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Title: The Catholic World; Vol. IV.; October, 1866, to March, 1867. - A Monthly Magazine of General Literature and Science
Author: Rameur, E.
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 "The Catholic World; Vol. IV.; October, 1866, to March, 1867. - A Monthly Magazine of General Literature and Science" ***

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[Transcriber's notes]

  Page numbers in this book are indicated by numbers enclosed in curly
  braces, e.g. {99}. They have been located where page breaks occurred
  in the original book.

[End transcriber's note.]


THE CATHOLIC WORLD.


_A Monthly Magazine_

of

GENERAL LITERATURE AND SCIENCE.



VOL. IV.

OCTOBER, 1866, TO MARCH, 1867.



NEW YORK:

LAWRENCE KEHOE, PUBLISHER.

145 Nassau Street.

1867.


CONTENTS

  Aërolites, 536.
  Andorra, The Republic of, 561.

  Books, Rise and Progress of, 104.
  Books and Hymns, Mediaeval, 804.

  Cervantes y Saavedra, Miguel de, 14.
  Connecticut, Divorce Legislation in, 101.
  Cowardice and Courage, 160.
  Count Julian and His Family, Legend of, 211.
  Celtic Anthology and Poetic Remains, 389.
  Charity and Philanthropy, 434.
  Christmas with the Baron, 446.
  Conversion, The Philosophy of, 459.
  Christ is Born, 496.
  Christmas Story, Little Sunbeam's, 515.
  Christmas Day, The Little Birds on, 584.
  Christmas Eve, What Came of a Laugh on, 542.
  Christmas, Catholic, 565.
  Catholic Church, How my Aunt Pilcher found the, 667.
  Christine, 681.
  Catholic Ceremonial, The, 721.

  De Vere, Aubrey, 73.
  Divorce Legislation in Connecticut, 101.
  Doubt, Victims of, 550.

  European Events, Recent, 217.

  French Unity, Founders of, 197.
  French Watering-Place, A Month at a, 405.
  Flowers, Sea-Side, 621.
  Fra Angelico, A Portrait of, 671.

  Godfrey Family, The, 30, 174, 320, 473, 598, 750.
  Holy Land, The, 500.
  Heart of Man, What Most Rejoices the, 559.

  Lake Dwellings, 398.
  Labor, The Source of, 593.
  Limerick, The First Siege of, 708.

  Miscellany, 138, 281, 424, 570, 853.
  Montpensier, Mademoiselle de, 360.
  Monarchy, The Church and, 627.
  Mediaeval Books and Hymns, 804.

  Nationalities, Development of, 245.

  Old Owl, The, 264.
  Origen at Caesarea, 772.

  Problems of the Age, 1, 145, 289, 519, 652.
  Paris, The Musée Retrospectif in, 275.
  Painting, Missal, 303.
  Proselytism, Protestant, in Eastern Lands, 342.
  Pope and the Revolution, The, 577.
  Parisian Attic, Genius in, 685.

  Robert; or, The Influence of a Good Mother, 641, 824.
  Rossetti, Christina G., 889.
  Ritualism, What I Heard About, in a City Car, 850.

  Saint Catharine at Florence, 129,
  Science, Physical and Christian Revelation, 253, 372.
  Syracuse and AEtna, 701.
  Swetchine, Madame, 736.

  The Age, Problems of, 1, 145, 289, 519, 652.
  The Church, Independence of, 51,
  The Thatched House, The Mystery of, 65.
  Traveler's Tales, 111.
  Tombstone, The Tale of a, 792.

  Unconvicted; or, Old Thorneley's Heirs, 87, 223.

  Woman, 417.

------

POETRY

  A Summer Sorrow, 103.
  Anniversary, 128.
  Autumn, 341.
  Ave Maria Sine Labe Concepts, 415.

  Barabas and I, 535.
  Bartimeus, On the Cure of, 771.

  Christmas Song, A, 433.
  Christmas Bells, 471.
  Charity, Christian, 518.
  Christmas Tree, My, 533.
  Christmas Dream, A, 549.

  Delia, 359.
  Dying Year, The, 499.
  Deliverance, 541.
  Deo Opt. Max., 640.

  Epigram, 457.

  Home at Last, 263.
  Herodias, Request of the Daughter of, 626.

  I Am the Way, 680.
  "Inconsolabile," 838.

  Lucifer Matutinus, 110.
  Light, 803.

  My Soldier, 100.
  My Fears, 210.
  My Two Mites, 423.

  Our Lord, Apparition of, to His Disciples, 514.
  One Moment, 651.

  Pea-Blossom, 404.
  Poem, 597.
  Pardon, 620.

  "Quare Tristis es Anima Mea et Quare Conturbas Me?" 397.

  Resurrection, The, 72.

  Silent Grief, 29.
  Song, 159.
  Saint Lucy, 172.
  Summer Days are Gone, 227.
  Sonnet, 274.
  St. Peter's Denial, On, 499.

  The Fairest Fair, 818.
  The Virgin's Cradle Hymn, 388.
  The Christmas Tree, 458.
  The Cry, 748.
  The Answer, 749.
  The Test, 846.
  The Barren Fig-Tree and the Cross, 852.

  Work-Box, My Aunt's, 666.

------

NEW PUBLICATIONS

  Allie's See of St. Peter, 139.
  Alphonso, 144.

  Church History, Darras, 575.
  Curious Questions, 428.

  England, History of, for the Young, 144.

  First Principles, 288.
  Frederick the Great and His Court, 575.

  Holt, Felix, 141.
  Harkness' Latin Book, 143.

  International Law, Wheaton's Elements of, 282.
  King René's Daughter, 859.

  Jesus, Sufferings of, 576.
  Jesus Crucified. The School of, 858.

  Laurentia, a Tale of Japan, 287.
  Letters, Beethoven's, 574.
  Lydia, 719.

  Mormon Prophet and his Harem, The, 144.
  Moral Evil, Origin of, 432.
  Men, Light and Life of, 576.
  Mouthful of Bread, History of a, 720.
  McAuley, Catherine, Life of, 854.
  Manual, The French, 858.

  Philip Earnescliffe, 143.
  Pastoral Letter of Second Plenary Council, 425.
  Poems, Alice Carey's, 572.
  Poems, Buchanan's, 574.
  Paulists, Sermons of the, 718.
  Pictorial Histories, Goodrich's, 720.
  Physiology of Man, The, 859.

  Rise and Fall, The, 431.

  See of St. Peter, Allie's, 139.
  Six Months at White House, Carpenter's, 142,
  Sunday-school Class-Book, Improved Catholic, 143.
  Saint Cecilia, Life of, 286.
  Spanish Papers, Irving's, 286.
  Shakespeare, Authorship of the Works of, 429.
  Scientific Subjects, Herschel's Lectures on, 430.
  Saint Vincent de Paul, Life of, 576.
  Severne, Robert, 857.

  The Sham Squire, 288.
  The Conditioned, Philosophy of, 432.
  Town, Out of, 860.

  Vignettes, Miss Parke's, 287.

  Woman's Work, Essays on, 142.
  Women, Higher Education of, 575.
  Welte, Alte und Neue, 576.

----

{1}

THE CATHOLIC WORLD.

VOL. IV., NO. 19.--OCTOBER, 1866.


ORIGINAL.

PROBLEMS OF THE AGE.


VII.

THE DOGMA OF CREATION--THE PRINCIPLE, ARCHETYPE,
AND END OF THE CREATIVE ACT.


The next article of the creed is, "Creatorem coeli et terrae:" Creator
of heaven and earth.

The mystery of the Trinity exhausts the idea of the activity of God
within his own interior being, or _ad intra_. The dogma of creation
expresses the idea of the activity of God without his own interior
being, or _ad extra_. It is an explication of the primitive idea of
reason which presents simultaneously to intelligence the absolute and
the contingent in their necessary relation of the dependence of the
contingent upon the absolute. Being an explication of the rational
idea, it is rationally demonstrable, and does not, therefore, belong
to the super-intelligible part of the revelation, or that which is
believed simply on the veracity of God. That portion of the dogma of
creation which is super-intelligible, or revealed truth in the highest
sense, relates to the supernatural end to which the creation is
determined by the decree of God. Nevertheless, although the idea of
creation, once proposed, is demonstrable on purely rational
principles, it is fairly and fully proposed to reason under an
adequate and explicit conception adequately expressed, only by divine
revelation. Wherever this adequate formula of revelation has been
lost, the conception has been lost with it, and not even the highest
philosophy has restored it. Plato's conception of the formation of the
universe went no higher than the impression of divine ideas upon
matter eternally self existent. In all philosophy which is not
regulated by the principles of revelation, the ideas of necessary
being and contingent existence and of the relation between them are
more or less confused, and the dogma of creation is corrupted.

The pure, theistic conception gives at once the pure conception of
creation.

Not that the idea of creation can be immediately perceived in the idea
of God, which has been shown to be impossible; but that it can be
perceived in the idea of God by the medium of the knowledge of finite
existences given to the intellect together with the knowledge of
infinite being, in the {2} primitive intuition. When the idea of
infinite being is fully explicated and demonstrated in the perfect
conception of God, the existence of real entities which are not God,
and therefore not included in necessary being, being known, the
relation of these things extrinsic to the being of God, to the being
of God itself, becomes evident in the idea of God. It is evident that
they have no necessary self-existence either out of the divine being
or in the divine being, and therefore have been brought out of
nonentity into entity by the act of God.

This creative act of God is that by which he reduces possibility to
actuality. It is evident that this possibility of creation, or
creability of finite existences extrinsic to the divine essence, is
necessary and eternal. For God could not think of doing that which he
does not think as possible, and his thoughts are eternal. The thought
or idea of creation is therefore eternal in the divine mind. It is a
divine and eternal archetype or ideal, which the externised, concrete
reality copies and represents. The divine essence is the complete and
adequate object of the divine contemplation.

It is, therefore, in his own essence that God must have beheld the
eternal possibility of creation and the ground or reason of
creability. It is the divine essence itself, therefore, which contains
the archetype or ideal of a possible creation. As an archetype, it
must contain that which is equivalent to finite essences, capable of
being brought into concrete, actual existence by the divine power, and
multiplied to an indefinite extent God's eternal knowledge of the
possibility of creation is, therefore, his knowledge of his own
essence, as an archetype of existences which he is capable of enduing
with reality extrinsic to the reality of his own being, by his
omnipotent power. The eternal possibility of creation, therefore,
exists necessarily in the being and omnipotence of God. It is the
imitability of the divine essence as archetype by finite essences,
which are its real and extrinsic similitudes, and which are
extrinsecated by an act of the divine will. The ideal or archetype of
creation is evidently as necessary, as eternal, as unchangeable, as
God himself. God cannot create except according to this archetype, and
in creating must necessarily copy himself, to give extrinsic existence
to something which is a concrete expression of the divine ideal in his
own intelligence. This ideal which creation copies being, therefore,
eternal in the divine intelligence, and the interior activity of the
divine intelligence, or its interior ideal life, being inexplicable
except in the relation of the three persons in God, creation is
likewise inexplicable, except in relation to the distinct persons of
the Trinity.

The Son, or Word, proceeds from the contemplation of his own divine
essence by the Father, who thus reproduces the perfect and coequal
image of himself. In this act of contemplation, the knowledge of the
archetype of creation, or of the creability of essences resembling the
divine essence, is necessarily included. The expressed ideal or
archetype of all possible existences is therefore in the Word, as the
personal image of the Father, and he contains in himself, in an
eminent and equivalent manner, infinite similitudes or images capable
of being reduced to act, and made to reflect himself in a countless
variety of ways. The Son thus communicates with the Father in creative
omnipotence. The spiration of the Holy Spirit, from the Father and the
Son, consummating the act of contemplation by which the Son is
generated in love, and thus completing the interior, intelligent, or
spiritual life of God within himself, is perfectly correlated to the
eternal generation of the Son. The complete essence of God is
communicated by the Father and the Son to the Holy Spirit, and with it
creative omnipotence as necessarily included in it. The object of
volition in God is identical with the object of intelligence. The
essence of God as being the archetype of a possible creation, {3} that
is, the ideal of creation, or the idea which creation copies, being
included in the term of the divine intelligence, or in the Word, is
also included in the term of the divine love, or the Holy Spirit. The
ideal of creation is therefore included in the object of the eternal,
intelligent, living contemplation in which the three persons of the
blessed Trinity are united. The power of illimitable creation
according to the divine archetype is a necessary and eternal predicate
of his divine being, which he contemplates with complacency. The idea
of creation is therefore as eternal as God; it is coeval with him, and
the object of the ineffable communications of the divine persons with
each other from eternity. God has always been pleased with this idea,
as the artist delights himself in the ideal of beauty, to which he
feels himself capable of giving outward form and expression in
sculpture, painting, or architecture.

