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Title: Harper's New Monthly Magazine, Volume 1, No. 4, September, 1850
Author: Various
Language: English
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*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Harper's New Monthly Magazine, Volume 1, No. 4, September, 1850" ***

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No. IV.--SEPTEMBER, 1850.--Vol. I.

[Illustration: MISS JANE PORTER]

[From the London Art Journal.]



The frequent observation of foreigners is, that in England we have few
"celebrated women." Perhaps they mean that we have few who are
"notorious;" but let us admit that in either case they are right; and
may we not express our belief in its being better for women and for the
community that such is the case: "celebrity" rarely adds to the
happiness of a woman, and almost as rarely increases her usefulness. The
time and attention required to attain "celebrity," must, except under
very peculiar circumstances, interfere with the faithful discharge of
those feminine duties upon which the well-doing of society depends, and
which shed so pure a halo around our English homes. Within these "homes"
our heroes--statesmen--philosophers--men of letters--men of
genius--receive their first impressions, and the _impetus_ to a faithful
discharge of their after callings as Christian subjects of the State.

There are few of such men who do not trace back their resolution, their
patriotism, their wisdom, their learning--the nourishment of all their
higher aspirations--to a wise, hopeful, loving-hearted and
faith-inspired mother; one who _believed_ in a son's destiny to be
great; it may be, impelled by such belief rather by instinct than by
reason; who cherished (we can find no better word), the "Hero-feeling"
of devotion to what was right, though it might have been unworldly; and
whose deep heart welled up perpetual love and patience, toward the
over-boiling faults and frequent stumblings of a hot youth, which she
felt would mellow into a fruitful manhood.

The strength and glory of England are in the keeping of the wives and
mothers of its men; and when we are questioned touching our "celebrated
women," we may in general terms refer to those who have watched over,
moulded, and inspired our "celebrated" men.

Happy is the country where the laws of God and nature are held in
reverence--where each sex fulfills its peculiar duties, and renders its
sphere a sanctuary! and surely such harmony is blessed by the
Almighty--for while other nations writhe in anarchy and poverty, our own
spreads wide her arms to receive all who seek protection or need repose.

But if we have few "celebrated" women, few, who impelled either by
circumstances or the irrepressible restlessness of genius, go forth amid
the pitfalls of publicity, and battle with the world, either as
poets--or dramatists--or moralists--or mere tale-tellers in simple
prose--or, more dangerous still, "hold the mirror up to nature" on the
stage that mimics life--if we have but few, we have, and have had
_some_, of whom we are justly proud; women of such well-balanced minds,
that toil they ever so laboriously in their public and perilous paths,
their domestic and social duties have been fulfilled with as diligent
and faithful love as though the world had never been purified and
enriched by the treasures of their feminine wisdom; yet this does not
shake our belief, that, despite the spotless and well-earned reputations
they enjoyed, the homage they received (and it has its charm), and even
the blessed consciousness of having contributed to the healthful
recreation, the improved morality, the diffusion of the best sort of
knowledge--the _woman_ would have been happier had she continued
enshrined in the privacy of domestic love and domestic duty. She may not
think this at the commencement of her career; and at its termination, if
she has lived sufficiently long to have descended, even gracefully from
her pedestal, she may often recall the homage of the _past_ to make up
for its lack in the _present_. But so perfectly is woman constituted for
the cares, the affections, the duties--the blessed duties of
_un_-public life--that if she give nature way it will whisper to her a
text that "celebrity never added to the happiness of a true woman." She
must look for her happiness to HOME. We would have young women ponder
over this, and watch carefully, ere the vail is lifted, and the hard
cruel eye of public criticism fixed upon them. No profession is pastime;
still less so now than ever, when so many people are "clever," though so
few are great. We would pray those especially who direct their thoughts
to literature, to think of what they have to say, and why they wish to
say it; and above all, to weigh what they may expect from a capricious
public, against the blessed shelter and pure harmonies of private

But we have had some--and still have some--"celebrated" women of whom we
have said "we may be justly proud." We have done pilgrimage to the
shrine of Lady Rachel Russell, who was so thoroughly "domestic" that the
Corinthian beauty of her character would never have been matter of
history, but for the wickedness of a bad king. We have recorded the
hours spent with Hannah More; the happy days passed with, and the years
invigorated by Maria Edgeworth. We might recall the stern and faithful
puritanism of Maria Jane Jewsbury; and the Old World devotion of the
true and high-souled daughter of Israel--Grace Aguilar. The mellow tones
of Felicia Heman's poetry linger still among all who appreciate the holy
sympathies of religion and virtue. We could dwell long and profitably on
the enduring patience and life-long labor of Barbara Hofland, and steep
a diamond in tears to record the memories of L.E.L. We could--alas,
alas! barely five-and-twenty years' acquaintance with literature and its
ornaments, and the brilliant catalogue is but a _Momento Mori_! Perhaps
of all this list, Maria Edgworth's life was the happiest; simply because
she was the most retired, the least exposed to the gaze and observation
of the world, the most occupied by loving duties toward the most united
circle of old and young we ever saw assembled in one happy home.

The very young have never, perhaps read one of the tales of a lady whose
reputation, as a novelist, was in its zenith when Walter Scott published
his first novel. We desire to place a chaplet upon the grave of a woman
once "celebrated" all over the known world; yet who drew all her
happiness from the lovingness of home and friends, while her life was as
pure as her renown was extensive.

In our own childhood romance reading was prohibited, but earnest
entreaty procured an exception in favor of the "Scottish Chiefs." It was
the bright summer, and we read it by moonlight, only disturbed by the
murmur of the distant ocean. We read it, crouched in the deep recess of
the nursery window; we read it until moonlight and morning met, and the
breakfast bell ringing out into the soft air from the old gable, found
us at the end of the fourth volume. Dear old times! when it would have
been deemed little less than sacrilege to crush a respectable romance
into a shilling volume, and our mammas considered _only_ a five volume
story curtailed of its just proportions.

Sir William Wallace has never lost his heroic ascendency over us, and we
have steadily resisted every temptation to open the "popular edition" of
the long-loved romance, lest what people will call "the improved state
of the human mind," might displace the sweet memory of the mingled
admiration and indignation that chased each other, while we read and
wept, without ever questioning the truth of the absorbing narrative.

Yet, the "Scottish Chiefs" scarcely achieved the popularity of "Thaddeus
of Warsaw," the first romance originated by the active brain and
singularly constructive power of Jane Porter, produced at an almost
girlish age.

The hero of "Thaddeus of Warsaw" was really Kosciuszko, the beloved
pupil of George Washington, the grandest and purest patriot the Modern
World has known. The enthusiastic girl was moved to its composition by
the stirring times in which she lived; and a personal observation of,
and acquaintance with some of those brave men whose struggles for
liberty only ceased with their exile, or their existence.

Miss Porter placed her standard of excellence on high ground, and--all
gentle-spirited as was her nature--it was firm and unflinching toward
what she believed the right and true. We must not, therefore, judge her
by the depressed state of "feeling" in these times, when its
demonstration is looked upon as artificial or affected. Toward the
termination of the last and the commencement of the present century, the
world was roused into an interest and enthusiasm, which now we can
scarcely appreciate or account for; the sympathies of England were
awakened by the terrible revolutions of France, and the desolation of
Poland; as a principle, we hated Napoleon, though he had neither act nor
part in the doings of the democrats; and the sea-songs of Dibdin, which
our youth _now_ would call uncouth and ungraceful rhymes, were key-notes
to public feeling; the English of that time were thoroughly "awake,"
the British Lion had not slumbered through a thirty years' peace. We
were a nation of soldiers and sailors, and patriots; not of mingled
cotton-spinners and railway speculators and angry protectionists; we do
not say which state of things is best or worst, we desire merely to
account for what may be called the taste for _heroic_ literature at that
time, and the taste for--we really hardly know what to call
it--literature of the present, made up, as it too generally is, of
shreds and patches--bits of gold and bits of tinsel--things written in a
hurry to be read in a hurry, and never thought of afterward--suggestive
rather than reflective, at the best; and we must plead guilty to a too
great proneness to underrate what our fathers probably overrated.

At all events we must bear in mind, while reading or thinking over Miss
Porter's novels, that, in her day, even the exaggeration of enthusiasm
was considered good tone and good taste. How this enthusiasm was
_fostered_, not subdued, can be gathered by the author's ingenious
preface to the, we believe, tenth edition of "Thaddeus of Warsaw."

This story brought her abundant honors, and rendered her society, as
well as the society of her sister and brother, sought for by all who
aimed at a reputation for taste and talent. Mrs. Porter, on her
husband's death (he was the younger son of a well-connected Irish
family, born in Ireland, in or near Coleraine, we believe, and a major
in the Enniskillen dragoons), sought a residence for her family in
Edinburgh, where education and good society are attainable to persons of
moderate fortunes, if they are "well born;" but the extraordinary
artistic skill of her son Robert required a wider field, and she brought
her children to London sooner than she had intended, that his promising
talents might be cultivated. We believe the greater part of "Thaddeus of
Warsaw" was written in London, either in St. Martin's-lane,
Newport-street, or Gerard-street, Soho (for in these three streets the
family lived after their arrival in the metropolis); though as soon as
Robert Ker Porter's abilities floated him on the stream, his mother and
sisters retired, in the brightness of their fame and beauty, to the
village of Thames Ditton, a residence they loved to speak of as their
"home." The actual labor of "Thaddeus"--her first novel--must have been
considerable; for testimony was frequently borne to the fidelity of its
localities, and Poles refused to believe that the author had not visited
Poland; indeed, she had a happy power in describing localities.

It was on the publication of Miss Porter's two first works in the German
language that their author was honored by being made a Lady of the
Chapter of St. Joachim, and received the gold cross of the order from
Wurtemberg; but "The Scottish Chiefs" was never so popular on the
continent as "Thaddeus of Warsaw," although Napoleon honored it with an
interdict, to prevent its circulation in France. If Jane Porter owed
her Polish inspirations so peculiarly to the tone of the times in which
she lived, she traces back, in her introduction to the latest edition of
"The Scottish Chiefs," her enthusiasm in the cause of Sir William
Wallace to the influence of an old "Scotch wife's" tales and ballads
produced upon her mind while in early childhood. She wandered amid what
she describes as "beautiful green banks," which rose in natural terraces
behind her mother's house, and where a cow and a few sheep occasionally
fed. This house stood alone, at the head of a little square, near the
high school; the distinguished Lord Elchies formerly lived in the house,
which was very ancient, and from those green banks it commanded a fine
view of the Firth of Forth. While gathering "_gowans_" or other wild
flowers for her infant sister (whom she loved more dearly than her life,
during the years they lived in most tender and affectionate
companionship), she frequently encountered this aged woman with her
knitting in her hand; and she would speak to the eager and intelligent
child of the blessed quiet of the land, where the cattle were browsing
without fear of an enemy; and then she would talk of the awful times of
the brave Sir William Wallace, when he fought for Scotland "against a
cruel tyrant; like unto them whom Abraham overcame when he recovered
Lot, with all his herds and flocks, from the proud foray of the robber
kings of the South," who, she never failed to add, "were all rightly
punished for oppressing the stranger in a foreign land! for the Lord
careth for the stranger." Miss Porter says that this woman never omitted
mingling pious allusions with her narrative, "Yet she was a person of
low degree, dressed in a coarse woolen gown, and a plain _Mutch_ cap
clasped under the chin with a silver brooch, which her father had worn
at the battle of Culloden." Of course she filled with tales of Sir
William Wallace and the Bruce, the listening ears of the lovely Saxon
child who treasured them in her heart and brain, until they fructified
in after years into the "Scottish Chiefs." To these two were added "The
Pastor's Fireside," and a number of other tales and romances; she
contributed to several annuals and magazines, and always took pains to
keep up the reputation she had won, achieving a large share of the
popularity, to which, as an author, she never looked for happiness. No
one could be more alive to praise or more grateful for attention, but
the heart of a genuine, pure, loving woman, beat within Jane Porter's
bosom, and she was never drawn _out_ of her domestic circle by the
flattery that has spoiled so many, men as well as women. Her mind was
admirably balanced by her home affections, which remained unsullied and
unshaken to the end of her days. She had, in common with her three
brothers and her charming sister, the advantage of a wise and loving
mother--a woman pious without cant, and worldly-wise without being
worldly. Mrs. Porter was born at Durham, and when very young bestowed
her hand and heart on Major Porter; an old friend of the family assures
us that two or three of their children were born in Ireland, and that
certainly Jane was among the number;[B] although she left Ireland when
in early youth, perhaps almost an infant, she certainly must be
considered "Irish," as her father was so both by birth and descent, and
esteemed during his brief life as a brave and generous gentleman; he
died young, leaving his lovely widow in straightened circumstances,
having only her widow's pension to depend on. The eldest son--afterward
Colonel Porter--was sent to school by his grandfather.

We have glanced briefly at Sir Robert Ker Porter's wonderful talents,
and Anna Maria, when in her twelfth year, rushed, as Jane acknowledged,
"prematurely into print." Of Anna Maria we knew personally but very
little; enough, however, to recall with a pleasant memory her readiness
in conversation, and her bland and cheerful manners. No two sisters
could have been more different in bearing and appearance: Maria was a
delicate blonde, with a _riant_ face, and an animated manner--we had
said almost _peculiarly Irish_--rushing at conclusions, where her more
thoughtful and careful sister paused to consider and calculate. The
beauty of Jane was statuesque, her deportment serious yet cheerful, a
seriousness quite as natural as her younger sister's gayety; they both
labored diligently, but Anna Maria's labor was sport when compared to
her elder sister's careful toil; Jane's mind was of a more lofty order,
she was intense, and felt more than she said, while Anna Maria often
said more than she felt; they were a delightful contrast, and yet the
harmony between them was complete; and one of the happiest days we ever
spent, while trembling on the threshold of literature, was with them at
their pretty road-side cottage, in the village of Esher, before the
death of their venerable and dearly-beloved mother, whose rectitude and
prudence had both guided and sheltered their youth, and who lived to
reap with them the harvest of their industry and exertion. We remember
the drive there, and the anxiety as to how those very "clever ladies"
would look, and what they would say; we talked over the various letters
we had received from Jane, and thought of the cordial invitation to
their cottage--their "mother's cottage"--as they always called it. We
remember the old white friendly spaniel who looked at us with blinking
eyes, and preceded us up-stairs; we remember the formal, old-fashioned
courtesy of the venerable old lady, who was then nearly eighty--the blue
ribbons and good-natured frankness of Anna Maria, and the noble courtesy
of Jane, who received visitors as if she granted an audience; this
manner was natural to her; it was only the manner of one whose thoughts
have dwelt more on heroic deeds, and lived more with heroes than with
actual living men and women; the effect of this, however, soon passed
away, but not so the fascination which was in all she said and did. Her
voice was soft and musical, and her conversation addressed to one person
rather than to the company at large, while Maria talked rapidly to every
one, or _for_ every one who chose to listen. How happily the hours
passed! we were shown some of those extraordinary drawings of Sir
Robert, who gained an artist's reputation before he was twenty, and
attracted the attention of West and Shee[C] in his mere boyhood. We
heard all the interesting particulars of his panoramic picture of the
Storming of Seringapatam, which, the first of its class, was known half
over the world. We must not, however, be misunderstood--there was
neither personal nor family egotism in the Porters; they invariably
spoke of each other with the tenderest affection--but unless the
conversation was _forced_ by their friends, they never mentioned their
own, or each other's works, while they were most ready to praise what
was excellent in the works of others; they spoke with pleasure of their
sojourns in London; while their mother said, it was much wiser and
better for young ladies who were not rich, to live quietly in the
country, and escape the temptations of luxury and display. At that time
the "young ladies" seemed to us certainly _not_ young; that was about
two-and-twenty years ago, and Jane Porter was seventy-five when she
died. They talked much of their previous dwelling at Thames Ditton, of
the pleasant neighborhood they enjoyed there, though their mother's
health and their own had much improved since their residence on
Esher-hill; their little garden was bounded at the back by the beautiful
park of Claremont, and the front of the house overlooked the leading
roads, broken as they are by the village green, and some noble elms. The
view is crowned by the high trees of Esher-place, opening from the
village on that side of the brow of the hill. Jane pointed out the
_locale_ of the proud Cardinal Wolsey's domain, inhabited during the
days of his power over Henry VIII., and in their cloudy evening, when
that capricious monarch's favor changed to bitterest hate. It was the
very spot to foster her high romance, while she could at the same time
enjoy the sweets of that domestic converse she loved best of all. We
were prevented by the occupations and heart-beatings of our own literary
labors from repeating this visit; and in 1831, four years after these
well-remembered hours, the venerable mother of a family so distinguished
in literature and art, rendering their names known and honored wherever
art and letters flourish, was called HOME. The sisters, who had resided
ten years at Esher, left it, intending to sojourn for a time with their
second brother, Doctor Porter, (who commenced his career as a surgeon in
the navy) in Bristol; but within a year the youngest, the
light-spirited, bright-hearted Anna Maria died: her sister was
dreadfully shaken by her loss, and the letters we received from her
after this bereavement, though containing the outpourings of a sorrowing
spirit, were full of the certainty of that reunion hereafter which
became the hope of her life. She soon resigned her cottage home at
Esher, and found the affectionate welcome she so well deserved in many
homes, where friends vied with each other to fill the void in her
sensitive heart. She was of too wise a nature, and too sympathizing a
habit, to shut out new interests and affections, but her _old ones_
never withered, nor were they ever replaced; were the love of such a
sister-friend--the watchful tenderness and uncompromising love of a
mother--ever "replaced," to a lonely sister or a bereaved daughter! Miss
Porter's pen had been laid aside for some time, when suddenly she came
before the world as the editor of "Sir Edward Seward's Narrative," and
set people hunting over old atlases to find out the island where he
resided. The whole was a clever fiction; yet Miss Porter never confided
its authorship, we believe, beyond her family circle; perhaps the
correspondence and documents, which are in the hands of one of her
kindest friends (her executor), Mr. Shepherd, may throw some light upon
a subject which the "Quarterly" honored by an article. We think the
editor certainly used her pen, as well as her judgment, in the work, and
we have imagined that it might have been written by the family circle,
more in sport than in earnest, and then produced to serve a double

After her sister's death Miss Jane Porter was afflicted with so severe
an illness, that we, in common with her other friends, thought it
impossible she could carry out her plan of journeying to St. Petersburgh
to visit her brother, Sir Robert Ker Porter, who had been long united to
a Russian princess, and was then a widower; her strength was fearfully
reduced; her once round figure become almost spectral, and little beyond
the placid and dignified expression of her noble countenance remained to
tell of her former beauty; but her resolve was taken; she wished, she
said, to see once more her youngest and most beloved brother, so
distinguished in several careers, almost deemed incompatible--as a
painter, an author, a soldier, and a diplomatist, and nothing could turn
her from her purpose: she reached St. Petersburgh in safety, and with
apparently improved health, found her brother as much courted and
beloved there as in his own land, and his daughter married to a Russian
of high distinction. Sir Robert longed to return to England. He did not
complain of any illness, and every thing was arranged for their
departure; his final visits were paid, all but one to the Emperor, who
had ever treated him as a friend; the day before his intended journey he
went to the palace, was graciously received, and then drove home, but
when the servant opened the carriage-door at his own residence he was
dead! One sorrow after another pressed heavily upon her, yet she was
still the same sweet, gentle, holy-minded woman she had ever been,
bending with Christian faith to the will of the Almighty--"biding her


How differently would she have "watched and waited" had she been tainted
by vanity, or fixed her soul on the mere triumphs of "literary
reputation." While firm to her own creed, she fully enjoyed the success
of those who scramble up--where she bore the standard to the heights--of
Parnassus; she was never more happy than when introducing some literary
"Tyro" to those who could aid or advise a future career. We can speak
from experience of the warm interest she took in the Hospital for the
cure of Consumption, and the Governesses' Benevolent Institution; during
the progress of the latter, her health was painfully feeble, yet she
used personal influence for its success, and worked with her own hands
for its bazaars. She was ever aiding those who could not aid themselves;
and all her thoughts, words, and deeds, were evidence of her clear,
powerful mind, and kindly loving heart; her appearance in the London
_coteries_ was always hailed with interest and pleasure; to the young
she was especially affectionate; but it was in the quiet mornings, or in
the long twilight evenings of summer, when visiting her cherished
friends at Shirley Park, in Kensington-square, or wherever she might be
located for the time--it was then that her former spirit revived and she
poured forth anecdote and illustration, and the store of many years'
observation, filtered by experience and purified by that delightful
faith to which she held--that "all things work together for good to them
that love the Lord." She held this in practice, even more than in
theory: you saw her chastened yet hopeful spirit beaming forth from her
gentle eyes, and her sweet smile can never be forgotten. The last time
we saw her, was about two years ago--in Bristol--at her brother, Dr.
Porter's house in Portland-square: then she could hardly stand without
assistance, yet she never complained of her own suffering or
feebleness--all her anxiety was about the brother--then dangerously ill,
and now the last of "his race." Major Porter, it will be remembered,
left five children, and these have left only one descendant--the
daughter of Sir Robert Ker Porter and the Russian Princess whom he
married, a young Russian lady, whose present name we do not even know.

We did not think at our last leave-taking that Miss Porter's fragile
frame could have so long withstood the Power that takes away all we hold
most dear; but her spirit was at length summoned, after a few days'
total insensibility, on the 24th of May.

We were haunted by the idea that the pretty cottage at Esher, where we
spent those happy hours, had been treated even as "Mrs. Porter's
Arcadia" at Thames Ditton--now altogether removed; and it was with a
melancholy pleasure we found it the other morning in nothing changed; it
was almost impossible to believe that so many years had passed since our
last visit. While Mr. Fairholt was sketching the cottage, we knocked at
the door, and were kindly permitted by two gentle sisters, who now
inhabit it, to enter the little drawing-room and walk round the garden;
except that the drawing-room has been re-papered and painted, and that
there were no drawings and no flowers, the room was not in the least
altered; yet to us it seemed like a sepulchre, and we rejoiced to
breathe the sweet air of the little garden, and listen to a nightingale,
whose melancholy cadence harmonized with our feelings.

"Whenever you are at Esher," said the devoted daughter, the last time we
conversed with her, "do visit my mother's tomb." We did so. A cypress
flourishes at the head of the grave; and the following touching
inscription is carved on the stone:


  OBIIT JUNE 18TH, 1831, ÆTAT. 86;




[A] In support of this opinion, which we know is opposed to the popular
feeling of many in the present day, we venture to quote what Miss Porter
herself repeats, as said to her by Madame de Stael: "She frequently
praised my revered mother for the retired manner in which she maintained
her little domestic establishment, _yielding her daughters to society,
but not to the world_." We pray those we love, to mark the delicate and
most true distinction, between "society" and the "world." "I was set on
a stage," continued De Stael, "I was set on a stage, at a child's age,
to be listened to as a wit and worshiped for my premature judgment. I
drank adulation as my soul's nourishment, _and I cannot now live without
its poison; it has been my bane_, never an aliment. My heart ever sighed
for happiness, and I ever lost it, when I thought it approaching my
grasp. I was admired, made an idol, _but never beloved_. I do not accuse
my parents for having made this mistake, but I have not repeated it in
my Albertine" (her daughter.) "She shall not

    'Seek for love, and fill her arms with bays.'

I bring her up in the best society, yet in the shade."

[B] Miss Porter never told me she was an Irishwoman, but once she
questioned me concerning my own parentage and place of birth; and upon
my explaining that my mother was an English woman, my father Irish, and
that I was born in Ireland, which I quitted early in life, she observed
_her own circumstances were very similar to mine_. For my own part, I
have no doubt that she was Irish by birth and by descent on the father's
side, but it will be no difficult matter to obtain direct evidence of
the facts; and we hope that some Irish patriotic friend will make due
inquiries on the subject. During her life, I had no idea of her
connection with Ireland, or I should certainly have ascertained if my
own country had a claim of which it may be justly proud.

[C] In his early days the President of the Royal Academy painted a very
striking portrait of Jane Porter, as "Miranda," and Harlowe painted her
in the canoness dress of the order of St. Joachim.

[From the Gallery of Nature.]



From every region of the globe and in all ages of time within the range
of history, exhibitions of apparent instability in the heavens have been
observed, when the curtains of the evening have been drawn. Suddenly, a
line of light arrests the eye, darting like an arrow through a varying
extent of space, and in a moment the firmament is as sombre as before.
The appearance is exactly that of a star falling from its sphere, and
hence the popular title of shooting star applied to it. The apparent
magnitudes of these meteorites are widely different, and also their
brilliancy. Occasionally, they are far more resplendent than the
brightest of the planets, and throw a very perceptible illumination upon
the path of the observer. A second or two commonly suffices for the
individual display, but in some instances it has lasted several minutes.
In every climate it is witnessed, and at all times of the year, but most
frequently in the autumnal months. As far back as records go, we meet
with allusions to these swift and evanescent luminous travelers.
Minerva's hasty flight from the peaks of Olympus to break the truce
between the Greeks and Trojans, is compared by Homer to the emission of
a brilliant star. Virgil, in the first book of the Georgics, mentions
the shooting stars as prognosticating weather changes:

    "And on, before tempestuous winds arise,
    The seeming stars fall headlong from the skies,
    And, shooting through the darkness, gild the night
    With sweeping glories and long trains of light."

Various hypotheses have been framed to explain the nature and origin of
these remarkable appearances. When electricity began to be understood,
this was thought to afford a satisfactory explanation, and the shooting
stars were regarded by Beccaria and Vassali as merely electrical sparks.
When the inflammable nature of the gases became known, Lavosier and
Volta supposed an accumulation of hydrogen in the higher regions of the
atmosphere, because of its inferior density, giving rise by ignition to
the meteoric exhibitions. While these theories of the older philosophers
have been shown to be untenable, there is still great obscurity resting
upon the question, though we have reason to refer the phenomena to a
cause exterior to the bounds of our atmosphere. Upon this ground, the
subject assumes a strictly astronomical aspect, and claims a place in a
treatise on the economy of the solar system.

The first attempt accurately to investigate these elegant meteors was
made by two university students, afterward Professors Brandes of
Leipsic, and Benzenberg of Dusseldorf, in the year 1798. They selected a
base line of 46,200 feet, somewhat less than nine English miles, and
placed themselves at its extremities on appointed nights, for the
purpose of ascertaining their average altitude and velocity. Out of
twenty-two appearances identified as the same, they found,

  7 under 45 miles
  9 between 45 and 90 miles
  5 above 90 miles
  1 above 140 miles.

The greatest observed velocity gave twenty-five miles in a second. A
more extensive plan was organized by Brandes in the year 1823, and
carried into effect in the neighborhood of Breslaw. Out of ninety-eight
appearances, the computed heights were,

   4 under 15 miles
  15 from 15 to 30 miles
  22 from 30 to 45 miles
  33 from 45 to 70 miles
  13 from 70 to 90 miles
   6 above 90 miles
   5 from 140 to 460 miles.

The velocities were between eighteen and thirty-six miles in a second,
an average velocity far greater than that of the earth in its orbit.

The rush of luminous bodies through the sky of a more extraordinary
kind, though a rare occurrence, has repeatedly been observed. They are
usually discriminated from shooting stars, and known by the vulgar as
fire-balls; but probably both proceed from the same cause, and are
identical phenomena. They have sometimes been seen of large volume,
giving an intense light, a hissing noise accompanying their progress,
and a loud explosion attending their termination. In the year 1676, a
meteor passed over Italy about two hours after sunset, upon which
Montanari wrote a treatise. It came over the Adriatic Sea as if from
Dalmatia, crossed the country in the direction of Rimini and Leghorn, a
loud report being heard at the latter place, and disappeared upon the
sea toward Corsica. A similar visitor was witnessed all over England, in
1718, and forms the subject of one of Halley's papers to the Royal
Society. Sir Hans Sloane was one of its spectators. Being abroad at the
time of its appearance, at a quarter past eight at night, in the streets
of London, his path was suddenly and intensely illuminated. This, he
apprehended at first, might arise from a discharge of rockets; but found
a fiery object in the heavens, moving after the manner of a falling
star, in a direct line from the Pleiades to below the girdle of Orion.
Its brightness was so vivid, that several times he was obliged to turn
away his eyes from it. The stars disappeared, and the moon, then nine
days old, and high near the meridian, the sky being very clear, was so
effaced by the lustre of the meteor as to be scarcely seen. It was
computed to have passed over three hundred geographical miles in a
minute, at the distance of sixty miles above the surface, and was
observed at different extremities of the kingdom. The sound of an
explosion was heard through Devon and Cornwall, and along the opposite
coast of Bretagne. Halley conjectured this and similar displays to
proceed from combustible vapors aggregated on the outskirts of the
atmosphere, and suddenly set on fire by some unknown cause. But since
his time, the fact has been established, of the actual fall of heavy
bodies to the earth from surrounding space, which requires another
hypothesis. To these bodies the term aërolites is applied, signifying
atmospheric stones, from αηρ, the atmosphere, and λιθος, a stone. While
many meteoric appearances may simply arise from electricity, or from the
inflammable gases, it is now certain, from the proved descent of
aërolites, that such bodies are of extra-terrestrial origin.

Antiquity refers us to several objects as having descended from the
skies, the gifts of the immortal gods. Such was the Palladium of Troy,
the image of the goddess of Ephesus, and the sacred shield of Numa. The
folly of the ancients in believing such narrations has often been the
subject of remark; but, however fabulous the particular cases referred
to, the moderns have been compelled to renounce their skepticism
respecting the fact itself, of the actual transition of substances from
celestial space to terrestrial regions; and no doubt the ancient faith
upon this subject was founded on observed events. The following table,
taken from the work of M. Izarn, _Des Pierres tombées du Ciel_, exhibits
a collection of instances of the fall of aërolites, together with the
eras of their descent, and the persons on whose evidence the facts rest;
but the list might be largely extended.

  |Substance.          |Place.            |Period.            |Authority.       |
  |Shower of stones    |At Rome           |Under Tullus       |Livy.            |
  |                    |                  |  Hostilius        |                 |
  |Shower of stones    |At Rome           |Consuls C. Martius |J. Obsequens.    |
  |                    |                  |  and M. Torquatus |                 |
  |Shower of iron      |In Lucania        |Year before the    |Pliny.           |
  |                    |                  | defeat of Crassus |                 |
  |Shower of mercury   |In Italy          |                   |Dion.            |
  |Large stone         |Near the river    |Second year of the |Pliny.           |
  |                    |  Negos, Thrace   |  78th Olympiad    |                 |
  |Three large stones  |In Thrace         |Year before J. C.  |Ch. of Count     |
  |                    |                  |  452              |   Marcellin.    |
  |Shower of fire      |At Quesnoy        |January 4, 1717    |Geoffroy le      |
  |                    |                  |                   |  Cadet.         |
  |Stone of 72lbs.     |Near Larissa,     |January 1706       |Paul Lucas.      |
  |                    |   Macedonia      |                   |                 |
  |About 1200 stones } |                  |                   |                 |
  |  --one of 120lbs.} |Near Padua in     |In 1510            |Carden, Varcit.  |
  |Another of 60lbs. } |  Italy           |                   |                 |
  |Another of 59lbs.   |On Mount Vasier,  |November 27, 1627  |Gassendi.        |
  |                    |  Provence        |                   |                 |
  |Shower of sand for  |In the Atlantic   |April 6, 1719      |Père la Fuillée. |
  |  15 hours          |                  |                   |                 |
  |Shower of sulphur   |Sodom and Gomorra |                   |Moses.           |
  |Sulphurous rain     |In the Duchy of   |In 1658            |Spangenburgh.    |
  |                    |  Mansfield       |                   |                 |
  |The same            |Copenhagen        |In 1646            |Olaus Wormius.   |
  |Shower of sulphur   |Brunswick         |October 1721       |Siegesbær.       |
  |Shower of unknown   |Ireland           |In 1695            |Muschenbroeck.   |
  |  matter            |                  |                   |                 |
  |Two large stones,   |Liponas, in       |September 1753     |Lalande.         |
  |  weighing 20lbs.   |  Bresse          |                   |                 |
  |A stony mass        |Niort, Normandy   |In 1750            |Lalande.         |
  |A stone of          |At Luce, in Le    |September 13, 1768 |Bachelay.        |
  |  7-1/2lbs.         |  Maine           |                   |                 |
  |A stone             |At Aire, in       |In 1768            |Gursonde de      |
  |                    |  Artois          |                   |  Boyaval.       |
  |A stone             |In Le Cotentin    |In 1768            |Morand.          |
  |Extensive shower    |Environs of Agen  |July 24, 1790      |St. Amand,       |
  |  of stones         |                  |                   |  Baudin, &c.    |
  |About twelve stones |Sienna, Tuscany   |July 1794          |Earl of Bristol. |
  |A large stone of    |Wold Cottage,     |December 13, 1795  |Captain Topham.  |
  |  56lbs.            |  Yorkshire       |                   |                 |
  |A stone of about    |Sale, Department  |March 17, 1798     |Lelievre and De  |
  |  20lbs.            |  of the Rhone    |                   |  Drée.          |
  |A stone of 10lbs.   |In Portugal       |February 19, 1796  |Southey.         |
  |Shower of stones    |Benares, East     |December 19, 1798  |J. Lloyd         |
  |                    |  Indies          |                   |  Williams, Esq. |
  |Shower of stones    |At Plaun, near    |July 3, 1753       |B. de Born.      |
  |                    |  Tabor, Bohemia  |                   |                 |
  |Mass of iron,       |America           |April 5, 1800      |Philosophical    |
  |  70 cubic feet     |                  |                   |  Mag.           |
  |Mass of iron,       |Abakauk, Siberia  |Very old           |Pallas, Chladni, |
  |  14 quintals       |                  |                   |   &c.           |
  |Shower of stones    |Barboutan, near   |July 1789          |Darcet Jun.,     |
  |                    |  Roquefort       |                   |   Lomet, &c.    |
  |Large stone of      |Ensisheim, Upper  |November 7, 1492   |Butenschoen.     |
  |  260lbs.           |  Rhine           |                   |                 |
  |Two stones, 200     |Near Verona       |In 1762            |Acad. de Bourd.  |
  |  and 300lbs.       |                  |                   |                 |
  |A stone of 20lbs.   |Sules, near Ville |March 12, 1798     |De Drée.         |
  |                    |  Franche         |                   |                 |
  |Several stones from |Near L'Aigle,     |April 26, 1803     |Fourcroy.        |
  |  10 to 17lbs.      |  Normandy        |                   |                 |

Some of the instances in the table are of sufficient interest to deserve
a notice.

A singular relation respecting the stone of Ensisheim on the Rhine, at
which philosophy once smiled incredulously, regarding it as one of the
romances of the middle ages, may now be admitted to sober attention as a
piece of authentic history. A homely narrative of its fall was drawn up
at the time by order of the Emperor Maximilian, and deposited with the
stone in the church. It may thus be rendered: "In the year of the Lord
1492, on Wednesday, which was Martinmas eve, the 7th of November, a
singular miracle occurred; for, between eleven o'clock and noon, there
was a loud clap of thunder, and a prolonged confused noise, which was
heard at a great distance; and a stone fell from the air, in the
jurisdiction of Ensisheim, which weighed two hundred and sixty pounds,
and the confused noise was, besides, much louder than here. Then a child
saw it strike on a field in the upper jurisdiction, toward the Rhine and
Inn, near the district of Giscano, which was sown with wheat, and it did
it no harm, except that it made a hole there: and then they conveyed it
from that spot; and many pieces were broken from it; which the landvogt
forbade. They, therefore, caused it to be placed in the church, with the
intention of suspending it as a miracle: and there came here many people
to see this stone. So there were remarkable conversations about this
stone: but the learned said that they knew not what it was; for it was
beyond the ordinary course of nature that such a large stone should
smite the earth from the height of the air; but that it was really a
miracle of God; for, before that time, never any thing was heard like
it, nor seen, nor described. When they found that stone, it had entered
into the earth to the depth of a man's stature, which every body
explained to be the will of God that it should be found; and the noise
of it was heard at Lucerne, at Vitting, and in many other places, so
loud that it was believed that houses had been overturned: and as the
King Maximilian was here the Monday after St. Catharine's day of the
same year, his royal excellency ordered the stone which had fallen to be
brought to the castle, and, after having conversed a long time about it
with the noblemen, he said that the people of Ensisheim should take it,
and order it to be hung up in the church, and not to allow any body to
take any thing from it. His excellency, however, took two pieces of it;
of which he kept one, and sent the other to the Duke Sigismund of
Austria: and they spoke a great deal about this stone, which they
suspended in the choir, where it still is; and a great many people came
to see it." Contemporary writers confirm the substance of this
narration, and the evidence of the fact exists; the aërolite is
precisely identical in its chemical composition with that of other
meteoric stones. It remained for three centuries suspended in the
church, was carried off to Colmar during the French revolution; but has
since been restored to its former site, and Ensisheim rejoices in the
possession of the relic. A piece broken from it is in the Museum of the
_Jardin des Plantes_ at Paris.

The celebrated Gassendi was an eye-witness of a similar event. In the
year 1627, on the 27th of November, the sky being quite clear, he saw a
burning stone fall in the neighborhood of Nice, and examined the mass.
While in the air it appeared to be about four feet in diameter, was
surrounded by a luminous circle of colors like a rainbow, and its fall
was accompanied by a noise like the discharge of artillery. Upon
inspecting the substance, he found it weighed 59 lbs., was extremely
hard, of a dull, metallic color, and of a specific gravity considerably
greater than that of common marble. Having only this solitary instance
of such an occurrence, Gassendi concluded that the mass came from some
of the mountains of Provence, which had been in a transient state of
volcanic activity. Instances of the same phenomenon occurred in the
years 1672, 1756, and 1768; but the facts were generally doubted by
naturalists, and considered as electrical appearances, magnified by
popular ignorance and timidity. A remarkable example took place in
France in the year 1790. Between nine and ten o'clock at night, on the
24th of July, a luminous ball was seen traversing the atmosphere with
great rapidity, and leaving behind it a train of light; a loud explosion
was then heard, accompanied with sparks which flew off in all
directions; this was followed by a shower of stones over a considerable
extent of ground, at various distances from each other, and of different
sizes. A _procès verbal_ was drawn up, attesting the circumstance,
signed by the magistrates of the municipality, and by several hundreds
of persons inhabiting the district. This curious document is literally
as follows: "In the year one thousand seven hundred and ninety, and the
thirtieth day of the month of August, we, the Lieut. Jean Duby, mayor,
and Louis Massillon, procurator of the commune of the municipality of La
Grange-de-Juillac, and Jean Darmite, resident in the parish of La
Grange-de-Juillac, certify in truth and verity, that on Saturday, the
24th of July last, between nine and ten o'clock, there passed a great
fire, and after it we heard in the air a very loud and extraordinary
noise; and about two minutes after there fell stones from heaven; but
fortunately there fell only a very few, and they fell about ten paces
from one another in some places, and in others nearer, and, finally, in
some other places farther; and falling, most of them, of the weight of
about half a quarter of a pound each, some others of about half a pound,
like that found in our parish of La Grange; and on the borders of the
parish of Creon, they were found of a pound weight; and in falling, they
seemed not to be inflamed, but very hard and black without, and within
of the color of steel: and, thank God, they occasioned no harm to the
people, nor to the trees, but only to some tiles which were broken on
the houses; and most of them fell gently, and others fell quickly, with
a hissing noise; and some were found which had entered into the earth,
but very few. In witness thereof, we have written and signed these
presents. Duby, mayor. Darmite." Though such a document as this, coming
from the unlearned of the district where the phenomenon occurred, was
not calculated to win acceptance with the _savans_ of the French
capital, yet it was corroborated by a host of intelligent witnesses at
Bayonne, Thoulouse, and Bordeaux, and by transmitted specimens
containing the substances usually found in atmospheric stones, and in
nearly the same proportions. A few years afterward, an undoubted
instance of the fall of an aërolite occurred in England, which largely
excited public curiosity. This was in the neighborhood of Wold Cottage,
the house of Captain Topham, in Yorkshire. Several persons heard the
report of an explosion in the air, followed by a hissing sound; and
afterward felt a shock, as if a heavy body had fallen to the ground at a
little distance from them. One of these, a plowman, saw a huge stone
falling toward the earth, eight or nine yards from the place where he
stood. It threw up the mould on every side, and after penetrating
through the soil, lodged some inches deep in solid chalk rock. Upon
being raised, the stone was found to weigh fifty-six pounds. It fell in
the afternoon of a mild but hazy day, during which there was no thunder
or lightning; and the noise of the explosion was heard through a
considerable district. It deserves remark, that in most recorded cases
of the descent of projectiles, the weather has been settled, and the sky
clear; a fact which plainly places them apart from the causes which
operate to produce the tempest, and shows the popular term thunder-bolt
to be an entire misnomer.

While this train of circumstances was preparing the philosophic mind of
Europe to admit as a truth what had hitherto been deemed a vulgar error,
and acknowledge the appearance of masses of ignited matter in the
atmosphere occasionally descending to the earth, an account of a
phenomenon of this kind was received from India, vouched by an authority
calculated to secure it general respect. It came from Mr. Williams,
F.R.S., a resident in Bengal. It stated that on December 19th, 1798, at
eight o'clock in the evening, a large, luminous meteor was seen at
Benares and other parts of the country. It was attended with a loud,
rumbling noise, like an ill-discharged platoon of musketry; and about
the same time, the inhabitants of Krakhut, fourteen miles from Benares,
saw the light, heard an explosion, and immediately after the noise of
heavy bodies falling in the neighborhood. The sky had previously been
serene, and not the smallest vestige of a cloud had appeared for many
days. Next morning, the mould in the fields was found to have been
turned up in many spots; and unusual stones, of various sizes, but of
the same substance, were picked out from the moist soil, generally from
a depth of six inches. As the occurrence took place in the night, after
the people had retired to rest, the explosion and the actual fall of the
stones were not observed; but the watchman of an English gentleman, near
Krakhut, brought him a stone the next morning, which had fallen through
the top of his hut, and buried itself in the earthen floor. This event
in India was followed, in the year 1803, by a convincing demonstration
in France, which compelled the eminent men of the capital to believe,
though much against their will. On Tuesday, April 26th, about one in the
afternoon, the weather being serene, there was observed in a part of
Normandy, including Caen, Falaise, Alençon, and a large number of
villages, a fiery globe of great brilliancy moving in the atmosphere
with great rapidity. Some moments after, there was heard in L'Aigle and
in the environs, to the extent of more than thirty leagues in every
direction, a violent explosion, which lasted five or six minutes. At
first there were three or four reports, like those of a cannon, followed
by a kind of discharge which resembled the firing of musketry; after
which there was heard a rumbling like the beating of a drum. The air was
calm, and the sky serene, except a few clouds, such as are frequently
observed. The noise proceeded from a small cloud which had a rectangular
form, and appeared motionless all the time that the phenomenon lasted.
The vapor of which it was composed was projected in all directions at
the successive explosions. The cloud seemed about half a league to the
northeast of the town of L'Aigle, and must have been at a great
elevation in the atmosphere, for the inhabitants of two hamlets, a
league distant from each other, saw it at the same time above their
heads. In the whole canton over which it hovered, a hissing noise like
that of a stone discharged from a sling was heard, and a multitude of
mineral masses were seen to fall to the ground. The largest that fell
weighed 17-1/2 pounds; and the gross number amounted to nearly three
thousand. By the direction of the Academy of Sciences, all the
circumstances of this event were minutely examined by a commission of
inquiry, with the celebrated M. Biot at its head. They were found in
harmony with the preceding relation, and reported to the French minister
of the interior. Upon analyzing the stones, they were found identical
with those of Benares.

The following are the principal facts with reference to the aërolites,
upon which general dependence may be placed. Immediately after their
descent they are always intensely hot. They are covered with a fused
black incrustation, consisting chiefly of oxide of iron; and, what is
most remarkable, their chemical analysis develops the same substances in
nearly the same proportions, though one may have reached the earth in
India and another in England. Their specific gravities are about the
same; considering 1000 as the proportionate number for the specific
gravity of water, that of some of the aërolites has been found to be,

  Ensisheim stone     3233
  Benares             3352
  Sienna              3418
  Gassendi's          3456
  Yorkshire           3508
  Bachelay's          3535
  Bohemia             4281.

The greater specific gravity of the Bohemian stone arose from its
containing a greater proportion of iron. An analysis of one of the
stones that fell at L'Aigle gives:

  Silica          46 per cent
  Magnesia        10    "
  Iron            45    "
  Nickel           2    "
  Sulphur          5    "
  Zinc             1    "

Iron is found in all these bodies, and in a considerable quantity, with
the rare metal nickel. It is a singular fact, that though a chemical
examination of their composition has not discovered any substance with
which we were not previously acquainted, yet no other bodies have yet
been found, native to the earth, which contain the same ingredients
combined. Neither products of the volcanoes, whether extinct or in
action, nor the stratified or unstratified rocks, have exhibited a
sample of that combination of metallic and earthy substances which the
meteoric stones present. During the era that science has admitted their
path to the earth as a physical truth, scarcely amounting to half a
century, few years have elapsed without a known instance of descent
occurring in some region of the globe. To Izarn's list, previously
given, upward of seventy cases might be added, which have transpired
during the last forty years. A report relating to one of the most
recent, which fell in a valley near the Cape of Good Hope, with the
affidavits of the witnesses, was communicated to the Royal Society, by
Sir John Herschel, in March, 1840. Previously to the descent of the
aërolites, the usual sound of explosion was heard, and some of the
fragments falling upon grass, caused it instantly to smoke, and were too
hot to admit of being touched. When, however, we consider the wide range
of the ocean, and the vast unoccupied regions of the globe, its
mountains, deserts, and forests, we can hardly fail to admit that the
observed cases of descent must form but a small proportion of the actual
number; and obviously in countries upon which the human race are thickly
planted many may escape notice through descending in the night, and will
lie imbedded in the soil till some accidental circumstance exposes their
existence. Some, too, are no doubt completely fused and dissipated in
the atmosphere, while others move by us horizontally, as brilliant
lights, and pass into the depths of space. The volume of some of these
passing bodies is very great. One which traveled within twenty-five
miles of the surface, and cast down a fragment, was suppose to weigh
upward of half a million of tons. But for its great velocity, the whole
mass would have been precipitated to the earth. Two aërolites fell at
Braunau, in Bohemia, July 14, 1847.

In addition to aërolites, properly so called, or bodies known to have
come to us from outlying space, large metallic masses exist in various
parts of the world, lying in insulated situations, far remote from the
abodes of civilization, whose chemical composition is closely analogous
to that of the substances the descent of which has been witnessed. These
circumstances leave no doubt as to their common origin. Pallas
discovered an immense mass of malleable iron, mixed with nickel, at a
considerable elevation on a mountain of slate in Siberia, a site plainly
irreconcilable with the supposition of art having been there with its
forges, even had it possessed the character of the common iron. In one
of the rooms of the British Museum there is a specimen of a large mass
which was found, and still remains, on the plain of Otumba, in the
district of Buenos Ayres. The specimen alone weighs 1400 lbs., and the
weight of the whole mass, which lies half buried in the ground, is
computed to be thirteen tons. In the province of Bahia, in Brazil,
another block has been discovered weighing upward of six tons.
Considering the situation of these masses, with the details of their
chemical analysis, the presumption is clearly warranted that they owe
their origin to the same causes that have formed and projected the
aërolites to the surface. With reference to the Siberian iron a general
tradition prevails among the Tartars that it formerly descended from the
heavens. A curious extract, translated from the Emperor Tchangire's
memoirs of his own reign is given in a paper communicated to the Royal
Society, which speaks of the fall of a metallic mass in India. The
prince relates, that in the year 1620 (of our era) a violent explosion
was heard at a village in the Punjaub, and at the same time a luminous
body fell through the air on the earth. The officer of the district
immediately repaired to the spot where it was said the body fell, and
having found the place to be still hot, he caused it to be dug. He found
that the heat kept increasing till they reached a lump of iron violently
hot. This was afterward sent to court, where the emperor had it weighed
in his presence, and ordered it to be forged into a sabre, a knife, and
a dagger. After a trial the workmen reported that it was not malleable,
but shivered under the hammer; and it required to be mixed with one
third part of common iron, after which the mass was found to make
excellent blades. The royal historian adds, that on the incident of this
_iron of lightning_ being manufactured, a poet presented him with a
distich that, "during his reign the earth attained order and regularity;
that raw iron fell from lightning, which was, by his world-subduing
authority, converted into a dagger, a knife, and two sabres."

A multitude of theories have been devised to account for the origin of
these remarkable bodies. The idea is completely inadmissible that they
are concretions formed within the limits of the atmosphere. The
ingredients that enter into their composition have never been discovered
in it, and the air has been analyzed at the sea level and on the tops of
high mountains. Even supposing that to have been the case, the enormous
volume of atmospheric air so charged required to furnish the particles
of a mass of several tons, not to say many masses, is, alone, sufficient
to refute the notion. They can not, either, be projectiles from
terrestrial volcanoes, because coincident volcanic activity has not been
observed, and aërolites descend thousands of miles apart from the
nearest volcano, and their substances are discordant with any known
volcanic product. Laplace suggested their projection from lunar
volcanoes. It has been calculated that a projectile leaving the lunar
surface, where there is no atmospheric resistance, with a velocity of
7771 feet in the first second, would be carried beyond the point where
the forces of the earth and the moon are equal, would be detached,
therefore, from the satellite, and come so far within the sphere of the
earth's attraction as necessarily to fall to it. But the enormous number
of ignited bodies that have been visible, the shooting stars of all
ages, and the periodical meteoric showers that have astonished the
moderns, render this hypothesis untenable, for the moon, ere this, would
have undergone such a waste as must have sensibly diminished her orb,
and almost blotted her from the heavens. Olbers, was the first to prove
the possibility of a projectile reaching us from the moon, but at the
same he deemed the event highly improbable, regarding the satellite as a
very peaceable neighbor, not capable now of strong explosions from the
want of water and an atmosphere. The theory of Chladni will account
generally for all the phenomena, be attended with the fewest
difficulties, and, with some modifications to meet circumstances not
known in his day, it is now widely embraced. He conceived the system to
include an immense number of small bodies, either the scattered
fragments of a larger mass, or original accumulations of matter, which,
circulating round the sun, encounter the earth in its orbit, and are
drawn toward it by attraction, become ignited upon entering the
atmosphere, in consequence of their velocity, and constitute the
shooting stars, aërolites, and meteoric appearances that are observed.
Sir Humphry Davy, in a paper which contains his researches on flame,
strongly expresses an opinion that the meteorites are solid bodies
moving in space, and that the heat produced by the compression of the
most rarefied air from the velocity of their motion must be sufficient
to ignite their mass so that they are fused on entering the atmosphere.
It is estimated that a body moving through our atmosphere with the
velocity of one mile in a second, would extricate heat equal to 30,000°
of Fahrenheit--a heat more intense than that of the fiercest artificial
furnace that ever glowed. The chief modification given to the Chladnian
theory has arisen from the observed periodical occurrence of meteoric
showers--a brilliant and astonishing exhibition--to some notices of
which we proceed.

The writers of the middle ages report the occurrence of the stars
falling from heaven in resplendent showers among the physical
appearances of their time. The experience of modern days establishes the
substantial truth of such relations, however once rejected as the
inventions of men delighting in the marvelous. Conde, in his history of
the dominion of the Arabs, states, referring to the month of October in
the year 902 of our era, that on the night of the death of King Ibrahim
ben Ahmed, an infinite number of falling stars were seen to spread
themselves like rain over the heavens from right to left, and this year
was afterward called the year of stars. In some Eastern annals of Cairo,
it is related that "In this year (1029 of our era) in the month Redjeb
(August) many stars passed, with a great noise, and brilliant light;"
and in another place the same document states: "In the year 599, on
Saturday night, in the last Moharrem (1202 of our era, and on the 19th
of October), the stars appeared like waves upon the sky, toward the east
and west; they flew about like grasshoppers, and were dispersed from
left to right; this lasted till day-break; the people were alarmed." The
researches of the Orientalist, M. Von Hammer, have brought these
singular accounts to light. Theophanes, one of the Byzantine historians,
records, that in November of the year 472 the sky appeared to be on fire
over the city of Constantinople with the coruscations of flying meteors.
The chronicles of the West agree with those of the East in reporting
such phenomena. A remarkable display was observed on the 4th of April,
1095, both in France and England. The stars seemed, says one, "falling
like a shower of rain from heaven upon the earth;" and in another case,
a bystander, having noted the spot where an aërolite fell, "cast water
upon it, which was raised in steam, with a great noise of boiling." The
chronicle of Rheims describes the appearance, as if all the stars in
heaven were driven like dust before the wind. "By the reporte of the
common people, in this kynge's time (William Rufus)," says Rastel,
"divers great wonders were sene--and therefore the king was told by
divers of his familiars, that God was not content with his lyvyng, but
he was so wilful and proude of minde, that he regarded little their
saying." There can be no hesitation now in giving credence to such
narrations as these, since similar facts have passed under the notice of
the present generation.

The first grand phenomena of a meteoric shower which attracted attention
in modern times was witnessed by the Moravian Missionaries at their
settlements in Greenland. For several hours the hemisphere presented a
magnificent and astonishing spectacle, that of fiery particles, thick as
hail, crowding the concave of the sky, as though some magazine of
combustion in celestial space was discharging its contents toward the
earth. This was observed over a wide extent of territory. Humboldt, then
traveling in South America, accompanied by M. Bonpland, thus speaks of
it: "Toward the morning of the 13th November, 1799, we witnessed a most
extraordinary scene of shooting meteors. Thousands of bodies and falling
stars succeeded each other during four hours. Their direction was very
regular from north to south. From the beginning of the phenomenon there
was not a space in the firmament equal in extent to three diameters of
the moon which was not filled every instant with bodies of falling
stars. All the meteors left luminous traces or phosphorescent bands
behind them, which lasted seven or eight seconds." An agent of the
United States, Mr. Ellicott, at that time at sea between Cape Florida
and the West India Islands, was another spectator, and thus describes
the scene: "I was called up about three o'clock in the morning, to see
the shooting stars, as they are called. The phenomenon was grand and
awful The whole heavens appeared as if illuminated with sky-rockets,
which disappeared only by the light of the sun after daybreak. The
meteors, which at any one instant of time appeared as numerous as the
stars, flew in all possible directions, except from the earth, toward
which they all inclined more or less; and some of them descended
perpendicularly over the vessel we were in, so that I was in constant
expectation of their falling on us." The same individual states that his
thermometer, which had been at 80° Fahr. for four days preceding, fell
to 56°, and, at the same time, the wind changed from the south to the
northwest, from whence it blew with great violence for three days
without intermission. The Capuchin missionary at San Fernando, a village
amid the savannahs of the province of Varinas, and the Franciscan monks
stationed near the entrance of the Oronoco, also observed this shower of
asteroids, which appears to have been visible, more or less, over an
area of several thousand miles, from Greenland to the equator, and from
the lonely deserts of South America to Weimar in Germany. About thirty
years previous, at the city of Quito, a similar event occurred. So great
a number of falling stars were seen in a part of the sky above the
volcano of Cayambaro, that the mountain itself was thought at first to
be on fire. The sight lasted more than an hour. The people assembled in
the plain of Exida, where a magnificent view presented itself of the
highest summits of the Cordilleras. A procession was already on the
point of setting out from the convent of Saint Francis, when it was
perceived that the blaze on the horizon was caused by fiery meteors,
which ran along the sky in all directions, at the altitude of twelve or
thirteen degrees. In Canada, in the years 1814 and 1819, the stellar
showers were noticed, and in the autumn of 1818 on the North Sea, when,
in the language of one of the observers, the surrounding atmosphere
seemed enveloped in one expansive ocean of fire, exhibiting the
appearance of another Moscow in flames. In the former cases, a residiuum
of dust was deposited upon the surface of the waters, on the roofs of
buildings, and on other objects. The deposition of particles of matter
of a ruddy color has frequently followed the descent of aërolites--the
origin of the popular stories of the sky having rained blood. The next
exhibition upon a great scale of the falling stars occurred on the 13th
of November, 1831, and was seen off the coasts of Spain and in the Ohio
country. This was followed by another in the ensuing year at exactly the
same time. Captain Hammond, then in the Red Sea, off Mocha, in the ship
Restitution, gives the following account of it; "From one o'clock A.M.
till after daylight, there was a very unusual phenomenon in the heavens.
It appeared like meteors bursting in every direction. The sky at the
time was clear, and the stars and moon bright, with streaks of light and
thin white clouds interspersed in the sky. On landing in the morning, I
inquired of the Arabs if they had noticed the above. They said they had
been observing it most of the night. I asked them if ever the like had
appeared before? The oldest of them replied it had not." The shower was
witnessed from the Red Sea westward to the Atlantic, and from
Switzerland to the Mauritius.

We now come to by far the most splendid display on record; which, as it
was the third in successive years, and on the same day of the month as
the two preceding, seemed to invest the meteoric showers with a
periodical character; and hence originated the title of the November
meteors. The chief scene of the exhibition was included within the
limits of the longitude of 61° in the Atlantic Ocean, and that of 100°
in Central Mexico, and from the North American lakes to the West Indies.
Over this wide area, an appearance presented itself, far surpassing in
grandeur the most imposing artificial fire-works. An incessant play of
dazzlingly brilliant luminosities was kept up in the heavens for several
hours. Some of these were of considerable magnitude and peculiar form.
One of large size remained for some time almost stationary in the
zenith, over the Falls of Niagara, emitting streams of light. The wild
dash of the waters, as contrasted with the fiery uproar above them,
formed a scene of unequaled sublimity. In many districts, the mass of
the population were terror-struck, and the more enlightened were awed at
contemplating so vivid a picture of the Apocalyptic image--that of the
stars of heaven falling to the earth, even as a fig-tree casting her
untimely figs, when she is shaken of a mighty wind. A planter of South
Carolina, thus describes the effect of the scene upon the ignorant
blacks: "I was suddenly awakened by the most distressing cries that ever
fell on my ears. Shrieks of horror and cries for mercy I could hear from
most of the negroes of three plantations, amounting in all to about six
or eight hundred. While earnestly listening for the cause, I heard a
faint voice near the door calling my name. I arose, and taking my sword,
stood at the door. At this moment, I heard the same voice still
beseeching me to rise, and saying, 'O my God, the world is on fire!' I
then opened the door, and it is difficult to say which excited me most
--the awfulness of the scene, or the distressed cries of the negroes.
Upward of one hundred lay prostrate on the ground--some speechless, and
some with the bitterest cries, but with their hands raised, imploring
God to save the world and them. The scene was truly awful; for never did
rain fall much thicker than the meteors fell toward the earth; east,
west, north, and south, it was the same."



This extraordinary spectacle commenced a little before midnight, and
reached its height between four and six o'clock in the morning. The
night was remarkably fine. Not a cloud obscured the firmament. Upon
attentive observation, the materials of the shower were found to exhibit
three distinct varieties:--1. Phosphoric lines formed one class
apparently described by a point. These were the most abundant. They
passed along the sky with immense velocity, as numerous as the flakes of
a sharp snow-storm. 2. Large fire-balls formed another constituency of
the scene. These darted forth at intervals along the arch of the sky,
describing an arc of 30° or 40° in a few seconds. Luminous trains marked
their path, which remained in view for a number of minutes, and in some
cases for half an hour or more. The trains were commonly white, but the
various prismatic colors occasionally appeared, vividly and beautifully
displayed. Some of these fire-balls, or shooting-stars, were of enormous
size. Dr. Smith of North Carolina observed one which appeared larger
than the full moon at the horizon. "I was startled," he remarks, "by the
splendid light in which the surrounding scene was exhibited, rendering
even small objects quite visible." The same, or a similar luminous body,
seen at New Haven, passed off in a northwest direction, and exploded
near the star Capella. 3. Another class consisted of luminosities of
irregular form, which remained nearly stationary for a considerable
time, like the one that gleamed aloft over the Niagara Falls. The
remarkable circumstance is testified by every witness, that all the
luminous bodies, without a single exception, moved in lines, which
converged in one and the same point of the heavens; a little to the
southeast of the zenith. They none of them started from this point, but
their direction, to whatever part of the horizon it might be, when
traced backward, led to a common focus. Conceive the centre of the
diagram to be nearly overhead, and a proximate idea may be formed of the
character of the scene, and the uniform radiation of the meteors from
the same source. The position of this radiant point among the stars was
near [Greek: g] Leonis. It remained stationary with respect to the stars
during the whole of the exhibition. Instead of accompanying the earth in
its diurnal motion eastward, it attended the stars in their apparent
movement westward. The source of the meteoric shower was thus
independent of the earth's rotation, and this shows its position to have
been in the regions of space exterior to our atmosphere. According to
the American Professor, Dr. Olmsted, it could not have been less than
2238 miles above the earth's surface.


The attention of astronomers in Europe, and all over the world, was, as
may be imagined, strongly roused by intelligence of this celestial
display on the western continent; and as the occurrence of a meteoric
shower had now been observed for three years successively, at a
coincident era, it was inferred that a return of this fiery hail-storm
might be expected in succeeding Novembers. Arrangements were therefore
made to watch the heavens on the nights of the 12th and 13th in the
following years at the principal observatories; and though no such
imposing spectacle as that of 1833 has been witnessed, yet extraordinary
flights of shooting stars have been observed in various places at the
periodic time, tending also from a fixed point in the constellation Leo.
They were seen in Europe and America on November 13th, 1834. The
following results of simultaneous observation were obtained by Arago
from different parts of France on the nights of November 12th and 13th,

  Place.                       Meteors.

  Paris, at the Observatory    170
  Dieppe                        36
  Arras                         27
  Strasburg                     85
  Von Altimarl                  75
  Angou                         49
  Rochefort                     23
  Havre                        300

On November 12th, 1837, at eight o'clock in the evening, the attention
of observers in various parts of Great Britain was directed to a bright,
luminous body, apparently proceeding from the north, which, after making
a rapid descent, in the manner of a rocket, suddenly burst, and
scattering its particles into various beautiful forms, vanished in the
atmosphere. This was succeeded by others all similar to the first, both
in shape and the manner of its ultimate disappearance. The whole display
terminated at ten o'clock, when dark clouds which continued up to a late
hour, overspread the earth, preventing any further observation. In the
November of 1838, at the same date, the falling stars were abundant at
Vienna: and one of remarkable brilliancy and size, as large as the full
moon in the zenith, was seen on the 13th by M. Verusmor, off Cherburg,
passing in the direction of Cape La Hogue, a long, luminous train
marking its course through the sky. The same year, the non-commissioned
officers in the island of Ceylon were instructed to look out for the
falling stars. Only a few appeared at the usual time; but on the 5th of
December, from nine o'clock till midnight, the shower was incessant,
and the number defied all attempts at counting them.


Professor Olmsted, an eminent man of science, himself an eye-witness of
the great meteoric shower on the American continent, after carefully
collecting and comparing facts, proposed the following theory: The
meteors of November 13th, 1833, emanated from a nebulous body which was
then pursuing its way along with the earth around the sun; that this
body continues to revolve around the sun in an elliptical orbit, but
little inclined to the plane of the ecliptic, and having its aphelion
near the orbit of the earth; and finally, that the body has a period of
nearly six months, and that its perihelion is a little within the orbit
of Mercury. The diagram represents the ellipse supposed to be described,
E being the orbit of the earth, M that of Mercury, and N that of the
assumed nebula, its aphelion distance being about 95 millions of miles,
and the perihelion 24 millions. Thus, when in aphelion, the body is
close to the orbit of the earth, and this occurring periodically, when
the earth is at the same time in that part of its orbit, nebulous
particles are attracted toward it by its gravity, and then, entering the
atmosphere, are consumed in it by their concurrent velocities, causing
the appearance of a meteoric shower. The parent body is inferred to be
nebular, because, though the meteors fall toward the earth with
prodigious velocity, few, if any, appear to have reached the surface.
They were stopped by the resistance of the air and dissipated in it,
whereas, if they had possessed any considerable quantity of matter, the
momentum would have been sufficient to have brought them down in some
instances to the earth. Arago has suggested a similar theory, that of a
stream or group of innumerable bodies, comparatively small, but of
various dimensions, sweeping round the solar focus in an orbit which
periodically cuts that of the earth. These two theories are in substance
the Chladnian hypothesis, first started to explain the observed actual
descent of aërolites. Though great obscurity rests upon the subject, the
fact may be deemed certain that independently of the great planets and
satellites of the system, there are vast numbers of bodies circling
round the sun, both singly and in groups, and probably an extensive
nebula, contact with which causes the phenomena of shooting stars,
aërolites, and meteoric showers. But admitting the existence of such
bodies to be placed beyond all doubt, the question of their origin,
whether original accumulations of matter, old as the planetary orbs, or
the dispersed trains of comets, or the remains of a ruined world, is a
point beyond the power of the human understanding to reach.




The Odenwald, or Forest of Odin, is one of the most primitive districts
of Germany. It consists of a hilly, rather than a mountainous district,
of some forty miles in one direction, and thirty in another. The
beautiful Neckar bounds it on the south; on the west it is terminated by
the sudden descent of its hills into the great Rhine plain. This
boundary is well known by the name of the Bergstrasse, or mountain road;
which road, however, was at the foot of the mountains, and not over
them, as the name would seem to imply. To English travelers, the beauty
of this Bergstrasse is familiar. The hills, continually broken into by
openings into romantic valleys, slope rapidly down to the plain, covered
with picturesque vineyards; and at their feet lie antique villages, and
the richly-cultivated plains of the Rhine, here thirty or forty miles
wide. On almost every steep and projecting hill, or precipitous cliff,
stands a ruined castle, each, as throughout Germany, with its wild
history, its wilder traditions, and local associations of a hundred
kinds. The railroad from Frankfort to Heidelberg now runs along the
Bergstrasse, and will ever present to the eyes of travelers the charming
aspect of these old legendary hills; till the enchanting valley of the
Neckar, with Heidelberg reposing amid its lovely scenery at its mouth,
terminates the Bergstrasse, and the hills which stretch onward, on the
way toward Carlsruhe, assume another name.

Every one ascending the Rhine from Mayence to Mannheim has been struck
with the beauty of these Odenwald hills, and has stood watching that
tall white tower on the summit of one of them, which, with windings of
the river, seem now brought near, and then again thrown very far off;
seemed to watch and haunt you, and, for many hours, to take short cuts
to meet you, till, at length, like a giant disappointed of his prey, it
glided away into the gray distance, and was lost in the clouds. This is
the tower of Melibocus, above the village of Auerbach, to which we shall
presently ascend, in order to take our first survey of this old and
secluded haunt of Odin.

This quiet region of hidden valleys and deep forests extends from the
borders of the Black Forest, which commences on the other side of the
Neckar, to the Spessart, another old German forest; and in the other
direction, from Heidelberg and Darmstadt, toward Heilbronn. It is full
of ancient castles, and a world of legends. In it stands, besides the
Melibocus, another tower, on a still loftier point, called the
Katzenbuckel, which overlooks a vast extent of these forest hills. Near
this lies Eberbach, a castle of the descendants of Charlemagne, which we
shall visit; the scenes of the legend of the Wild Huntsman; the castles
of Götz von Berlichingen, and many another spot familiar by its fame to
our minds from childhood. But besides this, the inhabitants are a people
living in a world of their own; retaining all the simplicity of their
abodes and habits; and it is only in such a region that you now
recognize the pictures of German life such as you find them in the _Haus
Märchen_ of the brothers Grimm.

In order to make ourselves somewhat acquainted with this interesting
district, Mrs. Howitt and myself, with knapsack on back, set out at the
end of August, 1841, to make a few days' ramble on foot through it. The
weather, however, proved so intensely hot, and the electrical sultriness
of the woods so oppressive, that we only footed it one day, when we were
compelled to make use of a carriage, much to our regret.

On the last day in August we drove with a party of friends, and our
children, to Weinheim; rambled through its vineyards, ascended to its
ancient castle, and then went on to Birkenau Thal, a charming valley,
celebrated, as its name denotes, for its lovely hanging birches, under
which, with much happy mirth, we dined.

Scrambling among the hills, and winding up the dry footpaths, among the
vineyards of this neighborhood, we were yet more delighted with the
general beauty of the scenery, and with the wild-flowers which every
where adorned the hanging cliffs and warm waysides. The marjorum stood
in ruddy and fragrant masses; harebells and campanulas of several kinds,
that are cultivated in our gardens, with bells large and clear; crimson
pinks; the Michaelmas daisy; a plant with a thin, radiated yellow
flower, of the character of an aster; a centaurea of a light purple,
handsomer than any English one; a thistle in the dryest places,
resembling an eryngo, with a thick, bushy top; mulleins, yellow and
white; the wild mignonnette, and the white convolvulus; and clematis
festooning the bushes, recalled the flowery fields and lanes of England,
and yet told us that we were not there. The meadows had also their moist
emerald sward scattered with the grass of Parnassus, and an autumnal
crocus of a particularly delicate lilac.

At the inn, at the mouth of Birkenau Thal, we proposed to take the
eilwagen as far as Auerbach, but that not arriving, we availed ourselves
of a peasant's light wicker wagon. The owner was a merry fellow, and had
a particularly spirited black horse; and taking leave of our friends,
after a delightful day, we had a most charming drive to Auerbach, and
one equally amusing, from the conversation of our driver.

After tea we ascended to Auerbach Castle, which occupies a hill above
the town, still far overtopped, however, by the height of Melibocus. The
view was glorious. The sunset across the great Rhine plain was
magnificent. It diffused over the whole western sky an atmosphere of
intense crimson light, with scattered golden clouds, and surrounded by a
deep violet splendor. The extremities of the plain, from the eye being
dazzled with this central effulgence, lay in a solemn and nearly
impenetrable gloom. The castle in ruins, seen by this light, looked
peculiarly beautiful and impressive. In the court on the wall was an
inscription, purporting that a society in honor of the military career
of the Grand Duke of Hesse-Darmstadt, in whose territory and in that of
Baden the Odenwald chiefly lies, had here celebrated his birthday in the
preceding July. Round the inscription hung oaken garlands, within each
of which was written the name and date of the battles in which he had
been engaged against the French. An altar of moss and stones stood at a
few yards' distance in front of these memorials, at which a peasant
living in the tower told us, the field-preacher had delivered an oration
on the occasion.

In the morning, at five o'clock, we began to ascend the neighboring
heights of Melibocus. It took us an hour and a quarter. The guide
carried my knapsack; and as we went, men came up through different
footpaths in the woods, with hoes on their shoulders. When we arrived
on the top, we found others, and among them some women, accompanied by a
policeman. They were peasants who had been convicted of cutting wood for
fuel in the hills, and were adjudged to pay a penalty, or in default, to
work it out in hoeing and clearing the young plantations for a
proportionate time--a much wiser way than shutting them up in a prison,
where they are of no use either to themselves or the state.

The view from the tower, eighty feet in height, over the great Rhine
plain, is immense and splendid, including two hundred villages, towns,
and cities. The windings of the magnificent Rhine lie mapped out below
you, and on its banks are seen, as objects of peculiar interest, the
cathedral of Speier, the lofty dome of the Jesuits' church at Mannheim,
and the four towers of the noble cathedral of Worms. In the remote
distance, as a fitting termination to this noble landscape, are seen the
heights of the Donnersberg, the Vosges, and the Schwarzwald.

The policeman, who followed us up into the tower, mentioned the time
when the inhabitants of that district had hastened thither to watch the
approach of the French armies, and pointed out the spot where they were
first seen, and described their approach, and the terrors and anxieties
of the people, in the most lively and touching manner.

The wind was strong on this lofty height, and the rattling of the
shutters in the look-out windows in the tower, and of their fastenings,
would have been dismal enough on a stormy night, and gave quite a
wildness to it even then. The view over the Odenwald was beautiful. Half
covered with wood, as far as you could see, with green, winding straths
between them, distant castles, and glimpses of the white walls of
low-lying dorfs or villages, it gave you an idea of a region at once
solitary and attractive. The whole was filled with the cheerful light of
morning, and the wooded hills looked of the most brilliant green. We
descended, and pursued our way through the forest glades with that
feeling of enjoyment which the entrance into an unknown region, pleasant
companionship, and fine weather, inspire. When we issued from the woods
which clothe the sides of Melibocus, we sate down on the heathy turf,
and gazed with a feeling of ever-youthful delight on the scene around
us. Above us, and over its woods, rose the square white tower of
Melibocus; below, lay green valleys, from among whose orchards issued
the smoke of peaceful cottages; and beyond, rose hills covered with
other woods, with shrouded spots, the legends of which had reached us in
England, and had excited the wonder of our early days--the castle of the
Wild Huntsman--the traditions of the followers of Odin--and the
strongholds of many an iron-clad knight, as free to seize the goods of
his neighbors as he was strong to take and keep them. Now all was
peaceful and Arcadian. We met, as we descended into the valley, young
women coming up with their cows, and a shepherd with a mixed flock of
sheep and swine. He had a belt around him, to which hung a chain,
probably to fasten a cow to, as we afterward saw cows so secured.

We found the cottages, in the depths of the valleys, among their
orchards, just those heavy, old-fashioned sort of things that we see in
German engravings; buildings of wood-framing, the plaster panels of
which were painted in various ways, and the windows of those circular
and octagon panes which, from old association, always seem to belong to
German cottages, just such as that in which the old witch lived in
_Grimm's Kinder und Haus Märchen_; and in the _Folk Sagor_ of Sweden and
Norway. There were, too, the large ovens built out of doors and roofed
over, such as the old giantess, _Käringen som vardt stekt i ugnen_, was
put into, according to German and Scandinavian legends. The people were
of the simplest character and appearance. We seemed at once to have
stepped out of modern times into the far-past ages. We saw several
children sitting on a bench in the open air, near a school-house,
learning their lessons, and writing on their slates; and we wept into
the school.

The schoolmaster was a man befitting the place; simple, rustic, and
devout. He told us that the boys and girls, of which his school was
full, came, some of them, from a considerable distance. They came in at
six o'clock in the morning and staid till eight, had an hour's rest, and
then came in till eleven, when they went home, and did not return again
till the next morning, being employed the rest of the day in helping
their parents; in going into the woods for fuel; into the fields to
glean, tend cattle, cut grass, or do what was wanted. All the barefooted
children of every village, how ever remote, thus acquire a tolerable
education, learning singing as a regular part of it. They have what they
call their _Sing-Stunde_, singing lesson, every day. On a black board
the _Lied_, song, or hymn for the day, was written in German character
in chalk; and the master, who was naturally anxious to exhibit the
proficiency of his scholars, gave them their singing lesson while we
were there. The scene was very interesting in itself; but there was
something humiliating to our English minds, to think that in the
Odenwald, a portion of the great Hyrcanian forest, a region associating
itself with all that is wild and obscure, every child of every hamlet
and cottage, however secluded, was provided with that instruction which
the villages of England are in a great measure yet destitute of. But
here the peasants are not, as with us, totally cut off from property in
the soil which they cultivate; totally dependent on the labor afforded
by others; on the contrary, they are themselves the possessors. This
country is, in fact, in the hands of the people. It is all parceled out
among the multitude; and, wherever you go, instead of the great halls,
vast parks, and broad lands of the few, you see perpetual evidences of
an agrarian system. Except the woods, the whole land is thrown into
small allotments, and upon them the people are laboring busily for

Here, in the Odenwald, the harvest, which in the great Rhine plain was
over in July, was now, in great measure, cut. Men, women, and children,
were all engaged in cutting it, getting it in, or in tending the cattle.
Everywhere stood the simple wagons of the country with their pair of
yoked cows. Women were doing all sorts of work; reaping, and mowing, and
threshing with the men. They were without shoes and stockings, clad in a
simple, dark-blue petticoat; a body of the same, leaving the white
chemise sleeves as a pleasing contrast; and their hair, in some
instances, turned up under their little black or white caps; in others
hanging wild and sunburnt on their shoulders. The women, old and young,
work as hard as the men, at all kinds of work, and yet with right
good-will, for they work for themselves. They often take their dinners
with them to the fields, frequently giving the lesser children a piece
of bread each, and locking them up in their cottages till they return.
This would be thought a hard life in England; but hard as it is, it is
better than the degradation of agricultural laborers, in a dear country
like England, with six or eight shillings a week, and no cow, no pig,
no fruit for the market, no house, garden, or field of their own; but,
on the contrary, constant anxiety, the fear of a master on whom they are
constantly dependent, and the desolate prospect of ending their days in
a union work-house.

Each German has his house, his orchard, his road-side trees, so laden
with fruit, that if he did not carefully prop up, and tie together, and
in many places hold the boughs together with wooden clamps, they would
be torn asunder by their own weight. He has his corn-plot, his plot for
mangel-wurzel or hay, for potatoes, for hemp, etc. He is his own master,
and he therefore, and every branch of his family, have the strongest
motives for constant exertion. You see the effect of this in his
industry and his economy.

In Germany, nothing is lost. The produce of the trees and the cows is
carried to market. Much fruit is dried for winter use. You see wooden
trays of plums, cherries, and sliced apples, lying in the sun to dry.
You see strings of them hanging from their chamber windows in the sun.
The cows are kept up for the greater part of the year, and every green
thing is collected for them. Every little nook where the grass prows by
roadside, and river, and brook, is carefully cut with the sickle, and
carried home, on the heads of women and children, in baskets, or tied in
large cloths. Nothing of any kind that can possibly be made of any use
is lost. Weeds, nettles, nay, the very goose-grass which covers waste
places, is cut up and taken for the cows. You see the little children
standing in the streets of the villages, in the streams which generally
run down them, busy washing these weeds before they are given to the
cattle. They carefully collect the leaves of the marsh-grass, carefully
cut their potato tops for them, and even, if other things fail, gather
green leaves from the woodlands. One can not help thinking continually
of the enormous waste of such things in England--of the vast quantities
of grass on banks, by roadsides, in the openings of plantations, in
lanes, in church-yards, where grass from year to year springs and dies,
but which, if carefully cut, would maintain many thousand cows for the

To pursue still further this subject of German economy. The very
cuttings of the vines are dried and preserved for winter fodder. The
tops and refuse of the hemp serve as bedding for the cows; nay, even the
rough stalks of the poppies, after the heads have been gathered for oil,
are saved, and all these are converted into manure for the land. When
these are not sufficient, the children are sent into the woods to gather
moss; and all our readers familiar with Germany will remember to have
seen them coming homeward with large bundles of this on their heads. In
autumn, the falling leaves are gathered and stocked for the same
purpose. The fir-cones, which with us lie and rot in the woods, are
carefully collected, and sold for lighting fires.

In short, the economy and care of the German peasant are an example to
all Europe. He has for years--nay, ages--been doing that, as it regards
agricultural management, to which the British public is but just now
beginning to open its eyes. Time, also, is as carefully economized as
every thing else. They are early risers, as may well be conceived, when
the children, many of whom come from considerable distances, are in
school at six in the morning. As they tend their cattle, or their swine,
the knitting never ceases, and hence the quantities of stockings, and
other household things, which they accumulate, are astonishing.

We could not help, as often before, being struck in the Odenwald with
the resemblance of the present country and life of the Germans to those
of the ancient Hebrews. Germany, like Judea, is literally a land flowing
with milk and honey: a land of corn, and vine, and oil. The plains are
full of corn; the hill-sides, however stony, are green with vineyards;
and though they have not the olive, they procure vast quantities of oil
from the walnut, the poppy, and the rape. The whole country is parceled
out among its people. There are no hedges, but the landmarks, against
the removal of which the Jewish law so repeatedly and so emphatically
denounces its terrors, alone indicate the boundaries of each man's
possession. Every where you see the ox and the heifer toiling beneath
the primitive yoke, as in the days of David. The threshing-floor of
Araunah often comes to your mind when you see the different members of a
family--father, mother, brother, and sister, all threshing out their
corn together on the mud floor of their barn; but much more so when you
see them, in the corn-field itself, collect the sheaves into one place,
and treading down the earth into a solid floor, there, in the face of
heaven and fanned by its winds, thresh out on the spot the corn which
has been cut. This we saw continually going forward on the steep slopes
of the Odenwald, ten or a dozen men and women all threshing together. A
whole field is thus soon threshed, the corn being beaten out much more
easily while the ear is crisp with the hot sun.

Having taken leave of the schoolmaster, his scholars, and his bees, with
whose hives nearly all his house-side was covered, we pursued our way to
the Jägerhaus on the top of the Felsberg, one of the highest hills in
the Odenwald. The day was splendid, with a fine breeze, and all around
was new, cheerful, yet solitary, bright and inspiriting. The peasants in
the harvest-fields, the herds watching their cattle, gave us a passing
salutation, and when within sight of you, took off their hats, even at a
field's distance. We walked on in great enjoyment, here sitting to look
back on the scenes we had left, or to drink from the glittering waters
that we had to pass.

Just as we were about to enter the woods again, we met an old woman
slowly wandering on from some cottages among the trees by the wood-side.
She had a leathern belt round her waist, and a cord fastened to it, by
which she led her cow to graze in the thickets and by the foot-path,
while her hands were busy with her knitting. A boy, about seven years
old, was leading a kid by a chain, letting it crop the flowers of the
hawkweed in the grass. The old woman saluted us cheerfully; told us that
the boy's father was in America, and his mother gone out to service, and
that he was intrusted to her care. Could there be any thing more like a
scene in the old _Märchen_, or less like one in England?

[From Howitt's Country Year-Book.]


