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Title: Harper's New Monthly Magazine, Vol. 3, No. 15, August, 1851
Author: Various
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Harper's New Monthly Magazine, Vol. 3, No. 15, August, 1851" ***

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                                HARPER'S

                         NEW MONTHLY MAGAZINE.

                    NO. XV.--AUGUST, 1851.--VOL. III.



                          TABLE OF CONTENTS


             NAPOLEON BONAPARTE.                                  289

             THE SOMNAMBULE.                                      304

             THE HOUSEHOLD OF SIR THO^S. MORE.                    310

             REMINISCENCES OF AN ATTORNEY.                        314

             VILLAGE LIFE IN GERMANY.                             320

             A PEEP AT THE "PERAHARRA."                           322

             A TOBACCO FACTORY IN SPAIN.                          326

             INFIRMITIES OF GENIUS.                               327

             RACE HORSES AND HORSE RACES.                         329

             HARTLEY COLERIDGE.                                   334

             THE ORIENTAL SALOONS IN MADRID.                      335

             PHANTOMS AND REALITIES.--AN AUTOBIOGRAPHY.           337

             THE FEET-WASHING ON GOOD FRIDAY IN MUNICH.           349

             A PEDESTRIAN IN HOLLAND.                             351

             THE LAST PRIESTESS OF PELE.                          354

             A SPANISH BULL FIGHT.                                359

             MAURICE TIERNAY, THE SOLDIER OF FORTUNE.             360

             FRENCH COTTAGE COOKERY.                              369

             STUDENT LIFE IN PARIS.                               373

             A FAQUIR'S CURSE.                                    375

             LOVE AND SMUGGLING.--A STORY OF THE ENGLISH COAST.   378

             AMERICAN NOTABILITIES.                               384

             THE HUNTER'S WIFE.                                   388

             THE WARNINGS OF THE PAST.                            391

             THE PIE SHOPS OF LONDON.                             392

             MY NOVEL; OR, VARIETIES IN ENGLISH LIFE.             394

             Monthly Record of Current Events.                    411

             Literary Notices.                                    419

             Editor's Drawer.                                     420

             WOMAN'S EMANCIPATION.                                424

             Three Leaves from Punch.                             425

             FASHIONS FOR AUGUST.                                 431



                          NAPOLEON BONAPARTE.

                          BY JOHN S. C. ABBOTT


                        I. CHILDHOOD AND YOUTH.

The island of Corsica, sublimely picturesque with its wild ravines and
rugged mountains, emerges from the bosom of the Mediterranean Sea, about
one hundred miles from the coast of France. It was formerly a province
of Italy, and was Italian in its language, sympathies, and customs. In
the year 1767 it was invaded by a French army, and after several most
sanguinary conflicts, the inhabitants were compelled to yield to
superior power, and Corsica was annexed to the empire of the Bourbons.

At the time of this invasion there was a young lawyer, of Italian
extraction, residing upon the island, whose name was Charles Bonaparte.
He was endowed with commanding beauty of person, great vigor of mind,
and his remote lineage was illustrious, but the opulence of the noble
house had passed away, and the descendant of a family, whose line could
be traced far back into the twilight of the dark ages, was under the
fortunate necessity of being dependent for his support upon the energies
of his own mind. He had married Letitia Raniolini, one of the most
beautiful and accomplished of the young ladies of Corsica. Of thirteen
children born to them eight survived to attain maturity. As a successful
lawyer the father of this large family was able to provide them with an
ample competence. His illustrious descent gave him an elevated position
in society, and the energies of his mind, ever in vigorous action,
invested him with powerful influence.

The family occupied a town house, an ample stone mansion, in Ajaccio,
the principal city of the island. They also enjoyed a very delightful
country retreat near the sea-shore, a few miles from Ajaccio. This rural
home was the favorite resort of the children during the heats of summer.
When the French invaded Corsica, Charles Bonaparte, then quite a young
man, having been married but a few years, abandoned the peaceful
profession of the law, and grasping his sword, united with his
countrymen, under the banner of General Paoli, to resist the invaders.
His wife, Letitia, had then but one child, Joseph. She was expecting
soon to give birth to another. Civil war was desolating the little
island. Paoli and his band of patriots, defeated again and again, were
retreating before their victorious foes into the fastnesses of the
mountains. Letitia followed the fortunes of her husband, and,
notwithstanding the embarrassment of her condition, accompanied him on
horseback in these perilous and fatiguing expeditions. The conflict,
however, was short, and, by the energies of the sword, Corsica became a
province of France, and the Italians who inhabited the island became the
unwilling subjects of the Bourbon throne. On the 15th of August, 1769,
in anticipation of her confinement, Letitia had taken refuge in her town
house at Ajaccio. On the morning of that day she attended church, but,
during the service, admonished by approaching pains, she was obliged
suddenly to return home, and throwing herself upon a couch, covered with
an ancient piece of tapestry, upon which was embroidered the battles and
the heroes of the Illiad, she gave birth to her second son, Napoleon
Bonaparte. Had the young Napoleon seen the light two months earlier he
would have been by birth an Italian, not a Frenchman, for but eight
weeks had then elapsed since the island had been transferred to the
dominion of France.

The father of Napoleon died not many years after the birth of that child
whose subsequent renown has filled the world. He is said to have
appreciated the remarkable powers of his son, and, in the delirium which
preceded his death, he was calling upon Napoleon to help him. Madame
Bonaparte, by this event, was left a widow with eight children, Joseph,
Napoleon, Lucien, Jerome, Eliza, Pauline, and Caroline. Her means were
limited, but her mental endowments were commensurate with the weighty
responsibilities which devolved upon her. Her children all appreciated
the superiority of her character, and yielded, with perfect and
unquestioning submission, to her authority. Napoleon in particular ever
regarded his mother with the most profound respect and affection. He
repeatedly declared that the family were entirely indebted to her for
that physical, intellectual, and moral training, which prepared them to
ascend the lofty summits of power to which they finally attained. He was
so deeply impressed with the sense of these obligations that he often
said, "My opinion is that the future good or bad conduct of a child,
depends entirely upon its mother." One of his first acts, on attaining
power, was to surround his mother with every luxury which wealth could
furnish. And when placed at the head of the government of France, he
immediately and energetically established schools for female education,
remarking that France needed nothing so much to promote its regeneration
as good mothers.

Madame Bonaparte after the death of her husband, resided with her
children in their country house. It was a retired residence, approached
by an avenue overarched by lofty trees and bordered by flowering shrubs.
A smooth, sunny lawn, which extended in front of the house, lured these
children, so unconscious of the high destinies which awaited them, to
their infantile sports. They chased the butterfly; they played in the
little pools of water with their naked feet; in childish gambols they
rode upon the back of the faithful dog, as happy as if their brows were
never to ache beneath the burden of a crown. How mysterious the designs
of that inscrutable Providence, which, in the island of Corsica, under
the sunny skies of the Mediterranean, was thus rearing a Napoleon, and
far away, beneath the burning sun of the tropics, under the shade of the
cocoa groves and orange-trees of the West Indies, was moulding the
person and ennobling the affections of the beautiful and lovely
Josephine. It was by a guidance, which neither of these children sought,
that they were conducted from their widely separated and obscure homes
to the metropolis of France. There, by their united energies, which had
been fostered in solitary studies and deepest musings they won for
themselves the proudest throne upon which the sun has ever risen; a
throne which in power and splendor eclipsed all that had been told of
Roman, or Persian, or Egyptian greatness.

[Illustration: THE BIRTH-HOUSE OF NAPOLEON.]

The dilapidated villa in Corsica, where Napoleon passed his infantile
years, still exists, and the thoughtful tourist loses himself in pensive
reverie as he wanders over the lawn where those children have played--as
he passes through the vegetable garden in the rear of the house, which
enticed them to toil with their tiny hoes and spades, and as he
struggles through the wilderness of shrubbery, now running to wild
waste, in the midst of which once could have been heard the merry shouts
of these infantile kings and queens. Their voices are now hushed in
death. But the records of earth can not show a more eventful drama than
that enacted by these young Bonapartes between the cradle and the grave.

There is, in a sequestered and romantic spot upon the ground, an
isolated granite rock, of wild and rugged form, in the fissures of which
there is something resembling a cave, which still retains the name of
"Napoleon's Grotto." This solitary rock was the favorite resort of the
pensive and meditative child, even in his earliest years. When his
brothers and sisters were in most happy companionship in the garden, or
on the lawn, and the air resounded with their mirthful voices, Napoleon
would steal away alone to his loved retreat. There, in the long and
sunny afternoons, with a book in his hand, he would repose, in a
recumbent posture, for hours, gazing upon the broad expanse of the
Mediterranean, spread out before him, and upon the blue sky, which
overarched his head. Who can imagine the visions which in those hours
arose before the expanding energies of that wonderful mind?

Napoleon could not be called an amiable child. He was silent and
retiring in his disposition, melancholy and irritable in his
temperament, and impatient of restraint. He was not fond of
companionship nor of play. He had no natural joyousness or buoyancy of
spirit, no frankness of disposition. His brothers and sisters were not
fond of him, though they admitted his superiority. "Joseph," said an
uncle at that time, "is the eldest of the family, but Napoleon is its
head." His passionate energy and decision of character were such that
his brother Joseph, who was a mild, amiable, and unassuming boy, was
quite in subjection to his will. It was observed that his proud spirit
was unrelenting under any severity of punishment. With stoical firmness,
and without the shedding of a tear, he would endure any inflictions. At
one time he was unjustly accused of a fault which another had committed.
He silently endured the punishment and submitted to the disgrace, and to
the subsistence for three days on the coarsest fare, rather than betray
his companion; and he did this, not from any special friendship for the
one in the wrong, but from an innate pride and firmness of spirit.
Impulsive in his disposition, his anger was easily and violently
aroused, and as rapidly passed away. There were no tendencies to cruelty
in his nature, and no malignant passion could long hold him in
subjection.

There is still preserved upon the island of Corsica, as an interesting
relic, a small brass cannon, weighing about thirty pounds, which was the
early and favorite plaything of Napoleon. Its loud report was music to
his childish ears. In imaginary battle he saw whole squadrons mown down
by the discharges of his formidable piece of artillery. Napoleon was the
favorite child of his father, and had often sat upon his knee; and, with
a throbbing heart, a heaving bosom, and a tearful eye, listened to his
recital of those bloody battles in which the patriots of Corsica had
been compelled to yield to the victorious French. Napoleon hated the
French. He fought those battles over again. He delighted, in fancy, to
sweep away the embattled host with his discharges of grape-shot; to see
the routed foe, flying over the plain, and to witness the dying and the
dead covering the ground. He left the bat and the ball, the kite and the
hoop for others, and in this strange divertisement found exhilarating
joy.

He loved to hear, from his mother's lips, the story of her hardships and
sufferings, as, with her husband and the vanquished Corsicans, she fled
from village to village, and from fastness to fastness before their
conquering enemies. The mother was probably but little aware of the
warlike spirit she was thus nurturing in the bosom of her son, but with
her own high mental endowments, she could not be insensible of the
extraordinary capacities which had been conferred upon the silent,
thoughtful, pensive listener. There were no mirthful tendencies in the
character of Napoleon; no tendencies in childhood, youth, or manhood to
frivolous amusements or fashionable dissipation. "My mother," said
Napoleon, at St. Helena, "loves me. She is capable of selling every
thing for me, even to her last article of clothing." This distinguished
lady died at Marseilles in the year 1822, about a year after the death
of her illustrious son upon the island of St. Helena. Seven of her
children were still living, to each of whom she bequeathed nearly two
millions of dollars; while to her brother, Cardinal Fesch, she left a
superb palace, embellished with the most magnificent decorations of
furniture, paintings, and sculpture which Europe could furnish. The son,
who had conferred all this wealth--to whom the family was indebted for
all this greatness, and who had filled the world with his renown, died a
prisoner in a dilapidated stable, upon the most bleak and barren isle of
the ocean. The dignified character of this exalted lady is illustrated
by the following anecdote: Soon after Napoleon's assumption of the
imperial purple, he happened to meet his mother in the gardens of St.
Cloud. The Emperor was surrounded with his courtiers, and half playfully
extended his hand for her to kiss. "Not so, my son," she gravely
replied, at the same time presenting her hand in return, "it is your
duty to kiss the hand of her who gave you life."

"Left without guide, without support," says Napoleon, "my mother was
obliged to take the direction of affairs upon herself. But the task was
not above her strength. She managed every thing, provided for every
thing with a prudence which could neither have been expected from her
sex nor from her age. Ah, what a woman! where shall we look for her
equal? She watched over us with a solicitude unexampled. Every low
sentiment, every ungenerous affection was discouraged and discarded. She
suffered nothing but that which was grand and elevated to take root in
our youthful understandings. She abhorred falsehood, and would not
tolerate the slightest act of disobedience. None of our faults were
overlooked. Losses, privations, fatigue had no effect upon her. She
endured all, braved all. She had the energy of a man, combined with the
gentleness and delicacy of a woman."

A bachelor uncle owned the rural retreat where the family resided. He
was very wealthy, but very parsimonious. The young Bonapartes, though
living in the abundant enjoyment of all the necessaries of life, could
obtain but little money for the purchase of those thousand little
conveniences and luxuries which every boy covets. Whenever they ventured
to ask their uncle for coppers, he invariably pleaded poverty, assuring
them that though he had lands and vineyards, goats and poultry, he had
no money. At last the boys discovered a bag of doubloons secreted upon a
shelf. They formed a conspiracy, and, by the aid of Pauline, who was too
young to understand the share which she had in the mischief, they
contrived, on a certain occasion, when the uncle was pleading poverty,
to draw down the bag, and the glittering gold rolled over the floor. The
boys burst into shouts of laughter, while the good old man was almost
choked with indignation. Just at that moment Madame Bonaparte came in.
Her presence immediately silenced the merriment. She severely
reprimanded her sons for their improper behavior, and ordered them to
collect again the scattered doubloons.

When the island of Corsica was surrendered to the French, Count
Marboeuf was appointed, by the Court at Paris, as its governor. The
beauty of Madame Bonaparte, and her rich intellectual endowments,
attracted his admiration, and they frequently met in the small but
aristocratic circle of society, which the island afforded. He became a
warm friend of the family, and manifested much interest in the welfare
of the little Napoleon. The gravity of the child, his air of pensive
thoughtfulness, the oracular style of his remarks, which characterized
even that early period of life, strongly attracted the attention of the
governor, and he predicted that Napoleon would create for himself a path
through life of more than ordinary splendor.

[Illustration: THE HOME OF NAPOLEON'S CHILDHOOD.]

When Napoleon was but five or six years of age, he was placed in a
school with a number of other children. There a fair-haired little
maiden won his youthful heart. It was Napoleon's first love. His
impetuous nature was all engrossed by this new passion, and he inspired
as ardent an affection in the bosom of his loved companion as that which
she had enkindled in his own. He walked to and from school, holding the
hand of Giacominetta. He abandoned all the plays and companionship of
the other children to talk and muse with her. The older boys and girls
made themselves very merry with the display of affection which the
loving couple exhibited. Their mirth, however, exerted not the slightest
influence to abash Napoleon, though often his anger would be so aroused
by their insulting ridicule, that, regardless of the number or the size
of his adversaries, with sticks, stones, and every other implement which
came in his way, he would rush into their midst and attack them with
such a recklessness of consequences, that they were generally put to
flight. Then, with the pride of a conqueror, he would take the hand of
his infantile friend. The little Napoleon was, at this period of his
life, very careless in his dress, and almost invariably appeared with
his stockings slipped down about his heels. Some witty boy formed a
couplet, which was often shouted upon the play-ground, not a little to
the annoyance of the young lover.

          Napoleone di mezza calzetta
          Fa l'amore à Giacominetta.
          Napoleon with his stockings half off
          Makes love to Giacominetta.

When Napoleon was about ten years of age, Count Marboeuf obtained for
him admission to the military school at Brienne, near Paris. Forty years
afterward Napoleon remarked that he never could forget the pangs which
he then felt, when parting from his mother. Stoic as he was, his
stoicism then forsook him, and he wept like any other child. His journey
led him through Italy, and crossing France, he entered Paris. Little did
the young Corsican then imagine as he gazed awe-stricken upon the
splendors of the metropolis, that all those thronged streets were yet to
resound with his name, and that in those gorgeous palaces the proudest
kings and queens of Europe were to bow obsequiously before his unrivaled
power. The ardent and studious boy was soon established in school. His
companions regarded him as a foreigner, as he spoke the Italian
language, and the French was to him almost an unknown tongue. He found
that his associates were composed mostly of the sons of the proud and
wealthy nobility of France. Their pockets were filled with money, and
they indulged in the most extravagant expenditures. The haughtiness with
which these worthless sons of imperious but debauched and enervated
sires, affected to look down upon the solitary and unfriended alien,
produced an impression upon his mind which was never effaced. The
revolutionary struggle, that long and lurid day of storms and desolation
was just beginning darkly to dawn; the portentous rumblings of that
approaching earthquake, which soon uphove both altar and throne, and
overthrew all of the most sacred institutions of France in chaotic ruin,
fell heavily upon the ear. The young noblemen at Brienne taunted
Napoleon with being the son of a Corsican lawyer; for in that day of
aristocratic domination the nobility regarded all with contempt who were
dependent upon any exertions of their own for support. They sneered at
the plainness of Napoleon's dress, and at the emptiness of his purse.
His proud spirit was stung to the quick by these indignities, and his
temper was roused by that disdain to which he was compelled to submit,
and from which he could find no refuge. Then it was that there was
implanted in his mind that hostility which he ever afterward so signally
manifested to rank founded not upon merit but upon the accident of
birth. He thus early espoused this prominent principle of republicanism:
"I hate those French," said he, in an hour of bitterness, "and I will do
them all the mischief in my power."

Thirty years after this Napoleon said, "Called to the throne by the
voice of the people, my maxim has always been, '_A career open to
talent_,' without distinction of birth."

[Illustration: NAPOLEON AT BRIENNE.]

In consequence of this state of feeling, he secluded himself almost
entirely from his fellow-students, and buried himself in the midst of
his books and his maps. While they were wasting their time in
dissipation and in frivolous amusements, he consecrated his days and his
nights with untiring assiduity to study. He almost immediately elevated
himself above his companions, and, by his superiority, commanded their
respect. Soon he was regarded as the brightest ornament of the
institution, and Napoleon exulted in his conscious strength and his
undisputed exaltation. In all mathematical studies he became highly
distinguished. All books upon history, upon government, upon the
practical sciences he devoured with the utmost avidity. The poetry of
Homer and of Ossian he read and re-read with great delight. His mind
combined the poetical and the practical in most harmonious blending. In
a letter written to his mother at this time, he says, "With my sword by
my side, and Homer in my pocket, I hope to carve my way through the
world." Many of his companions regarded him as morose and moody, and
though they could not but respect him, they still disliked his recluse
habits and his refusal to participate in their amusements. He was seldom
seen upon the play-ground, but every leisure hour found him in the
library. The Lives of Plutarch he studied so thoroughly, and with such
profound admiration, that his whole soul became imbued with the spirit
of these illustrious men. All the thrilling scenes of Grecian and Roman
story, the rise and fall of empires, and deeds of heroic daring absorbed
his contemplation. Even at this early period of his life, and in all
subsequent years, he expressed utter contempt for those enervating tales
of fiction, with which so many of the readers of the present day are
squandering their time and enfeebling their energies. It may be doubted
whether he ever wasted an hour upon such worthless reading. When
afterward seated upon the throne of France, he would not allow a novel
to be brought into the palace; and has been known to take such a book
from the hands of a maid of honor, and after giving her a severe
reprimand to throw it into the fire. So great was his ardor for
intellectual improvement, that he considered every day as lost in which
he had not made perceptible progress in knowledge. By this rigid mental
discipline he acquired that wonderful power of concentration by which he
was ever enabled to simplify subjects the most difficult and
complicated.

He made no efforts to conciliate the good-will of his fellow-students;
and he was so stern in his morals and so unceremonious in his manners
that he was familiarly called the Spartan. At this time he was
distinguished by his Italian complexion, a piercing eagle eye, and by
that energy of conversational expression which, through life, gave such
an oracular import to all his utterances. His unremitting application to
study, probably impaired his growth, for his fine head was developed
disproportionately with his small stature. Though stubborn and
self-willed in his intercourse with his equals, he was a firm friend of
strict discipline, and gave his support to established authority. This
trait of character, added to his diligence and brilliant attainments,
made him a great favorite with the professors. There was, however, one
exception. Napoleon took no interest in the study of the German
language. The German teacher, consequently, entertained a very
contemptible opinion of the talents of his pupil. It chanced that upon
one occasion Napoleon was absent from the class. M. Bouer, upon
inquiring, ascertained that he was employed that hour in the class of
engineers. "Oh! he does learn something, then," said the teacher,
ironically. "Why, sir!" a pupil rejoined; "he is esteemed the very first
mathematician in the school." "Truly," the irritated German replied, "I
have always heard it remarked, and have uniformly believed, that any
fool, and none but a fool, could learn mathematics." Napoleon afterward
relating this anecdote, laughingly said, "It would be curious to
ascertain whether M. Bouer lived long enough to learn my real character,
and enjoy the fruits of his own judgment."

Each student at Brienne had a small portion of land allotted to him,
which he might cultivate, or not, as he pleased. Napoleon converted his
little field into a garden. To prevent intrusion, he surrounded it with
palisades, and planted it thickly with trees. In the centre of this, his
fortified camp, he constructed a pleasant bower, which became to him a
substitute for the beloved grotto he had left in Corsica. To this grotto
he was wont to repair to study and to meditate, where he was exposed to
no annoyances from his frivolous fellow-students. In those trumpet-toned
proclamations which subsequently so often electrified Europe, one can
see the influence of these hours of unremitting mental application.

At that time he had few thoughts of any glory but military glory. Young
men were taught that the only path to renown was to be found through
fields of blood. All the peaceful arts of life, which tend to embellish
the world with competence and refinement, were despised. He only was the
chivalric gentleman, whose career was marked by conflagrations and
smouldering ruins, by the despair of the maiden, the tears and woe of
widows and orphans, and by the shrieks of the wounded and the dying.
Such was the school in which Napoleon was trained. The writings of
Voltaire and Rousseau had taught France, that the religion of Jesus
Christ was but a fable; that the idea of accountability at the bar of
God was a foolish superstition; that death was a sleep from which there
was no awaking; that life itself, aimless and objectless, was so
worthless a thing that it was a matter of most trivial importance how
soon its vapor should pass away. These peculiarities in the education of
Napoleon must be taken into account in forming a correct estimate of his
character. It could hardly be said that he was educated in a Christian
land. France renounced Christianity and plunged into the blackest of
Pagan darkness, without any religion, and without a God. Though the
altars of religion were not, at this time, entirely swept away, they
were thoroughly undermined by that torrent of infidelity which, in
crested billows, was surging over the land. Napoleon had but little
regard for the lives of others and still less for his own. He never
commanded the meanest soldier to go where he was not willing to lead
him. Having never been taught any correct ideas of probation or
retribution, the question whether a few thousand illiterate peasants,
should eat, drink, and sleep for a few years more or less, was in his
view of little importance compared with those great measures of
political wisdom which should meliorate the condition of Europe for
ages. It is Christianity alone which stamps importance upon each
individual life, and which invests the apparent trivialities of time
with the sublimities of eternity. It is, indeed, strange that Napoleon,
graduating at the schools of infidelity and of war, should have
cherished so much of the spirit of humanity, and should have formed so
many just conceptions of right and wrong. It is, indeed, strange that
surrounded by so many allurements to entice him to voluptuous indulgence
and self-abandonment, he should have retained a character, so
immeasurably superior in all moral worth, to that of nearly all the
crowned heads who occupied the thrones around him.

The winter of 1784 was one of unusual severity. Large quantities of snow
fell, which so completely blocked up the walks, that the students at
Brienne could find but little amusement without doors. Napoleon
proposed, that to beguile the weary hours, they should erect an
extensive fortification of snow, with intrenchments and bastions,
parapets, ravelins, and horn-works. He had studied the science of
fortification with the utmost diligence, and, under his superintendence
the works were conceived and executed according to the strictest rules
of art. The power of his mind now displayed itself. No one thought of
questioning the authority of Napoleon. He planned and directed while a
hundred busy hands, with unquestioning alacrity, obeyed his will. The
works rapidly rose, and in such perfection of science, as to attract
crowds of the inhabitants of Brienne for their inspection. Napoleon
divided the school into two armies, one being intrusted with the defense
of the works, while the other composed the host of the besiegers. He
took upon himself the command of both bodies, now heading the besiegers
in the desperate assault, and now animating the besieged to an equally
vigorous defense. For several weeks this mimic warfare continued, during
which time many severe wounds were received on each side. In the heat of
the battle, when the bullets of snow were flying thick and fast, one of
the subordinate officers, venturing to disobey the commands of his
general, Napoleon felled him to the earth, inflicting a wound which left
a scar for life.

[Illustration: THE SNOW FORT.]

In justice to Napoleon it must be related that when he had attained the
highest pitch of grandeur, this unfortunate school-boy, who had thus
experienced the rigor of Napoleon's military discipline, sought to
obtain an audience with the Emperor. Calamities had darkened the path of
the unfortunate man, and he was in poverty and obscurity. Napoleon, not
immediately recalling his name to mind, inquired if the applicant could
designate some incident of boyhood which would bring him to his
recollection. "Sire!" replied the courtier; "he has a deep scar upon his
forehead which he says was inflicted by your hand." "Ah!" rejoined
Napoleon, smiling; "I know the meaning of that scar perfectly well. It
was caused by an ice bullet which I hurled at his head. Bid him enter."
The poor man made his appearance, and immediately obtained from Napoleon
every thing that he requested.

At one time the students at Brienne got up a private theatre for their
entertainment. The wife of the porter of the school, who sold the boys
cakes and apples, presented herself at the door of the theatre to obtain
admission to see the play, of the death of Cæsar, which was to be
performed that evening. Napoleon's sense of decorum was shocked at the
idea of the presence of a female among such a host of young men, and he
indignantly exclaimed, in characteristic language, "Remove that woman,
who brings here the license of camps."

Napoleon remained in the school at Brienne for five years, from 1779
till 1784. His vacations were usually spent in Corsica. He was
enthusiastically attached to his native island, and enjoyed exceedingly
rambling over its mountains, and through its valleys, and listening at
humble firesides to those traditions of violence and crime with which
every peasant was familiar. He was a great admirer of Paoli, the friend
of his father and the hero of Corsica. At Brienne the students were
invited to dine, by turns, with the principal of the school. One day
when Napoleon was at the table, one of the professors, knowing his young
pupil's admiration for Paoli, spoke disrespectfully of the distinguished
general, that he might tease the sensitive lad. Napoleon promptly and
energetically replied, "Paoli, sir, was a great man! He loved his
country; and I never shall forgive my father, for consenting to the
union of Corsica with France. He ought to have followed Paoli's fortunes
and to have fallen with him."

Paoli, who upon the conquest of Corsica had fled to England, was
afterward permitted to return to his native island. Napoleon, though in
years but a boy, was, in mind a full-grown man. He sought the
acquaintance of Paoli, and they became intimate friends. The veteran
general and the manly boy took many excursions together over the island;
and Paoli pointed out to his intensely-interested companion, the fields
where sanguinary battles had been fought, and the positions which the
little army of Corsicans had occupied in the struggle for independence.
The energy and decision of character displayed by Napoleon produced such
an impression upon the mind of this illustrious man, that he at one time
exclaimed, "Oh, Napoleon! you do not at all resemble the moderns. You
belong only to the heroes of Plutarch."

Pichegru, who afterward became so celebrated as the conqueror of Holland
and who came to so melancholy a death, was a member of the school at
Brienne at the same time with Napoleon. Being several years older than
the young Corsican, he instructed him in mathematics. The commanding
talents and firm character of his pupil deeply impressed the mind of
Pichegru. Many years after, when Napoleon was rising rapidly to power,
the Bourbons proposed to Pichegru, who had espoused the royalist cause,
to sound Napoleon and ascertain if he could be purchased to advocate
their claims. "It will be but lost time to attempt it," said Pichegru:
"I knew him in his youth. His character is inflexible. He has taken his
side, and he will not change it."

One of the ladies of Brienne, occasionally invited some of the
school-boys to sup with her at her chateau. Napoleon was once passing
the evening with this lady, and, in the course of conversation, she
remarked, "Turenne was certainly a very great man; but I should have
liked him better had he not burned the Palatinate." "What signifies
that," was Napoleon's characteristic remark, "if the burning was
necessary to the object he had in view?"[1] This sentiment, uttered in
childhood, is a key to the character of Napoleon. It was his great moral
defect. To attain an end which he deemed important, he would ride over
every obstacle. He was not a cruel man. He was not a malignant man. It
was his great ambition to make himself illustrious by making France the
most powerful, enlightened, and happy empire upon the surface of the
globe. If, to attain this end, it was necessary to sacrifice a million
of lives, he would not shrink from the sacrifice. Had he been educated
in the school of Christianity, he might have learned that the end will
not sanctify the means. Napoleon was not a Christian.

    [1] Turenne was a marshal of France, and a distinguished
    military leader in the reign of Louis XIV. He marched an
    invading army into the Palatinate, a province of Germany, on
    the Rhine, and spread devastation every where around him. From
    the top of his castle at Manheim, the Elector of the
    Palatinate, at one time saw two of his cities and twenty five
    of his villages in flames.

His character for integrity and honor ever stood very high. At Brienne
he was a great favorite with the younger boys, whose rights he defended
against the invasions of the older. The indignation which Napoleon felt
at this time, in view of the arrogance of the young nobility, produced
an impression upon his character, the traces of which never passed away.
When his alliance with the royal house of Austria was proposed, the
Emperor Francis, whom Napoleon very irreverently called "an old
granny,"[2] was extremely anxious to prove the illustrious descent of
his prospective son-in-law.

    [2] Some one repeated, to Maria Louisa, this remark of
    Napoleon. She did not understand its meaning, and went to
    Talleyrand, inquiring, "What does that mean, Monsieur, _an old
    granny_, what does it mean?" "It means," the accomplished
    courtier replied, with one of his most profound bows, "it
    means a venerable sage."

He accordingly employed many persons to make researches among the
records of genealogy, to trace out the grandeur of his ancestral line.
Napoleon refused to have the account published, remarking, "I had rather
be the descendant of an honest man than of any petty tyrant of Italy. I
wish my nobility to commence with myself, and to derive all my titles
from the French people. I am the Rodolph of Hapsburg of my family. My
patent of nobility dates from the battle of Montenotte."[3]

    [3] Rodolph of Hapsburg, was a gentleman, who by his own
    energies had elevated himself to the imperial throne of
    Germany; and became the founder of the house of Hapsburg. He
    was _the ancestor_ to whom the Austrian kings looked back with
    the loftiest pride.

Upon the occasion of this marriage, the Pope, in order to render the
pedigree of Napoleon more illustrious, proposed the canonization of a
poor monk, by the name of Bonaparte, who for centuries had been quietly
reposing in his grave. "_Holy Father!_" exclaimed Napoleon, "_I beseech
you, spare me the ridicule of that step. You being in my power, all the
world will say that I forced you to create a saint out of my family._"
To some remonstrances which were made against this marriage Napoleon
coolly replied, "I certainly should not enter into this alliance, if I
were not aware of the origin of Maria Louise being equally as noble as
my own."

Still Napoleon was by no means regardless of that mysterious influence
which illustrious descent invariably exerts over the human mind. Through
his life one can trace the struggles of those conflicting sentiments.
The marshals of France, and the distinguished generals who surrounded
his throne, were raised from the rank and file of the army, by their own
merit; but he divorced his faithful Josephine, and married a daughter of
the Cæsars, that by an illustrious alliance he might avail himself of
this universal and innate prejudice. No power of reasoning can induce
one to look with the same interest upon the child of Cæsar and the child
of the beggar.

Near the close of Napoleon's career, while Europe in arms was crowding
upon him, the Emperor found himself in desperate and hopeless conflict
on that very plain at Brienne, where in childhood he had reared his
fortification of snow. He sought an interview with the old woman, whom
he had ejected from the theatre, and from whom he had often purchased
milk and fruit.

"Do you remember a boy by the name of Bonaparte," inquired Napoleon,
"who formerly attended this school?" "Yes! very well," was the answer.
"Did he always pay you for what he bought?" "Yes;" replied the old
woman, "and he often compelled the other boys to pay, when they wished
to defraud me." "Perhaps he may have forgotten a few sous," said
Napoleon, "and here is a purse of gold to discharge any outstanding debt
which may remain between us." At this same time he pointed out to his
companion a tree, under which, with unbounded delight, he read, when a
boy, Jerusalem Delivered, and where, in the warm summer evenings, with
indescribable luxury of emotion, he listened to the tolling of the bells
on the distant village-church spires. To such impressions his
sensibilities were peculiarly alive. The monarch then turned away sadly
from these reminiscenses of childhood, to plunge, seeking death, into
the smoke and the carnage of his last and despairing conflicts.

It was a noble trait in the character of Napoleon, that in his day of
power he so generously remembered even the casual acquaintances of his
early years. He ever wrote an exceedingly illegible hand, as his
impetuous and restless spirit was such that he could not drive his pen
with sufficient rapidity over his paper. The poor writing-master at
Brienne was in utter despair, and could do nothing with his pupil. Years
after, Napoleon was sitting one day with Josephine, in his cabinet at
St. Cloud, when a poor man, with threadbare coat, was ushered into his
presence. Trembling before his former pupil, he announced himself as the
writing-master of Brienne, and solicited a pension from the Emperor.
Napoleon affected anger, and said, "Yes, you were my writing-master,
were you? and a pretty chirographist you made of me, too. Ask Josephine,
there, what she thinks of my handwriting!" The Empress, with that
amiable tact, which made her the most lovely of women, smilingly
replied, "I assure you, sir, his letters are perfectly delightful." The
Emperor laughed cordially at the well-timed compliment, and made the
poor old man comfortable for the rest of his days.

In the days of his prosperity, amidst all the cares of empire, Napoleon
remembered the poor Corsican woman, who was the kind nurse of his
infancy, and settled upon her a pension of two hundred dollars a year.
Though far advanced in life, the good woman was determined to see her
little nursling, in the glory of whose exaltation her heart so
abundantly shared. With this object in view she made a journey to Paris.
The Emperor received her most kindly, and transported the happy woman
home again with her pension doubled.

In one of Napoleon's composition exercises at Brienne, he gave rather
free utterance to his republican sentiments, and condemned the conduct
of the royal family. The professor of rhetoric rebuked the young
republican severely for the offensive passage, and to add to the
severity of the rebuke, compelled him to throw the paper into the fire.
Long afterward, the professor was commanded to attend a levee of the
First Consul to receive Napoleon's younger brother Jerome as a pupil.
Napoleon received him with great kindness, but at the close of the
business, very good-humoredly reminded him that times were very
considerably changed since the burning of that paper.

Napoleon remained in the school of Brienne for five years, from 1779
till 1784. He had just entered his fifteenth year, when he was promoted
to the military school at Paris. Annually, three of the best scholars,
from each of the twelve provincial military schools of France, were
promoted to the military school at Paris. This promotion, at the
earliest possible period in which his age would allow his admission,
shows the high rank, as a scholar, which Napoleon sustained. The records
of the Minister of War contain the following interesting entry:

"State of the king's scholars eligible to enter into service, or to pass
to the school at Paris. Monsieur de Bonaparte (Napoleon), born 15th
August, 1769; in height five feet six and a half inches; has finished
his fourth season; of a good constitution, health excellent, character
mild, honest, and grateful; conduct exemplary; has always distinguished
himself by application to mathematics; understands history and geography
tolerably well; is indifferently skilled in merely ornamental studies,
and in Latin, in which he has only finished his fourth course; would
make an excellent sailor; deserves to be passed to the school at Paris."

The military school at Paris, which Napoleon now entered, was furnished
with all the appliances of aristocratic luxury. It had been founded for
the sons of the nobility, who had been accustomed to every indulgence.
Each of the three hundred young men assembled in this school had a
servant to groom his horse, to polish his weapons, to brush his boots,
and to perform all other necessary menial services. The cadet reposed on
a luxurious bed, and was fed with sumptuous viands. There are few lads
of fifteen who would not have been delighted with the dignity, the ease,
and the independence of this style of living. Napoleon, however,
immediately saw that this was by no means the training requisite to
prepare officers for the toils and the hardships of war. He addressed an
energetic memorial to the governor, urging the banishment of this
effeminacy and voluptuousness from the military school. He argued that
the students should learn to groom their own horses, to clean their
armor, and to perform all those services, and to inure themselves to
those privations which would prepare them for the exposure and the toils
of actual service. No incident in the childhood or in the life of
Napoleon shows more decisively than this his energetic, self-reliant,
commanding character. The wisdom, the fortitude, and the foresight, not
only of mature years, but of the mature years of the most powerful
intellect, were here exhibited. The military school which he afterward
established at Fontainebleau, and which obtained such world-wide
celebrity, was founded upon the model of this youthful memorial. And one
distinguishing cause of the extraordinary popularity which Napoleon
afterward secured, was to be found in the fact, that through life he
called upon no one to encounter perils, or to endure hardships which he
was not perfectly ready himself to encounter or to endure.

At Paris the elevation of his character, his untiring devotion to study,
his peculiar conversational energy, and the almost boundless information
he had acquired, attracted much attention. His solitary and recluse
habits, and his total want of sympathy with most of his fellow students
in their idleness, and in their frivolous amusements, rendered him far
from popular with the multitude. His great superiority was, however,
universally recognized. He pressed on in his studies with as much
vehemence as if he had been forewarned of the extraordinary career
before him, and that but a few months were left in which to garner up
those stores of knowledge with which he was to remodel the institutions
of Europe, and almost change the face of the world.

About this time he was at Marseilles on some day of public festivity. A
large party of young gentlemen and ladies were amusing themselves with
dancing. Napoleon was rallied upon his want of gallantry in declining to
participate in the amusements of the evening. He replied, "It is not by
playing and dancing that a _man_ is to be formed." Indeed he never, from
childhood, took any pleasure in fashionable dissipation. He had not a
very high opinion of men or women in general. He was perfectly willing
to provide amusements which he thought adapted to the capacities of the
masculine and feminine minions flitting about the court; but his own
expanded mind was so engrossed with vast projects of utility and renown,
that he found no moments to spare in cards and billiards, and he was at
the furthest possible remove from what may be called a lady's man.

On one occasion a mathematical problem of great difficulty having been
proposed to the class, Napoleon, in order to solve it, secluded himself
in his room for seventy-two hours; and he solved the problem. This
extraordinary faculty of intense and continuous exertion both of mind
and body, was his distinguishing characteristic through life. Napoleon
did not blunder into renown. His triumphs were not casualties; his
achievements were not accidents; his grand conceptions were not the
brilliant flashes of unthinking and unpremeditated genius. Never did man
prepare the way for greatness by more untiring devotion to the
acquisition of all useful knowledge, and to the attainment of the
highest possible degree of mental discipline. That he possessed native
powers of mind, of extraordinary vigor it is true; but those powers were
expanded and energized by Herculean study. His mighty genius impelled to
the sacrifice of every indulgence, and to sleepless toil.

The vigor of Napoleon's mind, so conspicuous in conversation, was
equally remarkable in his exercises in composition. His professor of
Belles-Lettres remarked that Napoleon's amplifications ever reminded him
of "flaming missiles ejected from a volcano." While in the military
school at Paris the Abbé Raynal became so forcibly impressed with his
astonishing mental acquirements, and the extent of his capacities, that
he frequently invited him, though Napoleon was then but a lad of
sixteen, to breakfast at his table with other illustrious guests. His
mind was at that time characterized by great logical accuracy, united
with the most brilliant powers of masculine imagination. His
conversation, laconic, graphic, oracular, arrested every mind. Had the
vicissitudes of life so ordered his lot, he would undoubtedly have been
as distinguished in the walks of literature and in the halls of science,
as he became in the field and in the cabinet. That he was one of the
profoundest of thinkers all admit; and his trumpet-toned proclamations
resounded through Europe, rousing the army to almost a frenzy of
enthusiasm, and electrifying alike the peasant and the prince. Napoleon
had that comprehensive genius which would have been pre-eminent in any
pursuit to which he had devoted the energies of his mind. Great as were
his military victories, they were by no means the greatest of his
achievements.

In September, 1785, Napoleon, then but sixteen years of age, was
examined to receive an appointment in the army. The mathematical branch
of the examination was conducted by the celebrated La Place. Napoleon
passed the ordeal triumphantly. In history he had made very extensive
attainments. His proclamations, his public addresses, his private
conferences with his ministers in his cabinet, all attest the
philosophical discrimination with which he had pondered the records of
the past, and had studied the causes of the rise and fall of empires. At
the close of his examination in history, the historical professor,
Monsieur Keruglion, wrote opposite to the signature of Napoleon, "A
Corsican by character and by birth. This young man will distinguish
himself in the world if favored by fortune." This professor was very
strongly attached to his brilliant pupil. He often invited him to
dinner, and cultivated his confidence. Napoleon in after years did not
forget this kindness, and many years after, upon the death of the
professor, settled a very handsome pension upon his widow. Napoleon, as
the result of this examination, was appointed second lieutenant in a
regiment of artillery. He was exceedingly gratified in becoming thus
early in life an officer in the army. To a boy of sixteen it must have
appeared the attainment of a very high degree of human grandeur.

That evening, arrayed in his new uniform, with epaulets and the enormous
boots which at that time were worn by the artillery, in an exuberant
glow of spirits, he called upon a female friend, Mademoiselle Permon,
who afterward became Duchess of Abrantes, and who was regarded as one
of the most brilliant wits of the imperial court. A younger sister of
this lady, who had just returned from a boarding-school, was so much
struck with the comical appearance of Napoleon, whose feminine
proportions so little accorded with this military costume, that she
burst into an immoderate fit of laughter, declaring that he resembled
nothing so much as "Puss in Boots." The raillery was too just not to be
felt. Napoleon struggled against his sense of mortification, and soon
regained his accustomed equanimity. A few days after, to prove that he
cherished no rancorous recollection of the occurrence, he presented the
mirthful maiden with an elegantly bound copy of Puss in Boots.

[Illustration: LIEUTENANT BONAPARTE.]

Napoleon soon, exulting in his new commission, repaired to Valence to
join his regiment. His excessive devotion to study had impeded the full
development of his physical frame. Though exceedingly thin and fragile
in figure, there was a girlish gracefulness and beauty in his form; and
his noble brow and piercing eye attracted attention and commanded
respect. One of the most distinguished ladies of the place, Madame du
Colombier, became much interested in the young lieutenant, and he was
frequently invited to her house. He was there introduced to much
intelligent and genteel society. In after life he frequently spoke with
gratitude of the advantages he derived from this early introduction to
refined and polished associates. Napoleon formed a strong attachment for
a daughter of Madame du Colombier, a young lady of about his own age and
possessed of many accomplishments. They frequently enjoyed morning and
evening rambles through the pleasant walks in the environs of Valence.
Napoleon subsequently speaking of this youthful attachment said, "We
were the most innocent creatures imaginable. We contrived short
interviews together. I well remember one which took place, on a
midsummer's morning, just as the light began to dawn. It will scarcely
be credited that all our felicity consisted in eating cherries
together." The vicissitudes of life soon separated these young friends
from each other, and they met not again for ten years. Napoleon, then
Emperor of France, was, with a magnificent retinue, passing through
Lyons, when this young lady, who had since been married, and who had
encountered many misfortunes, with some difficulty gained access to him,
environed as he was with all the etiquette of royalty. Napoleon
instantly recognized his former friend and inquired minutely respecting
all her joys and griefs. He immediately assigned to her husband a post
which secured for him an ample competence, and conferred upon her the
situation of a maid of honor to one of his sisters.

From Valence Napoleon went to Lyons, having been ordered, with his
regiment, to that place in consequence of some disturbances which had
broken out there. His pay as lieutenant was quite inadequate to support
him in the rank of a gentleman. His widowed mother, with six children
younger than Napoleon, who was then but seventeen years of age, was
quite unable to supply him with funds. This pecuniary embarrassment
often exposed the high-spirited young officer to the keenest
mortification. It did not, however, in the slightest degree, impair his
energies or weaken his confidence in that peculiar consciousness, which
from childhood he had cherished, that he was endowed with extraordinary
powers, and that he was born to an exalted destiny. He secluded himself
from his brother officers, and, keeping aloof from all the haunts of
amusement and dissipation, cloistered himself in his study, and with
indefatigable energy devoted himself anew to the acquisition of
knowledge, laying up those inexhaustible stores of information and
gaining that mental discipline which proved of such incalculable
advantage to him in the brilliant career upon which he subsequently
entered.

While at Lyons, Napoleon, friendless and poor, was taken sick. He had a
small room in the attic of an hotel, where, alone, he lingered through
the weary hours of hunger and pain. A lady from Geneva, visiting some
friends at Lyons, happened to learn that a young officer was sick in the
hotel. She could only ascertain, respecting him, that he was quite
young--that his name was Bonaparte--then an unknown name; and that his
purse was very scantily provided. Her benevolent feelings impelled her
to his bedside. She immediately felt the fascination with which Napoleon
could ever charm those who approached him. With unremitting kindness she
nursed him, and had the gratification of seeing him so far restored as
to be able to rejoin his regiment. Napoleon took his leave of the
benevolent lady with many expressions of gratitude for the kindness he
had experienced.

After the lapse of years when Napoleon had been crowned Emperor, he
received a letter from this lady, congratulating him upon the eminence
he had attained, and informing him that disastrous days had darkened
around her. Napoleon immediately returned an answer, containing two
thousand dollars, and expressing the most friendly assurances of his
immediate attention to any favors she might in future solicit.

The Academy at Lyons offered a prize for the best dissertation upon the
question: "What are the institutions most likely to contribute to human
happiness?" Napoleon wrote upon the subject, and though there were many
competitors, the prize was awarded to him. Many years afterward, when
seated upon the throne, his Minister Talleyrand sent a courier to Lyons
and obtained the manuscript. Thinking it would please the Emperor, he,
one day, when they were alone, put the essay into Napoleon's hands,
asking him if he knew the author. Napoleon immediately recognizing the
writing, threw it into the flames, saying at the same time, that it was
a boyish production full of visionary and impracticable schemes. He
also, in these hours of unceasing study, wrote a History of Corsica,
which he was preparing to publish, when the rising storms of the times
led him to lay aside his pen for the sword.

Two great parties, the Royalists and the Republicans, were now
throughout France contending for the supremacy. Napoleon joined the
Republican side. Most of the officers in the army being sons of the Old
Nobility, were of the opposite party; and this made him very unpopular
with them. He, however, with great firmness, openly avowed his
sentiments, and eagerly watched the progress of those events, which he
thought would open to him a career of fame and fortune. He still
continued to prosecute his studies with untiring diligence. He was, at
this period of his life, considered proud, haughty, and irascible,
though he was loved with great enthusiasm by the few whose friendship he
chose to cultivate. His friends appreciated his distinguished character
and attainments, and predicted his future eminence. His remarkable
logical accuracy of mind, his lucid and energetic expressions, his
immense information upon all points of history and upon every subject of
practical importance, his extensive scientific attainments, and his
thorough accomplishments as an officer, rendered him an object of
general observation, and secured for him the respect even of the idlers
who disliked his unsocial habits.

About this time, in consequence of some popular tumults at Auxonne,
Napoleon, with his regiment, was ordered to that place. He, with some
subaltern officers, was quartered at the house of a barber. Napoleon, as
usual, immediately, when off of duty, cloistered himself in his room
with his law books, his scientific treatises, his histories, and his
mathematics. His associate officers loitered through the listless days,
coquetting with the pretty wife of the barber, smoking cigars in the
shop, and listening to the petty gossip of the place. The barber's wife
was quite annoyed at receiving no attentions from the handsome,
distinguished, but ungallant young lieutenant. She accordingly disliked
him exceedingly. A few years after as Napoleon, then commander of the
army of Italy, was on his way to Marengo, he passed through Auxonne. He
stopped at the door of the barber's shop and asked his former hostess,
if she remembered a young officer by the name of Bonaparte, who was once
quartered in her family. "Indeed, I do," was the pettish reply, "and a
very disagreeable inmate he was. He was always either shut up in his
room or, if he walked out, he never condescended to speak to any one."
"Ah! my good woman," Napoleon rejoined; "had I passed my time as you
wished to have me, I should not now have been in command of the army of
Italy."

The higher nobility and most of the officers in the army were in favor
of Royalty. The common soldiers and the great mass of the people were
advocates of Republicanism. Napoleon's fearless avowal, under all
circumstances, of his hostility to monarchy and his approval of popular
liberty, often exposed him to serious embarrassments. He has himself
given a very glowing account of an interview at one of the fashionable
residences at Auxonne, where he had been invited to meet an aristocratic
circle. The revolution was just breaking out in all its terror, and the
excitement was intense throughout France. In the course of conversation
Napoleon gave free utterance to his sentiments. They all instantly
assailed him, gentlemen and ladies, pell-mell. Napoleon was not a man to
retreat. His condensed sentences fell like hot shot among the crowd of
antagonists who surrounded him. The battle waxed warmer and warmer.
There was no one to utter a word in favor of Napoleon. He was a young
man of nineteen, surrounded by veteran generals and distinguished
nobles. Like Wellington at Waterloo he was wishing that some "Blucher or
night were come." Suddenly the door was opened, and the mayor of the
city was announced. Napoleon began to flatter himself that a rescue was
at hand, when the little great man in pompous dignity joined the
assailants and belabored the young officer at bay, more mercilessly than
all the rest. At last the lady of the house took compassion upon her
defenseless guest, and interposed to shield him from the blows which he
was receiving in the unequal contest.

One evening, in the year 1790, there was a very brilliant party in the
drawing-rooms of M. Neckar, the celebrated financier. The Bastile had
just been demolished. The people, exulting in newly found power, and
dimly discerning long-defrauded rights, were trampling beneath their
feet, indiscriminately, all institutions, good and bad, upon which ages
had left their sanction. The gay and fickle Parisians, notwithstanding
the portentous approachings of a storm, the most fearful earth has ever
witnessed, were pleased with change, and with reckless curiosity awaited
the result of the appalling phenomenon exhibited around them. Many of
the higher nobility, terrified at the violence, daily growing more
resistless and extended, had sought personal safety in emigration. The
tone of society in the metropolis had, however, become decidedly
improved by the greater commingling, in all the large parties, of men
eminent in talents and in public services, as well as of those
illustrious in rank.

The entertainments given by M. Neckar, embellished by the presence, as
the presiding genius, of his distinguished daughter, Madame de Staël,[4]
were brilliant in the extreme, assembling all the noted gentlemen and
ladies of the metropolis. On the occasion to which we refer, the
magnificent saloon was filled with men who had attained the highest
eminence in literature and science, or who, in those troubled times, had
ascended to posts of influence and honor in the state. Mirabeau was
there,[5] with his lofty brow and thunder tones, proud of his very
ugliness. Talleyrand[6] moved majestically through the halls,
conspicuous for his gigantic proportions and courtly bearing. La
Fayette, rendered glorious as the friend of Washington and his companion
in arms, had gathered around him a group of congenial spirits. In the
embrasure of a window sat Madame de Staël. By the brilliance of her
conversational powers she had attracted to her side St. Just, who
afterward obtained such sanguinary notoriety; Malesherbes, the eloquent
and intrepid advocate of royalty; Lalande, the venerable astronomer;
Marmontel and Lagrange, illustrious mathematicians, and others, whose
fame was circulating through Europe.

    [4] Napoleon, at St. Helena, gave the following graphic and
    most discriminating sketch of the character of Madame de
    Staël. "She was a woman of considerable talent and great
    ambition; but so extremely intriguing and restless, as to give
    rise to the observation, that she would throw her friends into
    the sea, that, at the moment of drowning, she might have an
    opportunity of saving them. Shortly after my return from the
    conquest of Italy, I was accosted by her in a large company,
    though at that time I avoided going out much in public. She
    followed me every where, and stuck so close that I could not
    shake her off. At last she asked me, 'Who is at this moment
    the first woman in the world?' intending to pay a compliment
    to me, and thinking that I would return it. I looked at her,
    and replied, 'She, madame, who has borne the greatest number
    of children,' an answer which greatly confused her." From this
    hour she became the unrelenting enemy of Napoleon.

    [5] "Few persons," said Mirabeau, "comprehend the power of my
    ugliness." "If you would form an idea of my looks," he wrote
    to a lady who had never seen him, "you must imagine a tiger
    who has had the small-pox." "The life of Mirabeau," says
    Sydney Smith, "should embrace all the talents and all the
    vices, every merit and every defect, every glory and every
    disgrace. He was student, voluptuary, soldier, prisoner,
    author, diplomatist, exile, pauper, courtier, democrat,
    orator, statesman, traitor. He has seen more, suffered more,
    learned more, felt more, done more, than any man of his own or
    any other age."

    [6] Talleyrand, one of the most distinguished diplomatists,
    was afterward elevated by the Emperor Napoleon to be Grand
    Chamberlain of the Empire. He was celebrated for his
    witticisms. One day Mirabeau was recounting the qualities
    which, in those difficult times, one should possess to be
    minister of state. He was evidently describing his own
    character, when, to the great mirth of all present, Talleyrand
    archly interrupted him with the inquiry, "_He should also be
    pitted with the small-pox, should he not?_"

In one corner stood the celebrated Alfieri, reciting with almost
maniacal gesticulation his own poetry to a group of ladies. The grave
and philosophical Neckar was the centre of another group of careworn
statesmen, discussing the rising perils of the times. It was an
assemblage of all which Paris could afford of brilliance in rank,
talent, or station. About the middle of the evening, Josephine, the
beautiful, but then neglected wife of M. Beauharnais, was announced,
accompanied by her little son Eugène. Madame de Genlis, soon made her
appearance, attended by the brother of the king; and, conscious of her
intellectual dignity, floated through that sea of brilliance, recognized
wherever she approached, by the abundance of perfumery which her dress
exhaled. Madame Campan, the friend and companion of Maria Antoinette,
and other ladies and gentlemen of the Court were introduced, and the
party now consisted of a truly remarkable assemblage of distinguished
men and women. Parisian gayety seemed to banish all thoughts of the
troubles of the times, and the hours were surrendered to unrestrained
hilarity. Servants were gliding through the throng, bearing a profusion
of refreshments consisting of delicacies gathered from all quarters of
the globe.

As the hour of midnight approached there was a lull in the buzz of
conversation, and the guests gathered in silent groups to listen to a
musical entertainment. Madame de Staël took her seat at the piano, while
Josephine prepared to accompany her with the harp. They both were
performers of singular excellence, and the whole assembly was hushed in
expectation. Just as they had commenced the first notes of a charming
duet the door of the saloon was thrown open, and two new guests entered
the apartment. The one was an elderly gentleman, of very venerable
aspect, and dressed in the extreme of simplicity. The other was a young
man, very small, pale, and slender. The elderly gentleman was
immediately recognized by all as the Abbé Raynal, one of the most
distinguished philosophers of France; but no one knew the pale, slender,
fragile youth who accompanied him. They both, that they might not
interrupt the music, silently took seats near the door. As soon as the
performance was ended, and the ladies had received those compliments
which their skill and taste elicited, the Abbé approached Madame de
Staël, accompanied by his young protégé, and introduced him as Monsieur
Napoleon Bonaparte. Bonaparte! that name which has since filled the
world, was then plebeian and unknown, and upon its utterance many of the
proud aristocrats in that assembly shrugged their shoulders, and turned
contemptuously away to their conversation and amusement.

Madame de Staël had almost an instinctive perception of the presence of
genius. Her attention was instantly arrested by the few remarks with
which Napoleon addressed her. They were soon engaged in very animated
conversation. Josephine and several other ladies joined them. The group
grew larger and larger as the gentlemen began to gather around the
increasing circle. "Who is that young man who thus suddenly has gathered
such a group around him?" the proud Alfieri condescended to ask of the
Abbé Raynal. "He is," replied the Abbé, "a protégé of mine, and a young
man of very extraordinary talent. He is very industrious, well read, and
has made remarkable attainments in history, mathematics, and all
military science." Mirabeau came stalking across the room, lured by
curiosity to see what could be the source of the general attraction.
"Come here! come here!" said Madame de Staël, with a smile, and in an
under tone. "We have found a little great man. I will introduce him to
you, for I know that you are fond of men of genius."

Mirabeau very graciously shook hands with Napoleon, and entered into
conversation with the untitled young man, without assuming any airs of
superiority. A group of distinguished men now gathered round them, and
the conversation became in some degree general. The Bishop of Autun
commended Fox and Sheridan for having asserted that the French army, by
refusing to obey the orders of their superiors to fire upon the
populace, had set a glorious example to all the armies of Europe;
because, by so doing, they had shown that men by becoming soldiers did
not cease to be citizens.

"Excuse me, my lord," exclaimed Napoleon, in tones of earnestness which
arrested general attention, "if I venture to interrupt you; but as I am
an officer I must claim the privilege of expressing my sentiments. It is
true that I am very young, and it may appear presumptuous in me to
address so many distinguished men; but during the last three years I
have paid intense attention to our political troubles. I see with sorrow
the state of our country, and I will incur censure rather than pass
unnoticed principles which are not only unsound but which are subversive
of all government. As much as any one I desire to see all abuses,
antiquated privileges, and usurped rights annulled. Nay! as I am at the
commencement of my career, it will be my best policy as well as my duty
to support the progress of popular institutions, and to promote reform
in every branch of the public administration. But as in the last twelve
months I have witnessed repeated alarming popular disturbances, and have
seen our best men divided into factions which threaten to be
irreconcilable, I sincerely believe that now _more than ever_, a strict
discipline in the army is absolutely necessary for the safety of our
constitutional government and for the maintenance of order. Nay! if our
troops are not compelled unhesitatingly to obey the commands of the
executive, we shall be exposed to the blind fury of democratic passions,
which will render France the most miserable country on the globe. The
ministry may be assured that if the daily increasing arrogance of the
Parisian mob is not repressed by a strong arm, and social order rigidly
maintained, we shall see not only this capital, but every other city in
France, thrown into a state of indescribable anarchy, while the real
friends of liberty, the enlightened patriots, now working for the best
good of our country, will sink beneath a set of demagogues, who, with
louder outcries for freedom on their tongues, will be in reality but a
horde of savages worse than the Neros of old."

These emphatic sentences uttered by Napoleon, with an air of authority
which seemed natural to the youthful speaker, caused a profound
sensation. For a moment there was perfect silence in the group, and
every eye was riveted upon the pale and marble cheek of Napoleon. Neckar
and La Fayette listened with evident uneasiness to his bold and weighty
sentiments, as if conscious of the perils which his words so forcibly
portrayed. Mirabeau nodded once or twice significantly to Tallyrand,
seeming thus to say "that is exactly the truth." Some turned upon their
heels, exasperated at this fearless avowal of hostility to democratic
progress. Alfieri, one of the proudest of aristocrats, could hardly
restrain his delight, and gazed with amazement upon the intrepid young
man. "Condorcet," says an eye witness, "nearly made me cry out, by the
squeezes which he gave my hand at every sentence uttered by the pale,
slender, youthful speaker."

As soon as Napoleon had concluded, Madame de Staël, turning to the Abbé
Raynal, cordially thanked him for having introduced her to the
acquaintance of one, cherishing views as a statesman so profound, and so
essential to present emergencies. Then turning to her father and his
colleagues, she said, with her accustomed air of dignity and authority,
"Gentlemen, I hope that you will heed the important truths which you
have now heard uttered." The young Napoleon, then but nineteen years of
age, thus suddenly became the most prominent individual in that whole
assembly. Wherever he moved many eyes followed him. He had none of the
airs of a man of fashion. He made no attempts at displays of gallantry.
A peaceful melancholy seemed to overshadow him, as, with an abstracted
air, he moved through the glittering throng, without being in the
slightest degree dazzled by its brilliance. The good old Abbé Raynal
appeared quite enraptured in witnessing this triumph of his young
protégé.

Soon after this, in September, 1791, Napoleon, then twenty years of age,
on furlough, visited his native island. He had recently been promoted to
a first-lieutenancy. Upon returning to the home of his childhood, to
spend a few months in rural leisure, the first object of his attention
was to prepare for himself a study, where he could be secluded from all
interruption. For this purpose he selected a room in the attic of the
house, where he would be removed from all the noise of the family. Here,
with his books spread out before him, he passed days and nights of the
most incessant mental toil. He sought no recreation; he seldom went out;
he seldom saw any company. Had some guardian angel informed him of the
immense drafts which, in the future, were to be made upon his mind, he
could not have consecrated himself with more sleepless energy, to
prepare for the emergency. The life of Napoleon presents the most
striking illustration of the truth of the sentiment,

          "The heights by great men reached and kept
            Were not attained by sudden flight;
          But they, while their companions slept,
            Were toiling upward in the night."

[Illustration: THE WATER-EXCURSION.]

One cloudless morning, just after the sun had risen, he was sauntering
along by the sea-shore, in solitary musings, when he chanced to meet a
brother officer, who reproached him with his unsocial habits, and urged
him to indulge, for once, in a pleasure excursion. Napoleon, who had,
for some time, been desirous of taking a survey of the harbor, and of
examining some heights, upon the opposite side of the gulf, which, in
his view, commanded the town of Ajaccio, consented to the proposal, upon
the condition that his friend should accompany him upon the water. They
made a signal to some sailors on board a vessel riding at anchor, at
some distance from the shore, and were soon in a boat propelled by
vigorous rowers. Napoleon seated himself at the stern, and taking from
his pocket a ball of pack-thread, one end of which he had fastened upon
the shore, commenced the accurate measurement of the width of the gulf.
His companion, feeling no interest in the survey, and seeking only
listless pleasure, was not a little annoyed in having his amusement thus
converted into a study for which he had no relish. When they arrived at
the opposite side of the bay, Napoleon insisted upon climbing the
heights. Regardless of the remonstrances of his associate, who
complained of hunger, and of absence from the warm breakfast which was
in readiness for him, Napoleon persisted in exploring the ground.
Napoleon in describing the scene says: "My companion, quite uninterested
in researches of this kind, begged me to desist. I strove to divert him,
and to gain time to accomplish my purpose, but appetite made him deaf.
If I spoke to him of the width of the bay, he replied that he was
hungry, and that his warm breakfast was cooling. If I pointed out to
him a church steeple or a house, which I could reach with my
bomb-shells, he replied, "Yes, but I have not breakfasted." At length,
late in the morning, we returned, but the friends with whom he was
expecting to breakfast, tired of the delay, had finished their repast,
so that, on his arrival he found neither guests nor banquet. He resolved
to be more cautious in future as to the companion he would choose, and
the hour in which he would set out, on an excursion of pleasure."

Subsequently the English surmounted these very heights by a redoubt, and
then Napoleon had occasion to avail himself very efficiently of the
information acquired upon this occasion.



                            THE SOMNAMBULE.


About twelve months ago Andrè Folitton, horticulturist and herbalist of
St. Cloud, a young man of worth and respectability, was united in
marriage to Julienne, daughter of an apothecary of the same place. Andrè
and Julienne had long loved each other, and congeniality of disposition,
parity of years, and health and strength, as well as a tolerably
comfortable setout in the world, seemed to promise for them many years
of happiness. Supremely contented, and equally disposed to render life
as pleasant and blithe as possible, the future seemed spread before
them, a long vista of peace and pleasantness, and bright were the
auguries which rose around them during the early days of their espousal.

Though he loved mirth and fun as much as any one, Andrè was extremely
regular in his habits, and every engagement he made was pretty sure of
being punctually attended to. Julienne quickly discovered that thrice
every week, precisely at seven o'clock in the evening, her husband left
his home, to which he returned generally after the lapse of two hours.
Whither he went she did not know, nor could she find out.

Andrè always parried her little inquisitions with jokes and laughter.
She perceived, however, that his excursions might be connected with
business in some way or other, for he never expended money, as he would
had he gone to a café or estaminet. Julienne's speculations went no
further than this. As to the husband and wife, had they been left to
themselves, not the slightest interruption of mutual good-feeling would
ever have arisen out of this matter.

But it is a long lane which has no turning, and a very slight
circumstance gave an unhappy twist to the path which had promised such a
direct and pleasant voyage through life. Julienne had almost ceased to
puzzle herself about her husband's periodical absences, indeed had
ceased to joke when he returned from them, having easily learned--the
good-tempered little woman--to consider them as nothing more than some
engagement connected with the ordinary course of business. One night,
however, a neighbor, Madame Margot, stepped into the bowery cottage of
the young pair to have a chat and a cup of coffee with Madame Folitton.
Madame Margot, though she had more words than Julienne, and could keep
the conversation going at a more rattling pace, had by no means so sweet
and gracious a presence. Her sharp eye and thin lips were true indices
to a prying and somewhat ill-natured disposition; and the fact is, that
Madame Margot, having several times seen Andrè pass her house alone in
the evening, as if taking a walk by himself, had been seized with a
strong desire to know "how things were going on" between him and his
wife. Madame Margot had never joined other folks in their profuse
prophesies of future happiness when Andrè and Julienne were wedded. She
was not the woman to do it; her temper had spread her own bed, and her
husband's too, with thorns and briars, and so she declared that the
happiness of wedded life was something worse than a _mauvaise
plaisanterie_. "Eh, bien!" she exclaimed, when folks spoke of Andrè and
his wife. "I wish them well, but I have lived too long to suppose that
such a beginning as theirs can hold on long! We shall hear different
tales by and by!" So Madame Margot, with her sharp eye and thin lips,
eager to verify her prognostications, had visited Andrè's house to
reconnoitre.

"M. Folitton? he is not here?" said she, in the course of conversation.

"He is from home," answered Julienne; and as she saw the peering
expression of Madame Margot's face, she answered in such a manner as to
check further inquiry.

"I knew it!" thought Madame Margot. "I was sure there was something
wrong!"

"Andrè will be in presently," added Julienne.

"Ah, well," exclaimed her companion, with the look of one resigned to
the inconveniences of life, "it is well that he is so attentive to
business; and very glad I am to see how much he has upon his hands:
early in the morning till late at night. Fortune and leisure await those
who work like him."

"You are kind," said Julienne. "It is true that Andrè works very hard.
Let me fill your cup."

"Ah, Julienne! On your wedding-day, my dear, all the songs were hosannas
and jubilates, and it really does seem that you are very happy and
comfortable. Is it not so?"

"You are right, Madame Margot. Andrè and I are very happy, and we have
many blessings to be thankful for."

"There is one thing," rejoined the wily lady, "which, allow me to say,
people who have businesses to look after feel rather strongly. Ay, well
do I and Margot know that business interferes terribly with domestic
happiness."

"In what manner?" asked Julienne, in some surprise, for Madame Margot's
experience did not "come home" to her. "I have never thought so, nor
Andrè either, I believe."

"Why, my dear, when people are abroad they can't be at home," continued
the inquisitress. "And as I and Margot feel that it is hard we can be
so very little together, I naturally think that other people must feel
the same. But, however, we _can_ enjoy our little walk in the evening. I
am sure, my dear, you would like it all the better if you could do the
same."

"I should," said Julienne; "but as Andrè's time is occupied, there is no
use thinking about it. I can't think where he goes," added she,
unguardedly and pensively.

Madame Margot pricked up her ears.

"Why, my dear!" exclaimed she, lowering her voice, as if about to say
something of momentous importance, "do you mean to say that you don't
know where he goes so many evenings in the week?" The good lady had
always exercised a sharp scrutiny over the movements of her lord, and
the bare idea of Julienne being ignorant of Andrè's proceedings excited
her indignation and pity.

"I don't know, nor have I ever taken any trouble to know," answered
Julienne, frankly and carelessly.

"Well, it's very good of you, I daresay," returned her visitor, with
something like contemptuous commiseration in her tone. "But, my friend,
you should think how necessary it is that husband and wife should be as
one person. It vexes me to find that Andrè does not acquaint you with
all his doings--especially with that to which he seems to pay such
unfailing attention. You shouldn't let it go on any longer, my dear, for
you don't know what may happen. It never smokes but there is fire. No
one can tell what might have happened between me and Margot had I not
always kept my eyes open: a little watchfulness has saved us worlds of
annoyance and trouble." Observing that Julienne looked offended, and was
about to say something, Madame Margot dextrously handed her cup with a
most gracious and winning bow, and launched into another topic,
resolving by all means not to spoil the effect of the stimulants and
hints she had let fall.

When Andrè returned this night, Julienne, to his surprise, asked him
where he had been, and implored him to tell her. With a serious look he
answered that it was impossible, and begged her not to inquire into a
matter which in nowise concerned her, and which would cause her no sort
of surprise if she knew all. As usual, the two bantered each other over
the mystery, and the subject was dropped. But Madame Margot, though she
had not succeeded in setting the young folks by the ears, had
nevertheless implanted in a woman's breast an ardent desire to probe a
secret. Julienne, good as she was, could not vanquish nature, and a
curiosity possessed her as strong as Fatima's.

One day as she was glancing over the columns of a newspaper of which
Andrè was a constant reader, an advertisement of a peculiar description
met her eye. It was headed _La Somnambule_, and announced that
Mademoiselle Trompere, whose _prodigieuses facultés_ and _lucidité
extrême_ had caused the greatest astonishment and excitement, continued
to give mesmeric _séances_ on such and such days. Julienne then turned
the paper and read other matters, but now and then she looked back at
this advertisement, read it again and again, and presently laid it down
with a merry little laugh. There was a promise of inviolable secrecy at
the end of the announcement: that she regarded particularly. She had
heard stories of the wonders of clairvoyance, she was artless, and knew
little or nothing of the world, and thought it would be a capital joke
to try the power of Mademoiselle Trompere's _lucidité_. She was going
into Paris on business the very next day, and she resolved to put her
project into execution. She laughed gayly as she anticipated the
astonishment her husband would evince while she might let fall, some of
these days, when they were alone, that she knew his secret.

Behold the young wife, with sparkling eyes, and a smile upon her fresh
lips, wending her way up the long and narrow Rue St. Nicholas in Paris!
Arrived at the house of the clairvoyante, she asked at the concierge for
Mademoiselle Trompere.

"_Quatrième à gauche!_" cried the porter, and Julienne hurried up the
narrow staircase. Arrived at the fourth story, she rang the bell at the
door on the left, and awaited the issue of the summons in something like
trepidation. The door was opened, and there came forth an old man of
really venerable and imposing appearance. Thick locks of curling silver
hair were combed back off a high and well-formed forehead; and beneath
this appeared a countenance pale, but clear, and of serious and
benign expression. Thin, and of middle height, a long dark-green
robe-de-chambre made him appear tall, and the little Julienne
thought she had never seen so grand an old man before. From his
slightly-abstracted air, and a pair of silver-rimmed spectacles still
resting on his visage, one would have fancied he had just risen from
profound study. Julienne felt quite abashed that she should have
interrupted the labors of one who looked so much like a good seer,
especially as she thought what a trumpery and childish errand she had
come upon. It was with a faltering voice and a deprecating smile that
she asked for Mademoiselle Trompere.

"Ah!" exclaimed the old man, as if just awakened to full presence of
mind; "you wish to see her? Wait one moment, my child."

He spoke softly and tenderly, conveying the idea that he was good and
wise as well as aged. Julienne waited in the lobby of the suite of
apartments while he entered the salon. He returned after the lapse of a
few minutes, which seemed hours to the visitor, who began to grow
nervous, and to feel, to use a common phrase "ashamed of herself."

"I am sorry," said the old man as he returned, "Mademoiselle is fully
engaged to-day. I might have told you so before, but I am forgetful. Can
your business be postponed, my child?"

"Oh, indeed, yes!" answered Julienne, readily.

"It is well," continued he. "To-day is Friday: can you return on
Monday? Mademoiselle will be most happy to assist in any investigation
you may wish to make."

"Really"--commenced Julienne, intending, as haply Mademoiselle Trompere
was engaged at present, to have postponed her contemplated interview
_sine die_.

"I will tell her to expect you on Monday," said the old man, gently
shaking Julienne's unresisting hand. "Pray, what may be your name?"

"Folitton."

"Married, I see," added he, looking at the ring upon her finger. "It is
well! Of the Folittons of the Rue St. Lazare?"

"No," said Julienne; "I live at St. Cloud, where M. Folitton is a
florist and botanist."

"Ah, I know him: a worthy and clever young man!" answered the seer. And
thus, holding her hand, they enjoyed a pleasing and confidential chat.

Julienne, wishing she had never undertaken her adventure, or that, being
commenced, it were well over, kept her appointment on the Monday--it
being a very common thing for her in the summer-time to start off to
Paris. Something was continually being wanted from the vast storehouses
of the metropolis. Thus her journey attracted no attention.

When she rang Mademoiselle Trompere's bell this second time, the summons
was answered by a little girl, who conducted her into the salon. On
entering, she perceived the old man whom she had before seen, writing at
a table covered with papers and large books, many of the latter being
open. A young woman, dressed in black, and of genteel appearance, but
the expression of whose features Julienne did not altogether like, was
sitting by the window busied with her crotchet-needles. The latter
personage rose from her seat, and inclined her head to Julienne.

"Madame Folitton?"

"Yes."

"My father has prepared me to expect you. I was much engaged when you
came the other day, but now I am at your service." She touched the old
man whom she called father upon the shoulder, but she had to repeat the
operation twice or thrice ere he turned his eyes from his manuscript, so
profoundly was his attention engaged thereon. He shifted his position
slowly, raised his spectacles, and rubbed his eyes like one awakened
from a dream.

"He studies much," said Mademoiselle Trompere to Julienne, as if by way
of apology for the old man's abstraction. "Do you see?--here is Madame
Folitton."

"Ah, it is well!" exclaimed he, as, with half sigh half smile, he
advanced to the young visitor and shook her hand. "She comes to consult
you, my child, as I have told you; and I half suspect the little lady is
not so anxious for the mere solving of what seems a riddle to her, as
she is to test the truth of clairvoyance; so we must be upon our metal.
Saucy little bird! She is not the only one who doubts the wondrous
insight into the mysteries of nature which science has in our day
obtained."

Mademoiselle Trompere, the somnambule, then deposited herself in a large
and handsome armchair, softly cushioned in crimson velvet. She sat
upright for a while, and the old man and his daughter looked fixedly at
each other, while the former passed his right hand slowly up and down
before her face. After eight or ten "passes," her eyes suddenly closed,
her face grew white as death, and she sank back in an attitude of
complete repose. The old man continued making the "passes" for a minute
or two longer, and then going softly round to the back of the
somnambule, laid his hand lightly upon her head.

"Mademoiselle is now ready for your interrogations," said he to
Julienne.

Poor Julienne was frightened, and had she known beforehand that such a
mysterious operation as she had just witnessed would have been necessary
to the gratification of her whim, she would rather a thousand times have
let it remain unsatisfied. So flurried was she, that she knew not what
to ask, and would have been very glad to have paid her fee at once and
gone home again without testing the _lucidité extrême_. As if divining
her thoughts, the old man turned them into a different channel by
himself asking the question which Julienne had intended.

"Can you give your visitor any information respecting M. Folitton at St.
Cloud?"

"At St. Cloud say you?" said the somnambule, in a low, dreamy voice.
"Wait one moment Ah! now I see him. He is in a large garden. There are
workmen round him who ask him questions respecting the labor next to be
taken in hand. Now they leave him, each proceeding to his appointed
task. M. Folitton goes into his house. He takes a billet from his breast
and reads it. I can see the signature: it is _Marie Colonne_."

Julienne started. The old man looked toward her wistfully, and then, as
if interpreting her thoughts, asked the somnambule, "Can you read the
contents of the billet?"

"It is not very distinct," was the reply; "apparently written in haste.
The words are--_'Your fears, Andrè, are needless. What matters it that
Fate would seem to demand our eternal separation? Can we not be superior
to Fate? Have we not proved it? Do not fail to-night; but this I need
not tell you, for since you first discovered the grand mistake of your
life, you have not wavered.'_ Monsieur Folitton reads it again and
again, and replaces it in his breast. He opens his desk and examines
something. I see it now: it is the miniature of a lady. She is young:
her hair is very long, her eyes dark and bright."

"It is enough," said Julienne, rising quickly. "Be it true or false, I
will hear no more." She moved hurriedly toward the door, as if to escape
as quickly as possible from a cruel torment. The old man followed her.

"I forgot," exclaimed the agitated girl, as she paused and drew from
her little glove the stipulated fee.

That very evening Madame Margot repeated her visit, and requested to see
Julienne alone. She found her alone, but, as if she had something too
weighty to be said in the salle-à-manger, she insisted that they should
shut themselves up in Julienne's bedroom, while she relieved her loaded
mind.

"Ah, poor Julienne!" said she, "I never come to see her of an evening
but I find her alone! Poor child! so innocent and unsuspecting too!
Well, we all have our trials; but to see one whom I love as if she were
my own child so treated, is enough to drive me mad!"

"What do you mean?" asked Julienne, nervously, for her adventure with
the clairvoyante had given her a shock.

"My dear, do you mean still to say that you don't know where your
husband spends his evenings?"

"It is true; I do not know," said Julienne, blushing deeply; then
adding, in a tone which, though meant to be firm and resolute, was
painfully faint and timid--"nor do I wish to--"

"Well, my child, _I_ happen to know!" exclaimed Madame Margot, her sharp
eyes flashing with eager excitement. "By the merest chance in the world
I have made the discovery, and I considered it my duty to speak to you
directly, in the hope of saving you and your husband, if possible, from
much future misery. My love, prepare yourself for what I have to
tell:--Your husband repairs to M. Colonne's nearly every evening, and is
always admitted and let out by Mademoiselle Marie! She is the one who
gives him welcome, and bids him _adieu_! Oh, it is enough to drive one
crazy! My tears flowed for you last night, poor Julienne!"

"Oh, restez tranquille!" said Julienne, coldly. She had started and
trembled upon hearing a tale which coincided so completely with the
revelations of the somnambule, but Madame Margot's acrid and triumphant
manner roused her indignation, and whether the story she told and the
inference she so readily founded upon it were true or false, Julienne
heartily wished her away--never to see her malignant eyes or hear her
bitter voice again. She was too proud to ask any questions for the sake
of proving what foundation her sympathizing companion had for her
suspicions. She loved Andrè warmly, and sincerely believed him to be
worthy of her love; but there was something in his own secrecy and in
the similarity of the different reports which had reached her ears this
day which staggered her earnest faith. A dreary feeling overcame her:
the radiance of her life was clouded over. The anchor which had held her
safely in a tranquil and beautiful bay seemed to have lost its hold
suddenly, and now she was tossing upon a strange and restless sea. And
Madame Marmot watched the quivering of her lip and the fevered flushing
of her face, and gloated upon the agony she had caused.

"I have done my errand," said she, "and now my mind is a little more at
ease. Take what steps you think proper, my poor child; the sooner the
matter is settled the better for all parties; and if you should have any
difficulty, pray do not hesitate to apply to me. It might not yet be too
late to prevent mischief."

Andrè came home that night as hearty and good-tempered as ever. He saw
that his little wife looked but poorly, and he affectionately inquired
what ailed her; caressed her, and tried to comfort and revive her.
Indescribably oppressed, she burst into tears. This relieved her, but
she was silent and _triste_ the rest of the evening. She could not bear
to think of telling him what she had heard, and what she felt. Indeed a
deep feeling of reproach rose up in her heart as she looked in his frank
and sympathetic face; but she could not comprehend the mystery, and felt
miserable and crushed.

The days passed on, and Andrè grieved to find his young wife grow no
better. At length, satisfied, from the peculiarity of her malady, from
her silent behavior, and the strange brooding manner in which he
sometimes found her regarding him--feeling assured that the change owed
its existence to something relating to himself--he gravely asked her
what had brought it about, and solemnly conjured her to conceal nothing
from him. So repugnant to her, however, was the idea of exhibiting a
feeling so gross, and so unjust to her husband, as she determined to
think, was her jealousy, that she still withheld the secret.

She seemed to be pining day by day. Andrè's pain and vexation were as
deep as her own sadness. A mutual dissatisfaction was fast springing up
between them. While matters were at this pass, Madame Margot, who, like
the bats, rarely moved out before the evening, paid her third visit to
the house of the botanist. Andrè coming home earlier than usual this
night, she spent some time with the husband as well as the wife. Eagerly
she watched the behavior of the two, and acutely she judged how things
stood. Supper passed, however, without any allusion thereto, and Andrè
led madame to the door.

"Poor Julienne!" said she when they were alone. "You do not take care of
her; she is looking very so-so."

"It is true," said Andrè, sadly; "I can not understand it. She says she
is well, but there is something the matter I am sure."

"Ah! don't tell me!" exclaimed Madame Margot, lifting her right arm,
protruding her head, and shaking her forefinger at him. "You can not
understand, eh? Ah, I'm too old a bird for that, and I haven't forgotten
how _I_ was treated once by Margot!"

"What do you mean?" inquired Andrè, seriously.

"Mean! Ah, ah! it is very good, M. Folitton! You should have been made
an actor!"

"Madame Margot, I can not joke with you, nor read your riddles.
Julienne's ailment is a serious matter to me."

"Well, well! It is amusing to hear him! But one word in your ear, my
good Andrè. How can you expect your poor wife to look happy and pleased
when it is known all over St. Cloud that you are forever with Marie
Colonne? There!"

"What--what!" cried Andrè; but Madame Margot was off, muttering and
tittering as she walked rapidly home. Andrè was thunderstruck. The
conversation between him and his young wife when he returned to the room
was any thing but satisfactory. He wished to draw from her all she knew;
but Julienne was cold and mysterious; and at length the husband became
angry, or else feigned to do so, as she half-suspected, by way of a
cloak for his misdeeds.

"It seems we did not know much of each other after all," said Andrè,
ruefully one day. "After being together so many years too! Had any one
told me that so shortly after our marriage my house would be filled with
gloom and grief, I should have laughed finely, or taken offense."

"Oh, Andrè, Andrè, Andrè!" cried poor Julienne, laying her face upon his
breast, while her tears flowed fast and thick--all the inward pride,
which, though creditable to her heart, was capable of effecting so much
misunderstanding, completely vanquished. "Why have there been secrets
between us? Why have we sought to conceal any thing from each other? I
am sure that our love is not dried up, and that there is something
mysterious to each of us in the bitterness of these days! We have both
had secrets: let me have what blame I may for mine--I can keep it no
longer." And then, with some shame and humiliation, she recounted to
Andrè the little history of her own feelings and doings--how at first
she cared nothing whither he went, or what he did, satisfied that he was
good, and that he loved her truly; how Madame Margot had paid her a
visit, and had stimulated her curiosity by sarcasm and pity; how she
came, after seeing an advertisement in the newspaper, to think of
visiting the somnambule, more by way of a joke than any thing else; the
revelations that were made to her, and the apparent confirmation they
received from what Madame Margot afterward told her. She was in too much
fear of making him angry to tell him before; but how could her little
head be expected to see through all this, and how withstand the
inevitable influences of such a trial?

