow, roaring sound. It is our word _sough_.

[320-2] _Frae_ is the Scotch word meaning from.

[320-3] _Pleugh_ means _plow_.

[320-4] _Moil_ is a Scotch word meaning _drudgery_.

[320-5] A mattock is a two-bladed instrument for digging.

[320-6] _Stacher_ is the Scotch form of _stagger_.

[320-7] _Flichtering_ means _fluttering_.

[320-8] _Carking_ is _trying_.

[321-9] _Belyve_ means _soon_.

[321-10] _Ca'_ means _drive_.

[321-11] _Tentie_ means _carefully_.

[321-12] _Cannie_ means here _prudent_, or _trusty_.

[321-13] _Braw_ is _fine, gay_.

[322-14] _Sair-won_ is _hard-earned_.

[322-15] _Spiérs_ means enquires.

[322-16] The _uncos_ is the _news_.

[322-17] This line means _Makes old clothes look almost as new ones_.

[322-18] The _younkers_ are the _youngsters_.

[322-19] _Eydent_ is _diligent_.

[322-20] To _jauk_ is to _trifle_.

[323-21] _Hame_ is the Scotch form of our word _home_.

[323-22] _E'e_ is a contraction for _eye_.

[323-23] _Hafflins_ means _partly_.

[323-24] _Nae_ means _no_.

[323-25] _Ben_ means _into the room_.

[323-26] That is, _the visit is not unwelcome_.

[323-27] _Cracks_ is a Scotch word meaning _chats_.

[323-28] _Kye_ are _cattle_.

[323-29] _Blate_ means _modest_.

[323-30] _Laithfu'_ is _bashful_.

[323-31] _Sae_ is the Scotch form of _so_.

[323-32] _The lave_ is _the others_: that is, the neighbors' girls.

[324-33] The _halesome parritch_ is the _wholesome porridge_ of oatmeal.

[324-34] _Sowpe_ here means a little quantity of milk.

[324-35] _Hawkie_ is a _white-faced cow_.

[324-36] That is, _beyond the partition_.

[324-37] _Chows her cood_ means _chews her cud_.

[324-38] _Weel-hain'd_ means _carefully preserved_.

[324-39] _Kebbuck_ is _cheese_.

[324-40] This line, in English, would read _And often he is urged_ (to
take more) _and often he calls it good_.

[324-41] A _towmond_ is a _twelvemonth_, a _year_.

[324-42] _Since flax was in blossom_.

[324-43] The _ha'-Bible_ is the family Bible, which is kept in the
_hall_, or the best room.

[324-44] _Ance_ is the Scotch form of _once_.

[324-45] That is, his hat.

[324-46] _Lyart_ means _gray_.

[324-47] _Haffets_ means _temples_.

[325-48] _Wales_ means _chooses_.


One of the most tragic, and at the same time one of the most heroic, of
true stories is that of Charles and Mary Lamb, the brother and sister
who are known to millions of young people as the writers of _Tales from

Charles Lamb was rather a short man, with a spare body and legs so small
and thin that Thomas Hood once spoke of them as "immaterial legs." His
head, however, was large, and his brow fine; his nose, large and hooked,
was in a face which early showed lines of care and trouble; his eyes
were large and expressive, twinkling with humor but full of piercing
inquiry, and searching with keen interest everything about him; his
mouth was large and firm, but around it there flitted a smile that
showed the genial, humorous soul of the big-hearted boy.

Lamb's habits were peculiar, there is no denying that, and his habits of
dress made him even more noticeable. Almost always he wore a black coat,
knickerbockers and black gaiters. The old-fashioned cut of his clothes
and their worn appearance showed the narrowness of his means, which,
however, never caused him to neglect either clothing or person, for he
was remarkably neat in his ways.

[Illustration: CHARLES LAMB 1775-1834]

Although a poor boy, he was educated in the famous old Christ's
Hospital School in London, but when he was ready for college he found
himself barred by his stammering, stuttering tongue. Giving up his hope
of further schooling, he was glad to take a small clerkship in a
government office, where he remained for thirty-three years, a long
period with little or no advancement.

It was in 1792, when Charles was about seventeen years of age, that he
was given his clerkship, and for nearly four years he lived happily,
supporting his parents and his sister in their humble home. Mary was
eleven years older than Charles, a quiet gentle creature whom everybody
loved, though in some respects she was peculiar. There were things, too,
that troubled the family and made them reserved and inclined to be
oversensitive. Not only were they very poor, but there had been insanity
on the mother's side, and Charles, himself, had at one time been in
brief confinement for irrational actions. Mary, too, had occasionally
shown signs of madness, but no one anticipated the dreadful event which
took place in 1796.

It came upon them like a stroke of lightning out of a clear sky. All
were gathered together for their noon meal when Mary leaped to her feet
and ran wildly about the room, shrieking in the terrifying tones of the
insane. She caught the forks and spoons from the table, threw them about
the room, and then, seizing a case knife, plunged it into the heart of
her mother. Although one of the flying forks had struck her aged father
in the head and wounded him severely, Mary sprang upon him and would
certainly have killed the feeble old man then and there had not Charles
caught her and in a terrible struggle overpowered her and wrested the
knife from her grasp. Friends and neighbors came in, and the poor woman
was taken to an asylum, where in a short time she recovered her reason
and learned of the awful consequences of her madness. In those days
hospitals for the insane were much more poorly managed than they are at
present, and Charles could not be contented to think of his sister
confined within their walls. Accordingly he went to the authorities, and
after much persuasion they released her, under the condition that she
should be constantly under care.

Then began the long career of brotherly devotion which can scarcely be
matched, and which never fails to excite our sympathy and admiration. We
may well think it a terrible penance, for Mary's attacks recurred again
and again, and more than once Charles had to take her back to the
hospital for a brief time while her violence remained too great for him
to control. There were long lucid intervals, however, and after a while
both learned to recognize the symptoms which preceded an attack, and the
two would wend their way to the asylum, where she could take refuge.
They carried a straight-jacket with them for use in case she should
suddenly become violent, for never could either escape from the
nightmare of that first awful catastrophe.

For forty years this companionship, this sublime devotion continued,
even to the time of Charles Lamb's death in 1834. Both made many
friends, and when the brother was laid away these friends came forward
and took up the burden of Mary's care until she, too, died, nearly
thirteen years later. The last years of Lamb's life were full of
further trouble, that, combined with his crushing anxiety for Mary,
broke his genial spirit and left him sad and melancholy.

One of the greatest blows he suffered in his later life was the death of
his life-long friend, Samuel Taylor Coleridge. See how fondly he wrote
of this friend:

"Since I feel how great a part he was of me his great and dear spirit
haunts me. I cannot think a thought, I cannot make a criticism on men or
books without an ineffectual turning and reference to him.... He was my
fifty-years-old friend without a dissension. I seem to love the house he
died at more passionately than when he lived.... What was his mansion is
consecrated to me a chapel."

It is said that when his sister was first stricken Lamb was engaged to
be married to Ann Simmons, a sweet woman, whom he loved passionately. So
awful was the blow and so heavy the responsibility he assumed that the
match was broken off, and the gentle man resigned his hope of home and
family. We shall see, however, that he never quite forgot his love.

Sad as their life certainly was, there were many pleasant days for both
brother and sister. Between her spells of violence Mary was a charming
companion, a helpful adviser and a writer of great ability, as loyal to
her brother as he was to her. When Lamb was engaged to write the _Tales
from Shakespeare_, she took up the pen with him and wrote the stories of
the great poet's comedies while Charles wrote the tragedies.

How strong his affection and respect for her really were we may see from
his own words: "I am a fool bereft of her co-operation. I am used to
look up at her in the worst and biggest perplexities. To say all that I
find her would be more than I think anybody could possibly understand.
She is older, wiser, and better than I am, and all my wretched
imperfections I cover to myself by resolutely thinking on her goodness.
She would share life and death with me."

A more lovable character than Lamb's is hard to find. Full of fun he was
when with his friends, punning, quibbling and joking in quaint and
original ways that made him welcome wherever he went. "The best acid is
assiduity" was one of his favorite puns, and "_No_ work is worse than
_over_-work" is one of his wise and witty remarks.

The stuttering which in some persons might have seemed an annoyance only
served to add a certain spiciness to his good-natured quips. It is said
that a certain gushing lady once went into a long description of her
children and her own passionate love for them. Suddenly interrupting
herself she said to Lamb, "And how do you like babies, Mr. Lamb?" With a
sober face, but unable to conceal the humorous twinkle in his sharp
eyes, Charles replied, "Bub-bub-boiled, Madam!"

Lamb's friendship for Coleridge was fully returned, as we may see from
many things the latter wrote. At one time he said: "Lamb's character is
a sacred one with me. No associations that he may form can hurt the
purity of his mind.... Nothing ever left a stain on that gentle
creature's mind."

In 1825 Lamb's health became so poor that he was compelled to give up
his clerkship, and thereafter he lived most of his time at Edmonton. The
British government gave him an annual pension of £441, which sufficed
for the simple wants of himself and his sister.

The immediate cause of his death was a slight accident that befell him a
few months after the burial of Coleridge. Unconsciousness came before he
had been long ill and before any of his intimate friends could reach
him, yet it was their names that were last on his lips. They buried him
in the churchyard at Edmonton, as he wished, where on his tombstone may
be read:

    "Farewell, dear friend--that smile, that harmless mirth,
    No more shall gladden our domestic hearth;
    That rising tear, with pain forbid to flow--
    Better than words--no more assuage our woe.
    That hand outstretch'd from small but well-earned store
    Yield succor to the destitute no more.
    Yet art thou not all lost. Through many an age,
    With sterling sense and humour, shall thy page
    Win many an English bosom, pleased to see
    That old and happier vein revived in thee.
    This for our earth: and if with friends we share
    Our joys in heaven we hope to meet thee there."

Besides the _Tales from Shakespeare_, Charles Lamb wrote many beautiful
sketches which are known as the _Essays of Elia_. _Elia_ was the name of
one of the clerks in the South Sea House, where Lamb worked at one time.

A reader can easily form some idea of a writer's character from his
work, but Lamb was always so wholly himself, and he threw himself so
freely into his essays, that you can tell just what manner of man he
was as you read. A large part of the pleasure of reading him comes from
this trait. We seem to be sitting with a charming friend whenever we
hold one of his books, and to feel that the friend is pouring out his
whole heart for our delight and inspiration. Naturally a person must
keep alert when he is reading from Charles Lamb, for no one can predict
what course the brilliant mind will take. When once a reader has learned
to understand his oddities, delicate sentiment, bright wit and loving
faithfulness, every word becomes a living thing, and every reading a new
delight, a higher inspiration. In none of his essays is he seen to
greater advantage than in _Dream Children_, which follows this brief
sketch. The only people young or old who do not love this beautiful
essay are those who have not read it or who have read it without really
understanding it. You may need to read it once just to see what it is
about; again with the aid of the notes and comments we make upon it; a
third time to let it cast its spell upon you. If you do that you will
not forget it, but will return to it often as years go on and the hard
world buffets you with those stern experiences which make you men and
women. Every time you read it you will find new graces, more touching

Will you read it now for the first time, paying only so much attention
to the footnotes as may be necessary for you to understand the



Children love to listen to stories about their elders when _they_ were
children; to stretch their imagination to the conception of a
traditionary great-uncle, or grandame, whom they never saw.

It was in this spirit that my little ones crept about me the other
evening to hear about their great-grandmother Field,[335-1] who lived in
a great house in Norfolk (a hundred times bigger than that in which they
and papa lived) which had been the scene--so at least it was generally
believed in that part of the country--of the tragic incidents which they
had lately become familiar with from the ballad of the Children in the

Certain it is that the whole story of the children and their cruel uncle
was to be seen fairly carved out in wood upon the chimney-piece of the
great hall,[335-3] the whole story down to the Robin Redbreast; till a
foolish person pulled it down to set up a marble one of modern invention
in its stead, with no story upon it.

Here Alice put out one of her dear mother's looks, too tender to be
called upbraiding.

Then I went on to say, how religious and how good their
great-grandmother Field was, how beloved and respected by everybody,
though she was not indeed the mistress of this great house, but had only
the charge of it (and yet in some respects she might be said to be the
mistress of it too) committed to her by the owner, who preferred living
in a newer and more fashionable mansion which he had purchased somewhere
in the adjoining county; but still she lived in it in a manner as if it
had been her own, and kept up the dignity of the great house in a sort
while she lived. Afterwards it came to decay, and was nearly pulled
down, and all its old ornaments stripped and carried away to the owner's
other house, where they were set up, and looked as awkward as if someone
were to carry away the old tombs they had lately seen at the
Abbey,[336-4] and stick them up in Lady C.'s[336-5] tawdry gilt
drawing-room. Here John smiled, as much as to say, "that would be
foolish indeed."

And then I told how, when she came to die, her funeral was attended by a
concourse of all the poor, and some of the gentry, too, of the
neighborhood for many miles around, to show their respect for her
memory, because she had been such a good and religious woman; so good
indeed that she knew all the Psaltery[336-7] by heart, ay, and a great
part of the Testament[336-8] besides.

Here little Alice spread her hands.

Then I told what a tall, upright, gracious person their
great-grandmother Field once was; and how in her youth she was esteemed
the best dancer,--here Alice's little right foot played an involuntary
movement, till, upon my looking grave, it desisted,--the best dancer, I
was saying, in the country, till a cruel disease, called a cancer, came,
and bowed her down with pain, but it could never bend her good spirits,
or make them stoop, but they were still upright, because she was so good
and religious.

Then I told how she used to sleep by herself in a lone chamber of the
great lone house; and how she believed that an apparition of two infants
was to be seen at midnight gliding up and down the great staircase near
where she slept, but she said "those innocents would do her no harm;"
and how frightened I used to be, though in those days I had my maid to
sleep with me, because I was never half so good or religious as
she,--and yet I never saw the infants.

Here John expanded all his eyebrows and tried to look courageous.

Then I told how good she was to all her grandchildren, having us to the
great house in the holidays, where I in particular used to spend many
hours by myself, in gazing upon the old busts of the twelve Caesars,
that had been Emperors of Rome, till the old marble heads would seem to
live again, or I to be turned into marble with them; how I never could
be tired with roaming about that huge mansion, with its vast empty
rooms, with their worn-out hangings, fluttering tapestry, and carved
oaken panels, with the gilding almost rubbed out,--sometimes in the
spacious old-fashioned gardens, which I had almost to myself, unless
when now and then a solitary gardening man would cross me,--and how the
nectarines and peaches hung upon the walls,[338-9] without my ever
offering to pluck them, because they were forbidden fruit, unless now
and then,--and because I had more pleasure in strolling about among the
old melancholy-looking yew-trees,[338-10] or the firs, and picking up
the red berries, and the fir apples, which were good for nothing but to
look at,--or in lying about upon the fresh grass with all the fine
garden smells around me,--or basking in the orangery,[338-11] till I
could almost fancy myself ripening too along with the oranges and the
limes in that grateful warmth,--or in watching the dace[338-12] that
darted to and fro in the fish-pond, at the bottom of the garden, with
here and there a great sulky pike hanging midway down the water in
silent state, as if it mocked at their impertinent friskings,--I had
more pleasure in these busy-idle diversions than in all the sweet
flavors of peaches, nectarines, oranges, and such-like common baits of

Here John slyly deposited back upon the plate a bunch of grapes, which,
not unobserved by Alice he had meditated dividing with her, and both
seemed willing to relinquish them for the present as irrelevant.


Then, in somewhat a more heightened tone, I told how, though their
great-grandmother Field loved all her grandchildren, yet in an especial
manner she might be said to love their uncle, John L----,[340-13]
because he was so handsome and spirited a youth, and a king to the rest
of us; and, instead of moping about in solitary corners, like some of
us, he would mount the most mettlesome horse he could get, when but an
imp no bigger than themselves, and make it carry him half over the
county in a morning, and join the hunters when there were any out,--and
yet he loved the old great house and gardens too, but had too much
spirit to be always pent up within their boundaries;--and how their
uncle grew up to man's estate as brave as he was handsome, to the
admiration of everybody, but of their great-grandmother Field most
especially; and how he used to carry me upon his back when I was a
lame-footed[340-14] boy--for he was a good bit older than I--many a mile
when I could not walk for pain; and how in after life he became
lame-footed too, and I did not always (I fear) make allowances enough
for him when he was impatient and in pain, nor remember sufficiently how
considerate he had been to me when I was lame-footed;--and how when he
died,[340-15] though he had not been dead an hour, it seemed as if he
had died a great while ago, such a distance there is betwixt life and
death; and how I bore his death as I thought pretty well at first, but
afterwards it haunted and haunted me; and though I did not cry or take
it to heart as some do, and as I think he would have done if I had died,
yet I missed him all day long, and knew not till then how much I had
loved him. I missed his kindness, and I missed his crossness, and wished
him to be alive again, to be quarreling with him (for we quarreled
sometimes), rather than not to have him again, and was as uneasy without
him, as he their poor uncle must have been when the doctor took off his


Here the children fell a-crying, and asked if their little mourning
which they had on was not for Uncle John, and they looked up, and prayed
me not to go on about their uncle, but to tell them some stories about
their pretty dead mother.

Then I told how, for seven long years, in hope sometimes, sometimes in
despair, yet persisting ever, I courted the fair Alice W----n;[342-16]
and, as much as children could understand, I explained to them what
coyness, and difficulty, and denial meant in maidens.

When suddenly turning to Alice, the soul of the first Alice looked out
at her eyes with such a reality of representment, that I became in doubt
which of them stood before me, or whose that bright hair was; and while
I stood gazing, both the children gradually grew fainter to my view,
receding, and still receding, till nothing at last but two mournful
features were seen in the uttermost distance, which, without speech,
strangely impressed upon me the effects of speech:

"We are not of Alice, nor of thee, nor are we children at all. The
children of Alice call Bartram father. We are nothing; less than
nothing, and dreams. We are only what might have been, and must wait
upon the tedious shores of Lethe[342-17] millions of ages before we have
existence, and a name."

And immediately awaking, I found myself quietly seated in my bachelor
armchair, where I had fallen asleep, with the faithful Bridget[342-18]
unchanged by my side,--but John L. (or James Elia) was gone forever.

     You know Lamb's pathetic history, and you can see how _Dream
     Children_ came right out of his own sad heart, and how it teems
     with affectionate recollection. The children, too,--do they not
     seem like living beings? Can you believe that Alice and John never
     lived? Let us go back to the essay and see how little it is that he
     really says about them. Here it is:



     1. _Here Alice put out one of her dear mother's looks, too tender
     to be upbraiding._

     She thought it very sad that any one should pull down the beautiful
     mantelpiece in the great hall, but she would not find fault with
     him--she was too gentle, too tender for that!

          1. _Here John smiled as much as to say, "that would be foolish

          John is quite the boy--wise enough to see how ridiculous it was
          to put a fine, rich old carved chimney among a lot of gilt
          gimcracks--and rather anxious to show his wisdom.

     2. _Here little Alice spread her hands._

     Don't you think she knew her Psaltery by heart, and a great part of
     the Testament besides? "Of course it is very _wonderful_ that
     grandma knew so much--but then, I know it too."

          2. _Here John expanded all his eyebrows and tried to look

          The tale of the ghostly infants has frightened John a little, but
          he does not like to admit any timidity there with his father and
          sister, so he straightens up, expands his eyebrows and looks very
          brave and manly.

     3. _Here Alice's little right foot played an involuntary movement,
     till, upon my looking grave, it desisted._

     The mere suggestion of a dance sets the little foot in motion, and
     you and I know that Alice is a lively girl who would be as proud of
     being the best dancer in the country as she was of knowing as much
     Scripture as her grandmother knew. But how quickly she stops when
     her father looks grave! We do not think that he objects to Alice
     dancing, but he knows that he is going to tell her the sad part of
     the story, and that the dancing accompaniment of Alice's little
     right foot would be very much out of place.

     Later, Alice joined with John in wishing for the grapes, but she
     was equally willing to give them up when it seemed childish to take

          3. _Here John slyly deposited back upon the plate a bunch of
          grapes which, not unobserved by Alice, he had meditated
          dividing with her; and both seemed willing to relinquish them
          for the present as irrelevant._

          While the father has been telling of his glorious childhood
          among the rich fruit on the great estate, John has quietly
          picked up a bunch of grapes, and his quick-witted father,
          seeing the act, sneers a little at _such-like common baits of
          children_. John, wishing to be manly, puts the grapes back
          without a word, though evidently he will be glad enough to
          return to them at the proper time.

          Not a selfish child at all was John, for he meditated dividing
          the grapes with Alice, and they would have been so sweet and
          cooling while the children stood there listening to the story.

     4. _Here the children fell a-crying and asked if their little
     mourning which they had on was not for Uncle John, and they looked
     up and prayed me not to go on about their uncle, but to tell them
     some stories about their pretty dead mother._

     How tender-hearted they both are, and yet until now they had hardly
     realized that it was for Uncle John that they were wearing their
     fresh mourning. This was a new grief too sad to them, but it turned
     their gentle sympathies to their pretty dead mother, of whom they
     were always glad to hear. The father has scarcely begun to speak
     when he sees in Alice so much resemblance to his dead wife that he
     almost thinks it is the mother who stands beside him. So violent is
     his emotion that he gradually comes out of his reverie, and as he
     does so the children fade away and recede into the distance,
     saying, "_We are nothing; less than nothing, and dreams._"

     Is it not a wonderful thing that with so few words a writer can put
     his heart so much into yours that you believe almost as much as he
     does in the reality of the vision?

     In the sketch of Lamb we said that his character was very strongly
     reflected in his writings, and this essay shows the fact
     wonderfully well. Imagine the man, lonely, heartbroken, weary from
     the awful task he had set himself, sitting in his bachelor armchair
     by the fire, dreaming his evening away. Who are the people that
     come to him in his dreams and what are the incidents? First his
     grandmother Field, with whom he had spent a great deal of his
     childhood; then his sweetheart Alice, now married to another, with
     children of her own; then his brother, by no means a pleasing
     character, but a lazy and selfish man who, however, in the rich,
     loving heart of his brother stands out as handsome, affectionate,
     noble and brave. How keenly he feels the bitter loss which comes to
     him with tenfold severity when he awakens, and which he makes the
     closing thought in the essay! Lastly, the faithful Mary, unchanged,
     appears at his side,--his waking companion, his greatest burden and
     his greatest joy.

     Besides these evidences of his devoted and affectionate
     disposition, we find proof of his vivid imagination when as a child
     he gazes _upon the old busts of the twelve Cæsars that had been
     emperors of Rome, till the old marble heads would seem to live
     again, or I to be turned into marble with them_. In his _busy-idle_
     amusements at the great house he shows the innocence and simplicity
     of his pleasures, and in the delicate way in which he reproves
     Alice and John, his genial, sympathetic disposition as well as his
     abundant good humor. How much finer it was to say, "_and such-like
     common baits of children_" than to have said, "John, put the grapes
     back on the plate."


[335-1] Lamb's grandmother, Mary Field, was for a long time housekeeper
in one of the great English country houses, but not in the county
alluded to in the text.

[335-2] This means that the incidents had but lately become familiar to
the children. The story is the old one of the _Babes in the Wood_, as it
is sometimes called.

[335-3] One of Lamb's fancies; the chimney-carving in the real house
represented stag and boar hunts.

[336-4] Westminster Abbey.

[336-5] An imaginary person with a cheap, showy drawing-room.

[336-7] The Book of Psalms, or such a portion of it as is used in the
services of the English Church.

[336-8] New Testament.

[338-9] The trees were planted on the south side of the walls, which
protected them from the north wind and ripened them by reflected warmth.

[338-10] The foliage of the yews is very dark, and because these trees
are so often planted about cemeteries they give a hint of sadness to
every one.

[338-11] The glass house which protected the trees in the winter and
hastened the ripening of the fruit in summer.

[338-12] A small fish resembling our chub--usually seen in schools in
still waters.

[340-13] Lamb's brother John--twelve years his senior. John was rather a
lazy, selfish fellow--at least he never gave up his own pleasures and
comforts to assist his family, even in their greatest need.

[340-14] This probably alludes to some temporary affliction, for Charles
Lamb was not lame.

[340-15] John Lamb died just before this essay was written.

[342-16] It is not known positively whether Alice Warren was a real or
an imaginary character.

[342-17] _Lethe_ was among the ancient Greeks the name given to the
river of oblivion, of whose waters spirits drank to gain forgetfulness.

[342-18] Bridget Elia is his sister, Mary Lamb.


The greatest author the world has known is William Shakespeare, and his
writings will afford more pleasure, instruction and information than
those of any other author. They may be read again and again, for so
charged are they with living knowledge and so full of literary charm,
that no one can exhaust them in a single reading. Not every reader of
Shakespeare loves him, but that is because not every reader appreciates
him. He wrote in the English of his times, and used many words and
expressions that have since dropped out of the language, changed their
meaning, or become unfamiliar in common speech. Then again, his
knowledge of life is so profound and his insight into human nature so
keen and penetrating, that the casual reader is liable not to follow his
thought. In other words, Shakespeare must be studied to be appreciated;
but if he is studied and appreciated, he gives a pleasure and exerts an
influence that cannot be equaled.

[Illustration: WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE 1564-1616]

Young people are liable to think that study is laborious and
uninteresting, a nuisance and a bore. Nothing of that sort is true of
the study of Shakespeare, because for every effort there is a present
reward, there is no waiting to see results. Of course there are right
ways and wrong ways to study, just as there are right ways and wrong
ways of doing anything. Sometimes teachers fail entirely to interest
their classes in Shakespeare, and parents say they cannot make their
children like Shakespeare. None of this is the fault of the poet or of
the children; the fault lies in the methods used to create an interest.
If a person begins properly and proceeds as he should, there will never
be a lack of interest. Teachers are not needed, and parents may leave
their children to learn to be happy in reading by themselves, if the
books are prepared properly for them.

In the first place, one of the wonders of Shakespeare is the great
variety of his plays. In fact, they cover the whole range of human
activities, and introduce characters from almost every walk in life. The
stories they tell run from the light and gay to those of more somber
hue, from comedy to deepest tragedy. Wit and humor, pathos and sublimity
may sometimes be found in the same play, and smiles and tears may be
drawn from the same page. What play to select for a beginner becomes
then a question of some moment. _The Tempest_ is one of the best, for it
is not difficult to read, is an interesting story, has amusing
characters, and carries good food for thought.

Will you then, our young readers, go hand in hand with us into the
reading of Shakespeare? Do as we say this one time, and read as we ask
you to, even if it does take some time from your play. If, while you are
doing it, you do not enjoy yourselves, or if at the end you do not feel
repaid, then take your own course in your reading thereafter. It will be
a better course for having studied one great play carefully.

However, before we begin the play, let us read the charming tale written
by Charles and Mary Lamb. It will give us briefly the story of _The
Tempest_, though a wealth of incidents is omitted.



There was a certain island in the sea, the only inhabitants of which
were an old man, whose name was Prospero, and his daughter Miranda, a
very beautiful young lady. She came to this island so young, that she
had no memory of having seen any other human face than her father's.
They lived in a cave or cell, made out of a rock; it was divided into
several apartments, one of which Prospero called his study; there he
kept his books, which chiefly treated of magic, a study at that time
much affected by all learned men; and the knowledge of this art he found
very useful to him; for being thrown by a strange chance upon this
island, which had been enchanted by a witch called Sycorax, who died
there a short time before his arrival, Prospero, by virtue of his art,
released many good spirits that Sycorax had imprisoned in the bodies of
large trees, because they had refused to execute her wicked commands.
These gentle spirits were ever after obedient to the will of Prospero.
Of these, Ariel was the chief.