In one of those strolls which I have always loved to take into different
and little frequented parts of these kingdoms, I fell in with a
venerable old man, dressed in black, with very white hair, and of a
mild, somewhat melancholy and intelligent look. It was a beautiful scene
where I first encountered him--in a wood, on the banks of a noble river.
I accosted the old man with a remark on the delightfulness of the time
and place; and he replied to my observations with a warmth, and in a
tone, which strongly affected me. I soon found that he was as
enthusiastic a lover of nature as myself--that he had seen many of the
finest portions of the kingdom, and had wandered through them with
Milton or Shakspeare, Herbert or Quarles, in his hand. He was one of
those who, reading with his own eyes and heart, and not through the
spectacles of critics, had not been taught to despise the last old poet,
nor to treat his rich and quaint versification, and his many manly and
noble thoughts, as the conceits and rhymes of a poetaster. His reverence
for the great names of our literature, and his just appreciation of
their works, won upon me greatly. I invited him to continue his walk;
and--so well was I pleased with him--to visit me at my rustic lodgment.

From that day, for some weeks, we daily walked together. I more and more
contemplated with admiration and esteem the knowledge, the fine taste,
the generous sentiments, the profound love of nature which seemed to
fill the whole being of the old man. But who and whence was he? He said
not a word on that subject, and I did not, therefore, feel freedom to
inquire. He might have secret griefs, which such a query might awaken. I
respect too much the wounded heart of humanity carelessly to probe it,
and especially the heart of a solitary being who, in the downward stage
of life, may, perchance, be the stripped and scathed remnant of a
once-endeared family. He stood before me alone. He entered into
reminiscences, but they were reminiscences connected with no near ties;
but had such ties now existed, he would in some hour of frank enthusiasm
have said so. He did not say it, and it was, therefore, sufficiently
obvious, that he had a history which he left down in the depths of his
heart, beyond the vision of all but that heart itself. And yet, whatever
were the inward memories of this venerable man, there was a buoyancy and
youthfulness of feeling about him which amply manifested that they had
not quenched the love and enjoyment of life in him.

On different days we took, during the most beautiful spring, strolls of
many miles into distant dales and villages, and on the wild brown moors.
Now we sate by a moorland stream, talking of many absorbing things in
the history of the poetry and the religion of our country, and I could
plainly see that my ancient friend had in him the spirit of an old
Covenanter, and that, had he lived in the days of contest between the
church of kings and the church of God, he would have gone to the field
or the stake for his faith as triumphantly as any martyr of those times.
It was under the influence of one of these conversations that I could
not avoid addressing to the old man the following youthful stanzas,
which, though they may exhibit little poetry, testify to the patriotism
which his language inspired:

        My friend! there have been men
        To whom we turn again
    After contemplating the present age,
        And long, with vain regret,
        That they were living yet,
    Virtue's high war triumphantly to wage.

        Men whose renown was built
        Not on resplendent guilt--
    Not through life's waste, or the abuse of power,
        But by the dauntless zeal
        With which at truth's appeal,
    They stood unto the death in some eventful hour.

        But he who now shall deem,
        Because among us seem
    No dubious symptoms of a realm's decline--
        Wealth blind with its excess
        'Mid far-diffused distress,
    And pride that kills, professing to refine--

        He who deems hence shall flow
        The utter overthrow
    Of this most honored and long happy land,
      Little knows what there lies
      Even beneath his eyes,
    Slumbering in forms that round about him stand.

        Little knows he the zeal
        Myriads of spirits feel
    In love, pure principle, and knowledge strong;
        Little knows he what men
        Tread this dear land again,
    Whose souls of fire invigorate the throng.

        My friend! I lay with thee
        Beneath the forest tree,
    When spring was shedding her first sweets around.
        And the bright sky above
        Woke feelings of deep love,
    And thoughts which traveled through the blue profound.

        I lay, and as I heard--
        The joyful faith thus stirred,
    Shot like Heaven's lightning through my wondering breast
        I heard, and in my thought
        Glory and greatness wrought,
    And blessing God--my native land I blest.

Now we entered a village inn, and ate our simple luncheon; and now we
stood in some hamlet lane, or by its mossy well, with a group of
children about us, among whom not a child appeared more child-like or
more delighted than the old man. Nay, as we came back from a fifteen or
twenty miles' stroll, he would leap over a stile with the activity of a
boy, or run up to a wilding bush, covered with its beautiful pink
blossoms, and breaking off a branch hold it up in admiration, and
declare that it appeared almost sinful for an old man like him to enjoy
himself so keenly. I know not when I more deeply felt the happiness and
the holiness of existence, the wealth of intellect, and the blessings of
our fancies, sympathies, and affection, than I used to do as this
singular stranger sate with me on the turf-seat at the vine-covered end
of the old cottage, which then made my temporary residence, on the
serene evenings of that season, over our rustic tea-table, and with the
spicy breath of the wall-flowers of that little garden breathing around
us, and held conversation on many a subject of moral and intellectual
speculation which then deeply interested me. In some of those evening
hours he at length gave me glimpses into his past existence. Things more
strange and melancholy than I could ever have suspected had passed over
him, and only the more interested me in him.

Such had been our acquaintance for some months, when, one evening,
happening to be in the neighboring town, and passing through a
densely-populated part of it, I saw a number of people crowding into a
chapel. With my usual curiosity in all that relates to the life, habits,
and opinions of my fellow-men, I entered, and was no little surprised to
behold my ancient friend in the pulpit. As I believed he had not
observed me enter, and as I was desirous to hear my worthy friend, thus
most unexpectedly found in this situation, without attracting his
attention, I therefore seated myself in the shade of a pillar, and
awaited the sermon. My surprise, as I listened to it, was excessive, on
more accounts than one. I was surprised at the intense, fervid, and
picturesque blaze of eloquence that breathed forth from the preacher,
seeming to light up the whole place, and fill it with an unearthly and
cloudy fire. I was more astonished by the singularity and wildness of
the sentiments uttered. I looked again and again at the rapt and
ecstatic preacher. His frame seemed to expand, and to be buoyed up, by
his glowing enthusiasm, above the very height of humanity. His hair,
white as snow, seemed a pale glory burning round his head, and his
countenance, warm with the expression of his entranced spirit, was
molten into the visage of a pleading seraph, who saw the terrors of the
Divinity revealed before him, and felt only that they for whom he
wrestled were around him. _They_ hung upon that awful and unearthly
countenance with an intensity which, in beings at the very bar of
eternal judgment, hanging on the advocacy of an angel, could scarcely
have been exceeded; and when he ceased, and sat down, a sigh, as from
every heart at once, went through the place, which marked the fall of
their rapt imaginations from the high region whither his words and
expressive features had raised them, to the dimness and reality of
earth. I could scarcely persuade myself that this was my late friend of
the woods and fields, and of the evening discourse, so calm and
dispassionate, over our little tea-table.

I escaped cautiously with the crowd, and eagerly interrogated a man who
passed out near me who was the preacher? He looked at me with an air of
surprise; but seeing me a stranger, he said he thought I could not have
been in those parts long, or I should have known Mr. M----. I then
learned that my venerable acquaintance was one whose name was known far
and wide--known for the strange and fascinating powers of his pulpit
eloquence, and for the peculiarity of his religious views. The
singularity of those notions alone had prevented his becoming one of the
most popular religious orators of his time. They had been the source of
perpetual troubles and persecutions to him, they had estranged from him
the most zealous of his friends from time to time; yet they were such
only as he could lay down at the threshold of Divine judgment; and
still, wherever he went, although they were a root of bitterness to him
in private, he found in public a crowd of eager and enthusiastic
hearers, who hung on his words as if they came at once warm from the
inner courts of heaven.

The sense of this discovery, and of the whole strange scene of the last
evening, hung powerfully upon me through the following day. I sat on the
bench of my cottage window, with a book in my hand, the greater part of
it, but my thoughts continually reverted to the image of the preacher in
the midst of his audience; when, at evening, in walked the old man with
his usual quiet smile, and shaking me affectionately by the hand, sat
down in a wooden chair opposite me. I looked again and again, but in
vain, to recognize the floating figure and the exalted countenance of
the evening.

The old man took up my book, and began to read. A sudden impulse seized
me which I have never ceased to regret. I did not wish abruptly to tell
the old man that I had seen him in the pulpit, but I longed to discuss
with him the ground of his peculiar views, and said,

"What do you think, my friend, of the actual future destiny of the--?"

I made the question include his peculiar doctrines. He laid down the
volume with a remarkable quickness of action. He gazed at me for a
moment with a look humbled but not confused, such as I had never seen in
him before, and, in a low voice, said,

"You were then at my chapel last night?"

"I was," I replied.

"I am sorry--I am sorry," he said, rising with a sigh. "It has been a
pleasant time, but it is ended. Good-by, my dear young friend, and may
God bless you!"

He turned silently but quickly away.

"Stop!" I cried. "Stop!" But he heard or heeded not. I ran to the gate
to lay hold on him, and assure him that his sentiments would not alter
my regard for him, but I observed him already hastening down the lane at
such a speed that I judged it rude and useless at that moment to pursue.

I went down that day to his lodgings, to assure him of my sentiments
toward him, but door and window were closed, and if he were in he would
not hear me. Early next morning a little ragged boy brought me a note,
saying a gentleman in the lane had given it to him. It simply said:

"Dear young friend, good-by. You wonder at my abruptness; but my
religion has always been fatal to my friendship. You will say it would
not with you: so has many another assured me; but I am too well schooled
by bitter experience. I have had a call to a distant place. No one knows
of it, and I trust the name to no one. The pleasure of your society has
detained me, or I had obeyed the call a month ago. May we meet in
Heaven! C.M."

He was actually gone, and no one knew whither.

Time had passed over, and I had long imagined this strange and gifted
being in his grave, when in a wild and remote part of the kingdom, the
other day, I accidentally stumbled upon his retreat, and found him in
his pulpit with the same rapt aspect, uttering an harangue as exciting,
and surrounded by an audience as eagerly devouring his words.

[From Chesney's Expedition to the Euphrates and Tigris.]


There are two remarkable sects, one of which, called the Mendajaha
(disciples of John), is found scattered in small communities in Basrah,
Kurnah, Mohammarah, and, lastly, Sheikh el Shuyukh, where there are
about three hundred families. Those of Basrah are noticed by Pietro de
la Valle who says the Arabs call them Sabeans. Their religion is
evidently a mixture of Paganism, Hebrew, Mohammedan, and Christian. They
profess to regulate their lives by a book called the Sidra, containing
many moral precepts, which, according to tradition, have been handed
down from Adam, through Seth and Enoch; and it is understood to be in
their language (the Chaldee), but written in a peculiar character. They
abhor circumcision, but are very particular in distinguishing between
clean and unclean animals, and likewise in keeping the Sabbath with
extraordinary strictness. The Psalms of David are in use, but they are
held to be inferior to their own book. They abstain from garlic, beans,
and several kinds of pulse, and likewise most carefully from every
description of food between sunrise and sunset during a whole moon
before the vernal equinox; in addition to which, an annual festival is
kept, called the feast of five days. Much respect is entertained for the
city of Mecca, and a still greater reverence for the Pyramids of Egypt,
in one of which they believe that their great progenitor, Saba, son of
Seth, is buried; and to his original residence at Haran they make very
particular pilgrimages, sacrificing on these occasions a ram and a hen.
They pray seven times a day, turning sometimes to the south and
sometimes to the north. But, at the same time, they retain a part of the
ancient worship of the heavenly bodies, adding that of angels, with the
belief that the souls of the wicked are to enjoy a happier state after
nine hundred centuries of suffering. The priests, who are called
sheikhs, or chiefs, use a particular kind of baptism, which, they say,
was instituted by St. John; and the Chaldee language is used in this and
other ceremonies.

The other religion, that of a more numerous branch, the Yezidis, is, in
some respects, like the Mendajaha, but with the addition of the evil
principle, the exalted doctor, who, as an instrument of the divine will,
is propitiated rather than worshiped, as had been once supposed. The
Yezidis reverence Moses, Christ, and Mohammed, in addition to many of
the saints and prophets held in veneration both by Christians and
Moslems. They adore the sun, as symbolical of Christ, and believe in an
intermediate state after death. The Yezidis of Sinjar do not practice
circumcision, nor do they eat pork; but they freely partake of the blood
of other animals. Their manners are simple, and their habits, both
within and without, remarkable for cleanliness. They are, besides,
brave, hospitable, sober, faithful, and, with the exception of the
Mohammedan, are inclined to tolerate other religions; they are, however,
lamentably deficient in every branch of education. Polygamy is not
permitted, and the tribes intermarry with each other. The families of
the father and sons live under the same roof, and the patriarchal system
is carried out still further, each village being under its own
hereditary chief.


    The time draws near the birth of Christ,
      The moon is hid, the night is still;
      A single church below the hill
    Is pealing, folded in the mist

    A single peal of bells below,
      That wakens at this hour of rest
      A single murmur in the breast,
    That these are not the bells I know

    Like strangers' voices here they sound,
      In lands where not a memory strays,
      Nor landmark breathes of other days.
    But all is new unhallow'd ground.

TENNYSON'S "_In Memoriam_".

[From Dickens's Household Words.]


On a murky morning in November, wind northeast, a poor old woman with a
wooden leg was seen struggling against the fitful gusts of the bitter
breeze, along a stony, zig-zag road full of deep and irregular
cart-ruts. Her ragged petticoat was blue, and so was her wretched nose.
A stick was in her left hand, which assisted her to dig and hobble her
way along; and in her other hand, supported also beneath her withered
arm, was a large, rusty, iron sieve. Dust and fine ashes filled up all
the wrinkles in her face; and of these there were a prodigious number,
for she was eighty-three years old. Her name was Peg Dotting.

About a quarter of a mile distant, having a long ditch and a broken-down
fence as a foreground, there rose against the muddled-gray sky, a huge
dust-heap of a dirty-black color--being, in fact, one of those immense
mounds of cinders, ashes, and other emptyings from dust-holes and bins,
which have conferred celebrity on certain suburban neighborhoods of a
great city. Toward this dusky mountain old Peg Dotting was now making
her way.

Advancing toward the dust-heap by an opposite path, very narrow and just
reclaimed from the mud by a thick layer of freshly broken flints, there
came at the same time Gaffer Doubleyear, with his bone-bag slung over
his shoulder. The rags of his coat fluttered in the east-wind, which
also whistled keenly round his almost rimless hat, and troubled his one
eye. The other eye, having met with an accident last week, he had
covered neatly with an oyster-shell, which was kept in its place by a
string at each side, fastened through a hole. He used no staff to help
him along, though his body was nearly bent double, so that his face was
constantly turned to the earth, like that of a four-footed creature. He
was ninety-seven years of age.

As these two patriarchal laborers approached the great dust-heap, a
discordant voice hallooed to them from the top of a broken wall. It was
meant as a greeting of the morning, and proceeded from little Jem
Clinker, a poor deformed lad, whose back had been broken when a child.
His nose and chin were much too large for the rest of his face, and he
had lost nearly all his teeth from premature decay. But he had an eye
gleaming with intelligence and life, and an expression at once patient
and hopeful. He had balanced his misshapen frame on the top of the old
wall, over which one shriveled leg dangled, as if by the weight of a
hob-nailed boot, that covered a foot large enough for a plowman.

In addition to his first morning's salutation of his two aged friends,
he now shouted out in a tone of triumph and self-gratulation, in which
he felt assured of their sympathy--"Two white skins, and a

It may be requisite to state that little Jem Clinker belonged to the
dead-cat department of the dust-heap, and now announced that a prize of
three skins, in superior condition, had rewarded him for being first in
the field. He was enjoying a seat on the wall in order to recover
himself from the excitement of his good fortune.

At the base of the great dust-heap the two old people now met their
young friend--a sort of great-grandson by mutual adoption--and they at
once joined the party who had by this time assembled as usual, and were
already busy at their several occupations.

But besides all these, another individual, belonging to a very different
class, formed a part of the scene, though appearing only on its
outskirts. A canal ran along at the rear of the dust-heap, and on the
banks of its opposite side slowly wandered by--with hands clasped and
hanging down in front of him, and eyes bent vacantly upon his hands--the
forlorn figure of a man in a very shabby great-coat, which had evidently
once belonged to one in the position of a gentleman. And to a gentleman
it still belonged--but in _what_ a position! A scholar, a man of wit, of
high sentiment, of refinement, and a good fortune withal--now by a
sudden "turn of law" bereft of the last only, and finding that none of
the rest, for which (having his fortune) he had been so much admired,
enabled him to gain a livelihood. His title deeds had been lost or
stolen, and so he was bereft of every thing he possessed. He had
talents, and such as would have been profitably available had he known
how to use them for this new purpose; but he did not; he was
misdirected; he made fruitless efforts, in his want of experience; and
he was now starving. As he passed the great dust-heap, he gave one
vague, melancholy gaze that way, and then looked wistfully into the
canal. And he continued to look into the canal as he slowly moved along,
till he was out of sight.

A dust-heap of this kind is often worth thousands of pounds. The present
one was very large and very valuable. It was in fact a large hill, and
being in the vicinity of small suburb cottages, it rose above them like
a great black mountain. Thistles, groundsel, and rank grass grew in
knots on small parts which had remained for a long time undisturbed;
crows often alighted on its top, and seemed to put on their spectacles
and become very busy and serious; flocks of sparrows often made
predatory descents upon it; an old goose and gander might sometimes be
seen following each other up its side, nearly midway; pigs rooted round
its base, and, now and then, one bolder than the rest would venture some
way up, attracted by the mixed odors of some hidden marrow-bone
enveloped in a decayed cabbage leaf--a rare event, both of these
articles being unusual oversights of the searchers below.

The principal ingredient of all these dust-heaps is fine cinders and
ashes; but as they are accumulated from the contents of all the
dust-holes and bins of the vicinity, and as many more as possible, the
fresh arrivals in their original state present very heterogeneous
materials. We can not better describe them, than by presenting a brief
sketch of the different departments of the searchers and sorters, who
are assembled below to busy themselves upon the mass of original matters
which are shot out from the carts of the dustmen.

The bits of coal, the pretty numerous results of accident and servants'
carelessness, are picked out, to be sold forthwith; the largest and best
of the cinders are also selected, by another party, who sell them to
laundresses, or to braziers (for whose purposes coke would not do so
well); and the next sort of cinders, called the _breeze_, because it is
left after the wind has blown the finer cinders through an upright
sieve, is sold to the brick-makers.

Two other departments, called the "soft-ware" and the "hard-ware," are
very important. The former includes all vegetable and animal
matters--every thing that will decompose. These are selected and bagged
at once, and carried off as soon as possible, to be sold as manure for
ploughed land, wheat, barley, &c. Under this head, also, the dead cats
are comprised. They are, generally, the perquisites of the women
searchers. Dealers come to the wharf, or dust-field, every evening; they
give sixpence for a white cat, fourpence for a colored cat, and for a
black one according to her quality. The "hard-ware" includes all broken
pottery, pans, crockery, earthenware, oyster-shells, &c, which are sold
to make new roads.

"The bones" are selected with care, and sold to the soap-boiler. He
boils out the fat and marrow first, for special use, and the bones are
then crushed and sold for manure.

Of "rags," the woolen rags are bagged and sent off for hop-manure; the
white linen rags are washed, and sold to make paper, &c.

The "tin things" are collected and put into an oven with a grating at
the bottom, so that the solder which unites the parts melts, and runs
through into a receiver. This is sold separately; the detached pieces of
tin are then sold to be melted up with old iron, &c.

Bits of old brass, lead, &c., are sold to be melted up separately, or in
the mixture of ores.

All broken glass vessels, as cruets, mustard-pots, tumblers,
wine-glasses, bottles, &c., are sold to the old-glass shops.

As for any articles of jewelry, silver-spoons, forks, thimbles, or other
plate and valuables, they are pocketed off-hand by the first finder.
Coins of gold and silver are often found, and many "coppers."

Meantime, every body is hard at work near the base of the great
dust-heap. A certain number of cart-loads having been raked and searched
for all the different things just described, the whole of it now
undergoes the process of sifting. The men throw up the stuff, and the
women sift it.

"When I was a young girl," said Peg Dotting--

"That's a long while ago, Peggy," interrupted one of the sifters: but
Peg did not hear her.

"When I was quite a young thing," continued she, addressing old John
Doubleyear, who threw up the dust into her sieve, "it was the fashion to
wear pink roses in the shoes, as bright as that morsel of ribbon Sally
has just picked out of the dust; yes, and sometimes in the hair, too, on
one side of the head, to set off the white powder and salve-stuff. I
never wore one of these head-dresses myself--don't throw up the dust so
high, John--but I lived only a few doors lower down from those as _did_.
Don't throw up the dust so high, I tell 'ee--the wind takes it into my

"Ah! There! What's that?" suddenly exclaimed little Jem, running as fast
as his poor withered legs would allow him, toward a fresh heap, which
had just been shot down on the wharf from a dustman's cart. He made a
dive and a search--then another--then one deeper still. "I'm _sure_ I
saw it!" cried he, and again made a dash with both hands into a fresh
place, and began to distribute the ashes, and dust, and rubbish on every
side, to the great merriment of all the rest.

"What did you see, Jemmy?" asked old Doubleyear, in a compassionate

"Oh, I don't know," said the boy, "only it was like a bit of something
made of real gold!"

A fresh burst of laughter from the company assembled followed this
somewhat vague declaration, to which the dustmen added one or two
elegant epithets, expressive of their contempt of the notion that _they_
could have overlooked a bit of any thing valuable in the process of
emptying sundry dust-holes, and carting them away.

"Ah," said one of the sifters, "poor Jem's always a-fancying something
or other good--but it never comes."

"Didn't I find three cats this morning!" cried Jem; "two on 'em white
'uns! How you go on!"

"I meant something quite different from the like o' that," said the
other; "I was a-thinking of the rare sights all you three there have
had, one time and another."

The wind having changed and the day become bright, the party at work all
seemed disposed to be more merry than usual. The foregoing remark
excited the curiosity of several of the sifters, who had recently joined
the "company," the parties alluded to were requested to favor them with
the recital; and though the request was made with only a half-concealed
irony, still it was all in good-natured pleasantry, and was immediately
complied with. Old Doubleyear spoke first.

"I had a bad night of it with the rats some years ago--they run'd all
over the floor, and over the bed, and one on 'em come'd and guv a squeak
close into my ear--so I couldn't sleep comfortable. I wouldn't ha'
minded a trifle of at; but this was too much of a good thing. So, I got
up before sun-rise, and went out for a walk; and thinking I might as
well be near our work-place, I slowly come'd down this way. I worked in
a brick-field at that time, near the canal yonder. The sun was just
a-rising up behind the dust-heap as I got in sight of it; and soon it
rose above, and was very bright; and though I had two eyes then, I was
obligated to shut them both. When I opened them again, the sun was
higher up; but in his haste to get over the dust-heap, he had dropped
something. You may laugh. I say he had dropped something. Well--I can't
say what it was, in course--a bit of his-self, I suppose. It was just
like him--a bit on him, I mean--quite as bright--just the same--only not
so big. And not up in the sky, but a-lying and sparkling all on fire
upon the dust-heap. Thinks I--I was a younger man then by some years
than I am now--I'll go and have a nearer look. Though you be a bit o'
the sun, maybe you won't hurt a poor man. So, I walked toward the
dust-heap, and up I went, keeping the piece of sparkling fire in sight
all the while. But before I got up to it, the sun went behind a
cloud--and as he went out-like, so the young 'un he had dropped, went
out after him. And I had my climb up the heap for nothing, though I had
marked the place were it lay very percizely. But there was no signs at
all on him, and no morsel left of the light as had been there. I
searched all about; but found nothing 'cept a bit o' broken glass as had
got stuck in the heel of an old shoe. And that's my story. But if ever a
man saw any thing at all, I saw a bit o' the sun; and I thank God for
it. It was a blessed sight for a poor ragged old man of three score and
ten, which was my age at that time."

"Now, Peggy!" cried several voices, "tell us what you saw. Peg saw a bit
o' the moon."

"No," said Mrs. Dotting, rather indignantly; "I'm no moon-raker. Not a
sign of the moon was there, nor a spark of a star--the time I speak on."

"Well--go on, Peggy--go on."

"I don't know as I will," said Peggy.

But being pacified by a few good-tempered, though somewhat humorous
compliments, she thus favored them with her little adventure:

"There was no moon, nor stars, nor comet, in the 'versal heavens, nor
lamp nor lantern along the road, when I walked home one winter's night
from the cottage of Widow Pin, where I had been to tea, with her and
Mrs. Dry, as lived in the almshouses. They wanted Davy, the son of Bill
Davy the milkman, to see me home with the lantern, but I wouldn't let
him 'cause of his sore throat. Throat!--no, it wasn't his throat as was
rare sore--it was--no, it wasn't--yes, it was--it was his toe as was
sore. His big toe. A nail out of his boot had got into it. I _told_ him
he'd be sure to have a bad toe, if he didn't go to church more regular,
but he wouldn't listen; and so my words come'd true. But, as I was
a-saying, I wouldn't let him light me with the lantern by reason of his
sore throat--_toe_, I mean--and as I went along, the night seemed to
grow darker and darker. A straight road, though, and I was so used to it
by day-time, it didn't matter for the darkness. Hows'ever, when I come'd
near the bottom of the dust-heap as I had to pass, the great dark heap
was so zackly the same as the night, you couldn't tell one from t'other.
So, thinks I to myself--_what_ was I thinking of at this moment?--for
the life o' me I can't call it to mind; but that's neither here nor
there, only for this--it was a something that led me to remember the
story of how the devil goes about like a roaring lion. And while I was
a-hoping he might not be out a-roaring that night, what should I see
rise out of one side of the dust-heap, but a beautiful shining star of a
violet color. I stood as still--as stock-still as any I don't-know-what!
There it lay, as beautiful as a new-born babe, all a-shining in the
dust! By degrees I got courage to go a little nearer--and then a little
nearer still--for, says I to myself, I'm a sinful woman, I know, but I
have repented, and do repent constantly of all the sins of my youth, and
the backslidings of my age--which have been numerous; and once I had a
very heavy backsliding--but that's neither here nor there. So, as I was
a-saying, having collected all my sinfulness of life, and humbleness
before heaven, into a goodish bit of courage, forward I steps--little
furder--and a leetle furder more--_un_-til I come'd just up to the
beautiful shining star lying upon the dust. Well, it was a long time I
stood a-looking down at it, before I ventured to do, what I arterwards
did. But _at_ last I did stoop down with both hands slowly--in case it
might burn, or bite--and gathering up a good scoop of ashes as my hands
went along, I took it up, and began a-carrying it home, all shining
before me, and with a soft, blue mist rising up round about it. Heaven
forgive me!--I was punished for meddling with what Providence had sent
for some better purpose than to be carried home by an old woman like me,
whom it has pleased heaven to afflict with the loss of one leg, and the
pain, ixpinse, and inconvenience of a wooden one. Well--I _was_
punished; covetousness had its reward; for, presently, the violet light
got very pale, and then went out; and when I reached home, still holding
in both hands all I had gathered up, and when I took it to the candle,
it had turned into the red shell of a lobsky's head, and its two black
eyes poked up at me with a long stare--and I may say, a strong smell
too--enough to knock a poor body down."

Great applause, and no little laughter, followed the conclusion of old
Peggy's story, but she did not join in the merriment. She said it was
all very well for young people to laugh, but at her age she had enough
to do to pray; and she had never said so many prayers, nor with so much
fervency, as she had done since she received the blessed sight of the
blue star on the dust-heap, and the chastising rod of the lobster's
head at home.

Little Jem's turn now came; the poor lad was, however, so excited by the
recollection of what his companions called "Jem's Ghost," that he was
unable to describe it in any coherent language. To his imagination it
had been a lovely vision--the one "bright consummate flower" of his
life, which he treasured up as the most sacred image in his heart. He
endeavored, in wild and hasty words, to set forth, how that he had been
bred a chimney-sweep; that one Sunday afternoon he had left a set of
companions, most on 'em sweeps, who were all playing at marbles in the
church-yard, and he had wandered to the dust-heap, where he had fallen
asleep; that he was awoke by a sweet voice in the air, which said
something about some one having lost her way!--that he, being now wide
awake, looked up, and saw with his own eyes a young angel, with fair
hair and rosy cheeks, and large white wings at her shoulders, floating
about like bright clouds, rise out of the dust! She had on a garment of
shining crimson, which changed as he looked upon her to shining gold,
then to purple and gold. She then exclaimed, with a joyful smile, "I see
the right way!" and the next moment the angel was gone.

As the sun was just now very bright and warm for the time of the year,
and shining full upon the dust-heap in its setting, one of the men
endeavored to raise a laugh at the deformed lad, by asking him if he
didn't expect to see just such another angel at this minute, who had
lost her way in the field on the other side of the heap; but his jest
failed. The earnestness and devout emotion of the boy to the vision of
reality which his imagination, aided by the hues of sunset, had thus
exalted, were too much for the gross spirit of banter, and the speaker
shrank back into his dust-hovel, and affected to be very assiduous in
his work as the day was drawing to a close.

Before the day's work was ended, however, little Jem again had a glimpse
of the prize which had escaped him on the previous occasion. He
instantly darted, hands and head foremost, into the mass of cinders and
rubbish, and brought up a black mass of half-burnt parchment, entwined
with vegetable refuse, from which he speedily disengaged an oval frame
of gold, containing a miniature, still protected by its glass, but half
covered with mildew from the damp. He was in ecstasies at the prize.
Even the white cat-skins paled before it. In all probability some of the
men would have taken it from, him "to try and find the owner," but for
the presence and interference of his friends Peg Dotting and old
Doubleyear, whose great age, even among the present company, gave them a
certain position of respect and consideration. So all the rest now went
their way, leaving the three to examine and speculate on the prize.

The dust-heaps are a wonderful compound of things. A banker's check for
a considerable sum was found in one of them. It was on Herries and
Farquhar, in 1847. But bankers' checks, or gold and silver articles, are
the least valuable of their ingredients. Among other things, a variety
of useful chemicals are extracted. Their chief value, however, is for
the making of bricks. The fine cinder-dust and ashes are used in the
clay of the bricks, both for the red and gray stacks. Ashes are also
used as fuel between the layers of the clump of bricks, which could not
be burned in that position without them. The ashes burn away, and keep
the bricks open. Enormous quantities are used. In the brick-fields at
Uxbridge, near the Drayton Station, one of the brickmakers alone will
frequently contract for fifteen or sixteen thousand chaldron of this
cinder-dust, in one order. Fine coke or coke-dust, affects the market at
times as a rival; but fine coal, or coal-dust, never, because it would
spoil the bricks.

As one of the heroes of our tale had been originally--before his
promotion--a chimney-sweeper, it may be only appropriate to offer a
passing word on the genial subject of soot. Without speculating on its
origin and parentage, whether derived from the cooking of a Christmas
dinner, or the production of the beautiful colors and odors of exotic
plants in a conservatory, it can briefly be shown to possess many
qualities both useful and ornamental. When soot is first collected, it
is called "rough soot," which, being sifted, is then called "fine soot,"
and is sold to farmers for manuring and preserving wheat and turnips.
This is more especially used in Herefordshire, Bedfordshire, Essex, &c.
It is rather a costly article, being fivepence per bushel. One
contractor sells annually as much as three thousand bushels; and he
gives it as his opinion, that there must be at least one hundred and
fifty times this quantity (four hundred and fifty thousand bushels per
annum) sold in London. Farmer Smutwise of Bradford, distinctly asserts
that the price of the soot he uses on his land is returned to him in the
straw, with improvement also to the grain. And we believe him. Lime is
used to dilute soot when employed as a manure. Using it pure will keep
off snails, slugs, and caterpillars, from peas and various other
vegetables, as also from dahlias just shooting up, and other flowers;
but we regret to add that we have sometimes known it kill, or burn up
the things it was intended to preserve from unlawful eating. In short,
it is by no means so safe to use for any purpose of garden manure, as
fine cinders, and wood-ashes, which are good for almost any kind of
produce, whether turnips or roses. Indeed, we should like to have one
fourth or fifth part of our garden-beds composed of excellent stuff of
this kind. From all that has been said, it will have become very
intelligible why these dust-heaps are so valuable. Their worth, however,
varies not only with their magnitude (the quality of all of them is much
the same), but with the demand. About the year 1820, the Marylebone
dust-heap produced between four thousand and five thousand pounds. In
1832, St. George's paid Mr. Stapleton five hundred pounds a year, not
to leave the heap standing, but to carry it away. Of course he was only
too glad to be paid highly for selling his dust.

But to return. The three friends having settled to their satisfaction
the amount of money they should probably obtain by the sale of the
golden miniature-frame, and finished the castles which they had built
with it in the air, the frame was again enfolded in the sound part of
the parchment, the rags and rottenness of the law were cast away, and up
they rose to bend their steps homeward to the little hovel where Peggy
lived, she having invited the others to tea that they might talk yet
more fully over the wonderful good luck that had befallen them.

"Why, if there isn't a man's head in the canal!" suddenly cried little
Jem. "Looky there!--isn't that a man's head?--Yes; it's a drowndedd

"A drowndedd man, as I live!" ejaculated old Doubleyear.

"Let's get him out, and see!" cried Peggy. "Perhaps the poor soul's not
quite gone."

Little Jem scuttled off to the edge of the canal, followed by the two
old people. As soon as the body had floated nearer, Jem got down into
the water, and stood breast-high, vainly measuring his distance with one
arm out, to see if he could reach some part of the body as it was
passing. As the attempt was evidently without a chance, old Doubleyear
managed to get down into the water behind him, and holding him by one
hand, the boy was thus enabled to make a plunge forward as the body was
floating by. He succeeded in reaching it; but the jerk was too much for
the weakness of his aged companion, who was pulled forward into the
canal. A loud cry burst from both of them, which was yet more loudly
echoed by Peggy on the bank. Doubleyear and the boy were now struggling
almost in the middle of the canal with the body of the man swirling
about between them. They would inevitably have been drowned, had not old
Peggy caught up a long dust-rake that was close at hand--scrambled down
up to her knees in the canal--clawed hold of the struggling group with
the teeth of the rake, and fairly brought the whole to land. Jem was
first up the bank, and helped up his two heroic companions; after which
with no small difficulty, they contrived to haul the body of the
stranger out of the water. Jem at once recognized in him the forlorn
figure of the man who had passed by in the morning, looking so sadly
into the canal, as he walked along.

It is a fact well known to those who work in the vicinity of these great
dust-heaps, that when the ashes have been warmed by the sun, cats and
kittens that have been taken out of the canal and buried a few inches
beneath the surface, have usually revived; and the same has often
occurred in the case of men. Accordingly the three, without a moment's
hesitation, dragged the body along to the dust-heap, where they made a
deep trench, in which they placed it, covering it all over up to the

"There now," ejaculated Peggy, sitting down with a long puff to recover
her breath, "he'll lie very comfortable, whether or no."

"Couldn't lie better," said old Doubleyear, "even if he knew it."

The three now seated themselves close by, to await the result.

"I thought I'd a lost him," said Jem, "and myself too; and when I pulled
Daddy in arter me, I guv us all three up for this world."

"Yes," said Doubleyear, "it must have gone queer with us if Peggy had
not come in with the rake. How d'yee feel, old girl; for you've had a
narrow escape too. I wonder we were not too heavy for you, and so pulled
you in to go with us."

"The Lord be praised!" fervently ejaculated Peggy, pointing toward the
pallid face that lay surrounded with ashes. A convulsive twitching
passed over the features, the lips trembled, the ashes over the breast
heaved, and a low moaning sound, which might have come from the bottom
of the canal, was heard. Again the moaning sound, and then the eyes
opened, but closed almost immediately. "Poor dear soul!" whispered
Peggy, "how he suffers in surviving. Lift him up a little. Softly. Don't
be afeared. We're only your good angels, like--only poor
cinder-sifters--don'tee be afeared."

By various kindly attentions and manœuvres such as these poor people
had been accustomed to practice on those who were taken out of the
canal, the unfortunate gentleman was gradually brought to his senses. He
gazed about him, as well he might--now looking in the anxious, though
begrimed, faces of the three strange objects, all in their "weeds" and
dust--and then up at the huge dust-heap, over which the moon was now
slowly rising.

"Land of quiet Death!" murmured he, faintly, "or land of Life, as dark
and still--I have passed from one into the other; but which of ye I am
now in, seems doubtful to my senses."

"Here we are, poor gentleman," cried Peggy, "here we are, all friends
about you. How did 'ee tumble into the canal?"

"The Earth, then, once more!" said the stranger, with a deep sigh. "I
know where I am, now. I remember this great dark hill of ashes--like
Death's kingdom, full of all sorts of strange things, and put to many

"Where do you live?" asked old Doubleyear; "shall we try and take you
home, sir?"

The stranger shook his head mournfully. All this time, little Jem had
been assiduously employed in rubbing his feet and then his hands; in
doing which the piece of dirty parchment, with the miniature-frame,
dropped out of his breast-pocket. A good thought instantly struck Peggy.

"Run, Jemmy dear--run with that golden thing to Mr. Spikechin, the
pawnbroker's--get something upon it directly, and buy some nice
brandy--and some Godfrey's cordial--and a blanket, Jemmy--and call a
coach, and get up outside on it, and make the coachee drive back here as
fast as you can."

But before Jemmy could attend to this, Mr. Waterhouse, the stranger
whose life they had preserved, raised himself on one elbow, and extended
his hand to the miniature-frame. Directly he looked at it, he raised
himself higher up--turned it about once or twice--then caught up the
piece of parchment; and uttering an ejaculation, which no one could have
distinguished either as of joy or of pain, sank back fainting.

In brief, this parchment was a portion of the title-deeds he had lost;
and though it did not prove sufficient to enable him to recover his
fortune, it brought his opponent to a composition, which gave him an
annuity for life. Small as this was, he determined that these poor
people, who had so generously saved his life at the risk of their own,
should be sharers in it. Finding that what they most desired was to have
a cottage in the neighborhood of the dust-heap, built large enough for
all three to live together, and keep a cow, Mr. Waterhouse paid a visit
to Manchester-square, where the owner of the property resided. He told
his story, as far as was needful, and proposed to purchase the field in

The great dust-contractor was much amused, and his daughter--a very
accomplished young lady--was extremely interested. So the matter was
speedily arranged to the satisfaction and pleasure of all parties. The
acquaintance, however, did not end here. Mr. Waterhouse renewed his
visits very frequently, and finally made proposals for the young lady's
hand, she having already expressed her hopes of a propitious answer from
her father.

"Well, sir," said the latter, "you wish to marry my daughter, and she
wishes to marry you. You are a gentleman and a scholar, but you have no
money. My daughter is what you see, and she has no money. But I have;
and therefore, as she likes you, and I like you, I'll make you both an
offer. I will give my daughter twenty thousand pounds--or you shall have
the dust-heap. Choose!"

Mr. Waterhouse was puzzled and amused, and referred the matter entirely
to the young lady. But she was for having the money, and no trouble. She
said the dust-heap might be worth much, but they did not understand the
business. "Very well," said her father, laughing, "then there's the

This was the identical dust-heap, as we know from authentic information,
which was subsequently sold for forty thousand pounds, and was exported
to Russia to rebuild Moscow.




The old squire, or, in other words, the squire of the old school, is the
eldest born of John Bull; he is the "very moral of him;" as like him as
pea to pea. He has a tolerable share of his good qualities; and as for
his prejudices--oh, they are his meat and drink, and the very clothes
he wears. He is made up of prejudices--he is covered all over with them.
They are the staple of his dreams; they garnish his dishes, they spice
his cup, they enter into his very prayers, and they make his will
altogether. His oaks and elms in his park, and in his woods--they are
sturdy timbers, in troth, and gnarled and knotted to some purpose, for
they have stood for centuries; but what are they to the towering
upshoots of his prejudices? Oh, they are mere wands! If he has not stood
for centuries, his prejudices have; for they have come down from
generation to generation with the family and the estate. They have
ridden, to use another figure, like the Old Man of the Sea, on the
shoulders of his ancestors, and have skipped from those of one ancestor
to those of the next; and there they sit on his own most venerable,
well-fed, comfortable, ancient, and gray-eyed prejudices, as familiar to
their seat as the collar of his coat. He would take cold without them;
to part with them would be the death of him. So! don't go too
near--don't let us alarm them; for, in truth, they have had insults, and
met with impertinences of late years, and have grown fretful and
cantankerous in their old age. Nay, horrid radicals have not hesitated,
in this wicked generation, to aim sundry deadly blows at them; and it
has been all that the old squire has been able to do to protect them.

    You need not rub them backwards like a cat,
    If you would see them spirt and sparkle up.

You have only to give one look at them, and they will appear to all in
bristles and fury, like a nest of porcupines.

The old squire, like his father, is a sincere lover and a most hearty
hater. What does he love? Oh, he loves the country--'tis the only
country on the earth that is worth calling a country; and he loves the
constitution. But don't ask him what it is, unless you want to test the
hardness of his walking-stick; it is the constitution, the finest thing
in the world, and all the better for being, like the Athanasian creed, a
mystery. Of what use is it that the mob should understand it? It is our
glorious constitution--that is enough. Are you not contented to feel how
good it is, without going to peer into its very entrails, and perhaps
ruin it, like an ignorant fellow putting his hand into the works of a
clock? Are you not contented to let the sun shine on you? Do you want to
go up and see what it is made of? Well, then, it is the
constitution--the finest thing in the world; and, good as the country
is, it would be good for nothing without it, no more than a hare would
without stuffing, or a lantern without a candle, or the church without
the steeple or the ring of bells. Well, he loves the constitution, as he
ought to do; for has it not done well for him and his forefathers? And
has it not kept the mob in their places, spite of the French Revolution?
And taken care of the National Debt? And has it not taught us all to
"fear God and honor the king;" and given the family estate to him, the
church to his brother Ned, and put Fred and George into the army and
navy? Could there possibly be a better constitution, if the Whigs could
but let it alone with their Reform Bills? And, therefore, as he most
reasonably loves the dear, old, mysterious, and benevolent constitution
to distraction, and places it in the region of his veneration somewhere
in the seventh heaven itself, so he hates every body and thing that
hates it.

He hates Frenchmen because he loves his country, and thinks we are
dreadfully degenerated that we do not nowadays find some cause, as the
wisdom of our ancestors did, to pick a quarrel with them, and give them
a good drubbing. Is not all our glory made up of beating the French and
the Dutch? And what is to become of history, and the army and the fleet,
if we go on this way? He does not stop to consider that the army, at
least, thrives as well with peace as war; that it continues to increase;
that it eats, drinks, and sleeps as well, and dresses better, and lives
a great deal more easily and comfortably in peace than in war. But,
then, what is to become of history, and the drubbing of the French? Who
may, however, possibly die of "envy and admiration of our glorious

The old squire loves the laws of England; that is, all the laws that
ever were passed by kings, lords, and commons, especially if they have
been passed some twenty years, and he has had to administer them. The
poor-law and the game-law, the impressment act, the law of
primogeniture, the law of capital punishments; all kind of private acts
for the inclosure of commons; turnpike acts, stamp acts, and acts of all
sorts; he loves and venerates them all, for they are part and parcel of
the statute law of England. As a matter of course, he hates most
religiously all offenders against such acts. The poor are a very good
sort of people; nay, he has a thorough and hereditary liking for the
poor, and they have sundry doles and messes of soup from the Hall, as
they had in his father's time, so long as they go to church, and don't
happen to be asleep there when he is awake himself; and don't come upon
the parish, or send bastards there; so long as they take off their hats
with all due reverence, and open gates when they see him coming. But if
they presume to go to the Methodists' meeting, or to a Radical club, or
complain of the price of bread, which is a grievous sin against the
agricultural interest; or to poach, which is all crimes in one--if they
fall into any of these sins, oh, then, they are poor devils indeed! Then
does the worthy old squire hate all the brood of them most righteously;
for what are they but Atheists, Jacobins, Revolutionists, Chartists,
rogues and vagabonds? With what a frown he scowls on them as he meets
them in one of the narrow old lanes, returning from some camp meeting or
other; how he expects every dark night to hear of ricks being burnt, or
pheasants shot. How does he tremble for the safety of the country while
they are at large; and with what satisfaction does he grant a warrant to
bring them before him; and, as a matter of course, how joyfully, spite
of all pleas and protestations of innocence, does he commit them to the
treadmill, or the county jail, for trial at the quarter sessions.

He has a particular affection for the quarter sessions, for there he,
and his brethren all put together, make, he thinks, a tolerable
representation of majesty; and thence he has the satisfaction of seeing
all the poachers transported beyond the seas. The county jail and the
house of correction are particular pets of his. He admires even their
architecture, and prides himself especially on the size and massiveness
of the prison. He used to extend his fondness even to the stocks; but
the treadmill, almost the only modern thing which has wrought such a
miracle, has superseded it in his affections, and the ancient stocks now
stand deserted, and half lost in a bed of nettles; but he still looks
with a gracious eye on the parish pound, and returns the pinder's touch
of his hat with a marked attention, looking upon him as one of the most
venerable appendages of antique institutions.

Of course the old squire loves the church. Why, it is ancient, and that
is enough of itself; but, beside that, all the wisdom of his ancestors
belonged to it. His great-great-uncle was a bishop; his wife's
grandfather was a dean; he has the presentation of the living, which is
now in the hands of his brother Ned; and he has himself all the great
tithes which, in the days of popery, belonged to it. He loves it all the
better, because he thinks that the upstart dissenters want to pull it
down; and he hates all upstarts. And what! Is it not the church of the
queen, and the ministers, and all the nobility, and of all the old
families? It is the only religion for a gentleman, and, therefore, it is
his religion. Would the dissenting minister hob-nob with him as
comfortably over the after-dinner bottle as Ned does, and play a rubber
as comfortably with him, and let him swear a comfortable oath now and
then? 'Tis not to be supposed. Besides, of what family is this
dissenting minister? Where does he spring from? At what university did
he graduate? 'Twon't do for the old squire. No! the clerk, the sexton,
and the very churchwardens of the time being, partake, in his eye, of
the time-tried sanctity of the good old church, and are bound up in the
bundle of his affections.

These are a few of the old squire's likings and antipathies, which are
just as much part of himself, as the entail is of his inheritance. But
we shall see yet more of them when we come to see more of him and his
abode. The old squire is turned of threescore, and every thing is old
about him. He lives in an old house in the midst of an old park, which
has a very old wall, end gates so old, that though they are made of oak
as hard as iron, they begin to stoop in the shoulders, like the old
gentleman himself and the carpenter, who is an old man too, and has
been watching them forty years in hopes of their tumbling, and gives
them a good lusty bang after him every time he passes through, swears
they must have been made in the days of King Canute. The squire has an
old coach drawn by two and occasionally by four old fat horses, and
driven by a jolly old coachman, in which his old lady and his old maiden
sister ride; for he seldom gets into it himself, thinking it a thing fit
only for women and children, preferring infinitely the back of Jack, his
old roadster.

If you went to dine with him, you would find him just as you would have
found his father; not a thing has been changed since his days. There is
the great entrance hall, with its cold stone floor, and its fine
tall-backed chairs, and an old walnut cabinet; and on the walls a
quantity of stags' horns, with caps and riding-whips hung on them; and
the pictures of his ancestors, in their antiquated dresses, and slender,
tarnished, antiquated frames. In his drawing-room you will find none of
your new grand pianos and fashionable couches and ottomans; but an old
spinet and a fiddle, another set of those long-legged, tall-backed
chairs, two or three little settees, a good massy table, and a fine
large carved mantle-piece, with bright steel dogs instead of a modern
stove, and logs of oak burning, if it be cold. At table, all his plate
is of the most ancient make, and he drinks toasts and healths in
tankards of ale that is strong enough to make a horse reel, but which he
continually avows is as mild as mother's milk, and wouldn't hurt an
infant. He has an old rosy butler, and loves very old venison, which
fills the whole house with its perfume while roasting; and an old
double-Gloucester cheese, full of jumpers and mites; and after it a
bottle of old port, at which he is often joined by the parson, and
always by a queer, quiet sort of a tall, thin man, in a seedy black
coat, and with a crimson face, bearing testimony to the efficacy of the
squire's port and "mother's milk."

This man is always to be seen about, and has been these twenty years. He
goes with the squire a-coursing and shooting, and into the woods with
him. He carries his shot-belt and powder-flask, and gives him out his
chargings and his copper caps. He is as often seen about the steward's
house; and he comes in and out of the squire's just as he pleases,
always seating himself in a particular chair near the fire, and pinches
the ears of the dogs, and gives the cat, now and then, a pinch of snuff
as she lies sleeping in a chair; and when the squire's old lady says,
"How _can_ you do so, Mr. Wagstaff?" he only gives a quiet, chuckling
laugh, and says, "Oh, they like it, madam; they like it, you may
depend." That is the longest speech he ever makes, for he seldom does
more than say "yes" and "no" to what is said to him, and still oftener
gives only a quiet smile and a soft of little nasal "hum." The squire
has a vast affection for him, and always walks up to the little chamber
which is allotted to him, once a week, to see that the maid does not
neglect it; though at table he cuts many a sharp joke upon Wagstaff, to
which Wagstaff only returns a smile and a shake of the head, which is
more full of meaning to the squire than a long speech. Such is the old
squire's constant companion.

But we have not yet done with the squire's antiquities. He has an old
woodman, an old shepherd, an old justice's clerk, and almost all his
farmers are old. He seems to have an antipathy to almost every thing
that is not old. Young men are his aversion; they are such coxcombs, he
says, nowadays. The only exception is a young woman. He always was a
great admirer of the fair sex; though we are not going to rake up the
floating stories of the neighborhood about the gallantries of his youth;
but his lady, who is justly considered to have been as fine a woman as
ever stepped in shoe-leather, is a striking proof of his judgment in
women. Never, however, does his face relax into such pleasantness of
smiles and humorous twinkles of the eye, as when he is in company with
young ladies. He is full of sly compliments and knowing hints about
their lovers, and is universally reckoned among them "a dear old

When he meets a blooming country damsel crossing the park, or as he
rides along a lane, he is sure to stop and have a word with her. "Aha,
Mary! I know you, there! I can tell you by your mother's eyes and lips
that you've stole away from her. Ay, you're a pretty slut enough, but I
remember your mother. Gad! I don't know whether you are entitled to
carry her slippers after her! But never mind, you're handsome enough;
and I reckon you're going to be married directly. Well, well, I won't
make you blush; so, good-by, Mary, good-by! Father and mother are both

The routine of the old squire's life may be summed up in a sentence:
hearing cases and granting warrants and licenses, and making out
commitments as justice; going through the woods to look after the
growth, and trimming, and felling of his trees; going out with his
keeper to reconnoitre the state of his covers and preserves; attending
quarter sessions; dining occasionally with the judge on circuit;
attending the county ball and the races; hunting and shooting, dining
and singing a catch or glee with Wagstaff and the parson over his port.
He has a large, dingy room, surrounded with dingy folios, and other
books in vellum bindings, which he calls his library. Here he sits as
justice; and here he receives his farmers on rent-days, and a wonderful
effect it has on their imaginations; for who can think otherwise than
that the squire must be a prodigious scholar, seeing all that array of
big books? And, in fact, the old squire is a great reader in his own
line. He reads the _Times_ daily; and he reads Gwillim's "Heraldry," the
"History of the Landed Gentry," Rapin's "History of England," and all
the works of Fielding, Richardson, and Sterne, whom he declares to be
the greatest writers England ever produced, or ever will produce.

But the old squire is not without his troubles. In his serious judgment
all the world is degenerating. The nation is running headlong to ruin.
"Lord, how different it was in my time!" is his constant exclamation.
The world is now completely turned topsy-turvy. Here is the Reform Bill,
the New Poor-law, which though it does make sharp work among the rogues
and vagabonds, yet has sorely shorn the authority of magistrates. Here
are the New Game-laws, Repeal of the Corn-laws, and the Navigation-laws;
new books, all trash and nonsense; and these harum-scarum railroads,
cutting up the country and making it dangerous to be riding out any
where. "Just," says he, "as a sober gentleman is riding quietly by the
side of his wood, bang! goes that 'hell-in-harness,' a steam-engine,
past. Up goes the horse, down goes the rider to a souse in the ditch,
and a broken collar bone."

Then all the world is now running all over the continent, learning all
sorts of Frenchified airs and fashions and notions, and beggaring
themselves into the bargain. He never set foot on the d--d, beggarly,
frog-eating Continent--not he! It was thought enough to live at home,
and eat good roast beef, and sing "God save the King," in his time; but
now a man is looked upon as a mere clown who has not run so far round
the world that he can seldom ever find his way back again to his
estate, but stops short in London, where all the extravagance and
nonsense in creation are concentrated, to help our mad gentry out of
their wits and their money together. The old squire groans here in
earnest; for his daughter, who has married Sir Benjamin Spankitt, and
his son Tom, who has married the Lady Babara Ridemdown, are as mad as
the rest of them.

Of Tom, the young squire, we shall take a more complete view anon. But
there is another of the old squire's troubles yet to be noticed, and
that is in the shape of an upstart. One of the worst features of the
times is the growth and spread of upstarts. Old families going down, as
well as old customs, and new people, who are nobody, taking their
places. Old estates bought up--not by the old gentry, who are scattering
their money in London, and among all the grinning monsieurs, mynheers,
and signores, on the frogified continent, but by the soap-boilers and
sugar-bakers of London. The country gentry, he avers, have been fools
enough to spend their money in London, and now the people they have
spent it among are coming and buying up all the estates about them. Ask
him, as you ride out with him by the side of some great wood or
venerable park, "What old family lives there?" "Old family!" he
exclaims, with an air of angry astonishment; "old family! Where do you
see old families nowadays? That is Sir Peter Post, the great
horse-racer, who was a stable-boy not twenty years ago; and that great
brick house on the hill there is the seat of one of the great Bearrings,
who have made money enough among the bulls and bears to buy up the
estates of half the fools hereabout. But that is nothing; I can assure
you, men are living in halls and abbeys in these parts, who began their
lives in butchers' shops and cobblers' stalls."

It might, however, be tolerated that merchants and lawyers,
stock-jobbers, and even sugar-bakers and soap-boilers, should buy up the
old houses; but the most grievous nuisance, and perpetual thorn in the
old squire's side, is Abel Grundy, the son of an old wheelwright, who,
by dint of his father's saving and his own sharpness, has grown into a
man of substance under the squire's own nose. Abel began by buying odds
and ends of lands and scattered cottages, which did not attract the
squire's notice; till at length, a farm being to be sold, which the
squire meant to have, and did not fear any opponent, Abel Grundy bid for
it, and bought it, striking the old steward actually dumb with
astonishment; and then it was found that all the scattered lots which
Grundy had been buying up, lay on one side or other of this farm, and
made a most imposing whole. To make bad worse, Grundy, instead of taking
off his hat when he met the old squire, began now to lift up his own
head very high; built a grand house on the land plump opposite to the
squire's hall-gates; has brought a grand wife--a rich citizen's
daughter; set up a smart carriage; and as the old squire is riding out
on his old horse Jack, with his groom behind him, on a roan pony with a
whitish mane and tail, the said groom having his master's great coat
strapped to his back, as he always has on such occasions, drives past
with a dash and a cool impudence that are most astonishing.

The only comfort that the old squire has in the case is talking of the
fellow's low origin. "Only to think," says he, "that this fellow's
father hadn't even wood enough to make a wheel-barrow till my family
helped him; and I have seen this scoundrel himself scraping manure in
the high roads, before he went to the village school in the morning,
with his toes peeping out of his shoes, and his shirt hanging like a
rabbit's tail out of his ragged trowsers; and now the puppy talks of 'my
carriage,' and 'my footman,' and says that 'he and _his lady purpose_ to
spend the winter in _the_ town,' meaning London!"

Wagstaff laughs at the squire's little criticism on Abel Grundy, and
shakes his head; but he can not shake the chagrin out of the old
gentleman's heart. Abel Grundy's upstart greatness will be the death of

       *       *       *       *       *


      By smiling fortune blessed
  With large demesnes, hereditary wealth.

The Old Squire and the Young Squire are the antipodes of each other.
They are representatives of two entirely different states of society in
this country; the one, but the vestige of that which has been; the
other, the full and perfect image of that which is. The old squires are
like the last fading and shriveled leaves of autumn that yet hang on
the tree. A few more days will pass; age will send one of his nipping
nights, and down they will twirl, and be swept away into the oblivious
hiding-places of death, to be seen no more. But the young squire is one
of the full-blown blossoms of another summer. He is flaunting in the
sunshine of a state of wealth and luxury, which we, as our fathers in
their days did, fancy can by no possibility be carried many degrees
farther, and yet we see it every day making some new and extraordinary

It is obvious that there are many intervening stages of society, among
our country gentry, between the old squire and the young, as there are
intermediate degrees of age. The old squires are those of the completely
last generation, who have outlived their contemporaries, and have made a
dead halt on the ground of their old habits, sympathies, and opinions,
and are resolved to quit none of them for what they call the follies and
new-fangled notions of a younger, and, of course, more degenerate race.
They are continually crying, "Oh, it never was so in my day!" They point
to tea, and stoves in churches, and the universal use of umbrellas,
parasols, cork-soled shoes, warming-pans, and carriages, as
incontestible proofs of the rapidly-increasing effeminacy of mankind.
But between these old veterans and their children, there are the men of
the middle ages, who have, more or less, become corrupted with modern
ways and indulgences; have, more or less, introduced modern furniture,
modern hours, modern education, and tastes, and books; and have, more or
less, fallen into the modern custom of spending a certain part of the
year in London. With these we have nothing whatever to do. The old
squire is the landmark of the ancient state of things, and his son Tom
is the epitome of the new; all between is a mere transition and
evanescent condition.

Tom Chesselton was duly sent by his father to Eton as a boy, where he
became a most accomplished scholar in cricket, boxing, horses, and dogs,
and made the acquaintance of several lords, who taught him the way of
letting his father's money slip easily through his fingers without
burning them, and engrafted him besides with a fine stock of truly
aristocratic tastes, which will last him his whole life. From Eton he
was duly transferred to Oxford, where he wore his gown and trencher-cap
with a peculiar grace, and gave a classic finish to his taste in horses,
in driving, and in ladies. Having completed his education with great
_éclat_, he was destined by his father to a few years' soldiership in
the militia, as being devoid of all danger, and moreover, giving
opportunities for seeing a great deal of the good old substantial
families in different parts of the kingdom. But Tom turned up his nose,
or rather his handsome upper lip, with a most consummate scorn at so
groveling a proposal, and assured his father that nothing but a
commission in the Guards, where several of his noble friends were doing
distinguished honor to their country, by the display of their fine
figures, would suit him. The old gentleman shrugged his shoulders and
was silent, thinking that the six thousand pounds purchase-money would
be quite as well at fifteen per cent. in turnpike shares a little
longer. But Tom, luckily, was not doomed to rusticate long in melancholy
under his patrimonial oaks: his mother's brother, an old bachelor of
immense wealth, died just in time, leaving Tom's sister, Lady Spankitt,
thirty thousand pounds in the funds; and Tom, as heir-at-law, his great
Irish estates. Tom, on the very first vacancy, bought into the Guards,
and was soon marked out by the ladies as one of the most _distingué_
officers that ever wore a uniform. In truth, Tom was a very handsome
fellow; that he owed to his parents, who, in their day, were as
noble-looking a couple as ever danced at a county-ball, or graced the
balcony of a race-stand.

Tom soon married; but he did not throw himself away sentimentally on a
mere face; he achieved the hand of the sister of one of his old college
chums, and now brother-officer--the Lady Barbara Ridemdown. An earl's
daughter was something in the world's eye; but such an earl's daughter
as Lady Barbara, was the height of Tom's ambition. She was equally
celebrated for her wit, her beauty, and her large fortune. Tom had won
her from amid the very blaze of popularity and the most splendid offers.
Their united fortunes enabled them to live in the highest style. Lady
Barbara's rank and connections demanded it, and the spirit of our young
squire required it as much. Tom Chesselton disdained to be a whit behind
any of his friends, however wealthy or high titled. His tastes were
purely aristocratic; with him, dress, equipage, and amusements, were
matters of science. He knew, both from a proud instinct and from study,
what was precisely the true _ton_ in every article of dress or equipage,
and the exact etiquette in every situation. But Lady Barbara panted to
visit the Continent, where she had already spent some years, and which
presented so many attractions to her elegant tastes. Tom had elegant
tastes, too, in his way; and to the Continent they went. The old squire
never set his foot on even the coast of Calais: when he has seen it from
Dover, he has only wished that he could have a few hundred tons of
gunpowder, and blow it into the air; but Tom and Lady Barbara have lived
on the Continent for years.

This was a bitter pill for the old squire. When Tom purchased his
commission in the Guards, and when he opened a house like a palace, on
his wedding with Lady Barbara, the old gentleman felt proud of his son's
figure, and proud of his connections. "Ah," said he, "Tom's a lad of
spirit; he'll sow his wild oats, and come to his senses presently." But
when he fairly embarked for France, with a troop of servants, and a
suite of carriages, like a nobleman, then did the old fellow fairly
curse and swear, and call him all the unnatural and petticoat-pinioned
fools in his vocabulary, and prophesy his bringing his ninepence to a
groat. Tom and Lady Barbara, however, upheld the honor of England all
over the Continent. In Paris, at the baths of Germany, at Vienna,
Florence, Venice, Rome, Naples--every where, they were distinguished by
their fine persons, their fine equipage, their exquisite tastes, and
their splendid entertainments. They were courted and caressed by all the
distinguished, both of their own countrymen and of foreigners. Tom's
horses and equipage were the admiration of the natives. He drove, he
rode, he yachted, to universal admiration; and, meantime, his lady
visited all the galleries and works of art, and received in her house
all the learned and the literary of all countries. There, you always
found artists, poets, travelers, critics, _dilettanti_, and
connoisseurs, of all nations and creeds.

They have again honored their country with their presence; and who so
much the fashion as they? They are, of course, _au fait_ in every matter
of taste and fashion; on all questions of foreign life, manners, and
opinions, their judgment is the law. Their town-house is in
Eaton-square; and what a house is that! What a paradise of fairy
splendor! what a mine of wealth, in the most superb furniture, in books
in all languages, paintings, statuary, and precious fragments of the
antique, collected out of every classical city and country. If you see a
most exquisitely tasteful carriage, with a most fascinatingly beautiful
lady in it, in the park, amid all the brilliant concourse of the ring,
you may be sure you see the celebrated Lady Barbara Chesselton; and you
can not fail to recognize Tom Chesselton the moment you clap eyes on
him, by his distinguished figure, and the splendid creature on which he
is mounted--to say nothing of the perfection of his groom, and the steed
which he also bestrides. Tom never crosses the back of a horse of less
value than a thousand pounds; and if you want to know really what horses
are, you must go down to his villa at Wimbledon, if you are not lucky
enough to catch a sight of him proceeding to a levee, or driving his
four-in-hand to Ascot or Epsom. All Piccadilly has been seen to stand,
lost in silent admiration, as he has driven his splendid britchzka along
it, with his perfection of a little tiger by his side; and such cattle
as never besides were seen in even harness of such richness and
elegance. Nay, some scores of ambitious young whips became sick of their
envy of his superb gauntlet driving-gloves.

But, in fact, in Tom's case, as in all others, you have only to know his
companions to know him; and who are they but Chesterfield, Conyngham,
D'Orsay, Eglintoun, my Lord Waterford, and men of similar figure and
reputation. To say that he is well known to all the principal
frequenters of the Carlton Club; that his carriages are of the most
perfect make ever turned out by Windsor; that his harness is only from
Shipley's; and that Stultz has the honor of gracing his person with his
habiliments; is to say that our young squire is one of the most perfect
men of fashion in England. Lady Barbara and himself have a common
ground of elegance of taste, and knowledge of the first principles of
genuine aristocratic life; but they have very different pursuits,
arising from the difference of their genius, and they follow them with
the utmost mutual approbation.

Lady Barbara is at once the worshiped beauty, the woman of fashion, and
of literature. No one has turned so many heads, by the loveliness of her
person, and the bewitching fascination of her manners, as Lady Barbara.
She is a wit, a poetess, a connoisseur in art; and what can be so
dangerously delightful as all these characters in a fashionable beauty,
and a woman, moreover, of such rank and wealth? She does the honors of
her house to the mutual friends and noble connections of her husband and
herself with a perpetual grace; but she has, besides, her evenings for
the reception of her literary and artistic acquaintance and admirers.
And who, of all the throng of authors, artists, critics, journalists,
connoisseurs, and amateurs, who flock there are not her admirers? Lady
Barbara Chesselton writes travels, novels, novellets, philosophical
reflections, poems, and almost every species of thing which ever has
been written--such is the universality of her knowledge, experience, and
genius: and who does not hasten to be the first to pour out in reviews,
magazines, daily and hebdomadal journals, the earliest and most fervid
words of homage and admiration? Lady Barbara edits an annual, and is a
contributor to the "Keepsake;" and in her kindness, she is sure to find
out all the nice young men about the press; to encourage them by her
smile, and to raise them, by her fascinating conversation and her
brilliant saloons, above those depressing influences of a too sensitive
modesty, which so weighs on the genius of the youth of this age; so that
she sends them away, all heart and soul, in the service of herself and
literature, which are the same thing; and away they go, extemporizing
praises on her ladyship, and spreading them through leaves of all sizes,
to the wondering eyes of readers all the world over. Publishers run with
their unsalable manuscripts, and beg Lady Barbara to have the goodness
to put her name on the title, knowing by golden experience that one
stroke of her pen, like the point of a galvanic wire, will turn all the
dullness of the dead mass into flame. Lady Barbara is not barbarous
enough to refuse so simple and complimentary a request; nay, her
benevolence extends on every hand. Distressed authors, male and female,
who have not her rank, and, therefore, most clearly not her genius, beg
her to take their literary bantlings under her wing; and with a heart,
as full of generous sympathies as her pen is of magic, she writes but
her name on the title as an "Open Sesame!" and lo! the dead become
alive; her genius permeates the whole volume, which that moment puts
forth wings of popularity, and flies into every bookseller's shop and
every circulating library in the kingdom.

Such is the life of glory and Christian benevolence which Lady Barbara
daily leads, making authors, critics, and publishers all happy together,
by the overflowing radiance of her indefatigable and inexhaustible
genius, though she sometimes slyly laughs to herself, and says, "What a
thing is a title! if it were not for that, would all these people come
to me?" While Tom, who is member of parliament for the little borough of
Dearish, most patriotically discharges his duty by pairing off--visits
the classic grounds of Ascot, Epsom, Newmarket, or Goodwood, or
traverses the moors of Scotland and Ireland in pursuit of grouse. But
once a year they indulge their filial virtues in a visit to the old
squire. The old squire, we are sorry to say, has grown of late years
queer and snappish, and does not look on this visit quite as gratefully
as he should. "If they would but come," he says, "in a quiet way, as I
used to ride over and see my father in his time, why I should be right
glad to see them; but, here they come, like the first regiment of an
invading army, and God help those who are old, and want to be quiet!"

The old gentleman, moreover, is continually haranguing about Tom's folly
and extravagance. It is his perpetual topic to his wife, and wife's
maiden sister, and Wagstaff. Wagstaff only shakes his head, and says,
"Young blood! young blood!" but Mrs. Chesselton and the maiden sister
say, "Oh! Mr. Chesselton, you don't consider: Tom has great connections,
and he is obliged to keep a certain establishment. Things are different
now to what they were in our time. Tom is universally allowed to be a
very fine man, and Lady Barbara is a very fine woman, and a prodigious
clever woman! and you ought to be proud of them, Chesselton." At which
the old gentleman breaks out, if he be a little elevated over his wine:

    When the Duke of Leeds shall married be
    To a fine young lady of high quality,
    How happy will that gentlewoman be
    In his grace of Leeds good company!

    She shall have all that's fine and fair,
    And the best of silk and satin to wear;
    And ride in a coach to take the air,
    And have a house in St. James's-square.

Lady Barbara always professes great affection and reverence for the old
gentleman, and sends him many merry and kind compliments and messages;
and sends him, moreover, her new books as soon as they are out, most
magnificently bound; but all won't do. He only says, "If she'd please
me, she'd give up that cursed opera-box. Why, the rent of that
thing--only to sit in and hear Italian women squealing and squalling,
and to see impudent, outlandish baggages kicking up their heels higher
than any decent heads ought to be--the rent, I say, would maintain a
parish rector, or keep half-a-dozen parish schools a-going." As for her
books, that all the world besides are in raptures about, the old squire
turns them over as a dog would a hot dumpling; says nothing but a Bible
ought to be so extravagantly bound; and professes that "the matter may
all be very fine, but he can make neither head nor tail of it." Yet,
whenever Lady Barbara is with him, she is sure to talk and smile herself
in about half an hour into his high favor; and he begins to run about to
show her this and that, and calls out every now and then, "Let Lady
Barbara see this, and go to look at that." She can do any thing with
him, except get him to London. "London!" he exclaims; "no; get me to
Bedlam at once! What has a rusty old fellow, like me, to do at London?
If I could find again the jolly set that used to meet, thirty years ago,
at the Star and Garter, Pall Mall, it might do; but London isn't what
London used to be. It's too fine by half for a country squire, and would
drive me distracted in twenty-four hours, with its everlasting noise and

But the old squire does get pretty well distracted with the annual
visit. Down come driving the young squire and Lady Barbara, with a train
of carriages like a fleet of men-of-war, leading the way with their
traveling-coach and four horses. Up they twirl to the door of old hall.
The old bell rings a thundering peal through the house. Doors fly
open--out come servants--down come the young guests from their
carriages; and while embraces and salutations are going on in the
drawing-room, the hall is fast filling with packages upon packages;
servants are running to and fro along the passages; grooms and carriages
are moving off to the stables without; there is lifting and grunting at
portmanteaus and imperials, as they are borne up-stairs; while ladies'
maids and nursemaids are crying out, "Oh, take care of that trunk!"
"Mind that ban'-box!" "Oh, gracious! that is my lady's dressing-case; it
will be down, and be totally ruined!" Dogs are barking; children crying,
or romping about, and the whole house in the most blessed state of
bustle and confusion.

For a week the hurly-burly continues; in pour all the great people to
see Tom and Lady Barbara. There are shootings in the mornings, and great
dinner parties in the evenings. Tom and my lady have sent down before
them plenty of hampers of such wines as the old squire neither keeps nor
drinks, and they have brought their plate along with them; and the old
house itself is astonished at the odors of champagne, claret, and hook,
that pervade, and at the glitter of gold and silver in it. The old man
is full of attention and politeness, both to his guests and to their
guests; but he is half worried with the children, and t'other half
worried with so many fine folks; and muddled with drinking things that
he is not used to, and with late hours. Wagstaff has fled--as he always
does on such occasions--to a farm-house on the verge of the estate. The
hall, and the parsonage, and even the gardener's house, are all full of
beds for guests, and servants, and grooms. Presently, the old gentleman,
in his morning rides, sees some of the young bucks shooting the
pheasants in his home-park, where he never allows them to be disturbed,
and comes home in a fume, to hear that the house is turned upside-down
by the host of scarlet-breeched and powdered livery-servants, and that
they have turned all the maids' heads with sweethearting. But, at
length, the day of departure arrives, and all sweep away as suddenly and
rapidly as they came; and the old squire sends off for Wagstaff, and
blesses his stars that what he calls "the annual hurricane," is over.

But what a change will there be when the old squire is dead! Already
have Tom and Lady Barbara walked over the ground, and planned it. That
horrid fright of an old house, as they call it, will be swept as clean
away as if it had not stood there five hundred years. A grand
Elizabethean pile is already decreed to succeed it. The fashionable
architect will come driving down in his smart Brougham, with all his
plans and papers. A host of mechanics will come speedily after him, by
coach or by wagon: booths will be seen rising all around the old place,
which will vanish away, and its superb successor rise where it stood,
like a magical vision. Already are ponderous cases lying loaded, in
London, with massive mantle-pieces of the finest Italian marble, marble
busts, and heads of old Greek and Roman heroes, genuine burial-urns from
Herculaneum and Pompeii, and vessels of terra-cotta,
gloriously-sculptured vases, and even columns of verde antique--all from
classic Italy--to adorn the walls of this same noble new house.

But, meantime, spite of the large income of Tom and Lady Barbara, the
old squire has strange suspicions of mortgages, and dealings with Jews.
He has actually inklings of horrid post-obits; and groans as he looks on
his old oaks, as he rides through his woods and parks, foreseeing their
overthrow; nay, he fancies he sees the land-agent among his quiet old
farmers, like a wild-cat in a rabbit warren, startling them out of their
long dream of ease and safety, with news of doubled rents, and notices
to quit, to make way for threshing-machines, winnowing-machines,
corn-crushers, patent ploughs, scufflers, scarifiers, and young men of
more enterprise. And, sure enough, such will be the order of the day the
moment the estate falls to the YOUNG SQUIRE.--_Country Year Book._

[From Hogg's Instructor.]



The Roman _formula_ for summoning an earnest concentration of the
faculties upon any object whatever, that happened to be critically
urgent, was _Hoc age_, "Mind _this_!" or, in other words, do not mind
_that_--_non illud age_. The antithetic formula was "_aliud_ agere," to
mind something alien, or remote from the interest then clamoring for
attention. Our modern military orders of "_Attention!_" and "_Eyes
strait!_" were both included in the "_Hoc age_." In the stern
peremptoriness of this Roman formula we read a picturesque expression of
the Roman character both as to its strength and its weakness--of the
energy which brooked no faltering or delay (for beyond all other races
the Roman was _natus rebus agendis_)--and also of the morbid craving for
action, which was intolerant of any thing but the intensely practical.

In modern times, it is we of the Anglo-Saxon blood, that is, the British
and the Americans of the United States, who inherit the Roman
temperament with its vices and its fearful advantages of power. In the
ancient Roman these vices appeared more barbarously conspicuous. We, the
countrymen of Lord Bacon and Sir Isaac Newton, and at one time the
leaders of austere thinking, can not be supposed to shrink from the
speculative through any native incapacity for sounding its depths. But
the Roman had a real inaptitude for the speculative: to _him_ nothing
was real that was not practical. He had no metaphysics; he wanted the
metaphysical instinct. There was no school of _native_ Roman philosophy:
the Roman was merely an eclectic or _dilettanti_ picking up the crumbs
which fell from Grecian tables; and even mathematics was so repulsive in
its sublimer aspects to the Roman mind, that the very word mathematics
had in Rome collapsed into another name for the dotages of astrology.
The mathematician was a mere variety of expression for the wizard or the

From this unfavorable aspect of the Roman intellect it is but justice
that we should turn away to contemplate those situations in which that
same intellect showed itself preternaturally strong. To face a sudden
danger by a corresponding weight of sudden counsel or sudden
evasion--_that_ was a privilege essentially lodged in the Roman mind.
But in every nation some minds much more than others are representative
of the national type: they are normal minds, reflecting, as in a focus,
the characteristics of the race. Thus Louis XIV. has been held to be the
idealized expression of the French character; and among the Romans there
can not be a doubt that the first Cæsar offers in a rare perfection the
revelation of that peculiar grandeur which belonged to the children of

What _was_ that grandeur? We do not need, in this place, to attempt its
analysis. One feature will suffice for our purpose. The late celebrated
John Foster, in his essay on decision of character, among the accidents
of life which might serve to strengthen the natural tendencies to such a
character, or to promote its development, rightly insists on
_desertion_. To find itself in solitude, and still more to find itself
thrown upon that state of abandonment by sudden treachery, crushes the
feeble mind, but rouses a terrific reaction of haughty self-assertion in
that order of spirits which matches and measures itself against
difficulty and danger. There is something corresponding to this case of
human treachery in the sudden caprices of fortune. A danger, offering
itself unexpectedly in some momentary change of blind external agencies,
assumes to the feelings the character of a perfidy accomplished by
mysterious powers, and calls forth something of the same resentment, and
in a gladiatorial intellect something of the same spontaneous
resistance. A sword that breaks in the very crisis of a duel, a horse
killed by a flash of lightning in the moment of collision with the
enemy, a bridge carried away by an avalanche at the instant of a
commencing retreat, affect the feelings like dramatic incidents
emanating from a human will. This man they confound and paralyze, that
man they rouse into resistance, as by a personal provocation and insult.
And if it happens that these opposite effects show themselves in cases
wearing a national importance, they raise what would else have been a
mere casualty into the tragic or the epic grandeur of a fatality. The
superb character, for instance, of Cæsar's intellect throws a colossal
shadow as of predestination over the most trivial incidents of his
career. On the morning of Pharsalia, every man who reads a record of
that mighty event feels[D] by a secret instinct that an earthquake is
approaching which must determine the final distribution of the ground,
and the relations among the whole family of man through a thousand
generations. Precisely the inverse case is realized in some modern
sections of history, where the feebleness or the inertia of the
presiding intellect communicates a character of triviality to events
that otherwise are of paramount historical importance. In Cæsar's case,
simply through the perfection of his preparations arrayed against all
conceivable contingencies, there is an impression left as of some
incarnate Providence, vailed in a human form, ranging through the ranks
of the legions; while, on the contrary, in the modern cases to which we
allude, a mission, seemingly authorized by inspiration, is suddenly
quenched, like a torch falling into water, by the careless character of
the superintending intellect. Neither case is without its appropriate
interest. The spectacle of a vast historical dependency, pre-organized
by an intellect of unusual grandeur, wears the grace of congruity and
reciprocal proportion. And on the other hand, a series of mighty events
contingent upon the motion this way or that of a frivolous hand, or
suspended on the breath of caprice, suggests the wild and fantastic
disproportions of ordinary life, when the mighty masquerade moves on
forever through successions of the gay and the solemn--of the petty and
the majestic.

Cæsar's cast of character owed its impressiveness to the combination
which it offered of moral grandeur and monumental immobility, such as we
see in Marius, with the dazzling intellectual versatility found in the
Gracchi, in Sylla, in Catiline, in Antony. The comprehension and the
absolute perfection of his prescience did not escape the eye of Lucan,
who describes him as--"Nil actum reputans, si quid superesset agendum."
A fine lambent gleam of his character escapes also in that magnificent
fraction of a line, where he is described as one incapable of learning
the style and sentiments suited to a private interest--"Indocilis
privata loqui."

There has been a disposition manifested among modern writers to disturb
the traditional characters of Cæsar and his chief antagonist.
Audaciously to disparage Cæsar, and without a shadow of any new historic
grounds to exalt his feeble competitor, has been adopted as the best
chance for filling up the mighty gulf between them. Lord Brougham, for
instance, on occasion of a dinner given by the Cinque Ports at Dover to
the Duke of Wellington, vainly attempted to raise our countryman by
unfounded and romantic depreciations of Cæsar. He alleged that Cæsar had
contended only with barbarians. Now, _that_ happens to be the literal
truth as regards Pompey. The victories on which his early reputation was
built were won from semi-barbarians--luxurious, it is true, but also
effeminate in a degree never suspected at Rome until the next
generation. The slight but summary contest of Cæsar with Pharnaces, the
son of Mithridates, dissipated at once the cloud of ignorance in which
Rome had been involved on this subject by the vast distance and the
total want of familiarity with Oriental habits. But Cæsar's chief
antagonists, those whom Lord Brougham specially indicated, viz., the
Gauls, were _not_ barbarians. As a military people, they were in a stage
of civilization next to that of the Romans. They were quite as much
_aguerris_, hardened and seasoned to war, as the children of Rome. In
certain military habits they were even superior. For purposes of war
four races were then pre-eminent in Europe--viz., the Romans, the
Macedonians, certain select tribes among the mixed population of the
Spanish peninsula, and finally the Gauls. These were all open to the
recruiting parties of Cæsar; and among them all he had deliberately
assigned his preference to the Gauls. The famous legion, who carried the
_Alauda_ (the lark) upon their helmets, was raised in Gaul from Cæsar's
private funds. They composed a select and favored division in his army,
and, together with the famous tenth legion, constituted a third part of
his forces--a third numerically on the day of battle, but virtually a
half. Even the rest of Cæsar's army had been for so long a space
recruited in the Gauls, Transalpine as well as Cisalpine, that at
Pharsalia the bulk of his forces is known to have been Gaulish. There
were more reasons than one for concealing that fact. The policy of Cæsar
was, to conceal it not less from Rome than from the army itself. But the
truth became known at last to all wary observers. Lord Brougham's
objection to the quality of Cæsar's enemies falls away at once when it
is collated with the deliberate composition of Cæsar's own army. Besides
that, Cæsar's enemies were _not_ in any exclusive sense Gauls. The
German tribes, the Spanish, the Helvetian, the Illyrian, Africans of
every race, and Moors; the islanders of the Mediterranean, and the mixed
populations of Asia, had all been faced by Cæsar. And if it is alleged
that the forces of Pompey, however superior in numbers, were at
Pharsalia largely composed of an Asiatic rabble, the answer is--that
precisely of such a rabble were the hostile armies composed from which
he had won his laurels. False and windy reputations are sown thickly in
history; but never was there a reputation more thoroughly histrionic
than that of Pompey. The late Dr. Arnold of Rugby, among a million of
other crotchets, did (it is true) make a pet of Pompey; and he was
encouraged in this caprice (which had for its origin the doctor's
_political_[E] animosity to Cæsar) by one military critic, viz., Sir
William Napier. This distinguished soldier conveyed messages to Dr.
Arnold, warning him against the popular notion, that Pompey was a poor
strategist. Now, had there been any Roman state-paper office, which Sir
William could be supposed to have searched and weighed against the
statements of surviving history, we might, in deference to Sir William's
great experience and talents, have consented to a rehearing of the case.
Unfortunately, no new materials have been discovered; nor is it alleged
that the old ones are capable of being thrown into new combinations, so
as to reverse or to suspend the old adjudications. The judgment of
history stands; and among the records which it involves, none is more
striking than this--that, while Cæsar and Pompey were equally assaulted
by sudden surprises, the first invariably met the sudden danger (sudden
but never unlooked-for) by counter resources of evasion. He showed a new
front, as often as his situation exposed a new peril. At Pharsalia,
where the cavalry of Pompey was far superior to his own, he anticipated
and was in full readiness for the particular manœuvre by which it was
attempted to make this superiority available against himself. By a new
formation of his troops he foiled the attack, and caused it to recoil
upon the enemy. Had Pompey then no rejoinder ready for meeting this
reply? No. His one arrow being shot, his quiver was exhausted. Without
an effort at parrying any longer, the mighty game was surrendered as
desperate. "Check to the king!" was heard in silent submission; and no
further stratagem was invoked even in silent prayer, but the stratagem
of flight. Yet Cæsar himself, objects a celebrated doctor (viz., Bishop
Warburton), was reduced by his own rashness at Alexandria to a condition
of peril and embarrassment not less alarming than the condition of
Pompey at Pharsalia. How far this surprise might be reconcilable with
Cæsar's military credit, is a question yet undecided; but this at least
is certain, that he was equal to the occasion; and, if the surprise was
all but fatal, the evasion was all but miraculous. Many were the sudden
surprises which Cæsar had to face before and after this--on the shores
of Britain, at Marseilles, at Munda, at Thapsus--from all of which he
issued triumphantly, failing only as to that final one from which he had
in pure nobility of heart announced his determination to shelter himself
under no precautions.