Andrè was aghast. Trembling with excitement, and muttering imprecations
against the clairvoyante and Madame Margot, he bade Julienne quickly
prepare to accompany him to Paris. He got his horse and gig ready, and
in a few minutes himself and his wife, the latter greatly agitated and
alarmed, were proceeding at a rapid pace along the road to Paris. Andrè
drove his good horse as he had never been driven before, and the five
miles betwixt St. Cloud and the capital were quickly passed. The Rue St.
Nicholas was presently gained, and the bell of the somnambule's
apartment sharply rung. The old man appeared, looking sage and
benevolent as ever. His attitude and aspect, imposing and tranquil,
somewhat checked the impetuosity of the angry husband. The latter even
bowed, and took off his hat as he asked to see Mademoiselle Trompere,
but his voice and quick breathing still betrayed his excitement. His
eagerness appeared to take the old man by surprise; he looked at
Julienne; but her head being turned away, he did not recognize her; and
after an instant of consideration, bade them enter. Mademoiselle the
clairvoyante was discovered sitting in the same place, and occupied in
the same manner, as she had before been found by Julienne. She looked up
from her employment, and scanned both husband and wife with a quick,
penetrating glance as they advanced toward her. Her features for an
instant betrayed some excitement as she noted the flushed cheek and
wrathful eye of the former. It was but for an instant, however: almost
immediately they were resolved into an expression of perfect
nonchalance.

"Woman, your second-sight has cost us dear!" cried Andrè.

"Monsieur!" interrupted Mademoiselle Trompere, sternly.

"Your impositions will bring you into trouble, as they do other people,"
continued Andrè. "Your lies bear seed--do you know it?--and grow into
poison, blighting and working mischief wherever you spread them. If you
do not fully contradict the tale you told my silly wife the other day, I
will let you know that you carry on a dangerous trade."

"Your wife! My good man, you are mad!" returned the somnambule.

"I am nearly so," said Andrè; "so take care what you say. My wife--look
at her--you have seen her before; you need not attempt to deny _that_.
She, in a foolish whim, came to you the other day, and you told her
certain falsehoods respecting me, which I now demand that you own to be
such. Acknowledge your trick, and I will have no more to say; but
refuse, and I go instantly to the préfet of police." The old man stood
by with a wandering look, as if stricken with sudden imbecility; but his
bolder companion regarded the furious visitor with absolute
_sang-froid_, fixing upon him a glance that never wavered.

"My profession, my good man," said she, coldly, leaning back in her
cushioned chair, "is to discover truth, not to deny it. People consult
me when they find the course of their lives disturbed by secret causes,
and when the clearing up of such little mysteries is desirable. Your
wife, prompted by a very justifiable and proper curiosity, has availed
herself of the grand discovery of which I am an exponent. M. Folitton,
you accuse me of falsehood, and ask me to deny what I know to be true.
Of course I refuse to do any thing of the sort. Doubtless you think to
make yourself appear guiltless in the eyes of the wife whom you have
wronged, by frightening a woman, and forcing her to declare that you are
perfectly faithful and true. Impostor as you style me, I am neither
weak nor wicked enough for that!"

"Then I must consult the préfet," said Andrè.

"And I also," said the clairvoyante. "If necessary, I will not scruple
to make manifest to the whole world the truth of the revelations your
wife heard from me."

"You are bold, woman!"

"Yes, in common with the meanest living thing, I am bold when attacked.
You will not find it easy to turn me to your own account. Try, if you
are so disposed, by all means; but as surely as I know the truth, you
had better not!" This was uttered with such complete assurance, so
firmly and hardily, and her whole demeanor exhibited such supreme
defiance of him and reliance upon herself, that Andrè's indignation was
turned into bewilderment and perplexity. He abruptly seized the arm of
his agitated wife, and drawing it within his own, strode out of the
room, telling his contemptuous opponent that she should soon hear what
step he would take next. As yet, not a word of reconciliation or
explanation had passed between himself and Julienne. He was too proud to
make his peace with her before he had fully justified himself, do it how
he could.

But the same evening he brought Mademoiselle Marie Colonne and her
father and mother to his house, and to them, in the presence of his
wife, related the story of his troubles, up to the passage between
himself and the lady of vaunted _lucidité_ that morning. The worthy
family were highly indignant, but displayed much good-feeling toward
Julienne, who, sick at heart, was really deserving of commiseration. She
in her turn warmly denied that she had been actuated by any feeling of
suspicion or jealousy in consulting Mademoiselle Trompere: she had done
a very silly thing, and should repent it as long as she lived; but it
was merely a careless whim, and indeed was contemplated more as a joke
than any thing else, for being sure that Andrè was faithful to her, she
never had an idea that misunderstanding and misery to herself, induced
by remarkable coincidences, would result from what she did. She was now
perfectly satisfied, and trusted that Marie and her husband would
forgive her.

"That all may be made perfectly clear," said Andrè, "let me now say
that, in thinking over it, as I never happened to do before, I can
hardly wonder Julienne took my frequent absences and my secrecy
concerning them amiss. I never dreamed that misery would happen from a
husband concealing so small a matter from his wife; but I now see how
very possible it is, and in future am resolved never to refuse to answer
when she inquires where I have been."

He then explained to his wife that he had been a member of one of those
secret clubs which sprang up in such numbers all over France, but
especially in the neighborhood of Paris, immediately after the
Revolution of 1848. M. Colonne was the president of that club, and at
his house its meetings were held. All society was one great vortex of
antagonistic parties; and this club, consisting of several of the
substantial inhabitants of St. Cloud, owed its birth to the anxiety so
very commonly felt by the lovers of order and quiet to lay down for
themselves some unanimous and practical course of conduct in the event
of another outbreak. The continuance of tranquillity had for the
present, however, caused its dissolution, until, mayhap, another season
of disorder and violence should occur; "so in future," said Andrè, "I
shall spend my evenings at home!"

Julienne heard this explanation with mingled feelings of pleasure and
regret. She humbly asked Marie to forgive her, and was quickly in the
embrace of the sympathizing young girl.

M. Colonne, exceedingly wounded by the imputations which had been cast
upon the character of his daughter, of whom he was at once fond and
proud, paid Madame Margot a visit on his way home, and talked to the old
lady in a manner which caused her considerable trepidation, and no doubt
went far to check the propensity so strongly developed in the
composition of her character for picking holes in her neighbors'
jackets. He also resolved to prosecute Mademoiselle Trompere and her
confederate. This Andrè was hardly ready to do, being perfectly
satisfied, now the misunderstanding was cleared up; but M. Colonne
declared that no member of his family should be aspersed with impunity;
and even if it were solely on public grounds, to protect the unguarded
and the credulous from imposition and misery, he would spend a thousand
francs to make an example of the pair. Andrè was very reluctant,
however, to carry the affair before the public, and persuaded M.
Colonne, in the first place, to visit Mademoiselle Trompere with Marie,
and force her to contradict her tale; "Indeed," said he, "they had
better all go together, and then the woman would have no possible room
for subterfuge or persistence in her calumnies."

They were off to Paris the next day. As it happened, M. Colonne and his
daughter preceded Andrè and Julienne at the house of the somnambule. M.
Colonne was a man of warm and quick temperament.

"My name is Colonne," said he abruptly, the moment he stood before the
somnambule and her father; "this is my daughter Marie. We have made a
journey from St. Cloud purposely to inform you that your clairvoyance is
defective, and to warn you that, not being overskilled in the profession
you now follow, you had better choose another--a more honest and safe
one; for when people deal in slanders and lies, they risk intimate
acquaintance with police-officers and jails."

"Ah, my father, did I not say so?" exclaimed Mademoiselle Trompere,
turning tranquilly to the old man. "I told you we should shortly have a
little sequel to the romance of the poor Folittons."

"There will be another little sequel, mademoiselle, unless you quickly
apologize to my daughter!" said M. Colonne, warmly.

"M. Colonne," returned the somnambule, coolly, and even dictatorially,
"you have no doubt been induced to come here by a parental and honorable
feeling; but perhaps you are not aware that you yourself have been
duped."

"No, indeed!" said M. Colonne, with a smile; "I am not so easily duped."

"You think so, no doubt," continued Mademoiselle Trompere, smiling in
her turn. "Still, it is true: you are a dupe all the time. Your daughter
and M. Folitton know it well. They seek to escape suspicion of
intrigue--the one from her father, the other from his wife--by boldly
facing it out, and seeking to compel me, who happen to know all
concerning it, to declare that their virtue and honor are unimpeachable.
That I do not choose to do. They might content themselves, if they were
wise, with the satisfaction of knowing that such matters as I am engaged
to discover, do not go forth to the world, but remain solely betwixt
myself and them."

"Admirable!" cried M. Colonne, amazed at this immense impudence.

"Yes," said Mademoiselle Trompere, smiling ironically, "the case is so.
Poor M. Folitton the other day was going to turn the world upside down
because I would not contradict what I revealed to his wife. He
threatened me with the police, and I know not what more. Let him do it:
the result will be, that I shall be obliged to prove to the world the
truth of all I have said, and in doing that I should not have much
difficulty."

"Well, well!" cried M. Colonne, fairly overcome. "Talking is of no use
here, I perceive!" and as he and his daughter hurried down the stairs,
the triumphant and derisive laughter of the somnambule tended by no
means to the restoration of their good temper.

Andrè and his wife were just about to ascend as they arrived at the
bottom of the staircase, and to them they related the result of their
visit.

Proceedings were now immediately commenced against Mademoiselle Trompere
and her alleged father, and the latter shortly found themselves before
the tribunal of correctional police. The case was made out so very
clearly--Julienne, Marie, and Andrè, the sole parties whom the
revelations of the sibyl concerned, being arrayed against her--that she
was immediately convicted of imposture, and the old man as a
confederate. In the course of the trial the wig of silver hair was
unceremoniously lifted from the head of the male prisoner by an officer
of police. The change effected in his appearance by this simple
operation was remarkable, and greatly to his disadvantage. The officer
then read from his police record a list of no fewer than nine
convictions for imposition and misconduct against the aged sinner. The
female was truly, it appeared, his daughter. They had visited many parts
of France and Belgium under different names, and the diligent inquiries
of the police had been successful in establishing against them a long
course of guilt--one scheme of imposture having been tried after
another, and each terminated by disgrace and punishment. They were now
sentenced to two years' imprisonment and a thousand francs' fine.

All has gone brightly and pleasantly at Andrè's house since this
unpleasant affair, and so will continue, it is my belief. Husband and
wife seem on better terms with each other than ever. Madame Margot
sedulously keeps herself out of the way of the Folittons and the
Colonnes, nor do I suppose she will ever take coffee with Julienne any
more.



                   THE HOUSEHOLD OF SIR THO^S. MORE.[7]

   LIBELLUS A MARGARETA MORE. QUINDECIM ANNOS NATA, CHELSEIÆ INCEPTVS.

                        "Nulla dies sine linea."


Soe my fate is settled. Who knoweth at sunrise what will chance before
sunsett? No; the Greeks and Romans mighte speake of chance and of fate,
but we must not. Ruth's _hap_ was to light on y^e field of Boaz: but
what she thought casual, y^e Lord had contrived.

    [7] Continued from the July Number.

Firste, he gives me y^e marmot. Then, the marmot dies. Then, I, having
kept y^e creature soe long, and being naturallie tender, must cry a
little over it. Then Will must come in and find me drying mine eyes.
Then he must, most unreasonablie, suppose that I c^d not have loved the
poor animal for its owne sake soe much as for his; and thereupon, falle
a love-making in such downrighte earneste, that I, being alreadie
somewhat upset, and knowing 'twoulde please father ... and hating to be
perverse ... and thinking much better of Will since he hath studdied soe
hard, and given soe largelie to y^e poor, and left off broaching his
heteroclite opinions.... I say, I supposed it must be soe, some time or
another, soe 'twas noe use hanging back for ever and ever, soe now
there's an end, and I pray God give us a quiet life.

Noe one w^d suppose me reckoning on a quiet life if they knew how I've
cried alle this forenoon, ever since I got quit of Will, by father's
carrying him off to Westminster. He'll tell father, I know, as they goe
along in the barge, or else coming back, which will be soone now, though
I've ta'en no heed of the hour. I wish 'twere cold weather, and that I
had a sore throat or stiff neck, or somewhat that might reasonablie send
me a-bed, and keep me there till to-morrow morning. But I'm quite well,
and 'tis the dog-days, and cook is thumping the rolling-pin on the
dresser, and dinner is being served, and here comes father.

       *       *       *       *       *

Father hath had some words with the Cardinall. 'Twas touching the
draught of some forayn treaty which y^e Cardinall offered for his
criticism, or rather, for his commendation, which father c^d not give.
This nettled his Grace, who exclaimed,--"By the mass, thou art the
veriest fool of all the council." Father, smiling, rejoined, "God be
thanked, the King our master hath but one fool therein."

The Cardinall may rage, but he can't rob him of the royal favour. The
King was here yesterday, and walked for an hour or soe about the garden,
with his arm round father's neck. Will coulde not help felicitating
father upon it afterwards; to which father made answer, "I thank God I
find his Grace my very good lord indeed, and I believe he doth as
singularly favour me as any subject within this realm. Howbeit, son
Roper, I may tell thee between ourselves, I feel no cause to be proud
thereof, for if my head would win him a castle in France, it shoulde not
fail to fly off."

--Father is graver than he used to be. No wonder. He hath much on his
mind; the calls on his time and thoughts are beyond belief: but God is
very good to him. His favour at home and abroad is immense: he hath good
health, soe have we alle; and his family are established to his mind and
settled alle about him, still under y^e same fostering roof. Considering
that I am the most ordinarie of his daughters, 'tis singular I s^d have
secured the best husband. Daisy lives peaceablie with Rupert Allington,
and is as indifferent, me seemeth, to him as to all y^e world beside.
He, on his part, loves her and theire children with devotion, and woulde
pass half his time in y^e nurserie. Dancey always had a hot temper, and
now and then plagues Bess; but she lets noe one know it but me.
Sometimes she comes into my chamber and cries a little, but the next
kind word brightens her up, and I verilie believe her pleasures far
exceed her payns. Giles Heron lost her through his own fault, and might
have regained her good opinion after all, had he taken half the pains
for her sake he now takes for her younger sister: I cannot think how
Cecy can favour him; yet I suspect he will win her, sooner or later. As
to mine own deare Will, 'tis the kindest, purest nature, the finest
soul, the ... and yet how I was senselesse enow once to undervalue him.

Yes, I am a happy wife; a happy daughter; a happy mother. When my little
Bill stroaked dear father's face just now, and murmured "pretty!" he
burst out a-laughing, and cried,--

"You are like the young Cyrus, who exclaimed,--'Oh! mother, how pretty
is my grandfather!' And yet, according to Xenophon, the old gentleman
was soe rouged and made up, as that none but a child woulde have admired
him!"

"That's not the case," I observed, "with Bill's grandfather."

"He's a More all over," says father, fondly. "Make a pun, Meg, if thou
canst, about Amor, Amore, or Amores. 'Twill onlie be the thousand and
first on our name. Here, little knave, see these cherries: tell me who
thou art, and thou shalt have one. 'More! More!' I knew it, sweet
villain. Take them all."

I oft sitt for an hour or more, watching Hans Holbein at his brush. He
hath a rare gift of limning; and has, besides, the advantage of deare
Erasmus his recommendation, for whom he hath alreddie painted our
likenesses, but I think he has made us very ugly. His portraiture of my
grandfather is marvellous; ne'erthelesse. I look in vayn for y^e
spirituallitie which our Lucchese friend, Antonio Bonvisi, tells us is
to be found in the productions of y^e Italian schools.

Holbein loves to paint with the lighte coming in upon his work from
above. He says a lighte from above puts objects in theire proper lighte,
and shews theire just proportions; a lighte from beneath reverses alle
y^e naturall shadows. Surelie, this hath some truth if we spirituallize
it?

       *       *       *       *       *

Rupert's cousin, Rosamond Allington, is our guest. She is as beautiful
as ... not as an angel, for she lacks the look of goodness, but very
beautiful indeed. She cometh hither from Hever Castle, her account of
y^e affairs whereof I like not. Mistress Anne is not there at present;
indeed, she is now always hanging about court, and followeth somewhat
too literallie the Scripturall injunction to Solomon's spouse--to forget
her father's house. The King likes well enow to be compared with
Solomon, but Mistress Anne is not his spouse yet, nor ever will be, I
hope. Flattery and Frenchified habitts have spoilt her, I trow.

Rosamond says there is not a good chamber in the castle; even y^e
ball-room, which is on y^e upper floor of alle, being narrow and low. On
a rainy day, long ago, she and Mistress Anne were playing at shuttlecock
therein, when Rosamond's foot tripped at some unevennesse in y^e floor,
and Mistress Anne, with a laugh, cried out, "Mind you goe not down into
y^e dungeon"--then pulled up a trap-door in the ball-room floor, by an
iron ring, and made Rosamond look down into the unknown depth; alle in
y^e blacknesse of darkness. 'Tis an awfulle thing to have onlie a step
from a ball-room to a dungeon. I'm glad we live in a modern house, we
have noe such fearsome sights here.

Rosamond is sociable with alle, and mightilie taken with my husband,
who, in his grave way, jests with her pleasantlie enough. Daisy, who
seldom thinks anything worth giving an opinion on, said yestereven, when
they were bantering eache other in Robin Hood's Walk, "I'm glad, Meg,
she fancies your husband insteade of mine." 'Twas a foolish speech, and
had better have beene left unsaid. What a pity that folks who say soe
little shoulde say aught amiss. I have noe jealousy in my composition.

       *       *       *       *       *

Father, hearing little Tom Allington hammering over y^e 34th Psalm this
morning,--

"Child," says he, "don't say O! as unemphaticallie as if 'twere A, E, I,
or U. David is labouring to expresse a thoughte too big for
utterance.... '_Oh_,--_taste_ and _see_ that the Lord is good.' Try it
agayn. That's better, my little man. Yet once more."

I'm glad Rosamond is going. That tiresome saying of Daisy's rankles. A
poisoned shaft will infect the soundest flesh. What a pity we ever use
such. I never will.

       *       *       *       *       *

Yes, she's gone, but Will is not happy. Oh, God, that I should ever
know this feeling! We can never be sure of ourselves; we can never be
sure of one another; we can never be sure of any but Thee. For Thou art
love itself, without a shadowe of turning; and dost even condescend, in
Thine exquisite tendernesse, to call Thyself a _jealous_ God ... for of
whom are we jealous but of those whom we passionately love? And such is
the love, not the sternnesse, wherewith Thou sayest unto our souls,
"Thou _shalt_ not love any God but me! thou _shalt_ not make to thyself
anie earthlie idol! for I the Lord _thy_ God am ... a _jealous_ God,"--I
cannot bear a rival on my throne, which is your heart. Love me firste,
him next, even as much as you love yourself; and then I will bless you
both.

Fecisti nos, etc.

       *       *       *       *       *

Sancta mater, ora pro nobis, ora, ora.

Alas! am I awake, or dreaming still? He beganne to talk indistinctlie in
his sleep last night, and as I cannot beare to heare people speak when
they sleep but their heart waketh, I gently shooke him, and made him
turn about; but not until that he had distinctlie exclaimed, "Tu, Jesu,
es justicia mea." Thereon, a suddain light broke in on me, and I felt, I
know not how to expresse what sense of relief, at the apprehension that
his disquietation was not for Rosamond, but on y^e old count of
justification by faith. Waking up, he says,--"Oh, sweet Meg, I am soe
unhappy," and gives way to tears; but I try to relieve him. But the
matter is too hard for me; we cannot unravel it, soe he holds his peace,
and sleeps, or affects to sleep, the while I pray to every saint in y^e
calendar.

I am glad I did him injustice; which is a strange thing for a wife to
say.

       *       *       *       *       *

How many, many tears have I shed! Poor, imprudent Will!

To think of his escape from y^e Cardinall's fangs, and yet that he will
probablie repeat y^e offence. This morning father and he had a long,
and, I fear me, fruitless debate in the garden; on returning from which,
father took me aside and sayd,--

"Meg, I have borne a long time with thine husband; I have reasoned and
argued with him, and still given him my poor, fatherly counsel; but I
perceive none of alle this can call him home agayn. And therefore, Meg,
I will no longer dispute with him.".... "Oh, father!".... "Nor yet will
I give him over; but I will set another way to work, and get me to God
and pray for him."

And have I not done so alreadie?

       *       *       *       *       *

I feare me they parted unfriendlie; I hearde father say, "Thus much I
have a right to bind thee to, that thou indoctrinate not her in thine
own heresies. Thou shalt not imperill the salvation of my child."

Since this there has beene an irresistible gloom on our spiritts, a
cloud between my husband's soul and mine, without a word spoken. I pray
but my prayers seem dead.

... Last night, after seeking unto this saint and that, methought "why
not applie unto y^e fountain head? Maybe these holy spiritts may have
limitations sett to y^e power of theire intercessions--at anie rate, the
ears of Mary-mother are open to alle."

Soe I beganne, "Pia mater, fons amoris...."

Then, methoughte, "but I am onlie asking _her_ to intercede--I'll mount
a step higher still...."

Then I turned to y^e great Intercessor of alle. But methought, "Still he
intercedes with another, although the same. And his owne saying was, 'In
that day ye shall ask _me nothing_. Whatsoever ye shall ask in my name,
_he_ will give it you.'" Soe I did.

I fancy I fell asleep with y^e tears on my cheek. Will had not come up
stairs. Then came a heavie, heavie sleep, not such as giveth rest; and a
dark, wild dream. Methought I was tired of waiting for Will, and became
alarmed. The night seemed a month long, and at last I grew soe weary of
it, that I arose, put on some clothing, and went in search of him whom
my soul loveth. Soon I founde him, sitting in a muse; and said, "Will,
deare Will?" but he hearde me not; and, going up to touch him, I was
amazed to be broughte short up or ever I reached him, by something
invisible betwixt us, hard, and cleare, and colde, ... in short, a wall
of ice! Soe it seemed, in my strange dreame. I pushed at it, but could
not move it; called to him, but coulde not make him hear: and all y^e
while my breath, I suppose, raised a vapor on the glassy substance, that
grew thicker and thicker, soe as slowlie to hide him from me. I coulde
discerne his head and shoulders, but not see down to his heart. Then I
shut mine eyes in despair, and when I opened 'em, he was hidden
altogether.

Then I prayed. I put my hot brow agaynst y^e ice, and I kept a weeping
hot tears, and y^e warm breath of prayer kept issuing from my lips; and
still I was persisting, when, or ever I knew how, y^e ice beganne to
melt! I felt it giving way! and, looking up, coulde in joyfulle
surprize, just discerne the lineaments of a figure close at t'other
side; y^e face turned away, but yet in the guise of listening. And,
images being apt to seem magnified and distorted through vapours,
methought 'twas altogether bigger than Will, yet himself,
nothingthelesse; and, y^e barrier between us having sunk away to
breast-height, I layd mine hand on's shoulder, and he turned his head,
smiling, though in silence; and ... oh, heaven! 'twas not Will, but
----.

What coulde I doe, even in my dreame, but fall at his feet? What coulde
I doe, waking, but the same? 'Twas grey of morn; I was feverish and
unrefreshed, but I wanted noe more lying-a-bed. Will had arisen and gone
forthe; and I, as quicklie as I could make myself readie, sped after
him.

I know not what I expected, nor what I meant to say. The moment I opened
the door of his closett, I stopt short. There he stoode, in the centre
of the chamber; his hand resting flat on an open book, his head raised
somewhat up, his eyes fixed on something or some one, as though in
speaking communion with 'em; his whole visage lightened up and glorifide
with an unspeakable calm and grandeur that seemed to transfigure him
before me; and, when he hearde my step, he turned about, and 'steade of
histing me away, helde out his arms.... We parted without neede to utter
a word.

       *       *       *       *       *

Events have followed too quick and thick for me to note 'em. Firste,
father's embassade to Cambray, which I shoulde have grieved at more on
our owne accounts, had it not broken off alle further collision with
Will. Thoroughlie home-sick, while abroad, poor father was; then, on his
return, he noe sooner sett his foot a-land, than y^e King summoned him
to Woodstock. 'Twas a couple o' nights after he left us, that Will and I
were roused by Patteson's shouting beneath our window, "Fire, fire,
quoth Jeremiah!" and the house was a-fire sure enow. Greate part of y^e
men's quarter, together with alle y^e outhouses and barns, consumed
without remedie, and alle through y^e carelessness of John Holt.
Howbeit, noe lives were lost, nor any one much hurt; and we thankfullie
obeyed deare father's behest, soe soone as we received y^e same, that we
woulde get us to church, and there, upon our knees, return humble and
harty thanks to Almighty God for our late deliverance from a fearfulle
death. Alsoe, at fathers desire, we made up to y^e poor people on our
premises theire various losses, which he bade us doe, even if it left
him without soe much as a spoon.

But then came an equallie unlookt for, and more appalling event: y^e
fall of my Lord Cardinall, whereby my father was shortlie raised to y^e
highest pinnacle of professional greatnesse, being made Lord Chancellor,
to y^e content, in some sort, of Wolsey himself, who sayd he was y^e
onlie man fit to be his successor.

The unheard-of splendour of his installation dazzled the vulgar; while
the wisdom that marked y^e admirable discharge of his daylie duties, won
y^e respect of alle thinking men, but surprized none who alreadie knew
father. On y^e day succeeding his being sworn in, Patteson marched
hither and thither bearing a huge placard, inscribed, "Partnership
Dissolved;" and apparelled himself in an old suit, on which he had
bestowed a coating of black paint, with weepers of white paper;
assigning for't that "his brother was dead." "For now," quoth he, "that
they've made him Lord Chancellor, we shall ne'er see Sir Thomas more."

Now, although y^e poor Cardinal was commonlie helde to shew much
judgment in his decisions, owing to y^e naturall soundness of his
understanding, yet, being noe lawyer, abuses had multiplied during his
chancellorship, more especiallie in y^e way of enormous fees and
gratuities. Father, not content with shunning base lucre in his proper
person, will not let anie one under him, to his knowledge, touch a
bribe; whereat Dancey, after his funny fashion, complains, saying:

"The fingers of my Lord Cardinall's veriest door-keepers were tipt with
gold, but I, since I married your daughter, have got noe pickings; which
in your case may be commendable, but in mine is nothing profitable."
Father, laughing, makes answer:

"Your case is hard, son Dancey, but I can onlie say for your comfort,
that, soe far as honesty and justice are concerned, if mine owne father,
whom I reverence dearly, stoode before me on y^e one hand, and the
devil, whom I hate extremely, on y^e other, yet, the cause of y^e latter
being just, I shoulde give the devil his due."

Giles Heron hath found this to his cost. Presuming on his near connexion
with my father, he refused an equitable accommodation of a suit, which,
thereon, coming into court, father's decision was given flat against
him.

His decision against mother was equallie impartiall, and had something
comique in it. Thus it befelle. A beggar-woman's little dog, which had
beene stolen from her, was offered my mother for sale, and she bought it
for a jewel of no greate value. After a week or soe, the owner finds
where her dog is, and cometh to make complaynt of y^e theft to father,
then sitting in his hall. Sayth father, "Let's have a faire hearing in
open court; thou, mistress, stand there where you be, to have impartiall
justice; and thou, Dame Alice, come up hither, because thou art of y^e
higher degree. Now, then, call each of you the puppy, and see which he
will follow." Soe Sweetheart, in spite of mother, springs off to y^e old
beggar-woman, who, unable to keep from laughing, and yet moved at
mother's losse, sayth:

"Tell'ee what, mistress ... thee shalt have 'un for a groat."

"Nay," saith mother, "I won't mind giving thee a piece of gold;" soe the
bargain was satisfactorily concluded.

Father's despatch of business is such, that, one morning before the end
of term, he was tolde there was no other cause nor petition to be sett
before him; the which, being a case unparallelled, he desired mighte be
formally recorded.

He ne'er commences businesse in his owne court without first stepping
into y^e court of King's Bench, and there kneeling down to receive my
grandfather's blessing. Will sayth 'tis worth a world to see y^e unction
with which the deare old man bestows it on him.

In Rogation-week, following the Rood as usuall, round y^e parish, Heron
counselled him to go a horseback for y^e greater seemlinesse, but he
made answer that 'twoulde be unseemlie indeede for y^e servant to ride
after his master going a-foot.

His grace of Norfolk, coming yesterday to dine with him, finds him in
the church-choir, singing, with a surplice on.

"What!" cries y^e Duke, as they walk home together, "my Lord Chancellor
playing the parish clerk? Sure, you dishonor the King and his office."

"Nay," says father, smiling, "your grace must not deem that the King,
your master and mine, will be offended at my honoring _his_ Master."

Sure, 'tis pleasant to heare father taking y^e upper hand of these great
folks: and to have 'em coming and going, and waiting his pleasure,
because he is y^e man whom y^e King delighteth to honor.

True, indeede, with Wolsey 'twas once y^e same; but father neede not
feare y^e same ruin; because he hath Him for his friend, whom Wolsey
said woulde not have forsaken him had he served Him as he served his
earthly master. 'Twas a misproud priest; and there's the truth on't. And
father is not misproud; and I don't believe we are; though proud of him
we cannot fail to be.

And I know not why we may not be pleased with prosperitie, as well as
patient under adversitie; as long as we say, "Thou, Lord, hast made our
hill soe strong." 'Tis more difficult to bear with comelinesse,
doubtlesse; and envious folks there will be; and we know alle things
have an end, and everie sweet hath its sour, and everie fountain its
fall; but ... 'tis very pleasant for all that.

                           (TO BE CONTINUED.)



                      REMINISCENCES OF AN ATTORNEY.

                         THE CHEST OF DRAWERS.


I am about to relate a rather curious piece of domestic history, some of
the incidents of which, revealed at the time of their occurrence in
contemporary law reports, may be in the remembrance of many readers. It
took place in one of the midland counties, and at a place which I shall
call Watley; the names of the chief actors who figured in it must also,
to spare their modesty or their blushes, as the case may be, be changed;
and should one of those persons, spite of these precautions, apprehend
unpleasant recognition, he will be able to console himself with the
reflection, that all I state beyond that which may be gathered from the
records of the law courts will be generally ascribed to the fancy or
invention of the writer. And it is as well, perhaps, that it should be
so.

Caleb Jennings, a shoemender, cobbler, snob--using the last word in its
genuine classical sense, and by no means according to the modern
interpretation by which it is held to signify a genteel sneak or
pretender--he was any thing but that--occupied, some twelve or thirteen
years ago, a stall at Watley, which, according to the traditions of the
place, had been hereditary in his family for several generations. He may
also be said to have flourished there, after the manner of cobblers; for
this, it must be remembered, was in the good old times, before the
gutta-percha revolution had carried ruin and dismay into the
stalls--those of cobblers--which in considerable numbers existed
throughout the kingdom. Like all his fraternity whom I have ever fallen
in with or heard of, Caleb was a sturdy Radical of the Major Cartwright
and Henry Hunt school; and being withal industrious, tolerably
skillful, not inordinately prone to the observance of Saint Mondays,
possessed, moreover, of a neatly-furnished sleeping and eating apartment
in the house of which the projecting first floor, supported on stone
pillars, overshadowed his humble workplace, he vaunted himself to be as
really rich as an estated squire, and far more independent.

There was some truth in this boast, as the case which procured us the
honor of Mr. Jennings's acquaintance sufficiently proved. We were
employed to bring an action against a wealthy gentleman of the vicinity
of Watley for a brutal and unprovoked assault he had committed, when in
a state of partial inebriety, upon a respectable London tradesman who
had visited the place on business. On the day of trial our witnesses
appeared to have become suddenly afflicted with an almost total loss of
memory; and we were only saved from an adverse verdict by the plain,
straightforward evidence of Caleb, upon whose sturdy nature the various
arts which soften or neutralize hostile evidence had been tried in vain.
Mr. Flint, who personally superintended the case, took quite a liking to
the man; and it thus happened that we were called upon some time
afterward to aid the said Caleb in extricating himself from the
extraordinary and perplexing difficulty in which he suddenly and
unwittingly found himself involved.

The projecting first floor of the house beneath which the humble
work-shop of Caleb Jennings modestly disclosed itself, had been occupied
for many years by an ailing and somewhat aged gentleman of the name of
Lisle. This Mr. Ambrose Lisle was a native of Watley, and had been a
prosperous merchant of the city of London. Since his return, after about
twenty years' absence, he had shut himself up in almost total seclusion,
nourishing a cynical bitterness and acrimony of temper which gradually
withered up the sources of health and life, till at length it became as
visible to himself as it had for some time been to others, that the oil
of existence was expended, burnt up, and that but a few weak flickers
more, and the ailing man's plaints and griefs would be hushed in the
dark silence of the grave.

Mr. Lisle had no relatives at Watley, and the only individual with whom
he was on terms of personal intimacy was Mr. Peter Sowerby, an attorney
of the place, who had for many years transacted all his business. This
man visited Mr. Lisle most evenings, played at chess with him, and
gradually acquired an influence over his client which that weak
gentleman had once or twice feebly but vainly endeavored to shake off.
To this clever attorney, it was rumored, Mr. Lisle had bequeathed all
his wealth.

This piece of information had been put in circulation by Caleb Jennings,
who was a sort of humble favorite of Mr. Lisle's, or, at all events, was
regarded by the misanthrope with less dislike than he manifested toward
others. Caleb cultivated a few flowers in a little plot of ground at
the back of the house, and Mr. Lisle would sometimes accept a rose or a
bunch of violets from him. Other slight services--especially since the
recent death of his old and garrulous woman-servant, Esther May, who had
accompanied him from London, and with whom Mr. Jennings had always been
upon terms of gossiping intimacy--had led to certain familiarities of
intercourse; and it thus happened that the inquisitive shoe-mender
became partially acquainted with the history of the wrongs and griefs
which preyed upon, and shortened the life of the prematurely-aged man.

The substance of this every-day, commonplace story, as related to us by
Jennings, and subsequently enlarged and colored from other sources, may
be very briefly told.

Ambrose Lisle, in consequence of an accident which occurred in his
infancy, was slightly deformed. His right shoulder--as I understood, for
I never saw him--grew out, giving an ungraceful and somewhat comical
twist to his figure, which, in female eyes--youthful ones at
least--sadly marred the effect of his intelligent and handsome
countenance. This personal defect rendered him shy and awkward in the
presence of women of his own class of society; and he had attained the
ripe age of thirty-seven years, and was a rich and prosperous man,
before he gave the slightest token of an inclination toward matrimony.
About a twelvemonth previous to that period of his life, the
deaths--quickly following each other--of a Mr. and Mrs. Stevens threw
their eldest daughter, Lucy, upon Mr. Lisle's hands. Mr. Lisle had been
left an orphan at a very early age, and Mrs. Stevens--his aunt, and then
a maiden lady--had, in accordance with his father's will, taken charge
of himself and brother till they severally attained their majority.
Long, however, before she married Mr. Stevens, by whom she had two
children--Lucy and Emily. Her husband, whom she survived but two months,
died insolvent; and in obedience to the dying wishes of his aunt, for
whom he appears to have felt the tenderest esteem, he took the eldest of
her orphan children to his home, intending to regard and provide for her
as his own adopted child and heiress. Emily, the other sister, found
refuge in the house of a still more distant relative than himself.

The Stevenses had gone to live at a remote part of England--Yorkshire, I
believe--and it thus fell out, that till his cousin Lucy arrived at her
new home he had not seen her for more than ten years. The pale, and
somewhat plain child, as he had esteemed her, he was startled to find
had become a charming woman; and her naturally gay and joyous
temperament, quick talents, and fresh young beauty, rapidly acquired an
overwhelming influence over him. Strenuously but vainly he struggled
against the growing infatuation--argued, reasoned with himself--passed
in review the insurmountable objections to such a union, the difference
of age--he leading toward thirty-seven, she barely twenty-one; he
crooked, deformed, of reserved, taciturn temper--she full of young
life, and grace, and beauty. It was useless; and nearly a year had
passed in the bootless struggle when Lucy Stevens, who had vainly
striven to blind herself to the nature of the emotions by which her
cousin and guardian was animated toward her, intimated a wish to accept
her sister Emily's invitation to pass two or three months with her. This
brought the affair to a crisis. Buoying himself up with the illusions
which people in such an unreasonable frame of mind create for
themselves, he suddenly entered the sitting-room set apart for her
private use, with the desperate purpose of making his beautiful cousin a
formal offer of his hand. She was not in the apartment, but her opened
writing-desk, and a partly-finished letter lying on it, showed that she
had been recently there, and would probably soon return. Mr. Lisle took
two or three agitated turns about the room, one of which brought him
close to the writing-desk, and his glance involuntarily fell upon the
unfinished letter. Had a deadly serpent leaped suddenly at his throat,
the shock could not have been greater. At the head of the sheet of paper
was a clever pen-and-ink sketch of Lucy Stevens and himself; he,
kneeling to her in a lovelorn ludicrous attitude, and she laughing
immoderately at his lachrymose and pitiful aspect and speech. The letter
was addressed to her sister Emily; and the engaged lover saw not only
that his supposed secret was fully known, but that he himself was
mocked, laughed at for his doting folly. At least this was his
interpretation of the words which swam before his eyes. At the instant
Lucy returned, and a torrent of imprecation burst from the furious man,
in which wounded self-love, rageful pride, and long pent-up passion,
found utterance in wild and bitter words. Half an hour afterward Lucy
Stevens had left the merchant's house--forever, as it proved. She,
indeed, on arriving at her sister's, sent a letter supplicating
forgiveness for the thoughtless, and, as he deemed it, insulting sketch,
intended only for Emily's eye; but he replied merely by a note written
by one of his clerks, informing Miss Stevens that Mr. Lisle declined any
further correspondence with her.

The ire of the angered and vindictive man had, however, begun sensibly
to abate, and old thoughts, memories, duties, suggested partly by the
blank which Lucy's absence made in his house, partly by remembrance of
the solemn promise he had made her mother, were strongly reviving in his
mind, when he read the announcement of her marriage in a provincial
journal, directed to him, as he believed, in the bride's hand-writing;
but this was an error, her sister having sent the newspaper. Mr. Lisle
also construed this into a deliberate mockery and insult, and from that
hour strove to banish all images and thoughts connected with his cousin
from his heart and memory.

He unfortunately adopted the very worst course possible for effecting
this object. Had he remained amid the buzz and tumult of active life, a
mere sentimental disappointment, such as thousands of us have sustained
and afterward forgotten, would, there can be little doubt, have soon
ceased to afflict him. He chose to retire from business, visited Watley,
and habits of miserliness growing rapidly upon his cankered mind, never
afterward removed from the lodgings he had hired on first arriving
there. Thus madly hugging to himself sharp-pointed memories which a
sensible man would have speedily cast off and forgotten, the sour
misanthrope passed a useless, cheerless, weary existence, to which death
must have been a welcome relief.

Matters were in this state with the morose and aged man--aged mentally
and corporeally, although his years were but fifty-eight--when Mr. Flint
made Mr. Jennings's acquaintance. Another month or so had passed away
when Caleb's attention was one day about noon claimed by a young man
dressed in mourning, accompanied by a female similarly attired, and from
their resemblance to each other, he conjectured, brother and sister. The
stranger wished to know if that was the house in which Mr. Ambrose Lisle
resided. Jennings said it was; and with civil alacrity left his stall
and rang the front-door bell. The summons was answered by the landlady's
servant, who, since Esther May's death, had waited on the first-floor
lodger: and the visitors were invited to go up-stairs. Caleb, much
wondering who they might be, returned to his stall, and from thence
passed into his eating and sleeping room just below Mr. Lisle's
apartments. He was in the act of taking a pipe from the mantle-shelf, in
order to the more deliberate and satisfactory cogitation on such an
unusual event, when he was startled by a loud shout, or scream rather,
from above. The quivering and excited voice was that of Mr. Lisle, and
the outcry was immediately followed by an explosion of unintelligible
exclamations from several persons. Caleb was up-stairs in an instant,
and found himself in the midst of a strangely-perplexing and distracted
scene. Mr. Lisle, pale as his shirt, shaking in every limb, and his eyes
on fire with passion, was hurling forth a torrent of vituperation and
reproach at the young woman, whom he evidently mistook for some one
else; while she, extremely terrified, and unable to stand but for the
assistance of her companion, was tendering a letter in her outstretched
hand, and uttering broken sentences, which her own agitation and the
fury of Mr. Lisle's invectives rendered totally incomprehensible. At
last the fierce old man struck the letter from her hand, and with
frantic rage ordered both the strangers to leave the room. Caleb urged
them to comply, and accompanied them down stairs. When they reached the
street, he observed a woman on the other side of the way, dressed in
mourning, and much older apparently, though he could not well see her
face through the thick vail she wore, than she who had thrown Mr. Lisle
into such an agony of rage, apparently waiting for them. To her the
young people immediately hastened, and after a brief conference the
three turned away up the street and Mr. Jennings saw no more of them.

A quarter of an hour afterward the house-servant informed Caleb that Mr.
Lisle had retired to bed, and although still in great agitation, and, as
she feared, seriously indisposed, would not permit Dr. Clarke to be sent
for. So sudden and violent a hurricane in the usually dull and drowsy
atmosphere in which Jennings lived, excited and disturbed him greatly:
the hours, however, flew past without bringing any relief to his
curiosity, and evening was falling, when a peculiar knocking on the
floor overhead announced that Mr. Lisle desired his presence. That
gentleman was sitting up in bed, and in the growing darkness his face
could not be very distinctly seen; but Caleb instantly observed a vivid
and unusual light in the old man's eyes. The letter so strangely
delivered was lying open before him; and unless the shoemender was
greatly mistaken, there were stains of recent tears upon Mr. Lisle's
furrowed and hollow cheeks. The voice, too, it struck Caleb, though
eager, was gentle and wavering. "It was a mistake, Jennings," he said;
"I was mad for the moment. Are they gone?" he added in a yet more
subdued and gentle tone. Caleb informed him of what he had seen; and as
he did so, the strange light in the old man's eyes seemed to quiver and
sparkle with a yet intenser emotion than before. Presently he shaded
them with his hand, and remained several minutes silent. He then said
with a firmer voice: "I shall be glad if you will step to Mr. Sowerby,
and tell him I am too unwell to see him this evening. But be sure to say
nothing else," he eagerly added, as Caleb turned away in compliance with
his request; "and when you come back, let me see you again."

When Jennings returned, he found to his great surprise Mr. Lisle up and
nearly dressed; and his astonishment increased a hundredfold upon
hearing that gentleman say, in a quick but perfectly collected and
decided manner, that he should set off for London by the mail-train.

"For London--and by night!" exclaimed Caleb, scarcely sure that he heard
aright.

"Yes--yes, I shall not be observed in the dark," sharply rejoined Mr.
Lisle; "and you, Caleb, must keep my secret from every body, especially
from Sowerby. I shall be here in time to see him to-morrow night, and he
will be none the wiser." This was said with a slight chuckle; and as
soon as his simple preparations were complete, Mr. Lisle, well wrapped
up, and his face almost hidden by shawls, locked his door, and assisted
by Jennings, stole furtively down stairs, and reached unrecognized the
rail way station just in time for the train.

It was quite dark the next evening when Mr. Lisle returned; and so well
had he managed that Mr. Sowerby, who paid his usual visit about half an
hour afterward, had evidently heard nothing of the suspicious absence of
his esteemed client from Watley. The old man exulted over the success of
his deception to Caleb the next morning, but dropped no hint as to the
object of his sudden journey.

Three days passed without the occurrence of any incident tending to the
enlightenment of Mr. Jennings upon these mysterious events, which,
however, he plainly saw had lamentably shaken the long-since failing
man. On the afternoon of the fourth day, Mr. Lisle walked, or rather
tottered, into Caleb's stall, and seated himself on the only vacant
stool it contained. His manner was confused, and frequently purposeless,
and there was an anxious, flurried expression in his face which Jennings
did not at all like. He remained silent for some time, with the
exception of partially inaudible snatches of comment or questionings,
apparently addressed to himself. At last he said: "I shall take a longer
journey to-morrow, Caleb--much longer: let me see--where did I say? Ah,
yes! to Glasgow; to be sure, to Glasgow!"

"To Glasgow, and to-morrow!" exclaimed the astounded cobbler.

"No, no--not Glasgow; they have removed," feebly rejoined Mr. Lisle.
"But Lucy has written it down for me. True--true; and to-morrow I shall
set out."

The strange expression of Mr. Lisle's face became momentarily more
strongly marked, and Jennings, greatly alarmed, said: "You are ill, Mr.
Lisle; let me run for Dr. Clarke."

"No--no," he murmured, at the same time striving to rise from his seat,
which he could only accomplish by Caleb's assistance, and so supported,
he staggered indoors. "I shall be better to morrow," he said faintly,
and then slowly added: "To-morrow, and to-morrow, and to-morrow! Ah, me!
Yes, as I said, to-morrow, I--" He paused abruptly, and they gained his
apartment. He seated himself, and then Jennings, at his mute
solicitation, assisted him to bed.

He lay some time with his eyes closed; and Caleb could feel--for Mr.
Lisle held him firmly by the hand, as if to prevent his going away--a
convulsive shudder pass over his frame. At last he slowly opened his
eyes, and Caleb saw that he was indeed about to depart upon the long
journey from which there is no return. The lips of the dying man worked
inarticulately for some moments; and then with a mighty effort, as it
seemed, he said, while his trembling hand pointed feebly to a bureau
chest of drawers that stood in the room: "There--there, for Lucy; there,
the secret place is--" Some inaudible words followed, and then after a
still mightier struggle than before, he gasped out: "No word--no
word--to--to Sowerby--for her--Lucy."

More was said, but undistinguishable by mortal ear; and after gazing
with an expression of indescribable anxiety in the scared face of his
awestruck listener, the wearied eyes slowly reclosed--the deep silence
flowed past; then the convulsive shudder came again, and he was dead!

Caleb Jennings tremblingly summoned the house-servant and the landlady,
and was still confusedly pondering the broken sentences uttered by the
dying man, when Mr. Sowerby hurriedly arrived. The attorney's first care
was to assume the direction of affairs, and to place seals upon every
article containing or likely to contain any thing of value belonging to
the deceased. This done, he went away to give directions for the
funeral, which took place a few days afterward; and it was then formally
announced that Mr. Sowerby succeeded by will to the large property of
Ambrose Lisle; under trust, however, for the family, if any, of Robert
Lisle, the deceased's brother, who had gone when very young to India,
and had not been heard of for many years--a condition which did not at
all mar the joy of the crafty lawyer, he having long since instituted
private inquiries, which perfectly satisfied him that the said Robert
Lisle had died, unmarried, at Calcutta.

Mr. Jennings was in a state of great dubiety and consternation. Sowerby
had emptied the chest of drawers of every valuable it contained; and
unless he had missed the secret receptacle Mr. Lisle had spoken of, the
deceased's intentions, whatever they might have been, were clearly
defeated. And if he had _not_ discovered it, how could he, Jennings, get
at the drawers to examine them? A fortunate chance brought some relief
to his perplexities. Ambrose Lisle's furniture was advertised to be sold
by auction, and Caleb resolved to purchase the bureau chest of drawers
at almost any price, although to do so would oblige him to break into
his rent-money, then nearly due. The day of sale came, and the important
lot in its turn was put up. In one of the drawers there were a number of
loose newspapers, and other valueless scraps; and Caleb, with a sly
grin, asked the auctioneer if he sold the article with all its contents.
"Oh yes," said Sowerby, who was watching the sale; "the buyer may have
all it contains over his bargain, and much good may it do him." A laugh
followed the attorney's sneering remark, and the biddings went on. "I
want it," observed Caleb, "because it just fits a recess like this one
in my room underneath." This he said to quiet a suspicion he thought he
saw gathering upon the attorney's brow. It was finally knocked down to
Caleb at £5, 10s., a sum considerably beyond its real value; and he had
to borrow a sovereign in order to clear his speculative purchase. This
done, he carried off his prize, and as soon as the closing of the house
for the night secured him from interruption, he set eagerly to work in
search of the secret drawer. A long and patient examination was richly
rewarded. Behind one of the small drawers of the _secrétaire_ portion of
the piece of furniture was another small one, curiously concealed, which
contained Bank-of-England notes to the amount of £200, tied up with a
letter, upon the back of which was written, in the deceased's
handwriting, "To take with me." The letter which Caleb, although he read
print with facility, had much difficulty in making out, was that which
Mr. Lisle had struck from the young woman's hand a few weeks before and
proved to be a very affecting appeal from Lucy Stevens, now Lucy Warner,
and a widow, with two grown-up children. Her husband had died in
insolvent circumstances, and she and her sister Emily, who was still
single, were endeavoring to carry on a school at Bristol, which promised
to be sufficiently prosperous if the sum of about £150 could be raised,
to save the furniture from her deceased husband's creditors. The claim
was pressing, for Mr. Warner had been dead nearly a year, and Mr. Lisle
being the only relative Mrs. Warner had in the world, she had ventured
to entreat his assistance for her mother's sake. There could be no moral
doubt, therefore, that this money was intended for Mrs. Warner's relief;
and early in the morning Mr. Caleb Jennings dressed himself in his
Sunday's suit, and with a brief announcement to his landlady that he was
about to leave Watley for a day or two on a visit to a friend, set off
for the railway station. He had not proceeded far when a difficulty
struck him: the bank-notes were all twenties; and were he to change a
twenty-pound note at the station, where he was well known, great would
be the tattle and wonderment, if nothing worse, that would ensue. So
Caleb tried his credit again, borrowed sufficient for his journey to
London, and there changed one of the notes.

He soon reached Bristol, and blessed was the relief which the sum of
money he brought afforded Mrs. Warner. She expressed much sorrow for the
death of Mr. Lisle, and great gratitude to Caleb. The worthy man
accepted with some reluctance one of the notes, or at least as much as
remained of that which he had changed; and after exchanging promises
with the widow and her relatives to keep the matter secret, departed
homeward. The young woman, Mrs. Warner's daughter, who had brought the
letter to Watley, was, Caleb noticed, the very image of her mother, or
rather of what her mother must have been when young. This remarkable
resemblance it was, no doubt, which had for the moment so confounded and
agitated Mr. Lisle.

Nothing occurred for about a fortnight after Caleb's return to disquiet
him, and he had begun to feel tolerably sure that his discovery of the
notes would remain unsuspected, when, one afternoon, the sudden and
impetuous entrance of Mr. Sowerby into his stall caused him to jump up
from his seat with surprise and alarm. The attorney's face was deathly
white, his eyes glared like a wild beast's, and his whole appearance
exhibited uncontrollable agitation. "A word with you, Mr. Jennings," he
gasped--"a word in private, and at once!" Caleb, in scarcely less
consternation than his visitor, led the way into his inner room, and
closed the door.

"Restore--give back," screamed the attorney, vainly struggling to
dissemble the agitation which convulsed him--"that--that--which you have
purloined from the chest of drawers!"

The hot blood rushed to Caleb's face and temples; the wild vehemence and
suddeness of the demand confounded him; and certain previous dim
suspicions that the law might not only pronounce what he had done
illegal, but possibly felonious, returned upon him with terrible force,
and he quite lost his presence of mind.

"I can't--I can't," he stammered. "It's gone--given away--"

"Gone!" shouted, or more correctly howled, Sowerby, at the same time
flying at Caleb's throat as if he would throttle him. "Gone--given away!
You lie--you want to drive a bargain with
me--dog!--liar!--rascal!--thief!"

This was a species of attack which Jennings was at no loss how to meet.
He shook the attorney roughly off, and hurled him, in the midst of his
vituperation, to the further end of the room.

They then stood glaring at each other in silence, till the attorney,
mastering himself as well as he could, essayed another and more rational
mode of attaining his purpose.

"Come, come, Jennings," he said, "don't be a fool. Let us understand
each other. I have just discovered a paper, a memorandum of what you
have found in the drawers, and to obtain which you bought them. I don't
care for the money--keep it; only give me the papers--documents."

"Papers--documents!" ejaculated Caleb in unfeigned surprise.

"Yes--yes; of use to me only. You, I remember, can not read writing; but
they are of great consequence to me--to me only, I tell you."

"You can't mean Mrs. Warner's letter?"

"No--no; curse the letter! You are playing with a tiger! Keep the money,
I tell you; but give up the papers--documents--or I'll transport you!"
shouted Sowerby with reviving fury.

Caleb, thoroughly bewildered, could only mechanically ejaculate that he
had no papers or documents.

The rage of the attorney when he found he could extract nothing from
Jennings was frightful. He literally foamed with passion, uttered the
wildest threats; and then suddenly changing his key, offered the
astounded cobbler one--two--three thousand pounds: any sum he chose to
name, for the papers--documents! This scene of alternate violence and
cajolery lasted nearly an hour; and then Sowerby rushed from the house,
as if pursued by the furies, and leaving his auditor in a state of
thorough bewilderment and dismay. It occurred to Caleb, as soon as his
mind had settled into something like order, that there might be another
secret drawer; and the recollection of Mr. Lisle's journey to London
recurred suggestively to him. Another long and eager search, however,
proved fruitless; and the suspicion was given up, or, more correctly,
weakened.

As soon as it was light the next morning, Mr. Sowerby was again with
him. He was more guarded now, and was at length convinced that Jennings
had no paper or document to give up. "It was only some important
memoranda," observed the attorney carelessly, "that would save me a
world of trouble in a lawsuit I shall have to bring against some heavy
debtors to Mr. Lisle's estate; but I must do as well as I can without
them. Good-morning." Just as he reached the door, a sudden thought
appeared to strike him. He stopped, and said: "By the way, Jennings, in
the hurry of business I forgot that Mr. Lisle had told me the chest of
drawers you bought, and a few other articles, were family relics which
he wished to be given to certain parties he named. The other things I
have got; and you, I suppose, will let me have the drawers for--say a
pound profit on your bargain?"

Caleb was not the acutest man in the world; but this sudden proposition,
carelessly as it was made, suggested curious thoughts. "No," he
answered; "I shall not part with it. I shall keep it as a memorial of
Mr. Lisle."

Sowerby's face assumed, as Caleb spoke, a ferocious expression. "Shall
you?" said he. "Then be sure, my fine fellow, that you shall also have
something to remember me by as long as you live!"

He then went away, and a few days afterward Caleb was served with a writ
for the recovery of the two hundred pounds.

The affair made a great noise in the place; and Caleb's conduct being
very generally approved, a subscription was set on foot to defray the
cost of defending the action--one Hayling, a rival attorney to Sowerby,
having asserted that the words used by the proprietor of the chest of
drawers at the sale barred his claim to the money found in them. This
wise gentleman was intrusted with the defense; and, strange to say, the
jury--a common one--spite of the direction of the judge, returned a
verdict for the defendant, upon the ground that Sowerby's jocular or
sneering remark amounted to a serious, valid leave and license to sell
two hundred pounds for five pounds ten shillings!

Sowerby obtained, as a matter of course, a rule for a new trial; and a
fresh action was brought. All at once Hayling refused to go on, alleging
deficiency of funds. He told Jennings that in his opinion it would be
better that he should give in to Sowerby's whim, who only wanted the
drawers in order to comply with the testator's wishes. "Besides,"
remarked Hayling in conclusion, "he is sure to get the article, you
know, when it comes to be sold under a writ of _fi fa_." A few days
after this conversation, it was ascertained that Hayling was to succeed
to Sowerby's business, the latter gentleman being about to retire upon
the fortune bequeathed him by Mr. Lisle.

At last Caleb, driven nearly out of his senses, though still doggedly
obstinate, by the harassing perplexities in which he found himself,
thought of applying to us.

"A very curious affair, upon my word," remarked Mr. Flint, as soon as
Caleb had unburdened himself of the story of his woes and cares; "and in
my opinion by no means explainable by Sowerby's anxiety to fulfill the
testator's wishes. He can not expect to get two hundred pence out of
you; and Mrs. Warner, you say, is equally unable to pay. Very odd
indeed. Perhaps if we could get time, something might turn up."

With this view Flint looked over the papers Caleb had brought, and found
the declaration was in _trover_--a manifest error--the notes never
admittedly having been in Sowerby's actual possession. We accordingly
demurred to the form of action, and the proceedings were set aside.
This, however, proved of no ultimate benefit. Sowerby persevered, and a
fresh action was instituted against the unhappy shoemender. So utterly
overcrowed and disconsolate was poor Caleb, that he determined to give
up the drawers, which was all Sowerby even now required, and so wash his
hands of the unfortunate business. Previous, however, to this being
done, it was determined that another thorough and scientific examination
of the mysterious piece of furniture should be made; and for this
purpose Mr. Flint obtained a workman skilled in the mysteries of secret
contrivances, from the desk and dressing-case establishment in
King-street, Holborn, and proceeded with him to Watley.

The man performed his task with great care and skill: every depth and
width was gauged and measured, in order to ascertain if there were any
false bottoms or backs; and the workman finally pronounced that there
was no concealed receptacle in the article.

"I am sure there is," persisted Flint, whom disappointment as usual
rendered but the more obstinate; "and so is Sowerby: and he knows, too,
that it is so cunningly contrived as to be undiscoverable, except by a
person in the secret, which he no doubt at first imagined Caleb to be.
I'll tell you what we'll do: You have the necessary tools with you.
Split the confounded chest of drawers into shreds: I'll be answerable
for the consequences."

This was done carefully and methodically, but for some time without
result. At length the large drawer next the floor had to be knocked to
pieces; and as it fell apart, one section of the bottom, which, like all
the others, was divided into two compartments, dropped asunder, and
discovered a parchment laid flat between the two thin leaves, which,
when pressed together in the grooves of the drawer, presented precisely
the same appearance as the rest. Flint snatched up the parchment, and
his eager eye had scarcely rested an instant on the writing, when a
shout of triumph burst from him. It was the last will and testament of
Ambrose Lisle, dated August 21, 1838--the day of his last hurried visit
to London. It revoked the former will, and bequeathed the whole of his
property, in equal portions, to his cousins Lucy Warner and Emily
Stevens, with succession to their children; but with reservation of
one-half to his brother Robert or children, should he be alive, or have
left offspring.

Great, it may be supposed, was the jubilation of Caleb Jennings at this
discovery; and all Watley, by his agency, was in a marvelously short
space of time in a very similar state of excitement. It was very late
that night when he reached his bed; and how he got there at all, and
what precisely had happened, except, indeed, that he had somewhere
picked up a splitting headache, was, for some time after he awoke the
next morning, very confusedly remembered.

Mr. Flint, upon reflection, was by no means so exultant as the worthy
shoemender. The odd mode of packing away a deed of such importance, with
no assignable motive for doing so, except the needless awe with which
Sowerby was said to have inspired his feeble-spirited client, together
with what Caleb had said of the shattered state of the deceased's mind
after the interview with Mrs. Warner's daughter, suggested fears that
Sowerby might dispute, and perhaps successfully, the validity of this
last will. My excellent partner, however, determined, as was his wont,
to put a bold face on the matter; and first clearly settling in his own
mind what he should and what he should _not_ say, waited upon Mr.
Sowerby. The news had preceded him, and he was at once surprised and
delighted to find that the nervous, crest-fallen attorney was quite
unaware of the advantages of his position. On condition of not being
called to account for the moneys he had received and expended, about
£1200, he destroyed the former will in Mr. Flint's presence, and gave up
at once all the deceased's papers. From these we learned that Mr. Lisle
had written a letter to Mrs. Warner, stating what he had done, and where
the will would be found, and that only herself and Jennings would know
the secret. From infirmity of purpose, or from having subsequently
determined on a personal interview, the letter was not posted; and
Sowerby subsequently discovered it, together with a memorandum of the
numbers of the bank notes found by Caleb in the secret drawer--the
eccentric gentleman appears to have had quite a mania for such
hiding-places--of a writing-desk.

The affair was thus happily terminated: Mrs. Warner, her children, and
sister, were enriched, and Caleb Jennings was set up in a good way of
business in his native place, where he still flourishes. Over the centre
of his shop there is a large nondescript sign, surmounted by a golden
boot, which, upon close inspection, is found to bear some resemblance to
a huge bureau chest of drawers, all the circumstances connected with
which may be heard, for the asking, and in much fuller detail than I
have given, from the lips of the owner of the establishment, by any lady
or gentleman who will take the trouble of a journey to Watley for that
purpose.



                        VILLAGE LIFE IN GERMANY.

                               THE CLUB.


Lesmona possesses a club. Its meetings are suspended during summer, but
are resumed as autumn wanes. Professedly, it is a whist club; but
card-playing is in reality the least of its objects, its chief intention
being to cultivate a kindly feeling among the inhabitants of the village
and the neighborhood, by bringing them periodically together. I was duly
balloted for and admitted. On the Friday evening after this honor was
conferred on me, I was introduced. The meetings were held in Meyerholz's
inn, and in the same apartment which had served as a ball-room. Here I
found a dozen or fifteen of the notabilities of the place assembled. In
a short time they assorted themselves, and sat down, some to whist, some
to chess, while others contented themselves with looking on. The points
at whist were fixed at a grote, about equivalent to a halfpenny--any
higher play would have been considered gambling, and would have been
regarded with extreme disfavor. Doctor W----'s phrase, "To be, or not to
be," was, I now found, the usual signal for the end as well as the
beginning of the game. Wine, and still more commonly beer, were imbibed
during the course of it. The wine usually drank in that part of the
world is French wine--St. Julian or some other Bordeaux wine is the
commonest. Rhenish wine is very rare. Some indulged in what they called
"grogs"--a "grog" is a small tumbler of brandy-punch. Almost all smoked;
indeed the pastor of the village was the only person in it who never
did. The pipe was much preferred to the cigar, the smoke from the latter
being apt to be troublesome when the hands are engaged. Of course the
pipe was the long German one, consisting of mouth-piece, flexible tube,
polished or cherry-tree stem, schwammdose or receiver, and the more or
less ornamented head or bowl. Since I am speaking of pipes, I may
mention that in Germany every smoker possesses several--and these, of
course, vary much in length, calibre, and value. There is abundant
opportunity of displaying the owner's taste. Some have their armorial
bearings painted on the bowl. Among students, again, it is common to
present a friend with a bowl bearing one's likeness, the said likeness
being a _silhouette_ or shade in profile. There are, of course, all the
other varieties of bowl; some have female figures, others landscapes or
public buildings, others the likenesses of well-known characters--John
Ronge was rather a favorite at the time I speak of. As to the stem, the
most esteemed are those of the cherry-tree, brought from the Vistula.
These stems disengage a pleasant odor.

But to return. "To be, or not to be," says Dr. W---- as he rises. The
rest of the party finish their games, and think of supper. It is a
slight repast; each orders what he chooses, and there is no set table. A
beefsteak or a sandwich are the most common viands. The German
expression for sandwich, by the way, is rather circumlocutory--the
literal translation of it is, "a butter-bread-with-meat;" it is like
some of the other composite terms in that language which strike a
beginner as being so odd--_hand-shoes_, for instance, or _finger-hat_,
for gloves and a thimble.

The club used to meet every Friday. Each alternate week, however, we had
what was called a ladies' club. On these occasions, the female portions
of the families of members were entitled to be present. The only other
difference was, that, when ladies came, the gentlemen abstained from
smoking pipes, and confined themselves to cigars.

But it is time to break up. Cloaks and great-coats are donned. There is
a lighting of lanterns, for the roads are dark, and some of us have a
considerable way to go. We separate with a simultaneous "Good-night--may
you sleep well."


                         A TEMPERANCE MEETING.

A temperance meeting was announced as being about to be held at a
village called Blumenthal, situated a few miles from Lesmona. On the
appointed day, I proceeded thither with some friends. On our arrival at
the place, we found a large canvas-covered booth erected on the border
of an extensive wood; this booth was open on every side, being meant as
a protection only against the rays of the sun. Adjacent was an inn, a
solitary house, the village being at some little distance. Entering
here, I was not a little surprised to find the majority of the promoters
of temperance drinking wine. It was just ten o'clock of the forenoon.
The fact, however, was, first, that many had come from a considerable
distance, and stood in need of some refreshment, and secondly, that the
pledge given on entering the society went no further than a promise to
abstain from ardent spirits. Total abstinence seems not to find much
favor in Germany, and the efforts of the Mässigkeit-Verein are directed
almost entirely against the use of the deadly branntwein of the country.
This branntwein is made from the potato, and is not merely intoxicating,
but, even in small quantities, is of a most pernicious effect on the
human system, destroying the stomach, and affecting the nerves, even
when far from being indulged in to any thing like excess.

At last the meeting began. A clergyman opened it with a short prayer,
and then the assembly sang a temperance hymn. The air to which it was
adapted was no other than our National Anthem--which, by the way, the
Germans fondly but erroneously claim as a German composition. Then came
the usual succession of speeches, then another hymn, and then the
meeting, it being past noon, adjourned for dinner. The meal was served
in the inn, and also in booths similar to that constructed for the
meeting; but many had brought their provisions with them, and stretched
themselves on the turf under the shade of the forest. Altogether--and
especially as a large number of women had attended, and these of all
classes, from the peasant in gaudy colors to the more simply-dressed
lady--the scene was most picturesque: it looked like a pic-nic on a
great scale. After dinner, there were more speeches and more music. The
speeches tired me, and I wandered into the wood, where I found the music
much improved by being heard at a distance. The fact is, that the
country people in this part of Germany are any thing but the proficients
in music, which, according to the idea commonly entertained on the
subject in Britain, all Germans are. They, on the contrary, know
scarcely any thing whatever of the art; even in the churches,
part-singing is unknown. While I was at Lesmona, the pastor of that
place had indeed begun to instruct the children of his parish in
psalmody, and, as he is perfectly competent to do so, a change may
ultimately be effected; but in my time the church music was absolutely
painful to listen to; the vocal was deafening and discordant, and, as
for the instrumental, I shall not to my dying day forget the inhuman
turn which old Mr. Müller the organist introduced, and with evident
complacency, too, at the end of every two or three bars. Even among the
upper classes in the country, music is but scantily cultivated. In
Lesmona, for instance, one family, and one alone, paid any attention to
the art. That family, however--all its members included--had attained to
a very high degree of excellence in it. In the large towns, on the other
hand, the case is very different. In Bremen, for example, I heard the
Paulus of Mendelssohn given entirely by amateurs, and both in the
choruses, and in the solos, the finish of the performance was perfect.
In the neighborhood of Hamburg, too, I have met small companies of
workmen from the town enjoying a short walk into the country, and
singing in parts with admirable precision and _ensemble_.

But to return to Blumenthal. The meeting at last broke up. As soon as it
did, a fire balloon was sent up. What connection, however, this had with
the objects of the assembly, I never was able to ascertain.

Since I have introduced the word Verein--union, or society--I may notice
one of another kind, a branch of which had its head-quarters at Lesmona.
I mean the Gustavus-Adolphus Society. Its object is to unite by a common
bond the common Protestantism of Germany. I have not heard lately of its
progress and success, but I always greatly doubted of its possibility,
and am convinced it can not endure, on its original footing at least. On
what common ground (unless it be a negative one, and that is worth
nothing), can the evangelical party and the rationalists take their
stand? Even while I was in Lesmona, the elements of discord had begun to
show themselves; for in that remote nook were found keen partisans; and
it was only by a compromise effected with the greatest difficulty that
the Lesmona branch of the union did not fall to pieces before it was
completely established. And, as for the compromise, such things never
last long.


                            EVENING PARTIES.

I found the inhabitants of Lesmona exceedingly hospitable. It is the
custom in that part of the world for any new-comer to pay a visit to
those people of the place, to whom he desires to make himself known. It
is in their option to return the visit or not. If the visit is not
returned, it is understood that the honor and pleasure and so forth of
your visit is declined; if, on the contrary, even a card is left for you
within a few days, you may count on the friendship of the family.

One of the first visits I made was to Dr. W----. As is usual, I was
offered coffee and a cigar. When they were finished, and my small-talk
exhausted, I took my leave, after what I thought a somewhat stiff
interview. Indeed I almost regretted I had gone. So much for first
impressions. I changed my mind, when within a very few days I received a
kind invitation to an evening party at the worthy doctor's house. Doctor
W----, as I found out when I came to know him, was quite a _character_.
Bred to the bar, he was soon found totally unqualified for his
profession, from the extraordinary benevolence of his nature. Instead of
seeking for practice, he did all he could to prevent his clients from
going to law. The consequence was, that, whatever may have been the
rewards of his conscience, his profession gave him but few. Finding,
therefore, that he had mistaken his vocation, and that his purse
remonstrated strongly against his continuing in the pursuit of forensic
distinction, he wisely abandoned the line he had at first chosen, and
accepted the post of chief custom-house-officer on the frontier of
Hanover and Bremen. Here, modestly but comfortably settled, he gave his
leisure hours to the study of history, and, in a congenial retirement,
soon found himself quite happy. He soon became remarkable for the
accuracy of his information, and more especially for his acquaintance
with minute points and details. Thus, for example, when on his return
from his journey to Marienbad, to which I have already alluded, he
visited the town and field of battle of Leipsic, he found himself as
much at home, with regard to the topography, as did the very guide he
had engaged to point out the places rendered famous by the great fight.

On the evening appointed, I duly made my appearance in Madame W----'s
saloon or drawing-room. It was the handsomest I saw in the country, and
possessed a carpet. In general, this article, so indispensable to
English comfort, is represented, and that indeed but barely, by a few
straw mats scattered about. Tea was handed round. This the Germans drink
with cream, or wine, or neither. It is esteemed a great luxury, as it
costs dear, but they make it so weak, that there is not an old woman in
England who would not regard it with contempt. After tea, we began to
play at what they call company-games. Many of these are identical with
our own inn-door amusements. Thus, they have hide-the-handkerchief,
blind-man's-buff (which they call _the blind cow_), and many others.
One, however, seems to me quite peculiar, not merely to Germany, but to
this part of it. It is called _Luitye lebt noch_--literally, _the little
fellow is still alive_. _Luitye_ is Plattdeutsch, or low German, the
dialect, as I have already said, of this district. The game is played
thus: The party form a circle. Some splints of wood, three or four
inches long, have been provided. One of these is lighted, and blown out
again in a few seconds. This is _luitye_. There is, of course, for some
little time, a part of the charcoal which remains red. The stick is
passed from hand to hand, each player, as he gives it to his neighbor,
exclaiming, "Luitye lebt noch!" He or she in whose hands it is finally
extinguished has to pay a forfeit. No one can refuse it when offered;
and one of the most amusing parts of the matter is to hold luitye--the
little fellow--till he is on the very point of expiring, and then to
force him on the person next you, so that he goes out before he can get
him further. It is, however, more amusing still, when he who would thus
victimize his friend delays too long, and is himself caught.

After this, and some other German games, which I did not much enjoy, as
they consisted chiefly in the repetition of certain formal phrases,
without much meaning, we acted charades--not very successfully, I must
admit. Then we seated ourselves round a table, in the middle of which a
piece of light cotton was placed. At this we all began to blow fiercely,
and a tempest arose, on which the cotton was tossed about in all
directions. When it finally found refuge on the person of any of us, the
recipient was condemned to a forfeit. This game is entertaining enough,
and was carried on amidst much boisterous puffing and laughing, till
suddenly the cotton mysteriously disappeared. It appeared it had
actually been carried into the open mouth of a gentleman, whose powers
had been so severely taxed that he had lost his wind. This put an end to
the amusement, and we proceeded to draw the forfeits.

Then we had supper. It was a less substantial and more judicious meal
than I had generally seen in the neighborhood. It was also a more
ambitious one; not a few of the dishes were disguised with the artistic
skill which is the pride of modern cookery. In particular, I remember
that I accepted a spoonful of what I thought was a composition of
raspberries, strawberries, and red currant jelly. It turned out to be a
sort of hashed lobster pickle. Shortly after supper we broke up.

In such parties, I should remark that all present took part in them,
from the oldest to the youngest. What distinguished them most, besides
this, was a kind of homely cheerfulness that was quite delightful. Every
one came in good humor, and resolved to enjoy himself. And in this it
was very evident all succeeded. I never saw any dancing at any of these
soirées, and rarely was there any music. When, however, there was any of
the latter, it was excellent. I shall not soon forget the way in which
the music of Schiller's "Founding of the Bell" was performed by some of
my Lesmona and Ritterhude friends.



                       A PEEP AT THE "PERAHARRA."


Of the religious festivals of the Buddhists of Ceylon, that known as the
Peraharra is the most important. It is observed at Kandy, the capital of
the ancient kings of Ceylon, and at Ratnapoora, the chief town of the
Saffragam district. Few good Buddhists will be absent from these
religious observances; and whole families may be seen journeying on foot
for many miles, over mountains, through dense jungles and unwholesome
swamps, across rapid and dangerous streams, along hot sandy pathways,
loaded with their pittance of food and the more bulky presents of fruit,
rice, oil, and flowers, to lay at the foot of the holy shrine of Buddha,
to be eventually devoured by the insatiable priests.

In the month of July, 1840, I had a peep at the celebrated Peraharra of
Ratnapoora, where the shrine sacred to the memory of _Saman_ rivals in
attraction the great _Dalada Maligawa_ of Kandy. Like its mountain
competitor, it has its relic of Buddha enshrined in a richly-jeweled
casket, which is made an object of especial veneration to the votaries
of that god. _Saman_ was the brother of the famed Rama, the Malabar
conqueror who invaded Ceylon in ages long past, and extirpated from its
flowery shores the race of mighty giants who had held its people in
subjection for many centuries--a sort of Oriental King Arthur. To Saman
was given the district of Saffragam; and the people of that country at
his death, promoted him to the dignity of a deity, as a slight token of
their regard.

The Ratnapoora festival is the more attractive by reason of its being
made the occasion of a large traffic in precious stones, with which the
neighborhood abounds. In this way the great part of the Buddhists manage
to combine commerce with devotion.

The road to the Saffragam district was, in the time at which I traveled
it, a very barbarous and dangerous affair, differing widely from the
excellent traces which existed through most of the maritime provinces of
Ceylon. It was then, in fact, little more than a mere bullock-track, or
bridle-path, with no bridges to aid in crossing the streams which
intersect it. The journey from Colombo to Ratnapoora may now be easily
performed in one day: at that time it required a good nag and careful
diligence to accomplish it in two.

Day dawned as I got clear of the Pettah, or Black Town of Colombo, and
crossed a small stream which led me to the jungle, or village road, I
was to follow. In England, we should call such a muddy lane; but here
one knows little between the good high roads and the bullock-track.
Strange as it may sound to home travelers, one is often glad to see the
sun rise, and feel it warm the heavy, damp air in the tropics. Before me
lay a long straggling line of low jungle, indicating the road: far away
in the distance rose the high, bluff hill and rocks towering over the
once royal domain of _Avishawella_. Around, on every side, was water,
completely hiding the fields from view, and only allowing a bush, or a
tree, or a hut-top, to be seen peeping up through the aqueous vail,
dotting the wide expanse like daisies in a field. The rains had flooded
the whole of the low country, which, inundated by many mountain
torrents, could not discharge the mass of streams nearly so fast as it
received them. Over and across all this watery wilderness huge masses of
misty vapor came rolling and tumbling along, as though shrouding some
Titanic water-sprites who had been keeping it up rather late the night
before, and were not quite sure of the way home. One might have
imagined, indeed, that it was some universal washing-day, and that the
great lid of the national copper had just been lifted up.

As the sun rose above the line of black rocks in the distance, its rays
lit up those misty monsters of the flood, imparting to them life-like
tints, which gave them beauty, and forms they had not known before. As
these sun-lit fogs rolled on, a thousand shapes moved fitfully among
them: troops of wild horsemen; crystal palaces with gilded gates; grim
figures playing at bopeep; hills, towns, and castles; with many a ship
at sea, and lovely cottages in quiet, sunny glades; all these, and more,
seemed there. With the sea-breeze, all that array of cloudy creatures
departed, leaving the air hot and stifling from the reflection of the
sun's rays in the endless flood above me. But where were the poor
Singalese villagers, their families, and their goods, amidst all this
wreck? As I jogged along, the cry of a child, the crowing of a cock, the
bark of a dog, floated across the ocean of mist, but whence came they? I
looked to the right and to the left. I strained my eyes straightforward,
but not a soul, or a feather, or a snout was to be seen. Presently the
fog cleared away, and I could see overhead into the trees. There,
chairs, tables, chatties, paddy-pounders, boxes of clothes, children in
cots, men, women, cats, dogs, all were there in one strange medley,
curiously ensconced among the wide-spreading branches of the trees. Over
their heads, and on each side, mats and cocoa-nut leaves were hung to
keep off rain and damp fogs, while against each side of the tree was
placed a thick notched stick, which served as a ladder for the whole
party. Here and there canoes were to be seen paddled across the fields
to keep up communication between the different villages. It was a
strange but desolate spectacle, and I was glad to find myself, at last,
free from the watery neighborhood, and once more riding on _terra
firma_.

During the heat of the next day I turned aside to a shady green lane. A
mile along this quiet pathway I was tempted to rest myself at the mouth
of a dark-looking cave, by the side of a running stream of beautiful
water. Tying my pony to a bush, I entered at the low archway, and found
myself at once in utter darkness; but after a short time I began to
distinguish objects, and then saw, close to me, one whom I should have
least looked for in that strange, desolate spot. It was a Chinese, tail
and all. My first idea was, as I looked at the figure through the dim
light of the cave, that it was nothing more than a large China jar, or,
perhaps a huge tea-chest, left there by some traveler; but, when the
great, round face relaxed into a grin, and the little pea-like eyes
winked, and the tail moved, and the thick lips uttered broken English, I
took a proper view of the matter, and wished my cavern acquaintance
"good-morning." I soon gathered the occupation of See Chee in this
strange place; the cave we were then in was one of the many in that
neighborhood, in which a particular kind of swallow builds the edible
nests so highly prized by the Chinese and Japanese for conversion into
soups, stews, and, for aught we know, into tarts. The Chinaman told me,
what I was scarcely prepared to learn, that he rented from the Ceylon
government the privilege to seek these birds' nests in this district,
for which he paid the yearly sum of one hundred dollars, or seven
pounds, ten shillings. Procuring a _chule_, or native torch, the Chinese
nest-hunter showed me long ledges of shelving rock at the top of the
cavern, whereon whole legions of curious little gummy-like excrescences
were suspended; some were perfect nests, others were in course of
formation, and these latter I learned were the most valued; those which
had had the young birds reared in them being indifferently thought of,
and were only bought by the lower orders of soup-makers. Having rested
myself and pony, I once more pushed on for Ratnapoora, where I arrived,
heated, jaded, and dusty, by high noon.

A chattie bath seldom fails to refresh the Indian traveler, and fit him
for the enjoyment of his meal. In the cool of the evening I strolled out
to watch the preparations for the nightly festivities. These continue
for about a fortnight, chiefly after sunset, though devotees may be seen
laying their simple offerings at the foot of the shrine, during most
part of the afternoon. The little bazaar of the town was alive with
business; all vestiges of its wonted filth and wretchedness were hidden
beneath long strips of white linen, and garlands of cocoa-nut leaves and
flowers hung round by bands of bright red cloth. Piles of tempting wares
were there; beads, bangles, and scarfs to decorate; rice, jaggery, and
sweetmeats to eat, and innumerable liquors to drink, were placed in
profuse array. The streets and lanes poured forth long strings of human
beings, heated with the sun, flushed with drink, and bedizened with
trumpery jewelry and mock finery. Poor tillers of the soil; beggarly
fishermen; mendicant cinnamon peelers; half-starved coolies; lean,
sickly women, and poor, immature children, passed onward in the motley
throng, burying their every-day misery beneath the savage mirth of a
night or two at the Peraharra.

Following the living, dark stream, as closely as the heat, dust, and
strange odors would allow me, I arrived, at length, near to the Temple
of Saman. The edifice, of which I caught a distant glimpse, was half
concealed beneath the heavy, luxuriant foliage of cocoa-nut topes,
arekas, plantains, and banyan trees. An ocean of human heads filled up
the space around the building, from which proceeded the well-known
sounds of the reed and the tom-tom. Gay flags fluttered from the four
corners, and the lofty pinnacle in the centre; wreaths of flowers,
plaited leaves and ribbons of many colors, waved jauntily from roof to
door; while round the pillars of the walls and door posts clustered rich
bunches of most tempting fruit.

Close by this busy scene, another group was forming under a large and
lofty _Pandahl_, or open bungalow. Forcing my way to one corner of the
shed, I found a company of Indian jugglers consisting of two men, a
girl, and a child of perhaps three years. The men were habited in
strange uncouth dresses, with large strings of heavy black beads round
their necks; the girl was simply and neatly clad in white, with silver
bangles and anklets, and a necklace of native diamonds. It would be
impossible to detail all their extraordinary performances, which far
exceeded any thing I had ever read of their art. The quantity of iron
and brass ware which they contrived to swallow was truly marvelous;
ten-penny nails, clasp-knives, gimlets, were all treated as so many
items of pastry or confectionary, and I could but picture to myself the
havoc a dozen of these cormorants would commit in an ironmonger's shop.
Not the least remarkable of their feats was that of producing a sheet of
water upon the sand close at our feet; and, after conjuring upon its
clear surface half-a-dozen young ducks and geese, suddenly causing it to
freeze in such a solid mass as to allow of our walking across it without
causing so much as a crack in its crystal body. One more feat I must
relate; which was that of suspending the girl while seated on a sort of
ottoman, to the ridge-pole of the shed; and, at a given signal, removing
the rope by which she hung, leaving her still suspended in the air--not
with a regular apparatus, such as is used by the performers of a similar
trick in London and Paris, but apparently with no apparatus at all! For,
to my exceeding amazement, a sword was given to me, as the only European
of the company, and I was told to cut and slash as much as I pleased
above and around the girl. After some hesitation, I hacked and hewed the
air in every direction, around and close to the suspended maiden with a
vigor which would inevitably cut asunder any means of support; yet there
she swung unmoved, without any sort of apparent agent of suspension
except the air itself! Snake-charming and dancing completed the
entertainment. When I left the place it was night.

Near the temple, all was noise and confusion, and it was with some
difficulty that I forced my way through the dense crowd, and reached the
steps of the venerated shrine. The priest stationed at the entrance made
a way in for me as well as he could, but the pressure inside was
intense. Hundreds of men and women pressed eagerly forward to reach the
flight of huge stone stairs which led up to the sacred depositary. It
was as bad as a crush to get into the Crystal Palace. My passage was so
slow that I had time to examine and admire the fine antique carved work
on the pillars and ceiling of the entrance-hall, as well as on the tall
pilasters which lined the ample staircase. There was a beauty of style
and a high degree of finish about this work that could not be attained
in Ceylon in the present day. Arrived, at length, at the inner temple or
sacred shrine above, I passed with the rest, between a richly brocaded
curtain which hung in folds across the entrance at the top of the
stairs, and stood before the famed relic of Buddha, or rather the
jeweled casket which contained it. I felt disappointed at the spectacle
here, arising, perhaps, from my taking no interest in the exhibition as
a religious ceremony, and looking at it merely as an empty show, not far
removed from the status of Bartholemew Fair. The strong glare of a
hundred lights, the heat and crowd of so many in so small a place, the
sickly perfume of the piles of Buddha flowers heaped before the shrine
by the pilgrims, the deafening, discordant din of a score of tom-toms,
and vile screeching pipes, made me glad enough to descend the stairs,
and, flinging a rupee into the poor-box of the god, to escape once more
into the fresh air.