The decree of God to reduce this possibility of creation to act, or
the creative purpose, is likewise eternal; since all divine acts are
in eternity, and there is no process of deliberation or progress from
equilibrium to determination possible in the unchangeable God. God is
_actus purissimus_, most pure act, and there is in him nothing
potential or reducible to act which is not in act from eternity; since
in him there is no past or future, and no succession, but _tota, simul
ac perfecta possessio vitae interminabilss_, a complete, simultaneous,
and perfect possession of interminable life.

The necessity of his own self-existent being does not determine him to
the creative act, but merely to the exercise of supreme omnipotence in
choosing freely between the contemplation of creation in its ideal
archetype alone, and of creation in its ideal archetype determined to
outward actual expression. The inward life of God is necessary, and
the interior act of beatific contemplation is of the essence of the
divine being. Nothing beyond this, or outside of the interior essence
of God, can be necessary, and the creation cannot therefore be
necessary, or it would be included in the idea of God, and be
identical with the essence of God. God does not create, therefore, by
necessity of nature, but by voluntary choice. It is the only exercise
of voluntary choice possible to him. It is a choice, however, which
though free is determined from eternity. He might have eternally
chosen the contrary, that is, to leave the possible creation
unactualized in its ideal archetype. He did eternally choose, however,
to create.

The learned expositor of St. Thomas, F. Billuart, says that the
purpose to create is communicated by the Father to the Word,
concomitantly with the intelligence of the divine essence by which he
is generated. [Footnote 1] Creation is no afterthought, no capricious
or sportive play of omnipotence, like the _jeu d'esprit_ which a poet
throws off from a sudden impulse of fancy. The creative purpose has
been the theme of the mysterious communications of the three persons
of the blessed Trinity, from all eternity. In God, purpose and act,
consultation and decree, are one. The decree of creation and the
creative act are identical. The creative act, therefore, _a parte
Dei_, is eternal. It is an illusion of the imagination to conceive of
time as having existed before creation. "In the beginning, God created
the heavens and the earth." That beginning was the first moment of
time, which St. Thomas says God created when he created the universe.
Time is a mere relation of finite entities to each other and to
infinite being, arising from their limitation. The procession of
created existences is necessarily in time, and could not have begun
_ab aeterno_ without a series actually infinite, which is impossible.
Nevertheless, the first instant of created time had no created time
behind it, and no series of instants behind it, intervening between it
and eternity, but touched immediately on eternity.

  [Footnote 1: Tract. De Trin. Diss. V. Art III. ]

{4}

The procession of created existences from God is a finite similitude
of the procession of the Son and Holy Spirit from the Father. Creation
is an expression of that archetype in finite form which is expressed
in the infinite image of the Word. He is "the splendor of the glory,
and the express image of the substance"  [Footnote 2] of the Father;
and creation is a reflection of this splendor, a reduplication in
miniature of this image. It is an act of the same infinite
intelligence by which the infinite Word is generated. For although
finite itself, it is the similitude of an infinite archetype which
only infinite intelligence can possess within itself. It is also an
act of the same infinite love whose spiration is the Holy Spirit. The
sanctity of the divine nature consists in the perfect conformity of
intelligence and volition. Volition is love, a complacency in good.
Love must therefore concur with intelligence in every divine act, that
it may be holy. The Holy Spirit, or impersonated love, must concur
with the Father and the Son, as principle and medium, to consummate or
bring to its final end the creative act. Creation is therefore
essentially an act of love; proceeding from intelligence and ordained
for beatitude; proceeding from God as first cause, and returning to
him as final cause. [Footnote 3]

  [Footnote 2:  Heb. i. 3.]

  [Footnote 3:  Final cause is the same as ultimate end. It is the
  cause or reason of the determination of God to create.]

The final cause of creation must be God, just as necessarily as its
first cause must be God. The creative decree being eternal, all that
constitutes its perfection, including its end and consummation, must
be eternal, and must therefore be in God. He is the principle and
consummation of his own act _ad intra_, and of his act _ad extra_,
which imitates it perfectly. God creates, because he freely chooses to
please himself by conferring the good of existence through the
creative act on subjects distinct from himself. The adequate object of
this volition of God is himself as the author of created good, or the
term of the relation which created existences have to him as their
creator. The possession of good by the creature is inseparable in the
volition of God from the complacency which he has in the exercise of
the power of bestowing good by creation. Although he is necessarily
his own final end in creating, yet this does not prevent creation from
being an act of pure and free love, but on the contrary makes it to be
so; because it is as infinite love that God is the end of his creative
act. A charitable man, who confers good upon another, is moved by a
principle of love in himself, which causes him to take delight in the
happiness of his fellow-creatures. This movement originates in
himself, and returns back to himself, being consummated in the pure
happiness which the exercise of love produces. Yet the possession of
good by another is the real object which elicits the act of love, and
it is therefore pure, disinterested charity. Love makes the good as
given, and the good as received, one identical object, and unites the
giver and receiver in one good. Selfishness is inordinate self-love,
or a love of others merely so far as they serve as instruments of our
own pleasure and advantage, and not as themselves subjects of
happiness. But the just love of self and of others is identical in
principle, proceeding from the _amor entis_, or love of being. The
benignant father, prelate, or sovereign, the generous benefactor of
his fellow-men, is not less disinterested in his acts on account of
the pure happiness which comes back to himself, filling his heart with
the purest happiness of which it is capable. Thus in God; his
complacency in his creative act, or sovereign pleasure in creating, is
the purest and most perfect love to the creature. That which he
delights in as creator is the bestowal of existence, which
participates in the infinite good of his own being.

{5}

The mode and degree in which existences participate in this infinite
good which God distributes from the plenitude of his own being,
specificates and determines their relation to him as final cause, and
constitutes the ultimate term to which their creation is directed.
This ultimate term or final end of creation as a whole, includes the
ends for which each part taken singly is intended, and the common end
to which these minor and less principal ends are all subordinated in
the universal creative design. The end of a particular portion of the
creation, taken singly, is attained, when it makes the final and
complete explication of that similitude to the divine perfections
which constitutes it in its own particular grade of existence. The end
of the universe of existences is attained, when they collectively
reach the maximum of excellence which God proposed to himself in
creating. That is, when the similitude of the perfections of God is
expressed in the universe in that variety of distinct grades, and
raised to that altitude in the series of possible states of existence,
which God prefixed in the beginning as the ultimate term of the
creative act. Whatever the maximum of created good may be, whatever
may be the predetermined limits of the universe of existence, whatever
may be the highest point of elevation to which it is destined, it is
evident that the accomplishment of the creative act brings the
creation back to God as final cause. It has its final end in God,
wherever that finality may have been fixed by the eternal will of God.
This is very plain and obvious. But it leads into one of the most
abstruse and, at the same time, one of the most unavoidable questions
of philosophy, that which relates to the end of creation
metaphysically final. What is the end of creation, or the relation of
the universe of created existences to the final cause, which is
metaphysically final? How far ought the actual end of created
existences to coincide, or does it really coincide with the end
metaphysically final?



VIII.

THE END OF CREATION METAPHYSICALLY FINAL--THE ASCENDING SERIES OF
GRADES IN EXISTENCE--THE SUMMIT OF THIS SERIES IS A NATURE
HYPOSTATICALLY UNITED TO THE DIVINE NATURE OF THE WORD--THE
INCARNATION, THE CREATIVE ACT CARRIED TO THE APEX OF POSSIBILITY--THE
SUPERNATURAL END TO WHICH THE UNIVERSE IS DESTINED COMPLETED IN THE
INCARNATION.

By the end of creation metaphysically final, is meant a relation of
the universe to God as final cause which is final in the divine idea,
or the one which God beholds in his own infinite intelligence as the
ultimatum to which his omnipotence can carry the creative act. It is a
relation which brings the creature to the closest union and similitude
to the creator in the good of being which the nature of the infinite
and of the finite will admit.

We have already established the doctrine that God is by nature free to
create or not to create, and eternally determines himself to creation
by his own sovereign will to confer the pure boon of existence. We
have also established, that since God determines himself from eternity
to create, he necessarily creates in accordance with his own nature or
essence, in accordance with the eternal archetype and idea reflected
in the person of the Word; and for his own glory, or for an end in
himself to which the creature is related, and which he must attain if
he accomplishes his destiny. But we must inquire further, whether in
determining himself to create according to the archetype contained in
his own essence, he necessarily carries out this idea to the most
perfect and complete actualization in the real universe? That is, does
he necessarily create for an end metaphysically final, and carry the
creative act to its apex, or the summit of possibility? Or is there
any degree of existence or {6} grade of resemblance and relation to
God as archetype which must be supposed in order to conceive of an end
accomplished by creation which is worthy of the divine wisdom and
goodness? Or, on the contrary, is it just as free to God to determine
any limit, however low, as the term of creation, as it is to abstain
from creating? For instance, can we suppose it consistent with the
divine wisdom to create only a grain of sand? On the one hand, it may
be said that creation being a free act, the creation of a grain of
sand does not take away the liberty of the divine will to abstain from
creating anything else. On the other hand, God, as being in his very
essence the infinite wisdom, must have an adequate end in view, even
in creating a grain of sand. It may be said that the creation of a
grain of sand is truly an infinite act, and that a grain of sand
represents the omnipotence of God as truly as the universe itself.
Yet, it is difficult to see any reason why Almighty God should make
such a representation merely for his own contemplation. For the same
reason, it is equally difficult to suppose any adequate motive for the
creation of a merely material universe, however extensive. The wisdom
and power of God are manifested, but manifested to himself alone. The
very end of such a manifestation appears to be to manifest the
attributes of God to intelligent minds capable of apprehending it.
Suppose the material universe filled with sentient creatures, and,
although its end is thus partially fulfilled, by the enjoyment which
they are capable of receiving from it, its adaptation to the
manifestation of the divine attributes to intelligence is still
apparently without an object. The sentient creation itself manifests
the wisdom and goodness of God in such a way that it seems to require
an intelligent nature to apprehend it, in order that God may be
glorified in his works, and that the love which is the essential
consummating principle of the creative act may be reflected back from
the creation to the creator, and thus furnish an adequate term of the
divine complacency. This complacency of God in himself as creator, as
we have seen, is complacency in the communication of good, or pure,
disinterested love delighting in the distribution of its own infinite
plenitude. The material creation can only be the recipient of this
love _in transitu_ or as the instrument and means of conveying it to a
subject capable of apprehending it. The sentient creation can only be
the recipient of it as its most imperfect term, and as an end most
inadequate to the means employed. The wisdom and goodness of God in
the creative act cannot therefore be made intelligible to us, except
as we consider it as including the creation of intelligent natures,
capable of sharing in the intelligent life of God. As soon as the mind
makes this point, it is able to perceive an adequate motive for the
creation, for it apprehends a good in the finite order resembling the
infinite good which is necessary and uncreated. It is approaching to a
finality, for it apprehends that the rational nature is that nature in
which the finality must be situated, or in which the ultimate relation
of the universe to the final cause must exist. In other words, it
apprehends that God has created a _universe_, including all generic
grades of existence explicated into a vast extent and variety of
subordinate genera and species multiplied in a countless number of
individuals, all subordinate to a common order, and culminating in
intelligent life. It apprehends the correspondence of the actual
creation to its ideal archetype, or the realization in act of the
highest possible nature which omnipotence can create after the
resemblance of his own essence impersonated in the Word, and of every
inferior nature necessary to the constitution of a _universe_, or a
world of composite order and harmony comprising all the essential
forms of existence whose infinite equivalent is in the divine idea.

{7}

It is evidently befitting the wisdom and grandeur of Almighty God,
that the created universe should represent to created intelligence an
adequate and universal similitude of his being and perfections; that
its vast extent and variety, the multiplicity of distinct existences
which it contains, its complicated relations and harmonies, the
sublimity and beauty of its forms, the superabundance of its sentient
life and enjoyment, the excellence and perfection of its intelligent
creatures, should be adapted to overwhelm the mind with admiration of
the might and majesty, the wisdom and glory, the goodness and love of
the Creator; that, as far as possible, the procession of the divine
persons within the essence of God should be copied in the procession
of created existences; that the ineffable object of the divine
contemplation, or the Word going forth from the infinite intelligence
of the Father and returning to him in the Holy Spirit, should be
represented in created similitudes by the communication of being,
life, and intelligence, in every possible grade, and the completion of
these in the most sublime manner of union to God of which finite
nature is capable. This consummation of the creative act is worthy of
the wisdom of God; for it is the most perfect act of the divine
intelligence _ad extra_, or extrinsic to the _actus purissimus_ by
which the Word is generated in the unity of his eternal being, which
is possible. It is worthy of the goodness of God; for it is the most
perfect act of love _ad extra_, or extrinsic to the _actus purissimus_
of the spiration of the Holy Spirit, consummating the interior life of
God in eternal, self-sufficing beatitude, which omnipotence can
produce.

