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Title: A Yacht Voyage to Norway, Denmark, and Sweden - 2nd edition
Author: Ross, William A.
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 "A Yacht Voyage to Norway, Denmark, and Sweden - 2nd edition" ***

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         |              Transcriber's Note:                |
         |                                                 |
         | Inconsistent hyphenation and spelling in the    |
         | original document have been preserved.          |
         |                                                 |
         | Errata listed on Page viii have been            |
         | corrected in the text                           |
         |                                                 |
         +-------------------------------------------------+



[Illustration]



 A

 YACHT VOYAGE

 TO

 NORWAY,

 DENMARK, AND SWEDEN.



 BY

 W. A. ROSS, ESQ.



 Ver erat: errabam: Zephyrus conspexit: abibam:
   Insequitur: fugio.

 OVID. _Fast._, Lib. v.



 Second Edition.



 LONDON:

 HENRY COLBURN, PUBLISHER,

 GREAT MARLBOROUGH STREET.

 1849.



 LONDON:
 PRINTED BY T. R. HARRISON,
 ST. MARTIN'S LANE.



 TO

 AN AMIABLE AND A GENEROUS FRIEND,

 ROBERT, LORD RODNEY,

 I DEDICATE THIS VOLUME,

 IN TOKEN

 OF ADMIRATION, GRATITUDE,

 AND

 AFFECTION.



CONTENTS.

 CHAPTER I.

 Departure from Greenwich--The History of the Iris Yacht
 --Sheerness--Harwich--Under Weigh--The North Sea--Sail
 in Sight--The Mail Overboard--Speaking the Norwegian               1


 CHAPTER II.

 Foggy Weather--First View of Norway--Christiansand Fiord
 --Arrival at Christiansand--Description of the Town--The
 Toptdal River--Excursion Inland--The Enthusiastic
 Angler--Rustic Lodgings--Hunting the Bear--The Trap--The
 Death--Norwegian Liberality                                       13


 CHAPTER III.

 Departure from Christiansand--The Pilot's Pram--Skaw Point
 --Delinquencies of Jacko--Expensive Cannonading--Elsineur
 --Hamlet's Walk--The Minister, Struensee--Story of Queen
 Caroline-Matilda--Legend of the Serf                              46


 CHAPTER IV.

 The Pilot--Tempestuous Weather--Distant View of Copenhagen
 --Lord Nelson--The Battle of the Baltic--The Harbour-Master
 --Interest excited by the Yacht's Arrival--The Artist--The
 Angler--We go Ashore                                              58


 CHAPTER V.

 Copenhagen--The Cape--The Dilemma--The Guard--Compliment to
 England--Description of the Harbour and Fortifications--
 Delinquent Sailors--The City on Sunday--Negro Commissionaire
 --A Walk through the City--Notices of the various Public
 Buildings                                                         74


 CHAPTER VI.

 The Casino--The Royal Family of Denmark--Succession to
 Holstein--The English Consul--Visit to the English Ambassador
 --Colossal Statue of Christian the Fifth--Anecdote of Belzoni
 --Trinity Church--Extraordinary Feat of Peter the Great
 --Ducking an Offender--Palace of Christiansborg--The Exchange
 --The Castle of Rosenberg                                         91


 CHAPTER VII.

 Dinner at the Embassy--Manners and Customs of the Danes--The
 Spanish Ambassador and the English Exile--The Citadel--Story
 of the Two Captives--Joe Washimtum, again--A Danish Dinner
 --Visit to the Theatre--Political Reflections--Festivities
 on Board the Yacht--Merry Party at the American Ambassador's
 --The Duchies of Schleswig and Holstein                          106


 CHAPTER VIII.

 The Exile's Souvenir--The Disappointed Artist--Departure
 from Copenhagen--Arrival at Elsineur--Description of the
 Town--The Castle of Cronenborg--Hamlet's Garden--Esrom
 Lake--The Legend of Esrom Monastery--The French War-Steamer
 --Sailing up the Cattegat                                        140


 CHAPTER IX.

 Arrival at Falkenborg--The Storm--The Yacht in Danger--Safe
 Anchorage--Visit to Falkenborg--Ludicrous Adventure--A
 Drive into the Interior--Great Scarcity experienced by the
 Inhabitants--Description of the Country--The Disappointed
 Anglers--Kongsbacka--The Yacht runs aground--Gottenborg          154


 CHAPTER X.

 The Casino at Gottenborg--Awkward Dilemma--The Watchman
 and the Northern Star--Swedish Artillery--The Grove--An
 Old Man's History--The Alarm of Fire--The Carriage
 overturned--The River Gotha--Washing in the Stream--The
 Narrow Streets--Description of Gottenborg--Its Decayed
 Commerce--The Herring Fishery                                    172


 CHAPTER XI.

 Return to Norway--Sail up the Gulf--Approach to Christiania
 --Its Appearance from the Water--Anecdote of Bernadotte--
 Description of the City--The Fortress--Charles the XIIth
 --The Convicts--Story of the Captured Cannon--The Highwayman
 --Prospect from the Mountains--The Norwegian Peasant Girl        204


 CHAPTER XII.

 A Drive into the Interior--Extensive and Sublime Prospect
 --Norwegian Post-Houses--Repair of the Roads--Preparations
 for Departure                                                    215


 CHAPTER XIII.

 The Yacht under sail--Jacko overboard--Fredricksværn--The
 Union Jack--Scenery on the Larvig River--Transit of Timber
 --Salmon Fishing--The Defeated Angler--Ludicrous Adventure
 with an Eagle--Result of the Angling Expedition--The Bevy of
 Ladies--Norwegian Dinner-Party, Singular and Amusing Customs     240


 CHAPTER XIV.

 Another Fishing Excursion--Landing a Salmon--The Carriole--
 Boats rowed by Ladies--Departure from Larvig--Christiansand
 Harbour--Return to Boom--Sincere Welcome--Angling at the
 Falls--The Forsaken Angler--A Misunderstanding--Reconciliation
 --St. John's Day--Simplicity of Manners                          260


 CHAPTER XV.

 Sailing up the Gron Fiord--Dangerous Swell--Excursion Ashore
 --Trout-Fishing--Mountain Scenery--Ant-Hills--Hazardous
 Drive--The Scottish Emigrant--Miserable Lodging--Condition
 of the Peasantry--A Village Patriarch--Costume of the Country
 People--Arrival at Fædde                                         287


 CHAPTER XVI.

 Return to the Yacht--Poor Jacko--Ascending the Stream--
 Description of the Fædde Fiord--Adventures of an Angler--Sail
 to the Bukke Fiord--The Fathomless Lake--The Maniac, and her
 History--The Village of Sand--Extraordinary Peculiarities of
 the Sand Salmon--Seal Hunting--Shooting Gulls--The Seal
 caught--Night in the North                                       303


 CHAPTER XVII.

 The Dangerous Straits--British Seamanship--The Glaciers
 of Folgefonde--Bergen--Habits of the Fishermen--The Sogne
 Fiord--Leerdal--Arrival at Auron--A Hospitable Host--
 Ascending the Mountains--The Two Shepherdesses--Hunting
 the Rein-Deer--Adventure on the Mountains--Slaughtering
 Deer--The Fawn                                                   336


 CHAPTER XVIII.

 The Sick Sailor--The Storm--The Lee-Shore--"Breakers
 a-head"--The Yacht in Distress--Weathering the Storm--Return
 to Bergen--The Physician--The Whirlpool--The Water-Spout
 --Homeward Bound--Scarborough--Yarmouth Roads--Erith--
 Greenwich Hospital--Conclusion                                   397



ERRATA.


 Page
  79, line 14, _for_ "Nelson," _read_ "Gambier."
  92, omit "to the eye."
 100, line 12, _for_ "Nelson's," _read_ "Gambier's."
 145, last line, _for_ "Braggesen," _read_ "Baggesen."
 165, line 31, _for_ "they had endured," _read_ "each of them had endured."
 201, line 9, _read_ "as here at Gottenborg."
 239, line 33, _for_ "immovably," _read_ "immoveably."
 243, line 6, _for_ "jibbed," _read_ "jibed."
 286, line 18, _for_ "everywhere," _read_ "ever where."
 327, line 10, _for_ "than me," _read_ "than I."
 338, line 31, _for_ "jibbing," _read_ "jibing."


 A YACHT VOYAGE
 TO
 NORWAY, SWEDEN, & DENMARK.



CHAPTER I.

 DEPARTURE FROM GREENWICH--THE HISTORY OF THE IRIS
 YACHT--SHEERNESS--HARWICH--UNDER WEIGH--THE NORTH
 SEA--SAIL IN SIGHT--THE MAIL OVERBOARD--SPEAKING
 THE NORWEGIAN.


I believe the old Italian proverb says, that every man, before he dies,
should do three things: "Get a son, build a house, and write a book."
Now, whether or not I am desirous, by beginning at the end, to end at
the beginning of this quaint axiom, I leave the reader to conjecture. My
book may afford amusement to him who will smile when I am glad, and
sympathise with the impressions I have caught in other moods of mind;
but I have little affinity of feeling, and less companionship with him
who expects to see pictures of life coloured differently from those I
have beheld.

At three o'clock on the boisterous afternoon of the 1st of May, 1847, I
left Greenwich with my friend Lord R----, in his yacht, to cruise round
the coasts of Denmark, Norway, and Sweden; and, although the period of
the year at which I quitted London was the one I most desired to remain
in it, and join, as far as I was able, in the pomps and gaieties of Old
Babylon, I did not like to miss this opportunity, offered under such
favourable circumstances, of seeing countries so rarely visited by
Englishmen, more particularly as the invitation had been pressed upon me
so unaffectedly and kindly, that I could not, with any reason, decline
it.

Dropping down with the tide, we arrived the same evening alongside the
guard-ship at Sheerness; and, being desirous of making ourselves snug,
and of landing two unfortunate friends whom we had originally promised
to send ashore at Gravesend, we made fast to a Government buoy, and
remained in smooth water till the following morning.

The "Iris" cutter belongs to the R.Y.S., and is the sister-vessel of the
"Corsair." She was built by Ratsey for the late Mr. Fleming, with whom
she was a great favourite, and for whom she won many valuable prizes.
From England to the Mediterranean, she safely bore her first master many
times; but with flowing canvass and with rapid keel at last enticed him
once too often from his native shore; for, during a cruise in the
Mediterranean, after many months of pain, he died while gazing on her.
Passing through several hands, serving all equally well in gale or calm,
she came at last into the possession of Lord R----, who has travelled
farther, and made more extraordinary voyages in her than any member of
the Squadron; and in spite of all improvements adopted of late years in
yacht-building, there are but few, if any, vessels of seventy-five tons,
that can surpass her in speed and symmetrical beauty, or in the buoyant
ease with which she has encountered the fiercest storms.

Her crew consisted of seven or eight regular seamen, a sailing-master,
mate, cook, steward, and a boy to assist him. A fine Newfoundland dog,
called "Sailor," and a droll little ring-tail monkey, called "Jacko,"
also joined in the mess for'ard. Lord R----, with Captain P---- and
myself, made up the entire complement.

On Sunday morning, the 2nd, at eleven, as the church bells of Sheerness
were chiming a merry peal, we commenced preparations for our departure,
by sending our two friends off in the jolly-boat, in which they must
have got pretty wet; for a sea was running sufficiently high to cause
them some little discomfort. After a gloomy day's work, we reached
Harwich, and at nine in the evening rested again in five fathoms water.

We rose betimes the following day, and strolled about the town in search
of stores. We collected on board every kind of preserved meat and
vegetable one could think of; and every kind of wine, from champagne
down to cherry cordial, the taste of man could relish. We had milk, too,
in pots, and mint for our peasoup; lard in bladders, and butter, both
fresh and salt, in jars; flour, and suet, which we kept buried in the
flour; a hundred stalks of horseradish for roast beef; and raisins,
citron, and currants, for plum-pudding.

We had rifles and guns to shoot bears and wolves; and large rods, large
as small maypoles, to catch salmon, and small rods to secure the bait.
We had fishing-tackle which, when unwound, went all the way into the
after cabin, and then back again ten times round the main cabin.

We had water-proof boots, reaching up to the hips, for wading the
rivers; and India-rubber pilot-jackets for keeping the chest and back
secure from the spray of foss, or wave. Indeed, we had all that the
heart of man could wish, and all that his judgment could devise.

I contrived, before the day had passed, to become very sick of Harwich
and myself; for of all dull holes in this kingdom of England, does not
this one claim the superlative degree? Tuesday, the 4th, still found me
on the same spot, gazing on the two lighthouses; and, to enhance my
gaiety, R---- and P---- went to Ipswich to see a schooner yacht, being
built for an old friend of R---- and at that moment on the stocks. They
returned laden with turnips, carrots, radishes, and cabbages. The
luckless schooner was rated in great style--berths too numerous, and
cabin not lofty enough. A fiddle also was bought to-day for Jerome, a
sailor, who, though self-taught, had some idea of music and afterwards,
wiled away, in Norway, and on the ocean, during the calm evenings, many
a weary hour, by playing to us some of Old England's most plaintive
airs.

The following day came and went in the same monotonous fashion as its
predecessor, since I find its events recorded thus:--"Fine day--nothing
new. Went ashore. Bought fish, mutton, and beef. Eat all the fish, and
some of the beef. Wind E.S.E."

Thursday dawned beautifully calm, and not a cloud was visible between
earth and the blue Heaven. As I paced up and down the deck, yet damp
with dew, I thought the serenity of the morning emblematic of our future
wanderings--and was I wrong? As the sun gained altitude and power, the
water became rippled with a light air, and nine o'clock found us fairly
under weigh.

There was not a heavy heart on board; even Jacko chirupped, and,
swinging by his tail from the bowsprit shroud, revelled in the warm
sunshine. Being desirous of showing the exuberance of our spirits,
R----, who had observed an old dame and her maid plying in a wherry
round the cutter--probably to take a nearer view of our beautiful craft
and her adventurous crew, or, perhaps to breathe the morning air, I know
not which--ordered the two quarter swivels to be loaded, and watching
his opportunity, when the cautious wherry came rather near, fired both
of them right over the old lady's black bonnet, and sent the wad fizzing
and smoking into the servant-girl's lap. I need not describe the alarm
of the old woman, nor the shriek of the young one; but the grin of the
well-seasoned tar who rowed, coupled with his efforts to keep the fair
freight quiet where he had stowed it, were worth our whole cargo.

We shipped from this port a man named King, who was to act as
interpreter. He had been in Norway, and was well acquainted with the
people and language, having been for many previous years of his life
employed in the lobster fisheries. He proved a most willing, honest,
good-tempered servant, and a most useful linguist.

The wind being light, the Iris found it tough work in stemming the
strong tide which sets into Harwich; but we contrived at half-past
eleven to pass Orfordness Light. At six, the breeze having eastern'd a
little, and increased till it became what sailors term "pleasant," we
lost sight of Lowestoff; and lastly, being this day's work, as well as
for the information of all nautical men, we sounded at half-past seven
on Smith's Knoll, in seven fathoms.

Friday morning, the 7th, dawned upon our glorious craft dashing through
the water in great style, with a moderate breeze from S. to S.S.E. As I
cast my eye round the horizon, and descried no land, thoughts of old
days crowded to my recollection, when I left home for the first time,
and England for the West Indies. How all the high hopes of youth had
vanished; and how unaltered my condition _now_ from what it was _then_!
Had an angel come down from Heaven and told me, twelve years ago, when
I, a boy, stood on the hencoop of a West Indiaman, gazing at the Lizard,
that I should be the same creature in feeling and condition, I should
have questioned the prophecy. But the wind is fair, and this is no time
for sorrowful thoughts.

"Hard-up the helm! Dick," said D----.

"Ay, ay, sir."

"Steady!--So."

"Steady, sir."

"Some man there, heave the lead!" and down it went, rushing, in
five-and-twenty fathoms on the Silver Pits. At nine, the vessel was hove
to, and we tried our lines for fish, but did not succeed. We filled on
her again, and stood away, as before, to the N.E. At two o'clock, while
we were trying our lines for the second time, I felt, suddenly,
squeamish; and, in spite of the splendid weather and pure air, wished
myself most heartily in the middle of Bond-street, or any, the most
ignoble alley in the neighbourhood of Leicester-square. I closed my eyes
and fancied myself seated on a bench in the Green Park, watching the
sheep browsing round me, and listening to the rumbling of carriages as
they passed along Piccadilly. I opened my eyes; the vision fades, and,
lo!

 "Nil nisi pontus et aer."

However, I plucked up courage, and remained on deck until half-past six,
when the gaff-topsail was unbent and the top-mast struck; D----, the
sailing-master, anticipating no good from the calm, and the dense fog,
which had succeeded a fine wind and cheerful sunshine.

Early in the morning, about four o'clock, I was awakened by a good deal
of laughing and shuffling of feet on deck, and by an occasional thump,
as if a cargo of pumpkins was being taken on board.

I leaped out of my berth, and, putting my head above the companion, saw
all the men who composed the watch hard at work with their
fishing-lines, and the main-deck covered with several large codfish.
Witnessing the pugnacity of one or two fish when they were hauled out of
the water, I turned in again: for it was no easy matter to stand, the
swell increasing as we got more on the Dogger Bank.

While we were at breakfast, eating cods' sound and talking of smoked
salmon, the sailing-master came below and told us a small vessel was in
sight, and, by running down to her, we might speak her and send letters
home by her. Of course, all the married men commenced scratching in
great style both paper and their pates, and in a shorter time than could
be imagined, made up a small mail. The more strenuously, however, we
endeavoured to approach the vessel, the more she bore away; and, being a
long way to the eastward of us, and going before the wind with her
square-sail set, it was doubtful whether we should fetch her. At last,
we fancied she mistook us for pirates; for, I must confess, we looked
suspicious; and the squadron ensign flying at the peak made our cutter
appear more warlike and determined than she really was. By eleven,
notwithstanding our friend's manœuvring, we were pretty close to her,
and, lowering the dingy as quickly as possible, two men were ordered to
pull to the strange smack, and, ascertaining her destination, to deliver
the letters. This last action on our part took the poor craft by
surprise; for it was curious to observe the pertinacity with which this
little vessel avoided our boat, although we used every stratagem devised
by seafaring men to allay the consternation of the weak: such as the
waving of our caps, the hoisting of pacific signals, the lowering of our
gaff-topsail, &c., &c.; nor could she be persuaded of our amicable
intentions before poor King had shouted, at the top of his lungs, that
we were Englishmen in search of pleasure, and destined for no marauding
purpose.

She turned out to be, what our glasses had anticipated at daylight, a
Norwegian, laden with dried fish, and bound to the coast of Holland;
and, therefore, our letters were brought back.

Scarcely had the incident I have just mentioned come to a conclusion,
than another sail, just emerging from the horizon, was discovered on our
weather bow. We rubbed our hands, plucked our caps over the forehead,
and walked up and down the deck more briskly than ever; for there is no
man who has not been to sea can imagine the feelings of sailors when,
far from land, a sail is seen.

Every minute now brought us closer, and at two P.M. we had come
within hail. There was little wind, but a nasty short sea was running;
and it was comical in the extreme to observe each man endeavouring to
steady himself, and place his hands to his mouth for the purpose of
hailing, when a sudden swell would send him rolling over Sailor's hutch,
or seat him gently on the sky-light behind. After a little trouble, the
speaking-trumpet was found and brought on deck, and by its assistance a
communication was opened with the vessel. She was a large Norwegian
bark from Christiansand, and bound to London. To our request that they
would take charge of some letters, the captain, leaning over the
weather-quarter, assented in a loud Norwegian dialect. The question
which now arose was, how were we to get the said letters on board; but
necessity, being here established as the mother of invention, gave a
prompt answer. P----, holding the letters in his hand, desired that a
potato might be brought. The largest from the store was presented. It
was then lashed with a piece of twine to the letters, now transposed
into a tidy brown-paper parcel, which P----, balancing in the palm of
his left hand, suggested was not of sufficient weight to reach the ship.
We were not long at a loss, for the cook appeared, grim and smiling,
with a tolerable-sized coal exposed to view and approbation, between his
thumb and forefinger. Side by side, like a fair-haired youth with his
swarthy bride, the coal and potato were placed; and P----, poising for
the second time the precious parcel, rolled up his shirt-sleeve, and,
throwing himself well back, hurled, with all the elegance of a Parthian,
coal, potato, and parcel toward the Norwegian captain's head. But,
horror! the potato and coal combined proved rather too heavy, and,
retaining their impetus longer than intended, carried the luckless
brown-paper bundle over the lee-side and into the North Sea.

The ship immediately backed her main-yard, and, lowering one of her
stern boats, sent her off in search of the unhappy letters; but having
rowed about for some time without catching a glimpse of coal, paper, or
potato, the search was abandoned, and the boat came alongside of us.
After delivering another packet of brown paper, and presenting each man
(there were four) with a bottle of brandy, we parted company with mutual
good wishes conveyed through our interpreter, King, not omitting sundry
well-meaning gesticulations telegraphed between the fat Norwegian
captain on the weather quarter and ourselves. This was the first
specimen we had met with of northern kindness; and, although we had
heard a great deal of their unaffected goodness of heart, this act of
civility made no slight impression upon us. At four o'clock, while our
Norwegian bark was just _hull down_, the gaff-topsail was taken in, a
strong S.E. wind with rain having arisen. The wind still increasing, at
seven the first reef in the mainsail was also taken in, jibs shifted,
and the bowsprit reefed.

During the rest of the evening I was a martyr to all the miseries of
sea-sickness, and, stretched at full length on the cabin sofa, I closed
my eyes, and, allowing my thoughts to wander where they would, hoped to
cheat myself out of my present discomfort; but nausea, like no other ill
to which we are subservient, is not to be pacified, and I lay the whole
night sensible of the keenest pain.



CHAPTER II.

 FOGGY WEATHER--FIRST VIEW OF NORWAY--CHRISTIANSAND
 FIORD--ARRIVAL AT CHRISTIANSAND--DESCRIPTION OF THE
 TOWN--THE TOPTDAL RIVER--EXCURSION INLAND--THE
 ENTHUSIASTIC ANGLER--RUSTIC LODGINGS--HUNTING THE
 BEAR--THE TRAP--THE DEATH--NORWEGIAN LIBERALITY.


Sunday, the 9th, dawned on us, tossed about on a troubled sea indeed;
for a strong wind was blowing from E.S.E. However, at eight o'clock,
just before breakfast, we sounded in thirty-five fathoms. We had
scarcely concluded this cautious operation before the wind began to
lull; and after conjecturing, both from our calculations and soundings,
that land was not far away, we were confirmed in this opinion by a thick
fog rising above the horizon on our lee beam. We went to dinner in great
glee, and, in spite of the hazy atmosphere which now surrounded us,
compensation was felt and accepted by us at the hour of six, when a
perfect calm prevailed; and our peasoup and curry were threatened, for
the first time this week, to be demolished in that gentlemanly and
collected mode which the usages of society had rendered familiar to our
observation in England.

At eleven o'clock at night the haziness cleared away, and in about half
an hour afterwards a light was seen. It was imagined to be the light at
the mouth of the Christiansand Fiord, the name of which, amidst the
bustle and joyousness of the moment, I could but indistinctly learn, and
cannot now remember. As midnight approached, our old friend the fog
gathered density, and effectually deprived us of the slightest glimpse
of the light; and we retired to rest ill at ease, plunged into the vale
of anxiety in the same ratio as we had been exalted on the peaks of
expectation and joy.

Sunday at sea retains all the monotony of the shore; for the waves seem
to show deference to the day, and move their crests with more solemnity
and order; while the sailors gather round the vessel's bows, and, in a
group, listen with wrapt attention to the sublime and poetic sentences
of prophetic Isaiah.

I cannot, in all my wanderings at sea, call to mind a tempestuous
Sabbath, nor the sailors who would profane it. Mark them! How solemnly
the shadow of thought hangs over their countenances; and how, with cheek
cradled on the hand, with pipes unsmoked in their mouths, leaning over
the bulwarks, their eyes intently riveted on the clear distant horizon,
as, carried away by the inspiration and fervour of the great prophet, a
messmate, who reads with energy of gesture, ever and anon raises his
voice, which, by its tremulous intonation, tells the deep feeling of his
heart, and the quickness with which its pulse vibrates in answer to the
burning words he utters aloud!

Monday, the 10th, the most lovely of May mornings, fanned by the softest
of south winds. Land in all its grandeur of mountain and of cloud lay
before me, the towering peaks of the mountains, capped with everlasting
snow, and piercing an atmosphere of the intensest blue.

I sat down on the after-lockers, and looked with swelling heart on the
sublime scene. As far as the eye could reach inland, mountain over
mountain, extending round half the horizon, the land of old Norway, I
had read of in my earliest years, expanded itself. On my left hand the
Naze hung, frowning, over the Northern Ocean. How memory, in a moment,
rushed back to the quaint schoolroom at Ditton, and its still quainter
little bookcases huddled up in one corner, where and whence I first
began to pronounce and find the "Lindsnes!"

Just at this instant, poor old "Sailor," who had been poking his nose
over the vessel's side, and snuffing and whining, rushed up to me, and,
placing his head in my lap, turned his eyes towards my face, and looked
as much as to say, "Are we not near our journey's end; and don't I smell
the land?" Little Jacko, too, came out of his crib, and chirped, and
chattered, and scratched himself, and rolled about on the deck in the
sunniest corners; and then, all of a sudden, up he would jump, and,
seizing hold of "Sailor's" tail, pull it as if he was hauling taut the
weather runner. How everything was replete with life; and how happiness,
without the heart's reservation, was written on every face! I cannot
conceive anything more exhilarating than a beautiful morning at sea, and
land in sight; I could have passed the remaining portion of my life
without a pang of sorrow, or a gush of joy, but with equanimity, on this
dark blue wave, surpassed only in its dark dye and eternity by the dome
on which it looked.

When I returned upon deck after breakfast, the first object that
attracted my attention was the helmsman. He smiled as soon as his eye
met mine, and raised, in recognition, his Spanish-looking hat. He was a
stout, tall, fair-complexioned man, with a mild expression of
countenance, blue eyes, a long, straight-pointed nose, high cheekbones,
and light flaxen hair flowing down almost to his shoulders. He made some
observation to me in a dialect which sounded as being a mixture of
German, Celtic, and English; but the sense of it was incomprehensible.

"Norway?" I said in reply, pointing to the land now not three miles from
us.

"Ja, ja," he answered; and, turning to King, our interpreter, begged, in
the Norwegian language, that some of the sails might be trimmed.

I need not say he was the pilot who had come on board to take us up to
Christiansand. His dress differed not from the ordinary costume of our
own pilots; but I could not help gazing on him with a feeling of mystery
and interest which cannot easily be described. His whole appearance bore
a close resemblance to all I had read and seen in pictures of the
Esquimaux; and now I have formed their acquaintance personally, I feel
assured that the Norwegians are a branch of that family.

The scenery, the nearer we approached the shore, heightened in grandeur.
Though we were now not a mile from the most bold and formidable rocks,
no harbour or creek of any kind could be seen where we might find
shelter; yet our northern guide continued to point out with his finger
and explain as well as he could in his strange but harmonious idiom, the
mouth of the Fiord, up which we were to proceed to Christiansand.

The rocks along this coast of Norway are terrific, the sea breaking and
rushing upon them with tremendous noise and fury. Nor do the waves ever
rest peaceably here: for the tides of the North Sea and of the Cattegat
both meet together at this point of the "Sleeve," and cause a fearful
swell, which, when aided at times by the wind, rises to such a great
height that vessels are obliged to run for protection into some of the
smaller fiords abounding in this quarter.

It was now mid-day, and the sun shone with more heat than I had felt in
the tropics. Indeed, everything around us reminded one so vividly of a
tropical climate, that it required some resolution to keep imagination
in subserviency. The thermometer was at 80 on deck; and our
good-tempered pilot told us it was "manga varm" in August.

At one o'clock, the gallant Iris might be seen gliding along, with her
accustomed speed and elegance, in smooth water, up the Christiansand
Fiord. As we sailed along we would now and then catch a glimpse of large
and small vessels in all directions, in full sail, wending their way
through the tributary fiords to some town in the interior. On each side
of us rose from the surface of the water, perpendicularly into the clear
sky, mountains of solid stone, covered to their very summits with no
other vegetation than the fir, which springs out of the crevices of the
rocks. We pursued our course for many miles amidst the grandest scenery,
changing like a panorama, at every point of land round which the vessel
wound, and amidst the most profound silence, which is a peculiarity of
these fiords. Ever and anon the gulls, in flocks of thousands, would
soar into the air, only the flapping of their wings echoing through
these silent mountains.

At three o'clock, as we sailed round an enormous rock about a mile high,
with not a tree or shrub of any sort on its surface, the town of
Christiansand burst upon the view.

We had no sooner anchored, and the sails were not yet furled, when
Captain P----, who was an inveterate sportsman, went ashore to gather
what intelligence he could about the salmon fishing, it being for that
amusement Lord R---- had been induced to visit Norway.

During the absence of P----, R---- and I lay down on the deck, and
feasted our eyes with the beautiful prospect around us. The novelty of
every object which met the view acted in broad contrast to England. The
cutter was soon surrounded by boats without number, of the most
primitive construction and fantastic form. One old man, wearing a
bear's-skin cap and a black frock coat, rowed off to us in the family
"pram," for the purpose of recommending his hotel to our notice, the
cleanliness and comfort of which, he said, were unquestionable; since,
to test the verity of his assertions, he handed to us a piece of paper,
not larger than the palm of my hand, containing the names of those
persons who had lodged under his roof; and the Earl of Selkirk, Sir John
Ross, Sir Hyde Parker, and one or two other eminent men stood in bold
relief and large Norwegian type. This was the only deed approximating to
British we had yet witnessed.

Christiansand is considered as a tolerably important town, and is about
half the extent of Dover. The houses are all painted a pure white
colour, which has a fine effect when brought so immediately in contrast
with the surrounding scenery. There being no ebb or flow of the sea in
this part of the earth, no beach exists, and the houses are built on
piles close to the water's edge, ships of 500 or 600 tons being moored
at the very doors of the warehouses.

I could discover only one church within the precincts of Christiansand,
and close to it a dancing academy; for the Norwegians, though they are
pious, are as partial to the recreation of a dance as any of our Gallic
neighbours; and, during the long and dark days of winter, the merchants
and other persons employed in business of any description, close their
offices, and devote their time to sleighing and dancing. The town is
clean and romantically situated, being girt on the E. and the S. by the
picturesque fiord, dotted with islands, which bears its name, and on the
N. and W. by mountains rising one above the other until the eye loses
them in the mist of distance.

The sun had already sunk beyond the mountains, when P---- returned on
board; and, near as the day seemed to its end, it was determined to
start for the Toptdal River, and proceed as far as Boom, a small village
about twelve miles from Christiansand, where a merchant of some note had
granted us permission to fish.

Fishing-rods and fishing-books, and gaffs, and landing-nets, and
everything piscatory, were pulled from their cupboards and packed up,
that is to say, tied together in three distinct bundles by the mate; and
the steward removed from the custody of the cook a large iron pot, which
he filled with potatoes, as well as a smaller copper pot for stewing,
but which, for the present, received a mustard-pot, some salt in paper,
some black pepper, three teaspoons, and a similar number of knives and
forks. A good-sized game-basket, cocked hat in shape, was then, after a
diligent search, found, brought forth, and replenished with biscuits
(for we had not, and could not buy, any bread), three pots of preserved
meats, three bottles of champagne, the same of claret, one bottle of
brandy, one of Twining's chocolate tin cases filled with tea, both green
and black, and a like, though larger, one concealed from the inquisitive
gaze some white sugar.

About six o'clock, these items were stowed at the bottom of the gig,
under the immediate superintendence of the steward, and the men, with
their oars raised aloft in the air, showed all was prepared to convey us
on our excursion. After taking leave of one or two Norwegian gentlemen
who had come on board to welcome us, with their characteristic
kindheartedness, to their country, and, with their usual unaffected
hospitality, to invite us to dine with them, we started.

We had proceeded some distance when P----, after lighting his
meerschaum, and looking the ideal of comfort and delight, commenced
rummaging the baggage of pots and baskets; and he had not given up his
energies to that occupation more than a few seconds when his pipe almost
dropped, paralyzed, from his mouth, and, with much vehemence of manner
and voice, he exclaimed,

"Hang that fellow! Just like him; he has forgotten the pot."

"What pot?" said R----.

"Why, the copper one, of course," retorted P----. "The knives and forks
are in it, and the tea and sugar."

"Avast pulling!" said the Coxswain.

"We must go back," said R----.

"Very good, my Lord. Easy, starboard oars," again said the Coxswain; and
in a quarter of an hour, we were taking the copper kettle into the gig,
which P---- placed quietly away, within his reach and sight, in the
stern sheets.

As we rowed on, our fingers (bringing to my recollection my school-days)
would occasionally be thrust over the boat's side into the water to test
its temperature; for it had been hinted to P---- at Christiansand, that
the rivers might yet be too cold for the salmon to leave the sea and
enter them.

The Toptdal River is narrow, shallow, and swift of current; so that it
is no facile task to contend with its rapidity and force. When we had
proceeded about half-way, the boat and its crew were left to contend
with the stream, and we commenced walking.

It was now seven o'clock; and, though we were sheltered from the sun's
rays by the huge mountain-shadows, the air was warm, and I felt in a
short time as greatly fatigued as if it were a dog-day in England.

P----, who, as I said before, was excessively fond of fishing, led the
van; and, as we toiled along the bank of the river, would, himself
insensible of weariness, scramble down declivities to its edge whenever
the projecting rocks formed a kind of pool, and, scrambling up to us
again, would assert with emphasis, the convincing proofs the river
showed of containing much fish. He would, likewise, plunge his hand into
the tide, and deem it temperate in the extreme.

"There now," he said, as we turned a point of land, and saw below us a
small bay formed by the indentation of the river,--"there now; do you
mean to say there's no fish there?"

"I should think there were a great many," replied R----.

The river flowed on, and brought on its surface the foam of some
neighbouring foss, floating unbroken in small lumps like soap-suds;
which, borne by the eddying stream, revolved round and round a piece of
fallen rock elevated a little above the water. P----, with the eye of a
fisherman, gazed on the little bay; and it was with difficulty we could
dissuade him from putting his rod together and having a cast. However,
we did eventually dissuade him; but he had barely gone on in front, with
his usual velocity of motion, when, at the suggestion of R----, I hurled
a good-sized stone into the centre of the pool which had so riveted
P----'s fancy.

"By Jove!" he shouted, and, starting back, "did you hear _that_? It was
a rise. Holloa!" and he hailed the boat which was struggling against the
stream on the opposite bank. He seemed now determined to throw a fly;
but the night was so near at hand, and Boom was yet so distant, that we
exhorted him to mark the spot for our return on the following day.

"Why, my dear fellow, in two minutes I shall have a bite. Walk on, I'll
follow."

"No, no;" and, after a little consideration, he assented to what we
said.

The stars now began to show themselves, and shone forth with great
brilliancy in the deep blue Heaven. The roar of the first foss, or fall,
where we intended to fish, could be heard distinctly; and, about ten
o'clock, we arrived at Boom.

We presented, on our arrival, a letter our merchant friend had written
to an old and confidential servant, to whose care he recommended us, and
desired that every facility should be afforded us in the attainment of
our sport. Although it was almost dark, we walked about with the old
Norwegian, who, in order to obtain our kind thoughts and inclinations,
told us, that he had, in his youth, been apprenticed to a carpenter at
Hull. He spoke English sufficiently well to understand what we said, and
make himself understood by us.

The first check P---- received to his ardour, was the Norwegian's
assertion, that the river was still too cold for angling; and that no
salmon had yet been seen or caught in the neighbourhood. He then
recommended us to leave Norway and go to Copenhagen, or some other
capital in the south, and enjoy ourselves until the snows in the
interior had melted, and return to Christiansand about the end of the
first week in June, when he guaranteed we should have salmon-fishing in
all its phases to our heart's content.

After a slight allusion to the letter we had delivered to him, and which
he still held crumpled and soiled in his hand, he said, that his
master's house was being painted, and he could not accommodate us as he
had been commanded; but, if we had no objection, he would lodge us for
the night at a cottage hard by. Many Englishmen, he added, had slept
there, and found the people to whom it belonged, clean, attentive, and
honest. We replied, that we were content and wearied enough to rest any
where, and were prepared to take in good part any abode he could offer
us for the night.

We strolled on; and, in a few minutes, a cottage, with thatched roof,
and standing lonelily at the base of one of the high mountains, by which
we were surrounded, loomed through the grey tint of evening.

Its outward appearance at first, I must confess, staggered my sense of
comfort and cleanliness very wonderfully; and its internal arrangements
did not at all help to quiet my apprehensions. In one corner of the room
into which we were shown, stood a bedstead. Implements of cookery were
scattered negligently about the floor, and on a huge hob bubbled a huge
saucepan. The presence of salt-herrings and other dried fish, the common
Norwegian diet, could, by no art, be concealed. The ceiling was so low,
that I could hardly stand upright with my hat on; and the floor being
strewed with juniper leaves, the smell of which, though not ungrateful
in itself, aided by the villainous compound of stale tobacco smoke, in
no way prepossessed me in favour of the cottager's nicety; and, finally,
to consummate the discomfort, the small windows were closed as tightly
as a coffin, while the evening teemed with all the sultriness of an
oriental latitude.

R---- and P---- enjoyed my long face, and each, seating himself on the
only two deal chairs, laughed immoderately at my doleful complaints. The
gaunt Norwegian, the owner of this humble dwelling, made such comical
grimaces, and winked his little eyes so frequently and eruditely, in
endeavouring to fathom their mirth, that I could not restrain myself,
and took a conspicuous part in the joke. After arranging, through King,
who had come with us, as forming one of the boat's crew, where and how
we should sleep, we went into the open air, and R---- and P----,
lighting their cigars, again entered into conversation with the
Anglo-Norwegian regarding the sports of the country. He told us, with
brightening eyes, that, at the top of the mountain, which towered in the
rear of our cot, a large bear had been seen for some weeks past, and his
depredations had been so extensive, that the peasantry many miles round
were terrified out of their wits. This was something to hear; but the
old man went on to say, that a bait, consisting of a dead horse, had
been laid, and he doubted not, but that in a day or two a shot might be
had at the brute. After this narrative our sporting curiosity had
reached its zenith; and mutually promising to meet at a certain hour on
the morrow, we parted with our voluble informant.

Some bread and cheese, and Bass's stout, formed our supper, and
reconciled us to our dormitory; and, while we smoked our pipes at the
now opened window, we wandered back to old England, and talked of
friends and fair ones left behind.

It was near midnight. Descending from the hills, the smell of the
evening air, impregnated with the sweet odour of a thousand wild
flowers, refreshed us, jaded as we were by a long journey, and added
delight to the novelty of our situation. The lofty mountains, too, on
either hand, seemed, with their summits, to touch the stars; and, except
the roar of a cataract, no sound interrupted the silence, which, amidst
such vast natural creations, almost amounted to pain.

Notwithstanding my many antipathies, I went to bed, and slept soundly
till the next morning, having awaked but once during the night to throw
off my eider coverlet. The Norwegians hold the eider in great
estimation, and, invariably, whether it be in summer or winter, place it
on the bed of a stranger; but I would recommend those who travel in that
part of Europe, as we did, during the three summer months, to decline
this domestic attention. The eider appears very much like a feather
mattress, but is so light, that, when used as a coverlet, you can
scarcely feel the difference between its weight and that of an ordinary
linen sheet.

At six o'clock the following morning, we were up and on the banks of the
river, which flowed within sight of the cottage windows. Our old
Norwegian, punctual to his appointment, was walking by our sides in the
joint capacity of spectator and mentor. Captain P---- threw the first
fly, and continued throwing fly after fly, various as the tints of the
rainbow, but with the same result as the Norwegian had anticipated. I
soon became grieved at seeing the river well thrashed, and left P---- to
persevere in his sport, and R----, like Charon, standing bolt upright in
a punt, rod in hand, and tackle streaming in air, to be ferried about in
search of some quiet nook for his particular diversion. Besides, it was
now nine, and I felt interiorly that breakfast would be more pleasant
than loitering on the banks of a river, pinched exteriorly by the
eagerness of a N.E. wind; for the climate of Norway, in the early part
of summer, is influenced by the same fickleness as the climate of
England; and the wind, during the night, will visit the cardinal points
of the compass, breathing as it did last night, from a warm quarter, and
will blow as it does this morning, from the opposite extreme.

I had scarcely made myself a cup of coffee, and not yet added the cream,
which encouraged the spoon to stand upright in its thickness, when R----
and P----, tired with their angling, came in. After demolishing nearly a
dozen eggs amongst us, and two capital salmon-trout, which our fast
friend, the Anglo-Norwegian, had filched from a large cistern, where
they are placed during the winter, for the benefit of his master's
table; and after imbibing cauldrons of coffee--so delicious was its
flavour--we showed and expressed great anxiety to pay Bruin the
compliments of the season, and as strangers and Englishmen to testify to
him, as loudly as we could, the repute his fat had obtained in England.

Our cicerone raised no objection; and, turning to one of his countrymen
who had entered the room to gape at us, for I could not then, and I
cannot now conceive the nature of his business, addressed him in his
native language. The man immediately disappeared, and in half an hour
returned with two rifles over each shoulder, and one pistol in his
breeches' pocket. The rifles were larger and heavier than the
fowling-pieces formerly used by our regiments of the line, and the
pistol was of the horse genus, and had a rusty muzzle and a flint lock.
However, we were going to annihilate a ruthless foe; and the clumsiness
of our accoutrements was of little moment. A few good-natured
observations passed between us and the Norseman concerning the
susceptibility and quality of the powder, for its grains were coarser
than those black beads of which ladies in England make their purses. The
said powder for security, was poured into an empty porter-bottle, and
corked down.

We started; but we had barely proceeded three-quarters of a mile before
our little Anglo-Norwegian, who had abided by our good or ill fortune
constantly from the beginning, suddenly remembered that some important
business required his presence in the low lands where dwelt industry
and peace, and accordingly recommending us to the skill of two guides,
shook hands cordially with us, and in a few minutes his ominous face and
oval form were hidden from our sight by the shrubs and stunted firs
which covered the mountain's side.

The waning of his courage did not darken ours; for, like all Englishmen,
we instantly commenced a political discussion, which terminated, after
an hour's duration, in the British fleet attacking, fatally, the
Norwegian gun-boats at Christiansand, nemine contradicente, and the two
boors grinning from ear to ear.

At length our guides, by signs, signified that silence was requisite. A
quarter of an hour more elapsed when one of them motioned us to keep
close, and going down on his hands and feet, intimated the proximity of
our game.

We were now five and thirty yards from the brow of the mountain, and,
crawling with the stealth and silence of a cat, the principal guide
reached the summit, at the same moment levelling his gun, which made us
imagine that Bruin was in full view; but gradually lowering his piece,
till the butt reached the ground, and leaning on it with both hands, the
man turned towards us, shook his head, and smiled. We were instantly by
his side.

Round a hollow piece of table-land, tending to a swamp, we saw, standing
at equal distances from each other, three sheds, constructed of long fir
poles driven into the earth and tapering, like a cone, into the air,
covered scantily with the branches of the pine or fir, and having an
only inlet by which a man, crouching, might reach the interior. In the
centre of this swamp the carcass of a horse lay, mangled and scattered
in every direction. The trunks of trees, which had been felled for the
purpose, were piled on the dead body; and this was done that the bear,
finding it too troublesome, for he is economical of labour, to remove
the body nearer to his den, would satisfy his hunger on the spot, and
offer an opportunity to overtake him at his meals; besides, the bear,
being quick of sight and shy, and so sensitive of scent that he can
smell a man at the distance of a mile or more if he approaches _with_
the wind, will frequently leave his food and as frequently return to it;
and, therefore, the Norwegians conceal themselves in the kind of sheds I
have described above, and remain for days and nights under such
precarious roofs in order to circumvent and destroy the animal.

We felt rather disappointed at not having even seen old Bruin, but a
good laugh in some degree compensated us for the fatigue we had
undergone. For my own part, armed as I was with the rusty horse pistol,
and intent on the manufacture of my own bear's grease, I had heard so
many pleasing anecdotes of the bear's noble nature, that I did not
regret his retreat had been commenced in time. These animals, unless
severely pressed by hunger, will never attack any living creature, and
will even avoid with much care those parts of the mountains where cattle
are wont to feed; and it is beyond the recollection of the oldest
inhabitant, or, indeed, the reach of tradition, when a child has been,
in the slightest degree, hurt by the Norwegian bear. On the contrary, it
is well known that these animals have met children in their track, and,
though at the time much oppressed by thirst and famine, have passed them
harmlessly by.

We sate down on a large rock, about twelve feet square, slightly
elevated above the ground, and entirely overgrown with moss. A small fir
tree, not ten inches high, grew in its centre, and the symmetry of its
diminutive trunk, rendered more beautiful by the regularity with which
its little branches sprung forth and drooped around first attracted our
notice to the spot as one where we should rest.

It was so situated that we could see for many miles around us in one
direction; but were excluded from any prospect at the other points. A
bog, filled with animalculæ of all forms sporting about in the water,
which was black from long stagnation, surrounded three parts of the
rock, leaving but one approach to it, which was the side least raised
above the level of the earth. The bog, therefore, acted as a moat; and
it was with that, or some similar feeling of security, we stretched
ourselves at full length on the soft moss, and basked in the sun.
P----, as usual, drew forth his pipe, and soothing himself with its
fumes, exemplified absolute comfort and contentment in the placidity of
his countenance. R---- dangled his legs over the edges of the rock; and
I, assuming the same attitude, gazed with him on the mountains towering
and straggling, at a great distance above and beneath us.

"What a bore it is" said R----, "fagging all the way up here, and not
getting a shot at that brute."

"Why, yes," I replied, "but bears, you know, are as likely to deceive
people now-a-days, as will-o'-the-wisps did monks of yore."

"That's all very well," observed R----, "but I am no monk, and I think
those Norwegians tell a good many lies; and this dead horse has been
only pulled about up here by a herd of famished dogs, and no bear. These
fellows say there _are_ bears to make their country appear finer than it
is."

"No, no," answered P----, "the fact is, we are too late; the day is hot,
as you feel, and these animals disliking the heat, feed at daylight, and
then retire into the heart of the forest, where they can escape the
oppression of the mid-day sun."

"Always?" R---- asked.

"Of course," replied P----.

"Oh! of course;" R---- reiterated, "that may be natural philosophy, but
my way of thinking seems as natural; and I take it, that, when animals,
like men, know where food is to be found and eat for the mere walking,
sunlight and moonlight, heat and cold are alike to them."

"I know," answered P----, "these Norwegian fellows tell enormous
crammers; but you may depend upon it, if we wish to get sport we must
get up earlier."

"Well," R---- replied, "all I can say to the bears and sporting animals
in general is, that if they don't breakfast a little later, or indulge
in luncheons, they won't hear much of _me_. Fun is fun, and sport is
sport; but catch _me_ out of bed at half-past 2 A.M."

"I abide by R----," I said, "I hold his logic in high repute, since its
principle is good."

P---- replied not; but, removing the pin from his silk neckcloth,
stirred up with its sharp point the smouldering ashes of his pipe. R----
looked in silence at the surrounding scene, and then broke into an
exclamation of rapture.

"Is it not beautiful?" concurred P----, turning his eyes in the
direction of the mountains. "There is nothing in the world to be
compared to the sublimity of this scenery, defined as the outlines are
by the clearness of the atmosphere and its deep blue tint." After a
short pause he continued, "When we can see at one glance such an
immensity of space, and know that this vast tract of mountain and of
valley must be full of animal life, is not this silence awful?"

We made no answer, but tacitly complied with his observation.

The rustling of dried leaves and the sharp crack of a breaking twig now
crept upon the ear; and P----, a sportsman at all points and at all
times, had already turned in the direction whence the interruption came;
and, as I was about to speak, he grasped me convulsively by the arm,
and, without any other intimation of danger, began slowly to raise his
rifle from the ground. R---- and I immediately started up, utterly at a
loss to know the cause of his dismay.

"For God's sake!" P---- whispered, without removing his eyes from the
quarter where they had been fixed, "don't speak: here he is!"

"Here is what?" in imitative whispers, breathed R----; but, at the same
time, cocking the trigger of his rifle, "I don't see him."

"Don't fire!" again whispered P----; "take your time."

"'Don't fire!' and 'take your time,'" said R----; "but _what_ do you
see?"

"Look _there_! don't you see him--close to that old stump?"

"Oh! ah! _now_ I do. By Jove! he's a wapper!"

"Where are those fellows?" asked P----, glancing round. I guessed to
whom he alluded, and beckoned to our guides, who were sitting at some
short distance, in ignorance of our plight, but had been watching our
actions with all the attention, and listening to our conversation with
all the comprehension of persons who did not understand our language. An
instant sufficed to range them at our elbows.

P---- pointed to the spot he had already suggested as the focus of
attention, and they both saw, with the quick-sightedness of men
accustomed to live by the chase, the cause of his excitement.

"Ja! ja!" they exclaimed simultaneously, their countenances radiant with
joy, "goot."

P---- bowed his head in the affirmative; and we could not help admiring
the courage of the Norwegians, which seemed to merge into enthusiasm,
the more imminent the risk and danger of our sport became.

An enormous bear, apparently fatigued by long travel, and panting loudly
with protruding tongue, slowly stalked forth from a mound of earth which
had accumulated round the stump of a beech-tree grown to maturity, but
now decaying in the midst of rushes and briars of every sort. Bruin, no
doubt, overheard our voices, for he stopped on his way, drew in his
tongue, ceased his violent respiration; and, raising his head on high,
snuffed the air on all sides, and then placing his nose close to the
ground, kept it there for some little time. He was eighty or ninety
yards from the spot where we stood. As again his head was lifted up,
his small tuft of a tail moved quickly from right to left, revealing his
turbulence and hesitation.

"Don't let us all fire together," hinted P----, in an under tone; "but
let those Norwegians blaze away first, as we don't know anything about
their skill."

"Then, I'll follow," said R----.

"And my pistol next," I interceded.

"Very well; and I will try my luck last," said P----. "Are all ready?"

"All right," we both answered, and the two Norwegians assented with a
nod.

The bear kept moving gradually near and nearer to the bait, and
approached within a very short space of the rock where we lay hid,
thickly surrounded by the branches of the fir and beech.

"Fire!" breathed P----, lowly.

One guide, elevating his gigantic rifle, pulled the trigger. A
tremendous report was one result, and the total disappearance of the
Norwegian was the other; the fowling-piece having kicked him completely
off the edge of the rock into our natural moat, the bog. We heard the
splash of the man's body below, and thought, at first, he was killed by
the bursting of his rifle; but when his companion, who had leaped down
to his assistance, helped him, reeking and muddy, from the dominions of
the tadpole, and placed him, uninjured, though stunned, on his legs, we
could not resist a burst of merriment at his countenance of unmitigated
disgust, as the liquid filth oozed from the tips of his dependent
fingers.

The sound of our laughter alarmed Bruin, and revealed us to his sight,
and, rising immediately on his hind-legs, he commenced moving towards
the Norwegians, and hissing like a hot coal dipped in cold water.

"Hang the mud, jump up!" exclaimed P----.

"Grin and _bear_ it, old fellow," and, saying so, R---- quietly levelled
his rifle, with some misgiving, for it was of Norwegian manufacture, and
fired at the animal. Poor Bruin received the ball in his left fore-leg;
and, with a piteous moan, he instantly assumed his natural position on
all fours, and hissed and growled, and licked the blood which streamed
from the wound. The animal, nothing daunted, even in this extremity,
still moved towards us with great ferocity; and, as he came within forty
feet, P---- lodged a second bullet in his loin. The pain exasperated him
to the quick, and he rushed furiously towards the rock.

"Where's the powder?" shouted P----.

"I don't know," echoed from every one. No powder could be found; the
Norwegian having taken possession of the porter bottle, and placed it in
his pocket, had doubtlessly fallen with it into the quagmire; and they
had now absconded.

"Don't let him get up!" continued P---- emphatically.

"Not to my knowledge," R---- replied, assuming a long recognised
attitude of great military defence.

I now presented my rusty old horse-pistol at Bruin's head, at an
interval sufficient under the circumstances, of three yards, and fired
it; when, whether from having received its contents, or from alarm at
its loud report, the bear rolled over on his back; but, recovering
himself in a moment, he made an awkward spring, short of the rock, and
received, in commemoration of his false agility, a blow on the head from
the butt-end of R----'s rifle. The shock removed R----'s glazed cap from
his head, and it fell, bounding from the rock, close to Bruin's nose.
Mistaking, no doubt, this ingenious covering for R----'s especial skull,
the bear, infuriated, flew at it impetuously, and seizing it in his
mouth, shook it as an angry dog would have shaken a rag.

The blood was now fastly trickling down his tongue, which hung from his
mouth, and through his side at every pulsation, spouted, smoking, the
warm element of life. Gradually, slowly, yet reluctantly, his head
drooped towards the ground, and, faint from loss of blood, the animal,
tottering from side to side, sate, weakened as he was, upright on his
haunches, showing his teeth, and growling until the coagulated blood,
accumulating in his throat, would make him cough, and threatened
suffocation.

Descending from the rock, we came near to the dying creature, and,
striving to reach one of us, he lifted his paw, and, as he did so, lost
his balance, and tumbled over on the earth. Although, as we supposed, on
the point of death, the gallant brute still growled, and attempted to
rise again and renew the fight, but complete exhaustion denied what his
courage prompted.

The Norwegians now reappeared, and one of them knelt down to remove
R----'s cap from the bear's clutches; but the undaunted Bruin, as if
desirous of giving his countryman a final embrace, seized him round the
neck, and drew him tightly to his clotted breast. We were, of course,
alarmed a second time for the man's safety, and by great exertions tried
to release him from his perilous condition; but our efforts were not a
little crippled by the legs of the Norwegian, which he flung violently
about at every possible tangent; and one arm, moving with the rapid
oscillating motion of a steam-engine, brought the fist in sharp contact
with the other Norwegian's chest, and threw him, head over heels, into
the identical pool whence he had himself but lately escaped.

The accident was so ludicrous, that in the ecstasies of mirth, we forgot
the man lying prostrate and kicking in the arms of the bear; until, by
dint of his own exertions, he released himself, and, standing upright
before us, showed his face plastered from forehead to chin, and ear to
ear, with a multitude of withered leaves, which adhered to the blood he
had borrowed from the animal's wounds.

The poor bear was now dead; and, behaving bravely as he did to the last,
we could not help regretting his end. Though young, he almost reached an
Alderney cow in height and standard, and great power was developed in
the sinews and breadth of his chest. His coat to the touch and sight was
soft and glossy as silk.

After standing over his body for a few minutes in silent observation,
R---- wiped the gore from his cap, and placing it, shattered as it was,
on his head, we all left the bear, for the present, where he lay; and
wandering through the forest for some time, enjoyed the coolness of the
air at this great elevation, pursuing, by a circuitous route, our
descent to the cottage.

Our fame, unlike the

 "Fama malum," &c., &c.

of Virgil, did, certainly, precede us with great velocity, but with
beneficial effects; for the women came forth to meet us, and looking up
in our faces, found out our eyes were beautiful, and our noses better
moulded than their own, and called us handsome "Ingerleesh;" and the
men, grasping us by the wrists, said we were brave and "goot
Ingerleesh."

One little blue-eyed girl, the elegance of her light form unaided by the
care of art, attracted my attention; and, with finger in her mouth,
sidling coaxingly to me, took my hand gently in hers, and begged in the
sweet idiom of her country, and in the earnest tones of her own sweeter
voice, that I would carry her with me to "Ingerlaand," where she would
serve me, like a slave, till she died.

The sun had long passed the meridian before the felicitations on our
success were at an end; and then, having recommended the bear's carcass
to the custody of our ancient and well-tried friend, the
Anglo-Norwegian, who promised to preserve the skin for us till our
return, (and who, by the way, was the first to meet us and thank his
pagods for our safe issue out of the skirmish,) and having made a
trifling present to our host, we packed up our pots and pans, and,
seating ourselves in the gig, were again floating on the Toptdal River.

P----'s first love, the pool, was not forgotten, for he gave it a
wistful glance in passing; but the wind drawing aft, our sail was set,
and stopping was beyond all question. We continued our course without
any interruption until we arrived at the mouth of the river, when a
sudden puff took a fancy for R----'s renowned cap, and, forcing it from
his head, raised it high in its embrace, and kept it there for a second
or two; then, as if suddenly relaxing in its caresses, tossed it
vehemently away into the water.

We all witnessed the gyrations of the cap, and saw it fall; but, before
we could row to the spot, the great _tile_ sank from repletion, and--for
ever!

The same puff in its subtlety nearly capsized us, and completely carried
away the step of the mast. No other incident befell us; and we jumped on
board the Iris as the church at Christiansand was striking six.

Wednesday, the 12th, did us the kindness of showing the aspect of Old
Norway under the effect of a different atmosphere than we had yet
inhaled; for it rained the whole day with all the accumulated
steadiness, rheumatic rawness, slowness, and obstinacy of a Scotch, or
English November mist. We did not, however, heed the weather, but rowed
round the Bay, and strolled on the islands in its vicinity, stimulated
by the hope of getting a shot at some animal, fish or bird; but no such
luck overtook us. We returned on board, wet through, after being absent
for three hours, and while removing our damp boots, concluded that we
were deceived on our first arrival, and, that Norway was the same
"humbugging" sort of a place as the rest of Europe; and, indeed, that
the whole world was subject to the identical changes of shower, fog, and
sunshine.

Some Norwegian gentleman, just at this nick of time and temper, sent on
board a salmon, a brace of black cock, and a cock of the north, as
large as a turkey, and we immediately admitted the generosity of
foreigners, particularly these Norsemen, but shut out the drizzle of
Wednesday, the 12th of May, from any kind of sympathy.



CHAPTER III.

 DEPARTURE FROM CHRISTIANSAND--THE PILOT'S PRAM--SKAW
 POINT--DELINQUENCIES OF JACKO--EXPENSIVE CANNONADING
 --ELSINEUR--HAMLET'S WALK--THE MINISTER, STRUENSEE--
 STORY OF QUEEN CAROLINE-MATILDA--LEGEND OF THE SERF.


Thursday broke without a cloud. The wind breathed softly over the
mountains from the West. We had no object to detain us longer, for the
present, in Norway, and so the cutter was got under weigh. The wind
gradually increased, and, at eight o'clock, we passed the Oxoe Light, at
the eastern extremity of the Fiord.

The pilot, unaccustomed to the speed of an English yacht, was much
alarmed about the safety of his boat towing at the cutter's stern; for,
now and then, the antiquated pram would dip its nose so deeply into the
water, being drawn swiftly through it, as to threaten instant
submersion; and his attention divided between the tiller of a vessel,
which flew up in the wind's eye with the slightest negligence, and his
anxiety for the well-being of his own boat,--the countenance of the
Norse tar was a book on whose leaves the student might have seen how
truly "the ridiculous and sublime" can be united.

"Now then, my man," said D----; "mind your helm, or you'll have her up
in the wind in a minute."

"Ja; but luke at moin praam--moin Got!"

"Curse your pram,--she won't hurt; haul her on board," said D---- to
some of the sailors.

"Nej, nej," exclaimed the Norwegian; "zare--luke zare! Moin Got! luke at
moin praam!"

"Her timbers are good, ain't they? If they're good, and will hold
together, this lop wont hurt her," observed D----.

"Ja,--goot; but ze vater _ville_ come into moin praam. Moin Got!"

The fellow was glad to take his dollars and his leave, and, as soon as
he did so, we shaped our course for the Skaw Point, the most northerly
headland of Denmark. The wind now blew strongly from W.S.W., and the
Iris tore furiously along, revelling with her favourite breeze, three
points on the quarter; and, bounding from wave to wave, she seemed to
dally with their soft white crests, which curved half playfully, half
reluctantly, as her proud bows met and kissed them lightly, then threw
them, hissing, in her wake.

At noon, the latitude observed, was 57.54; and at five o'clock we made
the Skaw through the crevices of a fog.

We had run nearly one hundred miles in nine hours, and the reader may
easily understand the alarm of the pilot for the safety of his boat. At
six o'clock, the fog cleared away, and we discerned with our glasses
five vessels which had run ashore during the thickness of the weather.
These mishaps frequently occur along this part of the Danish shore, for
it is very low, and invariably shrouded in mist.

We did not lack society; as hundreds of vessels of all shapes and sizes,
from the lumbering Dutchman to the trim American, were scattered over
the surface of the water. We amused ourselves by signalling, first to
one ship, and, then, to the other brig, and so on, in rotation, from
schooner to smack; and, thus occupied, the afternoon wagged on.

Jacko was convicted of a few misdemeanours to-day, and the principal
witness against him was his particular friend, Alfred, the boy. Jacko
was seen to descend into the cabin, and, entering my berth, to take
thence my best London-made and only remaining tooth-brush; and, after
polishing his own diminutive teeth, and committing other pranks with it,
such as the scrubbing of the deck, and currying of Sailor's back, left
it to batten on the fish-bones in the said Sailor's hutch; and was,
moreover, seen by the aforesaid complainant to remove R----'s small
ivory box of cold cream from the dressing-case, and, ascending the
deck,--not as human creatures do by the companion-stairs, but along the
companion-banisters, carrying the purloined article in his tail,--to
anoint, in the first instance, his own pugged nose; and, in the second
instance, to transfer the obligation to Sailor's (always Sailor!) shaggy
ears and shaggier coat; and then, that his guilt might be concealed,
till the day of judgment for ring-tailed monkeys should come, the little
box itself was sent overboard through one of the scuppers. Jacko was
found guilty of these two charges by the steward and helmsman, (whose
pipe Jacko had also committed to the waters of the Scaggerack,) and
ordered to the mast-head; and there he remained for three hours sitting
close to the jaws of the gaff, and chattering, without cessation, his
annoyances to the gaff halliard blocks.

At midnight, the Trindelen light-ship bore west, distance six or seven
miles. Although Cronenborg Castle had been in sight all day, we did not
anchor off the town of Elsineur (the wind being so light) until six
o'clock on Friday evening. Immediately on our arrival, a boat was sent
ashore to deliver the vessel's papers; for, though the ancient
privileges of Cronenborg are not held with such paramount sovereignty as
they used to be of yore, some form, and merely form, is, however,
observed. For instance--in passing the castle, the ensign of the
country to which the vessel belongs must be hoisted at the peak, or at
the fore, according to the character of the vessel; and, should this
regulation be encroached upon, a gun from the citadel is immediately
fired, and is followed by others until the flag is hoisted, and
continues to be fired until the flag is seen at its proper place; and,
when the commotion is at an end, an artillery officer, or his deputy,
boards the refractory vessel and demands payment, (every gun, fired, at
so much) for the powder expended in bringing the crew to their senses.
Many droll scenes occur between the Castle and the Dutch
merchant-vessels going up the Baltic; for the Dutchmen, either from
their unwieldiness, or from the confused cargo they carry, cannot always
be made, on the instant, to conform to some of these regulations; and
the artillerymen, being desirous of profiting by the apparent
negligence, knowing well the cause, open an unremitting cannonade on the
passive Hollanders, and, in the course of a few minutes, will run up a
tolerably long bill.