From the votaries of Saman I entered another crowd, assembled round a
gayly decorated building, which I at once perceived was a Hindoo temple.
Here, to the sound of much music, and by the light of many lamps, a
group of young dancing-girls were delighting the motley crowd. There
were but three of them, one a finely-made, tall, sylph-like creature,
with really graceful movements; the others younger, stouter, and far
less pleasing. A good deal of pains had evidently been taken with their
dress, which sparkled at all points with what I was assured were
precious stones. I have heard that it is not uncommon for these Nautch
girls to have jewelry about their dress to the value of twenty thousand
pounds. The graceful little jacket which the chief dancer wore over her
flowing white robes sparkled and glistened with something which was
quite new to me as articles of ornament: along the edge of her pure
white garment, shone a whole host of fire-flies, which by some ingenious
arrangement had been secured to the dress, and gave a strange and
pleasing novelty to the appearance of her attire, as she swept
gracefully round in slow and measured steps. The music to which these
people dance is any thing but pleasing to an English ear: indeed, there
is scarcely a trace of rhythm in it; yet they contrive to measure their
mazy and difficult dance by its notes with admirable precision. Long
custom has so attached them to their empty meaningless music that they
can appreciate no other. I am certain that M. Julien's band would
scarcely be listened to by the Singalese if there were a few tom-toms
within hearing. It is a curious fact that in the districts in which
these Nautch girls are brought up, education is so rare, that these
dancers are generally the only lay persons within many days' journey who
can either read or write. The priests can all read, if not write, and
they take care to instruct the temple-girls in order to enable them to
learn the various songs and legends for recital at their periodic
festivals. The rest of the population they keep in the densest
ignorance.

Leaving the dancers and priests, I strolled toward the river
Kaloo-ganga, whose quiet, palm-shaded banks stood out in sweetest
contrast to the noisy revelry I had just beheld. The moon was near the
full, and rising high above the many rich green topes of palms, and
gorgeous plantains, lit up the peaceful scene with radiance not of
earth. It is hardly possible to conceive the magic beauty of moonlight
in the tropics; those who have witnessed it, can never forget their
feelings under its influence. The master hand of our finest painters
might attempt to depict it, but the affair would be a dead failure; and
did it succeed, strangers to these climes would pronounce it an
unnatural painting. Even in its reality, it bears the impress of
something half unearthly, and it requires the testimony of the huge
fingery leaves, as they wave to the breeze, to assure one that the whole
scene is not imaginary. Fully as bright and radiating, though softer in
its hue, than the broad sunshine, the moon poured down in living streams
its gifts of ether-light. The monster palms, the slender arekas, the
feathery bamboos and tamarinds, reveled in the harmony and glow of
radiant moonlight, which leaping down in phosphorescent waves, sprang on
from leaf to flower, from bud to herb, and streaming through the waving
seas of giant, emerald grass, died sparkling at its feet.

Some of the topes along this gentle river grew so thickly that not the
faintest ray of light found its soft way among them; the deepest shade
was there, and only in one of these could I trace any vestiges of living
beings. A little hut was buried far away in the inmost recesses of a
tope--all bright above, all gloom below. The door was open, and from it
shone a faintly glimmering light; so tiny was the ray amidst that heavy
shade, so distant did it seem, that it defied all conception of space,
and made my eyes ache to gaze at it. I, at length, distinguished faint
sounds proceeding from it. They were those of a regular harmony.
Strolling nearer, I heard that they proceeded from cultivated voices.
What a sensation! The music was that of the "Evening Hymn!" and it came
upon me with the echoes of the uncouth Babel of Heathenism I had just
left still ringing in my ears, like the sunlight on a surging sea. When
I recovered from the delightful surprise, I found that the singers were
the family of a native missionary who had embraced Christianity.

The next day the bazaar was crowded with dealers in and diggers for
precious stones. Hundreds of Moormen, Chitties, Arabs, Parsees, and
Singalese were busily employed in barter; and a most noisy operation it
was. In the neighborhood of Ratnapoora exist many tracts of clayey and
gravelly land, rich in rubies, sapphires, garnets, turquoise, and
cat's-eyes. For the privilege of digging for these, or of sifting them
from the sands of some of the rivers, the natives pay heavy rents to
Government; often sub-letting the ground, at large profits, to needy
speculators. Their harvest is usually offered for sale during the
Peraharra; and, be their gains what they may, they are generally rid of
the whole amount before the end of the festival. The existence of this
source of wealth is, unfortunately, a bane, rather than a blessing, to
the district; for whole villages flock to the ruby-grounds, delving and
sifting for weeks together, utterly neglecting their rice-fields and
gardens. Arrack taverns have multiplied, intemperance has increased,
long tracts of fertile land have ceased to be sown with paddy, and the
country-people now buy their food from strangers, in place of growing
it, as formerly. It will be a happy time for Saffragam when its stores
of precious stones shall be exhausted; for not till then will peaceful
industry be once more sought.

Struggling and forcing a way through the busy crowd were to be seen one
or two Hindoo fakeers, most repulsive objects, depending for subsistence
on the alms of pilgrims and others. One of these wretched creatures, in
the fulfillment of a vow, or as an act of fancied righteousness, had
held his left arm for so many years erect above his head, that it could
not now be moved--and grew transfixed, emaciated, and bony. It seemed
more like a dry, withered stick tied to the body than a part of itself.
The other fakeer had closed his hands so long that the finger-nails had
grown quite through the palms, and projected at the back of them; these
miserable-looking objects appeared to reap a tolerable harvest, and
seemed to be then in no pain.

Under the shade of a banyan tree, a grave-looking Moorman was amusing a
crowd of boys and women with the recital of some wonderful or silly
legend. The trade of story-telling, in the East, is still a profitable
one, if I might judge from the comfortable appearance of this well-clad
talker.

When I left Ratnapoora, crowds were still flocking into the town, for on
the morrow the huge temple elephants were expected to march in
procession through the place, decked out in all sorts of finery, and
bearing the casket and relic; but it was a wearisome spectacle, and I
was heartily glad to find myself once more on my pony, quietly winding
through green paddyfields and under shady topes.



                     A TOBACCO FACTORY IN SPAIN.


This is the most immense establishment of the kind in Spain, and is
devoted exclusively to the manufacture of snuff and cigars. "Chewing" is
a habit to which the Spaniards are not addicted. Tobacco, being a
government monopoly, yields an enormous revenue to the crown; the
factories being the most extensive in the world, and the demand for the
weed even greater than the supply. The Fabrica of Seville, though
utterly devoid of architectural merit, is only surpassed in size by the
famous monastery of the Escurial. It is six hundred and sixty-two feet
in length, by five hundred and twenty-four in width: having been erected
by a fat Dutchman about the middle of the last century, its slight
claims to symmetry and elegance are in no degree to be wondered at. Its
substantiality, however, and excellent adaptation to the purposes for
which it was intended, render it well worthy of a careful examination,
either by the fastidious cigar-smoker or indefatigable snuff-taker. For
the edification of such in particular have we undertaken this brief
description of the edifice.

Within its walls it has twenty-eight courts, while externally the
building is encompassed by a deep moat, in order to guard against the
possibility of smuggling on the part of the operatives. The number of
persons usually employed, ranges from five to six thousand, though
several thousand additional hands are sometimes called into requisition
in years of extraordinary demand. By far the greater proportion of these
are females, perhaps even four-fifths. Our application for admission was
readily granted, and such was the politeness of the managers, that they
put us immediately under the charge of a young Spaniard connected with
the building, with instructions to him to show us every part of the
establishment which we might desire to see. This mission he performed to
our entire satisfaction. We soon dispatched the snuff department which
occupies the ground floor, and which gave us such a terrible fit of
sneezing, that we were somewhat fearful our nasal organs would never
recover from the severe shock they had experienced. None but males were
employed in the snuff rooms, and more wretched-looking objects I think I
never saw.

They were frightfully cadaverous and pale, showing distinctly in their
countenances the pernicious influence of such a poisoned and tobacco
impregnated atmosphere upon their constitutions. Their appearance was
more like that of demons than human beings, and it was with a sense of
the deepest aversion, that we left their dark and dismal quarters.
Ascending to the upper story, we entered an immense hall, running nearly
the whole length of the building, in which between three and four
thousand females, seated at tables, were busily engaged in the
manufacture of cigars. It was indeed a strange spectacle. Not a man was
to be seen among the enormous concourse, and even had there been half a
dozen, well might we have exclaimed, "What are these among so many?" The
females were of every age, from childhood upward, and, as a general
rule, their complexions were characterized by a sallow and unhealthy
look. The animation which prevailed among them on our sudden advent, was
perfectly overwhelming: such a din and clattering of voices were
absolutely deafening. Every mouth was in rapid motion, and quite rivaled
in its vibrations the meteoric movements of their hands. _We_ were
evidently the engrossing subject of conversation, and our vanity was
consequently on the alert to overhear some of the remarks that were
made, and thus discover what impression our appearance had caused upon
the thickly-clustered damsels around us. But to our great dismay, we
heard but little of a complimentary nature, which aroused our
indignation to such a height, that we were half inclined to make a
terrific charge amid the mighty throng, and seek revenge by kissing in
turn each beautiful culprit upon whom we could lay our hands. But
seriously, we saw very little beauty among them, which we attributed in
a great measure to the unwholesome nature of their occupation. Certainly
I never saw such a striking want of good looks among any other class in
Spain. In Seville these girls are termed _cigarreras_, and they have a
not very enviable reputation.



                         INFIRMITIES OF GENIUS.


We must, in the first place, deny that there is any _necessary_
connection between genius and vice, or madness, or eccentricity. Genius
is a ray from heaven; and is naturally akin to all those things on earth
"which are lovely and pure, and of a good report." Its very name shows
its connection with the _genial_ nature; its main moral element is love.
Men are now in their hearts so conscious of this, that when they hear of
instances of disconnection between genius and virtue, it is with a start
of surprise and horror; and we believe that though all the men of genius
who ever lived had been tainted with vice, still the _thoughtful_ would
have been slow of drawing the horrible inference, that the brightest and
most divine-seeming power in the human mind was a fiend in the garb of a
radiant angel, and would have sought elsewhere for the real solution of
the problem. But when we remember that so many of this gifted order
_have_ been true to themselves and to their mission, the belief is
strengthened, that the instances of a contrary kind can be accounted for
upon principles or facts which leave intact alike the sanity, the
health, and the morality, of genius _per se_.

Such principles and facts there do exist; and we now proceed to
enumerate some of them. And first, some of the most flagrantly bad of
literary men have had no real pretensions to genius. Savage, for
example, Boyce, and Dermody, were men of tolerable talent, and
intolerable impudence, conceit, and profligacy. Churchill was of a
higher order, but has been ridiculously overrated by whoever it was that
wrote a paper on him, not long since, in the "Edinburgh Review"--a
disgraceful apology for a disgraceful and disgusting life. Swift and
Chatterton, with all their vast talents, wanted, we think, the fine
differentia, and the genial element of real poetic genius. And time
would fail us to enumerate the hundreds of lesser spirits who have
employed their small modica of light, which they mistook for genius, as
lamps allowing them to see their way more clearly down to the chambers
of death. Talent, however great, is not genius. Wit, however refined, is
not genius. Learning, however profound, is not genius. But genius has
been confounded not only with these respectable and valuable powers, but
with glibness of speech, a knack of rhyming, the faculty of echoing
others, elegance of language, fury of excitation, and a hundred other
qualities, either mechanical or morbid, and then the faults of such
feeble or diseased pretenders have been gravely laid down at the door
of the insulted genius of poetry.

Secondly, real genius has not always received its due meed from the
world. Like real religion, it has found itself in an enemy's land.
Resisted, as it has often been, at every step, it has not been able
uniformly to maintain the dignity, or to enjoy the repose, to which it
was entitled. Men of genius have occasionally soured in temper, and this
has bred now the savage satisfaction with which Dr. Johnson wrote and
printed, in large capitals, the line in his "London"--

     "Slow rises worth by poverty depressed;"

and now feelings still fiercer, more aggressive, and more destructive to
the moral balance of the soul. It is a painful predicament in which the
man of genius has often felt himself. Willing to give to all men a
portion of the bread of life, and unable to obtain the bread that
perisheth--balked in completing the unequal bargain of light
from heaven with earthly pelf--carrying about fragments of God's great
general book of truth from reluctant or contemptuous bookseller to
bookseller--subject even after his generous and noble thoughts are
issued to the world, to the faint praise, or chilly silence, or abusive
fury of oracular dunces--to the spurn of any mean slave who can find an
assassin's cloak in the "Anonymous," and who does not even, it may be,
take the trouble of looking at the divine thing he stabs, but strikes in
blind and brutal fury; such has been and is the experience of many of
whom the world is not worthy; and can it be wondered at, that some of
them sink in the strife, and that others, even while triumphing, do so
at the expense of much of the bloom, the expansive generosity, the
all-embracing sympathy which were their original inheritance? Think of
Byron's first volume, trampled like a weed in the dust--of Shelley's
magnificent "Revolt of Islam," insulted and chased out of public
view--of Keats's first volume and its judicial murder--of other
attempts, less successful, such as the treatment of Carlyle's "French
Revolution," at its first appearance, by a weekly journal (the
"Athenæum"), which _now_ follows his proud path with its feeble and
unaccepted adulation, and then speak with more pity of the aberrations
into which the weaker sons of the muse have been hurried, and with more
respect of the stern insulation and growing indifference to opinion and
firmness of antagonistic determination which characterize her stronger
children.

Thirdly, the aberrations of genius are often unduly magnified. The spots
in a star are invisible--those in a sun are marked by every telescope.
No man is a hero to his _valet de chambre_. And the reason often is, the
valet is an observant but malicious and near-sighted fool. He sees the
spots without seeing their small proportion to the magnitude of the orb.
Nay, he creates spots if he can not see them. The servants of Mrs.
Siddons, while she was giving her famous private readings from Milton
and Shakspeare, thought their mistress mad, and used to say, "There's
the old lady making as much noise as ever." Many and microscopic are
the eyes which follow the steps of genius; and, too often, while they
mark the mistakes, they are blind to the motives; to the palliations, to
the resistance, and to the remorse. The world first idolizes
genius--rates it even beyond its true worth--calls it perfect--remembers
its divine derivation, but forgets that it must shine on us through
earthly vessels, and then avenges on the earthly vessels the
disappointment of its own exaggerated expectations. Hence each careless
look, or word, or action of the hapless son of publicity, is noted, and,
if possible, misinterpreted; his occasional high spirits are traced to
physical excitement; his occasional stupidity voted a sin; his rapture
and the reaction from it are both called in to witness against him: nay,
an entire class of creatures arises, whose instinct it is to discover,
and whose trade it is to tell his faults as a writer, and his failings
as a man. It is under such a broad and searching glare, like that of a
stage, that many men of warm temperament, strong passions, and sensitive
feelings, have been obliged to play their part. And can we wonder
that--sometimes sickened at the excessive and unnatural heat, sometimes
dazzled by the overbearing and insolent light, and often disgusted at
the falsehood of their position, and the cruelty or incompetence of
their self-constituted judges--they have played it ludicrously or
woefully ill?

But again, till of late, the moral nature, and moral culture of genius,
were things ignored by general opinion, by critics, and even by men of
genius themselves. Milton and a few others were thought lucky and
strange exceptions to the general rule. The general rule was understood
to be that the gifted were MOST apt to go astray--that the very light
that was in them was darkness--that aberration, in a word, was the law
of their goings. One of their own number said that

          "The light that led astray,
          Was light from heaven."

Critics, such as Hazlitt, _too_ well qualified to speak of the errors of
the genius which they criticised, were not content to palliate those by
circumstances, but defended them on the dangerous principle of necessary
connection. The powers of high intellect were magnified--its errors
excused--and its solemn duties and responsibilities passed over in
silence. The text, "Where much is given, much also shall be required,"
was seldom quoted. Genius was regarded as a chartered libertine--not as
a child of divine law--guided, indeed, rather by the spirit than the
letter, but still in accordance with law, as well as with liberty--as a
capricious comet, not a planet, brighter and swifter than its fellows.
Now, we think all this is changing, and that the true judges and friends
of the poet, while admitting his fallibility, condemning his faults, and
forewarning him of his dangers, are ever ready to contend that his gift
is moral, that his power is conferred for holy purposes, that he is a
missionary of God, in a lower yet lofty sense--and that if he desecrate
his powers, he is a traitor to their original purposes, and shall share
in the condemnation of that servant who "was beaten with many stripes."
But must not the long--the written--the sung, the enacted prevalence of
a contrary opinion--of a false and low idea of genius, as a mere
minister of enjoyment, or child of impulse, irresponsible as the wind,
have tended to perpetuate the evils it extenuated, and to render the
gifted an easier prey to the temptations by which they were begirt, and
infinitely less sensible to the mischiefs which their careless or
vicious neglect of their high stewardship was certain to produce? Must
THEY bear the whole blame? Must not a large portion of it accrue to the
age in which they lived, and to that public opinion which they breathed
like an atmosphere?

We attribute the higher and purer efforts which genius is _beginning_ to
make, both in art and in life, to the growing prevalence of a purer
opinion, and of a more severe, yet charitable criticism. The _public_,
indeed, has, as we have intimated above, much to learn yet, in its
treatment of its gifted children; but the wiser and better among the
critics have certainly been taught a lesson by the past. Into the
judgment of literary works the consideration of their moral purpose has
now entered as an irresistible element. And the same measure is also
fast being applied, mercifully, yet sternly, to our literary men.

Finally, it follows from these remarks, that we expect every year to
hear less and less of the aberrations of genius. And that for various
reasons. First, fewer and fewer will, under our present state of
culture, claim to be considered as men of genius, and the public is less
likely to be troubled with the affected oddities of pretenders, and the
_niaiseries_ of monkeys run desperate. Then, again, the profession of
letters is now less likely to be chosen by men of gifts, it is so
completely overdone; and need we say, that as a profession, its
exceeding precariousness and the indefinite position it gives to the
literary man have been very pernicious to his morals and his peace. Then

     "The old world _is_ coming right,"

and as it rights, is learning more to respect the literary character, to
understand its peculiar claims, and to allow for its SINLESS
infirmities. Lastly--and chief of all, men of letters are _beginning_ to
awaken--are feeling the strong inspiration of common sense--are using
literature less as a cripple's crutch and more as a man's staff--are
becoming more charitable to each other, and are sensible with a
profounder conviction that literature, as well as life, is a serious
thing, and that for all its "idle words" they must give an account at
the day of judgment. May this process be perfected in due time. And may
all, however humble, who write, feel that they have each his special
part to play in this work of perfectionment!

We are very far from being blind worshipers of Thomas Carlyle. We
disapprove of much that he has written. We think, that unintentionally,
he has done deep damage to the realities of faith, as well as to the
"shams" of hypocrisy. He has gone out from the one ark and has not
returned like the dove with the olive leaf--but rather, like the raven,
strayed and croaked hopelessly over the carcasses of this weltering age.
And our grief, at reading one or two of his recent pamphlets (which
posterity will rank with such sins of power, as the wilder works of
Swift and Byron), resembled that of a son whose father had disgraced his
gray hairs by a crime or outrage. But even in the depth of this
undiminished feeling of sorrow, we must acknowledge that no writer, save
Milton and Wordsworth, has done so much in our country to restore the
genuine respectability, and to proclaim the true mission of literature.
In his hands and on his eloquent tongue it appears no idle toy for the
amusement of the lovesick or the trifling--no mere excitement--but a
profound, as well as beautiful reality--to be attested, if necessary, by
a martyr's tears and blood, and at all events by the life and
conversation of an honest and virtuous man. And he has himself so
attested it. With Scott, literature was a great money-making machine.
With Byron it was the trunk of a mad elephant, through which he squirted
out his spite at man, his enmity at God, and his rage at even his own
shadow. Carlyle has held his genius as a trust--has sought to unite it
to his religion (whatever _that_ may be)--has expressed it in the
language of a determined life--and has made, by the power of his
example, many to go and do likewise. If he has not produced a yet
broader and more permanent effect--if Carlyleism, as a system, is fast
weakening and dying away--if the young minds of the age are beginning to
crave something better than a creed with no articles, a gospel of
negations, a faith with no forms, a hope with no foundations, a
Christianity without facts (like a man with life and blood, but without
limbs)! the fault lies in the system, and not in the author of it.
Although, to this also we are tempted to attribute his well-known
disgust _latterly_ at literature. He has tried to form his own sincere
love and prosecution of it into a religion, and has failed. And why?
Literature is only a subjective, and not an objective reality. It is
made to adorn and explain religion--but no sincerity of prosecution, or
depth of insight can change it into a religion itself. _That_ must have
not only an inward significance, but an outward sign, more vital and
lasting than the Nature of the Poet. This the Christian finds in Jesus,
and the glorious facts connected with him. But Carlyle, with all his
deep earnestness, and purity of life, has become, we fear, a worshiper
without a God, a devotee with the object of the devotion extinct--a
strong swimmer in a Dead Sea, where no arm can cleave the salt and
sluggish waters--and although he seems to despise the mere adorer of
beauty, yet nothing else does he adore, and nothing else has he hitherto
taught, but this, that one may worship no distinctly objective Deity,
and be, nevertheless, a sincere, worthy, and high-minded man. But he
has left the questions unanswered: Will such a faith produce results on
the generality of men--will it _stand_? and, although it may so far
satisfy the conscience as to produce in one man, or a few like unto him,
the satisfaction of sincerity, can it produce the perseverance of
action, the patience of hope, and the energy of faith, which have
worked, and are working, in thousands and millions of Christian
men--alike high and humble, rich and poor, ignorant and refined? Still,
great should be the praise of a man who has redeemed literature from
degradation, and changed it into a noble, if not a thoroughly religious
thing, by the sheer force of genius, and rugged sincerity.



                      RACE HORSES AND HORSE RACES.


It is Monday--the Monday before the Derby Day, and a railway takes us,
in less than an hour, from London Bridge to the capital of the racing
world, close to the abode of its Great Man, who is--need we add! the
Clerk of the Epsom Course. It is, necessarily, one of the best houses in
the place; being--honor to literature--a flourishing bookseller's shop.
We are presented to the official. He kindly conducts us to the Downs, to
show how the horses are temporarily stabled; to initiate us into some of
the mysteries of the "field;" to reveal to us, in fact, the private life
of the race-horse.

We arrive at a neat farm-house, with more outbuildings than are usually
seen appended to so modest a homestead. A sturdy, well-dressed,
well-mannered, purpose-like, sensible-looking man, presents himself. He
has a Yorkshire accent. A few words pass between him and the Clerk of
the Course, in which we hear the latter asseverate with much emphasis
that we are, in a sporting sense, quite artless--we rather think
"green," was the exact expression--that we never bet a shilling, and are
quite incapable, if even willing, to take advantage of any information,
or of any inspection vouchsafed to us. Mr. Filbert (the trainer)
hesitates no longer. He moves his hat with honest politeness; bids us
follow him, and lays his finger on the latch of a stable.

The trainer opens the door with one hand; and, with a gentleman-like
wave of the other, would give us the precedence. We hesitate. We would
rather not go in first. We acknowledge an enthusiastic admiration for
the race-horse; but at the very mention of a race-horse, the stumpy
animal whose portrait headed our earliest lesson of equine history, in
the chapters of the "Universal Spelling Book," vanishes from our view,
and the animal described in the Book of Job prances into our mind's eye:
"The glory of his nostril is terrible. He mocketh at fear and is not
affrighted. He swalloweth the ground with the fierceness of his rage."
To enjoy, therefore, a fine racer--not as one does a work of art--we
like the point of sight to be the point of distance. The safest point,
in case of accident (say, for instance, a sudden striking-out of the
hinder hoofs), we hold to be the vanishing point--a point by no means
attainable on the inside of that contracted kind of stable known as a
"loose-box."

The trainer evidently mistakes our fears for modesty. We boldly step
forward to the outer edge of the threshold, but uncomfortably close to
the hind-quarters of Pollybus, a "favorite" for the Derby. When we
perceive that he has neither bit nor curb; nor bridle, nor halter, that
he is being "rubbed down" by a small boy, after having taken his
gallops; that there is nothing on earth--except the small boy--to
prevent his kicking, or plunging, or biting, or butting his visitors to
death; we breathe rather thickly. When the trainer exclaims, "Shut the
door, Sam!" and the little groom does his master's bidding, and boxes us
up, we desire to be breathing the fresh air of the Downs again.

"Bless you, sir!" says our good-tempered informant, when he sees us
shrink away from Pollybus, changing sides at a signal from his cleaner;
"these horses" (we look round, and for the first time perceive, with a
tremor, the heels of another high-mettled racer protruding from an
adjoining stall) "these horses are as quiet as you are; and--I say it
without offense--just as well-behaved. It is quite laughable to hear the
notions of people who are not used to them. They are the gentlest and
most tractable creeturs in creation. Then, as to shape and symmetry, is
there any thing like them?"

We acknowledge that Pretty Perth--the mare in the adjoining box--could
hardly be surpassed for beauty.

"Ah, _can_ you wonder at noblemen and gentlemen laying out their twenty
and thirty thousand a year on them?"

"So much?"

"Why, my gov'nor's stud costs us five-and-twenty thousand a-year, one
year with another. There's an eye, sir!"

The large, prominent, but mild optics of Pretty Perth are at this moment
turned full upon us. Nothing, certainly, can be gentler than the
expression that beams from them. She is "taking," as Mr. Filbert is
pleased to say, "measure of us." She does not stare vulgarly, or peer
upon us a half-bred indifference; but, having duly and deliberately
satisfied her mind respecting our external appearance, allows her
attention to be leisurely diverted to some oats with which the boy had
just supplied the manger.

"It is all a mistake," continues Mr. Filbert, commenting on certain
vulgar errors respecting race-horses; "thorough-breds are not nearly so
rampagious as mongrels and half-breds. The two horses in this stall are
gentlefolks, with as good blood in their veins as the best nobleman in
the land. They would be just as back'ard in doing any thing unworthy of
a lady or gentleman, as any lord or lady in St. James's--such as
kicking, or rearing, or shying, or biting. The pedigree of every horse
that starts in any great race, is to be traced as regularly up to James
the First's Arabian, or to Cromwell's White Turk, or to the Darley or
Godolphin barbs, as your great English families are to the Conqueror.
The worst thing they will do, is running away now and then with their
jockeys. And what's that? Why, only the animal's animal-spirit running
away with _him_. They are not," adds Mr. Filbert, with a merry twinkle
in his eye, "the only young bloods that are fond of going too fast."

To our question whether he considers that a race-horse _could_ go too
fast, Mr. Filbert gives a jolly negative, and remarks that it is all
owing to high feeding and fine air; "for, mind you, horses get much
better air to breathe than men do, and more of it."

All this while the two boys are sibillating lustily while rubbing and
polishing the coats of their horses; which are as soft as velvet, and
much smoother. When the little grooms come to the fetlock and pastern,
the chamois-leather they have been using is discarded as too coarse and
rough, and they rub away down to the hoofs with their sleek and their
plump hands. Every wish they express, either in words or by signs, is
cheerfully obeyed by the horse. The terms the quadruped seems to be on
with the small biped, are those of the most easy and intimate
friendship. They thoroughly understand one another. We feel a little
ashamed of our mistrust of so much docility, and leave the stable with
much less awe of a race-horse than we entered it.

"And now, Mr. Filbert, one delicate question--What security is there
against these horses being drugged, so that they may lose a race?"

Mr. Filbert halts, places his legs apart, and his arms akimbo, and
throws into his reply a severe significance, mildly tinged with
indignation. He commences with saying, "I'll tell you where it is: there
is a deal more said about foul play and horses going amiss, than there
need be."

"Then the boys are never heavily bribed?"

"Heavily bribed, sir!" Mr. Filbert contracts his eyes, but sharpens up
their expression, to look the suspicion down. "Bribed! it may not be
hard to bribe a man, but it's not so easy to bribe a boy. What's the use
of a hundred-pound note to a child of ten or twelve years old? Try him
with a pen'north of apples, or a slice of pudding, and you have a better
chance; though I would not give you the price of a sugar-stick for it.
Nine out of ten of these lads would not have a hair of their horse's
tails ruffled if they could help it; much more any such harm as drugs or
downright poison. The boy and the horse are so fond of one another, that
a racing stable is a regular happy family of boys and horses. When the
foal is first born, it is turned loose into the paddock; and if his
mother don't give him enough milk, the cow makes up the deficiency. He
scampers about in this way for about a year: then he is 'taken up;' that
is, bitted, and backed by a 'dumb-jockey'--a cross of wood made for the
purpose. When he has got a little used to that, we try him with a
speaking jockey--a child some seven or eight years old, who has been
born, like the colt, in the stables. From that time till the horse
retires from the turf, the two are inseparable. They eat, drink, sleep,
go out and come in together. Under the directions of the trainer, the
boy tells the horse what to do, and he does it; for he knows that he is
indebted to the boy for every thing he gets. When he is hungry, it is
the boy that gives him his corn; when he is thirsty, the boy hands him
his water; if he gets a stone in his foot, the boy picks it out. By the
time the colt is old enough to run, he and the boy have got to like one
another so well that they fret to be away from one another. As for
bribing! Why, you may as well try to bribe the horse to poison the boy,
as the boy to let the horse be injured."

"But the thing _has_ happened, Mr. Filbert?"

"Not so much as is talked about. Sometimes a likely foal is sent to a
training stable, and cracked up as something wonderful. He is entered to
run. On trial, he turns out to be next to nothing; and the backers, to
save their reputation, put it about that the horse was played tricks
with. There is hardly a great race, but you hear something about horses
going amiss by foul play."

"Do many of these boys become jockeys?"

"Mostly. Some of them are jockeys already, and ride 'their own' horses
as they call them. Here comes one."

A miniature man, with a horsewhip neatly twisted round the crop or
handle, opens the gate.

"Well, Tommy, how are you, Tommy?"

"Well, sir, bobbish. Fine day, Mr. Filbert."

Although Mr. Filbert tells us in a whisper that Tommy is only twelve
next birth-day, Tommy looks as if he had entered far into his teens. His
dress is deceptive. Light trowsers terminating in buttons, laced shoes,
long striped waistcoat, a cut-away coat, a colored cravat, a collar to
which juveniles aspire under the name of "stick-ups," and a Paris silk
hat, form his equipment.

"Let's see, Tommy; what stakes did you win last?"

Tommy flicks, with the end of his whip-crop, a speck of dirt from the
toe of his "off" shoe, and replies carelessly, "The Great
Northamptonshire upon Valentine. But then, I have won a many smaller
stakes, you know, Mr. Filbert."

"Are there many jockeys so young as Tommy?"

"Not many so young," says Tommy, tying a knot in his whip thong, "but a
good many smaller." Tommy then walks across the straw-yard to speak to
some stable friend he has come to see. Tommy has not only the
appearance, but the manners of a man.

"That boy will be worth money," says Mr. Filbert. "It is no uncommon
thing for a master to give a lad like that a hundred pound when he wins
a race. As he can't spend it in hard-bake, or ginger-beer, or marbles
(the young rogue _does_, occasionally, get rid of a pound or two in
cigars), he saves it. I have known a racing-stable lad begin the world
at twenty, with from three to four thousand pound."

Tommy is hopping back over the straw, as if he had forgotten something.
"O, I beg your pardon for not asking before," he says, "but--how does
Mrs. Filbert find herself?"

"Quite well, thank you, Tommy." Tommy says he is glad to hear it, and
walks off like a family-man.

Our interview with Mr. Filbert is finished, and we pace toward the
race-course with its indefatigable clerk. Presently, he points to a huge
white object that rears its leaden roof on the apex of the highest of
the "Downs." It is the Grand Stand. It is so extensive, so strong, and
so complete, that it seems built for eternity, instead of for busy use
during one day in the year, and for smaller requisitions during three
others. Its stability is equal to St. Paul's, or the Memnonian Temple.
Our astonishment, already excited, is increased when our cicerone tells
us that he pays as rent and in subscriptions to stakes to be run for,
nearly two thousand pounds per annum for that stand. Expecting an
unusually great concourse of visitors this year, he has erected a new
wing, extended the betting inclosure, and fitted up two apartments for
the exclusive use of ladies.

Here we are! Let us go into the basement. First into the weighing-house,
where the jockeys "come to scale" after each race. We then inspect the
offices for the Clerk of the Course himself; wine-cellars, beer-cellars,
larders, sculleries, and kitchens, all as gigantically appointed, and as
copiously furnished as if they formed part of an ogre's castle. To
furnish the refreshment-saloon, the Grand Stand has in store two
thousand four hundred tumblers, one thousand two hundred wine-glasses,
three thousand plates and dishes, and several of the most elegant vases
we have seen out of the Glass Palace, decorated with artificial flowers.
An exciting odor of cookery meets us in our descent. Rows of spits are
turning rows of joints before blazing walls of fire. Cooks are trussing
fowls; confectioners are making jellies; kitchen-maids are plucking
pigeons; huge crates of boiled tongues are being garnished on dishes.
One hundred and thirty legs of lamb, sixty-five saddles of lamb, and one
hundred and thirty shoulders of lamb; in short, a whole flock of
sixty-five lambs have to be roasted, and dished, and garnished, by the
Derby Day. Twenty rounds of beef, four hundred lobsters, one hundred and
fifty tongues, twenty fillets of veal, one hundred sirloins of beef,
five hundred spring chickens, three hundred and fifty pigeon-pies; a
countless number of quartern loaves, and an incredible quantity of ham
have to be cut up into sandwiches; eight hundred eggs have got to be
boiled for the pigeon-pies and salads. The forests of lettuces, the
acres of cress, and beds of radishes, which will have to be chopped up;
the gallons of "dressings" that will have to be poured out and converted
into salads for the insatiable Derby Day, will be best understood by a
memorandum from the chief of that department to the _chef de-cuisine_,
which happened, accidentally, to fall under our notice: "Pray don't
forget a large tub and a birch-broom for mixing the salad!"

We are preparing to ascend, when we hear the familiar sound of a
printing machine. Are we deceived? O, no! The Grand Stand is like the
kingdom of China--self-supporting, self-sustaining. It scorns foreign
aid; even to the printing of the Racing Lists. This is the source of the
innumerable cards with which hawkers persecute the sporting world on its
way to the Derby, from the Elephant and Castle to the Grand Stand.
"Dorling's list! Dorling's correct list! with the names of the horses,
and colors of the riders!"

We are now in the hall. On our left, are the parlors--refreshment rooms
specially devoted to the Jockey Club; on our right, a set of seats,
reserved, from the days of Flying Childers, for the members of White's
Clubhouse.

We step out upon the lawn; in the midst is the betting-ring, where sums
of money of fabulous amounts change hands.

The first floor is entirely occupied with a refreshment-room and a
police court. Summary justice is the law of the Grand Stand. Two
magistrates sit during the races. Is a pick-pocket detected, a
thimble-rigger caught, a policeman assaulted? The delinquent is brought
round to the Grand Stand, to be convicted, sentenced, and imprisoned in
as short a time as it takes to run a mile race.

The sloping roof is covered with lead, in steps; the spectator from that
point has a bird's-eye view of the entire proceedings, and of the
surrounding country, which is beautifully picturesque. When the
foreground of the picture is brightened and broken by the vast multitude
that assembles here upon the Derby Day, it presents a whole which has no
parallel in the world.

On that great occasion, an unused spectator might imagine that all
London turned out. There is little perceptible difference in the bustle
of its crowded streets, but all the roads leading to Epsom Downs are so
thronged and blocked by every description of carriage, that it is
marvelous to consider how, when, and where they were all made--out of
what possible wealth they are all maintained--and by what laws the
supply of horses is kept equal to the demand. Near the favorite bridges,
and at various leading points of the leading roads, clusters of people
post themselves by nine o'clock to see the Derby people pass. Then come
flitting by, barouches, phaetons, Broughams, gigs, four-wheeled chaises,
four-in-hands, Hansom cabs, cabs of lesser note, chaise-carts,
donkey-carts, tilted vans made arborescent with green boughs, and
carrying no end of people, and a cask of beer--equestrians, pedestrians,
horse-dealers, gentlemen, notabilities, and swindlers, by tens of
thousands--gradually thickening and accumulating, until, at last a mile
short of the turnpike, they become wedged together, and are very slowly
filtered through layers of policemen, mounted and a-foot, until, one by
one, they pass the gate, and skurry down the hill beyond. The most
singular combinations occur in these turnpike stoppages and presses.
Four-in-hand leaders look affectionately over the shoulders of ladies,
in bright shawls, perched in gigs; poles of carriages appear, uninvited,
in the midst of social parties in phaetons; little, fast, short-stepping
ponies run up carriage-wheels before they can be stopped and hold on
behind like footmen. Now, the gentleman who is unaccustomed to public
driving, gets into astonishing perplexities. Now, the Hansom cab whisks
craftily in and out, and seems occasionally to fly over a wagon or so.
Now the post-boy, on a jibbing or a shying horse, curses the evil hour
of his birth, and is ingloriously assisted by the shabby hostler out of
place, who is walking down with seven shabby companions, more or less
equine, open to the various chances of the road. Now, the air is fresh,
and the dust flies thick and fast. Now, the canvas booths upon the
course are seen to glisten and flutter in the distance. Now, the
adventurous vehicles make cuts across, and get into ruts and
gravel-pits. Now, the heather in bloom is like a field of gold, and the
roar of voices is like a wind. Now, we leave the hard road and go
smoothly rolling over the soft green turf, attended by an army of
importunate worshipers in red jackets and stable jackets, who make a
very Juggernaut car of our equipage, and now breathlessly call us My
Lord, and now, Your Honor. Now, we pass the outer settlements of tents,
where pots and kettles are--where gipsy children are--where airy
stabling is--where tares for horses may be bought--where water, water,
water, is proclaimed--where the Tumbler in an old pea-coat, with a
spangled fillet round his head, eats oysters, while his wife takes care
of the golden globes, and the knives, and also of the starry little boy,
their son, who lives principally upside-down. Now, we pay our one pound
at the barrier, and go faster on, still Juggernautwise, attended by our
devotees, until at last we are drawn, and rounded, and backed, and
sidled, and cursed, and complimented, and vociferated, into a station on
the hill opposite the Grand Stand, where we presently find ourselves on
foot, much bewildered, waited on by five respectful persons, who _will_
brush us all at once.

Well, to be sure, there never was such a Derby Day, as this present
Derby Day! Never, to be sure, were there so many carriages, so many
fours, so many twos, so many ones, so many horsemen, so many people who
have come down by "rail," so many fine ladies in so many Broughams, so
many of Fortnum and Mason's hampers, so much ice and champagne! If I
were on the turf, and had a horse to enter for the Derby, I would call
that horse Fortnum and Mason, convinced that with that name he would
beat the field. Public opinion would bring him in somehow. Look where I
will--in some connection with the carriages--made fast upon the top, or
occupying the box, or tied up behind, or dangling below, or peeping out
of window--I see Fortnum and Mason. And now, Heavens! all the hampers
fly wide open, and the green Downs burst into a blossom of
lobster-salad!

As if the great Trafalgar signal had been suddenly displayed from the
top of the Grand Stand, every man proceeds to do his duty. The weaker
spirits, who were ashamed to set the great example, follow it instantly,
and all around me there are table-cloths, pies, chickens, hams, tongues,
rolls, lettuces, radishes, shell-fish, broad-bottomed bottles, clinking
glasses, and carriages turned inside out. Amid the hum of voices a bell
rings. What's that? What's the matter? They are clearing the course.
Never mind. Try the pigeon-pie. A roar. What's the matter? It's only the
dog upon the course. Is that all? Glass of wine. Another roar. What's
that? It's only the man who wants to cross the course, and is
intercepted, and brought back. Is that all? I wonder whether it is
always the same dog and the same man, year after year! A great roar.
What's the matter? By Jupiter, they are going to start.

A deeper hum and a louder roar. Every body standing on Fortnum and
Mason. Now they're off! No. _Now_ they're off! No. _Now_ they're off!
No. _Now_ they are! Yes!

There they go! Here they come! Where? Keep your eye on Tattenham Corner,
and you'll see 'em coming round in half a minute. Good gracious, look at
the Grand Stand, piled up with human beings to the top, and at the
wonderful effect of changing light as all their faces and uncovered
heads turn suddenly this way! Here they are! Who is? The horses! Where?
Here they come! Green first. No: Red first. No: Blue first. No: the
Favorite first! Who says so? Look! Hurrah! Hurrah! All over. Glorious
race. Favorite wins! Two hundred thousand pounds lost and won. You don't
say so? Pass the pie!

Now, the pigeons fly away with the news. Now, every one dismounts from
the top of Fortnum and Mason, and falls to work with greater earnestness
than before, on carriage boxes, sides, tops, wheels, steps, roofs, and
rumbles. Now, the living stream upon the course, dammed for a little
while at one point, is released, and spreads like parti-colored grain.
Now, the roof of the Grand Stand is deserted. Now, rings are formed upon
the course, where strong men stand in pyramids on one another's heads;
where the Highland lady dances; where the Devonshire Lad sets-to with
the Bantam; where the Tumbler throws the golden globes about, with the
starry little boy tied round him in a knot.

Now, all the variety of human riddles who propound themselves on
race-courses, come about the carriages, to be guessed. Now, the gipsy
woman, with the flashing red or yellow handkerchief about her head, and
the strange silvery-hoarse voice, appears, My pretty gentleman, to tell
your fortin, sir; for you have a merry eye, my gentleman, and surprises
is in store for you, connected with a dark lady as loves you better than
you love a kiss in a dark corner when the moon's a-shining; for you have
a lively 'art, my gentleman, and you shall know her secret thoughts, and
the first and last letters of her name, my pretty gentleman, if you will
cross your poor gipsy's hand with a little bit of silver, for the luck
of the fortin as the gipsy will read true, from the lines of your hand,
my gentleman, both as to what is past, and present, and to come. Now,
the Ethiopians, looking unutterably hideous in the sunlight, play old
banjoes and bones, on which no man could perform ten years ago, but
which, it seems, any man may play now, if he will only blacken his face,
put on a crisp wig, a white waistcoat and wristbands, a large white tie,
and give his mind to it. Now, the sickly-looking ventriloquist, with an
anxious face (and always with a wife in a shawl) teaches the alphabet to
the puppet pupil, whom he takes out of his pocket. Now, my sporting
gentlemen, you may ring the Bull, the Bull, the Bull; you may ring the
Bull! Now, try your luck at the knock-em-downs, my Noble Swells--twelve
heaves for sixpence, and a pincushion in the centre, worth ten times the
money! Now, the Noble Swells take five shillings' worth of "heaves," and
carry off a halfpenny wooden pear in triumph. Now, it hails, as it
always does hail, formidable wooden truncheons round the heads, bodies
and shins of the proprietors of the said knock-em-downs, whom nothing
hurts. Now, inscrutable creatures in smock frocks, beg for bottles. Now,
a coarse vagabond, or idiot, or a compound of the two, never beheld by
mortal off a race-course, minces about, with ample skirts and a tattered
parasol, counterfeiting a woman. Now, a shabby man, with an overhanging
forehead, and a slinking eye, produces a small board, and invites your
attention to something novel and curious--three thimbles and one little
pea--with a one, two, three--and a two, three, one--and a one--and a
two--in the middle--right hand, left hand--go you any bet from a crown
to five sovereigns you don't lift the thimble the pea's under! Now,
another gentleman (with a stick) much interested in the experiment, will
"go" two sovereigns that he does lift the thimble, provided strictly
that the shabby man holds his hand still, and don't touch 'em again.
Now, the bet's made, and the gentleman with the stick, lifts obviously
the wrong thimble, and loses. Now, it is as clear as day to an innocent
bystander, that the loser must have won if he had not blindly lifted the
wrong thimble--in which he is strongly confirmed by another gentleman
with a stick, also much interested, who proposes to "go him" halves--a
friendly sovereign to _his_ sovereign--against the bank. Now, the
innocent agrees, and loses; and so the world turns round bringing
innocents with it in abundance, though the three confederates are
wretched actors, and could live by no other trade if they couldn't do it
better.

Now, there is another bell, and another clearing of the course, and
another dog, and another man, and another race. Now, there are all
these things all over again. Now, down among the carriage-wheels and
poles, a scrubby growth of drunken post-boys and the like has sprung
into existence, like weeds among the many-colored flowers of fine ladies
in Broughams, and so forth. Now, the drinking-booths are all full, and
tobacco-smoke is abroad, and an extremely civil gentleman confidentially
proposes roulette. And now, faces begin to be jaded, and horses are
harnessed, and wherever the old gray-headed beggarman goes, he gets
among traces and splinter-bars, and is roared at.

So, now, we are on the road again, going home. Now, there are longer
stoppages than in the morning; for we are a dense mass of men and women,
wheels, horses, and dust. Now, all the houses on the road seem to be
turned inside out, like the carriages on the course, and the people
belonging to the houses, like the people belonging to the carriages,
occupy stations which they never occupy at another time--on leads, on
housetops, on out-buildings, at windows, in balconies, in doorways, in
gardens. Schools are drawn out to see the company go by. The academies
for young gentlemen favor us with dried peas; the Establishments for
Young Ladies (into which sanctuaries many wooden pears are pitched),
with bright eyes. We become sentimental, and wish we could marry
Clapham. The crowd thickens on both sides of the road. All London
appears to have come out to see us. It is like a triumphant
entry--except that, on the whole, we rather amuse than impress the
populace. There are little love-scenes among the chestnut trees by the
roadside--young gentlemen in gardens resentful of glances at young
ladies from coach-tops--other young gentlemen in other gardens, whose
arms, encircling young ladies, seem to be trained like the vines. There
are good family pictures--stout fathers and jolly mothers--rosy cheeks
squeezed in between the rails--and infinitesimal jockeys winning in
canters on walking-sticks. There are smart maid-servants among the
grooms at stable-doors, where Cook looms large and glowing. There is
plenty of smoking and drinking among the tilted vans and at the
public-houses, and some singing, but general order and good-humor. So,
we leave the gardens and come into the streets, and if we there
encounter a few ruffians throwing flour and chalk about, we know them
for the dregs and refuse of a fine, trustworthy people, deserving of all
confidence and honor.

And now we are at home again--far from absolutely certain of the name of
the winner of the Derby--knowing nothing whatever about any other race
of the day--still tenderly affected by the beauty of Clapham--and
thoughtful over the ashes of Fortnum and Mason.



                          HARTLEY COLERIDGE.


While reading Hartley Coleridge's life, we have been often grieved, but
never for a moment have been tempted to anger. There is so much
bonhomie, so much unaffected oddity, he is such a queer being, such a
_character_, in short, that you laugh more than you cry, and wonder more
than you laugh. The judge would be a severe one who could keep his
gravity while trying him. One mischief, too, which often attends faulty
men of genius is wanting in him. He has not turned his "diseases into
commodities"--paraded his vices as if they were virtues, nor sought to
circulate their virus. He is, as the old divines were wont to say, a
"_sensible_ sinner," and lies so prostrate that none will have the heart
to trample on him. His vices, too, were so peculiarly interwoven with
his idiosyncrasy, which was to the last degree peculiar, that they can
find no imitators. When vice seems ludicrous and contemptible, few
follow it; it is only when covered with the gauzy vail of
sentimentalism, or when deliberately used as a foil to set off brilliant
powers, that it exerts an attraction dangerously compounded of its
native charm, and the splendors which shine beside it. Men who are
disposed to copy the sins of a gifted, popular, and noble poet like
Byron, and who, gazing at his sun-like beams, absorb his spots into
their darkened and swimming eyes, can only look with mockery, pity, and
avoidance upon the slips of an odd little man, driveling amid the
hedgerows and ditches of the lake country, even although his
accomplishments were great, his genius undoubted, and his name
Coleridge.

His nature was, indeed, intensely singular. One might fancy him
extracted from his father's side, while he slept, and _dreamed_. He was
like an embodied dream of that mighty wizard. He had not the breadth,
the length, or the height of S. T. Coleridge's mind, but he had much of
his subtlety, his learning, his occasional sweetness, and his tremulous
tenderness. He was never, and yet always a child. The precocity he
displayed was amazing--and precocious, and nothing more, he continued to
the end. His life was a perpetual promise to _be_--a rich unexpanded
bud--while his father's was a perpetual promise to _do_--a flower
without adequate fruit. It was no wonder that when the father first saw
his child his far-stretching eye was clouded with sorrow as he thought,
"If I--a whole, such as has seldom been created, have had difficulty in
standing alone, how can this be part of myself? If a frail tendency,
running across my being, has damaged me, what is to become of one whose
name is Frailty?" Some such thought was apparently in his prophetic mind
when he wrote the sonnet beginning with

          "Charles, my slow heart was only sad," &c.

Nor did the future history of the child belie the augury of this poetic
sigh of a fond, yet fearing parent, over the extracted, embodied frailty
and fineness of his own being.

Indeed, a circle of evil auguries surrounded the childhood of little
Hartley. The calm, quiet eye of Wordsworth surveyed the sports of the
child, and finding them those of no common infant, he wrote the poem to
"H. C., six years old," where he says--

          "Thou art a dew-drop which the morn brings forth,
          Ill-fitted to sustain unkindly shocks,
          Or to be trailed along the soiling earth."

His power of youthful fancy and language was wonderful. Not even Scott's
story-telling faculty was equal to his. He delighted in recounting to
his brother and companions, not a series of tales, but "one continuous
tale, regularly evolved, and possessing a real unity, enchaining the
attention of his auditors for a space of years." "This enormous romance,
far exceeding in length the compositions of Calprenede, Scudery, or
Richardson, though delivered without premeditation, had a progressive
story with many turns and complications, with salient points recurring
at intervals, with a suspended interest varying in intensity, and
occasionally wrought up to a very high pitch, and at length a final
catastrophe and conclusion." While constructing this he was little more
than twelve years of age.

A _curiosity_, Hartley Coleridge commenced life by being--and a
curiosity, somewhat battered and soiled, he continued to the end. His
peculiarity lay in such a combination of wonderful powers and wonderful
weaknesses, of the mind of a man, the heart of a child, and the body of
a dwarf, of purposes proud and high, and habits mean and low--as has
seldom been witnessed. The wild disorganization produced by such a
medley of contradictory qualities, no discipline, no fortunate
conjuncture of circumstances, nothing, perhaps, but death or miracle
could have reconciled. He was not _deranged_--but he was _disarranged_
in the most extraordinary degree. And such dark disarrangements are
sometimes more hopeless than madness itself. There is nothing for them
but that they be taken down, and cast into the new mould of the grave.

This original tendency and formation are thus described by his brother:
"He had a certain infirmity of will--the specific evil of his life. His
sensibility was intense, and he had not wherewithal to control it. He
could not open a letter without trembling. He shrank from mental
pain--he was beyond measure impatient of constraint. He was liable to
paroxysms of rage, often the disguise of pity, self-accusation, or other
painful emotion--anger it could hardly be called--during which he bit
his arm or finger violently. He yielded, as it were unconsciously, to
slight temptations, slight in themselves, and slight to him, as if
swayed by a mechanical impulse apart from his own volition. It looked
like an organic defect--a congenital imperfection."

     "Of such materials wretched men are made."

And so it fared with poor Hartley Coleridge. Up, indeed, to the time
(1814) when he left school, he seems to have been as happy as most
schoolboys are--nay, happier than most, in constant intercourse with Mr.
Wordsworth, carrying on his English studies in his library at Allanbank,
in the vale of Grasmere, and having become acquainted with John Wilson,
then residing at his beautiful seat, Elleray, on the banks of
Windermere, who became from that time, and continued to the last, one of
his kindest friends. Through Mr. Southey's active intervention, he was
sent to Merton College, Oxford. His curriculum there was at first
distinguished. If inferior in scholarship to many, he yielded to none in
general knowledge, in genius, and, above all, in conversation.
Ultimately he gained a fellowship in Oriel, with high distinction. But
his powers of table-talk became snares to him, and at the close of his
probationary year he "was judged to have forfeited his fellowship on the
ground mainly of intemperance." Great efforts were made by his father
and others to reverse the sentence--but in vain. His ruin was now only a
question of time. He repaired to London, but the precarious life of a
man of letters was fitted to nurse instead of checking his morbid
tendencies and unhappy habits. He next returned to the Lake country,
commenced a school in conjunction with another gentleman, and even
talked of entering into holy orders. But nothing would prosper with him.
His school dwindled away, and he was reduced to make a scrambling
livelihood by contributing to periodicals; domesticated the while at
Grasmere, in the house of a farmer's widow. Various attempts were made,
ever and anon, to make him useful--by taking him to Leeds to edit a
biographical work, assisting a friend in teaching school at Ledbergh,
&c; but all in vain. To Grasmere he as uniformly found his way back, to
resume his erratic existence. In 1845, his mother's death brought him an
annuity, which placed him on a footing of complete independence. During
all this time he was employed fitfully in literary effort, wrote poems,
contributed papers to "Blackwood's Magazine," and delivered occasional
addresses to literary societies. He was gentle, amiable, frank; and,
notwithstanding his oddities and errors, was a great favorite with all
classes in Cumberland. He was, as a churchman and politician, liberal,
almost radical, in his opinions. He was a daily reader of his Bible. To
the last, he struggled sore to unloose the accursed bands of indolence
and sensualism which bound him; but to little purpose.

At length, in the beginning of 1849, he departed this life, after giving
various evidences of a penitent spirit. He lies now in a spot, beside
which, in little more than a year, the dust of one--alike, but oh, how
different!--Wordsworth, was to be consigned. He was in his fifty-second
year. "His coffin, at the funeral, was light as that of a child." "It
was," says his brother, "a winter's day when he was carried to his last
earthly home, cold, but fine, with a few slight scuds of sleet and
gleams of sunshine, one of which greeted us as we entered Grasmere, and
another smiled brightly through the church-window. May it rest upon his
memory!"



                    THE ORIENTAL SALOONS IN MADRID.


"Come," said Don Philippe to us one evening, "come with me to a ball at
the Salon de Oriente, where you will see a picture of Madrilenian life,
too characteristic to be overlooked--a miniature of its beauty, its
taste, and its profligacy combined, which no stranger who visits the
metropolis should fail to note, and studiously observe." Having nothing
of greater importance before us, we assented forthwith to the proposal
of our entertaining teacher, who escorted us thither, as soon as we
could put ourselves in proper trim for the occasion. The first glimpse
of the ball-room was like a fairy scene. It was built in imitation of an
Oriental palace, tastefully painted and illuminated with glittering
chandeliers, in the most brilliant manner. The hall was quite thronged
with persons of both sexes, a large proportion of whom were engaged in
dancing the "Polka Mazurka," to the inspiring music of a full and
splendid band. So exciting was the spectacle, that it was with the
greatest difficulty we restrained ourselves for a few moments from
rushing into the midst of the throng, and finally we broke from all
restraint, and bade defiance to the counsels of Don Philippe, who
evidently regarded us in the light of a couple of hot headed youths,
whose harvest of wild oats had not yet been fully gathered. Away we
dashed into the very midst of the merry sport as if, with military
ardor, we intended to carry the place by storm; having secured a pair of
female prizes, whose brilliant eyes, like lodestones, had drawn us
toward them, while under our sudden spell of excitement we mingled with
the concourse of laughing dancers, and became ourselves the gayest of
the gay. The bright glances which gleamed around us, from every female
eye, were softer than the blushes of the moonbeams! Every cheek was
flushed with pleasure; every lip was red with joy! The men were wild
with frolic, and the youthful damsels intoxicated with delight. Among
the former, whom should I recognize, to my infinite surprise and
astonishment, but my faithful guide to Segovia and the Escurial. In his
dress he was completely metamorphosed into a fashionable gentleman, with
white waistcoat and gloves, and the remainder of his suit of fine black
broadcloth. In manners, he had not a superior in the room. Approaching
me with respect, but with the polished ease of a man well acquainted
with the world, he saluted us with unaffected cordiality, and then
invited us to partake of some refreshments with him in an adjoining
apartment, expressly intended and adapted for this purpose. We did not
wish to offend him by a refusal, and therefore assented to his desire.
Seating ourselves at a table together, we called for a favorite beverage
among the Spaniards, composed of small-beer and lemon, mixed in
proportions to suit the taste of those desiring it. An immense bowl,
supplied with a certain quantity of iced lemonade, was first brought and
placed in the centre of the table before us. Two or three bottles of
beer were then opened and poured into this general receptacle, the
contents of which were stirred up briskly with a kind of ladle or large
spoon. Each of us then helped himself to the frothy compound, which, at
the same time that it is very agreeable to the palate, does not produce
the slightest inebriating effect.

Turning to me, my quondam guide asked if I had passed a pleasant
evening. I replied in the affirmative, and told him I had been much
struck with his skillful performance upon "the light fantastic toe." He
seemed delighted with the compliment, and praised us highly in return,
for the manner in which we had conducted ourselves throughout the
entertainment. "These saloons," said he, "are resorted to by all classes
of gentlemen in the metropolis, without distinction of rank or station,
though they do not sustain so high a public reputation now as they
possessed in former years. This is owing to the fact, that ladies of
station no longer honor them with their presence, save during the period
of the 'masquerades,' when it is said that even the queen herself has
mingled among the general throng, confident that her disguise would
secure her from either scrutiny or recognition. The females whom you
have seen here to-night," continued my guide, "notwithstanding their
modest appearance and genteel manners, are most of them either
kept-mistresses or public courtesans, while the younger ones, apparently
under the protection of their mothers and aunts, by whom they are
accompanied, have been brought hither as to a market, in order to secure
an '_amante_' or lover, and make the most profitable sale of their
charms! This may sound very horrible to your ears, yet I assure you that
it is truth. You can scarcely have any conception of the extent of vice
which prevails in Madrid, nor of the lightness and indifference with
which it is regarded by the community. She who would be called by an
evil name in any other country, is only regarded as a gay and lively
girl in Spain, so low is the general standard of women. Absolute penury,
and the want of respectable employment, have tended to produce this
deplorable result, which must necessarily ensue, wherever the poverty
and mismanagement of a Government, and the consequent inactivity of
industry and commerce, does not create sufficient occupation for the
poorer classes, to keep them above starvation, without having recourse
to vice. It really offends me," continued my guide, with considerable
warmth, "to hear a noble people abused for the existence of faults which
do not properly belong to them." "Bravo," cried Don Philippe, "good,
good, good! Down with the government! Send the cursed ministers to the
infernals, and we'll have a grand Spanish republic. Then you'll see if
the Spaniards are not as industrious and brave, and the women as
virtuous and chaste, as those of any other land under the sun. Give the
people a fair chance, and they will rise, like the bird you call a
phoenix, and become a great and powerful nation. Success, I say, to
the glorious cause of liberty and republicanism in Spain!"



            PHANTOMS AND REALITIES.--AN AUTOBIOGRAPHY.[8]


                         PART THE THIRD--NIGHT.

                                   IV.


The interval of suspense to which we were doomed before we received any
tidings of Forrester seemed to us interminable; and our speculations on
the cause of his silence did not contribute to make our solitude the
more endurable. We clung together, it is true; but it was like people on
a raft, with our heads stretched out, looking apart into the distance
for succor.

    [8] Concluded from the July Number.

At last, at the end of a fortnight, there came a note in Forrester's
handwriting (which I well remembered), signed only with an initial
letter, requiring to see me alone in a roadside hostelrie about half a
mile inland. The note was cautiously worded, so that if it fell into
other hands, its purport would be unintelligible.

I thought this strange; but Forrester was always fond of a little
mystery, and on the present occasion there might be a necessity for it.
I am ashamed to say, that after I had read this note two or three times,
I felt some hesitation about giving him the meeting. The doubt was
unworthy of us both; yet I could not help asking myself, over and over
again, why he wished me to go alone?--why he appointed to meet me at
night?--why he should act under a mask in an affair which demanded the
utmost candor on all sides?--and a hundred other uncomfortable
questions. Circumstances had made me anxious and distrustful; and I was
so conscious of the irritable state of my nerves, that, even while these
suspicions were passing through my brain, I made an effort to do justice
to my friend by recalling to mind the incidents of our former
intercourse, throughout which he had displayed a fidelity and
steadfastness that entitled him to my most implicit confidence. Even if
it had been otherwise, I had no choice but to trust to him; it was
indispensable that we should know the determination of our implacable
enemy, and it was through Forrester alone we could obtain that
information.

The night was dark and stormy. The solitary walk to the little inn
afforded me time to collect myself for an interview which I approached
with no slight uneasiness. I had left Astræa behind me in a depressed
and fretful mood. She could not comprehend why she was excluded from our
councils, and seemed to regard it as a sort of conspiracy to dishonor
and humiliate her. Every trifling circumstance that affected her
personally was viewed in the same light, with jealousy and suspicion.
Poor Astræa! Her life was already beginning to jar with mental discords,
and the shadows of the future were falling thickly upon her, and
darkening her path.

The hostelrie at which I had the appointment with Forrester stood on the
edge of a bleak common. In that part of the country there are many
similar wastes, stretching a half mile or more into the interior,
covered with a scant and sickly herbage, and presenting on the surface
an arid picture of sand, stones, and shells, as if these great,
unprofitable pastures had been redeemed from the sea without being
converted into available land. There is a salt flavor in the air over
these wild inland stretches; the sea seems to pursue you with its saline
weeds, its keen winds, and measured murmurs; and the absolute solitude
of a scene in which you very rarely meet a house or a tree, is
calculated to make a dismal impression on a person otherwise out of
humor with the world. I felt it forcibly that night. I thought the
northeast wind that swept diagonally across the common was more wintry
and biting than usual; and the red light in the distant window of the
"Jolly Gardeners" (of all conceivable signs for such a spot!) looked as
if it were dancing away further and further from me as I advanced across
the heath.

At last I reached the inn--a low tiled house, with a tattered portico
jutting out upon the road some ten or twelve feet, a few latticed
windows, and a narrow passage, lighted by a single candle in a sconce on
the wall, leading into a sanded parlor beyond a little square "bar" that
looked like the inside of a cupboard, decorated with a variety of jugs,
teacups, saucers, and other ware hung up in rows all round. The house
was altogether a very tolerable specimen of what used to be called an
ale-house in remote country districts; a place suggestive of the
strictest caution about liquors, but where you might repose with
confidence on an impromptu entertainment of rashers and eggs. It was
exactly the sort of house that Forrester would have preferred to a
well-appointed hostel in the days of our summer vagrancy, when we used
to wander toward Hampstead and Highgate, avoiding beaten tracks and
crowded localities, and seeking out for ourselves, whenever we could
find it, a secluded "Barley Mow" shut up in a nest of orchards. He had
not lost his early tastes--nor had I! That little "bar," with its
innumerable samples of delft, threw me back sundry years of my life, to
the time when I was free to dream or idle, to go into the haunts of men,
or to desert them at will. The incident was a trifling one in itself;
but it shot through my heart like a bolt of fire. It was the first time
I had gone out and left Astræa alone behind me. I thought of her, seated
in her lonely room, brooding over her desolation, and torturing herself
with speculations upon the business in which I was engaged: while I?--I
was out again on the high road, exulting in a man's privilege to act for
myself, with her destiny, for good or evil, at my disposal, and
possessing the power of returning into the world from whence I had drawn
her, and in which she could never again appear! I?--I was at large once
more, with the memories of the freedom and tranquillity I had
relinquished tempting my thoughts into rebellion. And she?--alas! she
never seemed in my eyes so forlorn and lost as at that moment!

A single glance at the boxed-up "bar," and the honest round face, with a
skin-cap over it, that gaped at me behind a complete breastwork of
pewter and glass, awakened me from the state of reverie in which I had
entered the house. I dare say I looked rather bewildered, like a man
just shaking off a fit of abstraction, for the honest round face
immediately started out of the chair which served as a socket for the
body to which it belonged, and without waiting to hear me ask any
questions, instantly proposed to conduct me to the gentleman up-stairs,
who had been for some time expecting my arrival.

I found Forrester in a small room which was reached by a flight of
stairs, so sharp and precipitate, that they looked as if they were
inserted on the face of the wall. Having lighted me into the room, the
honest face disappeared, and left us alone together.

Forrester stretched out his hand, as I thought, somewhat formally; then
motioning me to a seat opposite to him, waited in silence till the
landlord had left the room.

"You are surprised I should have asked you to come here," he said.

"No," I replied, interrupting him, hastily; "but I am surprised we did
not hear from you sooner. In the name of Heaven, what can have been the
cause of your silence?"

"How long is it since I saw you?"

"How long? Upward of a fortnight, and we expected a letter every day.
But the world forgets us when we forget ourselves."

"It might be well with some people, if the world _did_ forget them," he
rejoined; "but that is no affair of mine. I have not forgotten you,
whatever you may have deserved from others."

This was uttered in a tone of asperity unusual with Forrester. But I
felt that I had provoked it by the unacknowledging spirit in which I had
met him after all the trouble he had taken on my account, and I was
proceeding to make the best apology I could, when he cut me short with a
wave of his hand, and entered upon the business that brought us
together.

"You were aware when I undertook to negotiate between you and the
husband of Astræa, that I was his friend as well as yours. He had even
stronger claims upon my friendship; I had known him in our boyhood; and
when I returned, after an interval of years, and found him bereaved, as
I had been myself--and by the same person--you can not be astonished
that I should feel some interest in his situation."

"I do not blame you for that," I returned, hardly knowing what I said, I
was so amazed by the tone and substance of this unexpected opening.

"Blame me?" reiterated Forrester. "Blame me for sympathizing with an
early friend, whose life, like my own, had been blasted to the root? You
must suppose my nature to be something different from that of other men,
if you imagine I could witness his sufferings unmoved."

"To what is this intended to lead?" I demanded. "When I saw you last,
your sympathies were not so exclusive. You were then, Forrester, the
friend of both?"

"Am I not so still? What brings me here? It is not exactly the sort of
weather a man would select for a trip of pleasure into the country.
What brings me here? Your business. Does this look like a failure of
friendship? You are soured--isolation and self-reproaches, which pride
will not suffer you to acknowledge, have turned your blood to acid. You
are ready to quarrel for straws, and your whole care is how to escape
the responsibility which passion and selfishness have brought upon you."

I leaped from my chair at these words, and looked fiercely at Forrester.
He was perfectly calm, and continued to speak in a voice of freezing
quietness.

"Pray, resume your seat. It is sheer waste of time to lose your temper
with me. Either I must speak candidly to you, or there is an end to our
intercourse."

"Yes--candidly, but not insultingly," I replied, seizing my chair, and,
after giving it a very ill-tempered fling upon the ground, throwing
myself into it.

"How foolish it is in you to exhibit this humor to me," he resumed after
a short pause. "I imagine I have a right to speak to you exactly what I
think, and that the interest I have taken in your concerns ought to
protect me from the suspicion of desiring to insult you. Were it my cue
to insult you, it is not in this affair I should look for the grounds of
quarrel. But let that pass. I have seen the man whom you have made your
mortal enemy, and have endeavored to prevail upon him to break the
marriage. I have failed."

"Failed? How? Why? What does he say? He is a fiend!"

"Strange that he should have just the same opinion of you. Beelzebub is
rather a respectable and virtuous person in his estimation compared with
you. Just possible both may be right!"

I never saw Forrester in this sort of vein before. It was as if he were
determined to lacerate my feelings and lay them bare; and yet there was
a certain eccentric kindness under this rough treatment, which helped to
reconcile me to it. At all events, I was bound to endure it; I knew that
if I outraged him by any show of distrust or violence, his lips would be
closed forever. I felt, too, that I had given him some provocation in
the first instance by the temper I had betrayed; and that the fault was
at least as much mine as his.

"Well," I cried, "you must forgive me, Forrester, if I am a little
chafed and galled, and, as you say, soured. Circumstances have pressed
hardly upon me. Remember how long I have been shut out from
communication with society--and the state of anxiety and suspense in
which I have lived. You must make allowances for me."

"Exactly. _I_ must make allowances for _you_. But when I ask _you_ to
make allowances for _him_, who has gone through sufferings a
hundred-fold more acute, which you have inflicted upon him, what kind of
response do I receive? No matter. I _do_ make allowances for you. If you
are not entirely absorbed by selfish considerations, you will endeavor
to comprehend the wrong you have committed, and do what you can to avoid
making it worse."

"Wrong? Premeditated wrong I never will admit. My conscience is clear of
that. But I will not argue with you. What would you have me do?"

"Leave the country. You have no other alternative."

"What? Fly from this demon, who first tempted me, and who now wants to
triumph over my ruin?"

"You say your conscience is clear of wrong. You have a happy conscience.
But it deceives you. It is true, that when you first knew Astræa, you
were ignorant of his rights; but you were not ignorant of them when he
found you together and claimed her. Up to that moment, you might have
had some excuse. There was yet time to save her, yourself, and him. How
did you act, then? If we are to discuss this matter with any hope of
arriving at a rational conclusion, you must rid yourself of the
flattering deception that you have been doing no wrong. We are not
children, but grown-up men and responsible agents."

"Well, I put myself in your hands. But that I should become an exile
because this man chooses to pursue me with vindictive feelings, _does_
seem something monstrous."

"From your point of sight, I dare say it does. Just change places with
him. A man who desires to decide justly will always endeavor to look at
both sides of a question. Put yourself in his position. He loves this
woman. I am satisfied he loves her more truly and tenderly, and less
selfishly now than he ever loved her from the beginning. You sneer at
that. You do not credit the possibility of such a thing. It is a
constitutional fallacy of yours to believe that no man loves as you
do--that there is a leaven of earth in other men which mixes with their
devotion and corrupts it. You have nursed this creed all your life, and
it has grown with your growth. You alone are pure and spiritual. I
remember you had that notion once before. I remember how you exalted
yourself on the intensity and endurance of your passion. Surely by this
time you should have outlived that delusion; for even then you might
have seen men with hearts as--But I am wandering from the subject."

"I understand you. I was young, superstitious, ignorant--"

"I will speak plainly. You are not capable of a great devotion. Your
character is not strong enough. You have none of the elements of power
necessary to the maintenance of the martyrdom of love. In a nature
constituted like yours, passion burns up fiercely, and goes out
suddenly. I have heard you say--some years gone by!--that you were
consumed by a love which would end only with your life. I was silent. I
loved, too; but I vailed my eyes, and spoke not, as the coffin which
contained all I cherished in the world was lowered into the grave.
Hope--affection--the desire of life, were buried with it. You see me now
wasted, haggard, solitary, a wreck upon the waters. And you? I find you
plunged into the ecstasies of a new passion. And what of the old one?
Where are the traces of it now? Some men can not live except in this
condition of excitement. You are one of them. But do not deceive
yourself into the belief that others have not hearts, because they do
not show them in spasms such as these. Do not despise the faithful
agonies even of the dwarf!"

I felt the severe justice of the reproach less in Forrester's words than
in his pallid face, and the pangs he struggled to conceal. I was even
secretly compelled to admit that there was a miserable truth in what he
said about Mephistophiles; yet it was difficult for me to give utterance
to the expression of any sympathy in the sufferings of a man who seemed
to have directed his whole energies to the pursuit of an insane and
unprofitable vengeance.

"The portrait is not flattering," I observed. "But why do you thus put
me on the rack? What has all this to do with the matter that has brought
us together?"

"It has every thing to do with it. The instability of your
character--the certainty of remorse and disappointment, passion sated
and exhausted, romance broken up, and nothing left but mutual
reproaches, which will not be the less bitter because they may not find
expression in words--the certainty that such is the fate to which Astræa
is doomed under your protection, justifies me in laying before you those
secrets of your nature which, without the help of some friendly monitor
like me, you would never be able to discover."

This was said in a tone of sarcasm. No man knows himself. With much
modesty and humility in some things (springing, perhaps, from weakness
rather than discretion or reserve), I had always overrated myself in
others. I had a strong faith in my own constancy of purpose--in the
steadfastness of my principles and feelings. But it was true that I was
self-deceived, if Forrester and Astræa had read my character accurately.
Their agreement was something wonderful. They used almost the very same
words in describing the points on which my strength was likely to break
down. I was beginning to fear that they were right; but I owed a grave
responsibility to Astræa, and could not yet be brought to admit, even to
myself, that it was possible I should fail in it.

"You judge from the rest of the world, and not from me, Forrester," I
replied. "But granted that it is as you say, how can that mend the
business? Believe me, you are ignorant of Astræa's character and mine.
No matter--let that pass. Suppose we should hereafter find our lives
wearisome and joyless, may we not justly trace the cause to the malice
that will not suffer us to redeem ourselves."

"Is your redemption, by the strength of your own efforts, so sure, then?
Neither he whom you have wronged, nor I, have any faith in your
fortitude. We believe that if you were free to marry Astræa, a certain
sense of justice would induce you at once to make her your wife; but we
believe also, that the enchantment would perish at the altar.
Attachments that begin in one form of selfishness generally end in
another--even with people of the most amiable intentions."

There was a scoff in his voice that made my blood tingle; but I subdued
myself. "Pray, come to the point," I exclaimed, impatiently.

"The point is simple enough," he returned. "My mission has failed. He
will make no terms, take no steps for a divorce, listen to no
expostulations until a separation shall have taken place between you and
Astræa."

"A separation?"

"It is clear to me that, in looking forward to such a contingency, it is
not because he hopes or desires, under such circumstances, to see her
again; but because it would enable him, without pain or humiliation, to
become the guardian of her future life. It is the passion of his soul to
dedicate himself, unseen, to the sacred duty of watching over her."

"Preposterous. He watch over her? The recollection of his former
guardianship is not so agreeable as to induce her to trust herself under
it again. As to separation, her devotion to me would make her spurn such
a proposition."

"H--m! It is because I believed her pride would make her spurn it that I
recommended you to go abroad."

"And why should we go abroad on that account?"

"Because his revenge, sleepless and insatiable, will render it
impossible for you to remain in England."

"His revenge! Pshaw! I am sick of hearing of it. Believe me, the word
has lost its terrors--if it ever had any."

"You are wrong. My advice is prudent, and is given honestly, for both
your sakes. In England there is danger; abroad, you will be beyond his
reach."

"Why," answered I, with a forced smile, "one would suppose that you were
speaking of the Grand Inquisition, or the Council of Ten, and that we
lived in a country where there was neither law nor social civilization.
What do you imagine I can possibly have to fear from him?"

"A vengeance that you can not evade, so subtle and unrelenting as to
leave no hour of your existence free from dread and misery. Can you not
understand how a man whose life you have laid waste may haunt you with
his curse? Can you not comprehend the workings of a mortal hate, ever
waiting for its opportunity, patient, silent, untiring, never for an
instant losing sight of its object, and making all things and all
seasons subservient to its deadly purpose? _I_ can understand this in
the most commonplace natures, when they are strongly acted upon; but in
him, fiery, self-willed, and vindictive, it is inevitable."

"Is this an inference of your own, drawn from your knowledge of his
character, or has he confided his intentions to you?"

"Even if he had not confided his intentions to me, I know him too well
not to foresee the course he will take; but he has concealed nothing of
his designs from me, except the mode in which he intends to work them
out. Of that I know nothing. But it is enough, surely, that such a man
should swear an oath of vengeance in my presence, to justify me in the
warning I have given you."

"I thank you. And this warning--upon which we seem to put very different
valuations--is the result of your friendly interference?"

"You are at liberty to doubt my friendship; but I will not leave my
motives open to misconstruction. I repeat to you that I give you this
warning, for _his_ sake as much as for yours."

"And why for his sake?"

"Because if you avoid him you may save him from the perpetration of a
crime. The whole energies of his mind are directed to one end. He lives
for nothing else, and will pursue it at any cost or peril to himself. I
know him. If you are wise, you will heed my warning. If not, take your
own course. I have discharged my conscience, and have done."

As he spoke these words, he drew his chair toward the fire, and sat
musing as if he had dropped out of the conversation.

"Forrester," I exclaimed, "one question more! Why did you not
communicate this to Astræa yourself? Why did you leave to me the pain of
carrying home such ill news?"

"Home!" repeated Forrester, involuntarily; then, raising his voice, he
went on: "Why did I not go to her, and tell her that she ought to
separate from you, if she had any regard for her own future security?
What should you have thought of my friendship if I had done that? Why,
you distrust me as it is."

"No--I have no distrusts. It is evident on which side your sympathies
are engaged."

"With whom should I sympathize--the wronged, or the wrong-doer?"

"When we parted last, I believed that you felt otherwise."

"When we parted last, you had made impressions upon me which I have
since found to be deceptive. I do not blame you for that. You told your
story in your own way, from your own point of sight: I believed it to be
true. Nor had I then looked into this man's heart--this suffering man in
his agony, whom you painted as a monster: I did not then know how
capable he was of loving and of suffering for love's sake--the noblest
and the most sorrowful of all suffering! nor how gently that heart,
crushed and struck to the core, had risen again to life, strengthened
and sweetened by the injuries it had learned to forgive! You can not
judge of that tenderness of soul, out of which a happier fortune and a
prosperous love might have drawn a life of kindliness and charity.
You--who, having accomplished your desires, are now reposing in the lull
of your sated passions--you can see nothing in him but the evil which
you have helped to nourish; his sacrifices and magnanimity are all
darkness to you."

"I will listen no longer," I said, starting up from my chair. "I see
distinctly what is before me. Old friends fall from us in our
adversities. Well! new ones must be made. It is some comfort that the
world is wide enough for us all, and that the loss, even of such a
friend as you, is not irreparable."

"H--m! a successful epitome of your creed and character! You can cast
old affections and memories from you with as little emotion as a bird
moults its feathers; and having got rid of one set of sensations, you
can begin again, and so go on, destroying and renewing, and still
thinking yourself misunderstood and injured, and taking your revenge in
fresh indulgences."

"I will endure no more of this," I exclaimed, seizing my hat and going
toward the door; "let us part, before I forget the ties that once bound
us together."

"Forget them?" he echoed, and his face grew ghastly pale; but, forcibly
controlling his agitation, he went on, in a low voice: "Have you not
forgotten them already? Have you not shaken them off like dust from your
feet? Ay, let us part; I am unfit to be your friend or companion. Leave
me to mate with him you have bereaved, and whose heart is desolate like
mine! There, at least, I shall find a community of feeling on one
point--the blight which we both owe to you. Go! Leave me--no words--no
words!"

Had I spoken it would have been angrily. But although my pride was
wounded, and I was bitterly mortified and disappointed at the result of
a meeting, which, instead of alleviating my anxiety, had only loaded me
with miseries, I felt that it would have been barbarous at that moment,
had I given way to my own feelings. I stood and gazed upon him in
silence while I held the half-opened door in my hand.

The old feeling was all at once revived, and as he buried his head in
his broad, shapeless hands, and bent over the table, the night when he
related to me the singular history with which he prefaced the
introduction to Gertrude, came back upon me with all its agonies and
terrors as freshly as if but a few weeks, instead of long and checkered
years, had elapsed in the interval. His great anguish on that occasion,
and the grandeur of the sacrifice he made to what he hoped would have
been the foundation of the life-long happiness of her he loved, returned
with painful distinctness. He was changed in nothing since, except in
the haggard expression of his face and figure. His heart--his strong,
manly heart--was still the same. His affections were in the grave with
Gertrude; he had traversed half the world, had been thrown into trying
circumstances, and doubtless, like other men, had been exposed to many
temptations, yet he had never swerved from his early attachment, and had
brought back with him from his wanderings the same truthfulness and the
same sorrow he had carried with him into exile. How strange it was that
he, of all men, should be cast by the force of accidental occurrences
into close communion with the dwarf! that the only men on earth who in
the depths of their hearts could--whether justly or unjustly, mattered
little--find a cause for hating and denouncing me, should be drawn
together, not by any sympathy of their own, but by a common resentment
against me! these two men, so utterly unlike each other in every thing
else, whose natures were as widely different and opposed as night and
day! And then in the midst of this rose up the memory of Gertrude, of
whom I could recollect nothing but a macilent figure, stretched upon a
sofa and scarcely breathing. The lineaments were gone, but there were
the spirit and the reproach, and the gloom that had settled on the
opening of my life, making all the rest wayward, fantastical, and
unreasoning.

I paused at the door, looked for the last time on Forrester, and
noiselessly leaving the room, descended the stairs. In the next moment I
was out again on the bleak heath.


                                   V.

On my return, I found Astræa pacing up and down the room in a state of
nervous irritation at my long absence. Her usual self-command was broken
down. The grace and dignity that once imparted to her an aspect of
calmness and power, were gone. Isolation was doing its work upon her!
Isolation and the feeling of banishment and disgrace which we struggled
with darkly in our minds, but which were slowly and surely destroying
our confidence in ourselves, and our trust in the future.

She was impatient to hear what I had to relate to her, yet was so
ruffled by it, that she constantly interrupted me by exclamations of
scorn and anger. The suggestion of our separation, and the subsequent
guardianship of the dwarf, which I stated simply, without coloring or
comment, affected her differently. She looked at me in silence, as I
slowly repeated the words of Forrester, her lips trembled slightly, and
a faint flush spread over her face and forehead. There was a great
conflict going on, and I could see that her strength was unequal to it.
Gradually the flush deepened, and tears sprang into her eyes. I shall
never forget it! A sob broke from her, and crushing up her face in her
outspread hands with a wildness that almost terrified me, she exclaimed:

"I never was humiliated till now! never till now! till now! O God! what
have I done that this bitterness should come upon me?"

"Astræa! for Heaven's sake do not give way to these violent emotions.
After all, what does it come to?"

She threw back her head with an expression of fierce reproach in her
eyes, and replied:

"Disgrace! _You_ do not feel it. _You_ are safe, free, unscathed; but
_I_--_I_--and this is what women suffer who sacrifice themselves as I
have done!"

"Come, you are nervous and desponding, Astræa. Why do you talk of
suffering? No body has the power to inflict suffering upon you now."

"It is idle--idle--idle!" she answered, moving to and fro; "you can not
comprehend it. Men have no sense of these things. Happy for them it is
so. I believe you mean all in kindness--I believe your manhood, your
pride would not allow you to see me unprotected, lost, degraded so
early! No! don't speak! Let me go on. He makes a condition that I should
leave you--that I should violate the most solemn obligation of my life,
and proclaim myself that which my soul recoils from, and my lips dare
not utter; then, when I shall have damned myself, he will protect me!
With a forbearance, for which I ought to be thankful he will watch over
me unseen--provide for my wants--take care that I am fed and housed; and
having secured my dependence on him, and broken my rebellious heart, he
will take infinite credit to himself for the delicacy and magnanimity
with which he has treated me. Oh man--man! how little you know our
natures, and how superior we are to you, even in our degradation! I ask
you, in what light must he regard me who could presume to make such a
proposition? And in what light should I deserve to be regarded if I
accepted it?"

"It is quite true, Astræa. I feel the whole force of your observations.
The proposition is an insult."

"Thank you--thank you, for that word!" she exclaimed, throwing herself
into my arms, and bursting into a flood of tears. "There is something
yet left to cling to. Thank God, I am not yet so lost but that you
should feel it to be an insult to me. It is something not to be yet
quite beyond the reach of insult."

"Astræa," I said, folding her tenderly in my arms, "compose yourself,
and trust to me. We must trust to each other. There--there--dear
Astræa!"

"What a wretch should I be," she replied, "if _this_ were all--if it
were for _this_ I forfeited every thing; no, no, _you_ don't think so.
It is my last hold--self-respect!--and it is in your keeping. For you I
gave up all--and would have given up life itself--it would be hard if I
should perish in my sin by his hands for whom I sinned!" Then releasing
herself from me, she grasped my arm, and looking earnestly into my face,
she demanded, "And what answer did you give to this proposal?"