The lively little sprite Ariel had nothing mischievous in his nature,
except that he took rather too much pleasure in tormenting an ugly
monster called Caliban, for he owed him a grudge because he was the son
of his old enemy Sycorax. This Caliban, Prospero found in the woods, a
strange misshapen thing, far less human in form than an ape: he took him
home to his cell, and taught him to speak; and Prospero would have been
very kind to him, but the bad nature which Caliban inherited from his
mother Sycorax, would not let him learn anything good or useful:
therefore he was employed like a slave, to fetch wood, and do the most
laborious offices; and Ariel had the charge of compelling him to these

When Caliban was lazy and neglected his work, Ariel (who was invisible
to all eyes but Prospero's) would come slily and pinch him, and
sometimes tumble him down in the mire; and then Ariel, in the likeness
of an ape, would make mouths at him. Then swiftly changing his shape, in
the likeness of a hedgehog, he would lie tumbling in Caliban's way, who
feared the hedgehog's sharp quills would prick his bare feet. With a
variety of such-like vexatious tricks Ariel would often torment him
whenever Caliban neglected the work which Prospero commanded him to do.

Having these powerful spirits obedient to his will, Prospero could by
their means command the winds, and the waves of the sea. By his orders
they raised a violent storm, in the midst of which, and struggling with
the wild sea-waves that every moment threatened to swallow it up, he
showed his daughter a fine large ship, which he told her was full of
living beings like themselves. "O my dear father," said she, "if by your
art you have raised this dreadful storm, have pity on their sad
distress. See! the vessel will be dashed to pieces. Poor souls! they
will all perish. If I had power, I would sink the sea beneath the earth,
rather than the good ship should be destroyed, with all the precious
souls within her."

"Be not so amazed, daughter Miranda," said Prospero; "there is no harm
done. I have so ordered it, that no person in the ship shall receive any
hurt. What I have done has been in care of you, my dear child. You are
ignorant who you are, or where you came from, and you know no more of
me, but that I am your father, and live in this poor cave. Can you
remember a time before you came to this cell? I think you cannot, for
you were not then three years of age."

"Certainly I can, sir," replied Miranda.

"By what?" asked Prospero; "by any other house or person? Tell me what
you can remember, my child."

Miranda said, "It seems to me like the recollection of a dream. But had
I not once four or five women who attended upon me?"

Prospero answered, "You had, and more. How is it that this still lives
in your mind? Do you remember how you came here?"

"No, sir," said Miranda, "I remember nothing more."

"Twelve years ago, Miranda," continued Prospero, "I was duke of Milan,
and you were a princess, and my only heir. I had a younger brother,
whose name was Antonio, to whom I trusted everything; and as I was fond
of retirement and deep study, I commonly left the management of my
state affairs to your uncle, my false brother (for so indeed he
proved). I, neglecting all worldly ends, buried among my books, did
dedicate my whole time to the bettering of my mind. My brother Antonio,
being thus in possession of my power, began to think himself the duke
indeed. The opportunity I gave him of making himself popular among my
subjects awakened in his bad nature a proud ambition to deprive me of my
dukedom; this he soon effected with the aid of the king of Naples, a
powerful prince, who was my enemy."

"Wherefore," said Miranda, "did they not that hour destroy us?"

"My child," answered her father, "they durst not, so dear was the love
that my people bore me. Antonio carried us on board a ship, and when we
were some leagues out at sea, he forced us into a small boat, without
either tackle, sail, or mast: there he left us, as he thought, to
perish. But a kind lord of my court, one Gonzalo, who loved me, had
privately placed in the boat water, provisions, apparel, and some books
which I prize above my dukedom."

"O my father," said Miranda, "what a trouble must I have been to you

"No, my love," said Prospero, "you were a little cherub that did
preserve me. Your innocent smiles made me to bear up against my
misfortunes. Our food lasted till we landed on this island, since when
my chief delight has been in teaching you, and well have you profited by
my instructions."

"Heaven thank you, my dear father," said Miranda. "Now pray tell me,
sir, your reason for raising this sea-storm?"

"Know then," said her father, "that by means of this storm, my enemies,
the king of Naples, and my cruel brother, are cast ashore upon this

Having so said, Prospero gently touched his daughter with his magic
wand, and she fell fast asleep; for the spirit Ariel just then presented
himself before his master, to give an account of the tempest, and how he
had disposed of the ship's company, and though the spirits were always
invisible to Miranda, Prospero did not choose she should hear him
holding converse (as would seem to her) with the empty air.

"Well, my brave spirit," said Prospero to Ariel, "how have you performed
your task?"

Ariel gave a lively description of the storm, and of the terrors of the
mariners; and how the king's son, Ferdinand, was the first who leaped
into the sea; and his father thought he saw his dear son swallowed up by
the waves and lost. "But he is safe," said Ariel, "in a corner of the
isle, sitting with his arms folded, sadly lamenting the loss of the
king, his father, whom he concludes drowned. Not a hair of his head is
injured, and his princely garments, though drenched in the sea-waves,
look fresher than before."

"That's my delicate Ariel," said Prospero. "Bring him hither: my
daughter must see this prince. Where is the king, and my brother?"

"I left them," answered Ariel, "searching for Ferdinand, whom they have
little hopes of finding, thinking they saw him perish. Of the ship's
crew not one is missing; though each one thinks himself the only one
saved: and the ship, though invisible to them, is safe in the harbor."

[Illustration: FERDINAND LEAPED]

"Ariel," said Prospero, "thy charge is faithfully performed; but there
is more work yet."

"Is there more work?" said Ariel. "Let me remind you, master, you have
promised me my liberty. I pray, remember, I have done you worthy
service, told you no lies, made no mistakes, served you without grudge
or grumbling."

"How now!" said Prospero. "You do not recollect what a torment I freed
you from. Have you forgot the wicked witch Sycorax, who with age and
envy was almost bent double? Where was she born? Speak; tell me."

"Sir, in Algiers," said Ariel.

"O was she so?" said Prospero. "I must recount what you have been,
which I find you do not remember. This bad witch, Sycorax, for her
witch-crafts, too terrible to enter human hearing, was banished from
Algiers, and here left by the sailors; and because you were a spirit too
delicate to execute her wicked commands, she shut you up in a tree,
where I found you howling. This torment, remember, I did free you from."

"Pardon me, dear master," said Ariel, ashamed to seem ungrateful; "I
will obey your commands."

"Do so," said Prospero, "and I will set you free." He then gave orders
what further he would have him do; and away went Ariel, first to where
he had left Ferdinand, and found him still sitting on the grass in the
same melancholy posture.

"O my young gentleman," said Ariel, when he saw him, "I will soon move
you. You must be brought, I find, for the Lady Miranda to have a sight
of your pretty person. Come, sir, follow me." He then began singing,

    "Full fathom five thy father lies:
      Of his bones are coral made;
    Those are pearls that were his eyes:
      Nothing of him that doth fade,
    But doth suffer a sea-change
    Into something rich and strange.
    Sea-nymphs hourly ring his knell:
    Hark! now I hear them,--Ding-dong, bell."

This strange news of his lost father soon roused the prince from the
stupid fit into which he had fallen. He followed in amazement the sound
of Ariel's voice, till it led him to Prospero and Miranda, who were
sitting under the shade of a large tree. Now Miranda had never seen a
man before, except her own father.

"Miranda," said Prospero, "tell me what you are looking at yonder."

"O father," said Miranda, in a strange surprise, "surely that is a
spirit. Lord! how it looks about! Believe me, sir, it is a beautiful
creature. Is it not a spirit?"

"No, girl," answered her father: "it eats and sleeps, and has senses
such as we have. This young man you see was in the ship. He is somewhat
altered by grief, or you might call him a handsome person. He has lost
his companions, and is wandering about to find them."

Miranda, who thought all men had grave faces and gray beards like her
father, was delighted with the appearance of this beautiful young
prince; and Ferdinand, seeing such a lovely maiden in this desert place,
and from the strange sounds he had heard, expecting nothing but wonders,
thought he was upon an enchanted island, and that Miranda was the
goddess of the place, and as such he began to address her.

She timidly answered, she was no goddess, but a simple maid, and was
going to give him an account of herself, when Prospero interrupted her.
He was well pleased to find they admired each other, for he plainly
perceived they had (as we say) fallen in love at first sight: but to try
Ferdinand's constancy, he resolved to throw some difficulties in their
way: therefore advancing forward, he addressed the prince with a stern
air, telling him, he came to the island as a spy, to take it from him
who was the lord of it. "Follow me," said he, "I will tie you neck and
feet together. You shall drink sea-water; shell-fish, withered roots,
and husks of acorns shall be your food." "No," said Ferdinand, "I will
resist such entertainment, till I see a more powerful enemy," and drew
his sword; but Prospero, waving his magic wand, fixed him to the spot
where he stood so that he had no power to move.

Miranda hung upon her father, saying, "Why are you so ungentle? Have
pity, sir; I will be his surety. This is the second man I ever saw, and
to me he seems a true one."

"Silence," said the father; "one word more will make me chide you, girl!
What an advocate for an impostor! You think there are no more such fine
men, having seen only him and Caliban. I tell you, foolish girl, most
men as far excel this, as he does Caliban." This he said to prove his
daughter's constancy; and she replied, "My affections are most humble. I
have no wish to see a goodlier man."

"Come on, young man," said Prospero to the prince; "you have no power to
disobey me."

"I have not indeed," answered Ferdinand; and not knowing that it was by
magic he was deprived of all power of resistance, he was astonished to
find himself so strangely compelled to follow Prospero: looking back on
Miranda as long as he could see her, he said, as he went after Prospero
into the cave, "My spirits are all bound up, as if I were in a dream;
but this man's threats, and the weakness which I feel, would seem light
to me if from my prison I might once a day behold this fair maid."

Prospero kept Ferdinand not long confined within the cell: he soon
brought out his prisoner, and set him a severe task to perform, taking
care to let his daughter know the hard labor he had imposed on him, and
then pretending to go into his study, he secretly watched them both.

Prospero had commanded Ferdinand to pile up some heavy logs of wood.
King's sons not being much used to laborious work, Miranda soon after
found her lover almost dying with fatigue. "Alas!" said she, "do not
work so hard; my father is at his studies, he is safe for these three
hours; pray rest yourself."

"O my dear lady," said Ferdinand, "I dare not. I must finish my task
before I take my rest."

"If you will sit down," said Miranda, "I will carry your logs the
while." But this Ferdinand would by no means agree to. Instead of a help
Miranda became a hindrance, for they began a long conversation, so that
the business of log-carrying went on very slowly.

Prospero, who had enjoined Ferdinand this task merely as a trial of his
love, was not at his books, as his daughter supposed, but was standing
by them invisible, to overhear what they said.

Ferdinand inquired her name, which she told, saying it was against her
father's express command she did so. Prospero only smiled at this first
instance of his daughter's disobedience, for having by his magic art
caused his daughter to fall in love so suddenly, he was not angry that
she showed her love by forgetting to obey his commands. And he listened
well pleased to a long speech of Ferdinand's, in which he professed to
love her above all the ladies he ever saw.

In answer to his praises of her beauty, which he said exceeded all the
women in the world, she replied, "I do not remember the face of any
woman, nor have I seen any more men than you, my good friend, and my
dear father. How features are abroad, I know not; but, believe me, sir,
I would not wish any companion in the world but you, nor can my
imagination form any shape but yours that I could like. But, sir, I fear
I talk to you too freely, and my father's precepts I forget."

At this Prospero smiled, and nodded his head, as much as to say, "This
goes on exactly as I could wish; my girl will be queen of Naples."

And then Ferdinand, in another fine long speech (for young princes speak
in courtly phrases), told the innocent Miranda he was heir to the crown
of Naples, and that she should be his queen.

"Ah! sir," said she, "I am a fool to weep at what I am glad of. I will
answer you in plain and holy innocence. I am your wife if you will marry

Prospero prevented Ferdinand's thanks by appearing visible before them.

"Fear nothing, my child," said he; "I have overheard and approve of all
you have said. And, Ferdinand, if I have too severely used you, I will
make you rich amends, by giving you my daughter. All your vexations were
but trials of your love, and you have nobly stood the test. Then as my
gift, which your true love has worthily purchased, take my daughter, and
do not smile that I boast she is above all praise." He then, telling
them that he had business which required his presence, desired they
would sit down and talk together till he returned; and this command
Miranda seemed not at all disposed to disobey.

When Prospero left them, he called his spirit Ariel, who quickly
appeared before him, eager to relate what he had done with Prospero's
brother and the king of Naples. Ariel said he had left them almost out
of their senses with fear, at the strange things he had caused them to
see and hear. When fatigued with wandering about, and famished for want
of food, he had suddenly set before them a delicious banquet, and then,
just as they were going to eat, he appeared visible before them in the
shape of a harpy, a voracious monster with wings, and the feast vanished
away. Then, to their utter amazement, this seeming harpy spoke to them,
reminding them of their cruelty in driving Prospero from his dukedom,
and leaving him and his infant daughter to perish in the sea; saying,
that for this cause these terrors were suffered to afflict them.

The king of Naples, and Antonio, the false brother, repented the
injustice they had done to Prospero; and Ariel told his master he was
certain their penitence was sincere, and that he, though a spirit, could
not but pity them.

"Then bring them hither, Ariel," said Prospero: "if you, who are but a
spirit, feel for their distress, shall not I, who am a human being like
themselves, have compassion on them? Bring them quickly, my dainty

Ariel soon returned with the king, Antonio, and old Gonzalo in their
train, who had followed him wondering at the wild music he played in the
air to draw them on to his master's presence. This Gonzalo was the same
who had so kindly provided Prospero formerly with books and provisions,
when his wicked brother left him, as he thought, to perish in an open
boat in the sea.

Grief and terror had so stupefied their senses, that they did not know
Prospero. He first discovered himself to the good old Gonzalo, calling
him the preserver of his life; and then his brother and the king knew
that he was the injured Prospero.

Antonio with tears, and sad words of sorrow and true repentance,
implored his brother's forgiveness, and the king expressed his sincere
remorse for having assisted Antonio to depose his brother: and Prospero
forgave them; and, upon their engaging to restore his dukedom, he said
to the king of Naples, "I have a gift in store for you too;" and opening
a door, showed him his son Ferdinand playing at chess with Miranda.

Nothing could exceed the joy of the father and the son at this
unexpected meeting, for they each thought the other drowned in the

"O wonder!" said Miranda, "what noble creatures these are! It must
surely be a brave world that has such people in it."

The king of Naples was almost as much astonished at the beauty and
excellent graces of the young Miranda as his son had been.

"Who is this maid?" said he; "she seems the goddess that has parted us,
and brought us thus together."

"No, sir," answered Ferdinand, smiling to find his father had fallen
into the same mistake that he had done when he first saw Miranda, "she
is a mortal, but by immortal Providence she is mine; I chose her when I
could not ask you, my father, for your consent, not thinking you were
alive. She is the daughter to this Prospero, who is the famous duke of
Milan, of whose renown I have heard so much, but never saw him till now:
of him I have received a new life: he has made himself to me a second
father, giving me this dear lady."

"Then I must be her father," said the king; "but oh! how oddly will it
sound, that I must ask my child forgiveness."

"No more of that," said Prospero: "let us not remember our troubles
past, since they so happily have ended."

And then Prospero embraced his brother, and again assured him of his
forgiveness; and said that a wise overruling Providence had permitted
that he should be driven from his poor dukedom of Milan, that his
daughter might inherit the crown of Naples, for that by their meeting in
this desert island, it had happened that the king's son had loved

These kind words which Prospero spoke, meaning to comfort his brother,
so filled Antonio with shame and remorse, that he wept and was unable to
speak; and the kind old Gonzalo wept to see this joyful reconciliation,
and prayed for blessings on the young couple.

Prospero now told them that their ship was safe in the harbor, and the
sailors on board her, and that he and his daughter would accompany them
home the next morning. "In the meantime," said he, "partake of such
refreshments as my poor cave affords; and for your evening's
entertainment I will relate the history of my life from my first landing
in this desert island." He then called for Caliban to prepare some food,
and set the cave in order; and the company were astonished at the
uncouth form and savage appearance of this ugly monster, who (Prospero
said) was the only attendant he had to wait upon him.

Before Prospero left the island, he dismissed Ariel from his service, to
the great joy of that lively little spirit; who, though he had been a
faithful servant to his master, was always longing to enjoy his free
liberty, to wander uncontrolled in the air, like a wild bird, under
green trees, among pleasant fruits, and sweet-smelling flowers. "My
quaint Ariel," said Prospero to the little sprite when he made him free,
"I shall miss you; yet you shall have your freedom." "Thank you, my dear
master," said Ariel; "but give me leave to attend your ship home with
prosperous gales, before you bid farewell to the assistance of your
faithful spirit; and then, master, when I am free, how merrily I shall
live!" Here Ariel sang this pretty song:

    "Where the bee sucks there suck I;
     In a cowslip's bell I lie:
     There I couch when owls do cry.
     On the bat's back I do fly
     After summer merrily.
     Merrily, merrily shall I live now
     Under the blossom that hangs on the bough."

Prospero then buried deep in the earth his magical books and wand, for
he was resolved never more to make use of the magic art. And having thus
overcome his enemies, and being reconciled to his brother and the king
of Naples, nothing now remained to complete his happiness, but to
revisit his native land, to take possession of his dukedom, and to
witness the happy nuptials of his daughter and Prince Ferdinand, which
the king said should be instantly celebrated with great splendor on
their return to Naples. At which place, under the safe convoy of the
spirit Ariel, they, after a pleasant voyage, soon arrived.





Having read Lamb's version of the story, we are ready for the play as
Shakespeare wrote it. To begin with, we will read it through from
beginning to end with as little hesitation and delay as possible. We
shall not expect to understand it all, and will pass over the more
difficult passages without attempting to master them. If at times we are
unable to go on intelligently, we will look at the notes at the bottom
of the pages and get the help we need. This reading, however, is
intended merely to give us a general idea of the play. We are spying out
the land as a general might do it, trying to see what kind of a country
we are invading, and to locate the places where we are liable to meet
with resistance. We will stop a moment now and then to shudder at
Caliban, to admire Prospero, to love the sweet Miranda or to laugh at
the nonsense of the jester and the drunken butler, but we will hasten on
to the end nevertheless, knowing that we will become better acquainted
with the people at another time.

Having finished the play, we will return to the beginning for a second,
a slower, more careful reading. Now many things that at first seemed
obscure will have cleared themselves by our greater knowledge of the
play. This time, however, we must read every sentence carefully and try
to understand the meaning of all. The footnotes should all be read,
because it often happens that when we think we understand what a
sentence signifies, we give the wrong meaning to a word or phrase, and
hence change the whole sense.

When this second reading has been completed, we will have a good
understanding of the play, a more intimate acquaintance with the
characters, and be ready for the more interesting studies which follow
the play.


  ALONSO, King of Naples.

  SEBASTIAN, his Brother.

  PROSPERO, the rightful Duke of Milan.

  ANTONIO, his Brother, the usurping Duke of Milan.

  FERDINAND, Son to the King of Naples.

  GONZALO, an honest old Counsellor of Naples.

  ADRIAN,    }
  FRANCISCO, } Lords.

  CALIBAN, a savage and deformed Slave.

  TRINCULO, a Jester.

  STEPHANO, a drunken Butler.

  Master of a Ship, Boatswain, and Mariners.

  MIRANDA, Daughter to Prospero.

  ARIEL, an airy Spirit.

  Other Spirits attending on Prospero.

  IRIS,    }
  CERES,   }
  JUNO,    } presented by
  Nymphs,  } Spirits.
  Reapers, }

SCENE,_ a Ship at Sea; afterwards an uninhabited Island._


SCENE I.--_On a Ship at sea. A Storm, with Thunder and Lightning._

_Enter _Master_ and _Boatswain_ severally._

_MASTER speaks._


_Boats._ Here, master: what cheer?

_Mast._ Good,[366-1] speak to the mariners: fall to't yarely,[366-2] or
we run ourselves a-ground: bestir, bestir.                     [_Exit._

_Enter_ Mariners.

_Boats._ Heigh, my hearts! cheerly, cheerly, my hearts! yare, yare!
Take in the top-sail. Tend to the master's whistle. [_Exeunt_
Mariners.]--Blow till thou burst thy wind,[366-3] if room enough![366-4]


_Alon._ Good boatswain, have care. Where's the master? Play the

_Boats._ I pray now, keep below.

_Anto._ Where is the master, boatswain?

_Boats._ Do you not hear him? You mar our labour: keep your cabins; you
do assist the storm.

_Gonza._ Nay, good, be patient.

_Boats._ When the sea is. Hence! What care these roarers for the name of
king? To cabin: silence! trouble us not.

_Gonza._ Good, yet remember whom thou hast aboard.

_Boats._ None that I more love than myself. You are a counsellor: if you
can command these elements to silence, and work the peace of the
present,[367-6] we will not hand a rope more; use your authority: if you
cannot, give thanks you have lived so long, and make yourself ready in
your cabin for the mischance of the hour, if it so hap.[367-7]--Cheerly,
good hearts!--Out of our way, I say.                           [_Exit._

_Gonza._ I have great comfort from this fellow: methinks he hath no
drowning-mark upon him; his complexion[367-8] is perfect gallows.--Stand
fast, good Fate, to his hanging! make the rope of his destiny our cable,
for our own doth little advantage! If he be not born to be hang'd, our
case is miserable.                                           [_Exeunt._

_Re-enter_ Boatswain.

_Boats._ Down with the top-mast! yare; lower, lower! Bring her to try
wi' th' main-course.[367-9] [_A cry within._] A plague upon this
howling! they are louder than the weather or our office,[367-10]--


Yet again! what do you here? Shall we give o'er, and drown? Have you a
mind to sink?

_Sebas._ A pox o' your throat, you bawling, blasphemous, incharitable

_Boats._ Work you, then.

_Anto._ Hang, cur, hang! you insolent noisemaker, we are less afraid to
be drown'd than thou art.

_Gonza._ I'll warrant him for drowning,[368-11] though the ship were no
stronger than a nut-shell.

_Boats._ Lay her a-hold, a-hold! set her two courses![368-12] off to sea
again: lay her off!

_Re-enter _Mariners,_ wet._

_Mariners._ All lost! to prayers, to prayers! all lost!      [_Exeunt._

_Boats._ What, must our mouths be cold?

_Gonza._ The King and Prince at prayers! let us assist them,
    For our case is as theirs.

_Sebas._                       I'm out of patience.

_Anto._ We're merely[368-13] cheated out of our lives by drunkards.
    This wide-chopp'd rascal--would thou mightst lie drowning,
    The washing of ten tides!

_Gonza._                       He'll be hang'd yet,
    Though every drop of water swear against it,
    And gape at widest to glut[368-14] him.

(_A confused noise within._) Mercy on us! We split, we split!--Farewell,
my wife and children!--Farewell, brother!--We split, we split, we split!
                                                     [_Exit_ Boatswain.

_Anto._ Let's all sink wi' th' King.                           [_Exit._

_Sebas._ Let's take leave of him.                              [_Exit._

_Gonza._ Now would I give a thousand furlongs of sea for an acre of
barren ground; ling, heath, broom, furze,[369-15] anything. The
wills[369-16] above be done! but I would fain die a dry death.

SCENE II.--_The Island: before the Cell of PROSPERO._


_Mira._ If by your art, my dearest father, you have
    Put the wild waters in this roar, allay them.
    The sky, it seems, would pour down stinking pitch,
    But that the sea, mounting to th' welkin's cheek,[369-1]
    Dashes the fire out. O, I have suffer'd
    With those that I saw suffer! a brave[369-2] vessel,
    Who had no doubt some noble creatures in her,
    Dash'd all to pieces. O, the cry did knock
    Against my very heart! Poor souls, they perish'd!
    Had I been any god of power, I would
    Have sunk the sea within the earth, or e'er[369-3]
    It should the good ship so have swallow'd, and
    The fraughting[370-4] souls within her.

_Pros._                                      Be collected;
    No more amazement:[370-5] tell your piteous heart
    There's no harm done.

_Mira._                   O, woe the day!

_Pros._                                   No harm.
    I have done nothing but in care of thee,--
    Of thee, my dear one, thee, my daughter,--who
    Art ignorant of what thou art, nought knowing
    Of whence I am; nor that I am more better[370-6]
    Than Prospero, master of a full-poor cell,
    And thy no greater father.

_Mira._                          More to know
    Did never meddle[370-7] with my thoughts.

_Pros._                                       'Tis time
    I should inform thee further. Lend thy hand,
    And pluck my magic garment from me.--So:
                                                 [_Lays down his robe._
    Lie there, my art.[370-8]--Wipe thou thine eyes; have comfort.
    The direful spectacle of the wreck, which touch'd
    The very virtue of compassion in thee,
    I have with such prevision in mine art
    So safely order'd, that there is no soul[370-9]--
    No, not so much perdition as an hair
    Betid to any creature in the vessel
    Which thou heard'st cry, which thou saw'st sink. Sit down;
    For thou must now know further.


_Mira._                              You have often
    Begun to tell me what I am; but stopp'd
    And left me to a bootless inquisition,[372-10]
    Concluding, _Stay, not yet_.

_Pros._                           The hour's now come;
    The very minute bids thee ope thine ear:
    Obey, and be attentive. Canst thou remember
    A time before we came unto this cell?
    I do not think thou canst; for then thou wast not
    Out[372-11] three years old.

_Mira._                           Certainly, sir, I can.

_Pros._ By what? by any other house or person?
    Of any thing the image tell me that
    Hath kept with thy remembrance.

_Mira._                              'Tis far off,
    And rather like a dream than an assurance
    That my remembrance warrants. Had I not
    Four or five women once that tended me?

_Pros._ Thou hadst, and more, Miranda. But how is it
    That this lives in thy mind? What see'st thou else
    In the dark backward and abysm of time?
    If thou remember'st aught ere thou camest here,
    How thou camest here, thou mayst.[372-12]

_Mira._                                But that I do not.

_Pros._ Twelve year since, Miranda, twelve year since,
    Thy father was the Duke of Milan, and
    A prince of power.

_Mira._                 Sir, are you not my father?

_Pros._ Thy mother was a piece of virtue, and
    She said thou wast my daughter; and thy father
    Was Duke of Milan; thou his only heir,
    A princess--no worse issued.

_Mira._                           O the Heavens!
    What foul play had we, that we came from thence?
    Or blessèd was't we did?

_Pros._                       Both, both, my girl:
    By foul play, as thou say'st, were we heaved thence;
    But blessedly holp[373-13] hither.

_Mira._                                 O, my heart bleeds
    To think o' the teen[373-14] that I have turn'd you to,
    Which is from my remembrance! Please you, further.[373-15]

_Pros._ My brother, and thy uncle, call'd Antonio,--
    I pray thee, mark me;--that a brother should
    Be so perfidious!--he whom, next thyself,
    Of all the world I loved, and to him put
    The manage[373-16] of my State; as, at that time,
    Through all the signiories[373-17] it was the first,
    And Prospero the prime[373-18] Duke; being so reputed
    In dignity, and for the liberal arts
    Without a parallel: those being all my study,
    The government I cast upon my brother,
    And to my State grew stranger, being transported
    And rapt in secret studies. Thy false uncle,--
    Dost thou attend me?

_Mira._                   Sir, most heedfully.

_Pros._--Being once perfected how to grant suits,
    How to deny them; who[374-19] t' advance, and who
    To trash[374-20] for over-topping[374-21]--new-created
    The creatures that were mine, I say, or changed 'em,
    Or else new-form'd 'em; having both the key[374-22]
    Of officer and office, set all hearts i' the State
    To what tune pleased his ear; that[374-23] now he was
    The ivy which had hid my princely trunk,
    And suck'd the verdure out on't. Thou attend'st not.

_Mira._ O good sir, I do.

_Pros._                    I pray thee, mark me.
    I thus neglecting worldly ends, all dedicated
    To closeness,[374-24] and the bettering of my mind
    With that which, but[374-25] by being so retired,
    O'er-prized all popular rate,[374-26] in my false brother
    Awaked an evil nature; and my trust,
    Like a good parent, did beget of him
    A falsehood, in its contrary as great
    As my trust was; which had indeed no limit,
    A confidence sans[375-27] bound. He being thus lorded,
    Not only with what my revenue yielded,
    But what my power might else exact,--like one
    Who having unto truth, by falsing of it,[375-28]
    Made such a sinner of his memory
    To[375-29] credit his own lie,--he did believe
    He was indeed the Duke; out o' the substitution,[375-30]
    And executing the outward face of royalty,
    With all prerogative: hence his ambition growing,--
    Dost thou hear?[375-31]

_Mira._ Your tale, sir, would cure deafness.