The night was most beautiful, and the sea calm as death. The fine old
Castle of Cronenborg, casting a dark shadow over the water even to the
vessel's side, made me dream of days and legends gone by as I remained
silently gazing on its elegant tower. My mind, filled with melancholy
fancies, flew to centuries long past, when the philosophic Hamlet mused,
perhaps, on calm evenings like this, pacing to and fro the very
ramparts I was looking on, or sought, on that night of "a nipping and an
eager air," the coming of him whose

 "Form and cause conjoined, preaching to stones,
 Would make them capable."

Those old walls, too, are full of poor, Struensee's fate,--he, whose
great soul, sundering aristocratic power, first gave liberty to Denmark,
and added to her natural blessings the moral beauty of our own dear
England. And how does history speak?

On the 16th of June, 1772, a masked ball was given at the Court of
Denmark, surpassing the imaginary brilliancy of an Oriental tale. A
thousand tapers threw their splendour over a scene already glittering
with the beauty, youth, and power of Copenhagen. The mean and daily
feelings which give impulse to the actions of political men, seemed
absorbed in the joyousness of the moment; and the gravest senators might
have been seen on this night, unravelling the mazes of the dance, with
the speed and light-heartedness of the youngest girl. The king himself,
throwing aside the apathetic reserve of his state, danced a
country-dance with the queen; and, at its conclusion, he having retired
to play at quadrille with General Gahler and Counsellor Struensee, the
youthful queen gave her hand to Count Struensee during the remainder of
the evening. At one end of the room, apart from all, and apparently
lost in their own thoughts, stood the Dowager-queen, and her son,
Prince Frederick. While his royal mother shone with the dazzling
brightness of numberless precious stones attired in all the outward pomp
of her high position, the Prince was habited in the splendid uniform of
a Danish regiment of horse; and the most honourable Order of the
Elephant, surmounted with a castle, set in diamonds, and suspended to a
sky-blue watered ribbon, passed over his right shoulder; a white ribbon
from which depended a small cross of diamonds, and an embroidered star
on the breast of his coat denoted him to be also a Knight of the most
ancient Order of Daneburg.

Keeping their eyes intently fixed on the beautiful Caroline-Matilda, as
she moved through the dance with Count Struensee, they would
occasionally, in whispers, make an observation to each other, but in
tones so low, that their nearest attendants could not catch its purport.
The young Queen, fatigued at last, retired at two o'clock from the
ball-room, followed by Struensee and Count Brandt. About four the same
morning, Prince Frederick got up and dressed himself, and went with his
mother to the King's bed-chamber, accompanied by General Eichstedt and
Count Rantzan. As soon as they had reached the lobby of the royal
chamber, the page was roused, and ordered to awake the King; and, in the
midst of the surprise and alarm that this unexpected intrusion excited,
they informed him, that his Queen and the two Struensees were at that
instant busy in drawing up an act of renunciation of the crown, which
they would immediately afterwards compel him to sign; and, that the only
means he could use to prevent so imminent a danger, was to validate by
his signature those orders, without loss of time, which they had brought
with them, for arresting the Queen and her accomplices. The King
hesitated for some time, and, it is said, was not easily prevailed upon
to sign these orders; but at length complied, though with reluctance and
expressions of great grief. Count Rantzan and three officers were
dispatched, at that untimely hour, to the Queen's apartment, and
immediately arrested her. She was hurried into one of the King's
carriages, and conveyed at once to the Castle of Cronenborg, where she
remained until May, when the King of England sent a small squadron of
ships to carry her to Germany. The City of Zell was appointed her place
of residence, where she died of a malignant fever on the 10th of May,
1775, at the early age of twenty-three. Some most unjust charges, in
connection with the Queen, Caroline-Matilda, were brought against
Struensee, and, on the 28th April, 1772, he was, together with his old
friend, Count Brandt, beheaded, his right hand being previously cut
off.

Caroline-Matilda was the sister of George III.; and her infant son, the
late King of Denmark, Christian VIII., was at this period taken from his
mother, though only five years of age; and this separation from her
little son, on whom she doted, hastened to an untimely grave this
innocent and unfortunate queen.

The Danish traditions say that for many ages the clang of arms, and
groans of human beings, as if in torture, were occasionally heard in the
dismal vaults beneath the Castle of Cronenborg. No human creature knew
the cause of these strange noises, and desirous, as all people were, to
learn the mystery, there was not in all the land of Denmark a man bold
enough to descend into the vaults. The sentinels, as they kept watch by
night, would be driven by superstitious terror from their posts, nor
could they be induced to resume their duty. On stormy nights, when the
rain descended, and thunder and lightning disturbed the face of nature,
these unearthly sounds would begin, at first by low moans, to join the
universal din; then, increasing loud and more loud, add horror to the
raging elements. At last, a poor serf, who had forfeited his life, was
told that all the errors of his youth should be regarded no more, and
his crimes be forgiven, if he would descend and bring intelligence to
his countrymen of what he saw and found in these vaults. Oppressed by
the ignominy of his fate, he went down, and following, carefully, to an
immense depth, the winding of a stone staircase, came to an iron door,
which opened, as if by a spring, when he knocked. He entered, and found
himself on the brink of a deep vault. In the centre of the ceiling hung
a lamp, which was nearly burnt out, and, by its flickering light, he
saw, below, a huge stone table, round which many warriors, clad in
armour, sate, resting, as if in slumber, their heads on their arms,
which they laid crossways. He who reclined at the farthest end of the
table--a man of great stature--then rose up. It was Holger, the Dane.
When he raised his head from his arms, the foundations of the vault
shook, and the stone table burst instantly in twain, for his beard had
grown through it. He beckoned the slave to approach; and, when he had
come near, said,

 "Give me thy hand!"

The slave, alarmed, durst not give him the hand he had required, but,
taking up an iron bar from the ground, put it forth; and Holger,
grasping it, indented it with his fingers. This friendly response (for
Holger perceived not the difference between flesh and iron,) to the
feelings of Holger made a deep impression on his heart, unaccustomed
though it had been for centuries to the sympathy of his kind, and
smiling, he muttered to the trembling slave,

"It is well! I am glad that there are yet _men_ in Denmark."

The serf returned to earth as soon as permission was obtained, and,
relating the story exactly as I have repeated it, received his freedom
and a pension from the king.

The Castle of Cronenborg was commenced by Frederick II. in 1574, and
finished by Christian IV.

The boat returned at eight o'clock, and brought off some bread; but it
was so hard and heavy, we could not touch it, though some Danes, who had
accompanied our men from the shore, assured us it was the best bread
baked in Elsineur, and eaten by the native nobility. It was darker in
colour than the brown bread in England; and so acid, that the sailors,
who were cormorants at food, and ostriches in digestion, declined the
loaf as a gift. Sailor ate it, and had the cholic for three weeks.

Earlier than the sun I arose on Saturday morning. From the spot where
the yacht lay at anchor, the town of Elsineur had an imposing
appearance; and, besides the number of fishing-vessels which kept
popping out of the harbour, one by one, round the pier-head, at this
early time, amidst the shouts and merry laughter of their crews,
betokening the light hearts with which they went forth to their daily
labour,--the wind-mills on the tops of the neighbouring hills, outvying
each other in velocity, showed that the inhabitants entertained, at
least, habits of industry, and were not, perhaps, unacquainted with the
advantages of traffic. But, since we did not land to-day, I will revert
to this celebrated little town on our return from Copenhagen, when, I
hope, to make myself more familiar with it.



CHAPTER IV.

 THE PILOT--TEMPESTUOUS WEATHER--DISTANT VIEW OF
 COPENHAGEN--LORD NELSON--THE BATTLE OF THE BALTIC
 --THE HARBOUR-MASTER--INTEREST EXCITED BY THE
 YACHT'S ARRIVAL--THE ARTIST--THE ANGLER--WE GO
 ASHORE.


At twelve o'clock the pilot stepped on board, and, in a few minutes,
with a freshening wind from the westward, we were on our way to the
Danish capital. To a warm, unclouded morning, a wet dark day succeeded;
and, except between the chasms of flying clouds, the sun wholly withheld
its light. The rain fell, at intervals, in torrents; and, concealing
myself under the lee of the gig, which was hoisted on the davits, I
endeavoured to enter into conversation with the pilot. The silvery hand
of time, or heavier one of toil, had tinged his hair; and though (to
judge from his sad and thoughtful mien,) life seemed protracted longer
than he wished, his career, I learned by hints, had not been without
excitement to himself, and could not be recited without interest and
instruction to others. The old man was short and stout, and little gray
eyes twinkled beneath an intellectual forehead, scarred by a sabre
wound. After I had watched him with attention for some time, his
firmly-compressed lips and sombre countenance showed the solidity of his
character, and no weak point at which I might attack him with an
observation. Sailor, who had been reclining in his hutch, disliking to
wet his hide, and who was still labouring from the ill effects of the
Danish brown bread, now came forth to stretch himself; and, seeing a
man, unknown, standing by the compass-box, approached, and, with all the
diffidence of his tribe, determined to form no friendship, without
previously ascertaining whence he came, and what his business was.
Sailor therefore walked with resolution up to the man, and smelt his
coat. The dog also applied his nose to a little bundle tied with a dark
silk handkerchief stowed unintrusively away between the pumps; and then,
turning round, he looked up at me, and wagged his tail. I could almost
see a smile upon his face. The old man laughed, and said, half nettled
by Sailor's contemptuous way of smelling his whole wardrobe, "Dat is von
vine dog."

Though the allusion to the dog's well-proportioned form, or extreme
sagacity, was one which answered itself, I replied,

"Yes; and that is the way he makes friends."

"I know, I know," he answered, "if von maan's schmell vosh as goot, ve
shoult schmell de tief vary shoon."

"True; but if we are fond of sweet scents, and had to judge virtue and
vice by smell, we should very soon leave off smelling, or leave the
world."

He did not seem to comprehend my meaning, for a vague expression of
neither assent nor dissent passed over his countenance. He now, however,
became talkative, and told me he commenced life by entering the Danish
navy, and had been present in many engagements. Travelling from one end
of the world to the other, though seated together under the gig's keel,
and wrapped in tarpaulin, we contrived to meet in the West Indies; and
the old sailor's heart opened towards me as I spoke of scenes and things
familiar to him in his youth. I told him how I had been going "up and
down on the earth," and "walking to and fro on it;" and he took my hand
in his and shook it, because I, like him, had been a wanderer. And so we
whiled away the time, and heard and felt neither wind nor rain.

P---- had gone below to arrange his flies; and I could occasionally hear
R----'s voice, above the whistling of the wind through the shrouds,
modulating "Buffalo Gals," "The Great Plenipotentiary," and other
favourite ballads. We were now half way between Elsineur and
Copenhagen, and rising above a cape of level land on our starboard bow,
the high buildings and steeples of Copenhagen could be distinguished. I
formed, from this view, a grand idea of the Northern Capital, and, had I
not done so, I might have been less disappointed, beautiful though the
city is, when I found myself the following day walking through its
streets. But the same event happens to man's works as to man himself.
The nearer I view a picture, the harsher become those lines which, at a
distance, seemed so soft; and had I seen Cæsar, I should not now worship
the deity I have raised on the pedestal of Imagination. I desire to
foster the poetic feeling which, like a mountain mist, surrounds the
ordinary habits and character of great men, and so I stand aloof and
look on them. I exist on the Pagan creed,

 "Omne ignotum pro magnifico."

The pilot, pointing with his finger, showed the spot where Nelson landed
some of his men the day before his action in 1801; and, as the Dane
reminded me of the crafty manner in which the officers of the English
fleet imposed on the credulity of the good folks at Elsineur, the sound
of distant thunder was heard. He ceased to speak, and listened to the
low, rumbling peals, as they swelled, now loudly on the tops of the far
mountains of Sweden, then sank faintly in the valleys. The old man went
on to say, he remembered the action well; and, with bitterness,
regretted that it ever occurred. This was the first time I had heard
England spoken of discreditably, and the arrow pierced deep, and deeper,
as familiar intercourse told, that the Danes, a brave and noble people
themselves, always remember this battle with a sorrowful resignation,
and grieving, feel, without vindictiveness, that, though Time may heal
the outward wound, the moral pain remains for ever.

The scenery all along this coast of Denmark is very beautiful, the royal
forests, extending nearly from Elsineur to Copenhagen, contributing with
their masses of trees, and their rich green tints, to relieve the
occasional gloomy aspect of the Swedish shore. These forests are
strictly preserved, and are full of game; and, reared above the loftiest
trees, the roof of one of the king's hunting-palaces may be seen. With
its usual bounty, the wind increased to a gale, and we entered
Copenhagen harbour at three o'clock, with a reef in the mainsail, and
ploughing up the water in furious fashion.

The Harbour-Master came on board as soon as we had anchored, and
requested, with much civility, that we would move from the berth we had
taken, since we obstructed the free passage between the docks and the
harbour; and the cutter, he hinted, might be injured by merchant-vessels
being warped from one to the other place. R---- made no demur; but
turned round, and rated in good English the old pilot for his stupidity;
while the old pilot, in unintelligible Danish, roared at his countryman
for not coming off before the anchor had gone. When the little stout
pilot was pacified, and unanimity restored, the Harbour-Master, a man of
immense stature, and great personal beauty, came up to me, and said,
with an excellent dialect, in the English language,

"I could perceive, Sir, your vessel was an English one, the moment she
weathered that point; for none but a British vessel could dash along in
such style as yours did."

I bowed, and thanked him for the compliment.

"I only hope, Sir," he continued, "that the Crown Prince will return
before you leave Copenhagen; for this yacht would soon disgust him with
his own."

"Is the Prince then away from Copenhagen?" I asked.

"Yes, Sir; he is gone for a cruise towards the Baltic, and that is the
reason you have not met him on the passage here. He is partial to the
English; and so are we. He would have chased you; but, Sir, his yacht is
no better than a fisherman's smack."

After a multitude of other aspirations, that we might encounter the
Crown Prince, now, by the way, king, to disgust him with his property,
the Dane took his leave; and, although his bland, Saxon face, with his
seemingly open disposition, drew me towards him, I was not sorry to be
alone.

The sun seemed at last to have gained its desire, by lulling the wind,
and, instead of bursting, fretfully, through squally clouds, now shone
forth with warmth and unblemished splendour. Many ladies and gentlemen
walked up and down on a promenade, evidently a favourite and fashionable
lounge, within the ramparts of a citadel, bristling with guns of
tremendous calibre, not a cable's length from the Iris; so, that, I
could see, without being much observed, the gaiety which was in vogue,
and could almost hear, did I understand the language, the anxiety
expressed to know what and whence we were. The ladies in their French
pink bonnets, and English dresses, pointed, gathering in knots, to the
white Ensign and red cross of St. George,--which drooping, dipped, like
a swallow, to the water's surface, then floated lazily in the air,--and
concluded at once in their sweet minds from what part of the sunny South
we came, and what the errand was which had brought us so far from home
to Denmark. I could almost tell, by the fervour of their manner, how the
men viewed with admiration the slight downward curve of the cutter's
bowsprit, her burnished copper, and low, raking hull. Boats of all sizes
and shapes, each containing a cargo, varying from four to thirteen
persons, put off from the shore, and each individual whispering one to
the other, that we were English, paddled round the cutter. Removed at a
short distance from the little fleet, like the leading drake of a flock
of ducks, a boat, rowed by a sailor and carrying two gentlemen, one with
spectacles, standing, and the other quietly seated, steering, described
continuously an elliptical circle round and round the vessel. Now and
then, the gentleman, who stood, would make an exclamation to his
companion, but whether of admiration or dislike, I had no other means of
conjecturing than from the frequency with which he arranged,
disarranged, and re-arranged his spectacles, first, fixing them tightly
to the bridge of his nose, then, unfixing them, with a pettish jerk, to
wipe them with his handkerchief, and, at last, refixing them with much
precision, by removing the hat from his head and clasping it between his
knees, till the yielding pasteboard crackled again. This
circumnavigation continued for some time, much to my amusement, but more
to the annoyance of Sailor, who leaped from stern to bow, following the
motion of the boat, and barked, till the echo of his voice struck
sharply against the bastions of Fredrikshavn, then flew, bounding, back
again.

At last, the boat was pulled boldly to the gangway, and the excitable
gentleman in spectacles, seizing hold of the after-braces, bowed and
handed me a card, and begged, in bad French, that he might be permitted
to come on board. Permission was soon obtained from R----, and, with hat
in hand, on board the Dane, as I fancied, jumped, accompanied, of
course, by the other gentleman. The whiteness of the deck attracted his
attention, and turning to me he made, smiling, an observation in a
language which I did not understand, but could not help desiring to hear
its silvery sounds again.

"Vous n'êtes pas Français?" he then asked.

"Non, je ne suis pas."

"Mais la langue, ne la comprenez-vous pas?"

"Pas beaucoup," I replied.

"Dat is pitty; for I have been for shome toime past in Ingerlaand, but I
not learn ze langwage. Ze Ingerleesh varry difficolt."

"You seemed," I replied, "to have overcome that difficulty, and you
speak it with a pretty good accent."

"No, Zare, you varry goot to say so; but I feel I can at all not--at all
not,--qu'est que veut dire, 'exprimer?'--ach! ach!" he exclaimed,
putting his finger in his mouth, and pressing it, meditatively, between
his front teeth, "I can at all not speak moin feeling in ze vay I shoult
vish."

"How long were you in England?" I said.

"En fjor--une année," he replied.

"If then, Sir," I went on, "after being one year in Denmark, I can speak
the language so correctly as you do the English, I should think myself
no deficient scholar."

"Oh! Zare, you too goot. I am not Dane, zough; I am from
Sweden--ffrān Svenska landet; but I come to Kjobenhagen for ze
painting. Zare," he said, turning round, and looking from stem to stern,
and from the burgee at the top-mast head to the brass belaying pins,
"dish Engelskt skepp varry--ach! ach!" again he exclaimed, stamping his
foot and thrusting his finger in his mouth, "fy!--vat you call 'skönt'?"

"Fine, beautiful," I said, assistingly.

"Ja; jag tackar. Det är skönt!" he exclaimed to his companion, who bowed
in assent, and observed in the Swedish tongue,

"Det ser ut som en fregatt;" which, being interpreted, meant that the
yacht was like a frigate.

"Ja," answered my friend; and, after allowing time that they might
admire everything, which they did, walking to and fro the deck, looking
down the pumps and up the rigging, I requested that they would follow
me, and I would show them below. The compactness of the cabin, the
comfort of the berths, the height between decks, the combination of ease
and elegance in the furniture, the copper-plate drawings, the swinging
table, the pantry with every drawer and cupboard exactly where they
ought to be, and nowhere else, the forecastle, and, wonder upon wonder!
the cooking apparatus with its moveable jack, and its particular copper
for hot water,--all these things, and a thousand others too minute to
tell, acted so impressively on their minds, that I could hear them
extolling, in barbarous grammar, to the cook the singular sagacity of an
English mechanic, and the collective greatness of the English nation.
They remained on board nearly three hours; and, after conversing with
R----, P----, and myself as well as they could, they presented each of
us with their cards, and, begging that we would honour them with a
visit, took their leave. I returned on deck with them; and the
gentleman, whom I have distinguished from his fellow visitor by his
spectacles, before he stepped into his boat, said to me,

"Zare, I can at all not say how mooch dish skepp delight me to look at.
I am von artiste, and I should like varry mooch to draw dish skepp."

"I am sure," I replied, "Lord R---- will make no objection, for you
compliment him in expressing such a wish."

"I tank you, Zare; I can at all not help eet, but I look at dish skepp
like von--like von--ach! ach!--" and again the top of the forefinger was
lodged in his mouth, "vat is 'skönt'?--bootifool?--jag tacker;--like von
bootifool flicka, gal, and ze odare skepps like old vomans."

So saying, he raised his hat and gravely wished me good day.

"Good dag," he exclaimed again, standing upright in the boat--"Farväl!"

"Good dag. Farväl!" repeated his companion. And still, in an erect
position, the gentleman in spectacles kept his eyes fixed on the vessel
until a projecting portion of the quay hid the Iris from his sight. I
then joined R---- and P---- in the cabin. We were endeavouring to settle
what could be done in the evening, and at what point we should commence
to see all the lions in Copenhagen, and regretting that we were
unacquainted with an Englishman resident in the capital, when the
steward gave a very small card, having a very large inscription on it,
to R----, and said that a gentleman wished to speak to us. R---- desired
that the stranger would walk below.

"Gentlemen," said a stout man about fifty-five years of age, who, with a
red face, was standing uncovered at the threshold of the cabin door, "I
hope you will forgive the liberty I have taken in boarding your yacht."

"Oh! yes, certainly," said R----, "I am happy to see a countryman."

"That is just my case," replied the stout man, advancing farther into
the cabin. "I have been driven from my own country by adversity, and
whenever I see an Englishman I cannot resist forming his acquaintance,
that I might speak to some one who has come from the land where I was
born. Have you seen my card? My name is A--l--r C."

"Won't you sit down?" said P----, offering him a chair.

"I thank you," answered Mr. C----, and sate down. "I suppose you are
come to fish."

"We are," P---- replied, "and should like to learn something about the
art, and the places where it may be applied."

"You can't fish so far to the south as Copenhagen," said Mr. C. "There
are no fish here. I suppose you know that?"

"Yes, we know that," interposed R----, "we are from Christiansand, and
there we heard of fish, but caught none."

"That's very likely; the rivers are yet too cold, and will continue so
for a month or more. I am an old fisherman," exclaimed Mr. C----
challengingly. "I have caught my sixty in a week;" and he slapped his
thigh.

P---- rubbed his hands with satisfaction, and R---- rose from the sofa
on which he was reclining, and looked at Mr. C---- with curiosity.

"Well, now," proceeded Mr. A--l--r C----, "I would suggest, that, you
three gentlemen, being in search of pleasure or sport, should remain a
few days where you are. After having worn out the enjoyments, and there
are many, of Copenhagen, coast it up to Gottenborg, Falkenborg, and so
on till you reach Christiania; and at Falkenborg, or Kongsbacka, you may
get a few fish. Have you brought any tackle, or flies?"

"Lots of both," said P----, rising at the same moment, and taking from
the bookcase behind him his whole fishing apparatus. The fly-book was
soon opened, and Mr. C---- scrutinized tackle and flies with the
attention of an angler.

"This is too yellow," he said of one fly, removing it from the book, and
placing it on the table for observation. "Here--here's too much red and
blue," of another; "there are no flies of that colour in Sweden, or
Norway; and all this green on the belly is rubbish,--no fish will take
_that_. What's this? Ha! The dragon-fly,--'t won't do." After rummaging
for a little while, he said, "By the Lord Harry! come out!" seizing by
the wings a fourth fly about the size of a humming bird. "This'll do for
the coast of Greenland where whales are caught. Shall I tell you what?"
asked Mr. C----, putting an end to his criticism, and looking round at
us all. "Make your own flies. It's impossible for a fellow in the Strand
to put a fly together which would suit fishermen like you. Observe the
flies and insects of the country as they flutter under your nose, and
imitate them the best way you can."

"That's not a bad idea," was the simultaneous answer of R---- and P----;
but they liked not their London-made goods rated so lowly.

"Now," exclaimed Mr. C----, glancing steadfastly all round the cabin at
each of us, "I hear this yacht belongs to an English nobleman, and the
name is familiar to me. Which one of you is Lord R----?"

P---- and I made no reply; and R----, quite _taken a-back_, resumed
instantly, with a comic air, his declining attitude sideways on the
sofa, with his face turned next to the bulk-head.

"_You_ are Lord R----," continued Mr. C----, pointing to me.

"As much as you have exalted me in the grade of society, so much has it
pleased Fate at last to depress me," I replied. "That is Lord R----," I
continued, pointing to R----, or, at least, towards the centre seam in
the back of his pilot-jacket.

"I hope your Lordship," said old C----, addressing R----'s back front
view, "will forgive the robbery of your due; but, had I observed your
face, I could not have mistaken you."

R---- rose laughing, and told him no apology was requisite.

"You are very like the pictures I have seen, when I was in England, of
the Admiral." Then, after a pause, "What can I do for you, gentlemen?"
said Mr. C----. "How can I serve you? To-day is Saturday. Nothing is
going on to-night; but if, after dinner, you will allow me to wait on
you, I will do my best to amuse in a stroll about the town."

"But won't you dine on board?" asked P----.

"I thank you; I have already ordered my own chop," Mr. C---- replied,
"and I would in that case beg you to permit my meeting you after I have
demolished it. Say half-past seven."

"As you like," said R----; "but I can give you a good bottle of claret."

"Thank you, my Lord; but not to-day." And Mr. C. commenced a retrograde
motion towards the companion.

"Have you a boat?" inquired R----; "because you can have one of mine, if
you like."

"If you will, I shall feel obliged," replied Mr. C----.

"Alfred!" shouted R----, at the top of his lungs.

"Yes, my Lord," echoed from the recesses of the pantry, and then the
cause of the echo became visible at the door of the pantry.

"Man the gig!" said R----.

"Yes, my Lord," and Alfred again disappeared as quickly as a falling
star. A few minutes more, and Mr. C---- was over the gangway, in the
gig, and ashore.



CHAPTER V.

 COPENHAGEN--THE CAFE--THE DILEMMA--THE GUARD--COMPLIMENT
 TO ENGLAND--DESCRIPTION OF THE HARBOUR AND FORTIFICATIONS
 --DELINQUENT SAILORS--THE CITY ON SUNDAY--NEGRO
 COMMISSIONAIRE--A WALK THROUGH THE CITY--NOTICES OF THE
 VARIOUS PUBLIC BUILDINGS.


Punctual to our engagement, we met Mr. C----, after dinner at half-past
seven. After wandering over the town for some time without any definite
object, I grumbled at the system of enjoyment we had adopted. The
streets not being paved so well as the worst streets in London are, the
stones, projecting with sharp points three or four inches above the
ground, wound and irritate the feet to a serious extent; and my ankles
were almost sprained several times in consequence of the high heels I
had to my boots. I recommend thick shoes without heels to the traveller
in _all_ the northern capitals.

"You are always rusty, Bill," said R----. "Come on."

"Let us stop," I replied, "and determine where we are going."

We therefore stopped in a large square, at the base of an equestrian
statue, the beauty or imperfection of which I could not see at the late
hour; and, with Mr. C---- in the centre, consulted what could be done.
Being in ignorance of the habits of the people, and the haunts where
amusements existed, we three could only look at each other and be mute.

"Come along," at last exclaimed Mr. C----, as if a great idea had dawned
on his mind; "let's turn into this café," directing our attention to a
spacious building brilliantly illuminated.

"Port your helm, Jack," said R----, in a jesting tone of voice, and
moved quickly away towards the café.

We entered, and to say that we saw anything at our first entrance beyond
an atmosphere of tobacco smoke, so thick as to be palpable to the touch,
would be out of the question. After opening and closing my eyes twice or
three times, and, wiping away the tears which the pungent tobacco smoke
excited, I began to take an observation.

The room in which I found myself was literally crammed with men of all
denominations and all ages, and each having a cigar in his mouth in full
play. Some, in this dense hot region, were reading books full of deep
thought, (for I looked over their shoulders); some meditating over a
game of chess, more chattering vehemently and loudly, and many playing
at billiards. Mr. C----, R----, and P---- had seated themselves in the
vicinity of a billiard-table, and, when I partially recovered my senses,
I followed their example. The table was about half the size of the
billiard-tables in England, and the pockets were twice as large. The
four balls, with which they played, were not much bigger than those
generally used at bagatelle. The queus were uncovered at the top with
leather; and the player had the satisfaction of hearing the sharp twang
of his bare-headed queu as each time it struck the little ivory ball. No
chalk was in the room. The Danes possess no word in their language
expressive of that convenient mineral. In Denmark, credit is never
given. You must pay, or go to prison. Thank God, I am an Englishman.

We remained an hour in this café; and after tasting, each of us, a glass
of maraschino, which Mr. C---- would insist on paying for, we left the
oven. We did not, I promise you, go into another during the week we
remained at Copenhagen; and I would urge those "troubled and disquieted
spirits," who desire health and good lungs to pursue their wanderings on
meadow or mountain, strenuously to avoid these gasometers and
receptacles of tobacco smoke.

As it was now nearly twelve o'clock, we took leave of Mr. C----, and
walked towards the harbour, when, on our arrival at the Custom House, we
found the gates, through which we had passed when landing, closed, and
thus cutting off all communication between the yacht and ourselves. What
was to be done? The Heaven, decked out in its deep blue mantle, shone
brightly over our heads; and the poppy-dew of Sleep, descending on the
Soul of Copenhagen, had lulled all into the profoundest silence. Lying
calmly at anchor on the smooth water which reflected a thousand stars,
our floating home, not a mile off, could be seen. The tramp of a
sentinel struck on the ear.

"Hi! ho!" exclaimed P----, distinguishing the soldier's accoutrements.
The Dane approached the iron gate, and, leering through the bars, seemed
to doubt our gentility. We could not speak Danish; he did not speak
English; and what was to be done with a common soldier at dead of night?
P---- went near to the gate.

"Hi! ho!" a second time he exclaimed, as the soldier commenced walking
the other way; "We English gentlemen want to get board jhat;" persevered
P----, endeavouring, by the adoption of a broken accent, to convey his
meaning.

The Dane shook his head.

"We are done," said P---- calmly, "I wish we could get him to call the
officer on guard;" and, turning to the gaping sentinel again, "Officer,"
he continued, "appelez officer," speaking half French, half English.

The man ducked his shakko, and departed. Almost immediately the officer
of the guard came out, wrapped in the huge folds of a military cloak,
and, gazing at us through the bars, uttered a sentence in Danish. Making
no reply to him, he then said, saluting us with much politeness,

"Que voulez vous, Messieurs?"

"Nous sommes des Messieurs Anglais qui désirent passer d'ici jusqu'à
notre jhat," replied P----.

"Certainement;" so saying, a second time the officer raised his cap,
and, turning to two serjeants who had followed him from the guard-room,
gave directions that the gates should be unlocked, and we passed
unmolested through.

This was an act of courtesy and kindness which, we learned the next day,
we were fortunate in receiving; for it was the stringent order of the
Governor of Copenhagen, the Prince of Hesse, that the gates of the city,
particularly this one, should be closed at ten o'clock, and no one
permitted, on any pretence, to go in or out after this hour. The
smuggling between the coast of Sweden and the town of Copenhagen being
carried on to a great extent, render these restrictions very necessary;
and we could only be indebted to our country for the exception which had
been made to us by the officer on guard.

I rose betimes the following day, and went on deck before breakfast, in
order to take a view of the harbour, its position and defences. The
mouth of Copenhagen Harbour opens to the eastward. In the centre of its
entrance is a small island, called Armager, well fortified; and to the
south of it is another battery separated from Armager by a narrow
channel, which is so shallow, that, a reef of rocks may be noted by the
foam of the waves as they curl and break over it; while to the North is
the tremendous citadel of Fredrikshavn, and the only passage into the
harbour is between this fortress and the Island of Armager.

Gambier may have effectually bombarded Copenhagen in 1807, but, I think,
such an achievement would be scarcely practicable now. However, I am no
judge of either naval or military tactics, but if the metal of guns, and
the strength as well as position of fortifications promise to a city
protection from an enemy, be he ever so mighty, Copenhagen has that
promise well guaranteed to her.

In the midst of my political meditations, the steward popped his head
above the companion, touched his hair, as he always did when he had no
hat on, and said,

"Breakfast ready, Sir."

My appetite soon clambered to the summit on which my mind had been
perched, and desired obedience to what I heard; and in justification of
my health, I ate a good breakfast. I returned on deck, an hour
afterwards, holding little Jacko in my arms, who was surfeited with
coffee, marmalade, fish, and egg, even to lethargy.

It was ten o'clock. R---- and I sitting on the taffrail aft, P----
having gone ashore, were basking in the bright sunshine of the Sunday
May morning, and comparing the temperature, scenes, and manners of
Copenhagen, with the variable winds, the Primrose Hill, and the
exuberant Sabbath spirits of London, when the sailing-master came, with
rather a longer face than usual, to the spot where we were lounging,
and, after his customary greeting of "Good morning, my Lord," and "Good
morning, Sir," said,

"I have a complaint to make, my Lord."

"Well, out with it" R---- replied.

"You know, my Lord," D---- continued, "old Tom, Dick, and George were
allowed to go ashore yesterday, and, instead of behaving like decent
fellows, as they ought to have done on arriving at a foreign port, they
must get drunk, and nearly drown themselves in trying to get off to the
vessel."

"The deuce they did; and when did this occur?" inquired R----.

"They got drunk last night; but they nearly got drowned this morning, my
Lord," D---- answered.

"Where are the men?" asked R----.

"On board, my Lord," D---- said.

"Send them aft."

Away went D---- in search of the delinquent tars; and, as soon as he had
got out of ear-shot, R---- observed to me,

"Is not this like these English blackguards? I dare say they have kicked
up the devil's own row ashore, and, by squabbling with the inhabitants,
brought my vessel into disrepute."

"Let us hear their story before we condemn them," I said; and in two
minutes more old Tom, Dick, and George, were arranged in a line before
R----, who still continued sitting, cross-legged, on the taffrail, abaft
the tiller. They all three looked sheepish enough, and, if one might
judge innocence and guilt from the countenance, they seemed criminal in
the extreme.

"Well, Tom," R---- commenced, "what is all this about?"

"The Cap'n, my Lord," said Tom, twitching up his duck trowsers on the
port side, "gave us leave to go ashore; and we had barely set foot on
dry land, than a sort of fellow, neither fish nor man, comes to us, and,
says he, in a rum kind of a lingo, 'My lads, I'll show you about the
town,' You know, my Lord, as well as I does,----"

"I don't want any of your palavering," interrupted R----; "but I want to
know why the devil you went and made beasts of yourselves?"

"Wery good, my Lord, I'm coming to the sarcumstances; but we warn't
drunk, my Lord--notottoll."

"D---- saw you drunk," said R----.

"No, my Lord, no;" calmly said Tom, "the Cap'n carn't substanshate that
air. We warn't drunk, my Lord,--notottoll."

"How can you stand there," interrupted D---- warmly, "and try to humbug
my Lord in that kind of a way?"

"Not a bit of it," said R----; "he can't humbug me; and don't fret
yourself about that."

"That's nothing more nor less than I would ax of your Lordship,"
interposed Tom; and, edging in a piece of opportune sentiment, he
continued, "I have sailed three seasons with your Lordship, and I have
always bore myself like a British sailor, as I be. We was joyful-like to
stretch our timbers; but we warn't drunk, my Lord, notottoll."

"If you were not at all drunk," replied R----, "you were very nearly
drowned; and you don't mean to tell me, that you could ever capsize that
dingy without being drunk?"

"Notottoll, my Lord," persisted Tom; "Dick, my Lord, took a broad sheer
to starboard, and capsized the boat. We warn't drunk, my Lord,
notottoll."

"Do you intend to say you three had no spirits to drink the whole time
you were ashore?" asked R----.

"Sperits, my Lord! they ain't got such gear in this air place."

"How do you know?" R---- said.

"Bekase, I enkquired, my Lord."

"Oh! did you inquire in the streets?" questioned R----.

"No, my Lord; I axes in a cabbarette, as they calls it," Tom answered.

"Then you went into a cabaret, and drank nothing. _Very_, like, a,
whale," said R----slowly.

"Notottoll, my Lord, we had a bottle of ordonnor_y_."

"What's that?" asked R----, a little puzzled.

"_Rot-gut_, my Lord," ejaculated Tom, with emphasis; "and if, my Lord, a
man wants to get the jandiss, I recommends vang ordonnor_y_;" and down
went Tom's fist, with a loud report, into the palm of his left hand. I
burst into a shout of laughter at the comicality of Tom's melancholy
face, and the smacking of his lips, as he called to mind the acidity of
the wine; and R----, judge as he was, could not resist the farce.

"I tell you what," said R----, "and I tell you _all_ plainly, if you
fellows go ashore, and get into a row, and the police take you in
charge; instead of defending you, as you fancy I will, I will appear
_against_ you, and assist the law in punishing you; and, what is more,
if you are sent to prison, I will up stick, and leave you there."

"Thank you, my Lord," they murmured, and old Tom assisting in the
thankful murmurs of Dick and George, kept reiterating till the sounds
died away as he descended the fore-hatch.

"We warn't drunk, my Lord,--notottoll;" and Tom was the most notorious
drunkard on board.

The story was simply this:--He and his two companions, after trudging
over the town, sight-seeing, till past ten, found, to their dismay, on
arriving at the outer gates, that they were closed. In self-defence, all
three were compelled to take shelter for the night in some low cabaret,
where, meeting with a few jovial Danes, unreluctant to shun the bout,
they drank the night away. Feeling the weight of Danish grog aloft,
Dick, a stalwart young fellow of six feet, lost his balance in stepping
into the boat next morning, and, falling athwart the little dingy's
gunwale, capsized it. Poor old Tom, out of the three, went like a
24-pounder to the bottom; but the transparency of the water allowed some
bystanders to observe his carcass stretched out among the cockles as
composedly as in his hammock, and to raise him, after the lapse of a
short time, by applying a boat-hook to the hole of his breeches' pocket.

P---- returned at one, and told us, that he called at the guard-room,
and, making the harbour-master his marshal and interpreter, had hunted
up the officer so civil to us last night; and expressed our gratitude
for the favour which we had received. To every one who travels
inconveniences must occur, or else travelling loses half its excitement.
I would rather remain all my days at home, my mind compressed within its
narrow precincts, and never see the sunny South, or mingle, as I do,
with people whose warm hearts are softer than the genial air they
breathe, and feel, that extreme nobility of soul and sensitiveness of
wrong are entwined with the purest simplicity of thought and manners,
than lack the slight annoyances of a Scythian life. P---- gave us to
understand that he had inquired about _the gates_; and all the
information he could collect was, that no respect could be paid to our
condition; and, if we remained on shore after ten, we should run the
risk of being kept out of our beds all night. The plan suggested was to
write to the Prince of Hesse, and, stating our position, beg that his
Royal Highness would grant us permission to pass backward and forward
at any hour. Reconsidering, however, the matter, we determined not to do
so; but to call on our Consul, and, through him, represent the hardship
of our case to the British Minister. This determination was adopted, and
ordered to be carried into execution the following day, this one being
the Sabbath. Is it not strange how Englishmen long to break through all
restraint, and regard the laws of foreign countries as so many
impediments in their path of pleasure?

As in England, many well-dressed people were walking about under the
shade of the trees planted with great regularity along the ramparts of
Fredrikshavn. We could hear children calling aloud, as soon as they
caught sight of the yacht, decked out with all the elegance of her
whitest ensign, and best Burgee "Engelskt! Engelskt!" with shrill
tongues they cried; and, denoting with their little hands the object of
delight, disturbed the stillness of the holy day.

The French customs are generally followed, I fancy, in this country; for
to-day, being Sunday, more entertainment is to be met with in Copenhagen
than on any other day of the week. The theatres are all open, and the
casino, sacred by the royal presence of Christian, lures, with its sweet
tones of operatic music, the prudish Englishman from thoughts of
Paradise and the fourth commandment. Moses, Daniel, and the Chronicles
are quite forgotten; and, putting Ecclesiastes in our pocket, we are
going to the casino to-night.

"Do you know," suddenly said P----, as he closed a large chart of
Norway, up and down the rivers of which he had been floating for some
time on the tip of his pen-knife, "I met old C---- ashore, and he stuck
to me like birdlime. He is a bore; I wonder who he is!"

Like a black cloud, you sometimes see on sultry summer days, moving
sluggishly across the purely azure sky; so this remark of
P---- overshadowed my mind with a misgiving feeling; and Horace's Ninth
Satire, seizing my memory with prophetic tenacity, made me involuntarily
mutter,--

 "Ibam forte viâ sacrâ, sicut meus est mos,
 Nescio quid meditans nugarum, et totus in illis;
 Accurrit quidam notus mihi nomine tantum,
 Arrep----"

"A note, my Lord," and the steward placed a most diminutive note in
R----'s hand. It ran thus:--

    "My Lord and Gentlemen,

    "I will accompany you to the Casino this evening at 8.
    I feel it my duty to show you all the attention I can.

                            "Yours faithfully,

                                   "A--l--r C----."

"Deuce take him!" said R----; "let us go at six."

"From Mr. C----, I suppose," remarked P----, taking up and glancing at
the piece of paper. "I see how it is. We must give him a civil hint; and
if he won't take it, we must do the best we can. Poor old fellow! I
should not like to hurt his feelings."

When we had made an end of the treatment it was suggested Mr. C----
should receive, I put on my best coat, and went ashore. Scarcely had I,
for the second time, rested my foot on the soil of Denmark, than I
caught, riveted on me, two small pig-like eyes twinkling in the centre
of an ebony face.

"Me berry glad to see you, Sir," said the owner of this countenance,
and, accompanying the welcome voice, the removal of a high-crowned white
hat exposed to the African warmth of noon a head of true African wool.

"Thank you, Solomon."

"No, Sir; me Joe--Joe Washimtum," replied the black man, proudly; "but
me brudder name Dabid--him better dan Sarlaman."

Deeming this the beginning and result of our acquaintance, I walked on,
paying no attention to the sable Mr. C----; but I had anticipated
blacky's intentions wrongfully, for a few minutes were sufficient time
to place him on my left hand.

"Hab you, Sir, no cumsidumration to see um town?" he inquired.

"Not to-day, Joe," I answered. "I have formed my plans; but some other
day we will navigate the town together."

"Berry good, Sir." And, again elevating his steeple white hat, away
marched Joe, Commissionaire of l'Hôtel d'Angleterre.

The day was very hot, and my feet, swollen by the heat, suffered more
than they did last night from the effects of the uneven stones. I limped
from one street to the other, and found the "Amalien-Gade," not much
inferior in breadth and length to Portland Place. Palaces of great
symmetry, though of immense size, rose before the eye at every corner;
and the residence of the Prince of Hesse is one of the most beautiful
structures I have ever seen. The white colour, as at Christiansand, with
which all these large buildings are painted, forces directly on the
stranger's mind their lightness and elegant proportions.

At the end of the "Amalien-Gade," which is about a mile in length, is a
large odiously-paved square intersected by four streets; and, between
each of these streets, are four small palaces in the style of Italian
architecture. They are inhabited by the royal family; and the old king,
Christian, may be seen sometimes, of an evening, walking across to play
a game of whist with the dowager-queen. Infantry and cavalry officers,
gossipping in groups, and flashing in the sun's rays, their light-blue
uniform embroidered elaborately with silver lace, remind you of the
Court's vicinity; and the eternal sound of a sentinel's challenge, as
files of men march and re-march by him, proclaims, that, deference to
kings is much the same in simple Denmark, as in pageant England.

In the centre of this square stands an equestrian bronze statue of
Frederick the Fifth; and, though the horse's head is considered a
perfect piece of statuary, I am obstinate enough to differ, from the
general opinion; and Monsieur Gorr, who executed it, will, with the
politeness and generosity of his country, permit me to think as I do,
and pardon me, if I be wrong. Since its foundation in 1168, three awful
fires in 1729, 1794, and 1795, nearly burned down the whole city of
Copenhagen; but Christiansborg, the colossal palace of the Danish kings,
was levelled with the ground; and Christian, deeming, perhaps, this
abode of his ancestors doomed to be destroyed a second time, avoids it
with superstitious care; and has selected for himself and family the
four mansions, for they are nothing more, to which I have alluded. Queen
Caroline-Matilda being taken from this palace to Cronenborg, her son,
Frederick the Sixth, would never reside in it afterwards; and, I think,
it is more from this mingled feeling of affection and painful regret,
and a desire to obliterate from their memories the recollection of her
fate, that his descendants have followed the filial example of
Frederick, than from any dread of sudden destruction by fire.

While walking through the streets, I could hardly dissuade myself I was
not in the tropics, for the capacious archways, and central court-yards
were quite oriental; and the large and numerous windows of the private
houses, with jalousies thrown open, at cool of day, against the wall,
reminded me also of the Antilles; and, had a black face but peeped out
at me, the fancy might have seemed reality.



CHAPTER VI.

 THE CASINO--THE ROYAL FAMILY OF DENMARK--SUCCESSION
 TO HOLSTEIN--THE ENGLISH CONSUL--VISIT TO THE ENGLISH
 AMBASSADOR--COLOSSAL STATUE OF CHRISTIAN THE FIFTH--
 ANECDOTE OF BELZONI--TRINITY CHURCH--EXTRAORDINARY
 FEAT OF PETER THE GREAT--DUCKING AN OFFENDER--PALACE
 OF CHRISTIANSBORG--THE EXCHANGE--THE CASTLE OF ROSENBERG.


At seven o'clock, we went to the Casino; and, trusting that we had
deceived Mr. C----, renewed our acquaintance with the gentleman in
spectacles.

The room, an immense one, was lighted from the lofty ceiling with four
splendid chandeliers. The people sat in seats appropriated to them, and
listened attentively to some exquisite pieces of music, played as
exquisitely, by a large band. There was no dancing; nor indeed was the
room adapted for such recreation. The king, the queen, and their niece,
the beautiful Princess Louise, sat in a gallery, speaking to those
around them, and watching with interest the group below. This is that
princess whose hand the Crown Prince, Frederick, thrice divorced, has
sought in vain; for, he failing heirs, Holstein passes from the present
dynasty to the Ducal House of Augustenburg. This political flaw is,
while I write, being adjusted by the Danish Senate, as the impotency of
Frederick, now reigning Sovereign of Denmark, has been pretty well
admitted. The company took no heed of the royal presence, but walked and
talked, and stood with hats on; and when I observed to my late excitable
friend in spectacles, that the English behaved not so in the sight of
their queen, he replied,

"Zat is nuttin. Ze king is nuttin."

"That is to say, though it be done, no feeling of disrespect is meant,"
I continued.

"Ja."

We wandered through illuminated galleries and conservatories sweetly
perfumed with the most delicate flowers. Continually, on every hand, was
revealed some marble statue to attract attention, or living beauty to
gratify the eye. Borne away by these delightful sights and sounds, and
feeling life only in the ideal, this lethargy of soul and body burst,
convulsively, into common existence, as the indomitable Mr. C----
issued, gaping in all directions, from behind a fluted column; and, when
his glance fell on us, the face of Minerva looked not more luminous when
she leaped from the brain of Jove.

"Ah! gentlemen," delightedly he exclaimed, "you gave me the slip; but
the guard below told me three Englishmen were here."

P---- answered him with civility, and said that we had altered our
plans, and could not communicate with him, being in ignorance of his
address. He showed us great attention, and, by explanation, smoothed all
those excrescences of conventional usages which we did not understand.
So far, Mr. C---- was useful; but, seeming a character of doubtful
respectability by the cold indifference with which some Danish gentlemen
received his warm advances, we did not like to be accompanied in public
by a man of whom we knew nothing. His companionship, therefore, hurried
us from the Casino; and, the cathedral clock was tolling midnight, as we
were rowed alongside the yacht. The closed gates again gave us trouble;
and, we thanked the bright stars above us, that knowledge of the French
grammar had survived the tenderness of Anacreon. Nevertheless, this
brought the irksomeness of our situation to a climax, and P---- made up
his mind to call on the Consul in the morning. For my part, I believe, I
became feverish through the night, and in my sleep talked to the
binnacle about Magna Charta.

At eleven o'clock on Monday morning, R----, P----, and I, formed a
deputation, and started for the Consul's office. While R---- was giving
directions to the men when to return with the boat for us, I felt a
gentle tap on my left shoulder; and turning round, received a nod, and
"good morrow," from Mr. C----. His services were, however, required, and
his pertinacity in retaining our friendship was not so unwelcome. We
told him the object we had in view; he appreciated our national conduct,
and begged to take us the pleasantest and shortest way to the Consul's.
Many people were abroad; and hardly one person failed to stop and
recognise us as Englishmen. I do not doubt that the population of
Copenhagen is upwards of 100,000; but I judge from the multitudes which,
in some parts, thronged the principal thoroughfares. The bee-like
movements of the males,--stopping, in the bustle of business, to greet
each other, then hurrying off again,--and the fondness of the females
for gazing in the shop-windows where fine wares lay exposed, frequently
blocking up the small foot-pavement in the gratification of this
idiosyncrasy, assimilated them to my own countrymen and women. I looked
under many a blue bonnet, and caught the sly glance of many a blue eye;
but they were not the blue eye and bonnet of England. I gazed upon many
a sweet, smiling face, and saw many an elegant form; but they had not
the pouting, red lip, and roundness of England. No! wander where I
will--and I have wandered far--I never saw aught to match the pure
beauty of England's Daughter. Stamped on her fair brow, the hand of
Heaven owns no other mould for loveliness; and the die was broken when
sensibility of soul blended with her tender frame the strong feelings of
the heart.

Before I saw enough of life in the streets, we were under the great
gateway which led to the Consul's apartments; for the houses here, as in
Edinburgh and Paris, are divided between several families, and have one
common staircase. The Consul heard attentively our tale, and then told
us he could in no way interfere; but that we had better make a personal
application to the Minister, Sir Henry Whynne.

To Sir Henry we went; and the result with him was the same as with the
Consul. Sir Henry said, he could with just as much propriety interrupt
for our benefit the closing of the gates at a certain hour, as the
Danish Minister in London could interrupt, for the benefit of three
Danes, the closing of the Horse Guards. He recommended us to make
friends with the officer on duty, and he doubted not every facility
would be afforded us in our ingress and regress, to and from the town at
night.

On the strength of that concession by the proper authority, Sir Henry
asked us to dine with him the following day; we thanked him for his
information, and accepted the invitation. Before parting, he offered to
introduce us to the king, who, he assured us, entertained a partiality
for the English, and would be happy to see us and have a game of whist
with us every night at the palace. Mr. C----, who had waited for us
outside, now conducted us round the town, and gave us all the
information he had mustered during a residence of many years in
Copenhagen.

In the centre of the second square,--better paved than the other
one,--where are situated the Theatre, Hôtel d'Angleterre, and several
other large hotels, stands another colossal statue of Christian the
Fifth, as devoid of admiration as its prancing fellow. Its remarkable
size has exceeded the bounds of elegance. The horse is about to trample
on a serpent with distended mouth and forked extended tongue, being the
symbol of Discord. Around the pedestal are many figures; and, amongst
them, Minerva's arms and legs are sculptured in prodigious relief: but
it is to be hoped the Goddess of the Fine Arts will, some day, descend
to Copenhagen, and prove to the Danes how symmetrical are her limbs,
since, in this allegorical group, the neck of the wild bull of Crete
must have been a withe to her proportions. An anecdote is told of
Belzoni, when Feldborg showed this statue to him.

"I hope this is not the work of a Danish artist?" demanded Belzoni.

"No; oh, no," replied Feldborg. "If you want to see statues executed by
Danish artists, go to England, or your own country; don't come here.
The statue you are now looking at was sculptured, and no doubt
conceived, by a Frenchman, named Amoureux, who was sent here by Louis
XIV. for the purpose, Louis being excessively anxious, in every
imaginable way, to promote the welfare of the Danish sovereign of that
day."

"Well, the Frenchman who executed this statue has been a clever fellow,"
observed Belzoni; "the only animation I notice in his work, is in the
horse's _tail_."

We clambered up the Round Tower of the Trinity Church, which was founded
by Christian IV. in the year 1673, and finished five years afterwards.
It is 115 feet high, and was used as an observatory about the time of
Tycho Brahe. There are no steps, but the ascent is made by a gentle
spiral plane; and, as we wound our way up, thinking of Peter the Great,
who drove a carriage drawn by four horses to the top, and of the manner
the Czar contrived to reach the bottom without backing; all the names of
all the families of Smiths, Smythes, and Joneses, deeply incised on the
wall, pulled us, with a jerk, to vulgarities again.

From the summit is a fine view of Copenhagen. Before we had finished
moralizing about views and heights, the afternoon had slipped
imperceptibly away. Where we stood, the cowherd's long whoop at
intervals, and, in answer to his call, the faint low of cattle, could
be heard; and, from some cottages beyond the city walls, the bark of
dogs, and noise of faggots being hewn, were interrupted only by the loud
jests of fishermen, who sat at the cottage-doors, unravelling their
nets; while the dewy mist of evening kept rising till it reached the
elm-tree tops, then hung there, like a girdle of thin white gauze. It
was quite an English scene.

We descended; and lagging behind, I followed my companions in silence
home.

We remained on board during the evening, and played at whist. It was
some time before we could muster the ace of spades; but, after diligent
search, it was found, torn in twain, and the fragments stuck upright, in
a pot of marmalade. A small hole bored in the centre of the skin which
covered the preserve, not exceeding the dimensions of Jacko's finger,
proclaimed it to be his handywork. Jacko, fortunately, had retired for
the night to Alfred's hammock; and, out of humanity, the period and
severity of his castigation were deferred till the morrow.

As soon as we rose on Tuesday morning, Jacko was placed in a canvass
bucket, and thrice ducked in the sea; when his yells were caught up by a
flock of little Danes dabbling in the water along the shore, who gave
shriek for shriek.

Remembering Sir Henry Whynne's injunctions, we went, after breakfast,
to the guard-room; and, through the harbour-master, held a long
conversation with the officer in command of the _objectionable gates_;
and, after a while, our names were written in a large book, and we
received permission to go and come as we pleased.

We went to-day to the palace of Christiansborg, which is not remarkable
for anything else but its magnitude. The stables, which are built in the
form of a crescent, are filled with horses, some of them most beautiful
and valuable. Eight cream-coloured ponies, and a similar number of grey
horses, were unsurpassed in colour and elegant proportions by those in
possession of the English sovereign. There were upwards of one hundred
horses; and what use King Christian, with his small Court, can find for
so many steeds, may come within the corn-factor's reach, but it is
certainly beyond mine.

For those who do not mind revolving to a great height by a back
staircase, the pictures in this palace may be a treat, since one or two,
painted by the old Dutch masters, are worthy of attention. Passing from
room to room, we stumbled on Mr. C----, who, with the keen scent of a
spaniel, had tracked us to our present elevation. There was no shaking
him off, and so, making the best use of him we could, we beset him with
questions; in answering which, by the way, he never wearied, but
chattered with all the perseverance of an old woman.

The only pump in Copenhagen is to be found in a vault beneath this
palace. A Dane led us through numerous dark cloisters; and, arriving at
last in front of this pump, stood still, and, with brightening eyes, as
well as great exultation of manner, pointed to it.

By the traveller who loiters along the streets of Copenhagen,
half-buried in the walls of many houses, a cannon-ball may here and
there be seen. In remembrance of Gambier's action, the Danes preserve,
like the apple of their eyes, these destructive missiles in the same
place and position they were lodged forty years ago; and, that the
stranger may not fail seeing these emblems of "British friendship," as
the term goes, their visible sections are daubed all over with black
paint, so that they stand boldly out from the snowy aspect of the
houses.

The Exchange, opposite to the Palace windows, is an exquisite building,
constructed in 1624, by order of Christian IV. It is four hundred feet
in length, and sixty in breadth. The steeple is the most curious you can
imagine. Three dragons, their throats resting on the roof, intertwine
their bodies, and, tapering a hundred feet gradually upwards, point with
their tails to the sky. At a little distance, their large heads and
mouths opened to show some formidable teeth and tongues, have a very
good effect.

From Christiansborg we went to the Castle of Rosenberg. In the middle of
a park, not larger than St. James's, rise the slender red towers of
Rosenberg above the tops of the trees; and, as you catch a glimpse of
it, glancing in the sunshine, down an avenue of oak and elm, you wonder
not how the Fourth Christian, two centuries ago, made this his favourite
abode.

Crossing a drawbridge, we arrived at an arched door; and Mr. C----,
taking hold of an antique iron chain, pulled it. The noisy tongue of a
hollow-sounding bell roused not the bark of slumbering hound, but had
all the desolation to itself, and echoed loudly and longly, then slowly,
stroke by stroke, through the deserted corridors. In a few minutes a
man, courtierly and well dressed, grasping a huge bunch of keys in his
left hand, opened the door; and, judging from our countenances--for I
know not by what else he could judge--the nature of our visit,
requested, in Danish, that we would enter. Mr. C---- replied, and told
him we were Englishmen. He bowed, and addressed us afterwards in our own
language.

The hall in which we now stood was surrounded, near the roof, with the
escutcheons of the old Kings of Denmark; and, in niches, three or four
feet from the marble floor, were bright suits of armour belonging also
to the ancient Danish Monarchs. From one anteroom to another, and from
presence-chamber to throne-room, we passed, and found in each one some
remnant of chivalry to admire, and heard of some deed to regret.

In the room where Christian IV. used to hold his councils is a Throne of
state, exceeding, by a great deal, the dimensions of a large arm-chair,
and composed of solid silver, and carved at the back in the most
fantastic and beautiful fashion. Placed at intervals of a yard round
this room, upwards of fifty feet long, are many other chairs, not so
large as the first one, but also of pure silver. In these the king's
privy councillors sate. Along the walls is hung the most curious
tapestry, worked by the hand nearly three centuries ago, and
representing battles with the Swedes, and the naval victories of
Christian. Walking along, you leave this magnificent room on the left
side; and, at the end of a long passage, a small door admits you, by
touching a spring in the panel, to a boudoir, about twelve feet square,
entirely walled, ceiled, and floored, with mirrors, so that, the face
and back, the right and the left sides, the crown of the head and the
sole of the foot, may be seen, simultaneously, at one glance. The
ingenious and amorous Christian, being far advanced beyond the ideas of
his time, conceived this room and its adaptation; for, in this Boudoir
Christian's mistresses were wont to revel with their royal lord, after
ablution in a bath close at hand.

Adjoining this apartment is another boudoir, filed with jewels of
inestimable value, not to mention swords of gold, and spurs of gold,
armour, and casques of gold. In a glass-case, which is kept locked, are
the entire accoutrements of a horse; and the saddle, even to the
stirrup-straps and girths, was studded with pearls, emeralds, rubies,
and torquoises. On the pommel, inlaid, were four emeralds, having a ruby
for their centre, each stone being little less than an inch square.
Every day Christian must have dismounted his horse some hundred pounds
poorer than when he mounted; and yet the eye could detect no flaw in
this precious saddle by the absence of a single pearl. It struck me at
the time as being very astonishing that, a small kingdom like Denmark,
and not a rich one, could find a surplus revenue sufficient to collect
such immensity of wealth, and the resources of the country not flag by
its useless accumulation. Why, the sale of all the jewellery, and gold,
and silver in the castle of Rosenberg would pay off half the national
debt of Denmark.

The earthenware and china, manufactured many centuries ago, are also
very curious and valuable. We visited a room literally crammed from top
to bottom with vases, tumblers, and glasses of all sizes and
denominations; and, while we were almost speechless in the admiration of
a bowl sufficiently large to admit its being mistaken for a bath, and
not less delicate in thickness than the rice paper made by natives of
the East, the Dane drew our attention to a rent in the ceiling, and
asked if we would not regret that any accident should destroy a
collection so curious, and the manufacture of which was now lost to
science. We replied altogether, with much indignation, that a man who
attempted the deed would be no better than an assassin, and might,
without reference to an impartial advocate, be hanged from one of the
portcullis' spikes below.

"Do you think so, really, gentlemen?" inquired the Dane, with an odd
kind of a smile.

"We do, we do," we all unanimously said; and Mr. C. wound up with
monosyllabic emphasis,

"Yes!"

"Well, then," with measured tone, answered the Dane, "that rent you see
there was done some forty years ago, and a shell from Nelson's ship did
it."

He stopped to mark the effect this disclosure would have upon us; and,
finding we regretted the policy of our country, but could not control
the cannon-balls of our ships, he continued, smiling,

"Never mind, never mind, he did no harm; and I hope no other Englishman
will again."

Leading us into another small room, the Dane approached a large iron
chest, and raising, with difficulty, its heavy lid, shewed us the
coronation robes of Christian lying at the bottom.

"In these robes," he said, "Christian, the present King of Denmark, was
crowned; and they will never be removed hence until he is dead."

"Why?" we asked.

"It is an ancient custom still preserved in Denmark," he replied, "that
her kings be buried in their robes of coronation."

He closed the lid.

To me, woven with their greatness, the fate of kings is ever one of
melancholy; and the incident I have just recounted so shadowed, in a
moment, the cheerfulness which had accompanied me throughout the day,
that I could not observe with attention any other object of interest
which presented itself, my only wish being to leave Rosenberg as
speedily as I had entered it; nor could I forget the utter desolation of
a man's soul, who, standing in the midst of all earthly magnificence,
knows himself clad as he will be for the coffin. How impotent must seem
all authority! how wan all mirth! how false all the envied supremacy of
his birth!

Finding it was five o'clock, we gave a small fee to the Dane, who still
kept chuckling at the capital trick he had played us with the split
ceiling, and we left Rosenberg to prepare for dinner.

The good people at Copenhagen generally dine at the early hour of our
English forefathers; but Sir Henry Whynne had altered his dinner time to
meet our habits.

Mr. C---- _would_, in spite of all the civilities we called to forbid
it, see us to the boat; and, then, promising to "look us up" on the
morrow, vanished as suddenly as Fortunatus would have done with his
invisible cap.



CHAPTER VII.

 DINNER AT THE EMBASSY--MANNERS AND CUSTOMS OF THE
 DANES--THE SPANISH AMBASSADOR AND THE ENGLISH
 EXILE--THE CITADEL--STORY OF THE TWO CAPTIVES--JOE
 WASHIMTUM, AGAIN--A DANISH DINNER--VISIT TO THE
 THEATRE--POLITICAL REFLECTIONS--FESTIVITIES ON
 BOARD THE YACHT--MERRY PARTY AT THE AMERICAN
 AMBASSADOR'S--THE DUCHIES OF SCHLESWIG AND HOLSTEIN.


At the Embassy we met, besides other guests, whose names I remember not,
the Baron de B----, a Holstein noble, and the Spanish Minister, from
both of whom, during the time we remained afterwards at Copenhagen, we
received the most marked kindness and attention. These two noblemen had
passed some brief period of their lives in London, as ambassadors to the
English court; and they ceased not telling us how great were the
hospitality, and how sincere the friendship, which had been heaped upon
them by our countrymen; and they said, they could never, either by
expression or deed, show too much gratitude for the happiness they had
felt.

While watching Jacko's gambols on deck this morning, I heard some one
hail the yacht; and, taking up a telescope, I discerned on the quay, the
Spanish Minister waving his handkerchief. The gig was immediately sent
for him. He came for the purpose of conducting us over the town, and
showing us all the public buildings and offices we had not yet seen.
After passing an hour on board, we all started with him for the shore.

I observed to-day, that the houses in Copenhagen, like the houses in
Holland, are inhabited by people equally inquisitive, and who desire to
know all that is going on in the streets, without being subjected to the
trouble of leaving their seats; for all the windows are supplied with
reflecting glasses, which are so placed, that you may see from the top
of one street to the bottom of another. This custom is peculiar, also,
to Norway and Sweden; for, I remember, when I was at Gottenborg, paying
a visit to a Swedish lady, she told me that she knew an Englishman was
in the town, although she had never met me in the streets, or even heard
of me from her friends. I begged to learn the charm. She then took me to
a window, and, directing my attention to a reflecting glass, requested
that I would look in it. I did so; and could see upwards of a mile from
the window while seated in an arm-chair. She had observed me, some days
before, standing on a bridge about three quarters of a mile from her
residence, looking at some Swedish washerwomen hard at their work.