"Why, what answer should I give, but that I knew you would spurn it?"

"That was right!" she cried; "right--manly--honest. We must let him know
that I am not the defenseless outcast he supposes; he must see and feel
that we can walk abroad as proudly in the open day as he or his. _His_
vengeance? What have we to fear? Let us cast the shame from us and show
ourselves to the world. We make our own disgrace by hiding and flying
from our friends. You see how our forbearance has been appreciated, and
what a charitable construction has been put upon our conduct. We owe it
to ourselves to vindicate ourselves. I will endure those dismal whispers
that carry a blight in every word no longer. I would rather die!
Come--let us decide once and forever our future course!"

These were brave words, and bravely uttered. Toward the close, Astræa
had regained much of her original power; the strength of purpose and
towering will, which I remembered so well in former days, and which gave
so elevated a character to her beauty, came back once more, and lighted
up her fine features.

It was late; but what were hours to us? Day or night made little
difference. We had no objects to call us up early--we had no occupations
for the next day--it was immaterial whether we retired or sat up; and so
in this listless mode of life we always followed the immediate impulse,
whatever it might be. When we found ourselves weary, we betook ourselves
to repose; when we felt inclined to talk and maunder over the fire, we
never troubled ourselves to ask what o'clock it was. In short, time had
no place in our calendar, which was governed, not by the revolutions of
the earth, but by our own moods and sensations.

We discussed a great question that night. No theme before a debating
club--such as the choice between Peace and War, between Society or
Solitude, or any of those grand abstract antitheses that agitate
nations--was ever more completely exhausted in all its details than the
question--Whether we should leave England, or remain at home, and go
boldly into public, with the determination to live down the persecutions
of the dwarf.

It was a question of life or death with us. We both felt that any fate
would be more welcome than the life to which we were then condemned. We
pined for human faces and human voices. We were sick at heart of eternal
loneliness. We longed for free intercourse with educated people like
ourselves, who would sympathize with our intellectual wants, and talk to
us in our own language. We had arrived at the discovery that the
solitude we had colored so brightly in those happy hours of romance
which love takes such pains in filling up with delusions, would be
rendered much more agreeable by an occasional variety, or an incidental
shock from without--any thing that would stir the pulses and awaken the
life-blood that was growing stagnant in our veins. We were not weary of
each other; on the contrary, anxiety had brought our hearts more closely
together; but we had drunk all the light out each other's eyes, and our
aspects were becoming wan and passionless from lack of change and
movement; we yearned for the presence even of strangers, to break up the
dullness and uniformity, and make us feel that we had an interest in the
living world, and that our love, sweet as it was in seclusion, was
sweeter still as a bond that linked us to the great family, from which
in our desolate retreat we felt ourselves entirely cut off.

I need not detail the arguments by which our final resolution was
determined. To go abroad, and embrace a voluntary banishment, would have
looked like an admission of guilt, which Astræa persisted in
repudiating. Whatever verdict society might choose to pronounce, Astræa
would be governed only by her own. Her justice adapted itself expressly
to the occasion, setting aside the larger views which laws designed for
the general security must include. But such is woman's logic
ever!--circumstantially sensitive, clear, and narrow! Her voice was for
war. I had no motive for opposing her; my pride agreed with her--my
reason took the other side; but, in reality, I saw no great choice
either way. I knew, or felt, that society would never be reconciled to
us. Men have instincts on such points; but women, with their wild sense
of what may be called natural law, never can see these things in the
same light. This was a matter I could not argue with Astræa. I merely
told her that in our anomalous situation, we must not look for much
sympathy or consideration; that, in fact, I had known similar cases
(perhaps not quite so peculiar, but that made no difference in the eyes
of society), and that the issue of the struggle to get back always ended
in increased humiliation; yet I was, nevertheless, ready to adopt any
plan of life that would satisfy her feelings. I was bound to think of
that first, and perfectly willing to take chance for the rest.

It was settled at last, at the close of our long council, that we should
adopt a sort of middle course; and before we returned to London, which
we now fully resolved to do at the opening of the season, we projected a
visit to Brighton, and one or two other places on the coast.


                                   VI.

Talk of the sagacity of the lower animals, and the reasoning faculties
of man! We are the most inconsistent of all creatures; we are
perpetually contradicting ourselves, perpetually involved in anomalies
of our own making. It is impossible to reconcile half the things we do
with the exercise of that reason which we boast of as the grand
distinction that elevates us above the horse, the dog, the elephant. We
never find any of these animals doing unaccountable things, or
practically compromising their sagacity.

For my part, looking back on my life, I feel that it is full of
contradictions, which, although apparent to me now, were not so in the
whirl of agitation out of which they surged. Here, for example, after a
flight from the world, and nearly six months' burial in the severest
solitude, behold us on a sudden in the midst of the gay crowds of
Brighton. The transition is something startling. It was so to us at the
time; and I confess that at this distance from the excitement which led
to it, I can not help regarding it as an act of signal temerity,
considering the circumstances in which we were placed.

Astræa's spirits grew lighter; she cast off her gloom and reserve, and
surrendered herself to the full tide of human enjoyment in which we were
now floating. Whatever might have been the terror or misgiving at either
of our hearts, we did not show it in our looks. We wore a mask to each
other--a mask of kindness, each desiring to conceal the secret pang, and
to convey to the other a notion that all was at peace within! We were
mutually conscious of the well-meant deception, but thought it wiser and
more generous on both sides to affect entire confidence in the gayety we
assumed! Upon this hollow foundation we set about building the
superstructure of our future lives.

We had a cheerful lodging facing the sea--rather a handsome and
extravagant lodging; for being intent upon our project of asserting
ourselves in the eyes of the world, we resolved to test any friends we
might happen to meet, by inviting them to our house. The landlady, a
respectable widow, was one of the most civil and obliging persons in the
world. Her whole establishment was at our disposal, and she never could
do too much to make us feel perfectly at our ease. Emerging as we had
just done from utter loneliness, with a strong fear that the hand of the
world was against us, all this attention and kindness touched us deeply.
Slight an incident as it was, it made us think better of our species,
and look forward more hopefully for ourselves. There was yet something
to live for! There always is, if we will only suffer our hearts to
explore for us, and find it out.

Any person who has moved much in the London circles is sure to find a
numerous acquaintance at Brighton. We met several people we had known in
the great maelstrom of the West End. It was pleasant to us to exchange
salutes with them. It was like coming back after a long voyage, and
finding one's self at home again among old faces and household scenes.
We were intimate with none of these people; and as our knowledge of them
did not justify more than a passing recognition, which was generally
very cordial on both sides, we used to return from our drive every day,
exulting in the success of our experiment upon society. The world, after
all, was not so bad as we supposed.

One day, sauntering on the sands, Astræa saw a lady at a distance whose
figure seemed to be familiar to her. She was an old schoolfellow of
hers, who had been recently married. They flew into each other's arms.
The meeting, indeed, was marked by such affectionate interest on the
part of the lady, who was a stranger to me, that I apprehended she was
entirely ignorant of our story. Almost the first question that passed
between them determined that fact; and as they had a great deal of news
to communicate to each other, it was arranged between them that they
should meet the next morning for a long gossip.

Astræa went alone, and staid away half the day. She returned to me full
of glee. Her friend had listened to her history with the deepest
interest, and entirely agreed with her that she could not have acted
otherwise, adopting, at the same time, without hesitation, Astræa's
opinion of the sanctity of our union. It was not our fault that we had
not been married in a church and this generous lady, seeing the
embarrassment of our situation, enthusiastically declared that the world
might take its own course, but that _she_, at least, would never abandon
a friend under such circumstances. This was very cheering. I must
remark, however, that this lady was several years younger than Astræa,
under whose protection she had been taken at school, where Astræa had
been a resident for convenience, rather than a pupil, when she entered
it. In this way their attachment originated. It would have been
difficult for any young person to have been placed in such close and
endearing intimacy with Astræa, and not to have acquired an enthusiastic
regard for her. She always inspired that sort of feeling--a deep and
passionate love, great admiration of her intellect, implicit respect for
her judgment. In the eyes of her schoolfellow she was the model of all
human excellence. As easily would she have believed in an error of the
planetary system, as that Astræa could commit an aberration of any kind.
Whatever Astræa did, appeared to her unimpeachable. A feeling of
veneration like this carried away from school will stand many severe
shocks in the mind of a true-hearted girl before it will give way.

This was all very well so far as the lady herself was concerned; but how
could we answer for the view her husband might take of the matter? She
volunteered in the most courageous way to take all that upon herself.
She could answer for her husband. She was very young, and very pretty,
and very giddy, and only just married, and her husband never denied her
any thing, and she ruled him with as queenly an influence as the heart
of the most imperious little beauty could desire. Nor did she reckon
without her host, as the event proved. Her husband, in the most
good-humored way, fell into her view of the case. He was one of those
easy-natured souls who, when they marry school-girls, feel themselves
called upon to marry the whole school, and to take its romps, and its
vows, and its bridesmaid pledges, to heart and home along with their
wives. He had heard her speak of Astræa a thousand times, and professed
to be very curious to see her; and so it was arranged that we should all
meet, and make the merriest double-bridal party in the universe. The
reunion was curious between these open-hearted, innocent young people,
with their track of bright flowers before them, and those who sat
opposite to them, with a terrible conviction that the path which lay
before _them_ was covered with ashes.

Our new friends had a large acquaintance at Brighton, and saw a great
deal of company; yet they were always glad to get away when they could,
and make a little holyday with us. Her husband entered into our meetings
with an ease and friendliness that were quite charming. He was an
indolent man, taking no trouble to look after pleasure, but ready to be
pleased in a passive way with any thing that other people enjoyed. As
for his wife, she was always in the highest spirits with Astræa. The
chatter they made together was quite an ecstasy. It seemed as if there
was no end to the things they had to talk about. Poor Astræa had been
shut up from her own sex so long, that the delight with which the
companionship of this young creature inspired her appeared to me
extremely pathetic and affecting.

One morning we were walking on the Parade as usual. Among the carriages
that were flying about, we recognized the open phaeton of our friends.
It passed quite close to us--so close that we could have shaken hands
with them as they swept by. We expected that they would have stopped as
usual, and we stood and put out our hands--but the carriage went on.
There was a hasty bow from the lady, and then her head was quickly
turned aside, as if something had suddenly attracted her attention.
Astræa looked at me, and asked me what I thought of it? I evaded her
question, by saying that they had other friends, and that we must not be
too _exigeant_. Astræa made no remark, but merely shook her head and
walked on.

In the afternoon we met them again. There was a gay crowd of people
walking, and our friends, in the midst of a group, were coming up toward
us. There was no possibility, at either side, of avoiding the meeting,
for the place was narrow, and we were compelled to pass each other
slowly. I could perceive, from the way in which Astræa's cheeks kindled,
that she was resolved to put her schoolfellow's friendship to the proof
at once. I anticipated the result, but thought it best not to interfere,
lest Astræa might suppose I shrank from the ordeal. We met face to face.
The lady grew very white, and then red, and then white again, and caught
her husband by the arm, and moved her lips as if she wished to appear to
be speaking to him, although she did not utter a word. Astræa looked
full into her eyes. Had the young wife seen a spectre from the grave,
she could not have been more effectually paralyzed. That look seemed to
turn her to stone. Not a single expression of greeting took place
between them. Upon the husband's part, the feeling was even less
equivocal. There was a dark, scowling frown upon his face as we came up;
he looked straight at us--and walked on. These _insouciant_ men, who
take the world so indifferently on ordinary occasions, are always the
most fierce when roused. They hate the trouble of being obliged to act
with decision, and when compelled to do so, they cut it short by an
energetic demonstration, that they may fall back the sooner upon their
habitual lassitude.

We returned to our lodging with a clear sense of our position. Galled as
I was on my own account, I felt it a hundred times more acutely on
account of Astræa. Here was her young friend and enthusiastic disciple,
who had always looked up to her with confidence and admiration, who had
heard her story, and clung all the more lovingly and protectingly to her
in pity for the unhappy circumstances in which she was placed, and this
friend had now abandoned and disowned her!--a blow under which some
women would have sunk at once, and which would have made others
reckless and desperate. Upon Astræa it acted slowly and painfully.
Externally it did not seem to affect her much; but I could perceive from
that time a tendency to lapse into fits of silence, and a desire to be
alone, which I had not noticed before. Whenever she alluded to her
friend, she spoke of her as a weak person, who had never been remarkable
for much character, with a kind heart and no understanding, and always
carried away by the last speaker. Ascribing her inconsistency on this
occasion to the influence of her husband, we agreed to dismiss the
subject--not from our thoughts, that was impossible--but from our
conversation. Astræa was bruised and hurt; and through all her efforts
to conceal it, I saw that she suffered severely. It was the first touch
she had directly experienced of the ice of the world's contumely, and it
had struck in upon her heart.

A few days passed away, and we were reconciling ourselves by daily
practice to the personal humiliation of passing and being passed in the
streets by the friends with whom we had been recently on terms of
absolutely hilarious alliance; when, on one occasion, on returning to
our solitary lodging, we were received at the door by our obliging
landlady in a manner which plainly showed that her opinion of us had
undergone a most singular change during our absence. Her quiet, sleepy
eyes scintillated with anger; her face was hot with excitement, and
instead of the civility she had hitherto invariably shown us, she all at
once broke out into a tirade which I will spare the reader the
unpleasantness of hearing: there can be no difficulty in guessing what
it was all about. This worthy woman had heard our history--falsified in
detail, and blackened by the most venomous exaggeration; and being a
very pure lodging-house keeper, standing upon the whiteness of her
morals and her caps, and trusting much to the patronage of the rector,
who allowed her to refer to him for the proprieties and respectabilities
of her establishment, she thought that the best way to vindicate her own
reputation was to assail ours in the most open and public manner.
Accordingly, she took care that every word she said should be overheard
by every body within reach, so that the whole neighborhood should know
of her indignation, and report it to her friend the rector. There never
was such a change in a woman; it was a saint turned into a demon. I
demanded her authority for the injurious aspersions she cast upon us,
and threatened her with a variety of tremendous, though exceedingly
vague, legal consequences--but to no effect. She desired us to leave the
house, and take our remedy; she would give us no satisfaction; she had
good grounds for what she said; that was enough for her; she knew what
"kind" we were; and a great deal more to the same purpose.

We were deeply aggrieved at discovering that our private affairs were
talked of in this scandalous way. As to the vulgar violence of this
woman, we thought no more of it after the immediate irritation of her
assault on us was over. It was one of those coarse incidents, which,
like striking against an awkward person in the streets, happen to us all
in life, and are forgotten with the momentary annoyance. But these
reports of our situation being afloat, rendered it impossible to remain
in Brighton; so that very night we moved down the coast to Worthing. In
this dull little watering-place, where the people always seem bent on
avoiding each other, we thought we should be secure from evil tongues.

It was late when we arrived, and we put up at the hotel, which, like
every thing else in Worthing, has an air of languor and idleness about
it. We liked the tone of the house. An eternal twilight brooded over the
rooms and passages. Every chamber was occupied, yet the place was as
still as a church. If you heard a footstep, it went stealthily as if it
were muffled, or "shod with felt;" and the only signs of life you caught
from the adjoining apartments, were when some noiseless lady in a
morning dress glided into the balcony, and after a side-long look at the
sea, glided back again. Out of doors, the order of the day was vigorous
promenading, but even this was conducted almost speechlessly, except
when a friendly group happened to collect and stop short, and then you
could hear an occasional joke and burst of laughter. The promenade was
the grand thing. It was not sauntering for relaxation, but brisk
exercise, that threw the blood into activity and exhilarated the
spirits. In the course of a week, we came to know every face in Worthing
by the introduction which this lusty amusement afforded us, and every
body in Worthing knew our faces. We were all out at a given hour,
tramping up and down at a swinging pace, and passing and repassing each
other so often, that we were as familiar with the whole guest population
of the place, and the whole guest population with us, as if we had known
each other all our lives. Every body had acquaintances there except
ourselves. We could see them making up little parties for excursions,
soirées, and other amusements; trifles that amused us as lookers-on,
but, nevertheless, made us feel our loneliness. We were _in_ the crowd,
but not _of_ it. Yet it was better to be in the open air among strangers
than to dwell in the desert.

But it was not to be. Our story followed us. We began to perceive, after
a little time, that we were observed and noticed, and that people used
to turn and look after us. This was the first hint we received of what
was now becoming rather an alarming fact to us--that we were known. To
be known with us, was to be shunned, or impertinently gazed at, as if we
were either great criminals, or notorieties of no very respectable
order. At last, it became difficult for us to walk about, from the
universality of the notice we attracted; and at the hotel there was no
possibility of mistaking the nature of the curiosity, not of the most
respectful kind, which tracked us up the stairs and down the stairs, and
penetrated even to our rooms, in the person of a sinister-looking
waiter, who had the oddest conceivable way of looking at us out of the
corner of one eye, which he pursed up and concentrated into a focus
expressly for the purpose. This sort of persecution was wearing us out.
It was like water dropped, drop by drop, upon a stone. The whisper of
shame came after us wherever we went. There was no escaping it; and I
began to suspect that there must be some mark upon us by which we were
known and detected. I believe there is more truth in this than most
people imagine. The habit of evasion and reserve, the apprehension of
being watched, and the secret consciousness of having something to
conceal, doubtless give an expression to one's entire action and
physiognomy which is likely to suggest unfavorable speculations. The
world is apt to think ill of the man who does not look it straight in
the face; and, upon the whole, perhaps the world is right.

This doom pursued us wherever we went. We tried two or three other
places on the coast with the same result. Within a week we were sure to
be found out, and avoided or gazed at. The sight of human beings
enjoying themselves, and the right of looking on at them, were dearly
purchased at such a price as this. Our spirits were beginning to give
way under it; our nerves were so affected by the minute persecution
which we daily endured, that when we got into strange quarters, where we
were as yet unknown, we fancied that all eyes were upon us. A little
more of this sort of racking suspicion, mixed with fear and rage, and I
think I should have gone mad.

Astræa bore it more heroically. She was tolerably calm, and used to
smile while I was glowing over with anger. I frequently felt inclined to
rush upon some of the people who stared at us, and demand of them what
they meant; but Astræa always checked me, and reminded me, that in these
small watering-places scandal was the entire occupation--that the
visitors had, in fact, nothing else to do all day long; and that if
every person who was tormented by their vicious curiosity were to
indulge in resentment, three-fourths of the time of the community would
be wasted in endeavoring to patch up the reputations that had been torn
to bits in the remaining fourth.

Notwithstanding the courage with which she set herself against the
waters that were visibly closing round us on all sides, and the light,
yet earnest and fearful way she talked about it, her health was rapidly
declining. Her color was gone. She was growing thin; there was a slight
cough hovering upon her nerves; and she had become so fanciful, that she
could not bear to go out in the dusk of the evenings, although that was
the only time when we could walk out at our ease.

These changes brought others. Her temper was altered; she tried to
subjugate herself, but could not; a notion seemed to have taken
possession of her that she was a weight upon me, and that the necessity
of sharing disgrace and exclusion with her was preying upon my mind. In
the first few months she was jealous of every hour I was absent from
her, and used to consider it a slight, and a proof that I was becoming
weary of her. Then all was new, and the gloss of novelty and enthusiasm
was yet upon her feelings. Now it was totally different; she had no
longer any care about herself; it was all for me. The dream of love had
been dreamed out, and she had ceased to regard herself as the object of
a devotion which was ready to incur shame and suffering for her sake.
She had seen that delusion to an end; and, having a real fear that,
being pent up continually with her, contracting the man's activity
within the sphere of the woman's limited range, would make our way of
life hateful to me at last, she now used to urge me to go out for long
walks in the country, or to visit the reading-rooms, and keep myself _au
courant_ with the events of the day. Exercise, mental and physical, was
healthful for me, and she would not have me moped to death in the house.
For her own part, she would say to me, she rather liked having a little
time to herself; a woman has always something to do, and is never at a
loss for occupation; and while I was out, she hardly missed me till I
came back--she was so busy! These professions and entreaties were kindly
and judiciously meant, but the difficulty was to act upon them. She
could not endure solitude. She always dreaded to be left alone, and,
only that it was a greater dread to her to make a prisoner of me at the
risk of rendering my existence wretched, nothing could have induced her
to go through the hours of misery she suffered in my absence. This
conflict made her temper unequal and sometimes unreasonable; but in such
a situation, what else could be expected? We were haunted by shadows
that were forever falling about our path; move where we would, these
dark phantoms pursued us.

Our lives were not like the lives of other people: we had no kindred, no
associations, no stir in the sad stagnation of day and night. Time
seemed to be mantling over us, and the breath of heaven to be becoming
less and less perceptible in our dreariness. Astræa was like a person
who was dying from the heart; and with all the fortitude I could bring
to my help, I felt it no easy task to lift myself out of the dismal
depression which occasionally seized upon me. At last we agreed that our
scheme of traveling about had disappointed our expectations, and that,
after all, London was the best of all places for people who sought
either of the extremes of society or seclusion. And so to London we
forthwith repaired.


                                  VII.

The heart of the town, or the suburbs? The question was speedily decided
in favor of a small detached house, not very far from the Regent's Park.
We had the whole park for a pleasure-ground, a little scrap of verdure
of our own, and an open space and airy situation to regale our lungs in.
We entered upon our new locality with sensations of security we had felt
nowhere else. We seemed to have left behind us the gloom and terror
that had been so long dogging our footsteps. Even Astræa brightened, and
grew better; her fretfulness was disappearing, and a tone of contentment
and cheerfulness supervening upon it. We were each of us more free in
our movements, and the dread of observation which had so long kept us in
a state of perpetual alarm, was gradually passing away.

But what had become all this time of the vengeance of the dwarf? Had he
abandoned his great plan of revenge? Had he thought better of it, and,
finding that Astræa was immovable, addressed himself to some more
sensible pursuit than that of plaguing us? I sometimes touched upon the
subject to Astræa, but could not extract from her what her suspicions
were. She did not like to talk about him. She seemed to be ruled by a
superstitious fear of reviving the topic. It was like the old wives'
adage, "Talk of the devil, and he'll appear!"

I can not exactly remember how long this lasted, or when it was that I
first detected in Astræa the return of the nervousness which had in some
degree abated upon our arrival in town. It could not, however, have been
more than two or three months after we had taken this house, that I
observed a striking change in her. Haggard lines seemed all of a sudden
to have been plowed round her eyes and cheeks, and her look had become
wild and unsettled. I never saw any body so completely shattered in so
short a time, and the transition from comparative tranquillity to a
state of excessive nervous excitement was so alarming, that I thought
there must have been some cause for it beyond that of mere physical
illness. I questioned her upon it, but always got the same
unsatisfactory answers, ending by entreating of me not to notice her,
but to let her go on in her own way. I can not recall what there was
about her manner--some strangeness in the way she looked at me or spoke
to me--that aroused the most painful suspicions. I confess I did not
know what to suspect; but there was a mental reservation of some kind,
and I was resolved to ascertain what it was. I had the utmost confidence
in Astræa; love with her was the most sacred of all obligations; and she
loved me sincerely--at least, she had loved me enthusiastically in the
beginning. What revolutions had since taken place in her heart, I could
not answer for. She had passed through a chaos in the interval that
might have destroyed the capacity of loving. That there was something
more in her thoughts than she had revealed, I felt sure; and the first
shape my suspicions took--natural enough in our circumstances, although
not the more just on that account--was a shape of jealousy. My alarm
immediately flew to the defense of my pride, or, as Forrester in his
cauterizing way would have called it, my selfishness; I resolved to
observe her closely, and I did so some time without being able to glean
any thing further.

At last the secret of her wasting frame and pallid face was suddenly
divulged.

One evening, toward the close of the summer, she remained out longer
and later than usual. Her walk, sometimes alone and sometimes with me,
was through the more secluded parts of the park. On this occasion, the
twilight was setting in, and she had not returned. With a dark and sulky
apprehension brooding in my mind, I resolved to go out in search of her.
We had not been confidential with each other of late; the old dreariness
had come back upon us, embittered with a captiousness and acerbity which
extracted all the sweets from our intercourse. A new element had found
its way between us: we had thoughts which we concealed from each other:
my distrust--her secret, whatever it was. This was a great evil; it
filled every hour of the day with lurking jealousies on both sides,
which one word would have dispelled forever.

I seized my hat, and was about to leave the house, when I heard a sudden
noise at the street-door, and a flurry of agitated steps up the stairs.
Immediately afterward, the door of the room was thrown violently open,
and Astræa rushed in, pale and disheveled. She was evidently in a state
of great alarm and consternation, and turning wildly round, beckoned me
to see that the door was made fast. She could not speak, drawing her
breath hysterically, like a person laboring under the effects of a
serious fright.

"Tranquilize yourself, Astræa," I cried; "there is nothing to fear here.
What is it? What has alarmed you?"

"It is _he_," she replied, fixing her eyes wildly upon me--"_he_ is
coming."

"Who?"

"He who has been upon our track ever and ever--who has never quitted
us--who never will leave us till we are dead."

I did not dare to ask in words, but I asked with my eyes if it was the
dwarf she meant.

"Ay, it is he. Be calm. It is your turn now to show your strength of
mind--to show whether you value the life I have devoted to you. I hoped
to have concealed this from you. We have suffered enough, and I hoped to
have hidden from you what I have suffered. But it is too late now. Hush!
O God!--that was his voice. You do not hear it--I do! It rings through
and through my brain. He is here--he has followed me. If you ever loved
me--and I know you did once!--prove it to me now. Go into the next room,
and promise me to stay there whatever happens. Listen; but speak
not--stir not. He is on the stairs!--will you not give me your promise?
Trust all to me--rely on me--be sure of me. Let go the door--he is
here!"

I made no answer, but conveying to Astræa by a searching look that it
was my purpose to watch the issue, I withdrew by one door, while the
dwarf entered by the other. His voice, as he approached her, sounded in
my ears like the hiss of a serpent.

"I have found you, then, at last--and alone, Astræa!"

"Why do you follow me thus?" exclaimed Astræa, who stood motionless in
the centre of the room, making a great effort to appear bold and calm,
but shuddering in every fibre beneath.

"Why do I follow you? What should I do else?"

"Live like other men. Seek occupation--any thing, rather than plunge
your own life and mine into this eternal horror."

"Have I not occupation? Am I not attending you every where? Have I not
enough to do in waiting upon you from place to place?"

"Abandon that fiendish mockery, and speak like a human being. What is it
you want?"

The dwarf coiled himself up at this question, as if he were distilling
all the venom out of his black heart into the answer.

"Revenge! It was for my revenge I hung upon your track, showed myself to
you at all times and in all places, letting you know that the destroyer
was at hand, so that you might go home and blast _his_ happiness by your
broken spirits and shattered nerves. I have seen it work; I see it now,
in your quivering lip and emaciated hands. Where are the holiday roses
now--the exulting lover--the secret blisses?"

Here, then, was poor Astræa's secret! The monster had been upon her
steps wherever we went; and, as I afterward learned, used to start up
suddenly before her in her solitary walks, to terrify her with threats
of sleepless vengeance, knowing that her fear of consequences would
prevent her from revealing to me the persecution under which she was
sinking. This ghastly pursuit of us (to which we were also indebted for
the scorn and obloquy we suffered) had gradually broken up Astræa's
health, and made the strong mind almost weak and superstitious. But I
must hasten on.

"And this," cried Astræa, "is the generosity I was to have received at
your hands--this the magnanimity your friend gave you credit for!"

"There was a condition to my magnanimity which you have forgotten. Had
you fulfilled that condition, I would have poured out my heart's blood
at your feet, could it have made you more secure and happy. Why did you
not forsake him, and trust to my generosity? No; you clung to him. You
maddened me, and left me nothing but--revenge. Did you suppose he could
escape me? I have no other life but this--to follow you as the
executioner follows the condemned to the scaffold, and make _his_ life a
curse to _him_, as he has made _mine_ to _me_. There's justice in
that--call it cruel, if you please; 'tis just--just--just!"

"'Tis monstrous, and will draw down the punishment of Heaven on your
head."

"Heaven will judge strictly between us. What am I? What have I to live
for? You have poisoned the earth for me. Every spot where we have been
together is accursed to me. I dare not look on the old haunts. I dare
not seek new scenes, for my soul is lonely, and no pleasure or delight
of nature can reach it. I should go mad were I not near you; it supplies
me with work--something to employ me--to keep my hands from
self-destruction. I weave stratagems all night, and watch my time all
day, day after day, patiently, to execute them. I have but one purpose
to fulfill, and when that is done, life is over. If I live long enough
to drive him mad, as he has maddened me, I shall be content, and go to
my grave happy. And I will do it; every hour gives me more strength. I
see the end nearer and nearer--it grows upon me. I awaken to my business
early; it is my first thought--my last; it never leaves me. Day after
day I have watched you, and have tracked you home at last. And here it
is you live--you, Astræa, whom I loved--whom I still--no, not that! You
live here with him--his wife! You call yourself his wife? Ha! ha! That
is good--his wife! I wonder to see you living, Astræa. I should have
looked for your corpse in this room rather than the living Astræa--the
proud, soaring, ambitious Astræa! Why do you not die? It would be
happier for you?"

During the latter part of this speech, Astræa, who had made a great
struggle throughout to sustain the attitude she had "taken" in the first
instance, grew weak from terror and exhaustion, and sunk or tottered
upon a chair. The inflections of voice with which these inhuman taunts
were delivered, ending in a tone that came apparently, if I may so
express it, laden with tears from the heart of the speaker, were so
ingeniously varied and so skillfully employed, that it would have been
impossible, even for an indifferent listener, to have heard them without
being alternately agitated and enraged. For my part, a kind of frenzy
possessed me. I restrained myself as long as I could. I tried to obey
poor Astræa's injunction, for, seeing how much I had wronged her in my
thoughts, and what misery she must have suffered and concealed on my
account, I felt that I ought to spare her any further alarm my
forbearance could avert. But the harrowing scoffs of the fiend were
beyond my endurance--my self-control gave way at last, and bursting open
the door of the room in which I was concealed, I rushed out upon the
malignant wretch, who, to do him justice, courageously turned upon me,
and met me with his eyes glaring fiercely as of old.

"Devil!" I exclaimed, "what do you do here? What do you want? Revenge?
Take it--in any shape you will. Only rid me of your presence, lest I
spurn you with my foot, and trample upon you."

"You should have told me," he said, turning with an air of mockery to
Astræa, "that he was listening in the next room. I would have dressed my
phrases accordingly."

"Again, I ask you why you come here? Answer me, or leave the room at
once."

"Why do I come here? To gladden myself by looking at your wretchedness.
You are worse than I am--sunk below me a thousand fathoms deep in
degradation--every finger is pointed at you--you are steeped in
scorn--despised and loathed. I came to see this. It makes me supremely
happy."

"Go--there is the door," I cried, the blood tingling in my ears, and in
the tips of my fingers. Astræa saw that the excitement was rising, and
looked at me imploringly; but it was too late to attend to her scruples.
The dwarf looked at the door superciliously, and almost smiled when I
repeated my warning.

"You will not leave the room? Be advised. I am not responsible for what
may happen after this. I am not master of myself. Go--it is the last
time I will utter the word. Go--or I will kill you on the spot!"

He did not move, but looked at me wonderingly and incredulously. I
rushed upon him and grappled him by the neck. Astræa sprang up, and
begged of me to desist, for I was hanging over him, with my hand upon
his throat.

"Let him go--let him go!" she exclaimed; "for my sake do not commit a
murder. Loosen your hold--there--there--have mercy on him, for my
sake--for the love of God, spare him--remember, we have injured him
enough already--remember that!"

I would not loosen my hold; passion had given me the power and the
cruelty of a demon. There was a brief struggle, in which I flung him
heavily to the ground. I had seized his handkerchief, and twisted my
hand in it--he was nearly choked--his face was growing black; but I was
hardly conscious of all this, for the room was swimming round me as I
knelt over him. Astræa saw the change in his color, and with a shriek of
horror fell upon my arm. This action made me relax my hold. She had
fainted on his body.


                               CONCLUSION.

Why should I dwell any longer on these painful events? Had I known then,
as I afterward discovered, that the unhappy object of my wrath and
hatred had, ever since the flight of Astræa, betrayed symptoms of
aberration, and that the scheme of vengeance he nurtured so
relentlessly, was the stratagem of a disordered brain, I should have
treated him with mercy and compassion. But I was ignorant of the real
condition of his mind, and dealt with him as I should have dealt with a
responsible being. The violent excitement of that scene brought on a
crisis, which ended in a seizure of insanity. He still lives; if that
may be called living in which all memory of the past is extinguished,
and the present is a mere tangled skein of day-dreams.

Astræa's health was utterly broken. It was not her physique that died,
but her heart, her spirits, her self-reliance, and her hope of the
future. She felt that there was nothing for her in this world but
remorse. The desolation that was round her killed her. She braved it
earnestly at first. Her noble heart and her true love she thought were
proof against the world and its hollow scorn. Alas! for true love and
noble hearts! They can not stand up alone in ice and storms. They must
be out in the sun with their allies round them, like frailer loves and
meaner hearts, or they will perish in their strength!



              THE FEET-WASHING ON GOOD FRIDAY IN MUNICH.


I have just witnessed the ceremony of the Feet-washing, which has been
announced for this month past as one of the great sights of the season.
My good friend at the _Kreigs Ministerium_ kept his word faithfully
about procuring tickets for us. Accordingly, Myra F. and I have seen the
whole ceremony. At nine o'clock Myra was with me, and, early as it was,
Madame Thekla advised us to set off to the Palace, as people were always
wild about places, and if we came late, spite of our tickets, we should
see nothing. The good old soul also accompanied us, on the plea that, as
she was big and strong, she could push a way for us through the crowd,
and keep our places by main force. She stood guard over us--the good
creature!--for two mortal hours, and when the door at length was opened
by a grand lacquey, had the satisfaction of seeing us step through the
very first. But before this happy moment arrived, we had to wait, as I
said, two hours; and leaving, therefore, the patient old lady as our
representative before the little door which led into the gallery of the
Hercules Hall, whither our tickets admitted us, and before which door no
one but ourselves had yet presented themselves, Myra and I ranged along
the queer whitewashed galleries of the old portion of the palace in
which we were. Can not you see these vistas of whitewashed wall, with
grim old portraits of powdered ladies and gentlemen, in hoops, ruffles,
gold lace, and ermine, and framed in black frames, interspersed amid
heavy wreaths and arabesques of stucco?--dazzlingly white walls,
dazzlingly white arched ceilings, diminishing in long perspective! Now
we came upon a strange sort of a little kitchen in the thick wall, where
a quaint copper kettle, standing on the now cold hearth, told of coffee
made for some royal servant some hours before; we were now before the
door of some _Kammer-Jungfer_; now in the gallery with the whitewash,
but without the portraits, where, opposite to every door, stood a large,
white cupboard; a goodly row of them.

Once we found ourselves below stairs and in one of the courts. There, on
passing through the door-way, you stood on a sort of terrace, above your
head a ceiling rich with ponderous wreaths of fruit and flowers, and
other stucco ornaments of the same style, which probably had once been
gilt, and with fading frescoes of gods, goddesses, and Cupids!

This old part of the Royal Palace of Munich is quite a little town. We
discovered also a little tiny chapel, now quite forgotten in the glory
of Hess's frescoes, and the beauty of the new _Hof-Kapelle_. To-day this
old chapel was open, hung with black cloth, and illuminated with
numberless waxen tapers, and the altar verdant with shrubs and plants,
placed upon the altar steps. There was, however, a remarkably mouldy,
cold smell in the place; but I suppose the royal procession visited this
old chapel as well as the new one, on its way to the Hercules Hall.
This _cortège_, with the king and his brother walking beneath a splendid
canopy, and attended priests and courtiers, went, I believe, wandering
about a considerable time, to the edification of the populace, out of
all this, excepting from hearsay, I can not speak, having considered it
as the wiser thing for us to return to Madame Thekla and our door,
rather than await it.

The Hercules Hall is rather small; and certainly more ugly than
beautiful, with numbers of old-fashioned chandeliers hanging from the
ceiling; a gallery at each end supported by marble pillars, with a row
of tall windows on either side; a dark, inlaid floor of some brown wood;
but with no sign whatever of Hercules to be seen. Suffice it to say,
that having noticed all this at a glance, we observed, in the centre of
the hall, a small altar covered with white linen, and bearing upon it
golden candlesticks, a missal bound in crimson velvet, a vailed
crucifix, and a golden ewer standing in a golden dish. On one side of
the altar rose a tall reading-desk, draped with sulphur-colored cloth,
upon which lay a large open book: a row of low, crimson stools stood
along the hall, opposite the altar; on the other side, across the
windows, ran a white and very long ottoman, raised upon a high step
covered with crimson cloth, and chairs of state were arranged at either
end of the hall below the galleries. The arrival of people below was
gradual, although our gallery and the gallery opposite had been crowded
for hours. We at length had the pleasure of seeing something commence.

The door at the further end opened, and in streamed a crowd. Then
tottered in ancient representations of the twelve "apostles," clothed in
long violet robes, bound round the waist with white bands striped with
red, and with violet caps on their heads: on they tottered, supported on
either side by some poor relative, an old peasant-woman, a stalwart man
in a black velvet jacket, and bright black boots reaching to the knee,
or by a young, buxom girl in her holiday costume of bright apron and gay
bodice. On they come, feeble, wrinkled, with white locks falling on
their violet apparel, with palsied hands resting on the strong arms that
supported them--the oldest being a hundred and one, the youngest
eighty-seven years old! My eyes swam with sudden tears. There was a deal
of trouble in mounting them upon their long snowy throne; that crimson
step was a great mountain for their feeble feet and stiff knees to
climb. But at last they were all seated, their poor friends standing
behind them. A man in black marshaled them like little school-children;
he saw that all sat properly, and then began pulling off a black shoe
and stocking from the right foot of each. There, with drooped heads and
folded withered hands, they sat meekly expectant. A group of twelve
little girls, in lilac print frocks and silver swallow-tailed caps,
headed by an old woman in similar lilac and silver costume, took its
place to the right of the old men in a little knot; they were twelve
orphans who are clothed and educated by the queen, and who receive a
present on this day.

The hall at the further end was by this time filled with bright
uniforms--blue, scarlet, white, and green. In front were seen King Max
and his brothers, also in their uniforms; numbers of ladies and
children; and choristers in white robes, who flitted, cloud-like, into a
small raised seat, set apart for them in a dark corner behind the
uniforms. A bevy of priests in gold, violet, blue, and black robes, with
burning tapers and swinging censers, enter; prostrate themselves before
the king of Bavaria, and before the King of Hosts, as typified to them
on the altar; they chant, murmur, and prostrate themselves again and
again. Incense fills the hall with its warm, odorous breath. They
present open books to the king and princes. And now the king, ungirding
his sword, which is received by an attendant gentleman, approaches the
oldest "apostle;" he receives the golden ewer, as it is handed from one
brother to another; he bends himself over the old foot; he drops a few
drops of water upon it; he receives a snowy napkin from the princes, and
lays it daintily over the honored foot; he again bows over the second,
and so on, through the whole twelve; a priest, with a cloth bound round
his loins, finishing the drying of the feet. A different scene must that
have been in Jerusalem, some eighteen hundred years ago!

And now the king, with a gracious smile, hangs round the patient neck of
each old man a blue and white purse, containing a small sum of money.
The priests retire; the altar and reading-desk are removed. Six tables,
covered with snowy cloths, upon each two napkins, two small metal
drinking-cups, and two sets of knives, forks, and spoons, are carried
in, and joined into one long table, placed before the crimson step. In
the mean time the man in black has put on the twelve stockings and the
twelve shoes, and, with much ado, has helped down the twelve "apostles,"
who now sit upon the step as a seat. Enter twelve footmen, in blue and
white liveries, each bearing a tray, covered with a white cloth, upon
which smoke six different meats, in white wooden bowls; a green
soup--remember it is _green Thursday_--two baked fish; two brown
somethings; a delicious-looking pudding; bright green spinach, upon
which repose a couple of tempting eggs, and a heap of stewed prunes.
Each footman, with his tray, is followed by a fellow-footman, carrying a
large bottle of golden-hued wine, and a huge, dark, rich looking roll on
silver waiters. The twelve footmen, with the trays, suddenly veer round,
and stand in a line opposite to the table, and each opposite to an
"apostle;" the twelve trays held before them, with their seventy-two
bowls, all forming a kind of pattern--soup, fishes, spinach; soup,
fishes, spinach; pudding, prunes, brown meats; puddings, prunes, brown
meats--all down the room. Behind stand the other footmen, with their
twelve bottles of wine and their twelve rolls. I can assure you that,
seen from the gallery above, the effect was considerably comic.

A priest, attended by two court-pages, who carry tall burning tapers,
steps forth in front of the trays and footmen, and chants a blessing.
The king and his brothers again approach the "apostles;" the choristers
burst forth into a glorious chant, till the whole hall is filled with
melody, and the king receives the dishes from his brothers, and places
them before the old men. Again I felt a thrill rush through me; it is so
graceful--though it be but a mere form, a mere shadow of the true
sentiment of love--any gentle act of kindness from the strong to the
weak, from the powerful to the very poor. As the king bowed himself
before the feeble old man of a hundred--though I knew it to be but a
mere ceremony--it was impossible not to recognize a poetical idea.

It took a long time before the seventy and two meats were all placed on
the table, and then it took a very long time before the palsied old
hands could convey the soup to the old lips; some were too feeble, and
were fed by the man in black. It was curious to notice the different
ways in which the poor old fellows received the food from the king; some
slightly bowed their heads; others sat stolidly; others seemed sunk in
stupor.

The Court soon retired, and twelve new baskets were brought by servants,
into which the five bowls of untasted food were placed; these, together
with the napkin, knife, fork, spoon and mug, bottle of wine, and bread,
are carried away by the old men; or, more properly speaking, are carried
away for them by their attendant relatives. Many of the poor old
fellows--I see by a printed paper which was distributed about, and which
contains a list of their names and ages--come from great distances; they
are chosen as being the oldest poor men in Bavaria. One only is out of
Munich, and he is ninety-three.

We went down into the hall to have a nearer view of the "apostles;" but,
so very decrepit did the greater number appear, on a close inspection;
their faces so sad and vacant; there was such a trembling eagerness
after the food in the baskets, now hidden from their sight; such a
shouting into their deaf ears; such a guiding of feeble steps and
blinded, blear eyes; that I wished we had avoided this painful part of
the spectacle.



                        A PEDESTRIAN IN HOLLAND.


While pacing along to Meppel, I made up my mind at all events to visit
Ommerschans; instead, therefore, of halting on reaching the town about
sunset, I left the main thoroughfare for a by-road, which, as usual,
formed the towing-path of a canal. With the aid of a countryman going in
the same direction, I passed for several miles through by-ways, and soon
after dusk arrived at De Wyk. Almost the first house in the village was
a _herbergje_; but there being no room, I went further, and presently
came to another--one of the long, low edifices which appear to be
peculiar to the rural districts in the northern provinces, the same roof
sheltering quadrupeds and bipeds. On opening the door, I found myself in
a large kitchen, dimly lighted by a single candle standing on a table,
round which sat a dozen rustics finishing their supper. Each one laid
down his spoon, and stared at me vigorously, and for some time my
question--"Kan ik hier overnachten?" ("Can I pass the night here?")
remained unanswered: sundry ejaculations alone were uttered. By and by,
both a mistress and maid appeared to minister to my needs, and tea and
eggs were quickly in preparation. Meanwhile, the men at the table were
making me the subject of discussion among themselves, and eying me with
curious looks. At length one of them asked me whence I came, and why I
was there; which queries were answered to their satisfaction, when
another rejoined,

"And so mynheer comes from Fredericksoord, and is going to
Ommerschans?"--an observation which elicited a grunt of approval from
the whole company.

"But how does mynheer find his way?" inquired the first speaker.

"That is not very difficult. With a map in his pocket, and a tongue in
his head, a man may go all over the world."

"Ja, that is good; but it is not easy sometimes to know which turning to
take. What does mynheer do then?"

"I generally get to know the direction of the place I want to go to
before starting, and then steer my way by the sun or wind; and seldom
fail to arrive, as you may see by my being here."

This explanation sufficed them for a time as a topic for further
discussion, and left me free to attend to my personal wants, which were
in the imperative mood. Before long, however, one of them began again by
asking, "What has mynheer to sell?"

"Nothing: my knapsack contains only articles for my own use." Here a
brief confabulation followed, and I began to fancy the Dutchmen not less
expert in gathering information than the New Englanders, when the
question came.

"Mynheer travels, then, for his own pleasure?"

"Why not?"

"Ah, mynheer says why not; but when one travels for pleasure, he must
have so much money in hand;" and, as he said this, the speaker tapped
significantly the palm of one of his hands with the fingers of the
other.

Whether it was that they voted such journeyings an unwholesome
extravagance, or that their ideas were all exhausted, the group said no
more; and shortly afterward kicking off their stained and clumsy sabots,
they retired, without any further process of undressing, to their
sleeping-lairs. Some crept into a loft, others into beds contrived, as
berths in a ship, in recesses in the walls of the kitchen, two into
each; and before I had finished my tea, a concert of snores was going
on, where the bass certainly had the best of it.

I have often found that a fatiguing walk on a hot day takes away all
relish for ordinary food: the appetite seems to demand some novelty--and
it was with no small pleasure that I accepted the landlady's offer to
add a plate of _framboose_ (raspberries) to my repast; their cool and
agreeable flavor rendered them even more refreshing than the tea.

In the intervals of talking and eating I had taken a survey of the
apartment, as far as it was illuminated by the solitary candle: it was
one that carried you back a century or two. The large hearth projected
several feet into the room, overhung by a canopy near the ceiling of
equal dimensions; and the top and back being lined with glazed white,
blue, and brown tiles, glistened as the light fell upon them from the
turf fire, and presented a cheerful aspect. A wooden screen fixed at one
side kept off draughts of air, and formed a snug corner for cold
evenings. The tables and chairs had been fabricated in the days when
timber was cheap, and strength was more considered than elegance. They
had little to fear from contact with the uneven paved floor. A goodly
array of bright polished cooking utensils hung upon the walls, and in
racks overhead a store of bacon and salt provisions, and bags and
bundles of dried herbs. Although rude in its appointments, and coarse in
its accommodations, the dwelling betrayed no marks of poverty; it was
perhaps up to the standard of the neighborhood, and in accordance with
the thrift that considers saving better than spending. The greatest
discomfort--to me at least--was the close, overpowering smell of cattle
which pervaded the whole place, and made you long for an inspiration of
purer air. From my seat I could see into an adjoining apartment,
similar, but better in character to the one described: this was to be my
_slaap-kamer_. I requested to have the window left partly open all
night, and immediately a look of suspicion came over the old woman's
face as she answered,

"Neen, mynheer, neen; best not to have the window open; thieves will
come in."

"Surely," I replied, "there are no thieves in this little village?"

"Ah, but there were some thieves at Meppel last week."

The landlady's apprehensions seemed so painful to her, that I ceased to
press the question, and followed her into the room, where she assured me
I should find the air sufficiently respirable, and bade me _goede
nacht_.

In this room there were several wall-recesses, as in the other, but
cleaner and better fitted up. A bedstead at one corner, behind a narrow
screen extending a few feet from the door, was intended for me; the
sheets and coverlids, though coarse, were clean. Three wardrobes or
presses stood against the walls, so richly dark and antique in
appearance, and of such tasteful workmanship, that you at once knew the
date to be assigned to their manufacture, probably about the time that
the Prince of Orange fell beneath Geraart's pistol-shot; at all events,
when, instead of working by contract, artificers interfused a portion of
their own spirit into the productions of their skill. The chairs, by
their dimensions, had been clearly intended for the past generations,
who wore the broad skirts at which we so often smile in prints of old
costumes. The projection of the largest articles of furniture produced
sundry picturesque effects of light and shade, relieved and diversified
by the rows of polished pewter dishes ranged on racks against the wall
alternately with dishes of rare old china, that would have gladdened the
eyes of a virtuoso. There were rows of spoons, also, of shining, solid
pewter, all betokening resources of substantial comfort, and assisting
to give effect to a picture which fully occupied my attention while
undressing.

The hostess, when she went out, had not closed the door; this I cared
little about, as it afforded some facility for circulation of air; but
her remark touching the thieves made me take the precaution to place my
watch and purse under the pillow, leaving such loose florins as were in
my pocket for any prowler who might think it worth while to pay me a
visit, that, finding some booty, he might there cease his search for
more. I left the candle burning on the table, and soon afterward the
girl came in and wished me a _goede nacht_ as she carried it away.

Presently all became still in the house, and as weariness softens the
hardest bed, I was soon asleep, notwithstanding the annoyance from
certain insects, which were neither bugs nor fleas, that came crawling
over me. I had lain thus in quiet repose for two or three hours, when I
was disturbed by a light shining in the room, and half-raising my
eyelids, I saw a tall figure clothed in white, holding a candle in its
hand, and gazing stealthily at me from behind the screen at the foot of
the bed. I did not start up or cry out, for a sufficient reason--I was
too drowsy. The figure withdrew; the room again became dark; I turned
round, and slept soundly until morning.

I was up soon after five, being desirous to recommence my walk before
the heat came on, and, it need scarcely be said, found all my property
as I had left it. The old presses looked not less imposing than in the
faintly-illuminated gloom some hours previously; and I could see in the
daylight several articles which had then escaped my notice. Among them
was the _groote bijbel_, a portly folio in black letter, and in good
condition. How many suffering hearts had found support and consolation
in those ancient pages! When I went into the next room, the laborers had
taken their breakfast, and gone to their work, and the old lady sat near
the window mending stockings. She saluted me by inquiring if I had _wel
geslaapt_, and what I would take for breakfast. I chose raspberries with
milk and bread, and highly enjoyed the fresh-gathered fruit that looked
so tempting, coated with its early bloom. It was the most acceptable
breakfast of any which I ate in Holland. The hostess chatted on various
topics: in one of my replies, I chanced to mention the large Bible which
I had seen in the other room--"Ah," she said, "it is the best of books:
what should we do without it?" I then told her that a little Bible was
part of the contents of my knapsack, and on hearing this her manner at
once changed; the suspicion disappeared, and the benevolent demeanor
resumed its place. My request of the night before concerning the window
had made her very anxious; she had, it seemed, been led to regard me as
a suspicious character--as one likely to let in a confederate, or to
decamp myself surreptitiously. From this I at once understood it was she
who, clad in white, and holding a candle, had come into my room during
the night; perhaps to see whether her guest were lying still as an
honest traveler ought. We became, however, very excellent friends, and I
regretted not having time to stay two or three days, to get a little
further insight into village life, and the pursuits and resources of its
inhabitants: but that could not be. I was somewhat surprised on asking,
"_Hoe veel betalen?_" (How much to pay?) at the cheapness of my lodging
and entertainment: the charge was only eighteen stivers. I handed a
florin to the old lady, with an intimation that the two stivers' change
might go to the maid for her alacrity in raspberry plucking, on which
she replied, "_Dank voor haar_," with much emphasis. Then holding out
her hand, after assisting to place my knapsack in position, she bade me
good-by, with many wishes for a prosperous journey.

It was a pleasant morning, with a bright sky and a hot sun, and a
feeling of exhilaration came over me as I left the close, sickening
smell of the house for the free and fresh air outside. The aspect of the
country was again different from that which I had already traversed.
Willows, so plentiful in the southern provinces, are rare on the dry
heath-lands of the north, while small plantations, and woods of birch,
beech, and oak are frequently met with. At times the route led along
narrow, winding lanes, between tangled hedges and overhanging trees,
where the shade and coolness made you feel the contrast the greater on
emerging upon the unsheltered and unfenced fields. Before long, I came
to another village, where the houses were built at random around a real
village green, such as you may see in some parts of Berkshire or
Hampshire, with tall umbrageous trees springing from the soft turf, and
old folk lounging, and children playing in their shadow. The post, which
visits the towns of Holland every day throughout the year, comes to such
villages as this two or three times a week, and thus keeps up its
communications with the great social world around. In another particular
they are well provided for--the means of instruction. Here, at one end
of the green, stood the schoolhouse, built of brick, well lighted, and
in good condition, decidedly the best building in the place. Indeed I do
not remember to have seen a shabby schoolhouse in Holland. It was too
early to see the scholars at their duties, but I looked in at the
windows, and saw that the interior was perfectly clean and well-ordered;
fitted with desks, closets, and shelves, with piles of books placed
ready for use on the latter, and maps hanging on the walls. How I wished
for a six months' holiday, to be able to linger at will among these
out-of-the-world communities, or wherever any thing more particularly
engaged my attention! Something to inform the mind or instruct the heart
is to be given or received wherever there are human beings. Soon after
passing the village, the road terminated suddenly on a part of the wild
heath, where the sand for nearly a mile on all sides lay bare, gleaming
palely in the sun, and no sign of a track visible in any direction. For
a few minutes I stood completely at fault, but at last bent my steps
toward some scattered trees in the distance. The deserts of Africa can
hardly be more dreary or trying to the wayfarer than that mile of sand
was to me. On reaching the trees, I again found a lane leading through
cultivated grounds; now a patch of grass, then barley, or wheat, or
potatoes, or buckwheat--the delicate blossoms of the latter scenting the
whole atmosphere, and alive with "innumerable bees." While standing
still to listen to their labor-inspired hum, I heard the cuckoo telling
his cheerful name to the neighborhood, although past the middle of July.
Then followed homely farms, standing a little off the road, the
homestead surrounded by rows of trees, somewhat after the fashion of
Normandy; and in one corner of the inclosure the never-failing
structure--four tall poles, erected in a parallelogram, with a square
thatched roof fitted upon them, sloping down on each side to form a
central point. The poles pass through the corners of this roof, which
thus can be made to slide up and down, according as the produce stored
beneath it is increased or diminished. Such a contrivance would perhaps
be useful to small farmers in England, when straitened for room in their
barns. Now and then I caught glimpses of haymakers working far off on a
meadow patch, and more than once the signs of tillage disappeared, and
there was the broad black heath under my feet, and stretching away to
the horizon, here and there intersected by a series of drains, cut
smooth and deep in the sandy soil, inclosing some acres of the barren
expanse--the preliminaries of cultivation. Then would come a mile or so
of woodland, with the thinnings and loppings of the trees cut into
lengths, and piled in stacks ready for the market, as I had seen on the
wharfs at Rotterdam, where firewood sells at eleven cents the bundle. A
party of woodcutters, with their wives and children, were encamped at
the entrance of a cross-road, disturbing the general stillness by the
sound of their voices and implements. The men and women were alike tall
and stout--remarkable specimens of the well-developed population of the
province, and reminding you of the peasantry in Westmoreland. The stacks
which they had set up were so long and high as to resemble a street with
little alleys between, where the children played while their fathers
chopped and sawed, and their mothers tied the bundles, or tended the
fire over which the round pot swung with the breakfast. They called out
a friendly "Good-day, mynheer," as I passed.

As the day advanced, it became oppressively hot; not a drop of drinkable
water was any where to be seen. I went to a cottage near the road to ask
for a draught, when a pitcherful was given to me that looked like pale
coffee, and was vapid and unrefreshing. The occupants of the cottage
told me that they were always obliged to strain it before drinking, to
free it from the fibres of turf held in suspension. These people, their
child, and their house were positively dirty, and looked comfortless:
the pigs lay in one corner of the kitchen, and the domestic utensils
stood about in apparently habitual disorder. They, however, were kind in
their manner, and wished me to sit down for a time and rest.

Besides these and the woodcutters, I scarcely met a soul during the
walk, which lasted nearly four hours, by which time I came to the
outskirts of Ommerschans. I went into the tavern that stood at the
extremity of the long straight road leading through the centre of the
colony, where, after half-an-hour's rest, ten minutes' sleep, and a cup
of tea, I felt able to go and present myself to the director.



                      THE LAST PRIESTESS OF PELE.


My erratic habits have led me through a variety of climes and scenes,
and, on two occasions, to the distant regions of Polynesia, even to the
shores of Hawaii, memorable as the death-scene of our famous navigator,
Cook. Hawaii is the principal of the Sandwich Islands, a group not
exceeded in interest by any which stud the broad bosom of the Pacific.
Their local situation, advantageous for purposes of commerce, is highly
important; but these remote shores present various subjects of interest
besides geographical position. The primitive race who inhabit them, so
long and totally isolated from the rest of the world, the enchanting
beauty of their scenery, the luxurious productions of their salubrious
climate, indicative of peace and plenty, furnish subjects worthy of
investigation; while, strangely contrasted with these bounties of
nature, is the awful sublimity of their volcanic mountains, that too
often burst forth into eruptions which spread frightful devastation over
scenes glowing with beauty, particularly the volcano of Kiranea,
probably the largest in the world. Even the first view of this island
struck me as remarkable, for it looks like congeries of mountains on one
common base, heaving their huge cones to the height of fourteen or
sixteen thousand feet above the level of the sea, while the lower
grounds, every where irregular, were covered with trees and with the
richest verdure. We were hospitably received by a native chief. An
Englishman who had long resided on the island acted as interpreter, and
by this means, as well as some knowledge which we had acquired of the
Polynesian language during a visit to Tahiti, my brother officers and I
made arrangements for a visit to the great volcano. It is well I should
here remind the reader of an event which proved to be an influential
epoch in the history of the people we were now among--the abolition of
their ancient and cruel system of idolatry, which was effected in the
year 1819, by a king whose natural good sense had enabled him to
perceive its absurdity and ill-consequences; so that when, some months
after, a few missionaries arrived from America with the philanthropic
intention of introducing the blessings of Christianity among them, they
found, by what was unquestionably a providential interposition, the
nation without any religion, released from the trammels of their ancient
superstitions, and, so far, prepared to receive the truths which they
were come to proclaim. These missionaries had been settled in the
islands a few years when my visit took place, and had many converts.

The volcano we were desirous of seeing was thirty miles from the place
of our landing, and we set out for it on the following day, attended by
some of the natives, and also by the English settler, to act as
interpreter. The commencement of our journey seemed auspicious, leading
through a wood, where trees afforded a grateful shade from the heat of a
tropical sun, while gorgeous birds fluttered among their boughs, or
regaled us with the melody of their songs. The fragrant gardenia, and
other beautiful flowers, so highly prized in our own country as
hot-house plants, profusely adorned our path. But too soon the scene
began to change. By degrees, trees, shrubs, and flowers disappeared--all
traces of vegetation, except an occasional oasis. We were traversing a
tract of lava that looked like an inland sea, over which the wand of an
enchanter had suddenly waved while it was agitated by violent
undulations, and turned it into stone. Not only were the swells and
hollows distinctly marked, but the surface of the billows seemed covered
by a smaller ripple. Our passage over this petrified ocean was most
laborious, owing to the heat of the sun, the reflection of its light
from the lava, and also the unevenness of the way, which was as slippery
as glass.

Just as day declined, we hailed with pleasure the residence of a chief,
where we were to pass the night, our friend at the harbor having
commissioned our attendants to introduce us as strangers in need of the
owner's hospitality, which was readily accorded. Our host and his
establishment evinced that advancement toward civilization was not
limited to the coast. His dwelling was divided into separate apartments
by screens of native cloth, and we were ushered into a large, airy,
reception-room, where we reposed our weary limbs on a divan covered with
mats, which extended the whole length of the apartment. A feast was
prepared for our entertainment; but I refrain from an account of the
baked dogs, hogs, and other dainties which adorned the board. During the
repast, a native bard sang, in a monotonous but sweet voice, "the deeds
of the days of other years," accompanying himself by beating a little
drum formed of a beautifully stained calabash; and then a group of
dancers were introduced for our amusement. But nothing interested me so
much as our host, who sat next to me at supper, performing the duties of
hospitality with an intuitive good-breeding and tact which I thought
quite a sufficient substitute for the conventional usages of European
society. He was, in common with all the aristocratic race of Hawaii,
tall, well-formed, with fine, muscular limbs, and a commanding air; his
complexion clear olive, and his handsome features wore an open and
intelligent expression. To my surprise, he spoke very tolerable English;
this was accounted for by long intimacy with our friend the interpreter,
and with the missionaries, who, since their settlement in the island,
had taught him to read. I was glad when he announced his intention of
accompanying us to the volcano, our journey to which we recommenced the
following morning. A toilsome one it proved, but Toleho, the young
chief, stuck close to me, and from such snatches of conversation as I
could hold with him, while we scrambled over masses of vitrified lava
and basaltic blocks jumbled together in wild confusion, the interest I
had felt in him at first sight was considerably increased. At length we
reached the great plain of the volcano, and the mountain of Mauna Loa
burst upon our view in all its magnificence, like an immense dome, of a
bronze color, rising from a plain twenty miles in breadth; its head was
covered with snow, the effect of which is peculiar when beheld under a
tropical sun.

Nearly overcome with heat and fatigue, we sat down to rest. Through the
fissures of the rocks, there grew an abundance of small bushes bearing
fruit of a pleasant flavor, which we eagerly gathered to allay our
thirst. To this some of the natives objected, asserting that the berries
belonged to Pele, the goddess of the volcano, who would be much incensed
by our eating them, until some had been thrown into the crater as a
propitiatory oblation. The English settler who accompanied us, set about
proving the absurdity of their fears, and, while the point was being
discussed, I observed that Toleho, who was seated with me apart from the
others, was quietly refreshing himself with the forbidden fruit. I
inquired why he also did not fear the wrath of the formidable goddess?

"Toleho knows better," he replied. "Toleho knows that there is but one
God; without His leave, the volcano can not hurt us. He looketh on the
earth, and it trembleth; he toucheth the hills, and they smoke."

I now learned from him that, under the instruction of the missionaries,
he had been led to embrace the truths of Christianity.

"I have lately avowed this conviction," he said; "and were I to remain
in this country, would do my utmost to promote a knowledge of the Bible
among my friends and people."

"And have you any idea of leaving this country?" I inquired, with
surprise.

"Alas! yes, I _must_ leave it," he replied, in a voice and with a look
of such deep dejection, that I understood it to be a subject of too
distressing a nature for further interrogatories, and we spoke about
other matters until the party was sufficiently rested to proceed to the
crater of Kiranea. I expected that we were for this purpose to ascend
the mountain which stood before us in such majestic beauty, and,
undaunted by the magnitude of the task, I longed to climb its stupendous
sides, and to inhale the pure atmosphere at its summit, so that it was
with a feeling of disappointment I heard myself called upon to behold
the crater upon the very plain to which we had already attained. At
first view, it seemed to be nothing but a huge black pit, totally
different from all we had imagined. There were no jets of fire, nothing
but a body of black smoke, rising high to the clear blue heavens, and
then spreading widely over the hemisphere. We journeyed onward, till we
found ourselves on the edge of a steep precipice inclosing a sunken
plain, in the middle of which was the crater. Our guides led to a part
of the precipice where descent was practicable, and, with some falls and
bruises, we all reached the basin beneath, which sounded hollow under
our tread, giving evidence, by smoking fissures here and there, of
subterranean burnings. As we advanced, the impression of vastness and
grandeur increased at every step; but, when we stopped at the edge of
the great crater, the sight was appalling. There we stood, mute with
astonishment and awe, transfixed like statues, our eyes riveted on the
abyss below, a vast flood of burning matter rolling to and fro in a
state of frightful ebullition. I know not how long we thus gazed, in
speechless wonder; but the natives had, meanwhile, employed themselves
in constructing, of branches of trees, ferns, and rushes, which,
nourished by the moisture of vapors, grew in chasms of lava, huts to
shelter us during the night, now fast approaching, and to them we were
glad to repair, when our emotion had somewhat subsided. The attendants
now cooked our supper in a crevice from which steam issued, and, after
doing ample justice to their labors in this volcanic _cuisine_, I again
walked to the edge of the crater, accompanied by Toleho.

It was now quite dark, and truly it has been said, that what is
wonderful in the day becomes ten times more so at night. Now was the
time for viewing the volcano in all its magnificence. We seated
ourselves at a height of four or five hundred feet, directly over that
lake of fire: its cherry-colored waves were rolling below, with billows
crested and broken into sheets and spray of fire, like waters when the
hurricane sweeps them over a reef of rocks. There was a low murmuring
noise, and occasionally masses of red-hot matter were ejected seventy
feet into the air, which fell back into the lake with a hissing sound.
My companion, though accustomed from childhood to these wonders, seemed
fully to participate in my feelings. He evidently possessed a soul
susceptible of the sublime and beautiful and the scene on which we
gazed was associated in his mind, as I afterward learned, with early and
endearing recollections. He was gratified by my admiration of it, and
this congeniality of taste soon led him to treat me with the confidence
of an old friend. Presuming upon this, I ventured to recur to the hint
he had dropped that morning of an intention to quit his native island,
inquiring whether his profession of Christianity had subjected him to
any kind of persecution? He told me in reply, that Hawaiian converts
were nearly exempted from this ordeal of sincerity by the edict which
had abolished idolatry before the missionaries' arrival. "But," he
added, with intense feeling, "Toleho found the change hard,
notwithstanding. No fear of Pele; even were there any such, what could
that cruel goddess do to one who trusted in Jesus? But Pele's
priestess--the last she will ever have, but the loveliest, the dearest
of women--it was _that_ Toleho found so hard." My expression of sympathy
elicited his full confidence, and, in a conversation which followed,
interrupted as our colloquial intercourse necessarily was by our
imperfect acquaintance with each other's language, I became possessed of
an outline of Toleho's previous history, which subsequent information
enabled me to fill up, as I shall now give it in detail.

The young Hawaiian chief had, when a child, been betrothed to the
hereditary priestess of Pele, the Goddess of Fire, supposed to inhabit
the volcano of Kiranea. Whether this redoubtable deity be in any way
related to Bel, the Oriental god of the same terrible element, greater
scholars and antiquarians than I am must determine; but it seems to me
that the similarity of the names is a curious coincidence, which would
be not an uninteresting subject of investigation. The young priestess
was the only child of the khan, or steward of Pele, an office of honor
and emolument, his duty being to provide materials for the sacrifices,
such as cloth, hogs, fowls, and fruit, with which he was abundantly
furnished by her worshipers. The young lovers were constant companions
during their childhood, and were linked together by the endearing bonds
of early affection, which grew with their growth, and strengthened with
their strength. It appeared that the devotion of Toleho had never been
so ardently rendered to the imaginary goddess as to her beautiful young
priestess, for his natural acuteness often led him to skeptical
conclusions when he considered the national system of theology; nor had
his superior mind long dwelt upon such subjects, when, in the words of a
poet who has well described a somewhat similar case,[9]

    [9] J. Montgomery, in the "Pelican Island."

              "The gods whom his deluded countrymen
              Acknowledged, were no gods to him; he scorn'd
              The impotence of skill that carved such figures,
              And pitied the fatuity of those
              Who saw not in the abortions of their hands,
              The abortions of their minds."

It was, in truth, interesting to trace the history of

          "This dark, endungeon'd spirit roused,
          And struggling into glorious liberty."

Emancipated from the trammels of superstition, you will not wonder to
hear that his mind joyfully received the truths which God has revealed
to mankind, when, after the arrival of the missionaries, he had an
opportunity of hearing them: and I had reason to believe, that not only
was his understanding enlightened, but his heart deeply imbued with the
spirit of the gospel. Toleho's first wish was, to lead her he loved to
the joy and peace in believing which he now experienced. After a rumor
of the young chief's apostasy from the religion of his fathers had gone
forth, on returning one day from a visit to the missionary station, he
hastened to the dwelling of the khan.

Oani was seated under the shade of a large eugenia tree, where she had
often before awaited his arrival, but she did not now spring forward to
meet him; her eyes were no longer lit up with joy when she beheld his
approach, and, after one look, expressive of deep sorrow, were turned
away. Toleho eagerly inquired if any misfortune had occurred? Was her
father ill?

She burst into tears, and replied, "No--I weep because Oani must not
love Toleho any longer."

He soon discovered that his change had awakened in the breast of the
khan feelings of opposition beyond any he had anticipated. Ancestral
pride--the office of khan being hereditary--early prejudices,
strengthened by time and self-interest, often too influential over the
actions of those who possess a better faith, exercised combined power on
the old man's mind. Perhaps he was also stimulated by the more generous
and romantic sentiment with which we are inclined to regard the decay of
what has been hallowed by antiquity; and he stigmatized those who
forsook the ancient idolatries as meanly subservient to the will of the
great, endeavoring to imbue the mind of his daughter with similar
feelings.

Poor Oani had neither ability nor inclination for controversial
disquisitions. When her lover tried to lay before her the truths which
had influenced him to the change she deplored, a knowledge of which
would enable her to appreciate his motives, she would only weep, and
say, "Toleho, I am sad--sleep has gone from me, and my food has lost its
sweetness. If you do not worship Pele, her priestess must try not to
love you. No more may I sing for you when you are weary; no more gather
summer fruits to refresh you; nor bind sweet flowers in a chaplet for
your brow."

When the chief remarked, that by her embracing Christianity these
objections to their union would be obviated, her only answer was, "Could
I leave my father? _He_ never will forsake Pele. Could I--the only light
of his eyes--the last flower left to gladden the winter of his
life--could I leave his old age desolate?"

The separation of these Polynesian lovers was now inevitable, and it was
a sore trial, for they were fondly attached. It was at this era of
their story that I became acquainted with the young chief, and great
was the interest with which I listened to his simple narration,
heightened, probably, by the extraordinary circumstances under which I
heard it, seated together as we were, at midnight, upon the brink of the
fiery abyss, contemplating a scene so stupendous, so "horribly
beautiful," that probably no other in this world can compete with it.

I could now understand the cause of poor Toleho's intended expatriation.
Oani would probably be given to another. Could he bear to witness it? to
see her miserable? No; he would quit the scenes of his happy days, and,
far away from objects which might agitate his mind, and interfere with
duty, would spend his life in the service of Him who had graciously
"called him from darkness to light." His friends at the mission-house
had already arranged the matter with a captain, who would give him a
passage in his ship to the American States, where he was to use every
exertion in his power for the purpose of awakening an interest in the
cause of the Polynesian mission. Toleho then informed me, that on the
following morning would take place a great annual feast in honor of
Pele, designed to deprecate the wrath of the volcanic goddess, and
secure the country from earthquakes or inundations of lava, at which, of
course, the khan and the young priestess would preside. This would
afford him an opportunity of once more beholding the latter before he
left the islands--the last time he could ever hope to do so; and, for
the purpose of enjoying this melancholy pleasure, he had joined our
party to the volcano.

We now returned to the hut, and I went to repose, rejoicing that I
should have an occasion of witnessing some of the idolatrous rites of
the natives before their final abolition.

Next morning, while my companions prepared to examine the various
natural phenomena of the place, I put myself under the guidance of my
new friend, who took me across the lava plain to the heiau, or temple,
dedicated to Pele, an inclosure, with several stone idols standing in
the midst of it. Votaries had already assembled around the shrine,
adorning these frightful images with wreaths of flowers; and innumerable
offerings were laid before them. As the devotees continued to arrive, my
companion stood, watching every new comer, with an expression of anxiety
and agitation. At length the sound of music was heard, and a procession
approached, for which the crowd opened an avenue to the temple. At its
head was an old man, attired in what I supposed were the pontifical
robes, leading by the hand a young female. Over their heads was borne a
canopy, and they were followed by a train of attendants, each carrying a
staff of state, ornamented with polished tortoise-shell, the upper ends
being of feathers. The sage was the khan, and his companion the
priestess of Pele, whose beauty, I soon perceived had not been
exaggerated in her lover's glowing description. Never had I beheld a
form of more exquisite symmetry, set off by the simple elegance of the
native costume--a robe of white cloth confined round the waist with a
cincture of flowers; her head-dress was only "an od'rous chaplet of
sweet summer buds," binding her dark tresses; while round her neck,
arms, and slender ankles, were wreaths of the snowy and fragrant
gardenia. The features of this young creature were faultless, but wore
an expression of thoughtful abstraction, strikingly contrasted with
those of the persons who surrounded and gazed upon her, all, even the
old khan's, evincing a state of excitement.

After some ceremonies had been performed in the temple, the various
contributions of the people were taken to the volcano, to be presented
to the goddess. Thither the procession moved, and Toleho and I followed
in the crowd. Arrived at the crater, the khan made an oration in praise
of Pele, deploring the national apostasy from her worship, until wrought
up to a state of great excitement, in which his auditors seemed to
participate, except the beautiful priestess, who, standing on the verge
of the gulf, still wore her look of calm dejection, while she received
small specimens of the various offerings from the votaries, and threw
them into the volcano, saying, in a voice of peculiar sweetness, "Accept
these offerings, Pele. Restrain thy wrath, and pour not the floods of
vengeance over our land. Save us, O Pele?"

Toleho darted from the crowd, and stood beside her. His stately form was
drawn up to its full height; from his shoulders hung a splendid mantle
of green and scarlet feathers; his right arm was extended, and in it he
held a small book.

"Oani! beloved Oani!" he exclaimed; "call not upon Pele to save you.
There is but one Saviour, and to know Him is life."

"Recreant," cried the khan, "you have forsaken the great goddess
yourself, and you would now draw away her priestess."

"Khan, and thou beloved Oani, listen," the chief replied, in a solemn
tone. "If there be such a deity as Pele, is she worthy of your
adoration? Is she not ever busy in works of mischief--destroying the
people, devastating our hills, and filling up our fruitful valleys with
floods of lava? Are they not cruel gods, who even require human
sacrifices? Could such beings have created that bright pure sky over our
heads, or that glorious sun which sends light and heat to ripen our corn
and our fruit? No! The Creator of all must be good, as well as great--an
object of love as well as of fear. Friends, countrymen, this book can
tell you of Him."

This seemed to make some impression on the people, but the khan was even
more exasperated than before.

"Traitor," he cried, "would you persuade us to disown our gods, while we
stand gazing on their terrible abode? They dwell in yonder fiery lake;
behold their houses!" pointing to the black conical craters which rose
here and there above the waves. "Do you not hear the roaring and
crackling of the flames? That is the music to which they dance; and in
yonder red surge they often play, sporting in its rolling billows. Pele
is a great goddess; acknowledge her power, Toleho, and Oani--her
priestess, the playmate of your childhood, the betrothed of your
youth--shall be yours, for she pines in secret for her loved one. Reject
Pele, and part with Oani forever."

As he said this, a bright smile lit up the countenance of the young
priestess, as if hope had suddenly revived in her bosom. She turned
toward her lover with a look of imploring affection, laying her small
hands on his arm, and said, "Toleho will not leave me; we may love one
another still."

He made a movement as if instinctively about to clasp her to his breast,
but seemed, with a strong effort, to resist the impulse; a convulsive
motion passed over his manly features; his strong frame trembled; and,
in a voice half-choked by contending feelings, he said, "Oani, I must--I
must leave you. There is but one God, and Him only will I serve. Beloved
maiden, trust to Him--not to senseless idols."

She withdrew her hands, and clasped them together in mute despair. Her
father exclaimed, "Heed him not. Great is the power of Pele. My
daughter, you are her priestess; and, though you flung yourself from
that shelving rock on which you stand, into the gulf below, Pele could
save you." He was now in a state of frenzy. "She could and she _would_
save you; _prove_ to them her power."

"I will, I will," cried the unfortunate girl. "And I want her not to
save me if she can. Toleho forsakes me, and I wish not for life."

Ere the outstretched hand of her lover could prevent it, she had turned
and sprung down the precipice.

A yell of horror burst from the crowd, and there was a general rush
toward the spot, so great, that for several minutes I could not approach
it. Minutes of intense anxiety they were. I heard one voice exclaim, "He
will perish--Toleho--the pride of Hawaiian chiefs."

"No," cried another, "he has almost reached the spot where she lies."

An interval of silence followed. The people evidently watched some
critical event in breathless suspense. Then there was a shout of
joy--Toleho and his loved one were both in safety. There was, as I
afterward learned, a crag projecting from the wall-faced cliff over
which the young priestess had flung herself; on that spot she had
fallen, the elasticity of some shrubs and herbs with which it was
covered preserving her from any serious injury. Toleho, with wonderful
presence of mind and activity, had succeeded in descending to that
place, and, by means of a kind of ropes flung to him from the summit,
re-ascended, and, pale as death, but still firm and composed, had laid
his almost senseless burden in the arms of her father.

The scene which followed would be difficult to describe. When, after
some time, a flood of tears had relieved the old khan, and enabled him
to speak, he tried to express gratitude to the deliverer of his
daughter, but could not say much. "Toleho," he cried, "you have saved
her life. We can not forsake the gods to whom our ancestors have been
priests for hundreds of years, to learn the religion of strangers who
come from distant lands whence originate the winds, but can not Oani
minister to Pele, and still be your wife?"

Here was a trying offer to my poor friend. Again Oani turned on him that
bright smile, that beseeching look, which were hard to be withstood;
but, though there were symptoms of yielding, of a violent internal
struggle, he soon regained composure, and said, "It must not, can not
be--it is forbidden here," holding up the book. "Farewell, Oani. Never
will I forget you. I go to distant lands, but I will love you still.
Keep this book: in it are the words of life. In our happy days, I was
teaching you to read. Get some other teacher, and, for Toleho's sake,
learn all this book teaches, and we may yet meet where there is no
sorrow."

One embrace, and he darted away. I followed with difficulty, keeping by
his side, as rapidly and silently he walked to the place where we had
agreed to meet our companions.

In a few days, we sailed from Hawaii, but not before we had seen the
young Hawaiian chief bid adieu to his native land, and sail for America.

Years passed away. Constant change of scene and variety of events had
nearly obliterated from my memory the story of the priestess and her
lover, when my wanderings once more brought me among the Polynesian
islands, and again to the shores of Hawaii. We were to remain but for a
few days, and, having visited the great volcano before, I now directed
my steps to the next object of interest in the neighborhood, what my
informant called "the Cascade of the Rainbow." This is a waterfall in
the river Wairuku, and surpassed in beauty all my anticipations. The
water, projected from a rock over a hundred feet in height, falls into a
circular basin, as smooth as a mirror, except where the stream plunges
in, and from its bright bosom reflects the enchanting scenery which
surrounds it; while trees and shrubs, laden with blossoms of various
hues, adorn its banks. Nor was the poetical appellation of this romantic
valley inappropriate, for, on the silver spray flung up by the fall of
waters, "an Iris sat" in its variegated beauty. "What a spot to spend
the evening of one's days in after a life of turmoil," I exclaimed. "But
probably, I have been anticipated in this idea, as there is, I see, a
cottage beyond that green lawn, and a tasteful, picturesque edifice it
appears." I walked toward it, and the neatness and comfort of every
thing were a new proof of the wonderful improvement which I had already
observed among the islanders, arising from the spread of Christianity
and civilization. The lady of the mansion, holding by one hand a child
who walked at her side, while with the other she supported a baby in her
arms, advanced to meet and invite me in. She had, to a high degree, the
air of dignity, I had almost said of graceful elegance, which
characterizes the aristocracy of the island; and, when she bade me
welcome, the tones of her voice and the contour of her features seemed
familiar. "Oani!" thought I; "Oani, a wife and a mother. Poor Toleho! So
much for woman's constancy." But I wronged her--I wronged that sex who,
if inferior in other things, surpass us in depth and unchangeableness of
affection. We entered the sitting-room; her husband rose to receive
me--it was Toleho.

After the departure of the chief, Oani had found no comfort in any thing
but in trying to fulfill his last request. One of the missionaries
assisted her, and she was soon able to read the Testament, which had
been his parting gift. Conviction of its truth, and a profession of
Christianity followed, in which she was uninfluenced by interested
motives, as she had not the most remote hope of ever seeing Toleho
again, but the missionaries, who held communication with him through the
American Society, informed him of the change, and he returned to Hawaii,
and claimed her as his own. I found them a loving and happy pair, and
left them so.



                          A SPANISH BULL FIGHT.


One day Don Philippe insisted upon taking us to witness a bull-fight,
which was about to take place, and which it was reported, the queen
herself was expected to attend. This was a spectacle we had never yet
beheld, and our curiosity was therefore aroused to the highest possible
pitch of excitement. Visions of blood floated before our fancy, and
flashing steel gleamed across our sight. Anxiety stood on tip-toe, and
the moments flew slowly by, until the wished-for hour arrived. We left
the business of securing seats in the arena to Philippe, who, by early
application, succeeded in obtaining for us as eligible positions for
witnessing the spectacle as we could reasonably desire. The critical
moment was now at hand, our hearts almost leaped from our mouths, so
deeply were we excited in contemplation of the sanguinary event. At
length the trumpets sounded, and forthwith entered, in martial array,
the entire body of combatants, gayly dressed, and presenting together a
most striking and brilliant effect. Marching to the opposite side of the
ring, they respectfully bowed to the appointed authorities, and then
took their places, in complete readiness for action. At a given signal,
a small iron gate was suddenly opened, and in an instant a furious bull
bounded frantically into the arena; and then, as if petrified with
astonishment at the wonderful scene around him, he stood motionless for
a few seconds, staring wildly at the immense assembly, and pawing
vehemently the ground beneath his feet. It was a solemn and critical
moment, and I can truly say that I never before experienced such an
intense degree of curiosity and interest. My feelings were wound up to
the highest pitch of excitement, and I can scarcely believe that even
that terrible human tragedy, a bloody gladiatorial scene, could have
affected me more deeply. The compressed fury of the bull lasted but an
instant: suddenly his glaring eye caught the sight of a red flag, which
one of the _chulos_, or foot combatants, had waved before him, and
immediately he rushed after his nimble adversary, who evaded his pursuit
by jumping skillfully over the lower inclosure of the ring. The
herculean animal, thus balked in his rage, next plunged desperately
toward one of the _picadores_, or mounted horsemen, who calmly and
fearlessly awaited his approach, and then turned off his attack by the
masterly management of his long and steel-capped pike. Thwarted once
more in his purpose, he became still more frantic than before, while his
low and suppressed roar, expressive of the concentrated passion and rage
which burned within him, sounded like distant thunder to my ears. Half
closing his eyes, and lowering his formidable horns, he darted again at
one of the picadores, and with such tremendous power, that he completely
unhorsed him. Then shouts of applause from the spectators filled the
arena: "Bravo toro!" "Viva toro!" and other exclamations of
encouragement for the bull broke from every mouth. The picador lost no
time in springing to his feet and re-mounting his horse, which, however,
could scarcely stand, so weak was the poor creature from the stream of
blood issuing from the deep wound in his breast. As soon as the enraged
bull, whose attention had been purposely withdrawn by the chulos, beheld
his former adversary now crimsoned with gore, he rushed at him with the
most terrific fury, and, thrusting his horns savagely into the lower
part of the tottering animal, he almost raised him from his feet, and so
lacerated and tore open his abdomen, that his bowels gushed out upon the
ground. Unable any longer to sustain himself, the pitiable animal fell
down in the awful agonies of death, and in a few moments expired. Two
other horses shortly shared the same miserable fate, and their mangled
bodies were lying covered with blood, in the centre of the arena. The
bull himself was now becoming perceptibly exhausted, and his own end was
drawing nigh. For the purpose of stimulating and arousing into momentary
action his rapidly-waning strength, the assailants on foot attacked him
with barbed darts, called _banderillos_, which they thrust with skill
into each side of his brawny neck. Sometimes these little javelins are
charged with a prepared powder, which explodes the instant that the
sharp steel sinks into the flesh. The torture thus produced drives the
wretched animal to the extreme of madness, who bellows and bounds in his
agony, as if endued with the energy of a new life.