Such eases of personal danger and escape are exciting to the
imagination, from the disproportion between the interests of an
individual and the interests of a whole nation which for the moment
happen to be concurrent. The death or the escape of Cæsar, at one
moment, rather than another, would make a difference in the destiny of
many nations. And in kind, though not in degree, the same interest has
frequently attached to the fortunes of a prince or military leader.
Effectually the same dramatic character belongs to any struggle with
sudden danger, though not (like Cæsar's) successful. That it was _not_
successful becomes a new reason for pursuing it with interest; since
equally in that result, as in one more triumphant, we read the altered
course by which history is henceforward destined to flow.

For instance, how much depended--what a weight of history hung in
suspense, upon the evasions, or attempts at evasion, of Charles I. He
was a prince of great ability; and yet it confounds us to observe, with
how little of foresight, or of circumstantial inquiry, either as
regarded things or persons, he entered upon these difficult enterprises
of escape from the vigilance of military guardians. His first escape,
viz., that into the Scottish camp before Newark, was not surrounded with
any circumstances of difficulty. His second escape from Hampton Court
had become a matter of more urgent policy, and was proportionally more
difficult of execution. He was attended on that occasion by two
gentlemen (Berkely and Ashburnham), upon whose qualities of courage and
readiness, and upon whose acquaintance with the accidents, local or
personal, that surrounded their path, all was staked. Yet one of these
gentlemen was always suspected of treachery, and both were imbecile as
regarded that sort of wisdom on which it was possible for a royal person
to rely. Had the questions likely to arise been such as belong to a
masquerading adventure, these gentlemen might have been qualified for
the situation. As it was, they sank in mere distraction under the
responsibilities of the occasion. The king was as yet in safety. At Lord
Southampton's country mansion, he enjoyed the protection of a loyal
family ready to face any risk in his behalf; and his retreat was
entirely concealed. Suddenly this scene changes. The military commander
in the Isle of Wight is acquainted with the king's situation, and
brought into his presence, together with a military guard, though no
effort had been made to exact securities from his honor in behalf of the
king. His single object was evidently to arrest the king. His military
honor, his duty to the parliament, his private interest, all pointed to
the same result, viz., the immediate apprehension of the fugitive
prince. What was there in the opposite scale to set against these
notorious motives? Simply the fact that he was nephew to the king's
favorite chaplain, Dr. Hammond. What rational man, in a case of that
nature, would have relied upon so poor a trifle? Yet even this
inconsiderable bias was much more than balanced by another of the same
kind but in the opposite direction. Colonel Hammond was nephew to the
king's chaplain, but in the meantime he was the husband of Cromwell's
niece; and upon Cromwell privately, and the whole faction of the
Independents politically, he relied for all his hopes of advancement.
The result was, that, from mere inertia of mind and criminal negligence
in his two attendants, the poor king had run right into the custody of
the very jailer whom his enemies would have selected by preference.

Thus, then, from fear of being made a prisoner Charles had quietly
walked into the military prison of Carisbrook Castle. The very security
of this prison, however, might throw the governor off his guard. Another
escape might be possible; and again an escape was arranged. It reads
like some leaf torn from the records of a lunatic hospital, to hear its
circumstances and the particular point upon which it split. Charles was
to make his exit through a window. This window, however, was fenced by
iron bars; and these bars had been to a certain extent eaten through
with _aqua fortis_. The king had succeeded in pushing his head through,
and upon that result he relied for his escape; for he connected this
trial with the following strange maxim or postulate, viz., that
wheresoever the head could pass, there the whole person could pass. It
needs not to be said, that, in the final experiment, this absurd rule
was found not to hold good. The king stuck fast about the chest and
shoulders, and was extricated with some difficulty. Had it even been
otherwise, the attempt would have failed; for, on looking down from
amidst the iron bars, the king beheld, in the imperfect light, a number
of people who were not among his accomplices.

Equal in fatuity, almost 150 years later, were the several attempts at
escape concerted on behalf of the French royal family. The abortive
escape to Varennes is now familiarly known to all the world, and
impeaches the good sense of the king himself not less than of his
friends. The arrangements for the falling in with the cavalry escort
could not have been worse managed had they been intrusted to children.
But even the general outline of the scheme, an escape in a collective
family party--father, mother, children, and servants--and the king
himself, whose features were known to millions, not even withdrawing
himself from the public gaze at the stations for changing horses--all
this is calculated to perplex and sadden the pitying reader with the
idea that some supernatural infatuation had bewildered the predestined
victims. Meantime an earlier escape than this to Varennes had been
planned, viz., to Brussels. The preparations for this, which have been
narrated by Madame de Campan, were conducted with a disregard of
concealment even more astounding to people of ordinary good sense. "Do
you really need to escape at all?" would have been the question of many
a lunatic; "if you do, surely you need also to disguise your
preparations for escape."

But alike the madness, or the providential wisdom, of such attempts
commands our profoundest interest; alike--whether conducted by a Cæsar
or by the helpless members of families utterly unfitted to act
independently for themselves. These attempts belong to history, and it
is in that relation that they become philosophically so impressive.
Generations through an infinite series are contemplated by us as
silently awaiting the turning of a sentinel round a corner, or the
casual echo of a footstep. Dynasties have trepidated on the chances of a
sudden cry from an infant carried in a basket; and the safety of empires
has been suspended, like the descent of an avalanche, upon the moment
earlier or the moment later of a cough or a sneeze. And, high above all,
ascends solemnly the philosophic truth, that the least things and the
greatest are bound together as elements equally essential of the
mysterious universe.


[D] "Feels by a secret instinct;"--A sentiment of this nature is finely
expressed by Lucan in the passage beginning, "Advenisse diem," &c. The
circumstance by which Lucan chiefly defeats the grandeur and
simplicities of the truth, is, the monstrous numerical exaggeration of
the combatants and the killed at Pharsalia.

[E] It is very evident that Dr. Arnold could not have understood the
position of politics in Rome, when he allowed himself to make a favorite
of Pompey. The doctor hated aristocrats as he hated the gates of Erebus.
Now Pompey was not only the leader of a most selfish aristocracy, but
also their tool. Secondly, as if this were not bad enough, that section
of the aristocracy to which he had dedicated his services was an odious
oligarchy; and to this oligarchy, again, though nominally its head, he
was in effect the most submissive of tools. Cæsar, on the other hand, if
a democrat in the sense of working by democratic agencies, was bending
all his efforts to the reconstruction of a new, purer, and enlarged
aristocracy, no longer reduced to the necessity of buying and selling
the people in mere self-defense. The everlasting war of bribery,
operating upon universal poverty, the internal disease of Roman society,
would have been redressed by Cæsar's measures, and _was_ redressed
according to the degree in which those measures were really brought into
action. New judicatures were wanted, new judicial laws, a new
aristocracy, by slow degrees a new people, and the right of suffrage
exercised within new restrictions--all these things were needed for the
cleansing of Rome; and that Cæsar would have accomplished this labor of
Hercules was the true cause of his death. The scoundrels of the
oligarchy felt their doom to be approaching. It was the just remark of
Napoleon, that Brutus (but still more, we may say, Cicero), though
falsely accredited as a patriot, was, in fact, the most exclusive and
the most selfish of aristocrats.

[From Cumming's Hunting Adventures in South Africa.]


On the 29th we arrived at a small village of Bakalahari. These natives
told me that elephants were abundant on the opposite side of the river.
I accordingly resolved to halt here and hunt, and drew my wagons up on
the river's bank, within thirty yards of the water, and about one
hundred yards from the native village. Having outspanned, we at once set
about making for the cattle a kraal of the worst description of
thorn-trees. Of this I had now become very particular, since my severe
loss by lions on the first of this month; and my cattle were, at night,
secured by a strong kraal, which inclosed my two wagons, the horses
being made fast to a trek-tow stretched between the hind wheels of the
wagons. I had yet, however, a fearful lesson to learn as to the nature
and character of the lion, of which I had at one time entertained so
little fear; and on this night a horrible tragedy was to be acted in my
little lonely camp of so very awful and appalling a nature as to make
the blood curdle in our veins. I worked till near sundown at one side of
the kraal with Hendric, my first wagon-driver--I cutting down the trees
with my ax, and he dragging them to the kraal. When the kraal for the
cattle was finished, I turned my attention to making a pot of
barley-broth, and lighted a fire between the wagons and the water, close
on the river's bank, under a dense grove of shady trees, making no sort
of kraal around our sitting-place for the evening.

The Hottentots, without any reason, made their fire about fifty yards
from mine; they, according to their usual custom, being satisfied with
the shelter of a large dense bush. The evening passed away cheerfully.
Soon after it was dark we heard elephants breaking the trees in the
forest across the river, and once or twice I strode away into the
darkness some distance from the fireside to stand and listen to them. I
little, at that moment, deemed of the imminent peril to which I was
exposing my life, nor thought that a bloodthirsty man-eater lion was
crouching near, and only watching his opportunity to spring into the
kraal, and consign one of us to a most horrible death. About three hours
after the sun went down I called to my men to come and take their coffee
and supper, which was ready for them at my fire; and after supper three
of them returned before their comrades to their own fireside, and lay
down; these were John Stofolus, Hendric, and Ruyter. In a few minutes an
ox came out by the gate of the kraal and walked round the back of it.
Hendric got up and drove him in again, and then went back to his
fireside and lay down. Hendric and Ruyter lay on one side of the fire
under one blanket, and John Stofolus lay on the other. At this moment I
was sitting taking some barley-broth; our fire was very small, and the
night was pitch-dark and windy. Owing to our proximity to the native
village the wood was very scarce, the Bakalahari having burned it all in
their fires.

Suddenly the appalling and murderous voice of an angry, bloodthirsty
lion burst upon my ear within a few yards of us, followed by the
shrieking of the Hottentots. Again and again the murderous roar of
attack was repeated. We heard John and Ruyter shriek "The lion! the
lion!" still, for a few moments, we thought he was but chasing one of
the dogs round the kraal; but, next instant, John Stofolus rushed into
the midst of us almost speechless with fear and terror, his eyes
bursting from their sockets, and shrieked out, "The lion! the lion! He
has got Hendric; he dragged him away from the fire beside me. I struck
him with the burning brands upon his head, but he would not let go his
hold. Hendric is dead! Oh God! Hendric is dead! Let us take fire and
seek him." The rest of my people rushed about, shrieking and yelling as
if they were mad. I was at once angry with them for their folly, and
told them that if they did not stand still and keep quiet the lion would
have another of us; and that very likely there was a troop of them. I
ordered the dogs, which were nearly all fast, to be made loose, and the
fire to be increased as far as could be. I then shouted Hendric's name,
but all was still. I told my men that Hendric was dead, and that a
regiment of soldiers could not now help him, and, hunting my dogs
forward, I had every thing brought within the cattle-kraal, when we
lighted our fire and closed the entrance as well as we could.

My terrified people sat round the fire with guns in their hands till the
day broke, still fancying that every moment the lion would return and
spring again into the midst of us. When the dogs were first let go, the
stupid brutes, as dogs often prove when most required, instead of going
at the lion, rushed fiercely on one another, and fought desperately for
some minutes. After this they got his wind, and, going at him, disclosed
to us his position: they kept up a continued barking until the day
dawned, the lion occasionally springing after them and driving them in
upon the kraal. The horrible monster lay all night within forty yards of
us, consuming the wretched man whom he had chosen for his prey. He had
dragged him into a little hollow at the back of the thick bush beside
which the fire was kindled, and there he remained till the day dawned,
careless of our proximity.

It appeared that when the unfortunate Hendric rose to drive in the ox,
the lion had watched him to his fireside, and he had scarcely laid down
when the brute sprang upon him and Ruyter (for both lay under one
blanket), with his appalling, murderous roar, and, roaring as he lay,
grappled him with his fearful claws, and kept biting him on the breast
and shoulder, all the while feeling for his neck; having got hold of
which, he at once dragged him away backward round the bush into the
dense shade.

As the lion lay upon the unfortunate man, he faintly cried, "Help me,
help me! Oh God! men, help me!" After which the fearful beast got a hold
of his neck, and then all was still, except that his comrades heard the
bones of his neck cracking between the teeth of the lion. John Stofolus
had lain with his back to the fire on the opposite side, and on hearing
the lion he sprang up, and, seizing a large flaming brand, had belabored
him on the head with the burning wood; but the brute did not take any
notice of him. The Bushman had a narrow escape; he was not altogether
scatheless, the lion having inflicted two gashes in his seat with his

The next morning, just as the day began to dawn, we heard the lion
dragging something up the river side, under cover of the bank. We drove
the cattle out of the kraal, and then proceeded to inspect the scene of
the night's awful tragedy. In the hollow, where the lion had lain
consuming his prey, we found one leg of the unfortunate Hendric, bitten
off below the knee, the shoe still on his foot; the grass and bushes
were all stained with his blood, and fragments of his pea-coat lay
around. Poor Hendric! I knew the fragments of that old coat, and had
often marked them hanging in the dense covers where the elephant had
charged after my unfortunate after-rider. Hendric was by far the best
man I had about my wagons, of a most cheerful disposition, a first-rate
wagon-driver, fearless in the field, ever active, willing, and obliging:
his loss to us all was very serious. I felt confounded and utterly sick
in my heart; I could not remain at the wagons, so I resolved to go after
elephants to divert my mind. I had that morning heard them breaking the
trees on the opposite side of the river. I accordingly told the natives
of the village of my intentions, and having ordered my people to devote
the day to fortifying the kraal, started with Piet and Ruyter as my
after-riders. It was a very cool day. We crossed the river, and at once
took up the fresh spoor of a troop of bull elephants. These bulls
unfortunately joined a troop of cows, and when we came on them the dogs
attacked the cows, and the bulls were off in a moment, before we could
even see them. One remarkably fine old cow charged the dogs. I hunted
this cow, and finished her with two shots from the saddle. Being anxious
to return to my people before night, I did not attempt to follow the
troop. My followers were not a little gratified to see me returning, for
terror had taken hold of their minds, and they expected that the lion
would return, and, emboldened by the success of the preceding night,
would prove still more daring in his attack. The lion would most
certainly have returned, but fate had otherwise ordained. My health had
been better in the last three days: my fever was leaving me, but I was,
of course, still very weak. It would still be two hours before the sun
would set, and, feeling refreshed by a little rest, and able for further
work, I ordered the steeds to be saddled, and went in search of the

I took John and Carey as after-riders, armed, and a party of the natives
followed up the spoor and led the dogs. The lion had dragged the remains
of poor Hendric along a native foot-path that led up the river side. We
found fragments of his coat all along the spoor, and at last the mangled
coat itself. About six hundred yards from our camp a dry river's course
joined the Limpopo. At this spot was much shade, cover, and heaps of dry
reeds and trees deposited by the Limpopo in some great flood. The lion
had left the foot-path and entered this secluded spot. I at once felt
convinced that we were upon him, and ordered the natives to make loose
the dogs. These walked suspiciously forward on the spoor, and next
minute began to spring about, barking angrily, with all their hair
bristling on their backs: a crash upon the dry reeds immediately
followed--it was the lion bounding away.

Several of the dogs were extremely afraid of him, and kept rushing
continually backward and springing aloft to obtain a view. I now pressed
forward and urged them on; old Argyll and Bles took up his spoor in
gallant style, and led on the other dogs. Then commenced a short but
lively and glorious chase, whose conclusion was the only small
satisfaction that I could obtain to answer for the horrors of the
preceding evening. The lion held up the river's bank for a short
distance, and took away through some wait-a-bit thorn cover, the best he
could find, but nevertheless open. Here, in two minutes, the dogs were
up with him, and he turned and stood at bay. As I approached, he stood,
his horrid head right to me, with open jaws, growling fiercely, his tail
waving from side to side.

On beholding him my blood boiled with rage. I wished that I could take
him alive and torture him, and, setting my teeth, I dashed my steed
forward within thirty yards of him and shouted, "_Your_ time is up, old
fellow." I halted my horse, and, placing my rifle to my shoulder, waited
for a broadside. This the next moment he exposed, when I sent a bullet
through his shoulder and dropped him on the spot. He rose, however,
again, when I finished him with a second in the breast. The Bakalahari
now came up in wonder and delight. I ordered John to cut off his head
and forepaws and bring them to the wagons, and, mounting my horse,
galloped home, having been absent about fifteen minutes. When the
Bakalahari women heard that the man-eater was dead, they all commenced
dancing about with joy, calling me _their father_.

[From Howitt's Country Year-Book.]


One fine, blustering, autumn day, a quiet and venerable-looking old
gentleman might be seen, with stick in hand, taking his way through the
streets of Leicester. If any one had followed him, they would have
found him directing his steps toward that side of the town which leads
to Charnwood. The old gentleman, who was a Quaker, took his way
leisurely, but thoughtfully, stopping every now and then to see what the
farmers' men were about, who were plowing up the stubbles to prepare for
another year's crop. He paused, also, at this and that farm-house,
evidently having a pleasure in the sight of good fat cattle, and in the
flocks of poultry--fowls, ducks, geese, and turkeys, busy about the
barn-door, where the sound of the flail, or the swipple, as they there
term it, was already heard busily knocking out the corn of the last
bountiful harvest. Our old friend--a Friend--for though you, dear
reader, do not know him, he was both at the time we speak of--our old
friend, again trudging on, would pause on the brow of a hill, at a
stile, or on some rustic bridge, casting its little obliging arch over a
brooklet, and inhale the fresh autumnal air; and after looking round
him, nod to himself, as if to say, "Ay, all good, all beautiful!" and so
he went on again. But it would not be long before he would be arrested
again by clusters of rich, jetty blackberries, hanging from some old
hawthorn hedge; or by clusters of nuts, hanging by the wayside, through
the copse. In all these natural beauties our old wayfarer seemed to have
the enjoyment of a child. Blackberries went into his mouth, and nuts
into his pockets; and so, with a quiet, inquiring, and thoughtful, yet
thoughtfully cheerful look, the good old man went on.

He seemed bound for a long walk, and yet to be in no hurry. In one place
he stopped to talk to a very old laborer, who was clearing out a ditch;
and if you had been near, you would have heard that their discourse was
of the past days, and the changes in that part of the country, which the
old laborer thought were very much for the worse. And worse they were
for him: for formerly he was young and full of life; and now he was old
and nearly empty of life. Then he was buoyant, sang songs, made love,
went to wakes and merry-makings; now his wooing days, and his marrying
days, and his married days were over. His good old dame, who in those
young, buxom days was a round-faced, rosy, plump, and light-hearted
damsel, was dead, and his children were married, and had enough to do.
In those days, the poor fellow was strong and lusty, had no fear and no
care; in these, he was weak and tottering; had been pulled and harassed
a thousand ways; and was left, as he said, like an old dry kex--_i.e._ a
hemlock or cow-parsnip stalk, hollow and dry, to be knocked down and
trodden into the dust some day.

Yes, sure enough, those past days _were_ much better days than these
days were to him. No comparison. But Mr. John Basford, our old wanderer,
was taking a more cheerful view of things, and telling the nearly
worn-out laborer, that when the night came there followed morning, and
that the next would be a heavenly morning, shining on hills of glory,
on waters of life, on cities of the blest, where no sun rose, and no sun
set; and where every joyful creature of joyful youth, who had been dear
to him, and true to him and God, would again meet him, and make times
such as should cause songs of praise to spring out of his heart, just as
flowers spring out of a vernal tree in the rekindled warmth of the sun.

The old laborer leaned reverently on his spade as the worthy man talked
to him. His gray locks, uncovered at his labor by any hat, were tossed
in the autumn wind. His dim eye was fixed on the distant sky, that
rolled its dark masses of clouds on the gale, and the deep wrinkles of
his pale and feeble temples seemed to grow deeper at the thoughts
passing within him. He was listening as to a sermon, which brought
together his youth and his age; his past and his future; and there were
verified on that spot words which Jesus Christ spoke nearly two thousand
years ago--"Wherever two or three are met together in my name, there am
I in the midst of them."

He was in the midst of the two only. There was a temple there in those
open fields, sanctified by two pious hearts, which no ringing of bells,
no sound of solemn organ, nor voice of congregated prayers, nor any
preacher but the ever-present and invisible One, who there and then
fulfilled His promise and was gracious, could have made more holy.

Our old friend again turned to set forward; he shook the old laborer
kindly by the hand, and there was a gaze of astonishment in the old
man's face--the stranger had not only cheered him by his words, but left
something to cheer him when he was gone.

The Friend now went on with a more determined step. He skirted the
memorable park of Bradgate, famous for the abode of Lady Jane Grey, and
the visit of her schoolmaster, Roger Ascham. He went on into a region of
woods and hills. At some seven or eight miles from Leicester, he drew
near a solitary farm-house, within the ancient limits of the forest of
Charnwood. It was certainly a lonely place amid the woodlands and the
wild autumn fields. Evening was fast dropping down; and as the shade of
night fell on the scene, the wind tossed more rushingly the boughs of
the thick trees, and roared down the rocky valley. John Basford went up
to the farm-house, however, as if that was the object of his journey,
and a woman opening it at his knock, he soon disappeared within.

Now our old friend was a perfect stranger here; had never been here
before; had no acquaintance nor actual business with the inhabitants,
though any one watching his progress hither would have been quite
satisfied that he was not wandering without an object. But he merely
stated that he was somewhat fatigued with his walk from the town, and
requested leave to rest awhile. In such a place, such a request is
readily, and even gladly granted.

There was a cheerful fire burning on a bright, clean hearth. The kettle
was singing on the hob for tea, and the contrast of the in-door comfort
was sensibly heightened by the wild gloom without. The farmer's wife,
who had admitted the stranger, soon went out, and called her husband
from the fold-yard. He was a plain, hearty sort of man; gave our friend
a hearty shake of the hand, sate down, and began to converse. A little
time seemed to establish a friendly interest between the stranger and
the farmer and his wife. John Basford asked whether they would allow him
to smoke a pipe, which was not only readily accorded, but the farmer
joined him. They smoked and talked alternately of the country and the
town, Leicester being the farmer's market, and as familiar to him as his
own neighborhood. He soon came to know, too, who his guest was, and
expressed much pleasure in the visit. Tea was carried into the parlor,
and thither they all adjourned, for now the farming men were coming into
the kitchen, where they sate for the evening.

Tea over, the two gentlemen again had a pipe, and the conversation
wandered over a multitude of things and people known to both.

But the night was come down pitch dark, wild, and windy, and old John
Basford had to return to Leicester.

"To Leicester!" exclaimed at once man and wife; "to Leicester!" No such
thing. He must stay where he was--where could he be better?

John Basford confessed that that was true; he had great pleasure in
conversing with them; but then, was it not an unwarrantable liberty to
come to a stranger's house, and make thus free?

"Not in the least," the farmer replied; "the freer the better!"

The matter thus was settled, and the evening wore on; but in the course
of the evening, the guest, whose simple manner, strong sense, and deeply
pious feeling, had made a most favorable impression on his entertainers,
hinted that he had heard some strange rumors regarding this house, and
that, in truth, had been the cause which had attracted him thither. He
had heard, in fact, that a particular chamber in this house was haunted;
and he had for a long time felt a growing desire to pass a night in it.
He now begged this favor might be granted him.

As he had opened this subject, an evident cloud, and something of an
unpleasant surprise, had fallen on the countenances of both man and
wife. It deepened as he proceeded; the farmer had withdrawn his pipe
from his mouth, and laid it on the table; and the woman had risen, and
looked uneasily at their guest. The moment that he uttered the wish to
sleep in the haunted room, both exclaimed in the same instant against

"No, never!" they exclaimed; "never, on any consideration! They had made
a firm resolve on that point, which nothing would induce them to break

The guest expressed himself disappointed, but did not press the matter
further at the moment. He contented himself with turning the
conversation quietly upon this subject, and after a while found the
farmer and his wife confirm to him every thing that he had heard. Once
more then, and as incidentally, he expressed his regret that he could
not gratify the curiosity which had brought him so far; and, before the
time for retiring arrived, again ventured to express how much what he
had now heard had increased his previous desire to pass a night in that
room. He did not profess to believe himself invulnerable to fears of
such a kind, but was curious to convince himself of the actual existence
of spiritual agency of this character.

The farmer and his wife steadily refused. They declared that others who
had come with the same wish, and had been allowed to gratify it, had
suffered such terrors as had made their after-lives miserable. The last
of these guests was a clergyman, who received such a fright that he
sprang from his bed at midnight, had descended, gone into the stable,
and saddling his horse, had ridden away at full speed. Those things had
caused them to refuse, and that firmly, any fresh experiment of the

The spirit visitation was described to be generally this: At midnight,
the stranger sleeping in that room would hear the latch of the door
raised, and would in the dark perceive a light step enter, and, as with
a stealthy tread, cross the room, and approach the foot of the bed. The
curtains would be agitated, and something would be perceived mounted on
the bed, and proceeding up it, just upon the body of the person in it.
The supernatural visitant would then stretch itself full length on the
person of the agitated guest, and the next moment he would feel an
oppression at his chest, as of a nightmare, and something extremely cold
would touch his face.

At this crisis, the terrified guest would usually utter a fearful
shriek, and often go into a swoon. The whole family would be roused from
their beds by the alarm; but on no occasion had any traces of the cause
of terror been found, though the house, on such occasions, had been
diligently and thoroughly searched. The annoying visit was described as
being by no means uniform. Sometimes it would not take place for a very
long time, so that they would begin to hope that there would be no more
of it; but it would, when least expected, occur again. Few people of
late years, however, had ventured to sleep in that room, and never since
the aforementioned clergyman was so terribly alarmed, about two years
ago, had it once been occupied.

"Then," said John Basford, "it is probable that the annoyance is done
with forever. If the troublesome visitant was still occasionally present
it would, no doubt, take care to manifest itself in some mode or place.
It was necessary to test the matter to see whether this particular room
was still subject to so strange a phenomenon."

This seemed to have an effect on the farmer and his wife. The old man
urged his suit all the more earnestly, and, after further show of
extreme reluctance on the part of his entertainers, finally prevailed.

The consent once being given, the farmer's wife retired to make the
necessary arrangements. Our friend heard sundry goings to and fro; but
at length it was announced to him that all was ready; the farmer and his
wife both repeating that they would be much better pleased if Mr.
Basford would be pleased to sleep in some other room. The old man,
however, remained firm to his purpose; he was shown to his chamber, and
the maid who led the way stood at some distance from the denoted door,
and pointing to it, bade him good night, and hurried away.

Mr. Basford found himself alone in the haunted room, he looked round and
discovered nothing that should make it differ from any other good and
comfortable chamber, or that should give to some invisible agent so
singular a propensity to disturb any innocent mortal that nocturnated in
it. Whether he felt any nervous terrors, we know not; but as he was come
to see all that would or could occur there, he kept himself most
vigilantly awake. He lay down in a very good feather bed, extinguished
his light, and waited in patience. Time and tide, as they will wait for
no man, went on. All sounds of life ceased in the house; nothing could
be heard but the rushing wind without, and the bark of the yard-dog
occasionally amid the laughing blast. Midnight came, and found John
Basford wide-awake and watchfully expectant. Nothing stirred, but he lay
still on the watch. At length--was it so? Did he hear a rustling
movement, as it were, near his door, or was it his excited fancy? He
raised his head from his pillow, and listened intensely. Hush! there is
something!--no!--it was his contagious mind ready to hear and see--what?
There was an actual sound of the latch! He could hear it raised! He
could not be mistaken. There was a sound as if his door was cautiously
opened. List! it was true. There were soft, stealthy footsteps on the
carpet; they came directly toward the bed; they paused at its foot; the
curtains were agitated; there were steps on the bed; something
crept--did not the heart and the very flesh of the rash old man now
creep too?--and upon him sank a palpable form, palpable from its
pressure, for the night was dark as an oven. There was a heavy weight on
his chest, and in the same instant something almost icy cold touched his

With a sudden, convulsive action, the old man suddenly flung up his
arms, clutched at the terrible object which thus oppressed him, and
shouted with a loud cry,

"I have got him! I have got him!"

There was a sound as of a deep growl, a vehement struggle, but John
Basford held fast his hold, and felt that he had something within it
huge, shaggy, and powerful. Once more he raised his voice loud enough to
have roused the whole house; but it seemed no voice of terror, but one
of triumph and satisfaction. In the next instant, the farmer rushed into
the room with a light in his hand, and revealed to John Basford that he
held in his arms the struggling form of a huge Newfoundland dog!

"Let him go, sir, in God's name!" exclaimed the farmer, on whose brow
drops of real anguish stood, and glistened in the light of the candle.
"Down stairs, Cæsar!" and the dog, released from the hold of the Quaker,
departed as if much ashamed.

In the same instant, the farmer and his wife, who now also came in
dressed, and evidently never having been to bed, were on their knees by
the bedside.

"You know it all, sir," said the farmer; "you see through it. You were
too deep and strong-minded to be imposed on. We were, therefore, afraid
of this when you asked to sleep in this room. Promise us now, that while
we live you will never reveal what you know?"

They then related to him, that this house and chamber had never been
haunted by any other than this dog, which had been trained to play the
part. That, for generations, their family had lived on this farm; but
some years ago, their landlord having suddenly raised their rent to an
amount that they felt they could not give, they were compelled to think
of quitting the farm. This was to them an insuperable source of grief.
It was the place that all their lives and memories were bound up with.
They were extremely cast down. Suddenly it occurred to them to give an
ill name to the house. They hit on this scheme, and, having practiced it
well, did not long want an opportunity of trying it. It had succeeded
beyond their expectations. The fears of their guests were found to be of
a force which completely blinded them to any discovery of the truth.
There had been occasions where they thought some clumsy accident must
have stripped away the delusion; but no! there seemed a thick vail of
blindness, a fascination of terror cast over the strongest minds, which
nothing could pierce through. Case after case occurred; and the house
and farm acquired such a character, that no money or consideration of
any kind would have induced a fresh tenant to live there. The old
tenants continued at their old rent; and the comfortable ghost stretched
himself every night in a capacious kennel, without any need of
disturbing his slumbers by calls to disturb those of the guests of the
haunted chamber.

Having made this revelation, the farmer and his wife again implored
their guest to preserve their secret.

He hesitated.

"Nay," said he, "I think it would not be right to do that. That would be
to make myself a party to a public deception. It would be a kind of
fraud on the world and the landlord. It would serve to keep up those
superstitious terrors which should be as speedily as possible

The farmer was in agony. He rose and strode to and fro in the room. His
countenance grew red and wrathful. He cast dark glances at his guest,
whom his wife continued to implore, and who sate silent, and, as it
were, lost in reflection.

"And do you think it a right thing, sir," said the farmer, "thus to
force yourself into a stranger's house and family, and, in spite of the
strongest wishes expressed to the contrary, into his very chambers, and
that only to do him a mischief? Is that your religion, sir? I thought
you had something better in you than that. Am I now to think your
mildness and piety were only so much hypocrisy put on to ruin me?"

"Nay, friend, I don't want to ruin thee," said the Quaker.

"But ruin me you will, though, if you publish this discovery. Out I must
turn, and be the laughing-stock of the whole country to boot. Now, if
that is what you mean, say so, and I shall know what sort of a man you
are. Let me know at once whether you are an honest man or a cockatrice?"

"My friend," said the Quaker, "canst thou call thyself an honest man, in
practicing this deception for all these years, and depriving thy
landlord of the rent he would otherwise have got from another? And dost
thou think it would be honest in me to assist in the continuance of this

"I rob the landlord of nothing," replied the farmer. "I pay a good, fair
rent; but I don't want to quit the old spot. And if you had not thrust
yourself into this affair, you would have had nothing to lay on your
conscience concerning it. I must, let me tell you, look on it as a piece
of unwarrantable impertinence to come thus to my house and be kindly
treated only to turn Judas against me."

The word Judas seemed to hit the Friend a great blow.

"A Judas!"

"Yes--a Judas! a real Judas!" exclaimed the wife. "Who could have
thought it!"

"Nay, nay," said the old man. "I am no Judas. It is true, I forced
myself into it; and if you pay the landlord an honest rent, why, I don't
know that it is any business of mine--at least while you live."

"That is all we want," replied the farmer, his countenance changing, and
again flinging himself by his wife on his knees by the bed. "Promise us
never to reveal it while we live, and we shall be quite satisfied. We
have no children, and when we go, those may come to th' old spot who

"Promise me never to practice this trick again," said John Basford.

"We promise faithfully," rejoined both farmer and wife.

"Then I promise too," said the Friend, "that not a whisper of what has
passed here shall pass my lips during your lifetime."

With warmest expressions of thanks, the farmer and his wife withdrew;
and John Basford, having cleared the chamber of its mystery, lay down
and passed one of the sweetest nights he ever enjoyed.

The farmer and his wife lived a good many years after this, but they
both died before Mr. Basford; and after their death, he related to his
friends the facts which are here detailed. He, too, has passed, years
ago, to his longer night in the grave, and to the clearing up of greater
mysteries than that of--the Haunted House of Charnwood Forest.

[From Fraser's Magazine.]


Ledru Rollin is now in his forty-fourth or forty-fifth year, having been
born in 1806 or 1807. He is the grandson of the famous _Prestidigateur_,
or Conjurer Comus, who, about four or five-and-forty years ago, was in
the acme of his fame. During the Consulate, and a considerable portion
of the Empire, Comus traveled from one department of France to the
other, and is even known to have extended his journeys beyond the Rhine
and the Moselle on one side, and beyond the Rhône and Garonne on the
other. Of all the conjurors of his day he was the most famous and the
most successful, always, of course, excepting that Corsican conjuror who
ruled for so many years the destinies of France. From those who have
seen that famous trickster, we have learned that the Charleses, the
Alexandres, even the Robert-Houdins, were children compared with the
magical wonder-worker of the past generation. The fame of Comus was
enormous, and his gains proportionate; and when he had shuffled off this
mortal coil it was found he had left to his descendants a very
ample--indeed, for France a very large fortune. Of the descendants in a
right line, his grandson, Ledru Rollin, was his favorite, and to him the
old man left the bulk of his fortune, which, during the minority of
Ledru Rollin, grew to a sum amounting to nearly, if not fully, £4000 per
annum of our money.

The scholastic education of the young man who was to inherit this
considerable fortune, was nearly completed during the reign of Louis
XVIII., and shortly after Charles X. ascended the throne _il commençait
à faire sur droit_, as they phrase it in the _pays Latin_. Neither
during the reign of Louis XVIII., nor indeed now, unless in the exact
and physical sciences, does Paris afford a very solid and substantial
education. Though the Roman poets and historians are tolerably well
studied and taught, yet little attention is paid to Greek literature.
The physical and exact sciences are unquestionably admirably taught at
the Polytechnique and other schools; but neither at the College of St.
Barbe, nor of Henry IV., can a pupil be so well grounded in the
rudiments and humanities as in our grammar and public schools. A
studious, painstaking, and docile youth, will, no doubt, learn a great
deal, no matter where he has been placed in pupilage; but we have heard
from a contemporary of M. Rollin, that he was not particularly
distinguished either for his industry or his docility in early life. The
earliest days of the reign of Charles X. saw M. Ledru Rollin an
_étudiant en droit_ in Paris. Though the schools of law had been
re-established during the Consulate pretty much after the fashion in
which they existed in the time of Louis XIV., yet the application of the
_alumni_ was fitful and desultory, and perhaps there were no two classes
in France, at the commencement of 1825, who were more imbued with the
Voltarian philosophy, and the doctrines and principles of Rosseau, than
the _élèves_ of the schools of law and medicine.

Under a king so skeptical and voluptuous, so much of a _philosophe_ and
_pyrrhonéste_, as Louis XVIII., such tendencies were likely to spread
themselves through all ranks of society--to permeate from the very
highest to the very lowest classes; and not all the lately acquired
asceticism of the monarch, his successor, nor all the efforts of the
Jesuits, could restrain or control the tendencies of the _étudiants en
droit_. What the law students were antecedently and subsequent to 1825,
we know from the _Physiologic de l'Homme de Loi_; and it is not to be
supposed that M. Ledru Rollin, with more ample pecuniary means at
command, very much differed from his fellows. After undergoing a three
years' course of study, M. Rollin obtained a diploma as a _licencié en
droit_, and commenced his career as _stagiare_ somewhere about the end
of 1826, or the beginning of 1827. Toward the close of 1829, or in the
first months of 1830, he was, we believe, placed on the roll of
advocates: so that he was called to the bar, or, as they say in France,
received an advocate, in his twenty-second or twenty-third year.

The first years of an advocate, even in France, are generally passed in
as enforced an idleness as in England. Clients come not to consult the
greenhorn of the last term; nor does any _avoué_ among our neighbors,
any more than any attorney among ourselves, fancy that an old head is to
be found on young shoulders. The years 1830 and 1831 were not marked by
any oratorical effort of the author of the _Decline of England_; nor was
it till 1832 that, being then one of the youngest of the bar of Paris,
he prepared and signed an opinion against the placing of Paris in a
state of siege consequent on the insurrections of June. Two years after
he prepared a memoir, or _factum_, on the affair of the Rue Transonian,
and defended Dupoty, accused of _complicité morale_, a monstrous
doctrine, invented by the Attorney-general Hebert. From 1834 to 1841 he
appeared as counsel in nearly all the cases of _émeute_ or conspiracy
where the individuals prosecuted were Republicans or
_quasi_-Republicans. Meanwhile, he had become the proprietor and
_rédacteur en chief_ of the _Réforme_ newspaper, a political journal of
an ultra-liberal--indeed, of a republican-complexion, which was then
called of extreme opinions, as he had previously been editor of a legal
newspaper called _Journal du Palais. La Réforme_ had been originally
conducted by Godefroy Cavaignac, the brother of the general, who
continued editor till the period of the fatal illness which preceded his
death. The defense of Dupoty, tried and sentenced under the ministry of
Thiers to five years' imprisonment, as a regicide, because a letter was
found open in the letter-box of the paper of which he was editor,
addressed to him by a man said to be implicated in the conspiracy of
Quenisset, naturally brought M. Rollin into contact with many of the
writers in _La Réforme_; and these persons, among others Guinard Arago,
Etienne Arago, and Flocon, induced him to embark some portion of his
fortune in the paper. From one step he was led on to another, and
ultimately became one of the chief, indeed, is not the chief proprietor.
The speculation was far from successful in a pecuniary sense; but M.
Rollin, in furtherance of his opinions, continued for some years to
disburse considerable sums in the support of the journal. By this he no
doubt increased his popularity and his credit with the republican party,
but it can not be denied that he very materially injured his private
fortune. In the earlier portion of his career M. Rollin was, it is
known, not indisposed to seek a seat in the chamber under the auspicies
of M. Barrot, but subsequently to his connection with the _Réforme_, he
had himself become thoroughly known to the extreme party in the
departments, and on the death of Garnier Pagès the elder, was elected in
1841 for Le Mans, in the department of La Sarthe.

In addressing the electors after his return, M. Rollin delivered a
speech much more republican than monarchical. For this he was sentenced
to four months' imprisonment, but the sentence was appealed against and
annulled on a technical ground, and the honorable member was ultimately
acquitted by the Cour d'Assizes of Angers.

The parliamentary _début_ of M. Rollin took place in 1842. His first
speech was delivered on the subject of the secret-service money. The
elocution was easy and flowing, the manner oratorical, the style
somewhat turgid and bombastic. But in the course of the session M.
Rollin improved, and his discourse on the modification of the criminal
law, on other legal subjects, and on railways, were more sober specimens
of style. In 1843 and 1844 M. Rollin frequently spoke; but though his
speeches were a good deal talked of outside the walls of the chamber,
they produced little effect within it. Nevertheless, it was plain to
every candid observer that he possessed many of the requisites of the
orator--a good voice, a copious flow of words, considerable energy and
enthusiasm, a sanguine temperament and jovial and generous disposition.
In the sessions of 1845-46, M. Rollin took a still more prominent part.
His purse, his house in the Rue Tournon, his counsels and advice, were
all placed at the service of the men of the movement, and by the
beginning of 1847 he seemed to be acknowledged by the extreme party as
its most conspicuous and popular member. Such, indeed, was his position
when the electoral reform banquets, on a large scale, began to take
place in the autumn of 1847. These banquets, promoted and forwarded by
the principal members of the opposition to serve the cause of electoral
reform, were looked on by M. Rollin and his friends in another light.
While Odillon Barrot, Duvergier d'Hauranne, and others, sought by means
of them to produce an enlarged constituency, the member for Sarthe
looked not merely to functional, but to organic reform--not merely to an
enlargement of the constituency, but to a change in the form of the
government. The desire of Barrot was _à la vérité, à la sincerité des
institutions conquises en Julliet 1830_; whereas the desire of Rollin
was, _à l'amélioration des classes laborieuses_: the one was willing to
go on with the dynasty of Louis Philippe and the Constitution of July
improved by diffusion and extension of the franchise, the other looked
to a democratic and social republic. The result is now known. It is not
here our purpose to go over the events of the Revolution of February,
1848, but we may be permitted to observe, that the combinations by which
that event was effected were ramified and extensive, and were long
silently and secretly in motion.

The personal history of Ledru Rollin, since February, 1848, is well
known and patent to all the world. He was the _ame damnée_ of the
Provisional Government--the man whose extreme opinions, intemperate
circulars, and vehement patronage of persons professing the political
creed of Robespierre--indisposed all moderate men to rally around the
new system. It was in covering Ledru Rollin with the shield of his
popularity that Lamartine lost his own, and that he ceased to be the
political idol of a people of whom he must ever be regarded as one of
the literary glories and illustrations. On the dissolution of the
Provisional Government, Ledru Rollin constituted himself one of the
leaders of the movement party. In ready powers of speech and in
popularity no man stood higher; but he did not possess the power of
restraining his followers or of holding them in hand, and the result
was, that instead of being their leader he became their instrument. Fond
of applause, ambitious of distinction, timid by nature, destitute of
pluck, and of that rarer virtue moral courage, Ledru Rollin, to avoid
the imputation of faint-heartedness, put himself in the foreground, but
the measures of his followers being ill-taken, the plot in which he was
mixed up egregiously failed, and he is now in consequence an exile in

[From Chambers's Edinburgh Journal.]


It was a dead calm--not a breath of air--the sails flapped idly against
the masts; the helm had lost its power, and the ship turned her head how
and where she liked. The heat was intense, so much so, that the chief
mate had told the boatswain to keep the watch out of the sun; but the
watch below found it too warm to sleep, and were tormented with thirst,
which they could not gratify till the water was served out. They had
drunk all the previous day's allowance; and now that their scuttle but
was dry, there was nothing left for them but endurance. Some of the
seamen had congregated on the top-gallant forecastle, where they gazed
on the clear blue water with longing eyes.

"How cool and clear it looks," said a tall, powerful young seaman; "I
don't think there are many sharks about: what do you say for a bath,

"That for the sharks!" burst almost simultaneously from the parched lips
of the group: "we'll have a jolly good bath when the second mate goes in
to dinner." In about half an hour the dinner-bell rang. The boatswain
took charge of the deck; some twenty sailors were now stripped, except a
pair of light duck trowsers; among the rest was a tall, powerful,
coast-of-Africa nigger of the name of Leigh: they used to joke him, and
call him Sambo.

"You no swim to-day, Ned?" said he, addressing me. "Feared of shark,
heh? Shark nebber bite me. Suppose I meet shark in water, I swim after
him--him run like debbel." I was tempted, and, like the rest, was soon
ready. In quick succession we jumped off the spritsail yard, the black
leading. We had scarcely been in the water five minutes, when some voice
in-board cried out, "A shark! a shark!" In an instant every one of the
swimmers came tumbling up the ship's sides, half mad with fright, the
gallant black among the rest. It was a false alarm. We felt angry with
ourselves for being frightened, angry with those who had frightened us,
and furious with those who had laughed at us. In another moment we were
all again in the water, the black and myself swimming some distance from
the ship. For two successive voyages there had been a sort of rivalry
between us: each fancied that he was the best swimmer, and we were now
testing our speed.

"Well done, Ned!" cried some of the sailors from the forecastle. "Go it,
Sambo!" cried some others. We were both straining our utmost, excited by
the cheers of our respective partisans. Suddenly the voice of the
boatswain was heard shouting, "A shark! a shark! Come back for God's

"Lay aft, and lower the cutter down," then came faintly on our ear. The
race instantly ceased. As yet, we only half believed what we heard, our
recent fright being still fresh in our memories.

"Swim, for God's sake!" cried the captain, who was now on deck; "he has
not yet seen you. The boat, if possible, will get between you and him.
Strike out, lads, for God's sake!" My heart stood still: I felt weaker
than a child as I gazed with horror at the dorsal fin of a large shark
on the starboard quarter. Though in the water, the perspiration dropped
from me like rain: the black was striking out like mad for the ship.

"Swim, Ned--swim!" cried several voices; "they never take black when
they can get white."

I did swim, and that desperately: the water foamed past me. I soon
breasted the black, but could not head him. We both strained every nerve
to be first, for we each fancied the last man would be taken. Yet we
scarcely seemed to move: the ship appeared as far as ever from us. We
were both powerful swimmers, and both of us swam in the French way
called _la brasse_, or hand over hand, in English. There was something
the matter with the boat's falls, and they could not lower her.

"He sees you now!" was shouted; "he is after you!" Oh the agony of that
moment! I thought of every thing at the same instant, at least so it
seemed to me then. Scenes long forgotten rushed through my brain with
the rapidity of lightning, yet in the midst of this I was striking out
madly for the ship. Each moment I fancied I could feel the pilot-fish
touching me, and I almost screamed with agony. We were now not ten yards
from the ship: fifty ropes were thrown to us; but, as if by mutual
instinct, we swam for the same.

"Hurra! they are saved!--they are alongside!" was shouted by the eager
crew. We both grasped the rope at the same time: a slight struggle
ensued: I had the highest hold. Regardless of every thing but my own
safety, I placed my feet on the black's shoulders, scrambled up the
side, and fell exhausted on the deck. The negro followed roaring with
pain, for the shark had taken away part of his heel. Since then, I have
never bathed at sea; nor, I believe, has Sambo been ever heard again to
assert that he would swim after a shark if he met one in the water.

[From Howitt's Country Year-Book.]


By the wayside, not far from the town of Mansfield--on a high and heathy
ground, which gives a far-off view of the minster of Lincoln--you may
behold a little clump of trees, encircled by a wall. That is called
THOMPSON'S GRAVE. But who is this Thompson; and why lies he so far from
his fellows? In ground unconsecrated; in the desert, or on the verge of
it--for cultivation now approaches it? The poor man and his wants spread
themselves, and corn and potatoes crowd upon Thompson's grave. But who
is this Thompson; and why lies he here?

In the town of Mansfield there was a poor boy, and this poor boy became
employed in a hosier's warehouse. From the warehouse his assiduity and
probity sent him to the counting-house; from the counting-house, abroad.
He traveled to carry stockings to the Asiatic and the people of the
south. He sailed up the rivers of Persia, and saw the tulips growing
wild on their banks, with many a lily and flower of our proudest
gardens. He traveled in Spain and Portugal, and was in Lisbon when the
great earthquake shook his house over his head. He fled. The streets
reeled; the houses fell; church towers dashed down in thunder across his
path. There were flying crowds, shrieks, and dust, and darkness. But he
fled on. The farther, the more misery. Crowds filled the fields when he
reached them--naked, half-naked, terrified, starving, and looking in
vain for a refuge. He fled across the hills, and gazed. The whole huge
city rocked and staggered below. There were clouds of dust, columns of
flame, the thunder of down-crashing buildings, the wild cries of men. He
suffered amid ten thousand suffering outcasts.

At length, the tumult ceased; the earth became stable. With other ruined
and curious men he climbed over the heaps of desolation in quest of what
once was his home, and the depository of his property. His servant was
nowhere to be seen: Thompson felt that he must certainly have been
killed. After many days' quest, and many uncertainties, he found the
spot where his house had stood; it was a heap of rubbish. His servant
and merchandise lay beneath it. He had money enough, or credit enough,
to set to work men to clear away some of the fallen materials, and to
explore whether any amount of property were recoverable. What's that
sound? A subterranean, or subruinan, voice? The workmen stop, and are
ready to fly with fear. Thompson exhorts them, and they work on. But
again that voice! No _human_ creature can be living there. The laborers
again turn to fly. They are a poor, ignorant, and superstitious crew;
but Thompson's commands, and Thompson's gold, arrest them. They work on,
and out walks Thompson's living servant, still in the body, though a
body not much more substantial than a ghost All cry, "How have you
managed to live?"

"I fled to the cellar. I have sipped the wine; but now I want bread,
meat, every thing!" and the living skeleton walked staggeringly on, and
looked voraciously for shops and loaves, and saw only brickbats and

Thompson recovered his goods, and retreated as soon as possible to his
native land. Here, in his native town, the memory of the earthquake
still haunted him. He used almost daily to hasten out of the place, and
up the forest hill, where he imagined that he saw Lisbon reeling,
tottering, churches falling, and men flying. But he saw only the red
tiles of some thousand peaceful houses, and the twirling of a dozen
windmill sails. Here he chose his burial-ground; walled it, and planted
it, and left special directions for his burial. The grave should be
deep, and the spades of resurrection-men disappointed by repeated layers
of straw, not easy to dig through. In the church-yard of Mansfield,
meantime, he found the grave of his parents, and honored it with an
inclosure of iron palisades.

He died. How? Not in travel; not in sailing over the ocean, nor up
tulip-margined rivers of Persia or Arabia Felix; nor yet in an
earthquake--but in the dream of one. One night he was heard crying in a
voice of horror, "There! there!--fly! fly!--the town shakes! the house
falls! Ha! the earth opens!--away!" Then the voice ceased; but in the
morning it was found that he had rolled out of bed, lodged between the
bedstead and the wall, and there, like a sandbag wedged in a windy
crevice, he was--dead!

There is, therefore, a dead Thompson in Sherwood Forest, where no
clergyman laid him, and yet he sleeps; and there is also a living

In the village of Edwinstowe, on the very verge of the beautiful old
Birkland, there stands a painter's house. In his little parlor you find
books, and water-color-paintings on the walls, which show that the
painter has read and looked about him in the world. And yet he is but a
house-painter, who owes his establishment here to his love of nature
rather than to his love of art. In the neighboring Dukery, some one of
the wealthy wanted a piece of oak-painting done; but he was dissatisfied
with the style in which painters now paint oak; a style very splendid,
but as much resembling genuine oak as a frying-pan resembles the moon.
Christopher Thompson determined to try _his_ hand; and for this purpose
he did not put himself to school to some great master of the art, who
had copied the copy of a hundred consecutive copies of a piece of oak,
till the thing produced was very fine, but like no wood that ever grew
or ever will grow. Christopher Thompson went to nature. He got a piece
of well-figured, real oak, well planed and polished, and copied it
precisely. When the different specimens of the different painters were
presented to the aforesaid party, he found only one specimen at all like
oak, and that was Thompson's. The whole crowd of master house-painters
were exasperated and amazed. Such a fellow preferred to them! No; they
were wrong; it was nature that was preferred.

Christopher Thompson was a self-taught painter. He had been tossed about
the world in a variety of characters--errand-boy, brickmakers' boy,
potter, shipwright, sailor, sawyer, strolling player; and here he
finally settled down as painter, and, having achieved a trade, he turned
author, and wrote his life. That life--_The Autobiography of an
Artisan_--is one of the best written and most interesting books of its
class that we ever read. It is full of the difficulties of a poor man's
life, and of the resolute spirit that conquers them. It is, moreover,
full of a desire to enlighten, elevate, and in every way better the
condition of his fellow-men. Christopher Thompson is not satisfied to
have made his own way; he is anxious to pave the way for the whole
struggling population. He is a zealous politician, and advocate of the
Odd Fellow system, as calculated to link men together and give them
power, while it gives them a stimulus to social improvement. He has
labored to diffuse a love of reading, and to establish mechanics'
libraries in neglected and obscure places.

Behold the Thompson of Edwinstowe. Time, in eight-and-forty years, has
whitened his hair, though it has left the color of health on his cheek,
and the fire of intelligence in his eye. With a well-built frame and
figure, and a comely countenance, there is a buoyancy of step, an energy
of manner about him, that agree with what he has written of his life and
aspirations. Such are the men that England is now, ever and anon, in
every nook and corner of the island, producing. She produces them
because they are needed. They are the awakeners who are to stir up the
sluggish to what the time demands of them.

The two Thompsons of Sherwood are types of their ages. He of the
grave--lies solitary and apart from his race. He lived to earn
money--his thought was for himself--and there he sleeps, alone in his
glory--such as it is. He was no worse, nay, he was better than many of
his contemporaries. He had no lack of benevolence; but trade and the
spirit of his age, cold and unsympathetic, absorbed him. He was content
to lie alone in the desert, amid the heath "that knows not when good
cometh," and where the lonely raven perches on the blasted tree.

The living Thompson is, too, the man of his age: for it is an age of
awakening enterprise, of wider views, of stronger sympathies. He lives
and works, not for himself alone. His motto is Progress; and while the
forest whispers to him of the past, books and his own heart commune with
him of the future. Such men belong to both. When the present becomes the
past, their work will survive them; and their tomb will not be a desert,
but the grateful memories of improved men. May they spring up in every
hamlet, and carry knowledge and refinement to every cottage fireside!

[From Five Years' Hunting Adventures in South Africa.]


The night of the 19th was to me rather a memorable one, as being the
first on which I had the satisfaction of hearing the deep-toned thunder
of the lion's roar. Although there was no one near to inform me by what
beast the haughty and impressive sounds which echoed through the
wilderness were produced, I had little difficulty in divining. There was
no mistake about it; and on hearing it I at once knew, as well as if
accustomed to the sound from my infancy; that the appalling roar which
was uttered within half a mile of me was no other than that of the
mighty and terrible king of beasts. Although the dignified and truly
monarchical appearance of the lion has long rendered him famous among
his fellow quadrupeds, and his appearance and habits have oftener been
described by abler pens than mine, nevertheless I consider that a few
remarks, resulting from my own personal experience, formed by a
tolerable long acquaintance with him, both by day and by night, may not
prove uninteresting to the reader. There is something so noble and
imposing in the presence of the lion, when seen walking with dignified
self-possession, free and undaunted, on his native soil, that no
description can convey an adequate idea of his striking appearance. The
lion is exquisitely formed by nature for the predatory habits which he
is destined to pursue. Combining in comparatively small compass the
qualities of power and agility, he is enabled, by means of the
tremendous machinery with which nature has gifted him, easily to
overcome and destroy almost every beast of the forest, however superior
to him in weight and stature.

Though considerably under four feet in height, he has little difficulty
in dashing to the ground and overcoming the lofty and apparently
powerful giraffe, whose head towers above the trees of the forest, and
whose skin is nearly an inch in thickness. The lion is the constant
attendant of the vast herds of buffaloes which frequent the interminable
forests of the interior; and a full-grown one, so long as his teeth are
unbroken, generally proves a match for an old bull buffalo, which in
size and strength greatly surpasses the most powerful breed of English
cattle: the lion also preys on all the larger varieties of the
antelopes, and on both varieties of the gnoo. The zebra, which is met
with in large herds throughout the interior, is also a favorite object
of his pursuit.

Lions do not refuse, as has been asserted, to feast upon the venison
that they have not killed themselves. I have repeatedly discovered lions
of all ages which had taken possession of, and were feasting upon, the
carcasses of various game quadrupeds which had fallen before my rifle.
The lion is very generally diffused throughout the secluded parts of
Southern Africa. He is, however, nowhere met with in great abundance, it
being very rare to find more than three, or even two, families of lions
frequenting the same district and drinking at the same fountain. When a
greater number were met with, I remarked that it was owing to
long-protracted droughts, which, by drying nearly all the fountains, had
compelled the game of various districts to crowd the remaining springs,
and the lions, according to their custom, followed in the wake. It is a
common thing to come upon a full-grown lion and lioness associating with
three or four large young ones nearly full-grown; at other times,
full-grown males will be found associating and hunting together in a
happy state of friendship: two, three, and four full-grown male lions
may thus be discovered consorting together.

The male lion is adorned with a long, rank, shaggy mane, which in some
instances, almost sweeps the ground. The color of these manes varies,
some being very dark, and others of a golden yellow. This appearance has
given rise to a prevailing opinion among the boers that there are two
distinct varieties of lions, which they distinguish by the respective
names of "Schwart fore life" and "Chiel fore life:" this idea, however,
is erroneous. The color of the lion's mane is generally influenced by
his age. He attains his mane in the third year of his existence. I have
remarked that at first it is of a yellowish color; in the prime of life
it is blackest, and when he has numbered many years, but still is in the
full enjoyment of his power, it assumes a yellowish-gray,
pepper-and-salt sort of color. These old fellows are cunning and
dangerous, and most to be dreaded. The females are utterly destitute of
a mane, being covered with a short, thick, glossy coat of tawny hair.
The manes and coats of lions frequenting open-lying districts utterly
destitute of trees, such as the borders of the great Kalahari desert,
are more rank and handsome than those inhabiting forest districts.

One of the most striking things connected with the lion is his voice,
which is extremely grand and peculiarly striking. It consists at times
of a low, deep moaning, repeated five or six times, ending in faintly
audible sighs; at other times he startles the forest with loud,
deep-toned, solemn roars, repeated five or six times in quick
succession, each increasing in loudness to the third or fourth, when his
voice dies away in five or six low, muffled sounds, very much resembling
distant thunder. At times, and not unfrequently, a troop may be heard
roaring in concert, one assuming the lead, and two, three, or four more
regularly taking up their parts, like persons singing a catch. Like our
Scottish stags at the rutting season, they roar loudest in cold, frosty
nights; but on no occasions are their voices to be heard in such
perfection, or so intensely powerful, as when two or three strange
troops of lions approach a fountain to drink at the same time. When this
occurs, every member of each troop sounds a bold roar of defiance at the
opposite parties; and when one roars, all roar together, and each seems
to vie with his comrades in the intensity and power of his voice.

The power and grandeur of these nocturnal forest concerts is
inconceivably striking and pleasing to the hunter's ear. The effect, I
may remark, is greatly enhanced when the hearer happens to be situated
in the depths of the forest, at the dead hour of midnight, unaccompanied
by any attendant, and ensconced within twenty yards of the fountain
which the surrounding troops of lions are approaching. Such has been my
situation many scores of times; and though I am allowed to have a
tolerable good taste for music, I consider the catches with which I was
then regaled as the sweetest and most natural I ever heard.

As a general rule, lions roar during the night; their sighing moans
commencing as the shades of evening envelop the forest, and continuing
at intervals throughout the night. In distant and secluded regions,
however, I have constantly heard them roaring loudly as late as nine and
ten o'clock on a bright sunny morning. In hazy and rainy weather they
are to be heard at every hour in the day, but their roar is subdued. It
often happens that when two strange male lions meet at a fountain, a
terrific combat ensues, which not unfrequently ends in the death of one
of them. The habits of the lion are strictly nocturnal; during the day
he lies concealed beneath the shade of some low, bushy tree or
wide-spreading bush, either in the level forest or on the mountain side.
He is also partial to lofty reeds, or fields of long, rank, yellow
grass, such as occur in low-lying vleys. From these haunts he sallies
forth when the sun goes down, and commences his nightly prowl. When he
is successful in his beat and has secured his prey, he does not roar
much that night, only uttering occasionally a few low moans; that is,
provided no intruders approach him, otherwise the case would be very

Lions are ever most active, daring, and presuming in dark and stormy
nights, and consequently, on such occasions, the traveler ought more
particularly to be on his guard. I remarked a fact connected with the
lions' hour of drinking peculiar to themselves: they seemed unwilling to
visit the fountains with good moonlight. Thus, when the moon rose early,
the lions deferred their hour of watering until late in the morning; and
when the moon rose late, they drank at a very early hour in the night.
By this acute system many a grisly lion saved his bacon, and is now
luxuriating in the forests of South Africa, which had otherwise fallen
by the barrels of my "Westley Richards." Owing to the tawny color of the
coat with which nature has robed him, he is perfectly invisible in the
dark; and although I have often heard them loudly lapping the water
under my very nose, not twenty yards from me. I could not possibly make
out so much as the outline of their forms. When a thirsty lion comes to
water, he stretches out his massive arms, lies down on his breast to
drink, and makes a loud lapping noise in drinking not to be mistaken. He
continues lapping up the water for a long while, and four or five times
during the proceeding he pauses for half a minute as if to take breath.
One thing conspicuous about them is their eyes, which, in a dark night,
glow like two balls of fire. The female is more fierce and active than
the male, as a general rule. Lionesses which have never had young are
much more dangerous than those which have. At no time is the lion so
much to be dreaded as when his partner has got small young ones. At that
season he knows no fear, and, in the coolest and most intrepid manner,
he will face a thousand men. A remarkable instance of this kind came
under my own observation, which confirmed the reports I had before heard
from the natives. One day, when out elephant-hunting in the territory of
the "Baseleka," accompanied by two hundred and fifty men, I was
astonished suddenly to behold a majestic lion slowly and steadily
advancing toward us with a dignified step and undaunted bearing, the
most noble and imposing that can be conceived. Lashing his tail from
side to side, and growling haughtily, his terribly expressive eye
resolutely fixed upon us, and displaying a show of ivory well calculated
to inspire terror among the timid "Bechuanas," he approached. A headlong
flight of the two hundred and fifty men was the immediate result; and,
in the confusion of the moment, four couples of my dogs, which they had
been leading, were allowed to escape in their couples. These instantly
faced the lion, who, finding that by his bold bearing he had succeeded
in putting his enemies to flight, now became solicitous for the safety
of his little family, with which the lioness was retreating in the
background. Facing about, he followed after them with a haughty and
independent step, growling fiercely at the dogs which trotted along on
either side of him. Three troops of elephants having been discovered a
few minutes previous to this, upon which I was marching for the attack,
I, with the most heartfelt reluctance, reserved my fire. On running down
the hill side to endeavor to recall my dogs, I observed, for the first
time, the retreating lioness with four cubs. About twenty minutes
afterward two noble elephants repaid my forbearance.

Among Indian Nimrods, a certain class of royal tigers is dignified with
the appellation of "man-eaters." These are tigers which, having once
tasted human flesh, show a predilection for the same, and such
characters are very naturally famed and dreaded among the natives.
Elderly gentlemen of similar tastes and habits are occasionally met with
among the lions in the interior of South Africa, and the danger of such
neighbors may be easily imagined. I account for lions first acquiring
this taste in the following manner: the Bechuana tribes of the far
interior do not bury their dead, but unceremoniously carry them forth,
and leave them lying exposed in the forest or on the plain, a prey to
the lion and hyæna, or the jackal and vulture; and I can readily imagine
that a lion, having thus once tasted human flesh, would have little
hesitation, when opportunity presented itself, of springing upon and
carrying off the unwary traveler or "Bechuana" inhabiting his country.
Be this as it may, man-eaters occur; and on my fourth hunting
expedition, a horrible tragedy was acted one dark night in my little
lonely camp by one of these formidable characters, which deprived me, in
the far wilderness, of my most valuable servant. In winding up these few
observations on the lion, which I trust will not have been tiresome to
the reader, I may remark that lion-hunting, under any circumstances, is
decidedly a dangerous pursuit. It may nevertheless be followed, to a
certain extent, with comparative safety by those who have naturally a
turn for that sort of thing. A recklessness of death, perfect coolness
and self-possession, an acquaintance with the disposition and manners of
lions, and a tolerable knowledge of the use of the rifle, are
indispensable to him who would shine in the overpoweringly exciting
pastime of hunting this justly-celebrated king of beasts.

[From Dickens's Household Words.]



There is an old yew tree which stands by the wall in a dark quiet corner
of the church-yard.

And a child was at play beneath its wide-spreading branches, one fine
day in the early spring. He had his lap full of flowers, which the
fields and lanes had supplied him with, and he was humming a tune to
himself as he wove them into garlands.

And a little girl at play among the tombstones crept near to listen; but
the boy was so intent upon his garland, that he did not hear the gentle
footsteps as they trod softly over the fresh green grass. When his work
was finished, and all the flowers that were in his lap were woven
together in one long wreath, he started, up to measure its length upon
the ground, and then he saw the little girl, as she stood with her eyes
fixed upon him. He did not move or speak, but thought to himself that
she looked very beautiful as she stood there with her flaxen ringlets
hanging down upon her neck. The little girl was so startled by his
sudden movement, that she let fall all the flowers she had collected in
her apron, and ran away as fast as she could. But the boy was older and
taller than she, and soon caught her, and coaxed her to come back and
play with him, and help him to make more garlands; and from that time
they saw each other nearly every day, and became great friends.

Twenty years passed away. Again, he was seated beneath the old yew tree
in the church-yard.

It was summer now; bright, beautiful summer, with the birds singing, and
the flowers covering the ground, and scenting the air with their

But he was not alone now, nor did the little girl steal near on tiptoe,
fearful of being heard. She was seated by his side, and his arm was
round her, and she looked up into his face, and smiled as she whispered:
"The first evening of our lives we were ever together was passed here:
we will spend the first evening of our wedded life in the same quiet,
happy place." And he drew her closer to him as she spoke.

The summer is gone; and the autumn; and twenty more summers and autumns
have passed away since that evening, in the old church-yard.

A young man, on a bright moonlight night, comes reeling through the
little white gate, and stumbling over the graves. He shouts and he
sings, and is presently followed by others like unto himself, or worse.
So, they all laugh at the dark solemn head of the yew tree, and throw
stones up at the place where the moon has silvered the boughs.

Those same boughs are again silvered by the moon, and they droop over
his mother's grave. There is a little stone which bears this


But the silence of the church-yard is now broken by a voice--not of the
youth--nor a voice of laughter and ribaldry.

"My son! dost thou see this grave? and dost thou read the record in
anguish, whereof may come repentance?"

"Of what should I repent?" answers the son; "and why should my young
ambition for fame relax in its strength because my mother was old and

"Is this indeed our son?" says the father, bending in agony over the
grave of his beloved.

"I can well believe I am not;" exclaimeth the youth. "It is well that
you have brought me here to say so. Our natures are unlike; our courses
must be opposite. Your way lieth here--mine yonder!"

So the son left the father kneeling by the grave.

Again a few years are passed. It is winter, with a roaring wind and a
thick gray fog. The graves in the church-yard are covered with snow, and
there are great icicles in the church-porch. The wind now carries a
swathe of snow along the tops of the graves, as though the "sheeted
dead" were at some melancholy play; and hark! the icicles fall with a
crash and jingle, like a solemn mockery of the echo of the unseemly
mirth of one who is now coming to his final rest.

There are two graves near the old yew tree; and the grass has overgrown
them. A third is close by; and the dark earth at each side has just been
thrown up. The bearers come; with a heavy pace they move along; the
coffin heaveth up and down, as they step over the intervening graves.

Grief and old age had seized upon the father, and worn out his life; and
premature decay soon seized upon the son, and gnawed away his vain
ambition, and his useless strength, till he prayed to be borne, not the
way yonder that was most opposite to his father and his mother, but even
the same way they had gone--the way which leads to the Old Church-yard



The English peasant is generally reckoned a very simple, monotonous
animal; and most people, when they have called him a clown, or a
country-hob, think they have described him. If you see a picture of him,
he is a long, silly-looking fellow, in a straw hat, a white slop, and a
pair of ankle-boots, with a bill in his hand--just as the London artist
sees him in the juxta-metropolitan districts; and that is the English
peasant. They who have gone farther into England, however, than Surrey,
Kent, or Middlesex, have seen the English peasant in some different
costume, under a good many different aspects; and they who will take the
trouble to recollect what they have heard of him, will find him a rather
multifarious creature. He is, in truth, a very Protean personage. What
is he, in fact? A day-laborer, a woodman, a plowman, a wagoner, a
collier, a worker in railroad and canal making, a gamekeeper, a poacher,
an incendiary, a charcoal-burner, a keeper of village ale-houses, and
Tom-and-Jerrys; a tramp, a pauper, pacing sullenly in the court-yard of
a parish-union, or working in his frieze jacket on some parish-farm; a
boatman, a road-side stone-breaker, a quarryman, a journeyman
bricklayer, or his clerk; a shepherd, a drover, a rat-catcher, a
mole-catcher, and a hundred other things; in any one of which, he is as
different from the sheepish, straw-hatted, and ankle-booted,
bill-holding fellow of the print-shop windows, as a cockney is from a
Newcastle keelman.

In the matter of costume only, every different district presents him in
a different shape. In the counties round London, eastward and westward,
through Berkshire, Hampshire, Wiltshire, etc., he is the _white-slopped_
man of the London prints, with a longish, rosy-cheeked face, and a
stupid, quiet manner. In Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire, and in that
direction, he sports his _olive-green_ slop, and his wide-awake, larking
hat, bit-o'-blood, or whatever else the hatters call those
round-crowned, turned-up-brimmed felts of eighteen-pence or two
shillings cost, which have of late years so wonderfully taken the fancy
of the country-chaps. In the Midland counties, especially
Leicestershire, Derby, Nottingham, Warwick, and Staffordshire, he dons a
_blue-slop_, called the Newark frock, which is finely gathered in a
square piece of puckerment on the back and breast, on the shoulders and
at the wrists; is adorned also, in those parts, with flourishes of white
thread, and as invariably has a little white heart stitched in at the
bottom of the slit at the neck. A man would not think himself a man, if
he had not one of those slops, which are the first things that he sees
at a market or a fair, hung aloft at the end of the slop-vender's stall,
on a crossed pole, and waving about like a scarecrow in the wind.

Under this he generally wears a coarse blue jacket, a red or yellow shag
waistcoat, stout blue worsted stockings, tall laced ankle-boots, and
corduroy breeches or trowsers. A red handkerchief round his neck is his
delight, with two good long ends dangling in front. In many other parts
of the country, he wears no slop at all, but a corduroy or fustian
jacket, with capacious pockets, and buttons of giant size.

That is his every-day, work-a-day style; but see him on a Sunday, or a
holiday--see him turn out to church, wake, or fair--there's a _beau_ for
you! If he has not his best slop on, which has never yet been defiled by
touch of labor, he is conspicuous in his blue, brown, or olive-green
coat, and waistcoat of glaring color--scarlet, or blue, or green
striped--but it must be showy; and a pair of trowsers, generally blue,
with a width nearly as ample as a sailor's, and not only guiltless of
the foppery of being strapped down, but if he find the road rather
dirty, or the grass dewy, they are turned up three or four inches at the
bottom, so as to show the lining. On those days, he has a hat of modern
shape, that has very lately cost him four-and-sixpence; and if he fancy
himself rather handsome, or stands well with the women, he cocks it a
little on one side, and wears it with a knowing air. He wears the collar
of his coarse shirt up on a holiday, and his flaming handkerchief round
his neck puts forth dangling ends of an extra length, like streamers.
The most troublesome business of a full-dress day is to know what to do
with his hands. He is dreadfully at a loss where to put them. On other
days, they have plenty of occupation with their familiar implements, but
to-day they are miserably sensible of a vacuum; and, except he be very
old, he wears no gloves. They are sometimes diving into his
trowser-pockets, sometimes into his waistcoat-pocket, and at others into
his coat-pockets behind, turning his laps out like a couple of tails.

The great remedy for this inconvenience is a stick, or a switch; and in
the corner of his cottage, between the clock-case and the wall, you
commonly see a stick of a description that indicates its owner. It is an
ash-plant, with a face cut on its knob; or a thick hazel, which a
woodbine has grown tightly round, and raised on it a spiral, serpentine
swelling; or it is a switch, that is famous for cutting off the heads of
thistles, docks, and nettles, as he goes along.

The women, in their paraphernalia, generally bear a nearer resemblance
to their sisters of the town; the village dressmaker undertaking to put
them into the very newest fashion which has reached that part of the
country; and truly, were it not for the genuine country manner in which
their clothes are thrown on, they might pass very well, too, at the

But the old men and old women, they are of the ancient world, truly.
There they go, tottering and stooping along to church! It is now their
longest journey. The old man leans heavily on his stout stick. His thin
white hair covers his shoulders; his coat, with large steel buttons, and
square-cut collar, has an antique air; his breeches are of leather, and
worn bright with age, standing up at the knees, like the lids of
tankards; and his loose shoes have large steel buckles. By his side,
comes on his old dame, with her little, old-fashioned black bonnet; her
gown, of a large flowery pattern, pulled up through the pocket-hole,
showing a well-quilted petticoat, black stockings, high-heeled shoes,
and large buckles also. She has on a black mode cloak, edged with
old-fashioned lace, carefully darned; or if winter, her warm red cloak,
with a narrow edging of fur down the front. You see, in fancy, the oaken
chest in which that drapery has been kept for the last half century; and
you wonder who is to wear it next. Not their children--for the fashions
of this world are changed; they must be cut down into primitive raiment
for the grandchildren.

But who says the English peasant is dull and unvaried in his character?
To be sure, he has not the wild wit, the voluble tongue, the reckless
fondness for laughing, dancing, carousing, and shillalying of the Irish
peasant; nor the grave, plodding habits and intelligence of the Scotch
one. He may be said, in his own phraseology, to be "betwixt and
between." He has wit enough when it is wanted; he can be merry enough
when there is occasion; he is ready for a row when his blood is well up;
and he will take to his book, if you will give him a schoolmaster. What
is he, indeed, but the rough block of English character? Hew him out of
the quarry of ignorance; dig him out of the slough of everlasting labor;
chisel him, and polish him; and he will come out whatever you please.
What is the stuff of which your armies have been chiefly made, but this
English peasant? Who won your Cressys, your Agincourts, your Quebecs,
your Indies, East and West, and your Waterloos, but the English peasant,
trimmed and trained into the game-cock of war? How many of them have
been carried off to man your fleets, to win your Camperdowns and
Trafalgars? and when they came ashore again, were no longer the simple,
slouching Simons of the village; but jolly tars, with rolling gait, quid
in mouth, glazed hats, with crowns of one inch high, and brims of five
wide, and with as much glib slang, and glib money to treat the girls
with, as any Jack of them all.

Cowper has drawn a capital picture of the ease and perfection with which
the clownish chrysalis may be metamorphosed into the scarlet moth of
war. Catch the animal young, and you may turn him into any shape you
please. He will learn to wear silk stockings, scarlet plush breeches,
collarless coats, with silver buttons; and swing open a gate with a
grace, or stand behind my lady's carriage with his wand, as smoothly
impudent as any of the tribe. He will clerk it with a pen behind his
ear; or mount a pulpit, as Stephen Duck, the thresher, did, if you will
only give him the chance. The fault is not in him, it is in fortune. He
has rich fallows in his soul, if any body thought them worth turning.
But keep him down, and don't press him too hard; feed him pretty well,
and give him plenty of work; and, like one of his companions, the
cart-horse, he will drudge on till the day of his death.

So in the north of England, where they give him a cottage and his food,
and keep no more of his species than will just do the work, letting all
the rest march off to the Tyne collieries; he is a very patient
creature; and if they did not show him books, would not wince at all. So
in the fens of Lincolnshire, Cambridgeshire, and Huntingdon, and on many
a fat and clayey level of England, where there are no resident gentry,
and but here and there a farm-house, you may meet, the English peasant
in his most sluggish and benumbed condition. He is then a long-legged,
staring creature, considerably "lower than the angels," who, if you ask
him a question, gapes like an Indian frog, which, when its mouth is
open, has its head half off; and neither understands your language, nor,
if he did, could grasp your ideas. He is there a walking lump, a thing
with members, but very little membership with the intellectual world;
but with a soul as stagnant as one of his own dykes. All that has been
wanted in him has been cultivated, and is there--good sturdy limbs, to
plow and sow, reap and mow, and feed bullocks; and even in those
operations, his sinews have been half-superseded by machinery. There
never was any need of his mind; and, therefore, it never has been

This is the English peasant, where there is nobody to breathe a soul
into the clod. But what is he where there are thousands of the wealthy
and the wise? What is he round London--the great, the noble, and the
enlightened? Pretty much the same, and from pretty much the same causes.
Few trouble themselves about him. He feels that he is a mere serf, among
the great and free; a mere machine in the hands of the mighty, who use
him as such. He sees the sunshine of grandeur, but he does not feel its
warmth. He hears that the great folks are wise; but all he knows is,
that their wisdom does not trouble itself about his ignorance. He asks,
with "The Farmer's Boy,"

    Whence comes this change, ungracious, irksome, cold?
    Whence this new grandeur that mine eyes behold?--
    The widening distance that I daily see?
    Has wealth done this? Then wealth's a foe to me!
    Foe to my rights, that leaves a powerful few
    The paths of emulation to pursue.

Beneath the overwhelming sense of his position, that he belongs to a
neglected, despised caste, he is, in the locality alluded to, truly a
dull fellow. That the peasant there is not an ass or a sheep, you only
know by his standing on end. You hear no strains of country drollery,
and no characters of curious or eccentric humor; all is dull, plodding,
and lumpish.

But go forth, my masters, to a greater distance from the luminous
capital of England; get away into the Midland and more Northern
counties, where the pride of greatness is not so palpably before the
poor man's eyes--where the peasantry and villagers are numerous enough
to keep one another in countenance; and there you shall find the English
peasant a "happier and a wiser man." Sunday-schools, and village
day-schools, give him at least the ability to read the Bible. There, the
peasant feels that he is a man; he speaks in a broad dialect, indeed,
but he is "a fellow of infinite jest." Hear him in the hay-field, in the
corn-field, at the harvest-supper, or by the village ale-house fire, if
he be not very refined, he is, nevertheless, a very independent fellow.
Look at the man indeed! None of your long, lanky fellows, with a sleepy
visage; but a sturdy, square-built chap, propped on a pair of legs, that
have self-will, and the spirit of Hampden in them, as plain as the ribs
of the gray-worsted stockings that cover them. What thews, what sinews,
what a pair of _calves_! why, they more resemble a couple of full-grown
_bulls_! See to his salutation, as he passes any of his neighbors--hear
it. Does he touch his hat, and bow his head, and look down, as the great
man goes by in his carriage? No! he leaves that to the cowed bumpkin of
the south. He looks his rich-neighbor full in the face, with a fearless,
but respectful gaze, and bolts from his manly breast a hearty, "Good day
to ye, sir!" To his other neighbor, his equal in worldly matters, he
extends his broad hand, and gives him a shake that is felt to the bottom
of the heart. "Well, and how are you, John?--and how's Molly, and all
the little ankle-biters?--and how goes the pig on, and the garden--eh?"

Let me hear the dialogue of those two brave fellows; there is the soul
of England's brightest days in it. I am sick of slavish poverty on the
one hand, and callous pride on the other. I yearn for the sound of
language breathed from the lungs of humble independence, and the
cordial, earnest greetings of poor, but warm-hearted men, as I long for
the breeze of the mountains and the sea. Oh! I doubt much if this

    Bold peasantry, a country's pride,

is lowered in its tone, both of heart-wholeness, boldness, and
affection, by the harsh times and harsh measures that have passed over
every district, even the most favored; or why all these emigrations, and
why all these parish-unions? What, then, is not the English peasant what
he was? If I went among them where I used to go, should I not find the
same merry groups seated among the sheaves, or under the hedgerows, full
of laughter, and full of droll anecdotes of all the country round?
Should I not hear of the farmer who never wrote but one letter in his
life, and that was to a gentleman forty miles off; who, on opening it,
and not being able to puzzle out more than the name and address of his
correspondent, mounted his horse in his vexation, and rode all the way
to ask the farmer to read the letter himself; and he could not do
it--could not read his own writing? Should I not hear Jonathan Moore,
the stout old mower, rallied on his address to the bull, when it pursued
him till he escaped into a tree? How Jonathan, sitting across a branch,
looked down with the utmost contempt on the bull, and endeavored to
convince him that he was a bully and a coward? "My! what a vaporing
coward art thou! Where's the fairness, where's the equalness of the
match? I tell thee, my heart's good enough; but what's my strength to

Should I not once more hear the hundred-times-told story of Jockey
Dawes, and the man who sold him his horse? Should I not hear these, and
scores of such anecdotes, that show the simple life of the district, and
yet have more hearty merriment in them than much finer stories in much
finer places? Hard times and hard measures may have, quenched some of
the ancient hilarity of the English peasant, and struck a silence into
lungs that were wont to "crow like chanticleer;" yet I will not believe
but that, in many a sweet and picturesque district, on many a brown
moor-land, in many a far-off glen and dale of our wilder and more
primitive districts, where the peasantry are almost the sole
inhabitants--whether shepherds, laborers, hewers of wood, or drawers of

    The ancient spirit is not dead,

that homely and loving groups gather round evening fires, beneath low
and smoky rafters, and feel that they have labor and care enough, as
their fathers had, but that they have the pride of homes, hearts, and
sympathies still.