_Pros._ To have no screen between this part he play'd
    And them he play'd it for, he needs will be
    Absolute Milan.[375-32] Me,[375-33] poor man, my library
    Was dukedom large enough: of temporal royalties
    He thinks me now incapable; confederates--
    So dry he was for sway[376-34]--wi' th' King of Naples
    To give him annual tribute, do him homage,
    Subject his coronet to his crown, and bend
    The dukedom, yet unbow'd,--alas, poor Milan![376-35]--
    To most ignoble stooping.[376-36]

_Mira._                                O the Heavens!

_Pros._ This King of Naples, being an enemy
    To me inveterate, hearkens my brother's suit;
    Which was, that he, in lieu[376-37] o' the premises,--
    Of homage, and I know not how much tribute,--
    Should presently[376-38] extirpate me and mine
    Out of the dukedom, and confer fair Milan,
    With all the honours, on my brother: whereon,
    A treacherous army levied, one midnight
    Fated to th' practice[376-39] did Antonio open
    The gates of Milan; and, i' the dead of darkness,
    The ministers for th' purpose hurried thence
    Me and thy crying self.[376-40]

_Mira._                               Alack, for pity!
    I, not remembering how I cried on't then,
    Will cry it o'er again: it is a hint[377-41]
    That wrings mine eyes to't.

_Pros._                Hear a little further,
    And then I'll bring thee to the present business
    Which now's upon's;[377-42] without the which this story
    Were most impertinent.[377-43]

_Mira._                              Wherefore did they not
    That hour destroy us?

_Pros._                     Well demanded, wench:[377-44]
    My tale provokes that question. Dear, they durst not--
    So dear the love my people bore me--set
    A mark so bloody on the business; but
    With colours fairer painted their foul ends.
    In few,[377-45] they hurried us aboard a bark,
    Bore us some leagues to sea; where they prepared
    A rotten carcass of a boat, not rigg'd,
    Nor tackle, sail, nor mast; the very rats
    Instinctively had quit it: there they hoist[377-46] us,
    To cry to th' sea that roar'd to us; to sigh
    To th' winds, whose pity, sighing back again,
    Did us but loving wrong.

_Mira._                       Alack, what trouble
    Was I then to you!

_Pros._                 O, a cherubim
    Thou wast that did preserve me! Thou didst smile,
    Infusèd with a fortitude from Heaven,
    When I have degg'd[378-47] the sea with drops full salt,
    Under my burden groan'd; which raised in me
    An undergoing stomach,[378-48] to bear up
    Against what should ensue.

_Mira._                         How came we ashore?

_Pros._ By Providence divine.
    Some food we had, and some fresh water, that
    A noble Neapolitan, Gonzalo,
    Out of his charity,--being then appointed
    Master of this design,--did give us; with
    Rich garments, linens, stuffs, and necessaries,
    Which since have steaded[378-49] much; so, of his gentleness,
    Knowing I loved my books, he furnish'd me,
    From mine own library, with volumes that
    I prize above my dukedom.

_Mira._                       Would I might
    But ever see that man!

_Pros._                     Now I arise:[378-50]
    Sit still, and hear the last of our sea-sorrow.
    Here in this island we arrived; and here
    Have I, thy schoolmaster, made thee more profit[378-51]
    Than other princesses can, that have more time
    For vainer hours, and tutors not so careful.

_Mira._ Heavens thank you for't! And now, I pray you, sir,--
    For still 'tis beating in my mind,--your reason
    For raising this sea-storm?

_Pros._                         Know thus far forth:
    By accident most strange, bountiful Fortune--
    Now my dear lady--hath mine enemies
    Brought to this shore; and by my prescience
    I find my zenith[379-52] doth depend upon
    A most auspicious star, whose influence
    If now I court not, but omit, my fortunes
    Will ever after droop.[379-53] Here cease more questions:
    Thou art inclined to sleep; 'tis a good dulness,
    And give it way: I know thou canst not choose.[379-54]
                                                     [_MIRANDA sleeps._
    Come away, servant, come! I'm ready now:
    Approach, my Ariel; come!

_Enter ARIEL._

_Ari._ All hail, great master! grave sir, hail! I come
    To answer thy best pleasure; be't to fly,
    To swim, to dive into the fire, to ride
    On the curl'd clouds: to thy strong bidding task
    Ariel and all his quality.[379-55]

_Pros._                         Hast thou, spirit,
    Perform'd to point[379-56] the tempest that I bade thee?

_Ari._ To every article.
    I boarded the King's ship; now on the beak,[379-57]
    Now in the waist,[380-58] the deck, in every cabin,
    I flamed amazement: sometime I'd divide,
    And burn in many places; on the top-mast,
    The yards, and bowsprit, would I flame distinctly,[380-59]
    Then meet and join. Jove's lightnings, the precursors
    O' the dreadful thunder-claps, more momentary[380-60]
    And sight-outrunning were not: the fire, and cracks
    Of sulphurous roaring, the most mighty Neptune
    Seem'd to besiege, and make his bold waves tremble.
    Yea, his dread trident shake.

_Pros._                            My brave spirit!
    Who was so firm, so constant, that this coil[380-61]
    Would not infect his reason?

_Ari._                             Not a soul
    But felt a fever of the mad,[380-62] and play'd
    Some tricks of desperation. All but mariners
    Plunged in the foaming brine, and quit the vessel.
    Then all a-fire with me: The King's son, Ferdinand,
    With hair up-staring,[380-63]--then like reeds, not hair,--
    Was the first man that leap'd; cried, _Hell is empty,
    And all the devils are here_.

_Pros._                            Why, that's my spirit!
    But was not this nigh shore?

_Ari._                             Close by, my master.

_Pros._ But are they, Ariel, safe?

_Ari._                             Not a hair perish'd;
    On their unstaining[381-64] garments not a blemish,
    But fresher than before: and, as thou badest me,
    In troops I have dispersed them 'bout the isle.
    The King's son have I landed by himself;
    Whom I left cooling of the air with sighs
    In an odd angle[381-65] of the isle, and sitting,
    His arms in this sad knot.[381-66]

_Pros._                         Of the King's ship
    The mariners, say, how hast thou disposed,
    And all the rest o' the fleet?[381-67]

_Ari._                             Safely in harbour
    Is the King's ship; in the deep nook, where once
    Thou call'dst me up at midnight to fetch dew
    From the still-vex'd Bermoothes,[381-68] there she's hid:
    The mariners all under hatches stow'd;
    Who, with a charm join'd to their suffer'd labour,
    I've left asleep:[381-69] and, for the rest o' the fleet
    Which I dispersed, they all have met again,
    And are upon the Mediterranean flote,[382-70]
    Bound sadly home for Naples;
    Supposing that they saw the King's ship wreck'd,
    And his great person perish.

_Pros._                           Ariel, thy charge
    Exactly is performed: but there's more work.
    What is the time o' the day?

_Ari._                            Past the mid season,
    At least two glasses.[382-71]

_Pros._                    The time 'twixt six and now
    Must by us both be spent most preciously.

_Ari._ Is there more toil? Since thou dost give me pains,
    Let me remember[382-72] thee what thou hast promised,
    Which is not yet perform'd[382-73] me.

_Pros._                                     How now! moody?
    What is't thou canst demand?

_Ari._                            My liberty.

_Pros._ Before the time be out? no more![382-74]

_Ari._                                   I pr'ythee,
    Remember I have done thee worthy service;
    Told thee no lies, made no mistakings, served
    Without or grudge or grumblings: thou didst promise
    To bate me a full year.[382-75]

_Pros._                      Dost thou forget
    From what a torment I did free thee?

_Ari._                                    No.

_Pros._ Thou dost; and think'st it much to tread the ooze
    Of the salt deep; to run upon the sharp
    Wind of the North; to do me business in
    The veins o' the earth when it is baked with frost.[383-76]

_Ari._ I do not, sir.

_Pros._ Thou liest, malignant thing![383-77] Hast thou forgot
    The foul witch Sycorax, who with age and envy[383-78]
    Was grown into a hoop? hast thou forgot her?

_Ari._ No, sir.

_Pros._         Thou hast: where was she born? speak; tell me.

_Ari._ Sir, in Argier.[383-79]

_Pros._               O, was she so? I must
    Once in a month recount what thou hast been,
    Which thou forgett'st. This damn'd witch Sycorax,
    For mischiefs manifold, and sorceries terrible
    To enter human hearing, from Argier,
    Thou know'st, was banish'd. Is not this true?

_Ari._ Ay, sir.

_Pros._ This blue-eyed hag[383-80] was hither brought,
    And here was left by th' sailors. Thou, my slave,
    As thou report'st thyself, wast then her servant;
    And, for[383-81] thou wast a spirit too delicate
    To act her earthy and abhorr'd commands,
    Refusing her grand hests,[384-82] she did confine thee,
    By help of her more potent ministers,
    And in her most unmitigable rage,
    Into[384-83] a cloven pine; within which rift
    Imprison'd thou didst painfully remain
    A dozen years; within which space she died,
    And left thee there; where thou didst vent thy groans
    As fast as mill-wheels strike. Then was this island--
    Save for the son that she did litter here,[384-84]
    A freckled whelp, hag-born--not honour'd with
    A human shape.

_Ari._             Yes, Caliban her son.

_Pros._ Dull thing, I say so; he, that Caliban,
    Whom now I keep in service. Thou best know'st
    What torment I did find thee in: thy groans
    Did make wolves howl, and penetrate the breasts
    Of ever-angry bears. It was a torment
    To lay upon the damn'd, which Sycorax
    Could not again undo: it was mine art,
    When I arrived and heard thee, that made gape
    The pine, and let thee out.

_Ari._                           I thank thee, master.

_Pros._ If thou more murmur'st, I will rend an oak,
    And peg thee in his knotty entrails, till
    Thou'st howl'd away twelve Winters.

_Ari._                                   Pardon, master:
    I will be correspondent[384-85] to command,
    And do my spriting gently.

_Pros._                Do so; and after two days
    I will discharge thee.

_Ari._                       That's my noble master!
    What shall I do? say what; what shall I do?

_Pros._ Go make thyself like to a nymph o' the sea:
    Be subject to no sight but mine; invisible
    To every eyeball else. Go take this shape,
    And hither come in't: hence, with diligence!--
                                                       [_Exit ARIEL._
    Awake, dear heart, awake! thou hast slept well;

_Mira._ [_Waking._] The strangeness of your story put
    Heaviness in me.

_Pros._               Shake it off. Come on;
    We'll visit Caliban my slave, who never
    Yields us kind answer.

_Mira._                     'Tis a villain, sir,
    I do not love to look on.

_Pros._                         But, as 'tis,
    We cannot miss him:[385-86] he does make our fire,
    Fetch in our wood, and serves in offices
    That profit us.--What, ho! slave! Caliban!
    Thou earth, thou! speak.

_Cal._ [_Within._] There's wood enough within.

_Pros._ Come forth, I say! there's other business for thee:
    Come forth, thou tortoise! when![385-87]--

_Re-enter ARIEL, like a Water-nymph._

    Fine apparition! My quaint[386-88] Ariel,
    Hark in thine ear.

_Ari._                 My lord, it shall be done.            [_Exit._

_Pros._ Thou poisonous slave, come forth!

_Enter CALIBAN._

_Cal._ As wicked[386-89] dew as e'er my mother brush'd
    With raven's feather from unwholesome fen
    Drop on you both! a south-west blow on ye,
    And blister you all o'er![386-90]

_Pros._ For this, be sure, to-night thou shalt have cramps,
    Side-stitches[386-91] that shall pen thy breath up; urchins[386-92]
    Shall, for that vast[386-93] of night that they may work,
    All exercise on thee; thou shalt be pinch'd
    As thick as honeycomb, each pinch more stinging
    Than bees that made 'em.

_Cal._                       I must eat my dinner
    This island's mine, by Sycorax my mother.
    Which thou takest from me. When thou camest here first,
    Thou strokedst me, and madest much of me; wouldst give me
    Water with berries in't[386-94] and teach me how
    To name the bigger light, and how the less,
    That burn by day and night: and then I loved thee,
    And show'd thee all the qualities o' the isle,
    The fresh springs, brine-pits, barren place, and fertile.
    Cursèd be that I did so! All the charms
    Of Sycorax, toads, beetles, bats, light on you!
    For I am all the subjects that you have,
    Which first was mine own king: and here you sty[387-95] me
    In this hard rock, whiles you do keep from me
    The rest o' the island.

_Pros._                      Abhorrèd slave,
    Which any print of goodness wilt not take,
    Being capable of all ill! I pitied thee,
    Took pains to make thee speak, taught thee each hour
    One thing or other: when thou didst not, savage,
    Know thine own meaning,[387-96] but wouldst gabble like
    A thing most brutish, I endow'd thy purposes
    With words that made them known. But thy vile race,
    Though thou didst learn, had that in't which good natures
    Could not abide to be with; therefore wast thou
    Deservedly confined into this rock,
    Who hadst deserved more than a prison.

_Cal._ You taught me language; and my profit on't
    Is, I know how to curse. The red plague rid[387-97] you
    For learning me your language!

_Pros._                             Hag-seed, hence!
    Fetch us in fuel; and be quick, thou'rt best,
    To answer other business. Shrugg'st thou, malice?
    If thou neglect'st, or dost unwillingly
    What I command, I'll rack thee with old[388-98] cramps,
    Fill all thy bones with achès, make thee roar,
    That beasts shall tremble at thy din.

_Cal._                                    No, pray thee.--
    [_Aside._] I must obey: his art is of such power,
    It would control my dam's god, Setebos,
    And make a vassal of him.

_Pros._                        So, slave; hence!
                                                       [_Exit CALIBAN._

_Re-enter ARIEL, invisible, playing and singing; FERDINAND


          Come unto these yellow sands,
            And then take hands:
          Curtsied when you have, and kiss'd
            The wild waves whist,[388-99]
            Foot it featly here and there;
          And, sweet sprites, the burden bear.
        Hark, hark!          { _Burden dispersedly._
      The watch-dogs bark:   {        Bow-wow.
      Hark, hark! I hear;    {        Bow-wow.
    The strain of strutting  {
      chanticleer.           {   Cock-a-diddle-dow.

_Ferd._ Where should this music be? i' the air, or th' earth?
    It sounds no more: and, sure, it waits upon
    Some god o' the island. Sitting on a bank,
    Weeping again the King my father's wreck,
    This music crept by me upon the waters,
    Allaying both their fury and my passion[389-100]
    With its sweet air: thence I have follow'd it,
    Or it hath drawn me rather. But 'tis gone.
    No, it begins again.

_ARIEL sings._

      Full fathom five thy father lies;
        Of his bones are coral made;
      Those are pearls that were his eyes:
        Nothing of him that doth fade
      But doth suffer a sea-change[389-101]
      Into something rich and strange.
      Sea-nymphs hourly ring his knell:

        _Burden._            Ding-Dong.

      Hark! now I hear them,--Ding-Dong, bell.

_Ferd._ The ditty does remember my drown'd father.
    This is no mortal business, nor no sound
    That the earth owes.[389-102] I hear it now above me.

_Pros._ The fringèd curtains of thine eyes advance,[389-103]
    And say what thou see'st yond.

_Mira._                         What is't? A spirit?
    Lord, how it looks about! Believe me, sir,
    It carries a brave[389-104] form. But 'tis a spirit.

_Pros._ No, wench: it eats and sleeps, and hath such senses
    As we have, such. This gallant which thou see'st
    Was in the wreck; and, but he's something stain'd
    With grief, that's beauty's canker,[390-105] thou mightst call him
    A goodly person: he hath lost his fellows,
    And strays about to find 'em.

_Mira._                            I might call him
    A thing divine; for nothing natural
    I ever saw so noble.[390-106]

_Pros._ [_Aside._]        It goes on,[390-107] I see,
    As my soul prompts it.--Spirit, fine spirit! I'll free thee
    Within two days for this.

_Ferd._                        Most sure, the goddess
    On whom these airs attend!--Vouchsafe my prayer
    May know if you remain upon this island;
    And that you will some good instruction give
    How I may bear me here: my prime request,
    Which I do last pronounce, is,--O you wonder!--
    If you be maid or no?[390-108]

_Mira._                    No wonder,[390-109] sir;
    But certainly a maid.

_Ferd._                    My language![390-110] Heavens!--
    I am the best of them that speak this speech,
    Were I but where 'tis spoken.

_Pros._                            How! the best?
    What wert thou, if the King of Naples heard thee?

_Ferd._ A single thing,[391-111] as I am now, that wonders
    To hear thee speak of Naples. He does hear me;
    And that he does I weep: myself am Naples;[391-112]
    Who with mine eyes, ne'er since at ebb, beheld
    The King my father wreck'd.

_Mira._                         Alack, for mercy!

_Ferd._ Yes, faith, and all his lords; the Duke of Milan
    And his brave son[391-113] being twain.

_Pros._ [_Aside._]                     The Duke of Milan
    And his more braver daughter could control thee,[391-114]
    If now t'were fit to do't. At the first sight
    They have changed eyes.--Delicate Ariel,
    I'll set thee free for this![391-115]--A word, good sir;
    I fear you've done yourself some wrong:[391-116] a word.

_Mira._            Why speaks my father so ungently? This
    Is the third man that e'er I saw; the first
    That e'er I sigh'd for: pity move my father
    To be inclined my way!

_Ferd._                      O, if a virgin,
    And your affection not gone forth, I'll make you
    The Queen of Naples.

_Pros._                  Soft, sir! one word more.--
    [_Aside._] They're both in either's powers: but this swift business
    I must uneasy make, lest too light winning
    Make the prize light.[392-117]--One word more; I charge thee
    That thou attend me: Thou dost here usurp
    The name thou owest not; and hast put thyself
    Upon this island as a spy, to win it
    From me, the lord on't.

_Ferd._                        No, as I'm a man.

_Mira._ There's nothing ill can dwell in such a temple:
    If the ill spirit have so fair a house,
    Good things will strive to dwell with't.

_Pros._ [_To FERD._]                        Follow me--
    Speak not you for him; he's a traitor.--Come;
    I'll manacle thy neck and feet together:
    Sea-water shalt thou drink; thy food shall be
    The fresh-brook muscles, wither'd roots, and husks
    Wherein the acorn cradled: follow.

_Ferd._                                    No;
    I will resist such entertainment, till
    Mine enemy has more power.
                               [_He draws, and is charmed from moving._

_Mira._                          O dear father,
    Make not too rash a trial of him, for
    He's gentle, and not fearful.[392-118]

_Pros._                            What, I say,
    My fool my tutor!--Put thy sword up, traitor;
    Who makest a show, but darest not strike, thy conscience
    Is so possess'd with guilt: come from thy ward;[393-119]
    For I can here disarm thee with this stick,
    And make thy weapon drop.

_Mira._                      Beseech you, father!--

_Pros._ Hence! hang not on my garments.

_Mira._                                  Sir, have pity;
    I'll be his surety.

_Pros._                    Silence! one word more
    Shall make me chide thee, if not hate thee. What!
    An advocate for an impostor? hush!
    Thou think'st there are no more such shapes as he,
    Having seen but him and Caliban: foolish wench!
    To th' most of men this is a Caliban,
    And they to him are angels.

_Mira._                           My affections
    Are, then, most humble; I have no ambition
    To see a goodlier man.

_Pros._ [_To FERD._] Come on; obey:
    Thy nerves[393-120] are in their infancy again,
    And have no vigour in them.

_Ferd._                           So they are:
    My spirits, as in a dream, are all bound up.
    My father's loss, the weakness which I feel,
    The wreck of all my friends, and this man's threats
    To whom I am subdued, are light to me,
    Might I but through my prison once a day
    Behold this maid: all corners else o' the Earth
    Let liberty make use of; space enough
    Have I in such a prison.

_Pros._ [_Aside._] It works.--[_To FERD._] Come on.--
    Thou hast done well, fine Ariel!--Follow me.--
    [_To ARIEL._] Hark, what thou else shalt do me.

_Mira._                              Be of comfort;
    My father's of a better nature, sir,
    Than he appears by speech: this is unwonted
    Which now came from him.

_Pros._ [_To ARIEL._] Thou shalt be as free
    As mountain winds: but then exactly do
    All points of my command.

_Ari._                        To th' syllable.

_Pros._ Come, follow.--Speak not for him.                    [_Exeunt._


SCENE I.--_Another part of the Island._


_GONZALO speaks._

    Beseech you, sir, be merry: you have cause--
    So have we all--of joy; for our escape
    Is much beyond our loss. Our hint of woe
    Is common; every day some sailor's wife,
    The master of some merchant,[394-1] and the merchant,
    Have just our theme of woe: but for the miracle--
    I mean our preservation--few in millions
    Can speak like us: then wisely, good sir, weigh
    Our sorrow with our comfort.

_Alon._                  Pr'ythee, peace.

_Sebas._ He receives comfort like cold porridge.

_Anto._ The visitor[395-2] will not give him o'er so.

_Sebas._ Look, he's winding up the watch of his wit; by-and-by it will

_Gonza._ Sir,--

_Sebas._ One:--tell.[395-3]

_Gonza._--When every grief is entertained that's offer'd,
    Comes to the entertainer--

_Sebas._ A dollar.

_Gonza._ Dolour[395-4] comes to him, indeed; you have spoken truer than
you purposed.

_Sebas._ You have taken it wiselier than I meant you should.

_Gonza._ Therefore, my lord,--

_Anto._ Fie, what a spendthrift is he of his tongue!

_Alon._ I pr'ythee, spare me.

_Gonza._ Well, I have done: but yet--

_Sebas._ He will be talking.

_Anto._ Which, of he or Adrian,[395-5] for a good wager, first begins to

_Sebas._ The old cock.[395-6]

_Anto._ The cockerel.

_Sebas._ Done! The wager?

_Anto._ A laughter.

_Sebas._ A match![395-7]

_Adri._ Though this island seem to be desert,--

_Sebas._ Ha, ha, ha!--So, you're paid.[396-8]

_Adri._--uninhabitable, and almost inaccessible,--

_Sebas._ Yet--


_Anto._ He could not miss't.

_Adri._--it must needs be of subtle, tender, and delicate

_Anto._ Temperance was a delicate wench.[396-10]

_Sebas._ Ay, and a subtle; as he most learnedly delivered.

_Adri._ The air breathes upon us here most sweetly.

_Sebas._ As if it had lungs, and rotten ones.

_Anto._ Or as 'twere perfumed by a fen.

_Gonza._ Here is everything advantageous to life.

_Anto._ True; save means to live.

_Sebas._ Of that there's none, or little.

_Gonza._ How lush[396-11] and lusty the grass looks! how green!

_Anto._ The ground, indeed, is tawny.

_Sebas._ With an eye[396-12] of green in't.

_Anto._ He misses not much.

_Sebas._ No: he doth but mistake the truth totally.

_Gonza._ But the rarity of it is,--which is indeed almost beyond

_Sebas._ As many vouch'd rarities are.

_Gonza._--that our garments, being, as they were, drenched in the sea,
are now as fresh as when we put them on first in Afric, at the marriage
of the King's fair daughter Claribel to the King of Tunis.

_Sebas._ 'Twas a sweet marriage, and we prosper well in our return.

_Adri._ Tunis was never graced before with such a paragon to[397-13]
their Queen.

_Gonza._ Not since widow Dido's time.[397-14]

_Anto._ Widow? a pox o' that! How came that widow in? Widow Dido!

_Sebas._ What if he had said widower Æneas too? Good Lord, how you take

_Adri._ Widow Dido, said you? you make me study of that: she was of
Carthage, not of Tunis.

_Gonza._ This Tunis, sir, was Carthage.

_Adri._ Carthage!

_Gonza._ I assure you, Carthage.

_Anto._ His word is more than the miraculous harp.[397-15]

_Sebas._ He hath raised the wall and houses too.

_Anto._ What impossible matter will he make easy next?

_Sebas._ I think he will carry this island home in his pocket, and give
it his son for an apple.

_Anto._ And, sowing the kernels of it in the sea, bring forth more

_Alon._ Ah!

_Anto._ Why, in good time.

_Gonza._ Sir, we were talking that our garments seem now as fresh as
when we were at Tunis at the marriage of your daughter, who is now

_Anto._ And the rarest that e'er came there.

_Sebas._ Bate, I beseech you, widow Dido.

_Anto._ O, widow Dido! ay, widow Dido.

_Gonza._ Is not, sir, my doublet as fresh as the first day I wore it, at
your daughter's marriage?

_Alon._ You cram these words into mine ears against
    The stomach of my sense.[398-16] Would I had never
    Married my daughter there! for, coming thence,
    My son is lost; and, in my rate,[398-17] she too,
    Who is so far from Italy removed,
    I ne'er again shall see her. O thou mine heir
    Of Naples and of Milan, what strange fish
    Hath made his meal on thee?

_Fran._                          Sir, he may live:
    I saw him beat the surges under him,
    And ride upon their backs; he trod the water,
    Whose enmity he flung aside, and breasted
    The surge most swoln that met him: his bold head
    'Bove the contentious waves he kept, and oar'd
    Himself with his good arms in lusty stroke
    To th' shore, that o'er his[398-18] wave-worn basis bow'd,
    As[398-19] stooping to relieve him: I not doubt
    He came alive to land.

_Alon._                     No, no; he's gone.

_Sebas._ Sir, you may thank yourself for this great loss,
    That would not bless our Europe with your daughter,
    But rather lose her to an African;
    Where she at least is banish'd from your eye,
    Who[399-20] hath cause to wet the grief on't.

_Alon._                                      Pr'ythee, peace.

_Sebas._ You were kneel'd to, and importuned otherwise,
    By all of us; and the fair soul herself
    Weigh'd, between loathness and obedience, at
    Which end the beam should bow.[399-21] We've lost your son,
    I fear, for ever: Milan and Naples have
    More widows in them of this business' making
    Than we bring men to comfort them: the fault's
    Your own.

_Alon._ So is the dear'st[399-22] o' the loss.

_Gonza._                              My lord Sebastian,
    The truth you speak doth lack some gentleness,
    And time to speak it in: you rub the sore,
    When you should bring the plaster.

_Sebas._                                Very well.

_Auto._ And most chirurgeonly.[399-23]

_Gonza._ It is foul weather in us all, good sir,
    When you are cloudy.[400-24]

_Sebas._                    Foul weather!

_Anto._                               Very foul.

_Gonza._ Had I plantation[400-25] of this isle, my lord,--

_Anto._ He'd sow't with nettle-seed.

_Sebas._                      Or docks, or mallows.

_Gonza._--And were the King on't, what would I do?

_Sebas._ 'Scape being drunk for want of wine.

_Gonza._ I' the commonwealth I would by contraries
    Execute all things; for no kind of traffic
    Would I admit; no name of magistrate;
    Letters should not be known; riches, poverty,
    And use of service, none; contract, succession,[400-26]
    Bourn,[400-27] bound of land, tilth,[400-28] vineyard, none;
    No use of metal, corn, or wine, or oil;
    No occupation; all men idle, all,
    And women too, but innocent and pure;
    No sovereignty:--

_Sebas._               Yet he would be king on't.

_Anto._ The latter end of his commonwealth forgets the beginning.

_Gonza._ All things in common Nature should produce
    Without sweat or endeavour: treason, felony,
    Sword, pike, knife, gun, or need of any engine,[401-29]
    Would I not have; but Nature should bring forth,
    Of its own kind, all foison,[401-30] all abundance,
    To feed my innocent people.

_Sebas._ No marrying 'mong his subjects?

_Anto._ None, man; all idle.

_Gonza._ I would with such perfection govern, sir,
    T' excel the golden age.[401-31]

_Sebas._                       God save his Majesty!

_Anto._ Long live Gonzalo!