On the present occasion, the arrows used were not of an explosive
character, yet they served scarcely less effectually to enrage the
furious monster. But hark! the last trumpet is sounding the awful
death-knell of the warrior-beast. The ring becomes instantly cleared,
and the foaming animal stands motionless and alone, sole monarch of the
arena. But the fiat has gone forth, and the doom of death is impending
over him. The _matador_ enters the ring by a secret door, and after
bowing to the president, and throwing down his cap in token of respect,
slowly and deliberately approaches his terrific adversary, who stands as
if enchained to the spot by a consciousness of the fearful destiny that
awaits him. The matador, undismayed by the ferocious aspect of the bull,
cautiously advances, with his eyes fixed firmly and magnetically upon
him; a bright Toledo blade glistens in his right hand, while in his left
he carries the _muleta_, or crimson flag, with which to exasperate the
declining spirit of his foe. An intense stillness reigns throughout the
vast assemblage, the most critical point of the tragedy is at hand, and
every glance is riveted upon the person and movements of the matador. A
single fatal thrust may launch him into eternity, yet no expression of
fear escapes him; cool, and self-possessed, he stands before his victim,
studious of every motion, and ready to take advantage of any chance.

It is this wonderful display of skill and bravery that fascinates the
attention of a Spanish audience, and not the shedding of blood or the
sufferings of the animal, which are as much lost sight of in the
excitement of the moment as the gasping of a fish or the quivering of a
worm upon the hook is disregarded by the humane disciple of Izaak
Walton. The bull and matador, as motionless as if carved in marble,
present a fearfully artistic effect. At length, like an electric flash,
the polished steel of the matador flies in the air, and descends with
tremendous force into the neck of the doomed animal, burying itself in
the flesh, even up to the hilt. The blow is well made, and from the
mouth of the bull a torrent of blood gushes forth in a crimson stream;
he staggers, drops on his knees, recovers himself for an instant, and
then falls dead at the feet of his conqueror, amid the tumultuous
plaudits of the excited throng of spectators.

Such is a slight sketch of a Spanish bull-fight. The impression made
upon our minds by the first representation was so deeply tinctured with
horror that we resolved never to attend another, though it is but fair
to state that this good resolution, like many others we have made in our
lives, was eventually overcome by temptations.



              MAURICE TIERNAY, THE SOLDIER OF FORTUNE.[10]


                             CHAPTER XXXV.

                        A NOVEL COUNCIL OF WAR.

I had scarcely finished my breakfast, when a group of officers rode up
to our quarters to visit me. My arrival had already created an immense
sensation in the city, and all kinds of rumors were afloat as to the
tidings I had brought. The meagreness of the information would, indeed,
have seemed in strong contrast to the enterprise and hazard of the
escape, had I not had the craft to eke it out by that process of
suggestion and speculation in which I was rather an adept.

    [10] Continued from the July Number.

Little in substance as my information was, all the younger officers were
in favor of acting upon it. The English are no bad judges of our
position and chances, was the constant argument. _They_ see exactly how
we stand; they know the relative forces of our army, and the enemy's;
and if the "cautious islanders"--such was the phrase--advised a _coup de
main_, it surely must have much in its favor. I lay stress upon the
remark, trifling as it may seem; but it is curious to know, that with
all the immense successes of England on sea, her reputation, at that
time, among Frenchmen, was rather for prudent and well-matured
undertakings, than for those daring enterprises which are as much the
character of her courage.

My visitors continued to pour in during the morning, officers of every
arm and rank, some from mere idle curiosity, some to question and
interrogate, and not a few to solve doubts in their minds as to my being
really French, and a soldier, and not an agent of that _perfide Albion_,
whose treachery was become a proverb among us. Many were disappointed at
my knowing so little. I neither could tell the date of Napoleon's
passing St. Gothard, nor the amount of his force; neither knew I whether
he meant to turn eastward toward the plains of Lombardy, or march direct
to the relief of Genoa. Of Moreau's success in Germany, too, I had only
heard vaguely; and, of course, could recount nothing. I could overhear,
occasionally, around and about me, the murmurs of dissatisfaction my
ignorance called forth, and was not a little grateful to an old
artillery captain for saying "That's the very best thing about the lad;
a spy would have had his whole lesson by heart."

"You are right, sir," cried I, catching at the words; "I may know but
little, and that little, perhaps, valueless and insignificant; but my
truth no man shall gainsay."

The boldness of this speech from one wasted and miserable as I was, with
tattered shoes and ragged clothes, caused a hearty laugh, in which, as
much from policy as feeling, I joined myself.

"Come here, mon cher," said an infantry colonel, as, walking to the door
of the room, he drew his telescope from his pocket, "you tell us of a
_coup de main_--on the Monte Faccio, is it not?"

"Yes," replied I, promptly, "so I understand the name."

"Well, have you ever seen the place?"

"Never."

"Well, there it is yonder," and he handed me his glass as he spoke; "you
see that large beetling cliff, with the olives at the foot. There, on
the summit stands the Monte Faccio. The road--the pathway rather, and a
steep one it is--leads up where you see those goats feeding, and crosses
in front of the crag, directly beneath the fire of the batteries.
There's not a spot on the whole ascent where three men could march
abreast, and wherever there is any shelter from fire, the guns of the
'Sprona,' that small fort to the right, take the whole position. What do
you think of your counsel now?"

"You forget, sir, it is not my counsel. I merely repeat what I
overheard."

"And do you mean to say, that the men who gave that advice were serious,
or capable of adopting it themselves?"

"Most assuredly; they would never recommend to others what they felt
unequal to themselves. I know these English well, and so much will I say
of them."

"Bah!" cried he, with an insolent gesture of his hand, and turned away;
and I could plainly see that my praises of the enemy were very
ill-taken. In fact, my unlucky burst of generosity had done more to
damage my credit, than all the dangerous or impracticable features of my
scheme. Every eye was turned to the bold precipice, and the stern
fortress that crowned it, and all agreed that an attack must be
hopeless.

I saw, too late, the great fault I had committed, and that nothing could
be more wanting in tact than to suggest to Frenchmen an enterprise which
Englishmen deemed practicable, and which yet, to the former, seemed
beyond all reach of success. The insult was too palpable and too direct,
but to retract was impossible, and I had now to sustain a proposition
which gave offense on every side.

It was very mortifying to me to see how soon all my personal credit was
merged in this unhappy theory. No one thought more of my hazardous
escape, the perils I encountered, or the sufferings I had undergone. All
that was remembered of me was the affront I had offered to the national
courage, and the preference I had implied to English bravery.

Never did I pass a more tormenting day; new arrivals continually
refreshed the discussion, and always with the same results; and although
some were satisfied to convey their opinions by a shake of the head or a
dubious smile, others, more candid than civil, plainly intimated that if
I had nothing of more consequence to tell, I might as well have staid
where I was, and not added one more to a garrison so closely pressed by
hunger. Very little more of such reasoning would have persuaded myself
of its truth, and I almost began to wish that I was once more back in
"the sick bay" of the frigate.

Toward evening I was left alone; my host went down to the town on duty;
and after the visit of a tailor, who came to try on me a staff
uniform--a distinction, I afterward learned, owing to the abundance of
this class of costume, and not to any claims I could prefer to the
rank--I was perfectly free to stroll about where I pleased unmolested,
and, no small blessing, unquestioned.

On following along the walls for some distance, I came to a part where a
succession of deep ravines opened at the foot of the bastions,
conducting by many a tortuous and rocky glen to the Apennines. The sides
of these gorges were dotted here and there with wild hollies and fig
trees; stunted and ill-thriven as the nature of the soil might imply.
Still, for the sake of the few berries, or the sapless fruit they bore,
the soldiers of the garrison were accustomed to creep from the
embrasures, and descend the steep cliffs, a peril great enough in
itself, but terribly increased by the risk of exposure to the enemy's
"Tirailleurs," as well as the consequences such indiscipline would bring
down on them.

So frequent, however, had been these infractions, that little footpaths
were worn bare along the face of the cliff, traversing in many a zigzag
a surface that seemed like a wall. It was almost incredible that men
would brave such peril for so little; but famine had rendered them
indifferent to death; and although debility exhibited itself in every
motion and gesture, the men would stand unshrinking and undismayed
beneath the fire of a battery. At one spot, near the angle of a bastion,
and where some shelter from the north winds protected the place, a
little clump of orange trees stood, and toward these, though fully a
mile off, many a foot-track led, showing how strong had been the
temptation in that quarter. To reach it, the precipice should be
traversed, the gorge beneath and a considerable ascent of the opposite
mountain accomplished, and yet all these dangers had been successfully
encountered, merely instigated by hunger!

High above this very spot, at a distance of perhaps eight hundred feet,
stood the Monte Faccio--the large black and yellow banner of Austria
floating from its walls, as if amid the clouds. I could see the muzzles
of the great guns protruding from the embrasures; and I could even catch
glances of a tall bearskin, as some soldier passed, or repassed behind
the parapet, and I thought how terrible would be the attempt to storm
such a position. It was, indeed, true, that if I had the least
conception of the strength of the fort, I never should have dared to
talk of a _coup de main_. Still I was in a manner pledged to the
suggestion. I had periled my life for it, and few men do as much for an
opinion; for this reason I resolved, come what would, to maintain my
ground, and hold fast to my conviction. I never could be called upon to
plan the expedition, nor could it by any possibility be confided to my
guidance; responsibility could not, therefore, attach to me. All these
were strong arguments, at least quite strong enough to decide a wavering
judgment.

Meditating on these things, I strolled back to my quarters. As I entered
the garden, I found that several officers were assembled, among whom was
Colonel de Barre, the brother of the general of that name, who afterward
fell at the Borodino. He was _Chef d'Etat Major_ to Massena, and a most
distinguished, and brave soldier. Unlike the fashion of the day, which
made the military man affect the rough coarseness of a savage, seasoning
his talk with oaths, and curses, and low expressions, De Barre had
something of the _petit maître_ in his address, which nothing short of
his well-proved courage would have saved from ridicule. His voice was
low and soft, his smile perpetual; and although well-bred enough to have
been dignified and easy, a certain fidgety impulse to be pleasing made
him always appear affected and unnatural. Never was there such a
contrast to his chief; but indeed it was said, that to this very
disparity of temperament he owed all the influence he possessed over
Massena's mind.

I might have been a General of Division at the very least, to judge from
the courteous deference of the salute with which he approached me--a
politeness the more striking, as all the others immediately fell back,
to leave us to converse together. I was actually overcome with the
flattering terms in which he addressed me on the subject of my escape.

"I could scarcely at first credit the story," said he, "but when they
told me that you were a 'Ninth man,' one of the old Tapageurs, I never
doubted it more. You see what a bad character is, Monsieur de Tiernay!"
It was the first time I had ever heard the prefix to my name, and I own
the sound was pleasurable. "I served a few months with your corps
myself, but I soon saw there was no chance of promotion among fellows
all more eager than myself for distinction. Well, sir, it is precisely
to this reputation I have yielded my credit, and to which General
Massena is kind enough to concede his own confidence. Your advice is
about to be acted on, Mons. de Tiernay."

"The _coup de main_--"

"A little lower, if you please, my dear sir. The expedition is to be
conducted with every secrecy, even from the officers of every rank below
a command. Have the goodness to walk along with me this way. If I
understand General Massena aright, your information conveys no details,
nor any particular suggestions as to the attack."

"None whatever, sir. It was the mere talk of a gun-room--the popular
opinion among a set of young officers."

"I understand," said he, with a bow and a smile; "the suggestion of a
number of high-minded and daring soldiers, as to what they deemed
practicable."

"Precisely, sir."

"Neither could you collect from their conversation any thing which bore
upon the number of the Austrian advance guard, or their state of
preparation?"

"Nothing, sir. The opinion of the English was, I suspect, mainly founded
on the great superiority of our forces to the enemy's in all attacks of
this kind."

"Our 'esprit Tapageur,' eh?" said he, laughing, and pinching my arm
familiarly, and I joined in the laugh with pleasure. "Well, Monsieur de
Tiernay, let us endeavor to sustain this good impression. The attempt is
to be made to-night."

"To-night!" exclaimed I, in amazement: for every thing within the city
seemed tranquil and still.

"To-night, sir; and, by the kind favor of General Massena, I am to lead
the attack; the reserve, if we are ever to want it, being under his own
command. It is to be at your own option on which staff you will serve."

"On yours, of course, sir," cried I, hastily. "A man who stands unknown
and unvouched for among his comrades, as I do, has but one way to
vindicate his claim to credit, by partaking the peril he counsels."

"There could be no doubt either of your judgment, or the sound reasons
for it," replied the colonel; "the only question was, whether you might
be unequal to the fatigue."

"Trust me, sir, you'll not have to send me to the rear," said I,
laughing.

"Then you are extra on my staff, Mons. de Tiernay."

As we walked along, he proceeded to give me the details of our
expedition, which was to be on a far stronger scale than I anticipated.
Three battalions of infantry, with four light batteries, and as many
squadrons of dragoons, were to form the advance.

"We shall neither want the artillery, nor cavalry, except to cover a
retreat," said he; "I trust, if it came to _that_, there will not be
many of us to protect; but such are the general's orders, and we have
but to obey them."

With the great events of that night on my memory, it is strange that I
should retain so accurately in my mind, the trivial and slight
circumstances, which are as fresh before me as if they had occurred but
yesterday.

It was about eleven o'clock, of a dark but starry night, not a breath of
wind blowing, that passing through a number of gloomy, narrow streets, I
suddenly found myself in the court yard of the Balbé Palace. A large
marble fountain was playing in the centre, around which several lamps
were lighted; by these I could see that the place was crowded with
officers, some seated at tables drinking, some smoking, and others
lounging up and down in conversation. Huge loaves of black bread, and
wicker-covered flasks of country wine formed the entertainment; but even
these, to judge from the zest of the guests, were no common delicacies.
At the foot of a little marble group, and before a small table, with a
map on it, sat General Massena himself, in his gray over-coat, cutting
his bread with a case knife, while he talked away to his staff.

"These maps are good for nothing, Bressi," cried he. "To look at them,
you'd say that every road was practicable for artillery, and every river
passable, and you find afterward that all these fine chaussees are
by-paths, and the rivulets downright torrents. Who knows the Chiavari
road?"

"Giorgio knows it well, sir," said the officer addressed, and who was a
young Piedmontese from Massena's own village.

"Ah, Birbante!" cried the general, "are you here again?" and he turned
laughingly toward a little bandy-legged monster, of less than three feet
high, who, with a cap stuck jauntily on one side of his head, and a
wooden sword at his side, stepped forward with all the confidence of an
equal.

"Ay, here I am," said he, raising his hand to his cap, soldier fashion;
"there was nothing else for it but this trade," and he placed his hand
on the hilt of his wooden weapon; "you cut down all the mulberries, and
left us no silkworms; you burned all the olives, and left us no oil;
you trampled down our maize-crops and our vines. Per Baccho! the only
thing left was to turn brigand like yourself, and see what would come of
it."

"Is he not cool to talk thus to a general at the head of his staff?"
said Massena, with an assumed gravity.

"I knew you when you wore a different-looking epaulet than that there,"
said Giorgio, "and when you carried one of your father's meal-sacks on
your shoulder, instead of all that bravery."

"Parbleu! so he did," cried Massena, laughing heartily. "That scoundrel
was always about our mill, and, I believe, lived by thieving!" added he,
pointing to the dwarf.

"Every one did a little that way in our village," said the dwarf; "but
none ever profited by his education like yourself."

If the general and some of the younger officers seemed highly amused at
the fellow's impudence and effrontery, some of the others looked angry
and indignant. A few were really well-born, and could afford to smile at
these recognitions; but many who sprung from an origin even more humble
than the general's, could not conceal their angry indignation at the
scene.

"I see that these gentlemen are impatient of our vulgar recollections,"
said Massena, with a sardonic grin; "so now to business, Giorgio. You
know the Chiavari road--what is't like?"

"Good enough to look at, but mined in four places."

The general gave a significant glance at the staff, and bade him go on.

"The white coats are strong in that quarter, and have eight guns to bear
upon the road, where it passes beneath Monte Rattè."

"Why, I was told that the pass was undefended!" cried Massena, angrily;
"that a few skirmishers were all that could be seen near it."

"All that could be seen!--so they are; but there are eight
twelve-pounder guns in the brushwood, with shot and shell enough to be
seen, and felt too."

Massena now turned to the officers near him, and conversed with them
eagerly for some time. The debated point, I subsequently heard, was how
to make a feint attack on the Chiavari road, to mask the _coup de main_
intended for the Monte Faccio. To give the false attack any color of
reality required a larger force and greater preparation than they could
afford, and this was now the great difficulty. At last it was resolved
that this should be a mere demonstration, not to push far beyond the
walls, but, by all the semblance of a serious advance, to attract as
much attention as possible from the enemy.

Another and a greater embarrassment lay in the fact, that the troops
intended for the _coup de main_ had no other exit than the gate which
led to Chiavari; so that the two lines of march would intersect and
interfere with each other. Could we even have passed out our Tirailleurs
in advance, the support could easily follow; but the enemy would, of
course, notice the direction our advance would take, and our object be
immediately detected.

"Why not pass the skirmishers out by the embrasures, to the left
yonder?" said I; "I see many a track where men have gone already."

"It is steep as a wall," cried one.

"And there's a breast of rock in front that no foot could scale."

"You have at least a thousand feet of precipice above you, when you
reach the glen, if ever you do reach it alive."

"And this to be done in the darkness of a night!"

Such were the discouraging comments which rattled, quick as musketry,
around me.

"The lieutenant's right, nevertheless," said Giorgio. "Half the
voltigeurs of the garrison know the path well already; and as to
darkness--if there were a moon you dared not attempt it."

"There's some truth in that," observed an old major.

"Could you promise to guide them, Giorgio," said Massena.

"Yes, every step of the way; up to the very wall of the fort."

"There, then," cried the general, "one great difficulty is got over
already."

"Not so fast, general mio," said the dwarf; "I said I could, but I never
said that I would."

"Not for a liberal present, Giorgio: not if I filled that leather pouch
of yours with five-franc pieces, man?"

"I might not live to spend it, and I care little for my next of kin,"
said the dwarf, dryly.

"I don't think that we need his services, general," said I: "I saw the
place this evening, and however steep it seems from the walls, the
descent is practicable enough--at least I am certain that our
Tirailleurs, in the Black Forest, would never have hesitated about it."

I little knew that when I uttered this speech I had sent a shot into the
very heart of the magazine, the ruling passion of Massena's mind being
an almost insane jealousy of Moreau's military fame; his famous campaign
of Southern Germany, and his wonderful retreat upon the Rhine, being
regarded as achievements of the highest order.

"I've got some of those regiments you speak of in my brigade here, sir,"
said he, addressing himself directly to me, "and I must own that their
discipline reflects but little credit upon the skill of so great an
officer as General Moreau; and as to light-troops, I fancy Colonel de
Vallence yonder would scarcely feel it a flattery, were you to tell him
to take a lesson from them."

"I have just been speaking to Colonel de Vallence, general," said
Colonel de Barre. "He confirms every thing Mons. de Tiernay tells us of
the practicable nature of these paths; his fellows have tracked them at
all hours, and neither want guidance nor direction to go."

"In that case I may as well offer my services," said Giorgio, tightening
his belt; "but I must tell you that it is too late to begin to-night--we
must start immediately after nightfall. It will take from forty to fifty
minutes to descend the cliff, a good two hours to climb the ascent, so
that you'll not have much time to spare before daybreak."

Giorgio's opinion was backed by several others, and it was finally
resolved upon that the attempt should be made on the following evening.
Meanwhile, the dwarf was committed to the safe custody of a sergeant,
affectedly to look to his proper care and treatment, but really to guard
against any imprudent revelations that he might make respecting the
intended attack.


                            CHAPTER XXXVI.

                        GENOA DURING THE SIEGE.

If the natural perils of the expedition were sufficient to suggest grave
thoughts, the sight of the troops that were to form it was even a
stronger incentive to fear. I could not believe my eyes, as I watched
the battalions which now deployed before me. Always accustomed, whatever
the hardships they were opposed to, to see French soldiers
light-hearted, gay, and agile, performing their duties in a spirit of
sportive pleasure, as if soldiering were but fun, what was the shock I
received at sight of these care-worn, downcast, hollow-cheeked fellows,
dragging their legs wearily along, and scarcely seeming to hear the
words of command; their clothes patched and mended, sometimes too big,
sometimes too little, showing that they had changed wearers without
being altered; their tattered shoes, tied on with strings round their
ankles; their very weapons dirty and uncared for; they resembled rather
a horde of bandits than the troops of the first army of Europe. There
was, besides, an expression of stealthy, treacherous ferocity in their
faces, such as I never saw before. To this pitiable condition had they
been brought by starvation. Not alone the horses had been eaten, but
dogs and cats; even the vermin of the cellars and sewers was consumed as
food. Leather and skins were all eagerly devoured; and there is but too
terrible reason to believe that human flesh itself was used to prolong
for a few hours this existence of misery.

As they defiled into the "Piazza," there seemed a kind of effort to
assume the port and bearing of their craft; and although many stumbled,
and some actually fell, from weakness, there was an evident attempt to
put on a military appearance. The manner of the adjutant, as he passed
down the line, revealed at once the exact position of affairs. No
longer inspecting every little detail of equipment, criticising this, or
remarking on that, his whole attention was given to the condition of the
musket, whose lock he closely scrutinized, and then turned to the
cartouch-box. The ragged uniforms, the uncouth shakos, the belts dirty
and awry, never called forth a word of rebuke. Too glad, as it seemed,
to recognize even the remnants of discipline, he came back from his
inspection apparently well satisfied and content.

"These fellows turn out well," said Colonel de Barre, as he looked along
the line; and I started to see if the speech were an unfeeling jest. Far
from it; he spoke in all seriousness! The terrible scenes he had for
months been witnessing; the men dropping from hunger at their posts; the
sentries fainting as they carried arms, and borne away to the hospital
to die; the bursts of madness that would now and then break forth from
men whose agony became unendurable, had so steeled him to horrors, that
even this poor shadow of military display seemed orderly and imposing.

"They are the 22d, colonel," replied the adjutant, proudly, "a corps
that always have maintained their character, whether on parade or under
fire!"

"Ah! the 22d, are they? They have come up from Ronco, then?"

"Yes, sir; they were all that General Soult could spare us."

"Fine-looking fellows they are," said De Barre, scanning them through
his glass. "The third company is a little, a very little to the
rear--don't you perceive it?--and the flank is a thought or so restless
and unsteady."

"A sergeant has just been carried to the rear ill, sir," said a young
officer, in a low voice.

"The heat, I have no doubt; a '_colpo di sole_,' as they tell us
everything is," said De Barre. "By the way, is not this the regiment
that boasts the pretty vivandiere? What's this her name is?"

"Lela, sir."

"Yes, to be sure, Lela. I'm sure I've heard her toasted often enough at
cafés and restaurants."

"There she is, sir, yonder, sitting on the steps of the fountain;" and
the officer made a sign with his sword for the girl to come over. She
made an effort to arise at the order; but tottered back, and would have
fallen if a soldier had not caught her. Then suddenly collecting her
strength, she arranged the folds of her short scarlet jupe, and
smoothing down the braids of her fair hair, came forward, at that
sliding, half-skipping pace that is the wont of her craft.

The exertion, and possibly the excitement had flushed her cheek; so that
as she came forward her look was brilliantly handsome; but as the color
died away, and a livid pallor spread over her jaws, lank and drawn in by
famine, her expression was dreadful. The large eyes, lustrous and
wild-looking, gleamed with the fire of fever, while her thin nostrils
quivered at each respiration.

Poor girl, even then, with famine and fever eating within her, the
traits of womanly vanity still survived, and as she carried her hand to
her cap in salute, she made a faint attempt at a smile.

"The 22d may indeed be proud of their vivandiere," said De Barre,
gallantly.

"What hast in the 'tonnelet,' Lela?" continued he, tapping the little
silver-hooped barrel she carried at her back.

"Ah, _que voulez vous_?" cried she, laughing, with a low, husky sound,
the laugh of famine.

"I must have a glass of it to your health, ma belle Lela, if it cost me
a crown piece," and he drew forth the coin as he spoke.

"For such a toast, the liquor is quite good enough," said Lela, drawing
back at the offer of money; while slinging the little cask in front, she
unhooked a small silver cup, and filled it with water.

"No brandy, Lela?"

"None, colonel," said she, shaking her head, "and if I had, those poor
fellows yonder would not like it so well."

"I understand," said he, significantly, "theirs is the thirst of fever."

A short, dry cough, and a barely perceptible nod of the head, was all
her reply; but their eyes met, and any so sad an expression as they
interchanged I never beheld! It was a confession in full of all each had
seen of sorrow, of suffering, and of death. The terrible events three
months of famine had revealed, and all the agonies of pestilence and
madness.

"That is delicious water, Tiernay," said the colonel, as he passed me
the cup, and thus trying to get away from the sad theme of his thoughts.

"I fetch it from a well outside the walls every morning," said Lela,
"ay, and within gun-shot of the Austrian sentries too."

"There's coolness for you, Tiernay," said the colonel; "think what the
22d are made of when their vivandiere dares to do this."

"They'll not astonish _him_," said Lela, looking steadily at me.

"And why not, ma belle?" cried De Barre.

"He was a Tapageur, one of the 'Naughty Ninth,' as they called them."

"How do you know that, Lela? Have we ever met before?" cried I eagerly.

"I've seen _you_, sir," said she, slily. "They used to call you the
corporal that won the battle of Kehl. I know my father always said so."

I would have given worlds to have interrogated her further; so
fascinating is selfishness, that already at least a hundred questions
were presenting themselves to my mind. Who could Lela be? and who was
her father? and what were these reports about me? Had I really won fame
without knowing it? and did my comrades indeed speak of me with honor?
All these, and many more inquiries, were pressing for utterance, as
General Massena walked up with his staff. The general fully corroborated
De Barre's opinion of the "22d." They were, as he expressed, a
"magnificent body." "It was a perfect pleasure to see such troops under
arms." "Those fellows certainly exhibited few traces of a starved-out
garrison." Such and such like were the jesting observations bandied from
one to the other, in all the earnest seriousness of truth! What more
terrible evidence of the scenes they had passed through, than these
convictions! What more stunning proof of the condition to which long
suffering had reduced them!

"Where is our pleasant friend, who talked to us of the Black Forest last
night?"

"Ah, there he is; well, Monsieur Tiernay, do you think General Moreau's
people turned out better than that after the retreat from
Donaueschingen?"

There was no need for any reply, since the scornful burst of laughter of
the staff already gave the answer he wanted; and now he walked forward
to the centre of the piazza, while the troops proceeded to march past.

The band, a miserable group, reduced from fifty to thirteen in number,
struck up a quick step, and the troops, animated by the sounds, and more
still, perhaps, by Massena's presence, made an effort to step out in
quick time; but the rocking, wavering motion, the clinking muskets, and
uncertain gait, were indescribably painful to a soldier's eye. Their
colonel, De Vallence, however, evidently did not regard them thus, for
as he joined the staff, he received the general's compliments with all
the good faith and composure in the world.

The battalions were marched off to barracks, and the group of officers
broke up to repair to their several quarters. It was the hour of dinner,
but it was many a day since that meal had been heard of among them. A
stray café here and there was open in the city, but a cup of coffee,
without milk, and a small roll of black bread, a horrid compound of rye
and cocoa, was all the refreshment obtainable; and yet, I am bold to
say, that a murmur or a complaint was unheard against the general or the
government. The heaviest reverses, the gloomiest hours of ill-fortune
never extinguished the hope that Genoa was to be relieved at last, and
that all we had to do was to hold out for the arrival of Bonaparte. To
the extent of this conviction is to be attributed the wide disparity
between the feeling displayed by the military and the townsfolk.

The latter, unsustained by hope, without one spark of speculation to
cheer their gloomy destiny, starved, and sickened, and died in masses.
The very requirements of discipline were useful in averting the
despondent vacuity which comes of hunger. Of the sanguine confidence of
the soldiery in the coming of their comrades, I was to witness a strong
illustration on the very day of which I have been speaking.

It was about four o'clock in the afternoon, the weather had been heavy
and overcast, and the heat excessive, so that all who were free from
duty had either lain down to sleep, or were quietly resting within
doors, when a certain stir and movement in the streets, a rare event
during the hours of the siesta, drew many a head to the windows. The
report ran, and like wildfire it spread through the city, that the
advanced guard of Bonaparte had reached Ronco that morning, and were
already in march on Genoa! Although nobody could trace this story to any
direct source, each believed and repeated it; the tale growing more
consistent and fuller at every repetition. I need not weary my reader
with all the additions and corrections the narrative received, nor
recount how now it was Moreau with the right wing of the army of the
Rhine; now it was Kellermann's brigade; now it was Macdonald, who had
passed the Ticino, and last of all Bonaparte. The controversy was often
even an angry one, when, finally, all speculation was met by the
official report, that all that was known lay in the simple fact, that
heavy guns had been heard that morning, near Ronco, and as the Austrians
held no position with artillery there, the firing must needs be French.

This very bare announcement was, of course, a great "come down" for all
the circumstantial detail with which we had been amusing ourselves and
each other, but yet it nourished hope, and the hope that was nearest to
all our hearts, too! The streets were soon filled; officers and soldiers
hastily dressed, and with many a fault of costume, were all
commingled, exchanging opinions, resolving doubts, and even bandying
congratulations. The starved and hungry faces were lighted up with an
expression of savage glee. It was like the last flickering gleam of
passion in men, whose whole vitality was the energy of fever! The heavy
debt they owed their enemy was at last to be paid, and all the insulting
injury of a besieged and famine-stricken garrison to be avenged. A
surging movement in the crowd told that some event had occurred; it was
Massena and his staff, who were proceeding to a watch-tower in the
bastion, from whence a wide range of country could be seen. This was
reassuring. The general himself entertained the story, and here was
proof that there was "something in it." All the population now made for
the walls; every spot from which the view toward Ronco could be obtained
was speedily crowded, every window filled, and all the house-tops
crammed. A dark mass of inky cloud covered the tops of the Apennines,
and even descended to some distance down the sides. With what shapes and
forms of military splendor did our imaginations people the space behind
that sombre curtain! What columns of stern warriors, what prancing
squadrons, what earth-shaking masses of heavy artillery! How longingly
each eye grew weary watching--waiting for the vail to be rent, and the
glancing steel to be seen glistening bright in the sun-rays!

As if to torture our anxieties, the lowering mass grew darker and
heavier, and rolling lazily down the mountain, it filled up the valley,
wrapping earth and sky in one murky mantle.

"There, did you hear that?" cried one, "that was artillery."

A pause followed, each ear was bent to listen, and not a word was
uttered, for full a minute or more; the immense host, as if swayed by
the one impulse, strained to catch the sounds, when suddenly, from the
direction of the mountain top, there came a rattling, crashing noise,
followed by the dull, deep booming that every soldier's heart responds
to. What a cheer then burst forth! never did I hear--never may I hear
such a cry as that was--it was like the wild yell of a shipwrecked crew,
as some distant sail hove in sight; and yet, through its cadence, there
rang the mad lust for vengeance! Yes, in all the agonies of sinking
strength, with fever in their hearts, and the death sweat on their
cheeks, their cry was, Blood! The puny shout, for such it seemed now,
was drowned in the deafening crash that now was heard; peal after peal
shook the air, the same rattling, peppering noise of musketry continuing
through all.

That the French were in strong force, as well as the enemy, there could
now be no doubt. Nothing but a serious affair and a stubborn resistance
could warrant such a fire. It had every semblance of an attack with all
arms. The roar of the heavy guns made the air vibrate, and the clatter
of small arms was incessant. How each of us filled up the picture from
the impulses of his own fancy! Some said that the French were still
behind the mountain, and storming the heights of the Borghetto; others
thought that they had gained the summit, but not "en force," and were
only contesting their position there; and a few more sanguine, of whom I
was one myself, imagined that they were driving the Austrians down the
Apennines, cleaving their ranks as they went, with their artillery.

Each new crash, every momentary change of direction of the sounds,
favored this opinion or that, and the excitement of partisanship rose to
an immense height. What added indescribably to the interest of the
scene, was a group of Austrian officers on horseback, who, in their
eagerness to obtain tidings, had ridden beyond their lines, and were now
standing almost within musket range of us. We could see that their
telescopes were turned to the eventful spot, and we gloried to think of
the effect the scene must be producing on them.

"They've seen enough!" cried one of our fellows, laughing, while he
pointed to the horsemen, who suddenly wheeling about, galloped back to
their camp at full speed.

"You'll have the drums beat to arms now; there's little time to lose.
Our cuirassiers will soon be upon them," cried another, in ecstasy.

"No, but the rain will, and upon us, too," said Giorgio, who had now
come up; "don't you see that it's not a battle yonder, it's a 'borasco.'
There it comes." And as if the outstretched finger of the dwarf had been
the wand of a magician, the great cloud was suddenly torn open with a
crash, and the rain descended like a deluge, swept along by a hurricane
wind, and came in vast sheets of water, while high over our heads, and
moving onward toward the sea growled the distant thunder. The great
mountain was now visible from base to summit, but not a soldier, not a
gun to be seen! Swollen and yellow, the gushing torrents leaped madly
from crag to crag, and crashing trees, and falling rocks, added their
wild sounds to the tumult.

There we stood, mute and sorrowstruck, regardless of the seething rain,
unconscious of any thing save our disappointment. The hope we built upon
had left us, and the dreary scene of storm around seemed but a type of
our own future! And yet we could not turn away, but with eyes strained
and aching, gazed at the spot from where our succor should have come.

I looked up at the watch-tower, and there was Massena still, his arms
folded on a battlement; he seemed to be deep in thought. At last he
arose, and drawing his cloak across his face, descended the
winding-stair outside the tower. His step was slow, and more than once
he halted, as if to think. When he reached the walls, he walked rapidly
on, his suite following him.

"Ah, Mons. Tiernay," said he, as he passed me, "you know what an
Apennine storm is now; but it will cool the air, and give us delicious
weather;" and so he passed on with an easy smile.


                            CHAPTER XXXVII.

                            MONTE DI FACCIO.

The disappointment we had suffered was not the only circumstance adverse
to our expedition. The rain had now swollen the smallest rivulets to the
size of torrents; in many places the paths would be torn away and
obliterated, and every where the difficulty of a night march enormously
increased. Giorgio, however, who was, perhaps, afraid of forfeiting his
reward, assured the general that these mountain streams subside even
more rapidly than they rise; that such was the dryness of the soil, no
trace of rain would be seen by sunset, and that we should have a calm,
starry night; the very thing we wanted for our enterprise.

We did not need persuasion to believe all he said, the opinion chimed in
with our own wishes, and better still, was verified to the very letter
by a glorious afternoon. Landward, the spectacle was perfectly
enchanting; the varied foliage of the Apennines, refreshed by the rain,
glittered and shone in the sun's rays, while in the bay, the fleet, with
sails hung out to dry, presented a grand and an imposing sight. Better
than all, Monte Faccio now appeared quite near us; we could, even with
the naked eye, perceive all the defenses, and were able to detect a
party of soldiers at work outside the walls, clearing, as it seemed,
some water-course that had been impeded by the storm. Unimportant as the
labor was, we watched it anxiously, for we thought that perhaps before
another sunset many a brave fellow's blood might dye that earth. During
the whole of that day, from some cause or other, not a shot had been
fired either from the land-batteries or the fleet, and as though a truce
had been agreed to, we sat watching each other's movements peacefully
and calmly.

"The Austrians would seem to have been as much deceived as ourselves,
sir," said an old artillery sergeant to me, as I strolled along the
walls at nightfall. "The pickets last night were close to the glacis,
but see now they have fallen back a gun-shot or more."

"But they had time enough since to have resumed their old position,"
said I, half-doubting the accuracy of the surmise.

"Time enough, parbleu; I should think so, too! but when the whitecoats
manoeuvre, they write to Vienna to ask, 'What's to be done next?'"

This passing remark, in which, with all its exaggeration, there lay a
germ of truth, was the universal judgment of our soldiers on those of
the Imperial army; and to the prevalence of the notion may be ascribed
much of that fearless indifference with which small divisions of ours
attacked whole army corps of the enemy. Bonaparte was the first to point
out this slowness, and to turn it to the best advantage.

"If our general ever intended a sortie, this would be the night for it,
sir," resumed he; "the noise of those mountain streams would mask the
sounds of a march, and even cavalry, if led with caution, might be in
upon them before they were aware."

This speech pleased me, not only for the judgment it conveyed, but as an
assurance that our expedition was still a secret in the garrison.

On questioning the sergeant further, I was struck to find that he had
abandoned utterly all hope of ever seeing France again; such he told me
was the universal feeling of the soldiery. "We know well, sir, that
Massena is not the man to capitulate, and we can not expect to be
relieved." And yet with this stern, comfortless conviction on their
minds--with hunger, and famine, and pestilence on every side--they never
uttered one word of complaint, not even a murmur of remonstrance. What
would Moreau's fellows say of us? What would the Army of the Meuse
think? These were the ever present arguments against surrender; and the
judgment of their comrades was far more terrible to them than the
grape-shot of the enemy.

"But do you not think when Bonaparte crosses the Alps he will hasten to
our relief?"

"Not he, sir! I know him well. I was in the same troop with him, a
bombardier at the same gun. Bonaparte will never go after small game
where there's a nobler prey before him. If he does cross the Alps he'll
be for a great battle under Milan; or, mayhap, march on Venice. _He's_
not thinking of our starved battalions here: he's planning some great
campaign, depend on it. He never faced the Alps to succor Genoa."

How true was this appreciation of the great general's ambition, I need
scarcely repeat; but so it was at the time; many were able to guess the
bold aspirings of one who, to the nation, seemed merely one among the
numerous candidates for fame and honors.

It was about an hour after my conversation with the sergeant, that an
orderly came to summon me to Colonel de Barre's quarters; and with all
my haste to obey, I only arrived as the column was formed. The plan of
attack was simple enough. Three Voltigeur companies were to attempt the
assault of the Monte Faccio, under De Barre; while to engage attention,
and draw off the enemy's force, a strong body of infantry and cavalry
was to debouch on the Chiavari road, as though to force a passage in
that direction. In all that regarded secrecy and dispatch our expedition
was perfect: and as we moved silently through the streets, the sleeping
citizens never knew of our march. Arrived at the gate, the column
halted, to give us time to pass along the walls and descend the glen, an
operation which, it was estimated, would take forty-five minutes; at the
expiration of this they were to issue forth to the feint attack.

At a quick step we now pressed forward toward the angle of the bastion,
whence many a path led down the cliff in all directions. Half-a-dozen of
our men well-acquainted with the spot, volunteered as guides, and the
muskets being slung on the back, the word was given to "move on," the
rallying-place being the plateau of the orange trees I have already
mentioned.

"Steep enough, this," said De Barre to me, as, holding on by briars and
brambles, we slowly descended the gorge; "but few of us will ever climb
it again."

"You think so?" asked I, in some surprise.

"Of course, I know it;" said he. "Vallence, who commands the battalions
below, always condemned the scheme; rely on it, he's not the man to make
himself out a false prophet. I don't pretend to tell you that in our
days of monarchy there were neither jealousies nor party grudges, and
that men were above all small and ungenerous rivalry; but, assuredly, we
had less of them than now. If the field of competition is more open to
every one, so are the arts by which success is won; a pre-eminence in a
republic means always the rain of a rival. If we fail, as fail we must,
he'll be a general."

"But why must we fail?"

"For every reason; we are not in force: we know nothing of what we are
about to attack; and, if repulsed, have no retreat behind us."

"Then, why--?" I stopped, for already I saw the impropriety of my
question.

"Why did I advise the attack?" said he, mildly, taking up my
half-uttered question. "Simply because death outside these walls is
quicker and more glorious than within them. There's scarcely a man who
follows us has not the same sentiment in his heart. The terrible scenes
of the last five weeks have driven our fellows to all but mutiny.
Nothing, indeed, maintained discipline but a kind of tigerish thirst for
vengeance--a hope that the day of reckoning would come round, and in one
fearful lesson teach these same whitecoats how dangerous it is to drive
a brave enemy to despair."

De Barre continued to talk in this strain as we descended, every remark
he made being uttered with all the coolness of one who talked of a
matter indifferent to him. At length the way became too steep for much
converse, and slipping and scrambling, we now only interchanged a chance
word as we went. Although two hundred and fifty men were around and
about us, not a voice was heard; and, except the occasional breaking of
a branch, or the occasional fall of some heavy stone into the valley,
not a sound was heard. At length a long, shrill whistle announced that
the first man had reached the bottom, which, to judge from the faintness
of the sound, appeared yet a considerable distance off. The excessive
darkness increased the difficulty of the way, and De Barre continued to
repeat, "that we had certainly been misinformed, and that even in
daylight the descent would take an hour."

It was full half an hour after this when we came to a small rivulet, the
little boundary line between the two steep cliffs. Here our men were all
assembled, refreshing themselves with the water, still muddy from recent
rain, and endeavoring to arrange equipments and arms, damaged and
displaced by many a fall.

"We've taken an hour and twenty-eight minutes," said De Barre, as he
placed a fire-fly on the glass of his watch to see the hour. "Now, men,
let us make up for lost time. _En avant!_"

"En avant!" was quickly passed from mouth to mouth, and never was a word
more spirit-stirring to Frenchmen! With all the alacrity of men fresh
and "eager for the fray," they began the ascent, and, such was the
emulous ardor to be first, that it assumed all the features of a race.

A close pine wood greatly aided us now, and in less time than we could
believe it possible, we reached the plateau appointed for our
rendezvous. This being the last spot of meeting before our attack on the
fort, the final dispositions were here settled on, and the orders for
the assault arranged. With daylight the view from this terrace, for such
it was in reality, would have been magnificent, for even now, in the
darkness, we could track out the great thoroughfares of the city, follow
the windings of the bay and harbor, and, by the lights on board, detect
the fleet as it lay at anchor. To the left, and for many a mile, as it
seemed, were seen twinkling the bivouac fires of the Austrian army;
while, directly above our heads, glittering like a red star, shone the
solitary gleam that marked out the "Monte Faccio."

I was standing silently at De Barre's side, looking on this sombre
scene, so full of terrible interest, when he clutched my arm violently,
and whispered--

"Look yonder; see, the attack has begun."

The fire of the artillery had flashed as he spoke, and now, with his
very words, the deafening roar of the guns was heard from below.

"I told you he'd not wait for us, Tiernay. I told you how it would
happen!" cried he; then, suddenly recovering his habitual composure of
voice and manner, he said, "now for our part, men, forward."

And away went the brave fellows, tearing up the steep mountain side,
like an assault party at a breach. Though hidden from our view by the
darkness and the dense wood, we could hear the incessant din of large
and small arms; the roll of the drums summoning men to their quarters,
and what we thought were the cheers of charging squadrons.

Such was the mad feeling of excitement these sounds produced, that I can
not guess what time elapsed before we found ourselves on the crest of
the mountain, and not above three hundred paces from the outworks of the
fort. The trees had been cut away on either side, so as to offer a
species of "glacis," and this must be crossed under the fire of the
batteries, before an attack could be commenced. Fortunately for us,
however, the garrison was too confident of its security to dread a _coup
de main_ from the side of the town, and had placed all their guns along
the bastion, toward Borghetto, and this De Barre immediately detected. A
certain "alert" on the walls, however, and a quick movement of lights
here and there, showed that they had become aware of the sortie from the
town, and gradually we could see figure after figure ascending the
walls, as if to peer down into the valley beneath.

"You see what Vallance has done for us," said De Barre, bitterly; "but
for _him_ we should have taken these fellows, _en flagrant delit_, and
carried their walls before they could turn out a captain's guard."

As he spoke, a heavy, crashing sound was heard, and a wild cheer.
Already our pioneers had gained the gate, and were battering away at it;
another party had reached the walls, and thrown up their rope ladders,
and the attack was opened! In fact, Giorgio had led one division by a
path somewhat shorter than ours, and they had begun the assault before
we issued from the pine wood.

We now came up at a run, but under a smart fire from the walls, already
fast crowding with men. Defiling close beneath the wall, we gained the
gate, just as it had fallen beneath the assaults of our men; a steep
covered way led up from it, and along this our fellows rushed madly, but
suddenly from the gloom a red glare flashed out, and a terrible
discharge of grape swept all before it. "Lie down!" was now shouted from
front to rear, but even before the order could be obeyed, another and
more fatal volley followed.

Twice we attempted to storm the ascent; but, wearied by the labor of the
mountain pass--worn out by fatigue--and, worse still, weak from actual
starvation, our men faltered! It was not fear, nor was there any thing
akin to it; for even as they fell under the thick fire, their shrill
cheers breathed stern defiance. They were utterly exhausted, and failing
strength could do no more! De Barre took the lead, sword in hand, and
with one of those wild appeals, that soldiers never hear in vain,
addressed them; but the next moment his shattered corpse was carried to
the rear. The scaling party, alike repulsed, had now defiled to our
support; but the death-dealing artillery swept through us without
ceasing. Never was there a spectacle so terrible, as to see men,
animated by courageous devotion, burning with glorious zeal, and yet
powerless from very debility--actually dropping from the weakness of
famine! The staggering step--the faint shout--the powerless charge--all
showing the ravages of pestilence and want!

Some sentiment of compassion must have engaged our enemies' sympathy,
for twice they relaxed their fire, and only resumed it as we returned to
the attack. One fearful discharge of grape, at pistol range, now seemed
to have closed the struggle; and as the smoke cleared away, the earth
was seen crowded with dead and dying. The broken ranks no longer showed
discipline--men gathered in groups around their wounded comrades, and,
to all seeming, indifferent to the death that menaced them. Scarcely an
officer survived, and, among the dead beside me, I recognized Giorgio,
who still knelt in the attitude in which he had received his
death-wound.

I was like one in some terrible dream, powerless and terror-stricken, as
I stood thus amid the slaughtered and the wounded.

"You are my prisoner," said a gruff-looking old Croat grenadier, as he
snatched my sword from my hand, by a smart blow on the wrist, and I
yielded without a word.

"Is it over?" said I; "is it over?"

"Yes, parbleu, I think it is," said a comrade, whose cheek was hanging
down from a bayonet wound. "There are not twenty of us remaining, and
_they_ will do very little for the service of the 'Great Republic.'"

                           (TO BE CONTINUED.)



                          FRENCH COTTAGE COOKERY.


I had frequently remarked a neat little old woman, in a clean,
stiff-starched, quilted cap, going to and from a neighboring chapel,
without however its ever coming into my head to ask who she was; until
one day a drove of oxen alarmed her so visibly, that I opened the gate
of my little garden, and begged her to remain there in safety till the
cattle had passed by.

"Madame is very polite; she has no doubt been in France?"

"Yes," answered I in her native language, "I resided there many years,
and perceive I have the pleasure of addressing a Frenchwoman."

"I was born in England, madame; but at eight years of age went with my
father to Honfleur, where I married, and continued to reside until four
years ago, when my poor husband followed the remains of his last
remaining child to the grave, and in less than a fortnight after died of
the _grippe_ himself. I had no means of living then, being too old to go
out as a _femme de journée_, my only means of gaining a livelihood; so I
returned to the place where I was born, and my mother's youngest brother
allows me thirty-five pounds a year, upon condition that I am never more
than a month out of England again."

We soon became great friends, and by degrees I learned her history. This
uncle of hers was a year younger than herself--a thorough John Bull, who
hated the French, and ridiculed every thing that was foreign. His heart,
however, was kind and generous, and he no sooner heard of the destitute
condition in which his aunt was left, than he hastened across the
channel for her, bought in her clothes and furniture, which she was
forced to sell to enable her to satisfy her creditors, and then made her
a present of them all again, offering to convey her to her native
country, and settle upon her enough to enable her to live there
decently; which allowance, however, was to cease if she was ever known
to be more than a month out of England. "Time enough for her to pray
over her French friends' graves, poor benighted Catholic that she be!
but I won't have more of my money spent among them foreign frog-eaters
nor I can help." The poor woman had no other choice; but it was several
years before she reconciled herself to habits so different from those to
which she had been so long accustomed; and to the last she preserved the
French mode in dressing, eating, and manner. At the topmost story of a
high house she took two unfurnished rooms; the largest contained her
bed, _secrétaire_, _commode_, _pendule_, _prie-dieu_, and whatever was
best and gayest of her possessions. The room behind was _consacrée_, as
she called it, to pots and pans, basins and baskets, her night-quilt and
pillow, and whatever else was not "convenable" to display to "le monde;"
but the front apartment was where she lived, slept, cooked, ate, and
prayed; and a nice, clean, cheerful, well-furnished room it was, and
many a pleasant hour have I spent in it with the old lady, conversing
upon cookery and politeness--two requisites she found the English quite
deficient in, she said. I confess I am somewhat inclined to agree with
her, especially as to the former; and those who agree with me in opinion
will perhaps be glad to have her recipes for the inexpensive French
dishes which fine cooks despise too much to print in cookery-books.

We shall begin with the pot au feu, in Madame Miau's own words:--"Get
from the butcher a nice, smooth, pretty piece of beef, with as little
skin, fat, strings, and bones, as possible: one pound does for me, but
for a family we shall say three pounds. Put this into--not an iron pot,
not a brass pot, not a tin pot--but an earthen pan with a close-fitting
lid, and three quarts of filtered water, and some salt. This you must
put, not on the fire, but on the top of the oven, which is heated from
the fire, and which will do just the same as a hot hearth: let it boil
up; skim and deprive it of all grease. When this is accomplished, take
three large carrots, cut in three pieces--three, remember!--one large
parsnip cut in two, two turnips, as many leeks as possible--you can't
have too many; two cloves ground, and the least little idea of pepper,
and onions if you like--I only put a burnt one to color. Now cover up,
and let it stay, going tic-tic-tic! for seven hours; not to _boil_,
pray. When I hear my bouillon bubble, the tears are in my eyes, for I
know it is a _plat manqué_. When ready, put the beef--what we country
people call bouillie--which word, they say, is vulgar--never mind!--put
it on a dish, and with tasteful elegance dispose around the carrots,
parsnip, and turnip. Then on slices of bread at the bottom of a bowl
pour your soup, and thank God for your good dinner.

"I sometimes tie the white part of my leeks in bundles, like asparagus,
and serve on roasted (she never would say toasted) bread. Next day I
warm the soup again, introducing rue, vermicelli, or fresh carrots cut
in shapes, as my fancy may lead me, and eat the beef cold with tarragon
vinegar. Madame Fouache, my sister-in-law, puts in celery, parsley, and
a hundred other things; but that is modern--mine is the old, respectable
pot au feu; and I never have nonplus, what all the Fouaches are so fond
of, which is properly a Spanish, not a French dish, called _olla
podrida_--very extravagant. Not only have they beef, but a fowl, a ham,
or piece of one; a Bologna or Spanish sausage; all the vegetables named
above; _pois chiches_ (large hard peas), which must be soaked a night; a
cabbage, a hard pear, and whatever they can gather, in the usual
proportion of a small quart to a large pound of meat; and not liking
oil, as the Spaniards do, Madame Fouache adds butter and flour to some
of the soup, to make sauce. The fowl is browned before the fire, and
served with pear, peas, celery, and the ham with the cabbage, the beef
with the carrots, leeks, and parsnips, the sausage by itself; and the
soup in a tureen over a _croûton_. This takes nine hours of slow
cooking; but mine, the veritable pot au feu Français, is much better, as
well as simpler and cheaper."

"Thank you, Madame Miau," said I; "here it is all written down. Is that
batter-pudding you have arranged for frying?"

"No, madame; it is _sarrasin_. It was my dinner yesterday, _en
bouillie_; to-day I fry it, and with a gurnet besides, am well dined."

"How do you cook it?"

"In France I take half a pint of water and a pint and a half of milk;
but here the milkman saves me the trouble: so I take two pints of his
milk, and by degrees mix in a good half pint of buckwheat flour, salt,
an egg if you have it, but if not, half an hour's additional boiling
will do as well. This mess must boil long, till it is quite, quite
thick: you eat some warm with milk, and put the remainder into a deep
plate, where, when cold, it has the appearance you see, and is very nice
fried."

"And the gurnet?"

"I boil it, skin it, and bone it, and pour over it the following sauce:
A dessert-spoonful of flour rubbed smooth into a half tumbler of water;
this you boil till it is thick, and looks clear; then take it off the
fire, and pray don't put it on again, to spoil the taste, and pop in a
good lump of Dutch butter, if you can't afford fresh, which is much
better, and a small tea-spoonful of vinegar; pour this over your fish:
an egg is a great improvement. I can't afford that, but I sometimes add
a little drop of milk, if I have it."

"I am sure it must be very good: and, by-the-by, can you tell me what to
do with a miserable, half-starved chicken that the dogs killed, to make
it eatable?"

"Truss it neatly, stuff it with sausage and bread-crumbs; mix some flour
and butter, taking care it does not color in the pan, for it must be a
white rout; plump your chicken in this, and add a little water, or soup
if you have it; take four little onions, two small carrots cut in half;
tie in a bundle the tops of celery, some chives, a bay-leaf, and some
parsley; salt to taste, with a bit of mace--will be all you require
more; cover close, so that the air is excluded, and keep it simmering
two hours and a quarter: it will turn out white and plump; place the
vegetables round it; stir in an egg to thicken the sauce, off the fire,
and your dish will not make you blush." I did as she directed, and found
it very good.

I went very often to Madame Miau's, and invariably found her reading her
prayer-book, and she as invariably put it down unaffectedly without
remark, and entered at once into conversation upon the subject I
introduced, never alluding to her occupation.

"I fear," said I, one day, "I interrupt your devotions."

"_Du tout_, madame, they are finished; I am so far from chapel I can
only get there upon Sundays, or on the very great saints' days; but I
have my _good corner_ here," pointing to the _prie-dieu_, which stood
before what I had always imagined shelves, protected from the dust by a
green baize curtain; "and you see I have my little remembrances behind
this," added she, pulling the curtain aside, and displaying a crucifix,
"the Virgin mild and sweet St. John" standing by, her string of beads,
the crowns of everlastings from her parents', husband's, and children's
graves, several prints of sacred subjects, and a shell containing holy
water.

Her simple piety was so sincere that I felt no desire to cavil at the
little harmless superstitions mixed with it, but said, "You must have
many sad and solitary hours; but you know where to look for consolation,
I find."

"Yes, indeed, madame. Without religion how could I have lived through my
many sorrows! but God sustains me, and I am not unhappy, although
wearing out my age in poverty and in a strange land, without one of
those I loved left to comfort me; for if the longest life be short, the
few years I have before _me_ are shorter still, and I thank Him daily
for the comfort I derive from my Christian education."

She was too delicate-minded to say Catholic, which I knew she meant, and
I changed the subject, lest our ideas might not agree so well if we
pursued it much further. "Pray, Madame Miau, what is the use of that
odd-looking iron stand?"

"It is for stewing or boiling: the baker sells me the burnt wood out of
his oven (we call it _braise_ in France), which I mix with a little
charcoal; this makes a capital fire, and in summer I dress my dinner.
You see there are three pots, one above the other; this saves me the
heat, and dirt, and expense of a fire in the grate, for it stands in the
passage quite well, and stewed beefsteak is never so good as when
dressed by it."

"How do you manage?"

"I make a rout, and put to it a quantity of onions minced small, and a
bit of garlic, when they are quite soft; I add salt, a little pepper,
and some flour and water, if I have no gravy or soup. Into this I put
slices of beef, and let it stew slowly till quite done, and then thicken
the sauce with polder starch. The neighbors down stairs like this so
much, that we often go halves in both the food and firing, which greatly
reduces the cost to both; and it keeps _so_ well, and heats up _so_
nicely! They eat it with boiled rice, which I never before saw done, and
like very much; but I boil my rice more than they do, and beat it into a
paste, with salt and an egg, and either brown it before the fire or fry
it, which I think an improvement; but neighbor Green likes it all
natural."

"Oh, do tell me about _soupe à la graisse_; it sounds very uninviting."

"I seldom take it in this country, where vegetables are so dear, and you
must prepare your _graisse_ yourself."

"How do you prepare it?"

"By boiling dripping with onions, garlic, and spices; a good
table-spoonful of this gives a nice taste to water, and you add every
kind of vegetable you can obtain, and eat it with brown bread steeped in
it. The very poor abroad almost live on it, and those who are better off
take a sou from those who have no fire, _pour tremper leur soupe_; and
surely on a cold day this hot mess is more acceptable to the stomach
than cold bread and cheese."

"You seem very fond of onions with every thing."

"Yes; they make every thing taste well: now _crevettes_, what you call
shrimps, how good they are with onions!"

"How! onions with shrimps!--what an odd combination! Tell me how to
dress this curious dish."

"When the shrimps are boiled, shell them, take a pint or a quart,
according to your family; make a rout, adding pepper; jump (_sautez_)
them in it, adding, as they warm, minced parsley; when quite hot, take
them off the fire, and stir round among them a good spoonful of sour
cream. _Pois de prud'homme_ and _pois mange-tout_ are dressed the same,
leaving out the flour and pepper."

"I don't know what _pois_ you mean."

"The _prud'hommes_, when they first come in, are like lupin-pods, and
contain little square white beans. You do not shell them till they are
quite old, and then they are good also, but not nearly so good or so
wholesome as in the green pods. The _pois tirer_ or _mange-touts_ are
just like every other pea--only as you can eat the pods, you have them
full three weeks before the others are ready, and a few handfuls make a
good dish: you must take the string off both, as you do with
kidney-beans, unless when young."

"I suppose you eat the white dry beans which are to be bought at the
French shop here."

"No, never: they don't agree with me, nor indeed are they very
digestible for any but strong workers."

"How should they be dressed?"

"Steeped from five to twelve hours; boiled till tender; then jumped with
butter and parsley in a pan after draining well; and milk and an egg
stirred in them off the fire, or what is much better, a little sour
cream or thick buttermilk. They eat well with roast mutton, and are much
more delicate than the red beans, which, however, I have never seen sold
in this country."

"Do you drink tea?"

"I would do so were I confined to the wishy-washy stuff people of my
rank in England call coffee--bad in itself, and worse prepared."

"How do _you_ manage?"

"I buy coffee-beans, ready roasted or not: a coffee-mill costs me 1_s._
6_d._, and I grind it every now and then myself; but I always freshen my
beans by jumping them in a clean frying-pan, with a little new butter,
till quite dry and crisp--very easy to do, and the way to have good
coffee. I do a little at a time, and use that small coffee-biggen, which
is now common even in this country: two well-heaped tea-spoonfuls serve
me; but were I richer, I should put three. Upon these two spoonfuls I
pour a cup of boiling water, and while it is draining through, heat the
same quantity of milk, which I mix with the clear coffee, and I have my
two cups. Chiccory I don't like, spite of the doctor, who says it is
wholesome. All French doctors preach against coffee; but I, who have
drunk it all my life, am of opinion they talk nonsense. You may take it
stronger or weaker; but I advise you always to make it this way, and
never try the foolish English practices of boiling, simmering, clearing,
and such like absurdities and fussings. I generally, however, breakfast
upon _soupe à la citronille_, which is very nice."

"Tell me how to make it."

"You cut your citronille (pumpkin, I believe you call it) in slices,
which you boil in water till soft enough to press through a cullender
into hot milk; add salt and pepper, stir smooth, and give one boil, and
it is ready to pour upon your bread as a _purée_. A little white wine
improves it, or you may make it _au gras_, mixing a little white meat
gravy; but to my mind the simple soup is the best, although I like a bit
of butter in it, I confess. Turnips and even carrots eat very well
prepared this way, many think; but I prefer the latter prepared _à la
Crécy_, which you do very well in England."

"You use a great deal of butter, which at one time of the year is very
dear in England."

"And in France, also; therefore I buy it at the cheap seasons, put it on
the fire, and give it a boil, skimming it well; then I let it settle,
and pour off all that is clear into bottles and pots, and it keeps until
the dear time is past, quite well for cooking."

"And eggs."

"Nothing so simple, when quite new laid; butter them well with fresh
butter; remember if a pin's point is passed over, the egg spoils--rub it
well into them, and place in jars, shaking over them bran or dry sand;
wash when about to use them, and you would say they had been laid two
days back only."

"Do you eat your prepared butter upon bread?"

"I never do any thing so extravagant as to eat butter upon bread: I
prefer to use it in my cookery; but I don't think boiled butter would
taste well so, though it fries beautifully on maigre days; and on others
I use lard to my potato."

"Does one satisfy you?" asked I, laughing.

"Oh yes, if it is of a tolerable size. I cut it in pieces the size of a
hazel-nut, dry, and put them into a common saucepan, with the least bit
of butter, shaking them about every few minutes; less than half an hour
does them; they are eaten hot, with some salt sifted over."

"I suppose you often have an omelet?"

"Not often; but let me offer you one now."

I had scarcely assented, when the frying-pan was on the fire to heat
three eggs broken, some chives and parsley minced, and mixed with a
little pepper and salt all together--Madame Miau throwing in a drop of
milk, because she happened to have it, in order to increase the size of
the omelet, although in general she seldom used it--and flour _never_.
It was thrown upon the boiling fat, and as it hardened, lifted up with
two wooden forks round and round, and then rolled over, _never_
turned--the upper part, which was still slightly liquid, serving for
sauce, as it were. This was all, and very good I found it. Another time
she put in grated cheese, which was also excellent.

"I can't comprehend how you contrive to make every thing so good at so
little expense," said I.

"There is no merit in making good things if you are extravagant: any one
can do that."

"No, indeed, not every one."

"Cookery, in a little way," continued Madame Miau, "appears to me _so_
simple. To fry well, the fat must _boil_ before putting what you wish
fried into it; and this you ascertain by throwing in a piece of bread,
which should gild immediately: the color should be yellow or
light-brown--never darker. To _stew_, the only rule is to let your meat
simmer gently for a long time, and keep in the steam, and all sorts
should be previously sautéd in a rout, which keeps in the juice: the
look, also, is important, and a burnt onion helps the color."

Madame Miau, however, could cook more elaborate dishes than those she
treated herself to, and I shall subjoin some of her recipes, all of
which I have tried myself; and if the preceding very economical but
thoroughly French dishes please as a foundation, I may give in a future
number _plats_ of a rather higher description.



                        STUDENT LIFE IN PARIS.


The first impression of the Student of Students in Paris is one of
curiosity. "When do the students find time to study?" is the natural
inquiry. The next impression solves the mystery, by leading to the
satisfactory conclusion, that the students do _not_ find time to study.
To be sure, eminent physicians, great painters, and acute lawyers, do
occasionally throw sufficient light upon society to render its
intellectual darkness visible. And the probabilities are that these
physicians are not born with diplomas, as children are, occasionally,
with cauls; nor the painters sent into the world with their pencils at
their fingers' ends; nor the lawyers launched into existence sitting
upon innate woolsacks. The inference, then, is, that education has done
something toward their advancement, and that they, necessarily, have
done something toward their education.

But the lives of great men are the lives of individuals, not of masses.
And with these I have nothing now to do. It is possible that the
Quartier Latin contains at the present moment more than one "mute
inglorious" Moliere, or Paul de Kock, guiltless, as yet, of his readers'
demoralization. Many a young man who now astonishes the Hôtel Corneille,
less by his brains than his billiards, may one day work hard at a
barricade, and harder still, subsequently, at the galleys! But how are
we to know that these young fellows, with their long legs, short coats,
and faces patched over with undecided beards, are geniuses, unless, as
our excellent friend, the English plebeian has it, they "behave as
such?" Let us hope, at any rate, that, like glow-worms, they appear mean
and contemptible in the glare of society, only to exhibit their shining
qualities in the gloom of their working hours.

It is only, then, with the outward life of the students that I have to
deal. With this, one may become acquainted without a very long residence
in the Quartier Latin--that happy quarter where every thing is
subservient to the student's taste, and accommodated to the student's
pocket--where amusement is even cheaper than knowledge--where braces are
unrespected, and blushes unknown--where gloves are not enforced, and
respectability has no representative.

If the student be opulent--that is to say, if he have two hundred francs
a month (a magnificent sum in the quarter) he lives where he
pleases--probably in the Hôtel Corneille; if he be poor, and is
compelled to vegetate, as many are, upon little more than a quarter of
that amount, he lives where he can--no one knows where, and very few
know how. It is principally from among this class, who are generally the
sons of peasants or _ouvriers_, that France derives her great painters,
lawyers, and physicians. They study more than their richer comrades;
not only because they have no money to spend upon amusement, but because
they have, commonly, greater energy and higher talents. Indeed, without
these qualities they would not have been able to emancipate themselves
from the ignoble occupations to which they were probably born; unlike
the other class of students, with whom the choice of a profession is
guided by very different considerations.

It is a curious sight to a man fresh from Oxford or Cambridge to observe
these poor students sunning themselves, at mid-day, in the gardens of
the Luxembourg--with their sallow, bearded faces, bright eyes, and long
hooded cloaks, which, notwithstanding the heat of the weather,
"circumstances" have not yet enabled them to discard. Without stopping
to inquire whether there really be any thing "new under the sun," it may
be certainly assumed that the garments in question could not be included
in the category. If, however, they are heavy, their owners' hearts are
light, and their laughter merry enough--even to their last pipe of
tobacco. After the last pipe of tobacco, but not till then, comes
despair.

The more opulent students resemble their poorer brethren in one respect:
they are early risers. Some breakfast as early as seven o'clock; others
betake themselves by six to their _ateliers_, or lectures--or pretend to
do so--returning, in two or three hours, to a later meal. This is of a
substantial character, consisting of two or three courses, with the
eternal _vin ordinaire_. When living in a hôtel, the student breakfasts
in the midst of those congenial delights; the buzz of conversation, the
fumes of tobacco, and the click of the billiard-balls. By means of these
amusements, and sundry _semi tasses_ and _petits verres_, he contrives
to kill the first two or three hours after breakfast. Cards and dominoes
are also in great request from an early hour, and present to an
Englishman a curious contrast with his own national customs. In England,
he is accustomed to find card-playing in the morning patronized only by
the most reckless; in France it is the commonest thing in the world to
see a pair of gentlemen with gray hairs and every attribute of
respectability, employed, at nine o'clock, upon a game of _écarte_,
enlivened by little glasses of brandy and the never-failing pipe. If a
young Englishman in London, instead of an old Frenchman in Paris, was to
addict himself to such untimely recreations, he would probably be cut
off with a shilling.

When the heat and smoke of the _café_ become too much even for French
students, they drop off by twos and threes, and seek the fresh air. The
Luxembourg Gardens are close by, and here they principally congregate.
Amusing figures they look, too, in their present style of costume, which
is a burlesque upon that of the Champs Elysées, which is a burlesque
upon that of Hyde Park. The favorite covering for the head is a very
large white hat, with very long nap; which I believe it is proper to
brush the wrong way. The coat, is of the paletôt description, perfectly
straight, without shape or make, and reaching as little below the hips
as the wearer can persuade himself is not utterly absurd. The remainder
of the costume is of various shades of eccentricity, according to the
degree of madness employed upon its manufacture. As for the beard and
mustaches, their arrangement is quite a matter of fancy: there are not
two persons alike in this respect in the whole quarter: it may be
remarked, however, that shaving is decidedly on the increase.

The Luxembourg Garden is principally remarkable for its statues without
fingers, almond trees without almonds, and _grisettes_ without number.
Its groves of horse-chestnuts would be very beautiful if, in their
cropped condition, they did not remind the unprejudiced observer--who is
of course English--of the poodle dogs, who in their turn are cropped, it
would seem, to imitate the trees. The queens of France, too, who look
down upon you from pedestals at every turn, were evidently the work of
some secret republican; and the lions that flank the terraces on either
side, are apparently intended as a satire upon Britain. However, if one
could wish these animals somewhat less sweet and smiling, one could
scarcely wish the surrounding scene more so than it is, with its
blooming shrubs and scarcely less blooming damsels, gayly decorated
parterres, and gayly attired loungers, the occasional crash of a
military band, and the continual recurrence of military manoeuvres.

Just outside the gates, near the groves of tall trees leading to the
Barrière d'Enfer, there is always something "going on"--more soldiers,
of course, whom it is impossible to avoid in Paris, besides various
public exhibitions, all cheap, and some gratuitous. On one side, you are
attracted by that most irresistible of attractions--a crowd. Edging your
way through it, as a late arrival always does, you find yourself, with
the body of students whom you followed from the hôtel, "assisting" at
the exhibition of a wonderful dog, who is doing nothing, under the
direction of his master, in general a most repulsive-looking rascal,
bearded and bloused as if hot for a barricade. The dog, by doing
nothing, is not obeying orders; on the contrary, he is proving himself a
most sagacious animal by having his own way in defiance of all
authority. This the master attributes, not to the stupidity of the dog,
but to the absence of contributions from the spectators. A few sous are
showered down upon this hint; which proceeding, perhaps, brings out the
dog's talents to a slight extent; that is to say, he is induced to lie
down and pretend to be asleep; but it is doubtful, at the same time,
whether his compliance is attributable to the coppers of his audience,
or the kicks of his spirited proprietor. This is probably the only
performance of the wonderful animal; for it is remarkable that whatever
the sum thrown into the circle, it is never sufficient, according to the
exhibitor, to induce him to show off his grand tricks, so high a value
does he place upon his own talents.

Who, among a different class of the animal creation, does not know what
is called a "genius," who sets even a higher value upon his talents, who
is equally capricious, and who certainly has never yet been persuaded to
show off his "grand trick?"

You are probably next attracted by a crowd at a short distance,
surrounding an exhibition, dear to every English heart--that of "Punch."
The same familiar sentry-box, hung with the same green baize, hides the
same mysteries which are known to every body. But the part of
"Hamlet"--that is to say, "Punch"--though not exactly omitted, is
certainly not "first business." His hunch has lost its fullness; his
nose, its rubicundity; and his profligacy, its point. He is a feeble wag
when translated into French, and has a successful rival in the person of
one Nicolet--who, by the way, gives its name to the theatre--and who is
chiefly remarkable for a wonderful white hat, and a head wooden enough,
even for a low comedian.

Nicolet is supposed to be a fast man. His enemies are not policemen and
magistrates, as in the case of "Punch," but husbands--for the reason
that his friends are among the wives. This seems to be the "leading
idea" of the drama of Nicolet, in common, indeed, with that of every
other French piece on record. If it were not considered impertinent in
the present day to draw morals, I might suggest that something more than
amusement is to be gained by contemplating the young children among the
crowd, who enjoy the delinquencies of this _Faublas_ for the million,
with most precocious sagacity. It is delightful, in fact, to see the
gusto with which they anticipate innuendoes, and meet improprieties half
way, with all the well-bred composure of the most fashionable audience.

It is not customary among the students to wait for the end of Nicolet's
performances. The fashionable hour for departure varies; but it is
generally about the period when the manager's wife begins to take round
the hat.

Any one who accompanies a party of students in their morning rambles,
will most probably find himself, before long, in the "Closerie des
Lilacs," which is close by the same spot. The "Closerie" is associated
in name with lilacs, probably from the fact that it contains fewer
flowers of that description than any other place in the neighborhood. It
is a garden somewhat resembling Vauxhall; and at dusk there is an
attempt made at lighting it up, especially on certain evenings in the
week which are devoted to balls. These balls do not vary materially from
any other twopenny dances, either in London or Paris; but as a morning
lounge, the place is not without attractions. One of them, is the fact
that there is no charge for admission, the proprietor merely expecting
his guests to _convenue_ something--a regulation which is generally
obeyed without much objection.

Throughout the whole day may here be seen numerous specimens of the two
great clashes of the quarter--students and grisettes, some smoking, and
drinking beer and brandy in pretty little bosquets, others disporting
themselves on a very high swing, which would seem to have been expressly
constructed for the purpose of breaking somebody's neck, and to have
failed in its object, somehow, like many other great inventions.
_Ecarte_ is also very popular; but the fact that its practice requires
some little exertion of the intelligence, so very inconvenient to some
persons, will always prevent it from attaining entire supremacy in a
place so polite as Paris. To meet this objection, however, some
ingenious person has invented an entirely different style of game; an
alteration for which the Parisians appear deeply grateful. A small toad,
constructed of bronze, is placed upon a stand, and into its open mouth
the player throws little leaden dumps, with the privilege of scoring
some high number if he succeeds, and of hitting the legs of the
spectators if he fails. At this exciting game a party of embryo doctors
and lawyers will amuse themselves at the "Closerie" for hours, and
moreover exhibit indications of a most lively interest. The great
recommendation of the amusement, I believe, is, that the players _might_
be doing something worse; a philosophical system of reasoning which will
apply to most diversions--from pitch-and-toss to manslaughter.

A few hours of this amusement is scarcely necessary to give the student
that sometimes inconvenient instinct--an appetite. Accordingly, at about
five, he begins to think about dining; or rather, he begins to perform
that operation, for he has been thinking about it for some time.

Dining, in the weak imagination of conventional persons, usually induces
visions of Vefour, and is suggestive of Provençal fraternity. But the
student of the Quartier Latin, if he indulges in any such visions, or is
visited by any such suggestions, finds their end about as substantial as
their beginning. His dreamy dinners have, alas! no possibility of
realization. Truffles to him are tasteless, and his "trifles" are
literally "light as air." Provence provides him, unfortunately, with
more songs than suppers, and the fraternal associations with which he is
best acquainted are those of the Cuisiniers in the Rue Racine or Rue des
Mathurins.

It is, very probably, with one of these "Fraternal Associations of
Cooks" that the student proceeds to dine. These societies, which are
fast multiplying in every quarter of Paris, are patronized principally
by Republicans who are red, and by Monarchists who are poor. The former
are attracted by sympathy, the latter are driven by necessity. Indeed, a
_plat_ at six sous, which is the usual price at these establishments, is
a very appropriate reward for the one, or refuge for the other. At these
establishments--which had no existence before the last revolution--every
body is equal; there are no masters, and there are no servants. The
_garçons_ who wait upon the guests are the proprietors, and the guests
themselves are not recognized as having any superior social position.
The guest who addresses the waiter as "_garçon_" is very probably
insulted, and the _garçon_ who addresses a guest as "_monsieur_" is
liable to be expelled from the society. In each case, "_citoyen_" is the
current form of courtesy, and any person who objects to the term is free
to dine elsewhere. Even the dishes have a republican savor. "_Macaroni à
la République_," "_Fricandeau à la Robespierre_," or "_Filet à la
Charrier_," are as dear to republican hearts as they are cheap to
republican pockets.

A dinner of this kind costs the student little more than a franc. If he
is more ostentatious, or epicurean, he dines at Risbec's, in the Place
de l'Odeon. Here, for one franc, sixty centimes, he has an entertainment
consisting of four courses and a dessert, inclusive of half a bottle of
_vin ordinaire_. If he is a sensible man, he prefers this to the
Associated Cooks, who, it must be confessed, even by republicans of
taste, are not quite what might be expected, considering the advancing
principles they profess.

After dinner, the student, if the Prado or some equally congenial
establishment is not open, usually addicts himself to the theatre. His
favorite resort is, not the Odeon, as might be supposed, from its
superior importance and equal cheapness, but the "Théatre du
Luxembourg," familiarly called by its frequenters--why, is a
mystery--"Bobineau's." Here the student is in his element. He talks to
his acquaintance across the house; indulges in comic demonstrations of
ecstasy whenever Mademoiselle Hermance appears on the scene, and, in
short, makes himself as ridiculous and contented as can be. Mademoiselle
Hermance, it is necessary to add, is the goddess of the quarter, and has
nightly no end of worshipers. The theatre itself is every thing that
could be desired by any gentleman of advanced principles, who spurns
propriety, and inclines himself toward oranges.

After the theatre the student probably goes home, and there I will leave
him safely. My object has been merely to indicate the general
characteristics of his ordinary life, from which he seldom deviates,
unless tempted by an unexpected remittance to indulge in more costly
recreations, afforded by the Bal Mobile or the Château Rouge.



                           A FAQUIR'S CURSE.


Among the many strange objects which an Englishman meets with in India,
there are few which tend so much to upset his equanimity as a visit from
a wandering faquir.

The advent of one of these gentry in an English settlement is regarded
with much the same sort of feeling as a vagrant cockroach, when he makes
his appearance unannounced in a modern drawing-room. If we could imagine
the aforesaid cockroach brandishing his horns in the face of the
horrified inmates, exulting in the disgust which his presence creates,
and intimating, with a conceited swagger, that, in virtue of his
ugliness, he considered himself entitled to some cake and wine, perhaps
the analogy would be more complete.

The faquir is the mendicant friar of India. He owns no superior; wears
no clothing; performs no work; despises every body and every thing;
sometimes pretends to perpetual fasting; and lives on the fat of the
land.

There is this much, however, to be said for him, that when he does
mortify himself for the good of the community, he does it to some
purpose. A lenten fast, or a penance of parched peas in his shoes, would
be a mere bagatelle to him. We have seen a faquir who was never "known"
to eat at all. He carried a small black stone about with him, which had
been presented to his mother by a holy man. He pretended that by sucking
this stone, and without the aid of any sort of nutriment, he had arrived
at the mature age of forty; yet he had a nest of supplementary chins,
and a protuberant paunch, which certainly did great credit to the
fattening powers of the black stone. Oddly enough, his business was to
collect eatables and drinkables; but, like the Scottish gentleman who
was continually begging brimstone, they were "no for hissel, but for a
neebor." When I saw him he was soliciting offerings of rice, milk, fish,
and ghee, for the benefit of his patron Devi. These offerings were
nightly laid upon the altar before the Devi, who was supposed to
_absorb_ them during the night, considerately leaving the fragments to
be distributed among the poor of the parish. His godship was very
discriminating in the goodness and freshness of these offerings; for he
rejected such as were stale, to be returned next morning, with his
maledictions, to the fraudulent donors.

Sometimes a faquir will take it into his head that the community will be
benefited by his trundling himself along, like a cart-wheel, for a
couple of hundred miles or so. He ties his wrists to his ankles, gets a
_tire_, composed of chopped straw, mud, and cow-dung, laid along the
ridge of his backbone; a bamboo-staff passed through the angle formed by
his knees and his elbows, by way of an axle, and off he goes; a brazen
cup, with a bag, and a _hubble-bubble_, hang like tassels at the two
extremities of the axle. Thus accoutred, he often starts on a journey
which will occupy him for several years, like Milton's fiend,

          "O'er bog, or steep, through straight, rough, dense, or rare,
          With head, hands, feet, or wings, pursues his way."

On arriving in the vicinity of a village, the whole population turn out
to meet and escort him with due honors to the public well or tank; the
men beating drums, and the women singing through their noses. Here his
holiness unbends, washes off the dust and dirt acquired by perambulating
several miles of dusty road; and, after partaking of a slight
refreshment, enters into conversation with the assembled villagers just
as if he were an ordinary mortal; making very particular inquiries
concerning the state of their larders, and slight investigations as to
their morals. Of course every one is anxious to have the honor of
entertaining a man so holy as to roll to their presence doubled up into
a hoop; and disputes get warm as to who is to have the preference.
Whereupon the faquir makes a speech, in which he returns thanks for the
attentions shown him and intimates that he intends taking up his
quarters with the man who is most capable of testifying his appreciation
of the honor. After some higgling, he knocks himself down, a decided
bargain, to be the guest of the highest bidder, in whose house he
remains, giving good advice to the community, and diffusing an odor of
sanctity throughout the whole village. When the supplies begin to fail,
he ties his hands to his heels again, gets a fresh tire put on, and is
escorted out of the village with the same formalities as accompanied his
entrance.

Like other vermin of his class, he is most apt to attach himself to the
"weaker vessels" of humanity, with whom he is generally a prodigious
favorite. He is not, certainly, indebted to his personal advantages for
this favor, for a more hideously ugly race of men is seldom met with. As
if nature had not made him sufficiently repulsive, he heightens his
hideousness by encircling his eyes with bands of white paint; daubing
his cheeks a rich mustard yellow: a white streak runs along the ridge of
his nose, and another forms a circle round his mouth: his ribs are
indicated by corresponding bars of white paint, which give a highly
venerable cross-bones effect to his breast. When I add, that he wears no
clothes, and that the use of soap is no part of his religion, some idea
may be gained of the effect the first view of him occasions in the mind
of a European.

On the afternoon of a very sultry day in June, I had got a table out in
the veranda of my bungalow, and was amusing myself with a galvanic
apparatus, giving such of my servants as had the courage, a taste of
what they called _Wulatee boiujee_ (English lightning), when a long
gaunt figure, with his hair hanging in disordered masses over his face,
was observed to cross the lawn. On arriving within a few paces of where
I stood, he drew himself up in an imposing attitude--one of his arms
akimbo, while the other held out toward me what appeared to be a pair of
tongs, with a brass dish at the extremity of it.

"Who are you?" I called out.

"Faquir," was the guttural response.

"What do you want?"

"Bheek" (alms).

"Bheek!" I exclaimed, "surely you are joking--a great stout fellow like
you can't be wanting bheek?"

The faquir paid not the slightest attention, but continued holding out
his tongs with the dish at the end of it.

"You had better be off," I said; "I never give bheek to people who are
able to work."

"We do Khooda's work," replied the faquir, with a swagger.

"Oh! you do--then," I answered, "you had better ask Khooda for bheek."
So saying, I turned to the table, and began arranging the apparatus for
making some experiments. Happening to look up about five minutes after,
I observed that the faquir was standing upon one leg, and struggling to
assume as much majesty as was consistent with his equilibrium. The
tongs and dish were still extended--while his left hand sustained his
right foot across his abdomen. I turned to the table, and tried to go on
with my work; but I blundered awfully, broke a glass jar, cut my
fingers, and made a mess on the table. I had a consciousness of the
faquir's staring at me with his extended dish, and could not get the
fellow out of my head. I looked up at him again. There he was as grand
as ever, on his one leg, and with his eyes riveted on mine. He continued
this performance for nearly an hour, yet there did not seem to be the
faintest indication of his unfolding himself--rather a picturesque
ornament to the lawn, if he should take it into his head--as these
fellows sometimes do--to remain in the same position for a twelvemonth.
"If," I said, "you stand there much longer, I'll give you such a taste
of boinjee (lightning) as will soon make you glad to go."

The only answer to this threat was a smile of derision that sent his
mustache bristling up against his nose.

"Lightning!" he sneered--"your lightning can't touch a faquir--the gods
take care of him."

Without more ado, I charged the battery and connected it with a coil
machine, which, as those who have tried it are aware, is capable of
racking the nerves in such a way as few people care to try, and which
none are capable of voluntarily enduring beyond a few seconds.

The faquir seemed rather amused at the queer-looking implements on the
table, but otherwise maintained a look of lofty stoicism; nor did he
seem in any way alarmed when I approached with the conductors.

Some of my servants who had already experienced the process, now came
clustering about with looks of ill-suppressed merriment, to witness the
faquir's ordeal. I fastened one wire to his still extended tongs, and
the other to the foot on the ground.