Let England take care that these are the portion of the English peasant,
and he will never cease to show himself the noblest peasant on the face
of the earth. Is he not that, in his patience with penury with him, and
old age, and the union before him? Is he not that, when his landlord has
given him his sympathy? When he has given him an ALLOTMENT--who so
grateful, so industrious, so provident, so contented, and so

The English peasant has in his nature all the elements of the English
character. Give him ease, and who so readily pleased; wrong him, and who
so desperate in his rage?

In his younger days, before the care of a family weighs on him, he is a
clumsy, but a very light-hearted creature. To see a number of young
country fellows get into play together, always reminds one of a quantity
of heavy cart-horses turned into a field on a Sunday. They gallop, and
kick, and scream. There is no malice, but a dreadful jeopardy of bruises
and broken ribs. Their play is truly called horse-play; it is all slaps
and bangs, tripping-up, tumbles, and laughter. But to see the young
peasant in his glory, you should see him hastening to the
Michaelmas-fair, statute, bull-roasting, or mop. He has served his year;
he has money in his pocket, his sweetheart on his arm, or he is sure to
meet her at the fair. Whether he goes again to his old place or a new
one, he will have a week's holiday. Thus, on old Michaelmas-day, he and
all his fellows, all the country over, are let loose, and are on the way
to the fair. The houses are empty of them--the highways are full of
them; there they go, lads and lasses, streaming along, all in their
finery, and with a world of laughter and loud talk. See, here they come,
flocking into the market-town! And there, what preparations for them!
shows, strolling theatres, stalls of all kinds--bearing clothes of all
kinds, knives, combs, queen-cakes, and gingerbread, and a hundred
inventions to lure those hard-earned wages out of his fob. And he does
not mean to be stingy to-day; he will treat his lass, and buy her a new
gown into the bargain. See, how they go rolling on together! He holds up
his elbow sharply by his side; she thrusts her arm through his, _up to
the elbow_, and away they go--a walking miracle that they can walk
together at all. As to keeping step, that is out of the question; but,
besides this, they wag and roll about in such a way, that, keeping their
arms tightly linked, it is amazing that they don't pull off one or the
other; but they don't. They shall see the shows, and stand all in a
crowd before them, with open eyes and open mouths, wondering at the
beauty of the dancing-women, and their gowns all over spangles, and at
all the wit and grimaces, and somersets of harlequin and clown. They
have had a merry dinner and a dance, like a dance of elephants and
hippopotami; and then--

    To-morrow to fresh fields and pastures new.

And these are the men that become sullen and desperate--that become
poachers and incendiaries. How and why! It is not plenty and kind words
that make them so? What, then? What makes the wolves herd together, and
descend from the Alps and the Pyrenees? What makes them desperate and
voracious, blind with fury, and reveling with vengeance? Hunger and

When the English peasant is gay, at ease, well-fed and clothed, what
cares he how many pheasants are in a wood, or ricks in a farmer's yard?
When he has a dozen backs to clothe, and a dozen mouths to feed, and
nothing to put on the one, and little to put into the other--then that
which seemed a mere playful puppy, suddenly starts up a snarling,
red-eyed monster! How sullen he grows! With what equal indifference he
shoots down pheasants or game-keepers. How the man who so recently held
up his head and laughed aloud, now sneaks, a villainous fiend, with the
dark lantern and the match, to his neighbor's rick! Monster! Can this be
the English peasant? 'Tis the same!--'tis the very man! But what has
made him so? What has thus demonized, thus infuriated, thus converted
him into a walking pestilence? Villain as he is, is he alone to
blame?--or is there another?

[From the Dublin University Magazine.]


[_Continued from Page_ 340.]



When I reached the quarters of the état major, I found the great
court-yard of the "hotel" crowded with soldiers of every rank and arm of
the service. Some were newly-joined recruits waiting for the orders to
be forwarded to their respective regiments. Some were invalids just
issued from the hospital, some were sick and wounded on their way
homeward. There were sergeants with billet rolls, and returns, and
court-martial sentences. Adjutants with regimental documents, hastening
hither and thither. Mounted orderlies, too, continually came and went;
all was bustle, movement, and confusion. Officers in staff uniforms
called out the orders from the different windows, and dispatches were
sent off here and there with hot haste. The building was the ancient
palace of the dukes of Lorraine, and a splendid fountain of white marble
in the centre of the "Cour," still showed the proud armorial bearings of
that princely house. Around the sculptured base of this now were seated
groups of soldiers; their war-worn looks and piled arms contrasting
strangely enough with the great porcelain vases of flowering plants that
still decorated the rich "plateau." Chakos, helmets, and great coats
were hung upon the orange trees. The heavy boots of the cuirassier, the
white leather apron of the "sapeur," were drying along the marble
benches of the terrace. The richly traceried veining of gilt iron-work,
which separated the court from the garden, was actually covered with
belts, swords, bayonets, and horse gear, in every stage and process of
cleaning. Within the garden itself, however, all was silent and still.
Two sentries, who paced backward and forward beneath the "grille,"
showing that the spot was to be respected by those whose careless
gestures and reckless air betrayed how little influence the mere "genius
of the place" would exercise over them.

To me, the interest of every thing was increasing; and whether I
lingered to listen to the raw remarks of the new recruit, in wonder at
all he saw, or stopped to hear the campaigning stories of the old
soldiers of the army, I never wearied. Few, if any, knew whither they
were going; perhaps to the north to join the army of Sambre; perhaps to
the east, to the force upon the Rhine. It might be that they were
destined for Italy: none cared! Meanwhile, at every moment, detachments
moved off, and their places were filled by fresh arrivals--all dusty and
way-worn from the march. Some had scarcely time to eat a hurried morsel,
when they were called on to "fall in," and again the word "forward" was
given. Such of the infantry as appeared too weary for the march were
sent on in great charrettes drawn by six or eight horses, and capable of
carrying forty men in each; and of these, there seemed to be no end. No
sooner was one detachment away, than another succeeded. Whatever their
destination, one thing seemed evident, the urgency that called them was
beyond the common. For a while I forgot all about myself in the greater
interest of the scene; but then came the thought, that I, too, should
have my share in this onward movement, and now I set out to seek for my
young friend, the "Sous-Lieutenant." I had not asked his name, but his
regiment I knew to be the 22d Chasseurs à Cheval. The uniform was light
green, and easily enough to be recognized; yet nowhere was it to be
seen. There were cuirassiers, and hussars, heavy dragoons, and
carabiniers in abundance--every thing, in short, but what I sought.

At last I asked of an old quartermaster where the 22d were quartered,
and heard, to my utter dismay, that they had marched that morning at
eight o'clock. There were two more squadrons expected to arrive at noon,
but the orders were that they were to proceed without further halt.

"And whither to?" asked I.

"To Treves, on the Moselle," said he, and turned away as if he would not
be questioned further. It was true that my young friend could not have
been much of a patron, yet the loss of him was deeply felt by me. He was
to have introduced me to his colonel, who probably might have obtained
the leave I desired at once; and now I knew no one, not one even to
advise me how to act. I sat down upon a bench to think, but could
resolve on nothing; the very sight of that busy scene had now become a
reproach to me. There were the veterans of a hundred battles hastening
forward again to the field; there were the young soldiers just flushed
with recent victory; even the peasant boys were "eager for the fray;"
but I alone was to have no part in the coming glory. The enthusiasm of
all around only served to increase and deepen my depression. There was
not one there, from the old and war-worn veteran of the ranks to the
merest boy, with whom I would not gladly have exchanged fortunes. Some
hours passed over in these gloomy reveries, and when I looked up from
the stupor my own thoughts had thrown over me, "the Cour" was almost
empty. A few sick soldiers waiting for their billets of leave, a few
recruits not yet named to any corps, and a stray orderly or two standing
beside his horse, were all that remained.

I arose to go away, but in my pre-occupation of mind, instead of turning
toward the street, I passed beneath a large arch-way into another court
of the building, somewhat smaller, but much richer in decoration and
ornament than the outer one. After spending some time admiring the
quaint devices and grim heads which peeped out from all the architraves
and friezes, my eye was caught by a low, arched door-way, in the middle
of which was a small railed window, like the grille of a convent. I
approached, and perceived that it led into a garden, by a long, narrow
walk of clipped yew, dense and upright as a wall. The trimly-raked
gravel, and the smooth surface of the hedge, showed the care bestowed on
the grounds to be a wide contrast to the neglect exhibited in the
mansion itself; a narrow border of hyacinths and carnations ran along
either side of the walk, the gorgeous blossoms appearing in strong
relief against the back-ground of dark foliage.

The door, as I leaned against it, gently yielded to the pressure of my
arm, and almost without knowing it, I found myself standing within the
precincts of the garden. My first impulse, of course, was to retire and
close the door again, but somehow, I never knew exactly why, I could not
resist the desire to see a little more of a scene so tempting. There was
no mark of footsteps on the gravel, and I thought it likely the garden
was empty. On I went, therefore, at first with cautious and uncertain
steps; at last, with more confidence, for as I issued from the
hedge-walk, and reached an open space beyond, the solitude seemed
unbroken. Fruit trees, loaded with their produce, stood in a closely
shaven lawn, through which a small stream meandered, its banks planted
with daffodills and water-lilies. Some pheasants moved about through the
grass, but without alarm at my presence; while a young fawn boldly came
over to me, and although in seeming disappointment at not finding an old
friend, continued to walk beside me as I went.

The grounds appeared of great extent; paths led off in every direction;
and while, in some places, I could perceive the glittering roof and
sides of a conservatory, in others, the humble culture of a vegetable
garden was to be seen. There was a wondrous fascination in the calm and
tranquil solitude around; and coming, as it did, so immediately after
the busy bustle of the "soldiering," I soon not only forgot that I was
an intruder there, but suffered myself to wander "fancy free," following
out the thoughts each object suggested. I believe at that moment, if the
choice were given me, I would rather have been the "Adam of that Eden"
than the proudest of those generals that ever led a column to victory!
Fortunately, or unfortunately--it would not be easy to decide which--the
alternative was not open to me. It was while I was still musing, I found
myself at the foot of a little eminence, on which stood a tower, whose
height and position showed it had been built for the view it afforded
over a vast tract of country. Even from where I stood, at its base, I
could see over miles and miles of a great plain, with the main roads
leading toward the north and eastward. This spot was also the boundary
of the grounds, and a portion of the old boulevard of the town formed
the defense against the open country beyond. It was a deep ditch, with
sides of sloping sward, cropped neatly, and kept in trimmest order; but,
from its depth and width, forming a fence of a formidable kind. I was
peering cautiously down into the abyss, when I heard a voice so close to
my ear, that I started with surprise. I listened, and perceived that the
speaker was directly above me; and leaning over the battlements at the
top of the tower.

"You're quite right, cried he, as he adjusted a telescope to his eye,
and directed his view toward the plain. He _has_ gone wrong! He has
taken the Strasbourg road, instead of the northern one."

An exclamation of anger followed these words; and now I saw the
telescope passed to another hand, and to my astonishment, that of a

"Was there ever stupidity like that? He saw the map like the others, and
yet--Parbleu! it's too bad!"

I could perceive that a female voice made some rejoinder, but not
distinguish the words; when the man again spoke:

"No, no; it's all a blunder of that old major; and here am I without an
orderly to send after him. Diable! it _is_ provoking."

"Isn't that one of your people at the foot of the tower?" said the lady,
as she pointed to where I stood, praying for the earth to open, and
close over me; for as he moved his head to look down, I saw the epaulets
of a staff officer.

"Halloa!" cried he, "are you on duty?"

"No, sir; I was--"

Not waiting for me to finish an explanation, he went on,

"Follow that division of cavalry that has taken the Strasbourg road, and
tell Major Roquelard that he has gone wrong; he should have turned off
to the left at the suburbs. Lose no time, but away at once. You are
mounted, of course?"

"No, sir, my horse is at quarters; but I can--"

"No, no; it will be too late," he broke in again. "Take my troop horse,
and be off. You'll find him in the stable, to your left."

Then turning to the lady I heard him say--

"It may save Roquelard from an arrest."

I did not wait for more, but hurried off in the direction he had
pointed. A short gravel walk brought me in front of a low building, in
the cottage style, but which, decorated with emblems of the chase, I
guessed to be the stable. Not a groom was to be seen; but the door being
unlatched, I entered freely. Four large and handsome horses were feeding
at the racks, their glossy coats and long silky manes showing the care
bestowed upon them. Which is the trooper? thought I, as I surveyed them
all with keen and scrutinizing eye. All my skill in such matters was
unable to decide the point; they seemed all alike valuable and
handsome--in equally high condition, and exhibiting equal marks of
careful treatment. Two were stamped on the haunches with the letters
"R.F.;" and these, of course, were cavalry horses. One was a powerful
black horse, whose strong quarters and deep chest bespoke great action,
while the backward glances of his eye indicated the temper of a
"tartar." Making choice of him without an instant's hesitation, I threw
on the saddle, adjusted the stirrups to my own length, buckled the
bridle, and led him forth. In all my "school experience" I had never
seen an animal that pleased me so much; his well-arched neck and
slightly-dipped back showed that an Arab cross had mingled with the
stronger qualities of the Norman horse. I sprung to my saddle with
delight; to be astride such a beast was to kindle up all the enthusiasm
of my nature, and as I grasped the reins, and urged him forward, I was
half wild with excitement.

Apparently the animal was accustomed to more gentle treatment, for he
gave a loud snort, such as a surprised or frightened horse will give,
and then bounded forward once or twice, as if to dismount me. This
failing, he reared up perfectly straight, pawing madly, and threatening
even to fall backward. I saw that I had, indeed, selected a wicked one;
for in every bound and spring, in every curvet and leap, the object was
clearly to unseat the rider. At one instant he would crouch, as if to
lie down, and then bound up several feet in the air, with a toss up of
his haunches that almost sent me over the head. At another he would
spring from side to side, writhing and twisting like a fish, till the
saddle seemed actually slipping away from his lithe body. Not only did I
resist all these attacks, but vigorously continued to punish with whip
and spur the entire time--a proceeding, I could easily see, he was not
prepared for. At last, actually maddened with his inability to throw me,
and enraged by my continuing to spur him, he broke away, and dashing
headlong forward, rushed into the very thickest of the grove.
Fortunately for me, the trees were either shrubs or of stunted growth,
so that I had only to keep my saddle to escape danger; but suddenly
emerging from this, he gained the open sward, and as if his passion
became more furious as he indulged it, he threw up his head, and struck
out in full gallop. I had but time to see that he was heading for the
great fosse of the boulevard, when we were already on its brink. A
shout, and a cry of I know not what, came from the tower; but I heard
nothing more. Mad as the maddened animal himself, perhaps at that moment
just as indifferent to life, I dashed the spurs into his flanks, and
over we went, lighting on the green sward as easily as a seagull on a
wave. To all seeming, the terrible leap had somewhat sobered _him_; but
on me it had produced the very opposite effect. I felt that I had gained
the mastery, and resolved to use it. With unrelenting punishment, then,
I rode him forward, taking the country as it lay straight before me. The
few fences which divided the great fields were too insignificant to be
called leaps, and he took them in the "sling" of his stretching gallop.
He was now subdued, yielding to every turn of my wrist, and obeying
every motive of my will like an instinct. It may read like a petty
victory; but he who has ever experienced the triumph over an enraged and
powerful horse, well knows that few sensations are more pleasurably
exciting. High as is the excitement of being borne along in full speed,
leaving village and spire, glen and river, bridge and mill behind
you--now careering up the mountain side, with the fresh breeze upon your
brow; now diving into the dark forest, startling the hare from her
cover, and sending the wild deer scampering before you--it is still
increased by the sense of a victory, by feeling that the mastery is with
you, and that each bound of the noble beast beneath you has its impulse
in your own heart.

Although the cavalry squadrons I was dispatched to overtake had quitted
Nancy four hours before, I came up with them in less than an hour, and
inquiring for the officer in command, rode up to the head of the
division. He was a thin, gaunt-looking, stern-featured man who listened
to my message without changing a muscle.

"Who sent you with this order?" said he.

"A general officer, sir, whose name I don't know; but who told me to
take his own horse and follow you."

"Did he tell you to kill the animal, sir," said he, pointing to the
heaving flanks and shaking tail of the exhausted beast.

"He bolted with me at first, major, and having cleared the ditch of the
Boulevard, rode away with me."

"Why it's Colonel Mahon's Arab, 'Aleppo,'" said another officer; "what
could have persuaded him to mount an orderly on a best worth ten
thousand francs?"

I thought I'd have fainted, as I heard these words; the whole
consequences of my act revealed themselves before me, and I saw arrest,
trial, sentence, imprisonment, and heaven knew what afterward, like a
panorama rolling out to my view.

"Tell the colonel, sir," said the major, "that I have taken the north
road, intending to cross over at Beaumont; that the artillery trains
have cut up the Metz road so deeply that cavalry can not travel; tell
him that I thank him much for his politeness in forwarding this dispatch
to me; and tell him, that I regret the rules of active service should
prevent my sending back an escort to place yourself under arrest, for
the manner in which you have ridden--you hear, sir?"

I touched my cap in salute.

"Are you certain, sir, that you have my answer correctly?"

"I am, sir."

"Repeat it, then."

I mentioned the reply, word for word, as he spoke it.

"No, sir," said he, as I concluded; "I said for unsoldierlike and cruel
treatment to your horse."

One of his officers whispered something in his ear, and he quietly

"I find that I had not used these words, but I ought to have done so;
give the message, therefore, as you heard it at first."

"Mahon will shoot him, to a certainty," muttered one of the captains.

"I'd not blame him," joined another; "that horse saved his life at
Quiberon, when he fell in with a patrol; and look at him now!"

The major made a sign for me to retire, and I turned and set out toward
Nancy, with the feelings of a convict on the way to his fate.

If I did not feel that these brief records of an humble career were
"upon honor," and that the only useful lesson a life so unimportant can
teach is, the conflict between opposing influences, I might possibly be
disposed to blink the avowal, that, as I rode along toward Nancy, a very
great doubt occurred to me as to whether I ought not to desert! It is a
very ignoble expression; but it must out. There were not in the French
service any of those ignominious punishments which, once undergone, a
man is dishonored forever, and no more admissible to rank with men of
character than if convicted of actual crime; but there were marks of
degradation, almost as severe, then in vogue, and which men dreaded with
a fear nearly as acute--such, for instance, as being ordered for service
at the Bagne de Brest, in Toulon--the arduous duty of guarding the
galley slaves, and which was scarcely a degree above the condition of
the condemned themselves. Than such a fate as this, I would willingly
have preferred death. It was, then, this thought that suggested
desertion; but I soon rejected the unworthy temptation, and held on my
way toward Nancy.

Aleppo, if at first wearied by the severe burst, soon rallied, while he
showed no traces of his fiery temper, and exhibited few of fatigue; and
as I walked along at his side, washing his mouth and nostrils at each
fountain I passed, and slackening his saddle-girths, to give him
freedom, long before we arrived at the suburbs he had regained all his
looks, and much of his spirit.

At last we entered Nancy about nightfall, and, with a failing heart, I
found myself at the gate of the Ducal palace. The sentries suffered me
to pass unmolested, and entering, I took my way through the court-yard,
toward the small gate of the garden, which, as I had left it, was

It was strange enough, the nearer I drew toward the eventful moment of
my fate, the more resolute and composed my heart became. It is possible,
thought I, that in a fit of passion he will send a ball through me, as
the officer said. Be it so--the matter is the sooner ended. If, however,
he will condescend to listen to my explanation, I may be able to assert
my innocence, at least so far as intention went. With this comforting
conclusion, I descended at the stable door. Two dragoons in undress were
smoking, as they lay at full length upon a bench, and speedily arose as
I came up.

"Tell the colonel he's come, Jacques," said one, in a loud voice, and
the other retired; while the speaker, turning toward me, took the bridle
from my hand, and led the animal in, without vouchsafing a word to me.

"An active beast that," said I, affecting the easiest and coolest
indifference. The soldier gave me a look of undisguised amazement, and I

"He has had a bad hand on him, I should say--some one too flurried and
too fidgety to give confidence to a hot-tempered horse."

Another stare was all the reply.

"In a little time, and with a little patience, I'd make him as gentle as
a lamb."

"I am afraid you'll not have the opportunity," replied he,
significantly; "but the colonel, I see, is waiting for you, and you can
discuss the matter together."

The other dragoon had just then returned, and made me a sign to follow
him. A few paces brought us to the door of a small pavilion, at which a
sentry stood, and having motioned to me to pass in, my guide left me. An
orderly sergeant at the same instant appeared, and beckoning to me to
advance, he drew aside a curtain, and pushing me forward, let the heavy
folds close behind me; and now I found myself in a richly-furnished
chamber, at the farther end of which an officer was at supper with a
young and handsome woman. The profusion of wax lights on the table--the
glitter of plate, and glass, and porcelain--the richness of the lady's
dress, which seemed like the costume of a ball--were all objects
distracting enough, but they could not turn me from the thought of my
own condition; and I stood still and motionless, while the officer, a
man of about fifty, with dark and stern features, deliberately scanned
me from head to foot. Not a word did he speak, not a gesture did he
make, but sat, with his black eyes actually piercing me. I would have
given any thing for some outbreak of anger, some burst of passion, that
would have put an end to this horrible suspense, but none came; and
there he remained several minutes, as if contemplating something too new
and strange for utterance. "This must have an end," thought I--"here
goes;" and so, with my hand in salute, I drew myself full up, and said,

"I carried your orders, sir, and received for answer that Major
Roquelard had taken the north road advisedly, as that by Beaumont was
cut up by the artillery trains; that he would cross over to the Metz
Chaussée as soon as possible; that he thanked you for the kindness of
your warning, and regretted that the rules of active service precluded
his dispatching an escort of arrest along with me, for the manner in
which I had ridden with the order."

"Any thing more?" asked the colonel, in a voice that sounded thick and
guttural with passion.

"Nothing more, sir."

"No further remark or observation?"

"None, sir--at least from the major."

"What then--from any other?"

"A captain, sir, whose name I do not know, did say something."

"What was it?"

"I forget the precise words, sir, but their purport was, that Colonel
Mahon would certainly shoot me when I got back."

"And you replied?"

"I don't believe I made any reply at the time, sir."

"But you thought, sir--what were your thoughts?"

"I thought it very like what I'd have done myself in a like case,
although certain to be sorry for it afterward."

Whether the emotion had been one for some time previous restrained, or
that my last words had provoked it suddenly, I can not tell, but the
lady here burst out into a fit of laughter, but which was as suddenly
checked by some sharp observation of the colonel, whose stern features
grew sterner and darker every moment.

"There we differ, sir," said he, "for _I_ should not." At the same
instant he pushed his plate away, to make room on the table for a small
portfolio, opening which he prepared to write.

"You will bring this paper," continued he, "to the 'Prevot Marshal.'
To-morrow morning you shall be tried by a regimental court-martial, and
as your sentence may probably be the galleys and hard labor--"

"I'll save them the trouble," said I, quietly drawing my sword; but
scarcely was it clear of the scabbard when a shriek broke from the lady,
who possibly knew not the object of my act; at the same instant the
colonel bounded across the chamber, and striking me a severe blow upon
the arm, dashed the weapon from my hand to the ground.

"You want the 'fusillade'--is that what you want?" cried he, as, in a
towering fit of passion, he dragged me forward to the light. I was now
standing close to the table; the lady raised her eyes toward me, and at
once broke out into a burst of laughter; such hearty, merry laughter,
that, even with the fear of death before me, I could almost have joined
in it.

"What is it--what do you mean, Laure?" cried the colonel angrily.

"Don't you see it?" said she, still holding her kerchief to her
face--"can't you perceive it yourself? He has only one mustache!"

I turned hastily toward the mirror beside me, and there was the fatal
fact revealed--one gallant curl disported proudly over the left cheek,
while the other was left bare.

"Is the fellow mad--a mountebank?" said the colonel, whose anger was now
at its white heat.

"Neither, sir," said I, tearing off my remaining mustache, in shame and
passion together. "Among my other misfortunes I have that of being
young; and what's worse, I was ashamed of it; but I begin to see my
error, and know that a man may be old without gaining either in dignity
or temper."

With a stroke of his closed fist upon the table, the colonel made every
glass and decanter spring from their places, while he uttered an oath
that was only current in the days of that army. "This is beyond belief,"
cried he. "Come, gredin, you have at least had one piece of good
fortune: you've fallen precisely into the hands of one who can deal with
you. Your regiment?"

"The Ninth Hussars."

"Your name."


"Tiernay; that's not a French name?"

"Not originally; we were Irish once."

"Irish!" said he, in a different tone from what he had hitherto used.
"Any relative of a certain Comte Maurice de Tiernay, who once served in
the Royal Guard?"

"His son, sir."

"What--his son! Art certain of this, lad? You remember your mother's
name, then; what was it?"

"I never knew which was my mother," said I. "Mademoiselle de la
Lasterie, or--"

He did not suffer me to finish, but throwing his arms around my neck,
pressed me to his bosom.

"You are little Maurice, then," said he, "the son of my old and valued
comrade! Only think of it, Laure--I was that boy's godfather."

Here was a sudden change in my fortunes; nor was it without a great
effort that I could credit the reality of it, as I saw myself seated
between the colonel and his fair companion, both of whom overwhelmed me
with attention. It turned out that Colonel Mahon had been a
fellow-guardsman with my father, for whom he had ever preserved the
warmest attachment. One of the few survivors of the "Garde du Corps," he
had taken service with the republic, and was already reputed as one of
the most distinguished cavalry officers.

"Strange enough, Maurice," said he to me, "there was something in your
look and manner, as you spoke to me there, that recalled your poor
father to my memory; and, without knowing or suspecting why, I suffered
you to bandy words with me, while at another moment I would have ordered
you to be ironed and sent to prison."

Of my mother, of whom I wished much to learn something, he would not
speak, but adroitly changed the conversation to the subject of my own
adventures, and these he made me recount from the beginning. If the lady
enjoyed all the absurdities of my checkered fortune with a keen sense of
the ridiculous, the colonel apparently could trace in them but so many
resemblances to my father's character, and constantly broke out into
exclamations of "How like him!" "Just what he would have done himself!"
"His own very words!" and so on.

It was only in a pause of the conversation, as the clock on the
mantle-piece struck eleven, that I was aware of the lateness of the
hour, and remembered that I should be on the punishment-roll the next
morning, for absence from quarters.

"Never fret about that, Maurice, I'll return your name as on a special
service; and to have the benefit of truth on our side, you shall be
named one of my orderlies, with the grade of corporal."

"Why not make him a sous-lieutenant?" said the lady, in a half whisper.
"I'm sure he is better worth his epaulets than any I have seen on your

"Nay, nay," muttered the colonel, "the rules of the service forbid it.
He'll win his spurs time enough, or I'm much mistaken."

While I thanked my new and kind patron for his goodness, I could not
help saying that my heart was eagerly set upon the prospect of actual
service; and that, proud as I should be of his protection, I would
rather merit it by my conduct, than owe my advancement to favor.

"Which simply means that you are tired of Nancy, and riding drill, and
want to see how men comport themselves where the manœuvres are not
arranged beforehand. Well, so far you are right, boy. I shall, in all
likelihood, be stationed here for three or four months, during which you
may have advanced a stage or so toward those epaulets my fair friend
desires to see upon your shoulders. You shall, therefore, be sent
forward to your own corps. I'll write to the colonel to confirm the rank
of corporal: the regiment is at present on the Moselle, and, if I
mistake not, will soon be actively employed. Come to me to-morrow,
before noon, and be prepared to march with the first detachments that
are sent forward."

A cordial shake of the hand followed these words; and the lady having
also vouchsafed me an equal token of her good-will, I took my leave, the
happiest fellow that ever betook himself to quarters after hours, and as
indifferent to the penalties annexed to the breach of discipline as if
the whole code of martial law were a mere fable.



If the worthy reader would wish to fancy the happiest of all youthful
beings, let him imagine what I must have been, as, mounted upon Aleppo,
a present from my godfather, with a purse of six shining Louis in my
pocket, and a letter to my colonel, I set forth for Metz. I had
breakfasted with Colonel Mahon, who, amid much good advice for my future
guidance, gave me, half slyly, to understand that the days of Jacobinism
had almost run their course, and that a reactionary movement had already
set in. The republic, he added, was as strong, perhaps stronger than
ever, but that men had grown weary of mob tyranny, and were, day by day,
reverting to the old loyalty, in respect for whatever pretended to
culture, good breeding, and superior intelligence. "As in a shipwreck,
the crew instinctively turn for counsel and direction to the officers,
you will see that France will, notwithstanding all the libertinism of
our age, place her confidence in the men who have been the tried and
worthy servants of former governments. So far, then, from suffering on
account of your gentle blood, Maurice, the time is not distant when it
will do you good service, and when every association that links you with
family and fortune will be deemed an additional guarantee of your good
conduct. I mention these things," continued he, "because your colonel is
what they call a 'Grosbleu,' that is, a coarse-minded, inveterate
republican, detesting aristocracy and all that belongs to it. Take care,
therefore, to give him no just cause for discontent, but be just as
steady in maintaining your position as the descendant of a noble house,
who has not forgotten what were once the privileges of his rank. Write
to me frequently and freely, and I'll take care that you want for
nothing, so far as my small means go, to sustain whatever grade you
occupy. Your own conduct shall decide whether I ever desire to have any
other inheritor than the son of my oldest friend in the world."

Such were his last words to me, as I set forth, in company with a large
party, consisting, for the most part, of under officers and employées
attached to the medical staff of the army. It was a very joyous and
merry fraternity, and, consisting of ingredients drawn from different
pursuits and arms of the service, infinitely amusing from contrast of
character and habits. My chief associate among them was a young
sous-lieutenant of dragoons, whose age, scarcely much above my own,
joined to a joyous, reckless temperament, soon pointed him out as the
character to suit me: his name was Eugene Santron. In appearance he was
slightly formed, and somewhat under-sized, but with handsome features,
their animation rendered sparkling by two of the wickedest black eyes
that ever glistened and glittered in a human head. I soon saw that,
under the mask of affected fraternity and equality, he nourished the
most profound contempt for the greater number of associates, who, in
truth, were, however "braves gens," the very roughest and least-polished
specimens of the polite nation. In all his intercourse with them, Eugene
affected the easiest tone of camaraderé and equality, never assuming in
the slightest, nor making any pretensions to the least superiority on
the score of position or acquirements, but on the whole consoling
himself, as it were, by "playing them off," in their several
eccentricities, and rendering every trait of their vulgarity and
ignorance tributary to his own amusement. Partly from seeing that he
made me an exception to this practice, and partly from his perceiving
the amusement it afforded me, we drew closer toward each other, and
before many days elapsed, had become sworn friends.

There is probably no feature of character so very attractive to a young
man as frankness. The most artful of all flatteries is that which
addresses itself by candor, and seems at once to select, as it were, by
intuition, the object most suited fur a confidence. Santron carried me
by a _coup de main_ of this kind, as taking my arm one evening, as I was
strolling along the banks of the Moselle, he said,

"My dear Maurice, it's very easy to see that the society of our
excellent friends yonder is just as distasteful to you as to me. One can
not always be satisfied laughing at their solecisms in breeding and
propriety. One grows weary at last of ridiculing their thousand
absurdities; and then there comes the terrible retribution in the
reflection of what the devil brought me into such company? a question
that, however easily answered, grows more and more intolerable the
oftener it is asked. To be sure, in my case there was little choice in
the matter, for I was not in any way the arbiter of my own fortune. I
saw myself converted from a royal page to a printer's devil by a kind
old fellow, who saved my life by smearing my face with ink, and covering
my scarlet uniform with a filthy blouse; and since that day I have
taken the hint, and often found the lesson a good one--the dirtier the

"We were of the old nobility of France, but as the name of our family
was the cause of its extinction, I took care to change it. I see you
don't clearly comprehend me, and so I'll explain myself better. My
father lived unmolested during the earlier days of the revolution, and
might so have continued to the end, if a detachment of the Garde
Republicaine had not been dispatched to our neighborhood of Sarre Louis,
where it was supposed some lurking regard for royalty yet lingered.
These fellows neither knew nor cared for the ancient noblesse of the
country, and one evening a patrol of them stopped my father as he was
taking his evening walk along the ramparts. He would scarcely deign to
notice the insolent 'Qui va la!' of the sentry, a summons _he_ at least
thought superfluous in a town which had known his ancestry for eight or
nine generations. At the repetition of the cry, accompanied by something
that sounded ominous, in the sharp click of a gun-lock, he replied,
haughtily, 'Je suis le Marquis de Saint-Trone.'

"'There are no more marquises in France!' was the savage answer.

"My father smiled contemptuously, and briefly said, 'Saint-Trone.'

"'We have no saints either,' cried another.

"'Be it so, my friend,' said he, with mingled pity and disgust. 'I
suppose some designation may at least be left to me, and that I may call
myself Trone.'

"'We are done with thrones long ago,' shouted they in chorus, 'and we'll
finish you also.'

"Ay, and they kept their word, too. They shot him that same evening, on
very little other charge than his own name! If I have retained the old
sound of my name, I have given it a more plebeian spelling, which is,
perhaps, just as much of an alteration as any man need submit to for a
period that will pass away so soon."

"How so, Eugene? you fancy the republic will not endure in France. What,
then, can replace it?"

"Any thing, every thing; for the future all is possible. We have
annihilated legitimacy, it is true, just as the Indians destroy a
forest, by burning the trees, but the roots remain, and if the soil is
incapable of sending up the giant stems as before, it is equally unable
to furnish a new and different culture. Monarchy is just as firmly
rooted in a Frenchman's heart, but he will have neither patience for its
tedious growth, nor can he submit to restore what has cost him so dearly
to destroy. The consequences will, therefore, be a long and continued
struggle between parties, each imposing upon the nation the form of
government that pleases it in turn. Meanwhile, you and I, and others
like us, must serve whatever is uppermost--the cleverest fellow he who
sees the coming change, and prepares to take advantage of it."

"Then are you a royalist?" asked I.

"A royalist! what! stand by a monarch who deserted his aristocracy, and
forgot his own order; defend a throne that he had reduced to the
condition of a fauteuil de Bourgeois?"

"You are then for the republic?"

"For what robbed me of my inheritance--what degraded me from my rank,
and reduced me to a state below that of my own vassals! Is this a cause
to uphold?"

"You are satisfied with military glory, perhaps," said I, scarcely
knowing what form of faith to attribute to him.

"In an army where my superiors are the very dregs of the people; where
the canaille have the command, and the chivalry of France is represented
by a sans-culotte!"

"The cause of the Church--"

A burst of ribald laughter cut me short, and laying his hand on my
shoulder, he looked me full in the face, while, with a struggle to
recover his gravity he said,

"I hope, my dear Maurice, you are not serious, and that you do not mean
this for earnest! Why, my dear boy, don't you talk of the Eleusinian
Mysteries, the Delphic Oracle, of Alchemy, Astrology--of any thing, in
short, of which the world, having amused itself, has, at length, grown
weary? Can't you see that the Church has passed away, and these good
priests have gone the same road as their predecessors. Is any acuteness
wanting to show that there is an end of this superstition that has
enthralled men's minds for a couple of thousand years? No, no, their
game is up, and forever. These pious men, who despised this world, and
yet had no other hold upon the minds of others than by the very craft
and subtlety that world taught them. These heavenly souls, whose whole
machinations revolved about earthly objects and the successes of this
groveling planet! Fight for _them_! No, _parbleu_; we owe them but
little love or affection. Their whole aim in life has been to disgust
one with whatever is enjoyable, and the best boon they have conferred
upon humanity, that bright thought, of locking up the softest eyes and
fairest cheeks of France in cloisters and nunneries! I can forgive our
glorious revolution much of its wrong when I think of the Prêtre; not
but that they could have knocked down the Church without suffering the
ruins to crush the chateau!"

Such, in brief, were the opinions my companion held, and of which I was
accustomed to hear specimens every day; at first, with displeasure and
repugnance; later on, with more of toleration; and, at last, with a
sense of amusement at the singularity of the notions, or the dexterity
with which he defended them. The poison of his doctrines was the more
insidious, because, mingled with a certain dash of good nature, and a
reckless, careless easiness of disposition, always attractive to very
young men. His reputation for courage, of which he had given signal
proofs, elevated him in my esteem; and, ere long, all my misgivings
about him, in regard of certain blemishes, gave way before my admiration
of his heroic bearing, and a readiness to confront peril, wherever to
be found.

I had made him the confidant of my own history, of which I told him
every thing, save the passages which related to the Père Michel. These I
either entirely glossed over, or touched so lightly as to render
unimportant: a dread of ridicule restraining me from any mention of
those earlier scenes of my life, which were alone of all those I should
have avowed with pride. Perhaps it was from mere accident--perhaps some
secret shame to conceal my forlorn and destitute condition may have had
its share in the motive; but, for some cause or other, I gave him to
understand that my acquaintance with Colonel Mahon had dated back to a
much earlier period than a few days before, and, the impression once
made, a sense of false shame led me to support it.

"Mahon can be a good friend to you," said Eugene; "he stands well with
all parties. The Convention trust him, the sansculottes are afraid of
him, and the few men of family whom the guillotine has left look up to
him as one of their stanchest adherents. Depend upon it, therefore, your
promotion is safe enough, even if there were not a field open for every
man who seeks the path to eminence. The great point, however, is to get
service with the army of Italy. These campaigns here are as barren and
profitless as the soil they are fought over; but, in the south, Maurice,
in the land of dark eyes and tresses, under the blue skies, or beneath
the trelliced vines, there are rewards of victory more glorious than a
grateful country, as they call it, ever bestowed. Never forget, my boy,
that you or I have no Cause! It is to us a matter of indifference what
party triumphs, or who is uppermost. The government may change
to-morrow, and the day after, and so on for a month long, and yet _we_
remain just as we were. Monarchy, Commonwealth, Democracy--what you
will--may rule the hour, but the sous-lieutenant is but the servant who
changes his master. Now, in revenge for all this, we have one
compensation, which is, to 'live for the day.' To make the most of that
brief hour of sunshine granted us, and to taste of every pleasure, to
mingle in every dissipation, and enjoy every excitement that we can.
This is my philosophy, Maurice, and just try it."

Such was the companion with whom chance threw me in contact, and I
grieve to think how rapidly his influence gained the mastery over me.



I parted from my friend Eugene at Treves, where he remained in garrison,
while I was sent forward to Coblentz to join my regiment, at that time
forming part of Ney's division.

Were I to adhere in my narrative to the broad current of great events, I
should here have to speak of that grand scheme of tactics by which
Kleber, advancing from the Lower Rhine, engaged the attention of the
Austrian Grand Duke, in order to give time and opportunity for Hoche's
passage of the river at Strasbourg, and the commencement of that
campaign which had for its object the subjugation of Germany. I have
not, however, the pretension to chronicle those passages which history
has forever made memorable, even were my own share in them of a more
distinguished character. The insignificance of my station must,
therefore, be my apology if I turn from the description of great and
eventful incidents to the humble narrative of my own career.

Whatever the contents of Colonel Mahon's letter, they did not plead very
favorably for me with Colonel Hacque, my new commanding officer;
neither, to all seeming, did my own appearance weigh any thing in my
favor. Raising his eyes at intervals from the letter to stare at me, he
uttered some broken phrases of discontent and displeasure; at last he
said--"What's the object of this letter, sir; to what end have you
presented it to me?"

"As I am ignorant of its contents, mon colonel," said I calmly, "I can
scarcely answer the question."

"Well, sir, it informs me that you are the son of a certain Count
Tiernay; who has long since paid the price of his nobility; and that
being a special protégé of the writer, he takes occasion to present you
to me; now I ask again, with what object?"

"I presume, sir, to obtain for me the honor which I now enjoy--to become
personally known to you."

"I know every soldier under my command, sir," said he, rebukingly, "as
you will soon learn if you remain in my regiment. I have no need of
recommendatory letters on that score. As to your grade of corporal, it
is not confirmed; time enough when your services shall have shown that
you deserve promotion. Parbleu, sir, you'll have to show other claims
than your ci-devant countship."

"Colonel Mahon gave me a horse, sir, may I be permitted to retain him as
a regimental mount?" asked I, timidly.

"We want horses--what is he like?"

"Three quarters Arab, and splendid in action, sir."

"Then of course, unfit for service and field manœuvres. Send him to
the Etat Major. The Republic will find a fitting mount for _you_; you
may retire."

And I did retire, with a heart almost bursting between anger and
disappointment. What a future did this opening present to me! What a
realization this of all my flattering hopes!

This sudden reverse of fortune, for it was nothing less, did not render
me more disposed to make the best of my new condition, nor see in the
most pleasing light the rough and rude fraternity among which I was
thrown. The Ninth Hussars were reputed to be an excellent service-corps,
but, off duty, contained some of the worst ingredients of the army.
Play, and its consequence dueling, filled up every hour not devoted to
regimental duty; and low as the tone of manners and morals stood in the
service generally, "Hacques Tapageurs," as they were called, enjoyed the
unflattering distinction of being the leaders. Self-respect was a
quality utterly unknown among them--none felt ashamed at the disgrace of
punishment--and as all knew that, at the approach of the enemy, prison
doors would open, and handcuffs fall off, they affected to think the
Salle de Police was a pleasant alternative to the fatigue and worry of
duty. These habits not only stripped soldiering of all its chivalry, but
robbed freedom itself of all its nobility. These men saw nothing but
licentiousness in their newly-won liberty. Their "Equality" was the
permission to bring every thing down to a base and unworthy standard;
their "Fraternity," the appropriation of what belonged to one richer
than themselves.

It would give me little pleasure to recount, and the reader, in all
likelihood, as little to hear, the details of my life among such
associates. They are the passages of my history most painful to recall,
and least worthy of being remembered; nor can I even yet write without
shame the confession, how rapidly _their_ habits became _my own_.
Eugene's teachings had prepared me, in a manner, for their lessons. His
skepticism extending to every thing and every one, had made me
distrustful of all friendship, and suspicious of whatever appeared a
kindness. Vulgar association, and daily intimacy with coarsely-minded
men, soon finished what he had begun; and in less time than it took me
to break my troop-horse to regimental drill, I had been myself "broke
in" to every vice and abandoned habit of my companions.

It was not in my nature to do things by halves; and thus I became, and
in a brief space too, the most inveterate Tapageur of the whole
regiment. There was not a wild prank or plot in which I was not
foremost, not a breach of the discipline unaccompanied by my name or
presence, and more than half the time of our march to meet the enemy, I
passed in double irons under the guard of the Provost-marshal.

It was at this pleasant stage of my education that our brigade arrived
in Strasbourg, as part of the corps d'armée under the command of General

He had just succeeded to the command on the dismissal of Pichegru, and
found the army not only dispirited by the defeats of the past campaign,
but in a state of rudest indiscipline and disorganization. If left to
himself, he would have trusted much to time and circumstances for the
reform of abuses that had been the growth of many months long. But
Regnier, the second in command, was made of "different stuff;" he was a
harsh and stern disciplinarian, who rarely forgave a first, never a
second offense, and who deeming the Salle de Police as an incumbrance to
an army on service, which, besides, required a guard of picked men,
that might be better employed elsewhere, usually gave the preference to
the shorter sentence of "four spaces and a fusillade." Nor was he
particular in the classification of those crimes he thus expiated: from
the most trivial excess to the wildest scheme of insubordination, all
came under the one category. More than once, as we drew near to
Strasbourg, I heard the project of a mutiny discussed, day after day.
Some one or other would denounce the "scelerat Regnier," and proclaim
his readiness to be the executioner; but the closer we drew to
head-quarters, the more hushed and subdued became these mutterings, till
at last they ceased altogether; and a dark and forboding dread succeeded
to all our late boastings and denunciations.

This at first surprised and then utterly disgusted me with my
companions. Brave as they were before the enemy, had they no courage for
their own countrymen? Was all their valor the offspring of security, or
could they only be rebellious when the penalty had no terrors for them?
Alas! I was very young, and did not then know that men are never strong
against the right, and that a bad cause is always a weak one.

It was about the middle of June when we reached Strasbourg, where now
about forty thousand troops were assembled. I shall not readily forget
the mingled astonishment and disappointment our appearance excited as
the regiment entered the town. The Tapageurs, so celebrated for all
their terrible excesses and insubordination, were seen to be a fine
corps of soldier-like fellows, their horses in high condition, their
equipments and arms in the very best order. Neither did our conduct at
all tally with the reputation that preceded us. All was orderly and
regular in the several billets; the parade was particularly observed;
not a man late at the night muster. What was the cause of this sudden
and remarkable change? Some said we were marching against the enemy; but
the real explanation lay in a few words of a general order read to us by
our colonel the day before we entered the city:

"The 9th Hussars have obtained the unworthy reputation of being an
ill-disciplined and ill-conducted regiment, relying upon their
soldier-like qualities in face of the enemy to cover the disgrace
of-their misconduct in quarters. This is a mistake that must be
corrected. All Frenchmen are brave; none can arrogate to themselves any
prerogative of valor. If any wish to establish such a belief, a campaign
can always attest it. If any profess to think so without such proof, and
acting in conformity with this impression, disobey their orders or
infringe regimental discipline, I will have them shot.


This was, at least, a very straight-forward and intelligible
announcement, and as such my comrades generally acknowledged it. I,
however regarded it as a piece of monstrous and intolerable tyranny,
and sought to make converts to my opinion by declaiming about the rights
of Frenchmen, the liberty of free discussion, the glorious privilege of
equality, and so on; but these arguments sounded faint in presence of
the drum-head; and while some slunk away from the circle around me,
others significantly hinted that they would accept no part of the danger
my doctrines might originate.

However I might have respected my comrades, had they been always the
well-disciplined body I now saw them, I confess, that this sudden
conversion from fear, was in nowise to my taste, and rashly confounded
their dread of punishment with a base and ignoble fear of death. "And
these are the men," thought I, "who talk of their charging home through
the dense squares of Austria--who have hunted the leopard into the sea!
and have carried the flag of France over the high Alps!"

A bold rebel, whatever may be the cause against which he revolts, will
always be sure of a certain ascendency. Men are prone to attribute power
to pretension, and he who stands foremost in the breach will at least
win the suffrages of those whose cause he assumes to defend. In this way
if happened that exactly as my comrades fell in my esteem, I was
elevated in theirs; and while I took a very depreciating estimate of
their courage, _they_ conceived a very exalted opinion of mine.

It was altogether inexplicable to see these men, many of them the
bronzed veterans of a dozen campaigns--the wounded and distinguished
soldiers in many a hard-fought field, yielding up their opinions and
sacrificing their convictions to a raw and untried stripling, who had
never yet seen an enemy.

With a certain fluency of speech I possessed also a readiness at picking
up information, and arraying the scattered fragments of news into a
certain consistence, which greatly imposed upon my comrades. A quick eye
for manœuvres, and a shrewd habit of combining in my own mind the
various facts that came before me, made me appear to them a perfect
authority on military matters, of which I talked, I shame to say, with
all the confidence and presumption of an accomplished general. A few
lucky guesses, and a few half hints, accidentally confirmed, completed
all that was wanting; and what says "Le Jeune Maurice," was the
inevitable question that followed each piece of flying gossip, or every
rumor that rose of a projected movement.

I have seen a good deal of the world since that time, and I am bound to
confess, that not a few of the great reputations I have witnessed, have
stood upon grounds very similar, and not a whit more stable than my own.
A bold face, a ready tongue, a promptness to support, with my right
hand, whatever my lips were pledged to, and, above all, good luck, made
me the king of my company; and although that sovereignty only extended
to half a squadron of hussars, it was a whole universe to me.

So stood matters when, on the 23d of June, orders came for the whole
_corps d'armée_ to hold itself in readiness for a forward movement.
Rations for two days were distributed, and ammunition given out, as if
for an attack of some duration. Meanwhile, to obviate any suspicion of
our intentions, the gates of Strasbourg, on the eastern side, were
closed--all egress in that direction forbidden--and couriers and
estafettes sent off toward the north, as if to provide for the march of
our force in that direction. The arrival of various orderly dragoons
during the previous night, and on that morning early, told of a great
attack in force on Manheim, about sixty miles lower down the Rhine, and
the cannonade of which some avowed that they could hear at that
distance. The rumor, therefore, seemed confirmed, that we were ordered
to move to the north, to support this assault.

The secret dispatch of a few dismounted dragoons and some rifle-men to
the banks of the Rhine, however, did not strike me as according with
this view, and particularly as I saw that, although all were equipped,
and in readiness to move, the order to march was not given, a delay very
unlikely to be incurred, if we were destined to act as the reserve of
the force already engaged.

Directly opposite to us, on the right bank of the river, and separated
from it by a low flat, of about two miles in extent, stood the fortress
of Kehl, at that time garrisoned by a strong Austrian force; the banks
of the river, and the wooded islands in the stream, which communicated
with the right by bridges, or fordable passes, being also held by the
enemy in force.

These we had often seen, by the aid of telescopes, from the towers and
spires of Strasbourg; and now I remarked that the general and his staff
seemed more than usually intent on observing their movements. This fact,
coupled with the not less significant one, that no preparations for a
defense of Strasbourg were in progress, convinced me that, instead of
moving down the Rhine to the attack on Manheim, the plan of our general
was, to cross the river where we were, and make a dash at the fortress
of Kehl. I was soon to receive the confirmation of my suspicion, as the
orders came for two squadrons of the ninth to proceed, dismounted, to
the bank of the Rhine, and, under shelter of the willows, to conceal
themselves there. Taking possession of the various skiffs and fishing
boats along the bank, we were distributed in small parties, to one of
which, consisting of eight men under the orders of a corporal, I

About an hour's march brought us to the river side, in a little clump of
alder willows, where, moored to a stake, lay a fishing boat with two
short oars in her. Lying down beneath the shade, for the afternoon was
hot and sultry, some of us smoked, some chatted, and a few dozed away
the hours that somehow seemed unusually slow in passing.

There was a certain dogged sullenness about my companions, which
proceeded from their belief, that we and all who remained at Strasbourg,
were merely left to occupy the enemy's attention, while greater
operations were to be carried on elsewhere.

"You see what it is to be a condemned corps," muttered one; "it's little
matter what befalls the old ninth, even should they be cut to pieces."

"They didn't think so at Enghein," said another, "when we rode down the
Austrian cuirassiers."

"Plain enough," cried a third, "we are to have skirmishers' duty here,
without skirmishers' fortune in having a force to fall back upon."

"Eh! Maurice, is not this very like what you predicted for us?" broke in
a fourth ironically.

"I'm of the same mind still," rejoined I, coolly, "the general is not
thinking of a retreat; he has no intention of deserting a
well-garrisoned, well-provisioned fortress. Let the attack on Manheim
have what success it may, Strasbourg will be held still. I overheard
Colonel Guyon remark, that the waters of the Rhine have fallen three
feet since the drought set in, and Regnier replied, 'that we must lose
no time, for there will come rain and floods ere long.' Now what could
that mean, but the intention to cross over yonder?"

"Cross the Rhine in face of the fort of Kehl!" broke in the corporal.

"The French army have done bolder things before now!" was my reply, and
whatever the opinion of my comrades, the flattery ranged them on _my_
side. Perhaps the corporal felt it beneath his dignity to discuss
tactics with an inferior, or perhaps he felt unable to refute the
specious pretensions I advanced; in any case he turned away, and either
slept, or affected sleep, while I strenuously labored to convince my
companions that my surmise was correct.

I repeated all my former arguments about the decrease in the Rhine,
showing that the river was scarcely two-thirds of its habitual breadth,
that the nights were now dark, and well suited for a surprise, that the
columns which issued from the town took their departure with a pomp and
parade far more likely to attract the enemy's attention than escape his
notice, and were, therefore, the more likely to be destined for some
secret expedition, of which all this display was but the blind. These,
and similar facts, I grouped together with a certain ingenuity, which,
if it failed to convince, at least silenced my opponents. And now the
brief twilight, if so short a struggle between day and darkness deserved
the name, passed off, and night suddenly closed around us--a night black
and starless, for a heavy mass of lowering cloud seemed to unite with
the dense vapor that arose from the river, and the low-lying grounds
alongside of it. The air was hot and sultry, too, like the precursor of
a thunder-storm, and the rush of the stream as it washed among the
willows sounded preternaturally loud in the stillness.

A hazy, indistinct flame, the watch-fire of the enemy, on the island of
Eslar, was the only object visible in the murky darkness. After a while,
however, we could detect another fire on a smaller island, a short
distance higher up the stream. This, at first dim and uncertain, blazed
up after a while, and at length we descried the dark shadows of men as
they stood around it.

It was but the day before that I had been looking on a map of the Rhine,
and remarked to myself that this small island, little more than a mere
rook in the stream, was so situated as to command the bridge between
Eslar and the German bank, and I could not help wondering that the
Austrians had never taken the precaution to strengthen it, or at least
place a gun there, to enfilade the bridge. Now, to my extreme
astonishment, I saw it occupied by the soldiery, who, doubtless, were
artillery, as in such a position small arms would prove of slight
efficiency. As I reflected over this, wondering within myself if any
intimation of our movements could have reached the enemy, I heard along
the ground on which I was lying the peculiar tremulous, dull sound
communicated by a large body of men marching. The measured tramp could
not be mistaken, and as I listened I could perceive that a force was
moving toward the river from different quarters. The rumbling roll of
heavy guns and the clattering noise of cavalry were also easily
distinguished, and awaking one of my comrades I called his attention to
the sounds.

"Parbleu!" said he, "thou'rt right; they're going to make a dash at the
fortress, and there will be hot work ere morning. What say you now,
corporal, has Maurice hit it off this time?"

"That's as it may be," growled the other, sulkily; "guessing is easy
work ever for such as thee! but if he be so clever, let him tell us why
are we stationed along the river's bank in small detachments. We have
had no orders to observe the enemy, nor to report upon any thing that
might go forward; nor do I see with what object we were to secure the
fishing boats; troops could never be conveyed across the Rhine in skin's
like these!"

"I think that this order was given to prevent any of the fishermen
giving information to the enemy in case of a sudden attack," replied I.

"Mayhap thou wert at the council of war when the plan was decided on,"
said he, contemptuously. "For a fellow that never saw the smoke of an
enemy's gun thou hast a rare audacity in talking of war!"

"Yonder is the best answer to your taunt," said I, as in a little bend
of the stream beside us, two boats were seen to pull under the shelter
of the tall alders, from which the clank of arms could be plainly heard;
and now another larger launch swept past, the dark shadows of a dense
crowd of men showing above the gunwale.

"They are embarking, they are certainly embarking," now ran from mouth
to mouth. As the troops arrived at the river's bank they were speedily
"told off" in separate divisions of which some were to lead the attack,
others to follow, and a third portion to remain as a reserve in the
event of a repulse.

The leading boat was manned entirely by volunteers, and I could hear
from where I lay the names called aloud as the men stepped out from the
ranks. I could hear that the first point of attack was the island of
Eslar. So far there was a confirmation of my own guessing, and I did not
hesitate to assume the full credit of my skill from my comrades. In
truth, they willingly conceded all or even more than I asked for. Not a
stir was heard, not a sight seen, not a movement made of which I was not
expected to tell the cause and the import; and knowing that to sustain
my influence there was nothing for it but to affect a thorough
acquaintance with every thing, I answered all their questions boldly and
unhesitatingly. I need scarcely observe that the corporal in comparison
sunk into down-right insignificance. He had already shown himself a
false guide, and none asked his opinion further, and I became the ruling
genius of the hour. The embarkation now went briskly forward, several
light field guns were placed in the boats, and two or three large rafts,
capable of containing two companies each, were prepared to be towed
across by boats.

Exactly as the heavy hammer of the cathedral struck one, the first boat
emerged from the willows, and darting rapidly forward, headed for the
middle of the stream; another and another in quick succession followed,
and speedily were lost to us in the gloom; and now, two four-oared
skiffs stood out together, having a raft, with two guns, in tow; by some
mischance, however, they got entangled in a side current, and the raft
swerving to one side, swept past the boats, carrying them down the
stream along with it. Our attention was not suffered to dwell on this
mishap, for at the same moment the flash and rattle of fire-arms told us
the battle had begun. Two or three isolated shots were first heard, and
then a sharp platoon fire, accompanied by a wild cheer, that we well
knew came from our own fellows. One deep mellow boom of a large gun
resounded amid the crash, and a slight streak of flame, higher up the
stream, showed that the shot came from the small island I have already
spoken of.

"Listen, lads," said I, "that came from the 'Fels Insel.' If they are
firing grape yonder, our poor fellows in the boats will suffer sorely
from it. By Jove there is a crash!"

As I was speaking a rattling noise like the sound of clattering timber
was heard, and with it a sharp, shrill cry of agony, and all was hushed.

"Let's at them, boys; they can't be much above our own number. The
island is a mere rock," cried I to my comrades.

"Who commands this party?" said the corporal, "you or I?"

"You, if you lead us against the enemy," said I; "but I'll take it if
my comrades will follow me. There goes another shot, lads--yes or
no--now is the time to speak."

"We're ready," cried three, springing forward, with one impulse.

At the instant I jumped into the skiff, the others took their places,
and then came a fourth, a fifth, a sixth, and a seventh, leaving the
corporal alone on the bank.

"Come along, corporal," cried I, "we'll win your epaulets for you;" but
he turned away without a word; and not waiting further, I pushed out the
skiff, and sent her skimming down the stream.

"Pull steady, boys, and silently," said I; "we must gain the middle of
the current, and then drop down the river without the least noise. Once
beneath the trees, we'll give them a volley, and then the bayonet.
Remember, lads, no flinching; it's as well to die here as be shot by old
Regnier to-morrow."

The conflict on the Eslar island was now, to all seeming, at its height.
The roll of musketry was incessant, and sheets of flame, from time to
time, streaked the darkness above the river.

"Stronger and together, boys--once more--there it is--we are in the
current, now; in with you, men, and look to your carbines--see that the
priming is safe; every shot soon will be worth a fusilade. Lie still
now, and wait for the word to fire."

The spreading foliage of the nut-trees was rustling over our heads as I
spoke, and the sharp skiff, borne on the current, glided smoothly on
till her bow struck the rock. With high-beating hearts we clambered up
the little cliff; and as we reached the top, beheld immediately beneath
us, in a slight dip of the ground, several figures around a gun, which
they were busy in adjusting. I looked right and left to see that my
little party were all assembled, and without waiting for more, gave the

We were within pistol range, and the discharge was a deadly one. The
terror, however, was not less complete; for all who escaped death fled
from the spot, and dashing through the brushwood, made for the shallow
part of the stream, between the island and the right bank.

Our prize was a brass eight pounder, and an ample supply of ammunition.
The gun was pointed toward the middle of the stream, where the current
being strongest, the boats would necessarily be delayed; and in all
likelihood some of our gallant comrades had already experienced its
fatal fire. To wheel it right about, and point it on the Eslar bridge,
was the work of a couple of minutes; and while three of our little party
kept up a steady fire on the retreating enemy, the others loaded the gun
and prepared to fire.

Our distance from the Eslar island and bridge, as well as I could judge
from the darkness, might be about two hundred and fifty yards; and as we
had the advantage of a slight elevation of ground, our position was

"Wait patiently, lads," said I, restraining, with difficulty, the
burning ardor of my men. "Wait patiently, till the retreat has commenced
over the bridge. The work is too hot to last much longer on the island:
to fire upon them there, would be to risk our own men as much as the
enemy. See what long flashes of flame break forth among the brushwood:
and listen to the cheering now. That was a French cheer! and there goes
another! Look! look, the bridge is darkening already! That was a
bugle-call, and they are in full retreat. Now, lads--now!"

As I spoke; the gun exploded, and the instant after we heard the
crashing rattle of the timber, as the shot struck the bridge, and
splintered the wood-work in all directions.

"The range is perfect, lads," cried I. "Load and fire with all speed."

Another shot, followed by a terrific scream from the bridge, told how
the work was doing. Oh! the savage exultation, the fiendish joy of my
heart, as I drank in that cry of agony, and called upon my men to load

Six shots were poured in with tremendous precision and effect, and the
seventh tore away one of the main supports of the bridge, and down went
the densely crowded column into the Rhine; at the same instant, the guns
of our launches opened a destructive fire upon the banks, which soon
were swept clean of the enemy.

High up on the stream, and for nearly a mile below also, we could see
the boats of our army pulling in for shore; the crossing of the Rhine
had been effected, and we now prepared to follow.

_To be continued._

[From the Dublin University Magazine.]


Of all the wonderful discoveries which modern science has given birth
to, there is perhaps not one which has been applied to useful purposes
on a scale so unexpectedly contracted as that by which we are enabled to
penetrate into the immense ocean of air with which our globe is
surrounded, and to examine the physical phenomena which are manifested
in its upper strata. One would have supposed that the moment the power
was conferred upon us to leave the surface of the earth, and rise above
the clouds into the superior regions, a thousand eager inquirers would
present themselves as agents in researches in a region so completely
untrodden, if such a term may here be permitted.

Nevertheless, this great invention of aerial navigation has remained
almost barren. If we except the celebrated aerial voyage of Gay-Lussac
in 1804, the balloon, with its wonderful powers, has been allowed to
degenerate into a mere theatrical exhibition, exciting the vacant and
unreflecting wonder of the multitude. Instead of being an instrument of
philosophical research, it has become a mere expedient for profit in
the hands of charlatans, so much so, that, on the occasion to which we
are now about to advert, the persons who engaged in the project incurred
failure, and risked their lives, from their aversion to avail themselves
of the experience of those who had made aerostation a mere spectacle for
profit. They thought that to touch pitch they must be defiled, and
preferred danger and the risk of failure to such association.

It is now about two months since M. Barral, a chemist of some
distinction at Paris, and M. Bixio, a member of the Legislative Assembly
(whose name will be remembered in connection with the bloody
insurrection of June, 1848, when, bravely and humanely discharging his
duty in attempting to turn his guilty fellow-citizens from their course,
he nearly shared the fate of the Archbishop, and was severely wounded),
resolved upon making a grand experiment with a view to observe and
record the meteorological phenomena of the strata of the atmosphere, at
a greater height and with more precision than had hitherto been
accomplished. But from the motives which we have explained, the project
was kept secret, and it was resolved that the experiment should be made
at an hour of the morning, and under circumstances, which would prevent
it from degenerating into an exhibition. MM. Arago and Regnault
undertook to supply the aerial voyagers with a programme of the proposed
performance, and instruments suited to the projected observations. M.
Arago prepared the programme, in which was stated clearly what
observations were to be made at every stage of the ascentional movement.

It was intended that the balloon should be so managed as to come to rest
at certain altitudes, when barometric, thermometric, hygrometric,
polariscopic, and other observations, were to be taken and noted; the
balloon after each series of observations to make a new ascent.

The precious instruments by which these observations were to be made
were prepared, and in some cases actually fabricated and graduated, by
the hands of M. Regnault himself.

To provide the balloon and its appendages, recourse was had to some of
those persons who have followed the fabrication of balloons as a sort of
trade, for the purposes of exhibition.

In this part of their enterprise the voyagers were not so fortunate, as
we shall presently see, and still less so in having taken the resolution
to ascend alone, unaccompanied by a practiced æronaut. It is probable
that if they had selected a person, such as Mr. Green, for example, who
had already made frequent ascents for the mere purpose of exhibition,
and who had become familiar with the practical management of the
machine, a much more favorable result would have ensued. As it was, the
two voyagers ascended for the first time, and placed themselves in a
position like that of a natural philosopher, who, without previous
practice, should undertake to drive a locomotive, with its train on a
railway at fifty miles an hour, rejecting the humble but indispensable
aid of an experienced engine-driver.

The necessary preparations having been made, and the programme and the
instruments prepared, it was resolved to make the ascent from the garden
behind the Observatory at Paris, a plateau of some elevation, and free
from buildings and other obstacles, at day-break of Saturday, the 29th
June. At midnight the balloon was brought to the spot, but the inflation
was not completed until nearly 10 o'clock, A.M.

It has since been proved that the balloon was old and worn, and that it
ought not to have been supplied for such an occasion.

It was obviously patched, and it is now known that two seamstresses were
employed during the preceding day in mending it, and some stitching even
was found necessary after it had arrived at the Observatory.

The net-work which included and supported the car was new, and not
originally made with a view to the balloon it inclosed, the consequences
of which will be presently seen.

The night, between Friday and Saturday, was one of continual rain, and
the balloon and its netting became thoroughly saturated with moisture.
By the time the inflation had been completed, it became evident that the
net-work was too small; but in the anxiety to carry into effect the
project, the consequences of this were most unaccountably overlooked. We
say unaccountably, because it is extremely difficult to conceive how
experimental philosophers and practiced observers, like MM. Arago and
Regnault, to say nothing of numerous subordinate scientific agents who
were present, did not anticipate what must have ensued in the upper
regions of the air. Nevertheless, such was the fact.

On the morning of Saturday, the instruments being duly deposited in the
car, the two enterprising voyagers placed themselves in it, and the
balloon, which previously had been held down by the strength of twenty
men, was liberated, and left to plunge into the ocean of air, at
twenty-seven minutes after ten o'clock.

The weather, as we have already stated, was unfavorable, the sky being
charged with clouds. As it was the purpose of this project to examine
much higher regions of the atmosphere than those which it had been
customary for aeronautic exhibitors to rise to, the arrangements of
ballast and inflation which were adopted, were such as to cause the
ascent to be infinitely more rapid than in the case of public
exhibitions; in short, the balloon darted upward with the speed of an
arrow, and in two minutes from the moment it was liberated, that is to
say, at twenty-nine minutes past ten, plunged into the clouds, and was
withdrawn from the anxious view of the distinguished persons assembled
in the garden of the Observatory.

While passing through this dense cloud, the voyagers carefully observed
the barometer, and knew by the rapid fall of the mercury that they were
ascending with a great velocity. Fifteen minutes elapsed before they
emerged from the cloud; when they did so, however, a glorious spectacle
presented itself. The balloon, emerging from the superior surface of the
cloud, rose under a splendid canopy of azure, and shone with the rays of
a brilliant sun. The cloud which they had just passed, was soon seen
several thousand feet below them. From the observations taken with the
barometer and thermometer, it was afterward found that the thickness of
the cloud through which they had passed, was 9800 feet--a little less
than two miles. On emerging from the cloud, our observers examined the
barometer, and found that the mercury had fallen to the height of 18
inches; the thermometer showed a temperature of 45° Fahr. The height of
the balloon above the level of the sea was then 14,200 feet. At the
moment of emerging from the cloud, M. Barral made polariscopic
observation, which established a fact foreseen by M. Arago, that the
light reflected from the surface of the clouds, was unpolarized light.

The continued and somewhat considerable fall of the barometer informed
the observers that their ascent still continued to be rapid. The rain
which had previously fallen, and which wetted the balloon, and saturated
the cordage forming the net-work, had now ceased, or, to speak more
correctly, the balloon had passed above the region in which the rain
prevailed. The strong action of the sun, and almost complete dryness of
the air in which the vast machine now floated, caused the evaporation of
the moisture which enveloped it. The cordage and the balloon becoming
dry, and thus relieved of a certain weight of liquid, was affected as
though a quantity of ballast had been thrown out, and it darted upward
with increased velocity.

It was within one minute of eleven, when the observers finding the
barometer cease the upward motion, and finding that the machine
oscillated round a position of equilibrium by noticing the bearing of
the sun, they found the epoch favorable for another series of
observations. The barometer there indicated that the balloon had
attained the enormous height of 19,700 feet. The moisture which had
invested the thermometer had frozen upon it, and obstructed, for the
moment, observations with it. It was while M. Barral was occupied in
wiping the icicles from it, that, turning his eye upward, he beheld what
would have been sufficient to have made the stoutest heart quail with

To explain the catastrophe which at this moment, and at nearly 20,000
feet above the surface of the earth, and about a mile above the highest
strata of the clouds, menaced the voyagers, we must recur to what we
have already stated in reference to the balloon and the net-work. As it
was intended to ascend to an unusual altitude, it was of course known,
that in consequence of the highly rarefied state of the atmosphere, and
its very much diminished pressure, the gas contained in the balloon
would have a great tendency to distend, and, consequently, space must be
allowed for the play of this effect. The balloon, therefore, at
starting, was not nearly filled with gas, and yet, as we have explained
it, very nearly filled the net-work which inclosed it. Is it not strange
that some among the scientific men present did not foresee, that when it
would ascend into a highly rarefied atmosphere, it would necessarily
distend itself to such a magnitude, that the netting would be utterly
insufficient to contain it? Such effect, so strangely unforeseen, now
disclosed itself practically realized to the astonished and terrified
eyes of M. Barral.

The balloon, in fact, had so swelled as not only completely to fill the
netting which covered it, but to force its way, in a frightful manner,
through the hoop under it, from which the car, and the voyagers were

In short, the inflated silk protruding downward through the hoop, now
nearly touched the heads of the voyagers. In this emergency the remedy
was sufficiently obvious.

The valve must be opened, and the balloon breathed, so as to relieve it
from the over-inflation. Now, it is well known, that the valve in this
machine is placed in a sort of sleeve, of a length more or less
considerable, connected with the lower part of the balloon, through
which sleeve the string-of the valve passes. M. Barral, on looking for
this sleeve, found that it had disappeared. Further search showed that
the balloon being awkwardly and improperly placed in the inclosing
net-work, the valve-sleeve, instead of hanging clear of the hoop, had
been gathered up in the net-work above the hoop; so that, to reach it,
it would have been necessary to have forced a passage between the
inflated silk and the hoop.

Now, here it must be observed, that such an incident could never have
happened to the most commonly-practiced balloon exhibitor, whose first
measure, before leaving the ground, would be to secure access to, and
the play of the valve. This, however, was, in the present case, fatally
overlooked. It was, in fine, now quite apparent, that either of two
effects must speedily ensue--viz.: either the car and the voyagers would
be buried in the inflated silk which was descending upon them, and thus
they would he suffocated, or that the force of distention must burst the
balloon. If a rupture were to take place in that part immediately over
the car, then the voyagers would be suffocated by an atmosphere of
hydrogen; if it should take place at a superior part, then the balloon,
rapidly discharged of its gas, would be precipitated to the earth, and
the destruction of its occupants rendered inevitable.

Under these circumstances the voyagers did not lose their presence of
mind, but calmly considered their situation, and promptly decided upon
the course to be adopted. M. Barral climbed up the side of the car, and
the net-work suspending it, and forced his way through the hoop, so as
to catch hold of the valve-sleeve. In this operation, however, he was
obliged to exercise a force which produced a rent in a part of the silk
below the hoop, and immediately over the car. In a moment the hydrogen
gas issued with terrible force from the balloon, and the voyagers found
themselves involved in an atmosphere of it.

Respiration became impossible, and they were nearly suffocated. A glance
at the barometer, however, showed them that they were falling to the
ground with the most fearful rapidity.

During a few moments they experienced all the anguish attending
asphyxia. From this situation, however, they were relieved more speedily
than they could then have imagined possible; but the cause which
relieved them soon became evident, and inspired them with fresh terrors.

M. Barral, from the indications of the barometer, knew that they were
being precipitated to the surface of the earth with a velocity so
prodigious, that the passage of the balloon through the atmosphere
dispelled the mass of hydrogen with which they had been surrounded.

It was, nevertheless, evident that the small rent which had been
produced in the lower part of the balloon, by the abortive attempt to
obtain access to the valve, could not have been the cause of a fall so

M. Barral, accordingly, proceeded to examine the external surface of the
balloon, as far as it was visible from the car, and, to his astonishment
and terror, he discovered that a rupture had taken place, and that a
rent was made, about five feet in length, along the equator of the
machine, through which, of course, the gas was now escaping in immense
quantities. Here was the cause of the frightful precipitation of the
descent, and a source of imminent danger in the fall.

M. Barral promptly decided on the course to be taken.

It was resolved to check the descent by the discharge of the ballast,
and every other article of weight. But this process, to be effectual,
required to be conducted with considerable coolness and skill. They were
some thousand feet above the clouds. If the ballast were dismissed too
soon, the balloon must again acquire a perilous velocity before it would
reach the earth. If, on the other hand, its descent were not moderated
in time, its fall might become so precipitate as to be ungovernable.
Nine or ten sand-bags being, therefore, reserved for the last and
critical moment, all the rest of the ballast was discharged. The fall
being still frightfully rapid, the voyagers cast out, as they descended
through the cloud already mentioned, every article of weight which they
had, among which were the blankets and woolen clothing which they had
brought to cover them in the upper regions of the atmosphere, their
shoes, several bottles of wine, all, in fine, save and except the
philosophical instruments. These they regarded as the soldier does his
flag, not to be surrendered save with life. M. Bixio, when about to
throw over a trifling apparatus, called an aspirator, composed of
copper, and filled with water, was forbidden by M. Barral, and obeyed
the injunction.

They soon emerged from the lower stratum of the cloud, through which
they had fallen in less than two minutes, having taken fifteen minutes
to ascend through it. The earth was now in sight, and they were dropping
upon it like a stone. Every weighty article had been dismissed, except
the nine sand-bags, which had been designedly reserved to break the
shock on arriving at the surface. They observed that they were directly
over some vine-grounds near Lagny, in the department of the Seine and
Marne, and could distinctly see a number of laborers engaged in their
ordinary toil, who regarded with unmeasured astonishment the enormous
object about to drop upon them. It was only when they arrived at a few
hundred feet from the surface that the nine bags of sand were dropped by
M. Barral, and by this manœuvre the lives of the voyagers were
probably saved. The balloon reached the ground, and the car struck among
the vines. Happily the wind was gentle; but gentle as it was it was
sufficient, acting upon the enormous surface of the balloon, to drag the
car along the ground, as if it were drawn by fiery and ungovernable
horses. Now arrived a moment of difficulty and danger, which also had
been foreseen and provided for by M. Barral. If either of the voyagers
had singly leaped from the car, the balloon, lightened of so much
weight, would dart up again into the air. Neither voyager would consent,
then, to purchase his own safety at the risk of the other. M. Barral,
therefore, threw his body half down from the car, laying hold of the
vine-stakes, as he was dragged along, and directing M. Bixio to hold
fast to his feet. In this way the two voyagers, by their united bodies,
formed a sort of anchor, the arms of M. Barral playing the part of the
fluke, and the body of M. Bixio that of the cable.

In this way M. Barral was dragged over a portion of the vineyard
rapidly, without any other injury than a scratch or contusion of the
face, produced by one of the vine-stakes.

The laborers just referred to meanwhile collected, and pursued the
balloon, and finally succeeded in securing it, and in liberating the
voyagers, whom they afterward thanked for the bottles of excellent wine
which, as they supposed, had fallen from the heavens, and which,
wonderful to relate, had not been broken from the fall, although, as has
been stated, they had been discharged above the clouds. The astonishment
and perplexity of the rustics can be imagined on seeing these bottles
drop in the vineyard.

This fact also shows how perpendicularly the balloon must have dropped,
since the bottles dismissed from such a height, fell in the same field
where, in a minute afterward, the balloon also dropped.

The entire descent from the altitude of twenty thousand feet was
effected in seven minutes, being at the average rate of fifty feet per

In fine, we have to report that these adventurous partisans of science,
nothing discouraged by the catastrophe which has occurred have resolved
to renew the experiment under, as may he hoped, less inauspicious
circumstances; and we trust that on the next occasion they will not
disdain to avail themselves of the co-operation and presence of some one
of those persons, who having hitherto practiced aerial navigation for
the mere purposes of amusement, will, doubtless, be too happy to invest
one at least of their labors with a more useful and more noble

(From the Dublin University Magazine.)


The night of a bitter winter day had come; frost, and hail, and snow
carried a sense of new desolation to the cold hearths of the moneyless,
while the wealthy only drew the closer to their bright fires, and
experienced stronger feelings of comfort.

In a small back apartment of a mean house, in one of the poorest
quarters of Edinburgh, a young man sat with a pen in his fingers,
endeavoring to write, though the blue tint of his nails showed that the
blood was almost frozen in his hands. There was no fire in the room; the
old iron grate was rusty and damp, as if a fire had not blazed in it for
years; the hail dashed against the fractured panes of the window; the
young man was poorly and scantily dressed, and he was very thin, and
bilious to all appearance; his sallow, yellow face and hollow eyes told
of disease, misery, and the absence of hope.

His hand shook with cold, as, by the light of the meanest and cheapest
of candles, he slowly traced line after line, with the vain thought of
making money by his writings. In his boyish days he had entered the
ranks of literature, with the hopes of fame to lead him on, but
disappointment after disappointment, and miserable circumstances of
poverty and suffering had been his fate: now the vision of fame had
become dim in his sick soul--he was writing with the hope of gaining
money, any trifle, by his pen.

Of all the ways of acquiring money to which the millions bend their best
energies, that of literature is the most forlorn. The artificers of
necessaries and luxuries, for the animal existence, have the world as
their customers; but those who labor for the mind have but a limited
few, and therefore the supply of mental work is infinitely greater than
the demand, and thousands of the unknown and struggling, even though
possessed of much genius, must sink before the famous few who
monopolize the literary market, and so the young writer is overlooked.
He may be starving, but his manuscripts will be returned to him; the
emoluments of literature are flowing in other channels; he is one added
to the thousands too many in the writing world; his efforts may bring
him misery and madness, but not money.

The door of the room opened, and a woman entered; and advancing near the
little table on which the young man was writing, she fixed her eyes on
him with a look in which anger, and the extreme wretchedness which
merges on insanity, were mingled. She seemed nearly fifty; her features
had some remaining traces of former regularity and beauty, but her whole
countenance now was a volume filled with the most squalid suffering and
evil passions; her cheeks and eyes were hollow, as if she had reached
the extreme of old age; she was emaciated to a woeful degree; her dress
was poor dirty, and tattered, and worn without any attempt at proper

"Writing! writing! writing! Thank God, Andrew Carson, the pen will soon
drop from your fingers with starvation."

The woman said this in a half-screaming, but weak and broken-down voice.

"Mother, let me have some peace," said the young writer, turning his
face away, so that he might not see her red glaring eyes fixed on him.

"Ay, Andrew Carson, I say thank God that the force of hunger will soon
now make you drop that cursed writing. Thank God, if there _is_ the God
that my father used to talk about in the long nights in the bonnie
highland glen, where it's like a dream of lang syne that I ever lived."

She pressed her hands on her breast, as if some recollections of an
overpowering nature were in her soul.

"The last rag in your trunk has gone to the pawn; you have neither
shirt, nor coat, nor covering now, except what you've on.
Write--write--if you can, without eating; to-morrow you'll have neither
meat nor drink here, nor aught now to get money on."

"Mother, I am in daily expectation of receiving something for my writing
now; the post this evening may bring me some good news."

He said this with hesitation, and there was little of hope in the
expression of his face.

"Good news! good news about your writing! that's the good news 'ill
never come; never, you good-for-nothing scribbler!"

She screamed forth the last words in a voice of frenzy. Her tone was a
mixture of Scotch and Irish accents. She had resided for some years of
her earlier life in Ireland.

As the young writer looked at her and listened to her, the pen shook in
his hand.

"Go out, and work, and make money. Ay, the working people can live on
the best, while you, with that pen in your fingers, are starving
yourself and me."

"Mother, I am not strong enough for labor, and my tastes are strongly,
very strongly, for literature."

"Not strong enough! you're twenty past. It's twenty long years since the
cursed night I brought you into the world." The young writer gazed
keenly on his mother, for he was afraid she was under the influence of
intoxication, as was too often the case; but he did not know how she
could have obtained money, as he knew there was not a farthing in the
house. The woman seemed to divine the meaning of his looks--

"I'm not drunk, don't think it," she cried; "it's the hunger and the
sorrow that's in my head."

"Well, mother, perhaps this evening's post may have some good

"What did the morning's post bring? There, there--don't I see it--them's
the bonnie hopes of yours."

She pointed to the table, where lay a couple of returned manuscripts.
Andrew glanced toward the parcel, and made a strong effort to suppress
the deep sigh which heaved his breast.

"Ay, there it is--there's a bundle of that stuff ye spend your nights
and days writing; taking the flesh off your bones, and making that face
of yours so black and yellow; it's your father's face, too--ay--well
it's like him now, indeed--the ruffian. I wish I had never seen him, nor
you, nor this world."

"My father," said Andrew, and a feeling of interest overspread his
bloodless face. "You have told me little of him. Why do you speak of him
so harshly?"

"Go and work, and make money, I say. I tell you I must get money; right
or wrong, I must get it; there's no living longer, and enduring what
I've endured. I dream of being rich; I waken every morning from visions
where my hands are filled with money; that wakening turns my head, when
I know and see there is not a halfpenny in the house, and when I see
you, my son, sitting there, working like a fool with pen and brain, but
without the power to earn a penny for me. Go out and work with your
hands, I say again, and let me get money--do any thing, if it brings
money. There is the old woman over the way, who has a working son; his
mother may bless God that he is a shoemaker and not a poet; she is the
happy woman, so cozily covered with warm flannel and stuff this weary
weather, and her mutton, and her tea, and her money jingling in her
pocket forever; that's what a working son can do--a shoemaker can do

At this some noise in the kitchen called Mrs. Carson away, to the great
relief of Andrew. He rose, and closed the door gently after her. He
seated himself again, and took up his pen, but his head fell listlessly
on his hand; he felt as if his mother's words were yet echoing in his
ears. From his earliest infancy he had regarded her with fear and
wonder, more than love.

Mrs. Carson was the daughter of a Scotch Presbyterian clergyman, who
was suspected by his brethren in the ministry of entertaining peculiar
views of religion on some points, and also of being at intervals rather
unsound in his mind. He bestowed, however, a superior education on his
only daughter, and instructed her carefully himself until his death,
which occurred when she was not more than fourteen. As her father left
her little if any support, she was under the necessity of going to
reside with relations in Ireland, who moved in a rather humble rank. Of
her subsequent history little was known to Andrew; she always maintained
silence regarding his father, and seemed angry when he ventured to
question her. Andrew was born in Ireland, and resided there until about
his eighth year, when his mother returned to Scotland.