_Gonza._           And--do you mark me, sir?--

_Alon._ Pr'ythee, no more: thou dost talk nothing to me.

_Gonza._ I do well believe your Highness; and did it to minister
occasion to these gentlemen, who are of such sensible[401-32] and nimble
lungs, that they always use to laugh at nothing.

_Anto._ 'Twas you we laugh'd at.

_Gonza._ Who in this kind of merry fooling am nothing to you:[401-33] so
you may continue, and laugh at nothing still.

_Anto._ What a blow was there given!

_Sebas._ An it had not fallen flat-long.[401-34]

_Gonza._ You are gentlemen of brave mettle; you would lift the Moon out
of her sphere, if she would[402-35] continue in it five weeks without

_Enter ARIEL, invisible, playing solemn music._

_Sebas._ We would so, and then go a-bat-fowling.[402-36]

_Anto._ Nay, good my lord, be not angry.

_Gonza._ No, I warrant you; I will not adventure[402-37] my discretion
so weakly. Will you laugh me asleep? for I am very heavy.

_Anto._ Go sleep, and hear us not.

                      [_All sleep[402-38] but ALON., SEBAS., and ANTO._

_Alon._ What, all so soon asleep! I wish mine eyes
    Would, with themselves, shut up my thoughts: I find
    They are inclined to do so.

_Sebas._                         Please you, sir,
    Do not omit[402-39] the heavy offer of it:
    It seldom visits sorrow; when it doth,
    It is a comforter.

_Anto._                  We two, my lord,
    Will guard your person while you take your rest,
    And watch your safety.

_Alon._   Thank you.--Wondrous heavy.[403-40]
                                          [_ALONSO sleeps. Exit ARIEL._

_Sebas._ What a strange drowsiness possesses them!


_Anto._ It is the quality o' the climate.

_Sebas._                                   Why
    Doth it not, then, our eyelids sink? I find not
    Myself disposed to sleep.

_Anto._                       Nor I; my spirits are nimble.
    They[404-41] fell together all, as by consent;
    They dropp'd, as by a thunder-stroke. What might,
    Worthy Sebastian, O, what might![404-42] No more:
    And yet methinks I see it in thy face,
    What thou shouldst be: th' occasion speaks thee;[404-43] and
    My strong imagination sees a crown
    Dropping upon thy head.

_Sebas._                     What, art thou waking?

_Anto._ Do you not hear me speak?

_Sebas._                      I do: and surely
    It is a sleepy language, and thou speak'st
    Out of thy sleep. What is it thou didst say?
    This is a strange repose, to be asleep
    With eyes wide open; standing, speaking, moving,
    And yet so fast asleep.

_Anto._                       Noble Sebastian,
    Thou lett'st thy fortune sleep,--die rather; wink'st
    Whiles thou art waking.[404-44]

_Sebas._                    Thou dost snore distinctly;
    There's meaning in thy snores.

_Anto._ I am more serious than my custom: you
    Must be so too, if heed[404-45] me; which to do
    Trebles thee o'er.[404-46]

_Sebas._               Well, I am standing water.[405-47]

_Anto._ I'll teach you how to flow.

_Sebas._                            Do so: to ebb
    Hereditary sloth instructs me.

_Anto._                             O,
    If you but knew how you the purpose cherish
    Whiles thus you mock it! how, in stripping it,
    You more invest it![405-48] Ebbing men,[405-49] indeed,
    Most often do so near the bottom run
    By their own fear or sloth.

_Sebas._                         Pr'ythee, say on:
    The setting of thine eye and cheek proclaim
    A matter[405-50] from thee; and a birth indeed
    Which throes thee much to yield.[405-51]

_Anto._                                Thus, sir:
    Although this lord[405-52] of weak remembrance, this
    Who shall be of as little memory[405-53]
    When he is earth'd,[405-54] hath here almost persuaded--
    For he's a spirit of persuasion, only
    Professes to persuade--the King his son's alive,
    'Tis as impossible that he's undrown'd
    As he that sleeps here swims.

_Sebas._                              I have no hope
    That he's undrown'd.

_Anto._                    O, out of that no hope
    What great hope have you! no hope that way is
    Another way so high a hope, that even
    Ambition cannot pierce a wink[406-55] beyond--
    But doubt discovery there.[406-56] Will you grant with me
    That Ferdinand is drown'd?

_Sebas._                        He's gone.

_Anto._                           Then, tell me,
    Who's the next heir of Naples?

_Sebas._                          Claribel.

_Anto._ She that is queen of Tunis; she that dwells
    Ten leagues beyond man's life;[406-57] she that from Naples
    Can have no note,[406-58] unless the Sun were post,--[406-59]
    The Man-i'-the-moon's too slow,--till new-born chins
    Be rough and razorable. She 'twas for whom we
    All were sea-swallow'd, though some cast again;[406-60]
    And, by that destiny, to perform an act
    Whereof what's past is prologue; what to come[406-61]
    In yours and my discharge.

_Sebas._         What stuff is this! How say you?
    'Tis true, my brother's daughter's Queen of Tunis;
    So is she heir of Naples; 'twixt which regions
    There is some space.

_Anto._                   A space whose every cubit
    Seems to cry out, _How shall thou, Claribel,
    Measure us back[407-62] to Naples? Keep in Tunis,
    And let Sebastian wake!_ Say, this were death
    That now hath seized them; why, they were no worse
    Than now they are. There be[407-63] that can rule Naples
    As well as he that sleeps; lords that can prate
    As amply and unnecessarily
    As this Gonzalo: I myself could make
    A chough[407-64] of as deep chat.[407-65] O, that you bore
    The mind that I do! what a sleep were this
    For your advancement! Do you understand me?

_Sebas._ Methinks I do.

_Anto._              And how does your content
    Tender your own good fortune?[407-66]

_Sebas._                           I remember
    You did supplant your brother Prospero.

_Anto._                                      True:
    And look how well my garments sit upon me;
    Much feater[407-67] than before: my brother's servants
    Were then my fellows; now they are my men.

_Sebas._ But, for your conscience--

_Anto._ Ay, sir; and where lies that? if 'twere a kibe,[408-68]
    'Twould put me to my slipper: but I feel not
    This deity in my bosom: twenty consciences,
    That stand 'twixt me and Milan, candied[408-69] be they,
    And melt, ere they molest! Here lies your brother,
    No better than the earth he lies upon,
    If he were that which now he's like; whom I,
    With this obedient steel, three inches of it,
    Can lay to bed for ever; whiles you, doing thus,
    To the perpetual wink[408-70] for aye might put
    This ancient morsel, this Sir Prudence, who
    Should not upbraid our course. For all the rest,
    They'll take suggestion[408-71] as a cat laps milk;
    They'll tell the clock to any business that
    We say befits the hour.[408-72]

_Sebas._                    Thy case, dear friend,
    Shall be my precedent; as thou gott'st Milan,
    I'll come by Naples. Draw thy sword: one stroke
    Shall free thee from the tribute which thou pay'st;
    And I the King shall love thee.

_Anto._                              Draw together;[408-73]
    And when I rear my hand, do you the like,
    To fall it on Gonzalo.

_Sebas._                     O, but one word.
                                                [_They converse apart._

_Music. Re-enter ARIEL, invisible._

_Ari._ My master through his art foresees the danger
    That you, his friend, are in; and sends me forth--
    For else his project dies--to keep thee living.

                                             [_Sings in GONZALO'S ear._

      While you here do snoring lie,
      Open-eyed conspiracy
        His time doth take.
      If of life you keep a care,
      Shake off slumber, and beware:
        Awake! Awake!

_Anto._ Then let us both be sudden.

_Gonza._ [_Waking._]           Now, good angels
    Preserve the King!--[_To SEBAS. and ANTO._] Why, how now!--[_To
      ALON._] Ho, awake!--
    [_To SEBAS. and ANTO._] Why are you drawn?[409-74] wherefore this
      ghastly looking?[409-75]

_Alon._ [_Waking._]      What's the matter?

_Sebas._ Whiles we stood here securing your repose,
    Even now, we heard a hollow burst of bellowing
    Like bulls, or rather lions: did't not wake you?
    It struck mine ear most terribly.

_Alon._                                I heard nothing.

_Anto._ O, 'twas a din to fright a monster's ear,
    To make an earthquake! sure, it was the roar
    Of a whole herd of lions.

_Alon._                       Heard you this, Gonzalo?

_Gonza._ Upon mine honour, sir, I heard a humming,
    And that a strange one too, which did awake me:
    I shaked you, sir, and cried: as mine eyes open'd,
    I saw their weapons drawn: there was a noise,
    That's verity. 'Tis best we stand upon our guard,
    Or that we quit this place: let's draw our weapons.

_Alon._ Lead off this ground; and let's make further search
    For my poor son.

_Gonza._ Heavens keep him from these beasts!
    For he is, sure, i' the island.

_Alon._                              Lead away.
                                               [_Exit with the others._

_Ari._ Prospero my lord shall know what I have done:--
    So, King, go safely on to seek thy son.                    [_Exit._

SCENE II.--_Another part of the Island._

_Enter CALIBAN, with a burden of wood. A noise of Thunder heard._

_Cal._ All the infections that the Sun sucks up
    From bogs, fens, flats, on Prosper fall, and make him
    By inch-meal[410-1] a disease! His spirits hear me,
    And yet I needs must curse. But they'll nor pinch,
    Fright me with urchin-shows,[410-2] pitch me i' the mire,
    Nor lead me, like a fire-brand,[410-3] in the dark
    Out of my way, unless he bid 'em: but
    For every trifle are they set upon me;
    Sometime[410-4] like apes, that mow[410-5] and chatter at me
    And after bite me; then like hedgehogs, which
    Lie tumbling in my barefoot way, and mount
    Their pricks[411-6] at my foot-fall; sometime am I
    All wound with adders, who with cloven tongues
    Do hiss me into madness. Lo, now, lo!
    Here comes a spirit of his; and to torment me
    For bringing wood in slowly. I'll fall flat:
    Perchance he will not mind me.[411-7]


_Trin._ Here's neither bush nor shrub, to bear off[411-8] any weather at
all, and another storm brewing; I hear it sing i' the wind: yond same
black cloud, yond huge one, looks like a foul bombard[411-9] that would
shed his liquor. If it should thunder as it did before, I know not where
to hide my head: yond same cloud cannot choose but fall by
pailfuls.--What have we here? a man or a fish? Dead or alive? A fish: he
smells like a fish; a very ancient and fish-like smell; a kind of
not-of-the-newest poor-john.[411-10] A strange fish! Were I in England
now, as once I was, and had but this fish painted, not a holiday fool
there but would give a piece of silver: there would this monster make a
man; any strange beast there makes a man:[411-11] when they will not
give a doit to relieve a lame beggar, they will lay out ten to see a
dead Indian. Legg'd like a man! and his fins like arms! Warm, o' my
troth! I do now let loose my opinion; hold it no longer: this is no
fish, but an islander, that hath lately suffered by a thunder-bolt.
[_Thunder._] Alas, the storm is come again! my best way is to creep
under his gaberdine;[412-12] there is no other shelter hereabout: misery
acquaints a man with strange bed-fellows. I will here shroud till the
dregs of the storm be past.

                                     [_Creeps under CALIBAN'S garment._

_Enter STEPHANO, singing; a bottle in his hand._

    Steph. _I shall no more to sea, to sea,
      Here shall I die ashore;--_

This is a very scurvy tune to sing at a man's funeral: well, here's my
comfort.                                                     [_Drinks._

[Sings.] _The master, the swabber,[412-13] the boatswain, and I,
        The gunner, and his mate,
    Loved Mall, Meg, and Marian, and Margery,
        But none of us cared for Kate;
      For she had a tongue with a tang,[412-14]
      Would cry to a sailor, _Go hang!
_She loved not the savour of tar nor of pitch:
      Then to sea, boys, and let her go hang!_

This is a scurvy tune too: but here's my comfort.            [_Drinks._

_Cal._ Do not torment me:--O!

_Steph._ What's the matter? Have we devils here? Do you put tricks
upon's with savages and men of Inde,[413-15] ha? I have not 'scaped
drowning, to be afeared now of your four legs; for it hath been said, As
proper a man as ever went on four legs cannot make him give ground; and
it shall be said so again, while Stephano breathes at's nostrils.

_Cal._ The spirit torments me:--O!

_Steph._ This is some monster of the isle with four legs, who hath got,
as I take it, an ague. Where the Devil should he learn our language? I
will give him some relief, if it be but for that. If I can recover him,
and keep him tame, and get to Naples with him, he's a present for any
emperor that ever trod on neat's-leather.[413-16]

_Cal._ Do not torment me, pr'ythee:
    I'll bring my wood home faster.

_Steph._ He's in his fit now, and does not talk after the wisest. He
shall taste of my bottle: if he have never drunk wine afore, it will go
near to remove his fit. If I can recover him, and keep him tame, I will
not take too much for him;[413-17] he shall pay for him that hath him,
and that soundly.

_Cal._ Thou dost me yet but little hurt;
    Thou wilt anon, I know it by thy trembling:
    Now Prosper works upon thee.

_Steph._ Come on your ways; open your mouth; here is that which will
give a language to you, cat:[413-18] open your mouth; this will shake
your shaking, I can tell you, and that soundly: [_Gives him drink._] you
cannot tell who's your friend; open your chops again. [_Gives him more

_Trin._ I should know that voice: it should be--but he is drown'd; and
these are devils:--O, defend me!

_Steph._ Four legs, and two voices--a most delicate monster? His forward
voice now is to speak well of his friend; his backward voice is to utter
foul speeches and to detract. If all the wine in my bottle will recover
him, I will help his ague: [_Gives him drink._]--Come,--Amen![414-19] I
will pour some in thy other mouth.

_Trin._ Stephano!

_Steph._ Doth thy other mouth call me?--Mercy, mercy! This is a devil
and no monster: I will leave him; I have no long spoon.[414-20]

_Trin._ Stephano!--If thou be'st Stephano, touch me, and speak to me;
for I am Trinculo,--be not afeared,--thy good friend Trinculo.

_Steph._ If thou be'st Trinculo, come forth: I'll pull thee by the
lesser legs: if any be Trinculo's legs, these are they. [_Pulls
TRINCULO out._] Thou art very Trinculo indeed! How earnest thou to be
the siege[414-21] of this moon-calf?[414-22]

_Trin._ I took him to be kill'd with a thunder-stroke. But art thou not
drown'd, Stephano? I hope, now, thou art not drown'd?[415-23] Is the
storm overblown? I hid me under the dead moon-calf's gaberdine for fear
of the storm. And art thou living, Stephano? O Stephano, two Neapolitans

_Steph._ Pr'ythee, do not turn me about; my stomach is not

_Cal._ [_Aside._] These be fine things, an if[415-25] they be not sprites.
    That's a brave god, and bears celestial liquor:
    I will kneel to him.

_Steph._ How didst thou 'scape? How camest thou hither? swear, by this
bottle, how thou camest hither. I escaped upon a butt of sack,[415-26]
which the sailors heaved o'erboard, by this bottle! which I made of the
bark of a tree with mine own hands, since I was cast ashore.

_Cal._ I'll swear, upon that bottle, to be thy
    True subject; for the liquor is not earthly.

_Steph._ Here; swear, man, how thou escapedst.

_Trin._ Swam ashore, man, like a duck: I can swim like a duck, I'll be

_Steph._ Here kiss the book. [_Gives him drink._] Though thou canst swim
like a duck, thou art made like a goose.

_Trin._ O Stephano, hast any more of this?

_Steph._ The whole butt, man: my cellar is in a rock by the sea-side,
where my wine is hid.--How now, moon-calf! how does thine ague?

_Cal._ Hast thou not dropp'd from heaven?

_Steph._ Out o' the Moon, I do assure thee: I was the Man-i'-the-moon
when time was.

_Cal._ I've seen thee in her, and I do adore thee:
    My mistress show'd me thee, and thy dog, and thy bush.[416-27]

_Steph._ Come, swear to that; kiss the book: I will furnish it anon with
new contents: swear.                            [_Gives CALIBAN drink._

_Trin._ By this good light, this is a very shallow monster!--I afeared
of him!--a very weak monster!--_The Man-i'-the-moon!_--a most poor
credulous monster!--Well drawn,[416-28] monster, in good sooth.

_Cal._ I'll show thee every fertile inch o' the island;
    And I will kiss thy foot: I pr'ythee, be my god.

_Trin._ By this light, a most perfidious and drunken monster! when his
god's asleep, he'll rob his bottle.

_Cal._ I'll kiss thy foot; I'll swear myself thy subject.

_Steph._ Come on then; down, and swear.

_Trin._ I shall laugh myself to death at this puppy-headed monster. A
most scurvy monster! I could find in my heart to beat him,--

_Steph._ Come, kiss.                            [_Gives CALIBAN drink._

_Trin._--but that the poor monster's in drink: an abominable monster!

_Cal._ I'll show thee the best springs; I'll pluck thee berries;
    I'll fish for thee, and get thee wood enough.
    A plague upon the tyrant that I serve!
    I'll bear him no more sticks, but follow thee,
    Thou wondrous man.

_Trin._ A most ridiculous monster, to make a wonder of a poor drunkard!

_Cal._ I pr'ythee, let me bring thee where crabs grow;
    And I with my long nails will dig thee pig-nuts;[417-29]
    Show thee a jay's nest, and instruct thee how
    To snare the nimble marmozet; I'll bring thee
    To clustering filberts, and sometimes I'll get thee
    Young staniels[417-30] from the rock. Wilt thou go with me?

_Steph._ I pr'ythee now, lead the way without any more talking.
Trinculo, the King and all our company else being drown'd, we will
inherit here. Here, bear my bottle: fellow Trinculo, we'll fill him
by-and-by again.

_Cal._ [_Sings drunkenly._] Farewell, master; farewell, farewell.

_Trin._ A howling monster; a drunken monster!

_Cal._  No more dams I'll make for fish;
          Nor fetch in firing at requiring;
        Nor scrape trencher, nor wash dish:
          'Ban, 'Ban, Ca--Caliban
          Has a new master; get a new man.
        Freedom, hey-day, hey-day, freedom! freedom, hey-day, freedom!

_Steph._ O brave monster! lead the way.



SCENE I.--_Before PROSPERO'S Cell._

_Enter FERDINAND, bearing a log._

    There be some sports are painful, and their labour
    Delight in them sets off:[418-1] some kinds of baseness[418-2]
    Are nobly undergone; and most poor matters
    Point to rich ends. This my mean task would be
    As heavy to me as 'tis odious, but
    The mistress which I serve quickens what's dead,
    And makes my labours pleasures:[418-3] O, she is
    Ten times more gentle than her father's crabbed,
    And he's composed of harshness. I must remove
    Some thousands of these logs, and pile them up,
    Upon a sore injunction: my sweet mistress
    Weeps when she sees me work; and says such baseness
    Had never like executor. I forget:
    But these sweet thoughts do even refresh my labour;
    Most busy when I do it least.[419-4]

_Enter MIRANDA; and PROSPERO behind._

_Mira._             Alas, now, pray you,
    Work not so hard: I would the lightning had
    Burnt up those logs that you're enjoin'd to pile!
    Pray, set it down, and rest you: when this burns,
    'Twill weep for having wearied you. My father
    Is hard at study; pray now, rest yourself:
    He's safe for these three hours.

_Ferd._                          O most dear mistress,
    The Sun will set before I shall discharge
    What I must strive to do.

_Mira._                        If you'll sit down,
    I'll bear your logs the while: pray, give me that;
    I'll carry't to the pile.

_Ferd._                        No, precious creature;
    I'd rather crack my sinews, break my back,
    Than you should such dishonour undergo,
    While I sit lazy by.

_Mira._                   It would become me
    As well as it does you: and I should do it
    With much more ease; for my good will is to it,
    And yours it is against.

_Pros._ [_Aside._] Poor worm, thou art infected!
    This visitation shows it.

_Mira._                        You look wearily.

_Ferd._ No, noble mistress; 'tis fresh morning with me
    When you are by at night. I do beseech you,--
    Chiefly that I might set it in my prayers,--
    What is your name?

_Mira._                 Miranda--O my father,
    I've broke your best to say so!

_Ferd._                              Admired Miranda!
    Indeed the top of admiration; worth
    What's dearest to the world! Full many a lady
    I've eyed with best regard; and many a time
    The harmony of their tongues hath into bondage
    Brought my too diligent ear: for several virtues
    Have I liked several women; never any
    With so full soul, but some defect in her
    Did quarrel with the noblest grace she owed,
    And put it to the foil:[420-5] but you, O you,
    So perfect and so peerless, are created
    Of every creature's best!

_Mira._                         I do not know
    One of my sex; no woman's face remember,
    Save, from my glass, mine own; nor have I seen
    More that I may call men, than you, good friend,
    And my dear father: how features are abroad,
    I'm skilless of; but, by my modesty,--
    The jewel in my dower,--I would not wish
    Any companion in the world but you;
    Nor can imagination form a shape,
    Besides yourself, to like of. But I prattle
    Something too wildly, and my father's precepts
    I therein do forget.

[Illustration: PRAY YOU, WORK NOT SO HARD]

_Ferd._                  I am, in my condition,
    A prince, Miranda; I do think, a king,--
    I would not so![420-6]--and would no more endure
    This wooden slavery than to suffer
    The flesh-fly blow[422-7] my mouth. Hear my soul speak:
    The very instant that I saw you, did
    My heart fly to your service; there resides,
    To make me slave to it; and for your sake
    Am I this patient log-man.

_Mira._                          Do you love me?

_Ferd._ O Heaven, O Earth, bear witness to this sound,
    And crown what I profess with kind event,
    If I speak true! if hollowly,[422-8] invert
    What best is boded me to mischief! I,
    Beyond all limit of what else[422-9] i' the world,
    Do love, prize, honour you.

_Mira._                            I am a fool
    To weep at what I'm glad of.

_Pros._ [_Aside._]                Fair encounter
    Of two most rare affections! Heavens rain grace
    On that which breeds between them!

_Ferd._                         Wherefore weep you?

_Mira._ At mine unworthiness, that dare not offer
    What I desire to give; and much less take
    What I shall die to want.[422-10] But this is trifling;
    And all the more it seeks to hide itself,
    The bigger bulk it shows. Hence, bashful cunning!
    And prompt me, plain and holy innocence!
    I am your wife, if you will marry me;
    If not, I'll die your maid: to be your fellow[423-11]
    You may deny me; but I'll be your servant,
    Whether you will or no.

_Ferd._                       My mistress, dearest,
    And I thus humble ever.

_Mira._                       My husband, then?

_Ferd._ Ay, with a heart as willing
    As bondage[423-12] e'er of freedom: here's my hand.

_Mira._ And mine, with my heart in't: and now farewell
    Till half an hour hence.

_Ferd._                       A thousand thousand![423-13]

                                       [_Exeunt FERDINAND and MIRANDA._

_Pros._ So glad of this as they, I cannot be,
    Who am surprised withal;[423-14] but my rejoicing
    At nothing can be more. I'll to my book;
    For yet, ere supper-time, must I perform
    Much business appertaining.                                [_Exit._

SCENE II.--_Another part of the Island._

_Enter CALIBAN, STEPHANO, and TRINCULO, with a bottle._

_Steph._ Tell not me: when the butt is out, we will drink water; not a
drop before: therefore bear up, and board 'em.[423-1] Servant-monster,
drink to me.

_Trin._ Servant-monster! the folly of this island! They say there's but
five upon this isle: we are three of them; if th' other two be brain'd
like us, the State totters.

_Steph._ Drink, servant-monster, when I bid thee: thy eyes are almost
set[424-2] in thy head.

                                                     [_CALIBAN drinks._

_Trin._ Where should they be set else? he were a brave monster indeed,
if they were set in his tail.

_Steph._ My man-monster hath drown'd his tongue in sack: for my part,
the sea cannot drown me; I swam, ere I could recover the shore,
five-and-thirty leagues, off and on, by this light.--Thou shalt be my
lieutenant, monster, or my standard.[424-3]

_Trin._ Your lieutenant, if you list: he's no standard.[424-4]

_Steph._ We'll not run, Monsieur Monster.

_Trin._ Nor go neither: but you'll lie like dogs, and yet say nothing

_Steph._ Moon-calf, speak once in thy life, if thou be'st a good

_Cal._ How does thy Honour? Let me lick thy shoe. I'll not serve him, he
is not valiant.

_Trin._ Thou liest, most ignorant monster: I am in case to justle a
constable.[424-5] Why, thou debosh'd[424-6] fish, thou, was there ever
man a coward that hath drunk so much sack as I to-day? Wilt thou tell a
monstrous lie, being but half a fish and half a monster?

_Cal._ Boo, how he mocks me! wilt thou let him, my lord?

_Trin._ Lord, quoth he. That a monster should be such a natural![425-7]

_Cal._ Lo, lo, again! bite him to death, I pr'ythee.

_Steph._ Trinculo, keep a good tongue in your head: if you prove a
mutineer,--the next tree.[425-8] The poor monster's my subject, and he
shall not suffer indignity.

_Cal._ I thank my noble lord. Wilt thou be pleased
    To hearken once again the suit I made thee?

_Steph._ Marry, will I: kneel, and repeat it; I will stand, and so shall

_Enter ARIEL, invisible._

_Cal._ As I told thee before, I am subject to a tyrant; a sorcerer, that
by his cunning hath cheated me of the island.

_Ari._ Thou liest.[425-9]

_Cal._ Thou liest, thou jesting monkey, thou:
    I would my valiant master would destroy thee!
    I do not lie.

_Steph._ Trinculo, if you trouble him any more in's tale, by this hand,
I will supplant some of your teeth.

_Trin._ Why, I said nothing.

_Steph._ Mum, then, and no more.--
                                    [_To CAL._] Proceed.

_Cal._ I say, by sorcery he got this isle;
    From me he got it. If thy Greatness will
    Revenge it on him,--for, I know, thou darest,
    But this thing[425-10] dare not,--

_Steph._                               That's most certain.

_Cal._ Thou shalt be lord of it, and I will serve thee.

_Steph._ How now shall this be compass'd?
    Canst thou bring me to the party?

_Cal._ Yea, yea, my lord; I'll yield him thee asleep,
    Where thou mayst knock a nail into his head.

_Ari._ Thou liest; thou canst not.

_Cal._ What a pied ninny's[426-11] this!--Thou scurvy patch![426-12]--
    I do beseech thy Greatness, give him blows,
    And take his bottle from him: when that's gone,
    He shall drink nought but brine; for I'll not show him
    Where the quick freshes[426-13] are.

_Steph._ Trinculo, run into no further danger: interrupt the monster one
word further, and, by this hand, I'll turn my mercy out of doors, and
make a stock-fish[426-14] of thee.

_Trin._ Why, what did I? I did nothing. I'll go further off.

_Steph._ Didst thou not say he lied?

_Ari._ Thou liest.

_Steph._ Do I so? take thou that. [_Strikes him._] As you like this,
give me the lie another time.

_Trin._ I did not give thee the lie. Out o' your wits and hearing too? A
pox o' your bottle! this can sack and drinking do. A murrain on your
monster, and the Devil take your fingers!

_Cal._ Ha, ha, ha!

_Steph._ Now, forward with your tale.--Pr'ythee stand further

_Cal._ Beat him enough: after a little time, I'll beat him too.

_Steph._ Stand further.--Come, proceed.

_Cal._ Why, as I told thee, 'tis a custom with him
    I' the afternoon to sleep; then thou mayst brain him,
    Having first seized his books; or with a log
    Batter his skull, or paunch him with a stake,
    Or cut his weazand[427-16] with thy knife. Remember
    First to possess his books; for without them
    He's but a sot,[427-17] as I am, nor hath not
    One spirit to command: they all do hate him
    As rootedly as I. Burn but his books.
    He has brave[427-18] utensils,--for so he calls them,--
    Which, when he has a house, he'll deck't withal:
    And that most deeply to consider is
    The beauty of his daughter; he himself
    Calls her a nonpareil: I ne'er saw woman,
    But only Sycorax my dam and she;
    But she as far surpasseth Sycorax
    As great'st does least.