Let us now analyse the composite order of the universe, and examine
its component parts singly, in reference to the final end to which
this order is determined. We will then proceed to examine more closely
the mode by which the end of the universe is attained in the rational
nature, and the relation of this rational nature to the end
metaphysically final.

Theologians distinguish in the divine nature _esse, vivere_, and
_intelligere_, or being, life, and intelligence, as constituting the
archetype of the inanimate, animated, and rational orders of creation
respectively.

The inanimate order, composed of the aggregate of material substances,
imitates the divine _esse_, considered as concrete and real imply;
prescinding the idea of vital movement. It imitates the divine being
in the lowest and most imperfect manner. The good that is in it can
only be apprehended and made to contribute to the happiness of
conscious existence when a higher order of existence is created. God
loves it only as an artist loves an aqueduct, a building, or a statue,
as the medium of contributing to the well-being or pleasure of his
creatures. Its hidden essence is impervious to our intelligence. The
utmost that we can distinctly conceive of its nature is that it is a
_vis activa_, an active force, producing sensible effects or
phenomena. This appears to be the opinion which is more common and
gaining ground both among physical and metaphysical philosophers.
[Footnote 4] By active force is meant a simple, indivisible substance,
which exists in perpetual activity. It is material substance, because
its activity is blind, unconscious, and wholly mechanical, producing
by physical necessity sensible effects, such as extension, resistance,
etc. Though not manifest to intelligence in its hidden nature and
operation, it is apprehensible by the intelligence through the effects
which it operates, as something intelligible. Its sensible {8}
phenomena are not illusions, or mere subjective forms of the
sensibility, but are objectively real. Nevertheless, our conception of
them must be corrected and sublimated by pure reason, in order to
correspond to the reality or substance which stands under them. Our
imaginary conceptions [Footnote 5] represent only the complex of
phenomena presented to the senses. They represent matter as composite,
because it is only through composition, or the interaction of distinct
material substances upon each other, that the effects and phenomena
are produced which the senses present to the imagination. The
substance, or active force which stands under them, is concluded by a
judgment of the reason. Reason cannot arrest itself at the composite
as something ultimate. The common, crude conception of extended bulk
as the ultimate material reality, is like the child's conception of
the surface of the earth as the floor of the universe having nothing
below it, and of the sky as its roof; or like the Indian conception of
an elephant supporting the world, who stands himself on the back of a
tortoise, who is on the absolute mud lying at the bottom of all
things. It is the essential operation of reason to penetrate to the
_altissima causa_, or deepest cause of things, and not to stop at
anything as its term which implies something else as the reason or
principle of its existence. It cannot therefore stop at anything short
of the _altissima causa_, in the order of material second causes, any
more than it can stop short of the cause of all causes, or the
absolute first cause. That which is ultimate in the composite must be
simple and indivisible in itself, and divided from everything else, or
it cannot be an original and primary component. For, however far the
analysis of a composite may be carried, it may be carried further,
unless it has been analysed to its simple constituent parts which are
not themselves composite, and therefore simple. It is of no avail to
take refuge in the notion of the infinite divisibility of matter. For,
apart from the absurdity of the infinite series contained in this
notion, one of these infinitesimal entities could certainly be divided
from all others by the power of God and made intelligible to the human
understanding. And the very question under discussion is, What is the
intelligible essence of this ultimate entity?

  [Footnote 4: The philosophical works of Leibnitz may be consulted
  for a thorough exposition of this doctrine. Also the Philosophical
  Manuals of F. Rothenflue, S.J., and the Abbé Branchereau of the
  Society of St. Sulpice. The philosophical articles of Dr. Brownson
  in his Review contain some incidental arguments of great value on
  the same topic. P. Dalgairns of the London Oratory, also treats,
  with the ability and clearness which characterize all his writings,
  of this subject, at considerable length, in his work on the Holy
  Communion.]

  [Footnote 5: By "imaginary conceptions" is not meant fanciful,
  unreal conceptions, but conceptions of the imaginative as and
  intellectual facility which reflects the real.]

Another proof that material substance is something intelligible and
not something sensible, is, that it has a relation to spiritual
substance, and therefore something cognate to spirit in its essence.
The Abbé Branchereau defines relation: "Proprietatem qua duo aut plura
entia ita se habeat ad invicem, ut unius conceptus conceptum alterius
includat aut supponat." "A property by which two or more entities are
so constituted in reference to one another, that the conception of one
includes or suppose the conception of the other."  [Footnote 6]

  [Footnote 6: Praelect. Philos. De Relat. Entis. Num. 108, 8.]

The conception of spirit must contain the equivalent of the conception
of matter, and the conception of matter must contain something the
equivalent of which is contained in spirit. Else, they must be related
as total opposites, which leads to the absurd conclusion that in the
essence of God, which is the equivalent of all finite essences, total
opposites and contradictions are contained. The same is affirmed by F.
Billuart after the scholastic principles of the Thomists. "Supremum
autem naturae inferioris attingitur a natura superiori." "The summit
of the inferior nature is touched by the superior nature."   [Footnote
7] Everything copies the essence of God and exists by its
participation in his being. There is no reason therefore for any other
distinction in creatures except the distinction of gradation in a
series, or the distinction of a more or less intense grade of
participation in being. God cannot create anything totally {9}
dissimilar to himself, because the sole archetype imitable in the
creative act, whose similitude is externised in creation, is himself.
All things therefore being similar to his essence are similar to the
essence of one another, each to each, each grade in the ascending
series containing the equivalent of all below it.

  [Footnote 7: De Augelis. Diss. II. Art. I.]

The material creation represents the real being of God, as
distinguishable in thought from his life and intelligence, in an
express and distinct manner. The being of God is the archetype of the
material creation, and contains a reason why the material order was
necessary to perfect the universe. All geometrical principles are
intuitively seen by the reason to be eternal truths. As eternal and
necessary they are included in the object of the divine contemplation.
The complete and adequate object of the divine contemplation is the
divine essence. It is therefore in his own essence that God sees these
necessary geometrical truths, not as we see them, but as identical
with the truth of his own being in some way above our human
understanding. These eternal geometrical principles are the principles
which lie at the basis of the structure of the material universe,
which therefore represents something in the divine essence not
immediately and distinctly represented by the spiritual world.

Without pretending to define precisely what the material universe
represents as equivalently and eminently contained in the divine
essence, we are only uttering a truism when we affirm that what man in
his present state principally apprehends through it, is the idea of
the immensity of the divine being. The material universe, which has a
_quasi_ infinitude to our feeble and limited imagination, is an image
of God as possessing boundless infinitude, and including an
immeasurable ocean of perfections. It is only when the mind becomes so
overwhelmed with the magnitude of the creation as to forget its
relation to the creator, that its judgment is erroneous. And the error
of judgment does not consist in appreciating the material universe too
highly, but in appreciating it too little, that is, in not
appreciating its highest relation to the spiritual order, with which
it is cognate in its essence. The physical, visible world is not to be
despised. It is no illusion, no temporary phase of reality, no
perishable substance, but real, indestructible, and of endless
duration. Its essence and its relation to the final cause are
incomprehensible. Its essence is, however, so far intelligible that we
can understand it to be a real entity, bearing a similitude to the
divine nature, endued with active force as a physical second cause,
through which wonderful phenomena are produced in which the divine
perfections are manifested. Its end is also intelligible as
subordinated to the higher grades of existence and to the grand
composite order of the universe.

The next grade of existence is that which represents the _vivere_ of
the divine essence, or presents an animated and living similitude of
the life of God. The distinct type of this grade is in the animal
world, but it is connected with the inanimate creation by an
intermediate link, namely, that which is constituted by the world of
vegetative life. This world of vegetative life represents the
principle of life in an inchoate form, and ministers to the higher
life of sentient existences, by furnishing them with the sustenance
and food of their physical life, and contributing to their enjoyment
by the beauty of its forms.

Thus far, the creation is merely good as means to an end, or as the
substratum of that order of existence which is capable of apprehending
and enjoying good. In the sentient creation, existence becomes a good
in itself, or a good capable of terminating the divine will. The
countless multitudes of sentient creatures are created that they may
enjoy life, and attain their particular end in this enjoyment.
Nevertheless this {10} particular end is a minor and less principal
end in reference to the general end of the created universe. To this
more general end the sentient order contributes, by increasing the
beauty and perfection of the whole, and ministering to the happiness
of the higher, intelligent order.

This third and highest grade of existence represents the divine
_intelligere_. It includes all rational natures, or intelligent
spirits, created after the similitude of that in the divine essence
which is the highest archetype imitable in finite existences.
According to the regular series of gradation, man comes next in order
above the animal world, and should be first considered. There is a
particular reason, however, which will appear hereafter, for
considering the angels first.

The angels represent most perfectly the order of pure intelligence as
distinct from the irrational creation. By their nature they are at the
summit of existence, and participate in the most immediate and
elevated mode which can be connatural to any created essence, in the
divine perfections. The perfection of the universe requires that it
should contain a grade of existence imitating that which is highest in
the essence of God so far as it is an archetype of a possible
creation. There is nothing conceivable in the divine essence higher
than its intelligence or pure spirituality. The divine life is
consummated in the most pure act of intelligent spirit, which is the
procession of the Word and Holy Spirit from the Father. This divine
procession within the divine essence being the archetype of the
procession of created existences without it, the latter ought to
imitate the former by producing that which represents the intelligent
act of God as closely as possible. This intelligent act of God being
consummated in love, or complacency in that infinite good which is the
object of intelligence, creation, which imitates and represents it,
ought to contain existences which are the recipients of love and are
capable of its exercise in the highest possible manner which can be
essential to a created nature. The creative act would therefore be
most imperfect and incomplete if it stopped short with the material or
even the sentient creation. Supposing that God determines to carry out
his creative act by creating a universe or a world in which the
potential is actualized in a universal manner by representing the
_esse, vivere_, and _intelligere_ of the divine essence in every
generic mode, this universe must evidently contain intelligent
spirits. Intelligent spirit alone can apprehend the image of God in
creation, apprehend itself as made in the image of God, apprehend the
infinite attributes of God by the intuition of reason, and become
fully conscious of the good of existence, capable of enjoying it, and
of returning to the creator an act of love, worship, and
glorification, for his great boon of goodness conferred in creation.
Creation is an overflow of the plenitude of good in the divine being
proceeding from the complacency of God in the communication of this
good. This communication can be made in a manner which appears to our
reason in any way adequate to terminate the divine complacency, only
by the communication of intelligence.

The type of intelligent nature is most perfectly actualized in the
angels, whose essence and operation are purely spiritual, so far as
created, finite nature and operation can be purely spiritual. Whatever
is intelligible or conceivable of finite, intellectual activity as
connatural, or intrinsically included in the essence of created
spirit, is to be attributed to them.

The notion of any composition of nature in the angels, or hypostatic
union of their pure, spiritual substance with another material
substance distinct from it, is wholly gratuitous. It destroys the
distinctive type of the angelic nature and the specific difference
between it and human nature. It has no foundation in reason except the
baseless supposition that a distinct {11} corporeal organization is
necessary to the exercise of created intelligence. Nor has it any
solid support from tradition or extrinsic authority.

Some of the fathers are cited as maintaining it. Their language is,
however, for the most part explained by the best theologians as
indicating not the union of the angelic spirit to a distinct subtle
corporeity, but the existence of something analogous to matter in the
angelic spirit itself. The angels are called corporeal existences,
because their essence is extrinsic to the divine essence, and
extrinsecation attains its extreme limit in matter; also because their
potentiality is not completely reduced to act, and their operation is
limited by time and space. This appears to be also the notion
advocated by Leibnitz, and the exposition of the nature of material
substance given above, in accordance with his philosophy, removes all
difficulty from the subject.

The conception of the angelic essence as completely free from all
composition with a distinct material substance, is also at least more
evidently in harmony with the decree _Firmiter_ of the Fourth Council
of Lateran, than any other. "Firmiter credimus et simpliciter
confitemur, quod unus est solus verus Deus aeternus. . . . .  qui sua
omnipotenti virtute simul ab initio temporis, utramque de nihilo
condidit creaturam, spiritualem et corporalem, angelicam videlicet et
mundanam; ac deinde humanam quasi communem ex spiritu et corpore
constitutam."

"We firmly believe and confess with simplicity, that there is one only
true eternal God . . . . who by his own almighty power simultaneously
from the beginning of time made out of nothing both parts of the
creation, the spiritual and the corporeal, that is, the angelical and
the mundane: and afterwards the human creature, as it were of a nature
in common with both, constituted from spirit and body."

Nevertheless, by the principle of the Thomist philosophy above cited,
that the lowest point of any nature touches the highest of the nature
beneath it, there may be something even in the spiritual operation of
the angels cognate to material operation, and coming within the sphere
of the sensible. We will venture to give a little sample of scholastic
theology on this head from Billuart.