It was from his mother Andrew had gained all the little education that
had been bestowed on him. That education was most capriciously imparted,
and in its extent only went the length of teaching him to read
partially; for whatever further advances he had made he was indebted to
his own self-culture. At times his mother would make some efforts to
impress on him the advantages of education: she would talk of poetry,
and repeat specimens of the poets which her memory had retained from the
period of her girlhood in her father's house; but oftenest the language
of bitterness, violence, and execration was on her lips. With the
never-ceasing complaints of want--want of position, want of friends,
but, most of all, want of money--sounding in his ears, Andrew grew up a
poet. The unsettled and aimless mind of his mother, shadowed as it was
with perpetual blackness, prevented her from calmly and wisely striving
to place her son in some position by which he could have aided in
supporting himself and her. As a child, Andrew was shy and solitary,
caring little for the society of children of his own years, and taking
refuge from the never-ceasing violence of his mother's temper in the
privacy of his own poor bedroom, with some old book which he had
contrived to borrow, or with his pen, for he was a writer of verses from
an early age.

Andrew was small-sized, sickly, emaciated, and feeble in frame; his mind
had much of the hereditary weakness visible in his mother; his
imagination and his passions were strong, and easily excited to such a
pitch as to overwhelm for the moment his reason. With a little-exercised
and somewhat defective judgment; with no knowledge of the world; with
few books; with a want of that tact possessed by some intellects, of
knowing and turning to account the tendencies of the age in literature,
it was hardly to be expected that Andrew would soon succeed as a poet,
though his imagination was powerful, and there was pathos and even
occasional sublimity in his poetry. For five long years he had been
toiling and striving without any success whatever in his vocation, in
the way of realizing either fame or emolument.

Now, as he sat with his eyes fixed on the two returned manuscripts on
his table, his torturing memory passed in review before him the many
times his hopes had been equally lost. He was only twenty years of age,
yet he had endured so many disappointments! He shook and trembled with a
convulsive agony as he recalled poem after poem, odes, sonnets, epics,
dramas--he had tried every thing; he had built so many glorious
expectations on each as, night after night, shivering with cold and
faint with sickness, he had persisted in gathering from his mind, and
arranging laboriously, the brightest and most powerful of his poetical
fancies, and hoped, and was often almost sure, they would spread
broadly, and be felt deeply in the world. But there they had all
returned to him--there they lay, unknown, unheard of--they were only so
much waste paper.

As each manuscript had found its way back to him, he had received every
one with an increasing bitterness and despair, which gradually wrought
his brain almost to a state of mental malady. By constitution he was
nervous and melancholy: the utmost of the world's success would hardly
have made him happy; he had no internal strength to cope with
disappointment--no sanguine hopes pointing to a brighter future: he was
overwhelmed with present failures. One moment he doubted sorely the
power of his own genius: and the thought was like death to him, for
without fame--without raising himself a name and a position above the
common masses--he felt he could not live. Again, he would lay the whole
blame on the undiscerning publishers to whom his poetry had been sent;
he would anathematize them all with the fierce bitterness of a soul
which was, alas! unsubdued in many respects by the softening and
humbling influences of the religion of Christ. He had not the calm
reflection which might have told him that, young, uneducated, utterly
unlearned in the world and in books as he was, his writings must of
necessity have a kind of inferiority to the works of those possessed of
more advantages. He had no deep, sober principles or thoughts; his
thoughts were feelings which bore him on their whirlwind course to the
depths of agony, and to the brink of the grave, for his health was
evidently seriously impaired by the indulgence of long-continued
emotions of misery.

He took up one of the rejected manuscripts in his hand: it was a
legendary poem, modeled something after the style of Byron, though the
young author would have violently denied the resemblance. He thought of
the pains he had bestowed on it--of the amount of thought and
dreams--the sick, languid headaches, the pained breast, the weary mind
it had so often occasioned him; then he saw the marks of tears on
it--the gush of tears which had come as if to extinguish the fire of
madness which had kindled in his brain. When he saw that manuscript
returned to him, the marks of the tears were there staining the outside
page. He looked fixedly on that manuscript, and his thin face became
darker, and more expressive of all that is hopeless in human sorrow;
the bright light of success shone as if so far away from him now--away
at an endless distance, which neither his strength of body or mind could
ever carry him over.

At that moment the sharp, rapid knock of the postman sounded in his
ears. His heart leaped up, and then suddenly sank with suffocating fear,
for the dark mood of despair was on him--could it be another returned
manuscript? He had only one now in the hands of a publisher; the one on
which he had expended all his powers--the one to which he had trusted
most: it was a tragedy. He had dreamed the preceding night that it had
been accepted; he had dreamed it had brought him showers of gold; he had
been for a moment happy beyond the bounds of human happiness, though he
had awoke with a sense of horror on his mind, he knew not why. The
publisher to whom he had sent his tragedy was to present it to the
manager of one of the London theatres. Had it been taken, performed,
successful?--a dream of glory, as if heaven had opened on him,
bewildered his senses.

The door was rudely pushed open; his mother entered, and flung the
manuscript of the returned tragedy on the table.

"There--there's another of them!" she cried, rage choked her voice for a

Andrew was stunned. Despair seemed to have frozen him all at once into a
statue. He mechanically took up the packet, and, opening it, he read the
cold, polite, brief note, which told of the rejection of his play both
by theatres and publishers.

"Idiot--fool--scribbling fool!"

The unfortunate poet's mother sank into a chair, as if unable to support
the force of her anger.

"Fool!--scribbling madman! will ye never give over?"

Andrew made no answer; but every one of his mother's furious words sank
into his brain, adding to the force of his unutterable misery.

"Will ye go now, and take to some other trade, will ye?--will ye, I

Andrew's lips moved for a moment, but no sound came from them.

"Will ye go out, and make money, I say, at some sensible work? Make
money for me, will you? I'll force you out to make money at some work by
which there's money to be made; not the like of that idiot writing of
yours, curse it. Answer me, and tell me you'll go out and work for money

She seized his arm, and shook it violently; but still he made no

"You will not speak. Listen, then--listen to me, I say; I'll tell it all
now; you'll hear what you never heard before. I did not tell you before,
because I pitied you--because I thought you would work for me, and earn
money; but you will not promise it. Now, then, listen. You are the very
child of money--brought into existence by the influence of money; you
would never have been in being had it not been for money. I always told
you I was married to your father; I told you a falsehood--he bound me to
him by the ties of money only."

A violent shudder passed over Andrew's frame at this intelligence, but
still he said nothing.

"You shall hear it all--I shall tell you particularly the whole story.
It was not for nothing you were always afraid of being called a bastard.
It's an ugly word, but it belongs to you--ay, ay, ye always trembled at
that word, since ye were able to go and play among the children in the
street. They called ye that seven years ago--ten years ago, when we came
here first, and you used to come crying to me, for you could not bear
it, you said. I denied it then--I told you I was married to your father;
I told you a lie: I told you that, because I thought you would grow up
and work for me, and get me money. You won't do it; you will only
write--write all day and all night, too, though I've begged you to quit
it. You have me here starving. What signifies the beggarly annuity your
father left to me, and you, his child? It's all spent long before it
comes, and here we are with nothing, not a crust, in the house, and it's
two months till next paying time.

"Listen--I'll tell you the whole story of your birth; maybe that will
put you from writing for a while, if you have the spirit you used to
have when they told you what you were."

She shook his arm again, without receiving any answer; his head had
fallen on his hands, and he remained fixed in one position. His mother's
eyes glared on him with a look in which madness was visible, together
with a tigress-like expression of ferocity which rarely appears on the
face of a mother, or of any human being, where insanity does not exist.
When she spoke, however, her words were collected, and her manner was
impressive and even dignified; the look of maniac anger gradually wore
away from her face, and in every sentence she uttered there were proofs
that something of power had naturally existed in her fallen and clouded

"Want of money was the earliest thing I remember to feel," she said, as
she seated herself, with something more of composure in her manner.
"There was never any money in my father's house. I wondered at first
where it could all go; I watched and reflected, and used all means of
finding out the mystery. At last I knew it--my father drank; in the
privacy of his room, when no eye was on him, he drank, drank. He paid
strict enough attention to my education. I read with him much; he had
stores of books. I read the Bible with him, too; often he spent long
evenings expounding it to me. But I saw the hollowness of it all--he
hardly believed himself; he doubted--doubted all, while he would fain
have made me a believer. I saw it well: I heard him rave of it in a
fever into which drink had thrown him. All was dark to him, he said,
when he was near dying; but he had taught his child to believe; he had
done his best to make her believe. He did not know my heart; I was his
own child; I longed for sensual things; my heart burned with a wish for
money, but it all went for drink. Had I but been able then to procure
food and clothes as others of my rank did, the burning wish for money
that consumed my heart then and now might never have been kindled, and I
might have been rich as those often become who have never wished for
riches. Yes, the eagerness of my wishes has always driven money far away
from me; that cursed gold and silver, it flows on them who have never
worshiped it--never longed for it till their brain turned; and it will
not come to such as me, whose whole life has been a desire for it. Well,
my father died, and I was left without a penny; all the furniture went
to pay the spirit-merchant. I went to Ireland; I lived with relations
who were poor and ignorant: I heard the cry of want of money there too.
A father and mother and seven children, and me, the penniless orphan: we
all wanted money--all cried for it. At last my cry was answered in a
black way; I saw the sight of money at last; a purse heaped, overflowing
with money, was put into my hands. My brain got giddy at the sight; sin
and virtue became all one to me at the sight. Gold, gold! my father
would hardly ever give me one poor shilling; the people with whom I
lived hardly ever had a shilling among them. I became the mistress of a
rich man--a married man; his wife and children were living there before
my eyes--a profligate man; his sins were the talk of the countryside. I
hated him; he was old, deformed, revolting; but he chained me to him by
money. Then I enjoyed money for a while; I kept that purse in my hand; I
laid it down so as my eyes would rest on it perpetually. I dressed; I
squandered sum after sum; the rich man who kept me had many other
expenses: his money became scantier; we quarreled; another offered me
more money--I went to him."

A deep groan shook the whole frame of the unfortunate young poet at this
statement--a groan which in its intensity might have separated soul and

"Let me go--let me go!" he cried, raising himself for a moment, and then
sinking back again in his chair in a passive state.

His mother seemed a little softened by his agitation, though she made no
comment on it, but continued her narrative as if no interruption had
taken place.

"Money took me to a new master; he was richer than the first; he bound
my heart to him by the profusion of his money. He was old and withered,
but his gold and silver reflected so brightly on his face, I came to
think him handsome; he was your father; you were born; after your birth
I think I even loved him. I urged him to marry me; he listened; he even
promised--yes, marriage and money--money--they were almost in my very
grasp. I was sure--sure--when he went to England to arrange some
business, he said; he wrote fondly for a while; I lived in an elysium;
money and an honorable marriage were my own. I had not one doubt; but he
ceased to write to me--all at once he ceased; had it been a gradual
drawing off, my brain would not have reeled as it did. At last, when
fear and anxiety had almost thrown me into a fever, a letter came. It
announced in a few words that your father was married to a young,
virtuous, and wealthy lady; he had settled a small annuity on me for
life, and never wished to see or hear from me again. A violent illness
seized me then; it was a kind of burning fever. All things around me
seemed to dazzle, and assume the form of gold and silver; I struggled
and writhed to grasp the illusion; they were forced to tie my hands--to
bind me down in my bed. I recovered at last, but I had grown all at once
old, withered, stricken in mind and body by that sickness. For a long
time--for years--I lived as if in a lingering dream; I had no keen
perceptions of life; my wishes had little energy; my thoughts were
confused and wandering; even the love of money and the want of money
failed to stir me into any kind of action. I have something of the same
kind of feeling still," she said, raising her hand to her head. "The
burning fever into which I was thrown when your father's love vanished
from me, is often here even yet, though its duration is brief; but it is
sufficient to make me incapable of any exertion by which I could make
money. I have trusted to you; I have hoped that you might be the means
of raising me from my poverty; I have long hoped to see the gold and
silver of your earning. I did not say much at first, when I saw you
turning a poet; I had heard that poetry was the sure high-road to
poverty, but I said little then. I was hardly able to judge and know
rightly what you should do when you commenced writing in your boyhood;
but my head is a little cooler now; the scorching fire of the money your
father tempted me with, and then withdrew, is quenched a little by
years. Now at last I see that you are wasting your time and health with
that pen; you have not made one shilling--one single sixpence for me,
yet, with that pen of yours; your health is going fast; I see the color
of the grave on your thin cheeks. Now I command you to throw away your
pen, and make money for me at any trade, no matter how low or mean."

As she spoke, there was a look approaching to dignity in her wasted
face, and her tones were clear and commanding--the vulgar Irishism and
Scoticism of dialect which, on common occasions, disfigured her
conversation, had disappeared, and it was evident that her intellect had
at one period been cultivated, and superior to the ordinary class of

Andrew rose without saying one syllable in answer to his mother's
communication; he threw his manuscripts and the sheets which he had
written into a desk; he locked it with a nervous, trembling hand, and
then turned to leave the room. His face was of the most ghastly
paleness; his eyes were calm and fixed; he seemed sick at heart by the
disclosure he had heard; his lips trembled and shook with agitation.

"Where are you going, Andrew? It's a bitter night."

"Mother, it is good enough for me--for a--"

He could not speak the hated word which rose to his lips; he had an
early horror of that word; he had dreaded that his was a dishonorable
birth: even in his boyish days he had feared it; his mother had often
asserted to the contrary, but now she had dispelled the belief in which
he had rested.

He opened the door hastily, and passed out into the storm, which was
rushing against the windows.

A feeling of pity for him--a feeling of a mother's affection and
solicitude, was stirred in Mrs. Carson's soul, as she listened to his
departing footsteps, and then went and seated herself beside the embers
of a dying fire in the kitchen; it was a small, cold,
miserably-furnished kitchen; the desolation of the severe season met no
counterbalancing power there; no cheering appearances of food, or fire,
or any comforts were there. But the complaining spirit which cried and
sighed perpetually was for once silent within Mrs. Carson's mind;
something--perhaps the death-like aspect of her son, or a voice from her
long stifled conscience--was telling her how ill she had fulfilled the
duties of a mother. She felt remorse for the reproaches she had heaped
on him before he had gone out in the storm.

She waited to hear his knock at the door; she longed for his returning
steps; she felt that she would receive him with more of kindness than
she had for a length of time displayed to him; she kept picturing to
herself perpetually his thin face and emaciated figure, and a fear of
his early death seized on her for the first time; she had been so
engrossed by her own selfish wants, that she had scarcely remarked the
failing health of her son. She started with horror at the probabilities
which her naturally powerful fancy suggested. She resolved to call in
medical aid immediately, for she was sure now that Andrew's constitution
was sinking fast. But how would she pay for medical aid? she had not one
farthing to procure advice. At this thought the yearning, burning desire
for money which had so long made a part of her existence came back with
full force; she sat revolving scheme after scheme, plan after plan, of
how she could procure it. Hours passed away, but still she sat alone,
silently cowering over the cinders of the fire.

At length she started up, fully awake, to a sense of wonder and dread at
Andrew's long absence. She heard the sound of distant clocks striking
twelve. It was unusual for Andrew to be out so late, for he had
uniformly kept himself aloof from evil companions. The high poetical
spirit within him, a spirit which utterly engrossed him, had kept him
from the haunts of vice. His mother went to the door, and opening it,
gazed on the narrow, mean street. The storm had passed away; the street
was white with hail and snow; the moon shone clearly down between the
tall but dilapidated houses of which the street or lane was composed;
various riotous-looking people were passing by; and from a neighboring
house the brisk strains of a violin came, together with the sound of
voices and laughter. The house had a bad repute in the neighborhood, but
Mrs. Carson never for an instant suspected her son was there. She looked
anxiously along the street, and at every passing form she gazed
earnestly, but none resembled her son.

For a long time she stood waiting and watching for the appearance of
Andrew, but he did not come. At last, sinking with cold and weariness,
and with a host of phantom fears rising up in her bewildered brain, and
almost dragging her mind down into the gulf of utter madness, on the
brink of which she had so long been, Mrs. Carson returned to the
kitchen. As she looked on the last ember dying out on the hearth, a
feeling of frenzy shook her frame. Andrew would soon return, shivering
with cold, and she had no fire to warm him--no money to purchase fire.
She thought of the wealthy--of their bright fires--and bitter envy and
longing for riches gnawed her very heart and life. A broken deal chair
was in a corner of the kitchen; she seized it, and after some efforts
succeeded in wrenching off a piece, which she placed on the dying ember,
and busied herself for some time in fanning; then she gathered every
remaining fragment of coals from the recess at one side of the
fire-place, in which they were usually kept, and with the pains and
patience which poverty so sorely teaches, she employed herself in making
some appearance of a fire. Had she been in her usual mood, she would
have sat anathematizing her son for his absence at such an hour; but now
every moment, as she sat awaiting his return, her heart became more
kindly disposed toward him, and an uneasy feeling of remorse for her
past life was each instant gaining strength amidst the variety of
strange spectral thoughts and fancies which flitted through her diseased
mind. At some moments she fancied she saw her father seated opposite to
her on the hearth, and heard him reading from the Bible, as he did so
often in her girlish days: then again he was away in the privacy of his
own room, and she was watching him through a crevice of the door, and
she saw him open the cabinet he kept there, and take out liquor, ardent
spirits, and he drank long and deep draughts, until gradually he sank
down on his bed in the silent, moveless state of intoxication which had
so long imposed on her, for she had once believed that her father was
subject to fits of a peculiar kind. She groaned and shuddered as this
vision was impressed on her; she saw the spirit of evil which had
destroyed her father attaching itself next to her own fate, and leading
her into the depths of guilt, and she trembled for her son. Had he now
fallen in sin? was some evil action detaining him to such an hour? He
was naturally inclined to good, she knew--strangely good and pure had
his life been, considering he was her child, and reared so carelessly as
she had reared him; but now he had been urged to despair by her endless
cry for money, and, perhaps, he was at that very instant engaged in some
robbery, by which he would be able to bring money to his mother.

So completely enslaved had her mind become to a lust for money, that the
thought of his gaining wealth by any means was for some time delightful
to her; she looked on their great poverty, and she felt, in her darkened
judgment, that they had something of a right to take forcibly a portion
of the superabundant money of the rich. Her eyes glared with eagerness
for the sight of her son returning with money, even though that money
was stolen; the habitual mood of her mind prevailed rapidly over the
impressions of returning goodness and affection which for a brief period
had awoke within her.

In the midst of the return of her overwhelming desire for money,
Andrew's knock came to the door. The eager inquiry whether he had
brought any money with him was bursting from her lips the moment she
opened the door and beheld him, but she was cheeked by the sight of two
strangers who accompanied him. Andrew bade the men follow him, and
walked rapidly to the kitchen; the tones of his voice were so changed
and hollow that his mother hardly recognized him to be her son.

He requested the men to be seated, telling them that when the noise on
the street would be quiet and the people dispersed they would get that
for which they had come. At that moment a drunken broil on the street
had drawn some watchmen to the neighborhood.

He bade his mother follow him, and proceeded hastily to his own room. By
the aid of a match he lighted the miserable candle by which, some hours
previously, he had been writing.

"Mother, here is money--gold--here--your hand." He pressed some gold
coins into her hand. "Gold! ay, gold, gold, indeed!" gasped his mother,
the intensity of her joy repressing for the instant all extravagant
demonstrations of it.

"Go, go away to the kitchen; in about five or ten minutes let the men
come here, and they will get what I have sold them."

"Money! money at last; gold--gold!" cried his mother, altogether
unconscious of what her son was saving, and only awake to the blessed
sense of having at last obtained money.

"Away, I say; go to the kitchen. I have no time to lose."

"Money! blessings, blessings on you and God--money!" She seemed still in
ignorance of Andrew's request that she would withdraw.

"Away, I say, I must be alone; away to the kitchen, and leave me alone;
but let the men come here in a few minutes and take what they have

He spoke with a strange energy. She obeyed him at last, and left the
room: she remembered afterward that his face was like that of a dead man
when he addressed her.

She returned to the kitchen. The two men were seated where she had left
them, and were conversing together: their strong Irish accent told at
once their country. Mrs. Carson paid no attention to them; she neither
spoke to them nor looked at them; she held tightly clasped in her hand
the few gold coins her son had given her; she walked about like one half
distracted, addressing audible thanksgiving to God one instant, and the
next felicitating herself in an insane manner on having at last obtained
some money. The two men commented on her strange manners, and agreed
that she was mad, stating their opinions aloud to each other, but she
did not hear them.

The noise and quarreling on the street continued for some time, and the
men manifested no impatience while it lasted. All became quiet after a
time; the desertion and silence of night seemed at last to have settled
down on the street. The two men then manifested a strong wish to finish
the business on which they had come.

"I say, whereabouts is it--where's the snatch, my good woman?" said one
of the men, addressing Mrs. Carson.

She looked on him and his companion with amazement mingled with
something of fear, for the aspects of both were expressive of low

"She's mad, don't you see," said the one who had not addressed her.

The other cursed deeply, saying that as they had given part payment,
they would get their errand, or their money back again.

At this, a gleam of recollection crossed Mrs. Carson's mind, and she
informed them that her son had mentioned about something they had
purchased, which was in his room. She thought at the instant, that
perhaps he had disposed of one of his manuscripts at last, though she
wondered at the appearance of the purchasers of such an article.

"That's it," cried the men; "show us the way to the room fast; it's all
quiet now."

Anxious to get rid of the men, Mrs. Carson proceeded hastily to her
son's room, followed closely by the men. The first object she saw, on
opening the door, was Andrew, leaning on his desk; the little desk stood
on the table, and Andrew's head and breast were lying on it, as if he
was asleep. There was something in his fixed attitude which struck an
unpleasant feeling to his mother's heart.

"Andrew!" she said; "Andrew, the men are here."

All was silent. No murmur of sleep or life came from Andrew. His mother
ran to his side, and grasped his arm: there was no sound, no motion. She
raised his head with one hand, while at the same time she glanced at an
open letter, on which a few lines were scrawled in a large, hurried
hand. Every word and letter seemed to dilate before her eyes, as in a
brief instant of time she read the following:

"Mother, I have taken poison. I have sold my body to a doctor for
dissection; the money I gave you is part of the price. You have
upbraided me for never making money: I have sold all I possess--my
body--and given you money. You have told me of the stain on my birth; I
can not live and write after that; all the poetical fame in this world
would not wash away such a stain. Your bitter words, my bitter fate, I
can bear no longer; I go to the other world; God will pardon me. Yes,
yes, from the bright moon and stars this night, there came down a voice,
saying, God would take me up to happiness amid his own bright worlds.
Give my body to the men who are waiting for it, and so let every trace
of Andrew Carson vanish from your earth."

With a lightning rapidity Mrs. Carson scanned each word; and not until
she had read it all, did a scream of prolonged and utter agony, such as
is rarely heard even in this world of grief burst from her lips; and
with a gesture of frenzied violence she flung the money she had kept
closely grasped in her hand at the men. One of them stooped to gather it
up, and the other ran toward Andrew, and raised his inanimate body a
little from its recumbent position. He was quite dead, however; a
bottle, marked "Prussic Acid," was in his hand. The two men, having
recovered the money, hurried away, telling Mrs. Carson they would send
immediate medical aid, to see if any thing could be done for the
unfortunate young man. Mrs. Carson did not hear them; a frenzied
paroxysm seized her, and she lay on the floor screaming in the wild
tones of madness, and utterly incapable of any exertion. She saw the
money she had received with such rapture carried away from before her
eyes, but she felt nothing: money had become terrible to her at last.

Her cries attracted a watchman from the street. A doctor was soon on the
spot; but Andrew Carson was no more connected with flesh, and blood, and
human life; he was away beyond recall, in the spirit-world.

An inquest was held on the body, and a verdict of temporary insanity
returned, as is usual in such cases of suicide. The young poet was
buried, and soon forgotten.

Mrs. Carson lingered for some weeks; her disease assumed something of
the form of violent brain-fever; in her ravings she fancied perpetually
that she was immersed in streams of fluid burning gold and silver. They
were forcing her to drink draughts of that scorching gold, she would
cry; all was burning gold and silver: all drink, all food, all air, and
light, and space around her. At the very last she recovered her senses
partially, and calling, with a feeble but calm voice, on her only
beloved child, Andrew, she died.

[Illustration: Neander in the Lecture Room.]


Germany has just lost one of her greatest Protestant theologians,
AUGUSTUS NEANDER. He was born at Göttingen, Jan. 16, 1789, and died at
Berlin, July 13, 1850, in his sixty-second year. He was of Jewish
descent, as his strongly-marked features sufficiently evidence; but at
the age of seventeen he embraced the Christian religion, to the defense
of which his labors, and to the exemplification of which his life, were
thenceforth devoted. Having studied theology at Halle, under
Schleiermacher, he was appointed private lecturer at Heidelberg in 1811,
and in the following year the first Professor of Theology at the Royal
University of Berlin, which post he held to the time of his death, a
period of thirty-eight years. Deservedly high as is his reputation
abroad, it is still higher in his own country, where he was known not
only as an author, but as a teacher, a preacher, and a man. The
following is a list of his published works: The Emperor Julian and his
Times, 1812; Bernard and his Times, 1813; Genetical Development of the
Principal Gnostic Systems, 1818; Chrysostom and the Church in his Times,
1820 and 1832; Memorabilia from the History of Christianity and the
Christian Life, 1822 and 1845-46; A Collection of Miscellanies, chiefly
exegetical and historical, 1829; A Collection of Miscellanies, chiefly
biographical, 1840; The Principle of the Reformation, or, Staupitz and
Luther, 1840; History of the Planting and Training of the Christian
Church, 4th ed., 1847; The Life of Jesus Christ in its Historical
Connection and Historical Development, 4th ed., 1845; General History of
the Christian Religion and Church, 1842-47. Neander is best known to
readers of English by the last two works, both of which have been made
accessible to them by American scholars.

The Life of Christ was undertaken to counteract the impression made by
STRAUSS'S "Life of Christ," in which the attempt was made to apply the
mythical theory to the entire structure of evangelical history.
According to Strauss, the sum of the historical truth contained in the
narratives of the evangelists is, that Jesus lived and taught in Judea,
where he gathered disciples who believed that he was the Messiah.
According to their preconceived notions, the life of the Messiah, and
the period in which he lived, were to be illustrated by signs and
wonders. Messianic legends existed ready-made, in the hopes and
expectations of the people, only needing to be transferred to the person
and character of Jesus. The appearance of this work produced a great
sensation in Germany. It was believed by many that the book should be
prohibited; and the Prussian government was inclined to this measure.
Neander, however, advised that the book should rather be met by
argument. His Life of Christ which was thus occasioned, wears, in
consequence, a somewhat polemical aspect. It has taken the rank of a
standard authority, both in German and in English, into which it has
been admirably translated by Professors M'CLINTOCK and BLUMENTHAL.

The great work of Neander's life, and of which his various writings in
the departments of Ecclesiastical History, Biography, Patristics, and
Dogmatics are subsidiary, is the General History of the Christian
Religion and Church. The first part of this, containing the history of
the first three centuries, was published in 1825, and, improved and
enlarged, in 1842--43. The second part, which brings the history down to
the close of the sixth century, appeared originally in 1828, and in a
second edition in 1846--47. These two parts, comprising four volumes of
the German edition, are well known to English readers through the
excellent version of Professor TORREY. This is a history of the inner
development of Christian doctrines and opinions rather than of the
external progress of the Church, and in connection with GIESELER'S
Text-Book, furnishes by far the best apparatus for the study of
ecclesiastical history now extant.

A correspondent of the _Boston Traveler_, writing under date of Berlin,
July 22, gives the following graphic sketch of the personal
characteristics of Neander:

"NEANDER is no more! He who for thirty-eight years has defeated the
attacks upon the church from the side of rationalism and
philosophy--who, through all the controversies among theologians in
Germany, has remained true to the faith of his adoption, the pure and
holy religion of Jesus Christ--Neander, the philosopher, the
scholar--better, the great and good man--has been taken from the world.

"He was never married, but lived with his maiden sister. Often have I
seen the two walking arm in arm upon the streets and in the parks of the
city. Neander's habit of abstraction and short-sightedness rendered it
necessary for him to have some one to guide the way whenever he left his
study for a walk or to go to his lecture room. Generally, a student
walked with him to the University, and just before it was time for his
lecture to close, his sister could be seen walking up and down on the
opposite side of the street, waiting to accompany him home.

"Many anecdotes are related of him illustrative of his absence of mind,
such as his appearing in the lecture room half dressed--if left alone,
always going to his old residence, after he had removed to another part
of the city--walking in the gutter, &c, &c. In the lecture room, his
manner was in the highest degree peculiar. He put his left arm over the
desk, clasping the book in his hand, and after bringing his face close
to the corner of his desk, effectually concealed it by holding his notes
close to his nose.

"In one hand was always a quill, which, during the lecture, he kept
constantly twirling about and crushing. He pushed the desk forward upon
two legs, swinging it back and forth, and every few minutes would plunge
forward almost spasmodically, throwing one foot back in a way leading
you to expect that he would the next moment precipitate himself headlong
down upon the desks of the students. Twirling his pen, occasional
spitting, jerking his foot backward, taken with his dress, gave him a
most eccentric appearance in the lecture room. Meeting him upon the
street, with his sister, you never would have suspected that such a
strange looking being could be Neander. He formerly had two sisters, but
a few years ago the favorite one died. It was a trying affliction, and
for a short interval he was quite overcome, but suddenly he dried his
tears, calmly declared his firm faith and reliance in the wise purpose
of God in taking her to himself, and resumed his lectures immediately as
if nothing had over taken him to disturb his serenity.

"Neander's charity was unbounded. Poor students were not only presented
with tickets to his lectures, but were also often provided by him with
money and clothing. Not a farthing of the money received for his
lectures ever went to supply his own wants; it was all given away for
benevolent purposes. The income from his writings was bestowed upon the
Missionary, Bible, and other societies, and upon hospitals. Thoughts of
himself never seemed to have obtruded upon his mind. He would sometimes
give away to a poor student all the money he had about him at the moment
the request was made of him, even his new coat, retaining the old one
for himself. You have known this great man in your country more on
account of his learning, from his books, than in any other way; but
here, where he has lived, one finds that his private character, his
piety, his charity, have distinguished him above all others.

"It would be difficult to decide whether the influence of his example
has not been as great as that of his writings upon the thousands of
young men who have been his pupils. Protestants, Catholics, nearly all
the leading preachers throughout Germany, have attended his lectures,
and all have been more or less guided by him. While philosophy has been
for years attempting to usurp the place of religion, Neander has been
the chief instrument in combating it, and in keeping the true faith
constantly before the students.

"He was better acquainted with Church History and the writings of the
Fathers than any one of his time. It has been the custom upon the
recurrence of his birth-day, for the students to present to him a rare
edition of one of the Fathers, and thus he has come to have one of the
most complete sets of their writings to be found in any library. Turning
from his great literary attainments, from all considerations suggested
by his profound learning, it is pleasant to contemplate the pure
Christian character of the man. Although born a Jew, his whole life
seemed to be a sermon upon the text, 'That disciple whom Jesus loved
said unto Peter, _It is the Lord!'_ Neander's life resembled more 'that
disciple's' than any other. He was the loving John, the new Church
Father of our times.

"His sickness was only of a few days' duration. On Monday he held his
lecture as usual. The next day he was seized with a species of cholera.
A day or two of pain was followed by a lucid interval, when the
physicians were encouraged to hope for his recovery. During this
interval he dictated a page in his Church History, and then said to his
sister--'I am weary--let us go home.' He had no time to die. He needed
no further preparation; his whole life had been the best preparation,
and up to the last moment we see him active in his master's service. The
disease returned with redoubled force; a day or two more of suffering,
and on Sunday, less than a week from the day of attack, he was dead.

"On the 17th of July I attended the funeral services. The procession of
students was formed at the university, and marched to his dwelling. In
the meantime, in the house, the theological students, the professors
from Berlin, and from the University of Halle, the clergy, relatives,
high officers of government, etc., were assembled to hear the funeral
discourse. Professor Strauss, for forty-five years an intimate friend of
Neander, delivered a sermon. During the exercises, the body, not yet
placed in the coffin, was covered with wreaths and flowers, and
surrounded with burning candles.

"The procession was of great length, was formed at 10 A.M. and moved
through Unter den Linden as far as Frederick-street, and then the whole
length of Frederick-street as far as the Elizabeth-street Cemetery. The
whole distance, nearly two miles, the sides of the streets, doors and
windows of the houses were filled with an immense concourse of people
who had come to look upon the solemn scene. The hearse was surrounded
with students, some of them from Halle, carrying lighted candles, and in
advance was borne the Bible and Greek Testament which had ever been used
by the deceased.

"At the grave, a choir of young men sang appropriate music, and a
student from Halle made an affecting address. It was a solemn sight to
see the tears gushing from the eyes of those who had been the pupils and
friends of Neander. Many were deeply moved, and well might they join
with the world in mourning for one who had done more than any one to
keep pure the religion of Christ here in Germany.

"After the benediction was pronounced, every one present, according to
the beautiful custom here, went to the grave and threw into it a handful
of dirt, thus assisting at the burial. Slowly, and in scattered groups
the crowd dispersed to their various homes.

"How insignificant all the metaphysical controversies of the age, the
vain teachings of man, appeared to us as we stood at the grave-side of
Neander. His was a far higher and holier faith, from which, like the
Evangelist, he never wavered. In his life, in his death, the belief to
which he had been converted, his watchword remained unchanged: 'It is
the Lord!' His body has been consigned to the grave, but the sunset
glory of his example still illumines our sky, and will forever light us
onward to the path he trod."




There are a multitude of places in this wide world, that we never heard
of since the day of creation, and that never would become known to a
soul beyond their own ten miles of circumference, except to those
universal discoverers, the tax-gatherers, were it not that some sparks
of genius may suddenly kindle there, and carry their fame through all
countries and all generations. This has been the case many times, and
will be the case again. We are now destined to hear the sound of names
that our fathers never dreamed of; and there are other spots, now
basking in God's blessed sunshine, of which the world knows and cares
nothing, that shall, to our children, become places of worship, and
pilgrimage. Something of this sort of glory was cast upon the little
town of Rapps, in Bohemia, by the hero whose name stands conspicuously
in this article, and whose pleasant adventures I flatter myself that I
am destined to diffuse still further. HANS NADELTREIBER was the son of
Mr. Strauss Nadeltreiber, who had, as well as his ancestors before him,
for six generations, practiced, in the same little place, that most
gentlemanly of all professions, a tailor--seeing that it was before all
others, and was used and sanctioned by our father Adam.

Now Hans, from boyhood up, was a remarkable person. His father had known
his share of troubles, and having two sons, both older than Hans,
naturally looked in his old age to reap some comfort and assistance from
their united labors. But the two elder sons successively had fled from
the shop-board. One had gone for a soldier, and was shot; the other had
learned the craft of a weaver, but being too fond of his pot, had
broken his neck by falling into a quarry, as he went home one night from
a carousal. Hans was left the sole staff for the old man to lean upon;
and truly a worthy son he proved himself. He was as gentle as a dove,
and as tender as a lamb. A cross word from his father, when he had made
a cross stitch, would almost break his heart; but half a word of
kindness revived him again--and he seldom went long without it; for the
old man, though rendered rather testy and crabbed in his temper, by his
many troubles and disappointments, was naturally of a loving,
compassionate disposition, and, moreover, regarded Hans as the apple of
his eye.

Hans was of a remarkably light, slender, active make, full of life and
mettle. This moment he was on the board, stitching away with as much
velocity as if he were working for a funeral or a wedding, at an hour's
notice; the next, he was dispatching his dinner at the same rate; and
the third beheld him running, leaping, and playing, among his
companions, as blithe as a young kid. If he had a fault, it was being
too fond of his fiddle. This was his everlasting delight. One would have
thought that his elbow had labor enough, with jerking his needle some
thirty thousand times a day; but it was in him a sort of universal
joint--it never seemed to know what weariness was. His fiddle stood
always on the board in a corner by him, and no sooner had he ceased to
brandish his needle, than he began to brandish his fiddlestick. If ever
he could be said to be lazy, it was when his father was gone out to
measure, or try on; and his fiddle being too strong a temptation for
him, he would seize upon it, and labor at it with all his might, till he
spied his father turning his next corner homeward. Nevertheless, with
this trifling exception, he was a pattern of filial duty; and now the
time was come that his father must die--his mother was dead long before;
and he was left alone in the world with his riddle. The whole house,
board, trade--what there was of it--all was his. When he came to take
stock, and make an inventory--in his head--of what he was worth, it was
by no means such as to endanger his entrance into heaven at the proper
time. Naturally enough, he thought of the Scripture simile of the rich
man, and the camel getting through the eye of a needle; but it did not
frighten him. His father never had much beforehand, when he had the
whole place to himself; and now, behold! another knight of the steel-bar
had come from--nobody knew where--a place often talked of, yet still a
_terra incognita_; had taken a great house opposite, hoisted a
tremendous sign, and threatened to carry away every shred of Hans's

In the depth of his trouble, he took to his fiddle, from his fiddle to
his bed, and in his bed he had a dream--I thought we had done with these
dreams!--in which he was assured, that could he once save the sum of
fifty dollars, it would be the seed of a fortune; that he should
flourish far beyond the scale of old Strauss; should drive his
antagonist, in utter despair, from the ground; and should, in short,
arrive eventually at no less a dignity than--Bürgermeister of Rapps!

Hans was, as I believe I have said, soon set up with the smallest spice
of encouragement. He was, moreover, as light and nimble as a
grasshopper, and, in his whole appearance, much such an animal, could it
be made to stand on end. His dream, therefore, was enough. He vowed a
vow of unconquerable might, and to it he went. Springing upon his board,
he hummed a tune gayly:

    There came the Hippopotamus,
    A sort of river-bottom-horse,
        Sneezing, snorting, blowing water
    From his nostrils, and around him
    Grazing up the grass--confound him!
        Every mouthful a huge slaughter!

    Beetle, grasshopper, and May-fly,
    From his muzzle must away fly,
        Or he swallowed them by legions,
    His huge foot, it was a pillar;
    When he drank, it was a swiller!
        Soon a desert were those regions.

    But the grasshoppers so gallant
    Called to arms each nimble callant,
       With their wings, and stings, and nippers,
    Bee, and wasp, and hornet, awful;
    Gave the villain such a jawful,
        That he slipped away in slippers!

"Ha! ha!--slipped down into the mud that he emerged from!" cried Hans,
and, seizing his fiddle, dashed off the Hippopotamus in a style that did
him a world of good, and makes us wish that we had the musical notes of
it. Then he fell to, and day and night he wrought. Work came; it was
done. He wanted little--a crust of bread and a merry tune were enough
for him. His money grew; the sum was nearly accomplished, when,
returning one evening from carrying out some work--behold! his door was
open! Behold! the lid of his pot where he deposited his treasure was
off! The money was gone!

This was a terrible blow. Hans raised a vast commotion. He did not even
fail to insinuate that it might be the interloper opposite--the
Hippopotamus. Who so likely as he, who had his eye continually on Hans's
door? But no matter--the thief was clear off; and the only comfort he
got from his neighbors, was being rated for his stinginess. "Ay," said
they, "this comes of living like a curmudgeon, in a great house by
yourself, working your eyes out to hoard up money. What must a young man
like you do with scraping up pots full of money, like a miser? It is a
shame!--it is a sin!--it is a judgment! Nothing better could come of it.
At all events, you might afford to have a light burning in the house.
People are ever likely to rob you. They see a house as dark as an oven;
they see nobody in it; they go in and steal; nobody can see them come
out--and that is just it. But were there a light burning, they would
always think there was somebody in. At all events, you might have a

"There is something in that," said Hans. He was not at all unreasonable:
so he determined to have a light in future: and he fell to work again.

Bad as his luck had been, he resolved not to be cast down: he was as
diligent and as thrifty as ever; and he resolved, when he became
Bürgermeister of Rapps, to be especially severe on sneaking thieves, who
crept into houses that were left to the care of Providence and the
municipal authorities. A light was everlastingly burning in his window;
and the people, as they passed in the morning, said, "This man must have
a good business that requires him to be up thus early;" and they who
passed in the evening, said, "This man must be making a fortune, for he
is busy early and late." At length Hans leaped down from his board with
the work that was to complete his sum, a second time; went; returned,
with the future Bürgermeister growing rapidly upon him; when, as he
turned the corner of the street--men and mercies!--what a spectacle! His
house was in a full burst of flame, illuminating, with a ruddy glow,
half the town, and all the faces of the inhabitants, who were collected
to witness the catastrophe. Money, fiddle, shop-board--all were
consumed! and when poor Hans danced and capered, in the very ecstasy of
his distraction--"Ay," said his neighbors, "this comes of leaving a
light in an empty house. It was just the thing to happen. Why don't you
get somebody to take care of things in your absence?"

Hans stood corrected; for, as I have said, he was soon touched to the
quick, and though in his anger he did think it rather unkind that they,
who advised the light, now prophesied after the event; when that was a
little abated, he thought there was reason in what they now said. So,
bating not a jot of his determination to save, and to be Bürgermeister
of Rapps, he took the very next house, which luckily happened to be at
liberty, and he got a journeyman. For a long time, his case appeared
hard and hopeless. He had to pay three hundred per cent, for the piece
of a table, two stools, and a couple of hags of hay, which he had
procured of a Jew, and which, with an odd pot, and a wooden spoon or
two, constituted all his furniture. Then, he had two mouths to feed
instead of one wages to pay; and not much more work done than he could
manage himself. But still--he had dreamed; and dreams, if they are
genuine, fulfill themselves. The money grew--slowly, very slowly, but
still it grew; and Hans pitched upon a secure place, as he thought, to
conceal it in. Alas! poor Hans! He had often in his heart grumbled at
the slowness of his _Handwerks-Bursch_, or journeyman; but the fellow's
eyes had been quick enough, and he proved himself a hand-work's fellow
to some purpose, by clearing out Hans's hiding-place, and becoming a
journeyman in earnest. The fellow was gone one morning; no great
loss--but then the money was gone with him, which _was_ a terrible

This was more than Hans could bear. He was perfectly cast down,
disheartened, and inconsolable. At first, he thought of running after
the fellow; and, as he knew the scamp could not go far without a
passport, and as Hans had gone the round of the country himself, in the
three years of his _Wandel-Jahre_, as required by the worshipful guild
of tailors, he did not doubt but that he should some day pounce upon the
scoundrel. But then, in the mean time, who was to keep his trade
together? There was the Hippopotamus watching opposite! No! it would not
do! and his neighbor, coming in to condole with him, said--"Cheer up,
man! there is nothing amiss yet. What signify a few dollars? You will
soon get plenty more, with those nimble fingers of yours. You want only
somebody to help you to keep them. You must get a wife! Journeymen were
thieves from the first generation. You must get married!"

"Get married!" thought Hans. He was struck all on a heap at the very
mention of it "Get married! What! fine clothes to go a-wooing in, and
fine presents to go a-wooing with; and parson's fees, and clerk's fees;
and wedding-dinner, and dancing, and drinking; and then, doctor's fees,
and nurse's fees, and children without end! That is ruin!" thought
Hans--"without end!" The fifty dollars and the Bürgermeistership--they
might wait till doomsday.

"Well, that is good!" thought Hans, as he took a little more breath.
"They first counseled me to get a light--then went house and all in a
bonfire; next, I must get a journeyman--then went the money; and now
they would have me bring more plagues upon me than Moses brought upon
Egypt. Nay, nay!" thought Hans; "you'll not catch me there, neither."

Hans all this time was seated upon his shop-board, stitching, at an
amazing rate, upon a garment which the rascally Wagner should have
finished to order at six o'clock that morning, instead of decamping with
his money; and, ever and anon, so far forgetting his loss in what
appeared to him the ludicrousness of this advice, as freely to laugh
out. All that day, the idea continued to run in his head; the next, it
had lost much of its freshness; the third, it appeared not so odd as
awful; the fourth, he began to ask himself whether it might be quite so
momentous as his imagination had painted it; the fifth, he really
thought it was not so bad neither; the sixth, it had so worked round in
his head, that it had fairly got on the other side, and appeared clearly
to have its advantages--children did not come scampering into the world
all at once, like a flock of lambs into a meadow--a wife might help to
gather, as well as spend--might possibly bring something of her own--ay!
a new idea!--would be a perpetual watch and storekeeper in his
absence--might speak a word of comfort, in trouble when even his fiddle
was dumb; on the seventh--he was off! Whither?

Why, it so happened that in his "wander-years," Hans had played his
fiddle at many a dance--a very dangerous position; for his chin resting
on "the merry bit of wood," as the ancient Friend termed that
instrument, and his head leaned on one side, he had had plenty of
opportunity to watch the movements of plenty of fair maids in the dance,
as well as occasionally to whirl them round in the everlasting waltz
himself. Accordingly, Hans had left his heart many times, for a week or
ten days or so, behind him, in many a town and dorf of Bohemia and
Germany; but it always came after him and overtook him again, except on
one occasion. Among the damsels of the Böhmer-Wald who had danced to the
sound of his fiddle, there was a certain substantial bergman's or
master-miner's daughter, who, having got into his head in some odd
association with his fiddle, was continually coming up as he played his
old airs, and could not be got out again, especially as he fancied that
the comely and simple-hearted creature had a lurking fondness for both
his music and himself.

Away he went: and he was right. The damsel made no objection to his
overtures. Tall, stout, fresh, pleasant growth of the open air and the
hills, as she was, she never dreamed of despising the little skipping
tailor of Rapps, though he was shorter by the head than herself. She had
heard his music, and evidently had danced after it. The fiddler and
fiddle together filled up her ambition. But the old people!--they were
in perfect hysterics of wrath and indignation. Their daughter!--with the
exception of one brother, now absent on a visit to his uncle in Hungary,
a great gold-miner in the Carpathian mountains, the sole remnant of an
old, substantial house, which had fed their flocks and their herds on
the hills for three generations, and now drew wealth from the heart of
these hills themselves! It was death! poison! pestilence! The girl must
be mad; the hop-o'-my-thumb scoundrel must carry witch-powder!

Nevertheless, as Hans and the damsel were agreed, every thing
else--threats, denunciations, sarcasms, cuttings-off with a shilling,
and loss of a ponderous dowry--all went for nothing. They were married,
as some thousands were before them in just the like circumstances. But
if the Bohemian maid was not mad, it must be confessed that Hans was
rather so. He was monstrously exasperated at the contempt heaped by the
heavy bergman on the future Bürgermeister of Rapps, and determined to
show a little spirit. As his fiddle entered into all his schemes, he
resolved to have music at his wedding; and no sooner did he and his
bride issue from the church, than out broke the harmony which he had
provided. The fiddle played merrily, "You'll repent, repent, repent;
you'll repent, repent, repent;" and the bassoon answered, in surly
tones, "And soon! and soon!" "I hope, my dear," said the bride, "You
don't mean the words for us." "No, love," explained Hans, gallantly; "I
don't say 'we,' but 'you'--that is, certain haughty people on these
hills that shall be nameless." Then the music played till they reached
the inn where they dined, and then set off in a handsome hired carriage
for Rapps.

It is true, that there was little happiness in this affair to any one.
The old people were full of anger, curses, and threats of total
disownment. Hans's pride was pricked, and perforated, till he was as
sore as if he had been tattooed with his own needle; and his wife was
completely drowned in sorrow at such a parting with her parents, and
with no little sense of remorse for her disobedience. Nevertheless, they
reached home; things began gradually to assume a more composed aspect.
Hans loved his wife; she loved him; he was industrious, she was careful;
and they trusted, in time, to bring her parents round, when they should
see that they were doing well in the world.

Again the saving scheme began to haunt Hans; but he had one luckless
notion, which was destined to cost him no little vexation. With the
stock of the shop, he had inherited from his father a stock of old
maxims, which, unluckily, had not got burnt in the fire with the rest of
the patrimonial heritage. Among these was one, that a woman can not keep
a secret. Acting on this creed, Hans not only never told his wife of the
project of becoming Bürgermeister of Rapps, but he did not even give her
reason to suppose that he laid up a shilling; and that she might not
happen to stumble upon his money, he took care to carry it always about
him. It was his delight, when he got into a quiet corner, or as he came
along a retired lane, from his errands, to take it out and count it; and
calculate when it would amount to this and that sum, and when the full
sum would be really his own. Now, it happened one day, that having been
a good deal absorbed in these speculations, he had loitered a precious
piece of time away; and suddenly coming to himself, he set off, as was
his wont, on a kind of easy trot, in which, his small, light form thrown
forward, his pale, gray-eyed, earnest-looking visage thrown up toward
the sky, and his long blue coat flying in a stream behind him, he cut
one of the most extraordinary figures in the world; and checking his
pace as he entered the town, he involuntarily clapped his hand on his
pocket, and behold! his money was gone! It had slipped away through a
hole it had worn. In the wildness and bitterness of his loss, he turned
back, heartily cursing the spinner and the weaver of that most
detestable piece of buckram that composed his breeches-pocket, for
having put it together so villainously that it broke down with the
carriage of a few dollars, halfpence, thimbles, balls of wax and thread,
and a few other sundries, after the trifling wear of seven years, nine
months, and nineteen days.

He was peering, step by step, after his lost treasure, when up came his
wife, running like one wild, and telling him that he must come that
instant; for the Ritter of Flachenflaps had brought in new liveries for
all his servants, and threatened if he did not see Hans in five minutes,
he would carry the work over to the other side of the street. There was
a perplexity! The money was not to be found, and if it were found in the
presence of his wife, he would regard it as no better than lost. He was
therefore obliged to excuse his conduct, being caught in the act of
poring after something, to tell, if not a lie, at least the very
smallest part of the truth, and say that he had lost his thimble. The
money was not found, and to make bad worse, he was in danger of losing a
good job, and all the Ritter's work forever, as a consequence.

Away he ran, therefore, groaning inwardly, at full speed, and, arriving
out of breath, saw the Ritter's carriage drawn up at his opponent's
door. Wormwood upon wormwood! His money was lost; his best customer was
lost, and thrown into the jaws of the detested Hippopotamus. There he
beheld him and his man in a prime bustle from day to day, while his own
house was deserted. All people went where the Ritter went, of course.
The Hippopotamus was now grazing and browsing through Hans's richest
meadows with a vengeance. He was flourishing out of all bounds. He had
got a horse to ride out on and take orders, and to all appearance was
likely to become Bürgermeister ten years before Hans had got ten dollars
of his own.

It was too much for even his sanguine temperament; he sank down to the
very depths of despair; his fiddle had lost its music; he could not
abide to hear it; he sate moody and disconsolate, with a beard an inch
long. His wife for some time hoped it would go off; but, seeing it come
to this, she began to console and advise, to rouse his courage and his
spirits. She told him it was that horse which gave the advantage to his
neighbor. While he went trudging on foot, wearying himself, and wasting
his time, people came, grew weary, and would not wait. She offered,
therefore, to borrow her neighbor's ass for him; and advised him to ride
out daily a little way. It would look as though he had business in the
country. It would look as if his time was precious; it would look well,
and do his health good into the bargain. Hans liked her counsel; it
sounded well--nay, exceedingly discreet. He always thought her a gem of
a woman, but he never imagined her half so able. What a pity a woman
could not be trusted with a secret! Were it not for that, she would be a
helpmate past all reckoning.

The ass, however, was got: out rode Hans; looked amazingly hurried; and,
being half-crazed with care, people thought he was half-crazed with
stress of business. Work came in; things went flowingly on again; Hans
blessed his stars; and as he grasped his cash, he every day stitched it
into the crown of his cap, taking paper-money for the purpose. No more
pots, no more hiding-holes, no more breeches-pockets for him; he put it
under the guardianship of his own strong thread and dexterous needle;
and all went on exceedingly well.

Accidents will, however, occur, if men will not trust their wives; and
especially if they will not avoid awkward habits. Now, Hans had a
strange habit of sticking his needles on his breeches-knees as he sat at
work; and sometimes he would have half-a-dozen on each knee for
half-a-dozen days. His wife often told him to take them out when he came
down from his board, and often took them out herself; but it was of no
use. He was just in this case one day as he rode out to take measure of
a gentleman, about five miles off. The ass, to his thinking, was in a
remarkably brisk mood. Off it went, without whip or spur, at a good
active trot, and, not satisfied with trotting, soon fairly proceeded to
a gallop. Hans was full of wonder at the beast. Commonly it tired his
arm worse with thrashing it during his hour's ride, than the exercise of
his goose and sleeve-board did for a whole day; but now he was fain to
pull it in. It was to no purpose; faster than ever it dashed on,
prancing, running sideways, wincing, and beginning to show a most ugly
temper. What, in the name of all Balaams, could possess the animal, he
could not for his life conceive! The only chance of safety appeared to
lie in clinging with both arms and legs to it, like a boa-constrictor to
its victim, when, shy!--away it flew, as if it were driven by a legion
of devils. In another moment, it stopped; down went its head, up went
its infernal heels; and Hans found himself some ten yards off, in the
middle of a pool. He escaped drowning, but the cap was gone; he had been
foolish enough to stitch some dollars, in hard cash, recently received,
into it along with his paper, and they sunk it, past recovery! He came
home, dripping like a drowned mouse, with a most deplorable tale; but
with no more knowledge of the cause of his disaster than the man in the
moon, till he tore his fingers on the needles, in abstracting his wet

Fortune now seemed to have said, as plainly as she could speak, "Hans,
confide in your wife. You see all your schemes without her fail. Open
your heart to her--deal fairly, generously, and you will reap the merits
of it." It was all in vain--he had not yet come to his senses. Obstinate
as a mule--he determined to try once more. But good-by to the ass! The
only thing he resolved to mount was his shop board--that bore him well,
and brought him continued good, could he only continue to keep it.

His wife, I said, came from the mountains; she, therefore, liked the
sight of trees. Now, in Hans's back-yard there was neither tree nor
turf, so she got some tubs, and in them she planted a variety of
fir-trees, which made a pleasant appearance, and gave a help to her
imagination of the noble firs of her native scenes. In one of these
tubs, Hans conceived the singular design of depositing his future
treasure. "Nobody, will meddle with them," he thought, so accordingly,
from week to week, he concealed in one of them his acquisitions. It had
gone on a long time. He had been out one day, collecting some of his
debts--he had succeeded beyond his hopes, and came back exulting. The
sum was saved; and, in the gladness of his heart, he bought his wife a
new gown. He bounded into the house with the lightness of seventeen. His
wife was not there--he looked into the back-yard. Saints and angels!
what is that? He beheld his wife busy with the tubs. The trees were
uprooted, and laid on the ground, and every particle of soil was thrown
out of the tubs. In the delirium of consternation, he flew to ask what
she had been doing.

"Oh! the trees, poor things, did not flourish; they looked sickly and
pining; she determined to give them some soil more suitable to their
natures; she had thrown the earth into the river, at the bottom of the

"And you have thrown into the river," exclaimed Hans, frantically, "the
hoarding of three years; the money which had cost me many a weary
day--many an anxious night. The money which would have made our
fortunes--in short, that would have made me Bürgermeister of Rapps."
Completely thrown off his guard, he betrayed his secret.

"Good gracious!" cried his wife, exceedingly alarmed; "why did you not
tell me of it?"

"Ay, that is the question!" said he. And it was a question; for, spite
of himself, it had occurred to his mind some dozens of times, and now it
came so overwhelmingly, that even when he thought he treated it with
contempt, it had fixed itself upon his better reason, and never left him
till it had worked a most fortunate revolution. He said to himself, "Had
I told my wife of it at the first, it could not possibly have happened
worse; and it is very likely it would have happened better. For the
future, then, be it so."

Thereupon, he unfolded to her the whole history and mystery of his
troubles, and his hopes. Now, Mrs. Hans Nadeltreiber had great cause to
feel herself offended, most grievously offended; but she was not at all
of a touchy temperament. She was a sweet, tender, patient, loving
creature, who desired her husband's honor and prosperity beyond any
thing; so she sate down, and in the most mild, yet acute and able
manner, laid down to him a plan of operations, and promised him such
aids and succors, that, struck at once with shame, contrition, and
admiration, he sprung up, clasped her to his heart, called her the very
gem of womanhood, and skipped two or three times across the floor, like
a man gone out of his senses. The truth is, however, he was but just
come into them.

From this day, a new life was begun in Hans's house. There he sat at his
work; there sat his wife by his side; aiding and contriving with a
woman's wit, a woman's love, and a woman's adroitness. She was worth ten
journeymen. Work never came in faster; never gave such satisfaction;
never brought in so much money; nor, besides this, was there ever such
harmony in the house, nor had they ever held such delectable discourse
together. There was nothing to conceal. Hans's thoughts flowed like a
great stream; and when they grew a little wild and visionary, as they
were apt to do, his wife smoothened and reduced them to sobriety, with
such a delicate touch, that, so far from feeling offended, he was
delighted beyond expression with her prudence. The fifty dollars were
raised in almost no time; and, as if prognostic of its becoming the seed
of a fortune, it came in most opportunely for purchasing a lot of cloth,
which more than trebled its cost, and gave infinite satisfaction to his
customers. Hans saw that the tide was rapidly rising with him, and his
wife urged him to push on with it; to take a larger house; to get more
hands; and to cut such a figure as should at once eclipse his rival. The
thing was done; but as their capital was still found scanty enough for
such an undertaking, Mrs. Nadeltreiber resolved to try what she could do
to increase it.

I should have informed the reader, had not the current of Hans's
disasters ran too strong for me, that his wife's parents were dead, and
had died without giving her any token of reconciliation--a circumstance
which, although it cut her to the heart, did not quite cast her down,
feeling that she had done nothing but what a parent might forgive, being
all of us creatures alike liable to error, demanding alike some little
indulgence for our weaknesses and our fancies. Her brother was now sole
representative of the family; and knowing the generosity of his nature,
she determined to pay him a visit, although, for the first time since
her marriage, in a condition very unfit for traveling. She went. Her
brother received her with all his early affection. In his house was born
her first child; and so much did she and her bantling win upon his
heart, that when the time came that she must return, nothing would serve
but he would take her himself. She had been so loud in Hans's praise,
that he determined to go and shake him by the hand. It would have done
any one good to have seen this worthy mountaineer setting forth, seated
in his neat, green-painted wicker wagon; his sister by his side, and the
child snugly-bedded in his own corn-hopper at their feet. Thus did they
go statelily, with his great black horse drawing them. It would have
been equally pleasant to see him set down his charge at the door of
Hans's house, and behold with wonder that merry mannikin, all smiles and
gesticulation, come forth to receive them. The contrast between Hans and
his brother-in-law was truly amusing. He, a shadow-like homunculus, so
light and dry, that any wind threatened to blow him before it; the
bergman, with a countenance like the rising sun, the stature of a giant,
and limbs like an elephant. Hans watched, with considerable anxiety, the
experiment of his kinsman seating himself in a chair. The chair,
however, stood firm; and the good man surveyed Hans, in return, with a
curious and critical air, as if doubtful whether he must not hold him
in contempt for the want of that solid matter of which he himself had
too much. Hans's good qualities, however, got the better of him. "The
man's a man, though," said he to himself, very philosophically, "and as
he is good to my sister, he shall know of it." Hans delighted him every
evening, by the powers of his violin; and the bergman, excessively fond
of music, like most of his countrymen, declared that he might perform in
the emperor's orchestra, and find nobody there to beat him. When he took
his leave, therefore, he seized one of Hans's hands with a cordial gripe
that was felt through every limb, and into the other he put a bag of one
thousand rix dollars, saying, "My sister ought not to have come
dowerless into a good husband's house. This is properly her own: take
it, and much good may it do you."

Our story need not be prolonged. The new tailor soon fled before the
star of Hans's ascendency. A very few years saw him installed into the
office of Bürgermeister, the highest of earthly honors in his eyes; and
if he had one trouble left, it was only in the reflection that he might
have attained his wishes years before had he understood the heart of a
good woman. The worshipful Herr Bürgermeister, and Frau Bürgermeisterin
of Rapps, often visited their colossal brother of the Böhmerwald, and
were thought to reflect no discredit on the old bergman family.

[From Dickens's "Household Words."]


That was a pleasant place where I was born, though 'twas only a thatched
cabin by the side of a mountain stream, where the country was so lonely,
that in summer time the wild ducks used to bring their young ones to
feed on the bog, within a hundred yards of our door; and you could not
stoop over the bank to raise a pitcher full of water, without
frightening a shoal of beautiful speckled trout. Well, 'tis long ago
since my brother Richard, that's now grown a fine, clever man, God bless
him! and myself, used to set off together up the mountain to pick
bunches of the cotton plant and the bog myrtle, and to look for birds'
and wild bees' nests. 'Tis long ago--and though I'm happy and well off
now, living in the big house as own maid to the young ladies, who, on
account of my being foster-sister to poor darling Miss Ellen, that died
of decline, treat me more like their equal than their servant, and give
me the means to improve myself; still, at times, especially when James
Sweeney, a dacent boy of the neighbors, and myself are taking a walk
together through the fields in the cool and quiet of a summer's evening,
I can't help thinking of the times that are passed, and talking about
them to James with a sort of peaceful sadness, more happy, maybe, than
if we ware laughing aloud.

Every evening, before I say my prayers, I read a chapter in the Bible
that Miss Ellen gave me; and last night I felt my tears dropping forever
so long over one verse, "And God shall wipe away all tears from their
eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying,
neither shall there be any more pain; for the former things are passed
away." The words made me think of them that are gone--of my father, and
his wife that was a true, fond mother to me; and above all, of my little
sister Mary, the _clureen bawn_[F] that nestled in her bosom.

I was a wild slip of a girl, ten years of age, and my brother Richard
about two years older, when my father brought home his second wife. She
was the daughter of a farmer up at Lackabawn, and was reared with care
and dacency; but her father held his ground at a rack-rent, and the
middleman that was between him and the head landlord did not pay his own
rent, so the place was ejected, and the farmer collected every penny he
had, and set off with his family to America. My father had a liking for
the youngest daughter, and well become him to have it, for a sweeter
creature never drew the breath of life; but while her father passed for
a _strong_[G] farmer, he was timorous-like about asking her to share his
little cabin; however, when he found how matters stood, he didn't lose
much time in finding out that she was willing to be his wife, and a
mother to his boy and girl. _That_ she was, a patient loving one. Oh! it
often sticks me like a knife, when I think how many times I fretted her
with my foolishness and my idle ways, and how 'twas a long time before
I'd call her "mother." Often, when my father would be going to chastise
Richard and myself for our provoking doings, especially the day that we
took half-a-dozen eggs from under the hatching hen, to play "Blind Tom"
with them, she'd interfere for us, and say, "Tim, _aleagh_, don't touch
them this time; sure 'tis only _arch_ they are: they'll get more sense
in time." And then, after he was gone out, she'd advise us for our good
so pleasantly, that a thundercloud itself couldn't look black at her.
She did wonders, too, about the house and garden. They were both dirty
and neglected enough when she first came over them; for I was too young
and foolish, and my father too busy with his out-door work, and the old
woman that lived with us in service too feeble and too blind to keep the
place either clean or decent; but my mother got the floor raised, and
the green pool in front drained, and a parcel of roses and honey-suckles
planted there instead. The neighbors' wives used to say, 'twas all pride
and upsetting folly, to keep the kitchen-floor swept clean, and to put
the potatoes on a dish, instead of emptying them out of the pot into the
middle of the table; and, besides, 'twas a cruel, unnatural thing, they
said, to take away the pool from the ducks, that they were always used
to paddle in so handy. But my mother was always too busy and too happy
to heed what they said; and, besides, she was always so ready to do a
kind turn for any of them, that, out of poor shame, they had at last to
leave off abusing her "fine English ways."

West of our house there was a straggling, stony piece of ground, where,
within the memory of man nothing ever grew but nettles, docks, and
thistles. One Monday, when Richard and myself came in from school, my
mother told us to set about weeding it, and to bring in some basketfuls
of good clay from the banks of the river; she said that if we worked
well at it until Saturday, she'd bring me a new frock, and Dick a
jacket, from the next market-town; and encouraged by this, we set to
work with right good will, and didn't leave off till supper time. The
next day we did the same; and by degrees, when we saw the heap of weeds
and stones that we got out, growing big, and the ground looking nice and
smooth and red and rich, we got quite anxious about it ourselves, and we
built a nice little fence round it to keep out the pigs. When it was
manured, my mother planted cabbages, parsnips, and onions in it; and, to
be sure, she got a fine crop out of it, enough to make us many a nice
supper of vegetables stewed with pepper, and a small taste of bacon or a
red herring. Besides, she sold in the market as much as bought a Sunday
coat for my father, a gown for herself, a fine pair of shoes for Dick,
and as pretty a shawl for myself, as e'er a colleen in the country could
show at mass. Through means of my father's industry and my mother's good
management, we were, with the blessing of God, as snug and comfortable a
poor family as any in Munster. We paid but a small rent, and we had
always plenty of potatoes to eat, good clothes to wear, and cleanliness
and decency in and about our little cabin.

Five years passed on in this way, and at last little Mary was born. She
was a delicate fairy thing, with that look, even from the first, in her
blue eyes, which is seldom seen, except where the shadow of the grave
darkens the cradle. She was fond of her father, and of Richard, and of
myself, and would laugh and crow when she saw us, but _the love in the
core of her heart_ was for her mother. No matter how tired, or sleepy,
or cross the baby might be, one word from _her_ would set the bright
eyes dancing, and the little rosy month smiling, and the tiny limbs
quivering, as if walking or running couldn't content her, but she must
fly to her mother's arms. And how that mother doted on the very ground
she trod! I often thought that the Queen in her state carriage, with her
son, God bless him! alongside of her, dressed out in gold and jewels,
was not one bit happier than my mother, when she sat under the shade of
the mountain ash, near the door, in the hush of the summer's evening,
singing and _cronauning_ her only one to sleep in her arms. In the month
of October, 1845, Mary was four years old. That was the bitter time,
when first the food of the earth was turned to poison; when the gardens
that used to be so bright and sweet, covered with the purple and white
potato blossoms, became in one night black and offensive, as if fire had
come down from heaven to burn them up. 'Twas a heart-breaking thing to
see the laboring men, the crathurs! that had only the one half-acre to
feed their little families, going out, after work, in the evenings to
dig their suppers from under the black stalks. Spadeful after spadeful
would be turned up, and a long piece of a ridge dug through, before
they'd get a small kish full of such withered _crohauneens_,[H] as other
years would be hardly counted fit for the pigs.

It was some time before the distress reached us, for there was a trifle
of money in the savings' bank, that held us in meal, while the neighbors
were next door to starvation. As long as my father and mother had it,
they shared it freely with them that were worse off than themselves; but
at last the little penny of money was all spent, the price of flour was
raised; and, to make matters worse, the farmer that my father worked
for, at a poor eight-pence a day, was forced to send him and three more
of his laborers away, as he couldn't afford to pay them even _that_ any
longer. Oh! 'twas a sorrowful night when my father brought home the
news. I remember, as well as if I saw it yesterday, the desolate look in
his face when he sat down by the ashes of the turf fire that had just
baked a yellow meal cake for his supper. My mother was at the opposite
side, giving little Mary a drink of sour milk out of her little wooden
piggin, and the child didn't like it, being delicate and always used to
sweet milk, so she said:

"Mammy, won't you give me some of the nice milk instead of that?"

"I haven't it _asthore_, nor can't get it," said her mother, "so don't
ye fret."

Not a word more out of the little one's mouth, only she turned her
little cheek in toward her mother, and staid quite quiet, as if she was
hearkening to what was going on.

"Judy," said my father, "God is good, and sure 'tis only in Him we must
put our trust; for in the wide world I can see nothing but starvation
before us."

"God _is_ good, Tim," replied my mother; "He won't forsake us."

Just then Richard came in with a more joyful face than I had seen on him
for many a day.

"Good news!" says he, "good news, father! there's work for us both on
the Droumcarra road. The government works are to begin there to-morrow;
you'll get eight-pence a day, and I'll get six-pence."

If you saw our delight when we heard this, you'd think 'twas the free
present of a thousand pounds that came to us, falling through the roof,
instead of an offer of small wages for hard work.

To be sure the potatoes were gone, and the yellow meal was dear and dry
and chippy--it hadn't the _nature_ about it that a hot potato has for a
poor man; but still 'twas a great thing to have the prospect of getting
enough of even that same, and not to be obliged to follow the rest of
the country into the poor-house, which was crowded to that degree that
the crathurs there--God help them!--hadn't room even to die quietly in
their beds, but were crowded together on the floor like so many dogs in
a kennel. The next morning my father and Richard were off before
daybreak, for they had a long way to walk to Droumcarra, and they should
be there in time to begin work. They took an Indian meal cake with them
to eat for their dinner, and poor dry food it was, with only a draught
of cold water to wash it down. Still my father, who was knowledgeable
about such things, always said it was mighty wholesome when it was well
cooked; but some of the poor people took a great objection against it on
account of the yellow color, which they thought came from having sulphur
mixed with it--and they said, Indeed it was putting a great affront on
the decent Irish to mix up their food as if 'twas for mangy dogs. Glad
enough, poor creatures, they were to get it afterward, when sea-weed and
nettles, and the very grass by the roadside, was all that many of them
had to put into their mouths.

When my father and brother came home in the evening, faint and tired
from the two long walks and the day's work, my mother would always try
to have something for them to eat with their porridge--a bit of butter,
or a bowl of thick milk, or maybe a few eggs. She always gave me plenty
as far as it would go; but 'twas little she took herself. She would
often go entirely without a meal, and then she'd slip down to the
huckster's, and buy a little white bun for Mary; and I'm sure it used to
do her more good to see the child eat it, than if she had got a
meat-dinner for herself. No matter how hungry the poor little thing
might be, she'd always break off a bit to put into her mother's mouth,
and she would not be satisfied until she saw her swallow it; then the
child would take a drink of cold water out of her little tin porringer,
as contented as if it was new milk.

As the winter advanced, the weather became wet and bitterly cold, and
the poor men working on the roads began to suffer dreadfully from being
all day in wet clothes, and, what was worse, not having any change to
put on when they went home at night without a dry thread about them.
Fever soon got among them, and my father took it. My mother brought the
doctor to see him, and by selling all our decent clothes, she got for
him whatever was wanting, but all to no use: 'twas the will of the Lord
to take him to himself, and he died after a few days' illness.

It would be hard to tell the sorrow that his widow and orphans felt,
when they saw the fresh sods planted on his grave. It was not grief
altogether like the grand stately grief of the quality, although maybe
the same sharp knife is sticking into the same sore bosom _inside_ in
both; but the _outside_ differs in rich and poor. I saw the mistress a
week after Miss Ellen died. She was in her drawing-room with the blinds
pulled down, sitting in a low chair, with her elbow on the small
work-table, and her cheek resting on her hand--not a speck of any thing
white about her but the cambric handkerchief, and the face that was
paler than the marble chimney-piece.

When she saw me (for the butler, being busy, sent me in with the
luncheon-tray), she covered her eyes with her handkerchief, and began to
cry, but quietly, as if she did not want it to be noticed. As I was
going out, I just heard her say to Miss Alice in a choking voice:

"Keep Sally here always; our poor darling was fond of her." And as I
closed the door, I heard her give one deep sob. The next time I saw her,
she was quite composed; only for the white cheek and the black dress,
you would not know that the burning feel of a child's last kiss had ever
touched her lips.

My father's wife mourned for him after another fashion. _She_ could not
sit quiet, she must work hard to keep the life in them to whom he gave
it; and it was only in the evenings when she sat down before the fire
with Mary in her arms, that she used to sob and rock herself to and fro,
and sing a low, wailing keen for the father of the little one, whose
innocent tears were always ready to fall when she saw her mother cry.
About this time my mother got an offer from some of the hucksters in the
neighborhood, who knew her honesty, to go three times a week to the next
market-town, ten miles off, with their little money, and bring them back
supplies of bread, groceries, soap, and candles. This she used to do,
walking the twenty miles--ten of them with a heavy load on her back--for
the sake of earning enough to keep us alive. 'Twas very seldom that
Richard could get a stroke of work to do: the boy wasn't strong in
himself, for he had the sickness too; though he recovered from it, and
always did his best to earn an honest penny wherever he could. I often
wanted my mother to let me go in her stead and bring back the load; but
she never would hear of it, and kept me at home to mind the house and
little Mary. My poor pet lamb! 'twas little minding she wanted. She
would go after breakfast and sit at the door, and stop there all day,
watching for her mother, and never heeding the neighbors' children that
used to come wanting her to play. Through the live-long hours she would
never stir, but just keep her eyes fixed on the lonesome _boreen_;[I]
and when the shadow of the mountain-ash grew long, and she caught a
glimpse of her mother ever so far off, coming toward home, the joy that
would flush on the small, patient face, was brighter than the sunbeam on
the river. And faint and weary as the poor woman used to be, before ever
she sat down, she'd have Mary nestling in her bosom. No matter how
little she might have eaten herself that day, she would always bring
home a little white bun for Mary; and the child, that had tasted nothing
since morning, would eat it so happily, and then fall quietly asleep in
her mother's arms.

At the end of some months I got the sickness myself, but not so heavily
as Richard did before. Any way, he and my mother tended me well through
it. They sold almost every little stick of furniture that was left, to
buy me drink and medicine. By degrees I recovered, and the first evening
I was able to sit up, I noticed a strange, wild brightness in my
mother's eyes, and a hot flush on her thin cheeks--she had taken the

Before she lay down on the wisp of straw that served her for a bed, she
brought little Mary over to me: "Take her, Sally," she said--and between
every word she gave the child a kiss--"take her; she's safer with you
than she'd be with me, for you're over the sickness, and 'tisn't long
any way, I'll be with you, my jewel," she said, as she gave the little
creature one long close hug, and put her into my arms.

'Twould take long to tell all about her sickness--how Richard and I, as
good right we had, tended her night and day; and how, when every
farthing and farthing's worth we had in the world was gone, the mistress
herself came down from the big house, the very day after the family
returned home from France, and brought wine, food, medicine, linen, and
every thing we could want.

Shortly after the kind lady was gone, my mother took the change for
death; her senses came back, she grew quite strong-like, and sat up
straight in the bed.

"Bring me the child, Sally, _aleagh_," she said. And when I carried
little Mary over to her, she looked into the tiny face, as if she was
reading it like a book.

"You won't be long away from me, my own one," she said, while her tears
fell down upon the child like summer-rain.

"Mother," said I, as well as I could speak for crying, "sure you _Know_
I'll do my best to tend her."

"I know you will, _acushla_; you were always a true and dutiful daughter
to me and to him that's gone; but, Sally, there's _that_ in my weeny one
that won't let her thrive without the mother's hand over her, and the
mother's heart for hers to lean against. And now--" It was all she could
say: she just clasped the little child to her bosom, fell back on my
arm, and in a few moments all was over. At first, Richard and I could
not believe that she was dead; and it was very long before the orphan
would loose her hold of the stiffening fingers; but when the neighbors
came in to prepare for the wake, we contrived to flatter her away.

Days passed on; the child was very quiet; she used to go as usual to sit
at the door, and watch, hour after hour, along the road that her mother
always took coming home from market, waiting for her that could never
come again. When the sun was near setting, her gaze used to be more
fixed and eager; but when the darkness came on, her blue eyes used to
droop like the flowers that shut up their leaves, and she would come in
quietly without saying a word, and allow me to undress her and put her
to bed.

It troubled us and the young ladies greatly that she would not eat. It
was almost impossible to get her to taste a morsel; indeed the only
thing she would let inside her lips was a bit of a little white bun,
like those her poor mother used to bring her. There was nothing left
untried to please her. I carried her up to the big house, thinking the
change might do her good, and the ladies petted her, and talked to her,
and gave her heaps of toys and cakes, and pretty frocks and coats; but
she hardly noticed them, and was restless and uneasy until she got back
to her own low, sunny door-step.

Every day she grew paler and thinner, and her bright eyes had a sad,
fond look in them, so like her mother's. One evening she sat at the door
later than usual.

"Come in, _alannah_," I said to her. "Won't you come in for your own

She never stirred. I went over to her; she was quite still, with her
little hands crossed on her lap, and her head drooping on her chest. I
touched her--she was cold. I gave a loud scream, and Richard came
running; he stopped and looked, and then burst out crying like an
infant. Our little sister was dead!

Well, my Mary, the sorrow was bitter, but it was short. You're gone home
to Him that comforts as a mother comforteth. _Agra machree_, your eyes
are as blue, and your hair as golden, and your voice as sweet, as they
were when you watched by the cabin-door; but your cheeks are not pale,
_acushla_, nor your little hands thin, and the shade of sorrow has
passed away from your forehead like a rain-cloud from the summer sky.
She that loved you so on earth, has clasped you forever to her bosom in
heaven; and God himself has wiped away all tears from your eyes, and
placed you both and our own dear father, far beyond the touch of sorrow
or the fear of death.


[F] White dove.

[G] Rich.

[H] Small potatoes.

[I] By-road.


The proof of the truth of the following statement, taken from the
_Courrier de l'Europe_, rests not only upon the known veracity of the
narrator, but upon the fact that the whole occurrence is registered in
the judicial records of the criminal trials of the province of
Languedoc. We give it as we heard it from the lips of the dreamer, as
nearly as possible in his own words.

As the junior partner in a commercial house at Lyons, I had been
traveling some time on the business of the firm, when, one evening in
the month of June, I arrived at a town in Languedoc where I had never
before been. I put up at a quiet inn in the suburbs, and, being very
much fatigued, ordered dinner at once; and went to bed almost
immediately after, determined to begin very early in the morning my
visits to the different merchants.

I was no sooner in bed than I fell into a deep sleep, and had a
dream that made the strongest impression upon me.

I thought that I had arrived at the same town, but in the middle of the
day, instead of the evening, as was really the case; that I had stopped
at the very same inn, and gone out immediately, as an unoccupied
stranger would do, to see whatever was worthy of observation in the
place. I walked down the main street, into another street, crossing it
at right angles, and apparently leading into the country. I had not gone
very far, when I came to a church, the Gothic portico of which I stopped
to examine. When I had satisfied my curiosity, I advanced to a by-path
which branched off from the main street. Obeying an impulse which I
could neither account for nor control, I struck into the path, though it
was winding, rugged, and unfrequented, and presently reached a miserable
cottage, in front of which was a garden covered with weeds. I had no
difficulty in getting into the garden, for the hedge had several gaps in
it, wide enough to admit four carts abreast. I approached an old well,
which stood solitary and gloomy in a distant corner; and looking down
into it, I beheld distinctly, without any possibility of mistake, a
corpse which had been stabbed in several places. I counted the deep
wounds and the wide gashes whence the blood was flowing.

I would have cried out, but my tongue clove to the roof of my mouth. At
this moment I awoke, with my hair on end, trembling in every limb, and
cold drops of perspiration bedewing my forehead--awoke to find myself
comfortably in bed, my trunk standing beside me, birds warbling
cheerfully around my window; while a young, clear voice was singing a
provincial air in the next room, and the morning sun was shining
brightly through the curtains.

I sprung from my bed, dressed myself, and, as it was yet very early, I
thought I would seek an appetite for breakfast by a morning stroll. I
accordingly entered the main street, and went along. The farther I
walked, the stranger became the confused recollection of the objects
that presented themselves to my view. "It is very strange," I thought;
"I have never been here before; and I could swear that I have seen this
house, and the next, and that other on the left." On I went, till I came
to the corner of a street, crossing the one down which I had come. For
the first time, I remembered my dream, but put away the thought as too
absurd; still, at every step, some fresh point of resemblance struck me.
"Am I still dreaming!" I exclaimed, not without a momentary thrill
through my whole frame. "Is the agreement to be perfect to the very
end?" Before long, I reached the church, with the same architectural
features that had attracted my notice in the dream; and then the
high-road, along which I pursued my way, coming at length to the same
by-path that had presented itself to my imagination a few hours before.
There was no possibility of doubt or mistake. Every tree, every turn,
was familiar to me. I was not at all of a superstitious turn, and was
wholly engrossed in the practical details of commercial business. My
mind had never dwelt upon the hallucinations, the presentiments, that
science either denies, or is unable to explain; but I must confess, that
I now felt myself spell-bound, as by some enchantment; and, with
Pascal's words on my lips, "A continued dream would be equal to
reality," I hurried forward, no longer doubting that the next moment
would bring me to the cottage; and this really was the case. In all its
outward circumstances, it corresponded to what I had seen in my dream.
Who, then, could wonder that I determined to ascertain whether the
coincidence would hold good in every other point? I entered the garden,
and went direct to the spot on which I had seen the well; but here the
resemblance failed--well, there was none. I looked in every direction;
examined the whole garden, went round the cottage, which appeared to be
inhabited, although no person was visible; but nowhere could I find any
vestige of a well.

I made no attempt to enter the cottage, but hastened back to the hotel,
in a state of agitation difficult to describe. I could not make up my
mind to pass unnoticed such extraordinary coincidences; but how was any
clew to be obtained to the terrible mystery?

I went to the landlord, and after chatting with him for some time on
different subjects, I came to the point, and asked him directly to whom
the cottage belonged that was on a by-road which I described to him.

"I wonder, sir," said he, "what made you take such particular notice of
such a wretched little hovel. It is inhabited by an old man with his
wife, who have the character of being very morose and unsociable. They
rarely leave the house--see nobody, and nobody goes to see them; but
they are quiet enough, and I never heard any thing against them beyond
this. Of late, their very existence seems to have been forgotten; and I
believe, sir, that you are the first who, for years, has turned his
steps to the deserted spot."