A beggar is rarely to be seen in Copenhagen, since the charitable
institutions for the sick, the poor, and cripple, are very numerous. Now
and then, a little girl or boy, accosts an Englishman in a plaintive
tone; but it is merely for the sake of gaping at him. At an early hour
of the morning prisoners are made to clean the streets; and you may know
them by the attendant soldier, and the heavy chain attached to their
legs. After visiting several public museums, we walked towards the
Spanish Minister's residence. When within a short distance of the house,
turning suddenly round a corner, we met our old friend Mr. C----. His
delight in stumbling upon us so opportunely, as he was on his way to the
yacht, was evident both by his ecstasy of manner and voice. The Spaniard
thought him an acquaintance of ours; and, when we arrived at his gate,
begged Mr. C----, who needed no solicitation, to enter. After we had
taken off our hats, and not yet taken our seats,

"Well, now," began the voluble Mr. C----, "have you seen every thing?
Have you been to the University Library, or the Church of Our Saviour?"

"No, we had not," we said; "but at any rate we were too tired to go
anywhere else to-day."

"Bless me!" he exclaimed, "when I was as young as you are, I could walk
to Elsineur, and back again; and did. Let's go to the Thorwaldsen
Museum, eh?"

"I don't think it is open," replied the Spanish Minister.

"I'll go and see;" and away started Mr. C---- to make inquiry.

"Do you know who that is?" I asked, addressing myself to the Spanish
Minister, as soon as Mr. C---- had left the room.

"Why, yes; I do know a little about him," answered the Spaniard; "but I
deemed him a friend of yours." We then explained the origin of our
acquaintance.

"Exactly," replied the Minister, when he had listened to all. "He is a
man who makes it his habit to introduce himself to all Englishmen who
may come to Copenhagen; and although he may, by his importunate bearing,
torment them, he is, at the same time, of some service; and only desires
to be attentive."

"Is he a respectable person?" I said. "By his dress he seems poor; but
that is not fatal to his respectability."

"Why, no; you are right," the Minister said. "Mr. C---- has no enemy in
Copenhagen but himself. He came here without a friend some years ago,
and received, in pity for his condition of poverty, a lucrative
appointment from the Danish Government. Mr. C---- could have held that
appointment till this moment; but his partiality for the society of
Silenus, and the punctuality with which he every day mounted his ass,
caused him to ride at last out of the bounds of all moderation; and the
Government was compelled to deprive him of his office. From that day
till this morning he has been known as an amiable, inoffensive man, and
as _the_ drunken Englishman."

"He is a man, then," we all three said, "whose intimacy it were wise to
drop."

"Why, I think so," agreed the Spaniard; "for, though no one can accuse
him of a dishonest action, it is as well, for the sake of
appearance,--and society is made of appearances,--to be without him in
public."

"But how can we rid ourselves of him without giving offence, or hurting
his feelings?"

"Allow me," said the Spanish Minister, "to arrange that the best way I
can."

We had scarcely spoken, and the Minister made an end of recounting this
error in the life of Mr. C----, than he entered the room, hurriedly,
panting with the information he had obtained.

"It is open," he uttered, breathlessly,--"it is open;--and I will
conduct you. I have told--the authorities that you are three countrymen
of mine,--and you will receive attention--depend upon it."

"These gentlemen," interceded the Spanish Minister, "do not desire to go
to the Museum to-day; they have altered their minds."

"Oh!--very well," said Mr. C----, nothing daunted; "let's go elsewhere.
Time's my own--time's my own. I suppose time is yours, my Lord,--and
yours, and yours?" addressing himself to us individually, and noting us,
as a shepherd would count his flock, with the tip of his forefinger.

"Yes, certainly," we replied; "yes, time is ours."

"But," again interposed the Spanish Minister, "if these gentlemen do go
anywhere, I have offered to accompany them, and my services have been
accepted. _Both_ of us are needless."

"Of course, your Excellency," replied poor old C----, "I yield; for you
are, by your rank, abler than I am to secure for them that attention
which, as strangers, they merit." He held his hand out to us, which we
received with cordiality; and he took his leave, hoping that we might
find gratification in everything we saw.

When Mr. C---- had gone, the Minister showed us several curiosities in
his possession, and amongst them a beautiful Spanish dagger. The steel
was so hard, that, a Danish copper coin, about the size and solidity of
an English penny, was placed horizontally on a marble slab, and the
Spanish Minister, with one blow, pierced the piece of money with the
dagger's point without blunting it in the least.

The cloudless sky and grateful warmth of the sun made us prefer the open
air to the confined gases of museums, libraries, laboratories,
cathedrals, and their vaults; and, wandering along the fortifications
which surround the city till we reached Fredrikshavn, we passed through
a private way and entered the fortress itself. As we sauntered along,
conversing on various subjects, a culprit of some kind--for this
fortress is full of them--would occasionally cross our path, and add
interest to our discourse by the Minister's recital of some remarkable
incident in the man's life, which had brought him to the condition of a
slave. Although the inner ramparts, or citadel, of Fredrikshavn are not
allowed to be approached by any one, the rank of the Spanish Minister
seemed to cause an exception in his favour; for, as we came near to the
drawbridge leading over the inside moat of all, the two sentinels, who
were on duty, recognised the Minister, and, instead of stopping us,
presented arms.

Within these ramparts, on a wooden bench, from which the Sound, spotted
with the white sails of many ships,--and, faintly, the distant mountains
of Sweden,--might be seen, two black men sat. Removed at a distance of
twenty yards from them, four sentinels stood, resting carelessly, with
folded arms, on the muzzles of their fire-locks; but, even in this
negligence, paying much attention to the movements of these black men.
We stopped and observed the strange group; and our sympathy was moved by
the dress and melancholy demeanour of the two men. The one nearest to
us, who appeared the eldest, rested his chin on the back of his hands,
which were clasped round the top of a large walking-stick; and in that
attitude kept his eyes fixed on the blue waters of the Sound; his
thoughts, no doubt, wandering to his home, some pleasant spot, far away.
His hat was brown by long use, and rent at the rims, beneath which his
white hair, here and there, straggled forth. His coat, once black, was
now thread-bare and worn at the elbows; while his shoes, almost without
soles, kept sad unison with the other parts of his dress. The other old
man, whose clothes were equally squalid, sat more upright, and seemed
livelier, and of a lighter heart, misfortune not having yet touched so
blightingly the natural volatility of his disposition; for, now and
then, he spoke in low tones to his companion, who sometimes smiled, but
rarely made answer.

"You are observing those black men?" said the Spanish Minister. "They
are the most interesting objects in Copenhagen."

"Who are they?" we asked.

"Those two men," continued the Spaniard, "were once men of note in their
own country; and their misfortune resolves itself into this simple
tale. The man with grey hair, nearest to us, seemingly bent with excess
of sorrow, was the king of some Danish colony in the East Indies; and
the other, his favourite minister. After having reigned for many years
with equity and wisdom, and having seen his little island, cradled in
the lap of peace, put forth the strength of prosperity, the old
monarch's bright day of happiness and glory was suddenly overshadowed by
a cloud, which, though, by its insignificance, at first unobserved,
gradually gained bulk and darkness, and replete, at last, with all the
elements of storm and destruction, burst upon his head. A man murdered a
woman, his wife; and, according to the criminal code of his country, was
arrested, tried, and convicted; and this king, by the advice of his
minister, ordered the assassin to be executed. The intelligence reached
the ears of the Court of Denmark, and by command of Christian, the black
monarch and his adviser were arrested, on the plea, that, the one being,
though a monarch, a subject of Denmark, had no power to carry the
statutes of his own realm summarily into effect, without the previous
assent of the Danish Government; and, that, the other, being the
principal minister, was as culpable as his master in permitting such an
infringement of the law. They were both subsequently tried for the
offence, and being found guilty, were placed on board a Danish ship of
war, and brought to Copenhagen, where, within this fortress, they are
doomed to pass, in solitary confinement, the small portion of life which
may yet remain to them."

The guns of the citadel, as I said before, are of immense dimensions;
and I do not think I exaggerate when I state that the body of a child,
nine or ten years old, may very easily be placed inside of them. I never
saw such heavy cannon either at Portsmouth, Plymouth, Dover, or any
other fortified port in England. The sentinels would not allow us to
take a minute survey of these ordnance; but as soon as we walked round
from the muzzle to the breech, in order to examine their really
herculean proportions, a bayonet, thrust before our eyes, would be sure
to interrupt the stream of information which commenced flowing through
them to the mind. I suppose the soldier had read or heard of England,
and thinking the people who lived in it, or came from it, were wonderful
creatures, deemed it not impossible we might put a few of the guns under
his charge into our pockets, and walk off with them; and unless that was
his thought, I cannot conceive what mischief can arise from four
gentlemen looking at four dismounted guns. However, governments, like
men, have their whims; and it is of very little use trying to talk them
out of their fallacies. It is as likely, that, when meeting a maniac in
Bedlam, who fancies himself Napoleon Buonaparte, or any other pagod, you
will be able to point out the delusion under which he labours, and to
assure him that his social position, though respectable, was never
imperial. He will understand you as soon, and as soon assent to the
truth of your observations.

Our scrutiny had been thus interrupted, when the Baron de B---- came up
to us. We had expressed a desire to eat, for the mere sake of saying
hereafter that we had eaten, a real Copenhagen dinner, and the Baron
offered to show us an hotel, where we could gratify our wish to the
utmost extent. Having made no arrangements to dine on board, we started
at once for the hotel; and it turned out to be the identical one at
which my old acquaintance, Joe Washimtum, held the official post of
commissionaire. Like those useful and diligent bees of the great hive of
mankind, Joe was standing, with his black hands in his black breeches'
pocket, beneath the huge arch of the Hôtel d'Angleterre, chattering and
laughing with a few other bees of a similar calling, but of a different
colour to himself. Joe raised his white hat five distinct times the
instant he saw our party, and, advancing towards us, he observed, still
with doffed hat and bended body,

"Good accummumdashum, gentlemen!"

"These gentlemen can dine here, can they not?" said the Baron de B.,
appealing to the exquisite Joe.

"No doubt at arl, sir, in de questchums," replied Joe quickly, and with
his Æthiopian face shining like a bright boot.

After the Baron de B., and the Spanish Minister had seen that we were
likely to encounter no difficulties under the protection of Joe, they
left us, expressing much regret they could not remain with us, being
obliged to dine at the Palace. When they had gone, "Dis way, gentlemen,
dis way," Joe breathed softly, and marshalled us his own peculiar way.
Joe soon put the whole hotel in an uproar by his magnificent description
of our personal rank and appearance; and in about ten minutes every
lacquey and scullery maid in the establishment knew that we were the
identical Englishmen who had come to Copenhagen in a yacht.

Joe had ascertained, somehow or other, there was a nobleman among us;
but his sagacity failed on this occasion, and he could not make out
which was the substantive Briton. Joe, however, was not to be done, and
so, after awhile, he addressed us all, as "my Lard;" and, though quite
out of his province, he _would_ stand at the door of the room where we
dined, and see that the waiters attended properly, and were sufficiently
agile in their movements. Joe, moreover, acted as interpreter.

"Waiter, some bread?"

"Es, my Lard," Joe would reply to me, and transfer the command in Danish
to the waiter.

"Hock, waiter;--bring some hock."

"Suttinlee, my Lard," said Joe to P.; then coming up to the table, and,
leaning confidentially over it, observed.

"Me would recumdate, my Lard, de Bunseppalouse, it bery good wine,
cumsiddumrately dan de hock."

"How do you know; have you tasted it?" said R.

"No, my Lard; me only go by de smell--him bery rifferous, bery, my
Lard;" and Joe sniffed till the steam from the vegetables rushed up his
nostrils.

"I say," R called out to Joe, as he was disappearing over the threshold
in search of the _Bunseppalouse_, "you black pudding, you; what do you
mean by my _Lard_? can't you pronounce your O's? what do you with your
A's, when you meet them?"

"Leeb um to himself, my Lard," replied Joe, deferring his exit; "nebber
trouble him; if me do, me bery quick wid him."

"Oh! that's your syntax, is it?" said R.

"Hebben forbid, my Lard, me gib de King money;" answered Joe solemnly.
"Dat d-- bad polumcy."

Joe had evidently mistaken the signification of the word "syntax," and,
catching the last syllable, concluded that R. referred to the system
universally adopted to supply the pecuniary wants of a government; and
therefore the solemnity of his answer.

I cannot say much in favour either of the dinner or the wine, vinegar
being the dominant ingredient of both; and, do what we would with
mustard and pepper, its pungent taste remained.

The evening turned out very wet, so that the only amusement we could
find was to stand at the window, and criticise the different carriages
as they passed on their way to the theatre. I certainly never saw such
rusty old rattle-traps, and I do not except the king's equipage, since
the hackney landaus have been abolished in England.

While we were smoking our cigars, Joe came into the room, and desired to
know if we would allow him to show us the "Coal Holes" and "Cider
Cellars" of Copenhagen; but we told him we were travelling in order to
gather information and reform our morals, and not to pass the night in
revelling. Convincing Joe that we were not in the vein to leave our
arm-chairs, and begging him not to call us all "my Lard," since there
was but one "Lard" between the three, we asked him whence he came.

"Me jist leebe Flora."

"No, no," I said; "in what part of the world were you born?"

"Oh! dat one oder ting. Me barn in Jamaikee, sir; but me leebe um two
tree year ago."

"What made you leave the island?" I inquired.

"Bekase him not de same kind of place, sir, as before--de niggers grow
so d---- imperant."

"But you must find Copenhagen very cold and uncomfortable," I replied;
"and surely impudence in one's own country is more tolerable than
discomfort and winter here."

"No, sir," answered Joe, all the soul of his great namesake, Washington,
beaming through his eyes; "me no tollumrate imperance; one imperant
raskill make me blood cold more dan de winter do. Jamaikee no de place
for de man of eddumcashum."

"In fact, you left it in disgust," I suggested.

"Suttinlee, sir," replied Joe; then seeming anxious to forget Jamaica,
and every thing connected with it, he said,

"Me hope you like you dinner, gentlemen; and will disgest him," he
continued.

"I hope we shall _digest_ it," I answered; "but there was vinegar enough
to stop any human creature's growth."

"Me said so, sir!" exclaimed Joe; "me tell Monsieur Sangnette so; dem
French cooks, debilish fond of souring deir tings. Me nebber widout um
stomick ache; d-- de feller!" and Joe hurried out of the room, before
his anger had cooled, to inform M. Sangnette how dissatisfied we were
with the dinner, and what torture, similar to his own, we should soon
undergo.

Before ten o'clock I was in my berth, listening to the rain pattering on
the deck, the trickling noise of which conveyed to my mind, as I lay in
my warm bed, an absorbing feeling of comfort, which can only be
conceived by those who have a roof to shelter their heads from the
pitiless storm. I remained awake for some hours; and, beside the falling
of the rain, and the sharp bubbling sound of its big drops as they fell
into the sea close to the vessel's side, the night was so still, that I
could hear the sentinels in the citadel of Fredrikshavn demanding the
pass-word, as the officer went his rounds. When our watch, too, struck
the hour, I could follow the echo of the bell, rising and sinking, half
way across the Sound.

Early on Thursday morning, before I had dressed, I heard the scraping of
feet on deck, and a man, in a broad Yorkshire dialect, as I thought,
asking a thousand questions, one after the other, and answering himself
before any person else could find time even to open his own mouth. I
could hear R----in his berth make reply to the steward; and,

"Say I am in bed," rose in muffled tones above the sheets.

I looked through the sky-light in my cabin, and saw two gentlemen
standing in mid-ship on the lee side, and one of them with a pencil was
writing on a piece of paper, which he placed against the lee-runner
block to supply the conveniences of a desk. As soon as I was dressed, I
learned that the American Minister, Mr. I----, and a Captain W---- had
been on board, and that the Minister had requested us to dine with him
on the following day. R---- hesitated about accepting the invitation,
for he had half made up his mind to leave Copenhagen to-day; but after a
little consideration, it was deemed advisable to defer our departure
till Saturday, and dine with Mr. I----.

At twelve o'clock I rowed myself ashore and passed half the afternoon
under the shady trees on the ramparts of Fredrikshavn. At the mouth of
the harbour lies a Danish frigate at anchor; and, I suppose, from the
position she has taken up, is intended for the guard-ship. The Danish
ships of war are in no way inferior to the British; and, at Elsineur, we
brought up alongside a 36-gun frigate which was the perfect combination
of elegance and strength; nor did I at Portsmouth, or anywhere else, see
a finer model. From the spot where I stand, I can catch a glimpse of the
dockyards, and the hulls of six dismounted men-of-war. I have been told,
that the Danish Government intends to build steam-frigates, and will
have nothing more to do with sailing vessels of war. The Danes may be
right, or they may be wrong; but what will be the result of any future
naval engagement where steam alone, or canvass alone is used, is beyond
the intelligence of any living creature. On all human events, such as
the issues of peace and war, human beings may conjecture, but cannot
determine so precisely.

When I returned on board, I found the cook very busily binding, with a
piece of yarn, an immense round of beef, which had been purchased for
the crew by R----, in order that they might have a regular
_jollification_ to-morrow, it being his birthday. Along the rigging were
white trowsers, check shirts, and all the other paraphernalia of a
sailor's wardrobe, hung up to swing to the wind, and dry; and, as Jerome
sat on the windlass, scraping and screwing his fiddle by way of tuning,
I could plainly be made to understand that Friday, the 21st of May, was
not intended to be passed over with the indifference of any ordinary
day,--at least, not on board the Iris. In a few minutes, while I still
listened to the plaintive screams of Jerome's fiddle, as he urged the
strings to their proper tension, the dingy shot alongside laden with
bundles of brown sugar, multitudes of raisins and currants, and a small
bucket of lemons. Jacko, also, mounted, as wont, on Sailor's back, rode
from end to end of the yacht, like a general officer, reviewing, and
sometimes descending to taste the different dainties as they arrived
from the shore; while Sailor would, for no reason whatever, but from
mere delight, burst into a loud bark, much to the consternation of
Jacko, who would leap from his seat in an instant, and standing, at a
little distance, on his hind legs, chatter with excessive alarm.

We dined early and went to the theatre. A play in fifteen acts was
performed. Tedious by its prolixity, the language, unintelligible to me,
made it still more wearisome. The music played in the orchestra was very
beautiful; and the officer, who had behaved so politely to us in
permitting the gates, on the first night of our arrival, to be opened,
seated on a high stool, rose conspicuously above the other musicians,
and seemed indeed the _first fiddle_. This is an act in no way
derogatory to the dignity of an officer, or a gentleman; for, throughout
our travels in Scandinavia, I often recognised in the orchestra of the
different theatres I visited, officers whom I had met in the streets
during the day. The interior decorations of the house were tawdry, and
could not for an instant bear comparison with the simple adornment of
the Haymarket theatre. The body of the theatre was not illuminated as in
Southern Europe; but large green tin shades cover the lights toward the
audience, and, all the reflection being thrown on the stage, the blaze
of light on the performers is very great and effective. The house was
much crowded; and, as at the casino, the King, the Queen, and the
Princess Louise were part of the audience, and conversed familiarly
with different people about them.

The theatres are entirely supported by the Government, and the actors
and actresses receive their salaries from the same quarter. Whether this
be a system which works well in Copenhagen, I have had no opportunity of
knowing; but I should fancy it would be more beneficial to the
Government, to the players, and the public, that individual labour, or
ability, should seek and find its own remuneration; for I do not believe
it is in the power of any Government to discriminate properly, and
reward the services of a particular class of the community. I do not
think I am at fault when I say, that England has produced more great
men, eminent in every department of the professions, politics, and
trade, than any other nation of the earth; and this superiority of
mental, intellectual, and physical greatness, is to be ascribed to that
timidity which the English Government manifests at all times to
interfere with individual exertions or collective industry.

To-day was our last day at Copenhagen, and the crew seemed determined to
make it the gayest. At early dawn, floating from the mast head to the
bowsprit end, then down again to the boom-end, even to the water; and
from the cross-trees along both back-stays, every flag and pennant on
board the yacht might have been seen.

"There's not a prettier craft in Denmark," I heard one man say, as he
sat in the boat, hauled up close to the port-hole of the cabin, where I
was dressing, "and I don't know as how there's a drier thing in a gale."

"No, nor I neither," replied another; "I'm blowed if it 'taint as good
as a picture to look at her."

This short dialogue had scarcely been brought to a conclusion, when I
heard some one in a raised tone of voice, as if at a distance from the
cutter, ask if Lord R, or P, or I, was up, but being answered in the
negative, the same person inquired what all the flags were flying for;
and being told that it was R's birthday, all further interrogation
ceased. It was the American Minister, who had rowed off to the yacht, to
repeat his invitation. At 12 o'clock, the conviviality of the crew
commenced; and as I sat down with R and P, near the binnacle, toast
after toast could be heard unanimously proposed, and more unanimously
drank. As the afternoon began to decline, their jollity began to rise,
and ere the sun had set, the grog had risen high in their heads.

"Here's to the Governor!" I could distinguish from a multitude of
noises, which issued upwards from the forecastle; and then snatches of
such Bacchanalian songs as,

 "He's a jolly good fellow,
 He's a jolly good fellow,"

interrupted the calm serenity of the coming evening.

"Now then, 'order,' my lads," I heard D. shout aloud, "and let's drink
the Governor's health, and long life to him!"

"Hurrah!" replied eight or ten voices;--"Hurrah!"

"Where's Jacko?" was then the cry; "where is he? out with the young
lubber, George--give him a glass."

"Ay, give him a glass;" echoed in answer.

"Time, my sons, time," shouted D., "attend to time. One--two--three;
hip! hip! hip! hurra!--hurra!--hurra!--nine times nine, my sons;
hip!"--and his voice was drowned in a perfect uproar. The next thing I
heard was that Jacko, confused by the din of joviality, had decamped
from the middle of the table where they had placed him, and broken his
glass. In the midst of all this merriment, we were rowed ashore to keep
our engagement with the American Minister; and, on reaching the land,
about half a mile off, we could hear the whole yacht's company joining
in the chorus, and Jerome's fiddle screaming the accompaniment, of

 "True blue for ever."

Our party at the American Minister's consisted of the Spanish Minister,
the Baron de B----, R----, P----, Captain W----, Mr. A----, the nephew
of Lord F----, a gentleman farmer from Holstein, and myself. The dinner
was an excellent one, and an improvement on the French system of
cookery; and every fruit and wine which could be bought in Copenhagen
were on the table. After we had dined, the American Minister rose, and
drank the health of the Queen of England. P---- immediately replied, and
proposed the President of the United States, and that also was drunk in
a bumper. A pause now took place in the proposal and drinking of
healths, and the conversation turned into a political current, and
flowed towards the merits and demerits of Christian, King of Denmark.
Public opinion was rather in opposition to the king, because he had
shown himself reluctant to give the people that limit of reform which
they asked.

"Well," exclaimed Captain W----, who, though a boisterous, was an
amiable man, "I have not the honour of knowing King Christian; but I
believe him a good fellow."

"Bravo! bravo!" and the Baron de B---- touched the table gently with his
hand.

"And I believe," continued Captain W----, "any reluctance he may show in
acceding to popular opinion is for the ultimate benefit of the country."

"Good, good," said the Baron de B----, and tapped his wine glass with a
small salt spoon.

"And he is partial to the English," added the American Minister,
looking towards our end of the table, "therefore he can't fail to have
some liberality of soul."

"The Danes have always been our old allies," said P----, "and I drink
with sincerity to the health of Christian, King of Denmark, and long may
he be so!"

P---- rose from his seat as he spoke, and held a brimming glass above
his head. The whole company followed his example, and with a round of
"hurrahs," quaffed to the personal welfare of the aged monarch in whose
dominions we had been enjoying ourselves for the last week. The Holstein
gentleman, having learned from the Baron de B---- what P---- had said,
walked round the table, and, cordially shaking hands with us, said
something in Danish which we did not understand, but at the conclusion
of every sentence, each one, except ourselves, exclaimed "Hear, hear;"
and so I am led to conclude it was complimentary. The Baron de
B---- thanked us in English for the kind feeling we had shown in drinking
the health of his sovereign, and which he appreciated the more, because
it came from an Englishman. He drank to P----, and, of course, all
present joined in the toast.

"My Lord," said the American Minister, addressing himself to R----, "I
saw your yacht to-day, looking pretty--excessively--among the other
vessels which lay in the harbour; and, from her mast-head to the
surface of the sea, I also saw streamers resting their full length on
the air. This must be a day of jubilee, and one, no doubt, replete with
good fortune to you, or your two friends; and my guests are desirous,
and I am too, of noting this day with white chalk. If I be not exceeding
the bounds of curiosity, and, in a moment of conviviality, the
conventionalities of society, may I ask the reason of so much
festivity?"

"Oh! nothing," replied R----, laughing carelessly; "I suppose my
sailing-master has merely hoisted the signals to give them an airing."

"That won't do, my Lord. Now, gentlemen," exclaimed the American
Minister, "I am not accredited minister to Denmark, without by secret
sources receiving information of all that passes in Copenhagen. Lord
R----, gentlemen, has done me the honour of dining with me on his
birthday."

This rather staggered R----, for he had no idea the American Minister
knew anything about the matter; and it was the last circumstance he
would have wished the company to know.

"Therefore," continued the American Minister, "I beg to propose Lord
R----'s health with all the honours."

"With all the honours," reiterated Captain W----.

Of course the clatter of glasses, the rapping of knuckles, the bravos,
and hears, are nothing more on all similar occasions than the
reverberations of such an appeal. Captain W---- mounted on his chair.

"Come down, W----," said Mr. A----.

"Not a bit," answered Captain W----. "Let me alone. I'm all right." The
Captain was elevated, and would remain so.

"I beg, with the permission of his Excellency," continued Mr. A----, "to
suggest an amendment,--the health of Lord R----, _and_ his two friends."

"My health has been drunk already," observed P----.

"Never mind. Bravo!" said Captain W----, from his point of elevation,
and, stooping down, he rapped the table. "Lord R---- _and_ his two
friends--good idea!"

"It was my intention to have them one by one," said the American
Minister.

"No, no;" interrupted Captain W----. "All together--three jolly chaps."

"Just as you like," answered the American Minister.

"Yes. We'll have two girls afterwards, instead," replied Captain W----.

"As you are so conspicuous, then," said the American Minister to Captain
W----, "perhaps you had better do the toast with honours."

"To be sure," replied Captain W----, "nine times nine, and one over for
a fair breeze. Gentlemen! _are_ you charged?"

"Yes, yes, yes," came from all quarters.

"Well, then, gentlemen," continued Captain W----, "reserve your fire,
till I give the word.--Now!" and, with all the hubbub of a toast, our
united healths were drunk. R---- was called upon to return thanks, which
he did; and another jingling of spoons, forks, and finger-basins, rose
in reply. The gentleman-farmer from Holstein now commenced a speech,
which none of us, but the Baron de B----, thoroughly understood; but it
evidently alluded to our three selves, for he often turned, and, looking
in our faces, delivered whole sentences without wincing. The Holsteiner
was much applauded. Captain W---- having come down to our level, now
offered to sing a song; and he dashed headlong into a pretty air, which
had an eternal chorus of

 "Trik-a-trik, trik,"

or some such monotonous burden at every sixth word. The gallant Captain
had executed but a small portion of his ditty, when the Holstein farmer
rose quickly from his chair, and addressed the songster at the moment
when he had reiterated for the second time,

 "Trik-a-trik, trik."

"I don't care," replied Captain W----, who knew the Danish language
slightly; "it means nothing. My friends here have never heard the air,
and that is the reason I sing it."

The Holsteiner still resisted. What could the matter be? The farmer must
be, I thought, a married man, and the song an immoral one. The Captain
made a second attempt with another song, and the Holsteiner resisted a
second time. What could the matter now be? Why, that the farmer was a
loyal subject, and a strenuous supporter of monarchy, and that Captain
W---- had pitched, at last, upon a revolutionary song, which had been
prohibited.

"It is so absurdly radical," said the American Minister, "that it
carries with it its own antidote. I am sure there can arise no harm from
Captain W---- singing it to our English friends, who are monarchy men
sufficiently staunch to disallow any defection from royalty."

"Yes," replied the Baron de B----; "it is not for ourselves my friend
from Holstein feels alarmed; but for those who attend upon us, and who,
knowing us, may disseminate reports prejudicial to our position. God
knows, my Sovereign has no truer subject than myself."

"Perhaps it is better," admitted the American Minister, "that the song
should not be sung, W----. King Christian possesses no heart more loyal
than my noble friend's," and he took the hand of the Baron de B----,
who sat close to him, and shook it.

"A stone," exclaimed Captain W----, "thrown into a brook dams it not,
but swells the current only to make it run swifter. What will you have?

 "Min skaal og din skaal,
 Alla vackra flickors skaal;"

and chanting these two lines of a Swedish drinking-song, he threw
himself back in his chair, and emptied his overflowing glass. The party
now began to get extremely merry; and from claret we turned to port,
and, by imperceptible degrees, descended to punch. The smoke of our
cigars soon accumulated in a dense mass, and, ascending to the ceiling
of the room, hung like a canopy of clouds over our heads; and Satan
would have envied the hot atmosphere which we now breathed and caroused
in. We were all pretty well elated; and as the wine warmed Captain
W----'s heart and feelings, he sang the sweetest Swedish song I shall
ever hear again. The melodious air, the sweet silvery reiteration of the
words, the language with its soft idioms, and the poetical beauty and
liveliness of the song itself, were a combination of harmony I could
never have anticipated. It would be useless endeavouring to embody "the
viewless spirit" of those lovely sounds; but as the words were then
translated to me, so I write them here:--

       "The happy hours,
       Amid the flowers,
   Familiar to the Spring's warm breast;
       When memory burneth,
       And the soul returneth,
   Day dreaming, to its own unrest.
 I know of looks, to me more sweet and clear,
   Than Light's glad beam, than heaven's own blue,
   The Spring's soft breath, the flower's bright hue;
         None so true,
     As his I cherish here,
     Whose image is so dear.
   Will he love, and love me duly?
   Fairy flowers, tell me truly.
   What shall be my lot hereafter?
   Shall it end in sighs, or laughter?
         Pull them lightly!
         Count them rightly!
   Yes! No! Yes! No! Yes! No! _Yes!_
         Counted rightly."

Captain W---- received much applause, but no more than his song
deserved. After awhile, I observed to the American Minister, that we had
drunk the health of nearly every one present except the Baron de B----,
and with his permission I would suggest that we toasted him. The hint
was no sooner given than it was adopted.

The probable separation of Holstein and Schleswig from Denmark, then
became the subject of discussion during the remainder of the evening;
and, indeed, this was the topic common in the mouths of all men whom we
met in Copenhagen.

"It is impossible to foresee the decrees of Time," said the Baron de
B----, "and tell what may, or may not befall this country; but all I
hope, is, that my present sovereign may live for many long years to
come, his life being a guarantee of peace to Denmark, and his death the
beginning of disaffection."

"Do you think, Baron," observed Mr. A----, "that the people of Holstein
and Schleswig are so much opposed to the rule of Denmark?"

"No," replied the Baron de B----, "I am not at liberty to say _that_ is
the general feeling of Holstein and Schleswig; for I am one among a
thousand who hold, that the disunion of Holstein and Schleswig from the
Parent Kingdom, would be fatal to the well-being of both, but more
particularly to Denmark; for I do not doubt, but that when Holstein and
Schleswig are lopped off from Denmark, some other State, like Prussia,
for instance, will take the duchies under its protection, and join them
ultimately to its dominions; but such a result could never happen to
Denmark, and she must sink into utter insignificance as a European
Power."

"Why, my dear Baron," said the American Minister, "is not care taken
that these evils should not occur to Denmark? If you do not mind
yourselves, you may rest satisfied no State in Europe will trouble
itself about you."

"The fact is this," answered the Baron de B----, "the present ministers
have not the moral courage, or mental ability to meet the difficulties
of the approaching crisis. When Christian dies, you may say the existing
dynasty of Denmark dies too; and I do not think the Duke of Augustenburg
will listen to an alteration in the law of succession to these realms,
prejudicial to his interest in Holstein, at the coronation of Prince
Frederick. If Denmark desires to retain Holstein and Schleswig, she must
show her determination now. The same trumpet that announces the decease
of Christian, will sound the proclamation of civil contention."

"Will England stand aloof," observed Captain W----, "and see Denmark
mutilated? I think not."

"I hope not," said the Baron de B----; "but as years roll on, who can
divine the political condition of any country. My Lord," continued the
Baron de B----, turning and addressing himself more exclusively to
R----, "you have, by hereditary right, a voice in the legislative
community of your country, and if ever you should hear that Denmark is
threatened with the loss of her dependencies, maintain her in her right;
remember the position of England without the aid and protection in the
West, however ill given, of Ireland; and, calling to mind the words of
myself, an old Holstein noble, be assured, that the apathetic
indifference of England to the dismemberment of this kingdom, her old
ally, will destroy, only for a time, the balance of power in Northern
Europe, but will entail on future generations the misery of restoring by
the sword, what can now be done with the pen, the independence of the
Danish Crown."

"I do not wish, Baron," I said, "to interfere with the opinion you
entertain of the intellectual refinement of men, and their inclination
to have their quarrels arranged rather by the silent aid of the pen,
than the roar of cannon; but of this I am convinced, that, the more
enlightened the human race appear to become, the more frequently
submission and order seem to be appalled by a total disregard of many
social institutions. That day is distant indeed, when the legislators of
two disaffected countries will sit down and calm their differences by
philosophic deliberation."

"I do not quite agree with you," answered the American Minister; "but, I
still think, that the irritability of human nature will overcome reason,
and so, in anger, men seize the sabre while they throw down the pen; but
that is only temporary. 'Ira furor brevis est.'"

"A great deal of mischief may be done in a short time," I replied. "I do
not, however, wish your Excellency to take all hope from the Baron de
B----, but the separation of Holstein and Schleswig from this country
will scarcely be opposed by England, and, if the interference of England
should be tendered, the other Powers will hardly permit it to be
accepted in quietude. I am no prophet, but however much Europe may boast
of her intellectual advancement, and point, as she may, to her sons of
mind, the innate love of destruction is so clearly marked on the
character of mankind, that, at any, the least provocation, war may
trample again on liberty and peace with all the increased malice and
horror of the Bonaparte dynasty."

Not many of the company would support me, but thought better of their
kind. I am now pleased that I then stood alone; for recent events have
shown how, in the midst of the most intellectual era since the world's
formation, glittering not only with the fruit of man's mental garden,
but beautified by the miracles of his manual skill, the total subversion
of conventional and political order is severely menaced; and how
doubtful the contest is between the earnest endeavour of one faith to
overcome every tenet of another, and the outrages of vulgar audacity to
supersede noble sentiment and refinement of manner.

We did not part until much past midnight, and I shall not forget that
last night at Copenhagen for many a long day; and for the time which is
to come I shall ever, lingeringly, look back with memory on the glad
faces which endear the happiness of that evening.



CHAPTER VIII.

 THE EXILE'S SOUVENIR--THE DISAPPOINTED ARTIST
 --DEPARTURE FROM COPENHAGEN--ARRIVAL AT ELSINEUR
 --DESCRIPTION OF THE TOWN--THE CASTLE OF CRONENBORG
 --HAMLET'S GARDEN--ESROM LAKE--THE LEGEND OF ESROM
 MONASTERY--THE FRENCH WAR-STEAMER--SAILING UP THE
 CATTEGAT.


I rose early on the following morning, and went ashore with R----, who
desired to purchase some cherry cordial, rum and brandy, since this was
the last city of any importance we should visit, before our arrival at
Christiania, or Bergen.

The first object which attracted our attention when we returned on
board, was a large nosegay, of sweet colour and perfume, in a jar of
water, standing in the centre of the cabin table; and a small note
directed, to us, lay by its side. When opened, the note read thus:--

"A poor, but proud countryman, begs that you will accept this trifling
present, as it is the only one within his means of offering; and, when
you are again in England, think sometimes of an outcast."

It had no signature; but the hand-writing was Mr. C----'s. A large boat
was seen putting off from the shore, and we hoped that it was Mr.
C----; for R---- was always happy to see him on board his vessel,
however much he might have objected to his companionship in the streets.
As the boat approached, we saw that it was not Mr. C----, but our old
friend the gentleman in spectacles, who had, unhappily, selected this
morning to sketch the yacht; and in ignorance of our intended departure,
had evidently hired a good-sized boat for the day, and brought all the
necessary appendages of his art. In a few seconds we slipped our
moorings, and jib, foresail, and gaff-topsail were hauled out to the
wind, and the main tack dropped, sooner than I have written it.

"Vare de skepp go?" I heard the artist exclaim to the boatman; "det
blăser hărdt--de vind blow hard--moin Gud! vare de skepp go?"

We were soon out of hearing; but we could still see the mute
astonishment of the disappointed Swede, as he stood bolt upright, a
pencil in one hand, and a large drawing-book in the other.

Like a wild horse, startled, would fly over the plains of Pampas, and
hurl with sounding hooves the turf behind him, our little bark darted
through the water, and, envious of her freedom, crushed and tossed each
resisting wave into foam, and a thousand bubbles. As we hauled closer to
the wind, and hugged the tongue of land which forms the most easterly
point of the citadel of Fredrikshavn, we discerned, leaning against the
flag-staff, poor old C----. He held a handkerchief in his hand, but
waved it not; yet it would be raised slowly to his face, and fall
heavily to his side again; and, after we had proceeded two miles out to
sea, with the aid of a telescope, we could still trace his form resting
in the same place and position, and his eyes still turned towards us.

When we drew further from the shore, the wind increased, and the
gaff-topsail was unbent, and a reef taken in the mainsail. We were soon
a second time anchored off Elsineur; and, as the sun declined from the
meridian, the wind almost lulled to a calm. We went ashore; and
although, on our arrival at the pier-head, the sentinels and police did
not speak to us, or demand our passports, they walked round and viewed
us, as a man would observe the points of a horse before he purchased it.

Elsineur appeared to me a more bustling town than Copenhagen itself; and
I suppose that arises from the number of sailors connected with the
vessels in the roadstead, who are to be met in the narrow lanes and
alleys of the town; and here all the pilots in Denmark mostly wait for
ships bound up the Baltic.

Over the door of every third house, generally swings a sign-board,
villainously painted, and exhibiting, in emblematical form to the
stranger's eye, the proprietor's name, and the nature of the goods
which may be bought of him. The streets are very long and confined; and
herds of fishwomen, dogs, and children, get in your way and under your
feet. Elsineur is the Wapping of Denmark, or comparable to the worst
parts of Portsmouth.

We walked through the town to the Castle of Cronenborg. After wandering
over drawbridges, through archways, and dark tunnels, we found ourselves
in the middle of a courtyard, surrounded on all sides by the solitary
walls of the seemingly deserted castle. We rang a bell several times,
and could just hear its noisy clatter, stealing through narrow,
longitudinal slits of windows at the top of an old tower; and, after
repeating the summons several times, without waiting, we walked away as
we had entered this famous citadel. From the ramparts we enjoyed a
magnificent view of the Sound, and the coast of Sweden.

In Hamlet's garden, about a mile from the castle, across a dreary
common, the willow-sheltered tomb is still to be seen, where, it is
said, sleeps that Spirit "the potent poison quite" o'ercrew. A house
stands, tenantless, in the centre of this garden, protected at the back
from the north wind by a bank, on which spring here and there flowers
and weeds entwined; while its front, turned to the south's warm breath,
is enlivened by a few statues, round the pedestals of which creep the
vine and honey-suckle. Though the footfall of time is scarcely heard on
the soft moss, which oozes in patches from the broad terrace where
princes trod, the hand of desolation seemed to be busy here; and as I
looked around me, and observed how each relic of antiquity was crumbling
into dust, the oblivion of every thing connected with man, except the
monuments of his intellect, crawled coldly, like a slug, over my senses,
and apart from all visible objects, I felt, and saw with the mind's eye,
the immortality of poetry only in the air which I breathed.

Not far from Elsineur is Esrom. Near the Castle of Fredensborg, a
boat-house, on Esrom Lake, may be seen by the traveller; and there it
was, on this calm summer evening, I lay down upon the grass, looking on
hill, wood, dale, and water. The still air, the unrippled surface of the
lake, the tops of the trees, which form the vast and majestic avenues
leading to the castle, appearing to melt into the blue sky, were so
imposing, that the spirit of melancholy, not unpleasing, descended on
me; and leaping from scene to scene, and from one epoch of my life to
another, I found myself a boy again, and the heart, like a bended bow,
returning to its full length, sprung swifter to the thoughts of home;
and I could not help muttering aloud these verses to myself:

 "There was a time, and I recall it well,
    When my whole frame was but an ell in height;
  Oh! when I think of that, my warm tears swell,
    And therefore in the mem'ry I delight.

 "I sported in my mother's kind embraces,
    And climb'd my grandsire's venerable knee;
  Unknown were care, and rage, and sorrow's traces:
    To me the world was blest as blest could be.

 "I mark'd no frowns the world's smooth surface wrinkle,
    Its mighty space seemed little to my eye;
  I saw the stars, like sparks, at distance twinkle,
    And wished myself a bird to soar so high.

 "I saw the moon behind the hills retiring,
    And thought the while--'Oh! would I were but there!'
  Then could my eye examine, without tiring,
    That radiant thing, how large, how round, how fair.

 "Wond'ring, I saw the Sun of God depart,
    To slumber in the golden lap of Even;
  And, from the East again in beauty dart,
    To bathe in crimson all the field of heaven.

 "I thought on Him, the Father all-bestowing,
    Who made me, and that silver orb, on high,
  And all the little stars, that, nightly glowing,
    Deck'd, like a row of pearls, the azure sky.

 "To Him, with infant piety, I faltered
    The prayer my tender mother taught me:
  'Oh! gracious God! be it my aim unalter'd
    Still to be wise and good, and follow Thee!'

 "For her I pray'd, and for my father, too,
    My sisters dear, and the community;
  The king, whom yet by name alone I knew,
    And mendicant that, sighing, totter'd by.

 "Those days were matchless sweet; but they are perish'd,
    And life is thorny now, and dim, and flat;
  Yet rests their memory--deeply--fondly cherish'd;
    God! in thy mercy, take not--take not that."[1]

That the placid and serious beauty of Esrom Lake might be enjoyed,
undisturbed, in intimate union and rare purity, some monks of the
Cistercian order built, in days of yore, a monastery in the island, the
ruins of which now alone remain; and it would do the eye good to see the
beautiful spot where these monks raised their dwelling.

On such an evening as the one of which I am now almost a part, a light
might have been seen dancing strangely round the trunk of a beech, the
oak of Denmark. It was no will-o'-the-wisp produced by exhalations of
the earth; for, now it would shine brightly, and at the next moment
vanish, as if it had mingled with the old tree's leaves. Reappearing,
the light would assume an oscillating motion for a short time; then
revolve with such rapidity, that it would seem a continuous circle of
fire; and, at last, as if wearied with its gyrations, burn with the
upward quivering glare of a candle. Suddenly, a slight puffing noise,
like the ignition of a small quantity of gunpowder, stole on the night,
and the beech, without noise, fell withered to the ground. In its stead
stood the figure of a man hid in the travelling hood and mantle worn by
the peasants of those days. Folding the mantle close to his form, the
man moved with quick steps towards the monastery of Esrom; and,
arriving, knocked gently, at the gates. He sought admission, and said
that his name was Ruus, and that the abbot had engaged him to be cook's
apprentice. The lateness of the hour pleading in his favour, a monk,
doubting not the truth of his assertion, admitted the stranger, who
entered without further question on the duties of his humble office.

Being one day alone with the master-cook, Ruus showed so much
disobedience, and raised the anger of his superior to such a pitch, that
he received chastisement severely for his contumely. At this Ruus felt
wroth; and, having previously placed a cauldron of water on the fire,
and perceiving the water boiled, he seized, in the apparent frenzy of
the moment, the master-cook by his ankle and the nape of his neck, and
thrust him head foremost into the hissing liquid. Tearing his hair, and
putting on the hypocritical garb of innocence, Ruus ran hither and
thither screaming, and lamenting in the face of all his saints the
irretrievable misfortune which had happened to his master. By such
deception, leading the friars by the nose, Ruus caused them to see
combined in him tenderness of heart and guilelessness of conduct, and to
make him straightway their master-cook. This was precisely the elevated
point of trust to which Ruus had aspired, since his entrance into the
monastery was urged by the resolution to work out its destruction. The
victuals of the friars, made savoury by every herb and spice Ruus could
take from the abundant hand of Nature, or steal from the art of man,
were luscious to the extreme of taste; and, delivering themselves up to
the enjoyment of all earth's good things, the friars allowed fasting and
prayer to slip from their memories. Nay, the legend even tends to the
utmost limit of delight, and asserts, that Ruus introduced the most
beautiful women to the caresses of this holy fraternity; and so
ingratiated himself highly with the abbot, that the old man desired
nothing more than that Ruus should become one of their order, and remain
for ever master-cook of Esrom monastery. Ruus consented; and, from that
moment, quarrels and wickednesses marred the unanimity, and crept
stealthily through all the cloisters of the monastery; and the little,
childish, coaxing form of sin, by daily toleration and soft endearments,
grew to such rapid maturity, that the walls of the monastery would have
fallen asunder by the pressure of its bulk, and come under the sway of
the Evil One, had not the Father Abbot expostulated with his children,
and seasonably persuaded them to avoid their vicious ways.

Now, it so happened, that in the cool of one summer's afternoon, Ruus
went forth to walk in a wood; and though the air which he breathed was
pure, and the generous sun, mindless of good or bad, poured around an
equal distribution of his tempered warmth, Ruus, throwing aside,
nevertheless, the harsher trammels of honesty, relaxed to his genial
depravity; for, observing at a little distance a fine fat cow, he
approached and slew her; and, taking on his shoulders a quarter to the
monastery, left the remaining three-quarters hanging on a tree.

Merry and content of heart, and chanting a native ditty to some young
girl he loved, a peasant, to whom the cow belonged, came soon afterwards
to seek her; and, when he saw the three-quarters hanging on the tree,
his mirth soon ceased, and with wringing hands, uttering sigh after
sigh, he knew no bounds of grief, since his wealth exceeded not the
cow's possession; but, his sorrow softening at length into moderation,
he became lost in the opposite intensity of feeling; and, stung by
anger, resolved to climb another tree, and, watching till the thief
should come to take the rest of the animal, beat him to death.

The sun began to sink, the cool breath of evening prevailing over the
warmer atmosphere of the day; and, ever and anon, the soft sighing of
the air brought to the peasant's ear the faint murmur of voices. While
sitting on a lofty tree concealed among the branches, and looking down
through the foliage he observed, assembled round the trunk, a vast
number of devil's imps playing their pranks, whispering of Ruus, and
telling each other how Ruus designed to invite the old Abbot and his
monks to partake of an entertainment in hell. The peasant, terrified at
all he heard and saw, and, watching his opportunity, descended
furtively from his hiding-place, and, repairing on the morrow to Esrom,
told his story to the Abbot.

When the Abbot heard the peasant's tale, in wonder and alarm, he ordered
the monks to the church, and, amid the solemn tolling of the bell,
throwing himself prostrate on the cold pavement, began to read and sing.
Ruus, who had ever shown himself a wayward convert, liked not the
lamentable voice of devotional services; and strove to sneak out from
the mumbling group, but the Abbot, with resolute horror, seized him by
the cloak, and exorcised him, quickly as his tongue would speak, into a
red horse; and, by the sanctity of invested power, constrained him, by
way of punishment for his wicked designs, to pass through the air day
after day to England, and without intermission, in blistering summer, or
biting winter, to return bearing on his back 320,000 pounds weight of
lead for the roof of Esrom Monastery. This Ruus is supposed in the
legends of Zealand, to have been the Devil, who, envious of the piety
and virtue of the monks of Esrom, assumed the human form, and gained
access to the monastery in the manner, and suffered punishment with the
certainty, I have stated.

During the night the wind had been soothed to a mere zephyr; but its
object was only to take breath, for this morning, Sunday, it blew a
perfect gale, and the sea was lashed, in a short time, to such anger,
that no communication whatever could be held with the shore. There were
many hundred vessels in the roadstead; and, packed closely together as
they were, it was amusing to observe the effect of their masts rising
and sinking, and tumbling from right to left, as wave after wave
approached and receded from each vessel. At noon, all our cable was
veered on the starboard anchor, and got ready for slipping, in
consequence of a large brig driving in our way. It became doubtful for
some hours, as she drew her anchors slowly home, whether the brig would
not come athwart our bows, and, if she had, one of us must have gone to
the bottom; and since the brig had so much more bulk, and consequently,
weight in her favour, than the Iris could muster, the chances are, that
my fleshless skull would have been long ago a resort for cockles under
the rocks of Cronenborg; but, a friendly wave, full of feeling as of
water, struck the brig to windward, and, heeling under the blow, she
took a broad sheer on our starboard bow, and dropped clear of us.

At six o'clock in the morning, we got under weigh, and went up the
Cattegat, with no particular plan in view, but desirous, if possible, to
reach Falkenborg, or some other harbour in Sweden, before night set in.
As the sun rose, however, the wind began gradually to fail, and before
noon, a calm prevailed so entirely, that all hope of leaving Cronenborg
out of sight to day was dissipated. This being the 24th of May and the
Queen's birthday; to commemorate the event and keep our loyalty in good
trim, we fired, even under the ramparts of Cronenborg Castle, which is
not always liked, a royal salute; and, when we had accomplished about
one-half of our Lilliputian cannonade, a large French war-steamer passed
within thirty yards of us, and, not heeding the approximation of such a
terrible and sensitive neighbour, we continued our firing, and sent a
broadside right into the Frenchman's larboard ports, much to his
astonishment; for anticipating more deference to the French flag, the
engines were immediately stopped, and a Lieutenant in gold banded cap,
and thick moustache, started into sight, showing his chin just elevated
above the bulwarks, and eying us with great ferocity over the
lee-quarter; but repeating our salute with all the precision of an hour
glass, which R----held, and the apparently sublime ignorance of
land-lubbers, Monsieur le Lieutenant seemed to feel some consolation for
our breach of etiquette, and paddled away again as hard as ever.

Not a breath of air was abroad, and the Sound lay silent as a lake. In
answer to the booming of our guns, from the town of Helsingborg, five
miles off, on the opposite coast of Sweden, we could hear the sound of
human tongues, and the bay of dogs, come echoing over the sea, so calm
was the day. A thousand vessels of all nations, some going up, others
returning from the Baltic, the deep blue sky, and the hot sun, reminded
me more of the Mediterranean than of the northern climate in which I was
wandering.

After we had concluded our salute, R---- ordered a swivel to be charged,
and, loading it with a handful of rifle balls, fired it towards the
coast of Sweden. The experiment was tried in order to satisfy our
speculations as to the distance our guns would carry. An immense flock
of wild ducks, rather more than a mile from us, rose as we fired; but
whether the report, or the bullets interfered with their fishing
amusements, I know not, for we did not see the smooth surface of the
water disturbed anywhere. Some of the sailors, however, were fanciful
enough to assert that they heard the balls strike the rocks on the
Swedish shore.

Every other object, except the high land of Sweden, lost to the eye,
Cronenborg was still, for a long way, visible; and, as the sun began to
descend, the old Castle, throwing its dark shadows almost across the
Sound, seemed to stand forth the gigantic symbol of national protection,
and type of times gone by.

FOOTNOTES:

[1] Translated from the Danish poet, Baggesen.



CHAPTER IX.

 ARRIVAL AT FALKENBORG--THE STORM--THE YACHT IN DANGER
 --SAFE ANCHORAGE--VISIT TO FALKENBORG--LUDICROUS
 ADVENTURE--A DRIVE INTO THE INTERIOR--GREAT SCARCITY
 EXPERIENCED BY THE INHABITANTS--DESCRIPTION OF THE
 COUNTRY--THE DISAPPOINTED ANGLERS--KONGSBACKA--THE
 YACHT RUNS AGROUND--GOTTENBORG.


Æolus seems to be the same good-natured deity Virgil represents him to
have been in the days of Æneas, and open to any supplication which may
be preferred to his rocky throne, whether it be by mythological Juno, or
material Jack; nor does that royal soother of waves and raiser of wind
pay more attention to such poetic prayer and soft promises of a Goddess,
as,

   "Eole,
 Incute vim ventis.
 Sunt mihi bis septem præstanti corpore Nymphæ:
 Quarum, quæ forma pulcherrima, Deïopeiam
 Connubio jungam stabili, propriamque dicabo:
 Omnes ut tecum meritis pro talibus annos
 Exigat, et pulchrâ faciat te prole parentem,"

than he listens to the reflections of two British tars.

"I think, from the scud, we shall have wind from the south'ard, Bill."

"So I think," replies Bill; "and we shall have enough of it, too.
There's a bank of black clouds over the Castle, I don't like."

"Ay, I'll be d-- if it does anything else but blow; but better a good
deal than none at all."

"Don't swear," Bill piously answers, "but take what you can catch. We
ain't got a black cat aboard; and, so, trust to Providence."

About an hour afterwards the observations of the two sailors were
verified; for a strong wind sprung up from the south, and blew without
intermission till nine o'clock, when we found ourselves abreast of
Falkenborg. The sky, being covered by dark masses of flying clouds, made
the night, now beginning to set in, more obscure than this season of the
year admitted. The coast, though bold, was dangerous and unknown; and we
had been told that Falkenborg, though famous for its salmon streams, had
no harbour where the yacht might lie with safety, unless, by sailing
through a very intricate and narrow channel, we anchored within a reef
of rocks stretching three miles from the land. The nearer, therefore, we
approached the shore, the more requisite was it to get a pilot on board;
but ten o'clock being now near at hand, and the Swedes being notoriously
negligent in the performance of their duty as pilots, the chance of
speedy relief from our anxious condition was slight indeed.

Hauling our fore-sheet to windward, and tricing up the main-tack, we
now shot rocket after rocket with a sharp report high into the darkness,
and, the roar of our guns booming above the loud storm, must have
reached the shore. For upwards of an hour we lay to, dreading to put the
cutter about, lest, in doing so, she should strike; for the reef of
rocks I have mentioned was nigh, we knew by the chart; but could not, in
the obscurity of night, ascertain the exact position of the vessel.
Again, the rockets rose into the air, and threw a blaze of light around,
as they hissed and flew with the velocity of lightning from the main
shrouds, and then burst, a hundred feet above our heads, into myriads of
blue, and green, and red sparks, which, curving like a feather,
descended towards us, their gently-floating appearance mocking the
turbulence of the elements, and our own inquietude. The guns, too,
bellowing, an instant after, with the loud tongue of distress, seemed,
when their echoes struck with angry force against the elevated points of
land, to upbraid the quick exhaustion and placid beauty of the rockets.

With this land on our lee the wind still continued to blow with unabated
fury, and, seeing that no assistance could be obtained without resorting
to other means, King, with two men, offered to put off in a boat, and
seek the aid we desired. These gallant fellows, in the teeth of a
tremendous sea, jumped into a small boat, and, taking several red and
blue lights to show, at intervals, their position, rowed, as well as
they could calculate, in the direction of the town of Falkenborg.

For two hours, the fate of King and his two companions, was unknown to
us, until the whisper passed from man to man on board, that a light was
imagined to have been seen. An answering signal was immediately ordered
to be made, and a man, running half up the shrouds, burned a blue light;
and, instantly, another blue light shone brightly about three miles to
windward, on our starboard quarter, then a second followed, and a third;
and, to satisfy all doubt, a fourth gleamed steadily through the night.
It had been arranged, that King should show a light for every man he
might have in the boat, so that if he should chance to find a pilot, a
fourth light would immediately convey the intelligence to us.

It was impossible for us to do anything more than lay to as long as we
could, and, to meet the boat, was utterly impracticable. In a shorter
time, however, than could be imagined, from the heavy sea running, the
little boat, taken, like a cork, on the top of a wave half way up our
mast, then carried down again so near our keel, that, a rope could
hardly reach her, jumped, and sank, and tumbled by some agency or other,
for the men did not pull, to the lee-gangway, and our three men leaped
on board with a Swedish fisherman. To our questions the Swede replied,
through King, that he was not a pilot, and would not attempt to take the
cutter within the reef until daylight, and that we must weather out the
gale where we were. These were no gratifying tidings to hear on such a
dark and boisterous night; but, in this part of Europe, Aurora soon
shows her rosy face; and, before I was up the following morning, the
yacht was safely at anchor in comparatively smooth water.

The reef of rocks, which forms the only roadstead at Falkenborg, circles
in the shape of a horse-shoe, having but one inlet. It is sunk half a
foot under water, so that a heavy surf is always broken before it
reaches a vessel lying in the centre of this curious bay. The channel
into it is not more than twenty or thirty feet in breadth.

After breakfast, we rowed ashore in the gig. In compensation for the
abatement of wind, the rain fell determinately, and in such big drops,
that, not all the coats and cloaks we put on, could keep us dry. P----
however, had gone by daylight into the town, and hired a carriole, which
was to take us some distance into the neighbouring country, where, it
was said, a celebrated salmon-stream ran.

On our arrival in the town of Falkenborg, a guard of several men, with
drawn swords, received us; but what their motive was in honouring us
with their protection, we could not conceive. Wherever we went, these
men kept close to our heels, nor faltered in the strictest observance of
every military evolution. This seeming honour amounted, at length, to
extreme pertinacity, and became offensive to our freedom; for, it not
only excited the curiosity of numberless dogs, that barked, and the
admiration of ragged children, who pointed at us as we passed; but, if
R----, or P----, or I, walked into a fisherman's hut, or any humbler
dwelling, to inquire the way, a man, with unsheathed sword, and scowling
brow, would step from this redoubted phalanx, and place himself on the
threshold, watching minutely every action. Tormented at length to anger,
by the pursuit of this file of armed men, P---- asked them what they
meant; but receiving, of course, no reply to his common, yet, to them,
incomprehensible question, he determined to seek out the Mayor, and
represent to that functionary the nuisance to which we were subject.

On reaching the Mayor's residence, our complaint was laid very forcibly
by P----, who was not a little nettled before that old gentleman, who,
shaking his grey hairs, replied, as well as he could, in French, that
the anticipated arrival of an English yacht at Falkenborg had been
communicated to him some days ago, and it was, at the same time, hinted
the object of the Englishman on board that yacht, was to fish. An order
was therefore issued by the owner of the salmon-streams near Falkenborg
to prevent any foreigners from angling on his property, and, in
pursuance of that order, the Mayor, fancying us to be the real Simon
Pures, which, by the bye, we were, had directed much attention should be
paid us, and no latitude given to our movements.

A short remonstrance being made to the inconveniences we felt by the
obstinate attendance of this body guard; and on our simple assertion,
without pledging our honour, that we would not molest, by fly or net,
two or three rivers which were mentioned, it was promulgated by the
Mayor himself, from his library window, to the populace below,
consisting of four women, the man who was to drive our carriole, forty
half naked urchins, and twice as many curs, that, the battalion of six
men was dismissed, and the rear of the three Englishmen should be
annoyed no longer.

This misunderstanding being set at rest, we got into our carriole, and
started to perform a journey of ten miles into the interior of the
country. The harness, which attached the two horses to our vehicle, had
not an inch of leather from one end of it to the other. The collar was a
plain, flat piece of wood; the traces were wood; the bit was wood; the
shafts, of course, were wood; and the reins alone relieved the monotony
of appointment by being of rope. Small wooden pegs supplied, by some
ingenuity I could not fathom, the absence of buckles. The carriole
itself had not even a piece of iron to act in any way as a spring, and
the agony we suffered when this wretched machine creaked, and squeaked,
and jolted over the stones, is indescribable; and, to the eye, it was
one of the clumsiest pieces of carpentry I ever met with; nor do I
hesitate in saying, that an approximation to a civilized condition was
more evident among savages I have seen, than in this first glimpse of
Sweden. I could hardly persuade myself I was not more than six hundred
miles from London; and when the driver began to talk to me about the
result of the war in China, and ask if George the Third was dead, I was
not at all astonished that the Baron Munchausen could write such travels
as he did.

We arrived about three o'clock at the river where salmon were said to
abound; but when the evening brought the labour of an entire day to its
close, neither R---- nor P---- were able to speak to the truth of that
abundance, for they had not even a _bite_ between them. It was our
original intention to sleep at a cottage on the banks of this river; but
it seemed to be inhabited by a patriarch, the father of so many
suspicious-looking sons, grown in want to maturity, that we thought the
most prudent plan was to return and rest for the night at Falkenborg.
Resuming our place of purgatory in the carriole, we were soon galloping
on our way home; for the Swedes, like the Norwegians, drive at a
tremendous pace, and it is astounding how these carrioles, so
barbarously joined together, scouring over ruts and stones, do not
tumble to pieces.

At every river we had to cross, a large boat, like a coal barge, without
stem or stern, is to be found, and stowing carriole, horses, and
everything else connected with them into this huge ferry boat, the
driver, by means of a rope made fast and extending from one bank to the
opposite one, draws boat and cargo across, and, reaching the shore he
desires, remounts his box, and, heeding not from which quarter the next
traveller may come, drives off, and leaves the barge where he did not
meet with it. I do not know how a wayfarer, following in our track,
contrives to reach our side of the water; but I fancy some person,
unseen, must be left in charge of these ferries, and rows across in a
skiff, or other smaller boat when necessity requires.

Passing along we saw several horses dying on the roadside from hunger;
and one poor brute, that we observed, in the morning, lying in a ditch,
was quite dead when we reached the same spot in the evening. Our driver,
who was an intelligent man, and, having been a volunteer in the English
service, spoke our language fluently, said, that all the oats and corn
which could be spared had been shipped within a few months to England,
to allay the threatened famine there; and the animals in the country
were starving from the deficiency of all kinds of grain. The pastures,
we could ourselves see, were dry, and in many parts burnt to chaff,
while the present summer beginning with oppressive heat, and the
preceding one having been equally unfavourable to the pasturage, the
scarcity of food was severely and fatally felt by all cattle.

"Every thing, Sir," said the man, "would have gone on well, had the king
forbidden corn to be sent to England, for Sweden can feed its
inhabitants; but when we send away any part of the crop, we feel the
loss very much."

"Have you ever suffered so much before?" one of us asked.

"No, Sir," he replied; "the Swedes are poor, and very little satisfies
them. We feel not famine ourselves, but the animals do; and if they die
now, at the beginning of summer, for want of food, what will they do
when the long winter comes? There--there's another," he said, as we
drove past another horse stretched near a hedge on the road, and
struggling faintly for life.

"Your horses will be exterminated," I said, "if they are neglected in
this wholesale fashion."

"Why, Sir," answered the Swede, "horses are not of much use in Sweden,
for the agriculture of the country is carried on so differently to what
it is in England, that a family, with their own hands, can plough and
sow a sufficient quantity of land to supply their wants through the
winter; and we don't buy and sell corn here, for we all have our few
acres. The farmers, therefore, allow the horses to starve, in order to
apply the food they would consume to the preservation of cows and
sheep."

The country through which we travelled appeared dreary in the extreme:
its level, sandy surface being nowhere varied by the pleasing undulation
of hill and dale. This is not the general aspect of Sweden, I know; but,
perhaps, I perceive this deficiency the more, being so lately arrived
from Denmark, where the landscapes are soft and beautiful, while the
natural gloom of its forests is relieved by the calmness of its lakes.

We reached Falkenborg at twelve, and, by dint of much loud knocking,
awoke the people at an inn, or cabaret, where we slept. The following
morning, as soon as it was light, we went to fish in a river near the
town, but encountered the same good fortune of which we had hitherto
made no complaint, considering that the mere sport of angling for salmon
had brought us to Scandinavia; and up to the present moment we had not
seen the scaly snout of a single fish. We murmured not; but could not
resist the doubt, that the existence of salmon in Northern Europe was a
reality; nor could we conceal from ourselves the absurd light in which
we appeared to the simple people who each day, with mute astonishment,
beheld us, late and early, in storm and calm, deliberately and
untiringly flog with a long line of cat-gut their legendary streams, in
the vain hope of capturing a creature not to be caught in them; and
which effort on our part was, in their opinion, a striking proof of the
aberration of human intelligence.