"It may be said with reason that the angels operate two things in the
celestial empyrean. The first is the illumination by which the
intrinsic splendor of the empyrean is perfected, according to St.
Thomas and various testimonies of Holy Scripture in which certain
places are said to have been sensibly illuminated by the angels. For
although an angel cannot immediately produce alterative qualities, as
heat or cold, he can produce light, because light is a celestial
quality and the highest of corporeal qualities, and the summit of the
inferior nature is touched by the superior nature.

"In the second place, the angels operate on the empyrean heaven, so
that it may more perfectly and efficaciously communicate a suitable
perpetuity and stability to all inferior things. For as the supreme
angels who are permanently stationed there have an influence over the
intermediate and lowest angels who are sent forth, although they
themselves are not sent forth, so the empyrean heaven, although it is
itself motionless, communicates to those things which are in motion
the requisite stability and permanence in their being. And that this
may be done more efficaciously and permanently the angels aid by their
operation in it. For, the whole universe is one in unity of order; and
this unity of order consists in that by a certain arrangement
corporeal things are regulated by those which are spiritual, and
inferior bodies by the superior; therefore, as this order demands that
the empyrean spheres influence the inferior ones, it demands also that
the angels influence the empyrean sphere."   [Footnote 8]

  [Footnote 8: De Angelis. Diss. IL Art. I.]

{12}

Whatever may be thought of this as philosophy, it is certainly
brilliantly poetical, as is the whole treatise of the learned
Dominican from which it is extracted. The physical theory of the
universe maintained by the scholastics was a magnificent conception,
although it has been supplanted by a sounder scientific hypothesis.
There appears to be no reason, however, for rejecting the notion of
angelic influence over the movement of the universe. The modern
hypothesis of a central point of revolution for the universe being
substituted for the ancient one of the empyrean, the entire scholastic
theory of the influence of the angels upon the exterior order of the
universe may remain untouched in its intrinsic probability.

The consideration of man has been reserved, because, although he is
inferior to the angels in intelligence, he sums up in himself the
three grades of existence, and therefore the consideration of the
three as distinct ought to precede the consideration of their
composition in the complex human nature. The human nature includes in
itself the material, vegetative, animal, and intelligent natures,
which represent respectively the divine _esse, vivere_, and
_intelligere_. For this reason man is called a microcosm or universe
in miniature. In certain special perfections of the material,
sentient, and intelligent natures, he is inferior to each; but the
combination of all gives him a peculiar excellence and completeness,
and qualifies him to stand in the most immediate relation to the final
cause of the universe, or to the consummation of its end.

What this end is, we must now more closely examine. It is plain at
first sight that this end must be attained by creation through its
intelligent portion, or through the angelic and human natures. As God
is final cause as well as first cause; of necessity, these intelligent
natures in themselves, and all inferior natures through them, must, in
some way, terminate on God as their ultimate end. God is final cause
as the supreme good participated in and attained to by the creation,
through the overflow of the plenitude of the divine being. The divine
complacency in this voluntary overflow of the fount of being and good
was the ultimate and determining motive to the creative act. The good
of being thus given is a similitude of the divine _esse, vivere,_ and
_intelligere_. As it is real, or existence in act, it must copy, as
far as its grade of existence permits, the most pure act of God in the
blessed Trinity. That is, the creature must reflect from its own
essence an image of the divine essence, or a created similitude of the
uncreated Word, in which its existence is completed and its act
consummated. In the material world this is a mere dead image, like the
representation of a living form made by a statue or picture. In the
sentient world, so far as we can understand this most inscrutable and
baffling of all parts of the creation, there is an apprehension by the
sensitive soul of a kind of shadow of the intelligible object in
sensible forms, and the imperfect resemblance of the life and felicity
of an intelligent nature which corresponds to this imperfect
apprehension. In the intelligent creature, its spiritual essence, by
virtue of the rationality in which it is created, and is its
constitutive principle, reflects an image of the divine Word in the
contemplation of which its intelligent life is completed. So far as
intelligent nature is merely potential, it is potential to this act of
intelligent life; and when its potentiality is reduced to act, so as
to produce the nearest similitude to the divine intelligence in act,
which God has determined to create, intelligent nature, and in it all
nature, has attained its finality. Intelligent nature has attained the
highest good attainable; and, the different intelligent species and
individuals existing together in due order and harmony in the
participation of the common good, with all inferior grades of
existence subordinated to them, the universe has unity and is
determined to a common final end.

{13}

Thus, creation returns back to the principle from which it proceeded
by the consummation of the creative act. As the Father is united to
the Word in the Holy Spirit, or in love and complacency, so the
creation is united to God by the possession of good and the
complacency of God in this good. It is actualized in the intelligent
nature capable of knowing and loving God, and therefore having a
similitude to the Son or Word. When it is ascertained what the highest
union to the Father, or that approaching nearest to the union of the
Son to him of which created nature is capable, is, it will be
ascertained what is the end metaphysically final to which created
nature can attain, if God wills to bring it to the summit of
possibility. When it is ascertained what this summit of possibility
is, it is ascertained what the end of creation is which is
metaphysically final; and when it is ascertained how far toward this
summit God has actually determined to elevate his creation, it is
ascertained what is the end of creation actually final, and how far it
coincides with the end metaphysically final.

This knowledge cannot be deduced from any first principle given to
reason. It is communicated by revelation, and by this revelation we
learn that God has determined to bring the creation to the end
metaphysically final in the incarnation of the Word.

The revelation of the mystery of the Incarnation is concomitant with
the revelation of the mystery of the Trinity; therefore, in the creed,
the same terms which propose the dogma that the Word is of God and is
God, propose the dogma that the Word is incarnate in human nature. The
name given to the Second Person in the Trinity, in the creed, Jesus
Christ, is the name which he assumed with his human nature. "Et in
unum Dominum nostrum, Jesum Christum Filium Dei unigenitum, Deum de
Deo, Lumen de Lumine, Deum verum de Deo vero, genitum non factum,
consubstantialem Patri, per quern omnia facta sunt. Qui propter nos
homines et propter nostram salutem descendit de coelis, et incarnatus
est etiam pro nobis de Spiritu Sancto ex Maria Virgine, et homo factus
est."

"And in one Jesus Christ our Lord, the only begotten Son of God, God
of God, Light of Light, very God of very God, begotten not made,
consubstantial with the Father, by whom all things were made. Who, for
us men, and for our salvation, descended from heaven, and was
incarnate also for us by the Holy Ghost of the Virgin Mary, and was
made man."

The mystery of the incarnation presents to us the idea, that the Word
has assumed human nature, not by assuming all the individuals of the
race, but by assuming humanity individuated in one perfect soul and
body into a union with his divine nature, in which it terminates upon
his divine person as the final complement of its existence, without
any confusion of its distinct essence with the divine essence to which
it is united. By this union, the Word is a theandric person, or one
divine person in two natures, divine and human, really distinct from
each other in essence and existence, but with one common principle of
imputability to which their attributes and operation are to be
ascribed. This is the union, called in theological language
hypostatic, of the creature to the Creator, which is metaphysically
final, or final to the divine intelligence and power; beyond which
there is no idea in God of a possible act _ad extra_, and which is
next in order to the procession of the divine persons _ad intra_.
Through this hypostatic union, created nature participates with the
uncreated nature impersonated in the Son in the relation to the Father
as principle, and the Holy Spirit as consummation, of intelligence and
love; that is, in the divine life and beatitude. The incarnation
having been in the view and purpose of Almighty God from eternity,
{14} as the ultimatum of his wisdom and omnipotence, is the apex of
the creative act, or the terminus at which the creative act reaches
the summit of possibility. In it the creation returns to God as final
cause, from whom it proceeds as first cause, in a mode which is
metaphysically final. It is therefore certain that God, in his
eternal, creative purpose, determined the universe to an end
metaphysically final; and that this end is attained in the
incarnation, or the union of created with uncreated nature in the
person of the Word.

--------

From The Dublin University Magazine.


MIGUEL DE CERVANTES Y SAAVEDRA.


Notwithstanding the value of the precious metals extracted from the
American mines, the Spanish exchequer had not been in a satisfactory
condition for a long time. War had scourged the kingdom since the
conquest by the Moors. Ferdinand and Isabella had indeed dislodged
them and their unlucky King Boabdil from their little paradise in
Granada and Andaluçia, about a century before the poor Don made his
first sally; but it was at a dread sacrifice of money and men's lives.
Charles V. was engaged in ruinous wars during the greater part of his
reign, and Philip II., his successor (unwillingly indeed), was put to
trouble and expense while uniting with other Christian powers to
prevent the ferocious sultan from bringing all Europe under the
Mussulman yoke. The victory of Lepanto, gained by his half-brother,
Don John, somewhat crippled the Sublime Porte and the terrible
renegade Uchali, but did not prevent the Algerine and other African
pirates from doing infinite mischief to all the Christian states
bordering the Mediterranean. Ceaselessly they intercepted their
merchant vessels, made booty of the freight and slaves of the crew,
and obliged all in the rank of merchants or gentlemen to find heavy
ransoms. Now what should have prevented Spain and France and the
Italian kingdoms from collecting a large fleet and army at any one
time, and battering down the strongholds of these ruthless plunderers,
and effectually putting it out of their power to annoy their Christian
neighbors? Philip was often urged to co-operate in such a good work,
but he preferred to expend time and money, and his subjects' blood and
property, on other projects.

An extract from the work mentioned below,  [Footnote 9] in reference
to the state of Spain toward the latter years of Philip II., is well
worth transcribing. The author is speaking of Cervantes in prison,
some time between 1598 and 1603:

  [Footnote 9: Michel de Cervantes, sa Vie, son Temps, son OEuvre
  Politique et Littéraire. Par Émile Chasles. Paris: Didier et Cie.]

  "He distinctly perceived, through the splendor and apparent unity of
  the Spanish monarchy, a muttering and stormy confusion, a thousand
  strange and opposed groupings;--politicians who in fact were mere
  favorites, austere gentlemen mixed with _galant_ writers,--grave
  inquisitors condemning errant Bohemians, applying a barbarous law to
  barbarous hordes, and cauterizing but not curing wounds. Through
  this assemblage of contrasts he could see a wide separation between
  the social classes. Two distinct groups existed united by any common
  idea or sympathy, extra-social world of Gitanos (gipsies), rogues,
  and mystics, whose lives were independent, and that of the alcaids
  and corregidors.

{15}

  "Between these two camps hovered a mixed population so frequently
  treated of in Spanish letters,--the alguazil, the sacristan, the
  deserter, the refugee, a hybrid people attached to the law or the
  church, but affiliated to the _hampa_ (illegal bond of union) by
  character, by nature, by origin, or by interest.

  "In a country where poverty was every day increasing, necessity
  threw thousands every day on a career of adventure. It depopulated
  Spain in exiling to the Indies her best soldiers. It flung away
  innumerable renegades to the coast of Africa. It decimated that
  nobility erewhile so valiant, so full of pride and patriotism.
  Impoverished gentlemen soon formed a large class of honorable
  paupers. They endured, with a stoicism purely Spanish, the
  exigencies of honor and poverty, along with the necessity of living
  and dying useless to their country."

Let pity be awarded to the poor gentlemen who took his promenade
toothpick in hand, to impress on his world that he had dined.
Cervantes had no need to go beyond his family recollections for
materials for this sketch:

  "Behold the hidalgo coming out of his house with unquiet eye. His
  suspicious humor inclines him to believe that every one knows his
  shoes are pieced, that perspiration has left marks on his hat, that
  his cloak is threadbare, and that his stomach is empty. He has taken
  a draught of water within closed doors, and just come forth
  displaying his hypocritical toothpick,--dolorous and deceptive
  exhibition, which has grown into a fashion."

Political principles and social institutions
prevalent during the long wars between
the Christians and the Moors were
still in vigor at the end of the sixteenth
century, when the circumstances
of the country had undergone a thorough
change.

  "During the the centuries when Spain was struggling against the
  Arabs, the she condition of the nationality was the purity of blood
  and the Christian faith. The Old Christian (Christiano Viejo), the
  irreproachable Castilian alone, could be intrusted with the defense
  of the soil or the government of the country. And now when the enemy
  was expelled the usage remained. The alcaid (magistrate) did not
  know the law, perhaps he could not read, but 'he had,' as he said,
  'four inches of the fat of an Old Christian on his ribs, and that
  was sufficient.'"

In the interlude of the Election of the Alcaids of Daganzo, Cervantes
specifies the personal gifts sufficient to qualify for the post. An
elector proposing Juan Verrouil, thus dwells on his good qualities:

  "At all events Juan Verrouil possesses the most delicate
  discernment. The other day, taking a cup of wine with me, he
  observed that it smacked of wood, of leather, and of iron. Well,
  when we got to the bottom of the pitcher, what did we discover but a
  key fastened by a strap of leather to a piece of wood!

  "_Secretary_.--Wonderful ability, rare genius. Such a man might rule
  Alanis, Cazalla, ay even Esquivias."