_Steph._                     Is it so brave a lass?

_Cal._ Ay, lord.

_Steph._ Monster, I will kill this man: his daughter and I will be king
and queen,--save our Graces!--and Trinculo and thyself shall be
viceroys.--Dost thou like the plot, Trinculo?

_Trin._ Excellent.

_Steph._ Give me thy hand: I am sorry I beat thee; but, while thou
livest, keep a good tongue in thy head.

_Cal._ Within this half-hour will he be asleep:
    Wilt thou destroy him then?

_Steph._ Ay, on mine honour.

_Ari._ This will I tell my master.[428-19]

_Cal._ Thou makest me merry; I am full of pleasure:
    Let us be jocund: will you troll the catch[428-20]
    You taught me but while-ere?[428-21]

_Steph._ At thy request, monster, I will do reason,[428-22] any
reason.--Come on, Trinculo, let us sing.
   _Flout 'em and scout 'em, and scout 'em and flout 'em;
    Thought is free._

_Cal._ That's not the tune.

                           [_ARIEL plays the tune on a tabor and pipe._

_Steph._ What is this same?[428-23]

_Trin._ This is the tune of our catch, play'd by the picture of

_Steph._ If thou be'st a man, show thyself in thy likeness: if thou
be'st a devil--take't as thou list.[429-25]

_Trin._ O, forgive me my sins!

_Steph._ He that dies pays all debts: I defy thee.--Mercy upon us!

_Cal._ Art thou afeard?

_Steph._ No, monster, not I.

_Cal._ Be not afeard; the isle is full of noises,
    Sounds and sweet airs that give delight and hurt not.
    Sometime[429-26] a thousand twangling instruments
    Will hum about mine ears; and sometimes voices,
    That, if I then had waked after long sleep,
    Will make me sleep again: and then, in dreaming,
    The clouds methought would open, and show riches
    Ready to drop upon me; that, when I waked,
    I cried to dream again.

_Steph._ This will prove a brave kingdom to me, where I shall have my
music for nothing.

_Cal._ When Prospero is destroy'd.

_Steph._ That shall be by-and-by: I remember the story.

_Cal._ The sound is going away; let's follow it.
    And after do our work.

_Steph._ Lead, monster; we'll follow.--I would I could see this taborer!
he lays it on.--Wilt come?

_Trin._ I'll follow, Stephano.                               [_Exeunt._

SCENE III.--_Another part of the Island._


_Gonza._ By'r lakin,[430-1] I can go no further, sir;
    My old bones ache: here's a maze trod, indeed,
    Through forth-rights[430-2] and meanders![430-3] by your patience,
    I needs must rest me.

_Alon._                 Old lord, I cannot blame thee,
    Who am myself attach'd with[430-4] weariness,
    To th' dulling of my spirits: sit down, and rest.
    Even here I will put off my hope, and keep it
    No longer for my flatterer: he is drown'd
    Whom thus we stray to find; and the sea mocks
    Our frustrate[430-5] search on land. Well, let him go.

_Anto._ [_Aside to SEBAS._] I am right glad that he's so out of hope.
    Do not, for one repulse, forgo the purpose
    That you resolved t' effect.

_Sebas._ [_Aside to ANTO._] The next advantage
    Will we take throughly.[430-6]

_Anto._ [_Aside to SEBAS._] Let it be to-night.
    For, now they are oppress'd with travel, they
    Will not, nor cannot, use such vigilance
    As when they're fresh.

_Sebas._ [_Aside to ANTO._] I say, to-night: no more.
                                           [_Solemn and strange music._

_Alon._ What harmony is this? My good friends, hark!

_Gonza._ Marvellous sweet music!

_Enter PROSPERO above, invisible. Enter, below, several strange
     Shapes, bringing in a Banquet: they dance about it with gentle
     actions of salutation; and, inviting the KING, &c., to eat, they

_Alon._ Give us kind keepers, Heavens!--
    What were these?

_Sebas._ A living drollery.[431-7] Now I will believe
    That there are unicorns; that in Arabia
    There is one tree, the phoenix throne;[431-8] one phoenix
    At this hour reigning there.

_Anto._                            I'll believe both;
    And what does else want credit, come to me,
    And I'll be sworn 'tis true; travellers ne'er did lie,
    Though fools at home condemn 'em.

_Gonza._                              If in Naples
    I should report this now, would they believe me?
    If I should say I saw such islanders,--
    For, certes,[431-9] these are people of the island,--
    Who, though they are of monstrous shape, yet, note,
    Their manners are more gentle-kind than of
    Our human generation you shall find
    Many, nay, almost any.

_Pros._ [_Aside._]         Honest lord,
    Thou hast said well; for some of you there present
    Are worse than devils.

_Alon._                    I cannot too much muse[432-10]
    Such shapes, such gesture, and such sound, expressing--
    Although they want the use of tongue--a kind
    Of excellent dumb discourse.

_Pros._ [_Aside._]               Praise in departing.[432-11]

_Fran._ They vanish'd strangely.

_Sebas._                       No matter, since
    They've left their viands behind; for we have stomachs.--
    Will't please you taste of what is here?

_Alon._                                       Not I.

_Gonza._ Faith, sir, you need not fear. When we were boys,
    Who would believe that there were mountaineers
    Dew-lapp'd like bulls, whose throats had hanging at 'em
    Wallets of flesh? or that there were such men
    Whose heads stood in their breasts?[432-12] which now we find,
    Each putter-out of one for five[432-13] will bring us
    Good warrant of.

_Alon._       I will stand to, and feed,
    Although my last: no matter, since I feel
    The best is past.--Brother, my lord the Duke,
    Stand to, and do as we.

_Thunder and lightning. Enter ARIEL, like a harpy; claps his wings
     upon the table; and by a quaint device, the banquet vanishes._

_Ari._ You are three men of sin, whom Destiny--
    That hath to instrument[433-14] this lower world
    And what is in't--the never-surfeited sea
    Hath caused to belch up; yea, and on this island
    Where man doth not inhabit; you 'mongst men
    Being most unfit to live. I've made you mad;
    And even with such like valour men hang and drown
    Their proper selves.
                       [_Seeing ALON., SEBAS., &c., draw their swords._
                         You fools! I and my fellows
    Are ministers of Fate: the elements,
    Of whom your swords are temper'd, may as well
    Wound the loud winds, or with bemock'd-at stabs
    Kill the still-closing[433-15] waters, as diminish
    One dowle[434-16] that's in my plume: my fellow-ministers
    Are like invulnerable. If you could hurt,
    Your swords are now too massy for your strengths,
    And will not be uplifted. But remember,--
    For that's my business to you,--that you three
    From Milan did supplant good Prospero;
    Exposed unto the sea, which hath requit[434-17] it,
    Him and his innocent child: for which foul deed
    The powers, delaying, not forgetting, have
    Incensed the seas and shores, yea, all the creatures,
    Against your peace. Thee of thy son, Alonso,
    They have bereft; and do pronounce, by me,
    Lingering perdition--worse than any death
    Can be at once--shall step by step attend
    You and your ways; whose[434-18] wraths to guard you from,--
    Which here, in this most desolate isle, else falls
    Upon your heads,--is nothing, but heart-sorrow
    And a clear life ensuing.

_He vanishes in thunder; then, to soft music, enter the Shapes again,
     and dance with mocks and mowes, and carry out the table._

_Pros._ [_Aside._] Bravely the figure of this harpy hast thou
    Perform'd, my Ariel; a grace it had, devouring:
    Of my instruction hast thou nothing 'bated
    In what thou hadst to say: so, with good life,
    And observation strange, my meaner ministers
    Their several kinds have done.[435-19] My high charms work,
    And these mine enemies are all knit up
    In their distractions: they now are in my power;
    And in these fits I leave them, while I visit
    Young Ferdinand,--who they suppose is drown'd,--
    And his and my loved darling.                   [_Exit from above._

_Gonza._ I' the name of something holy, sir, why stand you
    In this strange stare?

_Alon._                  O, it is monstrous, monstrous!
    Methought the billows spoke, and told me of it;[435-20]
    The winds did sing it to me; and the thunder,
    That deep and dreadful organ pipe, pronounced
    The name of Prosper: it did bass my trespass.[435-21]
    Therefore my son i' the ooze is bedded;[435-22] and
    I'll seek him deeper than e'er plummet sounded,
    And with him there lie mudded.[435-23]                     [_Exit._

_Sebas._                      But one fiend at a time,
    I'll fight their legions o'er.

_Anto._                             I'll be thy second.

                                       [_Exeunt SEBASTIAN and ANTONIO._

_Gonza._ All three of them are desperate: their great guilt,
    Like poison given to work a long time after,[436-24]
    Now 'gins to bite the spirits.--I do beseech you,
    That are of suppler joints, follow them swiftly,
    And hinder them from what this ecstasy[436-25]
    May now provoke them to.

_Adri._                       Follow, I pray you.            [_Exeunt._


SCENE I.--_Before PROSPERO'S Cell._


    If I have too austerely punish'd you,
    Your compensation makes amends; for I
    Have given you here a thread of mine own life,
    Or that for which I live; who once again
    I tender to thy hand: all thy vexations
    Were but my trials of thy love, and thou
    Hast strangely stood the test: here, afore Heaven,
    I ratify this my rich gift. O Ferdinand,
    Do not smile at me that I boast her off,
    For thou shalt find she will outstrip all praise
    And make it halt behind her.

_Ferd._                           I do believe it
    Against an oracle.

_Pros._ Then, as my gift, and thine own acquisition
    Worthily purchased, take my daughter, thou.
    Sit, then, and talk with her; she is thine own.--
    What, Ariel! my industrious servant, Ariel!

_Enter ARIEL._

_Ari._ What would my potent master? Here I am.

_Pros._ Thou and thy meaner fellows your last service
    Did worthily perform; and I must use you
    In such another trick. Go bring the rabble,
    O'er whom I give thee power, here, to this place:
    Incite them to quick motion; for I must
    Bestow upon the eyes of this young couple
    Some vanity[437-1] of mine art: it is my promise,
    And they expect it from me.

_Ari._                           Presently?

_Pros._ Ay, with a twink.[437-2]

_Ari._ Before you can say _Come_ and _Go_,
            And breathe twice, and cry _So, so_.
            Each one, tripping on his toe,
            Will be here with mop[437-3] and mow.[437-4]
            Do you love me, master?--no?                       [_Exit._

_Pros._ Now come, my Ariel! bring a corollary,[437-5]
    Rather than want a spirit: appear, and pertly![437-6]
    No tongue; all eyes; be silent.

                                                         [_Soft music._

_Enter IRIS._[437-7]

_Iris._ Ceres,[437-8] most bounteous lady, thy rich leas
    Of wheat, rye, barley, vetches, oats, and peas;
    Thy turfy mountains, where live nibbling sheep,
    And flat meads thatch'd with stover,[438-9] them to keep;
    Thy banks with peonéd[438-10] and twillèd[438-11] brims,
    Which spongy[438-12] April at thy best betrims,
    To make cold nymphs chaste crowns;[438-13] and thy brown groves,
    Whose shadow the dismissed bachelor loves,
    Being lass-lorn;[438-14] thy pole-clipt vineyard;[438-15]
    And thy sea-marge, steril, and rocky-hard,
    Where thou thyself dost air;--the Queen o' the Sky,[438-16]
    Whose watery arch[438-17] and messenger am I,
    Bids thee leave these, and with her sovereign Grace,
    Here on this grass-plot, in this very place,
    To come and sport. Her peacocks[438-18] fly amain:
    Approach, rich Ceres, her to entertain.

_Enter CERES._

_Cer._ Hail, many-color'd messenger, that ne'er
    Dost disobey the wife of Jupiter;[438-19]
    Who, with thy saffron wings, upon my flowers
    Diffusest honey-drops, refreshing showers;
    And with each end of thy blue bow dost crown
    My bosky[440-20] acres and my unshrubb'd down,[440-21]
    Rich scarf to my proud Earth;--why hath thy Queen
    Summon'd me hither, to this short-grass'd green?


_Iris._ A contract of true love to celebrate;
    And some donation freely to estate
    On the bless'd lovers.

_Cer._                      Tell me, heavenly Bow,
    If Venus[440-22] or her son, as thou dost know,
    Do now attend the Queen? Since they did plot
    The means that dusky Dis[440-23] my daughter got,[440-24]
    Her and her blind boy's[440-25] scandal'd company
    I have forsworn.

_Iris._               Of her society
    Be not afraid: I met her deity
    Cutting the clouds towards Paphos,[440-26] and her son
    Dove-drawn with her.

_Cer._                Here, Queen of highest state,
    Great Juno comes; I know her by her gait.[440-27]

_Enter JUNO._[440-28]

_Juno._ How does my bounteous sister? Go with me
    To bless this twain, that they may prosperous be,
    And honour'd in their issue.


    Juno. _Honour, riches, marriage-blessing,
          Long continuance, and increasing,
          Hourly joys be still upon you!
          Juno sings her blessings on you._

    Cer. _Earth's increase, and foison plenty,[441-29]
          Barns and garners never empty;
          Vines with clustering bunches growing;
          Plants with goodly burden bowing;
          Spring come to you at the farthest
          In the very end of harvest![441-30]
          Scarcity and want shall shun you;
          Ceres' blessing so is on you._

_Ferd._ This is a most majestic vision, and
    Harmonious charmingly. May I be bold
    To think these spirits?[441-31]

_Pros._                    Spirits, which by mine art
    I have from their confines call'd to enact
    My present fancies.

_Ferd._         Let me live here ever;
    So rare a wonder'd[442-32] father and a wife
    Make this place Paradise.               [_JUNO and CERES whisper,
                                            and send IRIS on employment._

_Pros._                        Sweet, now, silence!
    Juno and Ceres whisper seriously;
    There's something else to do: hush, and be mute,
    Or else our spell is marr'd.

_Iris._ You nymphs, call'd Naiads, of the winding brooks,
    With your sedge crowns and ever-harmless looks,
    Leave your crisp[442-33] channels, and on this green land
    Answer our summons; Juno does command:
    Come, temperate nymphs, and help to celebrate
    A contract of true love; be not too late.--

_Enter certain_ Nymphs.

    You sun-burn'd sicklemen,[442-34] of August weary,
    Come hither from the furrow, and be merry:
    Make holiday; your rye-straw hats put on,
    And these fresh nymphs encounter every one
    In country footing.

_Enter certain _Reapers,_ properly habited: they join with the _Nymphs_
     in a graceful dance; towards the end whereof PROSPERO starts
     suddenly, and speaks; after which, to a strange, hollow, and
     confused noise, they heavily vanish._

_Pros._ [_Aside._] I had forgot that foul conspiracy
    Of the beast Caliban and his confederates
    Against my life: the minute of their plot
    Is almost come.--[_To the_ Spirits.] Well done; avoid;[443-35] no more!

_Ferd._ This is most strange: your father's in some passion
    That works him strongly.

_Mira._                      Never till this day
    Saw I him touch'd with anger so distemper'd.

_Pros._ You do, my son, look in a moved sort,
    As if you were dismay'd: be cheerful, sir.
    Our revels now are ended. These our actors,
    As I foretold you, were all spirits, and
    Are melted into air, into thin air:
    And, like the baseless fabric of this vision,
    The cloud-capp'd towers, the gorgeous palaces,
    The solemn temples, the great globe itself,
    Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve,
    And, like this insubstantial pageant faded,
    Leave not a rack[443-36] behind. We are such stuff
    As dreams are made on,[443-37] and our little life
    Is rounded[443-38] with a sleep. Sir, I am vex'd;
    Bear with my weakness; my old brain is troubled:
    Be not disturb'd with my infirmity:
    If you be pleased, retire into my cell,
    And there repose: a turn or two I'll walk,
    To still my beating mind.

_Ferd._ }
_Mira._ }      We wish you peace.

_Pros._ [_To ARIEL._] Come with a thought!--
    I thank ye.[444-39] [_Exeunt FERD. and MIRA._]--Ariel, come!

_Re-enter ARIEL._

_Ari._ Thy thoughts I cleave to: what's thy pleasure?

_Pros._                                                Spirit,
    We must prepare to meet with[444-40] Caliban.

_Ari._ Ay, my commander: when I presented Ceres,
    I thought t' have told thee of it; but I fear'd
    Lest I might anger thee.

_Pros._ Well, say again, where didst thou leave these varlets?

_Ari._ I told you, sir, they were red-hot with drinking;
    So full of valour, that they smote the air
    For breathing[444-41] in their faces; beat the ground
    For kissing of their feet; yet always bending
    Towards their project. Then I beat my tabor;
    At which, like unback'd[444-42] colts, they prick'd their ears,
    Advanced[444-43] their eyelids, lifted up their noses
    As they smelt music: so I charm'd their ears,
    That, calf-like, they my lowing follow'd through
    Tooth'd briers, sharp furzes, pricking goss, and thorns,
    Which enter'd their frail shins: at last I left them
    I' the filthy-mantled[445-44] pool beyond your cell,
    There dancing up to th' chins, that[445-45] the foul lake
    O'erstunk their feet.

_Pros._                   This was well done, my bird.
    Thy shape invisible retain thou still:
    The trumpery in my house, go bring it hither,
    For stale[445-46] to catch these thieves.

_Ari._                                        I go, I go.      [_Exit._

_Pros._ A devil, a born-devil,[445-47] on whose nature
    Nurture can never stick;[445-48] on whom my pains,
    Humanely taken, all are lost, quite lost;
    And as with age his body uglier grows,
    So his mind cankers.[445-49] I will plague them all,
    Even to roaring.--

_Re-enter ARIEL loaden with glistering apparel, &c._

                       Come, hang them on this line.[445-50]

_PROSPERO and ARIEL remain invisible. Enter CALIBAN, STEPHANO, and
     TRINCULO, all wet._

_Cal._ Pray you, tread softly, that the blind mole may not
    Hear a foot fall: we now are near his cell.

_Steph._ Monster, your fairy, which you say is a harmless fairy, has
done little better than play'd the Jack with us.[446-51]

_Trin._ Monster, I do smell all horse-stale; at which my nose is in
great indignation.

_Steph._ So is mine.--Do you hear, monster? If I should take a
displeasure against you, look you,--

_Trin._ Thou wert but a lost monster.

_Cal._ Nay, good my lord, give me thy favour still.
    Be patient, for the prize I'll bring thee to
    Shall hoodwink this mischance:[446-52] therefore speak softly;
    All's hush'd as midnight yet.

_Trin._ Ay, but to lose our bottles in the pool,--

_Steph._ There is not only disgrace and dishonour in that, monster, but
an infinite loss.

_Trin._ That's more to me than my wetting: yet this is your harmless
fairy, monster.

_Steph._ I will fetch off my bottle, though I be o'er ears for my

_Cal._ Pr'ythee, my King, be quiet. See'st thou here?
    This is the mouth o' the cell: no noise, and enter.
    Do that good mischief which may make this island
    Thine own for ever, and I, thy Caliban,
    For aye thy foot-licker.

_Steph._ Give me thy hand. I do begin to have bloody thoughts.

_Trin._ O King Stephano! O peer![446-53] O worthy Stephano! look what a
wardrobe here is for thee!

_Cal._ Let it alone, thou fool; it is but trash.

_Trin._ O, ho, monster! we know what belongs to a frippery.[447-54]--O
King Stephano!

_Steph._ Put off that gown, Trinculo; by this hand, I'll have that gown.

_Trin._ Thy Grace shall have it.

_Cal._ The dropsy drown this fool!--what do you mean,
    To dote thus on such luggage? Let's along,
    And do the murder first: if he awake,
    From toe to crown he'll fill our skins with pinches;
    Make us strange stuff.

_Steph._ Be you quiet, monster.--Mistress line, is not this my jerkin?
Now is the jerkin under the line:[447-55] now, jerkin, you are like to
lose your hair, and prove a bald jerkin.

_Trin._ Do, do; we steal by line and level,[447-56] an't like your

_Steph._ I thank thee for that jest; here's a garment for't: wit shall
not go unrewarded while I am king of this country. _Steal by line and
level_ is an excellent pass of pate;[448-57] there's another garment

_Trin._ Monster, come, put some lime[448-58] upon your fingers, and away
with the rest.


_Cal._ I will have none on't: we shall lose our time,
    And all be turn'd to barnacles,[448-59] or to apes
    With foreheads villainous low.

_Steph._ Monster, lay-to your fingers: help to bear this away, where my
hogshead of wine is, or I'll turn you out of my kingdom: go to, carry

_Trin._ And this.

_Steph._ Ay, and this.

_A noise of hunters heard. Enter divers _Spirits_ in shape of hounds,
     and hunt them about; PROSPERO and ARIEL setting them on._

_Pros._ Hey, Mountain, hey!

_Ari._ Silver! there it goes, Silver!

_Pros._ Fury, Fury! there, Tyrant, there! hark! hark!--
                              [_CAL., STEPH. and TRIN. are driven out._
    Go charge my goblins that they grind their joints
    With dry convulsions; shorten up their sinews
    With aged cramps; and more pinch-spotted make them
    Than pard or cat-o'-mountain.[449-60]

_Ari._                            Hark, they roar!

_Pros._ Let them be hunted soundly. At this hour
    Lie at my mercy all mine enemies:
    Shortly shall all my labours end, and thou
    Shalt have the air at freedom: for a little
    Follow, and do me service.                               [_Exeunt._


SCENE I.--_Before the Cell of PROSPERO._

_Enter PROSPERO in his magic robes, and ARIEL. PROSPERO speaks:_

    Now does my project gather to a head:
    My charms crack not; my spirits obey; and Time
    Goes upright with his carriage.[450-1] How's the day?

_Ari._ On the sixth hour; at which time, my lord,
    You said our work should cease.

_Pros._                              I did say so,
    When first I raised the tempest. Say, my spirit,
    How fares the King and's followers?

_Ari._                             Confined together
    In the same fashion as you gave in charge:
    Just as you left them; all are prisoners, sir,
    In the line-grove which weather-fends your cell;[450-2]
    They cannot budge till your release.[450-3] The King,
    His brother, and yours, abide all three distracted;
    And the remainder mourning over them,
    Brimful of sorrow and dismay; but chiefly
    He that you term'd _The good old lord, Gonzalo_:
    His tears run down his beard, like winter-drops
    From eaves of reeds. Your charm so strongly works 'em,
    That, if you now beheld them, your affections
    Would become tender.

_Pros._                  Dost thou think so, spirit?

_Ari._ Mine would, sir, were I human.

_Pros._                        And mine shall.
    Hast thou, which art but air, a touch, a feeling
    Of their afflictions, and shall not myself,
    One of their kind, that relish all as sharply
    Passion as they,[451-4] be kindlier moved than thou art?
    Though with their high wrongs I am struck to th' quick,
    Yet with my nobler reason 'gainst my fury
    Do I take part: the rarer action is
    In virtue than in vengeance: they being penitent,
    The sole drift of my purpose doth extend
    Not a frown further. Go release them, Ariel:
    My charms I'll break, their senses I'll restore,
    And they shall be themselves.

_Ari._                    I'll fetch them, sir.                [_Exit._

_Pros._ Ye elves of hills, brooks, standing lakes, and groves;
    And ye that on the sands with printless foot
    Do chase the ebbing Neptune,[451-5] and do fly him
    When he comes back; you demi-puppets that
    By moonshine do the green-sour ringlets[451-6] make,
    Whereof the ewe not bites; and you whose pastime
    Is to make midnight mushrooms;[452-7] that rejoice
    To hear the solemn curfew;[452-8] by whose aid--
    Weak masters[452-9] though ye be--I have be-dimm'd
    The noon-tide Sun, call'd forth the mutinous winds,
    And twixt the green sea and the azure vault
    Set roaring war: to the dread-rattling thunder
    Have I given fire, and rifted Jove's[452-10] stout oak
    With his own bolt: the strong-based promontory
    Have I made shake, and by the spurs[452-11] pluck'd up
    The pine and cedar: graves at my command
    Have waked their sleepers, oped, and let 'em forth
    By my so potent art. But this rough magic
    I here abjure; and, when I have required
    Some heavenly music,--which even now I do,--
    To work mine end upon their senses that
    This airy charm is for, I'll break my staff,
    Bury it certain fathoms in the earth,
    And deeper than did ever plummet sound
    I'll drown my book.                                [_Solemn music._

_Re-enter ARIEL: after him, ALONSO, with a frantic gesture, attended
     by GONZALO; SEBASTIAN and ANTONIO in like manner, attended by
     ADRIAN and FRANCISCO: they all enter the circle which PROSPERO has
     made, and there stand charmed; which PROSPERO observing, speaks._

    A solemn air, as the best comforter
    To an unsettled fancy, cure the brains,
    Now useless, boil'd[453-12] within the skull!--There stand,
    For you are spell-stopp'd.--
    Holy Gonzalo, honourable man,
    Mine eyes, even sociable to[453-13] the show of thine,
    Fall fellowly drops.[453-14]--The charm dissolves apace;
    And as the morning steals upon the night,
    Melting the darkness, so their rising senses[453-15]
    Begin to chase the ignorant fumes that mantle[453-16]
    Their clearer reason.--O thou good Gonzalo,
    My true preserver, and a loyal sir
    To him thou follow'st! I will pay thy graces
    Home[453-17] both in word and deed.--Most cruelly
    Didst thou, Alonso, use me and my daughter:
    Thy brother was a furtherer in the act:--
    Thou'rt pinch'd for't now, Sebastian.--Flesh and blood,
    You, brother mine, that entertain'd ambition
    Expell'd remorse[453-18] and nature;[453-19] who, with Sebastian,--
    Whose inward pinches therefore are most strong,--
    Would here have kill'd your King; I do forgive thee,
    Unnatural though thou art,--Their understanding
    Begins to swell; and the approaching tide
    Will shortly fill the reasonable shore,[454-20]
    That now lies foul and muddy. Not one of them
    That yet looks on me, or would know me.--Ariel,
    Fetch me the hat and rapier in my cell:--
                                                         [_Exit ARIEL._
    I will discase me,[454-21] and myself present
    As I was sometime Milan:[454-22]--quickly, spirit;
    Thou shalt ere long be free.

_ARIEL re-enters, singing, and helps to attire PROSPERO._

_Ari._      Where the bee sucks, there suck I:
            In a cowslip's bell I lie,--
            There I couch: when owls do cry,
            On the bat's back I do fly
            After Summer, merrily.[454-23]
        Merrily, merrily shall I live now
        Under the blossom that hangs on the bough.

_Pros._ Why, that's my dainty Ariel! I shall miss thee;
    But yet thou shalt have freedom:--so, so, so.
    To the King's ship, invisible as thou art:
    There shalt thou find the mariners asleep
    Under the hatches; the master and the boatswain
    Being awaked, enforce them to this place,
    And presently, I pr'ythee.


_Ari._ I drink the air before me,[456-24] and return
    Or e'er your pulse twice beat.                       [_Exit ARIEL._

_Gonza._ All torment, trouble, wonder, and amazement
    Inhabit here: some heavenly power guide us
    Out of this fearful country!

_Pros._                         Behold, sir King,
    The wronged Duke of Milan, Prospero:
    For more assurance that a living prince
    Does now speak to thee, I embrace thy body;
    And to thee and thy company I bid
    A hearty welcome.

_Alon._               Whêr[456-25] thou be'st he or no,
    Or some enchanted trifle[456-26] to abuse me,
    As late I have been, I not know: thy pulse
    Beats, as of flesh and blood; and, since I saw thee,
    Th' affliction of my mind amends, with which,
    I fear, a madness held me: this must crave--
    An if this be at all[456-27]--a most strange story.
    Thy dukedom I resign and do entreat
    Thou pardon me my wrongs.[456-28] But how should Prospero
    Be living and be here?

_Pros._                      First, noble friend,[456-29]
    Let me embrace thine age, whose honour cannot
    Be measured or confined.

_Gonza._                     Whether this be
    Or be not, I'll not swear.