We had now travelled over a space of more than a thousand miles, and
were as far removed from the object of which we came in pursuit, as the
first hour when we left Greenwich; and yet our diligence had been
exemplary, our inquiries most minute, and our measures, in carrying out
the information we received, most prompt.

R---- and P---- went on board perfectly disgusted, and ready to start on
the morrow for Kongsbacka, or Gottenborg, or anywhere else. I
sympathised with their disappointment, for the desire to catch salmon
had amounted to a passion; and I do not think any other feeling, even of
love or hatred, sat more paramount in their breasts; and when I called
to mind how,

 "Patiens pulveris atque solis,"

each of them had endured all inconveniences without any remuneration, I
could not help thinking of those truthful lines of Anacreon, which he
applied, to be sure, to softer emotions of the heart than those now
depressing the hilarity of my companions, but the spirit of which was,
nevertheless, identified with the tone of their minds:----

  "Χαλεπὸν τὸ μὴ φιλῆσαι,
  Χαλεπὸν δὲ καὶ φιλῆσαι,
  Χαλεπώτατον δὲ πάντων,
  Ἀποτυγχάνειν φιλοῦντα."

The period when I left school is gone so far with the past, that I can
no longer bring back its lore, and, taking up my lexicon, translate;
but, if some old Etonian will receive the signification of these four
lines as I do, and allow their collective meaning to huddle in one
confused lump round the base of some shattered classic column, and there
remain, I shall feel thankful for the task I am spared in cracking each
word into English.

The coast of Falkenborg is the most uninteresting I have yet seen; and,
wherever I turn, the same low shore, with its solitary lighthouse, and
thousands of gulls, meets the eye.

On Thursday morning we left melancholy Falkenborg for Gottenborg; but,
having understood that at Kongsbacka some salmon-fishing might be
obtained, we made up our minds to stop there for a few hours, and
ascertain the truth of our information; for once deceived at Falkenborg,
R---- and P---- had no fancy for being deceived at Kongsbacka also. A
fine breeze favouring us, every stitch of canvass the Iris could carry
was crowded on her, and at three o'clock the same afternoon we found
ourselves off Kongsbacka, and threatened with a calm. A solitary boat
put off from a solitary shore, and, rowing alongside, a man tendered his
services as a pilot; but replying to our inquiries for "lax[2]," that
there were not any, we thanked him for his ingenuousness, and declined
his assistance.

The appearance of the sky, and the quarter whence the wind came,
promising a clear night and a good run, the helm was put hard up, and we
stretched away from the land to get a wide offing before sunset, and to
stand in a fairer course to Gottenborg. At six o'clock, however, the
wind died away, and before the sun bade us "good night," not a ripple,
far as the eye could roam, curled the ocean, on which, like a pool of
quicksilver, the vessel appeared to stick. So smooth, so bright, so
still, was the sea, that, when the sun's lower limb dipped in the west,
his dilated disc, drawn out longitudinally, seemed like a blazing
column, inlaid in the water, and extending from the horizon to the
yacht's channels.

Either a gentle current of air or tide, which was imperceptible to us,
drifted the yacht into the bay again; but, beyond the inconvenience of
being land-locked, no danger threatened us; for the coast in the
neighbourhood of Kongsbacka is bold, and the water unfathomable within a
few feet of the rocks. The bay itself, not enlivened by a house, or sign
of human habitation anywhere, was grand, surrounded on three sides by
rocky mountains, and studded here and there with islands, perfectly
white from the multitude of gulls which were perched on them.

The bay was so calm that we could see a great way along the water. A
black speck, like a hat, caught our attention; and, having nothing else
to do, P---- and I rowed in the jolly-boat to it; and, when we reached
it, were as much puzzled to make out its purpose as we were at a
distance to conjecture its form. It turned out to be a small keg
attached to a long line; and we imagined, at the first glance, it was
the component part of a salmon-net; but salmon, we knew on the other
hand, though of the sea, were not to be caught in it. P---- seized hold
of the keg; and, both together, we commenced hauling in the line as fast
as we could. The lapse of a little time brought us to the end of it, and
some dozen lobsters began flapping their goose-like tails in our faces.
We took two out of the trap for our trouble, and let down the rest to
wait the coming of their rightful owner.

The stars now came forth, one by one, to gaze about them, but slunk
back slyly when their Queen, still youthful with increasing horns,
peeped over the eastern wave at us; and when, in her first glance of
splendour, she cast a strong white light on the rocky shore encircling
the bay, its calm, clear water, taking a greener tint from the wooded
sides of the mountains, looked like an emerald set in silver. The scene
was still, and purely beautiful. The cutter lay like a log on the water,
the reef-points rattling on the main-sail like a shower of small shot;
and, every time he heard the sound, the man at the helm would raise his
eyes aloft, and, fixing them steadily on the gaff-topsail for a minute
or two, turn round and scan the horizon; and then, walking to the
quarter, moisten his forefinger in his mouth, and hold it above his
head.

"There's a breeze coming, Sir," he said aloud, but in an under-tone, to
the mate, the officer of the watch; who, coming aft, stood looking, far
and near, on the water, to observe the ripple of a coming wind.

"I see," he said; "it's springing up from the south'ard;" and, pacing
the deck to and fro, he would also turn his eyes to the topmast-head
every time he reached the quarter-deck of the vessel, to mark if the
night-flag moved. Standing, at last, close to the helmsman,

"How's her head?" he asked.

"North, a quarter east, Sir," replied the man. After a short pause, the
mate, taking another glimpse aloft, said,

"Slack off the main-sheet."

"Ay, ay, Sir," several men replied, and hurried, with a kind of trot, to
comply with the command.

"How are the head-sheets?" again said the mate.

"All taut, Sir," answered a voice.

"Ease them off," was the mate's command.

"Ay, ay, Sir," the same voice answered.

"So; belay there," the mate called out to the men who were slackening
the main-sail. Going up to the binnacle, he observed the compass, and
addressing the helmsman, said,

"Let her break off three points."

"Very good, Sir," replied the sailor; while the mate, still keeping his
eyes on the compass, watched the needle till it reached the desired
point, and exclaimed quickly, when he saw the vessel fast obeying her
helm,

"Now; take her up;--don't let her break off any more."

"Ay, ay, Sir."

"How's that lee runner?" the mate asked, hearing the main-sail chafe
against the runner block. "Slack it off, and take a turn or two at the
weather one."

"Ay, ay, Sir."

The officer then walking the deck again, all was silent as before, with
the exception only of a rippling sound as the cutter began to feel a
breath of air, and move through the water.

The wind fairly sprung up at midnight, and at eight o'clock in the
morning, the pilot came on board. About ten miles from Gottenborg, this
pilot contrived to run the yacht aground at eleven A.M., and
there she stuck until half-past two P.M.; but the mishap
occurred not so much through his ignorance, as through the importunity
of some custom-house officers, and the lightness of the wind. We reached
Gottenborg in the course of the afternoon, and, after a great deal of
shouting, swearing, hauling, and entangling of rigging, the yacht was
moored very pleasantly alongside the quay. We were indebted to the
courtesy of the Harbour-Master for the berth we obtained, since he
compelled two large American ships to alter their position, and make
room for us.

FOOTNOTES:

[2] "Lax," in the Swedish language, is "salmon."



CHAPTER X.

 THE CASINO AT GOTTENBORG--AWKWARD DILEMMA--THE WATCHMAN
 AND THE NORTHERN STAR--SWEDISH ARTILLERY--THE GROVE--
 AN OLD MAN'S HISTORY--THE ALARM OF FIRE--THE CARRIAGE
 OVERTURNED--THE RIVER GOTHA--WASHING IN THE STREAM--THE
 NARROW STREETS--DESCRIPTION OF GOTTENBORG--ITS DECAYED
 COMMERCE--THE HERRING FISHERY.


R---- and P---- had expressed a wish to visit the Falls of Trolhättan,
and, the Iris had scarcely touched the quay, before they started in
search of a carriage to convey them to the Falls. As I knew we should
sail for Christiania early on Tuesday morning, I was desirous of seeing
Gottenborg, and preferred remaining where I was, and allowing R---- and
P---- to go to Trolhättan without me; and I was more determined when I
heard they had arranged to begin their journey at five o'clock the
following morning, Saturday. I learned nothing more about the matter
until three o'clock in the morning, when, by the counterpane, blankets,
and sheets being pulled off my bed, I was awakened from a sound sleep,
and recovered my senses in time to hear R---- and P---- laughing, and
scrambling up the companion-stairs.

I passed the day on board, stretched at full length on the sofa, and
reading; nor was it possible to employ the body more industriously, the
thermometer not being much below 90. The cool evening, the bright moon,
and the Casino induced me to forego all solitary confinement, and to
wander in the direction of the town.

By dint of many and frequent inquiries I arrived at the Casino. This
Casino resembled not the one I had visited at Copenhagen, but bore more
affinity to the tea gardens of England.

There was a cottage in the centre of a flower garden, and at one
extremity of another garden a building, imitative of an Indian pagoda,
stood, appropriated to a fine band breathing, throughout the evening,
all the pathos and melody of Italian music. The cottage itself was set
apart for refreshment, and one might descend to a cup of coffee, or
mount to the limitless command of a dinner. I had dined very early, and,
feeling the effects of good digestion, desired to dine again. The
persons who attended the guests were Swedish girls, as notorious for
their inability to speak English, or any other language but their own,
as they are conspicuous for their personal attractions. Beckoning one
Hebe, whom I had selected, to come to me, I endeavoured, by every method
I could devise, to inform her how hungry I was, and how I should like to
have some food more edible than muffin. She bowed her pretty head in
token of her entire perception of my wishes, and, leaving the room with
the agility of a fawn, returned in a short time, laden with a tray, from
the level surface of which rose a tall coffee-pot that continued to
taper till it kissed with its old fashioned lid her jet black ringlets.

Alarmed to mark at what a fearful distance I stood from my dinner, I
looked wistfully round the room for some face on which I could read an
example or two of the English grammar; but in vain. The poor girl
observed that she had not anticipated my desire as well as she might
have, and said something to me in a tone of regret, to which I could
only make reply by a partial negative and affirmative shake of my head,
and committing it to the peculiar sagacity of her sex to understand what
I wanted. A little, stout man, something like a runt, saw the position
to which I was reduced, and, coming up to me, said in broken English,

"What you want, Sir? can I do you help?"

"Thank you," I replied; "I want some dinner; but I cannot make this girl
understand me."

"I not English," answered the man, "and I not speak te Swedish. I am
Russian. I alway make sign for tings I wish."

"And so do I," I said; "but in this case I am quite at a loss what to
do."

"You want dinner, Sir? When I want dinner," replied the Russian, "I
alway say, 'food,' vitch is, 'föda,' and put my finger down my mout; and
if tey not know what I mean by 'föda,' I say, 'kött,' vitch is meat."

"That's a capital plan; but, you see, I could not adopt it, for I never
heard of 'Föda' and 'Kött' before."

"Ha! Sir," exclaimed the Russian, "I alway find out te word for 'eat' in
every country. I travel much. I starve if I not know. What shall I help
for you?"

"Why--I will have some dinner," I said; "anything I can get--I don't
care what it may be."

"Good," answered the Russian; and, turning to the girl, who had remained
listening to our dialogue, but totally at a loss to imagine its drift,

"Kött! kött!" he exclaimed.

"Visserligen," said the girl, and walked away with her tall coffee-pot
and tray; but, stopping when she had reached the door, she looked back
as if some other idea, which she had altogether forgotten, suddenly
presented itself to her mind, and she asked,

"Farkött?"

The little Russian understood her directly, and told me she desired to
know if I would have some 'farkött,' mutton. I undertook the task of
answering for myself, and exclaimed aloud, with striking brevity,

"Ja."

My pretty Hebe laughed outright, and left the apartment to seek the
mutton.

In ten minutes she reappeared smiling; and brought me not only what I
asked for, but three or four potatoes in the bargain. I pointed to them.
Nodding her head, as if she understood I meant to say "How kind of you
to bring those too," she said,

"Goot."

"Ja; manga goot," I answered in a dialect of my own. She hurried away
laughing heartily; but did not forget to glance at me over her shoulder
as she passed out of the room.

Crossing, on my way home, a bridge which is thrown over one of the many
canals that intersect Gottenborg in all quarters, I stumbled against an
old watchman. In one hand he held the formidable "Morning Star," or
truncheon, and in the other hand an implement of chastisement, of which
I could make out no decisive classification, at least, so I fancied;
and, led away by that fancy, I drew near to the unsleeping Swede. I
requested him, as courteously and distinctly as I possibly could in
tattered English and with original signs, that he would permit me to
take a bird's-eye view of the instrument. It was a stick four or five
yards in length, to the end of which two pieces of iron were attached
in the shape of a heart. The implement may be drawn thus:

[Illustration]

Suppose Charley finds cause that a thief, who may be rather swifter of
foot than himself, should be taken into custody: he proceeds after the
following fashion. The instrument is seized hold of in the right hand,
or both hands, firmly, at the end A, and, giving the stick the full
benefit of his arm's length, the watchman runs along in the purloiner's
wake. Having approached sufficiently near to guarantee a certainty of
success, he thrusts the ingenious instrument either at the calves, or
neck of the flying thief; and the point B coming in contact with the
calf, or the nape of the neck, opens, and admits the leg, or head into
the centre C, and the sides D and E, being elastic, instantly close
again, the centre C being adapted to fit a man's neck, or leg, and no
more. The most careless reader may easily perceive the relative
positions of the guardian and the breaker of the Law, when the former is
at the extremity A, the latter in the centre C, and the advantage one
has obtained, without risk of injury to himself, of throwing the other
to the ground, should he prove restive. The watchman was as much amused
by observing me, as I was by scrutinizing his wand of office.

On Monday morning I was present at a review of the Horse Artillery. The
men went through their various evolutions, loading and discharging their
guns without ball or powder, by applying a walking-cane, in lieu of a
fusee, to the touch-hole, and, then, shouting aloud to imitate the
report of cannon.

At the upper part of the town of Gottenborg is a road, curving like a
crescent, sheltered on each side by trees, growing at equal distances
from one another, under the shade of which are benches where the
traveller may rest when tired, and enjoy the cool air, perfumed, as it
sometimes is, with the pleasant odour of flowers abounding in the
nursery gardens on either side of the road.

The noon of day had come with intense sultriness, and, feeling fatigued,
I walked towards this shady grove, with the intention of passing an hour
there, in the full enjoyment of my own thoughts, or in listening to any
zephyr which might be sighing among the young leaves of the elm and
cherry. Between the trunks of the trees I saw the stooping figure of a
man creeping slowly, by the aid of a stick, under the thickly leaved
boughs. He was dressed much after the manner of some of our English
farmers, with knee breeches, white stockings, and shoes fastened over
the instep with a large silver buckle. A short drab coat, and a scarlet
felt hat, something like a cardinal's, with large flaps, completed his
costume. After a while the man crawled, rather than walked, towards one
of the benches, and sat down.

He was apparently seventy, or eighty years of age. His long, silvered
hair strayed down over the collar of his coat; and the soft languor of
his light blue eye imparted a sad impression to his countenance, which,
when he was young, must have been eminently handsome. He smiled as I
approached, and seemed desirous that I should take a seat by his side,
for he moved nearer to the end of the bench to make more room. The day
being hot, as I have said, I received the hint, hoping by doing so to
find entertainment, at least, and, perhaps, information. Soon as I had
taken my seat the old man touched his hat, and bowed low as his
infirmities would permit, and,

"Hur mår Herren?" he said. Knowing sufficient of the Swedish language to
understand that he asked me how I was, I answered in the same tongue,
and, in compliment to himself,

"Bra, Gud ske låf;" which four words I intended should intimate my
gratitude to Heaven that I was well. The old man appeared pleased, that
I should make reply to him in Swedish, and no doubt deemed me no
deficient linguist; for, observing my eyes were wandering over the
beautiful landscape, undulating with corn-fields, and terminating by
gentle hills clothed with the beech and elm, he ventured to say,

"Det är ett vackert land."

I knew he alluded to the pretty appearance of the country; but I was
anxious to inform him that I did not understand the Swedish language
sufficiently well to carry on a conversation, and, at the same time, to
fall as decently as possible from the height on which I had placed
myself by the grammatical answer I had previously given, and which I had
accidentally learned by listening to the salutations and ordinary
replies of our pilots. I therefore curtly said,

"Ja."

A light seemed to stream across the old man's expressive features, and
he asked, leaning forward to catch my words, whence I had come;

"Hvarifrån kommer Ni?"

"Jag kommer från England," I answered.

The old man rose from his seat, and said, in tolerable English, that he
was glad to see me, (at which I was also delighted) and then begged,
like all the inhabitants of Northern Europe, that I would shake hands
with him. I did so, and taking my hand in his, he clapsed it firmer than
I imagined he could, and looked into my face.

"You are not French?" he observed inquiringly.

"I am not."

"Then I am glad," and he pressed my hand again; then letting it drop,
continued:

"I speak English, sir, but badly; and, yet, I always address an
Englishman, and read an English book when I can get it, and, this one,
in particular;" holding up to my view an old black book I had not
observed.

"May I see it?" I said, and, taking the volume from his hand, a Bible
fell open at the 8th chapter of Solomon's song. These two verses were
marked by a line being drawn down the margin.

"Set me as a seal upon thine heart, as a seal upon thine arm: for Love
is strong as death; Jealousy is cruel as the grave: the coals thereof
are coals of fire, which hath a most vehement flame. Many waters cannot
quench Love, neither can the floods drown it: if a man would give all
the substance of his house for Love, it would utterly be contemned."

"You read, sir?" he said interrogatively; and, putting on his
spectacles, glanced over my shoulder.

"Ah! sir, fifty-eight years ago, I was young like you, and it was then I
noted those two verses. You are young," he continued, "and perhaps have
loved."

"No," I replied; "Heaven has not given me the opportunity of
participating in one of its most essential blessings."

"Then, sir, Heaven has blessed you," he said. "I am old, you see; but I
am alone in the world. Love has made me solitary." He sighed.

The old man seemed overcome with grief, and, desirous though I now was
to hear his story, I dreaded to renew a sorrow, the intensity of which
Time had not lessened. He drew forth in silence from his bosom, a
miniature, suspended from his neck by a black ribbon, and with shaking
hands he touched a spring, and held it unclapsed before me. It was the
likeness of a girl about seventeen years of age. A loose robe partially
covered her shoulders, and, the elbows resting on a kind of slab, her
right cheek was cradled on the back of the left hand, the fingers of
which touched her throat; and she looked, with laughing, light blue
eyes, over her left shoulder. Her hair, parted slightly on one side,
clustered in ringlets above a full, fair forehead; while a melancholy
expression about her small, compressed mouth seemed to counteract the
joyousness of the upper part of her countenance. The resemblance to the
old man was striking.

"Sixty years ago, sir, I first saw that face, and it is as fresh in my
memory as if I had only seen it yesterday. It was a face once to look
on, to dream of for ever."

"It is very beautiful," I said, still gazing on the picture. "Was she
your daughter?"

"Oh! no, sir, no. Would to God she had been!" the old man mournfully
replied. "When, sir, I first saw that fair young creature, I was
eighteen years of age, and she might have been seventeen. Endeavouring
in vain to suppress the emotions which her beauty and amiable temper
caused in my heart, I ventured one day to tell the father of Thora
Rensel, for that was her name, the love I bore his daughter. Eric Rensel
listened; and, when I had told my tale in words as fervent as my
feelings, he replied, 'Engelbert Carlson, my daughter's hand is
uncontrolled as her heart; win the girl's affections, and I will not
stand in the way of your union.' I thanked Rensel with a grateful heart,
and went forth to seek Thora.

"Do you see yonder hill?" said my narrator, pointing in the direction of
a hill skirting some corn-fields before us; "there, close to that clump
of elm-trees, stood Eric Rensel's cottage. Descending that hill, I met
Thora, returning homewards, laden with a little basket full of fruit and
flowers. She smiled when she observed me, and held out her hand, as she
always did, in token of friendship. I hastened towards her, and, seizing
the offered hand, pressed it warmly, and would have raised it to my
lips, but I had not the courage.

"'Are you not well, Engelbert?'" she said, in a gentle tone, "'for your
hand trembles;'" and she took hold of my hand with both of hers, and
looked round inquiringly into my averted face.

"'Yes, Thora,'" I replied; "'I am ill at heart, and I can find relief
nowhere else but when I am near to you. I have endeavoured for the many
months since I have known you, to hide my grief, or forget my pain; but
the more I have exerted myself to do so, the keener felt my sorrow, and
deeper still I probed the wound.'

"'Alas! and why should grief, or pain be yours, Engelbert, when virtue
has been attendant on you always.'"

"'Sit down here, on this stone, and listen for a little while to me,
dear Thora.'"

"I led her to a large stone by the roadside, which is there to this
hour, and we both sat down together. The day, sir, was bright as this;
and the corn waved, as it does now, to each breath of wind, and over our
heads, among the trees, the birds were warbling. Ah! even now, at this
distance of time--in my old age--the tear comes to my eye, and my heart
heaves and swells to the memory of that happy, happy day.

"'Hitherto, to me, dear Thora,' I said, "'life has brought no changes of
excessive pain, or pleasure; for at an early period I lost both my
parents, and, being then but young, I never knew the sweet joys of home.
Forced to struggle with men for independence, and, tossed about
whichever way the waves of fortune pleased, my heart soon became
indifferent to every gentle feeling; and, in my isolation, I never
thought to seek for sympathy, but desired, by my industry, to live in
competency, and, at the last, to leave the world as I had been sent into
it, alone.'"

"The tears began to flow down Thora's face, and, nestling closer to me,
she placed her hand on my arm, and murmured,

"'Dear Engelbert!'"

"'One evening, my own Thora, relieved from daily toil, I was sitting, as
now, under that beech-tree, enjoying the cool evening air, heeding and
listening to the sweet sights and sounds of life, and musing with
softened spirit on all that had occurred to me since my dear parents'
deaths, when I heard the gentle footstep of some one behind me. I
turned, and, by the light of the full moon, saw a female figure
approaching the spot where I was. With beating pulse I kept my eyes
fixed on the form; but I soon gazed with delight on what my fluttering
heart then almost bade me shun, and now droops with desire to take as
its own. It was you.'"

"She replied not; and her head gradually turned from me. I raised the
hand I still held, and, in a moment of passionate feeling, pressed it to
my lips, and kissed it ardently. She immediately withdrew her hand, but
seemed not altogether offended; for a smile--but oh! how sad and
prophetic of what was to occur--passed over her beautiful face.

"'Dear Thora!'" I exclaimed, "'do not torture me. Pardon me, if, in
giving expression to the sweet but painful feelings which obscure my
brow with sorrow, I offend you; but I love you, dear Thora; and, the
first moment I saw you, I felt you were the only created thing which
could revive my torpid soul; and, you, I could have fallen down and
worshipped.'"

"'Do not, do not speak so, Englebert,'" she said; and, taking my hand in
hers, folded it warmly to her heart. I thought, as she lifted her eyes
fondly to my face, I observed a tear trickling down her cheek; and the
quick movement of her heart, against which my hand was still clasped,
told of all that was contending there."

The old man ceased for a few minutes, and the tears began to course each
other down his face. He then said:

"It may seem strange to you, sir, that one, so old as I am, can feel so
deeply and so long; but, though of a quiet temperament, I was prone in
my youth to be acutely sensible of pain or joy, however much I concealed
my emotions. I remember, when I was a mere child, my mother's chiding
would grieve me for many days together, and I used to hear her wondering
what the cause of my grief could be. She was wont then, sometimes, to
call me sulky. How, sir, the characters of children are misunderstood,
and how the heart, at that tender time, is trifled with, to bring
remorse in after life;--but, sir, to my story.

"In the summer of 1758 a French vessel arrived at Gottenborg, and on
board were several young Frenchmen possessing many worldly advantages,
and much personal grace. One, in particular, was remarkable for the
liveliness of his disposition, and beauty of form. His name was Adolphe
de Lacroix.

"By accident Adolphe saw Thora; and hers was a countenance which could
not be looked on with apathy. De Lacroix saw and loved, or fancied that
he loved. It would be useless, sir, to occupy your time, and increase my
own pain, by relating with the garrulity of old age all that happened
after the arrival of M. de Lacroix; but it is sufficient to tell you,
that, he sought the affections of Thora, gained them, and married her."

The speaker stopped in his narrative, and, taking from his pocket a
small packet of three letters, selected one from it, and, with tears
still rolling down his cheek, showed it to me.

"In this letter, Thora," he said, "told me of her marriage. I read it
then, but I have never read it since."

Observing me cast a glance at the other two letters,

"And these two," he continued, "brought the intelligence of my father's
and mother's deaths. I keep them all together."

When I had read, or attempted to read, Thora's letter, which was written
in the Swedish language, I returned it to the old man; and, folding it
carefully with the other letters, he tied the little parcel with a piece
of tape, and placed it in his bosom again.

"If, sir, my story is pleasing to you," observed the old man, "I will go
on with it; for though the repetition gives me pain, its acuteness is
relieved when I murmur, as I do now, to some one who will listen kindly
like you."

"I am sorry," I replied, "that you should feel so deeply in making me
acquainted with the earlier period of your life; for I have attended
with pleasure to your tale."

The old man peered with a sorrowful expression in my face, and, brushing
away a tear with his hand, continued:----

"Two years had passed away since Thora had been wedded, and the time was
Autumn. Almost on this very bench I rested, listening to the merriment
of men and women who were gathering winter-apples in the orchard yonder.
Divided between the study of this old Bible, and the recollection of the
happy hopes which Thora had once raised in my heart, a sense of
desolation crept so utterly over me, that I could read and think no
longer, and, closing the book, I bowed my head, and burst, like a child,
into tears. This attitude of excessive grief arrested the attention of
two passengers, a lady and a gentleman, whom I had not seen, and who,
moved by my youth, no doubt, and vehement sorrow, came near to where I
sat weeping; and, placing her hand gently on my shoulder, a woman, in a
soft and kind tone of voice, desired to know my grief. Though two years
had sadly laid waste my heart, my memory had not forgotten the source of
all its affliction; and the sweet, clear tones of the voice were so
familiar to my ears, that I raised my head quickly. In an instant my
tears ceased; through my whole frame, passed, like a cold wire, an
aching chill, which, when it subsided, left me faint and weak, and I
could hardly stand.

"It was Thora who had spoken to me. Standing, motionless, for a few
minutes in front of M. de Lacroix, Thora buried her face in her hands,
and then fell almost insensible into the arms of her husband. I did not
like to offer my assistance in restoring her, and stood aloof, prepared
to perform any office which her husband might think necessary. Thora
soon recovered; and when her hand was lifted to arrange her disordered
hair, I saw a little ring, still encircling her finger, which I had, in
token of our mutual plight, given to her years before. My wounded heart
at its sight began to bleed again; but Thora, expressing a wish to M. de
Lacroix that she might return home, bowed to me with a forced smile and
swimming eyes, and I was spared the humility of showing how incompetent
I was to conceal my tears. As Thora walked away from me, I could not
help casting a lingering look towards a form that I once knew at
distance, however great, and that I had thought to have called my own. I
resumed my seat, and, giving expression to my anguish with sighs and
tears, I did not stir till evening roused me from my trance of
wretchedness. Length of time, sir, flew fast away, and heaped cares upon
my head; but the recollection of my youthful days was vivid still as
ever. No day dawned without a thought of Thora.

"One winter's evening I sat alone over my cheerless hearth, gazing
vacantly on the glowing embers, when a coal fell from a mass of others
which had formed themselves into a hollow body in the fire, leaving a
tinge of deeper red over the spot, in the midst of which the letter, T,
appeared indistinctly, fading and reappearing for some time, till, at
last it became as visible as the mark I make with my stick on this sand.
Another coal was driven suddenly with a loud noise, into the middle of
the room, and the little cavity collapsed. No sooner had I risen to
throw the coal into the grate again, than a gentle tap at my door
attracted my attention. I thought it might be my fancy, or the wind; but
the visitor seemed determined to gain admittance, and the tap was
renewed a little louder than at first. Rising, I opened the door, and an
old woman, who had been Thora's nurse, stood before me; and, with bitter
lamentations, she placed a small note in my hand. It brought the
dreadful tidings of Thora's sudden death.

"The mournful fact soon flew from end to end of Gottenborg, for Thora
was much loved; and people whispered that she had died unfairly. This
conjecture grew so strong, that a few days after her burial, Thora's
body was taken from the tomb, and, after the minutest examination, no
cause could be found to account for her death, but the Will of Heaven.

"A year came and went; and M. de Lacroix, wearied of his lonely
condition, married again. He did not live happily with his second wife;
and, from angry words, they were wont to come to blows. To be brief,
sir, Madame de Lacroix, died as suddenly and mysteriously as my poor
Thora. Suspicion showed a more audacious front than it had done on the
previous occasion, and M. de Lacroix was arrested for murder. The loud
cries of Madame de Lacroix, heard the day before her death, were
sufficient to put M. de Lacroix on his trial.

"Either from contrition, or some other cause of fear or hope, M. de
Lacroix confessed that the death of Thora had been brought about by his
own hand. It seems, sir, by some act of the basest depravity, Heaven
permits that the fallen condition of man should be forced, at intervals,
on our minds, to show the necessity of keeping in subjection the vicious
propensities of our thoughts and deeds; for, unless it be so, I can in
no way solve the reckless abandonment of all human feeling in the breast
of M. de Lacroix. Ever afterwards, from the day I met Thora accidentally
on this spot, her husband gave way to fits of frequent jealousy and
anger; and a home, which had been one of harmony and joy, was then
converted into a den of contention and the bitterest acrimony. In one of
these domestic brawls, M. de Lacroix resolved to murder his beautiful
wife; and the plan he devised to accomplish his purpose was as novel as
it was diabolical.

"In the dead of night, when the young and innocent Thora was folded in
profound sleep, M. de Lacroix arose, and, going to a small box, took
thence a needle not larger than those in ordinary use, but of greater
length. Returning to the bed where Thora still lay, breathing with the
long, heavy respiration of slumber, he leaned over her, and the moment
he did so, and but for a moment, a low, spasmodic cry was heard, a
slight struggle shook the bed, and all was hushed as before. M. de
Lacroix had driven the needle into Thora's heart! Wiping with his finger
the trifling drop of blood which oozed from the puncture, he effaced all
trace of violence from the body."

The old man paused; and, drawing a handkerchief from his pocket, hid his
face in it, and, from the convulsive movement of his shoulders, I could
see he was weeping bitterly, though in silence.

"So ends, sir," with faltering accents the old man soon continued, "the
cause of all my misery. I am old now, and yet in my old age I keep fresh
the feelings of my youth; and, therefore, I wander hither every day to
gaze upon the blue sky, and bask in its warmth; but never to forget her
whose loss has made oblivion a desire, and created the hope, that, Death
be an eternal end of sensibility."

The old man ceased to speak. The solemn manner, and the earnest tones in
which he had told this sad episode of his life, made a deep impression
on me; and when I looked on his frame, bent more by sorrow than with
age, and saw the settled gloom of an inward grief shadowing a
countenance, on which length of years and rectitude of conduct should
have left the lines of happiness and mental peace, I felt how unable was
virtuous thought, or strength of intellectual refinement, to secure,
even, the love of life's young day, or to soothe the anguish of its
loss; and, unresistingly, I yielded to the remembrance of hope's
passionate farewell to joys, once dreamed of, before the world's strange
knowledge fell with grief's canker on the bloom of my own heart.

The old man rose to go. When I had assisted him from his seat, he took
my hand, and, sadly, wished me farewell. I watched him a long time,
wending his way slowly homeward through the corn-fields; and, when his
form was hid from sight, I could just see his head above the blades of
corn, and his silvery, white hair shining, like a wreath of snow, in the
slanted rays of the setting sun.

About six o'clock, when returning to the yacht, I heard the beating of
drums and discharge of cannon, the howling of dogs, the screams and
lamentation of women, and, now and then, rising above the general din,
the shrill blast of trumpets. As I approached nearer to the water-side,
the rigging, even to the mast-heads of the different ships in the
harbour and canals was crowded with sailors, who, clinging by one leg,
or one arm, to the ropes, strove with outstretched necks, to catch a
glimpse of some extraordinary deed to be, or being done. Presently a
troop of horse-soldiers trotted by me; and it was with some difficulty I
could escape being trod under foot by these impatient riders. Everybody
seemed mad. One Swede, with slippered feet, without hat or coat, rushed
past me with so much impetuosity, that he was like to throw me to the
ground; and, seizing him by his flying shirt-sleeve, I remonstrated
against his carelessness. He gave no heed to my anger, but continued
headlong in his flight, and left a fragment of his linen in my
possession. The maniac speed and bearing of the man reminded me of a
story which is told of the Calif Hegiage, who, having by his cruelties
rendered himself hateful to his subjects, one day, on a journey, met an
Arabian of the Desert, and asked him, among many other things, what kind
of a man the Calif was, of whom so much was said?

"He is no man," replied the Arabian; "but a monster."

"Of what do his subjects accuse him?" asked the Calif.

"Of the most inhuman barbarities," answered the indignant Arabian.

"Have you ever seen him?" demanded Hegiage.

"No," the other replied.

"Look at him now!" said the Calif; "for it is to him you speak."

The Arabian, without betraying the least sign of fear or surprise, fixed
his eyes on him, and said,--"And you, sir, do you know who _I_ am?"

"No," replied the Calif.

"I am of the family of Zobair," the Arabian continued, "all whose
descendants are infected with madness one day in the year; and _this_ is
_my_ mad day."

The faster I walked to that part of the town where the yacht lay, the
denser became the crowd of people; and I met regiments of foot-soldiers
and troops of cavalry scampering in every direction, as if Gottenborg
were besieged by a hundred thousand men, or the sun had slipped, when
setting, and fallen in the market-place. A fat Swede, who stood
demurely smoking his pipe, attracted my attention by the indifference
of his manner in the general confusion; and, noting the sagacity of his
little, roguish, blue eye, which he blinked as frequently as he blew the
smoke, in a horizontal spire, from his mouth, I asked him what the
uproar meant.

"Eld, eld," he said; and that was all the explanation I could obtain
from him. However, I soon discovered the cause of the hubbub; for,
following the direction of the people's eyes, I saw, elevated higher
than its fellows from the roof of an older house, an old chimney
ejecting volumes of the sootiest smoke, and causing the inmates to toss
beds, blankets, chairs, tables, and, even, their darling pipes out of
the windows. I immediately understood the alarm of the inhabitants of
Gottenborg. A chimney was on fire.

The conflagrations in Sweden and Norway have been so extensive and
frightful of late years, that the natives of those two countries regard
them as the most dreadful scourges of Odin, Thor, or Frey; and adopt
every precaution they possibly can, in their primitive way, to prevent a
fire, or to allay its fury when one does break out. I am not surprised
at their consternation, for many of the houses are entirely built of
fir, which is very inflammable; and a fire must bring a very fearful
catastrophe to such a crowded town as Gottenborg where you can shake
hands from an attic window with your opposite neighbour.

In half an hour, long before the trumpery apparatus counterfeiting the
shape of a fire-engine, or the water-buckets of the Corporation wrenched
from the custody of locks and iron gates, could be made to act, the old
chimney exhausted itself; and, at the moment when one unhappy
broken-winded engine spirted a small quantity of water into a window of
the first story only, the house having five stories, a column of clear
blue smoke shot straight up, from the chimney-pot into the air, with the
quietude and ease of a good joke. The chimney actually seemed to have
got up the smoke for a jest. The folks of Gottenborg, however, did not
view the matter in the same light as I did; for the bands of the
different regiments, that had been called together, by sound of trumpet,
to put out the fire, were mustered in a large square, and, in the
presence of a vast multitude, played a psalm, in token of the whole
nation's gratitude to Heaven, that Gottenborg had been spared the
ancient fate of Sodom and Gomorrah.

The wind veering round to the south, had blown the yacht farther from
the quay than when I left it in the morning. While conjecturing how I
should get on board, D---- came on deck, and said, _if_ I would jump, I
should find no difficulty in reaching the vessel. King Philip, of yore,
once wrote to the Lacedæmonians in the following manner:--"If I enter
your territories, I will destroy everything with fire and sword." To
this terrible menace, the Lacedæmonians answered only by the word, "If."
I certainly felt like a Lacedæmonian, and gave D---- credit for all the
confidence of the Macedonian monarch. I was rowed on board in the
jolly-boat.

A mob of many hundred persons surrounded the quay where the Iris was
moored, charmed by the symphony of Jerome's fiddle, or astounded by the
vociferous melody of the crew, as they tossed off a couplet or two of

 "Rule Britannia!"

and then chanted with the recitative energy of truth,

 "And there we lay, all the day,
 In the Bay of Biscay, O!"

On Sunday morning, R---- and P---- returned, unexpectedly, from
Trolhättan, and, when they entered the cabin, they were so powdered with
dust, and smeared with mud, that I hardly recognized them. They would
not, at first, tell me the cause of their dirty plight, but I contrived
to hear the whole account from King, who had accompanied them in the
capacity of valet. When they arrived at Trolhättan, on Saturday
afternoon, being wearied, they strove to find some cottage where they
might sleep, but failed; and it was, therefore, determined to visit the
Falls, snatch a hasty meal, and return to Gottenborg the same evening.
Having beheld the awful cataract, and eaten their humble dinner, at set
of sun they started.

The moon was bright, and, not having climbed half way up the Heavens,
surety of her light was promised throughout the night. The strict
enforcement of the laws had cleared the roads of robbers, and no ill was
to be feared from bears or wolves, for the approach of summer had driven
these animals to the farthest highlands of the kingdom to seek for food
and coolness.

With minds at ease, then, and drowsy by the process of digestion, R----
and P----, hushed by the rolling of the carriage, fell fast asleep. The
night crept on, and the moon began to go down on the other side of the
sky, and, still, R---- and P---- slumbered; and, moreover, their
pleasant snores, invading the ears of King, accustomed only to the lusty
roar of ocean, soon enticed him with a stupefying influence from his
watchful attitude on the box, and laid his head in similar forgetfulness
on the shoulder of the coachman.

They might have slept for three hours, and King and the coachman for
two, when the unguided carriage gave a violent jolt, a loud creak, a
revolving motion, and fell, wheels uppermost, on the road-side. King
awoke in an instant, but too late to resist being plunged to the top of
a high, irritable bramble hedge that showed him no mercy, while R----
and P---- found themselves, in a state of perfect sensibility, on their
knees and hands in a dry but deep ditch, with the cushions, the empty
drawers, little pieces of old carpet, and all the other interior
appointments of their travelling carriage piled mysteriously on their
backs and the napes of their necks.

The riddle was soon solved. The horses being sensible of what was
restraint and what was not, felt the reins dangling about their hocks,
and, having had no food since they left their stables at Gottenborg,
walked to the wayside, and began to crop the grass; but, as mindless of
the vehicle at their tails, as desirous to swallow the green fare before
their eyes, they approached too near the gutter, and one wheel, sliding
plump into it, drew the other three wheels after, and immediately caused
the accident I have mentioned.

With its tributary streams, a branch of the river Gotha flows through
the main street, and lesser thoroughfares of Gottenborg; and along the
banks are planted rows of trees, which give the town a lively
appearance. As I crossed the bridges, I saw, on floating platforms, a
shoal of washerwomen scouring and thrashing lustily, with an instrument
like a shuttle, the wardrobe of their customers. When I first arrived at
Gottenborg, I thought myself in Holland, the mode of dress, and aspect
of the town bearing so close a resemblance to Rotterdam.

On Tuesday morning, the 1st of June, at eleven o'clock, just one month
after our departure from Greenwich, we left Sweden for Norway. The time
had glided pleasantly and speedily away; and, wherever we had gone,
kindness and hospitality always awaited us. We had brought from England
few letters of introduction, and, at some places where we went, on our
first arrival, knew no one; but here, as here at Gottenborg, not many
hours would elapse before the doors of these simple and generous hearted
people were opened to us; and, the greatest delight was evinced, when we
entered their houses.

Gottenborg was founded by the great Gustavus Adolphus. The town is
situated, like all the towns of Scandinavia, on a fiord of its own name,
sleeping with all the placid beauty of a lake; but there is so much
monotony in the romantic position of the Swedish and Norwegian towns,
that, to describe one is to describe all. There are one or two fine
buildings in Gottenborg; and the many villas in its neighbourhood,
invariably bosomed in thickly wooded valleys, urged me to remember an
old tradition among the Swedish Laplanders, which has not been lost on
the Swedes. They maintain the Swedes and the Lapps were originally
brothers. A storm burst; the Swede was frightened, and took shelter
under a board, which God made into a house; but the Lapp, unappalled,
remained without. Since that time, the Swedes dwell in houses, but the
Lapps under the bare sky.

What Venice was to ancient Italy, Gottenborg was to Sweden, the national
mart; but Time, with ravages and alterations, has swept away its
traffic. A Swedish fisherman told me, that the herrings, which used to
be so plentiful in the adjacent waters, are now scarcely to be caught;
and Gottenborg feels the defection of their extensive sale. The same man
asserted, that our ships of war, going up the Baltic, were wont to fire
salutes, and the noise had driven the fish away. The fisherman made this
statement so roundly, that I could not have the heart to tell him how
incredulous I was; but, when I got on board the yacht, I repeated the
circumstance, as a jest, to the sailor who stood at the gangway to
receive me.

"Well, your Honour," replied the man, after listening with attention to
my narrative, "he arn't put his helm too hard a-port."

"What!" I said, "do you intend to tell me you believe that a salute will
frighten herrings, from this fiord, or any other fiord, so that they
never return?"

"Why, your Honour," answered the sailor, touching his hat, "I must run
alongside this ere foreigner, and sequeeze [acquiesce] with him like;
for when I was aboard the Racehorse, sloop o' war, we fired a salute off
the Western coast of England, and I'm blowed, your Honour, if they
didn't ax Sir Everard to cease the hullabaloo."

"Why?" I asked.

"Ay; your Honour," said the credulous tar, "that's just what I'm bearing
up to--why, your Honour, bekase we frightened away the pilchards! May I
never lift another handspike if that ain't gospel, that's all your
Honour!"

"You be hanged!" I muttered.

"What! your Honour," exclaimed the man, warming with his faith, "have
you never heerd, that the report of a cannon will make a lobster shake
off his big, starboard claw?"

"No, nor you either," I answered walking away; for I thought the man was
striving to palm off a joke.

"Ay; but it's gospel your Honour," I heard the man reply; and, I
believe, sailors do hand down to each other a tradition of that kind;
for there is a figure of speech, and it is nothing more, with which the
English men-of-war's men used to hail the lobster smacks going up the
Thames.

"Smack a-hoy! hand us a few lobsters, or--you know what'll happen!"



CHAPTER XI.

 RETURN TO NORWAY--SAIL UP THE GULF--APPROACH TO
 CHRISTIANIA--ITS APPEARANCE FROM THE WATER--ANECDOTE
 OF BERNADOTTE--DESCRIPTION OF THE CITY--THE
 FORTRESS--CHARLES THE XIITH--THE CONVICTS--STORY
 OF THE CAPTURED CANNON--THE HIGHWAYMAN--PROSPECT
 FROM THE MOUNTAINS--THE NORWEGIAN PEASANT GIRL.


Wednesday dawned cloudless; and the round, red Sun rose on our right
hand, and glared through his magnifying lattice, the mist, to see us
come back again to Norway.

The smooth and glassy surface of the tideless Fiord, hemmed in by lofty
mountains, stands forth the grand characteristic of Norway. The
weather-beaten rocks, rising abruptly from the water, have beauty and
boldness on their broad, blank fronts; and how infinite is the
loveliness of innumerable islands, clustered together, bearing
vegetation of all hues and odours!

Whether it were in the air which I breathed, or whether it were caught
from the solemn magnificence of the scenery, the same feeling of
sublimity came over me as when I first saw the land of Norway on my
arrival from England; and, I do not know how to account for the
impression, but during the whole time I remained in Norway, and whenever
I was left alone to wander along its fiords, or over its mountains, I
gave way, as in England, to no extreme sensations of delight or sorrow;
but a consciousness of awe weighed eternally upon my mind, and, released
from the tumultuous passions of joy or dejection, a desire, created as
it were by the visible perception of perfect natural beauty, was ever
present to embody itself with the sights of grandeur that soared and
sank above and below me.

Silently, as if without a breath of wind, the cutter crept up the Gulf,
the beauties of which increased the farther we advanced; the bays--the
vessels glancing among the rocks with their white sails in the sun--the
cultivated patches of land--and the neat wooden farm-houses amid the
desolation of the mountains, were novel and interesting objects. The
great variety of the underwood, and the diversified colours of the
foliage, were beautifully blended with the darker tints of the fir which
grew along the sides, and on the tops, of the high hills; and how well
does their sombre gloom mate with the stern magnificence of the rocks!

On the islands, the birch, the hazel, the alder, and the ash, cast their
shadows over the water, and are there reflected in their minutest
lineaments; nor are their trunks and branches more sharply defined in
the air above, than they are imaged in the watery mirror below, the
transparency of the water in no way yielding to the clearness of the
atmosphere; since, as the abruptly-rising rocks tower proportionally
into the air, their steep, bold sides are plunged perpendicularly into
the sea, and seem to descend till the eye loses them in its green depth.

Here and there the islands are inhabited by peasants; and flocks of
sheep and goats ceased, as the yacht passed them, to browse on the low
herbage which springs beneath the rocky coppice; and before the
cottage-doors half-clad children stood still, and gaped, then called
aloud to fishermen who were hanging out their nets to dry, or setting
them for fish around the shores of their sea-girt homes.

Beyond this, nowhere are seen or heard the sights or sounds of man's
habitation, and, hushed in painful tranquillity and profound solitude,
the interior recesses of the fiord show no signs of life. With all their
storm-beaten antiquity, gaunt and inhospitable, the skeletons of land
rather than the land itself,--the grey and rugged crags--alone appear
between the coppice and the short scanty grass which, ever when the wind
came to breathe gently on our sails, sighed and moaned amid the general
repose.

About twenty miles from Christiania the fiord narrows to two miles, and
holds that breadth up to the city. The town of Christiania is hid by a
small island from the sight of the traveller approaching it by water;
but at a great distance we could, while winding up the fiord, catch a
glimpse of the white houses sleeping in a valley, surrounded by high
mountains. At eight o'clock in the afternoon--for there is not much
night--we dropped anchor off the town.

Christiania stands low; but the land slopes gradually from the shore of
the fiord till it loses itself on the hazy tops of the mountains. When
the sky is partially obscured by masses of clouds, the appearance of
Christiania, seen from the deck of a vessel in the harbour, is very
beautiful; that part of the town, near the water, shining brightly in
the sunlight, while the remoter suburbs, at the back, being canopied by
the heavy vapours that hang around the peaks of the mountains, look
black as night.

As soon as the anchor was let go, we went ashore, as usual, to make
inquiries about salmon; and received as much encouragement as at
Falkenborg and Kongsbacka. The time, however, had not yet quite arrived
when the salmon-fishery commenced; and a few days devoted to Christiania
would not debar us from any amusement attached to the long-desired
sport. We brought several letters of introduction; and, among them, one
to the Viceroy of Christiania; but we did not present our letter to the
old Count, all the information and hospitality we desired being amply
given to us by the British Consul-General.

There is nothing to see in Christiania, the most conspicuous object
being the palace, which stands, like a manufactory, on the top of a
rising piece of ground. It is an enormous pile of building, painted
uniformly white; and I do not believe the interior is more commodious
than the exterior is monotonous and void of architectural taste, since
the late King, Bernadotte, once observed, when he entered it, that he
saw a multitude of rooms, but would be glad to know which apartment he
was to live in.

The same kind of mirrors that I had seen at Copenhagen and Gottenborg
projected outside the windows here, so that no one need move from his
chair to know all that occurs in the street; and this is also an
important exemption, for the casements of nearly all the houses in
Christiania are double, for the purpose of warmth. Large archways lead
to larger yards, into which the houses open, and street-doors are almost
dispensed with. Neither do the buildings ascend to any great altitude,
but two stories are, for the most part, considered the orthodox height.
The shop windows are not gay, and the name and pursuit of their owners
are badly lettered, and in hieroglyphics I could not read.

The largest open place is the market, and that is not so large as
Covent Garden. The streets are a little better paved than those of the
more southern capitals of the North, but are not of greater width than
Coventry Street, or St. Martin's Lane; and, being unlighted by gas, it
is difficult at night, should it prove rainy and dark, to keep out of
the gutters. At the point where four streets meet, you may generally
observe a well, and around this well a knot of idlers, men and women,
congregate and gossip, leaning against its palings; but the respectable
portion of the inhabitants are never to be found in the streets,
although they may be seen, on summer evenings, walking on the terrace of
the fortress.

To one looking from the sea, the fortress is on the left of the town,
and was the first object we caught sight of when sailing up the Fiord.
It is valueless as a place of defence; and I do not think it has been of
any service to the Norwegians, except when Charles XII. attacked
Christiania; and, then the Swedish monarch would have battered the town
to atoms, had not his attention been distracted by wars on the other
frontiers of his kingdom. There is a hill on the right, nearly double
the altitude of that on which the fortress is built; and an enemy,
making himself master of that spot, has the citadel under his feet, and
may amuse himself by rolling stones into the town.

Running parallel with one part of the Fiord, and from the quay to the
castle, is a raised terrace, broad enough to admit of fourteen or
fifteen people walking abreast; and here, on the Sabbath summer's
afternoon all the beauty, youth, and fashion of Christiania resort. It
is sheltered on one side by a row of lime-trees, and, on the other, the
cool air from the waters of the Fiord struggles to refresh the languor
of a sultry evening.

In gangs of two and two, with drab slouch hat and jerkin, having one
side of a darker colour than the other, and reaching half way down the
body, the prisoners are led from their penal den, within this fortress,
to their appointed toil. There were many old men among these culprits;
and their great age rather sought and met with sympathy, than excited
detestation of the crime that had brought them to servitude; and,
perhaps, it would be a wiser enactment of the Norwegian Government to
forego the system of task-work thus publicly, and adopt some other
method of punishment less exposed to the popular eye; for, I believe,
the spectacle of an old man submitted to daily penal labour, and
burdened with clanking chains, is recognised by the public more with a
tendency to sympathise with his fate, than to condemn his crime.

While viewing the fortress, we were shown a large cannon, which was
captured, it is said, by the Norwegians from Charles XII. when he
besieged Christiania; but the real history of the cannon is, that it did
certainly belong to the Swedish army; but, Charles, as I have hinted
before, being obliged to raise the siege of Christiania to march with
his troops elsewhere, many field-pieces, as being too cumbersome to move
with celerity, were abandoned, and, among the number, this cannon was
left on the heights above Christiania. The Norwegians, when Charles and
his army had disappeared, scaled the summit of the hill; and, with much
laudable perseverance, succeeded in removing the huge piece of ordnance
to the fortress; and two sentinels ever keep guard over it, placed in a
conspicuous position over which the Norwegian ensign waves, and point it
out to the stranger as a trophy of the Norwegian army.

Contemplating, as we stood round the cannon, the broad expanse of the
Fiord, and the distant blue mountains dissolving with the sky, a low
building, like a powder magazine, arrested our attention; for numerous
sentinels moved rapidly in every quarter round it, and many brass guns,
ready primed, and bearing an earnest signification, flashed in the
bright beams of the morning sun. In this dungeon, from which Beelzebub
himself could not escape, it seems a notorious highwayman, called Ole,
is confined. During the time he was master of his limbs and liberty, he
struck such terror into the hearts of his countrymen, that he was
imagined an immortal fiend. No prisons could hold him; and the
magistrates were compelled to trust to his forbearance, and not to bolts
and chains; but his depredations, at length, became so glaring, and
increased, year after year, to such magnitude, even to the sacking of
the bank, that, come what might, Ole was arrested. Fearful of his
supernatural strength and devilish craft, his captors deemed no common
dungeon sufficiently secure; and this miserable abode, a pandemonium
above ground, bomb-proof, and proof against every thing else, was
erected for the sole reception of Ole; and, lest he should burst asunder
the stone walls, he is surrounded by alert sentinels and loaded guns,
and here doomed to drag out the rest of his existence.

To the east of the town there is a road, which may be seen girdling a
mountain's barren side, and, following its track a mile, or so, I took
then a narrow foot-path, and, wandering through a forest of firs,
reached a circular green sward where, in the middle, the remnant of some
natural convulsion, a gigantic black stone lay. Seated there, I beheld
the whole city of Christiania crouched at my feet; and, far as the eye
could travel, the mountains rose one over the other, till my vision
ached, and mistook their aspiring peaks for the azure heaven. On the
left hand, serenely sleeping, wound, amid a thousand green islands, the
leaden-hued Fiord, bearing on its quiet surface a fleet of lazy ships,
whose white sails made them look, at distance so remote, like snowy
swans, or froth from neighbouring rapid.

The sun had just sunk behind the mountains when I reached the spot; and,
throwing myself on the grass, I watched its light, like a gold cap,
blazing around the lofty summit of a mountain, rearing itself above the
rest, and not less than forty miles distant to the north of the hill on
which I reclined. The evening was calm as it was clear. The cathedral
bells below had thrice told the approaching third hour before midnight,
when I heard the voice of some one singing, in the monotonous, drawling,
but melodious tone of prayer; and, at last, as the fitful evening zephyr
stirred uneasily, I could distinctly catch the soft intonation of a
female voice; and, whatever woman she was, she sang a sweet and touching
melody.

There was no hut, or building of any kind at hand, so that I was
perplexed to tell whence the voice came. I was not long in doubt. A
young girl, walking quickly, with a light step, and bearing in her hand
a bundle of dried sticks, came forth from the heart of the pine-forest.
The moment she saw me her song ceased, and she stood still.

She wore, sitting rather back upon the head, a crimson cotton skull-cap,
leaving exposed her fair high forehead. A boddice of white linen was
attached from her waist to a dark blue petticoat, hemmed with scarlet
cloth, which descended to her ankle, but not to such undue length as to
conceal her little naked feet, peeping out, like white mice, from
beneath. Her silken, fair hair flowed uncontrolled over her right
shoulder, off which her boddice, though fitting almost close to the
throat, had fallen slightly and left bare; and silver bracelets clasped
her wrists, while the image of the Saviour, carved in ivory, was
suspended from her neck. A gold ring, antiquely moulded, encompassed her
middle finger. She was of the ordinary height of women, and her small
mouth, her short, straight nose, her large, joyous blue eye, joyous
while yet the clear-complexioned, oval face was clouded with surprise,
developed the simplicity, liveliness, and rare beauty of a Norwegian
girl.

She gazed at me, fixedly, free from coyness, with the deliberation of an
innocent heart; and, when she saw my attention was as much devoted to
her, she smiled; and then, often turning round to look back as she went
her way, began to descend the hill towards the town. The shrubs and
filbert-trees soon took her from my sight.



CHAPTER XII.

 A DRIVE INTO THE INTERIOR--EXTENSIVE AND SUBLIME
 PROSPECT--NORWEGIAN POST-HOUSES--REPAIR OF THE
 ROADS--PREPARATIONS FOR DEPARTURE.


On Sunday morning, we went to Krokleven, a spot about twenty miles from
Christiania, and celebrated for its scenery. The journey thither was
unpleasant enough, for the day was hot, and the roads were dry; and,
when the Norwegian started off at the usual speed of his countrymen, the
dust, disturbed by the horses' hooves and the carriage wheels, rose in
volumes, which overtook and palpably descended upon us, when the driver
suddenly halted the career of his steeds at the base of a hill.

The road to Krokleven was as tantalizing as it was perfect in sublimity
of scenery; for, from several elevated places, we could observe our path
creeping along over the mountains, and down the valleys, to the very
cottage where we intended to stop.

But the same solitude prevailed as on the Fiord; and the silence is the
more extreme when not even the warbling of a single bird is heard to
test a particle of animal existence; and nothing meets the sight but the
blue sky, the bald heads of the mountains, and the yellow-tinted foliage
of the fir and pine. As the traveller rises from one side of a mountain
to a corner of the road, where it hurries perpendicularly down the other
side, his eye may fathom a valley several thousand feet beneath, rich in
vegetation, and surrounded on all points by rugged mountains covered
with illimitable forests of fir, through the branches of which, here and
there, the grey rocks glare, like skulls scattered over a green field;
and the whole view which is thus taken at one glance may extend before,
and on either hand of the spectator, over a space of twenty miles.

The forests are so extensive, and the chance of being lost in them is so
probable, that on our arrival in the vicinity of Krokleven, we hired a
guide. Wandering along a pleasant by-way, shaded by the overhanging
boughs of the birch, the pine, and the fir, we scaled a mountain, and
gaining its highest elevation, saw, about two thousand feet below us, an
immense lake, chequered with islands, unequal in size, on which were
farms, and on the largest small villages. Dividing its waters into two
equal parts, the road to Bergen lay no broader than a pen-knife's blade,
and twisted, far away, like a white thread round the sides of the
mountains.

From the bosom of the lake along the easy slope of this mighty valley,
the ascent of an amphitheatre of mountains, skirting the horizon, takes
the eye up to heaven; and while the sun shone brightly, on these
mountains, hoary by lapse of centuries and contention with the storm,
they seemed, although the nearest was twenty or thirty miles from us, to
be tinged with a red colour, which, contrasted with the snow on their
summits and the deep azure sky above, against which their huge forms
appeared to lean, produced a scene as difficult to delineate as it was
sublime to see.

When we had partaken of some salmon and capercaillie, cooked after the
Norwegian process--where butter abounded, and had lighted our
meerschaums, we went at a gallop homewards. Built by the road-side, many
miles apart, the only symbols of mortality to travellers in Norway, are
post-houses, stages at which the horses are generally baited, and where
a book, under the protection of the Government, is kept to insert the
names, occupations, and destination of the persons who alight there, or
are travelling through the country. Its pages are divided into four
columns, and in the fourth column, the traveller may state any complaint
he has to make. At the end of every month, the appointed officers of the
State inspect this book, and rectify with severity any errors which may
have been brought to their notice.

The highways are kept in order by the gentry, farmers, or peasants; and,
along the road-side, a number of black posts are erected at certain
distances from one another, on which are painted in white characters the
names of the persons who are to repair the road, and the number of yards
or feet allotted to each of them; and the more extensive the landed
possession, or consequence of the man in the neighbourhood, so the
quantity of ground which comes under his care. It is obvious how soon
the person, neglecting the performance of the duty imposed upon him by
the Government, may be detected; and the imposition is effective in
keeping the roads in excellent order.

Though we returned at a late hour to Christiania, I walked to my old
spot on the mountain; and there, looking down towards the vessels that
were anchored in the harbour, like toys in a basin, the Norwegian girl,
whom I had seen yesterday, stood close to the black stone, her right
elbow resting on it, and her chin hid in the palm of her hand. She
seemed abashed that I had caught her in such thoughtful guise, and began
to move towards the path that led through the forest. I motioned to her,
as significantly as I could, not to allow me to disturb her.

"Nej, tak," she said, in a low, sweet tone; and, retiring a short space
from the stone, with all the delicacy of her tender youth and sex, and
a winning humility of manner, drew back behind me. Retiring, also, a few
paces till I was in a line with her, I allowed the huge piece of granite
to separate us; and dreading, that, by observing her too attentively,
she might go away, I took no apparent notice of her, and kept my eyes
fixed on the yacht, which had dwindled to a nutshell in size, with
needles for its mast and boom. I could, but indifferently, speak the
Norwegian language; and I knew not that she understood mine, though many
of the inhabitants of the principal towns of Norway generally possessed
a slight knowledge of English; and so, in silence, we stood.

The mournful sighing of the firs, as a current of air, escaping from the
Fiord, crept gently through them, and the quietude that reigned around,
inspired me with a feeling of melancholy; and after a while, "Do you
understand English?" I asked.

"My father was a sailor, sir," my alabaster, statue-like companion said,
sometimes speaking in her own language, and sometimes in mine, with a
pretty foreign accent, "and went to England often, and he taught me
English; but I do not know it well."

"You soon would speak it as well as I, if every day you tried," I
answered, with courage, pleased that I could make her understand me.

"But there is no one," she replied, I thought, in a sad voice, "to
speak to me; and I forget all that I have learned. My dear father used
to talk to me of England; and I remember still its tongue, because he
told me Englishmen were good and great."

She came nearer to the stone, and looking full in my face, smiled.

"Perhaps," I said, "some one of my countrymen had been kind to your
father, and he taught you a lesson too flattering not to disappoint you
when you meet an Englishman."

"No, sir, I hope not," she answered, raising her little head somewhat
proudly; "for an Englishman was kind and good to him: and my father
used, for his sake, to pray for England when he prayed for our country,
Norway; and he taught me, when a little girl, to do the same."

"And where is your father?" I asked.

"He is dead, sir," and the poor girl began to weep, but so quietly, that
I was not aware of her grief until the tremulous motion of her hand, in
which she had concealed her face, indicated her sorrow, and made me
regret that I had asked the question. Recovering her self-possession,
she went on to speak, although, without a sob, her tears still flowed
abundantly.

"This cross," she said, lifting it from her heaving bosom, "my poor
father gave, and bade me always wear; for baring his arm one day, he
showed a cross tattooed upon the skin, and told me if he died far from
his own home, all barbarous men, even Indians, when they saw that sign,
would not let his corpse be eaten by birds or beasts of prey; but bury
it."

Her delicate frame swelled with strong emotions, and she could scarce
contain her loud grief.

"He died, sir," she continued, "two years ago on the banks of a river
near Rio, in South America; and some Indian tribe, in adoration, as he
had surely said, to this symbol of our creed, buried him."

She had not yet made an end of speaking, when the sound of the church
clocks, ascending faintly, tolled eleven. It was broad daylight; for,
though the sun had set, his rays darted in orange-tinted pillars to the
centre of the sky, and sustained the glory of his presence. My young and
beautiful companion, starting at the sound, wiped away her tears, and
seemed to regret the lateness of the hour; and noting each vibration as
it fell on her ear, she commenced with her thumb, and then advancing to
the tip of each tapering finger, counted, with a whisper in her native
language,

"En, twå, tre, fyra, fem, sex, sju, åtta, nie, tie,--elfva!"

Her exclamation of surprise and regret that she had remained so long
from home, made me strive to soothe her fears. When she was about to
hurry away, I begged her to tell me her name, that I might know what to
call her for the future.

"I am a poor peasant girl," she said, despondingly, "and you will never
desire to speak to me more."

"Are my thoughts to be known by yours?" I asked, with a slight smile;
"and do you think I cannot see God's bounty to the peasant girl, and
love virtue and innocence of heart clothed in any garb?"

"Yes, I think that," she answered, diffidently; "but I am not like those
you are wont to converse and dwell with; and when you talk to _me_, you
will learn my ignorance, and you will hate me then. I would have you
love me."

"And why," I said, "when you do not know my character, or temper, you
would have me love you?"

"That you may accept my love."

"And why _yours?_"

"Because it was my father's wish," she answered, with the gentleness of
the most engaging simplicity of manner, "that I should love all
Englishmen."

"I would not have that love," I replied.

She turned round quickly, and looked steadfastly at me; but soon as her
gaze met mine, her large, round, languishing blue eye fell, and drooped
to the ground.

"Will you not tell me your name?" I said, going nearer to her; "for we
shall meet again. Yonder lies the vessel that will bear me from your
country, and it is not prepared to move for many days."