As the coil machine was not yet in action, beyond disconcerting him a
little, the attachment of the wires did not otherwise affect him. But
when I pushed the magnet into the coil, and gave him the full strength
of the battery, he howled like a demon; the tongs--to which his hand was
now fastened by a force beyond his will--quivered in his unwilling grasp
as if it were burning the flesh from his bones. He threw himself on the
ground, yelling and gnashing his teeth, the tongs clanging an irregular
accompaniment. Never was human pride so abruptly cast down. He was
rolling about in such a frantic way that I began to fear he would do
himself mischief; and, thinking he had now had as much as was good for
him, I stopped the machine and released him.

For some minutes he lay quivering on the ground, as if not quite sure
that the horrible spell was broken; then gathering himself up, he flung
the tongs from him, bounded across the lawn, and over the fence like an
antelope. When he had got to what he reckoned cursing distance, he
turned round, shook his fists at me, and fell to work--pouring out a
torrent of imprecations--shouting, screeching, and tossing his arms
about in a manner fearful to behold.

There is this peculiarity in the abuse of an Oriental, that, beyond
wishing the object of it a liberal endowment of blisters, boils, and
ulcers (no inefficient curses in a hot country), he does not otherwise
allude to him personally; but directs the main burden of his wrath
against his female relatives--from his grandmother to his
grand-daughter--wives, daughters, sisters, aunts, and grand-aunts
inclusive. These he imprecates individually and collectively through
every clause of a prescribed formulary, which has been handed down by
his ancestors, and which, in searchingness of detail, and
comprehensiveness of malediction, leaves small scope to additions or
improvements.

Leaving me, then, to rot and wither from the face of the earth, and
consigning all my female kindred to utter and inevitable death and
destruction, he walked off to a neighboring village to give vent to his
feelings and compose his ruffled dignity.

It so happened, that a short time after the faquir had gone, I
incautiously held my head, while watching the result of some
experiments, over a dish of fuming acid, and consequently became so ill
as to be obliged to retire to my bedroom and lie down. In about an hour,
I called to my bearer to fetch me a glass of water; but, although I
heard him and some of the other servants whispering together behind the
purda, or door-curtain, no attention was paid to my summons. After
repeating the call two or three times with the same result, I got up to
see what was the matter. On drawing aside the purda, I beheld the whole
establishment seated in full conclave on their haunches round the door.
On seeing me, they all got up and took to their heels, like a covey of
frightened partridges. The old kidmudgar was too fat to run far; so I
seized him just as he was making his exit by a gap in the garden fence.
He was, at first, quite incapable of giving any account of himself; so I
made him sit a minute among the long grass to recover his wind, when he
broke out with, "Oh! _re-bab-re-bab_!" and began to blubber, as only a
fat kidmudgar can, imploring me to send instantly for the faquir, and
make him a present; if I did not, I would certainly be a dead man before
to-morrow's sun; "For," said he, "a faquir's curse is good as
_kismut-ke-bat_" (a matter of fate). Some of his fellows now seeing that
the murder was out, ventured to come back, and joined in requesting me
to save my life while there was yet time.

A laugh was the only answer I could make. This somewhat reassured them,
but it was easy to see that I was regarded by all as a doomed man. It
was to no purpose that I told them I was now quite well, and endeavored
to explain the cause of my sickness. They would have it that I was in a
dying state, and that my only salvation lay in sending off a messenger
with a kid and a bag of rupees to the faquir. The durdzee (tailor), who
had just come from the village where the faquir had taken refuge, told
me, that as soon as the faquir heard that I was ill, he performed a _pas
seul_ of a most impressive character, shouting and threatening to curse
every body in the village as he had cursed me and mine. The consequence
was that pice, cowries, rice, and ghee were showered upon him with
overwhelming liberality.

Without saying a word, I armed myself with a horsewhip, set out for the
village, and found the faquir surrounded by a dense crowd of men and
women; to whom he was jabbering with tremendous volubility; telling them
how he had withered me up root and branch, and expressing a hope that I
would serve as a lesson to the other children of Sheitan who ventured to
take liberties with a faquir. The crowd hid me from him till I broke in
upon his dreams with a slight taste of my whip across his shoulders. His
eyes nearly leaped out of their sockets when he turned round and saw me.
Another intimation from my thong sent him off with a yell, leaving the
rich spoil he had collected from the simple villagers behind. What
became of him I can not tell. I heard no more of him.

A few such adventures as these would tend to lessen the gross, and, to
them, expensive superstitions under which the natives of India at
present labor.



           LOVE AND SMUGGLING.--A STORY OF THE ENGLISH COAST.


My name is Warneford--at least it is not very unlike that--and I was
born at Itchen, a village distant in those days about a mile and a half,
by land and ferry, from Southampton. How much nearer the, as I hear and
read, rapidly-increasing town has since approached I can not say, as it
will be twenty-nine years next July since I finally quitted the
neighborhood. The village, at that time, chiefly inhabited by ferry and
fishermen, crept in a straggling sort of way up a declivity from the
margin of the Itchen river, which there reaches and joins the
Southampton estuary, till it arrives at Pear-Tree Green, an eminence
commanding one of the finest and most varied land-and-water views the
eye of man has, I think, ever rested upon. My father, a retired
lieutenant of the royal navy, was not a native of the place, as his name
alone would sufficiently indicate to a person acquainted with the then
Itchen people--almost every one of whom was either a Dible or a
Diaper--but he had been many years settled there, and Pear-Tree
church-yard contained the dust of his wife and five children--I and my
sister Jane, who was a year older than myself, being all of his numerous
family who survived their childhood. We were in fair circumstances, as
my father, in addition to his half-pay, possessed an income of something
above a hundred pounds a year. Jane and I were carefully, though of
course not highly or expensively educated; and as soon as I had attained
the warrior-age of fifteen, I was dispatched to sea to fight my
country's battles--Sir Joseph Yorke having, at my father's request,
kindly obtained a midshipman's warrant for me; and not many weeks after
joining the ship to which I was appointed, I found myself, to my great
astonishment, doubling the French line at the Nile--an exploit which I
have since read of with far more satisfaction than I remember to have
experienced during its performance.

Four years passed before I had an opportunity of revisiting home; and it
was with a beating as well as joyful heart, and light, elastic step,
that I set off to walk the distance from Gosport to Itchen. I need
hardly say that I was welcomed by Jane with tears of love and happiness.
It was not long, however, before certain circumstances occurred which
induced my worthy but peremptory father to cut my leave of absence
suddenly and unmercifully short. I have before noticed that the
aborigines of my native place were for the most part Dibles or Diapers.
Well, it happened that among the former was one Ellen Dible, the
daughter of a fisherman somewhat more prosperous than many of his
fellows. This young lady was a slim, active, blue-eyed, bright-haired
gipsy, about two years younger than myself, but somewhat tall and
womanly for her age, of a light, charming figure, and rather genteel
manners; which latter quality, by-the-by, must have come by nature, for
but little education of any kind had fallen to her share. She was, it
may be supposed, the _belle_ of the place, and very numerous were her
rustic admirers; but they all vanished in a twinkling, awestruck by my
uniform, and especially by the dangling dirk which I occasionally
handled in a very alarming manner; and I, sentimental moon-calf that I
was, fell, as it is termed, deeply and earnestly in love with the
village beauty! It must have been her personal graces alone--her
conversation it could not be--which thus entangled me; for she seldom
spoke, and then in reply only, and in monosyllables; but she listened
divinely, and as we strolled in the evening through the fields and woods
between Itchen and Netley Abbey, gazed with such enchanting eloquence in
my face, as I poured forth the popular love and nonsense poetry of the
time, that it is very possible I might have been sooner or later
entrapped into a ruinous marriage--not by her, poor girl! she was, I am
sure, as guileless as infancy, but by her parents, who were scheming,
artful people--had not my father discovered what was going on, and in
his rough way dispelled my silly day-dreams at once and forever.

The church-yard at the summit of Pear-Tree Green, it used to be commonly
said, was that in which Gray composed his famous "Elegy," or at all
events which partially inspired it. I know not if this be correct; but I
remember thinking, as I sat one fine September evening by the side of
Ellen Dible upon the flat wooden railing which then inclosed it, that
the tradition had great likelihood. The broad and tranquil waters of the
Southampton and Itchen rivers--bounded in the far distance by the New
Forest, with its wavy masses of varying light and shade, and on the
left by the leafy woods, from out of which I often think the gray ruins
of the old abbey must in these days look grimly and spectre-like forth
upon the teeming, restless life which mocks its hoary solitude--were at
the full of a spring tide. It was just, too, the hour of "parting day;"
and as the sun-tipped spires of the Southampton churches faded gradually
into indistinctness, and the earlier stars looked out, the curfew,
mellowed by distance into music, came to us upon the light air which
gently stirred fair Ellen's glossy ringlets, as she, with her bonnet in
her hand--for our walk had tired her--looked with her dove-innocent,
transparent eyes in mine, while I repeated Gray's melodious lines. The
Elegy was concluded, and I was rapturizing even more vehemently than was
my wont, when, whack! I received a blow on my shoulder, which sent us
both off the rail; for Ellen held me by the arm, and it was quite as
much as I could do to keep my feet when I reached them. I turned
fiercely round, only to encounter the angry and sardonic countenance of
my father. "I'll have no more of this nonsense, Bob," he gruffly
exclaimed. "Be off home with you, and to-morrow I'll see you safe on
board your ship, depend upon it. As for this pretty minx," he continued,
addressing Ellen, who so trembled with confusion and dismay that she
could scarcely tie her bonnet-strings, "I should think she would be
better employed in mending her father's shirts, or darning her brother's
stockings, than in gossiping her time away with a brainless young lubber
like you." I was, of course, awfully incensed, but present resistance, I
knew, was useless; and after contriving to exchange a mute gesture with
Ellen of eternal love, constancy, and despair, we took our several ways
homeward. Before twelve o'clock the next day I was posting to Gosport,
accompanied by my father, but not till after I had obtained, through the
agency of my soft-hearted sister, a farewell interview with Ellen, when
we of course made fervent vows of mutual fidelity--affirmed and
consecrated, at Ellen's suggestion, by the mystical ceremony of breaking
a crooked sixpence in halves--a moiety to be worn by each of us about
our necks, as an eternal memorial and pendant protest against the flinty
hearts of fathers.

This boyish fancy faded but slowly and lingeringly away with the busy
and tumultuous years which passed over my head, till the peace of 1815
cast me an almost useless sea-waif upon the land, to take root and
vegetate there as I best might upon a lieutenant's half-pay. My father
had died about two years before, and the hundred a year he left us was
scarcely more than sufficient for the support of my sister, whose
chances of an eligible marriage had vanished with her comeliness, which
a virulent attack of small-pox had utterly destroyed, though it had in
nothing changed the patient sweetness of her disposition, and the gentle
loving spirit that shone through all its disfiguring scars and seams. I
had never heard directly from Ellen Dible, although, during the first
months of separation, I had written to her many times; the reason of
which was partially explained by a few lines in one of Jane's letters,
announcing Ellen Dible's marriage--it seemed under some kind of moral
compulsion--to a person of their own grade, and their removal from
Itchen. This happened about six months after my last interview with her.
I made no further inquiries, and, Jane thinking the subject might be a
painful one, it happened that, by a kind of tacit understanding, it was
never afterward alluded to between us.

The utter weariness of an idle shore life soon became insupportable, and
I determined to solicit the good offices of Sir Joseph Yorke with the
Admiralty. The gallant admiral had now taken up his permanent residence
near Hamble, a village on the river of that name, which issues into the
Southampton water not very far from opposite Calshot Castle. Sir Joseph
was drowned there about eight or nine years after I left the station. A
more perfect gentleman, let me pause a moment to say, or a better
seaman, than Sir Joseph, never, I believe, existed; and of a handsome,
commanding presence too--"half-way up a hatchway" at least, to use his
own humorous self-description, his legs scarcely corresponding in
vigorous outline to the rest of his person. He received me with his
usual frank urbanity, and I left him provided with a letter to the
secretary of the admiralty--the ultimate and not long-delayed result of
which was my appointment to the command of the _Rose_ revenue-cutter,
the duties attached to which consisted in carefully watching, in the
interest of His Majesty's customs, the shores of the Southampton river,
the Solent sea, the Wight, and other contiguous portions of the seaboard
of Hants and Dorset.

The ways of smugglers were of course new to me; but we had several
experienced hands on board, and as I zealously applied myself to the
study of the art of contraband, I was not long in acquiring a competent
knowledge of the traditional contrivances employed to defraud the
revenue. Little of interest occurred during the first three or four
weeks of my novel command, except that by the sharpened vigilance of our
look-out, certain circumstances came to light, strongly indicating that
Barnaby Diaper, the owner of a cutter-rigged fishing-vessel of rather
large burden, living near Hamble Creek, was extensively engaged in the
then profitable practice of running moonshine, demurely and
industriously as, when ashore, he appeared to be ever-lastingly mending
his nets, or cobbling the bottom of the smack's boat. He was a hale,
wiry fellow this Barnaby--Old Barnaby, as he was familiarly called,
surnames in those localities being seldom used--with a wooden stolidity
of countenance which utterly defied scrutiny, if it did not silence
suspicion. His son, who was a partner in the cutter, lived at Weston, a
beautifully-situated hamlet between Itchen and Netley. A vigilant watch
was consequently kept upon the movements of the Barnabys, father, son,
and grandson--this last a smart, precocious youngster, I understood, of
about sixteen years of age, by which family trio the suspicious
_Blue-eyed Maid_ was, with occasional assistance, manned, sailed, and
worked. Very rarely, indeed, was the _Blue-eyed Maid_ observed to be
engaged in her ostensible occupation. She would suddenly disappear, and
as suddenly return, and always, we soon came to notice, on the nights
when the _Rose_ happened to be absent from the Southampton waters.

We had missed her for upward of a week, when information reached us that
a large lugger we had chased without success a few nights previously
would attempt to run a cargo at a spot not far from Lymington, soon
after midnight. I accordingly, as soon as darkness had fallen, ran down,
and stood off and on, within signal-distance of the shore-men with whom
I had communicated, till dawn, in vain expectation of the promised
prize. I strongly suspected that we had been deceived; and on rounding
Calshot Castle on our return, I had no doubt of it, for there, sure
enough, was the _Blue-eyed Maid_ riding lightly at anchor off Hamble
Creek, and from her slight draught of water it was quite evident that
her cargo, whatever it might have consisted of, had been landed, or
otherwise disposed of. They had been smart with their work, for the
summer night and our absence had lasted but a few hours only. I boarded
her, and found Old Barnaby, whom I knew by sight, and his two
descendants, whom I had not before seen, busily engaged swabbing the
cutter's deck, and getting matters generally into order and ship-shape.
The son a good deal resembled the old man, except that his features wore
a much more intelligent and good-humored expression; and the boy was an
active, bold-eyed, curly-headed youngster, whose countenance, but for a
provoking sauciness of expression apparently habitual to him, would have
been quite handsome. I thought I had seen his face somewhere before, and
he, I noticed, suddenly stopped from his work on hearing my name, and
looked at me with a smiling but earnest curiosity. The morning's work
had, I saw, been thoroughly performed, and as I was in no humor for a
profitless game of cross questions and crooked answers, I, after
exchanging one or two colloquial courtesies, in which I had by no means
the advantage, returned to the _Rose_ more than ever satisfied that the
interesting family I had left required and would probably repay the
closest watchfulness and care.

On the evening of the same day the _Blue-eyed Maid_ again vanished: a
fortnight slipped by, and she had not re-appeared; when the _Rose_,
having slightly grazed her bottom in going over the shifting shingle at
the northwest of the Wight, went into Portsmouth harbor to be examined.
Some of her copper was found to be stripped off; there were other
trifling damages; and two or three days would elapse before she could be
got ready for service. This interval I spent with my sister. The evening
after I arrived at Itchen, Jane and I visited Southampton, and
accompanied an ancient female acquaintance residing in Bugle-street--a
dull, grass-grown place in those days, whatever it may be now--to the
theatre in, I believe, the same street. The performances were not over
till near twelve o'clock, and after escorting the ladies home, I wended
my way toward the Sun Inn on the quay, where I was to sleep--my sister
remaining for the night with our friend. The weather, which had been
dark and squally an hour or two before, was now remarkably fine and
calm; and the porter of the inn telling me they should not close the
house for some time longer, I strolled toward the Platform Battery,
mounted by a single piece of brass ordnance overlooking the river, and
pointing menacingly toward the village of Hythe. The tide was at the
full, and a faint breeze slightly rippled the magnificent expanse of
water which glanced and sparkled in the bright moon and starlight of a
cloudless autumn sky. My attention was not long absorbed by the beauty
of the scene, peerless as I deemed it; for unless my eyes strangely
deceived me, the _Blue-eyed Maid_ had returned, and quietly anchored off
Weston. She appeared to have but just brought up; for the mainsail,
three new patches in which chiefly enabled me to recognize her, was
still flapping in the wind, and it appeared to me--though from the
distance, and the shadow of the dark back-ground of woods in which she
lay, it was difficult to speak with certainty--that she was deeply
laden. There was not a moment to be lost; and fortunately, just in the
nick of time, a boat with two watermen approached the platform steps. I
tendered them a guinea to put me on board the smack off Weston--an offer
which they eagerly accepted; and I was soon speeding over the waters to
her. My uniform must have apprised the Barnabys of the nature of the
visit about to be paid them; for when we were within about a quarter of
a mile of their vessel, two figures, which I easily recognized to be Old
Barnaby and his grandson, jumped into a boat that had been loading
alongside, and rowed desperately for the shore, but at a point
considerably further up the river, toward Itchen. There appeared to be
no one left on board the _Blue-eyed Maid_, and the shore-confederates of
the smugglers did not show themselves, conjecturing, doubtless, as I had
calculated they would, upon my having plenty of help within signal call.
I therefore determined to capture the boat first, and return with her to
the cutter. The watermen, excited by the chase, pulled with a will; and
in about ten minutes we ran alongside the Barnaby's boat, jumped in, and
found her loaded to the gunwale with brandy kegs.

"Fairly caught at last, old fellow!" I exclaimed exultingly, in reply to
the maledictions he showered on us. "And now pull the boat's head round,
and make for the _Blue-eyed Maid_, or I'll run you through the body."

"Pull her head round yourself," he sullenly rejoined, as he rose from
the thwart and unshipped his oar. "It's bad enough to be robbed of
one's hard arnings athout helping the thieves to do it."

His refusal was of no consequence: the watermen's light skiff was made
fast astern, and in a few minutes we were pulling steadily toward the
still motionless cutter. Old Barnaby was fumbling among the tubs in
search, as he growled out, of his pea-jacket; his hopeful grandson was
seated at the stern whistling the then popular air of the "Woodpecker"
with great energy and perfect coolness; and I was standing with my back
toward them in the bow of the boat, when the stroke-oarsman suddenly
exclaimed: "What are you at with the boat's painter, you young devil's
cub?" The quick mocking laugh of the boy, and the words, "Now, grandfer,
now!" replied to him. Old Barnaby sprang into the boat which the lad had
brought close up to the stern, pushing her off as he did so with all his
strength; and then the boy, holding the painter or boat-rope, which he
had detached from the ring it had been fastened to, in his hand, jumped
over the side; in another instant he was hauled out of the water by Old
Barnaby, and both were seated and pulling lustily, and with exulting
shouts, round in the direction of the _Blue-eyed Maid_, before we had
recovered from the surprise which the suddenness and completeness of the
trick we had been played excited. We were, however, very speedily in
vigorous chase; and as the wind, though favorable, and evidently rising,
was still light, we had little doubt of success, especially as some
precious minutes must be lost to the smuggler in getting under weigh,
neither jib nor foresail being as yet set. The watermen bent fiercely to
their oars; and heavily laden as the boat was, we were beginning to slip
freely through the water, when an exclamation from one of the men
announced another and more perilous trick that the Barnabys had played
us. Old Barnaby, in pretending to fumble about for his jacket, had
contrived to unship a large plug expressly contrived for the purpose of
sinking the boat whenever the exigences of their vocation might render
such an operation advisable; and the water was coming in like a sluice.
There was no help for it, and the boat's head was immediately turned
toward the shore. Another vociferous shout rang in our ears as the full
success of their scheme was observed by the Barnabys, replied to of
course by the furious but impotent execrations of the watermen. The boat
sank rapidly; and we were still about a hundred yards from the shore
when we found ourselves splashing about in the water, which fortunately
was not more than up to the armpits of the shortest of us, but so full
of strong and tangled seaweed, that swimming was out of the question;
and we had to wade slowly and painfully through it, a step on a spot of
more than usually soft mud plumping us down every now and then over head
and ears. After reaching the shore and shaking ourselves, we found
leisure to look in the direction of the _Blue-eyed Maid_, and had the
exquisite pleasure of seeing her glide gracefully through the water as
she stood down the river, impelled by the fast-freshening breeze, and
towing the watermen's boat securely at her stern.

There were no means of pursuit; and after indulging in sundry energetic
vocables hardly worth repeating, we retreated in savage discomfiture
toward Weston, plentifully sprinkling the grass and gravel as we slowly
passed along; knocked up the landlord of a public house, and turning in
as soon as possible, happily exchanged our dripping attire for warm
blankets and clean sheets, beneath the soothing influence of which I,
for one, was soon sound asleep.

Day had hardly dawned when we were all three up, and overhauling the mud
and weeds--the tide was quite gone out--for the captured boat and tubs.
They had vanished utterly: the fairies about Weston had spirited them
away while we slept, leaving no vestige whatever of the spoil to which
we had naturally looked as some trifling compensation for the night's
mishap, and the loss of the watermen's boat, to say nothing of the
sousing we had got. It was a bad business certainly, and my promise to
provide my helpmates with another boat, should their own not be
recovered, soothed but very slightly their sadly-ruffled tempers. But
lamentations were useless, and, after the lugubrious expression of a
dismal hope for better luck next time, we separated.

This pleasant incident did not in the least abate my anxiety to get once
more within hailing distance of the Barnabys; but for a long time my
efforts were entirely fruitless, and I had begun to think that the
_Blue-eyed Maid_ had been permanently transferred to another and less
vigilantly watched station, when a slight inkling of intelligence
dispelled that fear. My plan was soon formed. I caused it to be
carelessly given out on shore that the _Rose_ had sprung her bowsprit in
the gale a day or two before, and was going the next afternoon into
Portsmouth to get another. In pursuance of this intention, the _Rose_
soon after noon slipped her moorings, and sailed for that port; remained
quietly there till about nine o'clock in the evening, and then came out
under close-reefed storm canvas, for it was blowing great guns from the
northward, and steered for the Southampton river. The night was as black
as pitch; and but for the continuous and vivid flashes of lightning, no
object more than a hundred yards distant from the vessel could have been
discerned. We ran up abeam of Hythe without perceiving the object of our
search, then tacked, stood across to the other side, and then retraced
our course. We were within a short distance of Hamble River, when a
prolonged flash threw a ghastly light upon the raging waters, and
plainly revealed the _Blue-eyed Maid_, lying-to under the lee of the
north shore, and it may be about half a mile ahead of us. Unfortunately
she saw us at the same moment, and as soon as way could be got upon her
she luffed sharply up, and a minute afterward was flying through the
water in the hope of yet escaping her unexpected enemy. By edging away
to leeward I contrived to cut her off effectually from running into the
channel by the Needles passage; but nothing daunted, she held boldly on
without attempting to reduce an inch of canvas, although, from the press
she carried, fairly buried in the sea. Right in the course she was
steering, the _Donegal_, a huge eighty-gun ship, was riding at anchor
off Spithead. Old Barnaby, who, I could discern by his streaming white
hairs, was at the helm, in his anxiety to keep as well to windward of us
as possible, determined, I suppose, to pass as closely as he prudently
could under the stern of the line-of-battle ship. Unfortunately, just as
the little cutter was in the act of doing so, a furious blast of wind
tore away her jib as if it had been cobweb; and, pressed by her large
mainsail, the slight vessel flew up into the wind, meeting the _Donegal_
as the huge ship drove back from a strain which had brought her half way
to her anchors. The crash was decisive, and caused the instant
disappearance of the unfortunate smuggler. The cry of the drowning men,
if they had time to utter one, was lost amid the raging of the tempest;
and although we threw overboard every loose spar we could lay hands on,
it was with scarcely the slightest hope that such aid could avail them
in that wild sea. I tacked as speedily as possible, and repassed the
spot; but the white foam of the waves, as they leaped and dashed about
the leviathan bulk of the _Donegal_, was all that could be perceived,
eagerly as we peered over the surface of the angry waters. The _Rose_
then stood on, and a little more than an hour afterward was safely
anchored off Hythe.

The boy Barnaby, I was glad to hear a day or two afterward, had not
accompanied his father and grandfather in the last trip made by the
_Blue-eyed Maid_, and had consequently escaped the fate which had so
suddenly overtaken them, and for which it appeared that the smuggling
community held me morally accountable. This was to be expected; but I
had too often and too lately been familiar with death at sea in every
shape, by the rage of man as well as that of the elements, to be more
than slightly and temporarily affected by such an incident; so that all
remembrance of it would probably have soon passed away but for an
occurrence which took place about a month subsequently. One of the
officers of the shore-force received information that two large luggers,
laden with brandy and tobacco from Guernsey, were expected the following
night on some point of the coast between Hamble and Weston; and that as
the cargoes were very valuable, a desperate resistance to the
coast-guard, in the event of detection, had been organized. Our plan was
soon arranged. The _Rose_ was sent away with barely enough men to handle
her, and with the remainder of the crew, I, as soon as night fell, took
up a position a little above Netley Abbey. Two other detachments of the
coast-guard were posted along the shore at intervals of about a mile,
all of course connected by signal-men not more than a hundred yards
apart. There was a faint starlight, but the moon would not rise till
near midnight; and from this circumstance, as well as from the state of
the tides, we could pretty well calculate when to expect our friends,
should they come at all. It was not long before we were quite satisfied,
from the stealthy movements of a number of persons about the spot, that
the information we had received was correct. Just after eleven o'clock a
low, peculiar whistle, taken up from distance to distance, was heard;
and by placing our ears to the ground, the quick jerk of oars in the
rullocks was quite apparent. After about five minutes of eager
restlessness, I gave the impatiently-expected order; we all emerged from
our places of concealment, and with cautious but rapid steps advanced
upon the by this time busy smugglers. The two luggers were beached upon
the soft sand or mud, and between forty and fifty men were each
receiving two three-gallon kegs, with which they speeded off to the
carts in waiting at a little distance. There were also about twenty
fellows ranged as a guard, all armed as efficiently as ourselves. I gave
the word; but before we could close with the astonished desperadoes,
they fired a pistol volley, by which one seaman, John Batley, a fine,
athletic young man, was killed, and two others seriously wounded. This
done, the scoundrels fled in all directions, hotly pursued, of course. I
was getting near one of them, when a lad, who was running by his side,
suddenly turned, and raising a pistol, discharged it at my head. He
fortunately missed his mark, though the whistle of the bullet was
unpleasantly close. I closed with and caught the young rascal, who
struggled desperately, and to my extreme surprise, I had almost written
dismay, discovered that he was young Barnaby! It was not a time for
words, and hastily consigning the boy to the custody of the nearest
seaman, with a brief order to take care of him, I resumed the pursuit. A
bootless one it proved. Favored by their numbers, their perfect
acquaintance with the hedge-and-ditch neighborhood, the contrabandists
all contrived to escape. The carts also got off, and our only captures
were the boy, the luggers, which there had been no time to get off, and
their cargoes, with the exception of the few kegs that had reached the
carts.

The hunt after the dispersed smugglers was continued by the different
parties who came in subsequently to our brush with them, so that after
the two wounded seamen had been carried off on litters, and a sufficient
guard left in the captured boats, only two men remained with me. The
body of John Batley was deposited for the present in one of the luggers,
and then the two sailors and myself moved forward to Itchen with the
prisoner, where I intended to place him in custody for the night.

The face of the lad was deadly pale, and I noticed that he had been
painfully affected by the sight of the corpse; but when I addressed him,
his expressive features assumed a scornful, defying expression. First
ordering the two men to drop astern out of hearing, I said: "You will be
hanged for your share in this night's work, young man, depend upon it."

"Hanged!" he exclaimed in a quick, nervous tone; "hanged! You say that
to frighten me! It was not I who shot the man! You know that; or
perhaps," he added with a kind of hysterical cry, "perhaps you want to
kill me as you did father."

"I have no more inclination, my poor boy," I answered, "to injure you
than I had to harm your father. Why, indeed, should I have borne him any
ill-will?"

"Why should you? Oh, I know very well!"

"You know more than I do then; but enough of this folly. I wish, I
hardly know why, to save you. It was not you, I am quite aware, that
fired the fatal shot, but that makes no difference as to your legal
guilt. But I think if you could put us on the track of your associates,
you might yourself escape."

The lad's fine eyes perfectly lightened with scorn and indignation:
"Turn informer!" he exclaimed. "Betray them that loved and trusted me!
Never--if they could hang me a thousand times over!"

I made no answer, and nothing more was said till we had reached and were
passing the Abbey ruins. The boy then abruptly stopped, and with
quivering voice, while his eyes filled with tears, said: "I should like
to see my mother."

"See your mother! There can be no particular objection to that; but she
lives further on at Weston, does she not?"

"No, we have sold off, and moved to Aunt Diaper's, at Netley, up yonder.
In a day or two we should have started for Hull, where mother's father's
brother lives, and I was to have been 'prenticed to the captain of a
Greenlander; but now," he continued with an irrepressible outburst of
grief and terror, "Jack Ketch will, you say, be my master, and I shall
be only 'prenticed to the gallows."

"Why, if this be so, did your mother permit you to join the lawless
desperadoes to whom you owe your present unhappy and degraded position?"

"Mother did not know of it; she thinks I am gone to Southampton to
inquire about the day the vessel sails for Hull. Mother will die if I am
hanged!" exclaimed the lad with a renewed burst of passionate grief;
"and surely you would not kill _her_?"

"It is not very likely I should wish to do so, considering that I have
never seen her."

"Oh yes--yes, you have!" he sharply rejoined. "Then perhaps you do not
know! Untie or cut these cords," he added, approaching close to me and
speaking in a low, quick whisper; "give me a chance: mother's girl's
name was Ellen Dible!"

Had the lad's fettered arm been free, and he had suddenly dealt me a
blow with a knife or dagger, the stroke could not have been more sharp
or terrible than these words conveyed.

"God of mercy!" I exclaimed, as the momently-arrested blood again shot
through my heart with reactive violence, "can this be true?"

"Yes, yes--true, quite true!" continued the boy, with the same earnest
look and low, hurried speech. "I saw, when your waistcoat flew open in
the struggle just now, what was at the end of the black ribbon. You will
give me a chance for mother's sake, won't you?"

A storm of grief, regret, remorse, was sweeping through my brain, and I
could not for a while make any answer, though the lad's burning eyes
continued fixed with fevered anxiety upon my face.

At last I said--gasped rather: "I can not release you--it is impossible;
but all that can be done--all that can--can legally be done, shall be--"
The boy's countenance fell, and he was again deadly pale. "You shall see
your mother," I added. "Tell Johnson where to seek her; he is acquainted
with Netley." This was done, and the man walked briskly off upon his
errand.

"Come this way," I said, after a few minutes' reflection, and directing
my steps toward the old ruined fort by the shore, built, I suppose, as a
defense to the abbey against pirates. There was but one flight of steps
to the summit, and no mode of egress save by the entrance from whence
they led. "I will relieve you of these cords while your mother is with
you. Go up to the top of the fort. You will be unobserved, and we can
watch here against any foolish attempt at escape."

Ten minutes had not elapsed when the mother, accompanied by Johnson, and
sobbing convulsively, appeared. Roberts hailed her, and after a brief
explanation, she ascended the steps with tottering but hasty feet, to
embrace her son. A quarter of an hour, she had been told, would be
allowed for the interview.

The allotted time had passed, and I was getting impatient, when a cry
from the summit of the fort or tower, as if for help to some one at a
distance, roused and startled us. As we stepped out of the gateway, and
looked upward to ascertain the meaning of the sudden cry, the lad darted
out and sped off with surprising speed. One of the men instantly
snatched a pistol from his waist-belt, but at a gesture from me put it
back. "He can not escape," I said. "Follow me, but use no unnecessary
violence." Finding that we gained rapidly upon him, the lad darted
through a low, narrow gateway, into the interior of the abbey ruins,
trusting, I imagined, to baffle us in the darkness and intricacy of the
place. I just caught sight of him as he disappeared up a long flight of
crumbling, winding steps, from which he issued through a narrow aperture
upon a lofty wall, some five or six feet wide, and overgrown with grass
and weeds. I followed in terrible anxiety, for I feared that in his
desperation he would spring off and destroy himself. I shouted loudly to
him for God's sake to stop. He did so within a few feet of the end of
the wall. I ran quickly toward him, and as I neared him he fell on his
knees, threw away his hat, and revealed the face of--Ellen Dible!

I stopped, bewildered, dizzy, paralyzed. Doubtless the mellowing
radiance of the night softened or concealed the ravages which time must
have imprinted on her features; for as I gazed upon the spirit-beauty
of her upturned, beseeching countenance, the old time came back upon me
with a power and intensity which an hour before I could not have
believed possible. The men hailed repeatedly from below, but I was too
bewildered, too excited, to answer: their shouts, and the young mother's
supplicating sobs--she seemed scarcely older than when I parted from
her--sounded in my ears like the far-off cries and murmurs of a
bewildering, chaotic dream. She must have gathered hope and confidence
from the emotion I doubtless exhibited, for as soon as the confusion and
ringing in my brain had partially subsided, I could hear her say: "You
will save my boy--my only son: for my sake, you will save him?"

Another shout from the men below demanded if I had got the prisoner.
"Ay, ay," I mechanically replied, and they immediately hastened to join
us.

"Which way--which way is he gone?" I asked as the seamen approached.

She instinctively caught my meaning: "By the shore to Weston," she
hurriedly answered; "he will find a boat there."

The men now came up: "The chase has led us astray," I said: "look
there."

"His mother, by jingo!" cried Johnson. "They must have changed clothes!"

"Yes: the boy is off--to--to Hamble, I have no doubt. You both follow in
that direction: I'll pursue by the Weston and Itchen road."

The men started off to obey this order, and as they did so, I heard her
broken murmur of "Bless you, Robert--bless you!" I turned away, faint,
reeling with excitement, muttered a hasty farewell, and with disordered
steps and flaming pulse hurried homeward. The mother I never saw again:
the son at whose escape from justice I thus weakly, it may be
criminally, connived, I met a few years ago in London. He is the captain
of a first-class ship in the Australian trade, and a smarter sailor I
think I never beheld. His mother is still alive, and lives with her
daughter-in-law at Chelsea.



                       AMERICAN NOTABILITIES.[11]



                           PROFESSOR AGASSIZ.

This very distinguished man--one of the great contributors to the
world's stores of science and knowledge--is an extremely agreeable
member of society, and a very popular one. His manners are particularly
frank, pleasing, cordial, and simple; and though deeply absorbed, and
intensely interested in his laborious scientific researches, and a most
thorough enthusiast in his study of natural philosophy, yet he rattled
merrily away on many of the various light topics of the day with the
utmost gayety, good-humor, and spirit.

    [11] From Travels in the United States, etc. By Lady Emmeline
    Stuart Wortley. Just published by Harper and Brothers.

He has succeeded, after great trouble and persevering indefatigable
care, in preserving alive some coral insects, the first that have ever
been so preserved, and he kindly promised me an introduction to these
distinguished architects. We accordingly went, accompanied by Mr.
Everett, the following day. M. Agassiz was up-stairs very much occupied
by some scientific investigation of importance, and he could not come
down, but he allowed us to enter the all but hallowed precincts devoted
to the much-cherished coral insects.

M. Agassiz had been away a little while previously, and left these
treasures of his heart under the charge and superintendence of his
assistant. This poor care-worn attendant, we were told, almost lost his
own life in preserving the valuable existence of these little moving
threads, so much did he feel the weighty responsibility that devolved
upon him, and with such intense anxiety did he watch the complexions,
the contortions, all the twistings and twirlings, and twitchings, and
flingings and writhings of the wondrous little creatures, most
assiduously marking any indications of _petite santé_ among them. They
were kept in water carefully and frequently changed, and various
precautions were indispensably necessary to be taken in order to guard
their exquisitely delicate demi-semi existences.

Glad enough was the temporary gentleman-in-waiting, and squire-of-the-body
to these interesting zoophytes to see M. Agassiz return, and to resign his
charge into his hands. With him this exceeding care and watchfulness was
indeed nothing but a labor of love, and probably no nurse or mother ever
fondled a weakly infant with more devoted tenderness and anxious attention
than M. Agassiz displayed toward his dearly-beloved coral insects.

As to me, I hardly dared breathe while looking at them for fear I should
blow their precious lives away, or some catastrophe should happen while
we were there, and we should be suspected of _coralicide_! However, the
sight was most interesting. We watched them as they flung about what
seemed their fire-like white arms, like microscopic opera dancers or
windmills; but these apparent arms are, I believe, all they possess of
bodies. How wonderful to think of the mighty works that have been
performed by the fellow-insects of these little restless laborers. What
are the builders of the Pyramids to them? What did the writers of the
"Arabian Nights" imagine equal to their more magical achievements?

Will men ever keep coral insects by them to lay the foundations of a few
islands and continents when the population grows too large for the
earthy portion of earth? People keep silkworms to spin that beautiful
fabric for them; and M. Agassiz has shown there is no impracticability.
I looked at the large bowl containing the weird workers with unflagging
interest, till I could almost fancy minute reefs of rocks were rising up
in the basin.

What a world of marvels we live in, and alas that the splendid wonders
of science should be shut out from so many myriads of mankind; for that
the marvelous is inalienably dear to human nature, witness all the fairy
tales, ghost stories, and superstitions of all kinds that have abounded
and been popular from age to age. Penny Magazines and such works have
done much, but much there remains to be done to bring the subjects not
only within reach, but to make them more universally popular and
attractive, and less technical.

At last we took leave of those marine curiosities, and wended our way
back, sorry not to have seen M. Agassiz (who was still absorbed in
dissecting or pickling for immortality some extraordinary fish that he
had discovered), but delighted to have had the opportunity of seeing his
_protégés_.

"M. Agassiz ought indeed to have an extensive museum," said ----, "for I
believe every body in the States makes a point of sending off to him,
post haste, every imaginable reptile, and monster, and nondescript that
they happen to find." I should assuredly not like to have the opening of
his letters and parcels if that is the case.


                    MR. AND MRS. PRESCOTT AT NAHANT.

To-day we went and dined early with Mr. and Mrs. Prescott at Nahant,
where they are staying for the summer. They have a charming country
villa on the beautiful peninsula of Nahant. The town of Nahant is a very
pleasant watering-place, about twelve miles from Boston by water, and
sixteen by land. Near Mr. Prescott's house is a magnificent-looking
hotel with numerous piazzas; the sea-coast view from his villa is
boundless, and the perpetually high and dashing waves fling their
fantastic foam, without ceasing, against the wild jagged rocks, which
abound in every direction.

We started by railroad to go there, and very near us in the car was a
respectable looking negro. Mr. C. S----, who was in the same car with us
(also going to dine at Mr. Prescott's), pointed this man out to me, at
the same time saying, that this could not by possibility have happened
two years ago in this State, so strong then were the prejudices against
any approach to, or appearance of amalgamation with the black race. No
one could certainly appear more humble and quiet, less presuming or
forward in his new position, than did this colored individual.

On our way to Mr. Prescott's, we stopped to pay a visit to Mrs. Page,
the sister of Mrs. F. Webster. She has a very pretty little country
house at Nahant: she made many inquiries, with much kind feeling, after
those friends whom she remembers at Belvoir Castle, where she was
staying with Mr. and Mrs. Webster.

I have already mentioned that Mr. Prescott is one of the most agreeable
people I ever met with--as delightful as his own most delightful books:
he talks of going to Europe next year. He tells me he has never visited
either Mexico or Peru. I am surprised that the interest he must have
felt in his own matchless works did not impel him to go to both. Mrs.
Prescott is very delicate, with most gentle and pleasing manners. One of
the guests was a niece of Lord Lyndhurst, her mother being Lord
Lyndhurst's sister.

After a most interesting and agreeable visit, we returned by water to
Boston. The sea was blue as a plain of sparkling sapphire--quite
Mediterraneanic! Nahant is certainly a delightful place of summer
residence, though it wants shade; trees in general most positively
refuse to grow there, and there are but a few, which are taken as much
care of as if they were the most precious exotics; but Nahant and they
do not agree. They have quite a pouting sulky look; and it is almost as
sad to look at them as it is to see the _girdled_ trees, which look like
skeletons of malefactors bleaching in the wind. At dessert, at Mr.
Prescott's, there was a huge magnificent water-melon, that almost might
have taken the place of the Cochituate Pond, and supplied Boston with
the crystal element for a day.

In returning through the harbor of Boston from Nahant, we were full of
admiration of its scenery: the many lovely islands with which it is
beautifully studded, and the superb view of Boston itself, so nobly
surmounted by its crown-like State House, enchanted us.


          MR. AND MRS. J. GRINNELL.--NEW BEDFORD AND NAUSHON.

Since I wrote this, we have had a very agreeable little tour. We have
received, through Mrs. W----, a kind invitation from Mr. and Mrs. J.
Grinnell to visit them at New Bedford. That town is called "the City of
Palaces," from the beautiful buildings it contains: it is also the great
whaling metropolis of the North. It is about fifty-six miles from hence.

The Americans give their cities most poetical and significant
designations, and sometimes one town will have a variety of these. For
instance, this, I believe, is not only called the Granite City, but the
Trimountain City. Philadelphia is the city of Brotherly Love, or the
Iron City. Buffalo, the Queen City of the Lakes; New Haven, the City of
Elms, &c. I think the American imagination is more florid than ours. I
am afraid matter-of-fact John Bull, if he attempted such a fanciful
classification, would make sad work of it. Perhaps we should have
Birmingham, the City of Buttons or Warming-pans; Nottingham, the City of
Stockings; Sheffield, the City of Knives and Forks, and so forth.

Mr. and Mrs. Willis, and Mr. Willis's musical brother, were at Mr. and
Mrs. J. Grinnell's beautiful mansion. We paid a visit to an immense
whale-ship that is in the course of busy preparation for her voyage--to
the South Seas, I believe. The whale-fishery is very extensively carried
on at New Bedford. The population is about fifteen thousand, almost all
engaged directly or indirectly in this trade. There are about two
hundred and twenty-nine vessels engaged in the fishery, which is said to
be continually increasing.

The system on which they conduct their whaling operations, seems to be a
very judicious one. Every one of the crew has a share in the profits or
losses of the expedition; it becomes, therefore, his interest to do all
he possibly can to render the voyage a prosperous one. All are eager,
all on the look-out, all are quite sure to exert their energies to the
utmost, and perhaps this is one secret of the success that attends the
American whaling-ships.

Mrs. Grinnell had a little _conversazione_ the other evening, and among
the visitors was a beautiful young Quaker lady, a descendant of William
Penn. She was an extremely pleasing person, and her conversation was
very animated and interesting. Imagining that perhaps I had never been
in the society of Quakers before, she cleverly contrived to converse in
the most pleasant and delightful manner, without once bringing in either
"thee," or "thou," or "you," though she was talking to me almost all the
evening.

I remarked this omission, and was afterward certain of it when Mrs.
Willis told me the lady informed her of the fact before going away, and
gave her that reason for her delicate, scrupulous abstinence. She would
not say "_you_," in short; and "thee" and "thou" she thought would
appear strange to me. I was told her family are in possession of a
splendid silver tea-service which belonged to their celebrated ancestor,
William Penn.

We went from New Bedford to Martha's Vineyard, an island in the Atlantic
not far from New Bedford. There we staid a few days at an unpretending,
neat hotel, of small dimensions--not the chief hotel, where the
mistress, we found, was unaccommodating and disobliging--_a very rare
thing_ in America. On taking refuge at the other hotel, we found we had
reason to congratulate ourselves, for a more kind-hearted, attentive
person I never found than our new hostess. She, poor soul, was in
affliction at the time; for her son was about to go off to
California--indeed his departure took place for that distant region the
morning after our arrival.

What misery has this Californian emigration brought on thousands of
families--unknown, incalculable wretchedness! There was, as may be
supposed, a melancholy chorus of wailing and sobs when the dreaded
moment actually arrived; but her domestic sorrows did not make the
excellent mother of the family neglect her guests. Nothing was omitted
that could conduce to our comfort; and her daughter's attention and her
own were unremitting.

Her daughter was a smart intelligent lassie. One day, when she was in
the room, her mother hurried in to ask some question relative to dinner,
or something of the kind. She had previously been baking, and her hands,
and arms too, I believe, were white with flour. This very much annoyed
her neat, particular, and precise daughter, who kept dusting her
daintily, and trying to wipe it off, and drawing her mother's attention
to it with great pertinacity. At last the mother said she hadn't had
time to get rid of it--hoped the lady would excuse it, with other
apologies, and the daughter was a little pacified. One should hardly
have expected so much susceptibility in such matters in a little
out-of-the-way town on an island like Martha's Vineyard.

When we came away I felt it was quite a friend I was taking leave of,
though we had been there so short a time, so good and kind did we find
her. On the table in her little parlor, instead of the horrid novels so
commonly to be seen in America, were the "Penny Magazine," and other
works of that species.

From Martha's Vineyard we went to Woodsville, a quiet little village by
the sea. I had promised to pay a visit to Mrs. J. Grinnell, at the
residence of a friend of hers, situated on an island very near this
place (to which Mr. and Mrs. J. Grinnell had lately gone from New
Bedford). We were at a very nice little hotel, indeed, at Woodsville,
the master of which was a Mr. Webster, who had called one of his sons
Daniel, after the famous statesman, the pride of old Massachusetts.

At this hotel there was an admirable specimen of an American female
waiter and housemaid: in short, a domestic factotum. She was excessively
civil, obliging, active, and attentive, not in the slightest degree
forward or intrusive, always willing to do whatever one required of her.
Altogether a very prepossessing personage is Mademoiselle Caroline--not
the famous female equestrian of Paris, but the excellent and
accomplished waitress and chambermaid at Woodsville, whom I beg to
introduce to the reader, and to immortality. The mistress of the hotel
cooked for us herself, and she was quite a _cordon-bleu_, I assure you.
Her chicken pies and her puddings were of the sublimest description.

The morning was lovely, the sea sparkling with a myriad lustres, the air
of Ausonian clearness and purity, when we went to Naushon, an exquisite
little island (one of a cluster of the islands called the Elizabeth
Group). We started in a small boat manned by the two sons of our host,
and before very long we entered a little creek, and soon landed on the
beautiful shore of fairy-like Naushon. (This is of course its old Indian
name, and long may it retain it).

We found Mr. Grinnell kindly waiting to receive us and drive us to the
island palace of the proprietor of Naushon, for to Mr. S----, the whole
beauteous island belongs.--What an enviable possession! Though not given
to pilfering propensities, I should like to pick Mr. S----'s pocket of
this gem! We started in a somewhat sledge-like vehicle _à la flêche_ (as
our old Belgian courier Marcotte used to say), for the house, and soon
found ourselves seated in a large cool apartment with Mrs. Grinnell, and
the kindly, cordial Lord and Lady of the Isle, whose welcome had much of
unworldly heartiness about it. I longed to explore the beautiful island,
and when I did so, my anticipations were not disappointed.

Naushon is a little America in itself. There are miniatures of her wild,
illimitable, awful old forests--a beautiful little diamond edition of
her wonderful lakes, a fairy representation of her variety of scenery, a
page torn from her ancient Indian associations and remains. There too
are her customs, her manners, her spirit, and character; in short, it is
a little pocket America (and enough to make the chief superintendent of
any police himself a pick-pocket), a Liliputian Western World, a
compressed Columbia. But its trees are not Liliputian, they are
magnificent.

We drove under a varied shade for a long time, and saw lovely views
through openings in the woods. At last after tearing and crackling along
through a thick growth of timber and underwood, we emerged upon a truly
magnificent prospect. We were on a height, and on either side were
lovely woods, valleys, and gentle eminences; and in front the glorious
Atlantic. After enjoying this beauteous view for some time, the Lord of
Naushon took us to see a still, secluded part of the forest, where in
the midst of a sunny clearing, surrounded by partly overshadowing trees
in the heart of a sequestered island, embosomed in the mighty ocean, was
a single grave, that of the only and adored son of our amiable hosts;
indeed, their only child. Almost close to this simple grave was a
semi-circular seat. "There often," said Mr. S----, "we come in the
summer time and spend the evening, and frequently bring our friends,
too, with us, and it is a melancholy happiness to feel _he_ is
near--almost, as it were, with us."

Here we all remained for some time: the birds were singing, the sea so
calm you could scarcely just then at that distance hear its everlasting
resounding voice. You might look through the opening in the woods, up
and up, and the clear cloudless sky would seem almost receding from your
gaze (like the horizon when you are advancing toward it), yet bluer and
bluer, brighter and brighter. All was beauty and enchantment! and there
lay the lonely dead--who could dare to say in unconsecrated ground?
where Nature was so wild and beautiful, and Nature's Creator seemed so
nigh--and where that grand untrodden ground with nothing to desecrate
it, was ever bathed by the tears of hallowed parental affection? How
blessed and sacred it appeared! To think, in contrast with this grave,
of our dead in crowded city church-yards! But I trust that unutterably
detestable system will soon be done away with.

If what I have related seems strange to you, you must recollect that in
America it is often the case; at least, I have frequently heard so
before I came here. In the quiet garden, or in the wood near the house,
often sleep in their last slumber the beloved members of the family, not
banished from the every-day associations of the survivors, and almost
seeming to have still some participation in their feelings, in their
woes, and their pleasures. I could almost fancy, after seeing that Eden
for the dead, Mount Auburn, and remembering this affectionate custom,
that is one reason why death does not seem a thing to be dreaded or
deplored in America, as with us. If I recollect correctly, the only
words on the modest head-stone were, "To our beloved Son."

After willingly remaining some time here, beside this simple Christian
tomb, we went to see an ancient place of Indian sepulture. The corpses,
I believe, had mostly been dug up--poor Indians; hardly allowed to rest
in their graves! Mrs. S---- told me that the first time Naushon had
passed into white men's hands from those of the red chief's, this
exquisite island, with all its lovely and splendid woods, its herds of
wild deer, and all its fair lands, it had been sold for an old coat. (I
think a little fire-water must have entered into the bargain). After
hearing this, I began to think _feu_ squire and squaw Naushon of the
olden time and their clan hardly deserved to rest in their graves.

Our excellent hosts most kindly pressed us to stay at Naushon, but my
plans did not admit of this; so, enchanted with their delectable island,
and full of gratitude for all their cordial friendliness and truly
American hospitality toward us, we took leave of them and Mrs. Grinnell,
in the evening, and returned to the main land. The weather became very
unpropitious, and it blew and rained heavily. However, we arrived in
damp safety at our hotel.


                            GENERAL TAYLOR.

General Taylor received us most kindly. He had had two councils to
preside over that morning, and when we first arrived at the White House,
he was actually engaged in an extra Session of Council--in short,
overwhelmed with business, which rendered it doubly kind and amiable of
him to receive us. Mrs. Bliss, the charming daughter of the President,
was in the drawing-room when we first went in. Mrs. Taylor has delicate
health, and does not do the honors of the Presidential mansion. Mrs.
Bliss received us most cordially and courteously, saying her father
would come as soon as his presence could be dispensed with. Presently
after the President made his appearance: his manners are winningly
frank, simple, and kind, and though characteristically distinguished by
much straight-forwardness, there is not the slightest roughness in his
address. There was a quick, keen, eagle-like expression in the eye which
reminded me a little of the Duke of Wellington's.

He commenced an animated conversation with Madame C. de la B---- and us:
among other things, speaking of the routes, he recommended me to follow,
steam navigation, Mexico, and the Rio Grande, &c.

He was so exceedingly good-natured as to talk a great deal to my little
girl about roses and lilies, as if he had been quite a botanist all his
life. This species of light, daffydown-dilly talk was so particularly
and amiably considerate and kind to her, that it overcame her shyness at
once, and the dread she had entertained of not understanding what he
might say to her.

I was quite sorry when the time came for us to leave the White House.
General Taylor strongly advised me not to leave America without seeing
St. Louis: he said he considered it altogether perhaps the most
interesting town in the United States: he said he recollected the
greater part of it a deep dense forest. He spoke very kindly of
England, and adverting to the approaching acceleration and extension of
steam communication between her and America (the contemplated
competition about to be established by "Collins's line") he exclaimed,
"The voyage will be made shorter and shorter, and I expect England and
America will soon be quite alongside of each other, ma'am."

"The sooner the better, sir," I most heartily responded, at which he
bowed and smiled.

"We are the same people," he continued, "and it is good for both to see
more of each other."

"Yes," I replied, "and thus all detestable old prejudices will die
away."

"I hope so," he said, "it will be for the advantage of both."

He continued in this strain, and spoke so nobly of England, that it made
one's heart bound to hear him. And he evidently felt what he said;
indeed, I am sure that honest, high-hearted, true-as-steel, old hero
could not say any thing he did not feel or think.

A little while before we took leave he said, "I hope you will visit my
farm near Natchez: Cypress Grove is the name--a sad name," he said, with
a smile, "but I think you will find it interesting." I thanked him, and
promised so to do. A short time previously, after talking about the
beauties of Nature in the South, General Taylor had said to V----, that
he longed to return to that farm, and to his quiet home near the banks
of the Mississippi, and added, that he was sorely tired of public life,
and the harassing responsibilities of his high office. The President
insisted most courteously on conducting us to our carriage, and
bareheaded he handed us in, standing on the steps till we drove off, and
cordially reiterating many kind and friendly wishes for our prosperous
journey, and health, and safety.



                          THE HUNTER'S WIFE.


Tom Cooper was a fine specimen of the North American trapper. Slightly
but powerfully made, with a hardy, weather-beaten, yet handsome face,
strong, indefatigable, and a crack shot, he was admirably adapted for a
hunter's life. For many years he knew not what it was to have a home,
but lived like the beasts he hunted--wandering from one part of the
country to another in pursuit of game. All who knew Tom were much
surprised when he came, with a pretty young wife, to settle within three
miles of a planter's farm. Many pitied the poor young creature, who
would have to lead such a solitary life; while others said: "If she was
fool enough to marry him, it was her own look out." For nearly four
months Tom remained at home, and employed his time in making the old hut
he had fixed on for their residence more comfortable. He cleared and
tilled a small spot of land around it, and Susan began to hope that for
her sake he would settle down quietly as a squatter. But these visions
of happiness were soon dispelled, for as soon as this work was finished
he recommenced his old erratic mode of life, and was often absent for
weeks together, leaving his wife alone, yet not unprotected, for since
his marriage old Nero, a favorite hound, was always left at home as her
guardian. He was a noble dog--a cross between the old Scottish deerhound
and the bloodhound, and would hunt an Indian as well as a deer or bear,
which Tom said, "was a proof they Ingins was a sort o' warmint, or why
should the brute beast take to hunt 'em, nat'ral like--him that took no
notice o' white men?"

One clear, cold morning, about two years after their marriage, Susan was
awakened by a loud crash, immediately succeeded by Nero's deep baying.
She recollected that she had shut him in the house as usual the night
before. Supposing he had winded some solitary wolf or bear prowling
around the hut, and effected his escape, she took little notice of the
circumstance; but a few moments after came a shrill wild cry, which made
her blood run cold. To spring from her bed, throw on her clothes, and
rush from the hut, was the work of a minute. She no longer doubted what
the hound was in pursuit of. Fearful thoughts shot through her brain:
she called wildly on Nero, and to her joy he came dashing through the
thick underwood. As the dog drew nearer she saw that he galloped
heavily, and carried in his mouth some large dark creature. Her brain
reeled; she felt a cold and sickly shudder dart through her limbs. But
Susan was a hunter's daughter, and all her life had been accustomed to
witness scenes of danger and of horror, and in this school had learned
to subdue the natural timidity of her character. With a powerful effort
she recovered herself, just as Nero dropped at her feet a little Indian
child, apparently between three and four years old. She bent down over
him, but there was no sound or motion; she placed her hand on his little
naked chest; the heart within had ceased to beat--he was dead! The deep
marks of the dog's fangs were visible on the neck, but the body was
untorn. Old Nero stood with his large bright eyes fixed on the face of
his mistress, fawning on her, as if he expected to be praised for what
he had done, and seemed to wonder why she looked so terrified. But Susan
spurned him from her; and the fierce animal, who would have pulled down
an Indian as he would a deer, crouched humbly at the young woman's feet.
Susan carried the little body gently in her arms to the hut, and laid it
on her own bed. Her first impulse was to seize a loaded rifle that hung
over the fireplace, and shoot the hound; and yet she felt she could not
do it, for in the lone life she led the faithful animal seemed like a
dear and valued friend, who loved and watched over her, as if aware of
the precious charge intrusted to him. She thought also of what her
husband would say, when on his return he should find his old companion
dead. Susan had never seen Tom roused. To her he had ever shown nothing
but kindness; yet she feared as well as loved him, for there was a fire
in those dark eyes which told of deep, wild passions hidden in his
breast, and she knew that the lives of a whole tribe of Indians would
be light in the balance against that of his favorite hound.

Having securely fastened up Nero, Susan, with a heavy heart, proceeded
to examine the ground around the hut. In several places she observed the
impression of a small moccasined foot, but not a child's. The tracks
were deeply marked, unlike the usual light, elastic tread of an Indian.
From this circumstance Susan easily inferred that the woman had been
carrying her child when attacked by the dog. There was nothing to show
why she had come so near the hut: most probably the hopes of some petty
plunder had been the inducement. Susan did not dare to wander far from
home, fearing a band of Indians might be in the neighborhood. She
returned sorrowfully to the hut, and employed herself in blocking up the
window, or rather the hole where the window had been, for the powerful
hound had in his leap dashed out the entire frame, and shattered it to
pieces. When this was finished, Susan dug a grave, and in it laid the
little Indian boy. She made it close to the hut, for she could not bear
that wolves should devour those delicate limbs, and she knew that there
it would be safe. The next day Tom returned. He had been very
unsuccessful, and intended setting out again in a few days in a
different direction.

"Susan," he said, when he had heard her sad story, "I wish you'd lef'
the child where the dog killed him. The squaw's high sartain to come
back a-seekin' for the body, and 'tis a pity the poor crittur should be
disapinted. Besides, the Ingins will be high sartain to put it down to
us; whereas if so be as they'd found the body 'pon the spot, maybe
they'd understand as 'twas an accident like, for they're unkimmon
cunning warmint, though they an't got sense like Christians."

"Why do you think the poor woman came here?" said Susan. "I never knew
an Indian squaw so near the hut before."

She fancied a dark shadow flitted across her husband's brow. He made no
reply; and on her repeating the question, said angrily--how should he
know? 'Twas as well to ask for a bear's reasons as an Ingin's.

Tom only staid at home long enough to mend the broken window, and plant
a small spot of Indian corn, and then again set out, telling Susan not
to expect him home in less than a month. "If that squaw comes this way
agin," he said, "as maybe she will, jist put out any broken victuals
you've a-got for the poor crittur; though maybe she won't come, for they
Ingins be onkimmon skeary." Susan wondered at his taking an interest in
the woman, and often thought of that dark look she had noticed, and of
Tom's unwillingness to speak on the subject. She never knew that on his
last hunting expedition, when hiding some skins which he intended to
fetch on his return, he had observed an Indian watching him, and had
shot him with as little mercy as he would have shown a wolf. On Tom's
return to the spot the body was gone; and in the soft damp soil was the
mark of an Indian squaw's foot, and by its side a little child's. He was
sorry then for the deed he had done: he thought of the grief of the poor
widow, and how it would be possible for her to live until she could
reach her tribe, who were far, far distant at the foot of the Rocky
Mountains; and now to feel that through his means, too, she had lost her
child, put thoughts into his mind that had never before found a place
there. He thought that one God had formed the Red Man as well as the
White--of the souls of the many Indians hurried into eternity by his
unerring rifle; and they perhaps were more fitted for their "happy
hunting-grounds" than he for the white man's Heaven. In this state of
mind, every word his wife had said to him seemed a reproach, and he was
glad again to be alone in the forest with his rifle and his hounds.

The afternoon of the third day after Tom's departure, as Susan was
sitting at work, she heard something scratching and whining at the door.
Nero, who was by her side, evinced no signs of anger, but ran to the
door, showing his white teeth, as was his custom when pleased. Susan
unbarred it, when to her astonishment the two deerhounds her husband had
taken with him walked into the hut, looking weary and soiled. At first
she thought Tom might have killed a deer not far from home, and had
brought her a fresh supply of venison; but no one was there. She rushed
from the hut, and soon, breathless and terrified, reached the squatter's
cabin. John Wilton and his three sons were just returned from the
clearings, when Susan ran into their comfortable kitchen; her long black
hair streaming on her shoulders, and her wild and bloodshot eyes, gave
her the appearance of a maniac. In a few unconnected words she explained
to them the cause of her terror, and implored them to set off
immediately in search of her husband. It was in vain they told her of
the uselessness of going at that time--of the impossibility of following
a trail in the dark. She said she would go herself; she felt sure of
finding him; and at last they were obliged to use force to prevent her
leaving the house.

The next morning at daybreak Wilton and his two sons were mounted, and
ready to set out, intending to take Nero with them; but nothing could
induce him to leave his mistress: he resisted passively for some time,
until one of the young men attempted to pass a rope round his neck, to
drag him away: then his forbearance vanished; he sprung on his
tormentor, threw him down, and would have strangled him if Susan had not
been present. Finding it impossible to make Nero accompany them, they
left without him, but had not proceeded many miles before he and his
mistress were at their side. They begged Susan to return, told her of
the hardships she must endure, and of the inconvenience she would be to
them. It was of no avail; she had but one answer: "I am a hunter's
daughter, and a hunter's wife." She told them that knowing how useful
Nero would be to them in their search, she had secretly taken a horse
and followed them.

The party rode first to Tom Cooper's hut, and there having dismounted,
leading their horses through the forest, followed the trail, as only men
long accustomed to a savage life can do. At night they lay on the
ground, covered with their thick bear-skin cloaks: for Susan only they
heaped up a bed of dried leaves; but she refused to occupy it, saying it
was her duty to bear the same hardships they did. Ever since their
departure she had shown no sign of sorrow. Although slight and
delicately formed, she never appeared fatigued: her whole soul was
absorbed in one longing desire--to find her husband's body; for from the
first she had abandoned the hope of ever again seeing him in life. This
desire supported her through every thing. Early the next morning they
were again on the trail. About noon, as they were crossing a small
brook, the hound suddenly dashed away from them, and was lost in the
thicket. At first they fancied they might have crossed the track of a
deer or wolf; but a long mournful howl soon told the sad truth, for not
far from the brook lay the faithful dog on the dead body of his master,
which was pierced to the heart by an Indian arrow.

The murderer had apparently been afraid to approach on account of the
dogs, for the body was left as it had fallen--not even the rifle was
gone. No sign of Indians could be discovered save one small footprint,
which was instantly pronounced to be that of a squaw. Susan showed no
grief at the sight of the body; she maintained the same forced calmness,
and seemed comforted that it was found. Old Wilton staid with her to
remove all that now remained of her darling husband, and his two sons
again set out on the trail, which soon led them into the open prairie,
where it was easily traced through the tall thick grass. They continued
riding all that afternoon, and the next morning by daybreak were again
on the track, which they followed to the banks of a wide but shallow
stream. There they saw the remains of a fire. One of the brothers thrust
his hand among the ashes, which were still warm. They crossed the river,
and in the soft sand on the opposite bank saw again the print of small
moccasined footsteps. Here they were at a loss; for the rank prairie
grass had been consumed by one of those fearful fires so common in the
prairies, and in its stead grew short sweet herbage, where even an
Indian's eye could observe no trace. They were on the point of
abandoning the pursuit, when Richard, the younger of the two, called his
brother's attention to Nero, who had of his own accord left his mistress
to accompany them, as if he now understood what they were about. The
hound was trotting to and fro, with his nose to the ground, as if
endeavoring to pick out a cold scent. Edward laughed at his brother, and
pointed to the track of a deer that had come to drink at the river. At
last he agreed to follow Nero, who was now cantering slowly across the
prairie. The pace gradually increased, until, on a spot where the grass
had grown more luxuriantly than elsewhere, Nero threw up his nose, gave
a deep bay, and started off at so furious a pace, that although well
mounted, they had great difficulty in keeping up with him. He soon
brought them to the borders of another forest, where, finding it
impossible to take their horses further, they tethered them to a tree,
and set off again on foot. They lost sight of the hound, but still from
time to time heard his loud baying far away. At last they fancied it
sounded nearer instead of becoming less distinct; and of this they were
soon convinced. They still went on in the direction whence the sound
proceeded, until they saw Nero sitting with his fore-paws against the
trunk of a tree, no longer mouthing like a well-trained hound, but
yelling like a fury. They looked up in the tree, but could see nothing;
until at last Edward espied a large hollow about half way up the trunk.
"I was right, you see," he said. "After all, it's nothing but a bear;
but we may as well shoot the brute that has given us so much trouble."

They set to work immediately with their axes to fell the tree. It began
to totter, when a dark object, they could not tell what in the dim
twilight, crawled from its place of concealment to the extremity of a
branch, and from thence sprung into the next tree. Snatching up their
rifles, they both fired together; when, to their astonishment, instead
of a bear, a young Indian squaw, with a wild yell, fell to the ground.
They ran to the spot where she lay motionless, and carried her to the
borders of the wood where they had that morning dismounted. Richard
lifted her on his horse, and springing himself into the saddle, carried
the almost lifeless body before him. The poor creature never spoke.
Several times they stopped, thinking she was dead: her pulse only told
the spirit had not flown from its earthly tenement. When they reached
the river which had been crossed by them before, they washed the wounds,
and sprinkled water on her face. This appeared to revive her: and when
Richard again lifted her in his arms to place her on his horse, he
fancied he heard her mutter in Iroquois one word--"revenged!" It was a
strange sight, these two powerful men tending so carefully the being
they had a few hours before sought to slay, and endeavoring to stanch
the blood that flowed from wounds which they had made! Yet so it was. It
would have appeared to them a sin to leave the Indian woman to die; yet
they felt no remorse at having inflicted the wound, and doubtless would
have been better pleased had it been mortal; but they would not have
murdered a wounded enemy, even an Indian warrior, still less a squaw.
The party continued their journey until midnight, when they stopped to
rest their jaded horses. Having wrapped the squaw in their bear-skins,
they lay down themselves with no covering save the clothes they wore.
They were in no want of provisions, as not knowing when they might
return, they had taken a good supply of bread and dried venison, not
wishing to lose any precious time in seeking food while on the trail.
The brandy still remaining in their flasks they preserved for the use of
their captive. The evening of the following day they reached the
trapper's hut, where they were not a little surprised to find Susan. She
told them that although John Wilton had begged her to live with them,
she could not bear to leave the spot where every thing reminded her of
one to think of whom was now her only consolation, and that while she
had Nero, she feared nothing. They needed not to tell their mournful
tale--Susan already understood it but too clearly. She begged them to
leave the Indian woman with her. "You have no one," she said, "to tend
and watch her as I can do; besides, it is not right that I should lay
such a burden on you." Although unwilling to impose on her the painful
task of nursing her husband's murderess, they could not but allow that
she was right; and seeing how earnestly she desired it, at last
consented to leave the Indian woman with her.

For many long weeks Susan nursed her charge as tenderly as if she had
been her sister. At first she lay almost motionless, and rarely spoke;
then she grew delirious, and raved wildly. Susan fortunately could not
understand what she said, but often turned shudderingly away when the
Indian woman would strive to rise from her bed, and move her arms as if
drawing a bow; or yell wildly, and cower in terror beneath the clothes,
reacting in her delirium the fearful scenes through which she had
passed. By degrees reason returned; she gradually got better, but seemed
restless and unhappy, and could not bear the sight of Nero. The first
proof of returning reason she had shown was to shriek in terror when he
once accidentally followed his mistress into the room where she lay. One
morning Susan missed her; she searched around the hut, but she was gone,
without having taken farewell of her kind benefactress.

A few years after Susan Cooper (no longer "pretty Susan," for time and
grief had done their work) heard late one night a hurried knock, which
was repeated several times before she could unfasten the door, each time
more loudly than before. She called to ask who it was at that hour of
the night. A few hurried words in Iroquois were the reply, and Susan
congratulated herself on having spoken before unbarring the door. But on
listening again, she distinctly heard the same voice say,
"Quick--quick!" and recognized it as the Indian woman's whom she had
nursed. The door was instantly opened, when the squaw rushed into the
hut, seized Susan by the arm, and made signs to her to come away. She
was too much excited to remember then the few words of English she had
picked up when living with the white woman. Expressing her meaning by
gestures with a clearness peculiar to the Indians she dragged rather
than led Susan from the hut. They had just reached the edge of the
forest when the wild yells of the Indians sounded in their ears. Having
gone with Susan a little way into the forest her guide left her. For
nearly four hours she lay there half-dead with cold and terror, not
daring to move from her place of concealment. She saw the flames of the
dwelling where so many lonely hours had been passed rising above the
trees, and heard the shrill "whoops" of the retiring Indians. Nero, who
was lying by her side, suddenly rose and gave a low growl. Silently a
dark figure came gliding among the trees directly to the spot where she
lay. She gave herself up for lost; but it was the Indian woman who came
to her, and dropped at her feet a bag of money, the remains of her late
husband's savings. The grateful creature knew where it was kept; and
while the Indians were busied examining the rifles and other objects
more interesting to them, had carried it off unobserved. Waving her arm
around to show that all was now quiet, she pointed in the direction of
Wilton's house, and was again lost among the trees.

Day was just breaking when Susan reached the squatter's cabin. Having
heard the sad story, Wilton and two of his sons started immediately for
the spot. Nothing was to be seen save a heap of ashes. The party had
apparently consisted of only three or four Indians; but a powerful tribe
being in the neighborhood, they saw it would be too hazardous to follow
them. From this time Susan lived with the Wiltons. She was as a daughter
to the old man, and a sister to his sons, who often said: "That as far
as they were concerned, the Indians had never done a kindlier action
than in burning down Susan Cooper's hut."



                      THE WARNINGS OF THE PAST.


          Faint dream-like voices of the spectral Past
            Whisper the lessons of departed ages;
          Each gathering treasured wisdom from the last,
            A long succession of experienced sages

          They steal upon the statesman as he sleeps,
            And chant in Fancy's ear their warning numbers;
          When restless Thought unceasing vigil keeps,
            Trimming her taper while the body slumbers.

          They bid him listen to the tales they tell
            Of nations perish'd and embalm'd in story;
          How inly rotting they were sapp'd and fell,
           Like some proud oak whilome the forest's glory.

          Sepulchral ruins crumble where a maze
            Of busy streets once rang with life's commotion;
          Where sculptured palaces in bygone days
            Were gorged with spoils of conquer'd earth and ocean.

          For Faction rent the seamless robe of Peace,
            And, parting children of a common mother,
          Bade fealty and loving concord cease
            To link the hearts he sever'd from each other.

          Such is the burden of those solemn notes
            That issue from the haunted graves of nations;
          Where, spread by Time, a vailing shadow floats
            O'er spirits preaching from their ruin'd stations.



                       THE PIE SHOPS OF LONDON.


From time immemorial the wandering pieman was a prominent character in
the highways and byways of London. He was generally a merry dog, and was
always found where merriment was going on. Furnished with a tray about a
yard square, either carried upon his head or suspended by a strap in
front of his breast, he scrupled not to force his way through the
thickest crowd, knowing that the very centre of action was the best
market for his wares. He was a gambler, both from inclination and
principle, and would toss with his customers, either by the dallying
shilli-shally process of "best five in nine," the tricksy manoeuvre of
"best two in three," or the desperate dash of "sudden death!" in which
latter case the first toss was destiny--a pie for a halfpenny, or your
halfpenny gone for nothing; but he invariably declined the mysterious
process of "the odd man;" not being altogether free from suspicion on
the subject of collusion between a couple of hungry customers. We meet
with him frequently in old prints; and in Hogarth's "March to Finchley,"
there he stands in the very centre of the crowd, grinning with delight
at the adroitness of one robbery, while he is himself the victim of
another. We learn from this admirable figure by the greatest painter of
English life, that the pieman of the last century perambulated the
streets in professional costume; and we gather further, from the burly
dimensions of his wares, that he kept his trade alive by the laudable
practice of giving "a good pennyworth for a penny." Justice compels us
to observe, that his successors of a later generation have not been very
conscientious observers of this maxim. The varying price of flour,
alternating with a sliding-scale, probably drove some of them to their
wit's end; and perhaps this cause more than any other operated in
imparting that complexion to their productions which made them resemble
the dead body of a penny pie, and which in due time lost them favor with
the discerning portion of their customers. Certain it is that the
perambulating pie business in London fell very much into disrepute and
contempt for several years before the abolition of the corn-laws and the
advent of free trade. Opprobrious epithets were hurled at the wandering
merchant as he paraded the streets and alleys--epithets which were in no
small degree justified by the clammy and clay-like appearance of his
goods. By degrees the profession got into disfavor, and the pieman
either altogether disappeared, or merged in a dealer in foreign nuts,
fruits, and other edibles which barred the suspicion of sophistication.

Still the relish for pies survived in the public taste, and the willing
penny was as ready as ever to guerdon the man who, on fair grounds,
would meet the general desire. No sooner, therefore, was the
sliding-scale gone to the dogs, and a fair prospect of permanence
offered to the speculator, in the guarantee of something like a fixed
cost in the chief ingredient used, than up sprung almost simultaneously
in every district of the metropolis a new description of pie-shops,
which rushed at once into popularity and prosperity. Capital had
recognized the leading want of the age, and brought the appliances of
wealth and energy to supply it. Avoiding, on the one hand, the glitter
and pretension of the confectioner, and on the other the employment of
adulterated or inferior materials, they produced an article which the
populace devoured with universal commendation, to the gradual but
certain profit of the projectors. The peripatetic merchant was pretty
generally driven out of the field by the superiority of the article with
which he had to compete. He could not manufacture on a small scale in a
style to rival his new antagonists, and he could not purchase of them to
sell again, because they would not allow him a living margin--boasting,
as it would appear with perfect truth, that they sold at a small and
infinitesimal profit, which would not bear division.

These penny-pie shops now form one of the characteristic features of the
London trade in comestibles. That they are an immense convenience as
well as a luxury to a very large section of the population, there can be
no doubt. It might be imagined, at first view, that they would naturally
seek a cheap locality and a low rental. This, however, is by no means
the universal practice. In some of the chief lines of route they are to
be found in full operation; and it is rare indeed, unless at seasons
when the weather is very unfavorable, that they are not seen well filled
with customers. They abound especially in the immediate neighborhood of
omnibus and cab stations, and very much in the thoroughfares and
short-cuts most frequented by the middle and lower classes. But though
the window may be of plate-glass, behind which piles of the finest
fruit, joints and quarters of the best meat, a large dish of silver
eels, and a portly china bowl charged with a liberal heap of
minced-meat, with here and there a few pies, lie temptingly arranged
upon napkins of snowy whiteness, yet there is not a chair, stool, or
seat of any kind to be found within. No dallying is looked for, nor
would it probably be allowed. "Pay for your pie, and go," seems the
order of the day. True, you may eat it there, as thousands do; but you
must eat it standing, and clear of the counter. We have more than once
witnessed this interesting operation with mingled mirth and
satisfaction; nay, what do we care?--take the confession for what it is
worth--_pars ipsi fuimus_--we have eaten our pies (and paid for them
too, no credit being given)--_in loco_, and are therefore in a condition
to guarantee the truth of what we record. With few exceptions (we
include ourselves among the number), there are no theoretical
philosophers among the frequenters of the penny-pie shop. The philosophy
of bun-eating may be very profound, and may present, as we think it
does, some difficult points; but the philosophy of penny-pie eating is
absolutely next to _nil_. The customer of the pie-shop is a man (if he
is not a boy) with whom a penny is a penny, and a pie is a pie, who,
when he has the former to spend or the latter to eat, goes through the
ceremony like one impressed with the settled conviction that he has
business in hand which it behoves him to attend to. Look at him as he
stands in the centre of the floor, erect as a grenadier, turning his
busy mouth full upon the living tide that rushes along Holborn! Of shame
or confusion of face in connection with the enviable position in which
he stands he has not the remotest conception, and could as soon be
brought to comprehend the _differential calculus_ as to entertain a
thought of it. What, we ask, would philosophy do for him? Still every
customer is not so happily organized, and so blissfully insensible to
the attacks of false shame; and for such as are unprepared for the
public gaze, or constitutionally averse from it, a benevolent provision
is made by a score of old play-bills stuck against the adverse wall, or
swathing the sacks of flour which stand ready for use, and which they
may peruse, or affect to peruse, in silence, munching their pennyworths
the while. The main body of the pie-eaters are, however, perfectly at
their ease, and pass the very few minutes necessary for the discussion
of their purchases in bandying compliments with three or four
good-looking lasses, the very incarnations of good-temper and cleanly
tidiness, who from morn to night are as busy as bees in extricating the
pies from their metallic moulds, as they are demanded by the customers.
These assistants lead no lazy life, but they are without exception plump
and healthy-looking, and would seem (if we are to believe the report of
an employer) to have an astonishing tendency to the parish church of the
district in which they officiate, our informant having been bereaved of
three by marriage in the short space of six months. Relays are necessary
in most establishments on the main routes, as the shops are open all
night long, seldom closing much before three in the morning when
situated in the neighborhood of a theatre or a cab-stand. Of the amount
of business done in the course of a year it is not easy to form an
estimate. Some pie-houses are known to consume as much flour as a
neighboring baker standing in the same track. The baker makes ninety
quartern loaves from the sack of flour, and could hardly make a living
upon less than a dozen sacks a week; but as the proportion borne by the
crust of a penny-pie to a quartern loaf is a mystery which we have not
yet succeeded in penetrating, we are wanting in the elements of an exact
calculation.

The establishment of these shops has by degrees prodigiously increased
the number of pie-eaters and the consumption of pies. Thousands and tens
of thousands who would decline the handling of a scalding hot morsel in
the public street, will yet steal to the corner of a shop, and in front
of an old play-bill, delicately dandling the tit-bit on their
finger-tips till it cools to the precise temperature at which it is so
delicious to swallow--"snatch a fearful joy." The trades man, too, in
the immediate vicinity, soon learns to appreciate the propinquity of the
pie-shop, in the addition it furnishes to a cold dinner, and for half
the sum it would have cost him if prepared in his own kitchen. Many a
time and oft have we dropped in, upon the strength of a general
invitation, at the dinner-table of an indulgent bibliopole, and
recognized the undeniable _patés_ of "over the way" following upon the
heels of the cold sirloin. With artisans out of work, and with
town-travelers of small trade, the pie-shop is a halting-place, its
productions presenting a cheap substitute for a dinner. Few purchases
are made before twelve o'clock in the day; in fact the shutters are
rarely pulled down much before eleven; yet even then business is carried
on for nearly twenty hours out of the twenty-four. About noon the
current of custom sets in, and all hands are busy till four or five
o'clock; after which there is a pause, or rather a relaxation, until
evening, when the various bands of operatives, as they are successively
released from work, again renew the tide. As these disappear, the
numberless nightly exhibitions, lecture-rooms, mechanics' institutes,
concerts, theatres, and casinos, pour forth their motley hordes, of whom
a large and hungry section find their way to the pie-house as the only
available resource--the public-houses being shut up for the night, and
the lobster-rooms, oyster saloons, "shades," "coal-holes," and
"cider-cellars," too expensive for the multitude. After these come the
cab-drivers who, having conveyed to their homes the more moneyed classes
of sight-seers and play-goers, return to their stands in the vicinity of
the shop, and now consider that they may conscientiously indulge in a
refreshment of eel-pies, winding up with a couple of "fruiters," to the
amount at least of the sum of which they may have been able to cheat
their fares.

Throughout the summer months the pie trade flourishes with unabated
vigor. Each successive fruit, as it ripens and comes to market, adds a
fresh impetus to the traffic. As autumn waxes every week supplies a new
attraction and a delicious variety; as it wanes into winter, a good
store of apples are laid up for future use; and so soon as Jack Frost
sets his cold toes upon the pavement, the delicate odor of mince-meat
assails the passer-by, and reminds him that Christmas is coming, and
that the pieman is ready for him. It is only in the early spring that
the pie-shop is under a temporary cloud. The apples of the past year are
well-nigh gone, and the few that remain have lost their succulence, and
are dry and flavorless. This is the precise season when, as the pieman
in "Pickwick" too candidly observed, "fruits is out, and cats is in."
Now there is an unaccountable prejudice against cats among the
pie-devouring population of the metropolis: we are superior to it
ourselves, and can therefore afford to mention it dispassionately, and
to express our regret that any species of commerce, much more one so
grateful to the palate, and so convenient to the purse, should
periodically suffer declension through the prevalence of an unfounded
prejudice. Certain it is that penny-pie eating does materially decline
about the early spring season; and it is certain too, that of late
years, about the same season, a succession of fine Tabbies of our own
have mysteriously disappeared. Attempts are made with rhubarb to combat
the depression of business; but success in this matter is very
partial--the generality of consumers being impressed with the popular
notion that rhubarb is physic, and that physic is not fruit. But relief
is at hand; the showers and sunshine of May bring the gooseberry to
market; pies resume their importance; and the pieman backed by an
inexhaustible store of a fruit grateful to every English palate,
commences the campaign with renewed energy, and bids defiance for the
rest of the year to the mutations of fortune.

We shall close this sketch with a legend of the day, for the truth of
which, however, we do not personally vouch. It was related and received
with much gusto at an annual supper lately given by a large pie
proprietor to his assembled hands.

Some time since, so runs the current narrative, the owner of a thriving
mutton-pie concern, which, after much difficulty, he had succeeded in
establishing with borrowed capital, died before he had well extricated
himself from the responsibilities of debt. The widow carried on the
business after his decease, and throve so well, that a speculating baker
on the opposite side of the way made her the offer of his hand. The lady
refused, and the enraged suitor, determined on revenge, immediately
converted his baking into an opposition pie-shop; and acting on the
principle universal among London bakers, of doing business for the first
month or two at a loss, made his pies twice as big as he could honestly
afford to make them. The consequence was that the widow lost her custom,
and was hastening fast to ruin, when a friend of her late husband, who
was also a small creditor, paid her a visit. She detailed her grievance
to him, and lamented her lost trade and fearful prospects. "Ho, ho!"
said her friend, "that 'ere's the move, is it? Never you mind, my dear.
If I don't git your trade agin, there aint no snakes, mark me--that's
all!" So saying, he took his leave.