These details, far from satisfying my curiosity, did but provoke it the
more. Breakfast was served, but I could not touch it; and I felt that if
I presented myself to the merchants in such a state of excitement, they
would think me mad; and, indeed, I felt very much excited. I paced up
and down the room, looked out at the window, trying to fix my attention
on some external object, but in vain. I endeavored to interest myself in
a quarrel between two men in the street; but the garden and the cottage
preoccupied my mind; and, at last, snatching my hat, I cried, "I will
go, come what may."

I repaired to the nearest magistrate, told him the object of my visit,
and related the whole circumstance briefly and clearly. I saw directly
that he was much impressed by my statement.

"It is, indeed, very strange," said he, "and after what has happened, I
do not think I am at liberty to leave the matter without further
inquiry. Important business will prevent my accompanying you in a
search, but I will place two of the police at your command. Go once more
to the hovel, see its inhabitants, and search every part of it. You may,
perhaps, make some important discovery."

I suffered but a very few moments to elapse before I was on my way,
accompanied by the two officers, and we soon reached the cottage. We
knocked, and after waiting for some time, an old man opened the door. He
received us somewhat uncivilly, but showed no mark of suspicion, nor,
indeed, of any other emotion, when we told him we wished to search the

"Very well, gentlemen; as fast, and as soon as you please," he replied.

"Have you a well here?" I inquired.

"No, sir; we are obliged to go for water to a spring at a considerable

We searched the house, which I did, I confess, with a kind of feverish
excitement, expecting every moment to bring some fatal secret to light.
Meantime, the man gazed upon us with an impenetrable vacancy of look,
and we at last left the cottage without seeing any thing that could
confirm my suspicions. I resolved to inspect the garden once more; and a
number of idlers having been by this time collected, drawn to the spot
by the sight of a stranger with two armed men engaged in searching the
premises, I made inquiries of some of them whether they knew any thing
about a well in that place. I could get no information at first, but at
length an old woman came slowly forward, leaning on a crutch.

"A well!" cried she; "is it the well you are looking after? That has
been gone these thirty years. I remember, as if it were only yesterday,
many a time, when I was a young girl, how I used to amuse myself by
throwing stones into it, and hearing the splash they used to make in the

"And could you tell where that well used to be?" I asked, almost
breathless with excitement.

"As near as I can remember, on the very spot on which your honor is
standing," said the old woman.

"I could have sworn it!" thought I, springing from the place as if I had
trod upon a scorpion.

Need I say, that we set to work to dig up the ground. At about eighteen
inches deep, we came to a layer of bricks, which, being broken up, gave
to view some boards, which were easily removed; after which we beheld
the mouth of the well.

"I was quite sure it was here," said the woman. "What a fool the old
fellow was to stop it up, and then have so far to go for water!"

A sounding-line, furnished with hooks, was let down into the well; the
crowd pressing around us, and breathlessly bending over the dark and
fetid hole, the secrets of which seemed hidden in impenetrable
obscurity. This was repeated several times without any result. At
length, penetrating below the mud, the hooks caught an old chest, upon
the top of which had been thrown a great many large stones; and after
much effort and time, we succeeded in raising it to daylight. The sides
and lid were decayed and rotten; it needed no locksmith to open it; and
we found within, what I was certain we should find, and which paralyzed
with horror all the spectators, who had not my pre-convictions--we found
the remains of a human body.

The police-officers who had accompanied me now rushed into the house,
and secured the person of the old man. As to his wife, no one could at
first tell what had become of her. After some search, however, she was
found hidden behind a bundle of fagots.

By this time, nearly the whole town had gathered around the spot; and
now that this horrible fact had come to light, every body had some crime
to tell, which had been laid to the charge of the old couple. The people
who predict after an event, are numerous.

The old couple were brought before the proper authorities, and privately
and separately examined. The old man persisted in his denial, most
pertinaciously; but his wife at length confessed, that, in concert with
her husband, she had once--a very long time ago--murdered a peddler,
whom they had met one night on the high-road, and who had been
incautious enough to tell them of a considerable sum of money which he
had about him, and whom, in consequence, they induced to pass the night
at their house. They had taken advantage of the heavy sleep induced by
fatigue, to strangle him; his body had been put into the chest, the
chest thrown into the well, and the well stopped up.

The peddler being from another country, his disappearance had occasioned
no inquiry; there was no witness of the crime; and as its traces had
been carefully concealed from every eye, the two criminals had good
reason to believe themselves secure from detection. They had not,
however, been able to silence the voice of conscience; they fled from
the sight of their fellow-men; they trembled at the slightest noise, and
silence thrilled them with terror. They had often formed a determination
to leave the scene of their crime--to fly to some distant land; but
still some undefinable fascination kept them near the remains of their

Terrified by the deposition of his wife, and unable to resist the
overwhelming proofs against him, the man at length made a similar
confession; and six weeks after, the unhappy criminals died on the
scaffold, in accordance with the sentence of the Parliament of Toulouse.
They died penitent.

The well was once more shut up, and the cottage leveled to the ground.
It was not, however, until fifty years had in some measure deadened the
memory of the terrible transaction, that the ground was cultivated. It
is now a fine field of corn.

Such was the dream and its result.

I never had the courage to revisit the town where I had been an actor in
such a tragedy.

[From the Dublin University Magazine.]


    Do you ask how I'd amuse me
      When the long bright summer comes,
    And welcome leisure woos me
      To shun life's crowded homes;
    To shun the sultry city,
      Whose dense, oppressive air
    Might make one weep with pity
      For those who must be there?

    I'll tell you then--I would not
      To foreign countries roam,
    As though my fancy could not
      Find occupance at home;
    Nor to home-haunts of fashion
      Would I, least of all, repair,
    For guilt, and pride, and passion,
      Have summer-quarters there.

    Far, far from watering-places
      Of note and name I'd keep,
    For there would vapid faces
      Still throng me in my sleep;
    Then contact with the foolish,
      The arrogant, the vain,
    The meaningless--the mulish,
      Would sicken heart and brain.

    No--I'd seek some shore of ocean
      Where nothing comes to mar
    The ever-fresh commotion
      Of sea and land at war;
    Save the gentle evening only
      As it steals along the deep,
    So spirit-like and lonely,
      To still the waves to sleep.

    There long hours I'd spend in viewing
      The elemental strife,
    My soul the while subduing
      With the littleness of life;
    Of life, with all its paltry plans,
      Its conflicts and its cares--
    The feebleness of all that's man's--
      The might that's God's and theirs!

    And when eve came I'd listen
      To the stilling of that war,
    Till o'er my head should glisten
      The first pure silver star;
    Then, wandering homeward slowly,
      I'd learn my heart the tune
    Which the dreaming billows lowly,
      Were murmuring to the moon!


[From Dickens's Household Words.]


The Wilkinsons were having a small party, it consisted of themselves and
Uncle Bagges, at which the younger members of the family, home for the
holidays, had been just admitted to assist after dinner. Uncle Bagges
was a gentleman from whom his affectionate relatives cherished
expectations of a testamentary nature. Hence the greatest attention was
paid by them to the wishes of Mr. Bagges, as well as to every
observation which he might be pleased to make.

"Eh! what? you sir," said Mr. Bagges, facetiously addressing himself to
his eldest nephew, Harry--"Eh! what? I am glad to hear, sir, that you
are doing well at school. Now--eh! now, are you clever enough to tell me
where was Moses when he put the candle out?"

"That depends, uncle," answered the young gentleman, "on whether he had
lighted the candle to see with at night, or by daylight to seal a

"Eh! very good, now! 'Pon my word, very good," exclaimed Uncle Bagges.
"You must be Lord Chancellor, sir--Lord Chancellor, one of these days."

"And now, uncle," asked Harry, who was a favorite with the old
gentleman, "can you tell me what you do when you put a candle out?"

"Clap an extinguisher on it, you young rogue, to be sure."

"Oh! but I mean, you cut off its supply of oxygen," said Master Harry.

"Cut off its ox's--eh? what? I shall cut off your nose, you young dog,
one of these fine days."

"He means something he heard at the Royal Institution," observed Mrs.
Wilkinson. "He reads a great deal about chemistry, and he attended
Professor Faraday's lectures there on the chemical history of a candle,
and has been full of it ever since."

"Now, you sir," said Uncle Bagges, "come you here to me, and tell me
what you have to say about this chemical, eh? or comical; which? this
comical chemical history of a candle."

"He'll bore you, Bagges," said Mrs. Wilkinson. "Harry, don't be
troublesome to your uncle."

"Troublesome! Oh, not at all. He amuses me. I like to hear him. So let
him teach his old uncle the comicality and chemicality of a farthing

"A wax candle will be nicer and cleaner, uncle, and answer the same
purpose. There's one on the mantle-shelf. Let me light it."

"Take care you don't burn your fingers, or set any thing on fire," said
Mrs. Wilkinson.

"Now, uncle," commenced Harry, having drawn his chair to the side of Mr.
Bagges, "we have got our candle burning. What do you see?"

"Let me put on my spectacles," answered the uncle.

"Look down on the top of the candle around the wick. See, it is a
little cup full of melted wax. The heat of the flame has melted the wax
just round the wick. The cold air keeps the outside of it hard, so as to
make the rim of it. The melted wax in the little cup goes up through the
wick to be burnt, just as oil does in the wick of a lamp. What do you
think makes it go up, uncle?"

"Why--why, the flame draws it up, doesn't it?"

"Not exactly, uncle. It goes up through little tiny passages in the
cotton wick, because very, very small channels, or pipes, or pores, have
the power in themselves of sucking up liquids. What they do it by is
called cap--something."

"Capillary attraction, Harry," suggested Mr. Wilkinson.

"Yes, that's it; just as a sponge sucks up water, or a bit of lump-sugar
the little drop of tea or coffee left in the bottom of a cup. But I
mustn't say much more about this, or else you will tell me I am doing
something very much like teaching my grandmother to--you know what."

"Your grandmother, eh, young sharpshins?"

"No--I mean my uncle. Now, I'll blow the candle out, like Moses; not to
be in the dark, though, but to see into what it is. Look at the smoke
rising from the wick. I'll hold a bit of lighted paper in the smoke, so
as not to touch the wick. But see, for all that, the candle lights
again. So this shows that the melted wax sucked up through the wick is
turned into vapor; and the vapor burns. The heat of the burning vapor
keeps on melting more wax, and that is sucked up too within the flame,
and turned into vapor, and burnt, and so on till the wax is all used up,
and the candle is gone. So the flame, uncle, you see is the last of the
candle, and the candle seems to go through the flame into
nothing--although it doesn't, but goes into several things, and isn't it
curious, as Professor Faraday said, that the candle should look so
splendid and glorious in going away."

"How well he remembers, doesn't he?" observed Mrs. Wilkinson.

"I dare say," proceeded Harry, "that the flame of the candle looks flat
to you; but if we were to put a lamp glass over it, so as to shelter it
from the draught, you would see it is round, round sideways, and running
up to a peak. It is drawn up by the hot air; you know that hot air
always rises, and that is the way smoke is taken up the chimney. What
should you think was in the middle of the flame?"

"I should say, fire," replied Uncle Bagges.

"Oh, no! The flame is hollow. The bright flame we see is something no
thicker than a thin peel, or skin; and it doesn't touch the wick. Inside
of it is the vapor I told you of just now. If you put one end of a bent
pipe into the middle of the flame, and let the other end of the pipe dip
into a bottle, the vapor or gas from the candle will mix with the air
there; and if you set fire to the mixture of gas from the candle and
air in the bottle, it would go off with a bang."

"I wish you'd do that, Harry," said Master Tom, the younger brother of
the juvenile lecturer.

"I want the proper things," answered Harry. "Well, uncle, the flame of
the candle is a little shining case, with gas in the inside of it, and
air on the outside, so that the case of flame is between the air and the
gas. The gas keeps going into the flame to burn, and when the candle
burns properly, none of it ever passes out through the flame; and none
of the air ever gets in through the flame to the gas. The greatest heat
of the candle is in this skin, or peel, or case of flame."

"Case of flame!" repeated Mr. Bagges. "Live and learn. I should have
thought a candle flame was as thick as my poor old noddle."

"I can show you the contrary," said Harry. "I take this piece of white
paper, look, and hold it a second or two down upon the candle flame,
keeping the flame very steady. Now I'll rub off the black of the smoke,
and--there--you find that the paper is scorched in the shape of a ring;
but inside the ring it is only dirtied, and not singed at all."

"Seeing is believing," remarked the uncle.

"But," proceeded Harry, "there is more in the candle flame than the gas
that comes out of the candle. You know a candle won't burn without air.
There must be always air around the gas, and touching it like to make it
burn. If a candle hasn't got enough air, it goes out, or burns badly, so
that some of the vapor inside of the flame comes out through it in the
form of smoke, and this is the reason of a candle smoking. So now you
know why a great clumsy dip smokes more than a neat wax candle; it is
because the thick wick of the dip makes too much fuel in proportion to
the air that can get to it."

"Dear me! Well, I suppose there is a reason for every thing," exclaimed
the young philosopher's mamma.

"What should you say, now," continued Harry, "if I told you that the
smoke that comes out of a candle is the very thing that makes a candle
light? Yes; a candle shines by consuming its own smoke. The smoke of a
candle is a cloud of small dust, and the little grains of the dust are
bits of charcoal, or carbon, as chemists call it. They are made in the
flame, and burned in the flame, and, while burning, make the flame
bright. They are burned the moment they are made; but the flame goes on
making more of them as fast as it burns them; and that is how it keeps
bright. The place they are made in, is in the case of flame itself,
where the strongest heat is. The great heat separates them from the gas
which comes from the melted wax, and, as soon as they touch the air on
the outside of the thin case of flame, they burn."

"Can you tell how it is that the little bits of carbon cause the
brightness of the flame?" asked Mr. Wilkinson.

"Because they are pieces of solid matter," answered Harry. "To make a
flame shine, there must always be some solid--or at least liquid--matter
in it."

"Very good," said Mr. Bagges--"solid stuff necessary to brightness."

"Some gases and other things," resumed Harry, "that burn with a flame
you can hardly see, burn splendidly when something solid is put into
them. Oxygen and hydrogen--tell me if I use too hard words,
uncle--oxygen and hydrogen gases, if mixed together and blown through a
pipe, burn with plenty of heat but with very little light. But if their
flame is blown upon a piece of quick-lime, it gets so bright as to be
quite dazzling. Make the smoke of oil of turpentine pass through the
same flame, and it gives the flame a beautiful brightness directly."

"I wonder," observed Uncle Bagges, "what has made you such a bright

"Taking after uncle, perhaps," retorted his nephew. "Don't put my candle
and me out. Well, carbon or charcoal is what causes the brightness of
all lamps, and candles, and other common lights; so, of course, there is
carbon in what they are all made of."

"So carbon is smoke, eh? and light is owing to your carbon. Giving light
out of smoke, eh? as they say in the classics," observed Mr. Bagges.

"But what becomes of the candle," pursued Harry, "as it burns away?
where does it go?"

"Nowhere," said his mamma, "I should think. It burns to nothing."

"Oh, dear, no!" said Harry, "every thing--every body goes somewhere."

"Eh!--rather an important consideration that," Mr. Bagges moralized.

"You can see it goes into smoke, which makes soot, for one thing,"
pursued Harry. "There are other things it goes into, not to be seen by
only looking, but you can get to see them by taking the right
means--just put your hand over the candle, uncle."

"Thank you, young gentleman, I had rather be excused."

"Not close enough down to burn you, uncle; higher up. There--you feel a
stream of hot air; so something seems to rise from the candle. Suppose
you were to put a very long, slender gas-burner over the flame, and let
the flame burn just within the end of it, as if it were a chimney, some
of the hot steam would go up and come out at the top, but a sort of dew
would be left behind in the glass chimney, if the chimney was cold
enough when you put it on. There are ways of collecting this sort of
dew, and when it is collected it turns out to be really water. I am not
joking, uncle. Water is one of the things which the candle turns into in
burning--water, coming out of fire. A jet of oil gives above a pint of
water in burning. In some lighthouses they burn, Professor Faraday says,
up to two gallons of oil in a night, and if the windows are cold, the
steam from the oil clouds the inside of the windows, and, in frosty
weather, freezes into ice."

"Water out of a candle, eh?" exclaimed Mr. Bagges. "As hard to get, I
should have thought, as blood out of a post. Where does it come from?"

"Part from the wax, and part from the air, and yet not a drop of it
comes either from the air or the wax. What do you make of that, uncle?"

"Eh? Oh! I'm no hand at riddles. Give it up."

"No riddle at all, uncle. The part that comes from the wax isn't water,
and the part that comes from the air isn't water, but when put together
they become water. Water is a mixture of two things, then. This can be
shown. Put some iron wire or turnings into a gun-barrel open at both
ends. Heat the middle of the barrel red-hot in a little furnace. Keep
the heat up, and send the steam of boiling water through the red-hot
gun-barrel. What will come out at the other end of the barrel won't be
steam; it will be gas, which doesn't turn to water again when it gets
cold, and which burns if you put a light to it. Take the turnings out of
the gun-barrel, and you will find them changed to rust, and heavier than
when they were put in. Part of the water is the gas that comes out of
the barrel, the other part is what mixes with the iron turnings, and
changes them to rust, and makes them heavier. You can fill a bladder
with the gas that comes out of the gun-barrel, or you can pass bubbles
of it up into a jar of water turned upside down in a trough, and, as I
said, you can make this part of the water burn."

"Eh?" cried Mr. Bagges. "Upon my word. One of these days, we shall have
you setting the Thames on fire."

"Nothing more easy," said Harry, "than to burn part of the Thames, or
any other water; I mean the gas that I have just told you about, which
is called hydrogen. In burning, hydrogen produces water again, like the
flame of the candle. Indeed, hydrogen is that part of the water, formed
by a candle burning, that comes from the wax. All things that have
hydrogen in them produce water in burning, and the more there is in
them, the more they produce. When pure hydrogen burns, nothing comes
from it but water, no smoke or soot at all. If you were to burn one
ounce of it, the water you would get would be just nine ounces. There
are many ways of making hydrogen, besides out of steam by the hot
gun-barrel. I could show it you in a moment by pouring a little
sulphuric acid mixed with water into a bottle upon a few zinc or steel
filings, and putting a cork in the bottle with a little pipe through it,
and setting fire to the gas that would come from the mouth of the pipe.
We should find the flame very hot, but having scarcely any brightness. I
should like you to see the curious qualities of hydrogen, particularly
how light it is, so as to carry things up in the air; and I wish I had
a small balloon to fill with it and make go up to the ceiling, or a
bag-pipe full of it to blow soap-bubbles with, and show how much faster
they rise than common ones, blown with the breath."

"So do I," interposed Master Tom.

"And so," resumed Harry, "hydrogen, you know, uncle, is part of water,
and just one-ninth part."

"As hydrogen is to water, so is a tailor to an ordinary individual, eh?"
Mr. Bagges remarked.

"Well, now, then, uncle, if hydrogen is the tailor's part of the water,
what are the other eight parts? The iron-turnings used to make hydrogen
in the gun-barrel, and rusted, take just those eight parts from the
water in the shape of steam, and are so much the heavier. Burn iron
turnings in the air, and they make the same rust, and gain just the same
in weight. So the other eight parts must be found in the air for one
thing, and in the rusted iron turnings for another, and they must also
be in the water; and now the question is, how to get at them?"

"Out of the water? Fish for them, I should say," suggested Mr. Bagges.

"Why, so we can," said Harry. "Only instead of hooks and lines, we must
use wires--two wires, one from one end, the other from the other, of a
galvanic battery. Put the points of these wires into water, a little
distance apart, and they instantly take the water to pieces. If they are
of copper, or a metal that will rust easily, one of them begins to rust,
and air-bubbles come up from the other. These bubbles are hydrogen. The
other part of the water mixes with the end of the wire and makes rust.
But if the wires are of gold, or a metal that does not rust easily,
air-bubbles rise from the ends of both wires. Collect the bubbles from
both wires in a tube, and fire them, and they turn to water again; and
this water is exactly the same weight as the quantity that has been
changed into the two gases. Now, then, uncle, what should you think
water was composed of?"

"Eh? well--I suppose of those very identical two gases, young

"Right, uncle. Recollect that the gas from one of the wires was
hydrogen, the one-ninth of water. What should you guess the gas from the
other wire to be?"

"Stop--eh?--wait a bit--eh--oh!--why, the other eight-ninths, to be

"Good again, uncle. Now this gas that is eight-ninths of water is the
gas called oxygen that I mentioned just now. This is a very curious gas.
It won't burn in air at all itself, like gas from a lamp, but it has a
wonderful power of making things burn that are lighted and put into it.
If you fill a jar with it--"

"How do you manage that?" Mr. Bagges inquired.

"You fill the jar with water," answered Harry, "and you stand it upside
down in a vessel full of water too. Then you let bubbles of the gas up
into the jar, and they turn out the water and take its place. Put a
stopper in the neck of the jar, or hold a glass plate against the mouth
of it, and you can take it out of the water, and so have bottled oxygen.
A lighted candle put into a jar of oxygen blazes up directly and is
consumed before you can say 'Jack Robinson.' Charcoal burns away in it
as fast, with beautiful bright sparks--phosphorus with a light that
dazzles you to look at--and a piece of iron or steel just made red-hot
at the end first, is burnt in oxygen quicker than a stick would be in
common air. The experiment of burning things in oxygen beats any

"Oh, how jolly!" exclaimed Tom.

"Now we see, uncle," Harry continued, "that water is hydrogen and oxygen
united together, that water is got wherever hydrogen is burnt in common
air, that a candle won't burn without air, and that when a candle burns
there is hydrogen in it burning, and forming water. Now, then, where
does the hydrogen of the candle get the oxygen from, to turn into water
with it?"

"From the air, eh?"

"Just so. I can't stop to tell you of the other things which there is
oxygen in, and the many beautiful and amusing ways of getting it. But as
there is oxygen in the air, and as oxygen makes things burn at such a
rate, perhaps you wonder why air does not make things burn as fast as
oxygen. The reason is, that there is something else in the air that
mixes with the oxygen and weakens it."

"Makes a sort of gaseous grog of it, eh?" said Mr. Bagges. "But how is
that proved?"

"Why, there is a gas, called nitrous gas, which, if you mix it with
oxygen, takes all the oxygen into itself, and the mixture of the nitrous
gas and oxygen, if you put water with it, goes into the water. Mix
nitrous gas and air together in a jar over water, and the nitrous gas
takes away the oxygen, and then the water sucks up the mixed oxygen and
nitrous gas, and that part of the air which weakens the oxygen is left
behind. Burning phosphorus in confined air will also take all the oxygen
from it, and there are other ways of doing the same thing. The portion
of air left behind is called nitrogen. You wouldn't know it from common
air by the look; it has no color, taste, nor smell, and it won't burn.
But things won't burn in it either; and any thing on fire put into it
goes out directly. It isn't fit to breathe; and a mouse, or any animal,
shut up in it dies. It isn't poisonous, though; creatures only die in it
for want of oxygen. We breathe it with oxygen, and then it does no harm,
but good; for if we breathe pure oxygen, we should breathe away so
violently, that we should soon breathe our life out. In the same way, if
the air were nothing but oxygen, a candle would not last above a minute."

"What a tallow-chandler's bill we should have!" remarked Mrs. Wilkinson.

"'If a house were on fire in oxygen,' as Professor Faraday said, 'every
iron bar, or rafter, or pillar, every nail and iron tool, and the
fire-place itself; all the zinc and copper roofs, and leaden coverings,
and gutters, and; pipes, would consume and burn, increasing the

"That would be, indeed, burning 'like a house on fire,'" observed Mr.

"'Think,'" said Harry, continuing his quotation, "'of the Houses of
Parliament, or a steam-engine manufactory. Think of an iron-proof
chest--no proof against oxygen. Think of a locomotive and its
train--every engine, every carriage, and even every rail would be set on
fire and burnt up.' So now, uncle, I think you see what the use of
nitrogen is, and especially how it prevents a candle from burning out
too fast."

"Eh?" said Mr. Bagges. "Well, I will say I do think we are under
considerable obligations to nitrogen."

"I have explained to you, uncle," pursued Harry, "how a candle, in
burning, turns into water. But it turns into something else besides
that; there is a stream of hot air going up from it that won't condense
into dew; some of that is the nitrogen of the air which the candle has
taken all the oxygen from. But there is more in it than nitrogen. Hold a
long glass tube over a candle, so that the stream of hot air from it may
go up through the tube. Hold a jar over the end of the tube to collect
some of the stream of hot air. Put some lime-water, which looks quite
clear, into the jar; stop the jar, and shake it up. The lime-water,
which was quite clear before, turns milky. Then there is something made
by the burning of the candle that changes the color of the lime-water.
That is a gas, too, and you can collect it, and examine it. It is to be
got from several things, and is a part of all chalk, marble, and the
shells of eggs or of shell-fish. The easiest way to make it is by
pouring muriatic or sulphuric acid on chalk or marble. The marble or
chalk begins to hiss or bubble, and you can collect the bubbles in the
same way that you can oxygen. The gas made by the candle in burning, and
which also is got out of the chalk and marble, is called carbonic acid.
It puts out a light in a moment; it kills any animal that breathes it,
and it is really poisonous to breathe, because it destroys life even
when mixed with a pretty large quantity of common air. The bubbles made
by beer when it ferments, are carbonic acid, so is the air that fizzes
out of soda-water--and it is good to swallow though it is deadly to
breathe. It is got from chalk by burning the chalk as well as by putting
acid to it, and burning the carbonic acid out of chalk makes the chalk
lime. This is why people are killed sometimes by getting in the way of
the wind that blows from lime-kilns."

"Of which it is advisable carefully to keep to the windward," Mr.
Wilkinson observed.

"The most curious thing about carbonic acid gas," proceeded Harry, "is
its weight. Although it is only a sort of air, it is so heavy that you
can pour it from one vessel into another. You may dip a cup of it and
pour it down upon a candle, and it will put the candle out, which would
astonish an ignorant person; because carbonic acid gas is as invisible
as the air, and the candle seems to be put out by nothing. A soap-bubble
of common air floats on it like wood on water. Its weight is what makes
it collect in brewers' vats; and also in wells, where it is produced
naturally; and owing to its collecting in such places it causes the
deaths we so often hear about of those who go down into them without
proper care. It is found in many springs of water, more or less; and a
great deal of it comes out of the earth in some places. Carbonic acid
gas is what stupefies the dogs in the Grotto del Cane. Well, but how is
carbonic acid gas made by the candle?"

"I hope with your candle you'll throw some light upon the subject," said
Uncle Bagges.

"I hope so," answered Harry. "Recollect it is the burning of the smoke,
or soot, or carbon of the candle that makes the candle-flame bright.
Also that the candle won't burn without air. Likewise that it will not
burn in nitrogen, or air that has been deprived of oxygen. So the carbon
of the candle mingles with oxygen, in burning, to make carbonic acid
gas, just as the hydrogen does to form water. Carbonic acid gas, then,
is carbon or charcoal dissolved in oxygen. Here is black soot getting
invisible and changing into air; and this seems strange, uncle, doesn't

"Ahem! Strange, if true," answered Mr. Bagges. "Eh? well! I suppose it's
all right."

"Quite so, uncle. Burn carbon or charcoal either in the air or in
oxygen, and it is sure always to make carbonic acid, and nothing else,
if it is dry. No dew or mist gathers in a cold glass jar if you burn dry
charcoal in it. The charcoal goes entirely into carbonic acid gas, and
leaves nothing behind but ashes, which are only earthy stuff that was in
the charcoal, but not part of the charcoal itself. And now, shall I tell
you something about carbon?"

"With all my heart," assented Mr. Bagges.

"I said that there was carbon or charcoal in all common lights--so there
is in every common kind of fuel. If you heat coal or wood away from the
air, some gas comes away, and leaves behind coke from coal, and charcoal
from wood; both carbon, though not pure. Heat carbon as much as you will
in a close vessel, and it does not change in the least; but let the air
get to it, and then it burns and flies off in carbonic acid gas. This
makes carbon so convenient for fuel. But it is ornamental as well as
useful, uncle The diamond is nothing else than carbon."

"The diamond, eh? You mean the black diamond."

"No; the diamond, really and truly. The diamond is only carbon in the
shape of a crystal."

"Eh? and can't some of your clever chemists crystallize a little bit of
carbon, and make a Koh-i-noor?"

"Ah, uncle, perhaps we shall, some day. In the mean time, I suppose, we
must be content with making carbon so brilliant as it is in the flame of
a candle. Well; now you see that a candle-flame is vapor burning, and
the vapor, in burning, turns into water and carbonic acid gas. The
oxygen of both the carbonic acid gas and the water comes from the air,
and the hydrogen and carbon together are the vapor. They are distilled
out of the melted wax by the heat. But, you know, carbon alone can't be
distilled by any heat. It can be distilled, though, when it is joined
with hydrogen, as it is in the wax, and then the mixed hydrogen and
carbon rise in gas of the same kind as the gas in the streets, and that
also is distilled by heat from coal. So a candle is a little gas
manufactory in itself, that burns the gas as fast as it makes it."

"Haven't you pretty nearly come to your candle's end?" said Mr.

"Nearly. I only want to tell uncle, that the burning of a candle is
almost exactly like our breathing. Breathing is consuming oxygen, only
not so fast as burning. In breathing we throw out water in vapor and
carbonic acid from our lungs, and take oxygen in. Oxygen is as necessary
to support the life of the body, as it is to keep up the flame of a

"So," said Mr. Bagges, "man is a candle, eh? and Shakspeare knew that, I
suppose (as he did most things), when he wrote

    "'Out, out, brief candle!'

"Well, well; we old ones are moulds, and you young squires are dips and
rushlights, eh? Any more to tell us about the candle?"

"I could tell you a great deal more about oxygen, and hydrogen, and
carbon, and water, and breathing, that Professor Faraday said, if I had
time; but you should go and hear him yourself, uncle."

"Eh? well! I think I will. Some of us seniors may learn something from a
juvenile lecture, at any rate, if given by a Faraday. And now, my boy, I
will tell you what," added Mr. Bagges, "I am very glad to find you so
fond of study and science: and you deserve to be encouraged: and so I'll
give you a what-d'ye-call-it? a Galvanic Battery on your next birth-day;
and so much for your teaching your old uncle the chemistry of a candle."




In the latter years of the last century, two youths, Ferdinand von
Hallberg, and Edward von Wensleben were receiving their education in the
military academy of Marienvheim. Among their schoolfellows they were
called Orestes and Pylades, or Damon and Pythias, on account of their
tender friendship, which constantly recalled to their schoolfellows'
minds the history of these ancient worthies. Both were sons of
officers, who had long served the state with honor, both were destined
for their father's profession, both accomplished and endowed by nature
with no mean talents. But fortune had not been so impartial in the
distribution of her favors--Hallberg's father lived on a small pension,
by means of which he defrayed the expenses of his son's schooling at the
cost of the government; while Wensleben's parents willingly paid the
handsomest salary in order to insure to their only child the best
education which the establishment afforded. This disparity in
circumstances at first produced a species of proud reserve, amounting to
coldness, in Ferdinand's deportment, which yielded by degrees to the
cordial affection that Edward manifested toward him on every occasion.
Two years older than Edward, of a thoughtful and almost melancholy turn
of mind, Ferdinand soon gained a considerable influence over his weaker
friend, who clung to him with almost girlish dependence.

Their companionship had now lasted with satisfaction and happiness to
both, for several years, and the youths had formed for themselves the
most delightful plans--how they were never to separate, how they were to
enter the service in the same regiment, and if a war broke out, how they
were to fight side by side and conquer, or die together. But destiny, or
rather Providence, whose plans are usually opposed to the designs of
mortals, had ordained otherwise for the friends than they anticipated.

Earlier than was expected, Hallberg's father found an opportunity to
have his son appointed to an infantry regiment, and he was ordered
immediately to join the staff in a small provincial town, in an
out-of-the-way mountainous district. This announcement fell like a
thunder-bolt on the two friends; but Ferdinand considered himself by far
the more unhappy, since it was ordained that he should be the one to
sever the happy bond that bound them, and to inflict a deep wound on his
loved companion. His schoolfellows vainly endeavored to console him by
calling his attention to his new commission, and the preference which
had been shown him above so many others. He only thought of the
approaching separation; he only saw his friend's grief, and passed the
few remaining days that were allowed him at the academy by Edward's
side, who husbanded every moment of his Ferdinand's society with jealous
care, and could not bear to lose sight of him for an instant. In one of
their most melancholy hours, excited by sorrow and youthful enthusiasm,
they bound themselves by a mysterious vow, namely, that the one whom God
should think fit to call first from this world should bind himself (if
conformable to the Divine will) to give some sign of his remembrance and
affection to the survivor.

The place where this vow was made was a solitary spot in the garden, by
a monument of gray marble, overshadowed by dark firs, which the former
director of the institution had caused to be erected to the memory of
his son, whose premature death was recorded on the stone.

Here the friends met at night, and by the fitful light of the moon they
pledged themselves to the rash and fanciful contract, and confirmed and
consecrated it the next morning, by a religious ceremony. After this
they were able to look the approaching separation in the face more
manfully, and Edward strove hard to quell the melancholy feeling which
had lately arisen in his mind on account of the constant foreboding that
Ferdinand expressed of his own early death. "No," thought Edward, "his
pensive turn of mind and his wild imagination cause him to reproach
himself without a cause for my sorrow and his own departure. Oh, no,
Ferdinand will not die early--he will not die before me. Providence will
not leave me alone in the world."

The lonely Edward strove hard to console himself, for after Ferdinand's
departure, the house, the world itself, seemed a desert; and absorbed by
his own memories, he now recalled to mind many a dark speech which had
fallen from his absent friend, particularly in the latter days of their
intercourse, and which betokened but too plainly a presentiment of early
death. But time and youth exercised, even over these sorrows, their
irresistible influence. Edward's spirits gradually recovered their tone;
and as the traveler always has the advantage over the one who remains
behind, in respect of new objects to occupy his mind, so was Ferdinand
even sooner calmed and cheered, and by degrees he became engrossed by
his new duties, and new acquaintances, not to the exclusion, indeed, of
his friend's memory, but greatly to the alleviation of his own sorrow.
It was natural, in such circumstances, that the young officer should
console himself sooner than poor Edward. The country in which Hallberg
found himself was wild and mountainous, but possessed all the charms and
peculiarities of "far off" districts--simple, hospitable manners,
old-fashioned customs, many tales and legends which arise from the
credulity of the mountaineers, who invariably lean toward the marvelous,
and love to people the wild solitudes with invisible beings.

Ferdinand had soon, without seeking for it, made acquaintance with
several respectable families in the town; and, as it generally happens
in such cases, he had become quite domesticated in the best country
houses in the neighborhood; and the well-mannered, handsome, and
agreeable youth was welcomed every where. The simple, patriarchal life
in these old mansions and castles--the cordiality of the people, the
wild, picturesque scenery, nay, the very legends themselves were
entirely to Hallberg's taste. He adapted himself easily to his new mode
of life, but his heart remained tranquil. This could not last. Before
half a year had passed, the battalion to which he belonged was ordered
to another station, and he had to part with many friends. The first
letter which he wrote after this change, bore the impression of
impatience at the breaking up of a happy time. Edward found this natural
enough; but he was surprised in the following letters to detect signs
of a disturbed and desultory state of mind, wholly foreign to his
friend's nature. The riddle was soon solved. Ferdinand's heart was
touched for the first time, and, perhaps, because the impression had
been made late, it was all the deeper. Unfavorable circumstances opposed
themselves to his hopes: the young lady was of an ancient family, rich,
and betrothed since her childhood to a relation, who was expected
shortly to arrive in order to claim her promised hand. Notwithstanding
this engagement, Ferdinand and the young girl had become sincerely
attached to each other, and had both resolved to dare every thing with
the hope of being united. They pledged their troth in secret; the
darkest mystery enveloped not only their plans, but their affections;
and as secrecy was necessary to the advancement of their projects.
Ferdinand entreated his friend to forgive him if he did not intrust his
whole secret to a sheet of paper that had at least sixty miles to
travel, and which must pass through so many hands. It was impossible
from his letter to guess the name of the person or the place in
question. "You know that I love," he wrote, "therefore you know that the
object of my secret passion is worthy of any sacrifice; for you know
your friend too well to believe him capable of any blind infatuation,
and this must suffice for the present. No one must suspect what we are
to each other; no one here or round the neighborhood must have the
slightest clew to our plans. An awful personage will soon make his
appearance among us. His violent temper, his inveterate obstinacy
(according to all that one hears, of him), are well calculated to
confirm in _her_ a well-founded aversion. But family arrangements and
legal contracts exist, the fulfillment of which the opposing party are
bent on enforcing. The struggle will be hard, perhaps unsuccessful;
notwithstanding, I will strain every nerve. Should I fall, you must
console yourself, my dear Edward, with the thought, that it will be no
misfortune to your friend to be deprived of an existence rendered
miserable by the failure of his dearest hopes, and separation from his
dearest friend. Then may all the happiness which heaven has denied me be
vouchsafed to you and her, so that my spirit may look down contentedly
from the realms of light, and bless and protect you both."

Such was the usual tenor of the letters which Edward received during
that period. His heart was full of anxiety--he read danger and distress
in the mysterious communications of Ferdinand; and every argument that
affection and good sense could suggest aid he make use of, in his
replies, to turn his friend from this path of peril which threatened to
end in a deep abyss. He tried persuasion, and urged him to desist for
the sake of their long-tried affection. But when did passion ever listen
to the expostulations of friendship?

Ferdinand only saw one aim in life--the possession of the beloved one.
All else faded from before his eyes, and even his correspondence
slackened; for his time, was much taken up in secret excursions,
arrangements of all kinds, and communications with all manner of
persons; in fact every action of his present life tended to the
furtherance of his plan.

All of a sudden his letters ceased. Many posts passed without a sign of
life. Edward was a prey to the greatest anxiety; he thought his friend
had staked and lost. He imagined an elopement, a clandestine marriage, a
duel with a rival, and all these casualties were the more painful to
conjecture, since his entire ignorance of the real state of things gave
his fancy full range to conjure up all sorts of misfortunes. At length,
after many more posts had come in without a line to pacify Edward's
fears, without a word in reply to his earnest entreaties for some news,
he determined on taking a step which he had meditated before, and only
relinquished out of consideration for his friend's wishes. He wrote to
the officer commanding the regiment, and made inquiries respecting the
health and abode of Lieutenant von Hallberg, whose friends in the
capital had remained for nearly two months without news of him, he who
had hitherto proved a regular and frequent correspondent.

Another fortnight dragged heavily on, and at length the announcement
came in an official form. Lieutenant von Hallberg had been invited to
the castle of a nobleman whom he was in the custom of visiting, in order
to be present at the wedding of a lady; that he was indisposed at the
time, that he grew worse, and on the third morning had been found dead
in his bed, having expired during the night from an attack of apoplexy.

Edward could not finish the letter, it fell from his trembling hand. To
see his worst fears realized so suddenly, overwhelmed him at first. His
youth withstood the bodily illness which would have assailed a weaker
constitution, and perhaps mitigated the anguish of his grief. He was not
dangerously, ill, but they feared many days for his reason; and it
required all the kind solicitude of the director of the college,
combined with the most skillful medical aid, to stem the torrent of his
sorrow, and to turn it gradually into a calmer channel, until by degrees
the mourner recovered both health and reason. His youthful spirits,
however, had received a blow from which they never rebounded, and one
thought lay heavy on his mind which he was unwilling to share with any
other person, and which, on that account, grew more and more painful. It
was the memory of that holy promise which had been mutually contracted,
that the survivor was to receive some token of his friend's remembrance
of him after death. Now two months had already passed since Ferdinand's
earthly career had been arrested, his spirit was free, why no sign? In
the moment of death Edward had had no intimation, no message from the
passing spirit, and this apparent neglect, so to speak, was another deep
wound in Edward's breast. Do the affections cease with life? Was it
contrary to the will of the Almighty that the mourner should taste this
consolation? Did individuality lose itself in death and with it memory?
Or did one stroke destroy spirit and body? These anxious doubts, which
have before now agitated many who reflect on such subjects, exercised
their power over Edward's mind with an intensity that none can imagine
save one whose position is in any degree similar.

Time gradually deadened the intensity of his affliction. The violent
paroxysms of grief subsided into a deep but calm regret; it was as if a
mist had spread itself over every object which presented itself before
him, robbing them indeed of half their charms, yet leaving them visible,
and in their real relation to himself. During this mental change, the
autumn arrived, and with it the long-expected commission. It did not
indeed occasion the joy which it might have done in former days, when it
would have led to a meeting with Ferdinand, or at all events to a better
chance of meeting, but it released him from the thralldom of college,
and it opened to him a welcome sphere of activity. Now it so happened
that his appointment led him accidentally into the very neighborhood
where Ferdinand had formerly resided, only with this difference, that
Edward's squadron was quartered in the lowlands, about a short day's
journey from the town and woodland environs in question.

He proceeded to his quarters, and found an agreeable occupation in the
exercise of his new duties.

He had no wish to make acquaintances, yet he did not refuse the
invitations that were pressed upon him, lest he should be accused of
eccentricity and rudeness; and so he found himself soon entangled in all
sorts of engagements with the neighboring gentry and nobility. If these
so-called gayeties gave him no particular pleasure, at least for the
time they diverted his thoughts; and, with this view, he accepted an
invitation (for the new year and carnival were near at hand) to a great
shooting-match which was to be held in the mountains--a spot which it
was possible to reach in one day with favorable weather and the roads in
a good state. The day was appointed, the air tolerably clear; a mild
frost had made the roads safe and even, and Edward had every expectation
of being able to reach Blumenberg in his sledge before night, as on the
following morning the match was to take place. But as soon as he got
near the mountains, where the sun retires so early to rest, snow-clouds
drove from all quarters, a cutting wind came roaring through the
ravines, and a heavy fall of snow began. Twice the driver lost his way,
and daylight was gone before he had well recovered it; darkness came on
sooner than in other places, walled in as they were by dark mountains,
with dark clouds above their heads. It was out of the question to dream
of reaching Blumenberg that night; but in this hospitable land, where
every house-holder welcomes the passing traveler, Edward was under no
anxiety as to shelter. He only wished, before the night quite set in, to
reach some country house or castle; and now that the storm had abated in
some degree, that the heavens were a little clearer, and that a few
stars peeped out, a large valley opened before them, whose bold outline
Edward could distinguish, even in the uncertain light. The well-defined
roofs of a neat village were perceptible, and behind these, half-way up
the mountain that crowned the plain, Edward thought he could discern a
large building which glimmered with more than one light. The road led
straight into the village. Edward stopped and inquired.

That building was, indeed, a castle; the village belonged to it, and
both were the property of the Baron Friedenberg. "Friedenberg!" repeated
Edward: the name sounded familiar to him, yet he could not call to mind
when and where he had heard it. He inquired if the family were at home,
hired a guide, and arrived at length, by a rugged path which wound
itself round steep rocks, to the summit of them, and finally to the
castle, which was perched there like an eagle's nest. The tinkling of
the bells on Edward's sledge attracted the attention of the inmates; the
door was opened with prompt hospitality--servants appeared with torches;
Edward was assisted to emerge from under the frozen apron of his
carriage, out of his heavy pelisse, stiff with hoar frost, and up a
comfortable staircase into a long saloon of simple construction, where a
genial warmth appeared to welcome him from a spacious stove in the
corner. The servants here placed two large burning candles in massive
silver sconces, and went out to announce the stranger.

The fitting-up of the room, or rather saloon, was perfectly simple.
Family portraits, in heavy frames, hung round the walls, diversified by
some maps. Magnificent stags' horns were arranged between; and the taste
of the master of the house was easily detected in the hunting-knives,
powder-flasks, carbines, smoking-bags, and sportsmen's pouches, which
were arranged, not without taste, as trophies of the chase. The ceiling
was supported by large beams, dingy with smoke and age; and on the sides
of the room were long benches, covered and padded with dark cloth, and
studded with large brass nails; while round the dinner-table were placed
several arm-chairs, also of an ancient date. All bore the aspect of the
"good old times," of a simple patriarchal life with affluence. Edward
felt as if there were a kind welcome in the inanimate objects which
surrounded him, when the inner door opened, and the master of the house
entered, preceded by a servant, and welcomed his guest with courteous

Some apologies which Edward offered on account of his intrusion, were
silenced in a moment.

"Come, now, lieutenant," said the baron, "I must introduce you to my
family. You are no such a stranger to us, as you fancy."

With these words he took Edward by the arm, and, lighted by the servant,
they passed through several lofty rooms, which were very handsomely
furnished, although in an old-fashioned style, with faded Flemish
carpets, large chandeliers, and high-backed chairs: everything in
keeping with what the youth had already seen in the castle. Here were
the ladies of the house. At the other end of the room, by the side of an
immense stove, ornamented with a large shield of the family arms, richly
emblazoned, and crowned by a gigantic Turk, in a most comfortable
attitude of repose sat the lady of the house, an elderly matron of
tolerable circumference, in a gown of dark red satin, with a black
mantle, and a snow-white lace cap. She appeared to be playing cards with
the chaplain, who sat opposite to her at the table, and the Baron
Friedenberg to have made the third hand at ombre, till he was called
away to welcome his guest. On the other side of the room were two young
ladies, an elder person, who might be a governess, and a couple of
children, very much engrossed by a game at loto.

As Edward entered, the ladies rose to greet him; a chair was placed for
him near the mistress of the house, and very soon a cup of chocolate and
a bottle of tokay were served on a rich silver salver, to restore the
traveler after the cold and discomfort of his drive; in fact it was easy
for him to feel that these "far-away" people were by no means displeased
at his arrival. An agreeable conversation soon began among all parties.
His travels, the shooting match, the neighborhood, agriculture, all
afforded subjects, and in a quarter of an hour Edward felt as if he had
long been domesticated with these simple but truly well informed people.

Two hours flew swiftly by, and then a bell sounded for supper; the
servants returned with lights, announced that the supper was on the
table, and lighted the company into the dining-room--the same into which
Edward had first been ushered. Here, in the background, some other
characters appeared on the scene--the agent, a couple of subalterns, and
the physician. The guests ranged themselves round the table. Edward's
place was between the baron and his wife. The chaplain said a short
grace, when the baroness, with an uneasy look, glanced at her husband
over Edward's shoulder, and said, in a low whisper,

  "My love, we are thirteen--that will never do."

The baron smiled, beckoned to the youngest of the clerks, and whispered
to him. The youth bowed, and withdrew. The servant took the cover away,
and served his supper in the next room.

"My wife," said Friedenberg, "is superstitious, as all mountaineers are.
She thinks it unlucky to dine thirteen. It certainly has happened twice
(whether from chance or not who can tell?) that we have had to mourn the
death of an acquaintance who had, a short time before, made the
thirteenth at our table."

"This idea is not confined to the mountains. I know many people in the
capital who think with the baroness," said Edward. "Although in a town
such ideas, which belong more especially to the olden time, are more
likely to be lost in the whirl and bustle which usually silences every
thing that is not essentially matter of fact."

"Ah, yes, lieutenant," replied the baroness, smiling good-humoredly, "we
keep up old customs better in the mountains. You see that by our
furniture. People in the capital would call this sadly old-fashioned."

"That which is really good and beautiful can never appear out of date,"
rejoined Edward, courteously; "and here, if I mistake not, presides a
spirit that is ever striving after both. I must confess, baron, that
when I first entered your house, it was this very aspect of the olden
time that enchanted me beyond measure."

"That is always the effect which simplicity has on every unspoiled
mind," answered Friedenberg; "but townspeople have seldom a taste for
such things."

"I was partly educated on my father's estate," said Edward, "which was
situated in the Highlands; and it appeared to me as if, when I entered
your house, I were visiting a neighbor of my father's, for the general
aspect is quite the same here as with us."

"Yes," said the chaplain, "mountainous districts have all a family
likeness: the same necessities, the same struggles with nature, the same
seclusion, all produce the same way of life among mountaineers."

"On that account the prejudice against the number thirteen was
especially familiar to me," replied Edward. "We also dislike it; and we
retain a consideration for many supernatural, or at least inexplicable
things, which I have met with again in this neighborhood."

"Yes, here, almost more than any where else," continued the chaplain. "I
think we excel all other mountaineers in the number and variety of our
legends and ghost stories. I assure you that there is not a cave, or a
church, or, above all, a castle, for miles round about, of which we
could not relate something supernatural."

The baroness, who perceived the turn which the conversation was likely
to take, thought it better to send the children to bed; and when they
were gone, the priest continued, "Even here, in this castle--"

"Here!" inquired Edward, "in this very castle?"

"Yes, yes, lieutenant!" interposed the baron, "this house has the
reputation of being haunted; and the most extraordinary thing is, that
the matter can not be denied by the skeptical, or accounted for by the

"And yet," said Edward, "the castle looks so cheerful, so habitable."

"Yes, this part which we live in," answered the baron; "but it consists
of only a few apartments sufficient for my family and these gentlemen;
the other portion of the building is half in ruins, and dates from the
period when men established themselves on the mountains for greater

"There are some who maintain," said the physician, "that a part of the
walls of the eastern tower itself are of Roman origin; but that would
surely be difficult to prove."

"But, gentlemen," observed the baroness, "you are losing yourselves in
learned descriptions as to the erection of the castle, and our guest is
kept in ignorance of what he is anxious to hear."

"Indeed, madam," replied the chaplain, "this is not entirely foreign to
the subject, since in the most ancient part of the building lies the
chamber in question."

"Where apparitions have been seen?" inquired Edward, eagerly.

"Not exactly," replied the baroness; "there is nothing fearful to be

"Come, let us tell him at once," interrupted the baron. "The fact is,
that every guest who sleeps for the first time in this room (and it has
fallen to the lot of many, in turn, to do so), is visited by some
important, significant dream or vision, or whatever I ought to call it,
in which some future event is prefigured to him, or some past mystery
cleared up, which he had vainly striven to comprehend before."

"Then," interposed Edward, "it must be something like what is known in
the Highlands under the name of second sight, a privilege, as some
consider it, which several persons and several families enjoy."

"Just so," said the physician, "the cases are very similar; yet the most
mysterious part of this affair is, that it does not appear to originate
with the individual, or his organization, or his sympathy with beings of
the invisible world; no, the individual has nothing to say to it--the
locality does it all. Every one who sleeps in that room has his
mysterious dream, and the result proves its truth."

"At least in most instances," continued the baron, "when we have had an
opportunity of hearing the cases confirmed. I remember once in
particular. You may recollect, lieutenant, that when you first came in I
had the honor of telling you, you were not quite a stranger to me."

"Certainly, baron; and I have been wishing for a long time to ask an
explanation of these words."

"We have often heard your name mentioned by a particular friend of
yours--one who could never, pronounce it without emotion."

"Ah!" cried Edward, who now saw clearly why the baron's name had sounded
familiar to him also; "ah! you speak of my friend Hallberg; truly do you
say, we were indeed dear to each other."

"Were!" echoed the baron, in a faltering tone, as he observed the
sudden change in Edward's voice and countenance; "can the blooming,
vigorous youth be--"

"Dead!" exclaimed Edward; and the baron deeply regretted that he had
touched so tender a chord, as he saw the young officer's eyes fill with
tears, and a dark cloud pass over his animated features.

"Forgive me," he continued, while he leaned forward and pressed his
companion's hand; "I grieve that a thoughtless word should have awakened
such deep sorrow. I had no idea of his death; we all loved the handsome
young man, and by his description of you were already much interested in
you before we had ever seen you."

The conversation now turned entirely on Hallberg. Edward related the
particulars of his death. Every one present had something to say in his
praise; and although this sudden allusion to his dearest friend had
agitated Edward in no slight degree, yet it was a consolation to him to
listen to the tribute these worthy people paid to the memory of
Ferdinand, and to see how genuine was their regret at the tidings of his
early death. The time passed swiftly away in conversation of much
interest, and the whole, company were surprised to hear ten o'clock
strike; an unusually late hour for this quiet, regular family. The
chaplain read prayers, in which Edward devoutly joined, and then he
kissed the matron's hand, and felt almost as if he were in his father's
house. The baron offered to show his guest to his room, and the servant
preceded them with lights. The way led past the staircase, and then on
one side into a long gallery, which communicated with another wing of
the castle.

The high-vaulted ceilings, the curious carving on the ponderous
doorways, the pointed gothic windows, through many broken panes of which
a sharp night wind whistled, proved to Edward that he was in the old
part of the castle, and that the famous chamber could not be far off.

"Would it be impossible for me to be quartered there," he began, rather
timidly; "I should like it of all things."

"Really!" inquired the baron, rather surprised; "have not our ghost
stories alarmed you?"

"On the contrary," was the reply, "they have excited the most earnest

"Then, if that be the case," said the baron, "we will return. The room
was already prepared for you, being the most comfortable and the best in
the whole wing; only I fancied, after our conversation--"

"Oh, certainly not," exclaimed Edward; "I could only long for such

During this discourse they had arrived at the door of the famous room.
They went in. They found themselves in a lofty and spacious apartment,
so large that the two candles which the servant carried, only, shed a
glimmering twilight over it, which did not penetrate to the furthest
corner. A high-canopied bed, hung with costly but old-fashioned damask,
of a dark green, in which were swelling pillows of snowy whiteness, tied
with green bows, and a silk coverlet of the same color, looked very
inviting to the tired traveler. Sofa and chairs of faded needlework, a
carved oak commode and table, a looking-glass in heavy framework, a
prie-dieu and crucifix above it, constituted the furniture of the room,
where, above all things, cleanliness and comfort preponderated, while a
good deal of silver plate was spread out on the toilet-table.

Edward looked round. "A beautiful room!" he said. "Answer me one
question, baron, if you please. Did he ever sleep here?"

"Certainly," replied Friedenberg; "it was his usual room when he was
here, and he had a most curious dream in that bed, which, as he assured
us, made a great impression on him."

"And what was it?" inquired Edward, eagerly.

"He never told us, for, as you well know, he was reserved by nature; but
we gathered from some words that he let slip, that an early and sudden
death was foretold. Alas! your narrative has confirmed the truth of the

"Wonderful! He always had a similar foreboding, and many a time has he
grieved me by alluding to it," said Edward; "yet it never made him
gloomy or discontented. He went on his way firmly and calmly, and looked
forward with joy, I might almost say, to another life."

"He was a superior man," answered the baron, "whose memory will ever be
dear to us. But now I will detain you no longer. Good-night. Here is the
bell," he showed him the cord in between the curtains; "and your servant
sleeps in the next room."

"Oh, you are too careful of me," said Edward, smiling; "I am used to
sleep by myself."

"Still," replied the baron, "every precaution should be taken. Now, once
more, good night."

He shook him by the hand, and, followed by the servant, left the room.

Thus Edward found himself alone in the large, mysterious-looking,
haunted room, where his deceased friend had so often reposed--where he
also was expected to see a vision. The awe which the place itself
inspired, combined with the sad and yet tender recollection of the
departed Ferdinand, produced a state of mental excitement which was not
favorable to his night's rest. He had already undressed with the aid of
his servant (whom he had then dismissed), and had been in bed some time,
having extinguished the candles. No sleep visited his eyelids; and the
thought recurred which had so often troubled him, why he had never
received the promised token from Ferdinand, whether his friend's spirit
were among the blest--whether his silence (so to speak) proceeded from
unwillingness or incapacity to communicate with the living. A mingled
train of reflections agitated his mind: his brain grew heated; his
pulse beat faster and faster. The castle clock tolled eleven--half past
eleven. He counted the strokes; and at that moment the moon rose above
the dark margin of the rocks which surrounded the castle, and shed her
full light into Edward's room. Every object stood out in relief from the
darkness. Edward gazed, and thought, and speculated. It seemed to him as
if something moved in the furthest corner of the room. The movement was
evident--it assumed a form--the form of a man, which appeared to
advance, or rather to float forward. Here Edward lost all sense of
surrounding objects, and he found himself once more sitting at the foot
of the monument, in the garden of the academy, where he had contracted
the bond with his friend. As formerly, the moon streamed through the
dark branches of the fir-trees, and shed its cold, pale light on the
cold, white marble of the monument. Then the floating form which had
appeared in the room of the castle became clearer, more substantial,
more earthly-looking; it issued from behind the tombstone, and stood in
the full moonlight. It was Ferdinand, in the uniform of his regiment,
earnest and pale, but with a kind smile on his features.

"Ferdinand, Ferdinand!" cried Edward, overcome by joy and surprise, and
he strove to embrace the well-loved form, but it waved him aside with a
melancholy look.

"Ah! you are dead," continued the speaker; "and why then do I see you
just as you looked when living?"

"Edward," answered the apparition, in a voice that sounded as if it came
from afar, "I am dead, but my spirit has no peace."

"You are not with the blest?" cried Edward, in a voice of terror.

"God is merciful," it replied; "but we are frail and sinful creatures;
inquire no more, but pray for me."

"With all my heart," cried Edward, in a tone of anguish, while he gazed
with affection on the familiar features; "but speak, what can I do for

"An unholy tie still binds me to earth. I have sinned. I was cut off in
the midst of my sinful projects. This ring burns." He slipped a small
gold ring from his left hand. "Only when every token of this unholy
compact is destroyed, and when I recover the ring which I exchanged for
this, only then can my spirit be at rest. Oh, Edward, dear Edward, bring
me back my ring!"

"With joy--but where, where am I to seek it?"

"Emily Varnier will give it thee herself; our engagement was contrary to
holy duties, to prior engagements, to earlier vows. God denied his
blessing to the guilty project, and my course was arrested in a fearful
manner. Pray for me, Edward, and bring back the ring, my ring,"
continued the voice, in a mournful tone of appeal.

Then the features of the deceased smiled sadly but tenderly; then all
appeared to float once more before Edward's eyes--the form was lost in
mist, the monument, the fir grove, the moonlight, disappeared: a long,
gloomy, breathless pause followed. Edward lay, half sleeping, half
benumbed, in a confused manner; portions of the dream returned to
him--some images, some sounds--above all, the petition for the
restitution of the ring. But an indescribable power bound his limbs,
closed his eyelids, and silenced his voice; mental consciousness alone
was left him, yet his mind was a prey to terror.

At length these painful sensations subsided--his nerves became more
braced, his breath came more freely, a pleasing languor crept over his
limbs, and he fell into a peaceful sleep. When he awoke it was already
broad daylight; his sleep toward the end of the night had been quiet and
refreshing. He felt strong and well, but as soon as the recollection of
his dream returned, a deep melancholy took possession of him, and he
felt the traces of tears which grief had wrung from him on his
eyelashes. But what had the vision been? A mere dream engendered by the
conversation of the evening, and his affection for Hallberg's memory, or
was it at length the fulfillment of the compact?

There, out of that dark corner, had the form risen up, and moved toward
him. But might it not have been some effect of light and shade produced
by the moonbeams, and the dark branches of a large tree close to the
window, when agitated by the high wind? Perhaps he had seen this, and
then fallen asleep, and all combined had woven itself into a dream. But
the name of Emily Varnier! Edward did not remember ever to have heard
it; certainly it had never been mentioned in Ferdinand's letters. Could
it be the name of his love, of the object of that ardent and unfortunate
passion? Could the vision be one of truth? He was meditating, lost in
thought, when there was a knock at his door, and the servant entered.
Edward rose hastily, and sprang out of bed. As he did so, he heard
something fall with a ringing sound; the servant stooped and picked up a
gold ring, plain gold, like a wedding-ring. Edward shuddered; he
snatched it from the servant's hand, and the color forsook his cheeks as
he read the two words "Emily Varnier" engraved inside the hoop. He stood
there like one thunderstruck, as pale as a corpse, with the proof in his
hand that he had not merely dreamed, but had actually spoken with the
spirit of his friend. A servant of the household came in to ask whether
the lieutenant wished to breakfast in his room, or down stairs with the
family. Edward would willingly have remained alone with the thoughts
that pressed heavily on him, but a secret dread lest his absence should
be remarked, and considered as a proof of fear, after all that had
passed on the subject of the haunted room, determined him to accept the
last proposal. He dressed hastily, and arranged his hair carefully, but
the paleness of his face and the traces of tears in his eyes, were not
to be concealed, and he entered the saloon, where the family were
already assembled at the breakfast-table, with the chaplain and the

The baron rose to greet him; one glance at the young officer's face was
sufficient; he pressed his hand in silence, and led him to a place by
the side of the baroness. An animated discussion now began concerning
the weather, which was completely changed; a strong south wind had risen
in the night, so there was now a thaw. The snow was all melted--the
torrents were flowing once more, and the roads impassable.

"How can you possibly reach Blumenberg, to-day?" the baron inquired of
his guest.

"That will be well nigh impossible," said the doctor. "I am just come
from a patient at the next village, and I was nearly an hour performing
the same distance in a carriage that is usually traversed on foot in a
quarter of an hour."

Edward had not given a thought this morning to the shooting-match. Now
that it had occurred to him to remember it, he felt little regret at
being detained from a scene of noisy festivity which, far from being
desirable, appeared to him actually distasteful in his present frame of
mind. Yet he was troubled, by the thought of intruding too long on the
hospitality of his new friends; and he said, in a hesitating manner,

  "Yes! but I must try how far---"

"That you shall not do," interrupted the baron. "The road is always bad,
and in a thaw it is really dangerous. It would go against my conscience
to allow you to risk it. Remain with us; we have no shooting-match or
ball to offer you, but--"

"I shall not certainly regret either," cried Edward, eagerly.

"Well, then, remain with us, lieutenant," said the matron, lying her
hand on his arm, with a kind, maternal gesture. "You are heartily
welcome; and the longer you stay with us, the better shall we be

The youth bowed, and raised the lady's hand to his lips, and said,

"If you will allow me--if you feel certain that I am not intruding--I
will accept, your kind offer with joy. I never care much for a ball, at
any time, and to-day in particular--" he stopped short, and then added,
"In such bad weather as this, the small amusement--"

"Would be dearly bought," interposed the baron. "Come, I am delighted
you will remain with us."

He shook Edward warmly by the hand.

"You know you are with old friends."

"And, besides," said the doctor, with disinterested solicitude, "it
would be imprudent, for M. de Wensleben does not look very well. Had you
a good night, sir?"

"Very good," replied Edward.

"Without much dreaming?" continued the other, pertinaciously

"Dreaming! oh, nothing wonderful," answered the officer.

"Hem!" said the doctor, shaking his head, portentously. "No one yet--"

"Were I to relate my dream," replied Edward, "you would understand it no
more than I did. Confused images--"

The baroness, who saw the youth's unwillingness to enlarge upon the
subject, here observed,

"That some of the visions had been of no great importance--those which
she had heard related, at least."

The chaplain led the conversation from dreams themselves, to their
origin, on which subject he and the doctor could not agree; and Edward
and his visions were left in peace at last. But when every one had
departed, each to his daily occupation, Edward followed the baron into
his library.

"I answered in that manner," he said, "to get rid of the doctor and his
questioning. To you I will confess the truth. Your room has exercised
its mysterious influence over me."

"Indeed!" said the baron, eagerly.

"I have seen and spoken with my Ferdinand, for the first time since his
death. I will trust to your kindness--your sympathy--not to require of
me a description of this exciting vision. But I have a question to put
to you."

"Which I will answer in all candor, if it be possible."

"Do you know the name of Emily Varnier?"

"Varnier!--certainly not."

"Is there no one in this neighborhood who bears that name?"

"No one; it sounds like a foreign name."

"In the bed in which I slept I found this ring," said Edward, while he
produced it; and the apparition of my friend pronounced that name.

"Wonderful! As I tell you, I know no one so called--this is the first
time I ever heard the name. But it is entirely unaccountable to me, how
the ring should have come into that bed. You see, M. von Wensleben, what
I told you is true. There is something very peculiar about that room;
the moment you entered, I saw that the spell had been working on you
also, but I did not wish to forestall or force your confidence."

"I felt the delicacy, as I do now the kindness, of your intentions.
Those who are as sad as I am can alone tell the value of tenderness and

Edward remained this day and the following at the castle, and felt quite
at home with its worthy inmates. He slept twice in the haunted room. He
went away, and came back often; was always welcomed cordially, and
always quartered in the same apartment. But, in spite of all this, he
had no clew, he had no means of lifting the vail of mystery which hung
round the fate of Ferdinand Hallberg and of Emily Varnier.


Several weeks passed away. Edward spared no pains to discover some trace
of the lady in question, but all in vain. No one in the neighborhood
knew the family; and he had already determined, as soon as the spring
began, to ask for leave of absence, and to travel through the country
where Ferdinand had formed his unfortunate attachment, when a
circumstance occurred which coincided strangely with his wishes. His
commanding officer gave him a commission to purchase some horses, which,
to his great consolation, led him exactly into that part of the country
where Ferdinand had been quartered. It was a market-town of some
importance. He was to remain there some time, which suited his plans
exactly; and he made use of every leisure hour to cultivate the
acquaintance of the officers, to inquire into Ferdinand's connections
and acquaintance, to trace the mysterious name if possible, and thus
fulfill a sacred duty. For to him it appeared a sacred duty to execute
the commission of his departed friend--to get possession of the ring,
and to be the means, as he hoped, of giving rest to the troubled spirit
of Ferdinand.

Already, on the evening of the second day, he was sitting in the
coffee-room with burghers of the place and officers of different
regiments. A newly-arrived cornet was inquiring whether the neighborhood
were a pleasant one, of an infantry officer, one of Hallberg's corps.
"For," said he, "I come from charming quarters."

"There is not much to boast of," replied the captain. "There is no good
fellowship, no harmony among the people."

"I will tell you why that is," cried an animated lieutenant; "that is
because there is no house as a point of reunion, where one is sure to
find and make acquaintances, and to be amused, and where each individual
ascertains his own merits by the effect they produce on society at

"Yes, we have had nothing of that kind since the Varniers left us," said
the captain.

"Varniers!" cried Edward, with an eagerness he could ill conceal. "The
name sounds foreign."

"They were not Germans--they were emigrants from the Netherlands, who
had left their country on account of political troubles," replied the

"Ah, that was a charming house," cried the lieutenant, "cultivation,
refinement, a sufficient competency, the whole style of the
establishment free from ostentation, yet most comfortable; and
Emily--Emily was the soul of the whole house."

"Emily Varnier!" echoed Edward, while his heart beat fast and loud.

"Yes, yes! that was the name of the prettiest, most graceful, most
amiable girl in the world," said the lieutenant.

"You seem bewitched by the fair Emily," observed the cornet.

"I think you would have been too, had you known her;" rejoined the
lieutenant; "she was the jewel of the whole society. Since she went away
there is no bearing their stupid balls and assemblies."

"But you must not forget," the captain resumed once more, "when you
attribute every thing to the charms of the fair girl, that not only she
but the whole family has disappeared, and we have lost that house which
formed, as you say, so charming a point of reunion in our neighborhood."

"Yes, yes; exactly so," said an old gentleman, a civilian, who had been
silent hitherto; "the Varniers' house is a great loss in the country,
where such losses are not so easily replaced as in a large town. First,
the father died, then came the cousin and carried the daughter away."

"And did this cousin marry the young lady?" inquired Edward, in a tone
tremulous with agitation.

"Certainly," answered the old gentleman; "it was a very great match for
her; he bought land to the value of half a million about here."

"And he was an agreeable, handsome man, we must all allow," remarked the

"But she would never have married him," exclaimed the lieutenant, "if
poor Hallberg had not died."

Edward was breathless, but he did not speak a word.

"She would have been compelled to do so in any case," said the old man;
"the father had destined them for each other from infancy, and people
say he made his daughter take a vow as he lay on his death-bed."

"That sounds terrible," said Edward; "and does not speak much for the
good feeling of the cousin."

"She could not have fulfilled her father's wish," interposed the
lieutenant; "her heart was bound up in Hallberg, and Hallberg's in her.
Few people, perhaps, knew this, for the lovers were prudent and
discreet; I, however, knew it all."

"And why was she not allowed to follow the inclination of her heart?"
asked Edward.

"Because her father had promised her," replied the captain: "you used
just now the word terrible; it is a fitting expression, according to my
version of the matter. It appears that one of the branches of the house
of Varnier had committed an act of injustice toward another, and Emily's
father considered it a point of conscience to make reparation. Only
through the marriage of his daughter with a member of the ill-used
branch could that act be obliterated and made up for, and, therefore, he
pressed the matter sorely."

"Yes, and the headlong passion which Emily inspired her cousin with
abetted his designs."

"Then her cousin loved Emily?" inquired Edward.

"Oh, to desperation," was the reply; "He was a rival to her shadow, who
followed her not more closely than he did. He was jealous of the rose
that she placed on her bosom."

"Then poor Emily is not likely to have a calm life with such a man,"
said Edward.

"Come," interposed the old gentleman, with an authoritative tone, "I
think you, gentlemen, go a little too far. I know D'Effernay; he is an
honest, talented man, very rich, indeed, and generous; he anticipates
his wife in every wish. She has the most brilliant house in the
neighborhood, and lives like a princess."

"And trembles," insisted the lieutenant, "when she hears her husband's
footstep. What good can riches be to her? She would have been happier
with Hallberg."

"I do not know," rejoined the captain, "why you always looked upon that
attachment as something so decided. It never appeared so to me; and you
yourself say that D'Effernay is very jealous, which I believe him to be,
for he is a man of strong passions; and this very circumstance causes me
to doubt the rest of your story. Jealousy has sharp eyes, and D'Effernay
would have discovered a rival in Hallberg, and not proved himself the
friend he always was to our poor comrade."

"That does not follow at all," rejoined the lieutenant, "it only proves
that the lovers were very cautious. So far, however, I agree with you. I
believe that if D'Effernay had suspected any thing of the kind he would
have murdered Hallberg."

A shudder passed through Edward's veins.

"Murdered!" he repeated in a hollow voice; "do you not judge too harshly
of this man when you hint the possibility of such a thing?"

"That does he, indeed," said the old man; "these gentlemen are all angry
with D'Effernay, because he has carried off the prettiest girl in the
country. But I am told he does not intend remaining where he now lives.
He wishes to sell his estates."

"Really," inquired the captain, "and where is he going?"

"I have no idea," replied the other; "but he is selling every thing off.
One manor is already disposed of, and there have been people already in
negotiation for the place where he resides."

The conversation now turned on the value of D'Effernay's property, and
of land in general, &c.

Edward had gained materials enough for reflection; he rose soon, took
leave of the company, and gave himself up, in the solitude of his own
room, to the torrent of thought and feeling which that night's
conversation had let loose. So, then, it was true; Emily Varnier was no
fabulous being! Hallberg had loved her, his love had been returned, but
a cruel destiny had separated them. How wonderfully did all he had heard
explain the dream at the Castle, and how completely did that supply what
had remained doubtful, or had been omitted in the officer's narrative.
Emily Varnier, doubtless, possessed that ring, to gain possession of
which now seemed his bounden duty. He resolved not to delay its
fulfillment a moment, however difficult it might prove, and he only
reflected on the best manner in which he should perform the task
allotted to him. The sale of the property appeared to him a favorable
opening. The fame of his father's wealth made it probable that the son
might wish to be a purchaser of a fine estate, like the one in question.
He spoke openly of such a project, made inquiries of the old gentleman,
and the captain, who seemed to him to know most about the matter; and as
his duties permitted a trip for a week or so, he started immediately,
and arrived on the second day at the place of his destination. He
stopped in the public house in the village to inquire if the estate lay
near, and whether visitors were allowed to see the house and grounds.
Mine host, who doubtless had had his directions, sent a messenger
immediately to the Castle, who returned before long, accompanied by a
chasseur, in a splendid livery, who invited the stranger to the Castle
in the name of M. D'Effernay.

This was exactly what Edward wished, and expected. Escorted by the
chasseur he soon arrived at the Castle, and was shown up a spacious
staircase into a modern, almost, one might say, a
magnificently-furnished room, where the master of the house received
him. It was evening, toward the end of winter, the shades of twilight
had already fallen, and Edward found himself suddenly in a room quite
illuminated with wax candles. D'Effernay stood in the middle of the
saloon, a tall, thin young man. A proud bearing seemed to bespeak a
consciousness of his own merit, or at least of his position. His
features were finely formed, but the traces of stormy passion, or of
internal discontent, had lined them prematurely.

In figure he was very slender, and the deep sunken eye, the gloomy frown
which was fixed between his brows, and the thin lips, had no very
prepossessing expression, and yet there was something imposing in the
whole appearance of the man.

Edward thanked him civilly for his invitation, spoke of his idea of
being a purchaser as a motive for his visit, and gave his own, and his
father's name. D'Effernay seemed pleased with all he said. He had known
Edward's family in the metropolis; he regretted that the late hour would
render it impossible for them to visit the property to-day, and
concluded by pressing the lieutenant to pass the night at the Castle. On
the morrow they would proceed to business, and now he would have the
pleasure of presenting his wife to the visitor. Edward's heart beat
violently--at length then he would see her! Had he loved her himself he
could not have gone to meet her with more agitation. D'Effernay led his
guest through many rooms, which were all as well furnished, and as
brilliantly lighted, as the first he had entered. At length he opened
the door of a small boudoir, where there was no light, save that which
the faint, gray twilight imparted through the windows.

The simple arrangement of this little room, with dark green walls, only
relieved by some engravings and coats of arms, formed a pleasing
contrast to Edward's eyes, after the glaring splendor of the other
apartments. From behind a piano-forte, at which she had been seated in a
recess, rose a tall, slender female form, in a white dress of extreme

"My love," said D'Effernay, "I bring you a welcome guest, Lieutenant
Wensleben, who is willing to purchase the estate."

Emily courtesied; the friendly twilight concealed the shudder that
passed over her whole frame, as she heard the familiar name which
aroused so many recollections.

She bade the stranger welcome, in a low, sweet voice, whose tremulous
accents were not unobserved by Edward; and while the husband made some
further observation, he had leisure to remark, as well as the fading
light would allow, the fair outline of her oval face, the modest grace
of her movements, her pretty nymph-like figure--in fact, all those
charms which seemed familiar to him through the impassioned descriptions
of his friend.

"But what can this fancy be, to sit in the dark?" asked D'Effernay, in
no mild tone; "you know that is a thing I can not bear:" and with these
words, and without waiting his wife's answer, he rang the bell over her
sofa, and ordered lights.

While these were placed on the table, the company sat down by the fire,
and conversation commenced. By the full light Edward could perceive all
Emily's real beauty--her pale, but lovely face, the sad expression of
her large blue eyes, so often concealed by their dark lashes, and then
raised, with a look full of feeling, a sad, pensive, intellectual
expression; and he admired the simplicity of her dress, and of every
object that surrounded her: all appeared to him to bespeak a superior

They had not sat long, before D'Effernay was called away. One of his
people had something important, something urgent to communicate to him,
which admitted of no delay. A look of fierce anger almost distorted his
features; in an instant his thin lips moved rapidly, and Edward thought
he muttered some curses between his teeth. He left the room, but in so
doing, he cast a glance of mistrust and ill-temper on the handsome
stranger with whom he was compelled to leave his wife alone. Edward
observed it all. All that he had seen to-day--all that he had heard from
his comrades of the man's passionate and suspicious disposition,
convinced him that his stay here would not be long, and that, perhaps, a
second opportunity of speaking alone with Emily might not offer itself.

He determined, therefore, to profit by the present moment: and no sooner
had D'Effernay left the room, than he began to tell Emily she was not so
complete a stranger to him as it might seem; that long before he had had
the pleasure of seeing her--even before he had heard her name--she was
known to him, so to speak, in spirit.

Madame D'Effernay was moved. She was silent for a time, and gazed
fixedly on the ground; then she looked up; the mist of unshed tears
dimmed her blue eyes, and her bosom heaved with the sigh she could not

"To me also the name of Wensleben is familiar. There is a link between
our souls. Your friend has often spoken of you to me."

But she could say no more; tears checked her speech.

Edward's eyes were glistening also, and the two companions were silent;
at length he began once more:

"My dear lady," he said, "my time is short, and I have a solemn message
to deliver to you. Will you allow me to do so now?"

"To me?" she asked, in a tone of astonishment.

"From my departed friend," answered Edward, emphatically.

"From Ferdinand? and that now--after--" she shrunk back, as if in

"Now that he is no longer with us, do you mean? I found the message in
his papers, which have been intrusted to me only lately, since I have
been in the neighborhood. Among them was a token which I was to restore
to you." He produced the ring. Emily seized it wildly, and trembled as
she looked upon it.

"It is indeed my ring," she said at length, "the same which I gave him
when we plighted our troth in secret. You are acquainted with every
thing, I perceive; I shall therefore risk nothing if I speak openly."
She wept, and pressed the ring to her lips.

"I see that my friend's memory is dear to you," continued Edward. "You
will forgive the prayer I am about to make to you; my visit to you
concerns his ring."

"How--what is it you wish?" cried Emily, terrified.

"It was _his_ wish," replied Edward. "He evinced an earnest desire to
have this pledge of an unfortunate and unfulfilled engagement restored."

"How is that possible? You did not speak with him before his death; and
this happened so suddenly after, that, to give you the commission--"

"There was no time for it! that is true," answered Edward, with an
inward, shudder, although outwardly he was calm. "Perhaps this wish was
awakened immediately before his death. I found it, as I told you,
expressed in those papers."

"Incomprehensible!" she exclaimed. "Only a short time before his death,
we cherished--deceitful, indeed, they proved, but, oh, what blessed
hopes!--we reckoned on casualties, on what might possibly occur to
assist us. Neither of us could endure to dwell on the idea of
separation; and yet--yet since--Oh, my God!" she cried, overcome by
sorrow, and she hid her face between her hands. Edward was lost in
confused thought. For a time both again were silent; at length Emily
started up--

"Forgive me, M. de Wensleben. What you have related to me, what you have
asked of me, has produced so much excitement, so much agitation, that it
is necessary that I should be alone for a few moments, to recover my

"I am gone," cried Edward, springing from his chair.

"No! no!" she replied, "you are my guest; remain here. I have a
household duty which calls me away." She laid a stress on these words.

She leant forward, and with a sad, sweet smile, she gave her hand to the
friend of her lost Ferdinand, pressing his gently, and disappeared
through the inner door.

Edward stood stunned, bewildered; then he paced the room with hasty
steps, threw himself on the sofa, and took up one of the books that lay
on the table, rather to have something in his hand, than to read. It
proved to be Young's "Night Thoughts." He looked through it, and was
attracted by many passages, which seemed, in his present frame of mind,
fraught with peculiar meaning; yet his thoughts wandered constantly from
the page to his dead friend. The candles, unheeded both by Emily and
him, burned on with long wicks, giving little light in the silent room,
over which the red glare from the hearth shed a lurid glow. Hurried
footsteps sounded in the ante-room; the door was thrown open. Edward
looked up, and saw D'Effernay staring at him, and round the room, in an
angry, restless manner.

Edward could not but think there was something almost unearthly in those
dark looks and that towering form.

"Where is my wife?" was D'Effernay's first question.

"She is gone to fulfill some household duty," replied the other.

"And leaves you here alone in this miserable darkness? Most
extraordinary!--indeed, most unaccountable!" and, as he spoke, he
approached the table and snuffed the candles, with a movement of

"She left me here with old friends," said Edward, with a forced smile.
"I have been reading."

"What, in the dark?" inquired D'Effernay, with a look of distrust. "It
was so dark when I came in, that you could not possibly have
distinguished a letter."

"I read for some time, and then I fell into a train of thought, which is
usually the result of reading Young's "Night Thoughts."

"Young! I can not bear that author. He is so gloomy."

"But you are fortunately so happy, that the lamentations of the lonely
mourner can find no echo in your breast."

"You think so!" said D'Effernay, in a churlish tone, and he pressed his
lips together tightly, as Emily came into the room: he went to meet

"You have been a long time away," was his observation, as he looked into
her eyes, where the trace of tears might easily be detected. "I found
our guest alone."

"M. de Wensleben was good enough to excuse me," she replied, "and then I
thought you would be back immediately."

They sat down to the table; coffee was brought, and the past appeared to
be forgotten.

The conversation at first was broken by constant pauses. Edward saw that
Emily did all she could to play the hostess agreeably, and to pacify her
husband's ill humor.

In this attempt the young man assisted her, and at last they were
successful. D'Effernay became more cheerful; the conversation more
animated; and Edward found that his host could be a very agreeable
member of society when he pleased, combining a good deal of information
with great natural powers. The evening passed away more pleasantly than
it promised at one time; and after an excellent and well-served supper,
the young officer was shown into a comfortable room, fitted up with
every modern luxury; and weary in mind and body, he soon fell asleep. He
dreamed of all that had occupied his waking thoughts--of his friend, and
his friend's history.

But in that species of confusion which often characterizes dreams, he
fancied that he was Ferdinand, or at least, his own individuality seemed
mixed up with that of Hallberg. He felt that he was ill. He lay in an
unknown room, and by his bedside stood a small table, covered with
glasses and phials, containing medicine, as is usual in a sick room.

The door opened, and D'Effernay came in, in his dressing-gown, as if he
had just left his bed: and now in Edward's mind dreams and realities
were mingled together, and he thought that D'Effernay came, perhaps, to
speak with him on the occurrences of the preceding day. But no! he
approached the table on which the medicines stood, looked at the watch,
took up one of the phials and a cup, measured the draught, drop by drop,
then he turned and looked round him stealthily, and then he drew from
his breast a pale blue, coiling serpent, which he threw into the cup,
and held it to the patient's lips, who drank, and instantly felt, a
numbness creep over his frame which ended in death. Edward fancied that
he was dead; he saw the coffin brought, but the terror lest he should be
buried alive, made him start up with a sudden effort, and he opened his

The dream had passed away; he sat in his bed safe and well; but it was
long ere he could in any degree recover his composure, or get rid of the
impression which the frightful apparition had made on him. They brought
his breakfast, with a message from the master of the house to inquire
whether he would like to visit the park, farms, &c. He dressed quickly,
and descended to the court, where he found his host in a riding-dress,
by the side of two fine horses, already saddled. D'Effernay greeted the
young man courteously; but Edward felt an inward repugnance as he looked
on that gloomy though handsome countenance, now lighted up by the beams
of the morning sun, yet recalling vividly the dark visions of the night.
D'Effernay was full of attentions to his new friend. They started on
their ride, in spite of some threatening clouds, and began the
inspection of meadows, shrubberies, farms, &c., &c. After a couple of
hours, which were consumed in this manner, it began to rain a few drops,
and at last burst out into a heavy shower. It was soon impossible even
to ride through the woods for the torrents that were pouring down, and
so they returned to the castle.