She raised her eyes, and, with a smile, turned them towards the bay,
when observing that the sailors were painting the cutter's hull, and
scraping the spars, she appeared pleased with the sight; and dropping
her eyes towards the ground again, her tiny foot dallied with a blade of
grass, and, almost inaudibly,

"Call me Gunilda," she said.

A few minutes more separated us, and I wandered down the mountain. The
beauty of face and form,--the childish simplicity,--the virtue and
innocence of Gunilda's heart,--gave a nobler impulse to mine. I retired
to rest, but slept not; for when I dozed, the clouds would lower around
the yacht, and, the wind blowing with overwhelming force, every
successive wave threatened the little bark with instant destruction;
then, lo! the black vapours would rise from the surface of the sea, and
rolling away to the south, leave all the heaven clear and blue; and
there, shining in the west, the crescent moon, not three days old, would
slant quite close to Hesperus, twinkling by her nether edge, to help and
show the way across the ocean; and while the fair breeze filled the
sails, and all the sailors sang for joy, a linnet, blown from off the
land, would, shivering, perch upon the yard; and when the boatswain
strove to catch the bird, for fear it flew away and should be lost, the
foolish thing would stretch its wings and, fluttering, fall within the
vessel's course to sink beneath her bows; and when it rose again a long
way in her wake, I thought I heard Gunilda's screams for help, and I
would wake.

Then when I awoke, throughout the night, scaring the timid spirit of
sleep, a thousand dogs ashore howled and bayed the moon, as if all the
ghosts of the million souls that had perished since the far times when
Norway became the abode of men, had returned to earth, and were walking
through the streets of Christiania.

The dark grey mantle of morning had only enveloped the shades of night,
when I banished sleep, and the hour being yet too early to leave my bed,
I lay listening to the growls of Sailor, as he remonstrated with Jacko
for coming too close to him; while Jacko, in a low, murmuring twitter,
pointed out how scantily the straw was spread in the hutch, and how
chilly felt the Northern air to him, a little Indian born between the
Tropics.

"Well, D----," I said, about five hours afterwards, when I had gone on
deck, and saw the sailing-master sitting without his jacket, on the
taffrail, abaft the shrouds, smoking his morning pipe, "What do you
think of the day? Shall we move to-day?"

"Why, sir," replied D----, capping me, "what little wind there is, draws
up the Fiord, dead on end; but, as the day goes on, it's just as likely
to draw down. You see, sir," he said, directing my attention to some
fleecy clouds, not larger than my thumb-nail, and floating above the
mountains to the north-east, "those clouds seem coming this way."

"Yes, I see," I answered; "but I hope we shall not go away to-day."

"I don't think, sir," said D----, "we shall have any more air to-day,
than what there is now. The glass is high; and in these northern
latitudes, during the summer months, there is little change of weather."

"However, you can make some excuse," I observed, "if there be not
sufficient wind, for it is no good floating on the Fiord in a calm."

"Very good, sir," answered D----; "the wear and tear are certainly more
than the pleasure. But, I think, my Lord wants to reach Larvig as soon
as possible."

"I know that," I said; "but a day won't make any difference."

"As you please, sir," replied D----; and I went below to know if R----,
and P----, were getting up.

"Hollo! old fellow!" exclaimed R----, when he saw me, "what the devil
brought you out of bed so early?"

"Why, simply because I could not remain there later."

"I suppose so," replied R----; and then, whistling, singing, and
humming, he commenced his toilet.

"What sort of a day is it?" at length he asked. "The sun shines I see;
but how is the wind?"

"What little there is, is southerly," I replied.

"That's a bore, isn't it?" R---- observed.

"Why, that's as one may think," I said. "I am just as happy here as
anywhere else."

"What's the good of frousting here at Christiania;" asked R----,
disappointed at my difference of opinion.

"Why, look at the scenery. Nothing in the world is like it," I said
warmly.

"Pooh!" replied R----, disgustedly, "all my eye! I came to fish, not to
look at scenery. I suppose you want to go up to that confounded hill
again. But do as you like. I am for Larvig."

The sun mounted towards the zenith, and still his beams had no power
upon the sluggish atmosphere; and the quiet and warmth of the day were
unrelieved by a breath of air. R---- consulted D----, and found it
useless to get under weigh. As soon as I learned the decision that had
been come to, I jumped into a boat, and began to row myself towards the
mountain where I had met Gunilda.

"Mind you keep a sharp look out," shouted R----, to me, "for should the
wind get up, we'll be off."

I raised my hand in the air, in token of assent, and to intimate I heard
what he said.

"We'll fire a gun," he added in a louder voice. Again, I raised my hand
aloft; and then applying myself to the oars, soon reached the land. I
made the boat fast to a tree's stump, and commenced my ascent of the
mountain. No Gunilda, as yesterday, stood near the stone.

Musing, I sat, watching the crew on board the yacht making preparations
for our departure, should the wind shift fair. I saw them running, like
mice, up the shrouds, as they _boused_ up the mainsail, and heard them
chaunt a cheering chorus, as they heaved in the slack of the cable. It
was mid-day. I rose, and turning to the left hand, took my way through
the fir forest. I had proceeded about half a mile, when I discerned the
kneeling figure of a woman through the closely-planted trees. I
approached. It was Gunilda.

A little mound of earth, overgrown with flowers, denoted the humble
grave of some one dear to the recollection of the Norwegian girl. A
crucifix of black wood, round the top of which was wreathed a small
garland of wild flowers, was fixed at one end of the grave; and on the
cross the two Norwegian letters "G.H." signified the initials of the
dead one's name. By Gunilda's side lay a basket of fresh flowers,
culled while yet the morning's dew was sparkling on them.

"I did not think, sir, to see you again," said Gunilda, as soon as she
had perceived me; and ceasing in her dutiful care of removing the weeds
that had crept up since her last visit.

"Yes, I am here once more; but I shall not disturb you again after
to-day; though I regret my departure from Christiania, now that I have
known you."

"You regard me well," she replied sadly; "and, perhaps, it is, sir,
because you have seen me thus dutifully employed; but I do no more than
she would have done for me, had I been the first to die. This, sir, is
my mother's grave."

The girl turned away her face, and busied herself with the renewal of
her task, and plucked the weeds, one by one, from the grave. How great
was the contrast with my own country, England, where the moss and long
grass soon conceal the tomb of relative and friend, and living footstep
comes no more near the spot where the dead lie; but here, in simple
Norway, the ties between those who breathe, and those who are gone, are
still existent; nor does "death bring oblivion to the living as well as
to the dead." Strewn with the flowers of yesterday, the grave gives no
evidence that death has broken the strong links of affection; and while
I gazed and marked this young girl's sweet solicitude, a melancholy
feeling, even in the soul's desolation, came with a hope, that I too may
not rest altogether unremembered.

"How can I fail," I replied, "to love one who has not only affectionate
tenderness of heart, but surpassing beauty of form? God has denied you
nothing."

"Oh! sir, do not say so," she exclaimed. "Heaven has been good to me;
but I am also afflicted. My father sleeps in a distant land, and my poor
mother here; and, look, how young I am to be alone."

The tears followed each other down her face, and the intensity of her
grief was too great to allow Gunilda, for some moments, to speak.
Looking up into my face, her eyes still filled with tears, she said,

"My condition is one of extreme sorrow and loneliness; and if you could
hear it all, you would confess that I have cause to weep as well as
others. But think me not ungrateful."

"One whose heart is so guileless can never know ingratitude," I replied.
"But may I know your sorrows?"

"Would you like to hear them, sir?"

"I would."

"As I told you, then, sir," Gunilda said, rising from her kneeling
attitude, and sitting at my feet on the ground, "my father was a sailor.
His heart was as affectionate as his form was manly; and his was a
nature not long to roam the world without the sigh of sympathy. In the
summer of 1832, my father's vessel sailed from Christiania, bound to the
Black Sea; and he has often told me how dreary his fate felt, doomed, as
he was, to leave his country without one heart to think of him when
absent, or rejoice when he should return. After a prosperous voyage the
Mediterranean was reached, and the ship entered, with a fair wind, the
Straits of the Hellespont. On one side, sir, of the Hellespont, is a
small town called Sestos; it is a spot ignoble now, but was, once, one
of note. At Sestos a Turkish nobleman, removed by age from the cares of
State, had retired to pass in quietude the remainder of his life; and,
surrounded by his harem, desired no other felicity than the
companionship of his mistresses.

"The castle of this Turk lay by the Dardanelles, and from its windows
the clear blue waters might be seen.

"Beautiful, and having yet the innocence of youth, and brought from her
mountain home, near the Caucasus, to pant beneath the influence of a
warmer sun, a Circassian maiden pined. One day, oppressed by the heat,
the Circassian stole to a window overlooking the Straits, and strove to
catch the freshness of the wind that passed, cooled, from the surface of
the sea. While she stood there, the barque which bore my father sailed
in sight, and making her way with speed upon the water, soon drew, by
her gallant trim and flowing canvass, the attention of the girl; and
with swelling heart she sighed to see the vessel move towards that part
of earth from whence she came. That I may not weary you," Gunilda
continued, "my father's vessel arrived in safety at her destined port;
but, on her return homewards, a gale of wind arose, and the ship was
stranded under the walls of the castle where the Circassian dwelt. My
father and three other sailors were the only men saved from a crew of
twenty-five."

Gunilda stopped; and, turning towards me, said,

"Were you ever, sir, in Turkey?"

"No. Why do you ask?"

"Because, sir," she answered, "they say the Turkish people are not
compassionate; but I do not think that, for hear how kindly the Turkish
nobleman behaved to my poor father. When the tidings flew round the
country that a European vessel had been cast away, a multitude of people
hurried to the shore, some to see, and some to give aid; and among this
latter class, the good old Turk. My father, almost lifeless, by the
nobleman's command, was taken to the castle, and with kind attention,
was soon sensible of recovery. Though assiduity and tender care were
shown alike by all, my father selected from the group of maidens who
waited on him, a fair, slender girl, whose looks of sadness secured his
solicitude to learn the sorrow that oppressed her youthful heart. When
all were busy to restore my father's health and secure his comfort, this
young girl would sit apart, and, mutely, gaze for hours on him; but when
my father caught her glance, she would smile with sadness, and then look
another way.

"In our country, Norway, we are betrothed for many months before
marriage; and I suppose, sir, this custom is observed, that the
dispositions may assimilate; but, sir," observed Gunilda, retaining my
attention by her earnest countenance of inquiry, "do you not think that
two youthful creatures may love instinctively? Must the affections be
always fostered by the caution of time?"

"I think not," I replied, smiling to see her face beaming with anxiety
to learn my answer. "As the sun-flower turns to the sun, and the petals
of the rose open to the dew, so the human heart sighs for sympathy.
Nature is joined together by links identical to all; and the same law
that governs the sap, and external freshness of that little herb, rules
inexplicably our own affections, and visible demeanour. Do you
understand me?"

"Yes, I do," she answered; and clasped my hand with much delight.

"Indeed, Gunilda," I continued, "I believe in that heart's faith which,
in England, is called 'love at first sight.'"

"And so do I," she exclaimed, sidling closer to my feet, "and so did my
father. One day he took occasion, when all had retired, and left the
youthful Circassian watching by his couch alone, to tell her how he
loved her, and how devotedly he would watch over her happiness if she
would become his bride. The maiden wept, and told him, in return, how
reciprocal was her affection; but how insurmountable were the barriers
between their union, since she had been purchased as a slave, and
destined for the Turk's seraglio. Boldly defined as the forms of these
mountains are against the heavens, my father's noble character yielded
only to the sensitiveness of his heart; and when the Circassian made
known to him her destined abjection, he turned his face away and wept in
agony. Listen now to me, and hear the reason why I have been taught to
love your countrymen.

"Resident in Sestos, a young Englishman met, by accident, my father a
few days after his recovery, and seeing his dejected mien, entered into
conversation; and desired, finally, to know if he could aid him in his
return to Norway. My father told him he had no wish to see his native
land again, since he had seen at Sestos that which an unhappy destiny
had rendered dearer than the soil of his nativity.

"'No sorrow,' answered the young Englishman, 'is without alleviation.'

"'But this, sir,' my father said, 'is without remedy.'

"'If you desire money,' observed the Englishman, 'here is my purse; and
when I come, some day, to Christiania, you can then repay me.'

"'I desire not gold, sir,' and my father bowed his head in sorrow.

"'You are yet in the prime and vigour of youth,' the Englishman said;
'and, perhaps, you swerve under the infliction of a feeling to which I
have not been an entire stranger. You love.'

"My father replied not.

"'I have power in the presence of the Sultan,' replied the young
Englishman, 'and doubt not, if you will inform me of your grievances,
the sincerity of my desire to mitigate your grief.'

"My father looked up, and taking the Englishman's hand, thanked him, in
sentences broken by his sorrow, for his generous mediation. The tale was
soon told; and, when my father had recounted his fear, that a happy
result could never be brought to his affections, the Englishman bade him
not despair; and though the task was arduous, he still would strive to
master it. Two days afterwards the Englishman returned to my father, and
desired, that he would repair to Constantinople, and meet him there at a
certain church which the Englishman indicated by name. Faithful to his
promise, my father took leave of the Turkish nobleman who had been his
benefactor, and proceeded to Constantinople, where at the place and
hour appointed, he met the Englishman. Grasping my father heartily by
the hand, and telling him how impotent were the efforts of man to
contend with the decrees of Providence, the young Englishman begged that
he would follow him into the sacred edifice; and grieving no longer,
humiliate himself before his Maker, and thank Him, that his misfortunes
had been no greater. My father entered. Near an altar was a veiled
figure, and by its side a priest, clad in the snowy flowing robes of his
office, seemed busy with some holy ordinances; but when my father came
near, the Englishman raised suddenly the white veil, and allowing it to
fall on the marble floor, lo! with palpitating heart, before him stood
the Circassian slave. The Englishman had bought her for a large sum of
money from the Turk, and conveying her to Constantinople, gave her in
marriage to my father. My father's joy knew no bounds, and his gratitude
to the Englishman became a feeling as limitless in its ecstasy.

"'I desire no thanks,' the noble Englishman replied, 'for you would have
done the same for me had our positions been reversed; but I would always
be remembered by you both, and, that, I may not be forgotten, take this
ring, and wear it for my sake. When I was at Cairo, an Arab gave it me,
and bade, when I performed a deed that pleased me by its generosity, to
part with it in token of the heart's content.'

"See!" said Gunilda, holding up her hand, "this is the ring;" and she
kissed it. It was the same ring I had observed the first day I saw the
Norwegian girl; and it was a plain circlet of solid gold, surmounted by
a curiously-worked figure, having the beak and plumed wings of a bird,
and the body and tail of a lion.

"Since my mother's death I have worn it," said Gunilda sadly; and added,
with a faint smile, "but when I wed, my husband will make his claim, no
doubt."

Applying herself again to the cultivation of the flowers planted around
her mother's grave, the beautiful Norwegian informed me, while engaged
in her affectionate office, that, her mother survived the intelligence
of her husband's death but a short time; and on her death-bed, committed
Gunilda to the care of an old friend.

Mid-day came, and brought with it the sultriness and cheerful brightness
of a Norwegian summer's day. Through the fir-trees I could see the
waters of the Fiord sparkling, like liquid silver, in the glare of noon;
and far away, the clouds, like pieces of white wool, resting half-way up
the mountains. Gunilda, perceiving my pensive mood, observed,

"To-morrow, sir, at this hour, I shall not see you; and, I dare say, you
will almost have forgotten the Norwegian peasant girl."

"If there be any grief that pains me," I replied, "it is the one,
because it is fruitless, which reminds me how faithfully and long I
shall remember you and to-day."

"Take me with you to England," she exclaimed, "I will ever serve you
diligently, like a menial."

"To take you hence," I replied, "is only to lead you to destruction. A
flower so delicate in its texture, will not bear transplanting, or lack
of tenderness; and I would not see it droop and fade for all the
gratification I may derive from its presence and sweet perfume."

"What the heart desires, the body can endure," she answered in an
earnest tone. "My grief will be bitterer in your absence than all the
tortures which may attend me when I am near you. Let me go with you,"
and she seized my hand, and clung to it with affectionate tenacity.

"It is impossible," I answered. "In a short time after I am gone, you
will think of me no longer, and selecting from your countrymen one whose
feelings may sympathise with your own, you will pass your days in
happiness, and go to your grave in peace."

The young girl rose to her feet, for she had hitherto sat on the ground,
or retained a kneeling position; and taking the ring, I have casually
alluded to, from her finger, she said in her native tongue;

"The great and the humble, the rich and poor, feel alike, for God has
made no distinction between the peasant girl's deep affections and those
of a queen. My father's name and family will end with me, but let my
memory live with you."

She placed the ring upon my finger. She wept not, and not a sigh escaped
her; but her whole frame trembled with excess of feeling.

"You think," I exclaimed, "that I reverence not your love, and deem your
affectionate and noble heart worthy of my acceptance; but you know not
the false position in which I stand, or you would favour that apparent
apathy which wounds my soul. Had it been in my destiny, I could have
dwelt for ever among these mountains, with no other minister to my love
than your own self; but to take you hence to England, and refuse you the
cheerfulness and honourable endearments of wedlock, is to humiliate my
own conscience, and covet the curse of God in your hatred."

I had scarcely spoken, when a flash of light shot across the sky, and
before the girl had even ceased to start at the sight, the long, loud
roar of a gun succeeded. I understood the signal. The token of a
sincerely cherished, and steadfast friendship, I had worn, since I left
England, a valuable ring, and removing it from my finger, I took
Gunilda's hand and replaced her gift with mine. Gunilda held up her hand
before her for some minutes, without the utterance of a word, and gazed
on the brilliant jewel, then allowing her hand to fall by her side,
burst into a passionate flood of tears.

Again, a sudden gleam of light glanced through the forest, and, a moment
after, the booming of another gun rolled away down the valleys, and over
the rocks, with a faint, and then a loudly reviving echo.

"Good bye, Gunilda," I said. She spoke not, nor moved; but her shoulders
shook with a convulsive heaving.

"Will you not shake hands with me?" I asked, my voice almost indistinct
with emotion. Still, she spoke not. I kneeled down, for Gunilda had
reseated herself near her mother's grave, and raising her hand, I took
it in mine, and pressed it. I felt the pressure returned, and allowing
her small passive hand to fall gently again in her lap, I rose.

"God bless you!" I said.

She uttered a low, passionate cry, and then checking her anguish,
murmured faintly,

"Farväl!" and covering her face with her hands, fell, sobbing violently,
on her mother's grave.

I hurried from the spot; and hardly knew that I had left Gunilda, until
the boat ran against the cutter's bow, and roused me as from a dream.

When I got on board, I found that the wind was still too trivial to
allow us even to drift out of the harbour, and the cutter lay the whole
night immoveably on the water.



CHAPTER XIII.

 THE YACHT UNDER SAIL--JACKO OVERBOARD--FREDRICKSVÆRN
 --THE UNION JACK--SCENERY ON THE LARVIG RIVER--TRANSIT
 OF TIMBER--SALMON FISHING--THE DEFEATED ANGLER--
 LUDICROUS ADVENTURE WITH AN EAGLE--RESULT OF THE ANGLING
 EXPEDITION--THE BEVY OF LADIES--NORWEGIAN DINNER-PARTY
 SINGULAR AND AMUSING CUSTOMS.


At eight o'clock on Tuesday morning, the 6th, we started for Larvig.
About sixty miles from Christiania, at the mouth of the Fiord, a fine,
light air sprung up, and, delighted with the expectation that we should
reach Larvig before set of sun on Wednesday, we amused ourselves by
firing at bottles thrown into the sea, and afterwards by watching the
gambols of Sailor and Jacko. Sailor, stretched at full length on his
back, allowed Jacko to pull his ears, and bite his claws; and mindless
of the monkey's antics, seemed rather to encourage, than object to his
vagaries. Wearied, at last, with his pulling, and jumping, and biting,
Jacko sought a variation to his amusements, by springing on the weather
runner-block, and thence depending by his tail. When Sailor perceived
that Jacko had removed his gymnastics from himself, and transferred them
to the block, he rose from his recumbent attitude on the deck, and,
squatting on his haunches, observed, for some little time, with singular
attention and silence, the extraordinary flexibility of Jacko's limbs;
but at the moment when Jacko suspended his little carcase by his smaller
tail from the runner-block, whether it was the manner in which Sailor
expressed a roar of laughter, or whether it was a shout of applause at
the comical likeness of Jacko's body, swinging in the air, to a bunch of
black grapes, certain it is, that, at that instant, Sailor gave one, but
one, tremendous bark, and, in the twinkling of an eye, Jacko fell souse
into the water. He sank like a boiled plum-pudding to the vessel's keel;
for when he rose again, his little round head could just be seen a
hundred feet astern. Never was there such dismay on board the Iris
before.

"Jacko's overboard!" shouted each man; and echo taking up the cry,
"Jacko's overboard!" must have alarmed Jacko himself by its forlorn
expression. Struggling with the waves, and striking out manfully with
his hands, and not like a monkey, Jacko kept his head above water, and
his eyes turned towards the cap of the top-mast.

"Hard a-port the helm!" bellowed D----, rushing to the tiller himself;
and soon as the cutter shot up in the wind, he added,

"Now, then, two of you, my sons, jump into the dingy."

The command was obeyed quickly as it was given; and Jacko has to thank
his star, whichever it may be, that the boat had not been hoisted on the
davits, but towing in the vessel's wake; or he might, many months ago,
have been a source of entertainment at the Court of Neptune.

If a drowned rat looks sleekly wretched, Jacko looked ten times worse
when taken out of the water. The brightness of his eye had fled,--his
tail, which curled usually like a sucking-pig's, hung now straight down
behind him, relaxed from its ringlet, like a piece of tarred rope,--and
his stomach, vying once with the symmetry of the greyhound's, was
distended and globular as a small barrel of oysters. Half a spoonful of
brandy was poured down his throat, and having been wrapped up in some
odd pieces of flannel, he was put in a soup-plate, and set down before
the fire. This was all that human art could do, and the rest was left to
the control of time, or Jacko's robust constitution.

At twelve o'clock we were off Fredricksværn, the Norwegian Portsmouth,
which is a small town at the entrance of the Larvig Fiord. Here Jacko
came on deck buoyant as a ball, and with a coat made more glossy by the
chemical action of the salt water.

Looking towards Larvig, we saw, an unusual sight in this country, the
Union-jack flying on a little rock; and were puzzled for some time to
know whether it was a compliment that had reference to us. After a
tedious contention with _dead water_, light puffs of wind that came down
the gulleys on our starboard beam, and shifted to our bows, and then
veering right aft, jibed the main-sheet, we cast anchor about twenty
yards from the rock on whose summit the Union-jack waved.

The Consul sent on board to say, that his house was at our service, as
well as any other kindness he could show us. We understood afterwards,
that the Consul had mistaken the Iris for the Fairy schooner, belonging
to Sir Hyde Parker; and had hoisted the jack in compliment to his old
friend the baronet.

It was not possible for us to fish to-day; but P---- hired a carriole,
and drove about six miles into the country, to obtain leave from the
proprietors on the banks of the Larvig River, to fish on the following
morning. The task of gaining permission to fish for salmon in Norway is
sometimes a tedious one; for every man is his own landlord, and
possesses a few acres of land that he tills himself. All lands on the
banks make the portion of the river flowing by them, the property of the
landowner; and the angler may have to secure the good-will and assent of
fifty persons, before he can fish in any part of a river, which is more
difficult to do, as the Norwegians are jealous of their little
privileges. They rarely deny courtesy to a stranger; but they like to
have it in their power to do so if they please. This, however, was not
P----'s case; for through the hearty assistance and recommendation of
the Consul, no obstruction was made to the attainment of everything we
desired.

As all fishermen are aware, it is necessary to angle for salmon, and
indeed many fish, either very early in the morning, or in the cool of
the afternoon, the heat of noon being perfectly inimical to the sport.
At two o'clock, therefore, on Friday morning, the memorable 9th of June,
we started in the gig, stored with abundant provision, for the first
foss, or fall, of the Larvig River.

The scenery of this river was the most beautiful we had yet seen, though
not the grandest, the banks being thickly wooded, and the diversity of
the foliage more striking than at Krokleven, or in the Christiania
Fiord. Nearly four hours elapsed before we reached the spot selected for
fishing; but our passage up the river had been obstructed occasionally
by bars across the water. These bars are large stakes or piles driven,
about twenty feet apart, into the bed of the river, and carried from one
bank to the other, to which the trunks of trees are chained to prevent
the timber from escaping to the sea; and it is no uncommon thing to meet
with an immense field of timber, covering the whole surface of the river
as far as the eye can see. A passage is kept between two of these
stakes, distinguished from the others by a mark, for the ordinary
traffic of the river; and is defended by a huge bar of timber, secured
by a chain, on removing which, the boats are, after a good deal of
bumping, pulled through. The interior of the country being so
inaccessible, the Norwegians have no other alternative but to roll the
timber from the tops of the mountains, and casting it on the rivers,
allow it to float to these artificial havens, where it is collected, and
then, being made into immense rafts, guided by some half dozen men to
the town, whence it is shipped to France or Holland.

P---- had made such excellent arrangements, that two prams were in
readiness to receive R---- and himself when we arrived at our
destination. In some of the salmon rivers it is quite impossible to fish
from the banks, but the sportsman hires a boat, and angles in the centre
of the stream, which is generally interrupted by large stones, or pieces
of rock, in the eddy of which the salmon delight to sport.

P---- was the first to get his rod together, and selecting a particular
fly that he had considered as "a certain killer," jumped into his pram.
The men who row these prams are generally Norwegians, born on the banks
of the river, and knowing pretty well under what rocks, or in what eddy,
the salmon abound. The Norwegian who rowed P----'s pram was a fine
young fellow, but as unable to understand the English language as he was
athletic. R---- and P---- divided the river in two parts, so that
neither sportsman should interfere with the amusement of the other.
P---- took the upper part of the stream, and R---- the lower; or, in
other words, or other ideas, P---- was the wolf who came to drink of the
limpid tide, and R---- was the lamb who had to put up with the muddy
water.

Broiling my back in the rising sun, I took my seat on a high rock from
which I had a commanding view of both my friends, and could note the
praiseworthy tact and labour with which they angled. Time flew on; a
quarter of an hour elapsed, and then another quarter; and to these
thirty minutes, twice thirty more were added, when the heat at my back
was relieved by the furious and rapid clicking of P----'s reel. I
started from my seat, and lo! P----'s rod had assumed quite a new
appearance; for instead of its taper, arrowy form, it looked more like a
note of interrogation, and seemed to ask as loudly and plainly as it
could,

"What in heavens, master, has hold of my other end?"

P----, too, no longer retained that upright, soldierly attitude for
which I had always admired him, but leaned so much backwards, that,
should the good rod, I thought, give way, nothing on earth can save him
from falling on the hinder part of his head. R---- wound up his line, and
sat down in his pram to watch P----.

It is the custom, the instant the salmon takes the fly, for the rower to
pull towards the shore with as much celerity and judgment as possible,
neither to drive the boat too swiftly through the water, or loiter too
slowly, both extremes endangering the chance of capturing your salmon.
That part of the stream where P---- fished, was about forty yards below
a rapid, and, indeed, ran with the current of a sluice; and the reader
may imagine, that, a very little impetus given to the pram against this
current, would increase the pressure of a large salmon on a small gut
line. Directly the boatman discovered that P---- had a bite, towards the
bank he commenced to row; but not with that degree of expedition
P---- desired. Although I was some distance from them, I could perceive
the energetic signals of P----'s left hand to the Norwegian to pull
ashore more briskly. Every now and then the rattling of the reel would
keep P----'s excitement alive, and as he gradually wound up the line,
the salmon, making another start, would threaten to run away with every
inch of tackle. Warily the Norwegian rowed, scarcely dipping his sculls
in the water, lest their splash should startle the most timid of fish;
but his cautious conduct made no impression on P----, for I could still
see him motion angrily to the Norwegian to be more speedy.

The bank of the river at last was reached, and stumbling over sculls and
baling ladles, for these prams leak like sponges, and getting his foot
entangled in a landing net, P---- contrived to step on shore; but barely
had he stood on land again, than the line snapped, and the rod flew to
the perpendicular with a short, sharp hiss. Imagination cannot
sympathise with P----'s feelings, when, after travelling over a thousand
miles, or more, for the sake of entrapping salmon, he should break,
through the stupidity or slothfulness of a Norwegian boatman, his best
gut line, and lose the finest salmon in the whole Larvig river. P----'s
eyes wandered to the summit of his rod as it shot, like a poplar,
straight into the air, and saw the remnant of his tackle, not half a
yard long, flowing in every direction to the varying puffs of wind; and
turning his head slowly round towards the astounded Norwegian, gave him
a mingled look of inexpressible contempt and anger; and then, casting
his rod violently to the ground, stamped his foot, and vowed he would
never fish again.

"You stupid ass!" I heard him shout to the Norwegian, perfectly ignorant
whether P---- was addressing him with excess of passion, or a tornado of
praise; "didn't I tell you, as well as I could, to pull faster? Do you
think cat-gut is made of iron?"

"Ja[3]," said the gaping Norwegian, catching a very vague idea of his
meaning.

"But it isn't, you d----d fool!" exclaimed P---- angrily. "Why don't you
do what you're told?"

"Ja----," again began the unhappy boatman.

"But you didn't," shouted P----, cutting him off in the midst of his
reply.

"Ja, ja," interposed the Norwegian, "I pool pram."

"Yes, you did 'pool pram,' and a pretty mess you have made of it;" and
P---- put his hands in his trowsers' pockets, and began to walk up and
down on the bank.

"What's the row?" called out R---- from his pram, floating in the middle
of the river; "Have you lost your fish?"

He had witnessed the whole transaction, as well as I.

"It's hardly credible," answered P----, stopping in his walk, "that
these Norwegian fools can live in a country all their days, and have
salmon under their noses, and not know how to catch them. Curse the
fools! the sooner one leaves them the better."

"So I think," acceded R----, sitting down quietly in the after part of
his pram, and dangling his crossed leg. "For my part, I don't think
there are any salmon at all. _I_ can't get a _rise_. I wouldn't mind
betting an even crown you had hold of a weed!"

"Pooh! stuff!" ejaculated P----, starting off in his see-saw ambulation
again. "I saw the fish;--'twas fifteen pound weight at least."

"Oh! if you saw him, that's another thing," said R----; and taking his
pipe out of his pocket, began to soothe his nerves by blowing off his
disappointment in the substantial form of pure Oronoco tobacco-smoke.

Half an hour afterwards, P---- was hard at work as ever, perfectly
regardless of the solemn attestation he had volunteered to Jupiter.

The four sailors who had rowed the gig from Larvig, had, with the
ingenuity of their class, constructed a tent, lighted a fire, and were
preparing breakfast, both for us and themselves. This was the first time
I had breakfasted in the open air, and it is not so unpleasant as might
be imagined, particularly should the morning be so calm, and clear, and
warm as this one was. Shaded by a high mountain, fresh with the foliage
of fir, birch, and filbert trees, the morning sun reached not our
encampment. The balmy air, the dew and early vapour upon the grass, the
humming sound of the bee, the low of cattle, the lusty salutation of
peasants as they met each other, proceeding to their labour, and, above
all, the murmuring river, were sounds and things as pleasant to hear and
see as always to remember.

R---- and P---- were unwearied; nor did they yield to fatigue until the
sun had risen so high, that its heat sent the fish to respire at the
bottom of the river, and the animals under shelter of the trees. After
we had breakfasted, R---- and P---- exchanged a few remarks on the art
of angling, felt the fatigue of rising at two in the morning, and fell
fast asleep. I possessed the wakefulness of a second Cerberus, and
allowed not Morpheus to approach my eyelids; but loitering, up and down,
under the shady boughs of the trees, listened to the sweet silvery
rippling of the river, as it crept between the rocks, or bubbled over
its shingly bed. Overpowered at last by the fury of the vertical sun, I
entered the tent that had been formed by raising the gig's sail on the
four oars.

R---- and P---- were still slumbering, and I was lying under the tent,
on the ground, reading the Adventures of Peregrine Pickle. The sailors
who had formed the boat's crew were sauntering about along the banks of
the river; and the cockswain, who generally on such excursions as the
present performed the part of cook, was seated on a piece of rock which
projected into the bubbling stream, busily occupied in the preparation
of dinner. Whistling, and humming, by fits, one of the sea-songs of his
country, he wore the time away while peeling some potatoes, which, one
by one, as his large knife, slung from his belt by a piece of yarn,
deprived of their jackets, he threw into an iron pot, having rinsed them
previously in the flowing river. Within his sight, lay, on a white
towel, a leg of lamb, bewitchingly sprinkled with salt, all prepared to
be cooked, but only waiting for the potatoes to bear it company to the
fire. Absorbed in my book, I paid little attention to what was passing
around me, except by an occasional glance, until I heard a loud, shrill
scream, and then a louder rustling of feathers, as if this was the noon
of the last day, and Gabriel having blown his trumpet without my hearing
it, had actually reached the earth. I jumped up, and running out of the
tent, saw the cockswain standing like a nautical statue, motionless,
gazing upwards, and with a stick grasped firmly in his hand. Following
his example, I turned my eyes reverentially to the skies, and
distinguished, from the blaze of day, a most lusty eagle, making the
best of his way towards the residence of Jove with the leg of lamb in
his beak; and, as if conscious of the superiority his position had given
him over us, waving the white towel, grasped with his talons, hither and
thither in the air, like a flag moved exultingly by conquerors after
victory.

"It's gone, sir," said the sailor, lowering the uplifted club, "and,
blow me, if I ever heerd him coming."

I shall not forget the utter disgust of R---- and P----, when, like a
couple of Samsons they awoke, and found that their hair was certainly
untouched, but that the most positive support of their strength had been
cut off irretrievably, and their dinner of lamb gone where all innocence
should go. Some bread and cheese, together with a few eggs which the
boatmen purchased for us at a neighbouring cottage, supplied the loss of
our lamb. The coolness of the afternoon gave R---- and P----, an
opportunity to renew their ardour, and at six o'clock they both might
have been found encouraging the habit of patience in the art of angling.

The rattling of their reels, gave, at almost every half hour, the
announcement of a bite, and hurrying in their prams to the shore, my
friends, after the torture of another half hour, would, with the
assistance of a gaff, place the unhappy salmon among the long grass
growing on the river's brink.

The Norwegians, and I believe, all persons who have the sense of taste
developed to a most extraordinary nicety, say that the fish which are
caught with the hook, are not to be compared in flavour to those taken
in the net. Though I cannot account for the exquisiteness of taste, that
can distinguish between one and the other plan of catching the salmon, I
can very easily suppose that the pain, more or less, given in the
destruction of an animal, may increase or decrease the flavour of the
flesh, when used as food. A fish drawn backwards and forwards through
the water with a hook piercing its gills, or the more tender fibres of
the stomach, till it is almost jaded to death, and then lacerated with
such an instrument as the gaff, must endure such an accumulation of the
most intense pain, that the sweeter juices of the flesh escape during
the throes of a protracted death, and render its taste more stale and
flat. But the fish, taken in the net, suffers no injury; and free from
pain is instantaneously deprived of life, while the muscular parts
retain all the rigour and nutriment requisite for human food.

R---- and P---- caught eight fish between them, varying from fifteen to
twenty-five pounds' weight each; and, striking our tent, we returned in
the twilight of evening to the yacht at Larvig.

Nothing daunted, R---- and P---- rose again the following morning at
two, and collecting their fishing apparatus, began to prepare for
another jaunt up the river. They were very desirous that I should
accompany them; but having had insight enough into the stratagem of
salmon-fishing for the next three days, I declined.

"Well! ain't you going to get up? It's past two," I heard some one say;
but not quite certain whether I was dreaming, or really awake.

"Hollo! sleepy-head!" another voice shouted, and a strong arm shook me.

"Eh? what is it?" I asked, rubbing my eyes, entirely bewildered as to
the cause of such rough usage.

"Come! look alive, if you're coming. The sun's up, and we must be off,"
the last speaker continued. I could not conceive where I had promised to
go; nor could I make out what the sun had to do with my movements. A
second violent shake roused me.

"I am awake!" I said pettishly. "What do you want; who are you?"

"Get up, you great muff!" the loud voice again exclaimed from the centre
of the cabin. I sat up in my bed. From my berth I could see into the
main cabin. R---- and P---- in their short fishing coats, and jack-boots,
were standing round the cabin table, and drinking some preparation of
milk, rum, and egg.

"It's capital, isn't it?" I heard P---- say.

"Splendid!" R---- replied. "Let's have it every morning."

"Ha! many a time," P---- continued, "I have swallowed this just before
going to morning parade. It's the best thing in the world on an empty
stomach. Here's a little more." And he filled R----'s glass.

"Where are you going so early?" I asked, quite forgetful that we were
even in Norway.

"Why, to fish, of course," replied R----.

"What else do you suppose we are going to do? Come along."

"No; not this morning," I said, falling back on my pillow. "I am tired."

"Pooh! what humbug! you've been in bed ever since twelve. What more do
you want?" replied one of them.

"A little more," I answered, making myself as snug as I could; for I had
really not slept an hour.

"That's just like you, always pulling another way," R---- observed.
"What's the good of remaining here all alone, when you might gaff for
me? It's so unsociable!"

"Hang the gaffing!" I answered.

"If you don't like to gaff," suggested R----, "take the little rifle and
shoot an eagle or two. That's better than remaining behind; and we can
go to bed early to-night."

"Why can't you go without me?" I said. "I don't care about fishing, and
I do about comfort; for I feel now as if I had not been to bed at all."

This indifference to a sport, they both deemed the most exciting, caused
them to upbraid me, till half-past two, with such epithets as, "an old
woman," "a shocking cockney," "a fellow only fit to wear white kid
gloves," "a Regent Street swell," "a land lubber," "a milk sop," and a
multitude of other curious idioms, that rather made me merry than
clashed with my pride.

About ten o'clock, I received a note from the Consul, intimating that a
party of ladies desired to see the yacht, and requested he might bring
them on board. I replied that I could, in the absence of R----,
undertake to say how cordially he would have granted his permission, and
flatteringly he would have felt the compliment, had he been present, and
I begged that the Consul would act as if the vessel were his own. Three
hours afterwards, I saw several boats, filled with ladies, shoot out
from a little bay, on the starboard bow of the yacht, and gliding as
swiftly through the smooth water as the two rowers to each boat could
force them, soon clustered round the gangway. Thirteen young ladies, the
Consul being the only gentleman among them, jumped lightly on board; and
as they followed, interminably, one after the other, I never felt the
responsibility of any position so impressively, as I did the present
one. The young ladies, however, were all Norwegian, except one; so that
I had not much trouble in talking to them, their native tongue, or the
German, being the only two languages they could understand, and of both
of which I was almost ignorant.

Although I could not enter into conversation with them, I felt it was my
bounden duty to contribute by some device, or the other, to the
entertainment of these young ladies. Knowing the partiality of my own
countrywomen to music, I hazarded the idea, that the Norwegian ladies
were filled with an equal admiration for waltzes and polkas; and being
fortunately possessed of two very large musical boxes, I wound them up.
When these boxes began to play, my fair visitors were much delighted
with their ingenious mechanism, and for some short time listened to them
with wonder and delight; but at last, in harmonious movement to their
sweet notes, these children put their little arms round each other's
waists and began to dance. The elder girls, catching the mood, clasped
their companions by the hand, and begged them to join the merry group.
In ten minutes not one girl was sitting still; and she who could not get
a partner, placed her arms a-kimbo, and whirled up and down the deck
alone.

A Norwegian gentleman had asked me to dine with him, and as R---- and
P---- would not return much before midnight, I did not decline an
invitation that was not only hospitable, but would give me an
opportunity of seeing more of the habits and character of his
countrymen. The dinner was prepared at an early hour, one, or two,
o'clock. The style of cookery was the same as in England; except the
manner in which the salmon is dressed, for it is cut up into small junks
and fried; but the most ordinary, and esteemed way of eating the salmon
is to smoke it, which is nothing more or less than an excuse for
swallowing the fish raw.

After dinner, the host filled two glasses of wine, one for himself, and
one for me; and sidling close up to my chair, placed himself arm and arm
with me. I could not understand his meaning, and watched with no little
anxiety the next act of familiarity he would commit. My eyes glanced
round the table; but the gravity of every man's face was ecclesiastical
in the extreme. Without unlocking his arm from mine, the Norwegian
raised his glass in the air, and motioned with his hand to me to do the
same. I did so. He then drank off the wine, and bade me drink in like
manner. I did that likewise. I had thus followed my friend's
injunctions, and had scarcely, with a smile, replaced on the table the
glass I had drained, when I received a box on the ear. Starting from my
chair at the unprovoked assault, I was about to break the decanter over
the Norwegian's head, when a gentleman seized hold of my right hand, and
begged me to be pacified, for that it was merely the usage of the
country in pledging to the health of a friend. He said my host would be
highly gratified by my retaliation.

"We have simply then been drinking each other's health?" I asked.

"No more, sir," my mediator replied.

Ashamed of my hasty and most unmannerly conduct, I gave the amicable
cuff, and all was merriment again.

When we rose from table, the whole company commenced shaking hands with
each other, and coming up to me, one after the other, each guest took
my hand, and

"Tak for maden," he said.

This was another mysterious usage I could not unravel. A few days
afterwards, amid the general din of the same ceremony, I asked a young
lady, who spoke French, what it all meant; and she then told me it was
an ancient habit of returning thanks for a good dinner.

"But I have given them no dinner," I said.

"That is true," replied my fair informant; "but they thank you all the
same."

While she spoke, a Norwegian gentleman took possession of her hand, and
exclaimed,

"Tak for maden!" while a second did the same with my hand, and repeating
similar words, passed on all round the table.

FOOTNOTES:

[3] "Ja," pronounced "yar," signifies "yes," in the Norwegian language.



CHAPTER XIV.

 ANOTHER FISHING EXCURSION--LANDING A SALMON--THE
 CARRIOLE--BOATS ROWED BY LADIES--DEPARTURE FROM
 LARVIG--CHRISTIANSAND HARBOUR--RETURN TO BOOM--
 SINCERE WELCOME--ANGLING AT THE FALLS--THE FORSAKEN
 ANGLER--A MISUNDERSTANDING--RECONCILIATION--ST.
 JOHN'S DAY--SIMPLICITY OF MANNERS.


On Tuesday morning, at three, I joined R---- and P----, and took a
second trip up the river, to indulge in this pastime of angling.

When we arrived on our fishing ground, the salmon were seen springing
two or three feet out of the water into the air, a sign not always good
for the sportsman; for the Norwegians say, that when the fish begin to
leap out of the water, they are moving up the river, and disinclined to
take food. It was entertaining to observe them, as they leaped in
various places, from rock to rock, up the stream of the Foss; and
although they would be brought back by the immense volume of water,
nothing disheartened, would repeat the leap again and again. Seated in
the pram, I watched in the clear stream, the caution with which some of
the salmon approached the fly, and after darting away from it, returned
and sported round it, as if perfectly aware of the deceitful manner by
which the hook was hid; but in a reckless moment, just as the fly was
moved along the top of the water, resembling the living insect with such
exactitude that I could be deceived, they would make a sullen plunge,
and then as if aware of the foolish act they had committed, secure their
death by running away with the whole line before they could possibly
feel the hook. A slight jerk is given to the tackle, and their doom is
sealed.

I saw one salmon caught through his own folly; for had he been less
violent, he might have gratified his curiosity by tasting the fabricated
fly, and could, when he found that it was nothing more than a macaw's
feather, have quietly spitten it out; but as soon as the hook lanced his
lip, the fish made a leap of several feet above the surface, and on
falling into the river again, shot like a silver arrow, towards any weed
or rock he saw, sheltering himself behind it, as if he deemed this
retreat secure. But when he felt a motive power, over which he had no
control, gently drawing him by the head from his old abode, and the
consequent slight, shooting pang of the hook, away he flew, right up
towards the pram, flapped his tail furiously to the right and left, and
then bounced about his native pool, indignant of the vile trick that had
been played him. R----, was soon rowed to the bank, and I stood by his
side gaff in hand.

"Look out," said R----, in an under tone; and, turning up the sleeve of
my coat, I gave the gaff the full length of the handle. The fish,
however, saw me move, and like a flash of lightning, clove the water to
its lowest depth. The line passed with such rapidity between R----'s
thumb and forefinger, that it almost cut them off.

The manœuvring of ten minutes more brought the salmon within a few
feet of the bank, and crawling through the rushes, I remained ready to
perform my part of the tragedy. Near and nearer, turned on his back, and
panting laboriously, the fish allowed himself to be drawn towards the
shore. Lowering the gaff slowly into the stream, till I guessed it was
two or three inches below the fish, and then making a sudden lunge, I
pierced the soft part of the stomach a little behind the two fore fins,
and lifted the salmon from the water.

"You did that devilish well," exclaimed R----, hurrying up to remove the
hook. The salmon plunged in every direction violently; and it was with
great difficulty I could keep my hold of the gaff.

"Make haste," I said, "or he will be off the gaff; see, how the flesh of
the stomach is ripping!"

And so it was. The weight of the salmon was sufficient to tear the
tender part of the flesh under the stomach, and the longer I held the
fish from the ground to allow R---- to remove the hook, the more
probable it appeared, that, the salmon by his furious struggles, would
lacerate and divide the flesh, and fall from the gaff.

"Poor wretch!" said R----, as he strove to unfasten the hook from the
ligaments of the jaw, "I am keeping him in his pain a long time; but I
can't help it."

"I must put him on the ground," I observed, when the fish by its
struggles nearly twisted the gaff from my hand.

"No; for heaven's sake, don't!" exclaimed R----. "He'll knock both of us
into the water if you do. There," continued R----, holding the hook, at
last, in his hand, and cleansing it from slime and gore on the cuff of
his coat, "put him down;" and opening a clasp-knife, he ran the blade
into the crown of the salmon's head. The creaking sound of the bone as
it yielded to the passage of the sharp knife, like the cutting of a
cork, made my teeth ache. The fish stirred not; but the blood trickled
from his mouth in small bubbles, and stretching out all his fins, as a
bird would stretch its wings to fly, a spasmodic shudder succeeded, and
then the fins gradually relaxed and adhered close to his sides, while
the blood still oozed from the mouth and gills, and striking his tail
once or twice on the ground, the salmon seemed to fix his round,
staring, glassy eye on me, as if in accusation of the torture I had
caused, and gaping, died.

"If I ever gaff another fish, may I be gaffed myself," I said.

"Fish do not feel so acutely as you imagine," replied R----, wiping the
penknife on his handkerchief with the coolness of an anatomical
operator; "all the quivering you observe is not from actual pain, but
merely from muscular action."

"Well, I am not surgeon enough to know that," I answered; "but if you
talk for three years, you will never persuade me that a fish does not
feel, as well as every other creature, in proportion to its size, the
anguish of bodily torture as sensibly as you, or I."

"Never mind arguments," cried R----, "here, let's see what he weighs."

And R---- drew from his coat-pocket, a small balance that he always
carried about with him, and hooking the defunct salmon on it, held it
up.

"Twenty-two pounds to a fraction," he said; and took a little book from
his other pocket, and noted down the weight. Casting up the figures to
himself in a sort of whisper common to all calculators, R---- observed
aloud, when he had concluded his addition,

"I have killed forty-five pounds myself. That's not so bad, eh? Come
on;" and hurrying into his pram, was rowed away.

I did not remain much longer on the bank of the river, and desiring a
change, I walked towards the road that ran parallel with the stream. A
Norwegian peasant, driving a carriole soon overtook me, and asking him
in the most grammatical and simple manner I could, if he were returning
to Larvig, he made me a long speech in reply; but beseeching him in my
second address to give me a monosyllabic answer, either affirmatively or
negatively, as I was a foreigner, the man bowed his head till his chin
came in contact with the bone of his chest, and said,

"Ja!"

I then asked him if he were as desirous of letting his carriole, as I
was of hiring it; and he again said,

"Ja!"

I tendered several small silver coins, amounting to an ort, a piece of
Norwegian money equivalent in value to eight-pence sterling, and begged
the peasant to tell me if the offer were sufficiently generous. He
counted the coins in the palm of my hand. When he had done so, he
smiled, and said,

"Ja, tak;" and shaking hands with me, he gave me the rope reins.

The carriole is an elegant, comfortable, but most unsociable vehicle;
for it is as unfit to hold two persons, as an ordinary arm-chair. To sit
properly in a carriole, you should be rather round-shouldered, as its
shape is not unlike half a walnut, scooped out. The post-boy sits
behind, or stands up, as a groom does in England; but his position must
be uncomfortable in the extreme, as the carriole has no springs, and
bounds and jumps heavily over ruts and pebbles, causing him to fidget at
intervals, and make an exclamation of discomfort most irregularly. The
shafts and wheels are slight, and the body painted uniformly of a
chocolate colour. The foot-board is not larger than a tea-tray, about
six inches square, and in order to reach it, the legs are so extended as
to bring the tip of the toes and the apex of the knees on the same
plane. Nor does the driver look down on his horse, as he would in
England; but the eye has a level view along the back of the animal, and
his neck, or wooden collar obstructs any further perspective.

I could not make the man, or skydsgut, as he is called, who accompanied
me, understand ten consecutive words I spoke; but asking a multitude of
questions, I thought I must have collected a multitude of information.
Disliking the dulness of my companion, I drove at a swift pace, but the
skydsgut did not seem to like it, and several times I could guess from
his manner, that he was expostulating with me. The Norwegians love their
horses with the strong, feminine devotion of Arabs, and it is not an
uncommon sight to see the skydsgut, if he be a boy, burst into a
passionate fit of tears should you lash his horse twice in a mile. He
will strive to tell his grief, but if the language of his sorrow be not
understood, he will cover his face with his hands, and weep aloud by the
road side. The Norwegians have given Englishmen the credit of being
impatient travellers, and from their desire to pass over the greatest
quantity of ground in the smallest quantity of time, they are said to
use the whip more frequently than is necessary. I do not know that this
is an incorrect opinion. As one man has peculiarities that another man
has not, so one nation may be noted for eccentricities, of which another
nation is devoid; and, for my own part, I am inclined to think, that,
however superciliously Englishmen may regard the usages and habits of
foreigners, there are no people who give strangers a truer idea of
maniacs than Englishmen themselves.

R---- and P----, returned in the evening with a boat full of salmon, and
one fine fish, weighing nearly thirty-two pounds, was smoked and
prepared to be sent as a present to England. I passed the whole of the
subsequent day at Larvig, and the Consul begged, that as I was alone, I
would dine with him. I accepted his invitation. After dinner, in the
cool of the afternoon, his daughters, two very lady-like and pretty
girls, requested me to join an excursion they were about to make across
the fiord, to the opposite shore. These ladies would insist upon rowing
the boat the whole distance, upwards of two miles, themselves. I
objected for a time; but when they told me it was the custom of the
country, and, that the art of sculling was as much an accomplishment as
the softer allurements of the harp, or guitar, I felt more reconciled,
and fully appreciated an honour that could never be offered to me again.

At half-past ten o'clock, shortly after we had returned from our trip,
and while I was standing on a high rock, from which an extensive view of
the fiord could be seen, and talking to the Consul and several ladies, a
gun was fired from the yacht.

"His Lordship is returned," said the Consul to me, "and I think that is
for you."

"If it be so, they will fire again," I replied. The echo of the cable,
as the men began to heave it, left the Consul's conjecture no longer
chimerical; and after a little while, the flash and report of another
gun leaped one after the other, from crag to crag, through the dusk of
evening, and whirling above our heads, bounded over the summit of the
mountain.

"Come, there's no doubt now," observed the Consul, turning round towards
me.

"No," I answered; "but they don't suppose I can get on board without a
boat."

"You can have mine, with pleasure;" and the Consul, addressing his
little son, desired that a boat should be kept in readiness.

"Oh! there! look there," exclaimed two, or three ladies, pointing
towards the cutter.

"Ay, the anchor's away," said the Consul; and the yacht, with flapping
jib, began to move, like a colossal swan with erected crest, proudly
through the water.

The main-sail being well brailed up, the two boats were hauled alongside
to the davits, and while they were being hoisted on them, a third gun
was fired. The ladies, delighted with the flash and thundering of the
guns, begged me to linger a little longer, that another gun might be
fired; but fearful that R---- would play some mad prank, and stand out
of the fiord without me, I promised the fair dames, that the next time I
came to Norway, I would comply with their request, and never leave them,
or Larvig again.

The Consul's eldest son soon rowed me to the yacht. When I stood on
deck, and looked towards the shore, I could see the white handkerchiefs
of those whom I had just left, waving through the dusky air.

"There are some of your loves," said R---- to me.

"They do not wish you well less than they do me," I replied.

The separation from Larvig was the feeling of a second regret I
confessed since my departure from England. Dear old Larvig! It is the
green oasis where recollection, ever loving, turns to rest; and where
the springs of Friendship's warm simplicity, may quench the thirst of
him who sighs for Sympathy upon the Desert of Society.

At midnight we cleared the Larvig Fiord, and shaped our course for
Christiansand. The weather had been sultry and calm; and at three
o'clock in the morning, a tremendous thunder-storm spent the principal
part of its anger upon us. The rain descended as if it had been spouted
at the yacht through water-pipes; and the uproar of the thunder among
the mountains, and the frequency and vividness with which the lightning
gleamed, showing every object on the sea and land, were so terrific,
that, each man turned in his hammock, and rubbing his eyes, wished to
know what all the noise and light on deck were about.

"Lord! how it thunders!" I heard one man growl, as the peal awoke him.

"The lightning's no better," answered another, as a strong, red flash
followed close after the sledge-hammer blow of the clap. The officer of
the watch gave some command in muffled tones, and immediately afterwards
the man at the helm muttered in a gruff voice,

"Seven bells."

When the hour had been struck, the silence was again profound; and only
the pattering of the drops of rain on the deck, as the storm receded,
could be heard.

The next morning, before I was up, there was an altercation on deck; and
the word "stuff" seemed to prevail over every other.

"Here, D----," I heard R---- exclaim to the sailing master, "just look
here;" and then a short pause ensued, until D---- reached the after part
of the yacht, where the jolly-boat had been secured on deck.

"As long as you fellows can stuff yourselves," R---- continued, "that's
all you care about; but, after that, my property may go to the devil."

Then there was a dialogue, in an under tone, explanatory of something
that had gone wrong.

"I am sure, my Lord," pursued D----, "I am as careful as I can be, and I
endeavour to make every man the same."

"It's all very fine to say so," answered R----, "but I wish you would
act after the same fashion; for here's a salmon I ordered to be cured at
Larvig, for the purpose of sending to England as a present; and just
because not one man would take the trouble to throw a piece of tarpaulin
over it last night, to keep off the rain, it is perfectly spoilt."

The cured salmon had been placed in the jolly-boat the evening before,
and orders were strictly given, that it should be covered during the
night; but the attention paid to those orders amounted to what I have
related. The salmon, however, was hung up in the shrouds, and after a
great deal of trouble and attention, it was sufficiently preserved to
arrive in England, three weeks afterwards, and to command the praise of
every one who tasted it.

At two o'clock in the afternoon we entered Christiansand Harbour; and
taking our old berth a little to the westward of the castle, fired a
salute, to let our friends know we had returned. Several gentlemen came
on board, and made many inquiries about our travels; and when they had
learned all, arrangements were made for us to fish in the Toptdal River,
at Boom, as long as we liked.

Early on Monday morning we weighed anchor, and reached up the fiord as
far towards the mouth of the Toptdal River, as the depth of water would
permit; and after an hour's sail, the yacht was brought up in a
beautiful little bay, about three miles from Christiansand, and about
four from Boom.

From a sky azure and warm as in an oriental clime, not a cloud was
reflected on the smooth, transparent water, and scarcely a breath of
air stirred the leaves of the trees. So absolute was the stillness, that
the voices of fishermen, who dwelt among the rocks, could be heard in
conversation, although their forms were diminished by distance to the
size of a rook.

At five o'clock we were at Boom again, and our friend the
Anglo-Norwegian was shaking us by the hand. His eyes sparkled with
delight at the renewal of our acquaintance; and promising us the best of
sport, he led us towards the cottage in which we had lodged on our first
visit. The peasant, our landlord, came forth to the cottage door, pipe
in hand, to salute us; while his wife gazed at us through a small
window; and, when she caught our glance, smiled, with a sunnier language
on her face than she could have uttered with her tongue, the sincerity
of her joy to see us once more. I felt as if I had been a long time a
wanderer, and had returned home. The three beds in the cottage were
ordered to be got ready for us, and a lodging in a neighbouring
farm-house was secured for the four men who had rowed the gig.

The fish did not take the fly willingly, for only one or two were caught
between R---- and P----; but the amazing number of salmon that kept
leaping out of the water, during the whole afternoon, bade us not
despair of being more prosperous on the morrow. The Toptdal River is
the property of a celebrated merchant resident at Christiansand, and he
derives a considerable income from the sale of fish caught in it. It is
one of the most famous salmon streams in the south of Norway; and its
celebrity may in some way be tested when I state, that, two and three
hundred salmon have been taken in the nets in the course of one day at
Boom, and the same quantity has been continued through several
successive days. Great numbers are still caught, but not in such
multitudes as formerly; and the diminution is ascribed to the
circumstance of no law existing in Norway to protect, or rather,
preserve the salmon at certain seasons; and poaching has been, of late
years, so extensive, that unless the Government take a little more care
of a fish that has become almost a staple commodity of the country, and
arrest the nefarious system at present without bounds, the extinction of
salmon in the southern rivers of Norway must be immediate and complete.
Indeed, we visited some places which a few years ago were famous for the
beauty, size, and multiplicity of their salmon; but we were told on our
arrival, that, not a fish was now to be caught or seen, from the mouths
to the sources of these rivers.

Early in the morning, by daylight, I heard R---- and P---- pulling on
their jack-boots, and winding and unwinding their tackle. The clicking
noise of their reels awoke me.

The Toptdal River is uninterrupted by rapids from Christiansand up to
our cottage, but as I mentioned, there is before the door a tremendous
fall, and a pool of great depth has been formed, by the eternal force
and action of the tumbling water. This pool is nearly circular, and
about a quarter of a mile in circumference. A large rock, considerably
above the level of the water, stands in the middle of this pool; and
perched on it the sportsman may presume that he has attained the most
choice position for angling. From this rock, made slippery by the
ascending spray of the cataract, Mr. H----, the gentleman to whom I have
referred as the proprietor of this river, is wont to fish; and he is
allowed to be one of the most distinguished and sagacious anglers in the
vicinity of Christiansand or Boom.

Pursuant to the mode of the country, and the recommendation of the
natives, my two companions embarked in a pram to seek the piscatory
treasures of this pool. The surface of the water was not so clear and
smooth as at Larvig; for it boiled and eddied, and the wrath of the
thundering cataract made it white as Parian marble. R---- and P----,
notwithstanding the difficulty of throwing their flies daintily, from
the uneasy motion of the pram, discovered another more serious obstacle
to this united possession of the same pram; for, now and then, P----'s
silver pheasant fly would buz very close to R----'s right ear, and
R----'s white moth fly would hover around and settle at last on P----'s
pepper-and-salt cloth cap, and whisk it into the water. In short, the
danger of proximity in fly fishing was as obvious as the deductions of
any mathematical problem. The union could not exist. A remedy was to be
found; and P---- sat down on the grating over the well of the pram, and
gave himself to contemplation. His inquisitive mind lost no time.

"Hollo!" he suddenly exclaimed, "there's that rock; can't I get on it?"

"Let's pull and see," assented R----; and the boatman was desired to row
towards it. When the pram was driven by the force of the whirling stream
against the rock, P---- jumped on it, but nearly slid off on the other
side.

"Oh! ah! this is capital," he said, raising himself cautiously by the
aid of both hands. "This will do."

And having, after several efforts, stood upright, he commenced
untwisting his line from the rod.

"All right?" asked R----, impatient to begin.

"Yes, all right," replied P----; and away the pram, borne by the
thousand intertwining currents, shot with R----.

The high peaks of the mountains now began to shine in the rising sun,
and, like the ebbing surface of an ocean, the line of light gradually
descended towards the valley. One by one, the cattle came forth from
their sheds; and the cock, flapping his wing, stood a tip-toe, and crew
most lustily. Under the weather-vane, on the farm-house roof, the
pigeons trimmed their feathers, and cooed. Unfelt the coolness of the
morning air, (for they were hot with exertion,) and regardless of moving
shadows, or cooing doves, my two friends gave up the sense of hearing to
their reels, and that of seeing to the career of the little zinc hooks
at the end of their gut lines. When I looked at the insular P----, and
his active rod, I thought him like to Archimedes who had found his
extramundane spot of ground, and, as he threw the fly, and bent his back
to let it touch the water lightly, was endeavouring to fasten his lever
to the base of the adjacent mountain in order to consummate his wish of
raising the world; and the circumfluous R---- with his long tackle, that
hissed when he cast it with the petulance of an angry switch, appeared
an ocean god, who had selected a shorter route to the North Cape by the
Toptdal River, and was urging his reluctant grampuses up the cataract.

R---- and P---- might have angled for five hours, and the result of
their assiduity was as diverse as pain is to pleasure, whatever the
Stoics may have said to the contrary; for P---- caught fifteen salmon,
and R---- not one. Disappointed, no doubt, that such trifling profit
should succeed to so much labour, R---- wound up his ten or twelve
yards of cat-gut, and desired the boatmen to row ashore. It was now
eight o'clock; and when people rise at two in the morning, it does not
require much calculation to tell how keen the appetite must become when
it has grumbled five hours in vain for aliment. P----, however, was
callous to hunger, or thirst; and as he made capture after capture, all
thought of food decreased in an inverse ratio. When R---- had alighted
from the pram, the boatman drew it up on the shore, lest it should get
adrift, for it was the only available pram at Boom; and touching his
slouch hat, signified to R---- his intention of going to his morning
meal. R---- consented. We sat down on a piece of timber by the river's
brink, and R---- watched his successful fellow-angler. P----'s very soul
seemed to be diving about in the pool entirely unconscious of every
earthly thing but salmon.

"By Jove! there's another bite," exclaimed R----, as P----'s reel spread
the tidings with the tongue of a Dutch alarum clock. After a little
play, the salmon ceased to live in the Toptdal River.

"I can't tell how he manages," said R----, in a sort of soliloquy. "I
don't get a rise in two days. My flies must be bad; or, I think, P----
always takes the best place." And R---- pulled his fly-book from his
pouch, and began to examine the flies attentively, one by one, from the
largest to the smallest.

"Your flies are very good," I observed; "but you have not application.
Look at P----; he is part of that rock, apathetic to every idea of life,
but the idea that he sees his fly."

"A great deal of it is luck," answered R----; "but let us go to
breakfast. I am preciously thirsty; I must swill something."

We both rose, and walked towards the cottage. The sun had now risen
above the tops of the mountains, and shone brightly in the very centre
of the valley through which the Toptdal River wound. Not a cloud spotted
the sky, and the declining languid motion of the atmosphere gave token
of a torrid noon. Entering into jocular conversation with our
Anglo-Norwegian friend, who was bustling about the cottage on our
behalf, we became so intimate and open-hearted, that R---- begged him to
partake of breakfast if he had not eaten his own; and seating himself in
the third vacant chair, the Norwegian did as much justice to our
hospitality, as the hungry steer does to clover. Time wore on, for the
shade of the tall trees became short and shorter; and when our little
stout Northern guest went from under the cottage roof, to give some
orders to a labourer, I observed that the huge flaps of his felt hat
sheltered his round projecting van and bulbous flank, and, that, to the
contemplative man with downcast eye, his whole frame, fat though it
were, would appear quashed into a circular shadow moving along the
ground.