Francis de Humillos is considered fit for the magistracy because of
his nearness in soling a shoe. Michael Jarret is voted worthy, as he
shoots an arrow like any eagle. Peter the Frog knows every word of the
ballad of the "Dog of Alva" without missing one, but Humillos stands
the examination with rather more credit than the rest; he knows the
four prayers, and says them four or five times per week.

The number of wandering gipsies and brigands and thieves of all
description was out of all rational proportion with the honest and
respectable population. These were united under the hampa, and it was
a matter of extreme difficulty to obtain information against any
delinquent from a brother of the order.

Little is said about the mercantile or manufacturing classes in books
connected with the time of Cervantes. Enough is told of the pride, and
luxury, and generally perverted tastes of the great, and hints are
given of the kind and considerate demeanor of the nobility residing on
their estates to their dependents.

{16}

DON QUIXOTE'S PREDECESSORS.

Spain is not the only country which for a time has set an extravagant
estimate on some books or class of books. Even in our own days and in
those of the last generation, have not literary furors prevailed for
picturesque banditti, and feudal castles, and caverns, and awful
noises in vast and dimly lighted bedchambers, for poetry beckoning its
victims to despair and suicide, for novels stamped with the silver
fork of high life, and lastly, for those which enlarge on the
physiology of forbidden fruit? M. Chasles will pleasantly explain the
literary _penchants_ of the peninsula two hundred and sixty odd years
since:

  "We have seen the France of the seventeenth century enthusiastic for
  the Astrea and the Clelia,  [Footnote 10] and the England of the
  eighteenth assume shield and spear for Clarissa Harlowe,  [Footnote
  11] but in 1598 and in Spain, the extraordinary popularity of the
  Amadises resembled a brain fever at which no one dared laugh. One
  day a certain nobleman coming home found his wife in tears. 'What is
  the matter? What bad news have you heard?' 'My dear, Amadis is
  dead.' They could not suffer the writers to put their heroes to
  death. The infant Don Alonzo personally interceded with the author
  of the Portuguese Amadis to rewrite the chapter in which the Signora
  Briolana was sacrificed. These creatures of the imagination assumed
  a personal reality among the people of that era in the mind of every
  one. Every one was convinced that Arthur of Britain would one day
  return among men. Julian of Castile, who wrote in 1587, affirmed
  (could we believe him) that when Philip II. espoused Mary of
  England, he was obliged to reserve the claims of King Arthur, and
  engage to yield him the throne when he returned. Chivalric fictions
  became an article of faith. A certain gentleman, Simon de Silveyra,
  swore one day on the Holy Gospel that he held the history of Amadis
  de Gaul [Footnote 12] for true and certain."

  [Footnote 10: For information concerning these slow romances and
  their contemporaries, and the great Honore d'Urfy. see University
  Magazine for February, 1844.]

  [Footnote 11: A school of simple and warm-hearted working-class folk
  nightly assembled at a forge in Windsor to hear the perilous trials
  of Pamela read out to them. They watched with unflagging interest
  her progress through her ticklish trials, and showed their joy in
  her final triumph by running in a body to the church and ringing the
  bells.]

  [Footnote 12: This first and best of the chivalric romances was
  composed by Vasco de Lobeira of Oporto, who died in 1406. It was
  written between 1342 and 1367, and first printed between 1492 and
  1500. There is some uncertainty concerning the given dates.]

Such were a few characteristics of Spanish life when Cervantes thought
of writing his Don Quixote. In his numerous works he had it in purpose
to improve the state of things in his native country, and to correct
this or that abuse, but he obtained no striking success till the
publication of this his greatest work. Alas! while it established his
character as master in literature, it excited enmities and troubles in
abundance.


YOUTH OF CERVANTES.

Miguel de Cervantes y Saavedra was born in 1547 at Alcala de Hénarès.
His parents, both of gentle birth, were Rodrigo de Cervantes and
Leonor de Cortinas. Their other children born before Michael were
Rodrigo, Andrea, and Luisa. His family belonged to the class of
impoverished gentlefolk, poor but intensely proud of their descent
from one of those hardy mountaineers the Saavedras, who, five
centuries before, so heroically defended the northern portion of Spain
against the Moors. While the hereditary possessions were growing less
and less, the heads of the family would endeavor to compensate for
present privations, by relating to their children the noble deeds and
the great estates of their ancestors.

Cervantes' paternal roof was probably surrounded by some of the
paternal fields, and it is likely that the domestic economy was
similar to that described in the first chapter of Don Quixote, where
translators have still left us at a loss as to the Saturday's fare,
_duelos y quebrantos_ (griefs and groans), some, guessing it to be
eggs and bacon; others, a dish of lentils; others, brains fried in
oil; others, the giblets of fowl.

Alcala de Hénarès  [Footnote 13] was worthy to be the birthplace of
Spain's best writer. The archbishops of Toledo owned a palace there,
and there the great Cardinal Ximenes, an ex-student of its {17}
college, returned when somewhat under a cloud, and prepared his
world-famous polyglot Bible in Hebrew, Syriac, Greek, and Latin. From
the date when the great scholar and statesman made the town his
permanent residence it aimed to become, and did eventually become, the
intellectual Metropolis of the native country of Cervantes. It
possessed a University, nineteen colleges, thirty-eight churches, and
works of art in profusion.

  [Footnote 13: "From the Arabic At-Cala-d'el-Nahr, the chateau by the
  river."]

Whether debarred by poverty or negligence, the last an unlikely
supposition, Cervantes did not graduate in the University of Alcala or
in any other, a circumstance that occasioned him much fortification in
his manhood and advanced age. Émile Chasles thus expresses himself on
this subject:

  "The graduated took their revenge. When Cervantes acquired celebrity
  they recollected that he had taken no degree. When he thought an
  employ they applied to him by way of iron brand the epithet,
  _Ingenio Lego_, 'He is not of ours,' said they; 'he is not a
  cleric.' The day when he attracted the attention of all Europe their
  anger was excessive towards the writer who possessed talent without
  permission, and genius without a diploma. Cervantes gaily replied,
  that he admired their pedantic learning, their books bristling with
  quotations, the complements they paid each other in Greek, their
  erudition, their marginal notes, their doctors' degrees, but that he
  himself was naturally lazy, and did not care to search in authors
  for what he was able to say without them; and finally, that when
  there is a dull or foolish thing to be expressed, it will do in
  Spanish as well in Latin."

He was smarting under the contempt of the learned asses of his day
when writing the preface to his Don Quixote:

  "Alas, the story of Don Quixote is as bare has a rush! Ah, if the
  author could do as others,--cite at the head of the book a litany
  of authorities in alphabetic order, commencing with Aristotle and
  ending with Xenophon or Zoilus! But the poor Cervantes can find
  nothing of all this. There he sits, paper before him, the pen behind
  his ear, his elbow on the table, his cheek in his hand, and himself
  all unable to discover pertinent sentences or ingenious trifles to
  adorn his subject. Happily a humorous and intelligent friend enters
  and brings relief. 'Quote,' said he, 'and continue to quote; the
  first sentence that comes to hand will answer. "Pallida mors aequo
  pede" is as good as another. Horace will come in well anywhere, and
  you can even make use of the Holy Scriptures. The giant Golias or
  Goliath was a Philistine, whom David the shepherd slew with a stone
  from a sling in the valley of Terebinthus, as is related in the Book
  of Kings in the chapter where it is to be found.'"


THE FIRST PLAYS AT WHICH HE ASSISTED.

The earliest instructors of our brave romancer and poet were the
excellent clergyman Juan Lopez de Hoyos, who took pride and pleasure
in expanding the intellects of clear-headed pupils, and the talented
strolling actor, Lope de Rueda, who at a time (middle of sixteenth
century) when neither Alcala nor even Madrid could boast a suitably
appointed theatre, went from town to town, and amused the inhabitants
from his rudely contrived stage. This consisted of a platform of loose
planks supported by trestles, and a curtain as respectable as could be
afforded, doing duty as permanent scene, and affording a hiding-place
behind it to the actors when not performing, and to the few musicians
who occasionally chanted some romantic ballad.

Rueda had been in his youth a gold-beater at Seville, whence, finding
in himself a strong vocation for the mimetic art, he made his escape,
carrying some of the popular satiric stories in his head, and moulding
them into farces. His troupe consisted of three or four male actors,
one or two occasionally presenting female characters, and these were
found sufficient to present a simple story in action, the manager
himself being an actor of rare ability. These open air performances
took a very strong hold on Cervantes' imagination. An outline is given
of one of these acted fables, the precursors of the voluminous
repertory furnished some years later by Lope de Vega.

Rueda himself, presenting an old laborer, tired and wet, and carrying
a fagot, appears before his door, and calls on his wife, who should
have his supper ready. His daughter (represented by {18} a beardless
youth) acquaints him that she is helping a neighbor at her skeins of
silk. She is called, and a fierce scolding match ensues, he demanding
his supper and vaunting the severity of his labor, she vilifying the
fagot he has brought home. By-and-by the discourse falls on a little
plantation of olive trees which he has just put down, and the Signora
Aguéda de Toruegano forgets her anger in the anticipation of the large
profits to accrue from her seedlings:

  "_Wife_.--Do you know, my dear, what I've been just thinking? In six
  or seven years our little plantation will produce four or five
  fanèques (about fifteen barrels) of olives, and putting down a plant
  now and again, we shall have a noble field all in full bearing in
  twenty-five or thirty years.

  "_Husband_.--Nothing more likely; it will be a wonder in the
  neighborhood.

  "_Wife_.--I'll gather the fruit, you'll take them to market on the
  ass, and Menciguela (the daughter) will sell them; but mind what I
  tell you, girl! you must not sell them a maravedi less than two
  reals of Castile the celemin (bushel).

  "_Husband_.--Two reals of Castile! O conscience! a real and a half
  [Footnote 14] will be a fair price.

  [Footnote 14: This has been substituted for fifteen deniers,
  about three farthings, the amount in M. Chasles' version.]

  "_Wife--Ah_, hold your tongue! They are the very best kind--olives
  of Cordova.

  "_Husband_.--Even so, a real and a half is quite enough.

  "_Wife_.--Ah, don't bother my head! Daughter, you have heard me; two
  reals of Castile, no less.

 "_Husband_.--Come here, child. What will you ask--the bushel?

  "_Daughter_.--Whatever you please, father.

  "_Husband_.--Just a real and a half.

  "_Daughter_.--Yes, father.

  "_Mother_.--Yes, father! Come here to me. How will you sell them the
  bushel?

  "_Daughter_.--Whatever you say, mother.

  "_Father_.--I promise you, my lass, two hundred stripes of the
  stirrup leathers, if you don't mind my directions. Now what'll be
  the price?

  "_Daughter_.--Whatever you like, father.

  "_Mother_.--How! Ah, here's for your 'whatever you like.' (_She
  beats her_.) Take that, and maybe it'll teach you to disobey me.

  "_Father_.--Let the child alone.

  "_Daughter_.--Ah, mother, mother, don't kill me! (_Cries out; a
  neighbor enters_.)

  "_Neighbor_.--What's this, what's this? Why do you beat the little
  girl?

  "_Wife_.--Ah, sir, it's this wasteall that wants to give away all we
  have for nothing. He'll put us out of house and home. Olives as
  large as walnuts!

  "_Husband_.--I swear by the bones of my ancestors that they are no
  bigger than grains of millet.

  "_Wife_.--I say they are.

  "_Husband_.--I say they're not.

  "_Neighbor_.--Will you please, ma'am, to go inside? I undertake to
  make all right (_She enters the house_.) Now, my friend, explain
  this matter. Let us see your olives. If you have twenty fanèques, I
  will purchase all.

  "_Father_.--You don't exactly comprehend. The fact is--do you
  see?--and to tell the honest truth, the olives are not just in the
  house, though they are ours.

  "_Neighbor_.--No matter. Sure it's easy to get them brought here.
  I'll buy them at a fair price.

  "_Daughter_.--My mother says she must get two reals   [Footnote 15]
  the bushel.

    [Footnote 15: The Spaniards keep their accounts in piastres,
    reals, and marvedis, the first-named being worth about 8s. 6d. of
    our money. Thirty-four marvedis make a real, eight reals a
    piastre. The real mentioned in the text was probably a piece of
    eight or piastre.]

  "_Neighbor_.--That's rather dear.

  "_Father_.--Now isn't it, sir?

  "_Daughter_.--My father only asks a real and a half.

  "_Neighbor_.--Let us see a sample.

  "_Husband_.--Ah, don't ask to talk about it farther. I have to-day
  put down a small plot of olives. My wife says that within seven or
  eight years we'll be able to gather four or five fanèques of fruit
  from them. She is to collect them, I to take them on the ass to
  market, and our daughter to sell them, and she must not take less
  than two reals. She says yes, I say no, and that's the whole of it.

  "_Neighbor_.--A nice a fair, by my faith! The olives are hardly
  planted, and yet your daughter has been made to cry and roar about
  them.