Edward retired to his room to change his dress, and to write some
letters, he said, but more particularly to avoid Emily, in order not to
excite her husband's jealousy. As the bell rang for dinner he saw her
again, and found to his surprise that the captain, whom he had first
seen in the coffee-room, and who had given him so much information, was
one of the party. He was much pleased, for they had taken a mutual fancy
to each other. The captain was not at quarters the day Edward had left
them, but as soon as he heard where his friend had gone, he put horses
to his carriage and followed him, for he said he also should like to see
these famous estates. D'Effernay seemed in high good humor to-day, Emily
far more silent than yesterday, and taking little part in the
conversation of the men, which turned on political economy. After coffee
she found an opportunity to give Edward (unobserved) a little packet.
The look with which she did so, told plainly what it contained, and the
young man hurried to his room as soon as he fancied he could do so
without remark or comment. The continued rain precluded all idea of
leaving the house any more that day. He unfolded the packet; there were
a couple of sheets, written closely in a woman's fair hand, and
something wrapped carefully in a paper, which he knew to be the ring. It
was the fellow to that which he had given the day before to Emily, only
Ferdinand's name was engraved inside instead of hers. Such were the
contents of the papers:

"Secrecy would be misplaced with the friend of the dead. Therefore will
I speak to you of things which I have never uttered to a human being
until now. Jules D'Effernay is nearly related to me. We knew each other
in the Netherlands, where our estates joined. The boy loved me already
with a love that amounted to passion; this love was my father's greatest
joy, for there was an old and crying injustice which the ancestors of
D'Effernay had suffered from ours, that could alone, he thought, be made
up by the marriage of the only children of the two branches. So we were
destined for each other almost from our cradles; and I was content it
should be so, for Jules's handsome face and decided preference for me
were agreeable to me, although I felt no great affection for him. We
were separated: Jules traveled in France, England, and America, and made
money as a merchant, which profession he had taken up suddenly. My
father, who had a place under government, left his country in
consequence of political troubles, and came into this part of the world,
where some distant relations of my mother's lived. He liked the
neighborhood; he bought land; we lived very happily; I was quite
contented in Jules's absence; I had no yearning of the heart toward him,
yet I thought kindly of him, and troubled myself little about my future.
Then--then I learned to know your friend. Oh, then! I felt, when I
looked upon him, when I listened to him, when we conversed together, I
felt, I acknowledged, that there might be happiness on earth of which I
had hitherto never dreamed. Then I loved for the first time, ardently,
passionately, and was beloved in return. Acquainted with the family
engagements; he did not dare openly to proclaim his love, and I knew I
ought not to foster the feeling; but, alas! how seldom does passion
listen to the voice of reason and of duty. Your friend and I met in
secret; in secret we plighted our troth, and exchanged those rings, and
hoped and believed that by showing a bold front to our destiny we should
subdue it to our will. The commencement was sinful, it has met with a
dire retribution. Jules's letters announced his speedy return. He had
sold every thing in his own country, had given up all his mercantile
affairs, through which he had greatly increased an already considerable
fortune, and now he was about to join us, or rather me, without whom he
could not live. This appeared to me like the demand for payment of a
heavy debt. This debt I owed to Jules, who loved me with all his heart,
who was in possession of my father's promised word and mine also. Yet I
could not give up your friend. In a state of distraction I told him all;
we meditated flight. Yes, I was so far guilty, and I make the confession
in hopes that some portion of my errors may be expiated by repentance.
My father, who had long been in a declining state, suddenly grew worse,
and this delayed and hindered the fulfillment of our designs. Jules
arrived. During the five years he had been away he was much changed in
appearance, and that advantageously. I was struck when I first saw him,
but it was also easy to detect in those handsome features and manly
bearing, a spirit of restlessness and violence which had already shown
itself in him as a boy, and which passing years, with their bitter
experience and strong passions, had greatly developed. The hope that we
had cherished of D'Effernay's possible indifference to me, of the change
which time might have wrought in his attachment, now seemed idle and
absurd. His love was indeed impassioned. He embraced me in a manner that
made me shrink from him, and altogether his deportment toward me was a
strange contrast to the gentle, tender, refined affection of our dear
friend. I trembled whenever Jules entered the room, and all that I had
prepared to say to him, all the plans which I had revolved in my mind
respecting him, vanished in an instant before the power of his presence,
and the almost imperative manner in which he claimed my hand. My
father's illness increased; he was now in a very precarious state,
hopeless indeed. Jules rivaled me in filial attentions to him, that I
can never cease to thank him for; but this illness made my situation
more and more critical, and it accelerated the fulfillment of the
contract. I was to renew my promise to him by the death-bed of my
father. Alas, alas! I fell senseless to the ground when this
announcement was made to me. Jules began to suspect. Already my cold,
embarrassed manner toward him since his return had struck him as
strange. He began to suspect, I repeat, and the effect that this
suspicion had on him, it would be impossible to describe to you. Even
now, after so long a time, now that I am accustomed to his ways, and
more reconciled to my fate by the side of a noble, though somewhat
impetuous man, it makes me tremble to think of those paroxysms, which
the idea that I did not love him called forth. They were fearful; he
nearly sank under them. During two days his life was in danger. At last
the storm passed, my father died; Jules watched over me with the
tenderness of a brother, the solicitude of a parent; for that indeed I
shall ever be grateful. His suspicion once awakened, he gazed round with
penetrating looks to discover the cause of my altered feelings. But your
friend never came to our house; we met in an unfrequented spot, and my
father's illness had interrupted these interviews. Altogether I can not
tell if Jules discovered any thing. A fearful circumstance rendered all
our precautions useless, and cut the knot of our secret connection, to
loose which voluntarily I felt I had no power. A wedding-feast, at a
neighboring castle, assembled all the nobility and gentry, and officers
quartered near, together; my deep mourning was an excuse for my absence.
Jules, though he usually was happiest by my side, could not resist the
invitation, and your friend resolved to go, although he was unwell; he
feared to raise suspicion by remaining away, when I was left at home.
With great difficulty he contrived the first day to make one at a
splendid hunt, the second day he could not leave his bed. A physician,
who was in the house, pronounced his complaint to be violent fever, and
Jules, whose room joined that of the sick man, offered him every little
service and kindness which compassion and good feeling prompted; and I
can not but praise him all the more for it, as who can tell, perhaps,
his suspicion might have taken the right direction? On the morning of
the second day--but let me glance quickly at the terrible time, the
memory of which can never pass from my mind--a fit of apoplexy most
unexpectedly, but gently, ended the noblest life, and separated us
forever! Now you know all. I inclose the ring. I can not write more.

The conclusion of the letter made a deep impression on Edward. His dream
rose up before his remembrance, the slight indisposition, the sudden
death, the fearful nurse-tender, all arranged themselves in order before
his mind, and an awful whole rose out of all these reflections, a
terrible suspicion which he tried to throw off. But he could not do so,
and when he met the captain and D'Effernay in the evening, and the
latter challenged his visitors to a game of billiards, Edward glanced
from time to time at his host in a scrutinizing manner, and could not
but feel that the restless discontent which was visible in his
countenance, and the unsteady glare of his eyes, which shunned the fixed
look of others, only fitted too well into the shape of the dark thoughts
which were crossing his own mind. Late in the evening, after supper,
they played whist in Emily's boudoir. On the morrow, if the weather
permitted, they were to conclude their inspection of the surrounding
property, and the next day they were to visit the iron foundries, which,
although distant from the castle several miles, formed a very important
item in the rent-roll of the estates. The company separated for the
night. Edward fell asleep; and the same dream, with the same
circumstances, recurred, only with the full consciousness that the sick
man was Ferdinand. Edward felt overpowered, a species of horror took
possession of his mind, as he found himself now in regular Communication
with the beings of the invisible world.

The weather favored D'Effernay's projects. The whole day was passed in
the open air. Emily only appeared at meals, and in the evening when they
played at cards. Both she and Edward avoided, as if by mutual consent,
every word, every look that could awaken the slightest suspicion, or
jealous feeling in D'Effernay's mind. She thanked him in her heart for
this forbearance, but her thoughts were in another world; she took
little heed of what passed around her. Her husband was in an excelled
temper; he played the part of host to perfection and when the two
officers were established comfortably by the fire, in the captain's
room, smoking together, they could not but do justice to his courteous

"He appears to be a man of general information," remarked Edward.

"He has traveled a great deal, and read a great deal, as I told you when
we first met; he is a remarkable man, but one of uncontrolled passions,
and desperately jealous."

"Yet he appears very attentive to his wife."

"Undoubtedly he is wildly in love with her; yet he makes her unhappy,
and himself too."

"He certainly does not appear happy, there is so much restlessness."

"He can never bear to remain in one place for any length of time
together. He is now going to sell the property he only bought last
year. There is an instability about him; every thing palls on him."

"That is the complaint of many who are rich and well to do in the

"Yes; only not in the same degree. I assure you it has often struck me
that man must have a bad conscience."

"What an idea!" rejoined Edward, with a forced laugh, for the captain's
remark struck him forcibly. "He seems a man of honor."

"Oh, one may be a man of honor, as it is called, and yet have something
quite bad enough to reproach yourself with. But I know nothing about it,
and would not breathe such a thing except to you. His wife, too, looks
so pale and so oppressed."

"But, perhaps, that is her natural complexion and expression."

"Oh, no! no! the year before D'Effernay came from Paris, she was as
fresh as a rose. Many people declare that your poor friend loved her.
The affair was wrapped in mystery, and I never believed the report, for
Hallberg was a steady man, and the whole country knew that Emily had
been engaged a long time."

"Hallberg never mentioned the name in his letters," answered Edward,
with less candor than usual.

"I thought not. Besides D'Effernay was very much attached to him, and
mourned his death."


"I assure you the morning that Hallberg was found dead in his bed so
unexpectedly, D'Effernay was like one beside himself."

"Very extraordinary. But as we are on the subject, tell me, I pray you,
all the circumstances of my poor Ferdinand's illness, and awfully sudden

"I can tell you all about it, as well as any one, for I was one of the
guests at that melancholy wedding. Your friend, and I, and many others
were invited. Hallberg had some idea of not going; he was unwell, with
violent headache and giddiness. But we persuaded him, and he consented
to go with us. The first day he felt tolerably well. We hunted in the
open field; we were all on horseback, the day hot. Hallberg felt worse.
The second day he had a great deal of fever; he could not stay up. The
physician (for fortunately there was one in the company) ordered rest,
cooling medicine, neither of which seemed to do him good. The rest of
the men dispersed, to amuse themselves in various ways. Only D'Effernay
remained at home; he was never very fond of large societies, and we
voted that he was discontented and out of humor because his betrothed
bride was not with him. His room was next to the sick man's, to whom he
gave all possible care and attention, for poor Hallberg, besides being
ill, was in despair at giving so much trouble in a strange house.
D'Effernay tried to calm him on this point; he nursed him, amused him
with conversation, mixed his medicines, and, in fact, showed more
kindness and tenderness, than any of us would have given him credit
for. Before I went to bed I visited Hallberg, and found him much better,
and more cheerful; the doctor had promised that he should leave his bed
next day. So I left him and retired with the rest of the world, rather
late, and very tired, to rest. The next morning I was awoke by the fatal
tidings. I did not wait to dress, I ran to his room, it was full of

"And how, how was the death first discovered?" inquired Edward, in
breathless eagerness.

"The servant, who came in to attend on him, thought he was asleep, for
he lay in his usual position, his head upon his hand. He went away and
waited for some time; but hours passed, and he thought he ought to wake
his master to give him his medicine. Then the awful discovery was made.
He must have died peacefully, for his countenance was so calm, his limbs
undisturbed. A fit of apoplexy had terminated his life, but in the most
tranquil manner."

"Incomprehensible," said Edward, with a deep sigh. "Did they take no
measures to restore animation?"

"Certainly; all that could be done was done, bleeding, fomentation,
friction; the physician superintended, but there was no hope, it was all
too late. He must have been dead some hours, for he was already cold and
stiff. If there had been a spark of life in him he would have been
saved. It was all over; I had lost my good lieutenant, and the regiment
one of its finest officers."

He was silent, and appeared lost in thought. Edward, for his part, felt
overwhelmed by terrible suspicions and sad memories. After a long pause
he recovered himself: "and where was D'Effernay?" he inquired.

"D'Effernay," answered the captain, rather surprised at the question;
"oh! he was not in the castle when we made the dreadful discovery: he
had gone out for an early walk, and when he came back late, not before
noon, he learned the truth, and was like one out of his senses. It
seemed so awful to him, because he had been so much, the very day
before, with poor Hallberg."

"Ay," answered Edward, whose suspicions were being more and more
confirmed every moment. "And did he see the corpse? did he go into the
chamber of death?"

"No," replied the captain; "he assured us it was out of his power to do
so; he could not bear the sight; and I believe it. People with such
uncontrolled feelings as this D'Effernay, are incapable of performing
those duties which others think it necessary and incumbent on them to

"And where was Hallberg buried?"

"Not far from the Castle where the mournful event took place. To-morrow,
if we go to the iron foundry, we shall be near the spot."

"I am glad of it," cried Edward, eagerly, while a host of projects rose
up in his mind. "But now, captain, I will not trespass any longer on
your kindness. It is late, and we must be up betimes to-morrow. How far
have we to go?"

"Not less than four leagues, certainly. D'Effernay has arranged that we
shall drive there, and see it all at our leisure: then we shall return
in the evening. Good night, Wensleben."

They separated: Edward hurried to his room; his heart overflowed. Sorrow
on the one hand, horror and even hatred on the other, agitated him by
turns. It was long before he could sleep. For the third time the vision
haunted him; but now it was clearer than before; now he saw plainly the
features of him who lay in bed, and of him who stood beside the
bed--they were those of Hallberg and of D'Effernay.

This third apparition, the exact counterpart of the two former (only
more vivid), all that he had gathered from conversations on the subject,
and the contents of Emily's letter, left scarcely the shadow of a doubt
remaining as to how his friend had left the world.

D'Effernay's jealous and passionate nature seemed to allow of the
possibility of such a crime, and it could scarcely be wondered at, if
Edward regarded him with a feeling akin to hatred. Indeed the desire of
visiting Hallberg's grave, in order to place the ring in the coffin,
could alone reconcile Wensleben to the idea of remaining any longer
beneath the roof of a man whom he now considered the murderer of his
friend. His mind was a prey to conflicting doubts: detestation for the
culprit, and grief for the victim, pointed out one line of conduct,
while the difficulty of proving D'Effernay's guilt, and still more, pity
and consideration for Emily, determined him at length to let the matter
rest, and to leave the murderer, if such he really were, to the
retribution which his own conscience and the justice of God would award
him. He would seek his friend's grave, and then he would separate from
D'Effernay, and never see him more. In the midst of these reflections
the servant came to tell him, that the carriage was ready. A shudder
passed over his frame as D'Effernay greeted him; but he commanded
himself, and they started on their expedition.

Edward spoke but little, and that only when it was necessary, and the
conversation was kept up by his two companions; he had made every
inquiry, before he set out, respecting the place of his friend's
interment, the exact situation of the tomb, the name of the village, and
its distance from the main road. On their way home, he requested that
D'Effernay would give orders to the coachman to make a round of a mile
or two, as far as the village of ----, with whose rector he was
particularly desirous to speak. A momentary cloud gathered on
D'Effernay's brow, yet it seemed no more than his usual expression of
vexation at any delay or hinderance; and he was so anxious to propitiate
his rich visitor, who appeared likely to take the estate off his hands,
that he complied with all possible courtesy. The coachman was directed
to turn down a by-road, and a very bad one it was. The captain stood up
in the carriage and pointed out the village to him, at some distance
off; it lay in a deep ravine at the foot of the mountains.

They arrived in the course of time, and inquired for the clergyman's
house, which, as well as the church, was situated on rising ground. The
three companions alighted from the carriage, which they left at the
bottom of the hill, and walked up together in the direction of the
rectory. Edward knocked at the door and was admitted, while the two
others sat on a bench outside. He had promised to return speedily, but
to D'Effernay's restless spirit, one quarter of an hour appeared

He turned to the captain and said, in a tone of impatience, "M. de
Wensleben must have a great deal of business with the rector: we have
been here an immense time, and he does not seem inclined to make his

"Oh, I dare say he will come soon. The matter can not detain him long."

"What on earth can he have to do here?"

"Perhaps you would call it a mere fancy--the enthusiasm of youth."

"It has a name, I suppose?"

"Certainly, but--"

"Is it sufficiently important, think you, to make us run the risk of
being benighted on such roads as these?"

"Why, it is quite early in the day."

"But we have more than two leagues to go. Why will you not speak? there
can not be any great mystery."

"Well, perhaps not a mystery exactly, but just one of those subjects on
which we are usually reserved with others."

"So! so!" rejoined D'Effernay, with a little sneer. "Some love affair;
some girl or another who pursues him, that he wants to get rid of."

"Nothing of the kind, I can assure you," replied the captain, drily. "It
could scarcely be more innocent. He wishes, in fact, to visit his
friend's grave."

The listener's expression was one of scorn and anger. "It is worth the
trouble, certainly," he exclaimed, with a mocking laugh. "A charming
sentimental pilgrimage, truly; and pray who is this beloved friend, over
whose resting-place he must shed a tear, and plant a forget-me-not? He
told me he had never been in the neighborhood before."

"No more he had; neither did he know where poor Hallberg was buried
until I told him."

"Hallberg!" echoed the other in a tone that startled the captain, and
caused him to turn and look fixedly in the speaker's face. It was deadly
pale, and the captain observed the effort which D'Effernay made to
recover his composure.

"Hallberg!" he repeated again, in a calmer tone, "and was Wensleben a
friend of his?"

"His bosom friend from childhood. They were brought up together at the
academy. Hallberg left it a year earlier than his friend."

"Indeed!" said D'Effernay, scowling as he spoke, and working himself up
into a passion. "And this lieutenant came here on this account, then,
and the purchase of the estates was a mere excuse?"

"I beg your pardon," observed the captain, in a decided tone of voice;
"I have already told you that it was I who informed him of the place
where his friend lies buried."

"That may be, but it was owing to his friendship, to the wish to learn
something further of his fate, that we are indebted for the visit of
this romantic knight-errant."

"That does not appear likely," replied the captain, who thought it
better to avert, if possible, the rising storm of his companion's fury.
"Why should he seek for news of Hallberg here, when he comes from the
place where he was quartered for a long time, and where all his comrades
now are."

"Well, I don't know," cried D'Effernay, whose passion increased every
moment. "Perhaps you have heard what was once gossiped about the
neighborhood, that Hallberg was an admirer of my wife before she

"Oh yes, I have heard that report, but never believed it. Hallberg was a
prudent, steady man, and every one knew that Mademoiselle Varnier's hand
had been promised for some time."

"Yes! yes! but you do not know to what lengths passion and avarice may
lead: for Emily was rich. We must not forget that, when we discuss the
matter; an elopement with the rich heiress would have been a fine thing
for a poor, beggarly lieutenant."

"Shame! shame! M. D'Effernay. How can you slander the character of that
upright young man? If Hallberg were so unhappy as to love Mademoiselle

"That he did! you may believe me so far. I had reason to know it, and I
did know it."

"We had better change the conversation altogether, as it has taken so
unpleasant a turn. Hallberg is dead; his errors, be they what they may,
lie buried with him. His name stands high with all who knew him. Even
you, M. D'Effernay--you were his friend."

"I his friend? I hated him; I loathed him!" D'Effernay could not
proceed; he foamed at the mouth with rage.

"Compose yourself!" said the captain, rising as he spoke, "you look and
speak like a madman."

"A madman! Who says I am mad? Now I see it all--- the connection of the
whole--the shameful conspiracy."

"Your conduct is perfectly incomprehensible to me," answered the
captain, with perfect coolness. "Did you not attend Hallberg in his last
illness, and give him his medicines with your own hand?"

"I!" stammered D'Effernay. "No! no! no!" he cried, while the captain's
growing suspicions increased every moment, on account of the
perturbation which his companion displayed. "I never gave his
medicines; whoever says that is a liar."

"I say it!" exclaimed the officer, in a loud tone, for his patience was
exhausted. "I say it, because I know that it was so, and I will maintain
that fact against any one at any time. If you choose to contradict the
evidence of my senses, it is you who are a liar!"

"Ha! you shall give me satisfaction for this insult. Depend upon it, I
am not one to be trifled with, as you shall find. You shall retract your

"Never! I am ready to defend every word I have uttered here on this
spot, at this moment, if you please. You have your pistols in the
carriage, you know."

D'Effernay cast a look of hatred on the speaker, and then dashing down
the little hill, to the surprise of the servants, he dragged the pistols
from the sword-case, and was by the captain's side in a moment. But the
loud voices of the disputants had attracted Edward to the spot, and
there he stood on D'Effernay's return; and by his side a venerable old
man, who carried a large bunch of keys in his hand.

"In heaven's name, what has happened?" cried Wensleben.

"What are you about to do?" interposed the rector, in a tone of
authority, though his countenance was expressive of horror. "Are you
going to commit murder on this sacred spot, close to the precincts of
the church?"

"Murder! who speaks of murder?" cried D'Effernay. "Who can prove it?"
and as he spoke, the captain turned a fierce, penetrating look upon him,
beneath which he quailed.

"But, I repeat the question," Edward began once more, "what does all
this mean? I left you a short time ago in friendly conversation. I come
back and find you both armed--both violently agitated--and M.
D'Effernay, at least, speaking incoherently. What do you mean by
'proving it?'--to what do you allude?" At this moment, before any answer
could be made, a man came out of the house with a pick-ax and shovel on
his shoulder, and advancing toward the rector, said respectfully, "I am
quite ready, sir, if you have the key of the church-yard."

It was now the captain's turn to look anxious: "What are you going to
do, you surely don't intend--?" but, as he spoke, the rector interrupted

"This gentleman is very desirous to see the place where his friend lies

"But these preparations, what do they mean?"

"I will tell you," said Edward, in a voice and tone that betrayed the
deepest emotion, "I have a holy duty to perform. I must cause the coffin
to be opened."

"How, what?" screamed D'Effernay, once again. "Never--I will never
permit such a thing."

"But, sir," the old man spoke, in a tone of calm decision, contrasting
wonderfully with the violence of him whom he addressed, "you have no
possible right to interfere. If this gentleman wishes it, and I accede
to the proposition, no one can prevent us from doing as we would."

"I tell you I will not suffer it," continued D'Effernay, with the same
frightful agitation. "Stir at your peril," he cried, turning sharply
round upon the grave-digger, and holding a pistol to his head; but the
captain pulled his arm away, to the relief of the frightened peasant.

"M. D'Effernay," he said, "your conduct for the last half-hour has been
most unaccountable--most unreasonable."

"Come, come," interposed Edward, "let us say no more on the subject; but
let us be going," he addressed the rector; "we will not detain these
gentlemen much longer."

He made a step toward the church-yard, but D'Effernay clutched his arm,
and, with an impious oath, "you shall not stir," he said; "that grave
shall not be opened."

Edward shook him off, with a look of silent hatred, for now indeed all
his doubts were confirmed.

D'Effernay saw that Wensleben was resolved, and a deadly pallor spread
itself over his features, and a shudder passed visibly over his frame.

"You are going!" he cried, with every gesture and appearance of
insanity. "Go, then;" ... and he pointed the muzzle of the pistol to his
mouth, and before any one could prevent him, he drew the trigger, and
fell back a corpse. The spectators were motionless with surprise and
horror; the captain was the first to recover himself in some degree. He
bent over the body with the faint hope of detecting some sign of life.
The old man turned pale and dizzy with a sense of terror, and he looked
as if he would have swooned, had not Edward led him gently into his
house, while the two others busied themselves with vain attempts to
restore life. The spirit of D'Effernay had gone to its last account!

It was, indeed, an awful moment. Death in its worst shape was before
them, and a terrible duty still remained to be performed.

Edward's cheek was blanched; his eye had a fixed look, yet he moved and
spoke with a species of mechanical action, which had something almost
ghastly in it. Causing the body to be removed into the house, he bade
the captain summon the servants of the deceased and then motioning with
his hand to the awe-struck sexton, he proceeded with him to the
church-yard. A few clods of earth alone were removed ere the captain
stood by his friend's side.

       *       *       *       *       *

Here we must pause. Perhaps it were better altogether to emulate the
silence that was maintained then and afterward by the two comrades. But
the sexton could not be bribed to entire secrecy, and it was a story he
loved to tell, with details we gladly omit, of how Wensleben solemnly
performed his task--of how no doubt could any longer exist as to the
cause of Hallberg's death. Those who love the horrible must draw on
their own imaginations to supply what we resolutely withhold.

Edward, we believe, never alluded to D'Effernay's death, and all the
awful circumstances attending it, but twice--once, when, with every
necessary detail, he and the captain gave their evidence to the legal
authorities; and once, with as few details as possible, when he had an
interview with the widow of the murderer, the beloved of the victim. The
particulars of this interview he never divulged, for he considered
Emily's grief too sacred to be exposed to the prying eyes of the curious
and the unfeeling. She left the neighborhood immediately, leaving her
worldly affairs in Wensleben's hands, who soon disposed of the property
for her. She returned to her native country, with the resolution of
spending the greater part of her wealth in relieving the distresses of
others, wisely seeking, in the exercise of piety and benevolence, the
only possible alleviation of her own deep and many-sided griefs. For
Edward, he was soon pronounced to have recovered entirely, from the
shock of these terrible events. Of a courageous and energetic
disposition, he pursued the duties of his profession with a firm step,
and hid his mighty sorrow deep in the recesses of his heart. To the
superficial observer, tears, groans, and lamentations are the only
proofs of sorrow; and when they subside, the sorrow is said to have
passed away also. Thus the captive, immured within the walls of his
prison-house, is as one dead to the outward world, though the jailer be
a daily witness to the vitality of affliction.


This is a voice that speaks to us across a gulf of nearly fifty years. A
few months ago Wordsworth was taken from us at the ripe age of
fourscore, yet here we have him addressing the public, as for the first
time, with all the fervor, the unworn freshness, the hopeful confidence
of thirty. We are carried back to the period when Coleridge, Byron,
Scott, Rogers, and Moore were in their youthful prime. We live again in
the stirring days when the poets who divided public attention and
interest with the Fabian struggle in Portugal and Spain, with the wild
and terrible events of the Russian campaign, with the uprising of the
Teutonic nations, and the overthrow of Napoleon, were in a manner but
commencing their cycle of songs. This is to renew, to antedate, the
youth of a majority of the living generation. But only those whose
memory still carries them so far back, can feel within them any reflex
of that eager excitement, with which the news of battles fought and won,
or mail-coach copies of some new work of Scott, or Byron, or the
_Edinburgh Review_, were looked for and received in those already old
days. [J] We need not remind the readers of the _Excursion_, that when
Wordsworth was enabled, by the generous enthusiasm of Raisley Calvert,
to retire with a slender independence to his native mountains, there to
devote himself exclusively to his art, his first step was to review and
record in verse, the origin and progress of his own powers, as far as he
was acquainted with them. This was at once an exercise in versification,
and a test of the kind of poetry for which he was by temperament fitted.
The result was a determination to compose a philosophical poem,
containing views of man, of nature, and of society. This ambitious
conception has been doomed to share the fate of so many other colossal
undertakings. Of the three parts of his _Recluse_, thus planned, only
the second (the _Excursion_, published in 1814) has been completed. Of
the other two there exists only the first book of the first, and the
plan of the third. The _Recluse_ will remain in fragmentary greatness, a
poetical Cathedral of Cologne.

Matters standing thus, it has not been without a melancholy sense of the
uncertainty of human projects, and of the contrast between the sanguine
enterprise and its silent evaporation (so often the "history of an
individual mind"), that we have perused this _Prelude_ which no
completed strain was destined to follow. Yet in the poem itself there is
nothing to inspire depression. It is animated throughout with the
hopeful confidence in the poet's own powers, so natural to the time of
life at which it was composed; it evinces a power and soar of
imagination unsurpassed in any of his writings; and its images and
incidents have a freshness and distinctness which they not seldom lost,
when they came to be elaborated, as many of them were, in his minor
poems of a later date.

The _Prelude_, as the title page indicates, is a poetical autobiography,
commencing with the earliest reminiscences of the author, and continued
to the time at which it was composed. We are told that it was begun in
1799 and completed in 1805. It consists of fourteen books. Two are
devoted to the infancy and schooltime of the poet; four to the period of
his University life; two to a brief residence in London, immediately
subsequent to his leaving Cambridge, and a retrospect of the progress
his mind had then made; and three to a residence in France, chiefly in
the Loire, but partly in Paris, during the stormy period of Louis the
Sixteenth's flight and capture, and the fierce contest between the
Girondins and Robespierre. Five books are then occupied with an analysis
of the internal struggle occasioned by the contradictory influences of
rural and secluded nature in boyhood, and of society when the young man
first mingles with the world. The surcease of the strife is recorded in
the fourteenth book, entitled "Conclusion."

The poem is addressed to Coleridge; and, apart from its poetical merits,
is interesting as at once a counterpart and supplement to that author's
philosophical and beautiful criticism of the _Lyrical Ballads_ in his
_Biographia Literaria_. It completes the explanation, there given, of
the peculiar constitution of Wordsworth's mind, and of his poetical
theory. It confirms and justifies our opinion that that theory was
essentially partial and erroneous; but at the same time, it establishes
the fact that Wordsworth was a true and a great poet in despite of his

The great defect of Wordsworth, in our judgment, was want of sympathy
with, and knowledge of men. From his birth till his entry at college, he
lived in a region where he met with none whose minds might awaken his
sympathies, and where life was altogether uneventful. On the other hand,
that region abounded with the inert, striking, and most impressive
objects of natural scenery. The elementary grandeur and beauty of
external nature came thus to fill up his mind to the exclusion of human
interests. To such a result his individual constitution powerfully
contributed. The sensuous element was singularly deficient in his
nature. He never seems to have passed through that erotic period out of
which some poets have never emerged. A soaring, speculative imagination,
and an impetuous, resistless self-will, were his distinguishing
characteristics. From first to last he concentrated himself within
himself; brooding over his own fancies and imaginations to the
comparative disregard of the incidents and impressions which suggested
them; and was little susceptible of ideas originating in other minds. We
behold the result. He lives alone in a world of mountains, streams, and
atmospheric phenomena, dealing with moral abstractions, and rarely
encountered by even shadowy spectres of beings outwardly resembling
himself. There is measureless grandeur and power in his moral
speculations. There is intense reality in his pictures of external
nature. But though his human characters are presented with great skill
of metaphysical analysis, they have rarely life or animation. He is
always the prominent, often the exclusive, object of his own song.

Upon a mind so constituted, with its psychological peculiarities so
cherished and confirmed, the fortunes and fates of others, and the
stirring events of his time, made vivid but very transient impressions.
The conversation and writings of contemporaries trained among books, and
with the faculty of speech more fully developed than that of thought,
seemed colorless and empty to one with whom natural objects and
grandeurs were always present in such overpowering force. Excluded by
his social position from taking an active part in the public events of
the day, and repelled by the emptiness of the then fashionable
literature, he turned to private and humble life as possessing at least
a reality. But he thus withheld himself from the contemplation of those
great mental excitements which only great public struggles can awaken.
He contracted a habit of exaggerating the importance of every-day
incidents and emotions. He accustomed himself to see in men and in
social relations only what he was predetermined to see there, and to
impute to them a value and importance derived mainly from his own
self-will. Even his natural good taste contributed to confirm him in his
error. The two prevailing schools of literature in England, at that
time, were the trashy and mouthing writers who adopted the sounding
language of Johnson and Darwin, unenlivened by the vigorous thought of
either; and the "dead-sea apes" of that inflated, sentimental,
revolutionary style which Diderot had unconsciously originated, and
Kotzebue carried beyond the verge of caricature. The right feeling and
manly thought of Wordsworth were disgusted by these shallow
word-mongers, and he flew to the other extreme. Under the
influences--repulsive and attractive--we have thus attempted to
indicate, he adopted the theory that as much of grandeur and profound
emotion was to be found in mere domestic incidents and feelings, as on
the more conspicuous stage of public life; and that a bald and naked
simplicity of language was the perfection of style. Singularly enough,
he was confirmed in these notions by the very writer of the day whose
own natural genius, more than any of his contemporaries, impelled, him
to riot in great, wild, supernatural conceptions; and to give utterance
to them in gorgeous language. Coleridge was perhaps the only
contemporary from whom Wordsworth ever took an opinion; and that he did
so from him, is mainly attributable to the fact that Coleridge did
little more than reproduce to him his own notions, sometimes rectified
by a subtler logic, but always rendered more attractive by new and
dazzling illustrations.

Fortunately it is out of the power of the most perverse theory to spoil
the true poet. The poems of Wordsworth must continue to charm and
elevate mankind, in defiance of his crotchets, just as Luther, Henri
Quatre, and other living impersonations of poetry do, despite all quaint
peculiarities of the attire, the customs, or the opinions of their
respective ages, with which they were embued. The spirit of truth and
poetry redeems, ennobles, hallows, every external form in which it may
be lodged. We may "pshaw" and "pooh" at _Harry Gill_ and the _Idiot
Boy_; but the deep and tremulous tenderness of sentiment, the
strong-winged flight of fancy, the excelling and unvarying purity, which
pervade all the writings of Wordsworth, and the exquisite melody of his
lyrical poems, must ever continue to attract and purify the mind. The
very excesses into which his one-sided theory betrayed him, acted as a
useful counter-agent to the prevailing bad taste of his time.

The _Prelude_ may take a permanent place as one of the most perfect of
Wordsworth's compositions. It has much of the fearless felicity of
youth; and its imagery has the sharp and vivid outline of ideas fresh
from the brain. The subject--the development of his own great
powers--raises him above that willful dallying with trivialities which
repels us in some of his other works. And there is real vitality in the
theme, both from our anxiety to know the course of such a mind, and from
the effect of an absorbing interest in himself excluding that languor
which sometimes seized him in his efforts to impart or attribute
interest to themes possessing little or none in themselves. Its mere
narrative, though often very homely, and dealing in too many words, is
often characterized also by elevated imagination, and always by
eloquence. The bustle of London life, the prosaic uncouthness of its
exterior, the earnest heart that beats beneath it, the details even of
its commonest amusements, from Bartholomew Fair to Sadler's Wells, are
portrayed with simple force and delicate discrimination; and for the
most part skillfully contrasted with the rural life of the poet's native
home. There are some truthful and powerful sketches of French character
and life, in the early revolutionary era. But above all, as might have
been anticipated, Wordsworth's heart revels in the elementary beauty and
grandeur of his mountain theme; while his own simple history is traced
with minute fidelity and is full of unflagging interest.--_London


[J] _The Prelude, or Growth of a Poet's Mind; an Autobiographical Poem_.
By William Wordsworth. London. Moxon. New York, Appleton & Co.

[From the North British Review.]


It is a common complaint that the publishers make large fortunes and
leave the authors to starve--that they are, in fact, a kind of moral
vampire, sucking the best blood of genius, and destroying others to
support themselves. A great deal of very unhealthy, one-sided cant has
been written upon this subject. Doubtless, there is much to be said on
both sides. That publishers look at a manuscript very much as a
corn-dealer looks at sample of wheat, with an eye to its selling
qualities, is not to be denied. If books are not written only to be
sold, they are printed only to be sold. Publishers must pay their
printers and their paper-merchants; and they can not compel the public
to purchase their printed paper. When benevolent printers shall be found
eager to print gratuitously works of unsalable genius, and benevolent
paper-merchants to supply paper for the same, publishers may afford to
think less of a manuscript as an article of sale--may reject with less
freedom unlikely manuscripts, and haggle less savagely about the price
of likely ones. An obvious common-place this, and said a thousand times
before, but not yet recognized by the world of writers at large.
Publishing is a trade, and, like all other trades, undertaken with the
one object of making money by it. The profits are not ordinarily large;
they are, indeed, very uncertain--so uncertain that a large proportion
of those who embark in the publishing business some time or other find
their way into the Gazette. When a publishing firm is ruined by printing
unsalable books, authors seldom or never have any sympathy with a
member of it. They have, on the other hand, an idea that he is justly
punished for his offenses; and so perhaps he is, but not in the sense
understood by the majority of those who contemplate his downfall as a
retributive dispensation. The fact is, that reckless publishing is more
injurious to the literary profession than any thing in the world beside.
The cautious publisher is the author's best friend. If a house publish
at their own risk a number of works which they can not sell, they must
either go into the Gazette at last, or make large sums of money by works
which they _can_ sell. When a publisher loses money by a work, an injury
is inflicted upon the literary profession. The more money he can make by
publishing, the more he can afford to pay for authorship. It is often
said that the authors of successful works are inadequately rewarded in
proportion to their success; that publishers make their thousands, while
authors only make their hundreds. But it is forgotten that the profits
of the one successful work are often only a set-off to the losses
incurred by the publication of half a dozen unsuccessful ones. If a
publisher purchase a manuscript for £500, and the work prove to be a
"palpable hit" worth £5000, it may seem hard that the publisher does not
share his gains more equitably with the author. With regard to this it
is to be said, in the first place, that he very frequently _does_. There
is hardly a publisher in London, however "grasping" he may be, who has
not, time after time, paid to authors sums of money not "in the bond."
But if the fact were not as we have stated it, we can hardly admit that
publishers are under any kind of obligation to exceed the strict terms
of their contracts. If a publisher gives £500 for a copyright,
expecting to sweep the same amount into his own coffers, but instead of
making that sum, loses it by the speculation, he does not ask the author
to refund--nor does the author offer to do it. The money is in all
probability spent long before the result of the venture is ascertained;
and the author would be greatly surprised and greatly indignant, if it
were hinted to him, even in the most delicate way, that the publisher
having lost money by his book, would be obliged to him if he would make
good a portion of the deficit by sending a check upon his bankers.

We repeat, then, that a publisher who loses money by one man's books,
must make it by another's, or go into the Gazette. There are publishers
who trade entirely upon this principle, which, indeed, is a kind of
literary gambling. They publish a dozen works, we will suppose, of which
six produce an absolute loss; four just cover-their expenses; and the
other two realize a profit. The publisher, especially if he be his own
printer, may find this answer in the end; it may at least just keep him
out of the Bankruptcy Court, and supply his family with bread. But the
system can not be a really advantageous one either to publishers or
authors. To the latter, indeed, it is destruction. No inconsiderable
portion of the books published every year entail a heavy loss on author
or publisher, or on both--and the amount of this loss may be set down,
in most instances, as so much taken from the gross profits of the
literary profession. If Mr. Bungay lose a hundred pounds by the poems of
the Hon. Percy Popjoy, he has a hundred pounds less to give to Mr.
Arthur Pendennis for his novel. Instead of protesting against the
over-caution of publishers, literary men, if they really knew their own
interests, would protest against their want of caution. Authors have a
direct interest in the prosperity of publishers. The misfortune of
authorship is not that publishers make so much money, but that they make
so little. If Paternoster Row were wealthier than it is, there would be
better cheer in Grub-street.

It is very true that publishers, like other men, make mistakes; and that
sometimes a really good and salable work is rejected. Many instances of
this might readily be adduced--instances of works, whose value has been
subsequently proved by extensive popularity, having been rejected by one
or more experienced member of the publishing craft. But their judgment
is on the whole remarkably correct. They determine with surprising
accuracy the market value of the greater number of works that are
offered to them. It is not supposed that in the majority of cases, the
publisher himself decides the question upon the strength of his own
judgment. He has his minister, or ministers of state, to decide these
knotty questions for him. A great deal has been written at different
times, about the baneful influence of this middleman, or "reader"--but
we can see no more justice in the complaint than if it were raised
against the system which places a middleman or minister between the
sovereign and his people. To complain of the incapacity of the publisher
himself, and to object to his obtaining the critical services of a more
competent party, were clearly an inconsistency and an injustice. If the
publisher himself be not capable of deciding upon the literary merits or
salable properties of the works laid before him, the best thing that he
can do is to secure the assistance of some one who _is_. Hence the
office of the "reader." It is well known that in some large publishing
houses there is a resident "reader" attached to the establishment;
others are believed to lay the manuscripts offered to them for
publication before some critic of established reputation out-of-doors;
while more than one eminent publisher might be named who has trusted
solely to his own judgment, and rarely found that judgment at fault. In
either of these cases there is no reason to assume the incompetency of
the judge. Besides, as we have said, the question to be solved by the
publisher or reader, is not a purely literary question. It is mainly
indeed a commercial question; and the merits of the work are often
freely acknowledged while the venture is politely declined.

Much more might be said of the relations between publishers and authors,
but we are compelled to economize our space. The truth, indeed, as
regards the latter, is simply this: It is not so much that authors do
not know how to make money, as that they do not know how to spend it.
The same income that enables a clergyman, a lawyer, a medical
practitioner, a government functionary, or any other member of the
middle classes earning his livelihood by professional labor, to support
himself and his family in comfort and respectability, will seldom keep a
literary man out of debt and difficulty--seldom provide him with a
comfortable well-ordered home, creditable to himself and his profession.
It is ten to one that he lives untidily; that every thing about him is
in confusion, that the amenities of domestic life are absent from his
establishment; that he is altogether in a state of elaborate and costly
disorder, such as we are bound to say is the characteristic of no other
kind of professional life. He seldom has a settled home--a fixed
position. He appears to be constantly on the move. He seldom lives, for
any length of time, in the same place; and is rarely at home when you
call upon him. It would be instructive to obtain a return of the number
of professional writers who retain pews in church, and are to be found
there with their families on Sundays. There is something altogether
fitful, irregular, spasmodic in their way of life. And so it is with
their expenditure. They do not live like other men, and they do not
spend like other men. At one time, you would think, from their lavish
style of living, that they were worth three thousand a year; and at
another, from the privations that they undergo, and the difficulty they
find in meeting small claims upon them, that they were not worth fifty.
There is generally, indeed, large expenditure abroad, and painful
stinting at home. The "res angusta _domi_" is almost always there; but
away from his home, your literary man is often a prince and a
millionaire. Or, if he be a man of domestic habits, if he spends little
on tavern suppers, little on wine, little on cab hire, the probability
is, that he is still impulsive and improvident, still little capable of
self-denial; that he will buy a costly picture when his house-rent is
unpaid; that he will give his wife a guitar when she wants a gown; and
buy his children a rocking-horse when they are without stockings. His
house and family are altogether in an inelegant state of elegant
disorder; and with really a comfortable income, if properly managed, he
is eternally in debt.

Now all this may appear very strange, but it is not wholly
unaccountable. In the _first_ place, it may be assumed, as we have
already hinted, that no small proportion of those who adopt literature
as a profession have enlisted in the army of authors because they have
lacked the necessary amount of patience and perseverance--the systematic
orderly habits--the industry and the self-denial by which alone it is
possible to attain success in other paths of professional life. With
talent enough to succeed in any, they have not had sufficient method to
succeed in any. They have been trained perhaps for the bar, but wanted
assiduity to master the dry details of the law, and patience to sustain
them throughout a long round of briefless circuits. They have devoted
themselves to the study of physic, and recoiled from or broken down
under examination; or wanted the hopeful sanguine temperament which
enables a man to content himself with small beginnings, and to make his
way by a gradually widening circle to a large round of remunerative
practice. They have been intended for the Church, and drawn back in
dismay at the thought of its restraints and responsibilities; or have
entered the army, and have forsaken with impatience and disgust the slow
road to superior command.

In any case, it may be assumed that the original profession has been
deserted for that of authorship, mainly because the aspirant has been
wanting in those orderly methodical habits, and that patience and
submissiveness of temperament which secure success in those departments
of professional labor which are only to be overcome by progressive
degrees. In a word, it may be often said of the man of letters, that he
is not wanting in order because he is an author, but he is an author
because he is wanting in order. He is capable of occasional paroxysms of
industry; his spasms of energy are often great and triumphant. Where
results are to be obtained _per saltum_ he is equal to any thing and is
not easily to be frightened back. He has courage enough to carry a
fortress by assault, but he has not system enough to make his way by
regular approaches. He is weary of the work before he has traced out the
first parallel. In this very history of the rise of professional
authorship, we may often see the causes of its fall. The calamities of
authors are often assignable to the very circumstances that made them
authors. Wherefore is it that in many cases authors are disorderly and
improvident? simply because it is their nature to be so--because in any
other path of life they would be equally disorderly and improvident. The
want of system is not to be attributed to their profession. The evil
which we deplore arises in the first instance only from an inability to
master an inherent defect.

But it must be admitted that there are many predisposing circumstances
in the environments of literary life--that many of the causes which
aggravate, if they do not originate the malady, are incidental to the
profession itself. The absolute requirements of literary labor not
unfrequently compel an irregular distribution of time and with it
irregular social and moral habits. It would be cruel to impute that as a
fault to the literary laborer which is in reality his misfortune. We who
lay our work once every quarter before the public, and they who once a
year, or less frequently, present themselves with their comely octavo
volumes of fiction or biography--history or science--to the reading
world, may dine at home every day with their children, ring the bell at
ten o'clock for family prayers, rise early and retire early every day,
and with but few deviations throughout the year, regularly toil through,
with more or less of the afflatus upon them, their apportioned hours of
literary labor; but a large proportion of the literary practitioners of
the age are connected, in some capacity or other, with the newspaper
press; they are the slaves of time, not its masters; and must bend
themselves to circumstances, however repugnant to the will. Late hours
are unfortunately a condition of press life. The sub-editors, the
summary writers, the reporters; the musical and theatrical critics, and
many of the leading-article writers are compelled to keep late hours.
Their work is not done till past--in many cases till _long_
past--midnight; and it can not be done at home. It is a very unhappy
condition of literary life that it so often compels night-work.
Night-work of this kind seems to demand a resource to stimulants; and
the exigencies of time and place compel a man to betake himself to the
most convenient tavern. Much that we read in the morning papers,
wondering at the rapidity with which important intelligence or
interesting criticism is laid before us, is written, after midnight, at
some contiguous tavern, or in the close atmosphere of a reporter's room,
which compels a subsequent resort to some house of nocturnal
entertainment. If, weary with work and rejoicing in the thought of its
accomplishment, the literary laborer, in the society perhaps of two or
three of his brethren, betakes himself to a convenient supper house, and
there spends on a single meal, what would keep himself and his family in
comfort throughout the next day, perhaps it is hardly just to judge him
too severely; at all events, it is right that we should regard the
suffering, and weigh the temptation. What to us, in many cases, "seems
vice may be but woe." It is hard to keep to this night-work and to live
an orderly life. If a man from choice, not from necessity, turns night
into day, and day into night (we have known literary men who have
willfully done so), we have very little pity for him. The shattered
nerves--the disorderly home--the neglected business--the accounts unkept
and the bills unpaid, which are the necessary results of nights of
excitement and days of languor, are then to be regarded as the
consequences not of the misfortunes, but the faults of the sufferer. It
is a wretched way of life any how.

Literary men are sad spendthrifts, not only of their money, but of
themselves. At an age when other men are in the possession of vigorous
faculties of mind and strength of body, they are often used-up,
enfeebled, and only capable of effort under the influence of strong
stimulants. If a man has the distribution of his own time--if his
literary avocations are of that nature that they can be followed at
home--if they demand only continuous effort, there is no reason why the
waste of vital energy should be greater in his case than in that of the
follower of any other learned profession. A man soon discovers to what
extent he can safely and profitably tax his powers. To do well in the
world he must economize himself no less than his money. Rest is often a
good investment. A writer at one time is competent to do twice as much
and twice as well as at another; and if his leisure be well employed,
the few hours of labor will be more productive than the many, at the
time; and the faculty of labor will remain with him twice as long. Rest
and recreation, fresh air and bodily exercise, are essential to an
author, and he will do well never to neglect them. But there are
professional writers who can not regulate their hours of labor, and
whose condition of life it is to toil at irregular times and in an
irregular manner. It is difficult, we know, for them to abstain from
using themselves up prematurely. Repeated paroxysms of fever wear down
the strongest frames; and many a literary man is compelled to live a
life of fever, between excitement and exhaustion of the mind. We would
counsel all public writers to think well of the best means of
economizing themselves--the best means of spending their time off duty.
Rest and recreation, properly applied, will do much to counteract the
destroying influences of spasmodic labor at unseasonable hours, and to
ward off premature decay. But if they apply excitement of one kind to
repair the ravages of excitement of another kind, they must be content
to live a life of nervous irritability, and to grow old before their


William and Charles Grant were the sons of a farmer in Inverness-shire,
whom a sudden flood stript of every thing, even to the very soil which
he tilled. The farmer and his son William made their way southward,
until they arrived in the neighborhood of Bury, in Lancashire, and there
found employment in a print work, in which William served his
apprenticeship. It is said that, when they reached the spot near which
they ultimately settled, and arrived at the crown of the hill near
Walmesley, they were in doubt as to what course was best next to be
pursued. The surrounding country lay disclosed before them, the river
Irwell making its circuitous way through the valley. What was to be done
to induce their decision as to the route they were to take to their
future home? A stick was put up, and where it fell, in that direction
would they betake themselves. And thus their decision was made, and they
betook themselves toward the village of Ramsbotham, not far distant. In
this place, these men pitched their tent, and in the course of many long
years of industry, enterprise, and benevolence, they accumulated nearly
a million sterling of money; earning, meanwhile, the good-will of
thousands, the gratitude of many, and the respect of all who knew them.
They afterward erected, on the top of the hill overlooking Walmesley, a
lofty tower, in commemoration of the fortunate choice they had made, and
not improbably as a kind of public thank-offering for the signal
prosperity they had reaped. Cotton mills, and print works, were built by
them of great extent, employing an immense number of hands; and they
erected churches, founded schools, and gave a new life to the district.
Their well-directed diligence made the valley teem with industry,
activity, health, joy, and opulence; they never forgot the class from
which they themselves had sprung, that of working-men, whose hands had
mainly contributed to their aggrandizement, and, therefore, they spared
no expense in the moral, intellectual, and physical interests of their

A brief anecdote or two will serve to show what manner of men these
Grants were, and that Dickens, in his Brothers Cheeryble, has been
guilty of no exaggeration. Many years ago, a warehouseman published an
exceedingly scurrilous pamphlet against the firm of Grant Brothers,
holding up the elder partner to ridicule as "Billy Button." William was
informed by some "kind friend," of the existence and nature of the
pamphlet, and his observation was, that the man would live to repent of
its publication. "Oh!" said the libeler, when informed of this remark,
"he thinks that some time or other I shall be in his debt, but I will
take good care of that." It happens, however, that the man in business
does not always know who shall be his creditor. It turned out that the
libeler shortly became bankrupt, and the brothers held an acceptance of
his, which had been indorsed by the drawer who had also become bankrupt.
The wantonly libeled men had now an opportunity of revenging themselves
upon the libeler, for he could not obtain his certificate without their
signature, and without that he could not again commence business. But it
seemed to the bankrupt to be a hopeless case to expect that, they would
give their signature--they whom he had so wantonly held up to public
ridicule. The claims of a wife and children, however, at last forced him
to make the application. He presented himself at the counting-house
door, and found that "Billy Button" was in. He entered, and William
Grant, who was alone, rather sternly bid him, "shut the door, sir!" The
libeler trembled before the libeled. He told his tale, and produced his
certificate, which was instantly clutched by the injured merchant. "You
wrote a pamphlet against us once," exclaimed Mr. Grant. The supplicant
expected to see his parchment thrown into the fire; instead of which,
Mr. Grant took a pen, and writing something on the document, handed it
back to the supplicant, who expected to find  "rogue,
scoundrel, libeler," instead of which, there was written only the
signature of the firm, completing the bankrupt's certificate. "We make
it a rule," said Mr. Grant, "never to refuse signing the certificate of
an honest tradesman, and we have never heard that you were any thing
else." The tears started into the poor man's eyes. "Ah!" continued Mr.
Grant, "my saying was true, I said you would live to repent writing
that pamphlet, I did not mean it as a threat, I only meant that some day
you would know us better, and repent that you had tried to injure us; I
see you repent it now." "I do, I do," said the grateful man, "I do,
indeed, bitterly repent it." "Well, well, my dear fellow, you know us
now. How do you get on? What are you going to do?" The poor man stated
that he had friends who could assist him when his certificate was
obtained. "But how are you off in the mean time?" and the answer was
that, having given up every farthing to his creditors, he had been
compelled to stint his family of even the common necessaries of life,
that he might be enabled to pay the cost of his certificate. "My dear
fellow, this will never do, your wife and family must not suffer; be
kind enough to take this ten-pound note to your wife from me--there,
there, my dear fellow--nay, don't cry--it will all be well with you yet;
keep up your spirits, set to work like a man, and you will raise your
head among us yet." The overpowered man endeavored in vain to express
his thanks--the swelling in his throat forbade words; he put his hand to
his face, and went out of the door crying like a child.

In company with a gentleman who had written and lectured much on the
advantages of early religious, moral, and intellectual training, Mr
Grant asked--"Well, how do you go on in establishing schools for
infants?" The reply was, "Very encouragingly indeed; wherever I have
gone, I have succeeded either in inducing good people to establish them,
or in procuring better support to those that are already established.
But I must give over my labors, for, what with printing bills,
coach-fare, and other expenses, every lecture I deliver in any
neighboring town, costs me a sovereign, and I can not afford to ride my
hobby such a rate." He said, "You must not give over your labors; God
has blessed them with success; He has blessed you with talents, and me
with wealth, if you give your time, I ought to give my money. You must
oblige me by taking this twenty-pound note, and spending it in promoting
the education of the poor." The twenty-pound note was taken, and so
spent; and probably a thousand children are now enjoying the benefit of
the impulse that was thus given to a mode of instruction as delightful
as it was useful.

Mr. Grant was waited on by two gentlemen, who were raising a
subscription for the widow of a respectable, man, who, some years before
his death, had been unfortunate in business. "We lost £200 by him," said
Mr. Grant; "and how do you expect I should subscribe, for his widow?"
"Because," answered one of them, "what you have lost by the husband does
not alter the widow's claim on your benevolence." "Neither it shall,"
said he, "here are five pounds, and if you can not make up the sum you
want for her, come to me, and I'll give you more."

Many other anecdotes, equally characteristic of the kind nature of
William Grant, could be added. For fifteen years did he and his brother
Charles ride into Manchester on market days, seated side-by-side,
looking of all things like a pair of brothers, happy in themselves, and
in each other. William died a few years ago, and was followed to the
grave by many blessings. The firm still survives, and supports its
former character. Long may the merchant princes of England continue to
furnish such beautiful specimens of humanity as the now famous Brothers
Cheeryble!--_Chambers' Edinburgh Journal_.

[From the North British Review.]


Lord Lyndhurst once said, at a public dinner, with reference to the
numberless marvels of the press, that it might seem a very easy thing to
write a leading article, but that he would recommend any one with strong
convictions on that point, only to _try_. We confidently appeal to the
experience of all the conductors of the leading journals of Great
Britain, from the quarterly reviews to the daily journals, convinced
that they will all tell the same unvarying tale of the utter
incompetency of thousands of very clever people to write articles,
review books, &c. They will all have the same experiences to relate of
the marvelous failures of men of genius and learning--the crude cumbrous
state in which they have sent their so-called articles for
publication--the labor it has taken to mould their fine thoughts and
valuable erudition into comely shape--the utter impossibility of doing
it at all. As Mr. Carlyle has written of the needle-women of England, it
is the saddest thing of all, that there should be sempstresses few or
none, but "botchers" in such abundance, capable only of "a distracted
puckering and botching--not sewing--only a fallacious hope of it--a fond
imagination of the mind;" so of literary labor is it the saddest thing
of all, that there should be so many botchers in the world, and so few
skilled article-writers--so little article-writing, and so much
"distracted puckering and botching." There may be nothing in this
article-writing, when once we know how to do it, as there is nothing in
balancing a ladder on one's chin, or jumping through a hoop, or
swallowing a sword. All we say is, if people think it easy, let them
try, and abide by the result. The amateur articles of very clever people
are generally what an amateur effort at coat-making would be. It may
seem a very easy thing to make a coat; but very expert
craftsmen--craftsmen that can produce more difficult and elaborate
pieces of workmanship, fail utterly when they come to a coat. The only
reason why they can not make a coat is, that they are not tailors. Now
there are many very able and learned men, who can compass greater
efforts of human intellect than the production of a newspaper article,
but who can not write a newspaper at all, because they we not
newspaper-writers, or criticise a book with decent effect, because they
are not critics. Article-writing comes "by art not chance." The efforts
of chance writers, if they be men of genius and learning, are things to
break one's heart over.

It is not enough to think and to know. It requires the faculty of
utterance, and a peculiar kind of utterance. Certain things are to be
said in a certain manner; and your amateur article-writer is sure to say
them in any manner but the right. Perhaps of all styles of writing there
is none in which excellency is so rarely attained as that of
newspaper-writing. A readable leading article may not be a work of the
loftiest order, or demand for its execution the highest attributes of
genius; but, whatever it may be, the power of accomplishing it with
success is not shared by "thousands of clever fellows." Thousands of
clever fellows, fortified by Mr. Thackeray's opinion, may think that
they could write the articles which they read in the morning journals;
but let them take pen and paper and _try_.

We think it only fair that professional authors should have the credit
of being able to do what other people can not. They do not claim to
themselves a monoply of talent. They do not think themselves capable of
conducting a case in a court of law, as cleverly as a queen's counsel,
or of getting a sick man through the typhus fever as skillfully as a
practiced physician. But it is hard that they should not receive credit
for being able to write better articles than either the one or the
other; or, perhaps it is more to the purpose to say, than the briefless
lawyers and patientless medical students who are glad to earn a guinea
by their pens. Men are not born article-writers any more than they are
born doctors of law, or doctors of physic; as the ludicrous failures,
which are every day thrown into the rubbish-baskets of all our newspaper
offices, demonstrate past all contradiction. Incompetency is manifested
in a variety of ways, but an irrepressible tendency to fine writing is
associated with the greater number of them. Give a clever young medical
student a book about aural or dental surgery to review, and the chances
are ten to one that the criticism will be little else than a high-flown
grandiloquent treatise on the wonders of the creation. A regular
"literary hack" will do the thing much better.

If there be any set of men--we can not call it a _class_, for it is
drawn from all classes--who might be supposed to possess' a certain
capacity for periodical writing, it is the fraternity of members of
Parliament. They are in the habit of selecting given subjects for
consideration--of collecting facts and illustrations--of arranging
arguments--and of expressing themselves after a manner. They are for the
most part men of education, of a practical turn of mind, well acquainted
with passing events, and, in many instances, in possession just of that
kind of available talent which is invaluable to periodical writers. But
very few of them can write an article, either for a newspaper or a
review, without inflicting immense trouble upon the editor. Sometimes
the matter it contains will be worth the pains bestowed upon it; but it
very often happens that it is _not_. It is one thing to make a
speech--another to write an article. But the speech often, no less than
the article, requires editorial supervision. The reporter is the
speaker's editor, and a very efficient one too. In a large number of
cases, the speaker owes more to the reporter than he would willingly
acknowledge. The speech as spoken would often be unreadable, but that
the reporter finishes the unfinished sentences, and supplies meanings
which are rather suggested than expressed. It would be easy to name
members who are capable of writing admirable articles; but many of them
owe their position in the House to some antecedent connection with the
press, or have become, in some manner regularly "connected with the
press;" and have acquired, by long practice, the capacity of
article-writing. But take any half-dozen members indiscriminately out of
the House, and set them down to write articles on any subject which they
may have just heard debated, and see how grotesque will be their
efforts? They may be very "clever fellows," but that they can write
articles as well as men whose profession it is to write them, we take
upon ourselves emphatically to deny.


Although of a gloomy temperament, and from the earliest age evincing
those characteristics of pride and shyness which rendered him unsocial,
and therefore unpopular in general society, this nobleman, in the
private walks of life, was amiable, and peculiarly disinterested. While
in India, his correspondence with those of his own family, evinced in a
remarkable degree those right and kindly feelings which could hardly
have been expected from Clive, considering the frowardness of early life
and the inflexible sternness of more advanced age. When the foundation
of his fortune was laid. Lord Clive evinced a praiseworthy recollection
of the friends of his early days. He bestowed an annuity of £800 on his
parents, while to other relations and friends he was proportionately
liberal. He was a devotedly attached husband, as his letters to Lady
Clive bear testimony. Her maiden name was Maskelyne, sister to the
eminent mathematician, so called, who long held the post of astronomer
royal. This marriage, which took place in 1752, with the circumstances
attending it, are somewhat singular, and worth recording: Clive, who was
at that period just twenty-seven, had formed a previous friendship with
one of the lady's brothers, like himself a resident at Madras. The
brother and sister, it appears, kept up an affectionate and constant
correspondence--that is, as constant an interchange of epistolary
communication as could be accomplished nearly a century ago, when the
distance between Great Britain and the East appeared so much more
formidable, and the facilities of postal conveyance so comparatively
tardy. The epistles of the lady, through the partiality of her brother,
were frequently shown to Clive, and they bespoke her to be what from all
accounts she was--a woman of very superior understanding, and of much
amiability of character. Clive was charmed with her letters, for in
those days, be it remembered, the fair sex were not so familiarized to
the pen as at the present period. At that time, to indite a really good
epistle as to penmanship and diction, was a formidable task, and what
few ladies, comparatively speaking, could attain to. The accomplished
sister of Dr. Maskelyne was one of the few exceptions, and so strongly
did her epistolary powers attract the interest, and gain for her the
affections of Clive, that it ended by his offering to marry the young
lady, if she could be induced to visit her brother at Madras. The
latter, through whom the suggestion was to be made, hesitated, and
seemed inclined to discourage the proposition; but Clive in this
instance evinced that determination of purpose which was so strong a
feature in his character. He could urge, too, with more confidence a
measure on which so much of his happiness depended--for he was now no
longer the poor neglected boy, sent out to seek his fortune, but one who
had already acquired a fame which promised future greatness. In short,
he would take no refusal; and then was the brother of Miss Maskelyne
forced to own, that highly as his sister was endowed with every mental
qualification, nature had been singularly unfavorable to her--personal
attractions she had none. The future hero of Plassy was not, however, to
be deterred--but he made this compromise: If the lady could be prevailed
upon to visit India, and that neither party, on a personal acquaintance,
felt disposed for a nearer connection, the sum of £5000 was to be
presented to her. With this understanding all scruples were overcome.
Miss Maskelyne went out to India, and immediately after became the wife
of Clive, who, already prejudiced in her favor, is said to have
expressed himself surprised that she should ever have been represented
to him as plain. So much for the influence of mind and manner over mere
personal endowments. With the sad end of this distinguished general
every reader is familiar. His lady survived the event by many years, and
lived to a benevolent and venerable old age.

[From The Ladies' Companion.]


We derive the following curious passage of life one hundred years since,
from the second Series of Mr. Burke's "Anecdotes of the Aristocracy:"

Lady Cathcart was one of the four daughters of Mr. Malyn, of Southwark
and Battersea, in Surrey. She married four times, but never had any
issue. Her first husband was James Fleet, Esq., of the City of London,
Lord of the Manor of Tewing; her second, Captain Sabine, younger
brother of General Joseph Sabine, of Quinohall; her third, Charles,
eighth Lord Cathcart, of the kingdom of Scotland, Commander-in-Chief of
the Forces in the West Indies; and her fourth,[K] Hugh Macguire, an
officer in the Hungarian service, for whom she bought a
lieutenant-colonel's commission in the British army, and whom she also
survived. She was not encouraged, however, by his treatment, to verify
the resolution, which she inscribed as a posy on her wedding-ring:

    "If I survive,
    I will have five."

Her avowed motives for these several engagements were, for the first,
obedience to her parents; for the second, money; for the third, title;
and for the fourth, submission to the fact that "the devil owed her a
grudge, and would punish her for her sins." In the last union she met
with her match. The Hibernian fortune-hunter wanted only her money. Soon
after their marriage, she discovered her grievous mistake, and became
alarmed lest the colonel, who was desperately in love, not with the
widow, but with the "widow's jointured land," designed to carry her off,
and to get absolute power over all her property; to prepare for the
worst, her ladyship plaited some of her jewels in her hair, and quilted
others in her petticoat. Meanwhile the mistress of the colonel so far
insinuated herself into his wife's confidence that she learned where her
will was deposited; and Macguire getting sight of it, insisted on an
alteration in his favor, under a threat of instant death. Lady
Cathcart's apprehensions of the loss of her personal freedom proved to
be not without foundation; one morning, when she and her husband went
out from Tewing to take an airing, she proposed, after a time, to
return, but he desired to go a little further. The coachman drove on;
she remonstrated, "they should not be back by dinner-time." "Be not the
least uneasy on that account," rejoined Macguire; "we do not dine to-day
at Tewing, but at Chester, whither we are journeying." Vain were all the
lady's efforts and expostulations. Her sudden disappearance excited the
alarm of her friends, and an attorney was sent in pursuit, with a writ
of _habeas corpus_ or _ne exeat regno_. He overtook the travelers at an
inn at Chester, and succeeding in obtaining an interview with the
husband, demanded a sight of Lady Cathcart. The colonel, skilled in
expedients, and aware that his wife's person was unknown, assured the
attorney that he should see her ladyship immediately, and he would find
that she was going to Ireland with her own free consent. Thereupon
Macguire persuaded a woman, whom he had properly tutored, to personate
his wife. The attorney asked the supposed captive, if she accompanied
Colonel Macguire to Ireland of her own good-will? "Perfectly so," said
the woman. Astonished at such an answer, he begged pardon, made a low
bow, and set out again for London. Macguire thought that possibly Mr.
Attorney might recover his senses, find how he had been deceived, and
yet stop his progress; and in order to make all safe, he sent two or
three fellows after him, with directions to plunder him of all he had,
particularly of his papers. They faithfully executed their commission;
and when the colonel had the writ in his possession, he knew that he was
safe. He then took my lady over to Ireland, and kept her there, a
prisoner, locked up in his own house at Tempo, in Fermanagh, for many
years; during which period he was visited by the neighboring gentry, and
it was his regular custom at dinner to send his compliments to Lady
Cathcart, informing her that the company had the honor to drink her
ladyship's health, and begging to know whether there was any thing at
table that she would like to eat? The answer was always--"Lady
Cathcart's compliments, and she has every thing she wants." An instance
of honesty in a poor Irishwoman deserves to be recorded. Lady Cathcart
had some remarkably fine diamonds, which she had concealed from her
husband, and which she was anxious to get out of the house, lest he
should discover them. She had neither servant nor friend to whom she
could intrust them, but she had observed a beggar who used to come to
the house, she spoke to her from the window of the room in which she was
confined; the woman promised to do what she desired, and Lady Cathcart
threw a parcel, containing the jewels, to her.

The poor woman carried them to the person to whom they were directed;
and several years afterward, when Lady Cathcart recovered her liberty,
she received her diamonds safely. At Colonel Macguire's death, which
occurred in 1764, her ladyship was released. When she was first informed
of the fact, she imagined that the news could not be true, and that it
was told only with an intention of deceiving her. At the time of her
deliverance she had scarcely clothes sufficient to cover her; she wore a
red wig, looked scared, and her understanding seemed stupefied: she said
that she scarcely knew one human creature from another: her imprisonment
had lasted nearly twenty years. The moment she regained her freedom she
hastened to England, to her house at Tewing, but the tenant, a Mr.
Joseph Steele, refusing to render up possession, Lady Cathcart had to
bring an action of ejectment, attended the assizes in person, and gained
the cause. At Tewing she continued to reside for the remainder of her
life. The only subsequent notice we find of her is, that, at the age of
eighty, she took part in the gayeties of the Welwyn Assembly, and danced
with the spirit of a girl. She did not die until 1789, when she was in
her ninety-eighth year.

In the mansion-house of Tempo, now the property of Sir John Emerson
Tennent, the room is still shown in which Lady Cathcart was imprisoned.


[K] Lady Cathcart's marriage to Macguire took place 18th May, 1745.



Sidney Smith's account of the origin of the _Edinburgh Review_ is well
known. The following statement was written by Lord Jeffrey, at the
request of Robert Chambers, in November, 1846, and is now first made
public: "I can not say exactly where the project of the _Edinburgh
Review_ was first talked of among the projectors. But the first serious
consultations about it--and which led to our application to a
publisher--were held in a small house, where I then lived, in
_Buccleugh-place_ (I forget the number). They were attended by S. Smith,
F. Horner, Dr. Thomas Brown, Lord Murray, and some of them also by Lord
Webb Seymour, Dr. John Thomson, and Thomas Thomson. The first three
numbers were given to the publisher--he taking the risk and defraying
the charges. There was then no individual editor, but as many of us as
could be got to attend used to meet in a dingy room of Willson's
printing office, in Craig's Close, where the proofs of our own articles
were read over and remarked upon, and attempts made also to sit in
judgment on the few manuscripts which were then offered by strangers.
But we had seldom patience to go through with this; and it was soon
found necessary to have a responsible editor, and the office was pressed
upon me. About the same time Constable was told that he must allow ten
guineas a sheet to the contributors, to which he at once assented; and
not long after, the _minimum_ was raised to sixteen guineas, at which it
remained during my reign. Two-thirds of the articles were paid much
higher--averaging, I should think, from twenty to twenty-five guineas a
sheet on the whole number. I had, I might say, an unlimited discretion
in this respect, and must do the publishers the justice to say that they
never made the slightest objection. Indeed, as we all knew that they had
(for a long time at least) a very great profit, they probably felt that
they were at our mercy. Smith was by far the most timid of the
confederacy, and believed that, unless our incognito was strictly
maintained, we could not go on a day; and this was his object for making
us hold our dark divans at Willson's office, to which he insisted on our
repairing singly, and by back approaches or different lanes! He also had
so strong an impression of Brougham's indiscretion and rashness, that he
would not let him be a member of our association, though wished for by
all the rest. He was admitted, however, after the third number, and did
more work for us than any body. Brown took offense at some alterations
Smith had made in a trifling article of his in the second number, and
left us thus early; publishing at the same time in a magazine the fact
of his secession--a step which we all deeply regretted, and thought
scarcely justified by the provocation. Nothing of the kind occurred ever

Constable soon remunerated the editor with a liberality corresponding to
that with which contributors were treated. From 1803 to 1809 Jeffrey
received 200 guineas for editing each number. For the ensuing three
years, the account-books are missing; but from 1813 to 1826 he is
credited £700 for editing each number.

       *       *       *       *       *

The "_Economist_" closes an article upon the late Sir ROBERT PEEL with
the following just and eloquent summation:

"Sir Robert was a scholar, and a liberal and discerning patron of the
arts. Though not social, he was a man of literary interests and of
elegant and cultivated taste. Possessed of immense wealth, with every
source and avenue of enjoyment at his command, it is no slight merit in
him that he preferred to such refined enjoyment the laborious service of
his country. He was no holiday or _dillettanti_ statesman. His industry
was prodigious, and he seemed actually to love work. His toil in the
memorable six months of 1835 was something absolutely prodigious; in
1842 and 1843 scarcely less so. His work was always done in a masterly
and business-like style, which testified to the conscientious diligence
he had bestowed upon it. His measures rarely had to be altered or
modified in their passage through the House. In manners he was always
decorous--never over-bearing or insulting, and if ever led by the heat
of contest into any harsh or unbecoming expression, was always prompt to
apologize or retract. By his unblemished private character, by his
unrivaled administrative ability, by his vast public services, his
unvarying moderation, he had impressed not only England but the world at
large with a respect and confidence such as few attain. After many
fluctuations of repute, he had at length reached an eminence on which he
stood--independent of office, independent of party--one of the
acknowledged potentates of Europe; face to face, in the evening of life,
with his work and his reward--his work, to aid the progress of those
principles on which, after much toil, many sacrifices, and long groping
toward the light, he had at length laid a firm grasp; his guerdon, to
watch their triumph. Nobler occupation man could not aspire to; sublimer
power no ambition need desire; greater earthly reward, God, out of all
the riches of his boundless treasury has not to bestow."

Numerous projects for monuments to the deceased statesman have been
broached. In reference to these, and to the poverty of thought, and
waste of means, which in the present age builds for all time with
materials so perishable as statues, a correspondent of the _Athenæum_
suggests, as a more intelligent memorial, the foundation of a national
university for the education of the sons of the middle classes. Ours, he
says, are not the days for copying the forms of ancient Rome as
interpreters of feelings and inspirations which the Romans never knew.
While the statues which they reared are dispersed, and the columns they
erected are crumbling to decay, their thoughts, as embodied in their
literature, are with us yet, testifying forever of the great spirits
which perished from among them, but left, in this sure and abiding form,
the legacy of their minds.

       *       *       *       *       *

The effect upon civilization of the Ownership of the Land being in the
hands of a few, or of the many, has been earnestly discussed by writers
on political and social economy. Two books have recently been published
in England, which have an important bearing upon this subject. One is by
SAMUEL LAING, Esq. the well known traveler, and the other by JOSEPH KAY,
Esq. of Cambridge. Both these writers testify that in the continental
countries which they have examined--more especially in Germany, France,
Holland, Belgium and Switzerland--they have found a state of society
which does fulfill in a very eminent degree all the conditions of a most
advanced civilization. They have found in those countries education,
wealth, comfort, and self-respect; and they have found that the whole
body of the people in those countries participate in the enjoyment of
these great blessings to an extent which very far exceeds the
participation in them of the great mass of the population of England.
These two travelers perfectly agree in the declaration that during the
last-thirty or forty years the inequality of social condition among
men--the deterioration toward two great classes of very rich and very
poor--has made very little progress in the continental states with which
they are familiar. They affirm that a class of absolute paupers in any
degree formidable from its numbers has yet to be created in those
states. They represent in the most emphatic language the immense
superiority in education, manners, conduct, and the supply of the
ordinary wants of a civilized being, of the German, Swiss, Dutch,
Belgian and French peasantry over the peasantry and poorer classes not
only of Ireland, but also of England and Scotland. This is the general
and the most decided result with reference to the vital question of the
condition and prospects of the peasantry and poorer classes, neither Mr.
Laing nor Mr. Kay have any doubt whatever that the advantage rests in
the most marked manner with the continental states which they have
examined over Great Britain. According to Mr. Laing and Mr. Kay, the
cause of this most important difference is--_the distribution of the
ownership of land_. On the continent, the people _own_ and _cultivate_
the land. In the British islands the land is held in large masses by a
few persons; the class practically employed in agriculture are either
_tenants_ or _laborers_, who do not act under the stimulus of a personal
interest in the soil they cultivate.

       *       *       *       *       *

A self-taught artist named Carter has recently died at Coggshall, Essex,
where he had for many years resided. He was originally a farm laborer,
and by accident lost the power of every part of his body but the head
and neck. By the force of perseverance and an active mind, however, he
acquired the power of drawing and painting, by holding the pencil
between his lips and teeth, when placed there by the kind offices of an
affectionate sister. In this manner he had not only whiled away the
greater part of fourteen years of almost utter physical helplessness,
but has actually produced works which have met with high commendation.
His groups and compositions are said to have been "most delicately
worked and highly finished." The poor fellow had contemplated the
preparation of some grand work for the International Exhibition, but the
little of physical life remaining in him was lately extinguished by a
new accident.

       *       *       *       *       *

CONVERSATION OF LITERARY MEN.--Literary men talk less than they did.
They seldom "lay out" much for conversation. The conversational, like
the epistolary age, is past; and we have come upon the age of periodical
literature. People neither put their best thoughts and their available
knowledge into their letters, nor keep them for evening conversation.
The literary men of 1850 have a keener eye to the value of their
stock-in-trade, and keep it well garnered up, for conversion, as
opportunity offers, into the current coin of the realm. There is some
periodical vehicle, nowadays, for the reception of every possible kind
of literary ware. The literary man converses now through the medium of
the Press, and turns every thing into copyright at once. He can not
afford to drop his ideas by the way-side; he must keep them to himself,
until the printing-press has made them inalienably his own. If a happy
historical or literary illustration occurs to him, it will do for a
review article; if some un-hackneyed view of a great political question
presents itself to him, it may be worked into his next leader; if some
trifling adventure has occurred to him, or he has picked up a novel
anecdote in the course of his travels, it may be reproduced in a page of
magazine matter, or a column of a cheap weekly serial. Even puns are not
to be distributed gratis. There is a property in a _double-entente_,
which its parent will not willingly forego. The smallest jokelet is a
marketable commodity. The dinner-table is sacrificed to _Punch_. There
is too much competition in these days, too many hungry candidates for
the crumbs that fall from the thinker's table, not to make him chary of
his offerings. In these days, every scrap of knowledge--every happy
thought--every felicitous turn of expression, is of some value to a
literary man; the forms of periodical literature are so many and so
varied. He can seldom afford to give any thing away; and there is no
reason why he should. It is not so easy a thing to turn one's ideas into
bread, that a literary man need be at no pains to preserve his property
in them. We do not find that artists give away their sketches, or that
professional singers perform promiscuously at private parties. Perhaps,
in these days of much publishing, professional authors are wise in
keeping the best of themselves for their books and articles. We have
known professional writers talk criticism; but we have generally found
it to be the very reverse of what they have published.

       *       *       *       *       *

REWARDS OF LITERATURE.--Literature has been treated with much
ingratitude, even by those who owe most to it. If we do not quite say
with Goldsmith, that it supports many dull fellows in opulence, we may
assert, with undeniable truth, that it supports, or ought to support,
many clever ones in comfort and respectability. If it does not it is
less the fault of the profession than the professors themselves. There
are many men now in London, Edinburgh, and other parts of the country,
earning from £1000 to £300 per annum by their literary labors, and some,
with very little effort, earning considerably more. It is no part of our
plan in the present article to mix up modern instances with our wise
saws, else might we easily name writers who, for contributions to the
periodical press, for serial installments of popular tales, and other
literary commodities, demanding no very laborious efforts of
intellectual industry, have received from flourishing newspaper
proprietors and speculative booksellers, sums of money which it would be
difficult to earn with equal facility in any other learned profession.
An appointment on the editorial staff of a leading daily paper is in
itself a small fortune to a man. The excellence of the articles is, for
the most part, in proportion to the sum paid for them; and a successful
morning journal will generally find it good policy to pay its
contributors in such a manner as to secure the entire produce of their
minds, or, at all events, to get the best fruits that they are capable
of yielding. If a man can earn a comfortable independence by writing
three or four leading articles a week, there is no need that he should
have his pen ever in his hand, that he should be continually toiling at
other and less profitable work. But if he is to keep himself ever fresh
and ever vigorous for one master he must be paid for it. There are
instances of public writers who had shown evident signs of exhaustion
when employed on one paper--who had appeared, indeed, to have written
themselves out so thoroughly, that the proprietors were fain to dispense
with their future services--transferring those services to another
paper, under more encouraging circumstances of renumeration, and, as
though endued with new life, striking out articles fresh, vigorous, and
brilliant. They gave themselves to the one paper; they had only given a
part of themselves to the other.

       *       *       *       *       *

SCHAMYL, the Prophet of the Caucasus, through whose inspiriting
leadership the Caucasians have maintained a successful struggle against
the gigantic power of Russia for many years, is described by a recent
writer as a man of middle stature; he has light hair, gray eyes, shaded
by bushy and well-arched eyebrows; a nose finely moulded, and a small
mouth. His features are distinguished from those of his race by a
peculiar fairness of complexion and delicacy of skin: the elegant form
of his hands and feet is not less remarkable. The apparent stiffness of
his arms, when he walks, is a sign of his stern and impenetrable
character His address is thoroughly noble and dignified. Of himself he
is completely master; and he exerts a tacit supremacy over all who
approach him. An immovable, stony calmness, which never forsakes him,
even in moments of the utmost danger, broods over his countenance. He
passes a sentence of death with the same composure with which he
distributes "the sabre of honor" to his bravest Murids, after a bloody
encounter. With traitors or criminals whom he has resolved to destroy he
will converse without betraying the least sign of anger or vengeance. He
regards himself as a mere instrument in the hands of a higher Being; and
holds, according to the Sufi doctrine, that all his thoughts and
determinations are immediate inspirations from God. The flow of his
speech is as animating and irresistible as his outward appearance is
awful and commanding. "He shoots flames from his eyes and scatters
flowers from his lips," said Bersek Bey, who sheltered him for some days
after the fall of Achulgo, when Schamyl dwelt for some time among the
princes of the Djighetes and Ubiches, for the purpose of inciting the
tribes on the Black Sea to rise against the Russians. Schamyl is now
fifty years old, but still full of vigor and strength; it is however
said, that he has for some years past suffered from an obstinate disease
of the eyes, which is constantly growing worse. He fills the intervals
of leisure which his public charges allow him, in reading the Koran,
fasting, and prayer. Of late years he has but seldom, and then only on
critical occasions, taken a personal share in warlike encounters. In
spite of his almost supernatural activity, Schamyl is excessively severe
and temperate in his habits. A few hours of sleep are enough for him; at
times he will watch for the whole night, without showing the least trace
of fatigue on the following day. He eats little, and water is his only
beverage. According to Mohammedan custom, he keeps several wives. In
1844 he had _three_, of which his favorite (Pearl of the Harem, as she
was called) was an Armenian, of exquisite beauty.