About eight o'clock the same evening, when the baker's new pie-shop was
crammed to overflowing, and the principal was below superintending the
production of a new batch, in walks the widow's friend in the costume of
a kennel-raker, and elbowing his way to the counter dabs down upon it a
brace of huge dead cats, vociferating at the same time to the astonished
damsel in attendance, "Tell your master, my dear, as how them two makes
six-and-thirty this week, and say I'll bring t'other four to-morrer
arternoon!" With that he swaggered out and went his way. So powerful was
the prejudice against cat-mutton among the population of that
neighborhood, that the shop was clear in an instant, and the floor was
seen covered with hastily-abandoned specimens of every variety of
segments of a circle. The spirit-shop at the corner of the street
experienced an unusually large demand for "gees" of brandy, and
interjectional ejaculations not purely grammatical were not merely
audible, but visible, too, in the district. It is averred that the
ingenious expedient of the widow's friend, founded as it was upon a
profound knowledge of human prejudices, had the desired effect of
restoring "the balance of trade." The widow recovered her commerce; the
resentful baker was done as brown as if he had been shut up in his own
oven; and the friend who brought about this measure of justice received
the hand of the lady as a reward for his interference.



           MY NOVEL; OR, VARIETIES IN ENGLISH LIFE.[12]


                      BOOK VI.--INITIAL CHAPTER.

"Life," said my father, in his most dogmatical tone, "is a certain
quantity in time, which may be regarded in two ways--1st, as life
_Integral_; 2d, as life _Fractional_. Life integral is that complete
whole, expressive of a certain value, large or small, which each man
possesses in himself. Life fractional is that same whole seized upon and
invaded by other people, and subdivided among them. They who get a large
slice of it say, 'a very valuable life this!' those who get but a small
handful say, 'so, so, nothing very great!' those who get none of it in
the scramble exclaim, 'Good for nothing!'"

    [12] Continued from the July Number.

"I don't understand a word you are saying," growled Captain Roland.

My father surveyed his brother with compassion--"I will make it all
clear even to your understanding. When I sit down by myself in my study,
having carefully locked the door on all of you, alone with my books and
thoughts, I am in full possession of my integral life. I am _totus,
teres, atque rotundus_--a whole human being--equivalent in value we will
say, for the sake of illustration, to a fixed round sum--£100, for
example. But when I come forth into the common apartment, each of those
to whom I am of any worth whatsoever, puts his fingers into the bag that
contains me, and takes out of me what he wants. Kitty requires me to pay
a bill; Pisistratus to save him the time and trouble of looking into a
score or two of books; the children to tell them stories, or play at
hide and seek; the carp for bread-crumbs; and so on throughout the
circle to which I have incautiously given myself up for plunder and
subdivision. The £100 which I represented in my study is now parceled
out; I am worth £40 or £50 to Kitty, £20 to Pisistratus, and perhaps
30_s._ to the carp. This is life fractional. And I cease to be an
integral till once more returning to my study, and again closing the
door on all existence but my own. Meanwhile, it is perfectly clear that,
to those who, whether I am in the study, or whether I am in the common
sitting-room, get nothing at all out of me, I am not worth a farthing.
It must be wholly indifferent to a native of Kamtschatka whether Austin
Caxton be or be not rased out of the great account-book of human beings.

"Hence," continued my father--"hence, it follows that the more
fractional a life be--_id est_, the greater the number of persons among
whom it can be subdivided--why, the more there are to say, 'a very
valuable life that!' Thus, the leader of a political party, a conqueror,
a king, an author who is amusing hundreds or thousands, or millions, has
a greater number of persons whom his worth interests and affects than a
Saint Simon Stylites could have when he perched himself at the top of a
column; although, regarded each in himself, Saint Simon, in his grand
mortification of flesh, in the idea that he thereby pleased his Divine
Benefactor, might represent a larger sum of moral value _per se_ than
Bonaparte or Voltaire."

PISISTRATUS.--"Perfectly clear, sir, but I don't see what it has to do
with My Novel."

MR. CAXTON.--"Every thing. Your novel, if it is to be a full and
comprehensive survey of the '_quicquid agunt homines_' (which it ought
to be, considering the length and breadth to which I foresee, from the
slow development of your story, you meditate extending and expanding
it), will embrace the two views of existence, the integral and the
fractional. You have shown us the former in Leonard, when he is sitting
in his mother's cottage, or resting from his work by the little fount in
Riccabocca's garden. And in harmony with that view of his life, you have
surrounded him with comparative integrals, only subdivided by the tender
hands of their immediate families and neighbors--your Squires and
Parsons, your Italian Exile and his Jemima. With all these, life is more
or less the life Natural, and this is always more or less the life
integral. Then comes the life Artificial, which is always more or less
the life fractional. In the life Natural wherein we are swayed but by
our own native impulses and desires, subservient only to the great
silent law of virtue (which has pervaded the universe since it swung out
of chaos), a man is of worth from what he is in himself--Newton was as
worthy before the apple fell from the tree as when all Europe applauded
the discoverer of the Principle of Gravity. But in the life Artificial
we are only of worth inasmuch as we affect others. And, relative to that
life, Newton rose in value, more than a million per cent. when down fell
the apple from which ultimately sprang up his discovery. In order to
keep civilization going, and spread over the world the light of human
intellect, we have certain desires within us, ever swelling beyond the
ease and independence which belong to us as integrals. Cold man as
Newton might be (he once took a lady's hand in his own, Kitty, and used
her fore-finger for his tobacco-stopper; great philosopher!)--cold as he
might be, he was yet moved into giving his discoveries to the world,
and that from motives very little differing in their quality from the
motives that make Dr. Squills communicate articles to the Phrenological
Journal upon the skulls of Bushmen and wombats. For it is the _property
of light to travel_. When a man has light in him, forth it must go. But
the first passage of Genius from its integral state (in which it has
been reposing on its own wealth) into the fractional, is usually through
a hard and vulgar pathway. It leaves behind it the reveries of solitude,
that self-contemplating rest which may be called the Visionary, and
enters suddenly into the state that may be called the Positive and
Actual. There, it sees the operations of money on the outer life--sees
all the ruder and commoner springs of action--sees ambition without
nobleness--love without romance--is bustled about, and ordered, and
trampled, and cowed--in short, it passes an apprenticeship with some
Richard Avenel, and does not yet detect what good and what grandeur,
what addition even to the true poetry of the social universe, fractional
existences like Richard Avenel's bestow; for the pillars that support
society are like those of the Court of the Hebrew Tabernacle--they are
of brass it is true, but they are filleted with silver. From such
intermediate state Genius is expelled and driven on in its way, and
would have been so in this ease had Mrs. Fairfield (who is but the
representative of the homely natural affections, strongest ever in true
genius--for light is warm) never crushed Mr. Avenel's moss-rose on her
sisterly bosom. Now, forth from this passage and defile of transition
into the larger world, must Genius go on, working out its natural
destiny amidst things and forms the most artificial. Passions that move
and influence the world are at work around it. Often lost sight of
itself, its very absence is a silent contrast to the agencies present.
Merged and vanished for a while amidst the Practical World, yet we
ourselves feel all the while that it is _there_; is at work amidst the
workings around it. This practical world that effaces it, rose out of
some genius that has gone before; and so each man of genius, though we
never come across him, as his operations proceed in places remote from
our thoroughfares, is yet influencing the practical world that ignores
him, forever and ever. That is GENIUS! We can't describe it in books--we
can only hint and suggest it, by the accessaries which we artfully heap
about it. The entrance of a true Probationer into the terrible ordeal of
Practical Life is like that into the miraculous cavern by which, legend
informs us, St. Patrick converted Ireland."

BLANCHE.--"What is that legend? I never heard of it."

MR. CAXTON.--"My dear, you will find it in a thin folio at the right on
entering my study, written by Thomas Messingham, and called 'Florilegium
Insulæ Sanctorum,' &c. The account therein is confirmed by the relation
of an honest soldier, one Louis Ennius, who had actually entered the
cavern. In short, the truth of the legend is undeniable, unless you mean
to say, which I can't for a moment suppose, that Louis Ennius was a
liar. Thus it runs: 'St. Patrick, finding that the Irish pagans were
incredulous as to his pathetic assurances of the pains and torments
destined to those who did not expiate their sins in this world, prayed
for a miracle to convince them. His prayer was heard; and a certain
cavern, so small that a man could not stand up therein at his ease, was
suddenly converted into a Purgatory, comprehending tortures sufficient
to convince the most incredulous. One unacquainted with human nature
might conjecture that few would be disposed to venture voluntarily into
such a place;--on the contrary, pilgrims came in crowds. Now, all who
entered from vain curiosity, or with souls unprepared, perished
miserably; but those who entered with deep and earnest faith, conscious
of their faults, and if bold, yet humble, not only came out safe and
sound, but purified, as if from the waters of a second baptism.' See
Savage and Johnson, at night in Fleet-street;--and who shall doubt the
truth of St. Patrick's Purgatory!" Therewith my father sighed--closed
his Lucian, which had lain open on the table, and would read nothing but
"good books" for the rest of the evening.


                             CHAPTER II.

On their escape from the prison to which Mr. Avenel had condemned them,
Leonard and his mother found their way to a small public-house that lay
at a little distance from the town, and on the outskirts of the
high-road. With his arm round his mother's waist, Leonard supported her
steps, and soothed her excitement. In fact, the poor woman's nerves were
greatly shaken, and she felt an uneasy remorse at the injury her
intrusion had inflicted on the young man's worldly prospects. As the
shrewd reader has guessed already, that infamous Tinker was the prime
agent of evil in this critical turn in the affairs of his quondam
customer. For, on his return to his haunts around Hazeldean and the
Casino, the Tinker had hastened to apprise Mrs. Fairfield of his
interview with Leonard, and on finding that she was not aware that the
boy was under the roof of his uncle, the pestilent vagabond (perhaps
from spite against Mr. Avenel, or perhaps from that pure love of
mischief by which metaphysical critics explain the character of Iago,
and which certainly formed a main element in the idiosyncrasy of Mr.
Sprott) had so impressed on the widow's mind the haughty demeanor of the
uncle and the refined costume of the nephew, that Mrs. Fairfield had
been seized with a bitter and insupportable jealousy. There was an
intention to rob her of her boy!--he was to be made too fine for her.
His silence was now accounted for. This sort of jealousy, always more or
less a feminine quality, is often very strong among the poor; and it was
the more strong in Mrs. Fairfield, because, lone woman that she was,
the boy was all in all to her. And though she was reconciled to the loss
of his presence, nothing could reconcile her to the thought that his
affections should be weaned from her. Moreover, there were in her mind
certain impressions, of the justice of which the reader may better judge
hereafter, as to the gratitude--more than ordinarily filial--which
Leonard owed to her. In short, she did not like, as she phrased it, "to
be shaken off;" and after a sleepless night she resolved to judge for
herself, much moved thereto by the malicious suggestions to that effect
made by Mr. Sprott, who mightily enjoyed the idea of mortifying the
gentleman by whom he had been so disrespectfully threatened with the
treadmill. The widow felt angry with Parson Dale, and with the
Riccaboccas: she thought they were in the plot against her; she
communicated, therefore, her intention to none--and off she set,
performing the journey partly on the top of the coach, partly on foot.
No wonder that she was dusty, poor woman.

"And, oh! boy!" said she, half-sobbing; "when I got through the
lodge-gates, came on the lawn, and saw all that power o' fine folk--I
said to myself, says I--(for I felt fritted)--I'll just have a look at
him and go back. But, ah, Lenny, when I saw thee, looking so
handsome--and when thee turned and cried 'Mother,' my heart was just
ready to leap out o' my mouth--and so I could not help hugging thee, if
I had died for it. And thou wert so kind, that I forgot all Mr. Sprott
had said about Dick's pride, or thought he had just told a fib about
that, as he had wanted me to believe a fib about thee. Then Dick came
up--and I had not seen him for so many years--and we come o' the same
father and mother; and so--and so--" The widow's sobs here fairly choked
her. "Ah," she said, after giving vent to her passion, and throwing her
arms round Leonard's neck, as they sate in the little sanded parlor of
the public-house--"ah, and I've brought thee to this. Go back, go back,
boy, and never mind me."

With some difficulty Leonard pacified poor Mrs. Fairfield, and got her
to retire to bed; for she was, indeed, thoroughly exhausted. He then
stepped forth into the road, musingly. All the stars were out; and
Youth, in its troubles, instinctively looks up to the stars. Folding his
arms, Leonard gazed on the heavens, and his lips murmured.

From this trance, for so it might be called, he was awakened by a voice
in a decidedly London accent; and, turning hastily round, saw Mr.
Avenel's very gentlemanlike butler. Leonard's first idea was that his
uncle had repented, and sent in search of him. But the butler seemed as
much surprised at the rencounter as himself: that personage, indeed, the
fatigues of the day being over, was accompanying one of Mr. Gunter's
waiters to the public-house (at which the latter had secured his
lodging), having discovered an old friend in the waiter, and proposing
to regale himself with a cheerful glass, and--(_that_ of course)--abuse
of his present situation.

"Mr. Fairfield!" exclaimed the butler, while the waiter walked
discreetly on.

Leonard looked, and said nothing. The butler began to think that some
apology was due for leaving his plate and his pantry, and that he might
as well secure Leonard's propitiatory influence with his master--

"Please, sir," said he, touching his hat, "I was just a-showing Mr.
Giles the way to the Blue Bells, where he puts up for the night. I hope
my master will not be offended. If you are a-going back, sir, would you
kindly mention it?"

"I am not going back, Jarvis," answered Leonard, after a pause; "I am
leaving Mr. Avenel's house, to accompany my mother; rather suddenly. I
should be very much obliged to you if you would bring some things of
mine to me at the Blue Bells. I will give you the list, if you will step
back with me to the inn."

Without waiting for a reply, Leonard then turned toward the inn, and
made his humble inventory; item, the clothes he had brought with him
from the Casino; item, the knapsack that had contained them; item, a few
books ditto; item, Dr. Riccabocca's watch; item, sundry MSS., on which
the young student now built all his hopes of fame and fortune. This list
he put into Mr. Jarvis's hand.

"Sir," said the butler, twirling the paper between his finger and thumb,
"you are not a-going for long, I hope;" and as he thought of the scene
on the lawn, the report of which had vaguely reached his ears, he looked
on the face of the young man, who had always been "civil spoken to him,"
with as much curiosity and as much compassion as so apathetic and
princely a personage could experience in matters affecting a family less
aristocratic than he had hitherto condescended to serve.

"Yes," said Leonard, simply and briefly; "and your master will no doubt
excuse you for rendering me this service."

Mr. Jarvis postponed for the present his glass and chat with the waiter,
and went back at once to Mr. Avenel. That gentleman, still seated in his
library, had not been aware of the butler's absence; and when Mr. Jarvis
entered and told him that he had met Mr. Fairfield, and, communicating
the commission with which he was intrusted, asked leave to execute it,
Mr. Avenel felt the man's inquisitive eye was on him, and conceived new
wrath against Leonard for a new humiliation to his pride. It was awkward
to give no explanation of his nephew's departure, still more awkward to
explain.

After a short pause, Mr. Avenel said sullenly, "My nephew is going away
on business for some time--do what he tells you;" and then turned his
back, and lighted his cigar.

"That beast of a boy," said he, soliloquizing, "either means this as an
affront, or an overture; if an affront, he is, indeed, well got rid of;
if an overture, he will soon make a more respectful and proper one.
After all, I can't have too little of relations till I have fairly
secured Mrs. M'Catchly. An Honorable! I wonder if that makes me an
Honorable too? This cursed Debrett contains no practical information on
these points."

The next morning, the clothes and the watch with which Mr. Avenel had
presented Leonard were returned, with a note meant to express gratitude,
but certainly written with very little knowledge of the world, and so
full of that somewhat over-resentful pride which had in earlier life
made Leonard fly from Hazeldean, and refuse all apology to Randal, that
it is not to be wondered at that Mr. Avenel's last remorseful feelings
evaporated in ire. "I hope he will starve!" said the uncle,
vindictively.


                             CHAPTER III.

"Listen to me, my dear mother," said Leonard the next morning, as with
his knapsack on his shoulder and Mrs. Fairfield on his arm, he walked
along the high road; "I do assure you, from my heart, that I do not
regret the loss of favors which I see plainly would have crushed out of
me the very sense of independence. But do not fear for me; I have
education and energy--I shall do well for myself, trust me. No; I can
not, it is true, go back to our cottage--I can not be a gardener again.
Don't ask me--I should be discontented, miserable. But I will go up to
London! That's the place to make a fortune and a name: I will make both.
O yes, trust me, I will. You shall soon be proud of your Leonard; and
then we will always live together--always! Don't cry."

"But what can you do in Lunnon--such a big place, Lenny?"

"What! Every year does not some lad leave our village, and go and seek
his fortune, taking with him but health and strong hands? I have these,
and I have more: I have brains, and thoughts, and hopes, that--again I
say, No, no--never fear for me!"

The boy threw back his head proudly; there was something sublime in his
young trust in the future.

"Well--But you will write to Mr. Dale, or to me? I will get Mr. Dale, or
the good Mounseer (now I know they were not agin me) to read your
letters."

"I will, indeed!"

"And, boy, you have nothing in your pockets. We have paid Dick; these,
at least, are my own, after paying the coach fare." And she would thrust
a sovereign and some shillings into Leonard's waistcoat pocket.

After some resistance, he was forced to consent.

"And there's a sixpence with a hole in it. Don't part with that, Lenny;
it will bring thee good luck."

Thus talking, they gained the inn where the three roads met, and from
which a coach went direct to the Casino. And here, without entering the
inn, they sate on the green sward by the hedge-row, waiting the arrival
of the coach. Mrs. Fairfield was much subdued in spirits, and there was
evidently on her mind something uneasy--some struggle with her
conscience. She not only upbraided herself for her rash visit; but she
kept talking of her dead Mark. And what would he say of her, if he could
see her in heaven?

"It was so selfish in me, Lenny."

"Pooh, pooh! Has not a mother a right to her child?"

"Ay, ay, ay!" cried Mrs. Fairfield. "I do love you as a child--my own
child. But if I was not your mother after all, Lenny, and cost you all
this--oh, what would you say of me then?"

"Not my own mother!" said Leonard, laughing, as he kissed her. "Well, I
don't know what I should say then differently from what I say now--that
you who brought me up, and nursed and cherished me, had a right to my
home and my heart, wherever I was."

"Bless thee!" cried Mrs. Fairfield, as she pressed him to her heart.
"But it weighs here--it weighs"--she said, starting up.

At that instant the coach appeared, and Leonard ran forward to inquire
if there was an outside place. Then there was a short bustle while the
horses were being changed; and Mrs. Fairfield was lifted up to the roof
of the vehicle. So all further private conversation between her and
Leonard ceased. But as the coach whirled away, and she waved her hand to
the boy, who stood on the road-side gazing after her, she still
murmured--"It weighs here--it weighs--!"


                             CHAPTER IV.

Leonard walked sturdily on in the high-road to the Great City. The day
was calm and sunlit, but with a gentle breeze from gray hills at the
distance; and with each mile that he passed, his step seemed to grow
more firm, and his front more elate. Oh! it is such joy in youth to be
alone with one's day-dreams. And youth feels so glorious a vigor in the
sense of its own strength, though the world be before and--against it!
Removed from that chilling counting-house--from the imperious will of a
patron and master--all friendless, but all independent--the young
adventurer felt a new being--felt his grand nature as Man. And on the
Man rushed the genius long interdicted--and thrust aside--rushing back,
with the first breath of adversity to console--no! the Man needed not
consolation--to kindle, to animate, to rejoice! If there is a being in
the world worthy of our envy, after we have grown wise philosophers of
the fireside, it is not the palled voluptuary, nor the care-worn
statesman, nor even the great prince of arts and letters, already
crowned with the laurel, whose leaves are as fit for poison as for
garlands; it is the young child of adventure and hope. Ay, and the
emptier his purse, ten to one but the richer his heart, and the wider
the domains which his fancy enjoys as he goes on with kingly step to the
Future.

Not till toward the evening did our adventurer slacken his pace, and
think of rest and refreshment. There, then, lay before him, on either
side the road, those wide patches of uninclosed land, which in England
often denote the entrance to a village. Presently one or two neat
cottages came in sight--then a small farm-house, with its yard and
barns. And some way further yet, he saw the sign swinging before an inn
of some pretensions--the sort of inn often found on a long stage between
two great towns, commonly called "The Half-way House." But the inn stood
back from the road, having its own separate sward in front, whereon were
a great beech tree (from which the sign extended) and a rustic arbor--so
that, to gain the inn, the coaches that stopped there took a sweep from
the main thoroughfare. Between our pedestrian and the inn there stood
naked and alone, on the common land, a church; our ancestors never would
have chosen that site for it; therefore it was a modern church--modern
Gothic--handsome to an eye not versed in the attributes of
ecclesiastical architecture--very barbarous to an eye that was. Somehow
or other the church looked cold, and raw, and uninviting. It looked a
church for show--much too big for the scattered hamlet--and void of all
the venerable associations which give their peculiar and unspeakable
atmosphere of piety to the churches in which succeeding generations have
knelt and worshiped. Leonard paused and surveyed the edifice with an
unlearned but poetical gaze--it dissatisfied him. And he was yet
pondering why, when a young girl passed slowly before him, her eyes
fixed on the ground, opened the little gate that led into the
church-yard, and vanished. He did not see the child's face; but there
was something in her movements so utterly listless, forlorn, and sad,
that his heart was touched. What did she there? He approached the low
wall with a noiseless step, and looked over it wistfully.

There by a grave evidently quite recent, with no wooden tomb nor
tombstone like the rest, the little girl had thrown herself, and she was
sobbing loud and passionately. Leonard opened the gate, and approached
her with a soft step. Mingled with her sobs, he heard broken sentences,
wild and vain, as all human sorrowings over graves must be.

"Father! oh, father! do you not really hear me? I am so lone--so lone!
Take me to you--take me!" And she buried her face in the deep grass.

"Poor child!" said Leonard, in a half whisper--"he is not there. Look
above!"

The girl did not heed him--he put his arm round her waist gently--she
made a gesture of impatience and anger, but she would not turn her
face--and she clung to the grave with her hands.

After clear sunny days the dews fall more heavily; and now, as the sun
set, the herbage was bathed in a vaporous haze--a dim mist rose around.
The young man seated himself beside her, and tried to draw the child to
his breast. Then she turned eagerly, indignantly, and pushed him aside
with jealous arms. He profaned the grave! He understood her with his
deep poet-heart, and rose. There was a pause.

Leonard was the first to break it.

"Come to your home with me, my child, and we will talk of _him_ by the
way."

"Him! Who are you? You did not know him!" said the girl, still with
anger. "Go away--why do you disturb me? I do no one harm. Go--go!"

"You do yourself harm, and that will grieve him if he sees you yonder!
Come!"

The child looked at him through her blinding tears, and his face
softened and soothed her.

"Go!" she said very plaintively, and in subdued accents. "I will but
stay a minute more. I--I have so much to say yet."

Leonard left the church-yard, and waited without; and in a short time
the child came forth, waved him aside as he approached her, and hurried
away. He followed her at a distance, and saw her disappear within the
inn.


                               CHAPTER V.

"Hip--hip--hurrah!" Such was the sound that greeted our young traveler
as he reached the inn-door--a sound joyous in itself, but sadly out of
harmony with the feelings which the child sobbing on the tombless grave
had left at his heart. The sound came from within, and was followed by
thumps and stamps, and the jingle of glasses. A strong odor of tobacco
was wafted to his olfactory sense. He hesitated a moment at the
threshold. Before him on benches under the beech-tree and within the
arbor, were grouped sundry athletic forms with "pipes in the liberal
air." The landlady, as she passed across the passage to the tap-room,
caught sight of his form at the doorway, and came forward. Leonard still
stood irresolute. He would have gone on his way, but for the child; she
had interested him strongly.

"You seem full, ma'am," said he. "Can I have accommodation for the
night?"

"Why, indeed, sir," said the landlady, civilly, "I can give you a
bed-room, but I don't know where to put you meanwhile. The two parlors
and the tap-room and the kitchen are all choke-ful. There has been a
great cattle-fair in the neighborhood, and I suppose we have as many as
fifty farmers and drovers stopping here."

"As to that, ma'am, I can sit in the bed-room you are kind enough to
give me; and if it does not cause you much trouble to let me have some
tea there, I should be glad; but I can wait your leisure. Do not put
yourself out of the way for me."

The landlady was touched by a consideration she was not much habituated
to receive from her bluff customers.

"You speak very handsome, sir, and we will do our best to serve you, if
you will excuse all faults. This way, sir." Leonard lowered his
knapsack, stepped into the passage, with some difficulty forced his way
through a knot of sturdy giants in top-boots or leathern gaiters, who
were swarming in and out the tap-room, and followed his hostess
up-stairs to a little bed-room at the top of the house.

"It is small, sir, and high," said the hostess, apologetically. "But
there be four gentlemen-farmers that have come a great distance, and all
the first floor is engaged; you will be more out of the noise here."

"Nothing can suit me better. But, stay--pardon me;" and Leonard,
glancing at the garb of the hostess, observed she was not in mourning.
"A little girl whom I saw in the church-yard yonder, weeping very
bitterly--is she a relation of yours? Poor child, she seems to have
deeper feelings than are common at her age."

"Ah, sir," said the landlady, putting the corner of her apron to her
eyes, "it is a very sad story--I don't know what to do. Her father was
taken ill on his way to Lunnun, and stopped here, and has been buried
four days. And the poor little girl seems to have no relations--and
where is she to go? Laryer Jones says we must pass her to Marybone
parish, where her father lived last; and what's to become of her then?
My heart bleeds to think on it." Here then rose such an uproar from
below, that it was evident some quarrel had broken out; and the hostess,
recalled to her duties, hastened to carry thither her propitiatory
influences.

Leonard seated himself pensively by the little lattice. Here was some
one more alone in the world than he. And she, poor orphan, had no stout
man's heart to grapple with fate, and no golden manuscripts that were to
be as the "Open Sesame" to the treasures of Aladdin. By-and-by, the
hostess brought him up a tray with tea and other refreshments, and
Leonard resumed his inquiries. "No relatives?" said he; "surely the
child must have some kinsfolk in London? Did her father leave no
directions, or was he in possession of his faculties?"

"Yes, sir; he was quite reasonablelike to the last. And I asked him if
he had not any thing on his mind, and he said, 'I have.' And I said,
'your little girl, sir?' And he answered me, 'Yes, ma'am;' and laying
his head on his pillow, he wept very quietly. I could not say more
myself, for it set me off to see him cry so meekly; but my husband is
harder than I, and he said, 'Cheer up, Mr. Digby; had not you better
write to your friends?'"

"'Friends!' said the gentleman, in such a voice! 'Friends, I have but
one, and I am going to Him! I can not take her there!' Then he seemed
suddenly to recollect hisself, and called for his clothes, and rummaged
in the pockets as if looking for some address, and could not find it.
He seemed a forgetful kind of gentleman, and his hands were what I call
_helpless_ hands, sir! And then he gasped out, 'Stop--stop! I never had
the address. Write to Lord Les--' something like Lord Lester--but we
could not make out the name. Indeed, he did not finish it, for there was
a rush of blood to his lips; and though he seemed sensible when he
recovered (and knew us and his little girl too, till he went off
smiling), he never spoke word more."

"Poor man," said Leonard, wiping his eyes. "But his little girl surely
remembers the name that he did not finish?"

"No. She says, he must have meant a gentleman whom they had met in the
Park not long ago, who was very kind to her father, and was Lord
something; but she don't remember the name, for she never saw him before
or since, and her father talked very little about any one lately, but
thought he should find some kind friends at Screwstown, and traveled
down there with her from Lunnon. But she supposes he was disappointed,
for he went out, came back, and merely told her to put up the things, as
they must go back to Lunnon. And on his way there he--died. Hush, what's
that? I hope she did not overhear us. No, we were talking low. She has
the next room to your'n, sir. I thought I heard her sobbing. Hush!"

"In the next room? I hear nothing. Well, with your leave, I will speak
to her before I quit you. And had her father no money with him?"

"Yes, a few sovereigns, sir; they paid for his funeral, and there is a
little left still, enough to take her to town; for my husband said, says
he, 'Hannah, the widow _gave_ her mite, and we must not _take_ the
orphan's,' and my husband is a hard man, too, sir. Bless him?"

"Let me take your hand, ma'am. God reward you both."

"La, sir!--why, even Dr. Dosewell said, rather grumpily though, 'Never
mind my bill; but don't call me up at six o'clock in the morning again,
without knowing a little more about people.' And I never afore knew Dr.
Dosewell go without his bill being paid. He said it was a trick o' the
other Doctor to spite him."

"What other Doctor?"

"Oh, a very good gentleman, who got out with Mr. Digby when he was taken
ill, and staid till the next morning; and our Doctor says his name is
Morgan, and he lives in--Lunnon, and is a homy--something."

"Homicide," suggested Leonard ignorantly.

"Ah--homicide; something like that, only a deal longer and worse. But he
left some of the tiniest little balls you ever see, sir, to give the
child; but, bless you, they did her no good--how should they?"

"Tiny balls, oh--homeopathist--I understand. And the Doctor was kind to
her; perhaps he may help her. Have you written to him?"

"But we don't know his address, and Lunnon is a vast place, sir."

"I am going to London, and will find it out."

"Ah, sir, you seem very kind; and sin' she must go to Lunnon (for what
can we do with her here?--she's too genteel for service), I wish she was
going with you."

"With me!" said Leonard, startled; "with me! Well, why not?"

"I am sure she comes of good blood, sir. You would have known her father
was quite the gentleman, only to see him die, sir. He went off so kind
and civil like, as if he was ashamed to give so much trouble--quite a
gentleman, if ever there was one. And so are you, sir, I'm sure," said
the landlady, courtesying; "I know what gentlefolk be. I've been a
housekeeper in the first of families in this very shire, sir, though I
can't say I've served in Lunnon; and so, as gentlefolks know each other,
I've no doubt you could find out her relations. Dear--dear! Coming,
coming!"

Here there were loud cries for the hostess, and she hurried away. The
farmers and drovers were beginning to depart, and their bills were to be
made out and paid. Leonard saw his hostess no more that night. The last
hip--hip--hurrah, was heard; some toast, perhaps, to the health of the
county members;--and the chamber of woe, beside Leonard's, rattled with
the shout. By-and-by silence gradually succeeded the various dissonant
sounds below. The carts and gigs rolled away; the clatter of hoofs on
the road ceased; there was then a dumb dull sound as of locking-up, and
low humming of voices below, and footsteps mounting the stairs to bed,
with now and then a drunken hiccup or maudlin laugh, as some conquered
votary of Bacchus was fairly carried up to his domicile.

All, then, at last, was silent, just as the clock from the church
sounded the stroke of eleven.

Leonard, meanwhile, had been looking over his MSS. There was first a
project for an improvement on the steam-engine--a project that had long
lain in his mind, begun with the first knowledge of mechanics that he
had gleaned from his purchases of the Tinker. He put that aside now--it
required too great an effort of the reasoning faculty to re-examine. He
glanced less hastily over a collection of essays on various subjects,
some that he thought indifferent, some that he thought good. He then
lingered over a collection of verses, written in his best hand with
loving care--verses first inspired by his perusal of Nora's melancholy
memorials. These verses were as a diary of his heart and his
fancy--those deep unwitnessed struggles which the boyhood of all more
thoughtful natures has passed in its bright yet murky storm of the cloud
and the lightning flash; though but few boys paused to record the crisis
from which slowly emerges Man. And these first desultory grapplings with
the fugitive airy images that flit through the dim chambers of the
brain, had become with each effort more sustained and vigorous, till the
phantoms were spelled, the flying ones arrested, the Immaterial seized,
and clothed with Form. Gazing on his last effort, Leonard felt that
there at length spoke forth the Poet. It was a work which, though as yet
but half completed, came from a strong hand; not that shadow trembling
on unsteady waters, which is but the pale reflex and imitation of some
bright mind, sphered out of reach and afar; but an original substance--a
life--a thing of the _Creative_ Faculty--breathing back already the
breath it had received. This work had paused during Leonard's residence
with Mr. Avenel, or had only now and then, in stealth, and at night,
received a rare touch. Now, as with a fresh eye, he re-perused it; and
with that strange, innocent admiration, not of self--(for a man's work
is not, alas! himself--it is the beatified and idealized essence,
extracted he knows not how from his own human elements of
clay)--admiration known but to poets--their purest delight, often their
sole reward. And then, with a warmer and more earthly beat of his full
heart, he rushed in fancy to the Great City, where all rivers of Fame
meet, but not to be merged and lost--sallying forth again,
individualized and separate, to flow through that one vast Thought of
God which we call THE WORLD.

He put up his papers; and opened his window, as was his ordinary custom,
before he retired to rest--for he had many odd habits; and he loved to
look out into the night when he prayed. His soul seemed to escape from
the body--to mount on the air--to gain more rapid access to the far
Throne in the Infinite--when his breath went forth among the winds, and
his eyes rested fixed on the stars of Heaven.

So the boy prayed silently; and after his prayer he was about
lingeringly to close the lattice, when he heard distinctly sobs close at
hand. He paused, and held his breath; then looked gently out; the
casement next his own was also open. Some one was also at watch by that
casement--perhaps also praying. He listened yet more intently, and
caught, soft and low, the words, "Father--father--do you hear me _now_?"


                              CHAPTER VI.

Leonard opened his door and stole toward that of the room adjoining; for
his first natural impulse had been to enter and console. But when his
touch was on the handle, he drew back. Child though the mourner was, her
sorrows were rendered yet more sacred from intrusion by her sex.
Something, he knew not what, in his young ignorance, withheld him from
the threshold. To have crossed it then would have seemed to him
profanation. So he returned, and for hours yet he occasionally heard the
sobs, till they died away, and childhood wept itself to sleep.

But the next morning, when he heard his neighbor astir, he knocked
gently at her door; there was no answer. He entered softly, and saw her
seated very listlessly in the centre of the room--as if it had no
familiar nook or corner as the rooms of home have--her hands drooping on
her lap, and her eyes gazing desolately on the floor. Then he approached
and spoke to her.

Helen was very subdued, and very silent. Her tears seemed dried up: and
it was long before she gave sign or token that she heeded him. At
length, however, he gradually succeeded in rousing her interest; and the
first symptom of his success was in the quiver of her lip, and the
overflow of the downcast eyes.

By little and little he wormed himself into her confidence; and she told
him, in broken whispers, her simple story. But what moved him the most
was, that, beyond her sense of loneliness, she did not seem to feel her
own unprotected state. She mourned the object she had nursed, and
heeded, and cherished; for she had been rather the protectress than the
protected to the helpless dead. He could not gain from her any more
satisfactory information than the landlady had already imparted, as to
her friends and prospects; but she permitted him passively to look among
the effects her father had left--save only that if his hand touched
something that seemed to her associations especially holy, she waved him
back, or drew it quickly away. There were many bills receipted in the
name of Captain Digby--old yellow faded music-scores for the
flute--extracts of Parts from Prompt Books--gay parts of lively
comedies, in which heroes have so noble a contempt for money--fit heroes
for a Sheridan and a Farquhar; close by these were several pawnbroker's
tickets; and, not arranged smoothly, but crumpled up, as if with an
indignant nervous clutch of the old helpless hands, some two or three
letters. He asked Helen's permission to glance at these, for they might
give a clew to friends. Helen gave the permission by a silent bend of
the head. The letters, however, were but short and freezing answers from
what appeared to be distant connections or former friends, or persons to
whom the deceased had applied for some situation. They were all very
disheartening in their tone. Leonard next endeavored to refresh Helen's
memory as to the name of the nobleman which had been last on her
father's lips; but there he failed wholly. For it may be remembered that
Lord L'Estrange, when he pressed his loan on Mr. Digby, and subsequently
told that gentleman to address to him at Mr. Egerton's, had, from a
natural delicacy, sent the child on, that she might not hear the charity
bestowed on the father; and Helen said truly, that Mr. Digby had sunk
into a habitual silence on all his affairs latterly. She might have
heard her father mention the name, but she had not treasured it up; all
she could say was, that she should know the stranger again if she met
him, and his dog too. Seeing that the child had grown calm, Leonard was
then going to leave the room, in order to confer with the hostess: when
she rose suddenly, though noiselessly, and put her little hand in his,
as if to detain him. She did not say a word--the action said all--said
"Do not desert me." And Leonardo heart rushed to his lips, and he
answered to the action, as he bent down and kissed her cheek, "Orphan,
will you go with me? We have one Father yet to both of us, and He will
guide us on earth. I am fatherless like you." She raised her eyes to
his--looked at him long--and then leant her head confidingly on his
strong young shoulder.


                             CHAPTER VII.

At noon that same day, the young man and the child were on their road to
London. The host had at first a little demurred at trusting Helen to so
young a companion; but Leonard, in his happy ignorance, had talked so
sanguinely of finding out this lord, or some adequate protection for the
child; and in so grand a strain, though with all sincerity--had spoken
of his own great prospects in the metropolis (he did not say what they
were!)--that had it been the craftiest impostor he could not more have
taken in the rustic host. And while the landlady still cherished the
illusive fancy, that all gentlefolks must know each other in London, as
they did in a county, the landlord believed, at least, that a young man
so respectably dressed, although but a foot-traveler--who talked in so
confident a tone, and who was so willing to undertake what might be
rather a burdensome charge, unless he saw how to rid himself of
it--would be sure to have friends, older and wiser than himself, who
would judge what could best be done for the orphan.

And what was the host to do with her? Better this volunteered escort, at
least, than vaguely passing her on from parish to parish, and leaving
her friendless at last in the streets of London. Helen, too, smiled for
the first time on being asked her wishes, and again put her hand in
Leonard's. In short, so it was settled.

The little girl made up a bundle of the things she most prized or
needed. Leonard did not feel the additional load, as he slung it to his
knapsack: the rest of the luggage was to be sent to London as soon as
Leonard wrote (which he promised to do soon), and gave an address.

Helen paid her last visit to the church-yard; and she joined her
companion as he stood on the road, without the solemn precincts. And now
they had gone on some hours; and when he asked if she were tired, she
still answered, "No." But Leonard was merciful, and made their day's
journey short; and it took them some days to reach London. By the long
lonely way, they grew so intimate; at the end of the second day, they
called each other brother and sister; and Leonard, to his delight, found
that as her grief, with the bodily movement and the change of scene,
subsided from its first intenseness and its insensibility to other
impressions, she developed a quickness of comprehension far beyond her
years. Poor child! _that_ had been forced upon her by Necessity. And she
understood him in his spiritual consolations--half-poetical,
half-religious; and she listened to his own tale, and the story of his
self-education and solitary struggles--those, too, she understood. But
when he burst out with his enthusiasm, his glorious hopes, his
confidence in the fate before them, then she would shake her head very
quietly and very sadly. Did she comprehend _them_? Alas! perhaps too
well. She knew more as to real life than he did. Leonard was at first
their joint treasurer; but before the second day was over, Helen seemed
to discover that he was too lavish; and she told him so, with a prudent,
grave look, putting her hand on his arm as he was about to enter an inn
to dine; and the gravity would have been comic, but that the eyes
through their moisture were so meek and grateful. She felt he was about
to incur that ruinous extravagance on her account. Somehow or other, the
purse found its way into her keeping, and then she looked proud and in
her natural element.

Ah! what happy meals under her care were provided: so much more
enjoyable than in dull, sanded inn-parlors, swarming with flies and
reeking with stale tobacco. She would leave him at the entrance of a
village, bound forward, and cater, and return with a little basket and a
pretty blue jug--which she had bought on the road--the last filled with
new milk; the first with new bread and some special dainty in radishes
or water-cresses. And she had such a talent for finding out the
prettiest spot whereon to halt and dine: sometimes in the heart of a
wood--so still, it was like a forest in fairy tales, the hare stealing
through the alleys, or the squirrel peeping at them from the boughs;
sometimes by a little brawling stream, with the fishes seen under the
clear wave, and shooting round the crumbs thrown to them. They made an
Arcadia of the dull road up to their dread Thermopylæ--the war against
the million that waited them on the other side of their pass through
Tempe.

"Shall we be as happy when we are _great_?" said Leonard, in his grand
simplicity.

Helen sighed, and the wise little head was shaken.


                             CHAPTER VIII.

At last they came within easy reach of London; but Leonard had resolved
not to enter the metropolis fatigued and exhausted, as a wanderer
needing refuge, but fresh and elate, as a conqueror coming in triumph to
take possession of the capital. Therefore they halted early in the
evening of the day preceding this imperial entry, about six miles from
the metropolis, in the neighborhood of Ealing (for by that route lay
their way). They were not tired on arriving at their inn. The weather
was singularly lovely, with that combination of softness and brilliancy
which is only known to the rare true summer days of England: all below
so green, above so blue--days of which we have about six in the year,
and recall vaguely when we read of Robin Hood and Maid Marian, of Damsel
and Knight, in Spenser's golden Summer Song, or of Jacques, dropped
under the oak tree, watching the deer amidst the dells of Ardennes. So,
after a little pause in their inn, they strolled forth, not for travel,
but pleasure, toward the cool of sunset, passing by the grounds that
once belonged to the Duke of Kent, and catching a glimpse of the shrubs
and lawns of that beautiful domain through the lodge-gates; then they
crossed into some fields, and came to a little rivulet called the Brent.
Helen had been more sad that day than on any during their journey.
Perhaps, because, on approaching London, the memory of her father became
more vivid; perhaps from her precocious knowledge of life, and her
foreboding of what was to befall them, children that they both were. But
Leonard was selfish that day; he could not be influenced by his
companion's sorrow, he was so full of his own sense of being, and he
already caught from the atmosphere the fever that belongs to anxious
Capitals.

"Sit here, sister," said he imperiously throwing himself under the shade
of a pollard tree that overhung the winding brook, "sit here and talk."

He flung off his hat, tossed back his rich curls, and sprinkled his brow
from the stream that eddied round the roots of the tree that bulged out,
bald and gnarled, from the bank, and delved into the waves below. Helen
quietly obeyed him, and nestled close to his side.

"And so this London is really very vast?--VERY?" he repeated
inquisitively.

"Very," answered Helen, as abstractedly she plucked the cowslips near
her, and let them fall into the running waters. "See how the flowers are
carried down the stream! They are lost now. London is to us what the
river is to the flowers--very vast--very strong;" and she added, after a
pause, "very cruel?"

"Cruel! Ah, it _has_ been so to you; but _now_!--now I will take care of
you!" he smiled triumphantly; and his smile was beautiful both in its
pride and its kindness. It is astonishing how Leonard had altered since
he had left his uncle's. He was both younger and older; for the sense of
genius, when it snaps its shackles, makes us both older and wiser as to
the world it soars to--younger and blinder as to the world it springs
from.

"And it is not a very handsome city either, you say?"

"Very ugly, indeed," said Helen, with some fervor; "at least all I have
seen of it."

"But there must be parts that are prettier than others? You say there
are parks; why should not we lodge near them, and look upon the green
trees?"

"That would be nice," said Helen, almost joyously; "but--" and here the
head was shaken--"there are no lodgings for us except in courts and
alleys."

"Why?"

"Why?" echoed Helen, with a smile, and she held up the purse.

"Pooh! always that horrid purse; as if, too, we were not going to fill
it. Did I not tell you the story of Fortunio? Well, at all events, we
will go first to the neighborhood where you last lived, and learn there
all we can; and then the day after to-morrow, I will see this Dr.
Morgan, and find out the Lord--"

The tears started to Helen's soft eyes. "You want to get rid of me soon,
brother."

"I! ah, I feel so happy to have you with me, it seems to me as if I had
pined for you all my life, and you had come at last; for I never had
brother, nor sister, nor any one to love, that was not older than
myself, except--"

"Except the young lady you told me of," said Helen, turning away her
face; for children are very jealous.

"Yes, I loved her, love her still. But that was different," said
Leonard, with a heightened color. "I could never have talked to her as
to you; to you I open my whole heart; you are my little Muse, Helen. I
confess to you my wild whims and fancies as frankly as if I were writing
poetry." As he said this, a step was heard, and a shadow fell over the
stream. A belated angler appeared on the margin, drawing his line
impatiently across the water, as if to worry some dozing fish into a
bite before it finally settled itself for the night. Absorbed in his
occupation, the angler did not observe the young persons on the sward
under the tree, and he halted there, close upon them.

"Curse that perch!" said he aloud.

"Take care, sir," cried Leonard; for the man in stepping back, nearly
trod upon Helen.

The angler turned. "What's the matter? Hist! you have frightened my
perch. Keep still, can't you?"

Helen drew herself out of the way, and Leonard remained motionless. He
remembered Jackeymo, and felt a sympathy for the angler.

"It is the most extraordinary perch, that!" muttered the stranger,
soliloquizing. "It has the devil's own luck. It must have been born with
a silver spoon in its mouth, that damned perch! I shall never catch
it--never! Ha!--no--only a weed. I give it up." With this, he
indignantly jerked his rod from the water, and began to disjoint it.
While leisurely engaged in this occupation, he turned to Leonard.

"Humph! are you intimately acquainted with this stream, sir?"

"No," answered Leonard. "I never saw it before."

ANGLER (solemnly).--"Then, young man, take my advice, and do not give
way to its fascinations. Sir, I am a martyr to this stream; it has been
the Dalilah of my existence."

LEONARD (interested, the last sentence seemed to him poetical).--"The
Dalilah! Sir--the Dalilah!"

ANGLER.--"The Dalilah. Young man, listen, and be warned by example. When
I was about your age, I first came to this stream to fish. Sir, on that
fatal day, about 3, P.M., I hooked up a fish--such a big one, it must
have weighed a pound and a half. Sir, it was that length;" and the
angler put finger to wrist. "And just when I had got it nearly ashore,
by the very place where you are sitting, on that shelving bank, young
man, the line broke, and the perch twisted himself among those roots,
and--caco-dæmon that he was--ran off, hook and all. Well, that fish
haunted me; never before had I seen such a fish. Minnows I had caught in
the Thames and elsewhere, also gudgeons, and occasionally a dace. But a
fish like that--a PERCH--all his fins up like the sails of a
man-of-war--a monster perch--a whale of a perch!--No, never till then
had I known what leviathans lie hid within the deeps. I could not sleep
till I had returned; and again, sir--I caught that perch. And this time
I pulled him fairly out of the water. He escaped; and how did he escape?
Sir, he left his eye behind him on the hook. Years, long years, have
passed since then; but never shall I forget the agony of that moment."

LEONARD.--"To the perch, sir?"

ANGLER.--"Perch! agony to him! He enjoyed it:--agony to me. I gazed on
that eye, and the eye looked as sly and as wicked as if it was laughing
in my face. Well, sir, I had heard that there is no better bait for a
perch than a perch's eye. I adjusted that eye on the hook, and dropped
in the line gently. The water was unusually clear; in two minutes I saw
that perch return. He approached the hook; he recognized his
eye--frisked his tail--made a plunge--and, as I live, carried off the
eye, safe and sound; and I saw him digesting it by the side of that
water lily. The mocking fiend! Seven times since that day, in the course
of a varied and eventful life, have I caught that perch, and seven times
has that perch escaped."

LEONARD (astonished):--"It can't be the same perch; perches are very
tender fish--a hook inside of it, and an eye hooked out of it--no perch
could withstand such havoc in its constitution."

ANGLER (with an appearance of awe).--"It does seem supernatural. But it
_is_ that perch; for harkye, sir, there is ONLY ONE perch in the whole
brook! All the years I have fished here, I have never caught another
perch here; and this solitary inmate of the watery element I know by
sight better than I know my own lost father. For each time that I have
raised it out of the water, its profile has been turned to me, and I
have seen, with a shudder, that it has had only--One Eye! It is a most
mysterious and a most diabolical phenomenon, that perch! It has been the
ruin of my prospects in life. I was offered a situation in Jamaica; I
could not go, with that perch left here in triumph. I might afterward
have had an appointment in India, but I could not put the ocean between
myself and that perch: thus have I frittered away my existence in the
fatal metropolis of my native land. And once a-week, from February to
December, I come hither--Good Heavens! if I should catch the perch at
last, the occupation of my existence will be gone."

Leonard gazed curiously at the angler, as the last thus mournfully
concluded. The ornate turn of his periods did not suit with his costume.
He looked woefully threadbare and shabby--a genteel sort of shabbiness
too--shabbiness in black. There was humor in the corners of his lip; and
his hands, though they did not seem very clean--indeed his occupation
was not friendly to such niceties--were those of a man who had not known
manual labor. His face was pale and puffed, but the tip of his nose was
red. He did not seem as if the watery element was as familiar to himself
as to his Dalilah--the perch.

"Such is Life!" recommenced the angler in a moralizing tone, as he slid
his rod into its canvas case. "If a man knew what it was to fish all
one's life in a stream that has only one perch!--to catch that one perch
nine times in all, and nine times to see it fall back into the water,
plump;--if a man knew what it was--why, then"--Here the angler looked
over his shoulder full at Leonard--"why then, young sir, he would know
what human life is to vain ambition. Good evening."

Away he went, treading over the daisies and king cups. Helen's eyes
followed him wistfully.

"What a strange person!" said Leonard, laughing.

"I think he is a very wise one," murmured Helen; and she came close up
to Leonard, and took his hand in both hers, as if she felt already that
he was in need of the Comforter--the line broke, and the perch lost!


                             CHAPTER IX.

At noon the next day, London stole upon them, through a gloomy, thick,
oppressive atmosphere. For where is it that we can say London _bursts_
on the sight? It stole on them through one of its fairest and most
gracious avenues of approach--by the stately gardens of Kensington--along
the side of Hyde Park, and so on toward Cumberland Gate.

Leonard was not the least struck. And yet, with a very little money, and
a very little taste, it would be easy to render this entrance to London
as grand and imposing as that to Paris from the _Champs Elysées_. As
they came near the Edgeware Road, Helen took her new brother by the hand
and guided him. For she knew all that neighborhood, and she was
acquainted with a lodging near that occupied by her father (to _that_
lodging itself she could not have gone for the world), where they might
be housed cheaply.

But just then the sky, so dull and overcast since morning, seemed one
mass of black cloud. There suddenly came on a violent storm of rain. The
boy and girl took refuge in a covered mews, in a street running out of
the Edgeware Road. This shelter soon became crowded; the two young
pilgrims crept close to the wall, apart from the rest; Leonard's arm
round Helen's waist, sheltering her from the rain that the strong wind
contending with it beat in through the passage. Presently a young
gentleman, of better mien and dress than the other refugees, entered,
not hastily, but rather with a slow and proud step, as if, though he
deigned to take shelter, he scorned to run to it. He glanced somewhat
haughtily at the assembled group--passed on through the midst of
it--came near Leonard--took off his hat, and shook the rain from its
brim. His head thus uncovered, left all his features exposed; and the
village youth recognized, at the first glance, his old victorious
assailant on the green at Hazeldean.

Yet Randal Leslie was altered. His dark cheek was as thin as in boyhood,
and even yet more wasted by intense study and night vigils; but the
expression of his face was at once more refined and manly, and there was
a steady concentrated light in his large eye, like that of one who has
been in the habit of bringing all his thoughts to one point. He looked
older than he was. He was dressed simply in black, a color which became
him; and altogether his aspect and figure were not showy indeed, but
distinguished. He looked, to the common eye, a gentleman; and to the
more observant, a scholar.

Helter-skelter!--pell-mell! the group in the passage--now pressed each
on each--now scattered on all sides--making way--rushing down the
mews--against the walls--as a fiery horse darted under shelter; the
rider, a young man, with a very handsome face, and dressed with that
peculiar care which we commonly call dandyism, cried out,
good-humoredly, "Don't be afraid; the horse shan't hurt any of you--a
thousand pardons--so ho! so ho!" He patted the horse, and it stood as
still as a statue, filling up the centre of the passage. The groups
resettled--Randal approached the rider.

"Frank Hazeldean!"

"Ah--is it indeed Randal Leslie!"

Frank was off his horse in a moment, and the bridle was consigned to the
care of a slim prentice-boy holding a bundle.

"My dear fellow, how glad I am to see you. How lucky it was that I
should turn in here. Not like me either, for I don't much care for a
ducking. Staying in town, Randal?"

"Yes, at your uncle's, Mr. Egerton. I have left Oxford."

"For good?"

"For good."

"But you have not taken your degree, I think? We Etonians all considered
you booked for a double first. Oh! we have been so proud of your
fame--you carried off all the prizes."

"Not all; but some, certainly. Mr. Egerton offered me my choice--to stay
for my degree, or to enter at once into the Foreign Office. I preferred
the end to the means. For, after all, what good are academical honors
but as the entrance to life? To enter now, is to save a step in a long
way, Frank."

"Ah! you were always ambitious, and you will make a great figure, I am
sure."

"Perhaps so--if I work for it. Knowledge is power!"

Leonard started.

"And you," resumed Randal, looking with some curious attention at his
old school-fellow. "You never came to Oxford. I did hear you were going
into the army."

"I am in the Guards," said Frank, trying hard not to look too conceited
as he made that acknowledgment. "The Governor pished a little, and would
rather I had come to live with him in the old Hall, and take to farming.
Time enough for that--eh? By Jove, Randal, how pleasant a thing is life
in London? Do you go to Almack's to-night?"

"No; Wednesday is a holiday in the House! There is a great parliamentary
dinner at Mr. Egerton's. He is in the Cabinet now, you know; but you
don't see much of your uncle, I think."

"Our sets are different," said the young gentleman, in a tone of voice
worthy of Brummel. "All those parliamentary fellows are devilish dull.
The rain's over. I don't know whether the Governor would like me to call
at Grosvenor-square; but pray come and see me; here's my card to remind
you; you must dine at our mess. Such nice fellows. What day will you
fix?"

"I will call and let you know. Don't you find it rather expensive in the
Guards? I remember that you thought the Governor, as you call him, used
to chafe a little when you wrote for more pocket-money; and the only
time I ever remember to have seen you with tears in your eyes, was when
Mr. Hazeldean, in sending you £5, reminded you that his estates were not
entailed--were at his own disposal, and they should never go to an
extravagant spendthrift. It was not a pleasant threat, that, Frank."

"Oh!" cried the young man coloring deeply, "It was not the threat that
pained me, it was that my father could think so meanly of me as to fancy
that--well--well, but those were school-boy days. And my father was
always more generous than I deserved. We must see a good deal of each
other, Randal. How good-natured you were at Eton, making my longs and
shorts for me; I shall never forget it. Do call soon."

Frank swung himself into his saddle, and rewarded the slim youth with
half-a-crown; a largess four times more ample than his father would have
deemed sufficient. A jerk of the rein and a touch of the heel--off
bounded the fiery horse and the gay young rider. Randal mused; and as
the rain had now ceased, the passengers under shelter dispersed and went
their way. Only Randal, Leonard, and Helen remained behind. Then, as
Randal, still musing, lifted his eyes, they fell full upon Leonard's
face. He started, passed his hand quickly over his brow--looked again,
hard and piercingly; and the change in his pale cheek to a shade still
paler--a quick compression and nervous gnawing of his lip--showed that
he too recognized an old foe. Then his glance ran over Leonard's dress,
which was somewhat dust-stained, but far above the class among which the
peasant was born. Randal raised his brows in surprise, and with a smile
slightly supercilious--the smile stung Leonard; and with a slow step
Randal left the passage, and took his way toward Grosvenor-square. The
Entrance of Ambition was clear to _him_.

Then the little girl once more took Leonard by the hand, and led him
through rows of humble, obscure, dreary streets. It seemed almost like
an allegory personified, as the sad, silent child led on the penniless
and low-born adventurer of genius by the squalid shops, and through the
winding lanes, which grew meaner and meaner, till both their forms
vanished from the view.


                              CHAPTER X.

"But do come; change your dress, return and dine with me; you will have
just time, Harley. You will meet the most eminent men of our party;
surely they are worth your study, philosopher that you affect to be."

Thus said Audley Egerton to Lord L'Estrange, with whom he had been
riding (after the toils of his office). The two gentlemen were in
Audley's library. Mr. Egerton, as usual, buttoned up, seated in his
chair, in the erect posture of a man who scorns "inglorious ease."
Harley, as usual, thrown at length on a sofa, his long hair in careless
curls, his neckcloth loose, his habiliments flowing--_simplex
munditiis_, indeed--his grace all his own; seemingly negligent, never
slovenly; at ease every where and with every one, even with Mr. Audley
Egerton, who chilled or awed the ease out of most people.

"Nay, my dear Audley, forgive me. But your eminent men are all men of
one idea, and that not a diverting one--politics! politics! politics!
The storm in the saucer."

"But, what is your life, Harley?--the saucer without the storm?"

"Do you know, that's very well said, Audley; I did not think you had so
much liveliness of repartee. Life--life! it is insipid, it is shallow.
No launching argosies in the saucer. Audley, I have the oddest fancy--"

"_That_ of course," said Audley drily; "you never have any other. What
is the new one?"

HARLEY (with great gravity).--"Do you believe in Mesmerism?"

AUDLEY.--"Certainly not."

HARLEY.--"If it were in the power of an animal magnetizer to get me out
of my own skin into somebody else's! _That's_ my fancy! I am so tired of
myself--so tired! I have run through all my ideas--know every one of
them by heart; when some pretentious impostor of an idea perks itself up
and says, 'Look at me, I'm a new acquaintance'--I just give it a nod,
and say, 'Not at all, you have only got a new coat on; you are the same
old wretch that has bored me these last twenty years; get away.' But if
one could be in a new skin! if I could be for half-an-hour your tall
porter, or one of your eminent matter-of-fact men, I should then really
travel into a new world.[13] Every man's brain must be a world in itself,
eh? If I could but make a parochial settlement even in yours,
Audley--run over all your thoughts and sensations. Upon my life, I'll go
and talk to that French mesmerizer about it."

    [13] If, at the date in which Lord L'Estrange held this
    conversation with Mr. Egerton, Alfred de Musset had written
    his comedies, we should suspect that his lordship had
    plagiarized from one of them the whimsical idea that he here
    vents upon Audley. In repeating it, the author at least can
    not escape from the charge of obligation to a writer whose
    humor, at least, is sufficiently opulent to justify the loan.

AUDLEY (who does not seem to like the notion of having his thoughts and
sensations rummaged, even by his friend, and even in fancy).--"Pooh,
pooh, pooh! Do talk like a man of sense."

HARLEY--"Man of sense! Where shall I find a model? I don't know a man of
sense!--never met such a creature. Don't believe it ever existed. At one
time I thought Socrates must have been a man of sense;--a delusion; he
would stand gazing into the air, and talking to his Genius from sunrise
to sunset. Is that like a man of sense? Poor Audley, how puzzled he
looks! Well, I'll try and talk sense to oblige you. And first--(here
Harley raised himself on his elbow)--first, is it true, as I have heard
vaguely, that you are paying court to the sister of that infamous
Italian traitor?"

"Madame di Negra? No; I am not paying _court_ to her," answered Audley
with a cold smile. "But she is very handsome; she is very clever; she is
useful to me--I need not say how nor why; that belongs to my _métier_ as
politician. But, I think, if you will take my advice, or get your friend
to take it, I could obtain from her brother, through my influence with
her, some liberal concessions to your exile. She is very anxious to know
where he is."

"You have not told her?"

"No; I promised you I would keep that secret."

"Be sure you do; it is only for some mischief, some snare, that she
could desire such information. Concessions! pooh! This is no question of
concessions, but of rights."

"I think you should leave your friend to judge of that."

"Well, I will write to him. Meanwhile, beware of this woman, I have
heard much of her abroad, and she has the character of her brother for
duplicity and--"

"Beauty," interrupted Audley, turning the conversation with practiced
adroitness. "I am told that the Count is one of the handsomest men in
Europe, much handsomer than his sister still, though nearly twice her
age. Tut--tut--Harley! fear not for me. I am proof against all feminine
attractions. This heart is dead."

"Nay, nay; it is not for you to speak thus--leave that to me. But even
_I_ will not say it. The heart never dies. And you; what have you
lost?--a wife; true: an excellent noble-hearted woman. But was it love
that you felt for her? Enviable man, have you ever loved?"

"Perhaps not, Harley," said Audley, with a sombre aspect, and in
dejected accents; "very few men ever have loved, at least as you mean by
the word. But there are other passions than love that kill the heart,
and reduce us to mechanism."

While Egerton spoke, Harley turned side, and his breast heaved. There
was a short silence; Audley was the first to break it.

"Speaking of my lost wife, I am sorry that you do not approve what I
have done for her young kinsman, Randal Leslie."

HARLEY (recovering himself with an effort).--"Is it true kindness to bid
him exchange manly independence, for the protection of an official
patron?"

AUDLEY.--"I did not bid him. I gave him his choice. At his age I should
have chosen as he has done."

HARLEY.--"I trust not; I think better of you. But answer me one question
frankly, and then I will ask another. Do you mean to make this young man
your heir?"

AUDLEY (with a slight embarrassment).--"Heir, pooh! I am young still. I
may live as long as he--time enough to think of that."

HARLEY.--"Then now to my second question. Have you told this youth
plainly that he may look to you for influence, but not for wealth?"

AUDLEY (firmly).--"I think I have; but I shall repeat it more
emphatically."

HARLEY.--"Then I am satisfied as to your conduct, but not as to his. For
he has too acute an intellect not to know what it is to forfeit
independence; and, depend upon it, he has made his calculations, and
would throw you into the bargain in any balance that he could strike in
his favor. You go by your experience in judging men; I by my instincts.
Nature warns us as it does the inferior animals--only we are too
conceited, we bipeds, to heed her. My instincts of soldier and gentleman
recoil from that old young man. He has the soul of the Jesuit. I see it
in his eye--I hear it in the tread of his foot; _volto sciolto_, he has
not; _i pensieri stretti_ he has. Hist! I hear now his step in the hall.
I should know it from a thousand. That's his very touch on the handle of
the door."

Randal Leslie entered. Harley--who, despite his disregard for forms, and
his dislike to Randal, was too high-bred not to be polite to his junior
in age or inferior in rank--rose and bowed. But his bright piercing eyes
did not soften as they caught and bore down the deeper and more latent
fire in Randal's. Harley then did not resume his seat, but moved to the
mantlepiece, and leant against it.

RANDAL.--"I have fulfilled, your commissions, Mr. Egerton. I went first
to Maida-Hill, and saw Mr. Burley. I gave him the check, but he said
'it was too much, and he should return half to the banker;' he will
write the article as you suggested. I then--"

AUDLEY.--"Enough, Randal! we will not fatigue Lord L'Estrange with these
little details of a life that displeases him--the life political."

HARLEY.--"But _these_ details do not displease me; they reconcile me to
my own life. Go on, pray, Mr. Leslie."

Randal had too much tact to need the cautioning glance of Mr. Egerton.
He did not continue, but said, with a soft voice, "Do you think, Lord
L'Estrange, that the contemplation of the mode of life pursued by others
_can_ reconcile a man to his own, if he had before thought it needed a
reconciler?"

Harley looked pleased, for the question was ironical; and, if there was
a thing in the world he abhorred, it was flattery.

"Recollect your Lucretius, Mr. Leslie, _Suave mare_, &c., 'pleasant from
the cliff to see the mariners tossed on the ocean.' Faith, I think that
sight reconciles one to the cliff--though, before, one might have been
teased by the splash from the spray, and deafened by the scream of the
sea-gulls. But I leave you, Audley. Strange that I have heard no more of
my soldier. Remember I have your promise when I come to claim it.
Good-by, Mr. Leslie, I hope that Mr. Burley's article will be worth
the--check."

Lord L'Estrange mounted his horse, which was still at the door, and rode
through the Park. But he was no longer now unknown by sight. Bows and
nods saluted him on every side.

"Alas, I am found out then," said he to himself. "That terrible Duchess
of Knaresborough, too--I must fly my country." He pushed his horse into
a canter, and was soon out of the Park. As he dismounted at his father's
sequestered house, you would have hardly supposed him the same
whimsical, fantastic, but deep and subtle humorist that delighted in
perplexing the material Audley. For his expressive face was unutterably
serious. But the moment he came into the presence of his parents the
countenance was again lighted and cheerful. It brightened the whole room
like sunshine.


                             CHAPTER XI.

"Mr. Leslie," said Egerton, when Harley had left the library, "you did
not act with your usual discretion in touching upon matters connected
with politics in the presence of a third party."

"I feel that already, sir; my excuse is that I held Lord L'Estrange to
be your most intimate friend."

"A public man, Mr. Leslie, would ill serve his country if he were not
especially reserved toward his private friends--when they do not belong
to his party."

"But, pardon me my ignorance, Lord Lansmere is so well known to be one
of your supporters, that I fancied his son must share his sentiments,
and be in your confidence."

Egerton's brows slightly contracted, and gave a stern expression to a
countenance always firm and decided. He, however, answered in a mild
tone.

"At the entrance into political life, Mr. Leslie, there is nothing in
which a young man of your talents should be more on his guard than
thinking for himself; he will nearly always think wrong. And I believe
that is one reason why young men of talent disappoint their friends,
and--remain so long out of office."

A haughty flush passed over Randal's brow, and faded away quickly; he
bowed in silence.

Egerton resumed, as if in explanation, and even in kindly apology--

"Look at Lord L'Estrange himself. What young man could come into life
with brighter auspices? Rank, wealth, high animal spirits (a great
advantage those same spirits, Mr. Leslie), courage, self-possession,
scholarship as brilliant perhaps as your own; and now see how his life
is wasted! Why? He always thought fit to think for himself. He could
never be broken in to harness, and never will be. The State coach, Mr.
Leslie, requires that all the horses should pull together."

"With submission, sir," answered Randal, "I should think that there were
other reasons why Lord L'Estrange, whatever be his talents--and indeed
of these you must be an adequate judge--would never do any thing in
public life."

"Ay, and what?" said Egerton, quickly.

"First," said Randal, shrewdly, "private life has done too much for him.
What could public life give to one who needs nothing? Born at the top of
the social ladder, why should he put himself voluntarily at the last
step, for the sake of climbing up again? And secondly, Lord L'Estrange
seems to me a man in whose organization _sentiment_ usurps too large a
share for practical existence."

"You have a keen eye," said Audley, with some admiration; "keen for one
so young.--Poor Harley!"

Mr. Egerton's last words were said to himself. He resumed quickly--

"There is something on my mind, my young friend. Let us be frank with
each other. I placed before you fairly the advantages and disadvantages
of the choice I gave you. To take your degree with such honors as no
doubt you would have won, to obtain your fellowship, to go to the bar,
with those credentials in favor of your talents;--this was one career.
To come at once into public life, to profit by my experience, avail
yourself of my interest, to take the chances of rise or fall with a
party: this was another. You chose the last. But in so doing, there was
a consideration which might weigh with you; and on which, in stating
your reasons for your option, you were silent."

"What's that, sir?"

"You might have counted on my fortune should the chances of party fail
you;--speak--and without shame if so; it would be natural in a young
man, who comes from the elder branch of the house whose heiress was my
wife."

"You wound me, Mr. Egerton," said Randal, turning away.

Mr. Egerton's cold glance followed Randal's movement; the face was hid
from the glance--it rested on the figure, which is often as
self-betraying as the countenance itself. Randal baffled Mr. Egerton's
penetration--the young man's emotion might be honest pride, and pained
and generous feeling; or it might be something else. Egerton continued
slowly.

"Once for all then, distinctly and emphatically, I say--never count upon
that; count upon all else that I can do for you, and forgive me, when I
advise harshly or censure coldly; ascribe this to my interest in your
career. Moreover, before decision becomes irrevocable, I wish you to
know practically all that is disagreeable or even humiliating in the
first subordinate steps of him who, without wealth or station, would
rise in public life. I will not consider your choice settled, till the
end of a year at least--your name will be kept on the college books till
then; if, on experience, you should prefer to return to Oxford, and
pursue the slower but surer path to independence and distinction, you
can. And now give me your hand, Mr. Leslie, in sign that you forgive my
bluntness;--it is time to dress."

Randal, with his face still averted, extended his hand. Mr. Egerton held
it a moment, then dropping it left the room. Randal turned as the door
closed. And there was in his dark face a power of sinister passion, that
justified all Harley's warnings. His lips moved, but not audibly; then,
as if struck by a sudden thought, he followed Egerton into the hall.

"Sir," said he, "I forgot to say that on returning from Maida-Hill, I
took shelter from the rain under a covered passage, and there I met
unexpectedly with your nephew, Frank Hazeldean."

"Ah!" said Egerton indifferently, "a fine young man; in the Guards. It
is a pity that my brother has such antiquated political notions; he
should put his son into parliament, and under my guidance; I could push
him. Well, and what said Frank?"

"He invited me to call on him. I remember that you once rather cautioned
me against too intimate an acquaintance with those who have not got
their fortune to make."

"Because they are idle, and idleness is contagious. Right--better not be
intimate with a young Guardsman."

"Then you would not have me call on him, sir? We were rather friends at
Eton; and if I wholly reject his overtures, might he not think that
you--"

"I!" interrupted Egerton. "Ah, true: my brother might think I bore him a
grudge; absurd; call then, and ask the young man here. Yet still, I do
not advise intimacy."

Egerton turned into his dressing, room. "Sir," said his valet, who was
in waiting, "Mr. Levy is here--he says, by appointment; and Mr.
Grinders is also just come from the country."

"Tell Mr. Grinders to come in first," said Egerton, seating himself.
"You need not wait; I can dress without you. Tell Mr. Levy I will see
him in five minutes."

Mr. Grinders was steward to Audley Egerton.

Mr. Levy was a handsome man, who wore a camelia in his
button-hole--drove, in his cabriolet, a high-stepping horse that had
cost £200: was well known to young men of fashion, and considered by
their fathers a very dangerous acquaintance.


                             CHAPTER XII.

As the company assembled in the drawing-rooms, Mr. Egerton introduced
Randal Leslie to his eminent friends in a way that greatly contrasted
the distant and admonitory manner which he had exhibited to him in
private. The presentation was made with that cordiality, and that
gracious respect by which those who are in station command notice for
those who have their station yet to win.

"My dear lord, let me introduce to you a kinsman of my late wife's (in a
whisper)--the heir to the elder branch of her family. Stranmore, this is
Mr. Leslie of whom I spoke to you. You, who were so distinguished at
Oxford, will not like him the worse for the prizes he gained there.
Duke, let me present to you Mr. Leslie. The duchess is angry with me for
deserting her balls; I shall hope to make my peace, by providing myself
with a younger and livelier substitute. Ah, Mr. Howard, here is a young
gentleman just fresh from Oxford, who will tell us all about the new
sect springing up there. He has not wasted his time on billiards and
horses."

Leslie was received with all that charming courtesy which is the _To
Kalon_ of an aristocracy.

After dinner, conversation settled on politics. Randal listened with
attention, and in silence, till Egerton drew him gently out; just
enough, and no more--just enough to make his intelligence evident,
without subjecting him to the charge of laying down the law. Egerton
knew how to draw out young men--a difficult art. It was one reason why
he was so peculiarly popular with the more rising members of his party.

The party broke up early.

"We are in time for Almack's," said Egerton, glancing at the clock, "and
I have a voucher for you; come."

Randal followed his patron into the carriage. By the way, Egerton thus
addressed him--

"I shall introduce you to the principal leaders of society; know them
and study them; I do not advise you to attempt to do more--that is, to
attempt to become the fashion. It is a very expensive ambition; some men
it helps, most men it ruins. On the whole, you have better cards in your
hands. Dance or not as it pleases you--don't flirt. If you flirt, people
will inquire into your fortune--an inquiry that will do you little good;
and flirting entangles a young man into marrying. That would never do.
Here we are."

In two minutes more they were in the great ball-room, and Randal's eyes
were dazzled with the lights, the diamonds, the blaze of beauty. Audley
presented him in quick succession to some dozen ladies, and then
disappeared amidst the crowd. Randal was not at a loss; he was without
shyness; or if he had that disabling infirmity, he concealed it. He
answered the languid questions put to him, with a certain spirit that
kept up talk, and left a favorable impression of his agreeable
qualities. But the lady with whom he got on the best, was one who had no
daughters out, a handsome and witty woman of the world--Lady Frederick
Coniers.

"It is your first ball at Almack's, then, Mr. Leslie?"

"My first."

"And you have not secured a partner? Shall I find you one? What do you
think of that pretty girl in pink?"

"I see her--but I can not _think_ of her."

"You are rather, perhaps, like a diplomatist in a new court, and your
first object is to know who is who."

"I confess that on beginning to study the history of my own day, I
should like to distinguish the portraits that illustrate the memoir."

"Give me your arm then, and we will come into the next room. We shall
see the different _notabilités_ enter one by one, and observe without
being observed. This is the least I can do for a friend of Mr.
Egerton's."

"Mr. Egerton, then," said Randal--(as they threaded their way through
the space without the rope that protected the dancers)--"Mr. Egerton has
had the good fortune to win your esteem, even for his friends, however
obscure?"

"Why, to say truth, I think no one whom Mr. Egerton calls his friend
need long remain obscure, if he has the ambition to be otherwise. For
Mr. Egerton holds it a maxim never to forget a friend, nor a service."

"Ah, indeed!" said Randal, surprised.

"And, therefore," continued Lady Frederick, "as he passes through life,
friends gather round him. He will rise even higher yet. Gratitude, Mr.
Leslie, is a very good policy."

"Hem," muttered Mr. Leslie.

They had now gained the room where tea and bread-and-butter were the
homely refreshments to the _habitués_ of what at that day was the most
exclusive assembly in London. They ensconced themselves in a corner by a
window, and Lady Frederick performed her task of cicerone with lively
ease, accompanying each notice of the various persons who passed
panoramically before them with sketch and anecdote, sometimes
good-natured, generally satirical, always graphic and amusing.

By-and-by, Frank Hazeldean, having on his arm a young lady of haughty
air, and with high though delicate features, came to the tea-table.

"The last new Guardsman," said Lady Frederick; "very handsome, and not
yet quite spoiled. But he has got into a dangerous set."

RANDAL.--"The young lady with him is handsome enough to be dangerous."

LADY FREDERICK (laughing).--"No danger for him there--as yet at least.
Lady Mary (the Duke of Knaresborough's daughter) is only in her second
year. The first year, nothing under an earl; the second, nothing under a
baron. It will be full four years before she comes down to a commoner.
Mr. Hazeldean's danger is of another kind. He lives much with men who
are not exactly _mauvais ton_, but certainly not of the best taste. Yet
he is very young; he may extricate himself--leaving half his fortune
behind him. What, he nods to you! You know him?"

"Very well; he is nephew to Mr. Egerton."

"Indeed. I did not know that. Hazeldean is a new name in London. I heard
his father was a plain country gentleman, of good fortune, but not that
he was related to Mr. Egerton."

"Half-brother."

"Will Mr. Egerton pay the young gentleman's debts? He has no sons
himself."

RANDAL.--"Mr. Egerton's fortune comes from his wife, from my
family--from a Leslie, not from a Hazeldean."

Lady Frederick turned sharply, looked at Randal's countenance with more
attention than she had yet vouchsafed to it, and tried to talk of the
Leslies. Randal was very short there.

An hour afterward, Randal, who had not danced, was still in the
refreshment room, but Lady Frederick had long quitted him. He was
talking with some old Etonians who had recognized him, when there
entered a lady of very remarkable appearance, and a murmur passed
through the room as she appeared.

She might be three or four-and-twenty. She was dressed in black velvet,
which contrasted with the alabaster whiteness of her throat and the
clear paleness of her complexion, while it set off the diamonds with
which she was profusely covered. Her hair was of the deepest jet, and
worn simply braided. Her eyes, too, were dark and brilliant, her
features regular and striking; but their expression, when in repose, was
not prepossessing to such as love modesty and softness in the looks of
woman. But when she spoke and smiled, there was so much spirit and
vivacity in the countenance, so much fascination in the smile, that all
which might before have marred the effect of her beauty, strangely and
suddenly disappeared.

"Who is that very handsome woman?" asked Randal.

"An Italian--a Marchesa something," said one of the Etonians.

"Di Negra," suggested another who had been abroad; "she is a widow; her
husband was of the Genoese family of Negra--a younger branch of it."

Several men now gathered thickly around the fair Italian. A few ladies
of the highest rank spoke to her, but with a more distant courtesy than
ladies of high rank usually show to foreigners of such quality as Madame
di Negra. Ladies of a rank less elevated seemed rather shy of her;--that
might be from jealousy. As Randal gazed at the Marchesa with more
admiration than any woman, perhaps, had before excited in him, he heard
a voice near him say--

"Oh, Madame di Negra is resolved to settle among us, and marry an
Englishman."

"If she can find one sufficiently courageous," returned a female voice.

"Well, she is trying hard for Egerton, and he has courage enough for any
thing."

The female voice replied with a laugh, "Mr. Egerton knows the world too
well, and has resisted too many temptations, to be--"

"Hush!--there he is."

Egerton came into the room with his usual firm step and erect mien.
Randal observed that a quick glance was exchanged between him and the
Marchesa; but the Minister passed her by with a bow.

Still Randal watched, and ten minutes afterward, Egerton and the
Marchesa were seated apart in the very same convenient nook that Randal
and Lady Frederick had occupied an hour or so before.

"Is this the reason why Mr. Egerton so insultingly warns me against
counting on his fortune?" muttered Randal. "Does he mean to marry
again?"

Unjust suspicion!--for at that moment these were the words that Audley
Egerton was dropping forth from his lips of bronze--

"Nay, dear Madam, do not ascribe to my frank admiration more gallantry
than it merits. Your conversation charms me, your beauty delights me;
your society is as a holiday that I look forward to in the fatigues of
my life. But I have done with love, and I shall never marry again."

"You almost pique me into trying to win, in order to reject you," said
the Italian, with a flash from her bright eyes.

"I defy even you," answered Audley, with his cold, hard smile. "But to
return to the point: You have more influence at least over this subtle
Embassador; and the secret we speak of I rely on you to obtain me. Ah,
Madam, let us rest as friends. You see I have conquered the unjust
prejudices against you; you are received and _fetée_ every where, as
becomes your birth and your attractions. Rely on me ever, as I on you.
But I shall excite too much envy if I stay here longer, and am vain
enough to think that I may injure you if I provoke the gossip of the
ill-natured. As the avowed friend I can serve you--as the supposed
lover, No----" Audley rose as he said this, and, standing by the chair,
added carelessly, "Apropos, the sum you do me the honor to borrow will
be paid to your bankers to-morrow."

"A thousand thanks!--my brother will hasten to repay you."

Audley bowed. "Your brother, I hope, will repay me in person, not
before. When does he come?"

"Oh, he has again postponed his visit to London; he is so much needed in
Vienna. But while we are talking of him, allow me to ask if your friend,
Lord L'Estrange, is indeed still so bitter against that poor brother of
mine?"

"Still the same."

"It is shameful," cried the Italian, with warmth; "what has my brother
done to him, that he should actually intrigue against the Count in his
own court?"

"Intrigue! I think you wrong Lord L'Estrange; he but represented what he
believed to be the truth, in defense of a ruined exile."

"And you will not tell me where that exile is, or if his daughter still
lives?"

"My dear Marchesa, I have called you friend, therefore, I will not aid
L'Estrange to injure you or yours. But I call L'Estrange a friend also;
and I can not violate the trust that--" Audley stopped short, and bit
his lip. "You understand me," he resumed, with a more genial smile than
usual; and he took his leave.

The Italian's brows met as her eye followed him; then, as she too rose,
that eye encountered Randal's. Each surveyed the other--each felt a
certain strange fascination--a sympathy--not of affection, but of
intellect.

"That young man has the eye of an Italian," said the Marchesa to
herself; and as she passed by him into the ball-room, she turned and
smiled.

                         (TO BE CONTINUED.)



                   Monthly Record of Current Events.


                            UNITED STATES.

The political intelligence for the last few weeks is of remote and
secondary, rather than of immediate and primary interest. The political
parties have begun to hold State Conventions, the proceedings and
resolutions of which are of some importance, as indicating the temper
and policy which may be expected to characterize the ensuing elections.

In _Vermont_ the Whig State Convention convened at Bellows Falls, June
25th. Resolutions were passed expressive of continued adherence to the
principles by which the party has been heretofore guided, among which
are specified a tariff of specific duties--so levied as to afford
protection to American industry; appropriations by the Federal
Government for the improvement of harbors and rivers, and a liberal
policy toward actual settlers in the disposition of the public lands.
Slavery is represented as a "moral and political evil," for the
existence of which in the Slaveholding States, the people of Vermont are
nowise responsible, but to the extension or continuation of which under
the authority of the Federal Government, they are opposed. The Fugitive
Slave law is declared to be "a matter of ordinary legislation, open at
all times and on all occasions for discussion, and liable to be modified
or repealed at the pleasure of the people as expressed through their
representatives;" that it is "objectionable in some of its provisions,
and while they cheerfully admit their obligations to obey it as a law of
the land designed to fulfill a requirement of the Constitution," they
insist upon the right of making modifications of it, as time and
experience shall show to be proper. Other resolutions were passed
expressive of attachment to the Union, and of hostility to all doctrines
of secession or disunion, in whatever quarter manifested; and of
concurrence in the "moderate, and discreet, and practicable measures
recommended to Congress in the present National Administration." Hon.
CHARLES K. WILLIAMS was nominated for re-election as Governor. The Free
Soil State Convention was held at Burlington, May 29th. Resolutions were
passed denying the power of the General Government to make
appropriations for purposes of Internal Improvement, unless of a
strictly national character; in opposition to a National Bank;
recommending an equality of protection to all interests; in favor of
free grants to actual settlers of the public lands; denying the power of
Congress over the subject of slavery in the States, which, it is
affirmed, can not claim to be legalized beyond the limits of State
lines; in favor of the Wilmot Proviso, and adverse to the admission of
any new Slave States into the Union; declaring the unconstitutionality
of the Fugitive Slave law; approving of the law of the State, enacted at
the late session of the Legislature, granting the privilege of _habeas
corpus_ to alleged fugitives from labor; and, finally, professing
devotion to the Union, until perverted to an engine of oppression to the
States. A speech, arguing strenuously against the constitutionality of
the Fugitive Slave law, was made by JOHN VAN BUREN, Esq. Hon. LUCIUS B.
PECK was nominated for Governor; he has declined to accept the
nomination on the ground that he can not assent to the resolutions
passed by the Convention, inasmuch as he believes the Fugitive Slave law
to be constitutional, and does not consider the act passed by the late
Legislature, authorizing the State courts to take, by _habeas corpus_, a
slave out of the hands of the United States officers, to be a just
exercise of the power of the State. The Democratic State Convention,
held in May, passed resolutions decidedly approving of the Compromise
measures, which were declared to be a pledge of the fidelity of the
States to each other, and recommending the observance of them with the
utmost fidelity and good faith. Hon. JOHN S. ROBINSON was nominated for
Governor.

In _New Hampshire_ the Democratic State Convention met at Concord on the
9th of June. Resolutions were passed expressive of firm attachment to
the Union; of acquiescence in the Compromise measures; and affirming the
duty, on the part of all citizens, of unconditional submission to the
laws. Hon. LEVI WOODBURY was unanimously presented as a candidate for
the Presidency, subject to the decision of the National Convention to be
held at Baltimore.