After breakfast, R---- lit his pipe, and the Norwegian made a quid both
round and opaque, and bowing to us, stuffed it into his mouth. Its
proper arrangement with his tongue kept him silent for a second, and in
that second, we heard the prolonged, faint call of a man in distress;
but it was so indistinct, that the gentle rustling of the juniper leaf
interrupted our attention to it.

"Is not this delicious?" observed R---- to me; and the gray-blue
tobacco-smoke spouted, like a small fountain, from his mouth. "In London
I should be just thinking of getting out of bed, and here I have been up
these nine hours, and eaten like a bricklayer."

"I should not mind living here, and like this, all my life," I answered,
"and paddling about on that river."

"Ja," interposed the Norwegian in a broken dialect, but he thought
himself a good English scholar; "dat is goot, but you not tak care you
roltz down de foss; one old vomans roltz down de foss."

"Ah?" said I.

"Ja," replied the Norwegian; "she row one praam cross de top of de foss,
and de praam roltz over, and she vas drowntz."

The same dull, faint, long cry, fell on our ears; but we took no heed of
it, for our native companion said it was the signal shout of huntsmen in
the mountains.

"Did you ever find the old woman's body?" I asked.

"Ja," the Norwegian answered, twisting his quid from the left to the
right cheek, "she vas foundtz; and vat is droltz de bags of flour she
have in de praam, dough dey been long timetz in de vater, vere quite
drytz--de middle quite drytz."

"And what did you do with them?" I asked.

"I eatz dem," said my friend.

Again the long, low cry stole mournfully through the still air, and it
moaned like a melancholy spirit of the night that had been left behind
by its fellow spirits, as they hurried from earth at dawn of day, and
which, concealing itself in some mountain cavern, was wailing their
absence, and telling the torture it suffered from the glaring light.

"I say, old cock, have you any goblins in this place?" asked R----,
walking close up to the Norwegian, and blowing the smoke from his pipe
so voluminously in the little man's face, that he coughed till he nearly
spat his quid out of the window.

"Nej, nej," replied the Norwegian, as soon as he could breathe to speak,
in a tone of surprise that R---- should suppose such a thing. The
Norwegians are superstitious, and believe as confidently in ghosts, as I
do in the heat of fire.

"What the devil then," continued R----, "is that confounded groaning
about? Some fellow has committed murder. You had better go and see."

"Nej, nej," remonstrated the Norwegian, scratching his head, and moving
nervously in his chair at the suggestion. The Norwegian was stable as
his mountains; and R----, laughing at the man's apparent terror, resumed
his seat, and increased the generation of his genuine Latakia
tobacco-smoke.

It was now mid-day; and the hollow sounding tread of human feet clad
thickly, made R---- and me turn our eyes towards the threshold of the
cottage. Cased, like a shrimp-catcher, up to his hips in water-proof
boots, his landing-net, gaff, and fishing-rod, borne on his left
shoulder, P----, the very picture of impersonated anger, stood before
us. Dashing landing-net, gaff, fly-book, and his only fly-rod on the
table, regardless of crockery,

"A pretty trick you have played me!" he thundered out. We had never
given P---- a thought until the moment we saw him, nor did we, for one
instant, remember that, like Robinson Crusoe, he had been left on a
desert rock, and that the doleful cry might be his.

"It's now twelve," P---- continued angrily, "and you have quietly eaten
your breakfast, and allowed me to remain on that rock since six
o'clock."

"But my dear fellow," said R----, "could you not call for the boat?"

"And what have I been doing these four hours?" P---- exclaimed. "No;
it's just like you both; if you can satisfy your confounded
selfishness, the devil may take any one else's comfort."

"A boat would have put off to you," persisted R----, "if you had hailed
some of the workmen about."

"What nonsense that is," said P----, with wrath. "Do you think I stood
there like a fool, and held my tongue? Of course I hailed every one I
saw; but I should like to know who could hear me, stuck, as I was, close
under that Fall."

"Well, my dear fellow," answered R----, in a pacifying tone, "I tell you
the truth, I never thought of you until I saw your face at that door."

"That's just what I say; so long as you are comfortable, every one else
may go to the deuce;" and P---- snapped his finger, and walked to the
window. "Besides that," he added, "I am your guest, and entitled to look
for a little more respect."

"Oh! hang the respect," replied R----, quickly.

"Then you may fish alone," said P----; "for I'll be hanged if I will
stand being treated in this kind of way. Suppose, for one moment, you
had been in my place, and I had forgotten you, what would you have said
and felt? the case is the same."

"Why didn't you come ashore with me?" R---- asked, getting rather testy
himself; "am I your nurse? Am I to wait and watch for you?"

"Yes, you ought," said P----; "I would have done it for you. I can't
fish and have my eyes about me, in all quarters, at the same time. I
think it cursed unmannerly of you both."

R---- looked at me with one of his comic faces, and I looked at him.

"As to my manners," R---- answered aloud, "whether they be vulgar, or
whether they be genteel, I take no credit to myself; for an extra
allowance was made for my education, that I should be polished brightly
like a gentleman, and if you perceive a failure on that score, the fault
is not mine, but the preparatory school's. Moreover, if a man has any
mental, or personal defect, it is hardly fair to make allusion to it,
and by wounding his feelings to seek the gratification of anger."

R---- gave me a wink, as much as to say, "I have the weather-gage of
him." P---- spoke not in reply; but continued standing at the window,
and, with his back to us, looking out upon the fatal rock and cataract.

"We have left you a couple of eggs," observed R---- pacifically.

"You had better send them back to the hen to be hatched," P---- replied.

"Come, my dear fellow," continued R----, "don't let such a little thing
part us. Your being left on the rock was quite an oversight. Exercise a
christian spirit, and drink this delicious coffee."

Pouring out a cup of coffee, R---- held up the Norwegian wine-bottle of
milk by its long neck, and said to P----, "do you like a little, or a
good deal, of milk?"

"Oh! middling;" and moving from the window, P---- walked towards the
table.

"There," said R----, pushing the cup across to P----, "there's some real
Mocha for you."

P---- raised the cup to his lips.

"Capital!" he exclaimed, taking breath after a long pull.

"So it is!" reiterated R----, expelling a tremendous and satisfactory
cloud of smoke that took the shape of a balloon, and ascending towards
the cottage beams, puzzled me, by its great dilatation, to think, how
such a gigantic volume of sooty exhalation, as Dr. Johnson would say,
could be compressed into a small compass, like R----'s mouth.

When pacification took place, and conciliatory explanations were made
over and over again, R---- and P----, tumbling out their flies,
commenced to repair those that had been damaged by the fish, and
manufactured others, more suitable to the transparent water, and the
timidity of the salmon. While they were thus engaged, I loitered about
in the open air.

The day was hot to oppression; and it required no flight of the
imagination to forget that the country was Norway, and fancy myself in
the interior of Congo. Numerous insects, that flew with a droning noise
about me, and a multitude of adders basking in the sun, or hurrying
through the grass as I approached, gave new force to the illusion.

In the afternoon R---- and P---- caught thirty or forty salmon between
them. Such success made them determine to remain for some days longer at
Boom; but being desirous of a change of scene, as well as recreation, I
returned to the yacht, and sleeping on board that night, went the next
morning to Christiansand.

It was the 24th of June, known as St. John's Day; and on my arrival at
Christiansand, I learned that the festival was commemorated with great
ceremony by the Norwegians. Along the tops of the mountains, ever where
the eye wandered, piles of faggots, and old boats were collected
together, like funeral pyres. Men and women, children and dogs,
congregated in multitudes around them, watching for the set of sun; and
when the weary god sank down to rest, and with closing lids gave
darkness to the earth, a hundred bonfires simultaneously blazing forth
on the summits of the mountains, strove to reach his throne in the
meridian, and imitate the day. The sight was certainly fine, but could
not be compared with an ancient warlike and similar custom among the
Scottish Highlanders.

I called on some ladies and gentlemen whom I knew at Christiansand, and
learned a usage prevalent among the Norwegians, that should still more
endear their simplicity of heart, and the truthfulness of their
character, since it is void of all the artfulness and social fiction of
England. Approaching the house of a family, from the different members
of which we had received much kindness and hospitality, a servant met me
at the door, and while she was endeavouring to explain how much her
mistress was engaged, the eldest daughter of my fair hostess made her
appearance, and extending her hand to me, said, shaking her head,

"Herr, kan icca ta imod;" which meant, that I could not be received.
This is the usual phrase; and it tells you the simple fact, that the
lady of the house is at home, but her domestic occupations press upon
her so much at the moment, that she is unable to receive you.



CHAPTER XV.

 SAILING UP THE GRON FIORD--DANGEROUS SWELL--EXCURSION
 ASHORE--TROUT-FISHING--MOUNTAIN SCENERY--ANT-HILLS--
 HAZARDOUS DRIVE--THE SCOTTISH EMIGRANT--MISERABLE
 LODGING--CONDITION OF THE PEASANTRY--A VILLAGE
 PATRIARCH--COSTUME OF THE COUNTRY-PEOPLE--ARRIVAL AT
 FÆDDE.


On Wednesday, the 30th, we left Boom, having, during the ten days R----
and P---- had remained there, caught two hundred and sixty-four salmon.

On the afternoon of Wednesday, we landed at Christiansand for an hour,
to arrange a few accounts, and then sailed for the Gron Fiord.

The night was calm, and the sea smooth as a mirror. At noon the
following day, we were once more in sight of the Naze, and, signalling
for a pilot, elicited an instant answer from a solitary cottage standing
on the barren promontory. The swell was terrific; and as soon as the
pilot could contrive to scramble on board, we ran the vessel up the
lesser channel of the Gron Fiord to escape the sea. The violence of the
waves was more dangerous, as scarcely a breath of wind filled the sails;
and we were apprehensive that a huge spar like the boom swinging to and
fro, would carry away the mast by the board.

Leaving directions with D---- that the yacht should meet us in the Fædde
Fiord, R---- suggested that we should take an excursion inland. The
proposal was no sooner given than it was taken up gladly; and hiring a
mountaineer for our guide, who had jostled himself on board to see all
that he could, we started in the gig for a small village, the name of
which I forget, about sixteen miles further up the Fiord. What with
rowing, and sailing, under the favour of sudden puffs of wind which
nearly capsized us a dozen times, we came in sight of the village at
five o'clock in the afternoon. The sail thither was very beautiful; the
lofty mountains on all sides giving the Fiord the romantic calmness and
changing shadows of a beautiful lake. The water, too, so clear and
shallow, left our minds at ease when the frequent gusts of warm air
breathed heavily on our sail, and made us regard their sallies down the
different ravines rather as the cause of sport, than the effect of
mischief.

Being without a forbud, or courier, we waited for horses, as a
consequence, several hours at a post-house on the bank of the Fiord.
Time, however, did not hang heavily on our hands, R---- and P----
finding some amusement in fishing for trout in a neighbouring stream,
and I was not the less entertained by observing the rapidity with which
one fish was caught after the other. The surface of the water swarmed
with these little creatures, and the fly was no sooner thrown to them,
than they fought for the bait.

In half an hour we returned to the post-house; and three dozen trout
were, in a short time, converted into a substantial dinner. The flesh,
however, was so impregnated with the taste of turpentine, that I
relinquished the greater portion of my share to others who were more
hungry, and not so dainty. Living almost entirely on fish caught by
ourselves, I had, on former occasions, incurred the loss of my dinner
through this disagreeable flavour, but could not discover its cause
until a glass of water, taken from the Larvig River, tasted so strongly
of the fir, that, I preferred the inconveniences of thirst to the means
of its alleviation. So much timber is floated from the interior to the
towns on the sea-coast, that the rivers retain the taste of the fir, and
even take from it a particular light yellow tinge, not to be seen in
those streams that are too small and shallow for rafts or boats. Some
kinds of fish, deriving their sole sustenance from these rivers, are
consequently saturated with turpentine.

After dinner we walked up a hill, down whose rugged side ran a rapid,
murmuring brook. The Fiord, surrounded by mountains, lay beneath us,
and, far away, we could see the boat that had brought us hither,
floating, like a white feather, slowly homewards to the yacht. The
blue-bell and fox-glove were growing on every hand, and the heath throve
in luxuriance, but, flowerless, seemed to miss the golden blossoms of
the furze.

Sauntering along, we could scarcely avoid stumbling over numberless
ant-hills, of considerable size and height, raised around the trunks of
fallen firs rent in two by the violence of the winter storms, or hewn
down to be converted into charcoal. Regardless alike of the sultry
summer heat and of us, how industriously the little people worked,
running hither and thither with pieces of stick, ten times larger than
themselves, and sometimes so ponderous, that half-a-dozen of them would
put their strength together, and pull them from one corner of their
dominions to the other! I observed a sturdy mechanic, hurrying, like a
thief, along the summit of this mound, fall headlong to the very base;
but immediately recovering his senses, seized his load again, and
mounted valiantly to his former elevation.

I threw my glove in the midst of them. Their confusion and dismay were
beyond all description; but collecting their self-possession, they
returned in a mob, and seemed to view attentively the great calamity
that had befallen them. They examined it in every position, some
burrowing inside and arriving at the top of the glove through a small
hole between the thumb and the forefinger; others, apparently chemists,
clustering round the button at the wrist, and testing its properties.
Gathering in groups, they appeared to consult whether such a peculiar
substance could be converted into use, or whether the glove should be
drawn by main force, and precipitated to the sow-thistle below. Unlike
any large assemblage of men that I have ever seen, they wasted no time
in long speeches, but speedily came to a decision; and approaching the
thumb of my glove, some thirty or forty stalwart artificers took hold of
the seam that passes inside, and pulled stoutly. The glove moved. This
was not lost on the congregated thousands; for their motions appeared to
be in approval of their countrymen; and I am convinced did they wear
hats, they would have flourished them in the air, or owned voices, would
have cheered vociferously. The whole community now took part in the
removal of my glove, and in a few seconds it began to crawl pretty
evidently towards the edge of the mound.

Busily engaged as all the ants were, they did not pay much attention to
the proximity of danger, and, I am sure, even with their sagacity, did
not think of it; but bearing the common nuisance towards the boundary of
their country, they were only bent upon ejecting it summarily. The
little finger of my glove first reached the side of the ant-hill, and
falling, like a paralyzed limb, suddenly over the brink, cast some forty
excellent folks, head over heels, with rapidity and great force to the
long grass beneath. Unconscious of this accident at the other extremity,
the ants who laboured at the thumb and its environs, continued with
violent jerks to draw the glove towards its destination; and when it had
come so near the sloping edge, that the locomotive power became its own,
it slid, like an avalanche, to the bottom of the mound, drawing nearly
the entire population along with it. Never were pismires so terrified
before; nor did arrow ever swifter cleave the air, as these insects
scrambled over the blades of grass and chips of wood. The agility with
which they climbed up their pyramidical nest was perfectly astonishing;
and when the nimblest of them arrived at the top, the perfect state of
confusion which seemed to pervade the whole community, and the
continuance and fervour with which they were stopped and addressed by
those who had escaped the mishap, were the monkeyism and perplexity of
man truthful to a degree.

Late in the afternoon we started on our journey. The road at every
corner unfolded the sublimest scenery, my imagination conceiving nothing
beyond the grandeur and wild magnificence of the rugged mountains whose
castellated peaks, gray and black with time and storm, were fretted into
all combinations of pinnacle and turret raised like fortifications out
of their perpendicular, blank sides. To allay the parching heat and
sombreness of scene, the roar of falling water reached the ear, and here
and there the eyes caught sight of wooden bridges clasping an angry
torrent. Enclosed by mountains of great height, shooting abruptly into
the air, the precipices both above and beneath the narrow highway were
most frightful to contemplate, and in many places it was overhung with
immense portions of rock. We were obliged to stoop in order to avoid
striking our heads against them, and to keep the middle of the road, no
other precaution being taken to hinder a restive horse from falling into
the hideous gulf, than one or two stones piled on each other. The sharp
turn of the road, too, would appear at a distance to terminate at the
edge of a precipice; but when the spot was reached, this was found to be
mere deception, the angular corners of the road being most acute; and,
should a horse plunge in turning, or back, no human interference could
stay an instantaneous death.

A difficult descent brought us to a valley, shut in on all sides by
lofty mountains; and stopping our jaded horses by a rivulet, we had time
to observe another ascent, as steep as any we had yet encountered in
Norway. Looking along a ravine on the left hand, far as the eye could
see, the blue mountains, capped with snow, upon whose eminences rested
the brilliancy of the setting sun, were contrasted grandly with the
gloom and shadow of the nearer valley. Leaping from rock to rock, even
from the mountain's peak, cascades poured down their waters in every
direction, sparkling like columns of molten silver through the dark
green foliage of the fir and pine.

We commenced the ascent. Left to themselves, our horses exercised much
sagacity in overcoming every difficulty; for, occasionally making a
strong effort, they would gain ten or twenty yards upwards, and then,
halting of their own accord, plant their fore legs entirely under them
to recover their wind. But in spite of every indulgence, it was
disheartening to see the perspiration dripping, like a fountain, from
the flanks and stomachs of the animals, while they panted for breath.
Toiling up the acclivity, we arrived, at last, at the summit of the
mountain; and although the elevation must have been several thousand
feet above the level of the sea, a plain of great extent, inclining
slightly downwards to the north-west, and without the vestige of a
shrub, spread before us. Alighting from our carrioles, we stood on the
highest point of the mountain, and looking down the opposite side almost
perpendicularly beneath us, a beautiful lake suddenly broke upon the
view, the verdant banks of which, fringed with cottages, meandered for
many miles along a still, romantic valley. Down the sides of the
mountains that encompassed this valley, and with whose rocky heads we
had an equal altitude, hundreds of cascades were seen leaping among the
riven crags, and hid for a time from sight by the firs, would burst
again upon the eye, and roll in one large spout of foam down the
ravines, till they mingled with the sleeping waters of the lake now
thrown into deep shadow by the gigantic mountains, and ended day.

Taking up our abode for the night with a Scotsman, whose cottage we
found through the assistance of one of our skydsguts, we strove to make
ourselves as comfortable as circumstances would admit. This gentleman,
who had left his native land with the laudable motive of teaching
husbandry to the Norwegians, and with the ulterior chance of making his
fortune, discovered that the Norwegian farmers were as steadfast to the
aboriginal mode of cultivating their land, as he was ambitious of
becoming rich, and so, like a sensible man, when he found that his
agricultural scheme had failed, and retreat homewards, for want of
means, was impracticable, he wedded a Norwegian woman, and renting a
tract of land, turned farmer on his own account. All that his frugal
wife had collected for household use among these solitary mountains,
milk, eggs, and salmon, was freely offered to us; and having brought our
own tea and sugar, together with a few bottles of beer, we easily made a
wholesome meal. After we had supped, our host said that his house was
small, and his sleeping accommodation still more limited; but if we
could arrange between ourselves, as to the appropriation of one bed, and
a small sofa, he would be proud indeed to shelter us for the night.

We cast lots. R---- won the bed, and P---- the sofa. I might sleep where
I could, how I could, and when I could. However, things are so wisely
ordained in this world, even the most trivial, that I do not know
whether a man should not be as much elated with failure, as with
success. Who can tell the result of any undertaking?

At that "witching hour of night when churchyards yawn," we also had a
touch of the gaping fit, and thought of rest. The room in which we had
supped, was likewise our bed-room; and the bed and sofa, huddled cozily
in one corner of the apartment, carried comfort and enticement on their
spotless counterpanes. Joking, and suggesting all manner of plans for my
repose, R---- took off his coat, and sat down on his bed. No sooner had
he done so, than one might have thought his mattress was stuffed with
dried leaves or panes of glass, such a rustling and crackling ensued.

"By Jupiter!" exclaimed R----, starting from his seat, and clapping the
palm of his right hand to that part of his body that had caused the
hubbub; and then turning about, placed his other disengaged hand on the
bed, and said with an astonished voice and face,

"Damme, this is all straw, covered with a sheet!"

And pressing the mattress in all quarters, he seemed determined to
ascertain whether it were the fact, or, simply, the wandering of his
imagination. A piece of yellow straw, plucked from a central hole in the
sheet, was amply authenticating. P---- took the alarm; and plunging both
fists into the middle of his sofa, met with a soft composition of
juniper-leaves and common moss. A pleasant sort of foundation to sleep
upon, on a broiling summer's night, with the thermometer at 85°!
However, the fun had only just commenced, and laughing heartily I made a
pillow of a couple of boat-cloaks, and wrapping myself, like a mummy,
in a white great-coat, stretched myself on the floor. The boards were
sanded, and so, when I turned, I sounded like a piece of sand-paper
scrubbing a grate. That was the extent of my inconvenience. I slept
soundly; and I may have done so for an hour, or two, when some one in a
low tone of voice called to me. It was R----.

"Well, what is it?" I said.

"Lord!" he replied, "this bed is full of bugs and fleas. What the devil
shall I do?"

"I don't know," I answered, half asleep;--"scratch yourself."

Seemingly in acquiescence with my advice, a violent scratching issued
from P----'s corner of the room; and then a heavy sigh, peculiar to a
sleeping person, succeeded. Twisting about and blowing his breath with a
puff, as people do in hot weather, or when tormented, each time R----
moved, his straw-mattress yielded to his weight with the same noise as
the skin of a roasting-pig yields to the incision of a carving-knife.

"I can't stand this any longer," at length he exclaimed, and shooting
out of bed, walked up and down the room, scratching and fuming as if he
had just escaped from an ant's nest. Infuriated by the irritation of the
flea-bites, he could not do otherwise than stumble over everything that
came in his way; and the long nails of his naked toes coming in contact
with my ear, soon set me on my head's antipodes.

"Gracious heavens!" I exclaimed, smarting with pain; "why don't you
remain in bed, instead of stalking up and down the room all night long?"

"Go and remain there yourself," retorted R----, in no happy frame of
mind. "I won't be eaten up by bugs and all kinds of beastliness, for any
one."

"Yes; but you can keep your nails to yourself," I replied; and having
great faith in the power of friction, commenced rubbing my ear.

The silentness of death succeeded, interrupted only by the long, loud
breathing of P----, and the low, melancholy howl of wolves in the
mountains.

With regrets and earnest protestations never to leave the yacht again,
R---- and I wore the night away. P---- remained impregnable to the
attacks of bugs, fleas, and mosquitoes; and while he told us, in a
sonorous language of his own, how profoundly he slept, he sometimes gave
mechanical signs of feeling by scratching obstreperously his legs and
arms, and slapping himself smartly on the face.

Early the subsequent morning we took leave of our host, and regardless
of the intense heat, made the best of our way towards Fædde. The
peasantry along the road we travelled appeared to descend in
wretchedness the farther we advanced; and nothing could exceed the
poverty exhibited in the outward appearance of their hovels. At every
station where we stopped, misery, by exterior marks, stood dominant; and
one post-house, the last before we arrived at Fædde, was divested of
every comfort, and looked more dreary than all the others we had seen.
The whole family were partaking of their scanty meal spread on a deal
table, yet smooth as marble, and brilliant as a polished sword.
Surrounded by a gang of children, some grown to maturity, men and women,
and others only infants, the poor patriarch sat pale and sickly at the
family board; and the melancholy shade that kept flitting over his
countenance, though he smiled and rose to greet us, told of some blight
that had fallen on his hopes; for he resumed his seat apart, and
crossing his thin hands on his lap, gave no other notice of his presence
than an occasional sigh, uttered deeply and involuntarily. Except the
old man, they all eat fast and greedily of a kind of white mixture, or
porridge, collected in a large wooden basin.

Leaving this place, we pursued our journey through a country intersected
by rugged mountains, whose summits, denuded of all verdure, rose high
and imposingly to Heaven, but their bases were clothed with the cheerful
birch, the fir and pine, and here and there, a little knoll of grass
shining, like an emerald, amid this wilderness of rock. Herds of cattle,
interspersed with goats and sheep, hung over the edges of the
precipices, browsing on the tufts of green food that sprouted from the
jagged crags. The road wound through narrow mountain-passes, nearly
choked up with huge fragments of rock, the parent mountains on either
hand rising perpendicularly to an enormous height; and where a ravine
yawned, as if to cheer the heart and eye saddened and wearied by the
desolate monotony of stony fell and inhospitable hill, a forest of firs
would creep, sloping, to their very summits. Far above our heads, only
the fleecy clouds breaking into a variety of forms as they moved slowly
along the mountain sides, and the raven's hoarse cry, or the shrill
scream of the eagle, broke the prevailing solitude of scene and sound.

Many of the peasants whom we encountered on the way, wore red caps and
short jackets scarcely descending below their arm-pits, covered
elaborately with small conical silver buttons; and while some of them
concluded their attire with breeches extending to the knees and there
clasped with buckles, others, more fantastic in taste, preferred the
loose trowsers of the Ottoman. Hair, prodigiously long, flowing slovenly
over the shoulders, was common to all. Hats were worn, but they may be
exceptions. A blue petticoat, blue as their beautiful sky, and a jacket
bound by a scarlet sash around the waist, and a coloured silk kerchief
wreathed about the head, its two ends projecting, like the wings of
Mercury's cap, behind each ear, appeared to constitute the ordinary
costume of the Norwegian peasant women.

On the morning of the fifth day since we had left the Gron Fiord,
driving up a steep and winding road we reached the top of a magnificent
range of mountains, and glancing over an intervening forest covered with
every variety of shade, that fir, pine, birch, and grassy glades could
afford, the eye rested on the village of Fædde, with its forty houses
and single wooden church, bosomed in a luxuriant, green valley, on the
opposite shore of the Fiord. A thousand feet beneath, on the blue water,
floated the yacht with flapping canvass, and bearing all the appearance
of having outstripped us in the journey only by a very few minutes. The
picturesque beauty of the Fiord was increased by being distinctly seen
from a commanding site, and the bold outlines of its frowning headlands
jutted one beyond the other nearly into the centre of the Fiord, till
they were mingled in colour with the distant ocean, of which a glimpse
could just be caught. The sea gulls frequenting this Fiord, flew around
us and screeched amid the universal silence which was broken by the roar
of waterfalls, concealed from sight by the dark forest, but the
sparkling stream, bursting at times upon the view, would flow a little
way in the broad daylight, then steal as suddenly again from observation
in its circuitous course.

An immense pram, larger than the launch of a frigate, and rowed by two
natives, bore us sluggishly to the cutter.



CHAPTER XVI.

 RETURN TO THE YACHT--POOR JACKO--ASCENDING THE
 STREAM--DESCRIPTION OF THE FÆDDE FIORD--ADVENTURES
 OF AN ANGLER--SAIL TO THE BUKKE FIORD--THE
 FATHOMLESS LAKE--THE MANIAC, AND HER HISTORY--THE
 VILLAGE OF SAND--EXTRAORDINARY PECULIARITIES OF
 THE SAND SALMON--SEAL-HUNTING--SHOOTING GULLS--THE
 SEAL CAUGHT--NIGHT IN THE NORTH.


"I hope, my Lord," observed D----, as he stood at the gangway of the
yacht, and handed the man-ropes to R----, "you have had a pleasanter
voyage than we."

"Why? Has any accident occurred?" asked R----, anxiously.

"No, my Lord, no accident," continued D----; "but since your Lordship
left us, a gale of wind has been blowing from the south-west; and
knowing your Lordship would have no home until the cutter came round to
this place, I thought it best to thrash our way to Fædde in the best
manner we could."

"Oh! yes; you did right," replied R----; "but, I hope, you did not
strain the craft."

"No, my Lord, no," answered D----.

"How did she behave?" inquired R----.

"Beautifully, my Lord, beautifully," rejoined D----, rubbing his hands,
and casting his eyes up the spars towards the top-mast, which was still
struck. "We had three reefs in the main-sail, and still she made nine
knots against a heavy sea. You see, she is wet, my Lord. The sea made a
clean breach, both fore and aft."

"Ah! it won't hurt her," said R----, in a confident tone, while he
approached the companion, and began to descend into the cabin. P---- and
I had already preceded him. Every thing below seemed in the greatest
medley. The four chairs, lying on the floor, stuck their sixteen legs
right up in the air; and the books, with their covers horribly
distorted, were scattered in every corner. The sofa pillows appeared to
have been playing "bo-peep" with each other, for three had hid
themselves under one sofa, and the fourth I found in the after-cabin,
jammed between my portmanteau and the bulk-head. Nothing was in its
place, and all things were suffering the completest discomfort.

"Hollo!" exclaimed R----, as soon as he entered; "what's the row?"

"The bell is broken, my Lord," replied the steward. This was a favourite
hand-bell of R----; and any injury to it so entirely occupied his
sympathy, that, the steward generally parried a minute cross-examination
by referring, when he could, to the ill, or well, being of this bell.

"Is _that_ all?" answered R----.

"No, my Lord," said the steward, pursuing his narrative, seeing the bell
had failed; "three decanters, four couples of soup-plates, and----"

"Hang the plates!" interrupted R----; "how is Jacko?"

"Not so hearty, my Lord," replied the steward.

"Why, what's the matter with him, eh?" asked R----, going to the sofa,
and lying down. He was accustomed to do this when, on his return home,
he desired to know what had occurred in his absence.

"He went into the pantry, my Lord," the steward continued, "when my back
was turned, and while he was looking about him in one of the cupboards,
the vessel took a lurch to port, and unshipping the cruet-stand, emptied
the pepper-pot in his eye, my Lord."

"What was he doing there?" demanded R----.

"Up to his tricks again, my Lord," replied the steward, drily.

"Is he much hurt?" R---- asked.

"No, my Lord; not much," said the steward.

"Have you done anything for the eye?" continued R---- in his
interrogation.

"Cook has put on a poultice, my Lord," answered the steward, "a piece of
raw beef."

"Oh! that's it, is it?" replied R----, quietly, regaining his
self-possession.

"Yes, my Lord," rejoined the steward, with firmness, holding a positive
belief in his own, and the cook's efficacious remedy.

"Well," observed R----, with deliberate quaintness, "don't _boil_ it in
our soup afterwards."

"No, my Lord," and the steward took his leave, understanding his
master's disposition, and knowing that his dialogues with him generally
resulted in a compliment to the traditionary cleanliness of persons in
his office.

In the afternoon we went farther up the Fiord, about five miles to the
north-east of the village of Fædde. The Fædde Fiord is of great depth,
and in a circular bay to which we had now sailed, no anchorage for a
vessel of the yacht's tonnage could be found. Running her, therefore,
into a bight, ropes from the bow and stern were made fast to a couple of
firs, and by belaying them taut, the cutter was kept clear from the base
of a mountain that rose, straight as the mast, out of the water to an
altitude of several thousand feet. This was the most beautiful and
romantic spot of which the imagination of a poet might dream. The bay
was about half a league in circumference, and a perfect circle in form.
To the east, south, and west, were mountains covered nearly to their
peaks with thick forests of fir; and when the dispersion of the clouds
revealed their gray summits, many cascades, like thin pillars of light,
darted down the rocks; and the eye, following their track, could trace
their increasing bulk as they rolled along from crag to glen, bounding,
gliding, foaming, till they fell, roaring, with collected volume, into
the waters of the bay. The sound of these cascades during the heat of
the day was not only pleasant to the ear, but still more delightful was
the feeling of freshness it conveyed to the mind.

To the north a piece of level land, made into an island by the severed
branches of a river, bore, by its position, all the beauty and aptitude
for human habitation that nature could bestow; and the clean, white
cottages with their red roofs and spires of ascending smoke, its gardens
with their symmetrical flower-beds, and its cultivated fields, teemed
with every sign of ease and plenty, and revealed the ingenuity of man.
Beyond the northern limit of this island, far away in the interior, the
blue outlines of the mountains were drawn with a darker tint upon the
kindred colour of the sky, and their snowy scalps thrust to Heaven,
seemed to claim priority of creation and rule with patriarchal dominion
over the lesser hills. The main river ran along the eastern quarter of
the island, leaping and flowing over and under the rocky ledges of a
mountain, and its stream, sometimes expansive, then contracted, hurried
down a bed of scanty depth.

As the sole pursuit of my two companions was the circumvention and death
of numberless salmon, the same evening on which we arrived a start was
made for the salmon pools on the other side of the island. In the course
of an hour the pools were reached, and having gone through the usual
forms, such as solicitation for permission to fish, and the hire of two
prams, R---- and P---- began their accustomed labour. Taking, as
customary, my position on some elevated spot, whence a good range of all
my two friends' operations might be had, I strove to pass away the time
by staking bets with myself whether one fish could be caught in thirty
casts, or whether, on an average, twice as many minutes would elapse
without such a result. My left hand generally took the odds, and I
calculated that it won four times out of five.

The sun had set for many hours, but it was light as noon. Wearied with
fruitless watching, I lay down on the grass. Stretched at full length on
my back, and having read in astronomical works that, looking upwards
from a dark hole dug in the earth, the stars might be seen shining at
mid-day, I covered my face with my cap, and peered upwards at the sky
through a small hole in the crown. But my philosophy was suddenly
interrupted by the solution of another remarkable fact, and of more
personal moment than the scintillation of the stars, by finding I had
put my head in an ant's nest. I started to my feet, affirming that I
had never been so unwary before. But I am a believer in predestination,
and know that this accident could no more fail of occurrence, than that
from my cradle, in harmony of order, it should fail being traced, link
by link, to the instant at which it came upon me. See, now, its
consequences. No sooner had a score of angry ants been brushed from my
hair, in which their irritability had entangled them, than I was
gratified with the sight of a herculean salmon that rose completely out
of the water, and sprung, like a ravenous cat, at P----'s fly, which he
had just withdrawn from the water, intending to change it for another of
a brighter colour. The fish leapt about a foot and a half above the
surface of the stream, and was the largest salmon I ever saw, weighing,
I should think, between fifty and sixty pounds. If sharks inhabit the
Fædde river, I would not pledge my word it was not one. I yield,
however, my opinion to that of my gallant friend, who is a better
sportsman than myself and asserts, without any mental reservation, that

 "It was a salmon, sir,--a salmon."

Be it as it may, the difference of classification has nothing to do with
my story.

The Norwegians, I know, are a bold people, but may sometimes be taken
unawares, as well as other men, and though they live and think in the
simple and primitive manner of the Mosaic era, they express the signs
and feelings of apathy and surprise, with similarity of silence and
spasmodic gestures to Indians and Englishmen. This world, too, is
certainly a world of incongruities, and the more I see of it, the more I
am biased in that way of reflection; and if any one will take the
trouble to look at things as they are, abstractedly, and observe how
good, bad and indifferent, black, white and blue, are jumbled together,
he will not deny me his assent. It so happened, throughout our travels
in Norway, and, indeed, whenever we went on these fishing excursions,
that R----, who gave little expression to success in his pastime, nor
felt annoyed at failure, invariably obtained the services of the most
expert boatmen, while P----, who threw heart and soul into everything he
undertook, and always swerved under discomfiture, secured with the same
invariableness the aid of the most consummate clowns; and the rewardless
termination of his toil, or tact, has been mainly attributable to the
thick-headedness of those who should have assisted him with their
sagacity. Scarcely, then, had this bulky salmon shown his mouth,
literally an ugly one, above the water, than P----'s boatman, instead of
keeping silence, and subduing his fears, as any reasonable being would
do, raised an immediate shout of horror, and during the paroxysms of
dismay, dipped his two sculls negligently into the stream, and in his
anxiety to make a few rapid strokes towards the shore, caught, what is
nautically called, a couple of crabs, that caused him to lose his
balance, and fall, legs uppermost, with a loud crash backwards to the
bottom of the pram. His aspiring feet, taking P---- in the flank with
the purchase of a crow-bar, raised him from the diminutive poop-deck of
the pram on which he was standing; but some part of P----'s apparel
giving way to the weight of his body, told its mute love of gravitation,
and desire to prevent any further mischief. As it was, P---- narrowly
escaped submersion; and his presence of mind alone saved the fly-rod
from any more serious damage than a slight fracture of the top joint.
The untimely vociferation of the Norwegian interrupted of necessity any
plan P---- might have adopted to secure the salmon; for the assault made
so unexpectedly on his person seemed, like an electric shock, to pursue
its course throughout his whole frame, and rushing to the tips of his
fingers sent the rod, at a tangent, bolt into the air.

About sixty yards from the inlet where the yacht was anchored, stood a
cottage, tenanted by a woman and her daughters, two girls about fourteen
and fifteen years of age, elegant as Indians, in form, and possessing
the flowing fair hair, the large, round, loving, languid, blue eye, and
the unaffected simplicity of bearing, and native loveliness of their
clime. Every morning they brought us milk, eggs, and strawberries, and
seemed to find great delight in listening to our language, and,
observing the routine of a vessel carried on with all the regularity of
a ship of war; for, with their little bare feet that escaped from their
blue gowns, and shone on the black rocks, like the white moss of the
rein-deer, they would sit for hours on the crags above us, clinging to
each other and explaining the reason why the bell struck at certain
intervals of time, and why the firing of the evening gun made the flag
to fall, as if by magic, from the mast-head to the deck.

On Sunday morning, the 11th of July, we took leave of Fædde, and
started, with a foul wind, for the Bukke Fiord. Being in want of bread,
we were obliged to anchor off the village, in order to supply our
stores; and having accomplished our object with less difficulty than we
had anticipated, we set off fairly, at one o'clock, for our destination.

The wind had been increasing the whole morning, and veering two points
from the south toward the south-west, now blew with the fury of a gale.
The shifting gusts, as they careered down the valleys, taking the head
sheets, first, on the weather, then, on the lee, bow, made us more tardy
than usual in getting up the anchor. Being the Sabbath, greater crowds
of people were abroad than on other days; and we could see, with our
telescopes, ladies and gentlemen standing or sitting, in large numbers,
in the churchyard, watching our manœuvres with much interest. On the
brows of the headlands, the peasants, both men and women, viewed with
surprise our determination to put to sea on such an inauspicious day,
and in such stormy time; but when the cutter swung, so that the anchor
could be heaved, they could not refrain from loud expressions of praise
to see her gallant trim, and the pride of buoyancy with which she swam
the baffling waves.

At six o'clock in the evening, when we had stood out five or six miles
from the land, a calm fell; and when the sun declined, his disc,
expanded by the vapours of the mighty mountains at the mouth of the
Bukke Fiord, threw a gleam of golden light from peak to peak that,
glancing along the water, even came and danced upon our deck, and
dazzled the helmsman with its oblique light.

On Monday morning when I went on deck, I found that we had entered the
Bukke Fiord; and the same ravines, chasms, and cascades, identified the
sublimity of the scenery with that which I have already attributed to
the other Fiords. As we sailed along, the Fiord would expand into the
broad surface of a lake, and anon diminish to the narrow breadth of a
river hemmed in between two rocky banks. Smiling and still as a sleeping
child, and calmer than the watching mother, the water, undisturbed by a
breath of wind, lay without a ripple; and no cloud on the pure sky above
us intercepted the vertical rays of the sun, that descended with
intolerable heat; and, while panting beneath the piercing beams, we
turned towards the snow-clad mountains, and strove to bear the warmth by
looking on their glistening summits; but the tantalization was still
greater to see large patches of snow lying low down between the crevices
and deep glens, places where the sun had never shone, and to feel no
breath of cool air come to refresh us. Not a human habitation rose to
the sight, and no living creature, not even the gull, or smallest bird,
broke with its note the solemn stillness.

The pilot told us, that this Fiord had never been fathomed, and he
supposed it had no bottom. This was intelligence sufficiently
interesting to rouse all on board into activity; and a lead line of
eighty fathoms was nimbly brought on deck.

"I have heard say, my Lord," observed the sailing master to R----, "that
if a bottle be corked ever so tightly, and lowered to a certain depth in
the water, the water will find its way into the body of the bottle. Is
that true, my Lord?"

"Of course it is," replied R----.

D---- rather hesitated in his credulity, and to persuade him of the
fact, a bottle was tied to the line, and sunk in the water. At seventy
fathoms it was drawn up, and to D----'s astonishment the water had
nearly filled the bottle to its neck. He took the bottle in his hand,
and peering at the cork, which had been driven to float on the water
inside, said that some trick had been played.

"I don't think, my Lord," observed D----, "the cork was large enough,
and of course the weight of water, at any trifling depth, will force it
inwardly."

"You are incredulous as Didymus," said R----. "Here, bring a champagne
bottle."

A champagne bottle was brought, cork and all.

"Will you be satisfied now, D----?" continued R----. "It is quite
impossible that this cork can be too small; for you see, the upper part
of it overhangs the lip of the bottle."

"I see, my Lord," answered D----; "that's all fair enough."

And D---- took a piece of yarn, and lashed the cork at the sides and
over the top, having previously with a small stick rammed his
handkerchief into the body of the bottle, and wiped it perfectly dry.

"Let it go," said R---- to one of the men, who made the bottle fast to
the line, and did as he was commanded. D---- challenged the mate with an
equal shilling that the bottle would be water tight; and the mate, like
a sage, accepted the bet. As balance to the overlapping cork, we gave
the champagne bottle the whole length of the eighty fathoms; and then,
drawing it up, found the cork had not been moved an iota; but the
bottle was full of water.

D---- shook his head, and paid the shilling.

I do not think D---- will ever doubt any phenomena again, as he is ready
to admit the hardest truths of Science, however whimsical they may
appear, or sound to him. Indeed he believes most things, and only
mistrusts shoals and lee shores, to which he never fails to give a wide
berth.

"Now we are about it," said R----, "let us try and find the bottom."

When King told the pilot what we were going to undertake, the old man
laughed, and said we might try; but the Fiord was as deep as the
mountains were high. Another line of a hundred fathoms was joined to the
one with which we had been making the experiments to shake the
infidelity of the heterodox D----, and lowered. No weigh was on the
cutter; and two leads, being fixed to the line, were thrown over the
quarter, and leaving a perpendicular track of froth, descended, hissing
through the water. The whole hundred and eighty fathoms ran out; and we
seemed as far from the bottom of the Fiord as we were before we
commenced. Some idea may be conceived of the amazing depth of these
Fiords, when I say, that the yacht was not one hundred and twenty yards
from the shore, and the entire breadth of the Fiord about two miles.
The pilot again came aft, and through his interpreter, King, informed us
that the Fiord had never been plumbed, although the endeavour had been
made very frequently by scientific men, and Danish naval officers.

Not many miles from the village of Sand, the place to which we were
bound, on one of the sloping woodland swards that cheer by their vivid
verdure the loneliness of the Bukke Fiord, a small cottage, thatched
with the branches of the fir, may attract the traveller's observation,
and if he does not look around attentively he will not see it, for it is
low, and sheltered by the spreading arms of an old pine. The waters of
the Fiord flow not many feet from its humble threshold; and perhaps,
fastened to a stake, a fisherman's pram swings to the changing currents
of air. Now, however, as the cutter drifted, rather than sailed, nearer
to this green point of land, we saw that the pram had been untied from
the stake, and was rowed by an old woman round and round, in an unending
circuit, in midway of the Fiord. Often she ceased to row, and unfolding
a white handkerchief from her head bared her whiter hair to the burning
sky, and waved the signal in the air. Shouting with the shrill voice of
her sex and age, she beckoned us to hasten to her aid. Then, hobbling
from one end of her pram to the other, and moving quickly from side to
side she leaned over and looked steadfastly down in the water, as if
something valuable had been lost. When she saw we made no haste, she
resumed her seat, and singing a native song that had more of liveliness
than melancholy in its burden, again she rowed her pram round the same
circle, never deserting the spot, but whistling and chanting by turns,
she kept her face turned in one direction, that she might always watch
the central surface of the water.

"What means that old woman?" asked R---- of several men who were
observing her, and, clustering round the pilot, seemed to be gathering
all the information he could give.

"She is mad, my Lord," the sailors made reply.

"Mad!--why mad?" repeated R----.

"The pilot says, my Lord, that she is so, and looking for her husband,"
the cockswain answered.

"Where's her husband? Is he drowned, eh?" continued R----.

"No, my Lord," the sailor said, twitching up his trowsers, and walking
aft towards the quarter-deck; "her husband was a fisherman, and lived
hard by, my Lord,--up there. About fifteen years ago the man was bathing
hereabouts, and he was eaten up by mackerel; but the old woman thinks,
my Lord, he has only dived, and soon will rise again."

And so indeed the legend goes. One morning, fifteen summers past, the
poor fisherman plunged into the element, that had been his sole
sustaining friend from youth, to bathe, and before scarce fifteen
minutes had elapsed, surrounded by a shoal of mackerel, and in sight of
home and her who made it home, was devoured by these ravenous fish. When
he raised his arms from out the water to show the dreadful fate that
threatened him, and to rouse the alarm of his unconscious wife, a
hundred mackerel hung, like plummets, from the flesh. The fisherman
sank, and was never seen or heard of more. From that morning until
to-day his widow, having lost her reason, ever rows her husband's pram
about the spot where he perished, in the full persuasion, which she
certifies in her song, that he has gone to seek a sunken net, and in a
little while will emerge again; and, so, she prays the crew of every
vessel sailing by to stay and see the truth of what she speaks.

We arrived at Sand the same afternoon, and after ransacking the little
place from house to house, found the proprietor of the salmon river
there. With the good nature and extreme courtesy of his countrymen, the
Norwegian gave assent that we might angle, and not only favoured my two
indefatigable friends with a prolonged dissertation on the peculiarities
of the Sand salmon, but offered to undertake any duty that might lessen
the difficulties and increase the chances of taking a few of these
extraordinary fish.

It seems that the time when a salmon has been caught with a fly in the
Sand river is completely beyond the memory of the oldest inhabitant of
the village; nor is the task less difficult to snare this crafty species
in a net. On our arrival on the banks, or more properly rocks, of the
river, the salmon were thrusting their heads, like the bubbles of a
boiling pot, above the water; and leaping from one ledge of rock to a
higher, they were striving to make their way, in battalions, up a foss,
that was of no great height, but poured down its waters in a compact
flood with the din of a larger cataract. Persuaded as we had been of the
improbability that success would attend our sport, our spirits became
more buoyant as our attendant, by his despairing tone, made our
prosperity less likely.

All the most famous fishermen have visited this little river of Sand,
and after adopting every mode, all of them have failed to take the fish.
Although the salmon float within sight and reach in the most transparent
stream, they will not touch the fly, be it thrown even on their noses.
The only reason that can be given for this notorious fact is, that the
salmon, when they leave the sea, are generally gorged, and do not
desire, or seek for food until they have travelled some distance up the
rivers; for it is equally well ascertained that the farther the first
foss is removed from the mouth of a salmon river, the more voracious are
the fish. Now, the foss, or fall of the Sand river, is scarcely five
hundred feet from the shore of the Fiord, and the water is salt, or, at
least, brackish; and salmon are not caught in salt water.

It was certainly most annoying to my two companions, to see thousands of
the finest fish gamboling in the crystal water, not far from their feet,
and to throw their flies with the accumulated nicety of four Waltons,
absolutely in the teeth of these obstinate creatures, without the
semblance of success. I, myself, took R----'s rod, which with weariness
of hope he had laid on the ground, and seeing a splendid salmon two feet
below the surface of the stream, moving his fins slowly to resist the
current and remain stationary, I placed the fly above his head, allowing
the bait to sink gradually till it touched the top of his snout. The
fish did not, verily, alter the motion of its fins, either more
slothfully or quicker; but with perfect indifference permitted me to
keep the fly dangling before its eyes as long as I pleased.

To fish, therefore, at Sand was an absurdity; but having heard that the
Fiord abounded with seals, and wild fowl of every denomination, we
hoisted a square sail on the gig, and turned privateers.

The village of Sand is inclosed on three sides--north, east, and
south--by mountains; but before it, to the west, spread the broad waters
of the Fiord. The fragrant smell of uncultured flowers, the freshness of
the morning air, the serene loveliness of the sky and calm water, on
which the mountains with their peaks of snow were distinctly reflected,
even to the diminutive waterfall, and the whole solemn, yet sweet
character of the scenery, pressed upon me with an indefinite feeling of
delight and awe; and, sometimes yielding to the eternal aspirations and
impulsive passions of the soul, my heart heaved with gratitude, that I
had opportunity, health, and youth to see and feel with ardour the
infinity of God's good creation; and, then, I would relapse into the
humility of man's condition, the recollection of his trivial existence;
and the combination of excessive beauty filled my mind with sadness.

Arming ourselves with two guns and a rifle, we scoured the Fiord for
many miles round. No sooner did we fire at one seal that rose on the
gig's bow, than another would poke his rat-like head above the water, at
the stern, and a third and fourth on either beam. The report of our guns
was incessant; and the multitudes of crows, wild geese, ducks, eagles,
and gulls that croaked, and screamed, and whirled about above our heads,
to hear the echoes rattling among their silent fastnesses, were
incalculable.

Our seal-hunts, however, were most entertaining, and the excitement
relaxed not for an instant. The seal dives as soon as it is fired at, or
alarmed; but cannot remain for a prolonged period under water, nature
making it compulsory that the animal should ascend to the surface for
respiration. Having selected a particular seal, that appeared nearly as
large as a sheep, we were determined, by dint of perseverance, to hunt
it down. We divided our force in such a manner, that, rise where the
animal would, one of us must immediately see it; for R---- took the
starboard side of the gig, P---- went to port, and I stood at the stern,
while the two sailors, one being a crack shot, kept watch a-head. None
of us spoke; for the seal is as quick of hearing as of sight, and timid
to a proverb; but it was arranged, that, whoever saw it first was to
fire. We kept the boat broadside on, that is to say, her bow and stern
faced either shore, and her two sides swept, up and down, the entire
length of the Fiord. Regardless of myriads of gulls that flew close
round our heads, screaming angrily, we abated not in attention to the
water; and watched with straining eyes for the score of bubbles that
usually precede the rising of a seal; and the water being brilliant and
smooth as a looking-glass, they could not escape notice.

Up came a sleek head not twenty yards from me, and down it went again,
just in time before my rifle ball struck the eddying water; and at the
same instant both barrels of R----'s gun, discharged one after another,
made the drum of my ear ring.

"Two of them," he murmured. P---- and the sailor fired almost
immediately; but the seals were too quick for them. As fast as we could
load, these creatures kept rising around us; and they only seemed to
dive in order to spread the tidings below amongst their friends, for
they increased in numbers at each emersion. After firing a great
quantity of shot and powder to little purpose, we were making up our
minds to attack a rock covered with gulls, when a large seal rose within
reach of our oars, but sunk again the moment it discovered our
propinquity. In a few minutes afterwards, it bounced, head first, to the
top of the water, five-and-twenty or thirty yards from the boat; and
R---- and I having granted P---- the preference of first shot, he gave
the seal's full face the fuller benefit of a double charge of duck-shot.
We never saw the seal again, although we loitered about the spot for an
hour in the hope of finding its carcass. The cockswain persuaded us that
the seal was dead to a certainty; but that P---- had stowed such a
locker of shot in its head, it was too heavy to float.

The rock, moving like a huge living mass, being so thickly covered with
gulls, now attracted our attention; but we did not purpose to destroy
them for the mere sake of slaughter; for R---- had bought a couple of
young eagles a few days before, and it was necessary to procure food for
them.

"Let's pull to the rock," observed R----, "and see what we can do
there."

"I assent," said P----; "but we had better pull round to leeward, and
take them by surprise. What do you say, cockswain?"

"Yes, your Honour," replied the man, "we shall never be able to near
them as we pull now. Give the rock a wide berth, and get under the lee,
as your honour says."

"Pull away, then," said R----, to the two sailors; "but don't make a row
with your oars in the water."

The cockswain kept his eye on the rock, and, every now and then, hinted
to me the course I should steer; for I had taken the tiller.

"Port a little, your Honour," he said, in a voice hardly above a
whisper. The gig obeyed her helm instantly. We gradually came near to
the rock; and passing abreast of it, we could see the gulls basking in
the hot sun; some, standing on one leg, having the other drawn up under
the wing, and looking apathetically at us, while others arranged the
feathers of their tails, or breasts, with their bills, much after the
same fashion as ducks do, when they have been swimming in ponds, or
dabbling in puddles.

"Put your helm to starboard, your Honour," said the cockswain to me in a
quiet voice, "and bring her head right round."

I did as desired; and the men pulling noiselessly, the boat glided
towards the rock, like a needle to a magnet. The gulls had all
clustered to windward, and not one could be seen to leeward.

"I have no shot," I observed to R----, who sat just before me; "but only
balls."

"Never mind--they will do," R---- replied; "more credit to you if you
kill any."

Letting the tiller ropes loose, I allowed the boat to choose its own
course, and began to ram down my bullets. I tried two at a time. With a
slight grating, the keel of the gig touched a sunken piece of land, and
almost at the same time, its weigh was stopped entirely by the stem
coming in gentle contact with the main rock.

Like so many cats, we now crawled, without a sound, from the boat; and
P---- being the first to step on the rock, slipped back into the water.
The gurgling of the water as it ran over the tops of his jack-boots, and
the floundering P---- made to recover himself, alarmed two gulls, and
they flew, screaming, into the air. We crouched to the bare rock; and
these two sentinels, not distinguishing us from the colour of their
roosting place, took a few gyrations, and then re-perched themselves on
the rock. Aided by R---- and me, and the two sailors, P---- was got out
of the water; but it was no easy matter to accomplish this, for his
jack-boots had filled, to the brim, with water, and added considerably
to his natural weight.

We now stood fairly on the rock, prepared to encounter any given, or
ungiven quantity of birds or beasts.

"I say," observed R---- to me, in a low tone, "take a stone, or piece of
moss, or mud, or anything, and shy it amongst them--just for a start."

The cockswain, who was close behind me, had overheard R----, and being
more active than I, picked up a small pebble; and by way of giving
warning to R---- and P----, said, under his breath,

"Helm's a-lee, your Honour."

The clicking of their triggers answered the signal; and the missile
stone was tossed over the highest part of the rock in the midst of the
placid gulls. With the shrill screams of a thousand imps they darted
into the air.

"Blaze away, your Honours," shouted the cockswain, and mounting to the
top of the rock, endeavoured with an oar, which he handled like a flail,
to knock down every gull that came within reach. We all three fired at
the same instant, and some dozen gulls made a summerset in the air, and
with flapping wings and dangling legs, fell into the water. Those that
were not killed outright, screeched piteously as they floated on the
water. Their unscathed companions, with all the affection and courage of
the brute creation, hovered over their fallen kinsfolk, and descending
close to them, strove to bear them away with their beaks. Each time we
fired, the shock appeared to drive the gulls at a distance from us, as a
discharge of heavy artillery might cause a regiment of soldiers to
swerve backwards; but, as soon as the powder cleared away, these
pugnacious birds returned to the vicinity of the rock, screaming loudly;
and some of them were audacious enough to pounce upon our caps, and
wreak their vengeance by giving us one or two hearty pecks. The
cockswain, working like a telegraph with his swinging oar, generally
contrived to pick off these skirmishers.

"Load, your Honours, load," exclaimed the sporting cockswain;--"here
they come again."

And a whole shoal of gulls, like a troop of Arab cavalry, came, flying
with the speed of a whirlwind, to the attack. As soon as they were
within gun-shot, R---- and P---- gave the van the contents of two
tolerably good charges of large duck-shot, and I sent a couple of
bullets, making the third brace, right into a small division of the
approaching multitude. The surface of the water now appeared like a
field of turnips that had forced their bulky white bodies above the
earth, so thickly was it strewn with disabled and defunct gulls.

"Had those gulls not better be picked up?" said R----, while loading his
gun, to the cockswain.

"No, my Lord; let them be," replied the cockswain with as much
excitement in his face and manner, as if we had been bombarding a
strong citadel. "As long as there's one on the water, the others will
always come back; it's their love for one and t'other, my Lord."

A bevy of wild ducks now scoured the sky to windward, and quacking all
together, whirled round about in the air, and describing each circle
smaller and lower than the preceding one, approached the rock.

"Keep your weather eye up, your Honour," exclaimed the cockswain from
his commanding point to P----, who had not seen the advancing ducks;
"keep your weather eye up. Here they come; here's provender, your
Honour."

His remembrance, no doubt, returned to the eagles on board, and which,
by the bye, had been committed to his care. But the ducks kept a pretty
good elevation, being more timid, or wary than the gulls; and my rifle
now came into play. I took a random shot at the entire group just as it
was making a masterly evolution; and a drake, evidently the general
commanding, having ceased his quacking, and tumbling in tee-totum style
to the water, sufficiently proved how correctly I had, for the first
time, done my duty. The uproar of furious gulls and routed ducks was
never heard in these silent Fiords since the Flood to such a clamorous
extent; and I would not venture to say that the echoes were not as
surprisingly loud as the cries of the birds themselves. Urged on by the
entreaties and gesticulations of the warlike cockswain, the slaughter
lasted for an hour; but seeing that we had killed an ample quantity to
feed the eagles for some days, and remembering that powder and shot
could not be bought among the mountains of Norway, we retreated from the
rock, and getting into the boat, began to gather our game. This occupied
some little time; and after collecting a decent boatful, we lighted our
meerschaums, and floated homewards.

We might have proceeded nearly half way, when P---- suddenly dropped the
pipe from his mouth, and seizing his gun, fired it towards the shore,
from which we were not twenty feet, without uttering a word.

"Be quick--load!" he said, at last, to both of us, ramming down his own
charge as fast as he could. "Here's a seal."

"Where?" I asked,--"where?"

"Why, there," and he fired without any other explanation a second time
at the, apparently, bare rock.

"I see him, and here goes," said R----, and taking a deliberate aim,
fired also. "Missed him," he murmured.

I just caught a glimpse of the seal's flat tail, as the animal slided
from the rocky shore into the water.

"We have him," said P----, with brightened eyes, "if we act properly."

"There he is!" shouted one of the sailors, with a set of lungs that
might be needful in a gale, as the seal rose about ten feet from the
spot where it first sank.

"Don't make such a confounded row; you'd frighten the devil!" said
R----, to the seafaring Stentor.

"Beg pardon, my Lord," replied the man, in a low voice, and touching his
hat with a sheepish look.

"Keep the boat broadside on," observed R---- to the cockswain.

R---- had scarcely spoken, when the water bubbled a little, and the
seal's black snout, with dilating nostrils, rose close under the gig's
gunwale. The water whirled in eddies, and his tail, as he turned,
appearing slightly above the surface, showed me that the seal had seen
us, and dived again.

"He must come up in a minute; so, look out," whispered P----; and the
triggers of both barrels of his gun clicked, as he breathed the fact and
admonition. Fortunately the day was very calm, and the least
disturbance, the fall of the thistle's down, marred the bright surface
of the Fiord.

The head of the luckless seal soon peeped slowly up, a short way astern
of the boat, and before his eyes had risen above the water to take a
horizontal glance at us, P---- sent a handful, or so, of small shot into
his nose. Down popped the little dark proboscis speedily as thought.

"He hadn't much fresh air then," said R----, laughing at the promptitude
with which P---- saluted the appearance of the unfortunate seal.

"No; that's the way to do it," answered P----, smiling. Then turning to
the sailors, he said,

"Back astern."

The boat was accordingly backed, and so silently, that only the silvery
sound of the water as it fell, drop by drop, from the oars, contended
with the natural trickling of the ripples as they murmured under the
ledges of rock.

"Here he comes," whispered R----, "close on our quarter."

The seal rose, like a cork, up to its fore fins as if it had suffered
much torture from long retention of its breath, and, swifter than
thought, R----'s gun flashed, and with a sharp report seemed to take a
bucket of water from the Fiord, and fling it into the air. When the
light gray smoke of the powder had rolled in a revolving cloud from the
space intervening between us and the spot where the animal was observed,
the water was white with froth, but no sign of the seal could be seen.

"By Jove! that's odd. I thought I had killed him to a certainty," said
R----, somewhat surprised.

"Yes, my Lord, you hit him," observed the cockswain, consolingly. "I saw
him reel over to port."

"That's all right," said P----, "in that case he is done."

Once more two large bubbles, the spiteful heralds of the seal's advent,
rose to the top of the water, and then burst with a slight sound.

The purple dye of blood tinged the water, and immediately afterwards the
wounded seal, with lacerated fin, buoyed itself sluggishly to sight. Its
heavy breathing, expressive of pain, could be heard by all of us in the
boat; and levelling both their pieces, R---- and P---- fired together.
The seal rolled over with a moan, not unlike the faint lowing of a calf,
and floating in a pool of blood, rather than water, expired without a
struggle. Rowing the boat to the spot, the cockswain and his messmate
used their whole strength to pull the animal on board, its dimensions
not being contemptible. We reached the yacht about midnight, proud of
our day's sport.

Although it was the noon of night, it was light as at six o'clock in the
afternoon; and, indeed it is not an easy thing to tell the hour of the
day without referring to a time-piece; for there is but a very slight
difference in this part of the globe, during the summer months, between
the darkness of night and the transparency of day. This may sound
paradoxical enough; but the fact is no less true for all that. It would
be hardly necessary to observe, that the heat during the night in Norway
is sometimes more oppressive than during the day; and simply, I should
imagine, because, before the setting and rising of the sun, sufficient
time is not given to allow the ascending vapours to carry off the
fervour retained by the earth; and added to which the sun does not sink
at any period during the summer eighteen degrees below the horizon. His
rays therefore assist in keeping up the hot temperature until two or
three hours have elapsed, and then his great red face again begins to
parch every thing that dares come within its range. Norway being also a
very rocky country, absorbs the heat with wonderful facility, and as
every one may know, is disinclined to part with it. Returning home at
half-past twelve, or one, just before sunrise as I sometimes did, by
some shadowed path along the mountains, I have placed my hand on the
rocks, and found them still warm. The day, on the contrary, though
exposed to the direct power of the sun, has the atmosphere always cooled
by the wind, which is kept in motion more actively the hotter become the
sun's rays, the heat being a circulating medium of itself. Indeed the
departure of the sun is the signal for the wind's flight likewise; and
the night is generally painfully calm.

There is also another phenomenon that may rivet the observation of an
inhabitant of a more Southern latitude, and convey as much sublimity to
the mind, as it may be strange to the outward senses. I refer to the
appearance of a great Northern city at night. I shall not easily forget
Bergen, when for the first time, I walked through its streets at three
o'clock in the morning, and saw a bright sun in a blue sky shining over
it. Not a sound, beside my own footstep, disturbed the stillness; and
when I turned my eyes from the long, deserted avenues of streets and
closed windows of the houses, towards the mountains that droop sullenly
over the town, and sought there for some living sign to assure me that I
was not absolutely alone, not a bird or insect chirped or flitted on the
wing. I felt amid this desolation as if wandering in the fabled City of
Death; nor do I think that any man, the most elastic of disposition,
could bring to his heart any other feelings than those of awe and
sadness, when walking, as I did then, in the glare of day through the
thoroughfares of a populous city, he witnesses the silence and solemnity
that pervade it. I am glad that I have seen Bergen at midnight, for I
would see everything in this curious world; but the reflections that
troubled my mind were so much more than the sight was worth that I have
no desire to look again.



CHAPTER XVII.

 THE DANGEROUS STRAITS--BRITISH SEAMANSHIP--THE GLACIERS
 OF FOLGEFONDE--BERGEN--HABITS OF THE FISHERMEN--THE
 SOGNE FIORD--LEERDAL--ARRIVAL AT AURON--A HOSPITABLE
 HOST--ASCENDING THE MOUNTAINS--THE TWO SHEPHERDESSES
 --HUNTING THE REIN-DEER--ADVENTURE ON THE MOUNTAINS
 --SLAUGHTERING DEER--THE FAWN.