  "_Daughter_.--Very true indeed, sir, what you say.

  "_Father_.--Don't cry any more, Menciguela. Neighbor, this little
  body is worth her weight in gold. Go, lay the table, child. You must
  have an apron out of the very first money I get for the olives.

  "_Neighbor_.--Good-by, my friend; go in and be agreeable with your
  wife.

  "_Father_.--Good-by, sir. (_He and his daughter go in_.)

  "_Neighbor, alone_.--It must be owned that some things happen here
  below beyond belief. Ouf! quarrel about olives before they're in
  existence!"

{19}

The reader will easily recognize the "Maid with the milking pail" at
the bottom of this illustration. Before the production of any of the
regular pieces of De Vega, or Calderon, or Alarcon, or Tirso de
Molina, the easily pleased folk of country or town were thoroughly
satisfied with Rueda's repertory. When the talented stroller died in
1567, he was honored with a costly funeral, and solemnly interred in
the cathedral of Cordova. Strange contrast between his posthumous
fortune and that of Molière!

The impression made on Cervantes by the performances on Rueda's
platform was strong and lasting. He ever retained a high respect for
the talent of observation, the native genius and the good sense of
Lope de Rueda.

In the preface to his own plays, Cervantes left an inventory of the
theatrical properties of the strolling establishments in his youth:

  "All the materials of representation were contained in a sack. They
  were made up of four jackets of sheepskin, laced with gilt leather,
  four beards, as many wigs, four shepherd's crooks. The comedies
  consisted of eclogues or colloquies between two or three shepherds
  and one shepherdess. They prolonged the entertainments by means of
  interludes, such as that of the _Negress_, the _Ruffian_, the
  _Fool_, or that of the _Biscayan_,--four personages played by Lope
  as well as many others, and all with the greatest perfection and the
  happiest natural ability that can be imagined."

One evening in the old age of Cervantes, the company around him were
discussing the living actors and the present condition of the theatre.
Among other things they treated of the infancy of the Spanish stage,
and the artist who first essayed to make it something better than a
platform for tumbling. Cervantes at once brought forward the claims of
his early master:

  "I remember having seen play the great comedian Lope de Rueda, a man
  distinguished for his intelligence and his style of acting. He
  excelled in pastoral poetry. In that department no one then or since
  has shown himself his superior. Though then a child, and unable to
  appreciate the merit of his verses, nevertheless when I occasionally
  repeat some couplets that have remained in my memory, I find that my
  impression of his ability is correct."



HIS FIRST STEP IN LIFE.

The young admirer of Lope de Rueda exhibited in his temperament and
appearance more of the soldier than the poet. With his high forehead,
his arched eyebrows, his hair flung behind, his firm-set mouth, he
seemed to present little of the imaginative dreamer. However, there
was that in the delicate contours of the countenance, in the searching
look, in the fire of the large dark eyes, which betrayed the ironical
powers of the observant man of genius. No doubt he had the literary
instincts somewhat developed by the practical lessons of Rueda, but
military aspirations had the ascendant for the time. Though his
brother Rodrigo had departed for the war in Flanders, and it seemed as
if he was destined to remain at home with his family, fate and
inclination were against this arrangement. However, the first step he
took in life was not in the direction of the battle-field. An Italian
cardinal took him to Rome in quality of secretary. The brave Don John,
half-brother of Philip II., was appointed general of the league arming
against the Grand Turk at the same time, and the young and ardent
Miguel eagerly took arms under him, and was present at the memorable
naval engagement of Lepanto. Philip did not enter with much good-will
into this strife, and prevented any advantages that might result from
the glorious victory by shortly withdrawing his brother from the
command of the allied forces of Christendom. The enthusiastic young
soldier received three wounds as well as a broken arm in the fight.
This was in the year 1571, and until 1575 we find Cervantes attending
Don John in his contentions with the Mohammedan powers on the coast of
Africa, in which the chivalric commander was hampered by the ill-will
of his brother, Philip II. He went into the Low Countries much against
his will, and after several victories met a premature death there in
1578, when only thirty-two years old.

{20}

CAPTIVE IN ALGIERS.

Cervantes received from his great-souled commander written
testimonials of his valiant conduct and moral worth, and sailed for
Spain from Naples in the year 1578. On the voyage the vessel was
attacked by three Turkish galliots; those who fell not in the
engagement were made prisoners, and our hero became the slave of a
lame renegade called the "Cripple," in Arabic, Dali Mami.

The Algerians, rigid Mussulmans as they were, killed as few Christians
in these attacks as they could. Slaves and ransoms were the cherished
objects of their quests, and as soon as could be after the landing in
Algiers, the classification was made of "gentles and commons." The
captors were cunning in their generation, and this was the process
adapted for the enhancement of their live property.

The captive's owner proceeded with wonderful skill to raise the value
of his goods. While the slave declared his poverty, and lowered his
station in order to lower the terms of his ransom, the master affected
to treat his victim with the greatest respect. He gave him almost
enough of nourishment, and professed he was ruining himself for the
other's advantage through pure deference and good-will; and slipped in
a word as to his hopes of being repaid for his outlay. The prisoner
might undervalue himself as much as he chose, "he was merely a private
soldier." Ah, his master knew better; the man of the ranks was a
general, the man before the mast a _caballero_, the simple priest an
archbishop.

  "As for me,' said the captive Dr. Sosa, 'who am but a poor clerk,
  the need me bishop by their own proper authority, and _in
  plenitudine potestatis_. Afterward they appointed me the private and
  confidential secretary of the Pope. They assured me that I had been
  for eight days closeted with His holiness in a chamber, where we
  discussed in the most profound secrecy the entire affairs of
  Christendom. Then they created me cardinal, afterwards governor of
  Castel Nuovo at Naples; and at this present moment I am confessor to
  Her Majesty the Queen of Spain.' In vain Dr. Sosa renounced these
  honors. They produced witnesses, both Christian and Turks, who swore
  to having seen him officiating as cardinal governor."

The letters of of Don John of Austria having been found on Cervantes,
the poor soldier of Lepanto became at once a great lord, from whom a
large ransom might be expected. They began with genuflexions, and
frequently ended with the scourge, not in his case, however. Many poor
wretches, to save themselves from the horrible treatment they endured,
or expected to endure, became Mohammedans, on which they immediately
obtained their liberty, were set on horseback, with fifty Janissaries
on foot, serving as cortège, the king defraying the expense of the
ceremony, bestowing wives on the hopeful converts, and offering them
places among his Janissaries.

Cervantes became the centre, round which the hopes of many poor
captives were grouped. He made several attempts at evasion, and,
strange to say, was not in any instance punished by his otherwise
cruel master.

Several Christians enjoying the benefit of safe conduct were free to
come and go among these Algerines, and the Redemptorist Fathers
enjoyed thorough freedom, as through them the ransoms were chiefly
effected. A Spanish gentleman being set at liberty, carried a letter
from our hero home to his family, and in consequence the brave old
hidalgo, his father, mortgaged his little estate, took the dowries of
his two daughters, and forwarded all to his son for the liberation of
himself and his brother, who was also in captivity. When he presented
himself to Dali Mami with his sum in his hands the renegade cripple
only laughed at him. He and Rodrigo were men of too much importance to
be ransomed for so trifling a sum.

{21}

The cruel viceroy of Algiers having spent his allotted time in charge
of that nest of vultures, was replaced by a governor still more cruel,
under whom Cervantes made a desperate effort to escape, and carry off
forty or fifty fellow-captives with him. He paid his brother's ransom,
and he, when set at liberty, managed to send a vessel near the spot
where Miguel had his companions in safety in a grotto of a certain
garden. Through some mismanagement the descent failed, and the
hiding-place was revealed by the treachery of a trusted individual.
All were brought before the new Viceroy Hassan, and Cervantes avowed
himself the chief and only plotter among them. Hassan used flattery,
promises, and threats to induce the intrepid Spaniard to criminate a
certain brother Redemptorist as privy to the plot, in order that he
might come at a much coveted sum of money which he knew to be in his
possession. All was in vain. Cervantes was not to be turned from the
path of loyalty, and when every one expected sentence of death to be
pronounced on him at the moment, Hassan became suddenly cool, and
merely ordered him to be removed.

The bagnio of Hassan was a sufficiently wretched place, but while our
hero sojourned there, he made it as cheerful as he could by composing
poetical pieces and reciting them, and getting up a Spanish comedy.
There were forty priests in it at the time, and these performed their
clerical duties as if at liberty. They celebrated mass, administered
holy communion, and preached every Sunday. When Christmas approached,
he arranged a mystery, such as he had seen performed in his native
Alcala under the direction of the ingenious Lope de Rueda. All were
prepared,--the shepherds' dresses, the crib, the stable, etc.; the
guardian admitting outsiders at a small charge, and a shepherd
reciting the opening verses of the entertainment, when a Moor entered
in hot haste, and shouted out to all to look to their safety, as the
Janissaries were rushing through the streets, and killing the
Christians. Some clouds on the northern horizon had been taken for the
Christian fleet under Don John, and the terrible guards determined to
put it out of the Christian captives' power to aid the attack. The
massacre ceased on the clearing away of the vapors.

About that time, Philip II. was collecting a large naval force in the
Mediterranean for the ostensible purpose of storming Algiers, though
in reality his intent was merely to seize on the kingdom of Portugal.
Its romantic sovereign, Don Sebastian, the hero of one of Miss
Porter's romances, had just been slain in Morocco, and his successor
Henry, whose days were numbered, was unable to cross his projects. The
report of Philip's meditated descent inspired Cervantes with a project
of a general rising of the slaves. He even addressed to the sombre
king, through his secretary Mateo Vasquez, a remonstrance and
encouragement, of which we present a few extracts:

  "High and powerful lord, let the wrath of thy soul be enkindled.
  Here the garrison is numerous, but without strength, without
  ramparts, without shelter. Every Christian is on the alert; every
  Mussulman is watching for the appearance of the fleet as the signal
  for flight. Twenty thousand Christians are in this prison, the key
  of which is in your hands. We all, with clasped hands, on bended
  knees, and with stifled sobs, and under severe tortures, beseech
  thee, puissant lord, to turn your pitying looks towards us, your
  born subjects, who lie groaning here. Let the work courageously
  begun by your much loved father be achieved by your hand."

Hassan employed the slaves in building fortifications for his
garrison, but he kept Cervantes strictly guarded. "When my disabled
Spaniard," said he, "is under guard, I am sure of the city, the
prisoners, and the port." But though well watched, the restless
captive made three other attempts at escape, for each of which he was
to receive, but did not, two thousand bastinadoes. In the fourth
attempt, two merchants who were compromised, and feared he might
betray them under the torture, offered to pay his ransom, and thus
secure his departure, but he did not accept the terms. He braved the
examination, and would {22} not reveal the names of any accomplices
except four who were already out of danger. Strange to say, even this
time he escaped without punishment. A renegade, Maltrapillo, high in
Hassan's confidence, and who seems to have entertained great esteem
for the fearless and generous character of Cervantes, probably saved
his back sundry stripes on these different occasions. On this subject
we quote some lines from M. Chasles:

   "Either through the interference of Maltrapillo or the influence
   exercised by the noble character of Cervantes on all around him,
   this time again he was spared by Hassan. How was he enabled to many
   times to escape his master's rage? In following his fortunes
   through these years of trial, I am struck by the mysterious
   influence of his noble character on the events and the persons by
   whom he was surrounded. In the mixed of a diverse population
   incessantly changing, among a crowd of soldiers and captive
   doctors, he occupied an exceptional station. Brothers of Mercy,
   Christian merchants, renegades, all recognize in him a moral
   superiority. 'Every one,' says the eye-witness Pedrosa, 'admired
   his courage and his disposition.'"

The acts of kindness done by the renegades to the captives were not
small nor few. Nearly all of them had conformed through the immediate
prospect of promotion, or fear of punishment, and there was scarcely a
conscientious Mussulman among every hundred of them. In general they
were anxious to obtain from the captives about to be ransomed
certificates of their own good offices towards them. These were
intended to be available for some possible future contingencies.

The poor sorrowful father continued to make unavailing efforts for his
ransom. He even disturbed the court officials with representations of
his son's services and sufferings; but "circumlocution" was a word
understood even in Madrid and in the days of Philip II. The afflicted
and impoverished gentleman died in dragging his suit through the lazy
and unpatriotic officials, and if ever a death resulted from
heartbreak his was one. Still his mother, his brother Rodrigo and his
sister Andrea exerted themselves, and dispatched to Algiers 300
crowns. A strong representations at the court insured in addition the
amount of a cargo then consigned to Algiers, which produced only 60
ducats, say £30. These sums were not sufficient, and the heart sick
captive would have been carried by Hassan to Constantinople, his
viceroyalty having expired, only for the deficiency being made up by
the Brothers of Mercy, Christian merchants, etc., who were "tightly
targed" for that purpose by the good-hearted and zealous brother
superior, Gil. This providential redemption occurred in 1580.