_Pros._                        You do yet taste
    Some subtilties[457-30] o' the isle, that will not let you
    Believe things certain.--Welcome, my friends all:--
    [_Aside to SEBAS. and ANTO._] But you, my brace of lords, were I so
    I here could pluck his Highness' frown upon you,
    And justify you traitors:[457-31] at this time
    I'll tell no tales.

_Sebas._ [_Aside to ANTO._] The Devil speaks in him.

_Pros._                                             Now,
    For you, most wicked sir, whom to call brother
    Would even infect my mouth, I do forgive
    Thy rankest fault; all of them; and require
    My dukedom of thee, which perforce, I know,
    Thou must restore.

_Alon._                 If thou be'st Prospero,
    Give us particulars of thy preservation;
    How thou hast met us here, who three hours since
    Were wreck'd upon this shore; where I have lost--
    How sharp the point of this remembrance is!--
    My dear son Ferdinand.

_Pros._                     I'm woe[457-32] for't, sir.

_Alon._ Irreparable is the loss; and patience
    Says it is past her cure.

_Pros._                        I rather think
    You have not sought her help; of whose soft grace,
    For the like loss I have her sovereign aid,
    And rest myself content.

_Alon._                       You the like loss!

_Pros._ As great to me, as late;[458-33] and, portable
    To make the dear loss, have I means much weaker
    Than you may call to comfort you; for I
    Have lost my daughter.

_Alon._                      A daughter!
    O Heavens, that they were living both in Naples,
    The King and Queen there! that they were, I wish
    Myself were mudded in that oozy bed
    Where my son lies. When did you lose your daughter?

_Pros._ In this last tempest. I perceive, these lords
    At this encounter do so much admire,[458-34]
    That they devour their reason, and scarce think
    Their eyes do offices of truth, these words
    Are natural breath:[458-35] but, howsoe'er you have
    Been justled from your senses, know for certain
    That I am Prospero, and that very Duke
    Which was thrust forth of Milan; who most strangely
    Upon this shore, where you were wreck'd, was landed
    To be the lord on't. No more yet[458-36] of this;
    For 'tis a chronicle of day by day,[458-37]
    Not a relation for a breakfast, nor
    Befitting this first meeting. Welcome, sir;
    This cell's my Court: here have I few attendants,
    And subjects none abroad: pray you, look in.
    My dukedom since you've given me again,
    I will requite you with as good a thing;
    At least bring forth a wonder to content ye
    As much as me my dukedom.

_The entrance of the Cell opens, and discovers FERDINAND and MIRANDA
     playing at chess._

_Mira._ Sweet lord, you play me false.[459-38]

_Ferd._                      No, my dear'st love,
    I would not for the world.

_Mira._ Yes, for a score of kingdoms you should wrangle,[459-39]
    And I would call it fair play.

_Alon._                             If this prove
    A vision of the island, one dear son
    Shall I twice lose.[459-40]

_Sebas._                  A most high miracle!

_Ferd._ Though the seas threaten, they are merciful!
    I've cursed them without cause.                  [_Kneels to ALON._

_Alon._                           Now all the blessings
    Of the glad father compass thee about!
    Arise, and say how thou earnest here.

_Mira._                                   O, wonder!
    How many goodly creatures are there here!
    How beauteous mankind is! O brave new world,
    That has such people in't!

_Pros._                        'Tis new to thee.

_Alon._ What is this maid with whom thou wast at play?
    Your eld'st acquaintance cannot be three hours:
    Is she the goddess that hath sever'd us,
    And brought us thus together?

_Ferd._                            Sir, she's mortal;
    But by immortal Providence she's mine:
    I chose her when I could not ask my father
    For his advice, nor thought I had one. She
    Is daughter to this famous Duke of Milan,
    Of whom so often I have heard renown,
    But never saw before; of whom I have
    Received a second life; and second father
    This lady makes him to me.[460-41]

_Alon._                         I am hers:
    But, O, how oddly will it sound that I
    Must ask my child forgiveness!

_Pros._                            There, sir, stop:
    Let us not burden our remembrance with
    A heaviness that's gone.

_Gonza._                      I've inly wept,
    Or should have spoke ere this.--Look down, you gods,
    And on this couple drop a blessed crown!
    For it is you that have chalk'd forth the way
    Which brought us hither.

_Alon._                     I say, Amen, Gonzalo!


_Gonza._ Was Milan thrust from Milan, that his issue
    Should become Kings of Naples! O, rejoice
    Beyond a common joy! and set it down
    With gold on lasting pillars: In one voyage
    Did Claribel her husband find at Tunis;
    And Ferdinand, her brother, found a wife
    Where he himself was lost; Prospero, his dukedom,
    In a poor isle; and all of us, ourselves,
    When no man was his own.[462-42]

_Alon._ [_To FERD. and MIRA._] Give me your hands:
    Let grief and sorrow still embrace his heart
    That doth not wish you joy!

_Gonza._               Be't so! Amen!--

_Re-enter ARIEL, with the _Master_ and _Boatswain_ amazedly

    O, look, sir, look, sir! here is more of us:
    I prophesied, if a gallows were on land,
    This fellow could not drown.[462-43]--Now, blasphemy,
    That swear'st grace o'erboard, not an oath on shore?[462-44]
    Hast thou no mouth by land? What is the news?

_Boats._ The best news is, that we have safely found
    Our King and company; the next, our ship--
    Which, but three glasses since, we gave out split--
    Is tight, and yare, and bravely rigg'd, as when
    We first put out to sea.

_Ari._ [_Aside to PROS._] Sir, all this service
    Have I done since I went.

_Pros._ [_Aside to ARIEL._] My tricksy[463-45] spirit!

_Alon._ These are not natural events; they strengthen
    From strange to stranger.--Say, how came you hither?

_Boats._ If I did think, sir, I were well awake,
    I'd strive to tell you. We were dead of sleep,
    And--how we know not--all clapp'd under hatches;
    Where, but even now, with strange and several noises
    Of roaring, shrieking, howling, jingling chains,
    And more diversity of sounds, all horrible,
    We were awaked; straightway, at liberty:
    When we, in all her trim, freshly beheld
    Our royal, good, and gallant ship; our master
    Capering to eye her:[463-46] on a trice, so please you,
    Even in a dream, were we divided from them,
    And were brought moping[463-47] hither.

_Ari._ [_Aside to PROS._] Was't well done?

_Pros._ [_Aside to ARI._] Bravely, my diligence.
    Thou shalt be free.

_Alon._ This is as strange a maze as e'er men trod;
    And there is in this business more than Nature
    Was ever conduct of:[463-48] some oracle
    Must rectify our knowledge.[463-49]

_Pros._                          Sir, my liege,
    Do not infest your mind with beating on[463-50]
    The strangeness of this business; at pick'd leisure,[464-51]
    Which shall be shortly, single I'll resolve[464-52] you--
    Which to you shall seem probable--of every
    These happen'd accidents:[464-53] till when, be cheerful,
    And think of each thing well.--[_Aside to ARIEL._] Come hither, spirit:
    Set Caliban and his companions free;
    Untie the spell. [_Exit ARI._]--How fares my gracious sir?
    There are yet missing of your company
    Some few odd lads that you remember not.

_Re-enter ARIEL, driving in CALIBAN, STEPHANO, and TRINCULO, in
their stolen apparel._

_Steph._ Every man shift for all the rest,[464-54] and let no man take
care for himself; for all is but fortune.--Coragio,[464-55]
bully-monster, coragio!

_Trin._ If these be true spies which I wear in my head,[464-56] here's a
goodly sight.

_Cal._ O Setebos, these be brave spirits indeed!
    How fine my master is! I am afraid
    He will chastise me.

_Sebas._ Ha, ha!
    What things are these, my Lord Antonio?
    Will money buy 'em?

_Anto._                 Very like; one of them
    Is a plain fish, and, no doubt, marketable.

_Pros._ Mark but the badges of these men, my lords,
    Then say if they be true. This mis-shaped knave,--
    His mother was a witch; and one so strong
    That could control the Moon, make flows and ebbs,
    And deal in her command without[465-57] her power.
    These three have robb'd me; and this demi-devil--
    For he's but half a one--had plotted with them
    To take my life: two of these fellows you
    Must know and own; this thing of darkness I
    Acknowledge mine.

_Cal._                I shall be pinch'd to death.

_Alon._ Is not this Stephano, my drunken butler?

_Sebas._ He is drunk now: where had he wine?

_Alon._ And Trinculo is reeling ripe: where should they
    Find this grand liquor that hath gilded[465-58] 'em?--
    How camest thou in this pickle?

_Trin._ I have been in such a pickle since I saw you last, that I fear
me, will never out of my bones: I shall not fear fly-blowing.[465-59]

_Sebas._ Why, how now, Stephano!

_Steph._ O, touch me not! I am not Stephano, but a cramp.

_Pros._ You'd be king o' the isle, sirrah?

_Steph._ I should have been a sore[465-60] one, then.

_Alon._ [_Pointing to CAL._] This is as strange a thing as e'er I look'd

_Pros._ He is as disproportion'd in his manners
    As in his shape.--Go, sirrah, to my cell;
    Take with you your companions; as you look
    To have my pardon, trim it handsomely.

_Cal._ Ay, that I will; and I'll be wise hereafter,
    And seek for grace. What a thrice double ass
    Was I, to take this drunkard for a god,
    And worship this dull fool!

_Pros._                         Go to; away!

_Alon._ Hence, and bestow your luggage where you found it.

_Sebas._ Or stole it, rather.

                                      [_Exeunt CAL., STEPH., and TRIN._

_Pros._ Sir, I invite your Highness and your train
    To my poor cell, where you shall take your rest
    For this one night; which, part of it, I'll waste
    With such discourse as, I not doubt, shall make it
    Go quick away,--the story of my life,
    And the particular accidents gone by,
    Since I came to this isle: and in the morn
    I'll bring you to your ship, and so to Naples,
    Where I have hope to see the nuptial
    Of these our dear-beloved solemnized;
    And thence retire me[466-61] to my Milan, where
    Every third thought shall be my grave.[466-62]

_Alon._                                     I long
    To hear the story of your life, which must
    Take the ear strangely.

_Pros._                     I'll deliver all;
    And promise you calm seas, auspicious gales,
    And sail so expeditious, that shall catch
    Your royal fleet far off.--[_Aside to ARI._] My Ariel, chick,
    That is thy charge: then to the elements
    Be free, and fare thou well!--Please you, draw near.     [_Exeunt._



    Now my charms are all o'erthrown,
    And what strength I have's mine own,--[467-64]
    Which is most faint: now, 'tis true,
    I must be here confined by you,[467-65]
    Or sent to Naples. Let me not,
    Since I have my dukedom got,
    And pardon'd the deceiver, dwell
    In this bare island by your spell;
    But release me from my bands,
    With the help of your good hands.[467-66]
    Gentle breath of yours my sails
    Must fill, or else my project fails,
    Which was to please: now I want
    Spirits to enforce, art to enchant;
    And my ending is despair,
    Unless I be relieved by prayer;
    Which pierces so, that it assaults
    Mercy itself, and frees all faults.
    As you from crimes would pardon'd be,
    Let your indulgence set me free.


[366-1] _Good_ was often used in Shakespeare's time as we use the word
_well_, to introduce a sentence.

[366-2] _Fall to't yarely_ means _get to work briskly_.

[366-3] Perhaps the line should read, "Blow till thou burst _thee_,

[366-4] If there is sea-room enough. The boatswain is not alarmed if he
can have room to handle his ship.

[366-5] We still say "play the man" when we wish to encourage any one to
be brave and manly.

[367-6] The word _time_ may be understood after _present_. The boatswain
infers that they cannot make peaceful weather of the present storm.

[367-7] _Hap_ means _happen_.

[367-8] The word _complexion_ here means _bent_ or _inclination_.
Gonzalo says the boatswain is born to be hung; he cannot be drowned.

[367-9] The boatswain finds he has not sea-room enough so he calls upon
the sailors to take down the topmast and to bring the ship as close into
the wind as possible and hold her there with the main sail.

[367-10] This sentence means _they are noisier than the tempest and the
commands of our officers_.

[368-11] Gonzalo still thinks the boatswain was born to be hanged, and
warrants that he will not be drowned.

[368-12] The boatswain is still trying to bring her to the wind, so she
may get out to sea. The _courses_ are the largest lower sails.

[368-13] _Merely_, here, means _entirely_ or _absolutely_.

[368-14] _Glut_ means _swallow_.

[369-15] These are all plants that grow in England, and were to
Shakespeare the familiar signs of barren ground.

[369-16] _The wills above be done_ means _the will of the Powers above
be done_. Gonzalo interests us from the start by his rather humorous
view of everything.

[369-1] _Welkin_ means _sky_.

[369-2] _Brave_ means _fine_.

[369-3] _Or e'er_ means _before_ or _sooner than_.

[370-4] _Fraughting_ means _freighting_. The human souls were the
freight of the ship.

[370-5] _Amazement_ means _anguish_ and _deep distress_ rather than

[370-6] In the time of Shakespeare it was not considered inelegant
English to use two forms of the comparative and superlative degrees.
_More better_, _most best_ are good examples.

[370-7] _Meddle_ means _mix_. Miranda says she never thought of knowing
more about herself or her father.

[370-8] Prospero means that with his garment he lays his magic arts
aside and becomes the loving, human father.

[370-9] Prospero does not complete his sentence, but expresses the same
thought in different form.

[372-10] _Bootless inquisition_ means _fruitless questioning_. The
father has before begun to tell Miranda who she is, but has interrupted
himself, and said, "Stay, not yet."

[372-11] _Out_ means _fully_.

[372-12] Prospero says, in these two lines, "If you can remember
anything that happened before we came here, you may remember _how_ we
came here."

[373-13] _Holp_ is an old form of _helped_.

[373-14] _Teen_ is an old word that means _trouble_ or _anxiety_.

[373-15] _Please you, further_, means _Please you, tell me further_.

[373-16] _Manage_ means _management_.

[373-17] _Signiories_ is a name for _principalities_.

[373-18] _Prime_ means _first_ or _leading_.

[374-19] _Who_ is used for _whom_, as it was not considered
ungrammatical in Shakespeare's day.

[374-20] _Trash_ means _check_ or _set back_.

[374-21] _Over-topping_ means _rising too high_. Prospero means that his
brother knew what persons to check when they tried to rise too high, to
gain too much power.

[374-22] The brother understood the _key_ that kept officer and office
in tune, and so set the minds of all Prospero's subjects thinking as the
usurper wished. That is, Antonio took Prospero's friends away from him.

[374-23] We would say _so that_ instead of merely _that_.

[374-24] _To closeness_ means _to privacy_, to studies in his own home.

[374-25] _But_ in this sense means _except_.

[374-26] This is a difficult clause to understand. What Prospero means
is probably that his studies would have exceeded all popular estimate in
value, but that they (if they had not) kept him so retired from public
life. Prospero sees the mistake he made, but cannot give up the idea
that his studies were valuable.

[375-27] _Sans_ is a French word that means _without_.

[375-28] _By falsing it_ means _by falsifying it_ or _forging it_.

[375-29] Shakespeare omits the word _as_ before _to_. Antonio made so
great a sinner of his memory unto truth as to credit his own lie.

[375-30] _Out of the substitution_ may be understood to mean _because of
his being my substitute_.

[375-31] Prospero's tale is not clearly told. He is evidently thinking
of other things, and his sentences are often imperfect. His mind wanders
to the things he intends doing, to the storm, the strangers on the
island and to his plans for the future. Miranda is not inattentive--she
is fascinated by the story--but her father attributes his own wandering
thoughts to her.

[375-32] Tired of ruling behind a screen, for that is what Prospero
really was. Antonio planned to remove his brother and become absolute
Duke of Milan.

[375-33] Shakespeare omits the word _for_ before _me_.

[376-34] _So dry he was for sway_, might now be written as _so thirsty
he was for power_.

[376-35] Prospero bewails the fate of his principality, Milan.

[376-36] The meaning of the last seven lines is that Antonio thought
Prospero incapable of ruling, offered to pay the King of Naples an
annual tribute, to do him homage and to make Milan subject to Naples.

[376-37] _In lieu_ now means _instead of_, but Shakespeare uses it in
the sense of _in return for_.

[376-38] _Presently_ means _immediately_.

[376-39] _Practice_ means _plot_ or _stratagem_.

[376-40] The six lines mean that one midnight, suited to such a plot, a
treacherous army having been levied, Antonio opened the gates of Milan,
and in the dead of darkness hurried away Prospero and the crying

[377-41] In this place _hint_ means _theme_ or _subject_.

[377-42] _Upon's_ is _upon us_.

[377-43] _Impertinent_ in this connection means _out of place_.

[377-44] _Wench_ means _girl_, and at the time of Shakespeare was a term
of affection, like _dear girl_.

[377-45] _In few_ may be read as _in a few words_, that is, _to make the
story brief_.

[377-46] _Hoist us_ means _hoisted us_, that is _left us_.

[378-47] _Degg'd_ means _sprinkled_.

[378-48] Shakespeare, as was the custom in those days, often used the
word _stomach_ for _courage_; an _undergoing stomach_ is a _lasting

[378-49] _Steaded_ means _aided_. We might say, _which have since stood
us in good stead_.

[378-50] Readers of Shakespeare dispute about the meaning of this
sentence. We might imagine Prospero to say half to himself "Now _I
arise_;" that is, "My turn has come."

[378-51] _Made thee more profit_, that is, _have made you to profit
more_, have taught you to better advantage.

[379-52] The _zenith_ is the _highest point_.

[379-53] Prospero means that if he acts now his fortunes will rise to
their highest point, but that if he waits, he will lose his opportunity.

[379-54] Prospero, by his magic, throws his daughter into a deep sleep
so that he may carry on his plans without her knowledge.

[379-55] This line may be understood to read, _Ariel, and all spirits of
his kind_.

[379-56] _Performed to point_ means _performed in every respect_.

[379-57] The _beak_ of a ship is the _prow_, the projecting forward

[380-58] The _waist_ of a ship is the middle portion.

[380-59] _Distinctly_ means here _separately_. Ariel caused light globes
of flame to appear for a second in different parts of the rigging, and
to move about and to join.

[380-60] _Momentary_ means _instantaneous_.

[380-61] _Coil_ means _tumult_ or _confusion_.

[380-62] This clause means _There was not a soul that did not feel such
a fever as madmen feel_.

[380-63] In this place _upstaring_ means _sticking up_.

[381-64] For _unstaining_ we would say _unstained_.

[381-65] _Odd angle_ probably means _out-of-the-way place_.

[381-66] Probably Ferdinand sat with his arms folded loosely, his head
hanging on his breast.

[381-67] This is a good example of the way Shakespeare sometimes changes
the natural order in which the parts of a sentence should be placed.
Naturally the sentence would read: "Say, how hast thou disposed of the
mariners of the King's ship, and all the rest of the fleet?"

[381-68] _Bermoothes_ is the old form of the word _Bermudas_. It was
supposed that witches haunted the Bermudas and filled the air with
tempests, which kept the waters always stormy. _Still-vexed_ means
_always stormy_. The present errands of the spirit Ariel are not the
first he has executed for Prospero. Dew from the Bermudas was probably
wanted for some of his magical rites.

[381-69] To enjoy _The Tempest_, we must lay aside our reason to the
extent of believing in charms and in magic, in witchcraft and in Ariel's
wonderful powers. Prospero's control of the magic art is part of what he
gained from his studies while Antonio was stealing his principality.

[382-70] _Flote_ is _flood_, therefore _wave_ or _sea_.

[382-71] This means that it was about two o'clock in the afternoon--past
the mid-season by about the time it would take the sand to run twice
through the hour-glass.

[382-72] _Remember_ here means _remind_.

[382-73] _Perform'd me_ means _performed for me_.

[382-74] _Say_ no more.

[382-75] "To release me a full year before my time is up," is what Ariel
says Prospero has promised.

[383-76] This speech shows how marvelous are some of the things Ariel
has already done for Prospero.

[383-77] Prospero is not speaking in earnest when he calls Ariel a
"malignant thing." He intends to release Ariel soon.

[383-78] To Shakespeare and other writers of his time, the word _envy_
meant _malice_.

[383-79] _Argier_ is an old name for Algiers.

[383-80] _Blue-eyed_ means that the witch had dark blue circles around
her eyes, not that she had real blue eyes.

[383-81] _For_ means _because_.

[384-82] _Hests_ means _behests_ or _commands_.

[384-83] The witch confined Ariel _in_ a cloven pine tree.

[384-84] This line means _save for the son that was born here_.

[384-85] _Correspondent_ means _obedient_.

[385-86] _Miss_ means _spare_.

[385-87] _When_ was often used as an exclamation of impatience.

[386-88] Old meanings for _quaint_ are _artful, ingenious_.

[386-89] _Wicked dew_ probably means _poisonous dew_.

[386-90] Caliban, in cursing his master, alludes to the common belief of
that time that a southwest wind was unwholesome.

[386-91] _Side stitches_ are _stitches_ or _pains_ in the side.

[386-92] _Urchins_ were troublesome _sprites_ or _fairies_.

[386-93] _Vast_ alludes to the middle hours of night when in the
stillness and vacancy evil spirits can do their work.

[386-94] Just what Caliban means here is uncertain.

[387-95] _Sty_ here means _confine_, as in a sty.

[387-96] This clause means _did'st not, savage, know the meaning of
thine own words_.

[387-97] _Rid_ means _destroy_.

[388-98] _Old_ here, as often in the writings of Shakespeare's time, is
used merely to make stronger the meaning of the word that follows it.

[388-99] _Kiss'd the wild waves whist_ means _soothed the wild waves
into peace_.

[389-100] Ferdinand was suffering, and Shakespeare used the word
_passion_ to express the idea as we use it in speaking of the Passion of

[389-101] This line means _without suffering a change from the effects
of the sea_.

[389-102] _Owes_ here means _possesses_.

[389-103] Prospero speaking to Miranda says, "Lift up your eyelids and
tell me what you see yonder."

[389-104] In this connection _brave_ means _fine_ or _noble_.

[390-105] _Canker_ means _rust_ or _tarnish_. Prospero says,
"Except for the fact that he's somewhat stained with grief, which
tarnishes beauty, you might call him a goodly person."

[390-106] Miranda, it must be remembered, has never seen any other man
than her father.

[390-107] Prospero sees his plan going on well and gives Ariel credit
for it. Just what the plan is will soon become apparent.

[390-108] Ferdinand speaks somewhat aside when he sees the beautiful
Miranda, and then directly addresses her. He is embarrassed, calls her a
goddess, asks her how he shall behave, calls her a wonder, but above
all, wishes to know if she is mortal or not.

[390-109] The word _Miranda_ means _wonderful_

[390-110] "She speaks my language!"

[391-111] _A single thing_ means _a weak and companionless thing_.

[391-112] _Myself am Naples_ means _I am now the King of Naples_.

[391-113] Notice that this is the only mention of a son to Antonio, the
usurping Duke of Milan.

[391-114] _Control_ means here _confute_, that is, _tell you

[391-115] Prospero notices the interest the two young people have taken
in each other, and as this furthers his plan he feels more grateful to

[391-116] What Prospero says is, "I fear that in claiming to be the King
of Naples you have done some wrong to your character."

[392-117] Prospero wishes to test the love he sees in Ferdinand, and
make him earn his prize. So he charges the young man with deceit and
threatens him.

[392-118] _Fearful_ here means _timid_.

[393-119] _Ward_ is his position of defense to ward off a blow.

[393-120] _Nerves_ is here used for _muscles_ and _sinews_.

[394-1] This word means a ship--the _merchantman_.

[395-2] A _visitor_ in this sense is one who visits the sick to comfort
them. Antonio and Sebastian are ridiculing Gonzalo for his efforts to
cheer and console them.

[395-3] _Tell_ means _keep tally_. Sebastian means that the clock of
Gonzalo's wit has struck one.

[395-4] _Dolour_ means _grief_ or _sadness_.

[395-5] Instead of _of he or Adrian_, we would say merely _he or
Adrian_. Antonio offers to bet a good sum on which will speak first,
Gonzalo or Adrian.

[395-6] Gonzalo.

[395-7] _A match_ means _I take the bet_.

[396-8] Sebastian has lost his bet, and he pays with a laugh.

[396-9] Adrian means _temperature_ when he says _temperance_.

[396-10] People often named their girls _Temperance_, _Prudence_,
_Faith, etc._ It is to this fact that Antonio jokingly alludes.

[396-11] _Lush_ means _juicy_.

[396-12] _Eye_ here means _tint_ or _shade_.

[397-13] We would now say _for_ instead of _to_.

[397-14] Tunis is near the supposed site of Carthage. The story of Dido
and Æneas is told in Virgil's _Æneid_.

[397-15] One of the stories of the god Mercury is that he gave to
Amphion, King of Thebes, a magic harp upon which the king played and so
charmed the stones that they sprang into place to make the walls of his

[398-16] The meaning of _stomach_ in this line is _appetite_ or
_desire_. Alonso says they crowd their words into his ears when his
feelings do not relish such nonsense.

[398-17] _Rate_ means _estimation_.

[398-18] _His_ is used for _its_ and refers to _shore_.

[398-19] For _as_, read _as if_.

[399-20] _Who_ is used for _which_. This is but another illustration of
the changes that have taken place in the use of words since
Shakespeare's time.

[399-21] Sebastian tells the King that he alone is responsible for the
loss. Even his daughter weighed her wish to be obedient against her
loathing of the match.

[399-22] _Dearest_ here means the same as _heaviest_ or _worst_.

[399-23] _Chirurgeon_ is the old word for _surgeon_. Antonio says, "And
in the most surgeon-like manner."

[400-24] Gonzalo says, literally. "When you are sad, we all share your

[400-25] "Had I the colonizing" is what Gonzalo means. Antonio makes it
appear that Gonzalo was speaking of _planting_ the island.

[400-26] _Succession_ means _inheritance_, as a son _succeeds_ to his
father's property.

[400-27] _Bourn_ means _brook_, hence _boundary_, as of land.

[400-28] _Tilth_ means _tillage_ or _cultivation_, as of land.

[401-29] He probably means any _engine of war_.

[401-30] _Foison_ means _plenty_ of grain or fruits.

[401-31] The _Golden Age_ is that period of the world's history when
there was no sin, sorrow or suffering, and when all mankind was so good
that there was no need of government of any sort. The Greeks,
especially, but other peoples to some extent, have mythical tales of
such a time.

[401-32] _Sensible_ is here used for _sensitive_.

[401-33] Gonzalo admits that in witty talk he is nothing in comparison
to Antonio and Sebastian.

[401-34] A blow with the _flat_ of a sword is harmless: so is Gonzalo's

[402-35] We would say _should_ instead of _would_ in this case.

[402-36] When they used to hunt birds in the night, they called it
_bat-fowling_. Sometimes at night they took a light into the woods, and
while one of the hunters held a net in front of the light, the others
would beat the bushes round about. Some of the frightened birds would
fly directly at the light and become entangled in the net.

[402-37] _Adventure_ here means _put in peril_.

[402-38] Ariel is at work again, and in carrying out the plans of
Prospero, he causes some to fall asleep that the others may plot.

[402-39] _Omit_ here means _neglect_. Sebastian suggests that it will be
better for Alonso to go to sleep while he can. He has reasons for
wishing the King asleep.

[403-40] Alonso grows more sleepy under Ariel's influence, and in these
words alludes to what Sebastian has just said--"It is a wondrous heavy
offer of sleep."

[404-41] _They_ refers to the other men.

[404-42] Probably we must understand Antonio to mean, "What might you
be!" In this way Antonio begins to tempt Sebastian, whom he finds ready
to listen.

[404-43] _Speaks_ means _proclaims_.

[404-44] Antonio says in effect, "You close your eyes when you are
awake. You are blind to your opportunity."

[404-45] "If _you_ heed me."

[404-46] Antonio means, "Which if you do, you shall be three times as
great as you are now."

[405-47] By _I am standing water_, Sebastian means that he is like the
ocean standing between tides, ready to ebb or flow. That is, he is ready
to accept suggestions from Antonio.

[405-48] Antonio says in effect, "The more you ridicule the purpose I
suggest, the more you welcome it."