The time was now drawing to a close that we had purposed to spend in
Norway, because we desired to return to England and be present at the
regattas which usually take place towards the latter part of July, or
commencement of August along the southern coast of England; and
therefore it became necessary that we should move with more expedition
from place to place than we had hitherto done. A great many plans had
suggested themselves to us, and it was a wish to carry them out that had
enticed us in the first instance to Scandinavia; some we had already
fulfilled, but there were others as important in the list of pleasure
not yet realized. Moreover, our provisions, both for our personal use
and for the use of the yacht's company, were dwindling to scarcity; and
among these barren mountains no bread or meat could be bought. Bidding
farewell, therefore, to the beautiful village of Sand, and to the kind
hearts that increased its beauty, we made all sail the subsequent day
for Bergen.

Siggen, the loftiest scion of Norwegian mountains, soon towered with
conic form before and above us; and taking a shorter and different
course than the one we had previously steered, we were spectators, as we
proceeded, of the most magnificent scenery that the imagination could
conceive. We were so fortunate as to keep a fine strong wind the whole
way; and our pilot, who was an old and expert mariner, did not hesitate
to contend with the rapid currents that flow between the thousand
islands which obstruct the narrower and more unfrequented channels of
the Bukke Fiord. The cutter, too, retained her celebrity for swiftness,
and during her passage to Bergen showed her aptitude to overcome every
emergency.

There are, half way between Sand and Bergen and within sight of mighty
Siggen, two small islands of rock, disunited by a narrow channel not
three hundred yards broad, and between which the stream rushes from a
northern to a southern direction with much fleetness and force. It was
necessary to pass through this channel; and if any difficulty could have
arisen in our pilot's mind as to the efficiency of the yacht in making
good her passage to Bergen, and unwarranting his boldness in selecting a
path out of the ordinary track, it was the remembrance of this little
strait.

On Friday morning, the 16th, two days after we had left Sand, the two
islands, each with its solitary cottage belonging to some fishermen,
hove in sight. The wind blew nearly due north, and was, as sailors say,
"dead on end" for us. As the cutter came up to the islands, we saw a
fleet of Norwegian vessels at anchor, waiting a change of wind to
attempt the passage.

While the pilot and D---- held a short consultation regarding the
capabilities of the yacht, she had already glided, with the noiseless
speed of a spirit, into the midst of native brigs and Dutch barges, for
they cannot be called, ships. The beauty of the cutter, and the English
ensign streaming from the peak, combined with the strange place and
novelty of a vessel like the yacht, were quite enough to cause
conjecture and excitement among the crews of the different Norwegian and
Dutch craft, and to crowd their decks with spectators. The proud,
swan-like appearance with which the cutter sailed towards the channel,
still more moved their astonishment; and when the first eddy caught the
yacht on her weather bow and swung her to leeward, they were satisfied
of the impudent attempt we were contemplating.

Every sail of the yacht flapped, and the skilful management of the helm
alone prevented the boom from jibing. The pilot now saw that the task
was not one which the Iris would, as he had hoped, surmount with ease,
and going as far forward as he could, stood on the weather bow as if to
re-consider what he was about to undertake. Fixing his eyes long and
steadily on the swift flowing water, he appeared to think that, should
the wind fail, or the strong current bear us back, the danger was
manifest.

During the old pilot's meditation, D---- had mechanically taken his
position aft, close to the helmsman on the weather quarter. More fairly,
the cutter now started a second time, and, standing well up, promised to
fetch the very centre of the passage. The gaff-topsail shook.

"Keep her well full," said D---- to the helmsman. The man kept her half
a point more free. The current boiled, and eddied, and bubbled, as all
swift running water will do; and when again it caught the cutter's bow,
we could all feel the shock just as if she had touched a sand-bank.

"Blow, sweet breeze," said D----, half to himself, half aloud; and
casting his eyes, alternately from the flying jib and foresail to the
swelling gaff-topsail, stooped down and looked under the boom at the
land.

"Steady,--the helm," exclaimed the pilot, as he still stood to windward,
holding the bulwarks and bending slightly over the bow.

"Steady, sir," answered the helmsman.

Scarcely had the man made answer, than a puff filled every stitch of
canvass, and the cutter yielding to its pressure, leaned over and shot,
like a shaft, right into the middle of the channel.

"She'll do it now," said R---- to D----.

"She will, my Lord," replied D----, "if this puff holds ten minutes."

The wind did hold; and behaving well on this, her first tack, and edging
up in the wind's eye whenever she could get the chance, the impatient
cutter seemed willing to clear the channel on her second tack. The pilot
made much of the narrow berth, and ran close to the shore.

"I suppose the water is pretty deep here, eh?" asked R----, addressing
himself to D----.

"Oh! yes, my Lord; or the pilot would----"

"'Bout!" shouted the pilot, cutting D---- off in his reply.

"'Bout!" echoed the helmsman.

"Put the helm hard up," continued the pilot excitedly, in a louder
voice; "she mustn't shoot."

"Ay, ay, sir," again replied the helmsman, and in obedience to the reply
the cutter spun round, like a top. The noise of the sails and blocks,
while the vessel was in stays, roused the fishermen, their wives, and
children, who dwelt in the two cottages to which I have cursorily
alluded, and they gathered about the doors to look on. I heard those
hardy fishermen make some observation, for at intervals, we were not
many yards from their houses, either in derision of the cutter being
imagined competent to work through the channel, or in laudation of the
seaman-like skill with which she was managed. They called aloud each to
the other across the water, and spoke in praise or admiration; but being
in a dialect of the Norwegian language I could not tell what they said,
and how they thought. We had made a fair reach, and it was no longer
audacity to hope, that, the cutter was a match for the current. To get a
better view of the feat, some of the Dutchmen and Norwegians had mounted
the shrouds of their vessels, and appeared to take as much interest in
the trial as we did.

"'Bout!" a second time exclaimed the pilot, and turning towards the
helmsman, made a rotary motion with his hand to bring the cutter right
round at once.

"'Bout!" reiterated the helmsman, and lashed the tiller close up under
the weather quarter bulwarks. With equal adroitness, as at first, the
sails were let go and drawn aft, and our gallant vessel appeared not to
feel the resistance of the rapid tide. The wind, although foul as any
wind could be, blew steadily as any wind could blow, and the Iris, under
its favour, reluctantly though it seemed given, was in another and third
tack again in still water. The Dutch and Norwegian crews could not
resist expressing their admiration; and flourishing their caps over
their heads while standing in their rigging, they gave us three rounds
of lusty cheers. The soaring, sombre mountains took up the echoes, and
returned not cheer for cheer, but bellowed a ten-fold multiplication of
huzzas.

Since we had taken leave, we had seen no vessel to remind us of England;
and although, wherever we went, the natives would tell us some of our
countrymen were in the immediate neighbourhood, we never had the good
fortune to fall in with them. We had received no tidings, good or bad,
from home; and Europe, as far as we knew, might be in revolutionary
confusion: at Bergen, however, we hoped that letters were awaiting our
arrival.

Saturday the 17th of July, at midnight, we brought up off Bergen. It was
too late to pay much attention to any object; and after a careless view
of the town from deck, I went to bed.

The position of Bergen is similar to that of most of the other Norwegian
towns I had seen, girt on three sides with lofty, rocky mountains; and
on the fourth side by the blue waters of the Fiord. I looked on Bergen
with the liveliest interest, because its name was familiar to me when a
child, and I used to lisp the word before I could walk steadily; for in
those young days of waywardness my old schoolmistress, whose peaked nose
and malicious heart are still a vivid truth, would threaten to give me
to the fishermen at Bergen who, she said, would take and toss me into
the Maelstrom. With an eagerness akin to that of a schoolboy at
Christmas, gazing on the green curtain of a theatre, the moment it is
rising to disclose its wondrous entertainments, did I, travelling
headlong in memory from childhood to manhood and stumbling over a batch
of ancient feelings, stand looking, with strained eyes, on the
white-washed, quaint-fashioned Bergen, balancing the vicissitudes of
life and conjecturing what the chances might be, I should not, by some
agency as unaccountable as that which had brought me hither, be looking
in three months' time on the Golden shore of the Bight of Biaffir.

South-east of Bergen, twenty miles from the deck on which I stand,
blazing with dazzling splendour in the mid-day sun, the glaciers of
Folgefonde fall upon my sight; and raising its summit six thousand feet
to heaven, the stupendous range of mountain with its field of ice, forty
miles in length and twenty in breadth, braves with eternal snow the
tropic fury of this northern noon.

Surrounded as Bergen is by mountains of solid rock which, at a little
distance, appear completely black, some of the buildings painted green,
and others white, with their uniform roofs of red tiles, have a very
singular effect. The houses reared, with much order, on piles near the
water, are also neatly constructed of wood; and their bright colours
are not permitted to become tarnished by exposure to the weather, but
may contend with Holland in cleanliness and the freshness of their
paint. This first favourable glance from the deck of the yacht was not
altered when I had found myself in the streets. The inhabitants seemed a
lively, talkative set, and accustomed to mix with foreigners, for they
paid less attention to us than their countrymen and women in the other
towns we had visited.

The most important export trade of Bergen consists of timber and salt
fish, which are sent to the Mediterranean and Holland. The stench
arising from the fish, which is packed in great heaps on the eastern
quay of the harbour, is insuperable; and I leave the reader's
imagination to reach that height of misery when an unfortunate
sight-seeker and traveller like myself, loses his way, at broiling noon,
in the vicinity of this market, the thermometer being at 90°, and the
ling fish at perfection. How the old fishwomen, the natural guardians of
this northern frankincense, chatter and squabble! With their blue
petticoats tucked up above their knees, how they pick off the stray
pieces of raw haddock, or cod, and, with creaking jaws, chew them; and
while they ruminate, bask their own flabby carcasses in the sun! With
the dried tail of a herring sticking out of their saffron-coloured,
shrivelled chops, Lord! how they gaped when I passed by, hurriedly, like
a scared cat!

Being pressed for time, as I have hinted before, we did not waste much
at Bergen for the present, promising ourselves a longer sojourn when we
returned from the Sogne Fiord, for thither were we bound. The primary
object that sent us up the Sogne Fiord was, certainly, a little more
salmon-fishing; but rein-deer stalking had taken a tender hold of
R----'s game side. At Leerdal, a town at the farthest extremity of the
Sogne Fiord, and nearly one hundred miles to the north of Bergen, my two
friends had heard flowed a wonderful salmon river; and they relied with
confidence on the great chances of brilliant success since the stream
was so far removed from the path of common travellers. To the northward,
too, of Leerdal was Auron, a spot held in repute for the herds of
rein-deer that frequent the mountains there; and failing in salmon, my
companions might fall to venison. Replenishing, therefore, our exhausted
provisions, we secured on Monday evening the services of two pilots; and
on Tuesday morning, the 20th, we set sail for Leerdal. The whole of that
day was calm; and being on a cruise of much novelty and anticipated
sport, this lukewarmness of the wind touched our patience very severely.
On any other occasion we should not have observed its indifference; but
now we fretted, and expressed our annoyance in clamorous and bitter
terms. Towards evening the cutter drifted among a fleet of
fishing-boats; and it was no little entertainment to see the rapidity
with which the fishermen drew net after net, and the shoals of fish they
caught. Flocks of gulls hovered over the boats, and screamed; and
sometimes darted down, and bore away the fish in their beaks. We
purchased some very large fish, which were not cod, but very like them;
and satisfied with their great likeness to that favourite fish, we ate
them with greediness; but the heads being of an abominable bull-dog
shape, the cook was ordered to decapitate, before committing them to the
pot.

On Wednesday morning we entered the Sogne Fiord. It would be tedious to
dwell on the magnificence, beauty, and silence of this Fiord; because it
would only become a repetition of what I have already attempted to
describe as native to the other Fiords. There can be no softer, and more
soul-stirring scenery in the world than its small, rare, green valleys,
and barren mountains.

This evening, towards sunset, the cutter being becalmed, I went ashore
in one of the boats with two men, in search of milk; and making the boat
fast to a piece of rock, we walked to the top of a neighbouring hill to
look for some signs of a human habitation; but only the waters of the
Fiord could be seen at our feet, and the yacht, with a cloud of white
canvass, floating on its still surface. No sound,--not a bird's note,
nor the cry of animals, fell on the listening ear; save, occasionally,
the loud roar and splash of the rocks as they were loosened from the
mountains' sides, and rolled down into the water. Wandering about for
some time, struck with the sublime, solemn aspect of the mountains and
their level summits of endless snow, we found a goat tied with a string
to a stake; and taking that as a token of the near abode of human
beings, we strove to find some track through the long grass that might
lead us to a cottage. One of the sailors climbed up a tree, and veering
his body about in all quarters, like a bear on the top of a pole, came
down again, and said, that he saw smoke curling upwards from the middle
of a fir forest to the south-east. I had a small pocket-compass, and to
the south-east, therefore, we went; and after stumbling over fallen
rocks, and pulling each other up and down a variety of ravines,
differing in depth and ruggedness, we succeeded in arriving at last
before a very neat and comfortable cottage. An old woman, clean in dress
and comely in her person, came to the door, having, on either side of
her, two youths evidently her sons, for their features bore a strong
resemblance to her own; and between the lad on her right hand, and the
dame's black gown, a large dog, mongrel in his breed, thrust his
inquisitive nose. Out of the four windows, which I attributed to the
bed-rooms, the heads of four girls popped. Three half-naked savages, or
the Graces, could not have caused more excitement in the streets of
London, than we did to the amiable inmates of this lonely cottage; for I
do not suppose there was another house, or hovel, within twenty miles.
King, who had come with us, endeavoured to explain the object of our
visit by a request, made in the Norwegian language, for milk, and by
holding up the empty jug; but the old woman shook her head, and glancing
at the two lads, they shook their heads, and the four girls above shook
their heads too, but with the quick perception of drollery common to
their sex,--they laughed. King made a step or two nearer to the cottage
door to explain himself more distinctly; but the old lady retrograded in
the same proportion as King advanced, her two sons following her
example, and, likewise, the dog growling most gutturally.

"They don't understand you," I said to King.

"Oh! yes, Sir, they do," he replied; "but they can't make us out, and
are afraid."

"The girls ain't afraid, your Honour," observed the good-humoured
cockswain, who was the other sailor, beside King, with me, and had been
coquetting already with the four lasses. We beckoned to them to come
down, and one immediately withdrew her head, and the next moment peeped
over the old woman's shoulder. She seemed inclined to speak with us,
but the old hag would not permit such conduct: and the more earnestly
King notified our pacific errand, the more belligerent the ancient
mother thought it.

We were obliged to return without the milk; but I am sure, if the eldest
girl had been allowed to use her own discretion, she would have supplied
our wants; for when we had gone some distance from the cottage, I looked
back and saw her standing at the door; and kissing my hand to her, she
returned the salute readily.

I thought the old woman inhospitable, to say nothing of inhuman; for
among these solitary mountains we might have lost our way, for aught she
knew, and our wants exceeded a pint of milk. This is not, however, the
general character of the Norwegians, for they are tender-hearted, kind,
and generous to strangers; but fear had superseded the sympathy of the
old lady's expansive heart; and had men of riper years than her sons
been present, we should not have met with so much inattention to our
necessities. Even the girl, young though she was, desired to administer
to our need; but sweetness of manner, simplicity, tenderness, and noble
generosity are unchanging types of the youthful female character in
every quarter of the earth.

When I got on board again, R---- and P---- were amusing themselves by
firing, one by one, at all the empty soda-water bottles that the
steward could find. The bottles were slung to an oar which was stuck
upright in the taffrail aft; and placing themselves close to the
windlass, my two associates secured a range of some forty or fifty feet
along the deck. Now and then a grampus would divert their attention; and
every time the fish rose, a bullet was lodged, or attempted to be
lodged, in his huge dorsal fin. In this way the greater portion of the
time was passed, altered only by rowing about in the gig, and seeking
for wild ducks among the crevices of the rocks. But the farther we
sailed into the interior of the Fiord, the more bereft of animal and
vegetable life the country appeared to become; the scream of the eagle,
and the report of the rocks as they split asunder and bounded down the
mountains, being the only sounds that varied the silent monotony.
Sometimes the swivels were fired for the sake of listening to the
echoes, which, by their prolonged reverberations, repaid us well for the
lard we consumed in greasing the muzzles; a salute of nineteen or twenty
guns, fired at intervals of fifteen or seventeen seconds, creating the
most astonishing uproar; and what with the shrill screams of the eagles,
the consternation of wild geese, and the falling of the rocks caused by
the violent motion of the atmosphere, the powder and tow were profitably
expended by the novel entertainment they produced. This amusement, I
must intimate, was a favourite one with all on board, not omitting even
Jacko; and whenever the yacht became land-locked, I could always hear
the distinguishing order,

"Load the swivels!"

If it were not for the wild grandeur of the scenery, the sail among
these Fiords would be most tedious, unchanging, as they are, by
indications of human abode.

On Friday morning, at twelve, we arrived at Leerdal; and considered
ourselves most fortunate in taking only four days to drift from Bergen;
for beyond the eddying air that breathed down the valleys, no other
agency had propelled the vessel nearly one hundred miles.

Here we met a young Englishman who had travelled, for pleasure, over
land from Christiania; and although he could not speak two Norwegian
words, had contrived, by some unaccountable method, to supply all his
wants without difficulty. He was on his way to Bergen; and giving him
all the information he begged of us, we parted company, exchanging
mutual desires to meet again. Finding this place most desolate, we left
it, and the cutter was got under weigh the next morning, Saturday, for
Auron, a small town not many leagues farther up the Sogne Fiord, and
receiving from both our pilots the reputation of greater liveliness and
importance. Early the following morning we came within sight of Auron,
and went ashore before the anchor was dropped.

Auron, like all the Norwegian villages that are found, at rare
intervals, among the Fiords, is situated in a valley that rises gently
from the shore of the Fiord, and hastens in a steep ascent till it
aspires, south, east, and west, into high mountains, and inaccessible
cliffs. This hamlet of Auron was the most pleasantly situated of any
that we had seen; and the romantic beauty of the scenery was not more
perfect than the unanimity that seemed to animate the whole village. The
yellow ears of corn had invited men, women, children, and dogs to gather
them for winter store; and dispersed over a large field that sloped
along the valley to a considerable height up the mountains, this
universal family, inclusive of the dogs, was at its work. The arrival,
however, of three Englishmen with a retinue of some fifteen English
tars, strange-looking fellows! at their backs, was a circumstance not
likely to pass off in silence, or without due attention; and the
intelligence sounded by the tongues of several ragged urchins,
frolicking on the beach of the Fiord, was communicated to a lazy cur
that set up a continuous howl, and his noisy throat spread the news to
the diligent folk among the corn. In a short time we were naturally
hemmed about by a throng of both sexes, human and canine, curious to
learn the reason of our coming to Auron. The gestures of these people
were so energetic, and their voices so low, that, had I not known both
by history and my own observation, the Norwegians were not cannibals, I
should assuredly have been led away by the idea they were devising some
scheme to murder and eat us. Their behaviour, though respectful,
appeared so suspicious, that I was not at first without fear; but being
the slightest made and thinnest of the three, and my two friends being
ruddy and plump, I consoled myself by knowing that their previous
immolation would be timely warning enough for me to make good my escape.
While these useful reflections were putting me on my guard, a little,
spare, grey-eyed, high-cheekboned, long-headed man, forced his way
through the crowd, and tottering into the central space occupied by
ourselves, took off his felt hat, and making a profound obeisance
remained, with extreme courtesy, uncovered; but said nothing.

King was ordered to ask the man what the nature of his visit was, and to
tell him the object of ours. A few curt questions and answers made us
understand, that he was the very person of all that lived in Auron whose
acquaintance we most desired. The little man was lord of five hundred
rein-deer, and sole proprietor of the salmon river of which we had come
so far in search. The intelligent eyes of the Norwegian sparkled with
satisfaction, when he replaced his hat on his head, and shook hands
heartily with us all. The multitude who had given attentive ear to the
dialogue between King and their countryman, appeared pleased with the
immediate familiarity that sprung up between the Norwegian and
ourselves, and showed their cordial acquiescence by shaking us also by
the hand. Hurrying through the villagers our new friend led us with
triumphant strides and a vivacious air towards his cottage, and calling
forth his wife, bade her salute us, which she did with that modest and
simple demeanour common to her countrywomen. Gratified that he had so
far conduced, as he imagined, to our comfort, the Norwegian would insist
on our entering his house; and conducting us, by a steep and narrow
stair, to an upper room, the windows of which overlooked a small garden
filled with currant bushes, brought us, in due lapse of time, every
dainty that his larder or the thriftiness of his wife could give.
Although we were not hungry, we were too sensible of a hospitable man's
feelings to give offence by saying we had just breakfasted, but
attacking the different mountain delicacies, such as dried venison, and
broiled capercaillie, we actually devoured all that had been placed
before us, and did not decline a succession of native cheeses. These
latter dainties were, however, rather too much perfumed and animated for
me, and I left their entire consumption to the more fashionable taste of
my companions. After this slight repast, we then told our host,
definitively, the plans we wished to carry out by wending our way to
Auron; and that he would confer the greatest favour on us if he could
secure us a day's sport on the mountains. Our host replied, that he was
himself a proprietor of several hundred rein-deer; but his consent that
we should disturb the peacefulness of the whole herd, by firing at a
deer belonging to him, was not alone to be obtained. He informed us,
that the rein-deer were the original cattle of the country; and the
primitive usages adopted with regard to these animals by the old
inhabitants of Norway were still persisted in by their descendants.

"On the tops of these mountains," he said in Norwegian, and, I am
afraid, I translate his beautiful language but indifferently, "many
hundred rein-deer are wandering; and though a great many belong to me, I
cannot give you leave to shoot one of them, without the consent of those
by whom the remaining deer are owned; for all the deer herd together,
and they are only known to belong to different persons by the marks
made, at birth, on their skin. Mine have two slits on the right ear.
These distinguishing marks, which separate my deer from those claimed by
the neighbouring farmers, are so slight, that, they could not be
ascertained at a distance; and in taking aim with your rifles, you might
miss my deer and destroy the property of another man. You must be so
placed, that, you may kill, indifferently, any deer that comes within
shot; and for that purpose I must seek the assent of my friends. If,
however, you will go to the mountains with me to-day, you shall see the
herds, and to-morrow I will send round to my friends; to-day it is
hopeless to think of communicating with my neighbours, for they live so
far;--the night would come before my task was finished."

We hesitated for some time whether we should undergo the fatigue of
travelling over such declivitous mountains without any palpable reward.

"You hesitate," the Norwegian observed, smiling; "but you will not be
sorry when you stand up there."

And he pointed to the high peaks of the mountains that soared half-way
up to the clear, blue firmament.

"Let us not go unarmed," he continued, "for there are wolves and bears;
and the nightly destruction of our flocks gives us need of men who love
the chase like you. I, myself, will bear you company. Come, let us go."

The intimation that bears and wolves congregated on the level lands
above was quite sufficient to decide our wavering mood; and ordering the
crew to return with the gig to the yacht, and bring our rifles, we wiled
away the intermediate time by sitting at a window that opened upon the
waters of the Fiord, and afforded us a splendid view of the limitless
range of mountains on the opposite shore, called the Reenfjeld.

The morning was sometimes bright and clear, and sometimes the sky was
dimmed by large, dark, solid masses of clouds. It was very beautiful to
see the mountains glittering with their white summits in the strong
sunlight, while their bases were blackened with a shower of rain. These
showers were partial, and all things around so still, that we could hear
the rain drops pattering among the leaves of the trees that grew on the
sides of the mountains two miles from the spot where we sat rejoicing in
the warmth and cheerfulness of a summer's sun.

At eleven o'clock the boat returned with rifles, and powder enough to
blow up the village of Auron. Our host, who had disappeared for some
little time, now came back decked out like a chamois-hunter. His hat had
been exchanged for a red cap that fitted exactly to his skull, and a
velvet jacket buttoned up to his throat, defined a tolerable expanse of
chest. Across his back, from the right shoulder towards the left heel,
his trusty gun was slung, muzzle downwards. A leathern belt went
entirely round his waist, and pressing a brace of horse-pistols and a
wonderfully large knife to his left hip-bone, was clasped in front with
an embossed silver buckle. A red handkerchief, spotted white, hung by a
knowing loop from the right arm, contained provender and a flask of
liquor for the inward man. This last piece of accoutrement had the
evident impress of a woman's clear-sightedness; for while our friend
fortified the outward walls of his person with guns, pistols, and
knives, his wife, knowing how useless all these preparations were
without suitable attention to the repletion of the cisterns and stores
of the citadel, had suggested, with affectionate devotion no doubt, this
trifling bundle as being necessary to the conquest of present labour and
future danger. The very knot bore the combined neatness and strength of
female ingenuity, and its complication looked endless as conjugal love.

The Norwegian, our three selves, and King, formed the whole party. Our
ascent of the mountain, I need scarcely say, put the sinews of our
thighs to a severe test; and the higher we mounted, the more frequent
were the expressions of fatigue. When we had clambered a quarter of the
way, we came suddenly upon two sheds built of wood, and appropriated to
the use of a little girl and half a hundred pigs. I do not know whether
the swine squeaked their surprise more at seeing us, than the cheerless
child looked it. King, who had been ailing occasionally for some days,
now fell to the rear, and said, that, he was incompetent to proceed any
farther, and the permission to descend, which he solicited, was granted.

All larger vegetation now began gradually to disappear, and though I had
hardly marked the trees dwindling from the cherry to the filbert, and
then to long tufts of grass, the bare rocks strewed over an endless
tract of gravel made me stop and look about. When I cast my eyes above,
the mountains still towered half a mile higher, and gazing downwards I
could see the different kinds of trees and shrubs changing in size and
colour of their foliage, as the space between me and the low lands
increased. I do not remember that I had ever exceeded in elevation the
point to which I had now risen; and perhaps the appearance of the
valleys, the water, and habitations of men might have been more novel
than to persons who are accustomed to crawl to the tops of mountains. I
must confess I remained perfectly lost in thought for some minutes; nor
did I ever feel, or could imagine so distinctly, how the stupendous and
neglected works of creation are blended with the truest beauty; for,
seen from the very mountains on which I stood, so rough, so barren, so
bleak, the same rugged, straggling rocks, scattered over the opposite
mountain, seemed soft as velvet and more delicate than the finished
lines of a miniature.

Beneath the dark, blue surface of the Fiord I could discover shoals and
rocks for which the mariner had sought in vain, and for many miles along
the shore the shelving land showed, with a faint yellow tinge, the
distance it stretched under the water that was otherwise of a deep azure
shade. When from the deeply-dyed cerulean water, the valley with its
different green colours of tree and grass, and the red tints of the
atmosphere that rested round the sides of the remoter mountains, I
lifted my eyes to the fields of snow that extended, to an incalculable
extent, over the flat summit of the Reenfjeld, the contrast was so
forcible, that while I gazed my very soul seemed to bound with delight
it had discovered Sublimity was something material, and not an ideal
torture.

"Hollo! Bill, keep moving," was shouted in a loud voice from some rocks
above my head, and seriously interfered with any further contemplation.

"Here's a fox," continued the same voice, sustaining its sharp, resonant
tone; "come, and smell him!"

Though fond of giving reins to the imagination, I am as matter of fact
as most people when necessity requires it; nor do I yield to any man the
estimation at which I hold the odorous Reynard. Tucking my feet well
into the shingly mountain side, and bringing the point of equilibrium,
as nearly as possible, to an angle of twenty-five degrees, I scrambled
towards R----, and P----, and the Norwegian. They were all three on
their knees peering into a hole that Reynard had intended should be
round; but having forgotten, or never heard of Euclid, had dug it
frightfully oblong. It must have hurt his back to go in and out. We
shouted, and rummaged the premises very disgracefully, and if Reynard
were at home, I need not state the opinion I entertain of his courage;
for apathetic as I am, no one, not Goliath himself, should have
ransacked my house with the impunity we poked long sticks, and threw
acute-sided stones into the recesses of the Fox's residence. I ventured
to assure my companions that Reynard was abroad, and accepting my hint,
they partially jammed up the mouth of the cave with the fragments of an
old hat, and rising from their knees, left Reynard to find out who had
meddled with his lodging.

I have heard say, that mariners, returning home from India, may smell,
for many leagues off the Island of Madagascar, the sweet odour of
countless spices; but I must do this fox the fairness to state, that if
he were exiled to the Island of Madagascar, those latitudes would soon
excite in the minds of all keen-scented sailors the idea of an
interesting expedition to discover the variation of smell.

Passing that portion of the mountain where the hardiest plants had
ceased to grow, we arrived at those high regions abounding with the
rein-deer moss, and struggling with the severity of the cold temperature
the wild strawberry put forth its small, red fruit. The rein-deer moss
being purely white, like hoar frost, the scarlet colour of the
strawberry mingling thickly with it, conveyed pleasure to the eye, and a
feeling of delicacy to the mind. Our path did not become less irksome
now we had left the gravel behind, for the moss yielded with its
softness so much to the feet, that it sometimes covered our ankles; but
panting with desire to ascend the supreme brow of the mountain, fatigue
succumbed to the resuscitation of spiritual vigour.

Standing on a solitary patch of snow that spread over the highest point
of the mountain we found ourselves on a level plain with the lofty chain
of the Reenfjeld, separated from us by a gulf of fifteen miles, at the
bottom of which flowed the Sogne Fiord diminished in its wide expanse to
a river, and darkened to the sable dye of ebony by the intersecting
shadows of numerous mountains. The general character of the Norwegian
mountains being perfectly flat on the top, the distance seen where we
stood was very great; and the table-land assumed more solemn grandeur,
free as it almost was from glaciers, since, with livelier relief, the
peaks that cleaved the air shone brilliantly with their snowy hoods; and
over an infinite extent of country, diversifying no other verdure with
that of the tawny moss, these peaks, rising numberlessly, one over the
other, seemed like conical loaves of white sugar placed on an enormous
sheet of brown paper.

Taking up a handful of snow, we jestingly alluded to the occupation of
our cockney friends at the same moment, and saw them, in fancy, tricked
out with the Gallic finery of kid gloves and nankeen trowsers,
strutting through the crowded thoroughfares of Regent Street, or ambling
in Rotten Row.

"Yes, by George!" observed R----, who had been silently scraping the
snow together, and levelling it with his foot again, "I remember the
time when, about this hour of the day, and season of the year, then
somewhat younger than I am now, I used to look at men who talked of
anything else but balls, operas, and Hyde Park, as so many marvels of
imbecility; but now their good sense and just estimation of life oppress
me with the recollection of that lost portion of my own youth passed in
all the puppyism of fashion."

"Ay," I replied, "there is one consolation in growing old, we grow wiser
in our wickedness."

"Well, and if men are, de naturâ, depraved," continued R----, "and
possess virtue and vice only in proportional masses to the size of the
brain and body, they can surely exhibit a pound or two of wisdom to
eighteen stone of folly; and if they must be asinine, may cover their
actions with a little good sense."

"They may, truly," I said; "but remember your head has not grown a
particle larger since the Spring of 1844, nor your body less; but had
the same idea of Ethics been then presented to you, you would certainly
not have seen its lucidity."

R---- was about to retort, and I do not know how much longer we should
have endangered the moral existence of the young dandies at home, had
not P----, already at a distance from us, called out with the impatience
of a huntsman,

"Are you fellows coming on to-day?"

In a few seconds we overtook P---- and the Norwegian, and they proposed
that we should descend till we came to a valley, which the Norwegian
pointed out at a considerable way beneath us, and there it was thought
we should find a herd of deer. Remaining stationary while we spoke, a
space of fifty miles, partly mountain, and partly valley, lay above and
below us, and glancing the eye from end to end of this immense tract,
not a hut of any kind could be seen; but, faintly, the tinkling of bells
attached to the necks of sheep, or cattle, could be heard, and that only
when the feeble puffs of wind blew from a certain direction. We wandered
for many miles over the desolate mountains, and found no signs by which
we might be guided to the animals that we sought. Hour after hour
elapsed, and the day began to wane; but no tracks, not even the print of
their hooves on the muddy banks of the small lakes that abounded
everywhere, pointed the path the deer had taken. We reached, at last,
towards sunset, a valley that, virent by the multitude and variety of
its trees, changed the dreary similarity pervading all things; and a few
sheep, that bleated loudly when they saw us, led us to hope we had come
again within the line of animal existence. The Norwegian, our guide,
however, said that no one lived in this valley, but in an adjoining
vale, he thought, some cowherds dwelt.

"What are all these sheep here for?" I asked.

"They are driven here," the man replied, "for food; since in the lower
lands the grass is parched by heat."

"Who takes care of them, then?" again I asked.

"No one," answered the guide. "They will remain among these mountains
all the summer; and when the winter returns, they will be taken home,
and folded at Auron."

While the Norwegian was still addressing these sentences to me, we had
crossed the rivulet that gurgled through the valley, and commenced our
ascending zigzag way. The skins and bones of sheep destroyed by the
wolves that infest these mountains were scattered on every hand, and the
foot-marks of these furious brutes and bears were plainly
distinguishable on those parts of the soil moistened by the snow-water,
and not covered with moss. Our flagging spirits were roused when we
remembered that it might so chance we fell in with one of these animals;
but our guide did not add encouragement to our ardour, and told us how
the improbability of encountering wolves was strong, since they never
left their hiding-places in the forests until night.

"At any rate," he said, "we shall, a long while hear, before we see,
them; for they howl like devils. I assure you, you may be bold before
they arrive; but I have known many a courageous man grow timid when he
has heard the moaning, melancholy signal of their approach. Besides, I
suppose you know, wolves never go forth to feed singly; but issue,
prepared for mischief, from the caverns and glens in herds of fourteen
or twenty."

"Yes," observed either R---- or P----, "but we are a fair match for
twenty wolves."

"I am not so sure of that," answered the Norwegian, smiling with great
good humour. "Wolves in this country are not afraid of a man. No, sir,
they will attack two, or three men, and will overcome them. Many a one
has come to these mountains, and never left them again."

This is the kind of news that brave men like to hear; and as the
countenances of R---- and P---- did not blanch, but rather beamed with
gratification, as a ray of light will flash through divided dark clouds,
I am quite at liberty to state that they are gallant fellows; and I
could almost say it would take a great many more wolves than the
Norwegian nation can count to intimidate either of them. But since I
have not yet commenced the historical physiology of their courageous
hearts, I will not mar what I am arranging, methodically, in my head,
by slight allusions, or apologues that are ill wrought. The Norwegian,
by making these fearful intimations, had, doubtless, some object in
view; and sharing with a dutiful spouse the blessings of domestic life,
desired not to risk the protection of Heaven in a conflict with
predacious animals. But this is mere supposition; for the Norwegian
people are valiant in soul, as they are indefatigable in body, warm and
friendly of heart; yet I may conjecture; for our guide either spoke
fervently, having his own interest in sight, or felt deeply for our
preservation, which, he fancied, we would throw away with mad boldness
should an opportunity occur. On this occasion there was no visible
distinction between selfishness and philanthropy, or a disinterested
will to fight, or run with us.

On the top of the hill we rested, and looked down on the other valley
where we hoped to find some cottages; for, whatever the Norwegian might
have done to recruit his strength, we had neither eaten nor drank since
we left Auron. The hill on which we stopped was without vegetation of
any sort, except moss; but trees in great abundance grew in the valley;
and one small hut, partially concealed by three pines, showed its dun
roof of fir branches lying quietly below, like a dove in its nest; and
hard by the door, down in the centre of the valley enlivened and
refreshed as the meadows we had left behind, ran a brook that foamed
and sought its difficult way with noisy tongue. Thirsty and hungry we
wandered on towards the hut; but when we came near to it, we found no
other living animals but pigs and sheep likely to hold communion with
us. Our guide, conversant with the customs of his country, thought that
the cottagers might be slumbering, and tapped loudly with his fist and
the butt of his pistol; but no answer was returned. On the ground, near
the sill, had fallen an instrument, similar in outward form to the
classic Cornucopiæ, about five feet in length, and which appeared to be
cut from some tree and made hollow by the pith being scooped out. The
Norwegian taking it from the ground and applying the smaller end to his
mouth, blew in it, and produced a blast that rang through the valley
from one extremity to the other, and rattled among the rocks of the
mountains. He bade us be still and listen; and the faint, distant,
long-sustained cry of a human voice gave a responsive halloo; and here
and there, from the farthest recesses of the fir forests, the lowing of
cattle could be perceived indistinctly. All was soon again as silent as
the scene was solitary. To our inquiries for what purpose this curious
trumpet was intended, the Norwegian made reply:----

"This is an instrument used by shepherds to call their flocks together;
and I have only to persist in blowing it to collect all the cows, that
graze in these mountains, about me. Did you not hear the cattle this
minute? The wolves also, and bears, and other predatory animals, do not
like its note; and when they hear it, will crouch to the ground and hide
themselves."

Issuing from the firs that formed a forest at the lower part of the
valley, two girls hurried towards us; and running and walking by turns,
they made haste to the cottage near which we stood.

"Who lives here?" I said, pointing to the miserable building.

"Those two girls," answered the Norwegian.

"Alone?" I asked.

"Yes, alone," replied the guide; "but they will go away when the winter
comes, for then the cattle are removed. It is only the months of summer
that they pass up here, to take care of these pigs, and sheep, and
cows."

"Only the months of summer," I thought; but by this time the two girls
had reached the cottage; and I could not help regarding them with some
little interest. The eldest was not more than eighteen, the youngest
four years less; and they possessed the simplicity and shyness of manner
such children of the mountain might be supposed naturally to imbibe from
the mode of life they led, and the desolation which surrounded them.
They wore no covering to the feet or head, and their arms and shoulders
were equally bare; and though naturally of a very fair complexion, their
faces had, by constant exposure to the sun, been tanned; but, lo! when
they smiled, their coral lips, curved like the bow that shot the arrow
through the heart of Psyche, parted to show a row of teeth as smooth and
pure as the snows of Siggen.

The pigs, that were lately digging up the soil by hundreds, trotted
towards these girls yet breathing heavily from the speed with which they
had run, and looking up in their faces, grunted and squeaked without any
apparent cause; and some of these swine told their wants, or affection,
with such painful shrillness, that it was almost impossible to make
ourselves heard.

Opening the cottage door with a wooden key, the eldest girl led us into
a small room appropriated as a dairy, in which were eight or ten large
basins of wood filled with milk, in the various gradations of
decomposition from its natural sweet state to that of acidity, until it
took the solidity of cream cheese. I do not know that the Norwegians
have any precise system of making cheese by churning; but from what I
saw, and I am now only speaking of the poorer peasantry, I believe that
the milk, from the moment that it is drawn from the cow is placed in
these deal basins, whence the cream is skimmed and committed to a
separate bowl, where it remains till it becomes sour, and after resting
undisturbed for a few days, thickens to a vile firm substance, the
natives call cheese. The Norwegians do not drink fresh milk, but use it,
even for household purposes, when quite sour; and plentiful as milk was,
we found much difficulty in procuring any, the most trifling quantity,
fit for our English tastes. We were so fortunate as to find one basin
that contained some fresh milk, of which we drank plentifully; but our
guide swallowed quart after quart of all the acid stuff he could smell
out; for he would not taste before he had applied his nose to each
basin.

There were only two apartments in this cottage, and both without floors,
or windows. In one corner of the dairy, which was not eight feet square,
a few planks of fir formed a bedstead over which were tumbled one or two
torn and dirty blankets. Three large stones, arranged angularly on the
dank earth, answered the purpose of a grate, for half burned sticks and
cinders were scattered about; and immediately over head, a large hole in
the roof admitted the rain and cold wind, while it might, and was
intended to let out the smoke. Poverty and discomfort seemed to wrestle
with each other which should torment these two girls the most. And yet
they looked glad and contented, and said they were so, and laughed
heartily at our discomposure when we went from pan to pan, and found
the milk sour, or half hardened to a jelly. They could hardly be
persuaded to receive any compensation for the milk we and the Norwegian
had consumed; and both of these girls shook hands with us, and thanked
us continually in grateful idioms for sixteen skillings, a sum of money
worth five pence sterling. They answered to the solicitous questions of
our guide, that a herd of three hundred rein-deer had passed through the
valley two days before, and believed they had gone towards a large lake
ten miles to the eastward.

The sun had now set, and no place of rest could be found among these
mountains, unless we chose to risk the danger of sleeping in the open
air under some tree. It was, therefore, necessary to delay as little as
possible, and we took leave of the two peasant girls. They came forward
with the most unaffected simplicity, and shaking us again by the hand,
wished us a pleasant journey. It seemed almost heartless to leave two
girls, so young and unprotected, in such a wilderness, many miles from
any human dwelling, surrounded everywhere by wolves and bears; and the
smile of perfect contentment and cheerful resignation to the dreary lot
attributed to them, made me feel the more sensibly for their isolated
condition. But it is the condition allotted to women by the usages of
Norway; and while the young men remain in the low lands to cultivate
the soil and gather the corn, the females are banished to the mountains
to tend the flocks. Sometimes, among the most distant and unfrequented
mountains, a hut, like this, may be met with, inhabited by a single
girl; and holding no communication with her fellow creatures she drags
on the bright time of summer in the profoundest solitude, quite
regardless, apparently, of the bereavement of all social intercourse, or
of the horrible death that may overtake her by the hunger and ferocity
of wild beasts.

We now travelled with more briskness, not only lured by the chance of
coming up with the herd of rein-deer, but pursued by the moss-grown
phantom of a mountain couch. An endless forest of firs lay on our right
hand, and the nearer we approached it, the more clearly we could hear
the howl of wolves; and whenever we reached an elevated mound of ground
we thought to see a troop of them galloping forth to their nightly
depredations. Mountainous ridge after ridge we climbed, but along the
wide expanse our eyes could alight on no lake; and only through a chasm,
far away between two mountains, the lead-coloured water of the Sogne
Fiord momentarily deceived the sight. The guide kept his place in front
and led the way, bounding from valley to mountain-top like a spirit of
Indian rubber; and unwearied in his tongue as he seemed in body, he
continued shouting, cheerily, in a strange, drawling chant,

"Salt, h-o-o-o! salt, h-o-o-o! salt, h-o-o-o!"

"Salt" in the Norwegian language signifies salt, as it does in ours; but
the vowel has a soft pronunciation. The rein-deer are very fond of salt,
and the wildest of them will follow a person, who holds some salt in his
hand, for miles together. To put salt on a bird's tail, and catch it,
may be an English piece of jocularity; but the Norwegian would be
puzzled to think why we should attach a joke to such an act; and to
prove to an Englishman the inaptitude of the proverb, the Norseman will
go forth with his handful of salt, and take, not his covey of sparrows,
for his country has none; but a fine fat buck.

As the evening advanced, the light wind, that had made the heat of the
day tolerable, now lulled; but mute as the long blades of grass were,
the breath of night, when it moved the hair gently from our brows to
cool our faces, whispered in our ears the warning sound of the tramp and
unceasing howl of a hundred wolves. Regardless of all danger, be it far
or near, the Norwegian still claimed the van, and dipped his hand with
frequency in the little bag of salt that dangled at his girdle, chanting
as he went,

"Salt, h-o-o-o! salt, h-o-o-o! salt, h-o-o-o!"

The deer came not; though the lonely hills took up the words, and passed
them from vale to vale.

"We shall never reach home to-night," said R---- to me, as we toiled up
the side of the hill overgrown with moss.

"I am afraid not," I answered; "and for my own comfort I don't care. If
we made a fire we could sleep as safely up here as on board. However,
let's consult when we get to the top."

"Yes; it takes the whole of one's breath," observed R----, "to scramble
over this moss."

Mounted to the top, we were not inclined to curtail our jaunt; for we
saw a pool of water, one of the objects of our search, spread beneath
us; and, what is an uncommon sight at 3000 feet above the level of the
sea, its banks were covered with rushes. Opponent to us, on the extreme
side, or eastern corner of this pool, the even surface of the mountain
rose into a hill which, being higher than the ground where we stood,
obstructed our view. The rein-deer had frequently resorted to this water
to drink, for the mud of its diminutive shore was everywhere indented
with their hooves. The Norwegian examined these marks with much
minuteness; and when he had satisfied himself that they were the
hoof-prints of the rein-deer, and not of the smaller cows of the
country, he thrust his hand into the salt-bag that was still suspended
from his left side, like a good-sized rook's nest, and vociferated,

"Salt, h-o-o-o! salt, h-o-o-o! salt! salt!"

The monotony of his song was kept up for a quarter of an hour without
any variation either in the tones of his voice, or arrangement of the
words; but, occasionally, when he looked on the ground, and was reminded
of the cloven marks in the slough, his voice would swell to the
passionate bellow of a war-whoop. His manner reminded me strongly of a
bull, that by some mischance has lost the common herd; and as he gallops
along the meadows, when he finds himself alone, will stop suddenly at
times, and, placing his broad nostrils to the earth, sniff the grass
with the absorption of a huge pump; then lifting his head loftily in the
air, will lash his tail, and madly tossing his legs, roar till the
country round is filled with the sounds of his anger.

"Well, Sir," said the Norwegian, addressing me, "if we do not find the
deer near this water, I fear we shall find none to-day. It is late; and
they are gone to shelter in the forests for the night."

The last four words had not yet fallen from his lips, when a doe,
followed by her fawn, stood on the brow of the hill directly opposite to
us; and halting for a moment, moved her head up and down, scenting the
air. No sooner did the guide perceive the animal, than he tugged the
salt-bag from his belt, and, holding it in his left hand, extended it at
arm's length before him, creeping down the hillock on which we had
clustered, exclaiming,

"Kommit; salt, h-o-o-o! salt, h-o-o-o! kommit, kommit."

The deer seemed perfectly to understand his meaning, for she shook her
antlers and small tufted tail, and trotted down the other hill towards
the Norwegian. Our guide still kept moving forward by stealthy steps,
while the animal quickened its motion from a trot to a canter, and
arriving within a yard of the proffered salt-bag, made a dead stop. The
Norwegian had volunteered the promise, that if the deer turned out to be
his own, and he could lay hands on her, we should accept her as a gift.

"Kommit," said the Norwegian, in tones of gentler blandness;
"salt!--salt, h-o-o-o! kommit, kommit."

But the doe was not so easily to be entrapped; for she stretched out her
long neck as far as it would go, and then, just as her nose was so near
to the salt that its savour made her dart out her tongue and lick her
slimy nostrils, she plunged backwards as if a cannon had exploded, and
scampered half-way up the hill to her fawn. The Norwegian turned his
head and smiled with us, but would not yet despair of success.

"Kommit," still, with onward step, he said, "kommit; salt, h-o-o-o!
salt!--kommit, kommit."

The doe appeared as desirous of tasting the salt, as the Norwegian was
to give it; for she fixed her large eyes on the little moving man as he
stumbled and tottered over the uneven heath, and watching his gradual
approach, threw up her head, and stamped her foot.

I and my two companions were aware, that the Norwegian intended, if
practicable, to seize the deer by the horns, and by that means secure
her; but we saw more clearly than he did, that, if any attempt of the
kind was made on the doe, she would not only tumble our little friend
down the steep side of the mountain, but, no doubt, being with the fawn,
gore him. If he is fool enough, we thought, not to know any better,
having passed all his life among deer, and claiming, moreover, a
patrimony of five hundred head, surely it was needless to interrupt by
our surmises his preconcerted plans. For my own part, and I will
attribute the same anticipations to R---- and P----, I promised myself
more laughter than wounds from the engagement of the Norwegian with the
deer; but I knew there was some risk, yet rejoiced in my own heart at
the sum of pleasure that might be cast up in my favour, making no
deduction for the Norwegian.

The deer remained perfectly still until the Norwegian could almost have
touched her overcome with the insatiable craving to taste the salt; but
if he dared, however slily, to move the other hand that held no salt,
she bounded several yards from him.

"Kommit; salt, h-o-o-o! kommit,--kommit; salt, h-o-o-o! salt, h-o-o-o!"
the Norwegian continued half singing, and half importuning the deer to
come to him. His importunities and cantata might have lasted for another
week, but we observed, that the doe was, by insensible degrees,
allowing, like a human creature, her appetite to get the better of her
mind, or instinct; and when she took, at last a trifling lap of the
salt, the Norwegian, with much dexterity, seized her with his right hand
by one of the antlers. The deer, feeling herself thus assaulted, shot,
like a thunder-bolt, backwards, dragging the Norwegian with her; and
though, by the weight of her antagonist's strength, her nose was almost
forced between her fore-legs, she shook her head violently, and making a
desperate lunge, struck her countryman somewhere about the silver buckle
of his belt, or, pugilistically speaking "in the wind," with her
forehead, and threw him, gun, pistols, provender, salt-bag, and all,
towards a ravine formed by the rain, into which, rolling over and over,
he fell heavily, like a sack of oats. So soon as the deer had butted,
and the Norwegian was overturned on his back, the gun went off, and
instantly blew his red cap some height into the air, and we made up our
minds it must be full, as it was before, of our guide's skull, and that
he had now gone to that bourn from which no hunter, like no traveller,
could ever return. We ran to his assistance. The gun by some contortion
of the Norwegian's body, was twisted upside down, and instead of the
muzzle being pointed downwards, had been elevated, point blank, towards
his head. The poor Norwegian, breathing with great labour, closed eyes,
and opened mouth, lay on his back, like a log in a mill-pond; but we
were glad to find that his mouth, tongue, and all his teeth remained
perfect; and it was some inducement to us to raise the body with the
hope, that he was not yet beyond the need of medical, if of our skill.
The closed eyes of the Norwegian opened, and the opened mouth closed,
when he felt us touch him, and sitting upright, showed all the external
symptoms of having been stunned, for he rubbed his eyes, and pressed his
hand to his brow, then clasped his temples, and with a continuous
movement bowed his head, the crown of which we saw was unmutilated.
After a time, he looked up at us, and seemed surprised to find himself
seated in the gulley; for starting immediately, without any aid, to his
feet, he laughed idiotically as some men will laugh when awakened from a
nap, and setting in order his dress, and singed hair, bore no other
signs of injury beyond a scratch on the left cheek, and the loss of his
scarlet woollen cap. The Norwegian, however, has to thank Heaven for a
narrow escape, since the whole charge of his gun struck the tassel of
his cap, and changed that memento of spousal devotion into its original
nonentity.

The readjustment of the Norwegian's lungs did not detain us long; and
binding his spotted handkerchief round his head to guard against rheum,
or catarrh, he led us by a track almost invisible down the mountain.
Since the fray we had seen nothing of the deer, and gave no further
thought of her, or any of her genus; but made the best of our way, by
the waning light, to a village at the foot of the mountain, whence we
hoped to find some conveyance home. The Norwegian, trustful to the last,
did not yield all chance of capturing the deer for us; and actuated by
the feeling of generosity steadfast to his nation, recommenced his song.
Although the first hour of morning had subtracted from that of midnight
the light was sufficient to guide our steps aright, but not enough to
mislead the wolves; for their howling, and its eternal repercussion
among the mountains and over the forests, brought the most melancholy
fancies to the mind, which the undecided hue of the atmosphere, neither
that of brilliant day nor the black majesty of profound night, and the
low moan of the wind through the fir trees, that sounded like the feeble
expression of bodily pain, or contrition of a dying creature, made too
oppressively sad to admit any thoughts of rational meditation which the
solemnity of the time and place might have encouraged. The gloomy
shadows of the fir forest, through which we had to pass, caused us to
look around with greater caution than we had hitherto done; and our
guide failed not to keep our vigilance alive by exclaiming at the
regular terminations of a few minutes;

"Varg, varg."

"Varg," means a wolf. The rustling of the leaves, or the rolling of a
stone as one of us might strike it accidentally with the foot, would set
the trigger of each gun clicking, and send from mouth to mouth the
signal of----

"Listen!--h-u-u-u-sh!"

Since we had left the more open part of the mountain, we had not felt
entirely at ease; for the incessant tramp of some wild animal was too
distinct at times to attribute the sound to imagination; and we pursued
our way with a feeling of uncertainty as to the manner and moment we
might be attacked. We all concluded, that some wolf had got in our
track, and was following at such a distance as to keep himself out of
our sight; but not so far to prevent him from pouncing on us just when
his opportunity offered. Though we were not wolves, we completely
understood the intentions of the animal, and exercised that attribute of
craft which is as abundant in the organization of man, as of the brute.
We had now reached the very heart of the forest; and the shades of light
were so uncertain, that the fallen trunks of the firs and pine were
often mistaken for bears, or any other kind of ferocious beast that we
had ever heard was of the colour of the bark, or common to Norway. The
measured tramp in our rear became louder and nearer, the deeper we
advanced into the forest; and every moment seemed to be the one in which
the conflict was to commence.

"Let us stop and see," said the Norwegian, in his own language, "if he
will come up to us."

We stood still; and turning the locks of our guns downwards, tapped
them, to replace the powder that might have receded from the nipples. We
could not afford to give our enemy the benefit of one gun hanging fire.

"Keep still," said P----, in a low voice, as he stooped down and glanced
through the firs; "here he comes!--but,--no;--it's no wolf."

"Ja," replied the Norwegian, who had asked me what P---- said;
"ja!--varg;" and he placed himself in an attitude to fire at the
shortest possible notice.

"It's no wolf, I tell you," answered P----, rather louder than he had
spoken at first; "it's too big--why, damn it!" and he again stooped
down, moving his body from side to side, as he looked between the pines
that obstructed his view; and placing his left hand over his eyes, used
it as a kind of shade,--"surely--yes;--I'm sure--it's a jackass!"

"Is it?" said R----; "well, then, let's shoot him as a nuisance."

"Nej, nej," exclaimed the Norwegian, with much trepidation, laying hold
of R----'s fowling-piece, that he had jokingly raised to his shoulder
preparatory to its discharge.

The animal, whatever it was, still continued trotting towards us,
winding its way by the circuitous track of the forest. P---- kneeled
down to have a more exact range both for his gun and sight; but
springing to his feet almost instantly, he exclaimed,----

"I'll be shot, if it isn't the old doe again!"

Panting from fatigue, and the unflagging speed with which she had
travelled, the deer, with her fawn, came close to us, and tamed by
weariness, stood within a foot of the Norwegian.

"Kommit," he said; "salt; kommit, kommit," and filling his hand with
salt, the animal came near, and devoured it greedily, and allowed the
Norwegian to pat her on the neck and shoulder.

The extreme fondness of the rein-deer for salt cannot be better
exemplified; for this animal had followed us from her natural abode on
the top of the mountain to its base, and could not have performed a
lesser journey than twenty miles. She approached us with so much
confidence, and licked our hands with that domestic affection which is
so winning in dumb animals, that we declined to accept and take her from
her native haunts; but strove by every discordant noise and angry
gesture to drive her back to the mountains. With the same care, however,
that the deer had avoided us, she now sought our society, and did not
leave us until we had reached the precincts of the village, and leaping
a high, wooden fence that separated it from the forest, we gave her the
alternative of doing as we did, or remaining where she was. With the
decorous conduct of her sex she made not the attempt; but during the
hour we wandered about the sleeping village in search of some boatmen to
row us back to Auron, we could hear her lowing piteously. We had
descended the eastern side of the mountain, and arrived on a southern
branch of the Sogne Fiord.

Day now began to dawn; and though we had hardly eaten or drank since our
departure the previous morning from Auron, the freshness of the early
air, the balm of mountain flowers, and the beautiful face of nature,
afforded new vigour to our frames, and in feasting the mind we nourished
the body. Wandering from cottage to cottage we knocked at the doors and
windows, hoping to rouse the slumbering people; but sleep sits more
willingly on the peasant's hard pillow than it will pace, without
fretting, the softly-garnished chamber of indolent wealth, and not long
for morning to fly away. At last we succeeded completely by not only
awakening the family of one cottage, but our vociferations alarmed
nearly half the village population. I do not recollect the name of the
village, but the inhabitants bore the disturbance with great good
nature; and thrusting their heads out of their bed-room windows, that
looked no bigger than port-holes, two or three men directed us to the
abode of a fisherman who would soon put us in the way of hiring a pram.
Finding the fisherman's hut, we soon thumped him out of his dreams, and,
shouting uproariously from within, he desired to know who we were, and
what we desired. The Norwegian, our guide, entered into a lengthened
dialogue through the door, and assured the fisherman of our good faith
and bad plight, begging that he would rise, and help us with the means
of returning to Auron.

Half an hour afterwards we were reclining on some branches of the fir
with which the four boatmen, whose services the fisherman had secured,
covered the seats and bottom of the pram, having learned from our guide
the distance we had travelled; and, spreading their coats over us, bade
us rest. To soothe us to slumber, they sang, in union with the motion of
their oars, a native boat-song, and its sweet and plaintive air, though
it could not entice us to sleep soundly, pacified the wearied nerves,
and we lay in a Paradise of dreaming sensibility. These four men were
each six feet in stature, and their philanthropy and good nature were as
broad as their frames. They ceased not rowing for one moment, throughout
the entire distance, to rest on their oars; and though the rain, from
two o'clock till four, fell in torrents, their spirits chafed not with
its pelting violence; but they sang, and laughed, and jested with each
other as if the sun was shining cheerfully over their heads. We stepped
on board the cutter at four o'clock, having been rowed eighteen miles in
three hours and a half.

For all the countries which I have traversed Nature appears not to have
done so much to make them agreeable to man, as she has for Norway, and
man so little to make his own soil suitable for himself as the
Norwegian; nor have I, in either hemisphere, felt more truly
spiritualized by the grandeur of the scenery, the honest frankness and
simplicity of its people, as here. I have wandered over many parts of
the earth; I have looked upon its lofty mountains shrouded in clouds, or
capped with snow; I have, loitering in its smiling valleys, seen its
waterfalls, and floated on its crystal torpid lakes, and rushing rivers;
yet this old land of Norway yields not in all to them, but bears on her
stern and rugged brow the soft impressions of a beneficent creation
impartially dispensed. Such reflections failed not, day by day, to force
themselves upon me; for I knew, that every step I now took removed me
farther and farther from a country, whose mighty mountains had, with
their solemnity, first taught me to think; and the integrity and
single-mindedness of whose children showed how, though fostered in the
flinty lap of poverty, happiness and heroic contentment were no fable.
The peasants, whom we sometimes met in the interior of the country,
where their livelihood must be earned with the hardest labour, and whose
necessity during the long and dismal months of winter must not be much
inferior to absolute want, ever seemed cheerful and ready, not only to
share their scanty fare with us, but to give us milk and butter, and
dried fish, or other dainties which they may have hoarded for the coming
time of cold and darkness. Black bread of barley, or of rye, sour and
unfit even for "Sailor," formed their daily diet, and meat had never
been tasted by thousands; nor did we obtain any other animal food,
except at Christiania and Bergen, and there but with difficulty, than
what we had brought from England; yet, under all their privations, the
contented and happy disposition of these people, added to their
independent bearing and dauntless bravery, was a lesson as instructive
to luxurious selfishness, as it must be gratifying to the man who
believes in the innate nobility of his race, and is proud of it.

Our guide was determined that we should not quit the Sogne Fiord without
some token by which we might remember it; and sending a messenger to the
other side of the Fiord, desired that a certain number of his tenants or
friends should go to the Reenfjeld, and bring as many rein-deer as they
could secure to the foot of a mountain, which he specified by name, on
the morrow. Early in the morning, therefore, the first man who might
have been seen on the deck of the cutter, was our Norwegian guide; and
helping to heave the anchor, he pointed our course to the spot where the
rein-deer would be brought. About one o'clock in the afternoon, we
lay-to off a small village consisting of a few cottages, reposing at the
base of the mountain which the Norwegian had indicated as our
destination. Here, as it had been everywhere else, the scene was
sublime; stamped against the blue sky, glaciers were above our heads,
and green fields at our feet; and thousands of cascades leaping down the
barren sides of the mountains which surrounded us north, east, and west,
were not concealed from the eye by tree or shrub; but could be traced,
inch by inch, from the flat summit of the mountains to the valleys that
sloped to the water on which the vessel swam.

A girl with a basket of cherries came off to the yacht in a boat rowed
by an old man, who watched her with solicitude and the most devoted
affection; and when arriving alongside, the young lady was requested to
come on board, and she complied readily with our entreaty, the despair
that shaded the countenance of the old man delineated the torture of his
heart. This peculiar appearance of the patriarchal face was not lost
upon R----, who was as observant, as he is full of fun, and turning to
me, he said, "Let's take her for a sail, and leave the old bird
behind."

"Very well," I answered; "shall I tell D----?"

The old man not being aware of the trick we were about to play, had not
thought it necessary to make his pram fast to the cutter, but held on by
the starboard main-channel. The order was given to put the helm over,
and let the foresail draw. The cutter soon began to gather way, and
before the old man could imagine why, or whence the increase of traction
came, the main-chain slipped through his fingers, and he fell quietly
but backwards in his pram. I am sorry to say our fair prisoner laughed
as heartily as any one else at the comical attitude of the old man.
Unlike the generality of people who have attained his years, the old man
still possessed much presence of mind; and the instant he could recover
his equilibrium, he sat down and set to work vigorously with his oars.
We kept shouting to him in bad Norwegian, to "pull away;" and running
the cutter close up in the wind, allowed him to overtake us, and then
taking hold of a coil of rope, the sailors bade him to "stand by for the
end," but always took care when they did throw it, to make it fall short
of him. This went on for some time; so that by degrees we had enticed
the old man some two miles from the land, but discovering that we were
only cajoling him, he turned the bow of his pram towards the shore, and
with a long face of misery rowed back. The young lady, in the mean time,
had wheedled herself into the affections of the amorous tars,
particularly of King, he being a linguist. Having sold her basket of
cherries she then seated herself on the deck, near the quarter bulwarks,
enjoying the excursion and novelty of her situation, and laughing
merrily at the discomfiture of her old swain. We had now stood across
the Fiord, and sailed within half a mile of another village of some
importance, for a large church with a red wooden steeple soared above
the houses, out of the windows of which a multitude of heads were thrust
and turned towards the cutter.

"The girl, my Lord," said D---- coming up to R----, "wishes to go ashore
here--she lives here, my Lord."

"Man the gig," answered R----, smiling, "and send her off in it."

"Very good, my Lord;" and away went D---- to give the order. The cutter
lay to, and the gig was hauled up from the stern to the gangway. Four
men sprung into her, and the cockswain took his seat aft; and received,
beside the cushions for the seat and back-board, the empty basket of the
Norwegian girl. The girl looked with much attention to all that was
going forward; but could not tell why her basket was handed into the
boat; and being informed that the gig was waiting to take her home, she
did not dislike the honour about to be shewn her; but smiled and
tittered with the instinctive gratification of her sex.

"Tak," she said, mindful of her manners, shaking R----, P----, and me,
by the hand, "tak, tak;" and gathering her petticoats tight about her
legs, yet without any semblance of prudery, walked to the gangway, and,
without aid, jumped into the boat. Seating herself on the scarlet
cushions, the cockswain receiving permission from her to go on, with all
the gravity due to a queen gave the word to his men, and away the gig
shot, the girl kissing her hand all the time affectionately, and with no
lack of elegance in the bowing inclination of her body in answer to our
acts of reciprocal adoration. I need scarcely say, that the girl had
never touched her native shores with an appearance more imposing, nor
enjoyed herself so largely in so short a time; nor was her return to the
village strand on any previous occasion, whether baptismal, or hymeneal,
more numerously attended than on that day; for men, women, naked
children, and snarling dogs came to the water's side to greet her,
without any reference to numerical force, or moral weakness.