       *       *       *       *       *

A Frankfort journal states that the colossal statue of Bavaria, by
Schwanthaler, which is to be placed on the hill of Seudling, surpasses
in its gigantic proportions all the works of the moderns. It will have
to be removed in pieces from the foundry where it is cast to its place
of destination, and each piece will require sixteen horses to draw it.
The great toes are each half a mètre in length. In the head two persons
could dance a polka very conveniently, while the nose might lodge the
musician. The thickness of the robe, which forms a rich drapery
descending to the ankles, is about six inches, and its circumference at
the bottom about two hundred mètres. The Crown of Victory which the
figure holds in her hands weighs one hundred quintals (a quintal is a
hundred weight).

       *       *       *       *       *

WORDSWORTH'S prose writings are not numerous; and with the exception of
the well-known prefaces to his minor poems, they are little known. A
paper or two in Coleridge's _Friend_, and a political tract occasioned
by the convention of Cintra, form important and valuable contributions
to the prose literature of the country. We would especially call
attention to the introductory part of the third volume of the _Friend_,
as containing a very beautiful development of Mr. Wordsworth's opinions
on the moral worth and intellectual character of the age in which it was
his destiny to live. The political tract is very scarce; but we may
safely affirm, that it contains some of the finest writing in the
English language. Many of its passages can be paralleled only by the
majestic periods of Milton's prose, or perhaps by the vehement and
impassioned eloquence of Demosthenes. Its tone is one of sustained
elevation, and in sententious moral and political wisdom it will bear a
comparison with the greatest productions of Burke. We trust that this
pamphlet will be republished. A collection and separate publication of
all Mr. Wordsworth's prose writings would form a valuable addition to
English literature.

Mr. Wordsworth's conversation was eminently rich, various, and
instructive. Attached to his mountain home, and loving solitude as the
nurse of his genius, he was no recluse, but keenly enjoyed the pleasures
of social intercourse. He had seen much of the world, and lived on terms
of intimate friendship with some of the most illustrious characters of
his day. His reading was extensive, but select; indeed, his mind could
assimilate only the greater productions of intellect. To criticism he
was habitually indifferent; and when solicited for his opinions, he was
generally as reserved in his praise as he was gentle in his censures.
For some of his contemporaries he avowed the highest respect; but
Coleridge was the object of his deepest affection as a friend, and of
his veneration as a philosopher. Of the men who acted important parts in
the political drama of the last century, the homage of his highest
admiration was given to Burke, who, after Shakspeare and Bacon, he
thought the greatest being that Nature had ever created in the human

The last few years of Mr. Wordsworth's life were saddened by
affliction. They who were admitted to the privilege of occasional
intercourse with the illustrious poet in his later days will long dwell
with deep and affectionate interest upon his earnest conversation while
he wandered through the shaded walks of the grounds which he loved so
well, and ever and anon paused to look down upon the gleaming lake as
its silver radiance was reflected through the trees which embosomed his
mountain home. Long will the accents of that "old man eloquent" linger
in their recollection, and their minds retain the impression of that
pensive and benevolent countenance. The generation of those who have
gazed upon his features will pass away and be forgotten. The marble,
like the features which it enshrines, will crumble into dust. _Ut vultus
hominum ita simulacra vultus imbecilla ac mortalia sunt, forma mentis
æterna_; the attributes of his mighty intellect are stamped for ever
upon his works which will be transmitted to future ages as a portion of
their most precious inheritance.

       *       *       *       *       *

No man is more enshrined in the heart of the French people than the poet
BERANGER. A few weeks since he went one evening with one of his nephews
to the _Clos des Lilas_, a garden in the students' quarter devoted to
dancing in the open air, intending to look for a few minutes upon a
scene he had not visited since his youth, and then withdraw. But he
found it impossible to remain unknown and unobserved. The announcement
of his presence ran through the garden in a moment. The dances stopped,
the music ceased, and the crowd thronged toward the point where the
still genial and lovely old man was standing. At once there rose from
all lips the cry of _Vive Beranger!_ which was quickly followed by that
of _Vive la Republique_. The poet, whose diffidence is excessive, could
not answer a word, but only smiled and blushed his thanks at this
enthusiastic reception. The acclamations continuing, an agent of the
police invited him to withdraw, lest his presence might occasion
disorder. The illustrious song-writer at once obeyed; by a singular
coincidence the door through which he went out opened upon the place
where Marshal Ney was shot.

       *       *       *       *       *

sending forth the most valuable contributions, to the history of the
middle ages especially. It is now completing the publication of the
sixth volume of the Charters, Diplomas, and other documents relating to
French history. This volume, which was prepared by M. Pardessus,
includes the period from the beginning of 1220 to the end of 1270, and
comprehends the reign of St. Louis. The seventh volume, coming down some
fifty years later, is also nearly ready for the printer. Its editor is
M. Laboulaye. The first volume of the Oriental Historians of the
Crusaders, translated into French, is now going through the press, and
the second is in course of preparation. The greater part of the first
volume of the Greek Historians of the same chivalrous wars is also
printed, and the work is going rapidly forward. The Academy is also
preparing a collection of Occidental History on the same subject. When
these three collections are published, all the documents of any value
relating to the Crusades will be easily accessible, whether for the use
of the historian or the romancer. The Academy is also now engaged in
getting out the twenty-first volume of the History of the Gauls and of
France, and the nineteenth of the Literary History of France, which
brings the annals of French letters down to the thirteenth century. It
is also publishing the sixteenth volume of its own Memoirs, which
contains the history of the Academy for the last four years, and the
work of Freret on Geography, besides several other works of less
interest. From all this some idea may be formed of the labors and
usefulness of the institution.

       *       *       *       *       *

In speaking of the advantage of education to Mechanics, Robert Hall says
that it has a tendency to exalt the character, and, in some measure, to
correct and subdue the taste for gross sensuality. It enables the
possessor to beguile his leisure moments (and every man has such) in an
innocent, at least, if not in a useful manner. The poor man who can
read, and who possesses a taste for reading, can find entertainment at
home, without being tempted to repair to the public-house for that
purpose. His mind can find employment where his body is at rest. There
is in the mind of such a man an intellectual spring, urging him to the
pursuit of mental good; and if the minds of his family are also a little
cultivated, conversation becomes the more interesting, and the sphere of
domestic enjoyment enlarged. The calm satisfaction which books afford
puts him into a disposition to relish more exquisitely the tranquil
delight of conjugal and parental affection; and as he will be more
respectable in the eyes of his family than he who can teach them
nothing, he will be naturally induced to cultivate whatever may
preserve, and to shun whatever would impair that respect.

       *       *       *       *       *

For producing steel pens the best Dennemora--Swedish iron--or hoop iron
is selected. It is worked into sheets or slips about three feet long,
and four or five inches broad, the thickness varying with the desired
stiffness and flexibility of the pen for which it is intended. By a
stamping press pieces of the required size are cut out. The point
intended for the nib is introduced into a gauged hole, and by a machine
pressed into a semi-cylindrical shape. In the same machine it is pierced
with the required slit or slits. This being effected, the pens are
cleaned by mutual attrition in tin cylinders, and tempered, as in the
case of the steel plate, by being brought to the required color by heat.
Some idea of the extent of this manufacture will be formed from the
statement, that nearly 150 tons of steel are employed annually for this
purpose, producing upward of 250,000,000 pens.

       *       *       *       *       *

Philosophers abroad are working diligently at many interesting branches
of physical science: magneto and muscular electricity, dia-magnetism,
vegetable and animal physiology: Matteucci in Italy, Bois-Reymond,
Weber, Reichenbach, and Dove in Germany. The two maps of isothermal
lines for every month in the year, lately published by the
last-mentioned _savant_, are remarkable and most valuable proofs of
scientific insight and research. If they are to be depended on, there is
but one pole of cold, situate in Northern America; that supposed to
exist in the Asiatic continent disappears when the monthly means are
taken. These maps will be highly useful to the meteorologist, and indeed
to students of natural philosophy generally, and will suggest other and
more-extended results.

       *       *       *       *       *

A communication from M. Trémaux, an Abyssinian traveler, has been
presented to the French Academy by M. Geoffroy St. Hilaire: it gives an
account of the sudden difference which occurs in the races of men and
animals near Fa Zoglo, in the vicinity of the Blue Nile. The shores of
this stream are inhabited by a race of Caucasian origin, whose sheep
have woolly coats; but at a few miles' distance, in the mountains of
Zaby and Akaro, negro tribes are found whose sheep are hairy. According
to M. Trévaux, 'the differences and changes are due to two causes: the
one, that vegetable nature, having changed in aspect and production,
attracts and supports certain species, while others no longer appear, or
the individuals are fewer. As for the second cause, it is the more
surprising, since it produces opposite effects on the same point: where
man has no longer silken, but woolly hair, there the sheep ceases to be
covered with wool.' M. St. Hilaire remarked on these facts, that the
degree of domestication of animals is proportional to the degree of
civilization of those who possess them. Among savage people dogs are
nearly all alike, and not far removed from the wolf or jackal; while
among civilized races there is an almost endless variety--the greater
part far removed from the primitive type. Are we to infer from this that
negroes will cease to be negroes by dint of civilization--that wool will
give place to hair, and _vice versâ_? If so, a wide field is opened for
experiment and observation.


The action of Congress during the past month has been of more than usual
interest. The Senate has finally disposed of the Compromise Bill, which
has absorbed its discussions for nearly the whole of the session, and
has taken definite action upon all the subjects which that bill
embraced. On the 30th of July, the bill being before the Senate, a
resolution offered by Senator BRADBURY, of Maine, was pending,
authorizing the appointment of Commissioners by the United States and
Texas, for the adjustment of the boundary line between Texas and New
Mexico. To this Mr. DAWSON, of Ga., offered an amendment, providing that
until the boundary should have been agreed to, no territorial government
should go into operation east of the Rio Grande, nor should any state
government be established to include that territory. This amendment was
adopted, ayes 30, noes 28. Mr. BRADBURY'S resolution, thus amended, was
then adopted by the same vote. On the 31st the bill came up for final
action. Mr. NORRIS moved to strike out the clause restricting the
Legislature of New Mexico from establishing or prohibiting slavery. This
was carried, 32 to 20. Mr. PEARCE, of Maryland, then moved to strike out
all relating to New Mexico, which was carried by a vote of 33 to 22. He
then moved to re-insert it, omitting the amendment of Messrs. Bradbury
and Dawson--his object being by this roundabout process (which was the
only way in which it could be reached), to reverse the vote adopting
that amendment. His motion was very warmly and strongly resisted, and
various amendments offered to it were voted down. The motion itself was
then put and lost, ayes 25, nays 28. This left nothing in the bill
except the provision for admitting California and that establishing a
territorial government for Utah. Mr. WALKER, of Wisconsin, then moved to
strike out all except that part relating to California. This was lost,
ayes 22, nays 33. Mr. ATCHISON, of Missouri, moved to strike out all
relating to California. This motion was first lost by a tie vote, but a
reconsideration was moved by Mr. WINTHROP and carried, and then the
motion prevailed, ayes 34, nays 25. The Bill thus contained nothing but
the sections relating to Utah, and in that shape it was passed, ayes 32,
nays 18. Thus the Compromise bill, reported early in the session, and
earnestly debated from that time forward, was decisively rejected. On
the very next day, the 1st of August, the bill for the admission of
California was made the special order by a vote of 34 to 23. Mr. FOOTE,
of Miss., offered an amendment that California should not exercise her
jurisdiction over territory south of 35° 30'. Mr. CLAY in an earnest and
eloquent speech, after regretting the fate of the Compromise Bill, said
he wished it to be distinctly understood that if any state or states, or
any portion of the people, should array themselves in arms against the
Union, he was for testing the strength of the government, to ascertain
whether it had the ability to maintain itself. He avowed the most
unwavering attachment to the Union, and declared his purpose to raise
both his voice and his arm in support of the Union and the Constitution.
He had been in favor of passing the several measures together: he was
now in favor of passing them separately: but whether passed or not, he
was in favor of putting down any and all resistance to the federal
authority. After some debate, Mr. FOOTE'S amendment was negatived, yeas
23, nays 33. On the 6th of August Mr. TURNEY, of Tennessee, offered an
amendment, dividing California into two territories, which may hereafter
form state constitutions. This was rejected, ayes 29, nays 32. Mr. YULEE
offered an amendment, establishing a provisional government, which he
advocated in a speech extending through three days: on the 10th it was
rejected by a vote of 12 to 35 An amendment offered by Mr. Foote,
erecting the part of California south of 36° 30' into a distinct
territory, was rejected by a vote of 13 to 30. On the 12th the bill was
ordered to be engrossed, yeas 33, nays 19; and on the 13th, after a
brief but warm debate, in the course of which Senators BERRIEN and
CLEMENS denounced the bill as fraught with mischief and peril to the
Union, and Mr. HOUSTON ridiculed the apprehensions thus expressed, the
bill was finally passed, yeas 34, nays 18, as follows:

YEAS--Messrs. Baldwin, Bell, Benton, Bradbury, Bright, Cass, Chase,
Cooper, Davis, of Massachusetts, Dickinson, Dodge, of Wisconsin, Dodge,
of Iowa, Douglas, Ewing, Felch, Green, Hale, Hamlin, Houston, Jones,
Miller, Norris, Phelps, Seward, Shields, Smith, Spruance, Sturgeon,
Underwood, Upham, Wales, Walker, Whitcomb, and Winthrop--34.

NAYS.--Messrs. Atchison, Barnwell, Berrien, Butler, Clemens, Davis, of
Mississippi, Dawson, Foote, Hunter, King, Mason, Morton, Pratt, Rusk,
Sebastian, Soulé, Turney, and Yulee--18.

The next day a Protest against the admission of California, signed by
Senators Mason and Hunter, of Virginia, Butler and Barnwell, of South
Carolina, Turney, of Tennessee, Soulé, of Louisiana, Davis, of
Mississippi, Atchison, of Missouri, and Morton and Yulee, of Florida,
was presented, and a request made that it might be entered on the
Journal. This, however, the Senate refused. Thus was completed the
action of the Senate on the admission of California.

On the 5th of August Mr. PEARCE, of Md., introduced a bill, making
proposals to Texas for the settlement of her western and northern
boundaries. It proposes that the boundary on the north shall commence at
the point where the meridian of 100° west longitude intersects the
parallel of 36° 30' north latitude, and shall run due west to the
meridian of 103° west longitude: thence it shall run due south to the
32d degree north latitude, thence on the said parallel to the Rio del
Norte, and thence with the channel of said river to the Gulf of Mexico.
For relinquishing all claims to the United States government for
territory beyond the line thus defined, the bill proposes to pay Texas
ten millions of dollars. The bill was debated for several successive
days, and on the 9th was ordered to be engrossed, yeas 27, nays 24, and
received its final passage on the same day, yeas 30, nays 20, as

YEAS.--Messrs. Badger, Bell, Berrien, Bradbury, Bright, Cass, Clarke,
Clemens, Cooper, Davis, of Massachusetts, Dawson, Dickinson, Dodge, of
Iowa, Douglas, Felch, Foote, Greene, Houston, King, Norris, Pearce,
Phelps, Rusk, Shields, Smith, Spruance, Sturgeon, Wales, Whitcomb, and

NAYS.--Messrs. Atchison, Baldwin, Barnwell, Benton, Butler, Chase,
Davis, of Mississippi, Dodge, of Wisconsin, Ewing, Hale, Hunter, Mason,
Morton, Seward, Soulé, Turney, Underwood, Upham, Walker, and Yulee--20.

Thus was completed the action of the Senate on the second of the great
questions which have enlisted so much of public attention during the
past few months.--On the 14th the bill providing a territorial
government for New Mexico was taken up. Mr. CHASE moved to amend it by
inserting a clause prohibiting the existence of slavery within its
limits, which was rejected, ayes 20, nays 25. The bill was then ordered
to be engrossed for a third reading, which it had, and was finally

In the House of Representatives, no business of importance has been
transacted. The Civil and Diplomatic Appropriation Bill has been
discussed, and efforts have been made to change the existing rules of
the House so as to facilitate public business; but nothing important has
been done.--On the 6th of August President FILLMORE sent to the House a
Message, transmitting a letter he had received from Governor BELL, of
Texas, announcing that he had sent a commissioner to extend the laws of
Texas over that part of New Mexico which she claims, and that he had
been resisted by the inhabitants and the United States military
authorities. The President says in his Message that he deems it his duty
to execute the laws of the United States, and that Congress has given
him full power to put down any resistance that may be organized against
them. Texas as a state has no authority or power beyond her own limits;
and if she attempts to prevent the execution of any law of the United
States, in any state or territory beyond her jurisdiction, the President
is bound by his oath to resist such attempts by all the power which the
Constitution has placed at his command. The question is then considered
whether there is any law in New Mexico, resistance to which would call
for the interposition of the Executive authority. The President regards
New Mexico as a territory of the United States, with the same boundaries
which it had before the war with Mexico, and while in possession of that
country. By the treaty of peace the boundary line between the two
countries is defined, and perfect security and protection in the free
enjoyment of their liberty and property, and in the free exercise of
their religion, is guaranteed to those Mexicans who may choose to reside
on the American side of that line. This treaty is part of the law of the
land, and as such must be maintained until superseded or displaced by
other legal provisions; and if it be obstructed, the case is regarded as
one which comes within the provisions of law, and which obliges the
President to enforce these provisions. "Neither the Constitution or the
laws," says Mr. FILLMORE, "nor my duty or my oath of office, leave me
any alternative, or any choice, in my mode of action." The Executive has
no power or authority to determine the true line of boundary, but it is
his duty, in maintaining the laws, to have regard to the actual state of
things as it existed at the date of the treaty--all must be now regarded
as New Mexico which was possessed and occupied as New Mexico by citizens
of Mexico at the date of the treaty, until a definite line of boundary
shall be established by competent authority. Having thus indicated the
course which he should pursue, the President expresses his earnest
desire that the question of boundary should be settled by Congress, with
the assent of the government of Texas. He deprecates delay, and objects
to the appointment of commissioners. He expresses the opinion that an
indemnity may very properly be offered to Texas, and says that no event
would be hailed with more satisfaction by the people than the amicable
adjustment of questions of difficulty which have now for a long time
agitated the country, and occupied, to the exclusion of other subjects,
the time and attention of Congress. Accompanying the Message was a
letter from Mr. WEBSTER, Secretary of State, in reply to that of
Governor BELL. Mr. WEBSTER vindicates the action of the military
authorities in New Mexico, saying that they had been instructed to aid
and advance any attempt of the inhabitants to form a state government,
and that in all they did they acted as agents of the inhabitants rather
than officers of the government. An outline is given of the history of
the acquisition of New Mexico, and it is clearly shown that every thing
thus far has been done in strict accordance with the stipulations of the
treaty, and with the position and principles of the late President Polk.
The military government existed in New Mexico as a matter of necessity,
and must remain until superseded by some other form. The President
approves entirely of the measures taken by Colonel Munroe, while he
takes no part, and expresses no opinion touching the boundary claimed by
Texas. These documents were ordered to be printed and were referred to

Mr. PEARCE of Maryland, and Mr. BATES of Missouri, who were invited by
President FILLMORE to become members of his cabinet, both declined. Hon.
T. M. T. MCKENNAN of Pennsylvania, has been appointed Secretary of the
Interior, and Hon. CHAS. M. CONRAD of Louisiana, Secretary of War, in
their places. Both have accepted.--It is stated that Hon. D. D. BARNARD
of New-York, has been nominated as Minister to Prussia. Mr. B. is one of
the ablest writers and most accomplished scholars in the country.--A
regular line of stages has just been established to run monthly between
Independence, Missouri, and Santa-Fé, in New Mexico. Each coach is to
carry eight persons, and to be made water tight, so as to be used as a
boat in crossing streams. This will prove to be an important step toward
the settlement of the great western region of our Union.--An active
canvass has been going on in Virginia for the election of members of a
convention to revise the state constitution. The questions at issue grow
mainly out of a contest between the eastern and western sections of the
state for supremacy. The west has been gaining upon the east in
population very rapidly during the last fifteen or twenty years. The
east claims a representation based upon property, by which it hopes to
maintain its supremacy, while the west insists that population alone
should be made the basis of political representation. The contest is
carried on with a great deal of warmth and earnestness.--Elections of
considerable interest have taken place during the month in several of
the states. In Missouri, where five members of Congress were chosen,
three of them, Messrs. PORTER, DARBY, and MILLER, are known to be Whigs.
In the other two districts the result has not been ascertained. The
change which this result indicates, is attributed to the course taken by
Senator BENTON, in refusing to obey the instructions of the state
legislature, and in denouncing them as connected with the scheme of
disunion, which he charged upon certain southern politicians. This led
to a division in his own party, which enabled the Whigs to elect a part,
at least, of the Congressional delegation.--In North Carolina an
election for governor, has resulted in the choice of Col. REID,
Democrat, by 3000 majority. In the state senate the Democrats have four,
and in the house they have 10 majority. This enables them to choose a
democratic U.S. Senator in place of Mr. MANGUM, the present Whig
incumbent.--In Indiana the election has given the Democrats control of
the legislature and of the state convention for the revision of the
constitution.--The authorities of Buffalo some weeks since, hearing that
Lord Elgin, Governor of Canada, was about to visit their city, prepared
for him a public reception. Circumstances prevented the fulfillment of
the purpose, but the courtesy of the people of Buffalo was communicated
by Lord Elgin to his government at home, and acknowledged by Earl Grey
in a letter to our Department of State. In further acknowledgement the
Legislature of Canada, and the Corporation of Toronto, invited the
authorities of Buffalo to pay them a visit, which was done on the 8th of
August, when they were welcomed by a very brilliant reception. This
interchange of courtesies is peculiarly creditable to both parties, and
highly gratifying to both countries.--The Legislature of Wisconsin has
enacted a law making it a penal offence for any owner or lessee of land
to allow the Canada thistle to go to seed upon it.--The Board of
Visitors appointed by the Government to attend the annual examination at
West Point, have made their report, giving a detailed account of their
observations, and concluding by expressing the opinion, that the
Military Academy is one of the most useful and highly creditable in our
country; that it has been mainly instrumental in forming the high
character which our army now sustains before the civilized world, and
that it is entitled to the confidence and fostering care of the
Government.--Hon. HENRY CLAY has been spending the August weeks at
Newport, R.I. He has received essential benefit from the sea-bathing and
the relief from public care which his temporary residence there
affords.--Commodore JACOB JONES, of the United States Navy, died at his
residence in Philadelphia, on the 3d ult. He was in the 83d year of his
age, and stood nearly at the head of the list of post captains,
Commodores BARRON and STEWART only preceding him. He was a native of
Delaware, and one of the number who, in the war of 1812, contributed to
establish the naval renown of our country. For the gallant manner in
which, while in command of the brig Wasp, he captured the British brig
Frolic, of superior force, he was voted a sword by each of the States of
Delaware, Massachusetts, and New-York. He was, until recently, the
Governor of the Naval Asylum, near Philadelphia.--The city authorities
of Boston, acting under the advice of the Consulting Physicians, have
decided to abandon all quarantine regulations, as neither useful nor
effectual in preventing the introduction of epidemic
diseases.--Professor FORSHEY, in an essay just published, proves by the
result of observations kept up through a great number of years, that the
channel of the Mississippi river is _deepening_, and consequently the
levee system will not necessarily elevate the bed of the river, as has
been feared. On the contrary, he thinks confining the river within a
narrow channel will give it additional velocity, ant serve to scrape out
the bottom; while opening artificial outlets, by diminishing the
current, will cause the rapid deposition of sediment, and thus produce
evil to be guarded against.--A project has been broached for completing
the line of railroads from Boston to Halifax, and then to have the
Atlantic steamers run between that port and Galway, the most westerly
port of Ireland. In this way it is thought that the passage from
Liverpool to New York may be considerably shortened.

In SCIENTIFIC matters some interesting and important experiments have
been made by Prof. PAGE of the Smithsonian Institute, on the subject of
Electro-Magnetism as a motive power, the results of which have recently
been announced by him in public lectures. He states that there can be no
further doubt as to the application of this power as a substitute for
steam. He exhibited experiments in which a bar of iron weighing one
hundred and sixty pounds was made to spring up ten inches through the
air, and says that he can as readily move a bar weighing a hundred tons
through a space of a hundred feet. He expects to be able to apply it to
forge hammers, pile drivers, &c, and to engines with a stroke of six,
ten, or twenty feet. He exhibited also an engine of between four and
five horse power, worked by a battery contained in a space of three
cubic feet. It was a reciprocating engine of two feet stroke, the engine
and battery weighing about one ton, and driving a circular saw ten
inches in diameter, sawing boards an inch and a quarter thick, making
eighty strokes a minute. The professor says that the cost of the power
is less than steam under most conditions, though not so low as the
cheapest steam engines. The consumption of three pounds of zinc per day
produces one horse power. The larger his engines the greater the
economy. Some practical difficulties remain to be overcome in the
application of the power to practical purposes on a larger scale: but
little doubt seems to be entertained that such an application is
feasible. The result is one of very great importance to science, as well
as to the arts of practical life.--We made a statement in our July
number of the pretensions of Mr. Henry M. Paine, of Worcester, Mass., to
having discovered a new method of procuring hydrogen from water, and
rendering it capable of giving a brilliant light, with great case and at
a barely nominal expense, by passing it through cold spirits of
turpentine. His claims have been very generally discredited, and were
supposed to have been completely exploded by the examinations of several
scientific gentlemen of Boston and New York. Mr. GEORGE MATHIOT, an
electro-metallurgist attached to the United States Coast Survey, and a
gentleman of scientific habits and attainments, has published in the
Scientific American, a statement that he has succeeded in a kindred
attempt. He produced a very brilliant light, nearly equal to the
Drummond, by passing hydrogen through turpentine: and in thus passing
the gas from thirty-three ounces of zinc through it, the quantity of
turpentine was not perceptibly diminished. "In this case," he says, "the
hydrogen could not have been changed into carburetted hydrogen, for coal
gas contains from four to five times as much carbon as hydrogen, and
pure carburetted hydrogen has six times as much carbon as hydrogen; and,
as 33 ounces of zinc, by solution, liberate one ounce, or twelve cubic
feet of hydrogen, therefore, from four to six ounces of turpentine
should have been used up, supposing it to be all carbon; but turpentine
is composed of twenty atoms of carbon to fifteen atoms of hydrogen, and,
consequently, only one-seventh of its carbon can be taken up by the
hydrogen; or, in other words, forty-two ounces of turpentine will be
required to carburet one ounce of hydrogen." He tried the experiment
afterward, placing the whole apparatus in a cold bath to prevent
evaporation, and again by heating the turpentine to 120 degrees--but in
both cases with the same result. He used the same turpentine and had a
brilliant light for nearly three hours, and yet the quantity was not
perceptibly diminished. Mr. Mathiot claims that his experiments prove
conclusively that hydrogen can be used for illumination, but at what
comparative rate of expense he does not state.--The American Scientific
Association commenced its annual session at New Haven on the 19th of
August. This is an association formed for the advancement of science and
embraces within its members nearly all the leading scientific men of the
United States. Prof. BACHE presides. The proceedings of these
conventions, made up of papers on scientific subjects read by
distinguished gentlemen, are published in a volume, and form a valuable
contribution to American scientific literature.--Intelligence has been
received, by way of England, and also, direct, from two of the American
vessels sent out in search of Sir John Franklin. The brig _Advance_
arrived at Whalefish Island, on the West Coast of Greenland, on the 24th
of June, and the _Rescue_ arrived two days after. Two of the British
steamers and two of the ships had also arrived. All on board were well,
and in good spirits for prosecuting the expedition. Enormous icebergs
were, seen by the American vessels on the voyage, some of them rising
150 or 200 feet above the water. A letter from an officer of the
_Rescue_ says they expected to go to a place called Uppermarik, about
two hundred miles from Whalefish Island, thence to Melville Bay, and
across Lancaster Sound to Cape Walker, and from that point they would
try to go to Melville Island and as much farther as possible. They
intended to winter at Melville Island, but that would depend upon

       *       *       *       *       *

The LITERARY INTELLIGENCE of the month presents no feature of special
interest. The first volume of a series of Reminiscences of Congress,
made up mainly of a biography of DANIEL WEBSTER, has just been issued
from the press of Messrs. Baker and Scribner. It is by CHARLES W. MARCH,
Esq., a young man of fine talents, and of unusual advantages for the
preparation of such a work. His style is eminently graphic and
classical, and the book is one which merits attention.--The same
publishers will also publish a volume of sketches by IK. MARVEL, the
well-known pseudonym of Mr. D. G. MITCHELL, whose "Fresh Gleanings," and
"Battle Summer," have already made him very favorably known to the
literary community.--Prof. TORREY, of the University of Vermont, has
prepared for the press the fourth volume of his translation of NEANDER'S
Church History, which will be issued soon. It is understood that, at the
time of his death, the great German scholar was engaged upon the fifth
volume of his history, which is therefore left unfinished.--The
Appletons announce a Life of JOHN RANDOLPH, by Hon. A. H. GARLAND, which
can not fail to be an attractive and interesting work. They are also to
publish the magnificently-illustrated book on the war between the United
States and Mexico, upon which GEO. W. KENDALL has been engaged for a
year or two., It is to embrace splendid pictorial drawings of all the
principal conflicts, taken on the spot, by Carl Nebel, a German artist
of distinction, with a description of each battle by Mr. KENDALL. It
will be issued in one volume, folio, beautifully colored.

       *       *       *       *       *

The past month has been distinguished by the annual commencements of the
academic year in most of the colleges of the country. At these
anniversary occasions, the candidates for honors make public exhibition
of their ability; the literary societies attached to the colleges hold
their celebrations: and addresses and poems are delivered by literary
gentlemen previously invited to perform that duty. The number of
colleges in the country, and the fact that the most distinguished
scholars in the country are generally selected for the office, gives to
these occasions a peculiar and decided interest; and the addresses then
and thus pronounced, being published, form no inconsiderable or unworthy
portion of the literature of the age. The commencement at Yale College
was celebrated at New Haven, on the 15th ult. The recurrence of the
third semi-centennial anniversary of the foundation of the college, in
1700, led to additional exercises of great interest, under the
supervision of the alumni of the college, of whom over 3000 are still
living, and about 1000 of whom were present. President WOOLSEY delivered
a very interesting historical discourse, sketching the origin, progress,
and results of the institution, and claiming for it a steady and
successful effort to meet the requirements of the country and the age.
The discourse, when published, will form a valuable contribution to the
historical literature of the country. The alumni, at their dinner, which
followed the address, listened to some eloquent and interesting speeches
from ex-President DAY and Prof. SILLIMAN, touching the history of Yale
College; from Prof. FELTON, concerning Harvard; from LEONARD BACON,
D.D., in reference to the clergy educated at Yale; from EDWARD BATES, of
Missouri, concerning the West and the Union; from Prof. BROWN, of
Dartmouth; from DANIEL LORD, of New York, upon the Bench and the Bar;
and from Dr. STEVENS, upon the Medical Profession, as connected with
Yale College; and from other gentlemen of distinction and ability, upon
various topics. JOHN W. ANDREWS, Esq., of Columbus, O., delivered the
oration before the Phi Beta Kappa Society; his subject was the Progress
of the World during the last half century. OLIVER WENDELL HOLMES, of
Cambridge, delivered the poem, which was one of his most admirable
productions--a blending of the most exquisite descriptive and
sentimental poetry with the finest humor, the keenest wit, and the most
effective sarcasm. PIERPONT, the well-known poet, also read an admirable
satirical and humorous poem at the dinner: The number of graduates at
Yale this year was seventy-eight.--The commencement of the University of
Vermont occurred on the 7th. Rev. HENRY WILKES, of Montreal, delivered
an address before the Society for Religious Inquiry, upon the Relations
of the Age to Theology. H. J. RAYMOND, of New-York, addressed the
Associate Alumni on the Duties of American Scholars, with special
reference to certain aspects of American Society; and Rev. Mr. WASHBURN,
of Newburyport, Mass., delivered an address before the Literary
Societies, on the Developments and Influences of the Spiritual
Philosophy The number of graduates was fifteen--considerably less than
usual.--Union College at Schenectady, N.Y., celebrated its commencement
on the 24th of July. Rev. Dr. S. H. Cox, of Brooklyn, delivered the
address. The number of graduates was eighty.--At Dartmouth, commencement
occurred on the 25th of July. Rev. Dr. SPRAGUE, of Albany, addressed the
alumni on the Perpetuity of Literary Influence; DAVID PAUL BROWN, Esq.,
of Philadelphia, the Literary Societies, on Character, its Force and
Results; and Rev. ALBERT BARNES, of the same city, addressed the
Theological Society on the Theology of the Unknown. The number of
graduates was forty-six.--On the 24th of July, the regular
commencement-day, Hon. THEO. FRELINGHUYSEN was inaugurated as President
of Rutgers College, N.J. His address was one of great ability and
eloquence, enforcing the importance of academic education to the age and
the country. The number of graduates was twenty-four.--Amherst College
celebrated its commencement on the 8th The number of graduates was
twenty-four Rev. Dr. Cox addressed the Society of Inquiry on the
importance of having history studied as a science in our colleges. A. B.
STREET, Esq., of Albany, delivered a poem, and Mr. E. P. WHIPPLE, of
Boston, an admirable and eloquent oration on the characteristics and
tendencies of American genius. He repeated the oration at the Wesleyan
University, at Middletown, Conn.; where a brilliant oration by Prof. D.
D. WHEDON, and a poem by Mr. W. H. C. HOSMER, were delivered before the
Phi Beta Kappa Society. An able and learned address was delivered before
the Alumni by Rev. J. CUMMINGS. The number of graduates was
nineteen.--Some important changes are to be made in the organization of
Brown University, in accordance with the principles and views recently
set forth by President WAYLAND, in a published pamphlet. Greater
prominence is to be given to the study of the natural sciences as
applied to the arts of practical life, and the study of the ancient
languages is to be made optional with students. The sum of $108,000 has
been raised by subscriptions in aid of the institution. Rev. ASAHEL
KENDRICK, of Madison University, has been elected Professor of Greek;
WILLIAM A. NORTON, of Delaware College, Professor of Natural Philosophy
and Civil Engineering; and JOHN A. PORTER, of the Lawrence Scientific
School, Professor of Chemistry applied to the Arts.--Rev. Dr. Tefft, of
Cincinnati, has been elected President of the Genesee College just
established at Lima, N.Y. The sum of $100,000 has been raised for its

       *       *       *       *       *

From CALIFORNIA our intelligence is to the 15th of July, received by the
Philadelphia steamer, which brought gold to the value of over a million
of dollars. The accounts from the gold mines are unusually good. The
high water at most of the old mines prevented active operations; but
many new deposits had been discovered, especially upon the head waters
of Feather river, and between that and Sacramento river. Gold has also
been discovered at the upper end of Carson river valley, near and at the
eastern base of the Sierra Nevada. A lump of quartz mixed with gold,
weighing thirty pounds, and containing twenty-three pounds of pure gold,
has been found between the North and Middle Forks of the Yuba river. At
Nevada and the Gold Run, where the deposits were supposed to have been
exhausted, further explorations have shown it in very great abundance,
at a depth, sometimes, of forty feet below the surface. The hills and
ravines in the neighborhood are said to be very rich in gold.--A very
alarming state of things exists in the southern mines, owing, in a great
degree, to the disaffection created by the tax levied upon foreign
miners. Murders and other crimes of the most outrageous character are of
constant occurrence, and in the immediate vicinity of Sonora, it is
stated that more than twenty murders had been committed within a
fortnight. Guerrilla parties, composed mainly of Mexican robbers, were
in the mountains, creating great alarm, and rendering life and property
in their vicinity wholly insecure. Fresh Indian troubles had also broken
out on the Tuolumne: three Americans had been shot.--The Odd Fellows
have erected a grand edifice at San Francisco for the accommodation of
their order.--The Fourth of July was celebrated with great enthusiasm
throughout California.--It is stated that a line of steamers is to be
run from San Francisco direct to Canton. Whether the enterprise be
undertaken at once or not, it cannot, in the natural course of events,
be delayed many years. The settlement of California will lead, directly
or indirectly, to a constant commercial intercourse with China, and will
exert a more decided influence upon the trade and civilization of
eastern Asia, than any other event of the present century. California
can not long continue dependent upon the Atlantic coast, still less
upon the countries of Europe, for the teas, silks, spices, &c, which her
population will require. She is ten thousand miles nearer to their
native soil than either England, France, or the United States, and will,
of course, procure them for herself rather than through their agency.

From OREGON we have intelligence to the first of July. Governor LANE has
resigned his post as governor of the territory, and was about starting
on a gold-hunting expedition. It is said that one of the richest gold
mines on the Pacific coast has been discovered in the Spokan country,
some 400 miles above Astoria, on the Columbia river. Parties were on
their way to examine it. Extensive discoveries of gold, we may say here,
are reported to have been made in Venezuela, on a branch of the river
Orinoco. The papers of that country are full of exultation over this
discovery, from which they anticipate means to pay the English debt
within a single year.

       *       *       *       *       *

From MEXICO our dates are to the 16th of July. The ravages of the
Indians in the Northern districts still continue. In Chihuahua they have
become so extensive that a body of three hundred men was to be sent to
suppress them. The State of Durango has also been almost overrun by
them. In Sonora several severe conflicts have taken place in which the
troops were victorious. The cholera has almost ceased.

       *       *       *       *       *

In ENGLAND, no event has excited more interest than the claim of his
seat in the House of Commons by Baron ROTHSCHILD. At his request, a
meeting of the electors of the city of London was held July 25th, to
confer on the course proper to be pursued. The meeting concluded by
resolving that Baron R. ought to claim his seat, which he accordingly
did on the 26th of July. He asked to be sworn on the Old Testament,
against which Sir Robert Inglis protested. The question was debated for
several days, and was finally postponed until the next session.--The
proceedings of PARLIAMENT, during the month, have not been of special
interest. The House of Commons passed the resolutions approving of the
foreign policy of the ministry, and especially its conduct in regard to
the claims on the government of Greece, by a vote of ayes 310, nays 264,
showing a ministerial majority of 46. The selection of a site for the
great Industrial Exhibition of next year has elicited a good deal of
discussion. Hyde Park has been fixed upon as the site against the very
earnest remonstrances of many who live in its vicinity; and the building
committee have accepted an offer made by Mr. Paxton, to erect a building
chiefly of iron and glass. It is to be of wood-work to the height of
eighteen feet, and arrangements have been made to provide complete
ventilation, and to secure a moderate temperature. It is to be made in
Birmingham, and the entire cost is stated at about a million of
dollars. There will be on the ground-floor alone seven miles of tables.
There will be 1,200,000 square feet of glass, 24 miles of one
description of gutter, and 218 miles of "sash-bar;" and in the
construction 4500 tons of iron will be expended. The wooden floor will
be arranged with "divisions," so as to allow the dust to fall
through.--An attempt was made to secure a vote in the House of Commons
in favor of repealing the malt-tax, on the ground that it pressed too
heavily upon the agricultural interest; but it failed, 247 voting
against it and 123 in its favor.--An effort was made to extend still
further the principles of the reform bill, by making the franchise of
counties in England and Wales the same as it is in boroughs, giving the
right of voting to all occupiers of tenements of the annual value of
£10. The motion was warmly advocated by several members, but opposed by
Lord John Russel, partly on the ground that it was brought forward at a
wrong time, and partly because he thought the changes contemplated
inconsistent with the maintenance of the monarchy, the House of Lords,
and the House of Commons, which were fundamental parts of the British
Constitution. The motion was lost by 159 to 100.--A motion to inquire
into the working of the existing regulation concerning Sunday labor in
the Post-offices was carried 195 to 112.--A motion made by Lord John
Russell to erect a monument in Westminster Abbey, to the memory of Sir
Robert Peel was carried by acclamation.--The sum of £12,000 per annum
was voted to the present Duke of Cambridge, and £3000 to the Princess
Mary of Cambridge--being grandchildren of the late King George III.--not
without strenuous opposition from members, who thought the sums
unnecessarily large.

A petition was recently presented in the House of Lords, purporting to
be signed by 18,000 rate payers, against the bill for the Liverpool
Corporation Water-works. In consequence of suspicions that were
entertained, the document was referred to a select committee and it was
found on investigation that many of the names had been affixed by
clerks, and the paper then wet to make it appear that it had been
carried round from place to place in the rain. Evidence was taken
showing that this had been a very common practice of agents employed by
the parties interested to get up signatures to petitions. The Committee
in the House of Lords had expressed themselves very strongly as to the
necessity of some law for preventing such abuses in future.--The
criminal tables for the year 1849 have been laid before Parliament. Of
the persons committed for trial during the year, 6786 were acquitted,
and 21,001 convicted. Of these convicted one in 318 was sentenced to
death, and one in 8 to transportation. There has been no execution since
1841 except for murder: of 19 persons convicted during the past year of
this offense 15 were executed, _five_ of whom were females.--The Royal
Agricultural Society held its annual meeting July 18th at Exeter. Mr.
LAWRENCE the American Minister at London, and Mr. RIVES the Minister at
Paris were both present and made eloquent speeches, upon the
agricultural state of England.--The boiler of the steamer Red Rover at
Bristol exploded July 22d, killing six persons and severely injuring
many others.--An explosion took place in the coal-pits belonging to Mr.
Sneden, near Airdrie on the 23d, by which _nineteen_ persons were
instantly killed. Only one man in the mine escaped; he saved his life by
throwing himself upon the ground the moment he heard the explosion. The
men were not provided with Davy safety-lamps.--At a meeting of the Royal
Humane Society a new invention of Lieutenant Halkett, of the Navy, was
introduced. It is a boat-cloak which may be worn, like a common cloak on
the shoulders, and may be inflated in three or four minutes by a bellows
and will then sustain six or eight persons--forming a kind of boat which
it is almost impossible to overturn. A trial was to be made of its
efficacy.--Sir Thomas Wilde has been made Lord Chancellor and raised to
the peerage by the title of Baron Truro of Bowes, in the County of
Middlesex.--Sir Robert Peel, Bart., has been returned to Parliament for
the borough of Tamworth made vacant by the death of his father. It is
stated that Sir Robert's last injunction was that his children should
not receive titles or pensions for any supposed services their father
might have rendered. This is in keeping with the severe simplicity of
his character and negatives conclusively the representations of those
who have charged his advocacy of measures designed to aid the poor, to
interested motives of selfish or family ambition. A subscription has
been set on foot for a testimonial to his memory to be called "the
Working-man's Monument."

       *       *       *       *       *

The foreign LITERARY INTELLIGENCE of the month is unusually meagre. The
only work of great interest that has been published is WORDSWORTH'S
posthumous Poem, _The Prelude_, of which a somewhat extended notice will
be found on a preceding page. It has already been republished in this
country, where it will find a wide circle of sympathizing readers. The
Household Narrative, in summing up the literary news, says that another
note-worthy poem of the month, also a posthumous publication though
written some years ago, is a dramatic piece attributed to Mr. Beddoes,
and partaking largely of his well-known eccentricity and genius, called
_Death's Jest-Book or the Fool's Tragedy_. A republication of Mr.
Cottle's twenty-four books of _Alfred_, though the old pleasant butt and
"jest-book" of his ancient friend Charles Lamb, is said hardly to
deserve even so many words of mention. Nor is there much novelty in _A
Selection from the Poems and Dramatic Works of Theodore Korner_, though
the translation is a new one, and by the clever translator of the
_Nibelungen_. To this brief catalogue of works of fancy is added the
mention of two somewhat clever tales in one volume, with the title of
_Hearts in Mortmain_ and _Cornelia_, intended to illustrate the working
of particular phases of mental emotion; and another by Mrs. Trollope,
called _Petticoat Government_.----In the department of history there is
nothing more important than a somewhat small volume with the very large
title of the _Correspondence of the Emperor Charles V. and his
Embassadors at the Courts of England and France_; which turns out to be
a limited selection from letters existing in the archives at Vienna, but
not uninteresting to English readers, from the fact of their incidental
illustrations of the history of Henry VIII., and the close of Wolsey's
career. Two books of less pretension have contributed new facts to the
history of the late civil war in Hungary; the first from the Austrian
point of view by an _Eye-witness_, and the second from the Hungarian by
_Max Schlesinger_. Mr. Baillie Cochrane has also contributed his mite to
the elucidation of recent revolutions in a volume called _Young Italy_,
which is chiefly remarkable for its praise of Lord Brougham, its defense
of the Pope, its exaggerated scene-painting of the murder of Rossi, its
abuse of the Roman Republic, and its devotion of half a line to the
mention of Mazzini.

Better worthy of brief record are the few miscellaneous publications,
which comprise an excellent new translation of _Rochefoucauld's Maxims_,
with a better account of the author, and more intelligent notes, than
exist in any previous edition; most curious and interesting _Memorials
of the Empire of Japan in the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries_,
which Mr. Rundell of the East India House has issued under the
superintendence of the Hakluyt Society, and which illustrate English
relations with those Japanese; an intelligent and striking summary of
the _Antiquities of Richborough, Reculver, and Lynne_, written by Mr.
Roach Smith and illustrated by Mr. Fairholt, which exhibits the results
of recent discoveries of many remarkable Roman antiquities in Kent; and
a brief, unassuming narrative of the Hudson's Bay Company's _Expedition
to the Shores of the Arctic Sea in 1846 and 1847_, by the commander of
the expedition, Mr. John Rae.

Ballooning in France and England seems to have become a temporary mania.
The ascent of Messrs. Barral and Bixio, of which a detailed and very
interesting account will be found in a preceding page, has encouraged
imitators in various styles. One M. Poitevin made an ascent in Paris
seated on a horse, which was attached to the balloon in place of the
car. The London _Athenæum_ invokes the aid of the police to prevent such
needless cruelty to animals, and to exercise proper supervision over the
madmen who undertake such fool-hardy feats.----A plaster mask said to
have been taken from the face of Shakspeare, and bearing the date 1616
on its back, has been brought to London from Mayence, which is said to
have been procured from an ecclesiastical personage of high rank at
Cologne. It excites considerable attention among virtuosos.----The
English, undeterred by the indignation which has been poured out upon
Lord Elgin by BYRON and others for rifling Athens of its antiquities for
display at home, are practicing the same desecration in regard to the
treasures discovered in Nineveh by Mr. Layard. It is announced that the
Great Bull and upwards of 100 tons of sculpture excavated by him, may be
expected in England in September for the British Museum. The French
Government are also making extensive collections of Assyrian works of
art.----Among those who perished by the loss of the British steamer
_Orion_ was Dr. JOHN BURNS, Professor of Surgery in the University of
Glasgow, and a man of considerable eminence in his profession. He was
the author of several works upon various medical subjects and had also
written upon literary and theological topics. Dr. GRAY, Professor of
Oriental languages in the same university has also deceased within the
month.----A new filtering apparatus, intended to render sea-water
drinkable, has recently been brought to the notice of the Paris
Academy.----A letter in the London _Athenæum_ from the Nile complains
bitterly of the constant devastation of the remains of ancient temples,
&c., caused by the rapacious economy of the government. The writer
states that immense sculptured and painted blocks have been taken from
the temple of Karnac, for the construction of a sugar factory; a fine
ancient tomb has also entirely disappeared under this process. Very
earnest complaints are also made of the Prussian traveler Dr. Lepsius,
for carrying away relies of antiquity, and for destroying others. The
writer urges that if this process is continued Egypt will lose far more
by the cessation of English travel than she can gain in the value of
material used.----Rev. W. KIRBY, distinguished as one of the first
entomologists of the age, died at his residence in Suffolk, July 4th, at
the advanced age of 91. He has left behind him several works of great
ability and reputation on his favorite science.----It is stated that the
late Sir Robert Peel left his papers to Lord Mahon and Mr. Edward
Cardwell M.P.----Among the deaths of the month we find that of an
amiable man and accomplished writer, Mr. B. Simmons, whose name will be
recollected as that of a frequent contributor of lyrical poems of a high
order to _Blackwood's Magazine_, and to several of the Annuals. Mr.
Simmons, who held a situation in the Excise office, died July
19th.----GUIZOT, the eminent historian, on the marriage of his two
daughters recently to descendants of the illustrious Hollander De WITT,
was unable to give them any thing as marriage portions. Notwithstanding
the eminent positions he has filled for so much of his life--positions
which most men would have made the means of acquiring enormous wealth,
GUIZOT is still poor. This fact alone furnishes at once evidence and
illustration of his sterling integrity.----A new History of Spain, by
ST. HILAIRE, is in course of publication in Paris. He has been engaged
upon it for a number of years, and it is said to be a work of great
ability and learning.----LEVERRIER, the French astronomer, has published
a strong appeal in favor of throwing the electric telegraph open to the
public in France, as it has been in the United States. At present it is
guarded by the government as a close monopoly. His paper contains a good
deal of interesting matter in regard to this greatest of modern
inventions.----MEINHOLD, the author of the "Amber Witch," has lately
been fined and imprisoned for slandering a brother clergyman. This is
the second instance in which he has been convicted of this
offense.----M. GUIZOT has addressed a long letter to each of the five
classes of the Institute of France, to declare that he can not accept
the candidateship offered him for a seat in the Superior Council of
Public Instruction.----Sir EDWARD BULWER LYTTON is to be a candidate for
the House of Commons, with Colonel Sibthorpe, for Lincoln. He has a new
play forthcoming for the Princess's Theater.----Miss STRICKLAND has in
preparation a series of volumes on the Queens of Scotland, as a
companion to her interesting and successful work on the Queens of
England.----Sir FRANCIS KNOWLES has recently taken out a patent for
producing iron in an improved form. In blast-furnaces, as at present
constructed, the ore, the flux, and combustibles, are mixed together;
and the liberated gases of the fuel injure the quality of the iron, and
cause great waste, in the shape of slag. By the new process the ore is
to be kept separate from the sulphureous fuel in a compartment contrived
for the purpose, in the centre of the furnace, where it will be in
contact with peat only; and in this way the waste will be avoided, and a
quality of metal will be produced fully equal to the best Swedish. The
invention is likely to be one of considerable importance.----Professor
JOHNSTON, the distinguished English agriculturist, who visited this
country last year, and lectured in several of the principal cities, at a
late farmers' meeting in Berwickshire, gave a general account of the
state of agriculture in America, as it fell under his personal
observation. He represented it in the Northern States as about what it
was in Scotland eighty or ninety years ago. The land in all New England
he said had been exhausted by bad farming, and even in the Western
States the tendency of things was to the same result. He thought it
would not be long before America would be utterly unable to export wheat
to England in any large quantity.

       *       *       *       *       *

Affairs in FRANCE are still unsettled. The Government goes steadily
forward in the enactment of laws restraining the Press, forbidding free
discussion among the people, diminishing popular rights and preparing
the way, by all the means in their power, for another revolution. The
most explicit provisions of the Constitution have been set aside and the
government of the Republic is really more despotic than was that of
Louis Philippe at any time during his reign. A warm debate occurred in
the Assembly on the bill for restricting the liberty of the press. It
commenced on the 8th of July and gave occasion to a violent scene. M.
Rouher, the Minister of Justice, spoke of the Revolution of February as
a "disastrous catastrophe," which elicited loud demands from the
opposition that he should be called to order. The President refused to
call him to order and M. Girardin threatened to resign saying, that he
would not sit in an assembly where such language was permitted. He did
not resign, however, but his friends contented themselves with handing
in a protest the next day which the President refused to receive. The
debate then proceeded and an amendment was passed, 313 to 281, declaring
that all leading articles in journals should be signed by the writers.
On the 15th an amendment was adopted that papers publishing a
_feuilleton_ should pay an additional tax of one centime beyond the
ordinary stamp duty. On the 16th the bill was finally passed by a vote
of 390 to 265.

       *       *       *       *       *

From PORTUGAL we learn that Mr. CLAY, having failed to secure from the
Portuguese government a compliance with the demands he was instructed to
make, asked for his passports and withdrew. The difficulty engages the
attention of the Portuguese Minister at Washington, and the Department
of State, and it is supposed that it will be amicably settled. No
details of the negotiations in progress have been made public, but it is
understood that no doubt exists as to the result.

       *       *       *       *       *

In GERMANY the event of the month which excites most interest in this
country, is the death of NEANDER. Our preceding pages contain a notice
of his life, writings, and character, which renders any further mention
here unnecessary.----At Berlin the Academy of Sciences has been holding
a sitting, according to its statutes, in honor of the memory of
Leibnitz. In the course of the oration delivered on the occasion it was
stated that, the 4th of August next being the 50th anniversary of the
admission of Alexander von Humboldt as a member of the Academy, it has
been resolved, in celebration of the event, to place a marble bust of
the "Nestor of Science" in the lecture-room of the Society.

       *       *       *       *       *

From SPAIN there is nothing of importance. The Queen, Isabella, gave
birth to an heir, on the 13th of July, but it lived scarcely an hour, so
that the Duchess of Montpensier is still heir presumptive to the throne.
The Count of Montemolin has married a sister of the king of Naples, and
the Spanish minister, taking offense, has left that court.

       *       *       *       *       *

From DENMARK there is intelligence of new hostilities. The
Schleswig-Holstein difficulty, which was supposed to have been settled,
has broken out afresh. The negotiations which had been in progress
between the five great powers, were broken off by Prussia, she declaring
that neither Austria nor Prussia could ever assent to considering the
provinces in question as parts of the Danish monarchy. The failure to
agree upon satisfactory terms, led both parties to prepare for renewed
hostilities, and a severe engagement took place on the 25th of July,
between the Danes and the Holsteiners, in which the latter were
defeated. The field of action was Idstedt, a small village on the
Flensburg road. The Danish army amounted to about 45,000 men, commanded
by General Von Krogh; the army of the Holsteiners to 28,000 only,
commanded at the centre by General Willisen, a Prussian volunteer; at
the right by Colonel Von der Horst, also a Prussian, and at the left by
Colonel Von der Taun, a Bavarian officer, of chivalrous courage and
great impetuosity. The battle commenced at three o'clock in the morning
with an attack of the Danes on both wings of the enemy. They were very
warmly received, and after the battle had lasted two or three hours,
they made an assault upon the centre, with infantry, cavalry, and
artillery at the same time. They were so strongly repulsed, however,
that they were compelled to retreat. An attack of their whole force,
concentrated upon the centre and right wing of the Holsteiners was more
successful, and by bringing up a reserve, after ten or twelve hours hard
fighting, they compelled the Holstein centre to give way, and by two
o'clock the army was in full retreat, but in good order. The Danes
appear to have been either too fatigued or too indolent to follow up
their advantage. The members of the Holstein government, who were in
Schleswig, fled immediately to Kiel, on hearing the battle was lost; all
the officials also left the town; the post-office was shut, the doors
locked, and all business suspended. The battle was more sanguinary than
that fought under the walls of Frederica on the 6th of July last year.
The loss on both sides has been estimated at about 7000 men in killed,
wounded, and missing--of which the Holstein party say the greater share
has fallen upon the Danes. Another engagement is said to have taken
place on the 1st of August near Mohede, in which the Danes were
defeated, with but slight loss on either side. The interference of the
great powers is anticipated.

       *       *       *       *       *

From INDIA and the EAST there is little news of interest. A terrible
accident occurred at Benares on the 1st of May. A fleet of thirty boats,
containing ordnance stores, was destroyed by the explosion of 3000
barrels of gunpowder with which they were freighted. Four hundred and
twenty persons were killed on the spot, about 800 more were wounded, and
a number of houses were leveled with the ground. The cause of the
disaster remained unexplained, as not a human being was left alive who
could tell the tale.----The city of Canton has been visited with a
severe fever which has been very destructive, though it had spared the
European factories.----The great Oriental diamond, seized by the British
as part of the spoils of the Sikh war, was presented to the Queen on the
3d of July, having arrived from India a few days before. It was
discovered in the mines of Golconda three hundred years ago, and first
belonged to the Mogul emperor, the father of the great Aurungzebee. Its
shape and size are like those of the pointed end of a hen's egg; and its
value is estimated at two millions of pounds sterling.----News has been
received of an insurrection against the Dutch government in the district
of Bantam. The insurgents attacked the town of Anjear, in the Straits of
Sunda, but, after burning the houses, were driven back to their
fastnesses by the military.


IN MEMORIAM. Boston: Ticknor, Reed, and Fields. 12mo. pp. 216.

The impressive beauty of these touching lyrics proceeds, in a great
degree, from the "sad sincerity" which so evidently inspired their
composition. In memory of a youthful friend, who was distinguished for
his rare early promise, his ripe and manifold accomplishments, and a
strange, magnetic affinity with the genius of the author, these
exquisite poems are the gushing expression of a heart touched and
softened, but not enervated by deep sorrow. The poet takes a pensive
delight in gathering up every memorial of the brother of his affections;
his fancy teems with all sweet and beautiful images to show the
tenderness of his grief; every object in external nature recalls the
lost treasure; until, after reveling in the luxury of woe, he regains a
serene tranquillity, with the lapse of many years. With the exquisite
pathos that pervades this volume, there is no indulgence in weak and
morbid sentiment. It is free from the preternatural gloom which so often
makes elegiac poetry an abomination to every healthy intellect. The
tearful bard does not allow himself to be drowned in sorrow, but draws
from its pure and bitter fountains the sources of noble inspiration and
earnest resolve. No one can read these natural records of a spirit,
wounded but not crushed, without fresh admiration of the rich poetical
resources, the firm, masculine intellect, and the unbounded wealth of
feeling, which have placed TENNYSON in such a lofty position among the
living poets of England.

       *       *       *       *       *

Harper and Brothers have recently published _The History of Darius_, by
JACOB ABBOTT, _The English Language in its Elements and Forms_, by
WILLIAM C. FOWLER, _Julia Howard_, a Romance, by Mrs. MARTIN BELL,
_Five Years of a Hunter's Life in the Interior of South Africa_, by R.
G. CUMMING, _Health, Disease, and Remedy_, by GEORGE MOORE, and _Latter
Day Pamphlets_, No. viii., by THOMAS CARLYLE.

_The History of Darius_ is one of Mr. ABBOTT'S popular historical
series, written in the style of easy and graceful idiomatic English
(though not always free from inaccuracies), which give a pleasant flavor
to all the productions of the author. In a neat preface, with which the
volume is introduced, Mr. Abbott explains the reasons for the mildness
and reserve with which he speaks of the errors, and often the crimes of
the persons whose history he describes. He justifies this course, both
on the ground of its intrinsic propriety, and of the authority of
Scripture, which, as he justly observes, relates the narratives of crime
"in a calm, simple, impartial, and forbearing spirit, which leads us to
condemn, the sins, but not to feel a pharisaical resentment and wrath
against the sinner." The present volume sets forth the leading facts in
the life of Darius the Great with remarkable clearness and condensation,
and can scarcely be too highly commended, both for the use of juvenile
readers, and of those who wish to become acquainted with the subject,
but who have not the leisure to pursue a more extended course of
historical study.

Professor FOWLER'S work on the English Language is a profound treatise
on the Philosophy of Grammar, the fruit of laborious and patient
research for many years, and an addition of unmistakable value to our
abundant philological treasures. It treats of the English Language in
its elements and forms, giving a copious history of its origin and
development, and ascending to the original principles on which its
construction is founded. The work is divided into eight parts, each of
which presents a different aspect of the subject, yet all of them, in
their mutual correlation, and logical dependence, are intended to form a
complete and symmetrical system. We are acquainted with no work on this
subject which is better adapted for a text-book in collegiate
instruction, for which purpose it is especially designed by the author.
At the same time it will prove an invaluable aid to more advanced
students of the niceties of our language, and may even be of service to
the most practiced writers, by showing them the raw material, in its
primitive state, out of which they cunningly weave together their most
finished and beautiful fabrics.

_Julia Howard_ is the reprint of an Irish story of exciting interest,
which, by its powerful delineation of passion, its bright daguerreotypes
of character, and the wild intensity of its plot, must become a favorite
with the lovers of high-wrought fiction.

We have given a taste of CUMMING'S _Five Years of a Hunter's Life_ in
the last number of _The New Monthly Magazine_, from which it will be
seen that the writer is a fierce, blood-thirsty Nimrod, whose highest
ideal is found in the destruction of wild-beasts, and who relates his
adventures with the same eagerness of passion which led him to
expatriate himself from the charms of English society in the tangled
depths of the African forest. Every page is redolent of gunpowder, and
you almost hear the growl of the victim as he falls before the unerring
shot of this mighty hunter.

Dr. MOORE'S book on _Health, Disease, and Remedy_ is a plain, practical,
common-sense treatise on hygiene, without confinement in the harness of
any of the modern _opathies_. His alert and cheerful spirit will prevent
the increase of hypochondria by the perusal of his volume, and his
directions are so clear and definite, that they can be easily
comprehended even by the most nervous invalid. Its purpose can not be
more happily described than in the words of the author. "It is neither a
popular compendium of physiology, hand-book of physic, an art of healing
made easy, a medical guide-book, a domestic medicine, a digest of odd
scraps on digestion, nor a dry reduction of a better book, but rather a
running comment on a few prominent truths in medical science, viewed
according to the writer's own experience. The object has been to assist
the unprofessional reader to form a sober estimate of Physic, and enable
him to second the physician's efforts to promote health." Dr. Moore's
habits of thought and expression are singularly direct, and he never
leaves you at a loss for his meaning.

We can not say so much for CARLYLE, whose eighth number of _Latter-Day
Tracts_, on _Jesuitism_, brings that flaming and fantastic series to a
close, with little detriment, we presume, to the public.

Phillips, Sampson, and Co. have published a critique on Carlyle, by
ELIZUR WRIGHT, the pungent editor of the Boston Chronotype, entitled
_Perforations of the "Latter-Day Pamphlets, by one of the Eighteen
Million Bores,"_ in which he makes some effective hits, reducing the
strongest positions of his opponent to impalpable powder.

_The Odd Fellows' Offering for_ 1851, published by Edward Walker, is the
ninth volume of this beautiful annual, and is issued with the earliest
of its competitors for public favor. As a representative of the literary
character of the Order, it is highly creditable to the Institution.
Seven of the eleven illustrations are from original paintings by native
artists. The frontispiece, representing the Marriage of Washington,
appeals forcibly to the national sentiment, and is an appropriate
embellishment for a work dedicated to a large and increasing fraternity,
whose principles are in admirable harmony with those of our free

_Haw-Ho-Noo, or, Records of a Tourist_, by CHARLES LANMAN, published by
Lippincott, Grambo and Co., under an inappropriate title, presents many
lively and agreeable descriptions of adventures in various journeys in
different parts of the United States. The author has a keen sense of the
beauties of nature, is always at home in the forest or at the side of
the mountain stream, and tells all sorts of stories about trout, salmon,
beavers, maple-sugar, rattle-snakes, and barbecues, with a heart-felt
unction that is quite contagious. As a writer of simple narrative, his
imagination sometimes outstrips his discretion, but every one who reads
his book will admit that he is not often surpassed for the fresh and
racy character of his anecdotes.

_The Autobiography of Leigh Hunt_, published by Harper and Brothers, as
our readers may judge from the specimens given in a former number of
this Magazine, is one of the most charming works that have lately been
issued from the English press. Leigh Hunt so easily falls into the
egotistic and ridiculous, that it is a matter of wonder how he has
escaped from them to so great a degree in the present volumes. His
vanity seems to have been essentially softened by the experience of
life, the asperities of his nature greatly worn away, and his mind
brought under the influence of a kindly and genial humor. With his rare
mental agility, his susceptibility to many-sided impressions, and his
catholic sympathy with almost every phase of character and intellect, he
could not fail to have treasured up a rich store of reminiscences, and
his personal connection with the most-celebrated literary men of his
day, gives them a spirit and flavor, which could not have been obtained
by the mere records of his individual biography. The work abounds with
piquant anecdotes of Coleridge, Wordsworth, Shelley, Byron, Keats, Lamb,
Hazlitt, and Moore--gives a detailed exposition of Hunt's connection
with the Examiner, and his imprisonment for libel--his residence in
Italy--his return to England--and his various literary projects--and
describes with the most childlike frankness the present state of his
opinions and feelings on the manifold questions which have given a
direction to his intellectual activity through life. Whatever
impressions it may leave as to the character of the author, there can be
but one opinion as to the fascination of his easy, sprightly, gossiping
style, and the interest which attaches to the literary circles, whose
folding-doors he not ungracefully throws open.

The _United States Railroad Guide and Steam-boat Journal_, by Holbrook
and Company, is one of the best manuals for the use of travelers now
issued by the monthly press, containing a great variety of valuable
information, in a neat and portable form.

_Hints to Young Men on the True Relation of the Sexes_, by JOHN WARE,
M.D., is a brief treatise, prepared by a distinguished scientific man of
Boston, in which an important subject is treated with delicacy, good
sense, and an earnest spirit. It is published by Tappan, Whittimore, and
Mason, Boston.

Among the publications of the last month by Lippincott, Grambo, and
Company, is the _Iris_, an elegant illuminated souvenir, edited by
Professor JOHN S. HART, and comprising literary contributions from
distinguished American authors, several of whom, we notice, are from the
younger class of writers, who have already won a proud and enviable fame
by the admirable productions of their pens. In addition to the
well-written preface by the Editor, we observe original articles by
and others, most of which are superior specimens of the lighter form of
periodical literature. The volume is embellished with exquisite beauty,
containing four brilliantly illuminated pages, and eight line
engravings, executed in the highest style of London art. We are pleased
to welcome so beautiful a work from the spirited and intelligent house
by which it is issued, as a promise that it will sustain the well-earned
reputation of the old establishment of Grigg, Elliot, and Co., of which
it is the successor. The head of that firm, Mr. JOHN GRIGG, we may take
this occasion to remark, presents as striking a history as can be
furnished by the records of bookselling in this country. Commencing life
without the aid of any external facilities, and obtaining the highest
eminence in his profession, by a long career of industry, enterprise,
and ability, he has retired from active business with an ample fortune,
and the universal esteem of a large circle of friends. We trust that his
future years may be as happy, as his busy life has been exemplary and

George P. Putnam has published _The Chronicle of the Conquest of
Granada_, by WASHINGTON IRVING, forming the fourteenth volume of the
beautiful revised edition of Irving's collected works. Since the first
publication of this romantic prose-poem, the fictitious dress, in which
the inventive fancy of the author had arrayed the story, had been made
the subject of somewhat stringent criticism; Fray Antonio Agapida had
been found to belong to a Spanish branch of the family of Diedrich
Knickerbocker; and doubts were thus cast over the credibility of the
whole veracious chronicle. Mr. Irving extricates himself from the
dilemma with his usual graceful ingenuity. In a characteristic note to
this edition, he explains the circumstances in which the history had its
origin, and shows conclusively that whatever dimness may be thrown over
the identity of the worthy Fray Antonio, the work itself was constructed
from authentic documents, and is faithful in all its essential points to
historical fact. While occupied at Madrid in writing the life of
Columbus, Mr. Irving was strongly impressed with the rich materials
presented by the war of Granada, for a composition which should blend
the interest of romance with the fidelity of history. Alive as he always
is to picturesque effect, he was struck with the contrast presented by
the combatants of Oriental and European creeds, costumes, and manners;
with the hairbrained enterprises, chivalric adventures, and wild forays
through mountain regions; and with the moss-trooping assaults on
cliff-built castles and cragged fortresses, which succeeded each other
with dazzling brilliancy and variety. Fortunately in the well-stored
libraries of Madrid, he had access to copious and authentic chronicles,
often in manuscript, written at the time by eye-witnesses, and in some
instances, by persons who had been actually engaged in the scenes
described. At a subsequent period, after completing the Life of
Columbus, he made an extensive tour in Andalusia, visiting the ruins of
the Moorish towns, fortresses, and castles, and the wild mountain
passes, which had been the principal theatre of the war, and passing
some time in the stately old palace of the Alhambra, the once favorite
abode of the Moorish monarchs. With this preparation, he finished the
manuscript of which he had already drawn up the general outline,
adopting the fiction of a Spanish monk as the chronicler of the history.
By this innocent stratagem, Mr. Irving intended to personify in Fray
Antonio the monkish zealots who made themselves busy in the campaigns,
marring the chivalry of the camp by the bigotry of the cloister, and
exulting in every act of intolerance toward the Moors.

This ingenious explanation will give a fresh interest to the present
edition. The costume of the garrulous Agapida is still retained,
although the narrative is reduced more strictly within historical
bounds, and is enriched with new facts that have been recently brought
to light by the erudite researches of Alcántara and other diligent
explorers of this romantic field. With excellent taste, the publisher
has issued this volume in a style of typographical elegance not unworthy
the magnificent paragraphs of the golden-mouthed author.

_The Life and Times of General John Lamb_, by ISAAC Q. LEAKE, published
at Albany by J. Munsell, is an important contribution to the history of
the Revolution, compiled from original documents, many of which possess
great interest.

_Progress in the Northwest_ is the title of the Annual Discourse
delivered before the Historical Society of Ohio, by the President,
WILLIAM D. GALLAGHER, and published by H. W. Derby and Co., Cincinnati.
It gives a rapid description of the progress of cultivation and
improvement in the Northwestern portion of the United States, showing
the giant steps which have been taken, especially, within the last
twenty years, on that broad and fertile domain. The conditions of future
advancement are also discussed in the spirit of philosophical analysis,
and with occasional touches of genuine eloquence.

EDWARD EVERETT'S _Oration at the Celebration of the Battle of Bunker
Hill_, published by Redding and Co., Boston, describes some of the
leading incidents in that opening scene of the American Revolution, and
is distinguished for the rhetorical felicity, the picturesque beauty of
expression, and the patriotic enthusiasm which have given a wide
celebrity to the anniversary performances of the author. Its flowing
melody of style, combined with the impressive tones and graceful manner
of the speaker, enables us to imagine the effect which is said to have
been produced by its delivery. The ability exhibited in Mr. EVERETT'S
expressive and luminous narrative, if devoted to an elaborate
historical composition, would leave him with but few rivals in this
department of literature.

_Oration before the Phi Beta Kappa Society_ of Harvard University, by
TIMOTHY WALKER, published by James Munroe and Co., Boston, is a
temperate discussion of the Reform Spirit of the day, abounding in
salutary cautions and judicious discriminations. The style of the
Oration savors more of the man of affairs than of the practical writer,
and its good sense and moderate tone must have commended it to the
cultivated audience before which it was delivered.

_The Poem on the American Legend_, by BAYARD TAYLOR, pronounced on the
same occasion, and published by John Bartlett, Cambridge, is a graceful
portraiture of the elements of romance and poetry in the traditions of
our country, and contains passages of uncommon energy of versification,
expressing a high order of moral and patriotic sentiment. His allusion
to the special legends of different localities are very felicitous in
their tone, and the tribute to the character of the lamented President
is a fine instance of the condensation and forcible brevity which Mr.
Taylor commands with eminent success.

A useful and seasonable work, entitled _Europe, Past and Present_, by
FRANCIS H. UNGEWITTER, LL.D., has been issued by G. P. Putnam, which
will be found to contain a mass of information, carefully arranged and
digested, of great service to the student of European Geography and
History. The author, who is a native German, has published several
extensive geographical works in his own country, which have given him
the reputation of a sound and accurate scholar in that department of
research. He appears to have made a faithful and discriminating use of
the abundant materials at his command, and has produced a work which can
not fail to do him credit in his adopted land.

_The Architecture of Country Houses_, by A. J. DOWNING, published by D.
Appleton and Co., is from the pen of a writer whose former productions
entitle him to the rank of a standard authority on the attractive
subject of the present volume. Mr. Downing has certainly some uncommon
qualifications for the successful accomplishment of his task, which
requires no less practical experience and knowledge than a sound and
cultivated taste. He is familiar with the best publications of previous
authors; his pursuits, have led him to a thorough appreciation of the
wants and capabilities of country life; he has been trained by the
constant influence of rural scenes; and with an eye keenly susceptible
to the effect of proportion and form, he brings the refinements of true
culture and the suggestions of a vigilant common-sense to the
improvement of Rural Architecture, which he wishes to see in harmony
with the grand and beautiful scenery of this country. His remarks in the
commencement of the volume, with regard to the general significance of
architecture are worthy of profound attention. A due observance of the
principles, which he eloquently sets forth, would rescue the fine
localities for which nature has done so much from the monstrosities in
wood and brick with which they are so often deformed. His discussion of
the materials and modes of construction are of great practical value.
With the abundance of designs which he presents, for every style of
rural building, and the careful estimates of the expense, no one who
proposes to erect a house in the country can fail to derive great
advantage from consulting his well-written and interesting pages.

Tallis, Willoughby, & Co. are publishing as serials the _Adventures of
Don Quixote_, translated by JARVIS, and the _Complete Works of
Shakspeare_, edited by JAMES ORCHARD HALLIWELL. The Don Quixote is a
cheap edition, embellished with wood cuts by Tony Johannot. The
Shakspeare is illustrated with steel engravings by Rogers, Heath,
Finden, and Walker, from designs by Henry Warren, Edward Corbould, and
other English artists who are favorably known to the public. It is
intended that this edition shall contain all the writings ascribed to
the immortal dramatist, without distinction, including not only the
Poems and well-authenticated Plays, but also the Plays of doubtful
origin, or of which Shakspeare is supposed to have been only in part the

Herrman J. Meyer, a German publisher in this city, is issuing an edition
of MEYER'S _Universum_, a splendid pictorial work, which is to appear in
monthly parts, each containing four engravings on steel, and twelve of
them making an annual volume with forty-eight plates. They consist of
the most celebrated views of natural scenery, and of rare works of art,
selected from prominent objects of interest in every part of the globe.
The first number contains an engraving of Bunker Hill Monument, the
_Ecole Nationale_ at Paris, Rousseau's Hermitage at Montmorency, and the
Royal Palace at Munich, besides a well-executed vignette on the
title-page and cover. The letter-press descriptions by the author are
retained in the original language, which, in a professed American
edition, is an injudicious arrangement, serving to limit the circulation
of the work, in a great degree, to Germans, and to those familiar with
the German language.

Mrs. CROWE'S _Night Side of Nature_, published by J. S. Redfield, is
another contribution to the literature of Ghosts and Ghost-Seers, which,
like the furniture and costume of the middle ages, seems to be coming
into fashion with many curious amateurs of novelties. The reviving taste
for this kind of speculation is a singular feature of the age, showing
the prevalence of a dissatisfied and restless skepticism, rather than an
enlightened and robust faith in spiritual realities. Mrs. Crowe is a
decided, though gentle advocate of the preternatural character of the
marvelous phenomena, of which probably every country and age presents a
more or less extended record. She has collected a large mass of
incidents, which have been supposed to bear upon the subject, many of
which were communicated to her on personal authority, and were first
brought to the notice of the public in her volume. She has pursued her
researches, with incredible industry, into the traditions of various
nations, making free use of the copious erudition of the Germans in this
department, and arranging the facts or legends she has obtained with a
certain degree of historical criticism, that gives a value to her work
as an illustration of national beliefs, without reference to its
character as a _hortus siccus_ of weird and marvelous stories. In point
of style, her volume is unexceptionable; its spirit is modest and
reverent; it can not be justly accused of superstition, though it
betrays a womanly instinct for the supernatural: and without being
imbued with any love of dogmas, breathes an unmistakable atmosphere of
purity and religious trust. The study of this subject can not be
recommended to the weak-minded and timorous, but an omnivorous digestion
may find a wholesome exercise of its capacity in Mrs. Crowe's tough

A volume of Discourses, entitled _Christian Thoughts on Life_, by HENRY
GILES, has been published by Ticknor, Reed, and Fields, Boston,
consisting of a series of elaborate essays, intended to gather into a
compact form some fragments of moral experience, and to give a certain
record and order to the author's desultory studies of man's interior
life. Among the subjects of which it treats are The Worth of Life, the
Continuity of Life, the Discipline of Life, Weariness of Life, and
Mystery in Religion and in Life. The views presented by Mr. Giles are
evidently the fruit of profound personal reflection; they glow with the
vitality of experience; and in their tender and pleading eloquence will
doubtless commend themselves to many human sympathies. Mr. Giles has
been hitherto most favorably known to the public in this country, as a
brilliant rhetorician, and an original and piquant literary critic; in
the present volume, he displays a rare mastery of ethical analysis and

W. Phillips & Co., Cincinnati, have issued an octavo volume of nearly
seven hundred pages, composed of _Lectures on the American Eclectic
System of Surgery_, by BENJAMIN L. HILL, M.D., with over one hundred
illustrative engravings. It is based on the principles of the medical
system of which the author is a distinguished practitioner.

The _National Temperance Offering_, edited by S. F. Cary, and published
by R. Vandien, is got up in an expensive style, and is intended as a
gift-book worthy the patronage of the advocates of the Temperance
Reform. In addition to a variety of contributions both in prose and
poetry from several able writers, it contains biographical sketches of
some distinguished Temperance men, accompanied with their portraits,
among whom we notice Rev. Dr. Beecher, Horace Greeley, John H. Hawkins,
T. P. Hunt, and others.

Fashions for Early Autumn.

[Illustration: FIG. 1.--PROMENADE DRESS.]

[Illustration: FIG. 2.--COSTUME FOR A YOUNG LADY.]

FIG 1. A PROMENADE DRESS of a beautiful lavender _taffetas_, the front
of the skirt trimmed with folds of the same, confined at regular
distances with seven flutes of lavender gauze ribbon, put on the reverse
of the folds; a double fluted frilling, rather narrow, encircles the
opening of the body, which is made high at the back, and closed in the
front with a fluting of ribbon similar to that on the skirt; _demi-long_
sleeves, cut up in a kind of wave at the back, so as to show the under
full sleeve of spotted white muslin. Chemisette of fulled muslin,
confined with bands of needlework. Scarf of white China _crape_,
beautifully embroidered, and finished with a deep, white, silk fringe.
Drawn _capote_ of pink _crape_, adorned in the interior with
half-wreaths of green myrtle.

FIG. 2. COSTUME FOR A YOUNG LADY.--A dress of white _barège_ trimmed
with three deep vandyked flounces put on close to each other; high body,
formed of worked inlet, finished with a stand-up row round the throat;
the sleeves descend as low as the elbow, where they are finished with
two deep frillings, vandyked similar to the flounces. Half-long gloves
of straw-colored kid, surmounted with a bracelet of black velvet. Drawn
_capote_ of white _crape_, adorned with clusters of the _rose de mott_
both in the interior and exterior. _Pardessus_ of pink _glacé_ silk,
trimmed with three frillings of the same, edged with a narrow silk
fringe, which also forms a heading to the same; over each hip is a
trimming _en tablier_ formed of the fringe; short sleeves, trimmed with
one fulling edged with fringe; these sleeves are of the same piece as
the cape, not cut separate; the trimming over the top of the arms being
similar to that under, and formed also of fringe; this _pardessus_ is
perfectly round in its form, and only closes just upon the front of the

MORNING CAPS which are slightly ornamented, vary more in the way in
which they are trimmed, than in the positive form; some being trimmed
with _chicorées_, wreaths of gauze ribbon, or knobs of ribbon edged with
a festooned open-work encircling a simple round of _tulle_, or what is
perhaps prettier, a cluster of lace. A pretty form, differing a little
from the monotonous round, is composed of a round forming a star, the
points being cut off; these points are brought close together, and are
encircled with a narrow _bavolet_, the front part being formed so as to
descend just below the ears, approaching somewhat to the appearance of
the front of a capote. A pretty style of morning cap are those made of
India muslin, _à petit papillon_, flat, edged with a choice Mechlin
lace, and having three _ricochets_ and a bunch of fancy ribbon placed
upon each side, from which depend the _brides_ or strings. Others are
extremely pretty, made of the _appliqué_ lace, rich Mechlin, or
needlework, and are sometimes ornamented with flowers, giving a
lightness to their appearance.

[Illustration: MORNING CAPS.]

FIG. 4. MORNING COSTUME.--Dress and pardessus of printed cambric muslin,
the pattern consisting of wreaths and bouquets of flowers. Jupon of
plain, white cambric muslin, edged with a border of rich open
needlework. The sleeves of the pardessus are gathered up in front of the
arm. The white under-sleeves, which do not descend to the wrists, are
finished by two rows of vandyked needlework. A small needlework collar.
Lace cap of the round form, placed very backward on the head, and
trimmed with full coques of pink and green ribbon at each ear.

[Illustration: FIG. 4--MORNING COSTUME.]


Minor errors in punctuation have been corrected without note.

The following typographical errors have been corrected:

  Page  Corrected Text                             Original had
  435   fine view of the Firth of Forth            Frith
  439   when the curtains of the evening           curttains
  456   so I couldn't sleep comfortable            could'nt
  465   splendid creature on which he is mounted   spendid
  486   ancient hilarity of the English peasant    peasaat
  496   I shall not readily forget,                readi-
  497   "They didn't think so at Enghein."         did'nt
  507   Andrew to be out so late                   to to
  522   I was no sooner in bed                     was was
  524   Were murmuring to the moon!                to to
  532   heavy frames, hung round the walls         roung
  549   he is justly punished for his offenses     punnished
  549   publisher gives £500                       gives gives
  565   Progress of the World                      of of
  566   be very rich in gold                       be be
  567   published is WORDSWORTH'S posthumous       WORDSWORT'S

The following words with questionable spellings have been retained:
auspicies, dacent, dacency, Elizabethean, vleys. Variant spellings of
dillettanti and dilettanti have been retained. Inconsistent hyphenation
is as per the original.

The following errors which can not be corrected were noted:

On page 520, it appears that one or more lines may be missing from the
original here:

  "sulphur mixed with it--and they said,
  Indeed it was putting a great affront on the"

On page 560, in the paragraph starting "A communication from M.
Trémaux..." the protagonist is later referred to as M. Trévaux.

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software suite offers a broad range of search, navigation and discovery
solutions for desktop search, intranet search, SharePoint search and embedded
search applications.  ISYS has been deployed by thousands of organizations
operating in a variety of industries, including government, legal, law
enforcement, financial services, healthcare and recruitment.