In _Pennsylvania_ the State Convention for the nomination of Executive
officers was held at Reading, June 4th. Resolutions were adopted in
favor of a strict construction of the Constitution; affirming the
obligation of Congress to refrain from all exercise of doubtful powers;
declaring that the rights of the individual States ought to be
scrupulously regarded, and that the citizens of one State ought not to
interfere with the domestic institutions of any other; that all
appropriations made by the General Government should be strictly
confined to national objects. Resolutions were passed, fully endorsing
the Compromise measures of the last session; and condemning the State
law of March 3, 1847, withholding the use of the State jails for the
detention of alleged fugitives from service, as interposing obstacles on
the part of the State to the execution of a provision of the
Constitution, and as an infringement of the principles of the
Compromise. It was likewise declared that the Convention was in favor
"in levying duties upon foreign imports, of a reciprocal interchange of
our products with other nations," while "recognizing clearly the
practice of the Government to maintain and preserve in full vigor and
safety all the great industrial pursuits of the country." Hon. WILLIAM
BIGLER was nominated for Governor. No candidate was formally presented
for nomination as President at the ensuing election, although it was
universally understood that the preferences of the Convention were
almost unanimously in favor of Mr. BUCHANAN. The Convention for the
nomination of Judicial officers met at Harrisburg on the 11th of June.
On the 28th of that month a ratification meeting was held at Lancaster,
at which Mr. BUCHANAN made a speech, forcibly advocating the principles
of the resolutions proposed. They embraced a recommendation of a tariff
based upon the _ad valorem_ system, and expressed a cordial adherence to
the principles adopted at the Democratic Convention held at Baltimore in
1848. A strict adherence to the Compromise measures was recommended; the
constitutionality of the Fugitive Slave law, and the duty of its
enforcement on the part of the North, were affirmed. The course of
Governor Johnston in neglecting to sign the bill for the repeal of the
law of March 3, 1847, was declared to be in violation of the wishes of a
large majority of the people of the State. The Whig State Convention met
at Lancaster on the 24th of June. The series of resolutions presented
and adopted, advocate the principle of protection to American industry,
and declare the tariff of 1846 to be unequal in its tendencies, and
ruinous to the interests of Pennsylvania. The attachment of the citizens
of that State to the Constitution is warmly insisted upon; and a
faithful adherence to the Compromise measures is promised. The general
policy of the State and National administrations is fully endorsed. A
special resolution, offered by way of amendment, in favor of the
Fugitive Slave law, was cut off by the previous question, and the series
of resolutions, as presented, was adopted. A resolution was carried,
"That General WINFIELD SCOTT is beyond question the choice of the Whigs
of Pennsylvania as their candidate for the Presidency of 1852, and that
we earnestly recommend him to the Whigs of the Union as the most
deserving and available man for that high office." Gov. JOHNSTON was
re-nominated.

In _Ohio_ the Whig State Convention assembled at Columbus, on the 3d of
July. The resolutions passed affirm that the Conventions of 1848 and
1850 "declare the position of the Whigs of Ohio on State and national
policy: That protection to American Industry, a sound currency, the
improvement of our rivers and harbors, an unyielding opposition to all
encroachment by the Executive Power, and a paramount regard to the
Constitution and the Union," are the cardinal principles of the policy
of the party. All the provisions of the Constitution are declared to be
equally binding. The course of the present National Administration is
unqualifiedly sanctioned. In respect to the Compromise measures, and the
next Presidency, the following resolutions were adopted: "That as the
Compromise measures were not recommended by a Whig Administration, and
were not passed as party measures by Congress, perfect toleration of
opinion respecting those measures should be accorded to Whigs
everywhere." "That it is the desire of the Whigs of Ohio that GEN.
WINFIELD SCOTT should be the candidate of the Whig party for President
of the United States at the election of A. D. 1852: and we cordially
recommend him to the Whigs of the Union as the most deserving and
suitable candidate for that office." Hon. SAMUEL F. VINTON was nominated
as candidate for Governor.

In _Mississippi_ the State Rights Convention was held June 16th, at
Jackson. Resolutions were passed reaffirming the policy indicated by the
Convention of October, 1849, which was in the main as follows: A devoted
and cherished attachment to the Constitution, "as it was formed and not
as an engine of oppression," was expressed. The institution of slavery
was declared to be exclusively under the control of the States in which
it exists; and "all attempts on the part of Congress or others to
interfere with this subject, either directly or indirectly, are in
violation of the Constitution, dangerous to the rights and safety of the
South, and ought to be promptly resisted." The right of Congress to
abolish slavery in the District of Columbia, to prohibit the slave-trade
between the several States, or to prohibit the introduction of slavery
into the Territories of the United States is denied. The Wilmot Proviso
is declared to be "an unjust and insulting discrimination, to which
these States can not without degradation submit." The Legislature is
requested to pass laws to encourage emigration of citizens of the
slave-holding States into the new Territories. The resolutions of the
Nashville Convention of 1850 are sanctioned and approved. The Convention
declare the admission of California into the Union to be the "enactment
of the Wilmot Proviso in another form," as set forth in a letter from
the Congressional delegation of the State, under date of June 21, 1850.
The Compromise measures are disavowed, particularly the admission of
California, the division of Texas, the action on the subject of the
slave-trade in the District of Columbia; and the course of the southern
members of Congress who voted for those measures is most warmly
condemned. While the "right of a State peaceably to withdraw from the
Union, without denial or obstruction," is affirmed, the Convention
"consider it the last remedy, the final alternative, and also declare
that the exercise of it by the State of Mississippi, under existing
circumstances, would be inexpedient, and is a proposition which does not
meet the approbation of this Convention." The platform of the Union
party, as adopted by common consent, declares "The American Union
secondary in importance only to the rights and principles it was
designed to perpetuate." It is represented that in the spirit of
compromise which enabled the original thirteen States to found the
Union, and which the present thirty-one must exercise to perpetuate it,
they have considered the whole series of the Compromise measures, "and
while they do not wholly approve, they will abide by it as a permanent
adjustment of this sectional controversy." It is declared that, as a
last resort, Mississippi ought to resist to the disruption of the Union
any action by Congress upon the subject of slavery in the District of
Columbia or in places subject to the jurisdiction of Congress which
should be inconsistent with the safety or honor of the Slaveholding
States; or the prohibition of the inter-state slave-trade; or the
refusal to admit a new State on account of the existence of slavery; or
the prohibition of the introduction of slavery into Utah or New Mexico;
or any act repealing or materially modifying the Fugitive Slave law;
upon the faithful execution of which depends the preservation of the
Union.

In _California_ the Whig State Convention recommend the extension of the
pre-emption laws over all except the mineral lands of the State; the
donation to each head of a family actually settled upon it, of 160
acres; liberal grants for educational purposes; appropriations for
public improvements; the adoption of measures to construct a railroad to
connect that State with the valley of the Mississippi; the establishment
of steam communication with the Sandwich Islands and with China. The
Compromise measures are also cordially commended.

The Fourth of July was celebrated with more than usual enthusiasm in
almost every section of the country. In Washington, upon the occasion of
laying, by the President, the corner stone of the extension of the
Capitol, MR. WEBSTER delivered an oration which will rank with his most
eloquent speeches. He gave a rapid sketch of the growth and progress of
the Republic, from the time when Berkeley prophesied that the star of
empire was about to take its westward way. He then portrayed the
distinctive nature of American liberty, as distinguished from that of
Greece and Rome, or of modern Europe, and altogether peculiar in its
character. Its prominent and distinguishing characteristic he stated to
consist in the capacity for self-government, developing itself in the
establishment of popular governments by an equal representation; and in
giving to the will of the majority, fairly expressed through its
representatives, the binding force of law; and in the formation of
written constitutions, founded upon the will of the people, regulating
and restraining the powers of Government; added to the strong and
deep-settled conviction of all intelligent persons among us that in
order to support a useful and wise government upon these popular
principles, the general education of the people, and the wide diffusion
of pure morality and true virtue are indispensable. Mr. Webster then
proceeded to deposit under the corner stone a document written by his
own hand, which, after reciting the circumstances of the ceremony, thus
concludes: "If, therefore, it shall be hereafter the will of God, that
this structure shall fall from its base, that its foundations be
upturned, and the deposit beneath this stone brought to the eyes of men,
be it then known that, on this day, the Union of the United States of
America stands firm--that their Constitution still exists unimpaired,
and with all its original usefulness and glory, growing every day
stronger and stronger in the affections of the great body of the
American people, and attracting more and more the admiration of the
world. And all here assembled, whether belonging to public life or to
private life, with hearts devoutly thankful to Almighty God for the
preservation of the liberty and happiness of the country, unite in
sincere and fervent prayers that this deposit, and the walls and arches,
the domes and towers, the columns and entablatures, now to be erected
over it, may endure forever.--God save the United States of America."
After which he presented some statements setting forth in several
aspects the comparative state of the country upon that day, and upon the
same day, fifty-eight years before, when the corner stone of the
original Capitol was laid by the hand of Washington.

The Legislature of _New York_ closed its extra session on the 11th of
July. The skirmishing upon the passage of the Canal Enlargement Bill was
sharp and protracted; but the large majority in its favor in both Houses
pressed it steadily on. Previous to the final passage, a protest was
presented, signed by 32 representatives. In the House the vote stood 81
for and 36 against the Bill. In the Senate the numbers are 22 to 8. The
majority in the Senate was augmented by awarding the seat in the
district in which a tie was returned, to Mr. Gilbert, the candidate in
favor of enlargement, on the ground of illegal votes cast for his
opponent; and by the death of Hon. William H. Brown, Senator from the
first district, who died a few days before the close of the session. As
under the next appropriation New York loses a representative in
Congress, it became necessary to make a new division of the State into
Congressional districts. Of the 33 members to which the State will be
entitled, taking the vote for Governor at the late election as a
criterion, the Whigs will elect 20, the Democrats 13. The Whig majority
for Governor was but 262. In the present Congress the members are
equally divided between the parties. The gain to the Whigs has been
effected by classing together, in several cases, into one district,
counties in which the Democratic majority is large. At the annual
meeting of the Society of the Cincinnati, on the 4th of July, a speech
was made by Hon. HAMILTON FISH, Senator-elect, in which he defined his
position with respect to the leading political question of the day. It
will be borne in mind that his refusal to do so while he was a candidate
for the United States Senate, was the ground of the determined
opposition made to his election. He said that while the Compromise
measures were under consideration, they did not meet his approval; one
in particular he thought open to exception as well on the ground of
omission as enactment. But they had been enacted, as he believed,
constitutionally; and from the moment that they became laws, he had
avowed his acquiescence in them; and though he hoped for a modification
of some of their provisions, he thought that the present was not the
time for wise and prudent action. In a word, while he did not approve,
he fully and unreservedly acquiesced. He offered, as a toast, these
fundamental principles: "An incessant attention to preserve inviolate
those exalted rights and liberties of human nature for which they have
fought and bled, and without which the high rank of a rational being is
a curse instead of a blessing."--"An unalterable determination to
promote and cherish, between the respective States, that union and
national honor so essentially necessary to their happiness, and the
future dignity of the American Empire."

The Legislature of _Rhode Island_ adjourned on the 21st of June, after a
session of four and a half days. Among the acts passed was one for
re-organizing the Common School system of the State; and one providing
for secret ballots at elections.

In _Ohio_ the new Constitution, a synopsis of which we gave in our
Number for May, has been accepted by the popular vote, by a decided
majority. The article prohibiting licenses for the sale of ardent
spirits, which was separately submitted to the people, was also adopted,
though by a majority less than that in favor of the other articles.

By a recent law of _Kentucky_, widows having children of an age suitable
for attending common schools, are entitled to vote in the election of
school trustees.

The Governor of _South Carolina_ has issued his proclamation for the
election of representatives to the Southern Congress. He recommends the
choice of two delegates from each Congressional district. The
anniversary of the battle of Fort Moultrie was celebrated at and near
Charleston, on the 28th of June. An address to the Moultrie Guards was
delivered by THOMAS M. HANCKEL, Esq., in the course of which he declared
that the only remedy for the grievances of the South "was to be found in
an inflexible determination to dissolve this Union--a determination
which would accept of no indemnity for the past, listen to no
concessions for the present, and rely on no guarantee for the future;
but which would ask and accept nothing but the sovereign right of
self-government and Southern Independence." Among the toasts given were
the following: "The Compromise--A breach of faith, and a violation of
the Constitution. Resistance is all that is left to freemen."--"Separate
State Action--the test of patriotism."--"Our sister State, Georgia--We
will take all the corn she can raise, but beg of her to keep the Cobb at
home."--"Federal threats and Federal guns--The first none of us fear,
the last, if pointed at us, we will take."

In _Alabama_ Senator CLEMENS is vigorously canvassing the State in
support of the Union party and in defense of the Compromise measures. On
the 2d of June, he made a speech at Florence, in which he commended the
entire series of measures, and defended his own course in relation to
them from attacks made by members of his party. Senator KING has
published a letter in which he announces his decided hostility to the
Compromise measures. He pronounces the admission of California into the
Union an act of injustice. Under no contingency could he have sanctioned
the bill abolishing slavery in the District of Columbia under certain
circumstances; and he should feel himself bound to vote for the repeal
of the emancipation clause, whenever proposed. He would vote again, as
he did at the last Congress, for the repeal of the Mexican law
prohibiting slavery in Utah and New Mexico.

The Legislature of _Connecticut_ adjourned on the 2d of July, without
having made any choice of United States Senator. In the House, a series
of resolutions was passed by a vote of 113 to 35, declaring the duty of
a cheerful submission to law, endorsing the Compromise measures as
constituting a fair and equitable adjustment of the whole vexed
questions at issue, and meeting the full approbation of the Assembly;
pronouncing the Fugitive Slave law to be in accordance with the
Constitution, containing merely enactments to carry into effect the
provisions of that instrument, and calling upon all good citizens to
sustain the requirements of the law. The resolutions were sent to the
Senate at a late period of the session, where various motions of
amendment were made, all of which were lost. Before they could be
finally acted upon, the hour fixed upon for adjournment arrived, when a
motion was made and carried for their indefinite postponement. The
resolutions were returned to the House, and entered upon the journal.

The Legislature of _Michigan_, at its late session, divided the State
into four Congressional districts, as rendered necessary by the results
of the late census. These districts are so arranged that it is supposed
the Democrats will secure the entire delegation in Congress. A number of
Mormons, who had settled on Beaver Island, in Lake Michigan, have been
arrested on charge of various crimes. Among the number was James J.
Strang, who claims and is believed by his followers to be endowed with
special divine inspiration. They have been tried on an indictment for
obstructing the United States mail, and acquitted by the jury after a
very brief consultation.

In _Virginia_ the Convention is laboriously engaged in framing the new
Constitution. In our last Record, by a clerical error, we reversed the
terms of the compromise on the suffrage question. In the House the West
are to have 82 members and the East 68. In the Senate 30 members are to
be chosen from the East and 20 from the West, giving the West a majority
of four on joint ballot. This settlement has been adopted by the
Convention, who have stricken out the clause reported by the committee
prohibiting the Legislature from passing laws for the emancipation of
slaves, and inserted a provision that an emancipated slave remaining in
the State more than twelve months shall be sold. A public dinner was
given to Mr. WEBSTER on the 28th of June, at Capon Springs, in Western
Virginia, at which he made a speech, which was most enthusiastically
received. In the course of it he said: "I make no argument against
resolutions, conventions, secession speeches, or proclamations. Let
these things go on. The whole matter, it is to be hoped, will blow over,
and men will return to a sounder mode of thinking. But one thing,
gentlemen, be assured of--the first step taken in the programme of
secession, which shall be an actual infringement of the Constitution or
the laws, will be promptly met. And I would not remain an hour in any
administration that should not immediately meet any such violation of
the Constitution and the law effectually and at once; and I can assure
you, gentlemen, that all with whom I am at present associated in the
government, entertain the same decided purpose." He concluded with the
following sentiment: "The Union of the States--May those ancient
friends, Virginia and Massachusetts, continue to uphold it as long as
the waves of the Atlantic shall beat on the shores of the one, or the
Alleghanies remain firm on their basis in the territories of the other."
The British Embassador, Sir HENRY LYTTON BULWER, made an eloquent
speech, which was received with warm cheers, and elicited the following
toast: "England and the United States--One language--one creed--one
mission."

From _California_ our dates are to May 31. On the night of the 3d of
May, the anniversary of a great fire of last year, a destructive
conflagration took place in San Francisco, by which a large portion of
the business part of the city was destroyed. The number of buildings
burned is set down at 1500; the loss was at first stated at from ten to
twelve millions, which is probably three or four times the actual
amount. A number of lives were also lost. In one case six persons
undertook the care of a store supposed to be fire-proof; the iron doors
and window-shutters became expanded by the heat to such a degree that it
was impossible to open them, and the inmates were all burned to death.
The work of rebuilding was commenced and carried forward with such
characteristic rapidity, that within ten days after the fire 357
buildings were in process of erection, of which the greater part were
already occupied. At the close of the month it is stated on reliable
authority, that the number of buildings actually tenantable was greater
than before the conflagration. The city of Stockton suffered severely by
a fire on the 12th of May. The amount of gold produced continues to be
very great. The gold bluffs of the Trinity River, the reported discovery
of which caused such an excitement a few months since, prove to be of
little or no value; but the extraction of gold from the auriferous
quartz is rapidly developing itself as experience points out new and
improved methods of procedure. This promises to become the most
productive of all the mining operations in California. It is evident
that the market is altogether overglutted with goods, the large amount
destroyed at the fires, apparently producing no effect upon prices in
general. Political excitement runs high: party lines beginning to be
strictly drawn. The nominations for State officers of both parties have
been made. The depredations and outrages of the Indians have not
altogether ceased. The severe code of Lynch law still continues in
practical force, though instances of its execution are somewhat less
frequently given. Large numbers of emigrants from China are arriving; a
British vessel from Hong Kong lately brought 381 Celestials to San
Francisco. They promise to out-number the emigrants from any other
foreign people, and manifest a most unexpected facility in acquiring the
language, manners, and modes of thought and life of their new homes. An
expedition raised in the southern part of the State, for the purpose of
invading the Mexican province of Lower California, appears to have
miscarried.

In _Oregon_ a treaty has recently been concluded with portions of the
Callapooya and Twallaty tribes of Indians, who cede to the United States
a large tract of the most valuable lands in the valley of the
Willamette. These Indians refuse to leave that portion of the country,
and will probably continue to reside within the limits of the
reservations. Unlike the tribes to the east of the Rocky Mountains, they
are desirous of adopting the habits of civilized life, many of them
being now in the service of the whites as laborers.

In Illinois, Missouri, Iowa, and along the whole course of the Upper
Mississippi, great damage has been done by an unusual and long-continued
flood of that river. Many towns of considerable size have been quite
overflowed. At St. Louis, during the greater part of the month of June,
the levee was entirely submerged, and all the stores upon Front-street
filled with water to the depth of several feet. For a vast extent along
the Mississippi, Missouri, and their tributaries the bottom lands have
been submerged for so long a time as to destroy the growing crops. It is
the most disastrous inundation which has occurred for several years.
Three distinct shocks of an earthquake were felt at St. Louis on the 2d
of July. The morning was somewhat cool and cloudy, followed not long
after by a slight rain, with thunder. In the afternoon the weather
cleared up, and so remained for the remainder of the day. The cholera
has appeared at several places in the West, more especially on the line
of the Mississippi. It does not appear, however, to have assumed a
decidedly epidemic character. The troops under the command of Col.
Sumner, on their way to New Mexico, have suffered severely; as well as
the trains of traders. The small pox has committed terrible ravages
among the Sioux and other Indian tribes on the plains of the Northwest.
In January the weather was extremely cold, and some 40 or 50 of the
Indians in exposed situations were frozen to death. Affrays have taken
place among various tribes of Indians in Iowa, Wisconsin, and Minnesota.
A steamer has recently set out from St. Louis, with about 100 voyagers
bound for the Rocky Mountains. The steamer is destined for the mouth of
the Yellowstone, about two thousand miles up the Missouri, the head of
steamboat navigation. From this point the passengers will proceed in
Mackinaw boats to the falls of the Missouri. Most of the passengers are
employees of the American Fur Company. Dr. Evans, U. S. Geologist, is of
the number; and two Jesuit missionaries, Fathers De Smedt and Hæken,
take the opportunity to visit the wild tribes of Indians near the
Mountains, among whom they intend to remain for two or three years.

Brevet General GEORGE TALCOTT, of the Ordnance Department has been tried
by a Court Martial for violation of the regulations of the Department,
for disobedience of orders and instructions; and for conduct unbecoming
a gentleman. He was found guilty of all the charges, and upon all the
specifications with two exceptions, and by sentence of the court, with
the approval of the President of the United States, has been dismissed
from the service.

MR. CHARLES L. BRACE, the "Pedestrian Correspondent" of the
_Independent_ newspaper has been arrested at Grosswardein, in
Transylvania, upon a charge of complicity in some democratic plots. The
only evidence against him seems to be his having letters of introduction
which were thought suspicious, and being in possession of a copy of
Pulzky's "Rights of Hungary." Mr. Brace is a young man of decided
literary talent, who has been for many months performing a pedestrian
tour through Europe for the purpose of learning by personal inspection
the condition of the people. His letters from Europe are among the most
valuable that have been published in this country. He is the writer of
an appreciative and thoughtful critique upon Emerson which appeared some
months since in the _Knickerbocker_ Magazine.

The London _Economist_, in noticing the translation of the "History of
the Colonization of America" by _Talvi_ (Mrs. Robinson), gives some
information in respect to the author which will be new upon this side of
the Atlantic. It says that "Mr. Talvi gives a succinct and carefully
compiled history of the event, which will be acceptable to many readers.
He is a German, probably settled in the States, and his book displays
the pains-taking character of his countrymen."

Mr. B. A. GOULD, of Cambridge, Mass., has received a tender of the
appointment of Professor of Astronomy at the University of Göttingen,
vacated by the recent death of Dr. Goldschmidt.

During the past month have been celebrated the Annual Commencements of a
number of the colleges of the country. Apart from the exercises of the
candidates for collegiate honors, much of the best talent of the country
is usually enlisted in the service of the literary societies connected
with the institutions. First in order of time, this year, we believe,
stands the one hundred and fourth anniversary of _Nassau Hall College_,
in New Jersey. The address before the Literary Societies by Hon. A. W.
VENABLE, of North Carolina, on "The claims of our common country on the
citizen scholar," is characterized as an able and eloquent performance.
The graduating class numbered fifty-four. _The University of New York_
held its commencement on Wednesday, July 2. On the Monday evening
previous, a characteristically brilliant oration was delivered before
the Literary Societies by Rev. Dr. BETHUNE, of Brooklyn. JOHN G. SAXE,
Esq., of Vermont, pronounced a poem, which elicited great admiration.
The annual oration before the Alumni was delivered by HOWARD CROSBY,
Esq. The number of graduates was twenty-two. The commencement of
_Dickinson College_, at Carlisle, Penn., was held June 25th. Rev. Dr.
PECK, the President, tendered his resignation, to take effect at the
close of the next academic year. Rev. O. H. TIFFANY, of Baltimore, was
elected Professor of Mathematics. The graduates numbered sixteen.
_Miami University_, at Oxford, Ohio, held its commencement June 28th,
when eleven students graduated. The different Societies were addressed
by Rev. W. B. SPENCE, of Sidney; Rev. Dr. RICE, of Cincinnati, on the
topic of "Revelation the source of all true philosophy;" and by Rev. S.
W. FISHER, of Cincinnati, in a very able manner. The oration before the
Alumni was delivered by WM. DENNISON, Esq., of Columbus. The
eighty-third annual commencement of _Brown University_, at Providence,
R. I., took place on the 9th of July. The graduating class numbered
thirty-two. N. W. GREENE, Esq., of Cincinnati, delivered before the Phi
Beta Kappa Society an oration of great power and vigor, discussing in an
earnest and vigorous manner some of the great social and political
problems of the day. The address before the Literary Societies was by
ABRAHAM PAYNE, Esq., of Providence. His subject was "Common Sense." A
very interesting discourse was delivered before the Society for
Missionary Inquiry, by Rev. R. TURNBULL, of Hartford, upon the subject
of the "Unity of the human race." The unity advocated was not so much
that arising from a common origin as the deeper unity of a common
nature, capacities, requirements, and destiny. The newly-founded
_University of Rochester_ held its first commencement exercises on the
9th of July. The graduating class numbered thirteen. Rev. HENRY WARD
BEECHER, of Brooklyn, delivered before the Literary Societies his
often-repeated and brilliant discourse on "Character." PARK BENJAMIN,
Esq., recited a sparkling poem, keenly satirizing the all-prevailing
passion of the love of money. On the 10th the anniversary of the
Theological Department of the University was held. The graduating class
was addressed by Prof. J. S. MAGINNIS; and Rev. T. J. CONANT, D.D.,
delivered an inaugural address as Professor of Hebrew, Biblical
Criticism, and Interpretation. The subject of his address was "The
claims of sacred learning." It was amply worthy of the subject and of
the reputation of the distinguished Professor.


                          SOUTHERN AMERICA.

In _Mexico_ the extra session of Congress was opened on the 1st of June.
Señor Lacunza was chosen President of the Senate, and Señor Alcosta of
the Chamber. On the second day, several financial projects were
broached. Among the means proposed for the support of Government, was
the application to immediate use of the remainder of the indemnity, if
there should be any; a general duty on consumption; a tax upon cotton
manufactures; an increase of the duty on the circulation and export of
coin. The Chambers have agreed to allow the Government to use the
$1,600,000, said to remain of the American indemnity, at the rate of
$250,000 a month, although this money had been specially appropriated to
the interior creditors. An order has been issued for the discharge of
any official who shall speak against the Government. The number of
police in the capital has been augmented, and they are allowed to arm
themselves with pistols. Brigandage does not appear to be diminished.
One of the engineers of the Tehuantepec survey states that a line for a
railroad from the Coatzocoalcos River to the Pacific has been examined,
in no part of which will there be an ascent of more than sixty feet to
the mile. The prosecution of the survey has been prohibited by the
Government, and all Americans engaged in it ordered to leave the
country. Some disturbances have arisen in consequence of this order,
which it is said the Company intend to disregard. Subsequently to the
issuing of the order they advertised at New Orleans for 500 additional
laborers, and two steamboats which they wished to dispatch immediately.
The Mexican consul at New Orleans refused a clearance to a steamer which
the Company wished to send.

The disturbances in _Chili_ and _Peru_ seem to have been effectually
suppressed, though in the latter Republic some uneasiness yet prevails,
owing to the attitude assumed by the partisans of Vivanca.

In the Argentine Republic, and the small States in its neighborhood, the
same singular state of affairs prevails that has existed for some years.
Rosas, though nominally only Governor of Buenos Ayres, is in reality
supreme dictator of the whole Argentine Republic. The elements of
discontent against his administration have, however, so far increased
that there is a probability that his overthrow may be effected. General
Urquiza, Governor of the province of Entrerios, has taken up arms
against Rosas, and calls upon the other provinces for aid. He, however,
does not ask for military assistance, affirming that his own troops are
amply sufficient to overthrow the "fictitious power" of Rosas, which he
affirms to be based solely upon "terror," although he acknowledges that
it has been maintained with "execrable ability." It is quite probable
that Lopez, the successor of Francia, in Paraguay, may be induced to
join Urquiza; for Rosas has always avowed that Paraguay was an integral
portion of the Argentine Republic, and has ever cherished the design of
its invasion, although more urgent occupations have never allowed him
the opportunity to catty the purpose into execution. It has long been
the wish of Lopez to secure the recognition by other nations of the
independence of Paraguay, and it is said that he has lately addressed a
communication to the President of France, designed to effect this
object. Brazil has also a pretext for engaging against Rosas, owing to
his having assumed the responsibility of certain aggressions upon the
Brazilian provinces, committed by General Oribe. If all these separate
interests can be combined at the same moment against Rosas, it is
difficult to see how he can maintain himself, notwithstanding his
undoubted ability.

_Uruguay_ still maintains its singular position. The nominal government
is without power beyond the walls of Montevideo, the capital, which, as
for the last dozen years, is held in a state of siege by General Oribe,
supported by aid from Buenos Ayres.

In _Bolivia_ Government has issued the programme of a new Constitution,
based upon the following articles: "1st. The Government will defend and
uphold the sovereignty and independence of the republic abroad, and
peace and tranquillity at home. 2d. The Catholic religion shall be that
of the State. 3d. The best relations shall be maintained with other
American and European States, and all treaties strictly observed, as
well as neutrality in discussions arising between them. 4th. The civil
liberty of citizens, and the rights of all shall be respected in
conformity with the laws. 5th. The crimes of conspiracy and sedition
shall be judged by verbal courts martial. 6th. The liberty of the press
shall be guaranteed. 7th. Foreigners shall be respected and protected in
the exercise of their trade and commercial pursuits. 8th. A National
Convention shall be convoked. 9th. The independence of the judicial
authority shall be respected. 10th. Official appointments are
conferments. 11th. The political opinions of all citizens shall be
respected. 12th. The Ministers of State shall be responsible for the
acts of their administration." A convention, consisting of fifty-three
delegates, is summoned to meet on the 16th of July.

In the Republics to the North there are discontents. In _New Granada_
there has been an insurrection in the southern provinces, aided by
forces from Equador. The insurgents were defeated in two battles, but in
a third gained some success. A law has been passed for the abolition of
slavery, to take effect on the 1st of January, 1852.

A plot has been brought to light in _Venezuela_, the design of which was
to make way with the President and chief officers of government. A
portion of the conspirators belong to the principal families in
Caraccas. Some have been arrested; others have fled. The President has
been clothed with extraordinary powers to meet the crisis.

In Central America there is reason to hope that a federal confederacy is
about to be established between several States upon a model not unlike
our own government, and under auspices which give hope of its
maintaining a permanent existence. The basis of a confederation between
Nicaragua, San Salvador, and Honduras was formed in November, 1849, and
agreed to by representatives from those states, in December, 1850. A
General Congress, called to meet in December next, is to complete the
details of the Confederacy. These three States embrace a territory of
145,000 square miles, with a population of a little more than a million.
Guatemala and Costa Rica, who have hitherto stood aloof, are invited to
become members of the Confederacy. These States have a territory of
68,000 square miles, and a population of somewhat more than a million.
If all these States can be united, they will possess an area of
territory somewhat greater than that of France. If the town of San Juan
de Nicaragua be given up by Great Britain to the State of Nicaragua, as
there is reason to anticipate, the new State will have the control of
the most important commercial port in the world. And even if surrendered
with the guarantee of its being a free port, according to the Bulwer and
Clayton treaty, the State must derive great advantage from it.

In _Jamaica_ the cholera has broken out with a fresh access of violence.
A vessel from Sierra Leone has recently brought 208 Africans, who had
been captured from a French slaver; they were distributed among the
planters of the interior.

In _Cuba_ the alarm excited by the proposed invasion has passed away.
The number of negroes brought to the island from Africa within the last
fourteen months, is stated to be 14,500. Count Villanueva, for
twenty-five years the able Intendant, or chief fiscal officer of the
island, has resigned his post, much to the regret of the Spanish
Government. The reasons assigned are his own advanced age, and the
delicate state of the health of his wife. But the real cause is supposed
to be the absolute impossibility of making the revenue of the island
adequate to meet the constantly increasing demands of the mother
country. He is said to have opposed the sending out the last
re-enforcement of troops, on the ground that if the people were loyal no
more were needed; if they were not loyal, five times as many would be of
no avail. The expense arising from this last addition of troops is
stated at $2,500,000, which has totally exhausted the treasury.

In _Santa Cruz_ the new Danish Governor was daily expected from
Copenhagen. It was supposed that upon his arrival some important changes
would be made in the laws relating to the colored population. A partial
emancipation of the blacks, after the 1st of October has been provided
for by law.

In _Hayti_ hostilities between the Haytians and Dominicans have taken
place. The former advanced beyond the advanced posts of the latter on
the 29th of May, but were repulsed with some loss; the Dominicans not
losing a man, if we are to believe the bulletin of the President, Baez.


                            GREAT BRITAIN.

Beyond the continued and triumphant success of the Great Exhibition,
there is little of interest to record. The daily number of visitors upon
the shilling days fluctuates from 50,000 to 70,000, depending much upon
the state of the weather. In very warm days, when the building is
crowded, the heat is almost insupportable. The Queen continues her
almost daily visits, and the absurd apprehension of violence to the
royal person has passed away. The Russian department, the opening of
which was delayed by the detention by ice of the contributions, is now
opened, and astonishes every one by its splendor, giving an idea of the
state of art and manufactures in that empire much higher than had before
been entertained. There is now no talk of removing the Crystal Palace at
the close of the Exhibition; the disposition most likely to be made of
it being to convert it into a winter garden and conservatory.

The Kaffir war proves even more serious than was anticipated. A number
of chiefs, upon whose fidelity to the English reliance had been placed,
and whose followers are at least partially supplied with fire-arms, have
joined their countrymen.

In Parliament nothing of more than local interest has transpired, except
a motion made by Mr. COBDEN, praying the Queen "to enter into
communication with the Government of France to endeavor to prevent in
future the rivalry of warlike preparations, in time of peace, which has
hitherto been the policy of the two Governments, and to promote, if
possible, a mutual reduction of armaments." Lord PALMERSTON, in behalf
of the Ministers, expressed a general concurrence in the object aimed at
by the motion; but wished Mr. Cobden would not press it to a division,
as those who might vote against it would be liable to be misunderstood
to be opposed to the object of the motion, rather than to the means
proposed to accomplish it. The mover withdrew the motion, at the request
of his friends.

An abstract of the census has been published, showing that the
population of Great Britain, including the islands in the British seas,
not including Ireland, is 20,919,531, being an increase in ten years of
2,263,550, or 12.13 per cent. The rate of increase has regularly
diminished, with a single exception, during each successive decennial
period within the century. The returns from Ireland have not been made
up; but there is no doubt that they will indicate a marked decrease of
population. London has increased from 1,948,369 to 2,363,141, or 21.33
per cent, almost double the rate of the country generally. It is worthy
of notice that the number of houses has not increased in a ratio equal
to the population, showing that the population is continually crowding
into closer quarters.

Great exertions have been put forth in Ireland to have some port in that
island selected as one of the places of departure for the transatlantic
steamers. The steamer North America, which had been announced to sail
from New York to Galway, was expected with great anxiety, under the
impression that her passage would prove the precursor of a regular
communication between the two ports. Every effort was made to complete
the railway, so that the passengers might be forwarded without loss of
time. The steamer, it will be recollected, did not sail as advertised,
having been sold at the very moment when her departure was announced.
The Commissioners to whom was referred the question of the selection of
an Irish port for a transatlantic packet station, presented a report
strongly adverse to the project.

At the one hundred and fiftieth anniversary of the Society for the
Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts, Prince ALBERT made a speech
which must have sounded somewhat strangely, coming from such an
individual, in the ears of High-Churchmen and ultra-monarchists. He
characterized William III. as the "greatest sovereign the country had to
boast of;" and said that "by his sagacity and energy were secured the
inestimable advantages of the Constitution and the Protestant faith."
The American colonies, he said, were "originally peopled chiefly by
British subjects, who had left their homes to escape the yoke of
religious intolerance and oppression, and who threw off their allegiance
to the mother country in defense of civil and religious rights." An
opinion which hardly accords with the views of Judge HALIBURTON ("Sam
Slick"), in his forthcoming work, "The English in America." Lord JOHN
RUSSELL and Earl GREY were also speakers at the anniversary of this
society.

A disastrous balloon ascent has been made from London by a Mr. and Mrs.
Graham. Owing to a violent wind the balloon became unmanageable, and
narrowly escaped being dashed against the Crystal Palace. It finally
struck against a chimney; the aeronauts were flung out insensible, and
the balloon destroyed.


                                FRANCE.

The question of the revision of the Constitution overshadows every
other. Apart from its mere partisan aspects, it is of grave and vital
moment to the cause of tranquillity and public order. By what would seem
almost an oversight, the functions of the executive and legislative
branches of the Government expire so nearly at the same time, that at
the period of the election there is practically an interregnum. The
election of the new Assembly must take place between the 45th and the
30th day preceding the expiration of the term of the present legislative
body. The term of the present Assembly expires on the 28th of May, 1852,
so that the new election must occur between the 13th and the 29th of
April. The term of the President ceases on the second Sunday in May, so
that within a month at furthest, possibly within a fortnight, both
branches of the Government have to be renewed. It is this which renders
the coming election so critical. The peculiar state of the suffrage
question furnishes another element of discord. The present Government
was elected by universal suffrage, every Frenchmen, of the age of 21
years, being entitled to vote at the place of his residence. But last
year, by the law of May 31, it was enacted that a legal residence could
only be obtained by a continuous habitation of three years. By this law
the number of voters was reduced from 9,936,004 to 6,809,281,
disfranchising 3,126,723 electors who had the right of voting for the
present Government. The validity of this law is warmly contested; and in
particular it is affirmed that at most it can only apply to the election
of representatives, which, in certain aspects, is a local affair; but
can not refer to the choice of President. It is said that at the
election these 3,000,000 disfranchised voters will present themselves,
and the responsibility of deciding as to the admissibility of their
votes will fall upon the officials of a Government whose term of office
is about to expire; and the duty of enforcing the law will devolve upon
an executive who is supposed to be hostile to it. Add to these the
different factions among the people, each seeking to carry out its own
plans, and it will be seen how pressing is the necessity of some strong
and permanent authority in the Government. This is the ground upon which
the Bonapartists press the absolute necessity of prolonging the tenure
of the President; and with this view they have urged to the utmost the
presentation of petitions for a revision of the Constitution, desiring
simply that the article which renders him ineligible for immediate
re-election should be annulled. These petitions have not been as
numerously signed as was anticipated; from present appearances, the
number of signatures will not exceed a million, of which not more than
one half are in favor of the re-eligibility of the President. These have
all been referred to a committee of fifteen, of whom nine are for and
six against a revision. Of this committee M. de TOCQUEVILLE has been
appointed to draw up the report. He has announced himself in favor of a
revision accomplished in the manner pointed out by the Constitution;
provided that the law of May 31 be repealed, and the elections be by
universal suffrage. This, however, from the constitution of the
Assembly, is manifestly impossible.

At Dijon, on occasion of the opening of a section of the Paris and Lyons
Railway, the President made a speech reflecting severely upon the
Assembly which he charged with a failure to support him in carrying out
the popular improvements which he desired to effect. Though considerably
moderated as published, the speech caused great excitement in the
Assembly. General Changarnier evidently assumed it to be a declaration
on the part of the President of an intention to disregard the
prerogatives of the Assembly, should that body prove adverse to his
plans. He assured the members that in any case they might rely upon the
army, who would implicitly obey their officers. The debates in the
Assembly continue to be very bitter and acrimonious, sometimes hardly
stopping short of personal violence.


                            GERMANY, ETC.

From the remaining portion of Europe there is little of special
interest. The Frankfort Diet has resumed its regular sittings, but
nothing of importance has been proposed. At Hamburg, an affray occurred
between the populace and a party of Austrian troops, in which lives were
lost.

In Portugal, the Ministry of the Marquis of Saldanha seems likely to
maintain its place.

In Italy there is the same hostility to the Austrian rulers, manifesting
itself as it best may. In Milan, not only is tobacco proscribed by the
people, as a government monopoly, but the purchase of tickets in the
state lotteries is looked upon as an act of treason to the popular
cause. At Pavia, the Count Gyulay, the Military Governor of Lombardy,
appearing in the theatre, almost all the audience rose and left the
house; and the few who remained were received with hisses by the crowd
when they finally came out. At Florence, the Count Guicciardini, and
five others have been sentenced to six months' banishment for being
found, to quote the words of the _procès verbal_, "sitting round a small
table," upon which "occasion Count Piero Guicciardini read and commented
upon a chapter in the Gospel of St. John," in the Italian translation of
Diodati, under circumstances that "offer valid and sufficient proof that
this reading and comment had no other purpose than mutually to insinuate
into the parties religious sentiments and principles contrary to those
prescribed by the Roman Catholic Apostolic Religion."



                          Literary Notices.


_The Parthenon_ is the title of a serial work on a new plan, published
by Loomis, Griswold, and Co., the first number of which has just been
issued in a style of uncommon typographical elegance, and containing
original articles from several distinguished American writers. It is
intended to present, in this publication, a collection of specimens of
the literary talent and cultivation of the United States, as exhibited
in the productions of our most eminent living authors. Among the
contributors, whose pens are enlisted in the proposed enterprise, we
find the most celebrated names in the field of American letters,
together with a host of lesser lights, who have yet distinction to
achieve. The contents of this number are of a high order, and give a
rich promise of the future excellence of the work. It opens with an
Indian Legend, by Cooper, called "The Lake Gun," which is followed by
poetical contributions from Mrs. Sigourney, Miss Gould, Duganne, and
Ross Wallace.

_Narrative of Travels in America_, by Lady EMMELINE STUART WORTLEY
(published by Harper and Brothers), is a perpetual effusion of
astonishment and admiration at the natural resources and the social
developments of the Western Continent. Lady Wortley is not a traveler of
the regular English stamp, judging every thing American by the standard
of the Old World, and giving vent to the disappointment of absurd
anticipations by ridiculous comparisons. She has no doubt gone to the
contrary extreme, and presented a too rose-colored picture of her
impressions of America. With the quickness of observation, and gayety of
temperament with which she mingled in all classes of American society,
she could not fail to catch its most important features; but we think
she often mistakes the courtesy and deference which her own frankness
and intelligence called forth for a more decidedly national
characteristic than is warranted by facts. On questions at issue between
her own country and the United States, she uniformly takes sides with
the latter. She shows a warm American heart every where, without the
slightest disposition to flatter English prejudices. Evidently her
nature is strongly magnetic; she wears her foreign habits like a glove,
and throws them off at pleasure; adapting herself with cordial facility
to the domestic life of New England, or the brilliant _far niente_ of
Mexico. This disposition gives her book a highly personal and often
gossiping character. She talks of the acquaintances she forms with the
delight of a joyous child, who has found a new amusement, and generally
with as little reserve. No one can complain of her fastidiousness, or of
her unwillingness to be pleased. Indeed, the whole volume gives you the
idea of a frank, impulsive, high-hearted Englishwoman, rejoicing to
escape for a while from the restraints of conventional etiquette, and
expressing herself with the careless ease of a perfectly natural
character, among scenes of constant novelty and excitement. So
completely does she throw herself into the mood of the passing moment,
that she adopts all sorts of American colloquialisms, with as much
readiness as if she had been to "the manner born," embroidering her
pages with a profusion of familiar expressions, caught from the
rebellious volubility of Brother Jonathan, and which most shock the
"ears polite" in every drawing-room in England. It will be seen that her
work belongs to the amusing order of travels, and makes no pretensions
to intense gravity or profound wisdom. You read it as you would listen
to the rattling talk of the author, pleased with its vivacity and
unstarched grace, with its off-hand descriptions of comical adventures,
and its glowing pictures of natural scenes, while you forgive a good
deal of superfluous loquacity to her irrepressible good-humor and
evident kindness of heart.

James Munroe and Co. have issued the first volume of a new edition of
_The Works of Shakspeare_, edited by Rev. H. N. HUDSON. In its external
appearance, this edition is intended, as nearly as possible, to be a
fac-simile of the celebrated Chiswick edition, while the numerous errors
and corruptions, with which that edition abounds, have been removed by
the diligence and sagacity of the present editor. Every line, every
word, every letter, and every point has been thoroughly revised, with
the determination to present nothing but the genuine text of Shakspeare.
This volume contains The Tempest, The Merry Wives of Windsor, Two
Gentlemen of Verona, and The Twelfth Night, with introductions by the
Editor, written with his usual acuteness, and more than his usual
modesty. His Shakspearian learning, and enthusiastic reverence of the
author, admirably qualify him to superintend an edition of his works,
and we shall look with confidence to these successive volumes as an
important aid to the enlightened appreciation of the immortal Poet.

_The History of Josephine_, by JOHN S. C. ABBOTT (published by Harper
and Brothers), is a lively and beautiful portraiture of the romantic
career of the fascinating and unfortunate Empress. Without presenting
any new incidents in her extraordinary life, Mr. Abbott has related her
well-known history with such dramatic effect, that his work has all the
charm of novelty. It will be read with great interest, even by those who
are familiar with the subject.

A new edition of _Fresh Gleanings_, by IK. MARVEL, has been issued by
Charles Scribner. It will be read with a new zest of delight by those
whose hearts have vibrated to the rich touches of feeling in the
_Reveries of a Bachelor_, or who have rejoiced in the refined, delicious
humor of the _Lorgnette_, now acknowledged as the production of the same
versatile pen. The author, DONALD MITCHELL, under all his amusing
disguises, can not quite conceal the exquisite refinement of his
imagination, nor his manly sympathy with the many-colored phases of
life, which will make his name a "household word" among the lovers of a
chaste and elevated literature. This edition is introduced with a dainty
preface.

LOSSING'S _Pictorial Field-Book of the Revolution_, now publishing by
Harper and Brothers, has reached the fifteenth number, and fully
sustains the character which has won for it such a welcome reception in
all parts of the Union. The historical narrative is agreeably
diversified by a copious and well-authenticated collection of anecdotes,
and the illustrations taken from drawings on the spot, give a vivid
impression of many of the most important localities which have now
become classical by their association with the Revolution.

_The Daughter of Night_, by S. W. Fullom (published by Harper and
Brothers), is a recent English novel, which in spite of a good deal of
exaggeration, leaves a deep impression on the mind of the reader. The
scene is laid in the present day, and the principal materials are drawn
from the state of the population in the mining districts of England.
Among other incidents, the ravages of the cholera among the laboring
classes are described with frightful effect, showing a rare power of
tragic representation.



                           Editor's Drawer.


We have forgotten (or never knew) who it is that speaks of the "small
sweet courtesies of life," but the term is as true as it is felicitous.
There _are_ such courtesies, and the habitual employment of them is the
surest evidence of a good heart as well as refined manners. "I never
look," said a benevolent lady to a friend walking down Broadway one
morning, "at a deformed person in the street, except directly in the
face. How many a pang has been caused to the physically unfortunate by a
lingering glance at a deformed limb, a "marked" face, or other physical
defect, to a scrutiny of which the afflicted are so painfully
sensitive!" There was a tenderness, a humanity in this remark, and
therefore it was recorded at the time, as being worthy, not only of
remembrance, but of heedful regard and emulation. Yes; and that woman
would leave the arm of her husband in the street, and push from off the
side-walk with her little foot a piece of orange-peel, a peach-skin, or
other the like slippery obstruction, lest _somebody_ should step upon
it, slide, fall, and break or dislocate a limb. "These are little things
to speak of," the reader may say, and they are; but still, they are
"close devotements, working _from the heart_" that with such an one, a
too common selfishness, or indifference to the good of others, "does not
_rule_."

       *       *       *       *       *

One of our "bold peasantry, a nations pride," disdaining California and
its temptations, thus signifies his contentment with his little
mountain-farm in "dear old New England:"

          "Let others, dazzled by the shining ore,
          Delve in the soil to gather golden store;
          Let, others, patient of the menial toil,
          And daily suffering, seek the precious spoil;
          I'll work instead, exempt from fear or harm,
          The fruitful "placers" of my mountain farm;
          Where the bright plow-share opens richest veins,
          From whence shall issue countless golden grains,
          Which in the fullness of the year shall come,
          In bounteous sheaves to bless my harvest-home."

       *       *       *       *       *

It was well said by an eminent man, that, during the prevalence, or
expected prevalence, of any unusual epidemic, "cheerful-minded persons
and cheerful looks, are more to be valued than all the drugs of the
city." His further remarks are worthy of heed just now, in an
anticipated or predicted "cholera-time:" "A great portion of mankind
have a wonderful proclivity to groan, repine, whine, snarl, and find
fault with every body and every thing, making other people miserable,
and rendering themselves intolerable nuisances. At a time when all
excitement, alarm, and panic are to be studiously avoided, as promotive
or incitive of diseases, these groaners, these incessant predicters of
more trouble, more sickness, and more deaths; these persons with rueful
countenances, should be shut up, kept out of sight. They fret, annoy,
and disgust all healthy, sensible people, and are 'sure death' to
persons of diseased body and mind; while on the other hand, the
cheerful-minded man or woman, with pleasant aspect, rejuvenates and
fortifies the minds of all; filling the soul of the sick and desponding
with hope, confidence, and courage. A cheerful-minded physician, who can
inspire his patients with a firm faith and hope of recovery, is to be
preferred, in nine cases out of ten, to the physician of gloomy
misgivings and lugubrious countenance." This is good advice. We know an
old weather-croaker who at all times "never expects any more really
pleasant weather." If it happens to _be_ pleasant, he says: "Ah! my
young friend, we shall _pay for this_--a mere weather-breeder--a
weather-breeder, sir." If it is _not_ pleasant, he reverses his
grumbling. "Ah, sir, just as I told you--just as I expected!"

       *       *       *       *       *

When the development of what are termed "Spiritual Rappings" was first
made in this city, we were of a party who visited the exhibitors of the
phenomena, or whatever else it may be called. Surprised, amazed, yet not
satisfied, we returned home. In the evening, at a friend's house, the
conversation turned upon the scene we had witnessed. Some importing
deception, collusion, &c.; while others avowed, almost with "fear and
trembling" their full belief in the operation of a spiritual agency in
producing the sounds. "I know nothing whatever," said a gentleman who
chanced to be present, and who had remained entirely silent during the
discussion, which however he seemed to be regarding very attentively, "I
know nothing whatever about these 'Spiritual Rappings,' for I have not
heard them, nor had an opportunity of testing the various ways in which
it is alleged they may be produced; but if you will permit me, and I
shall not be considered as inflicting a story upon your company, I will
tell you what I _have_ seen, and which I think partook somewhat of the
nature of those mysterious spiritual communications of which you have
been speaking.

"I presume that many of you remember the case of RACHEL BAKER, the
Somnambulist-preacher, who, some twenty-eight or thirty years ago, in
one of the interior counties of this State, attracted so much the wonder
and curiosity of the public. She was an ignorant, unlettered girl, of
some nineteen or twenty years of age. Her parents were poor, and were
unable to give her any education. She could read the BIBLE only with
great difficulty, and even that little with apparently but small
understanding of the force and extent of its moral and religious
teachings. Although indigent and ignorant, her character, however humble
and undeveloped, was unblemished. She was of a religious turn of mind,
and was a regular attendant of the Methodist meetings, which were only
occasionally held in the sparsely-populated neighborhood where she
resided.

"Such was the young girl who subsequently became the theme of almost
every journal in the United States, and whose fame, or perhaps more
properly notoriety, extended to England and France; awakening in each
country elaborate psychological and physiological discussions concerning
the nature of the peculiar case of 'RACHEL BAKER, _the American
Somnambulist_.' But I am getting a little before my story.

"One hot evening, about midsummer, somewhat earlier than was usual with
her, RACHEL took a candle and ascended the ladder which served as stairs
to lead to the open chamber or garret which contained her humble bed. A
short time after midnight, her mother, being accidentally awake, and
talking with her father, heard her, as she expressed, 'gabbling to
herself in a dream.' She called aloud to her daughter, but received no
answer; but her talk, in a low tone of voice, continued as before. The
mother now awoke her husband, and lighting a candle, they ascended
together to RACHEL'S apartment.

"She lay upon her bed on her back, her face turned to the rafters and
shingled roof of the rude dwelling. Her eyes were wide open; her hands
clasped convulsively over her bosom; and she was pronouncing a prayer.
After finishing her prayer, she lay silent for a few moments, and then
awakening with a start, and gazing wildly around her, she demanded to
know of her wonder-stricken and agitated parents, why they were there,
and 'what that _light_ was for?'

"'You waked your father and me, by talking in your sleep, Rachel; when
we called to you, you did not answer, and we came up to see what was the
matter. You've been dreaming, haven't you, Rachel?'

"'No, mother, I've had no dream; you have wakened me from a sound and
sweet sleep.'

"The parents retired, went down the ladder to their own apartment, and
Rachel fell into a sound sleep, and slept until morning. All the
following day, however, she was indisposed; her eyes were heavy, her
step faltering, and her whole manner indolent and _ennuyée_. The same
somnambulism occurred every night for a week; until at length the rumor
of the phenomena was noised about the country, and excited a wide and
general curiosity. And when inquiry was made of the mother as to the
character of Rachel's 'talk in her sleep,' she said, 'It was first-rate
preaching--as good as any minister's; and her prayers,' she added,
'_was_ beautiful to hear.'

"About this time Mr. W---- G----, a man of rare self-attainments in
practical science and philosophy, and of the highest reputation for
general intelligence--(an ornament, moreover, to the agriculturists of
New York, toward whose interests no man in the State subsequently more
efficiently contributed)--invited Rachel to pass a short time at the
house of his father, an opulent farmer in the little town of O----, in
the county of Onondaga.

"She came after some considerable persuasion; and here it was, being at
that time on a tour in the western part of the State, that I first saw
the remarkable spiritual development of which I spoke a while ago.
Rachel had already spoken three nights, utterly unconscious to herself,
although surrounded by gradually-increasing numbers, who had been
attracted by a natural curiosity to hear her. Up to this time she had
not herself been made aware of the continuance of her 'sleep-talking.'
During the day she would assist the family in various domestic matters;
and she was given to understand by Mr. G----, that it was intended to
assist her to attain such proficiency in a common education as would
enable her to read the Bible freely, to understand its plainest
precepts, to write and to speak with grammatical correctness. She seemed
anxious to avail herself of such an opportunity, and was thus entirely
deceived as to the real purpose of the visit which she was induced to
make.

"The house of Mr. G---- contained upon the ground-floor four apartments;
an 'east' and 'west room,' the first of which contained the library of
the younger Mr. G----, an organ, &c.; and the second was the 'spare
room,' _par excellence_, in other words, the best parlor: these were
connected by an 'entry' or passage-way; and opening into this parlor was
another large room, where the family took their meals, held family
worship, &c. Adjoining this room was a large kitchen. But let me
describe the scene on the first night in which I saw Rachel Baker.

"It was on the evening of a hot day in summer. I had been permitted to
come into the dining-room with the family, and was seated accidentally
near the unconscious somnambulist. Conversation turned upon various
matters, as it was intended purposely to prevent the least suspicion of
there being any curiosity concerning her. The 'men-folks' talked of
harvesting and other agricultural matters, and the 'women-kind' of their
domestic affairs. Meanwhile twilight was deepening; the 'east room' was
filling with the neighbors, who approached in a direction whence they
could not be seen by any of us who were in the sitting-room. I was
saying something to Rachel of an indifferent nature, when I thought I
saw a slight twitching about the eyelids, and an unwonted heaviness in
the expression of her eyes. The conversation was now vigorously renewed,
but she seemed to be gradually losing all interest in it; and presently
she observed, 'I am tired and sleepy, and I guess I'll go to bed.'
'Certainly, Rachel, if you wish,' said Mrs. G----; 'take a candle with
you.'

"She left the chair in which she had been sitting by my side, took up a
candle, bade us 'good-night,' left the room, and closed the door behind
her.

"All was now expectation. We heard the subdued rustling of the crowd in
the 'east room,' while we in the sitting-room were awaiting the
involuntary signal which would render it proper to enter the parlor
where the bed of the somnambulist was placed. Presently a subdued groan
was heard. We seized the candles which had been lighted after she had
retired, and entered her apartment, into which also was pouring a crowd
of persons from the 'east room.'

"I shall never forget the scene that was now presented. The face of the
somnambulist, which, without being handsome, was extremely interesting,
was turned toward the ceiling; her large blue eyes were wide open, and
their pupils seemed to fill the entire eye-balls, giving her what the
Germans call an "interior" or soul-look. Her hands were crossed upon her
bosom over the bed-clothes; nor did she once move them, or her eyes, so
much even as to wink, during the whole evening. And so tightly did she
press them, that the blood settled for the time under her nails, and at
length grew black like the fingers of a corpse. She lay for the space of
a few minutes motionless and silent. She then began a short prayer in a
voice calm and solemn, which, although, not at all loud, could be heard
plainly in all the apartments, while the hushed attention of the hearers
kept the house as still as the grave. I remember that the prayer was
fervent, brief, and beautiful, and in language simple and pure.

"After the prayer, she lay for some time silent and motionless;
affording space, as some supposed, for the singing of a hymn, as in the
regular exercises of the sanctuary. Then she began her discourse, which
usually continued about half an hour. It was not a discourse from any
particular text, although it was connected, regular, and nobly
illustrated by the most apposite quotations from the Bible. If
interrupted by any questions, she would pause, make answer, and
immediately resume the broken chain of her remarks. The evening I was
present, a distinguished clergyman of this city, who had come expressly
to visit her, interrupted her with:

"'Rachel, why do you consider yourself called upon to address your
fellow-sinners, and by what authority do you speak.'

"'I even I,' she answered, 'a woman of the dust, am moved by the SPIRIT
which liveth and moveth all things. Necessity is laid upon me; for I
speak through HIM who hath said, "Upon my young men and maidens will I
pour out my Spirit, and the young men shall see visions and the young
maidens dream dreams."' The passage quoted was to this purport. Although
the somnambulist was utterly ignorant of correct language, never
speaking, when awake, without the grossest blunders in grammar, yet in
all passages and discourses which she delivered in her somnambulent
state, in all the answers to questions which were propounded to her she
never committed the slightest error. I wish I could remember a passage
of her discourse the second night I heard her. It was replete with the
most admirable imagery, and its pathos was infinitely touching. She was
visited at the house of Mr. G---- by some of the most eminent clergymen
and _savans_ of New York, and other cities; among others, if I remember
rightly, by the celebrated Dr. SAMUEL L. MITCHELL. After her discourse
was finished, she would be silent and motionless, as before she began
it, then pronounce a prayer; and at last relapse into a disturbed
slumber, from which she would gradually arouse, groaning as if in pain,
her hands relaxing and falling by her side, and her frame trembling as
if 'rent with mortal agony.'

"Her somnambulism continued for some two or three months afterward; all
physical remedies were tried, but without avail. She died in about a
year afterward, her case baffling to the last all attempts at
explanation of the mysterious agency by which it was produced."

       *       *       *       *       *

DR. OLIVER WENDELL HOLMES tells us how the members of the medical
profession feel when the "poison-chalice" of their prescriptions is
commended to their own lips; in other words, when the visitor becomes
the visitee:

          "Just change the time, the person, and the place
          And be yourself the 'interesting case;'
          You'll gain some knowledge which it's well to learn;
          In future practice it may serve your turn.
          Leeches, for instance--pleasing creatures quite;
          Try them, and, bless you! don't you think they bite?
          You raise a blister for the smallest cause,
          And be yourself the great sublime it draws;
          And, trust my statement, you will not deny
          The worst of draughtsmen is your Spanish Fly.
          It's mighty easy ordering when you please,
          '_Infusi Sennæ, capiat uncias tres_';
          It's mighty different when you quackle down
          Your own three ounces of the liquid brown.
          '_Pilula Pulvis_'--pleasant words enough,
          When _other_ jaws receive the shocking stuff;
          But oh! what flattery can disguise the groan,
          That meets the gulp which sends it through your own!"

       *       *       *       *       *

"Ah! they are very busy and bustling here _now_, but they will all be
still enough by-and-by," said a clergyman from the country, as he passed
with his friend, for the first time, through Cortlandt-street into
crowded Broadway, at its most peopled hour. "And," said our informant
(the friend alluded to, who had lived in the Great Metropolis all his
life), "I never before felt so forcibly, so sudden was the observation,
and so fervent the expression of the speaker, the truth of his remark.
To _me_, the scene before us was an every-day one; to _him_, spending
his days in the calm retirement of the country, the crowd, the roaring
of the wheels, the sumptuous vehicles of Wealth, and the bedizened
trappings of Pride, presented a contrast so strong, that the exclamation
which he made was forced from him by the overpowering thought: "Ye busy,
hurrying throng, ye rich men, ye vain and proud men, where will all
these things be, where will _you_ be seventy years from now?" "After
all," says SYDNEY SMITH, "take some thoughtful moment of life, and add
together two ideas of pride and of man: behold him, creature of a span
high, stalking through infinite space, in all the grandeur of
littleness. Perched on a speck of the universe, every wind of heaven
strikes into his blood the coldness of death; his soul floats from his
body like melody from the string. Day and night, as dust on the wheel,
he is rolled along the heavens, through a labyrinth of worlds, and all
the creations of GOD are flaming above and beneath. Is _this_ a creature
to make himself a crown of glory? to mock at his fellows, sprung from
the dust to which they must alike return? Does the proud man not err?
does he not suffer? does he not die? When he reasons, is he never
stopped by difficulties? When he acts, is he never tempted by pleasures?
When he lives, is he free from pain? when he dies can he escape the
common grave? Pride is not the heritage of man. Humility should dwell
with Frailty, and atone for ignorance, error, and imperfection."

       *       *       *       *       *

That sort of curiosity which invests murderers and their secret motives
with so much interest, instances of which may be seen any week almost in
our very midst, was finely satirized many years ago by a writer in one
of the English or Scottish periodicals. The criminal was arrested for
the murder of an old woman, who had no money to tempt his avarice, and
he resisted all inquiries touching the motives which induced him to
commit the horrid deed. He "couldn't tell," he said; "it was a sudden
impulse--a sort of a whisper; SATAN put it into his head." He had no
reason for doing it; didn't know _why_ he did it. Ladies brought tracts
and cakes to his prison, and begged him to "make a clean breast of it."
Why did he do it? "LORD knows," said he, "_I_ don't." At his trial the
jury brought him in guilty, but recommended him to mercy, provided he
gave his reasons. He said he "hadn't any; he killed the old 'oman
off-hand; it was a sudden start--the same as a frisk: he couldn't
account for it; it was done in a dream, like." Finally the day appointed
for his execution arrived; and the sheriff, under-sheriffs, clergy,
reporters, etc., all implored him to make a full confession, now that
his time had come. A phrenologist, knowing that although "Murder had no
tongue, it could speak with most miraculous _organ_," felt the devoted
head, but was none the wiser. The interest in the murderer was now
increased tenfold; and such was the demand for locks of the culprit's
hair, that when he was led forth to the scaffold, there remained upon
his head but a few carroty clippings; "and all this while," says the
writer in parenthesis, "there was poor old HONESTY toiling for a
shilling a day, wet or shine, and not one Christian man or woman to ask
him for so much as one white hair of his head!" Well, the murderer,
unyielding to the end, stands at last upon the scaffold, the focus of
the gaze of ten thousand sons and daughters of curiosity, in the street,
at the windows, on the house-tops. The hangman is adjusting the rope;
the clergyman is reading the death-service; the fatal bolt is about to
be withdrawn; when a desperate individual, in a straw-hat, a light blue
jacket, striped trowsers, and Hessian boots, with an umbrella under his
arm, dashes in before the clergyman, and in hurried accents puts the old
question, "Why did you do it?" "Why, then," said the convict, with an
impatient motion of his cropped head, "I did it--_to get my hair cut!_"
And he had not miscalculated the sympathy with crime which was to denude
his guilty head for "keep sakes!"

       *       *       *       *       *

Those who have risen early on a Sabbath morning in the country, and
experienced the solemn stillness and holy calm of the hour, will read
the following lines with something of the religious fervor with which
they came warm from the heart of the author:

          "How calm comes on this holy day!
            Morning unfolds the eastern sky,
          And upward takes his lofty way
            Triumphant to her throne on high.
          Earth glorious wakes as o'er her breast
            The morning flings her rosy ray,
          And blushing from her dreamless rest
            Unvails her to the gaze of day:
          So still the scene each wakeful sound
          Seems hallowed music breathing round.

          "The night-winds to their mountain caves,
            The morning mist to heaven's blue steep
          And to their ocean depths the waves
            Are gone, their holy rest to keep,
          'Tis tranquil all, around, above,
            The forests far which bound the scene
          Are peaceful as their Maker's love,
            Like hills of everlasting green.
          And clouds like earthly barriers stand,
          Or bulwarks of some viewless land."

Now those lines came to our recollection on one occasion many months
since, simply by way of direct contrast, which is one of the curious, if
not unexplainable operations of the human mind. We had been reading a
long description, in a letter from a traveler, of life in the English
coal-mines and of the "Sabbath privileges" of the thirty-five thousand
men and boys who labor in the vast coal-fields of Durham and
Northumberland, in England. There they are, and there they spend their
long nights of labor, for day is not for them, hundreds of fathoms down
in subterranean depths; never breathing pure air, but often stagnant and
exhausted, when the stream of ventilation does not permeate the
ever-lengthening gallery, and are almost always inhaling noxious gases.
Not only is the atmospheric medium rarefied by a perpetual summer heat,
without one glimpse of summer day, but every now and then occur terrific
explosions of the "fire-damp," instantaneously thundering through a
Vulcanian region, with more certain death to all within its range than
there was ever dealt by artillery on the surface of the earth: or a gush
of poisonous vapor in one moment extinguishes the candles and the lives
of the workmen, and changes the scene of unceasing toil into a catacomb
inconceivably more awful than any of the great receptacles of death that
bear that name: or the ill-propped vault gives way, and bodies, never to
be seen until the resurrection, are buried under the ruins of a
pestilential cavern: often, too, life is sacrificed to carelessness or
parsimony, and a few "indulgences" are perhaps given to the widow and
orphans, to hush up the "casualty" within the neighborhood of the pit.
Seldom does a visitor venture to plunge into the Hades-like profound. No
attraction in the scenery of the miserable villages above ground brings
a stranger to meddle with a population that never come to the surface
except to eat or sleep. Yes, there is one exception. On that thrice
happy day of rest, when even the burden of the beast is unloosed, the
sober, humbly-clad colliers, as clean as they can make themselves,
emerge from darkness into light, and hear from the lips of some brother
"pitman," in their own familiar _patois_, the "glad tidings of
salvation."

       *       *       *       *       *

There are numerous pictures of NAPOLEON: Napoleon in scenes of triumph
in peace, and of sublime grandeur in war. He has been depicted crossing
the Alps; at Marengo, at Austerlitz, at the bridge of Lodi, at Jena, at
Moscow, by the Nile; gazing at the everlasting pyramids; entering sacked
cities, bivouacked at night, and the like. But of all the pictures that
we have ever seen of the Great Captain, one which has pleased us most,
and which seems to represent him in the most gratifying light, is a
picture which depicts him sitting upon a sofa in his library, a book in
his hand, which he is perusing attentively; while his little son,
reclining on one end of the sofa, lies asleep with his head resting on
his father's lap--pillowed on those adipose limbs, that look as if they
had been melted and run into the close-fitting breeches which they
inhabit. This is a picture which, unlike the others, represents the
great original as "one of us"--a man and a father, and not as a
successful warrior or a triumphant victor.

       *       *       *       *       *

Speaking nearly a century ago, an old English worthy laments the "good
old times" when a book was bequeathed as an invaluable legacy, and if
given to a religious house, was offered on the altar, and deemed a gift
worthy of salvation; and when a prelate borrowed a Bible, his cathedral
gave a bond for its return. Libraries then consisted of a few tracts,
chained or kept in chests. The famous Library of Oxford, celebrated by
Humphrey, Duke of Gloucester, contained only six hundred volumes! What
would _then_ have been thought of the "making of many books," of which
"there is no end" in these our days?

       *       *       *       *       *

There is a striking example of the style of "Sir PERTINAX MAC
SYCOPHANT," in a character of MARSTON'S "_What you Will_." Here is a
slight specimen of his "booing and booing:"

     "Sir, I protest I not only take distinct notice of your dear
     rarities of exterior presence, but also I protest I am most
     vehemently enamored, and very passionately dote on your inward
     adornments and habilities of spirit. I protest I shall be proud to
     do you most obsequious vassalage."

       *       *       *       *       *

We find upon a scrap in the "drawer" these two stanzas taken from a
German hymn, entitled, "_Kindliches Gemüthe_," or Childlike Temper:

          "His mother's arms his chief enjoyment;
          To be there is his loved employment;
          Early and late to see her face,
          And tenderly her neck embrace.

          "O Innocence! sweet child's existence!
          This have I learnt, through God's assistance,
          He who possesses thee is wise,
          And valued in the ALMIGHTY'S eyes."

"Valued" is doubtless a stronger word in the original German, but it may
have been difficult to render into our vernacular.

       *       *       *       *       *

It would be a curious question whether, supposing the sun could be
inhabited, its citizens would be as large, in proportion to the size of
that luminary as we mundanes are in proportion to the earth. This, it
strikes us, is one of those questions which it would be difficult to
answer to general satisfaction. We remember some old philosopher who
once complained that a flea had a good deal more proportional force
than, from his size, he was entitled to. Although weighing only a single
grain, it is endowed with the ability to jump an inch and a half at a
spring. Now a man weighing an hundred and fifty pounds, ought, "by the
same rule," to be able to make a spring over a space of twelve thousand
eight hundred miles, which would be equivalent to jumping from Gotham to
Cochin China, or round the world in two jumps. A man capable of doing
that, might be set down "pretty spry."



                        WOMAN'S EMANCIPATION.

   (BEING A LETTER ADDRESSED TO MR. PUNCH, WITH A DRAWING, BY A
                   STRONG-MINDED AMERICAN WOMAN.)


[Illustration]

It is quite easy to realize the considerable difficulty that the natives
of this old country are like to have in estimating the rapid progress of
ideas on all subjects among us, the Anglo-Saxons of the Western World.
Mind travels with us on a rail-car, or a high-pressure river-boat. The
snags and sawyers of prejudice, which render so dangerous the navigation
of Time's almighty river, whose water-power has toppled over these
giant-growths of the world, without being able to detach them from the
congenial mud from which they draw their nutriment, are dashed aside or
run down in the headlong career of the United States mind.

We laugh to scorn the dangers of popular effervescence. Our
almighty-browed and cavernous-eyed statesmen sit, heroically, on the
safety-valve, and the mighty ark of our vast Empire of the West moves on
at a pressure on the square inch which would rend into shivers the
rotten boiler-plates of your outworn states of the Old World.

To use a phrase which the refined manners of our ladies have banished
from the drawing-room, and the saloon of the boarding-house, _we_ go
ahead. And our progress is the progress of all--not of high and low, for
we have abolished the odious distinction--but of man, woman, and child,
each in his or her several sphere.

Our babies are preternaturally sharp, and highly independent from the
cradle. The high-souled American boy will not submit to be whipped at
school. That punishment is confined to the lower animals.

But it is among _our_ sex--among women (for I am a woman, and my name is
THEODOSIA EUDOXIA BANG, of Boston, U.S., Principal of the Homeopathic
and Collegiate Thomsonian Institute for developing the female mind in
that intellectual city) that the stranger may realize, in the most
convincing manner, the progressional influences of the democratic
institutions it is our privilege to live under.

An American female--for I do not like the term Lady, which suggests the
outworn distinctions of feudalism--can travel alone from one end of the
States to the other; from the majestic waters of Niagara to the mystic
banks of the Yellowstone, or the rolling prairies of Texas. The American
female delivers lectures, edits newspapers, and similar organs of
opinion, which exert so mighty a leverage on the national mind of our
great people, is privileged to become a martyr to her principles, and to
utter her soul from the platform, by the side of the gifted POE or the
immortal PEABODY. All this in these old countries is the peculiar
privilege of man, as opposed to woman. The female is consigned to the
slavish duties of the house. In America the degrading cares of the
household are comparatively unknown to our sex. The American wife
resides in a boarding-house, and, consigning the petty cares of daily
life to the helps of the establishment, enjoys leisure for higher
pursuits, and can follow her vast aspirations upward, or in any other
direction.

We are emancipating ourselves, among other badges of the slavery of
feudalism, from the inconvenient dress of the European female. With
man's functions, we have asserted our right to his garb, and especially
to that part of it which invests the lower extremities. With this great
symbol, we have adopted others--the hat, the cigar, the paletot or round
jacket. And it is generally calculated that the dress of the Emancipated
American female is quite pretty--as becoming in all points as it is
manly and independent. I inclose a drawing made by my gifted
fellow-citizen, INCREASEN TARBOX, of Boston, U.S., for the _Free Woman's
Banner_, a periodical under my conduct, aided by several gifted women of
acknowledged progressive opinions.

I appeal to my sisters of the Old World, with confidence, for their
sympathy and their countenance in the struggle in which _we_ are
engaged, and which will soon be found among them also. For I feel that I
have a mission across the broad Atlantic, and the steamers are now
running at reduced fares. I hope to rear the standard of Female
Emancipation on the roof of the Crystal Palace, in London Hyde Park.
Empty wit may sneer at its form, which is bifurcate. And why not?
MOHAMMED warred under the Petticoat of his wife KADIGA. The American
female Emancipist marches on her holy war under the distinguishing
garment of her husband. In the compartment devoted to the United States
in your Exposition, my sisters of the old country may see this banner by
the side of a uniform of female freedom--such as my drawing
represents--the garb of martyrdom for a month; the trappings of triumph
for all ages of the future!

           THEODOSIA E. BANG, M.A.,
           M.C.P., [Greek: Ph.D.K.], K.L.M., &c., &c. (of Boston, U.S.)



                      Three Leaves from Punch.


[Illustration: "THERE, NOW;--THAT'S A CIGAR I CAN CONFIDENTLY
RECOMMEND!"

"WELL; PUT ME UP A DOZEN TO TRY!"]

[Illustration: THE INTERESTING STORY.

_First Ticket-Porter._--"AND SO, YOU KNOW, THAT'S ALL I KNOWS ABOUT IT."

_Second Ticket-Porter._--"WELL! I DON'T KNOW AS EVER I KNOWED A MAN AS
KNOWS AS MUCH AS YOU KNOWS!"]

[Illustration: ELEGANT AND RATIONAL DINNER COSTUME FOR THIS CLOSE
WEATHER.]

[Illustration: A WET DAY AT A COUNTRY INN.

_Guest_--"IS THAT YOUR NOTION OF SOMETHING AMUSING?"]

[Illustration: _Bathing-Woman_--"MASTER FRANKY WOULDN'T CRY! NO! NOT
HE!--HE'LL COME TO HIS MARTHA, AND BATHE LIKE A MAN!"]

[Illustration: AFFECTING--RATHER!

_Alfred._--"TELL ME, MY OWN ONE. IS THERE ANY THING ELSE YOU HAVE TO
SAY, BEFORE I GO?"

_Emma._--"YES, DEAREST--DO NOT--OH DO NOT FORGET TO BRING
THE--TH--TH--BRUNSWICK SAUSAGE FROM F-F-F-FORT--NUM AND MASON'S."]

[Illustration: REAL ENJOYMENT.

_Annie._--"GOOD-BY, DEAR. YOU MUST COME AGAIN SOON, AND SPEND A GOOD
LONG DAY, AND THEN I CAN SHOW YOU ALL MY NEW THINGS."

_Clara._--"OH! THAT WILL BE NICE! GOOD-BY, DEAR." (_Kiss and exit._)]

[Illustration: "SEE, DEAR, WHAT A SWEET DOLL MA-A HAS MADE FOR ME."]

[Illustration: SINGULAR OPTICAL DELUSION.

_Gentleman._--"THERE, LOVE; DO YOU SEE THAT STEAMER?"

_Lady._--"OH, DISTINCTLY! THERE ARE TWO!"]

[Illustration: A MOST ALARMING SWELLING!]

[Illustration: SUNBEAMS FROM CUCUMBERS; OR, GEMS FROM ADVERTISEMENTS
SCHOLASTIC!

_Mother._--"AND--PRAY, DOCTOR, WHAT ARE YOUR TERMS FOR HEDUCATING LITTLE
BOYS?"

_The Principal._--"WHY, MY DEAR MADAM, MY USUAL TERMS ARE SEVENTY
GUINEAS _PER ANNUM_ (TO USE THE LANGUAGE OF THE ANCIENT ROMANS), BUT TO
EFFECT MY OBJECT (?) QUICKLY, I WOULD TAKE A FEW FOR WHAT I COULD GET;
PROVIDED THEY BE GENTLEMEN, LIKE YOUR DEAR LITTLE BOY THERE; BUT (AGAIN
TO USE THE LATIN TONGUE), IT IS A _SINE QUA NON_ THAT THEY SHOULD BE
GENTLEMEN!!!"]

[Illustration: _First Old Foozle._--"WOULD YOU LIKE TO SEE THE PAPER,
SIR? THERE'S NOTHING IN IT."

_Second Old Foozle._--"THEN WHAT THE DEUCE DID YOU KEEP IT SO LONG
FOR?"]

[Illustration: LITTLE LESSONS FOR LITTLE LADIES.

FAN-NY FAL-LAL, al-though she was not rich, nor a per-son of rank, was a
ve-ry fine La-dy. She would pass all her time read-ing nov-els and
work-ing cro-chet, but would neg-lect her house-hold du-ties; so her
hus-band, who was a ve-ry nice man, and fond of a nice din-ner, be-came
a mem-ber of a Club, and used to stop out ve-ry late at night, which led
to ma-ny quar-rels. How fool-ish it was of FAN-NY to neg-lect her
house-hold du-ties, and not to make her AL-BERT hap-py at home!]



                        FASHIONS FOR AUGUST.


[Illustration: FIG. 1.--PROMENADE AND YOUNG LADY'S MORNING COSTUME.]

We have very little change to note in the forms of dress, since our
last; and while "the dog-star rages," materials suitable for the heat of
July will be appropriate. For out-of-door costume, silks of light
texture, and hues accordant with those of surrounding nature, such as
peach, lilac, violet, buff, green, pink, &c., are in vogue. Mantelets
are much worn, and are of two different forms--the scarf mantelet, and
the little round shawl mantelet. These, particularly the shawl mantelet,
are beautifully embroidered and deeply fringed, giving them an
exceedingly rich appearance. They have mostly a double collar attached.

PROMENADE COSTUME.--The figure on the right, in our first illustration,
represents a beautiful style of walking costume. The dress is of
light-textured silk. Body high, open in front, and having at the edge,
as a lapel, two vandyked and goffered trimmings, with very little
fullness. The under one meets the upper about two-thirds down the front.
The body has a rounded point in front, and the trimming goes to the
bottom. The sleeves are almost tight for about two-thirds of the arm,
and end in a frill, on which are set two smaller frills, vandyked and
goffered at the edges. The skirt has three flounces; the first, six
inches below the waist, is ten inches deep; the second is twelve, and
the third fourteen inches. Each of these flounces, already a little
drawn, is trimmed at bottom with two vandyked frills of two inches in
width. They are held in, when sewed on, so as to be full on the large
ones. The habit shirt is composed of two valenciennes at the collar, and
of muslin puffs; the under-sleeve, trimmed with a narrow valenciennes,
is formed of muslin _bouillonnés_, diminishing toward the bottom.

The bonnet is an elegant style. It is drawn, of net, blond, and silk;
the edge of the poke has a roll of silk; above and below there is a
transparent width of net, about two inches deep, and two blond frills
drawn shell-shape. All the inside of the poke and crown is composed of a
kind of _carapace_ made of silk, with small folds lapping over each
other. On one side there are two large moss-roses with buds and leaves.
A blond, about an inch and a half wide, goes over the roses, and is
continued in waves all along the piping. On the other side there are no
flowers, but instead of them are a net _bouillonné_ and three blond
frills. The curtain is of puffed net, with blonds and no frills.

YOUNG LADY'S MORNING COSTUME.--The figure on the left represents an
elegant morning costume for a young lady. Hair in bandeaux, forming a
puff which spreads well at the bottom. The points are carried back to
meet under the knot. The back hair is done up in a torsade with black
velvet ribbons, the two ends of which float behind. Frock of plaid silk,
skirt very full. _Canezou_, or jacket, of embroidered muslin, trimmed
with embroidered and festooned bands. It is open and square in front,
with five bands for trimming. The sleeves are demi-length, and trimmed
in a similar manner. The under-chemisette is of plaited net, with a
narrow lace at the edge.

[Illustration: FIG. 2.--JACKETS.]

Jackets are now much worn, not only as a part of a morning costume, but
as an elegant addition to a visiting dress. Figure 2 represents two of
these. The first, held in the hand, is of light blue silk, and intended
as an accompaniment to a visiting dress of the same material. It is
trimmed round the lower part, as well as the sleeves and lapels or
facings, with a narrow frilling of the same, fastened down the front
with three large rosettes of silk, the corsage being sufficiently open
to show the habit-shirt, decorated with a frilling of white lace. The
large white under-sleeves are decorated with a double fall of white
lace. On the half-length figure is represented the jacket of a morning
costume. It is of white jaconet muslin, trimmed with lace and rows of
pink ribbon of different widths. Long sleeves made rather loose, and
encircled with lace and ribbon, finished with a noeud of the latter,
on the top of the wrist. Under close sleeve trimmed with rows of lace
placed close together. This figure also shows a pretty style of cap,
made of white lace, trimmed round the back part with four rows of narrow
white lace, finished on each side with a bow and ends of pink ribbon,
with loops on each side of the face.

A beautiful style of EVENING DRESS is a robe of white cachmere, trimmed
with very deep flounces, each finished with stripes of silk woven in the
material. The body open, square in the front; made very high and open,
across the chest, terminating below the waist with basquines, which give
it some what the appearance of a little vest, or jacket.

[Illustration: FIG. 3.--BOY'S DRESS.]

FIGURE 3 represents a pleasing style of dress for a little boy. A
Charles-the-Ninth cap of black velvet, with a well-rolled feather on one
side, and proceeding from a cabbage-rose of black satin ribbon. Coat of
black velvet, without any seam at the waist. It is hollowed out at the
side and back seams, like a lady's paletot, tight over the breast, and
fastened with little jet buttons. Sleeves half short, also with buttons.
Under the coat is a tunic of plaid poplin, black and red. This tunic is
full of gathers like a Scotch kilt. Plaid stockings, stripes sloping;
small black gaiters with jet buttons. Collar sewed on to a band; the
trimmings of the under-sleeves and trowsers are of the older style of
English embroidery.

The taste for flowers, those gems which give exquisite beauty to
nature's pictures, is becoming more and more prevalent. Nearly every
bonnet is decorated with flowers, particularly those of rice straw.
Heaths, lilies, violets, roses, &c., with straw, oats, asparagus,
butter-cups, and fancy trifles are used in giving grace and beauty to
bonnets.

                                 END



                       Changes Made To The Text


Transcriber's note: A table of contents has been added. Blank pages have
been deleted. The publisher's inadvertent omissions of important
punctuation have been corrected. 'oe' ligatures have been converted to
just 'oe'. Other detected publisher's errors were corrected as follows:

 p. 385: on which they conduc[conduct] their whaling
 p. 289: with an ancient piece of tapesty[tapestry]
 p. 291: thousand little conveniencies[conveniences]
 p. 299: rancorous recollection of the occurence[occurrence],
 p. 301: By the brillance[brilliance] of her conversational
 p. 304: when folks spok[spoke] of Andrè and his wife
 p. 310: revelations of the sybil[sibyl] concerned
 p. 334: how can this [be] part of myself?
 p. 335: to literary socities[societies]
 p. 337: country disstricts[districts]
 p. 352: and gay boddice[bodice]
 p. 365: The general fully corrobarated[corroborated]
 p. 366: and rolling lazily adown[down] the
 p. 368: round, and [in] one fearful lesson teach these same whitecoats
 p. 368: drive a brave enemy to depair[despair]
 p. 370: two unfurnished rooms; the lagest[largest] contained her
 p. 374: they anticipate inuendoes[innuendoes], and meet
 p. 384: accordingly went, accompaniod[accompanied] by
 p. 399: but my husband is harder nor[than] I, and he said
 p. 408: why should be[he] put himself

       *       *       *       *       *





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