At three o'clock, with the assistance of our glasses, we discovered
sixteen Norwegians, and their invariable companions, as many dogs,
leading and tormenting four rein-deer down the mountains; and for two
hours, along the narrow road of descent, we watched the whole troop
enlarging from the indistinctness of black-beetles to the symmetry and
size of men and animals. When they had reached the plain on which the
small village was built, they shouted and beckoned to us; and although
we made all possible haste, they seemed to fancy their excited feelings
sluggish, nor allowed us sufficient time to walk from one side of the
deck to the gangway without renewing their whoop.

When we landed, the first object that drew our attention from everything
else, was a buck, whose height and proportions quite astonished us. This
animal measured from the tail to the nose five feet two inches, and from
the hoof of the fore leg to the top of his horns, when he held his head
up, seven feet three inches, and his body was quite as large as that of
an ass. Although very much injured by the violence with which he had
been used during his long journey from the mountains, and which had been
rendered absolutely necessary by his ferocity and wildness, we were
desirous of bringing him alive to England; but being so mutilated, our
guide recommended us to have the buck slaughtered, and take a doe and
her fawn on board. With great reluctance the death of the buck was
agreed to by R----, and this splendid animal was dragged to a field
close at hand. The strength and turbulence of the buck are beyond
description; but I do not think I ever enjoyed any fiendish sight more
than this short struggle between him and his murderers over twenty yards
of ground. None but men, like the Norwegians, accustomed to these savage
animals, could have controlled the deer in any way; but notwithstanding
all their caution, I saw the buck kick one man on the chest, and throw
him, exactly like a nine-pin, over and over, some few feet along the
beach. The manner by which the Norwegians had secured this powerful
animal was so ingenious, that he could, by no means, do much mischief,
except to those persons who, bolder than the rest, went near to caress
him; for three ropes were bound round the root of the horns, and being
five or six feet in length, were held by three men who stood in the form
of an angle, the head of the deer forming the base; or, in other words,
one man stood on the left side of the buck, in a line with his left
shoulder; a second man stood on the right side opposite to the right
shoulder, while the third man took his station in front; and the three
men were careful that the rope in the custody of each of them should be
kept tight, since the peril of its being slack must be as obvious as its
contrariety of tension; for whenever the animal made a plunge, as he
sometimes did, towards the man on his right side, the Norwegian on the
left could immediately check the career of the maddened deer by "holding
on his end," as sailors say; the man in front at the same time giving
his protection, and being protected in his turn.

The facility with which this buck was led seemed surprising; for the
animal had not only his natural ferocity to offer against the skill of
his antagonists, but he possessed strength and all the madness born of
the human sounds to which he had been unaccustomed,--the loud ribaldry,
and laughter of men and women, the whistle, and shrill cries of boys and
frighted infants. Submitting to my ignorance, I must say that I had
never seen any large animal killed, and did not know how the operation
was performed; and with a feeling of the most horrible infatuation I
gathered in the small group round the animal to learn the stratagems
observed to surround his legs with looped ropes which, being drawn
quickly, slipped into knots and tripped him up. When the proud deer fell
to the ground, a man drawing a knife from his pocket, and unclasping it,
thrust the blade up to the hilt into the skull between the horns. I
could not have conceived anything deprived of life so suddenly; and were
it not for the blood that flowed in warm and copious streams from the
mouth and nostrils, the animal appeared to have been dead a week.
Another buck was killed, and made a present by R---- to his crew. The
doe and the fawn were with great difficulty put on board; and so much
time was expended in the construction of a pen for them, that we did not
sail until ten o'clock in the evening. The doe received a few bruises in
hoisting her over the side of the vessel, and one of the sprouting horns
of the fawn was broken, which we endeavoured by splints to restore; but
inflammation appeared to succeed so rapidly, that P----, who was
principal chirurgeon, was obliged to amputate it with his razor close to
the head of the animal. This beautiful little creature is still alive,
and may be seen in the Zoological Gardens in the Regent's Park, to which
Society both animals were presented by R---- on their safe arrival in
England.

Every available corner of the yacht was filled with moss, for the
Norwegians told us we should find some difficulty in urging the doe to
eat any other food; but the fawn might be accustomed to corn or oats.
What the Norwegians then said was certified afterwards; for when within
sight of the English coast, the moss had all been consumed, and the deer
pined for its loss, eating nothing else in its lieu but bread and
biscuit; but the fawn demolished the leaf of the filbert, corn, and hay,
which had been collected in large quantities the last hour before we
left Bergen.



CHAPTER XVIII.

 THE SICK SAILOR--THE STORM--THE LEE-SHORE--"BREAKERS
 A-HEAD"--THE YACHT IN DISTRESS--WEATHERING THE STORM
 --RETURN TO BERGEN--THE PHYSICIAN--THE WHIRLPOOL--THE
 WATER-SPOUT--HOMEWARD BOUND--SCARBOROUGH--YARMOUTH
 ROADS--ERITH--GREENWICH HOSPITAL--CONCLUSION.


Whatever might have been my refinement of feeling, I was not deterred
from eating venison for a week afterwards, day by day, and assenting to
its delicious flavour, which, for the satisfaction of the son of
Epicurus who may read these lines, I would state, tasted very strongly
of the moss on which the animal had fed, and comprehended every charming
idea he can form of the term "gamey."

All was hilarity on board; and though the evening wind in passing only
kissed gently the lazy canvass, nothing occurred to mar the serenity of
every face and heart until the afternoon of the day following that on
which we sailed from the village. The sailors had been partaking of
venison as well as ourselves; but there were not those sounds of
joviality incidental to festive occasions, and the silence in the
forecastle attracted our notice. "Talk of the Devil," my ancient
countrywomen say, "and you will be sure to see him;" but though we had
not spoken of his majesty, we certainly alluded to the crew; and
whether D----, their representative, bears any affinity to that mighty
potentate, I have never heard; yet certain it is, the said D----, with a
countenance of ill omen, came into the cabin, and regretting that he
should disturb us at such a time, observed,

"I am afraid, my Lord, King is very bad. He eats nothing, and complains
a good deal."

"Of what does he complain?" asked R----.

"Of a dull pain in his stomach, my Lord," replied D----, "and a
continual desire to retch."

"Oh! it's only a little attack of bile," observed R----; "I will soon
put him to rights."

Rising from his chair, he went to seek his small medicine-chest with
which returning, he placed it on the dinner-table. A few grains of
calomel were weighed; and due directions being given when the physic
should be taken, R---- prepared a black dose for the morrow, and
committed that also to the custody of D----.

"I tell you what it is," said R----, after he had resumed his seat,
"those cherries were too sour, and King, in making love to that girl,
eat nearly the basket-ful; but if men will be fools, they must stand the
brunt of their folly."

"Very true, my Lord," assented D----; "but I think King more ill than
he looks, or says that he is; for he is fond of a drop, my Lord, like
most of us, and that predilection tells when it comes."

"With this still weather," observed R----, "I suppose we cannot hope to
reach Bergen for the next week."

"There is a slight tide, my Lord, the pilot says sets out the Fiord,"
D---- made reply; "and if so, the cutter would hardly take so long to
drift the distance."

"It is nearly one hundred miles?" said R----, interrogatively.

"Nearly, my Lord," answered D----; "but I think the wind is edging round
to the west. Let us see, my Lord;" and D---- turned round, and began to
examine the barometer hanging up behind him, as well as a symparometer.

"It is very odd, my Lord," he continued, after a pause, "but the
barometer is very low, and this symparometer as high as it can well be."

We rose to look at the glasses, and found them as D---- had stated; but
it was not the first time we had observed this variation between the
barometer and symparometer.

"That barometer must be out of order," said R----.

"I never saw this before, my Lord," answered D----, "and it would be
difficult to say which is right, or which is wrong; but you may depend,
my Lord, something is brewing."

We tapped the barometer, and coaxed the symparometer; but all to no
purpose, and they both doggedly retained their relative indications one
to the other. D---- had hitherto been guided entirely by the
symparometer, for it was a very delicate and beautiful instrument, and
never failed in foretelling a shower of rain, or squall of wind. It is
remarkable, that when we got to the north of 60 degrees, the
symparometer acted directly opposite to that plan for which it was
intended; and instead of the declension of the oil being indicative of
bad weather, and its ascension prognostic of fair weather, a direct
contradiction to the movement of the barometer was the result. Let those
who understand the matter account for the fact. The coldness of the
climate could have had no influence, for the temperature differed not
from that of England; and when we were cruising in the latitude of the
Naze, this symparometer was most sensitive and correct in its action.

Perplexed by the position of the two glasses we went on deck, and cast
our eyes to the clear blue firmament, and rested them, ungratified, on
the sharply-marked summits of the mountains. It was now about half-past
ten o'clock, the evening being unusually calm, and its breath sweet with
the smell of flowers, and aroma of the juniper and fir. The sky was
without a stain, except in the west, and there clouds of a dark crimson
tinge clustered, motionlessly, about twenty degrees above the horizon,
and extending from the S.W. to the N.W., looked like a narrow zone of
red-hot iron; but their splendid colour was lessened by being seen
through blacker vapours, that thrown, as a veil of crape, over them,
intercepted our vision.

As the cutter drifted close in to the shore, a great number of filbert
trees were pointed out to us by our pilot; and since the fawn had shown,
the day before, such partiality for the leaves, I rowed the jolly-boat
to land, and commenced plucking as much as the boat would carry. Busy
with my task, I paid no attention to the yacht; but still took it for
granted, that she lay becalmed. A gun fired; and looking up, I saw the
cutter on a port tack, standing across the Fiord; and I knew enough
about sailing to understand, that if I did not make haste, I should be
unable to overtake her when she reached over, on the other tack, to me.
Stowing as many branches of the filbert at the bottom of the boat as it
would hold, I pulled to the yacht; but before I got alongside, the wind
that had freshened, lulled again calmly as ever. The clouds,
nevertheless, to which I have drawn attention, began almost
imperceptibly to move, and the darker ones, breaking into small masses
as they floated towards the zenith, dilated and assumed all kinds of
shapes.

After administering the calomel to King, D---- returned in an hour.

"My Lord," he said, "King is worse. With his hands clasped on his
stomach, he sits writhing with anguish. Listen, my Lord--hear, how he
groans!"

R---- spoke not in answer; but walking to the fore-hatch, descended into
the forecastle, and we followed.

"Where is your principal pain?" asked R----.

"Here,--my Lord,--here," and without altering his position, King pressed
his right hand closer to the pit of his stomach.

"Do you fancy a little brandy?--do you think it will relieve you?"
observed R----.

"No,--my Lord," he replied in a faint voice.

"Keep heart, my man," said R----, placing his hand kindly on King's
shoulder. "He ought to go to bed," he then observed to us; and giving
instructions to the steward, ordered the large berth occupied by P----,
should be prepared. P---- had made the proposal of vacating his cabin;
and in a quarter of an hour, King was put to bed. Striving by every
means in his power to alleviate the pain an honest and faithful servant
was suffering, R---- suggested and tried a variety of remedies, both by
external and internal applications; but in vain. The virulence of the
disease, whatever it was, increased, and its painful intensity exceeding
all endurance, King, with every contortion of body, groaned aloud.

An hour had passed, and the confusion on deck appeared to grow greater
the nearer midnight came. The wind had been rising gradually and
determinedly since we first left the deck, and now had arrived at the
force and recklessness of a strong breeze. Rare, but great drops of rain
struck the deck like lumps of molten lead, and flashes of lightning, yet
without the sound of thunder, brought intelligence of an advancing
storm. From mouth to mouth ran the order of,

"All hands on deck!" and the shuffling feet of men moving up the fore
hatch intimated the promptitude with which the command was treated.
R---- and P---- had already returned to the deck; but I remained below
doing what little offices I could to assuage the anguish of King; and he
seemed to desire my presence for no other service than to give him
water; for during the paroxysms of his complaint, he ceased not saying,

"Water! Sir; water!" and would snatch the glass from me, and drink with
avidity.

I crept on deck to see our situation and that of the vessel. Thick
clouds, black and rolling one over the other in their headlong flight,
overcast the sky, and the stars no longer shone in the firmament. The
mountains that had been so distinctly defined when I looked on them two
hours before, seemed now shapeless mounds of earth swelling towards
Heaven, and adding to the obscurity of night; and when the lightning
gleamed in broad sheets, their great forms hanging over us, had, from
the motion of the vessel, the appearance of falling on us. Every instant
the strength of the wind became mightier, the thunder roared louder, and
before the echo had made response from the nearest mountain-top, the
lightning leaped downward from the zenith into the valleys, and darted,
while it hissed, from tree to tree. The sea began to rise, and the
cutter, that had hitherto lain so placidly on the smooth water, heaved,
and her larger spars creaked to the growing scud.

We had now opened the North Sea, and the pilots were desirous of getting
under an island that lay about two miles from the mouth of the Fiord,
before the gale reached its utmost fury; for by doing so, the vessel
would then be perfectly secure in the quiet waters of another Fiord that
flowed thence to the walls of Bergen. In the effort to accomplish this,
the vessel was exposed to the whole drift of the Northern Ocean; and the
wind having settled down to S.W. by W., blew directly in our faces, and
placed a fearful shore on our lee. Having looked around me, as well as
the pitchy darkness would allow, and ascertaining from the King's Pilot,
as he was called, a seaman as courageous as he was skilful, the
dangerous bearing of the land, and the object he desired to gain, I took
my leave of the deck, and made more room for those who could be
serviceable in the governance of the vessel. A deafening peal of thunder
shook down a second deluge, and driven to seek shelter, R---- and P----
came to the cabin immediately after me.

Taking each a seat on the sofas, we spoke not; and no sounds but the
loud words of command, the noise of men running to and fro over head,
and the cries of King, interfered with the sovereignty of the thunder,
and whistling of the impetuous wind.

Dripping with rain, and out of breath, anxious care sitting on his
whitened lips to watch and thwart each word he would speak with
firmness, D---- hastened down the main companion and addressed himself
to R----.

"My Lord," he said, "the pilots begin to differ: one prays the other to
put back, who persists in beating to windward. The gale increases, and
the land is not two miles from our lee. What had better be done, my
Lord?"

"It is impossible for me to interpose my authority. The safety of the
vessel is in the hands of the two pilots; and what they say must be
obeyed," replied R----.

"But, my Lord, they are at variance," said D----, impressively. "I do
not know the coast, and cannot judge for myself which one is in the
right."

R---- made no answer, but, calling for a glazed coat and cap, went,
accompanied by P----, on deck. Knowing that on all such occasions as
the present, the less crowded the decks are, the more effectually all
orders can be carried out, I lay down on the sofa, and noted all that
was going forward. Worn in nerve and wearied by the distracting uproar
of the elements, and flapping sails, I fell at last into a pleasant mood
of thought, and, lost to everything around me, did not perceive that
King, by some means or the other, had risen from his berth and was in
the cabin, until I heard him groan. Kneeling on the floor, and with his
face buried on the sofa opposite to the one on which I was reclining,
the poor fellow had placed one of the pillows on the side of the sofa,
and was pressing his stomach against it.

"Why, King!" I exclaimed, starting from my lethargy, "What has brought
you here? You should not have left your bed;" but he did not appear to
understand, or hear me. Knowing that he had taken calomel, I took a
blanket and threw it over him lest he should catch cold, for the wind
passed in draughts through the cabin, as it would rush through a funnel.
He looked up, and said,

"Oh! Sir--is it you? Do I disturb you, Sir?"

"No," I replied, "it only disturbs me to see you so ill."

"Thank you, Sir, thank you," he said, and strove to smile; but his
complaint, which appeared to attack him with great anguish at intervals
of a few minutes, altered the expression of his countenance, and with
the most horrible distortions, he shrieked like a maniac. When the pain
abated he was alive to everything; and hearing the thunder, the fury of
the wind and rain, he observed to me,

"What a night, Sir! If I don't die one way, I shall another."

"Don't despond," I answered as cheerfully as I could, "and you will die
neither way."

At this moment R---- and P---- tumbling down the staircase as softly as
the pitching and rolling of the cutter permitted, inquired how King
felt. I told them what I really thought, that the man was dying of some
internal disease of which we were not aware.

"The pilots," said R----, out of King's hearing, "wish now to run back
into the Fiord; but if King is not rallying, I think we had better go
on. We _may_ get through it somehow."

"I am willing," I replied, "to do anything you propose; but I am sure if
we be not at Bergen to-morrow, King will be dead."

"I agree with you," answered P----.

"Very well, then," said R----, "as far as we three are concerned, it's a
bargain."

"It is," we both replied.

"I will now hear what the men say," R---- continued, smiling with his
wonted lively air, "for I can't drown them all without giving them a
little time to pipe to prayers."

Approaching King, he observed, as light-heartedly as the occasion would
give cause,

"Keep up your courage, King; we shall be at Bergen to-morrow morning by
daylight."

"Shall we, my Lord? Thank God!" said the poor fellow solemnly. "But, my
Lord," he went on saying, with a forced smile, "though I am sick, I am a
sailor. I know this channel well, my Lord--it is narrow, full of
blinders, and,--"

"Never mind the blinders," replied R----, with gaiety; "if your
messmates will thrash through them, I will."

"God bless you! my Lord--thank you;" and the sick man took R----'s hand,
and clasped it firmly as the weakness of his condition granted.

Hurrying to the deck, R---- ascertained the feeling of his crew, for I
heard above the loudness of the storm, D---- call to the men,

"What will you do, my sons? Will you go on, or put back? There is danger
a-head; but if we run back, King must die. Which will you do? my Lord
gives you the choice, since your souls are at stake. Will you risk your
lives to save your messmate; or put the helm up, and throw him overboard
at daylight?"

As with one voice, they all shouted,

"We will go on."

I heard the acclamation, and did not think King was well enough to pay
attention to the observations of D----, or the reply of the sailors; but
he must have also heard the shout for he said to me,

"What is that they say, Sir?"

"Only," I replied, "that the men are determined to brave the gale, and
mean to beat round under the lee of the island into the Bergen Fiord."

"It is very good of my Lord," said King in a low voice. "If I live, I
will never forget my Lord's goodness."

I thought I saw him lift his hand to his face and brush away a tear; but
I had persuaded him to lie down on the sofa, and the table, swinging up
and down as the vessel pitched and rolled in the trough of the sea,
obstructed sometimes my view completely. I rose to trim the dull lamp
that burned on the table; and seeing that the blanket had fallen to the
floor I approached King to spread it over him again. Poor fellow! he lay
on his back with his mouth wide open, gasping for breath, and his sunken
closed lids, his ruddy complexion and round face changed to the yellow
hue and emaciation of sickness, made me think that he was dying; and I
placed my hand on his wrist. At my cold touch he opened his eyes, and
groaned. Just then the vessel gave a very heavy lurch, and its violence
forced the door that communicated with the pantry back upon its hinges.
Scarcely had this accident come to pass, than Jacko, whom I had not
seen for some days, taking advantage of it, ran into the main cabin and,
with the curious chirp of the ring-tail monkey, jumped on the restless
table. Perceiving with the quickness of a man, that all was not right,
the little animal looked into my face for inquiry, and then scratched
his side, not from any particular reason, but from habit; and walking on
all fours to the edge of the table nearest to me, stopped, and looked
again as if to probe my humour, and leaped gently on my arm. I was still
standing over King. The monkey peered first at me, and then gaped at
King, wondering why he should be so inert, when activity was so
paramount; and putting his head on one side, chirped, and appeared to be
deliberating about something. Stretching out his neck to have a closer
view, he satisfied himself that he was not in error, but knew the face
before him, however much illness might have changed it; and being a
singular favorite of King, the affectionate creature seemed to
understand the miserable condition of his kind friend, and descending
with the aid of his tail, which he twisted round my arm, he stepped
softly on King's chest. The sick man again opened his heavy eyes, and
seeing what had disturbed him, raised his hand, and feebly stroked the
monkey's glossy back. As long as I live I shall not forget the
expressive despair and love of that little creature. With a low, piteous
chirp, it wormed its small, round head under King's chin, and folded
its left arm as far round his throat as it would go.

"Jacko," said the sailor, so faintly that I could just distinguish the
words he uttered, "I shall--die. Yes!--I must!--yes,--Jacko."

The monkey moved not; but continued chirping, fondling closer to King's
neck, and doubling up his body almost into a ball.

"Oh! Lord!--Sir," exclaimed King suddenly--"here it comes! O! O! O!" and
the convulsion of his limbs and features testified his anguish. Such
expressions of dreadful pain at any other time would have frightened
Jacko out of his wits; but now he merely stood upright on his hind legs
with his diminutive hands placed on King's cheek, and glancing from the
tortured countenance and form of the stricken seaman to my face,
expressed his deep concern by the most melancholy chirrups.

Midnight had come and gone, and the hurricane continued unabated. The
wind blowing with terrific violence caused all commands to be given
through a speaking-trumpet; and the waves broke over the labouring
vessel in such frequent volumes, that they jeopardized the lives of the
men, who, in the excitement and execution of their duty, neglected due
precaution. I have crossed the Atlantic thrice from one hemisphere to
the other, and in a deeply-laden merchant-vessel experienced the anger
of a south-west gale; but my consolation then was to know, that the
sluggish ship had ample sea-room. Now, however, the case was reversed;
and with a storm concentrating the fury of ten others, our little bark
had no breadth of berth to lay to, or length to run in, but was
compelled to accept the alternative of beating against the tremendous
swell of the North Sea that appeared to crowd all its power and
vehemence into the mouth of the Fiord, or be shattered to atoms on the
perpendicular rocks of the mountains, against which the waves dashed
with a roar not less appalling than that of thunder. The intensity of
darkness was complete as that of a wall; for standing a foot abaft the
mast, we could not see the bowsprit end; and one man had no other order
to fulfil but to wait for the flashes of lightning, and mark the
position of the land. I cannot remember any sight either that I have
seen, or fable that I have read, which gave me a more terrible idea of
death than this night; for not only did the elements struggle with each
other to drive us to despair, but the groans and shrieks of a
fellow-creature, as he was being borne on the wings of disease to his
grave, cut off the small ray of cheerfulness that might have crept into
our hearts while standing shoulder to shoulder in contention with the
tempest.

A cry of desperation flew from end to end of the deck, as a vivid gleam
of lightning sped by us, and a tearing noise, like that of a tree whose
trunk, nearly severed by the axe, is rent in two by the weight of its
branches, and falls to the ground. I thought the mast was struck and
shivered by the lightning.

"We are lost!" several voices cried; "the mainsail is split!"

King had fallen into unconsciousness, produced either by the acuteness
of the nerves being nullified by the assaults of disease, or incidental
to that kind of stupor which death casts like a shadow along its path.
Disliking to die like a rat in my hole, I went on deck; and a bright
flash of lightning showed the mainsail ripped from the second reef
earing up to the peak. Though the waves rushed by the vessel with the
velocity of the fleetest steeds, and demolished everything that
obstructed their career, our craft appeared to defy their fury, and
sprung from billow, to billow with the playful airiness of a cork.

"We are lost!" said P----, collectedly, in a low voice, as soon as my
head was visible above the companion.

"No," I replied; "'a live dog is worth a dead lion.' I shall be drowned
when I am three fathoms under water,--not before."

My companions, I think, attached more heartlessness to my careless
manner, and, perhaps, quotation, than I intended; for they made no
answer.

"My Lord," said D----, hurrying up to R----, "we must cut away the
boom!"

"Let it go," answered R----, briefly, and with calmness.

The cutter was luffed up, and above the roar of the sea, as it lashed
and leaped over the bows, D---- shouted,

"Now, my sons, down with the main! and stand by to cut it away."

"Ay, ay, Sir," the men replied, and arranged themselves almost in an
instant in their proper places, just as if they moved by mechanism; and
not a human voice was heard as the different ropes were let go, and the
huge mainsail, flapping furiously, descended towards the deck. The
cutter did not seem to feel the immense weight of the canvass, increased
as it was by the rain; but danced about as buoyantly as ever. In a few
minutes vanished all idea of sending the mainsail adrift, and every
thought was turned to the trysail. Five times the attempt was made to
set it; but the furious blasts of wind, now freighted with hail,
dissipated the strength of our crew with the same facility as the breath
of a man would level a palace of cards. During these repeated efforts to
get the trysail up, which necessarily occupied much time, the cutter had
drifted some way to leeward; and, at last, the man keeping watch on the
bow, exclaimed,

"Breakers! Sir, breakers!"

A dozen of us vociferated at the same moment,

"Where?"

"There they are!" shouted the man; "close on the lee-beam!"

Through the thickness of night the waves were discernible like a heap of
snow, white with foam, and, as if wantoning with each other, jumping
into the air, not fifty fathoms from the yacht. Sailors are brave men;
but when a continuity of danger pursues them, they are apt to despair,
not from any want of physical or moral ability, but from that morbid
impotence which develops itself in their superstitious fancies. The
pilots had not given up the hope of vanquishing the storm, and D----,
who knew the disposition of his countrymen, did not yet dread their
vacillation; but we did. Nothing seemed possible to save us, but the
interposition of Heaven; for the storm-jib and reefed foresail were the
only sails on the cutter, and they were barely sufficient, in such a
sea, to give her steerage way. Every wave that struck the yacht hurled
her near and nearer to the breakers; but the courage of the men
continued indomitable, and promptly, with the most cheerful expressions,
they performed any, the most perilous task allotted to them.

"Ware her, pilot!" D---- called out to the principal pilot. The two
pilots taking up the hint, consulted for an instant, and then that one
to whom D---- had spoken, said,

"Ware ship."

The beautiful little vessel obeyed her helm as willingly as if she were
on a lake; and D---- could not help observing to me, his eyes beaming
with the devotion of a sailor for his ship,

"It's a shame, Sir, to doubt she would ever perform her duty."

Scarcely had the words fallen from his lips, or the cutter wore round,
when the man, who had first seen the breakers, shouted a second time,
like the flying herald of Doomsday,

"There's a vessel going to run us down!"

Every soul ran to the weather side and sought with starting eyes the
object of anticipated destruction. By the gleams of light a native
vessel, with a sole square-sail set, was imperfectly seen bearing down
on our weather bow; and although the wind and sea combined with the
darkness to render our annihilation seemingly inevitable, the crew of
the approaching bark sang, in a long, slow measure, two or three
Norwegian words, and their constant, drawling repetition became
distincter as the vessel, like an ice-berg, tore through the frothing
surge towards us. There stirred not a sound on board our cutter, except
the unceasing exhortation, spoken almost sepulchrally, of the pilot
standing near to the helmsman,

"Stea--dy!--stea--dy!"

Both pilots appeared to have understood the signification of the chant,
for they altered not the course of the cutter, but kept their eyes
fixed, as well as the night admitted, on the huge white sail of the
spectral vessel; and would make no other reply to our questions, but,

"They see us, they see us."

Like the spirit of the storm, the vast sail glided through the black air
above our top-mast, for it was so dark we could not distinguish the hull;
and there was something of mystery and impressive awe, amid the howling
tempest, the roar of thunder, and the flash of lightning, in this slow,
chanting recitation, uttered by a number of voices that seemed to
proceed from the dense obscurity.

It was a vessel from Bergen bound up the Sogne Fiord for timber; and the
crew having seen us buffeted, in such a shattered condition, by the
gale, and perceiving by the rig of the cutter, that she was a foreigner,
humanely bore down to us; and the mystical song of the sailors was a
signal to follow them, which being sung slowly and with unfailing
repetition, outlasted the blasts of wind, and gave us the opportunity of
catching the words as the two vessels rose on the crests of the waves.
Our pilots refused to adopt the counsel given, and run out to sea; for
had they done so, we might have found ourselves by daylight driven half
way to Trondhjem, and the life of King must have been sacrificed.

Neither wind nor sea yielded yet, and we were as stubborn; but had the
trim of the yacht not been true, and her liveliness that of a straw, the
swell would have made a clean breach over her decks, and its pressure
been fatal. At two we got under the lee of the long-desired island. The
trysail that had been partially hoisted was now set properly, and
trusting to the goodness of our cause, guaranteed by the tried
worthiness of our craft, we stretched away from the island, and stood
for Bergen.

Returning to the cabin I found King awake, lying where I had left him.
When he saw me,

"My pain is easier, sir," he said, not more audibly than a whisper; "but
I feel weaker."

"That's your fancy," I answered livelily; but not without the fear that
internal mortification was ensuing. "We have beaten the gale on its own
ground," I proceeded, endeavouring to divert his thoughts, "and are
standing right down the Bergen Fiord."

"It is good of my Lord--very," he replied, and drew a deep sigh; "but--I
shall never see England again. My poor wife!" The tears ran silently
down his sunken cheeks. While the sick man wept, my two friends, with
countenances of joy, entered the cabin.

"Well!" observed one of them, "I thought all was up with us; but it is
now only a tale to tell."

"Yes," the other replied, "neither on sea or shore fail experiments of
the heart; and if we could only land you, King," continued the speaker,
drawing near to the sofa, "three or four hours hence in Bergen, I would
not decline fighting the same battle, ignorant of its chances, again
next week."

The sailor, too sad and ill to speak, smiled through his tears at the
generosity of a youthful spirit. After administering every possible
comfort to King, we lay down to rest; and it seemed that I had hardly
closed my eyes when the grating noise of the cable awoke me. The yacht
was at anchor in Bergen harbour. In less than half an hour a medical man
was on board; and by his order King was immediately wrapped up in
blankets and taken ashore. He was in the last stage of intestinal
inflammation; and an hour more would have sealed his destiny. I need not
say, that for many days life oscillated uncertainly between death and
the vigour of his constitution; but R---- had the good fortune to secure
the services of a most skilful, though young, Norwegian physician. None
of us can speak too highly of the kindness and unhesitating attention of
this gentleman, who combined not only the estimable and generous
disposition of youth with the intellectual attainments of maturer years,
but claimed every accomplishment of manner and attraction of form that
birth and education might have refined and nature alone could give.

So ended the 1st of August, to live in our memories. In the evening we
went to see King. He was so ill, that his medical attendant begged,
while remaining in his bed-room, we would not speak. The poor fellow was
delirious. When we came near to his bed-side, he stared at us; but could
not remember who we were. Sailor, who managed to push his way up stairs,
though we had taken the precaution to leave him out of doors, rushed up
to the bed, and placed his paws on it; but a cuff on the head sent him
to the other end of the room. King seemed to have recognized the dog;
for he rolled his head from side to side on the pillow, as if in
reprobation of the act to keep the animal from him; and although his
left hand lay outside the coverlet, he was so exhausted, having been
bled twice, that he could not stir it; but moved the forefinger,
beckoning the animal to him. At the suggestion of the doctor we stood on
one side, and opened a passage for the dog. The animal crouching in the
farthest corner of the room, hung his head, doubtful of the duty
required of him; but the moment R---- motioned with his hand, the dog in
one bound reached the bed. The wan, vacant countenance of the sufferer,
brightened with the hue and intelligence of health, for he smiled and
moved his lips, though he had not sufficient strength to articulate a
word. The dog sometimes licked his hand, and then with playfulness, took
the moving finger between his teeth, and allowing it to slip from his
mouth, would seize it again; and so, although both were speechless, both
understood each other. At last some sad reflection, the thought perhaps
of home, or the little chance he had more of sharing the affection of
any human thing, as he did now, crossed his mind; for the sick man
closed his eyes, while yet his finger moved as before and the noble
brute still toyed with it, and oozing from under the shut lids, one by
one, the tears ran over, and bathed his temples.

"We shall excite him, doctor," we said in a whisper.

"I think so," he replied; "leave him for the present."

We left the room; but it was with some difficulty we could get the dog
to follow us. The attachment of animals is a common tradition, but I
have never had the opportunity of seeing it so feelingly displayed as
during the illness of King; nor did the rage of the elements, or the
fear of death press heavier on my spirits than the mute love of Sailor
and Jacko touched me deeply. No living creatures could have remembered
with more devotional sincerity the acts of friendship and human
kindness, or demonstrated their grief with greater effect and truth.

Our stay at Bergen was greatly lengthened by the illness of King; for
R---- did not like to leave Norway without being assured of his
ultimate recovery. During our sojourn, the guide, a Swede, whom we had
hired, pointed out the house in which the Marquis of Waterford was
lodged after his encounter with the watchman, when his life was nearly
lost. Borne on their shoulders, the watchmen carry about with them a
long staff, at the end of which is a circular knob full of small spikes
that resemble the rays of a star, on which account the staff is called
the Morning Star; and with one of these astral knobs the noble Lord, in
a scuffle, was struck on the head. The inhabitants of Bergen still
remember the Marquis; and while they condemn the conduct of their
countryman, exalt the character of the young nobleman; and I believe
myself, that the local trade of the town never received before his
arrival, or after his departure, such an impetus as it did from the
liberality and personal expenditure of Lord Waterford. Our guide did
nothing else but talk of him, and laughed till he cried while recounting
the comical freaks of "the sweet man;" or, as he phrased him
vernacularly,

"Manen sött."

The lateness of the season made R---- anxious to quit Norway before the
middle of August; and since King could not, under the most favourable
circumstances, leave his bed before the end of the month, we thought of
our return to England. On the afternoon of the 7th, King being
pronounced entirely out of danger, and, as far as human wisdom could
tell, certain of regaining his former health, we sailed; but R---- left
in the hands of the British Consul a sum of money, to purchase whatever
might be required for King's present use, and future passage to England;
and writing a note which was to be given to him by the Consul, when he
was sufficiently well to read it, R---- told the poor fellow not to be
hurt at our departure; but that we had sailed from Bergen by compulsion,
and not according to the dictates of our own hearts. Promising to touch
at Harwich, and communicate to his wife the tidings of his
convalescence, for we had written to inform her of her husband's
desperate condition, R---- concluded by intimating, that the Consul
would supply him with every luxury he desired, and he was not to
hesitate in the expression of any fancy his sickly state might prompt
him to make. R---- told him, also, to join the yacht at Cowes when he
returned to England. King lived to see the English shores again, and
gratefully, in the blunt, pathetic language of a sailor, to thank his
amiable benefactor. He fills, at this moment, his old post.

Although the afternoon was calm, the cutter dropped rapidly down the
Fiord, until within four miles of the sea. The pilot, one of the most
expert at Bergen, had been very anxious to get the yacht clear from the
land before night-fall, that he might be on his homeward way in good
time; nor were we less desirous of taking our departure before set of
sun. But Fortune seems ever to act towards some men with the sincerest
malice. About half a league, as I have said, from the mouth of this
Fiord, one of many that conducts to Bergen, and on the starboard shore,
is a rock that juts towards the centre of the channel, and forms a small
bay. Mariners know the spot well, and avoid it. The surrounding scenery,
fraught with the natural softness of beauty and severe grandeur of
Norway, resembles most other things that bear, seductively, external
comeliness, and carry an antidote unseen. The bay is a whirlpool. Our
hyperboreal Palinurus was perfectly acquainted with this modern
Charybdis, and used every stratagem of which he was master, to escape
it; but the wind being light, left the cutter to the mercy of the
current. Nearly three hours the yacht did nothing else but revolve, as
if she were fixed on a pivot, and not all the united exertions of the
crew could tow her out of the eddy.

The unhappy pilot stamped his foot every time the cutter took a fresh
whirl, and called his favourite Odin to witness his dilemma; but Odin
paid as much deference to his prayers as Hercules did, of yore, to the
waggoner who got the wheel of his cart in the rut. The cutter wearied
not in her waltz; but, whether she felt the want of a partner, or the
power of the wind, I know not; for when the pilot had lighted his pipe,
and given his soul to its soporific ward, she darted unexpectedly out of
the circling haven, and ceased not in her flight until the first wave of
the Ocean leaped up against her bow with so much rude impetuosity that
her hull staggered under its force, and her gaff-topsail shook with
anger at such lack of gentleness.

Amid a multitudinous salute of "Farväl!" the pilot bundled into his
pram; and even now I see him tossed about, looking the very
configuration of "Gamle Norge."

The sameness of all other seas is not forbidden to this northern one;
and except a more constant repetition of squalls and showers of rain, I
distinguished the great family likeness. The 8th of August passed
pleasantly enough, and for those souls which can absorb the sublimity of
water, and soar to the infinity of space, the scene might have seemed
wondrous in width and height; but the subsequent day, while sitting
below and reading, I heard a tremendous racket on deck, and before I
could exactly arrange the different sounds, the main-sail and
gaff-topsail came to the deck "with a run;" and for aught I knew to the
contrary, but strongly imagined, the gib and foresail followed their
example with like expedition.

"We shall go up in the air, like a balloon!" one of the sailors, with a
twang of horror in his voice, exclaimed.

"Ay, or swamped!" a second suggested, loudly, with dreadful
determination.

"Ay, ay; and the deck's as good as stove in!" growled a third nautical
son of a Shuhite.

I threw the book I had been perusing on the cabin table, and hurried
towards the staircase; but one of my friends met me at the door, and
moving with the same velocity as myself, we came into sharp collision.
He rebounded to the right, and I recoiled to the left hand.

"For God's sake, get out of the way," said he, out of breath, and
recovering his legs as fast as he could.

"What's the matter?" I asked, with much alarm. "Is the vessel on fire,
or what?"

"No;--nothing," replied he, with a wildness of look that foretold
anything but nothing. "Here, steward!" he called out at the top of his
voice,--"Alfred!--Gandy!--cook!"--dismay expanding the sources of
information, and adding loudness to his vociferation--"Where's my gun?"

The steward, Alfred, Gandy, and the cook were busily employed elsewhere,
for they made no reply, and my friend soon found, without their
assistance, what, at first, confusion of mind had hid from his sight.

Breathless, too, with the flushed face and disordered dress of haste and
horror, my other fellow traveller came thundering down the companion,
and the thick shooting-boots he commonly wore clattered the importance
of his approach.

"Gracious heaven!" I exclaimed, "What is all this about? If I am to
be----"

"Where's the powder?" asked he, and brushing by me, like a rocket, to
get across the cabin, brought his shoulder so forcibly in contact with
my chest, that he knocked all the breath out of my lungs, and broke my
second sentence into pieces.

"Where's the powder?" again asked he, his voice ascending in the scale
of articulation.

"How am I to know?" fulminated the one, angrily, loading his gun with
the despatch of an adroit musketeer. "Am I a magazine?"

"No; I know that," said the other, tartly.

"Well; what's the good of baiting a fellow when he's busy," replied the
first decisively.

I could rest no longer in ignorance of my fate, and I scrambled on deck.
The vessel labouring very much in a heavy sea, had not a stitch of
canvass on her, and her bare mast tapered into the air like a cocoa-nut
tree that had been discrowned.

"What is all this?" I said, appealing to one man who had hold of the
tiller, and, with his neck extended like a race-horse, seemed to be
steering as if the greatest way was on the vessel.

"Look there, your Honour," and without removing his eyes from the bow of
the cutter, he pointed the thumb of his left hand over his shoulder. I
turned, and saw, half a mile astern, the cause of all this uproar. But I
had barely a clear conception of what I was looking at, when my
companions with loaded guns reappeared on deck. The triggers clicked,
and I assumed their guns were to be discharged at once, but D---- called
out,

"Not yet; it's too far off."

"Tell us when to fire, then," said my two friends, filing themselves in
that attitude which the reader may have observed in a regiment of
soldiers, when the word is given to "present."

"What!" I cried out, now that I found my senses by the visual
elucidation of the threatened evil;

"What! you don't mean to say you are going to fire with a couple of
fowling pieces at a water-spout?"

"To be sure, Sir," answered D----, giving me a momentary glance that he
ventured to take, clandestinely, from the water-spout. "Don't they fire
guns to break them?"

"Yes," I replied, "people do,--cannon!"

However, I could not get any one to agree with me, that a rifle-ball
would have just as much effect on the dispersion of the huge water-spout
that boiled and waved, like an elastic tower, to and fro with the wind,
and roared in the wake of the yacht, as a sigh would arrest the rotation
of Sirius; and so, placing my life in the custody of Providence, I went
back to my book, and left my companions standing on the poop with guns
presented, and the whole crew with leaping hearts and open mouths
waiting the efficacy of their artillery. I did not hear the discharge of
the two guns; but the water-spout kept them in great trepidation, by
approaching within a hundred yards of the cutter, and then resolving
into its native cloud and water.

The following day the high lands in the vicinity of Whitby in Yorkshire
were seen; and at four o'clock the same afternoon we passed close under
the frowning headland, on which the old ruins of the castle stand. A
south-west wind appearing desirous to treat us with another gale, we
brought up off Scarborough for the night; and notwithstanding the swell
which precluded all other boats from intercourse with the shore, we
managed to reach the land in a gig, and stretched our legs on English
ground again.

Early in the morning P---- left us for London, fearful that the wind
might detain us some time at Scarborough; but five hours after his
departure, at mid-day, with a fresh breeze, we got under weigh; and,
though the wind continued heading us the whole distance, reached
Yarmouth as the clocks in the town were striking eight.

Having made up our minds not to remain more than the night at this
place, the cutter lay in the roadstead.

We must have arrived at a moment of some gaiety, for on a terrace facing
the sea, a band was playing, and all the inhabitants had congregated to
converse and walk. What a contrast to the country from which we had just
come! No man can judge of the superiority of England, whether in the
beauty and elegance of its women, the cleanliness of its towns, the
multiplicity and aptness of its comforts, but he who has wandered in
other parts of the world. Grumblers are domestic; just the same as
spoiled brats cry for the very sake of peevishness, because they know
not the pain of denial. As I have not much more time to speak, I would,
with my last breath, recommend discontented people to travel; but if
they should come back in the same fretful condition, well, let them go
to----Bath;--no further.

At six o'clock on the morning of the 12th of August, we sailed from
Yarmouth, and at a quarter to seven in the evening, the anchor of the
Iris dropped within thirty yards of the pier-head at Erith.

By the first flush of day, taking the early tide, the cutter crept up
the familiar, winding River; and while yet I pondered on the reason why
I should love my own land, with its yellow sky and puffing toil, better
than the pure Heaven and kindly ease of foreign strands, the Hospital of
Greenwich lay within the cast of a stone. The crimson flag was waving on
the western turret, just as it waved in May, and so, with his two wooden
legs projecting at right angles to his body, sat alone, on the same
bench, the lone old pensioner. I seemed to have been sleeping for three
months. I felt sad, and knew not why. How ideal is the reality of life!
and the inexpressive cause of grief is the consciousness of that truth.

The sailors, as they furled the sails, talked of home. The deer and
fawn, ceasing to ruminate, viewed their new country with surprise; but
Jacko going into Sailor's hutch, begged, without doubt, to know if he
might ride through the town on his back; and Greenwich, like Brundusium,
was,

 "longæ finis chartæque viæque."

As all men are not of the same stature, so their minds differ in the
means of accepting knowledge, or entertainment, and to please every one
is a difficult thing. To hope, therefore, that I should afford amusement
to all who read these pages, would be to aspire for that which has not
fallen to the lot of any one; but if out of the incongruity of opinions
I have expressed, be they ever so weak, or opposed to each other,
instruction may be taken, then I shall not have striven without a
result. For me, I have no moral lesson to teach; but by writing, to
repeat what I have witnessed, and by that repetition to impart to others
those things which, sheltered, though of the same world, by a different
sky, and shadowed by other customs, were pleasing to my mind and sight.

My task is done; and, like a dream, is dreamt the recollection of human
things already changed and ever changing. The remembrance of the
interesting country through which I have been travelling shall abide by
me always; for, encouraged by the desire to speak and muse, as I do now,
of the hardy, freely happy, and contented sons of its mountains, I first
learned that no greater blessing could be granted than a life of
honourable industry, and that, pine who might beneath the infliction of
mental or bodily exertion, I had known the exalted destiny of creation
in the effort to be useful. Like an exile turning to take a last glance
at the blue outlines of his native land, I, too, have lingered to look
back; yet the pleasant retrospection of three happy months is at an end;
and I now dream of its delight as one who feels that, in the swift
transition of existence, such peace of mind can never come again.



THE END.



LONDON:

PRINTED BY T. R. HARRISON, 45, ST. MARTIN'S LANE.


       *       *       *       *       *


 _13, Great Marlborough Street._

 MR. COLBURN'S
 LIST OF NEW WORKS.

       *       *       *       *       *

 LIVES OF THE PRINCESSES OF ENGLAND,
 By Mrs. EVERETT GREEN,
 EDITOR OF THE "LETTERS OF ROYAL AND ILLUSTRIOUS LADIES."
 2 vols., post 8vo., with Illustrations, 21s. bound.

 OPINIONS OF THE PRESS.

"A most agreeable book, forming a meet companion for the work of Miss
Strickland, to which, indeed, it is an indispensable addition. The
authoress, already favourably known to the learned world by her
excellent collection of 'Letters of Royal and Illustrious Ladies,' has
executed her task with great skill and fidelity. Every page displays
careful research and accuracy. There is a graceful combination of sound,
historical erudition, with an air of romance and adventure that is
highly pleasing, and renders the work at once an agreeable companion of
the boudoir, and a valuable addition to the historical library. Mrs.
Green has entered upon an untrodden path, and gives to her biographies
an air of freshness and novelty very alluring. The present volumes
(including the Lives of twenty-five Princesses) carry us from the
daughters of the Conqueror to the family of Edward I.--a highly
interesting period, replete with curious illustrations of the genius and
manners of the Middle Ages. Such works, from the truthfulness of their
spirit, furnish a more lively picture of the tunes than even the
graphic, though delusive, pencil of Scott and James."--_Britannia._

"The vast utility of the task undertaken by the gifted author of this
interesting book can only be equalled by the skill, ingenuity, and
research required for its accomplishment. The field Mrs. Green has
selected is an untrodden one. Mrs. Green, on giving to the world a work
which will enable us to arrive at a correct idea of the private
histories and personal characters of the royal ladies of England, has
done sufficient to entitle her to the respect and gratitude of the
country. The labour of her task was exceedingly great, involving
researches, not only into English records and chronicles, but into those
of almost every civilised country in Europe. The style of Mrs. Green is
admirable. She has a fine perception of character and manners, a
penetrating spirit of observation, and singular exactness of judgment.
The memoirs are richly fraught with the spirit of romantic
adventure."--_Morning Post._

"This work is a worthy companion to Miss Strickland's admirable 'Queens
of England.' In one respect the subject-matter of these volumes is more
interesting, because it is more diversified than that of the 'Queens of
England.' That celebrated work, although its heroines were, for the most
part, foreign Princesses, related almost entirely to the history of this
country. The Princesses of England, on the contrary, are themselves
English, but their lives are nearly all connected with foreign nations.
Their biographies, consequently, afford us a glimpse of the manners and
customs of the chief European kingdoms, a circumstance which not only
gives to the work the charm of variety, but which is likely to render it
peculiarly useful to the general reader, as it links together by
association the contemporaneous history of various nations. The
histories are related with an earnest simplicity and copious
explicitness. The reader is informed without being wearied, and
alternately enlivened by some spirited description, or touched by some
pathetic or tender episode. We cordially commend Mrs. Everett Green's
production to general attention; it is (necessarily) as useful as
history, and fully as entertaining as romance."--_Sun._

 THE FOLLOWING WILL BE PUBLISHED IMMEDIATELY.

       *       *       *       *       *

 A NEW HISTORICAL ROMANCE.
 BY ELIOT WARBURTON, Esq.,

 Author of "The Crescent and the Cross." &c. 3 vols.

       *       *       *       *       *

 MEMOIRS OF A HUNGARIAN LADY
 BY THERESA PULSZKY.

 With an Historical Introduction, by FRANCIS PULSZKY, late Under
 Secretary of State to the Emperor Ferdinand and King of Hungary.

 2 vols., post 8vo., 21s. bound. (Now ready.)

       *       *       *       *       *

 THE LIFE AND REIGN OF CHARLES I.
 BY J. DISRAELI.

 A NEW AND IMPROVED EDITION, with a Preface by B. DISRAELI, M.P.
 2 vols., uniform with the "Curiosities of Literature."

       *       *       *       *       *

 HISTORIC SCENES.
 BY AGNES STRICKLAND.

 Author of "Lives of the Queens of England," &c. 1 vol., post 8vo,
 elegantly bound, with Portrait of the Author.

       *       *       *       *       *

 LONDON LITERARY SOCIETY
 IN THE DAYS OF SAMUEL JOHNSON.
 FROM THE PAPERS OF THE LATE HENRY ROSCOE.
 BY WILLIAM WEIR.

 2 vols., post 8vo.

       *       *       *       *       *

 LEAVES FROM A LADY'S DIARY
 OF HER TRAVELS IN BARBARY.

 2 vols., post 8vo.

       *       *       *       *       *

 FRESTON TOWER;
 OR, THE EARLY DAYS OF CARDINAL WOLSEY.
 BY THE REV. RICHARD COBBOLD.

 3 vols., post 8vo., with Illustrations.

       *       *       *       *       *

 A CHEAPER EDITION OF
 BURKE'S
 HISTORY OF THE LANDED GENTRY;
 FOR 1850.

 A Genealogical Dictionary

 OF THE WHOLE OF THE UNTITLED ARISTOCRACY OF
 ENGLAND, SCOTLAND, AND IRELAND:

 And comprising Particulars of 100,000 Individuals connected with them.

 CORRECTED TO THE PRESENT TIME.

 =A COMPANION TO ALL THE PEERAGES.=

In 2 volumes, royal 8vo., beautifully printed in double columns,
comprising more matter than 30 ordinary volumes, price only _2l. 2s._
elegantly bound in gilt morocco cloth.

*** The great cost (upwards of £6000) attending the production of this
National Work, the first of its kind, induces the Publisher to hope that
the heads of all Families recorded in its pages will supply themselves
with copies.

       *       *       *       *       *

The Landed Gentry of England are so closely connected with the stirring
records of its eventful history, that some acquaintance with them is a
matter of necessity with the legislator, the lawyer, the historical
student, the speculator in politics, and the curious in topographical
and antiquarian lore; and even the very spirit of ordinary curiosity
will prompt to a desire to trace the origin and progress of those
families whose influence pervades the towns and villages of our land.
This work furnishes such a mass of authentic information in regard to
all the principal families in the kingdom as has never before been
attempted to be brought together. It relates to the untitled families of
rank, as the "Peerage and Baronetage" does to the titled, and forms, in
fact, a peerage of the untitled aristocracy. It embraces the whole of
the landed interest, and is indispensable to the library of every
gentleman.

"A work of this kind is of a national value. Its utility is not merely
temporary, but it will exist and be acknowledged as long as the families
whose names and genealogies are recorded in it continue to form an
integral portion of the English constitution. As a correct record of
descent, no family should be without it. The untitled aristocracy have
in this great work as perfect a dictionary of their genealogical
history, family connexions, and heraldic rights, as the peerage and
baronetage. It will be an enduring and trustworthy record."--_Morning
Post._

"A work in which every gentleman will find a domestic interest, as it
contains the fullest account of every known family in the United
Kingdom. It is a dictionary of all names, families, and their
origin,--of every man's neighbour and friend, if not of his own
relatives and immediate connexions. It cannot fail to be of the greatest
utility to professional men in their researches respecting the members
of different families, heirs to property, &c. Indeed, it will become as
necessary as a Directory in every office."--_Bell's Messenger._

       *       *       *       *       *

 DIARY AND CORRESPONDENCE
 OF
 SAMUEL PEPYS, F.R.S.,
 SECRETARY TO THE ADMIRALTY IN THE REIGNS OF CHARLES II. AND JAMES II.

 EDITED BY LORD BRAYBROOKE.

New and Revised Edition, with numerous Passages now restored from the
Original Manuscript, and many Additional Notes, complete in 5 vols.,
post 8vo., with Portraits, &c., price 10s. 6d. each, elegantly bound in
French Morocco with gilt edges.

"These volumes of Pepys' famous Journal, in their present complete form,
contain much attractive novelty. Without making any exception in favour
of any other production of ancient or modern diarists, we unhesitatingly
characterise this journal as the most remarkable production of its kind
which has ever been given to the world. Pepys paints the Court, the
Monarchs, and the times, in more vivid colours than any one else. His
Diary makes us comprehend the great historical events of the age, and
the people who bore a part in them, and gives us more clear glimpses
into the true English life of the times than all the other memorials of
them that have come down to our own."--_Edinburgh Review._

"The best book of its kind in the English language. The new matter is
extremely curious, and occasionally far more characteristic and
entertaining than the old. The writer is seen in a clearer light, and
the reader is taken into his inmost soul. Pepys' Diary is the ablest
picture of the age in which the writer lived, and a work of standard
importance in English literature."--_Athenæum._

"There is much in Pepys' Diary that throws a distinct and vivid light
over the picture of England and its government during the period
succeeding the Restoration. If, quitting the broad path of history, we
look for minute information concerning ancient manners and customs, the
progress of arts and sciences, and the various branches of antiquity, we
have never seen a mine so rich as these volumes. The variety of Pepys'
tastes and pursuits led him into almost every department of life. He was
a man of business, a man of information, a man of whim, and, to a
certain degree, a man of pleasure. He was a statesman, a _bel-esprit_, a
virtuoso, and a connoisseur. His curiosity made him an unwearied, as
well as an universal, learner, and whatever he saw found its way into
his tables."--_Quarterly Review._

"We owe Pepys a debt of gratitude for the rare and curious information
he has bequeathed to us in this most amusing and interesting work. His
Diary is valuable, as depicting to us many of the most important
characters of the times. Its author has bequeathed us the records of his
heart, the very reflection of his energetic mind; and his quaint but
happy narrative clears up numerous disputed points, throws light into
many of the dark corners of history, and lays bare the hidden substratum
of events which gave birth to, and supported the visible progress of,
the nation."--_Tait's Magazine._

"Of all the records that have ever been published, Pepys' Diary gives us
the most vivid and trustworthy picture of the times, and the clearest
view of the state of English public affairs and of English society
during the reign of Charles II. We see there, as in a map, the vices of
the Monarch, the intrigues of the Cabinet, the wanton follies of the
Court, and the many calamities to which the nation was subjected during
the memorable period of fire, plague, and general licentiousness. In the
present edition all the suppressed passages have been restored, and a
large amount of valuable explanatory notes have been added. Thus this
third edition stands alone as the only complete one. Lord Braybrooke has
efficiently performed the duties of editor and annotator, and has
conferred a lasting favour on the public by giving them Pepys' Diary in
its integrity."--_Morning Post._

       *       *       *       *       *

 DIARY AND CORRESPONDENCE
 OF
 JOHN EVELYN, F.R.S.,
 Author of the "Sylva," &c.

 A NEW EDITION, REVISED AND ENLARGED WITH
 NUMEROUS ADDITIONAL NOTES.

 UNIFORM WITH THE NEW EDITION OF PEPYS' DIARY.

 In 4 vols., post 8vo., price 10s. 6d. each, with Illustrations.

 N.B.--The First Two Volumes, comprising "The Diary," are now ready.

The Diary and Correspondence of John Evelyn has long been regarded as an
invaluable record of opinions and events, as well as the most
interesting exposition we possess of the manners, taste, learning, and
religion of this country, during the latter half of the seventeenth
century. The Diary comprises observations on the politics, literature,
and science of his age, during his travels in France and Italy; his
residence in England towards the latter part of the Protectorate, and
his connexion with the Courts of Charles II. and the two subsequent
reigns, interspersed with a vast number of original anecdotes of the
most celebrated persons of that period. To the Diary is subjoined the
Correspondence of Evelyn with many of his distinguished contemporaries;
also Original Letters from Sir Edward Nicholas, private secretary to
King Charles I., during some important periods of that reign, with the
King's answers; and numerous letters from Sir Edward Hyde (Lord
Clarendon) to Sir Edward Nicholas, and to Sir Richard Brown, Ambassador
to France, during the exile of the British Court.

A New Edition of this interesting work having been long demanded, the
greatest pains have been taken to render it as complete as possible, by
a careful re-examination of the original Manuscript, and by illustrating
it with such annotations as will make the reader more conversant with
the numerous subjects referred to by the Diarist.

"It has been justly observed that as long as Virtue and Science hold
their abode in this island, the memory of Evelyn will be held in the
utmost veneration. Indeed, no change of fashion, no alteration of taste,
no revolution of science, have impaired, or can impair, his celebrity.
The youth who looks forward to an inheritance which he is under no
temptation to increase, will do well to bear the example of Evelyn in
his mind, as containing nothing but what is imitable, and nothing but
what is good. All persons, indeed, may find in his character something
for imitation, but for an English gentleman he is the perfect
model."--_Quarterly Review._

       *       *       *       *       *

 ANECDOTES OF THE ARISTOCRACY,
 AND
 EPISODES IN ANCESTRAL STORY.

 By J. BERNARD BURKE, Esq.,

 Author of "The History of the Landed Gentry," "The Peerage and
 Baronetage," &c.

 SECOND EDITION, 2 vols., post 8vo., 24s. bound.

The memoirs of our great families are replete with details of the most
striking and romantic interest, throwing light on the occurrences of
public as well as domestic life, and elucidating the causes of many
important national events. How little of the personal history of the
Aristocracy is generally known, and yet how full of amusement is the
subject! Almost every eminent family has some event connected with its
rise or greatness, some curious tradition interwoven with its annals, or
some calamity casting a gloom over the brilliancy of its achievements,
which cannot fail to attract the attention of that sphere of society to
which this work more particularly refers, and must equally interest the
general reader, with whom, in this country, the records of the higher
classes have always possessed a peculiar attraction. The anecdotes of
the Aristocracy here recorded go far to show that there are more marvels
in real life than in the creations of fiction. Let the reader seek
romance in whatever book, and at whatever period he may, yet nought will
he find to surpass the unexaggerated reality here unfolded.

"Mr. Burke has here given us the most curious incidents, the most
stirring tales, and the most remarkable circumstances connected with the
histories, public and private, of our noble houses and aristocratic
families, and has put them into a shape which will preserve them in the
library, and render them the favourite study of those who are interested
in the romance of real life. These stories, with all the reality of
established fact, read with as much spirit as the tales of Boccaccio, and
are as full of strange matter for reflection, and amazement."--_Britannia._

"Two of the most interesting volumes that have ever issued from the
press. There are no less than one hundred and twenty-three of the most
stirring and captivating family episodes we ever remember to have
perused. The 'Anecdotes of the Aristocracy' will be read from the palace
to the hamlet; and no one can rise from these volumes without deriving a
useful knowledge of some chapter of family history, each connected with
one or other of the great houses of the kingdom."--_British Army
Despatch._

"We cannot estimate too highly the interest of Mr. Burke's entertaining
and instructive work. For the curious nature of the details, the
extraordinary anecdotes related, the strange scenes described, it would
be difficult to find a parallel for it. It will be read by every
one."--_Sunday Times._

       *       *       *       *       *

 COMPLETION OF THE
 LIVES OF THE QUEENS OF ENGLAND.
 BY AGNES STRICKLAND.

 DEDICATED, BY PERMISSION, TO HER MAJESTY.

The ELEVENTH and TWELFTH VOLUMES, completing this
interesting Work, being now published, Purchasers are recommended to
give immediate orders to their Booksellers for the completion of their
sets, to prevent disappointment.

"These volumes have the fascination of a romance united to the integrity
of history. The work is written by a lady of considerable learning,
indefatigable industry, and careful judgment. All these qualifications
for a biographer and an historian she has brought to bear upon the
subject of her volumes, and from them has resulted a narrative
interesting to all, and more particularly interesting to that portion of
the community to whom the more refined researches of literature afford
pleasure and instruction. The whole work should be read, and no doubt
will be read, by all who are anxious for information. It is a lucid
arrangement of facts, derived, from authentic sources, exhibiting a
combination of industry, learning, judgment, and impartiality, not often
met with in biographers of crowned heads."--_Times._

"This remarkable, this truly great historical work, is now brought to a
conclusion. In this series of biographies, in which the severe truth of
history takes almost the wildness of romance, it is the singular merit
of Miss Strickland that her research has enabled her to throw new light
on many doubtful passages, to bring forth fresh facts, and to render
every portion of our annals which she has described an interesting and
valuable study. She has given a most valuable contribution to the
history of England, and we have no hesitation in affirming that no one
can be said to possess an accurate knowledge of the history of the
country who has not studied her 'Lives of the Queens of
England.'"--_Morning Herald._

"A most valuable and entertaining work. There is certainly no lady of
our day who has devoted her pen to so beneficial a purpose as Miss
Strickland. Nor is there any other whose works possess a deeper or more
enduring interest. Miss Strickland is to our mind the first literary
lady of the age."--_Chronicle._

"We must pronounce Miss Strickland beyond all comparison the most
entertaining historian in the English language. She is certainly a woman
of powerful and active mind, as well as of scrupulous justice and
honesty of purpose."--_Morning Post._

"Miss Strickland has made a very judicious use of many authentic MS.
authorities not previously collected, and the result is a most
interesting addition to our biographical library."--_Quarterly Review._

"A valuable contribution to historical knowledge. It contains a mass of
every kind of historical matter of interest, which industry and research
could collect. We have derived much entertainment and instruction from
the work."--_Athenæum._

       *       *       *       *       *

 KING ARTHUR.
 BY SIR E. BULWER LYTTON, BART.,

 Author of "The New Timon."

 Second Edition, 1 vol., post 8vo., 10s. 6d. bound.

"King Arthur aims at relating one of the most fascinating of all
national and chivalrous legends. It is a valuable addition to the
poetical treasures of our language, and we regard it as not only worthy,
but likely, to take its place among those fine, though not faultless
performances which will hereafter represent the poetical literature of
England in the first half of the nineteenth century. The author is, we
think, right in believing this to be the least perishable monument of
his genius."--_Edinburgh Review._

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       *       *       *       *       *

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it to our readers, as well for the amusement of its lighter portions,
the vivid brilliancy of its descriptions, and the solid information it
contains respecting Canada, and the position generally of England in the
new world."--_John Bull._

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present volume in the variety and interest of his narrative."--_John
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       *       *       *       *       *

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       *       *       *       *       *

 THE MIDNIGHT SUN.

 BY FREDRIKA BREMER.

 Translated by Mary Howitt. 1 vol. 10s. 6d.

       *       *       *       *       *

 THE HALL & THE HAMLET.

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 Cheaper Edition. 2 vols., 12s. bound.



 +-------------------------------------------------+
 | Transcriber's Note:                             |
 |                                                 |
 | Typographical errors corrected in the text:     |
 |                                                 |
 | Page vii  Fæde changed to Fædde                 |
 | Page   1  sympathize changed to sympathise      |
 | Page  12  galf-topsail changed to gaff-topsail  |
 | Page  13  horison changed to horizon            |
 | Page  41  ecstacies changed to ecstasies        |
 | Page  42  held changed to help                  |
 | Page  46  underweigh changed to under weigh     |
 | Page  49  haliard changed to halliard           |
 | Page  50  profitting changed to profiting       |
 | Page  61  cruize changed to cruise              |
 | Page  76  mareschino changed to maraschino      |
 | Page  86  Fredrickshavn changed to Fredrikshavn |
 | Page  87  rivetted changed to riveted           |
 | Page 102  pannel changed to panel               |
 | Page 109  Thorwalsden changed to Thorwaldsen    |
 | Page 140  attentention changed to attention     |
 | Page 142  villanously changed to villainously   |
 | Page 187  wordly changed to worldly             |
 | Page 202  hullabulloo changed to hullabaloo     |
 | Page 261  mackaw's changed to macaw's           |
 | Page 292  paralized changed to paralyzed        |
 | Page 292  lymb changed to limb                  |
 | Page 299  moskitoes changed to mosquitoes       |
 | Page 330  geting changed to getting             |
 | Page 330  merschaums changed to meerschaums     |
 | Page 400  cruizing changed to cruising          |
 | Page 438  Boccacio changed to Boccaccio         |
 |                                                 |
 | Pages 183-186 quotation marks confirmed as in   |
 | original text                                   |
 +-------------------------------------------------+





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