Before he quitted his abode of little ease he had the forethought to
demand a public scrutiny of his conduct by the Christian authorities.
Witnesses in great number came forward to testify to his worth. The
following facts were irrevocably established. He had rescued one man
from slavery only for the treachery of Blanco. The pure morality of
his life was attested by a gentleman of high standing. Others proved
his many acts of charity to the unfortunate and to children, all done
as secretly as possible. He had contrived the escape of five captives.
A gentleman, Don Diego (James) de Benavides, furnished this testimony:

  "On coming here from Constantinople, I asked if there were in the
  city any gentlemen by birth, I was told there was one in
  particular--a man of honor, noble, virtuous, well-born, the friend
  of caballeroes, to wit, Michael de Cervantes. I paid him a visit. He
  shared with me his chamber, his clothes, his money. In him I have
  found a father and a mother."

The declarations of Brother Gil and of Rev. Dr. Sosa solemnly
confirmed the facts brought forward by numerous captives. Sosa wrote
his declaration while still in irons, and avowed with a mixture of
dignity and feeling that his principles would have prevented him from
allowing himself such {23} intimacy with Cervantes, had he not
considered him in the light of an earnest Christian, liable to
martyrdom at any moment.

A scrutiny was also made in Spain at the request of the elder
Cervantes, in 1578, and both the justifying documents, signed by
notaries, are still in existence.

  "Ah!" says Haedo (himself an eye-witness of the sufferings of the
  Christians in that vulture's nest), "it had been a fortunate thing
  for the Christians if Michael Cervantes had not been betrayed by his
  own companions. He kept up the courage and hopes of the captives at
  the risk of his own life, which he imperilled four times. He was
  threatened with death by impaling, by hanging, and by burning alive;
  and dared all to restore his fellow-sufferers to liberty. If his
  courage, his ability, his plans, had been seconded by fortune,
  Algiers at this day would belong to us, for he aimed at nothing
  less."

Cervantes did not put his own adventures in writing. The captive in
Don Quixote said with reference to them, "I might indeed tell you some
strange things done by a soldier named Saavedra. They would interest
and surprise you, but to return to my own story." The disinterested
hero had more at heart the downfall of Islamism than his own
glorification.


HIS RESTITUTION TO HIS NATIVE LAND.

Cervantes touched his native land again with no very brilliant
prospect before him. His father was dead; his mother could barely
support herself, his brother was with the army, and his friends
dispersed. Still the first step on his beloved Spain gave him great
joy, afterwards expressed through the mouth of the captive in Don
Quixote:

  "We went down on our knees and kissed our native soil, and then with
  eyes bathed in tears of sweet emotion we gave thanks to God. The
  sight of our Spanish land made us forget all our troubles and
  sufferings. It seemed as if they had been endured by others than
  ourselves, so sweet it is to recover lost liberty."

At the time of his arrival king and court were at Badajos, watching
the progress of the annexation of Portugal. He joined the army, and
during the years 1581, '2, '3, shared in the battles between Philip
and the Prior Antonio de Ocrato, the latter being assisted by the
French and English. In one of these fights the Spanish admiral ordered
the brave Strozzi, wounded and a prisoner, to be flung into the sea.
At the engagement of the Azores, Rodrigo Cervantes and another captain
flung themselves into the sea, and were the first to scale the
fortifications, thus giving their soldiers a noble example.


MARRIAGE AND SUBSEQUENT TROUBLES.

He lived in Lisbon a short time and composed his Galatea there. Next
year he returned to Madrid, and married the lady Dona Catalina de
Palacios y Salazar y Vomediano. She was of a noble family, but her
dowry consisted of a few acres of land. In the marriage contract,
signed in presence of Master Alonzo de Aguilera, and still in
existence, mention is made of half a dozen fowl forming part of the
fortune brought by her to the soldier and poet. The marriage was
celebrated 12th December, 1584, at the bride's residence, Esquivias, a
little town in the neighborhood of the capital.

He now betook himself seriously to literature, published the Galatea,
and began to write for the theater. At first he was very successful,
but on a sudden Lope de Vega came on the scene, and exhibited such
dramatic aptitude and genius and mental fertility, that managers and
actors and audience had no ears for any other aspirant to dramatic
reputation, and poor Cervantes found his prospect of fame and
independence all at once clouded. The pride of the Spanish hidalgo and
"Old Christian"  [Footnote 16] had been much {24} modified by his life
in the army and bagnio, and his good common sense told him that it was
his duty to seek to support his family by some civil occupation rather
than indulge his family pride, and suffer them and himself to starve.

  [Footnote 16: One unsuspected of having Moorish or Jewish blood in
  his veins.]

But oh, Apollo and his nine blue stockings! what was the occupation
dropped over our soldier-poet's head, and doing all in its power to
extinguish his imaginative and poetic faculties? Nothing more nor less
than the anti-romantic duties of a commissary. Well, well, Spain was
no more prosaic than other countries, and Cervantes had brothers in
his mechanical occupations. Charles Lamb's days were spent in adding
up columns of "long tots." Burns gauged whiskey casks and kept an eye
on private stills; Shakespeare adjusted the contentions of actors, and
saw that their exits and entrances did not occur at the wrong sides;
perhaps the life of the mill-slave Plautus furnished as much happiness
as any of the others. The mill-stones got an occasional rest, and he
was in enjoyment for the time, when reading comic scenes from his
tablets or scrolls, and listening to the outbursts of laughter that
came from the open throats of his sister and brother drudges.

The Invincible Armada, while preparing to make a hearty meal on
England, had need meantime of provender while crossing the rough
Biscayan sea, and four commissaries were appointed to collect
provisions for that great monster, and for the behoof of the Indian
fleets. Cervantes was one of the four, Seville appointed his
headquarters, and his time most unpoetically employed collecting
imposts in kind from all tax-paying folk.

The regular clergy (houses of friars and monks) were at the time at
deadly feud with his Most Catholic Majesty, Philip II., and refused to
pay him tribute. They founded their refusal on a papal bull; and on
the other aide, the alcaids produced the royal warrant. Between the
contending powers the author of Galatea found himself sufficiently
embarrassed.

For some years Cervantes endured a troubled and wretched existence in
such employment as the above, in purchasing corn for the use of the
galleys, and in making trips to Morocco on public business. He
solicited the government for an office in the Indies, and was on the
point of obtaining it when some influence now unknown frustrated his
hopes. He describes his condition and that of many other footballs of
fortune in the Jealous Estremaduran:

  "In the great city of Seville he found opportunities of spending the
  little he had left. Finding himself destitute of money, and not
  better provided with friends, he tried the means adopted by all the
  idle hangers-on in that city, namely, a passage to the Indies, the
  refuge of the outcasts of Europe, the sanctuary of bankrupts, the
  inviolable asylum of homicides, paradise of gamblers who are there
  sure to gain, resort of women of loose lives, where the many have a
  prospect, and the few a subsistence."

Our poet not being born with an instinct for regular accounts and
being charged to collect arrears of tax in Granada to the amount of
two millions of maravedis, say £1,500, found his task difficult among
people who were slow in committing to memory the rights of the crown.
His greatest mistake was the intrusting of a considerable sum to a
merchant named Simon Freire de Luna in order to be deposited in the
treasury at Madrid. Simon became bankrupt, and Cervantes was cast into
prison for the deficiency in his accounts. He was soon set at liberty,
but the different appearances he was obliged to make before the courts
of Seville, Madrid, and Valladolid were sufficient to turn his hair
grey before its time. The judges reproached him for his deficit, the
people gave him no praise. The alcaids of Argamasilla in La Mancha
gave him particularly bad treatment. Perhaps he recollected it when
writing his romance.

{25}

Subjected to the interrogatories of the royal councillors, judges, and
even alcaids, a servant to all merely for means to live, and always
moving about, poor Cervantes appears at last to have given way. From
1594, when sent to collect arrears in Granada, to 1598, little can be
gathered concerning him, but from this last date till 1603 nothing
whatever is known of his fortunes. The probability is that he spent
part of the time in a prison of Andaluçia or La Mancha, and there
meditated on the vanity of human expectations, and wrote the first
part of Don Quixote.


HIS LITERARY LIFE.

Wherever he spent this interval his brain had not been idle--he had
passed in review the defects of the Spanish government and of the
Spanish character. He had been unable to rouse the king to crush the
power of the Algerine pirates, either by the memorials he had
consigned to his friend the secretary, or by the vigorous pictures he
had presented on the stage (after his return from captivity) of the
cruelties inflicted by them on their unhappy captives. He had failed
in his great and cherished object, but there remained one reformation
yet to be made, namely, of taste among those Spaniards, ladies and
gentlemen, to whom reading was a pleasure, and who could afford to
purchase books. To substitute a relish for healthier studies was a
darling object of our much worried poet for years. It was cherished in
prisons, and the first part of his great work written, or nearly so,
at the time when we find him again mixing with society in Valladolid,
where Philip II. held his court. This was in the year 1603. The
following extract concerning his residence and his mode of life in
that city, is taken from the work of M. Chasles:

  "There is at Valladolid a poor looking house, narrow and low, hemmed
  in among the taverns of a suburb, and near the deep and empty bed of
  a torrent called Esguéva. There Cervantes came to live in 1603, in
  the fifty-seventh year of his age. With an  emotion which I cannot
  express I hare visited this dwelling, which stands outside the city,
  and which remains unmarked by stone or inscription. A well-used
  staircase conducts to the two modest chambers used by Cervantes.
  One, in which he slept, no doubt, is a square room with a low
  ceiling supported by beams. The other, a sort of ill-lighted kitchen
  looking on to the neighboring roofs, still holds his _cantarelo_ or
  stone with three round hollows to hold water jars. Here lived with
  him his wife, Dona Catalina, his daughter Isabelle, now twenty years
  old, his sister Dona Andrea, his niece Constanza, and a relation
  named Dona Magdalena. A housekeeper increased the family. Where did
  all sleep? However that was arranged, they all did their work
  together. The ladies earned money by embroidering the court-dresses.
  Valladolid, adopted for abode by the new king and by the Duke of
  Lerma, was then incumbered, as was Versailles afterwards, with
  gentlemen, with the grandees, and with generals. Our impoverished
  family was supported by this affluence. The Marquis of Villafranca,
  returning from Algiers to the court, got his gala-suit made by the
  family of the soldier-poet, with whom he had erewhile been
  acquainted. Cervantes was occupied either with keeping the books of
  people in business, or regulating the accounts of some people of
  quality, or striving to bring his long lawsuit with the government
  lo a close.

  "In the evening, while the needles of the women flew through the
  stuffs, he held the pen, and on the corner of the table he put his
  thoughts in writing. There it was he composed the prologue of that
  work which had been a labor of love in the composition, and in which
  he employed all the force of his genius. In bringing it with him to
  Valladolid, he experienced alternations of hope and fear, being
  fully sensible that it was his masterpiece. 'Idle reader,' said he
  in the first page, 'you may credit my word, for I have no need to
  take oath, that I wish this book, child of my brain, were the most
  beautiful, the most brilliant, and the most witty that any one could
  imagine.' He had published nothing since the Galatea, which had
  appeared twenty years before and was an amiable apology for the
  taste of the times. The book about to be printed was a flagrant
  attack on the same literature."

Those who despise the old books of chivalry, and have probably never
opened one, are too ready to undervalue Cervantes' apprehension about
bringing out his book, and the service it eventually rendered to
society and literature. We recommend an indifferent individual of this
way of thinking to peruse about the eighth of the contents of one of
the condemned {26} volumes of Don Quixote's library, and work himself
into the conviction that the body of the Spanish readers of 1603,
ladies and gentlemen, not only admired such compositions more than
living readers admire the most popular writings of our times, but in
many instances believed the contents to be true.

Let us hope that there is some mistake about the non-accommodation
afforded to the seven individuals of Cervantes' family, six of whom
were of gentle blood. It is easy to imagine what delightful evenings
they would have enjoyed if tolerably comfortable with regard to
furniture and space, the soldier-poet reading out some passages from
the Don, or the Exemplary Novels, or one of his plays, and the
well-bred women plying their needles, listening with interest, and
occasionally breaking out into silvery laughs at the comic misfortunes
of the knight, or the naive pieces of roguery of the squire.

We can readily imagine the desolation of Cervantes' spirit during the
troubled years of his official wanderings, his superiors urging him to
grind the faces of his countrymen and fellow-subjects, and these
entertaining most unfriendly feelings toward himself. The ladies of
his family--where were they during this nomadic life of his, and how
were they situated? Separation from their society and anxiety about
their privations must have added much to the present suffering, and
forebodings of things still worse, the companions of his lonely hours.

A pleasant interruption to the monotony and privations of the family
life must have been the appearance of the first part of the Don in
1604, and the popularity it soon attained.