[405-49] _Ebbing men_, that is, _men whose fortunes are at a low ebb_.

[405-50] _Matter_ means _something of great importance_.

[405-51] "It is difficult or painful for you to say what you think."
While both have about the same idea in their minds, neither is quite
willing to speak of it openly. It is too cruel and murderous a thought.

[405-52] Francisco.

[405-53] That is, "this lord who remembers little of the favors done
him, and will be remembered no better."

[405-54] _Earth'd_ means _buried_.

[406-55] A _wink_ here means _the least distance_.

[406-56] It is difficult to say just what _But doubt discovery there_
means. Antonio says, "But out of your certainty that Ferdinand is
drowned, you have a great hope, a hope so high that ambition cannot see
anything greater."

[406-57] This means _ten leagues farther away than a man can travel in
his life_.

[406-58] _Can have no note_ means _can receive no word_.

[406-59] This clause means _unless the sun carried the mail_.

[406-60] _Though some were cast up again._

[406-61] This sentence means, _you and I can manage what is to come_.

[407-62] "_Measure us back_," etc., means the same as _Return to us_.

[407-63] The word _others_ may be understood after _there be_.

[407-64] A _chough_ is a bird of the jackdaw kind.

[407-65] This clause means, _I myself could breed a bird to talk as

[407-66] This is difficult to understand. Perhaps it means. "And how
does your present contentment advance or care for your interest?"

[407-67] _Feater_ means _more fittingly_ or _more becomingly_.

[408-68] A _kibe_ is a sore on the heel.

[408-69] _Candied_ means here the same as crystallized.

[408-70] This means, _while you, doing the same thing, might put Gonzalo
to continuous sleep forever_.

[408-71] _Suggestion_ here means _temptation_.

[408-72] _They'll tell the clock to any business_, etc., means _they
will speak any words we tell them to_.

[408-73] _Draw together_ is _let us draw our swords together_.

[409-74] That is, _Why are your swords drawn_?

[409-75] This means, _Why do you look so ghastly_?

[410-1] _Inch-meal_ means _piece-meal_.

[410-2] _Urchin-shows_ are _fairy-shows_.

[410-3] _Fire-brand_ refers to will o' the wisp, or dancing balls of
light seen sometimes at night in swampy places. People used to think
these lights were tended by naughty sprites who lured men into trouble.

[410-4] We would now say _sometimes_.

[410-5] _Mow_ means _make mouths_ or _grin_.

[411-6] _Pricks_, here, means their _prickles_ or _sharp quills_.

[411-7] Caliban is a monster, part brute, part human, more fish-like
than man-like, probably. He works only when Prospero drives him to it,
and he hates his master bitterly in spite of all that the latter has
done for him. Now Caliban is under punishment for his wickedness.

[411-8] _To bear off_ means _to keep off_.

[411-9] A _bombard_ is a black jar or jug to hold liquor.

[411-10] _Poor-john_ is an old name for dried and salted _hake_, a kind
of fish.

[411-11] Trinculo means that any strange beast could be exhibited and
make a man's fortune.

[412-12] A _gaberdine_ was a coarse outer garment or frock.

[412-13] A _swabber_ is a man who scrubs the decks of a ship.

[412-14] _Tang_ means _sharp taste_; here it means that Kate spoke

[413-15] _Inde_ may mean India as we understand it, or West India, that
is, America. Stephano probably alludes to the sham wonders from America
that were often exhibited by lying showmen.

[413-16] _Neat's-leather_ is _calfskin_.

[413-17] Stephano means that he will take all he can get.

[413-18] He alludes to an old saying, "Good liquor will make a cat

[414-19] This is probably the nearest to a prayer that Stephano can
remember in his fright.

[414-20] This alludes to an old proverb, "He that would eat with the
devil must use a long spoon."

[414-21] _Siege_ here means _seat_.

[414-22] A moon-calf was any shapeless monster; supposed to be made so
through the influence of the moon.

[415-23] The superstitious Trinculo is still a little afraid that
Stephano may be a ghost.

[415-24] _Constant_ here means _settled_, from his recent experiences in
the sea.

[415-25] The word _an_ may be omitted from before _if_ without altering
the meaning. Caliban fears the men may be evil spirits, but thinks
Stephano must be a god.

[415-26] _Sack_ is an old-fashioned intoxicating drink. A _butt_ is a
big cask holding about two hogsheads.

[416-27] All these things the fanciful used to think they could see in
the face of the moon.

[416-28] This probably means that Caliban had taken a long hearty
draught at the bottle.

[417-29] _Pig-nuts_ were probably _ground-nuts_, the small bulbous
growths on the roots of certain vines.

[417-30] A _staniel_ is a _kestril_, a beautiful hawk.

[418-1] Ferdinand says, "Some sports are painful, and the delight we
take in them offsets the labor."

[418-2] _Baseness_ here means _lowliness_, rather than anything base or

[418-3] Prospero has set Ferdinand to carrying logs, a hard task and a
lowly one, to test his love for Miranda, to find out how manly he really

[419-4] The meaning of this line probably is that when he works the
least he is really most wearied because he does not have Miranda's
sympathetic words to cheer him, or the sweet thought that he is working
for her.

[420-5] _Put it to the foil_, means _put it on the defensive_. Foil was
a general name for swords.

[420-6] Ferdinand thinks his father has been drowned, but wishes it were
not so, even though he is thereby made King.

[422-7] The flesh-fly is the blow-fly, which lays its eggs in meat and
helps its decay.

[422-8] _Hollowly_ here means _falsely_.

[422-9] We would now say, "_Whatsoever_ else."

[422-10] Instead of _to want_, we would say _from wanting_.

[423-11] _Fellow_ here means _equal_.

[423-12] _Bondman_ may be read for _bondage_. He accepts her as
willingly as a slave ever accepted freedom.

[423-13] "A thousand thousand _farewells_."

[423-14] Prospero desires Ferdinand to love and marry Miranda and has
planned for it, but he is surprised at the suddenness and strength of
their love.

[423-1] As in a naval battle one ship runs alongside another, and the
sailors leap aboard.

[424-2] _Set_ means _fixed and staring_.

[424-3] _Standard_ may be read _standard-bearer_.

[424-4] Trinculo means that Caliban is too drunk to stand.

[424-5] Trinculo is always jesting, even at his own expense. He means he
is so drunk he would pick a quarrel with a constable.

[424-6] _Debosh'd_ means _debauched_.

[425-7] A _natural_ is a fool or a simpleton.

[425-8] Stephano means "You shall be hanged on the next tree."

[425-9] As Ariel is invisible, each thinks another has spoken.

[425-10] "_This thing_" is Caliban himself.

[426-11] The court fools or jesters of that day wore clothes of many
colors--were _pied_, that is, _dappled_.

[426-12] _Patch_ is another word referring to the parti-colored clothing
of the jester.

[426-13] The _quick freshes_ are the running springs of fresh water.

[426-14] _Stock-fish_ is a word used in the writings of that period to
mean some kind of a fixture, which men struck with their fists or with
cudgels in practicing boxing and fighting.

[427-15] Stephano speaks first to Caliban, then to Trinculo.

[427-16] The _weazand_ is the windpipe or throat.

[427-17] _Sot_ in this place means _fool_, not _drunkard_. Caliban
thinks Prospero's books are the source of his magic power over such
spirits as Ariel and those he commands.

[427-18] _Brave_ here means _beautiful_ or _showy_.

[428-19] This speech of Ariel's is made aside, that is, out of hearing
of the three conspirators.

[428-20] _Troll the catch_ means _sing the jolly song_.

[428-21] _While-ere_ means _awhile since_.

[428-22] "I will do anything reasonable," says Stephano.

[428-23] "What is this music I hear?"

[428-24] A common sign in those times was called the picture of Nobody.
It consisted of a head upon two legs, with arms.

[429-25] Stephano probably means, "Take a blow from my fist," and speaks
to the invisible spirit or devil that he now thinks to be near them,
because of Ariel's curious interruptions.

[429-26] _Sometime_ is again used for _sometimes_.

[430-1] _By our lady!_ was a common exclamation. A diminutive form of
this was _by our ladykin_ which was contracted into _by our lakin_.

[430-2] _Forth-rights_ are straight lines.

[430-3] _Meanders_ are crooked lines.

[430-4] _Attach'd with_ means _seized by_.

[430-5] _Frustrate_ means _defeated_ or _baffled_.

[430-6] _Throughly_ means the same as _through_. Sebastian means that
the next time he will carry his purpose through.

[431-7] A _drollery_ was an amusing show of the _Punch and Judy_ kind,
where the characters were puppets. In a _living_ drollery, the
characters would be alive instead of puppets.

[431-8] The _phoenix_ was a fabled bird of antiquity which lived a
hundred years and then died in flames, only to rise young and strong
again from its ashes. There was but one such bird in the world, and
somewhere in Arabia was a tree, different from any other in the world,
in which the phoenix built its nest.

[431-9] _Certes_ means _for a certainty_.

[432-10] _Muse_ here means _wonder at_.

[432-11] Probably Prospero alludes to an old saying which meant, "Do not
praise your banquet too soon; wait till it is over."

[432-12] Among the _strange shapes_ that danced about the banquet were
deformed men from whose throats the flesh hung down in huge pockets,
like goitres, and others whose heads grew from their breasts without
neck and shoulders.

[432-13] Sometimes in Shakespeare's days they practiced a curious kind
of insurance. If a man were going on a long journey, he _put out_ in the
hands of agents a sum of money, under the agreement that if he returned
he was to have a certain number of times the money he put out. If the
journey was perilous, the agreement might call for five times the sum;
if a safer journey, perhaps twice the amount. If the traveler did not
return, the agents kept the sum put out. Gonzalo uses the phrase "_Each
putter-out of one for five_," to mean each man who goes on a perilous
journey. He means that every traveler returning vouches for, or gives
good warrant for, the wonders he has seen.

[433-14] Instead of _That hath to instrument_, we might read _That has
control of_. The whole sentence means: "You are three sinful men whom
Destiny, that rules this lower world and what is in it, has caused the
never-surfeited sea to throw on shore; yes, and on this island which man
does not inhabit; you who are among men the most unfit to live."

[433-15] Water closes immediately over any cut made in it.

[434-16] _Dowle_ means _down_, and the comparison means, _as cut off a
single thread of down from my plumes_.

[434-17] _Requit_ means here _revenged_.

[434-18] _Whose_ refers to the word _powers_ six lines before. The
meaning of the remainder of Ariel's speech is as follows: "Nothing but
repentance and a clear life hereafter can guard you from the wrath that
otherwise will fall upon your heads in this desolate isle."

[435-19] The meaning of the preceding clause is: "Thus with the skill of
life and keen observance of the ways of men, my humbler servants have
done their work, each according to his nature or kind."

[435-20] _It_ refers to his sin against Prospero.

[435-21] That is: "It sang my misdeed in a terrible bass."

[435-22] This clause means: "My son sleeps in the ooze on the bottom of
the ocean."

[435-23] _Mudded_ means _buried in mud_. Alonso threatens to drown

[436-24] There are said to be poisons which will not work until a long
time after a person takes them.

[436-25] For _ecstasy_, read _fit of madness_.

[437-1] _Vanity_ probably means _fine display_.

[437-2] _With a twink_ means _in the twinkling of an eye_.

[437-3] _Mop_ means _chattering_.

[437-4] _Mow_ means _making faces_. _Mop and mow_ were words applied to
such chattering and grinning as a monkey makes.

[437-5] A _corollary_ here means _more than enough_.

[437-6] _Pertly_ means _alertly_.

[437-7] Iris was the fleet messenger of the Greek gods. She had
beautiful golden wings, and as she flew across the heavens, she left the
many-colored rainbow as her trail.

[437-8] Ceres was the Greek goddess of the earth, who especially watched
over the growth of grain and fruits. She it is who brings rich harvests,
or when her attention is called away, permits drought to kill the

[438-9] _Stover_ is fodder. A mead thatched with stover is a meadow
covered with rich grass and hay.

[438-10] The common marsh-marigold was called _peony_ in some

[438-11] Reeds were called _twills_ in some localities.

[438-12] The frequent rains of April make the ground like a water-soaked

[438-13] This passage means: "Thy banks with edges bordered with
marsh-marigolds and reeds which rainy April trims to make cold crowns
for chaste nymphs."

[438-14] _Lass-lorn_ means _forsaken by his lass_.

[438-15] The poles in a vineyard are _clipt_ or _embraced_ by the vines.

[438-16] Juno was Queen of the sky and Iris was her special messenger.

[438-17] Rainbow.

[438-18] Peacocks were sacred to Juno and are represented as
accompanying her.

[438-19] Jupiter was the chief god of the ancient Greeks, and Juno was
his wife.

[440-20] _Bosky_ means _wooded_.

[440-21] _Unshrubbed downs_ are tracts of land on which no bushes grow.

[440-22] Venus was the Greek goddess of love and beauty.

[440-23] _Dis_ is another name for Pluto, who according to the Greek
mythology ruled in the dismal lower world.

[440-24] By the aid of Venus, Pluto stole Proserpina, the daughter of
Ceres and Jupiter, and carried her away to be his queen in Hades.

[440-25] Her _blind boy_ is Cupid, the mischievous little god of love.

[440-26] Paphos was a city in Cyprus, where Venus loved to live.

[440-27] Juno's walk was very stately and dignified.

[440-28] Juno was a large, noble, motherly-looking woman, who is
represented in art as attended by the nymphs and the hours, as well as
by Iris. The goose and the cuckoo were as much Juno's birds as the
peacock. She was the protectress of young married people and infants,
and so was worshipped especially by women.

[441-29] _Foison_ and _plenty_ mean about the same thing. The phrase
might be read, _overflowing plenty_, a great plenty.

[441-30] This means, may a new spring come as soon as you have gathered
the harvest of the old one. May there be no winter in your lives.

[441-31] Ferdinand is still amazed, and inquires if they are really
spirits that he sees.

[442-32] _So rare a wonder'd father_ means, _so rarely wonderful a

[442-33] _Crisp_ means _curled_, alluding to the wavelets that the
breezes make on the surface of the water.

[442-34] The _sicklemen_ are reapers called from the harvest fields to
make merry.

[443-35] _Avoid_ means _begone_.

[443-36] The thin fleecy clouds, highest in the sky, were called _rack_.

[443-37] _On_ is here used for _of_.

[443-38] We would say _rounded off_ or _finished_.

[444-39] _I thank ye_ is spoken to Ferdinand and Miranda, and is
Prospero's reply to their good wishes.

[444-40] _Meet with_ means _oppose_ or _counteract_.

[444-41] _For breathing_ means _because it breathed_. In the next line,
_for kissing_ means _because it kissed_.

[444-42] _Unback'd_ means _unridden_.

[444-43] _Advanced_ means _raised_.

[445-44] The pool was mantled, or covered over, with filth.

[445-45] For _that_ read _so that_ or _insomuch that_.

[445-46] _Stale_ means _bait_. It was a term used by hunters for a bait
that would lure birds.

[445-47] Caliban.

[445-48] _Nurture_ can never stick on his _nature_: that is, he can
never be improved by culture or education.

[445-49] _Cankers_ means _rusts_, or here, _eats into itself_.

[445-50] It is not known whether _line_ refers to a clothesline or to a
line tree. Only Shakespeare himself could tell us to a certainty.

[446-51] _Play'd the Jack with us._ "Led us astray as a Jack-o'-lantern

[446-52] _To hoodwink this mischance_ means _to make it forgotten_ or

[446-53] In Hudson's Shakespeare this is explained as an allusion to the
old ballad entitled "Take thy old Cloak about thee." The following
stanza is quoted:

    "_King Stephen_ was a worthy _peer_,
    His breeches cost him but a crown:
    He held them sixpence all too dear.
    Therefore he called the tailor lown."

[447-54] A _frippery_ was a shop where old clothes were sold. Trinculo
has found the clothing Ariel hung upon the line.

[447-55] _Under the line._ We can imagine that Stephano has pulled the
leather jerkin or coat from the line. When he says _under the line_, he
thinks of that as an expression sailors use when they are near the
equinoctial line or equator, where the heat is intense, so strong as to
take the hair or fur off the coat and make it a _bald jerkin_.

[447-56] _By line and level_, that is, as architects build, by
plumb line and level. Trinculo picks up the word _line_ and makes a new
pun on it.

[448-57] A _pass_ is a _thrust_; _pate_ is _head_. _Pass of pate_ is a
_thrust_ or _sally of wit_.

[448-58] _Lime_ is a sticky substance used to catch birds.

[448-59] _Barnacles_ here means _barnacle-geese,_ a kind of geese
supposed by the superstitious to be produced when certain barnacles or
shell-fish fell into the sea water.

[449-60] _Pard_ is a contraction for _leopard_; _cat-o'-mountain_ may be
another name for wild-cat, though wild-cats are not spotted. Probably
the term is loosely used to mean any spotted animal of the cat tribes.

[450-1] _Goes upright with his carriage_ means, _goes erectly under his
burden_, that is, there is time enough to accomplish what Prospero
wishes to do.

[450-2] That is, "In the grove of line-trees which protects your cell
from the weather."

[450-3] _Till your release_ means _till you release them_.

[451-4] In this place _all_ has the sense of _quite_; _relish_ means
_feel_; _passion_ has the sense of _suffering_. The meaning of the
clause is, that feel suffering quite as sharply as they.

[451-5] _Neptune_, the name of the god of the seas, is used for _sea_ or

[451-6] "Fairy rings" are green circles in the grass. They were supposed
to be caused by fairies dancing in a circle, but are now known to be
caused by mushrooms which grow in circles and which enrich the ground as
they decay. Because it contained some peculiar quality which Shakespeare
calls sourness, the sheep would not eat the grass of the rings.

[452-7] Because mushrooms and toadstools spring up so quickly in the
night, they were supposed to be the work of fairies.

[452-8] The curfew rings at night, and the fairies rejoice to hear it,
for it is the signal for them to begin their frolics.

[452-9] The fairies are weak masters, that is, they can accomplish
little if left to themselves, but under the direction of a human mind
like Prospero's they could work such wonders as he describes.

[452-10] The oak was sacred to Jove (Jupiter), and lightning and
thunder-bolts were his chief weapons.

[452-11] The spurs are the long _roots_ of the pines and cedars.

[453-12] _Boil'd_ is used for _boiling_ or _seething_.

[453-13] _Sociable to_ means _sympathizing with_.

[453-14] _Fall fellowly drops_ means _shed tears in sympathy_.

[453-15] _Rising senses_ means _clearing mental faculties_.

[453-16] _Ignorant fumes that mantle_ alludes to the confusion that the
charm has caused in their ideas. The whole passage means simply that
they are recovering their senses.

[453-17] This sentence means, _I will reward thee to the utmost_.

[453-18] _Remorse_ here means _pity_.

[453-19] _Nature_ here means _brotherly love_.

[454-20] _The reasonable shore_ means _the shore of reason_. As the tide
rises to the shore of the sea, so their clearing thoughts fill their

[454-21] _Discase me_ means _remove my disguise_.

[454-22] _As I was sometime Milan_ means _as I was once, the Duke of

[454-23] The meaning of the three lines preceding has been much
disputed. No one knows exactly what the poet meant. Perhaps Ariel sings
with this meaning: "When the owls cry and foretell the approach of
winter, I fly on the back of a bat in a merry search for summer."

[456-24] Ariel uses this fanciful way of saying that he will go as fast
as human thought.

[456-25] _Whêr_ is a contraction of _whether_.

[456-26] _Trifle_ here means _phantom_ or _spirit_.

[456-27] This clause means, _if this be at all true_.

[456-28] _My wrongs_ means _the wrongs I have done_.

[456-29] He speaks to Gonzalo.

[457-30] _Taste some subtilties_ means _feel some deceptions_.

[457-31] _Justify you traitors_ means _prove that you are traitors_.

[457-32] _Woe_ here means _sorry_.

[458-33] _As late_ means _as recent_.

[458-34] In this place _admire_ means _wonder_.

[458-35] _Are natural breath_ means _are the breath of a human being_.
The lords are still amazed; they cannot reason, they can scarcely
believe their eyes or that the words they hear come from a living human

[458-36] In this connection _yet_ means _now_ or _for the present_.

[458-37] That is, it is a story to be told day after day.

[459-38] Miranda playfully accuses Ferdinand of cheating in the game.

[459-39] The exact meaning of _wrangle_ has not been determined, and
critics still disagree. However, what Miranda says is, "you might cheat
me for a score of kingdoms and yet I would call it fair play."

[459-40] Alonzo means that if this sight of Ferdinand is one of the
witcheries of the island, he will feel that he has lost his son a second

[460-41] And this lady by becoming my wife makes him a second father to

[462-42] That is, "all of us have found our senses, when no man was in
possession of his own."

[462-43] See Act I--Scene I.

[462-44] This sentence means, "Now you blasphemous man who swore so on
board the ship that we could be saved, have you not an oath to swear on

[463-45] _Tricksy_ means _clever_.

[463-46] _Capering to eye her_ means _dancing with joy at seeing her_.

[463-47] _Moping_ here means _bewildered_.

[463-48] _Conduct of_ is used for _conductor_ or _leader of_.

[463-49] That is, "some wise man must make it clear to us."

[463-50] This sentence means "Do not trouble your mind by hammering away
at the strangeness of these happenings."

[464-51] _At pick'd leisure_ is _at a chosen time when we have the

[464-52] _Single I'll resolve_ means _I will explain singly_.

[464-53] _Of every these happen'd accidents_ means _how every one of
these things happened_.

[464-54] Stephano is still a little drunk and his tongue uncertain in
its speech. He means, _Let us every man shift for himself_.

[464-55] _Coragio_ is used for _courage!_

[464-56] Trinculo means, "If my eyes do not deceive me."

[465-57] _Without_ here means _outside of_ or _beyond_.

[465-58] _Gilded_ is a word that was commonly applied to a man who was

[465-59] Meat that is infested with maggots which have hatched from eggs
laid by flies is said to be fly-blown. These will not lay their eggs in
pickled meat. Trinculo says he has been so pickled, that is drunk, that
the flies will not blow him.

[465-60] Stephano is sore from his torments, but as the word _sore_ also
means _harsh_ and _severe_, he makes a good pun in his speech.

[466-61] _Retire me_ means _withdraw myself_.

[466-62] Prospero has accomplished his purpose; he has recovered his
dukedom, has found a suitable husband for his daughter, and now feels
that life has little in store for him. So every third thought will be in
preparation for his death.

[467-63] The Epilogue is a part spoken by one of the actors after the
play is over, and is addressed to the audience. Here _Prospero_ steps
forward and speaks.

[467-64] He has dismissed Ariel and laid aside all his magic arts.

[467-65] The audience may hold him on the island or send him to Naples,
for he is still under a spell.

[467-66] He asks the audience to applaud, to clap their hands, for noise
always breaks charms, and will release him from the enchantment so that
he may return to his dukedom.


THE AUTHOR. Many times we have had occasion to say that an acquaintance
with an author has much to do with our liking for his works, and as we
read the great plays of our greatest poet, we wish we might know him
more intimately. However, when we look for information concerning him,
we quickly find that comparatively little is known of the man beyond
what we can draw from his writings, and few authors have shown
themselves less vividly. After doing our best, we can find only a great,
shadowy Author who must have had a broad knowledge, a rare invention, a
profound insight into human nature, a penetrating sympathy and a
marvelous power of expression. As seen through his works, he appears
more than human, but when we look into our histories, we wonder that so
great a man could have lived and died, and left so light an impression
on his times. In fact, some wise men have felt that the William
Shakespeare we know could never have written the great plays that bear
his name. That is a question, however, we need not discuss; it is better
to leave the credit where it has rested for centuries, and believe that
the plays are better evidence of Shakespeare's greatness than his own
life is evidence of his ability to write them.

William Shakespeare was born in Stratford-on-Avon, April 23, 1564. His
father, John Shakespeare, was a respectable citizen, a wool-dealer and a
glover, who at one time possessed considerable means, and was an
alderman and a bailiff in the little town, but who later on lost most of
his property and ceased to be prominent in the affairs of the village.
William's mother was Mary Arden, a gentle, tender woman of Norman
descent, who exerted a powerful influence over the lives of her

Until William was about fourteen years old he attended the free school
in Stratford, and though there are many legends concerning his boyhood
pranks and his gift for learning, we know practically nothing for a
certainty. In one of the desks at the school, they still show the
initials he is supposed to have cut during some idle moment. Of his
youth we know still less, except that at about eighteen he married Ann
Hathaway, a farmer's daughter who lived in the village of Shottery, a
mile or two from Stratford. Ann was eight years older than William, but
they seem to have lived happily and to have loved the children that were
born to them.

The next thing we can be really certain of is, that about the time
William was twenty-three he went to London and soon became connected
with a company of actors. Here the genius of the poet began to make
itself felt. He wrote some plays, he recast others, and by the time he
had been five years in the city, he was prominent among the bright men
of his time, and was recognized as a rising man. Unlike most actors and
writers of that period, Shakespeare was not a dissipated man, but
attended carefully to his duties, saved his money, and ten years after
he left Stratford was able to return to his native town and buy a fine
estate, to which he added from time to time. His money had not all come
from his writings and his acting, however, for he owned a large part of
the stock in the two leading theaters in London.

About 1604 he ceased to be an actor, although he continued to write for
the stage, and in fact produced his greatest plays after that date.
Seven years later he returned finally to Stratford, and there lived a
quiet and delightful home life until 1616, when on the anniversary of
his birth he died suddenly of a fever. He was buried in the little
parish church at Stratford, where his remains rest beside those of his
wife. On the flat stone that covers his body is inscribed this epitaph:

    "Good frend for Iesus sake forbeare,
    To digg the dvst encloased heare:
    Blesse be ye man yt spares thes stones,
    And Cvrst be he yt moves my bones."

Such are the principal facts that we know concerning the great man, and
a simple biography it certainly is. We must not, however, think that he
was not popular among his fellows, or that he was merely a successful
business man. He counted among his friends the wisest and best men of
his time, and some of them have written their impressions of him. Ben
Jonson, a rough but sincere and honest man, says: "I loved the man, and
do honor his memory, on this side idolatry, as much as any. He was
indeed honest, and of an open, free nature; had an excellent phantasy,
brave notions and gentle expressions."

THE PLAY. _The Tempest_ was one of the last of the poet's dramas, though
not the last, as some writers have contended. It was not printed until
1623, after the poet's death, but it was written, according to Hudson,
between 1603 and 1613, and probably between 1610 and 1613.

The story seems to have been original with Shakespeare; at least no
satisfactory evidence has been given to show that he borrowed it. This
is rather unusual, for Shakespeare showed a fine contempt for
originality, and borrowed the plots of his plays from a great variety of
sources. His own version of each story, however, was so masterly that no
one regrets that he availed himself of all the assistance he could get.

The scene of the play is laid on an island; what island we do not know.
Probably it is as mythical as the events that happened on it.

_The Tempest_ is one of Shakespeare's most perfect plays. In form it is
perfect, and follows, more closely than was customary with him, the
strict laws of the old Greek dramas, the laws which critics still uphold
as those governing the highest art. The three unities are here observed:
The events all occur in a single day; they happen in a single place;
from beginning to end there is one continuous line of thought. Only the
last characteristic is still generally observed by dramatic writers.

Beside perfection in form, _The Tempest_ shows the greatest nicety in
the way the natural and supernatural move along together without a
single interference. It is difficult to think of the magic art of
Prospero as more marvelous than the coarse plotting of Sebastian, or to
consider the delicate Ariel and the mis-shapen Caliban less human than
the manly Ferdinand, or the honest old Gonzalo. Only a great writer
could accomplish this, and none but a genius could make of his work a
piece so fine that we delight in every line of it. It would be unfair
too not to mention the beautiful expressions that abound in it, the high
sentiments that prevail, and the great renunciation that Prospero makes
when he has in his hands every means for swift and terrible revenge.

CHARACTERS. In reading the drama we become acquainted with the
characters, and begin to be indifferent toward some, to have admiration
for others and contempt for others. In real life we must not be governed
by our first impressions of people. We must study their appearance,
their speech, their actions, and make up our minds as to their
characters before we decide to make them our friends. It is very unwise
to trust every agreeable person we meet, and especially unwise to be
suspicious of every person who at first impresses us unfavorably. The
older we grow, the keener becomes our power to read character, and the
less liable we are to be deceived if we try always to use our best
judgment. One of the great benefits literature can offer us is the
opportunity to study character, and Shakespeare had such a remarkable
insight into human nature, and so great a power of drawing character
that in his plays we can see before us almost every type of human being,
and from a study of them we can gain a knowledge of humanity that will
help us every day of our lives.

Accordingly, let us take up, one after another, the principal characters
in _The Tempest_ and study them in such a way that we shall be able to
read other plays with greater ease and quickened intelligence.

1. _Prospero._ The hero of the drama is a man well advanced in years,
grave, dignified and serene. As Duke of Milan he was a prince of power,
"without a parallel in dignity and knowledge." He was popular with his
subjects, for so dear was the love his people bore him, that the
conspirators did not dare to destroy him. Yet he was not inclined to
rule his dukedom, for he grew a stranger to his estate, so transported
and wrapt was he in secret studies. He confesses that his library was
dukedom enough for him, and that he had volumes that he prized above his
dukedom. This was his weakness, and upon this his false brother preyed,
until one night in the dead of darkness the Duke and the crying Miranda
were set adrift in the rotten carcass of a boat, which the very rats
instinctively had quit.

On the island, with the books Gonzalo had preserved for him, he
continued his studies and played the schoolmaster to his gentle child
until she was better educated and more highly cultured than other
princesses that spend more time in vain enjoyments and have less careful
tutors. Prospero's love for his daughter is the strong, central trait
in his character. He has raised her judiciously, guarded her zealously,
and now when he finds, brought to his very door, all the actors in the
tragedy of his life, his one great care is to provide for Miranda's
happiness. All his plans lead to that end, and when he has achieved it,
the labors of his life are over.

The supernatural powers that Prospero has acquired seem natural to the
studious, dignified old gentleman, and amazing as they are, we can
discredit none of them. He tells us he caused the storm, and Miranda
begs him to save the passengers on the doomed ship with perfect
confidence in his ability to do it. He causes sleep to fall on Miranda,
and he summons the gentle Ariel, who enters as naturally as a human
being, and admits the marvelous acts that he has seen Prospero perform.
Caliban testifies to the power of Prospero so convincingly that we know
the magician has control of the destinies of every human being on the
island, and can wreak a terrible vengeance if he is determined to do it.
When Ferdinand draws his sword, the magician by a word makes him
powerless as he stands. We see the magic banquet appear and disappear,
and Iris, Ceres, Juno, the nymphs and the reapers come and converse, as
a proof positive of his more than mortal power. How has he used this
power and how will he continue to use it? When first he came upon the
island it was full of evil, and the powers of darkness ruled. He has
imprisoned and punished the evil spirits; freed the gentle and the good,
banished all discord, and filled the island "full of noises, sounds and
sweet airs that give delight and hurt not." That in the future he will
use his vast power only for good, we feel assured. Only Caliban hates
and abuses him, but the testimony of one so wicked rather proves the
gentleness, wisdom and justice of the magician.

Prospero's passionate love for his daughter makes him cunning and wise.
Before he will trust his daughter to Ferdinand, he tests both the
character and the love of the latter most severely. He even feigns anger
and appears to be cruel and unjust. That he is feigning, neither
suspect, but Miranda says: "Never till this day saw I him touch'd with
anger so distemper'd," and "My father's a better nature, sir, than he
appears by speech." When he is assured of Ferdinand's worthiness, of the
sincerity of his love for Miranda and of her devotion to her young
lover, he is delighted, and becomes so interested in the entertainment
he is giving them, that he forgets the plot against his life, although
the hour of his danger has arrived. It is true the father stoops to
listening, but his purpose is so worthy, no one is inclined to cavil at
his watchfulness, and, in any event, his exceeding care but justifies
the feeling that his love for Miranda is the mainspring of his every

On this small island Prospero is little less than a god, and controls
affairs with almost supernatural justice and wisdom. Caliban, the
ungrateful, terribly wicked monster, is punished unsparingly but with
justice, for in the end with repentance he is forgiven, and the tortures
cease. Ariel and the other obedient spirits, though reproved at times,
are rewarded by freedom and placed beyond the reach of the evil powers
of earth and air.

The sufferings Prospero has endured, the intensity of his studies, and
the fierceness of his struggles with the supernatural powers of evil,
have given a tinge of sadness to his thought, and have led him to feel
that the result of all his labors may amount to little. The world is to
him but an insubstantial pageant that shall dissolve and fade, leaving
not the trace of the thinnest cloud behind. And as for ourselves,

                                  "We are such stuff
    As dreams are made on, and our little life
    Is rounded with a sleep."

Yet no sooner does he give way to this feeling than he sees how unkind
it is to trouble the young with such musings, and says pathetically to

                                    "Sir, I am vex'd;
    Bear with my weakness; my old brain is troubled:
    Be not disturbed with my infirmity."

It is, however, at the end of the play, when all his plans have been
carried out successfully, and enemies and friends are alike at his
mercy, that the character of Prospero shines out most gloriously.
Rejoicing at the fruition of his hopes, he asks from his enemies only a
sincere repentance, and then nobly resigning the great arts which have
rendered the plotters powerless, he forgives them one and all: his
brother Antonio; the scheming Sebastian; Caliban, the evil spirit; and
the two weak but wicked ones, Stephano and Trinculo. Then with
generosity unparalleled he restores Ferdinand to his father, the King,
who has joined with Antonio, and promises to all "calm seas, auspicious
gales and sail so expeditious that shall catch your royal fleet far
off." Remembering to set Ariel free, he lays aside his magic gown,
breaks his staff, buries it fathoms deep in the earth, and drowns his
magic book deeper than did ever plummet sound. Thus he leaves us, only a
man once more, but a loving father, a wise and gentle ruler.

2. _Miranda._ We have seen that the master feeling in Prospero's soul is
his love for his daughter. Is she worthy of so great an affection? Let
us draw our answers from the drama.

(a) She is beautiful.

Ferdinand says:

                "Most sure, the goddess
    On whom these airs attend!"


          "O you wonder!
    If you be maid or no?"

Caliban says:

    "And that most deeply to consider is
    The beauty of his daughter; he himself
    Calls her a nonpareil: I ne'er saw woman
    But only Sycorax my dam and she;
    But she as far surpasseth Sycorax
    As great'st does least."

Alonzo says:

    "Is she the goddess that hath sever'd us,
    And brought us thus together?"

(b) She is educated, cultured and refined.

Prospero says:

                                        "And here
    Have I, thy schoolmaster, made thee more profit
    Than other princesses can, that have more time
    For vainer hours, and tutors not so careful."

(c) She is tender-hearted, sympathetic and compassionate.

She says:

              "O, I have suffer'd
    With those that I saw suffer!"


                "O, the cry did knock
    Against my very heart!"

Prospero speaks of these traits:

        "Wipe thou thine eyes; have comfort.
    The direful spectacle of the wreck, which touch'd
    The very virtue of compassion in thee,----"

Speaking of the trials which Prospero puts upon Ferdinand, she says:

    "Make not too rash a trial of him, for
    He's gentle and not fearful."

When she learns of her helplessness at the time they were set adrift,
she says:

                "O, my heart bleeds
    To think o' the teen that I have turn'd you to."

When Miranda hears how her father was treated by her false uncle, she

                    "Alack, for pity!
    I, not remembering how I cried on't then,
    Will cry it o'er again: it is a hint
    That wrings mine eyes to't."

(d) She is brave.

Prospero says of her childhood:

                                "O, a cherubim
    Thou wast that did preserve me! Thou didst smile,
    Infused with a fortitude from Heaven."

(e) She is innocent and unacquainted with mankind and hates the sight of

When she first sees Ferdinand, she asks:

                      "What is't? A spirit?
    Lord, how it looks about! Believe me, sir,
    It carries a brave form. But 'tis a spirit."


                      "I do not know
    One of my sex; no woman's face remember,
    Save, from my glass, mine own; nor have I seen
    More that I may call men, than you, good friend."

And finally:

    "How beauteous mankind is! O brave new world,
    That has such people in't."

She says of Caliban:

              "'Tis a villain, sir,
    I do not love to look on."

(f) She is grateful.

When she is told of Gonzalo's services to her and her father, she

                      "Would I might
    But ever see that man!"

(g) She is a loving, faithful woman:

While Ferdinand is at work she pleads:

                "Alas, now, pray you,
    Work not so hard,----
    Pray, set it down, and rest you: when this burns,
    'Twill weep for having wearied you."


                "If you'll sit down,
    I'll bear your logs the while."

Later Ferdinand asks, "Wherefore weep you?" Miranda answers:

    "At mine unworthiness,----
    ----Hence, bashful cunning!
    And prompt me, plain and holy innocence!
    I am your wife, if you will marry me;
    If not, I'll die your maid: to be your fellow
    You may deny me; but I'll be your servant,
    Whether you will or no."

(h) Lover and father both bestow unqualified praise upon her. Ferdinand

                    "Admired Miranda!
    Indeed the top of admiration; worth
    What's dearest to the world!----
                            ----but you, O you,
    So perfect and so peerless, are created
    Of every creature's best!"

Her father says:

                        "O Ferdinand,
    Do not smile at me that I boast her off,
    For thou shalt find she will outstrip all praise,
    And make it halt behind her."

3. _Ferdinand._ The quotations we have made from the text seem to have
answered our question as to Miranda's worthiness. Upon what sort of a
man has she set her affections? Will she find in her husband the man she
thinks she is to marry? Answer these questions for yourselves by reading
the text and setting down the proofs as we did while studying Miranda.

4. _Ariel._ Prospero's agent Ariel is an interesting study, for the poet
has drawn him with lines so clear and exact that he seems a veritable
person. Will you not seek to know him, and in doing so follow these

(a) Ariel appears in the following scenes:

  ACT I    SCENE II   (three times)
  ACT II   SCENE I    (twice)
  ACT III  SCENE II   (once)
           SCENE III  (once)
  ACT IV   SCENE I    (once)
  ACT V    SCENE I    (five times)

How many scenes are there in the play? In how many does Ariel appear? In
what scenes does he make no appearance? What characters appear more
times? What characters appear more prominently in the play?

(b) Ariel does many different things. Make a list of the things Ariel
does in this plays and a second list of the things that it appears Ariel
has done elsewhere.

(c) Ariel appears in different forms. What are these forms? Is Ariel
ever visible to any of the characters besides Prospero? Does Ariel ever
appear visibly to Prospero? If the play were to be acted on the stage,
would it be necessary at any time to have a person come upon the stage
to represent him?

(d) Ariel has human characteristics. What acts like those of a human
being does Ariel commit? What does Ariel say that shows him to have
human traits?

(e) Ariel is a spirit. What supernatural things does Ariel do? What does
Ariel say that makes him seem more than human?

(f) Ariel has a many-sided character. Find in the play where the
following questions are answered: Is he faithful? Does he do his duties
well? Does Ariel love music? Does he feel gratitude? Does he always
favor the right? Is Ariel merry? Does he love fun? Does he play
practical jokes? Does he love warmth and light, or cold and darkness? Is
he sympathetic? Does he lessen the grief of any one? Does he lead any
one to remorse for evil deeds? Does he assist love in the hearts of
Ferdinand and Miranda? Do you think Prospero always treats him fairly?
Does he seem so light and inconstant that he needs some discipline? What
will he do when he is released from Prospero's control? Finally, does
Ariel seem lovable to you, would you like him as a friend and companion
as well as a powerful servant?

5. _Caliban._ It is difficult to tell just what the slave of Prospero
looked like, and it is not at all unlikely that the poet intended we
should not see him very clearly. He is a hideous spectacle, scarcely
human, yet resembling a man in some respects. He is called in various
places villain, slave and tortoise; a moon-calf, that is, a shapeless
lump; a fish, with legs like a man and fins like arms; a puppy-headed
monster; a man monster; half a fish and half a monster; a plain fish; a
mis-shaped knave; "as strange a thing as e'er I looked upon;" and it is
said of him that his manners are as disproportioned as his shape.

Is the character of Caliban apparently in keeping with his appearance?
What does Prospero say of him? Do you place confidence in the opinion of
such a man as Prospero, and do you feel that he is not unnecessarily
severe? Does Caliban do anything to justify the bad character Prospero
gives him early in the play? Why do you suppose Shakespeare introduces
into the play such a character? Does such a character heighten the
effect of the others?

6. _Other Characters._ Classify the other characters as good or bad.
Where did you place Alonso? Is there any doubt at all as to where
Gonzalo should be placed? Are there any redeeming traits in Stephano? Do
you think Trinculo's jesting is really funny? Would you like the play
better if Stephano and Trinculo were left out of it? What can you find
in the boatswain's words to justify the opinion Gonzalo holds of him?
Which is the greater scoundrel, Sebastian or Antonio?

THE STORY or PLOT. A certain duke has been by treachery driven from his
principality with his infant daughter, and has found refuge on an
uninhabited island. After many years those who plotted against him are
thrown into his power, he recovers his dukedom and marries his daughter
to the son of his king. Such, in brief, is the plot of _The Tempest_,
but how wonderfully it is expanded, and how many characters have been
created, how many incidents created to give interest and truthfulness to
the narrative. Let us follow the play through, and by studying the
relation of the incidents, one to another, learn to appreciate more
fully the art of the great magician who wrote the play.

ACT I--SCENE I. _Purpose:_ To introduce the enemies of Prospero. Do we
know at the time of such a person as Prospero? Do we know why the
persons are on the ship, where they intended to go or where they are
now? When do we find out these things? What idea do you get of Gonzalo
in the first scene? Why is his conversation with the boatswain put into
the play?

ACT I--SCENE II. _Purpose:_ To bring before us all the leading
characters in the play, and to tell us enough about them to secure our
interest; also to give us the history necessary to an understanding of
the plot. When do we first learn that there are miracles and magic in
the play? How do we learn what has happened to Prospero before the time
of the storm? How do we learn Ariel's history? How are we made
acquainted with Caliban? How do we learn that Prospero raised the storm?
How were the mariners confused, and by whom were all saved? What did
Prospero whisper in the ear of Ariel when the latter came in after
Prospero has called Caliban? What incident followed as a result of this
command? How did Ariel lead Ferdinand? Are there other places in the
play where Ariel leads people in the same way? What do you call the
three most important incidents in this scene? What incidents could be
left out of this scene without interfering with the development of the

ACT II--SCENE I. _Purpose:_ To account for the presence of the plotters,
and to show the character of the men. Is it necessary to the development
of the main plot that Sebastian and Antonio should scheme to kill the
king? Do any of the incidents of this scene have any direct bearing on
the main plot? Could any of the incidents of this scene be omitted
without injury to the play?

ACT II--SCENE II. _Purpose:_ To create amusement, lighten the play and
by contrast make the fine parts more beautiful. Is any character in the
scene absolutely essential to the completion of the story? Would you
understand the story as well if the entire scene were omitted?

ACT III--SCENE I. _Purpose:_ To disclose Prospero's purpose more fully,
and to secure our interest in Ferdinand and Miranda.

ACT III--SCENE II. What is the purpose of this scene? What bearing do
the incidents of this scene have upon the main plot?

ACT III--SCENE III. What effect is the magic banquet to have on the
persons who saw it? What was Prospero's purpose in showing it? Did it
contribute in any way to the success of his general plan?

ACT IV--SCENE I. What incidents in this scene are necessary, and what
are introduced to give light and beauty to the play? What is the effect
of introducing Caliban and his companions right after Ariel and the
spirits have been entertaining Ferdinand and Miranda? What are Mountain,
Silver, Fury and Tyrant, mentioned in this scene?

ACT V--SCENE I. What is the purpose of this scene? Is the plot brought
to a satisfactory conclusion? Are there any characters left unaccounted
for? Does every character in the play appear in this scene? Are they all
on the stage when the curtain falls?

Make a list of the incidents which to you seem unnecessary, which could
be left out without injury to the real story. Make another list of
incidents that could not be omitted without spoiling the story. Find two
little plots that make complete stories in themselves, but that help
only in a moderate degree to make the main story clearer.

POETRY AND PROSE. Do any of the characters speak always in prose? Do any
speak always in poetry? Do some speak partly in prose and partly in
poetry? Can you see any connection between each character and his method
of speech? How many songs are sung in the play? Who sings them? Do you
like any of the songs? What effect do the songs have upon the play? Can
you find rhyming lines anywhere excepting in the songs? Does any
character speak in rhyme?

CONCLUSION. If we study a play too long or continue to read it after our
interest ceases for a time, we are liable to be prejudiced against it,
and to feel that it is not worth the labor we have put upon it. If,
however, a person will stop studying when he begins to lose interest and
work seems a drudgery, he will come back a little later with renewed
interest. Again, when we study a play minutely as we have been doing,
and view it from many sides, we may lose sight for a time of the unity
and beauty of the whole composition. This is peculiarly unfortunate, for
the poet intends us to view his work as a whole, and to produce his
effect with the whole. It is _The Tempest_ that we will remember as a
work of art, and, if our studies are fruitful, that will draw us back to
it at intervals for many years to come. Before we leave it, we must take
it and read it through in a leisurely manner, pausing merely to enjoy
its beauty, to smile at its playfulness and to feel our hearts expand
under the benign influence of the grand old man Prospero. Now Miranda,
Ferdinand and Ariel have passed the line of mere acquaintances, and have
become to us fast friends, who, though they may be forever silent, have
yet given us a fragment of their lives to cheer us on our way.

OTHER PLAYS OF SHAKESPEARE. Shakespeare wrote a great many plays, and
all are not equally good; a few seem so inferior that many who study
them think they were not written by the same hand that penned _The
Tempest_. Some of the plays are more difficult than others, and some
cannot be comprehended until the reader has had some experience in life.
There are several, on the other hand, that may be read with great
interest and profit by almost any one, while those who have read _The
Tempest_ as we have recommended, should find some measure of enjoyment
in all. _A Midsummer Night's Dream_ is a charming fairy story; _The
Merchant of Venice_ is a good story, contains fine characters and shows
some of Shakespeare's most beautiful thoughts, although some people are
inclined to believe he has dealt too severely with the Jew. _Much Ado
About Nothing_ is a jolly comedy to match with _The Comedy of Errors_.
_Julius Cæsar_, _Richard III_ and _Coriolanus_ are interesting
historical plays, and _Hamlet_, _Macbeth_ and _Romeo and Juliet_ are
among the best of his tragedies. If a person would read just the plays
mentioned in the thoughtful way we have indicated here, he would gain a
benefit whose great value never can be estimated, and thereafter all
reading would seem easier and more delightful.


NOTE.--The pronunciation of difficult words is indicated by respelling
them phonetically. _N_ is used to indicate the French nasal sound; _K_
sound of _ch_ in German; _ü_ the sound of the German _ü_ and French _u_;
_ö_ the sound of _ö_ in foreign languages.

  ABOUKIR, _ah boo keer´_
  ACHILLES, _a kil´ leez_
  ACIS, _ay´ sis_
  AIX, _ayx_
  AJAX TELAMON, _ay´ jacks tel´ a mon_
  ALAMO, _al´ a mo_
  ALAMEDA, _ah la may´ dah_
  ALAVA, _ah´ la vah_
  ALGIERS, _al jeerz´_
  ALGONQUIN, _al gon´ kwin_
  ALLOUEZ, _al loo ay´_
  ALONSO, _a lon´ zo_
  ALPUXARRAS, _ahl´´ poo hahr´ ras_
  ALVARADO, _ahl vah rah´ do_
  ANTIGUA, _an tee´ gwa_
  APHRODITE, _af ro di´ tee_
  ARDENNES, _ahr den´_
  ARGONAUTA, _ahr go naw´ tah_
  ARIEL, _ay´ ry el_
  AYACANORA, _i a kahn o´ rah_
  BOABDIL, _bo ahb deel´_
  CADIZ, _kay´ diz_
  CANOVA, _kah no´ vah_
  CASABIANCA, _kas´´ a bee an´ kah_
  CHARLEVOIX, _shahr´´ lev wah´_
  CHARYBDIS, _ka rib´ dis_
  COLIGNI, _ko´´ leen´´ yee´_, or _ko leen´ yee_
  COMMUNIPAW, _kom mun´ y paw_
  CORIOLANUS, _kor y o lay´ nus_
  COROMANTEES, _ko ro mahn´ teez_
  CUNDINAMARCA, _koon´´ dee nam ahr´ kah_
  DAMFREVILLE, _doN freh veel´_
  D'AUMALE, _do mahl´_
  DEMARATUS, _de mar´ a tus_
  DENT BLANCHE, _doN bloN´ sh_
  DIAZ, _dee´ ahs_, or _dee´ ath_
  DIOGENES, _di oj´ ee neez_
  DISCOBOLUS, _dis kob´ o lus_
  ELIA, _ee´ ly a_
  EPHIALTES, _ef y al´ teez_
  EURYALUS, _u ri´ a lus_
  FERROL, _fer role´_
  FINISTERRE, _fin´´ is tayr´_
  FLIEDNER, _fleet´ ner_
  FRONTENAC, _fron´ te nak_
  GALATEA, _gal a tee´ a_
  GHENT, _gent_
  GONZALES, _gon zah´ leez_
  GONZALO, _gon zah´ lo_
  GRANADA, _gran ah´ dah_
  GRÈVE, _grayv´_
  HERNANDO CORTES, _her nahn´ do kor tays´_
  HERVÉ RIEL, _her vay´´ ree el´_
  IVRY, _eev ree´_
  JOLIET, _zho lee yay´_
  KIKABEAUX, _kee ka bo´_
  KORAN, _ko´ ran_, or _ko rahn´_
  LA CHINE, _lah sheen´_
  LEIGH, AMYAS, _lee, a mi´ as_
  LEONIDAS, _lee on´ y das_
  LETHE, _lee´ thee_
  LOCHIEL, _lo keel´_
  LOUVRE, _loo´ vr´_
  MAELSTROM, _mayl´ strum_
  MALOUINS, _mah loo aN´_
  MARCO BOZZARIS, _mahr´ ko bo tsa´ rees_, popularly _bo zar´ is_
  MAYENNE, _mi en´_
  MEGISTIAS, _me gis´ ty as_
  MIAMIS, _mi ah´ miz_
  MICHILLIMACKINAC, _mee´´ shil y mack´ in ak_
  MIGUEL, _mee gayl´_
  MILAN, _mil´ an_, or _mil an´_
  MYCENAE, _mi see´ nee_
  NACOGDOCHES, _nak o do´ chez_
  NAVARRE, _nah vahr´_
  NOMBRE DE DIOS, _nom´ bray day de os´_
  NYACK, _ni´ ak_
  OETA, _ee´ ta_
  OLMEDO, _ol may´ do_
  ORCHOMENUS, _or kom´ ee nus_
  ORDAZ, _or dath´_
  PEDRILLO, _pay dreel´ yo_
  PELOPONNESUS, _pel´´ o pon nee´ sus_
  PERE MARQUETTE, _payr mar ket´_
  PHOENICIANS, _fee nish´ anz_
  PICARDY, _pik´ ar dy_
  PIZARRO, _pee zahr´ ro_
  PLATÆA, _pla tee´ a_
  PLUTARCH, _plu´ tark_
  PROSPERO, _pros´ pe ro_
  PUEBLO NUEVA, _pweb´ lah nuay´ va_
  ROCHEFORT, _rosh for´_
  ST. GÉNÉVIÈVE, _saN zhen´´ vy ayv´_
  SALTO DE ALVARADO, _sahl´´ to day ahl vah rah´ do_
  SAN ANTONIO DE BEXAR, _day bay hahr´_
  SANDOVAL, _sahn do vahl´_
  SAN JACINTO, _san ja sin´ to_
  SANTA FÉ, _san´´ ta fay´_
  SAULT SAINTE MARIE, _soo saint may´ ry_
  SCYLLA, _sil´ la_
  SEGUIN, _se geen´_
  STUYVESANT, _sti´ ves sant_
  TALADEGA, _tah lah day´ ga_
  TEGEA, _tee´ gee a_
  TEMERAIRE, _tem e rayr´_
  THERMOPYLAE, _thur mop´ y lee_
  TLASCALANS, _tlahs kah´ lahns_
  TOURVILLE, _toor veel´_
  TRAFALGAR, _traf al gahr´_ or _tra fal´ gar_
  TYROLESE, _tir ol ees´_
  VIGO, _vee´ go_
  VILLENEUVE, _veel neuv´_
  WILHELMUS KIEFT, _vil hel´ mus keeft´_
  XENIL, _hay´ neel_
  XERXES, _zurks´ eez_

  Transcriber's Note


  Page  Error
    36  bring them to me? changed to bring them to me?'
   310  dreadful ery changed to dreadful cry
   336  Footnote 6 was skipped in numbering the footnotes in this section.
   379  his fortune changed to his fortunes
   391  The marker for footnote 391-115 was missing in the original book.
        It was inserted based on context.
   424  _CALIBAN drinks._ changed to [_CALIBAN drinks._
   430  _Aside_ to changed to _Aside to_
   430  SEBAS. [_Aside_ changed to _Sebas._ [_Aside_
   431  The _phoenix_ was changed to The _phoenix_ was
   478  cherubim changed to cherubim
   490  Demartus changed to Demaratus
   491  Plataea was changed to Platæa

  Other comments

  180  Footnote for 180-3 was printed on 181
  340  Footnotes 340-14 and 340-15 were printed on 341
  413  Footnote 413-18 was originally printed on 414
  440  Footnote 440-28 was originally printed on 441

  Inconsistent spelling and hyphenation:

  bowsprit / bow-sprit
  Cæsars / Caesars
  Cortés / Cortes
  Fe / Fé
  Hardkoppig / Hard-Koppig
  hillside / hill-side
  lifelong / life-long
  misshapen / mis-shapen
  Moskoestrom / Moskoe-strom
  negroes / Negroes
  Père / Pere
  Schermerhorns / Schermerhornes
  southwest / south-west
  spiérs / spiers
  Thermopylæ / Thermopylae
  thunderbolt / thunder-bolt
  thunderbolts / thunderbolts
  topmast / top-mast
  upstaring / up-staring
  waterside / water-side

*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Journeys Through Bookland, Vol. 8" ***

Doctrine Publishing Corporation provides digitized public domain materials.
Public domain books belong to the public and we are merely their custodians.
This effort is time consuming and expensive, so in order to keep providing
this resource, we have taken steps to prevent abuse by commercial parties,
including placing technical restrictions on automated querying.

We also ask that you:

+ Make non-commercial use of the files We designed Doctrine Publishing
Corporation's ISYS search for use by individuals, and we request that you
use these files for personal, non-commercial purposes.

+ Refrain from automated querying Do not send automated queries of any sort
to Doctrine Publishing's system: If you are conducting research on machine
translation, optical character recognition or other areas where access to a
large amount of text is helpful, please contact us. We encourage the use of
public domain materials for these purposes and may be able to help.

+ Keep it legal -  Whatever your use, remember that you are responsible for
ensuring that what you are doing is legal. Do not assume that just because
we believe a book is in the public domain for users in the United States,
that the work is also in the public domain for users in other countries.
Whether a book is still in copyright varies from country to country, and we
can't offer guidance on whether any specific use of any specific book is
allowed. Please do not assume that a book's appearance in Doctrine Publishing
ISYS search  means it can be used in any manner anywhere in the world.
Copyright infringement liability can be quite severe.

About ISYS® Search Software
Established in 1988, ISYS Search Software is a global supplier of enterprise
search solutions for business and government.  The company's award-winning
software suite offers a broad range of search, navigation and discovery
solutions for desktop search, intranet search, SharePoint search and embedded
search applications.  ISYS has been deployed by thousands of organizations
operating in a variety of industries, including government, legal, law
enforcement, financial services, healthcare and recruitment.