HIS LABORERS AND THEIR REQUITAL.

Some who merely neglected the author till found by fame, were soon
ready to do him disservice by passing censure on the execution of the
great work, and even searching for subjects of blame in his past
career. Lope de Vega, as we have seen, had put it out of his power to
turn his dramatic talents to account. Further, he did not act in a
kind manner towards him in private, though outwardly friendly. But
Lope's friends and admirers so deeply resented an honest and judicious
criticism on the works of the prolific dramatist by Cervantes, that
they ceased not during the remaining dozen years of his life to do him
every unfriendly act in their power. One was so full of malice and so
unprincipled, that towards the end of Cervantes' life he wrote a
second part of the Adventures of Don Quixote, distinguished by
coarseness, dullness, and inability to make the personages of the
first part of the story act and speak in character. The impudent and
talentless writer called himself Don Avellaneda of some town in La
Mancha, but one of De Vega's admirers was supposed to be the real
culprit. Suspicions fell on several, but the greater number centered
in Pere Luis de Aliaga, a favorite of the Duke of Lerma, and the
confessor of Philip III. He was call, meagre, and dark-complexioned,
and had got the sobriquet of _Sancho Panza_, by antithesis.



The wretched attack, for it was no better, was published in 1614, two
years before the death of Cervantes, Though suffering from illness,
and overshadowed by the expectation of approaching death, the
appearance of the impudent and worthless production acted on him as
the bugle on the nerves of the old battle-steed. In the order of
Providence good is extracted from mere human evil, and to the false
Avellaneda the world is indirectly indebted for the second part of Don
Quixote, the wedding of Gamacho, the wise though unsuccessful
government of Barataria by Sancho, the disenchantment of Dulcinea, and
all the delightful adventures and conferences that had place at the
ducal chateau, province unknown.

{27}

But between the publishing of the first part of Don Quixote in 1605,
and the second in 1614, how had the great heart and head been
occupied? Probably with little pleasure to himself. On his return from
the wars of Portugal in 1584, he had the pleasure and profit of seeing
several of his plays acted, some expressly written to direct public
spirit towards a crusade on the Algerines.  [Footnote 17] Of these he
thus speaks in the prologue to his dramatic works, published 1613:

    [Footnote 17: Between the days of Lope de Rueda and those of
    Cervantes' debut, Naharra of Toledo had made considerable
    improvement in the mechanics of the art. The sack was rejected,
    and chests and trunks held the properties. The musicians came from
    behind their blanket, and faced their customers. He rejected the
    beards except in the case of disguisements, and invented or
    adopted thunder, lightning, clouds, challenges, and fights. He
    himself was a capital personator of cowardly bullies.]

  "In all the playhouses of Madrid were acted some plays of my
  composing, such as the Humors of Algiers, the Destruction of
  Numantia, and the Naval Battle, wherein I took the liberty of
  reducing plays to three acts which before consisted of five. I
  showed, or, to speak better, I was the first that represented the
  imaginations and secret thoughts of the soul, exhibiting moral
  characters to public view to the entire satisfaction of the
  audience. I composed at that time thirty plays at least, all of
  which were acted without anybody's interrupting the players by
  flinging cucumbers or any other trash at them. They ran their race
  without any hissing, cat-calling, or any other disorder. But
  happening to be taken up with other things, I laid aside
  play-writing, and then came on that prodigy of nature, that
  marvellous man, the great Lope de Vega, who raised himself to be
  supreme monarch of the stage. He subdued all the players, and made
  them obedient to his will. He filled the world with theatrical
  pieces, finely and happily devised, and full of good sense, and so
  numerous that they take up above ten thousand sheets of paper all of
  his own writing, and, which is a most wonderful thing to relate, he
  saw them all acted or at least had the satisfaction to hear they
  were all acted."

Good-hearted, generous Cervantes, who could so dwell on that success
in a rival which condemned himself to the wretched life of an inland
revenue officer, to the hatred of non-payers of tax, to prosecutions,
and to the discomforts of an Andaluçian or Manchegan dungeon, and
separation from his niece, sister, daughter, and wife, whom, in
absence of data to the contrary, we take to be amiable and
affectionate women.

When the court returned to Madrid he and his family followed it, but
we find no employment given by him to the printing presses of that
city from 1604 to 1613, when he got published the collection of plays
and interludes before mentioned. In the same year he published his
twelve Exemplary Novels,  [Footnote 18] dedicating them to his patron,
Don Pedro Fernandez de Castro, count of Lemos. This nobleman, in
conjunction with Archbishop Sandoval, and the actor, Pedro de Morales,
had succeeded (let us hope) in cheering the poet's latter years. In
the preface he gives a portrait of himself in his sixty-sixth year,
distinguished by his own charming style, always redolent of
resignation, good-will, and good-nature. He pretends that a friend was
to have got his portrait engraved to serve as frontispiece, but, owing
to his negligence, he himself is obliged to supply one in pen and ink:

    [Footnote 18: The Lady Cornelia, Rinconete and Cortadillo, Doctor
    Glass-case, the Deceitful Marriage, the Dialogue of the Dogs
    Scipio and Berganza, the Little Gipsy Girl, the Generous Lover,
    the Spanish-English Lady, the Force of Blood, the Jealous
    Estremaduran, the Illustrious Scullery-Maid, and the Two Damsels.]

  "My friend might have written under the portrait--This person whom
  you see here, with an oval visage, chestnut hair, smooth open
  forehead, lively eyes, a hooked but well-proportioned nose, a
  silvery beard that, twenty years ago, was golden, large moustaches,
  a small mouth, teeth not much to speak of, for he has but six, all
  in bad condition and worse placed, no two of them corresponding to
  each other; a figure between the two extremes, neither tall nor
  short, a vivid complexion, rather fair than dark, somewhat stooped
  in the shoulders, and not very light-footed: this I say is the
  author of Galatea, Don Quixote de la Mancha, . . . commonly called
  Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra. He was for many years a soldier, and
  for five years and a half in captivity, where he learned to have
  patience in adversity. He lost his left hand by a musket-shot in the
  battle of Lepanto, and ugly as this wound may appear, he regards it
  as beautiful, having received it {28} on the most memorable and
  sublime occasion which passed times have ever scene, or future times
  can hope to equal, fighting under the victorious banners of the son
  of that thunderbolt of war, Charles V. of blessed memory. Should the
  friend of whom I complain have no more to say of me than this, I
  would myself have composed a couple of dozen of eulogiums, and
  communicated them to him in secret," etc.


THE CLOSING SCENE.

Cervantes' Voyage to Parnassus, in which he complains to Apollo for
not being furnished even with a stool in that poets' elysium, was
published in 1614, the second part of Don Quixote in 1615, and that
was the last book whose proofs he had the pleasure to correct. He was
employed on his Troubles of Persiles and Sigismunda,   [Footnote 19]
and wrote its preface, and the dedication to his patron the Count of
Lemos, while suffering under his final complaint, the dropsy, and
having only a few day to live. From the preface to the Persiles he
appears to have received extreme unction before the last word of it
was written. From the forgiving, and patient, and tranquil spirit of
his writing, even when annoyed by much unkindness and injustice on the
part of the Madrid coteries, from the spirit of religion and morality
that pervades his writings, and the care he appears to have taken to
meet his summons as a sincere Christian, we may reasonably hope that
his sorrows and troubles for time and eternity ended on 23d April,
1616 the day on which a kindred spirit breathed his last at
Stratford-on-Avon.

  [Footnote 19: It was published by his widow, Dona Catalina, la 1617.]

And indeed in our meditations on the characteristics of the author and
man in Cervantes, we have always mentally associated him with
Shakespeare and Sir Walter Scott. We find in all the same versatility
of genius, the same grasp and breadth of intellect, the same gifts of
genial humor and the same largeness of sympathy. The life of Cervantes
will be always an interesting and edifying study in connexion with the
literature and the great events of his time. We find him
conscientiously doing his duty in every phase of his diversified
existence, and effecting all the good in his power. When he feels the
need of filling a very disagreeable office in order to afford
necessary support to his family, he bends the stubborn pride of the
hidalgo to his irksome duties--and it is not easy for us to realize
the rigidity of that quality which he inherited by birth, and which
became a second nature in every gentleman of his nation. In advanced
years he still vigorously exerts his faculties, and endures privations
and disappointments in a resigned and patient spirit; and when
complaints are wrung from him they are neither bitter nor ill-natured.
Even his harmless vanity has something amiable and cordial about it.
When he has just reached his sixtieth year he effects a salutary
revolution in the corrupt literary taste of his countrymen and
countrywomen, and save a few coarse expressions separable from the
literature of his day, a deathbed examination would have found few
passages in his numerous writings which it would be desirous to find
omitted. He closed an anxious and industrious life by a Christian
death.



NOTE.

Towards the end of Cervantes' life he belonged to the third order of
Trinitarian monks, and was buried in their church with his face
uncovered. These brothers having quitted their convent in 1633, the
site of the interment could not be discovered when a search was
afterwards made. The house he occupied in Madrid being pulled down
about twenty years since, his bust has been placed in a niche in front
of the new building.

------

{29}


SILENT GRIEF.


  You bid me raise my voice,
             And pray
  For tears; but yet this choice
  Resteth not with me. Too much grief
  Taketh the tears and words that give relief
             Away:
  Though I weep not, silent and apart,
        Weeps and prays my heart

  You like not this dead, calm,
            Cold face.
  So still, unmoved, I am.
  You think that dark despair begins
  To brood upon me for my many sins'
            Disgrace:
  Not so; within, silent and apart,
       Hopes and trusts my heart.

  Down underneath the waves
          Concealed
  Lie in unfathomed graves
  A thousand wrecks, storm never yet--
  That did the upper surface madly fret--
            Revealed.
  Wreck'd loves lie deep; tears, with all their art,
       Ne'er could show my heart.

  Complaint I utter not.
            I know
  That He who cast my lot,
  In silence also bore His cross.
  Nor counted lack of words or tears a loss
            In woe.
  Alone with Him, silent and apart,
        Weeps and prays my heart.

--------

{30}

Original.

THE GODFREY FAMILY;
OR, QUESTIONS OF THE DAY.


CHAPTER I.


MR. GODFREY AND HIS FAMILY.

About the time the events of the era 1792 were creating a panic
throughout the European world, an English gentleman sat at breakfast
with his wife and children in a noble mansion on the south eastern
coast of his native island. The newspaper was unfolded with more than
usual interest, for the Honorable Mr. Godfrey's sister had married a
French nobleman, and the daily accounts from France struck every day
new terror to the heart of this gentleman. Until now, he had been what
is termed a liberal in his politics, and, alas! an unbeliever in his
religion, and had prided himself on bringing up his family free from
all bigotry and superstition; he had kept up correspondence with men
of science all over the world, and fondly hoped that the reign of
intellect "would emancipate the world from evil." His children had
been brought up under all these influences, and thus far with success
to his scheme. Accustomed from infancy to refinement, elegance,
domestic happiness, and intellectual culture, these young people felt
that in their case goodness and happiness were synonymous. All that
was beautiful they loved, for they had cultivated tastes; all that was
noble in sentiment they admired, for their father prided himself, and
taught them to pride themselves, on their noble ancestry, whose deeds
of daring and renown he was never weary of recounting. Fame, honor,
and glory were their idols. Brought up among such genial influences as
foster agreeable manners and bring out the most lovable of earth's
dispositions, together with an intellectual expression of beauty, and
a poetic appreciation of nature's charms, it was little wonder that
they mistook strong impulses for principle, thought themselves firm in
integrity of purpose, and were disposed fearlessly to launch their
vessel on the ocean of life, secure that intelligence and high aims
would guard them for ever against shipwreck. But now a change seemed
pending. The fear engendered by the French Revolution had somewhat
revolutionized Mr. Godfrey's mind, he was becoming more cautious in
his theories, and more morose in his temper than he had ever been
before. His wife hesitated ere she asked: "Any news of the countess
to-day?"

"No; though affairs are getting more desperate every hour. Would she
and the count were safe in England."

"But, in that case, their estates, would be confiscated, would they
not?"

Mr. Godfrey rose uneasily and paced the room. "What is the world
coming to?" he said.

A loud ring at the outer gate prevented reply; it was early for
visitors at the front entrance. They paused, and listened; soon a
servant announced "M. de Villeneuve."

"M. de Villeneuve! why, what can bring him here? Where have you shown
him to?"

"He is in the library, sir."

Mr. Godfrey hastened to receive his visitor. "I thought you were in
America," he said, after the first greetings were over.

"I went back to France to finish arranging some affairs for my father;
{31} and well for me that they were settled before these scenes of
blood had crazed the populace, or we should have lost everything."

"And now------"

"Now, everything of ours has been favorably disposed of, and my father
and his family are settled in America without loss of property; my
father is delighted at the prospects of the new world, where every man
is to be EQUAL before the laws; you know he is an enthusiast."

"Yes, but it is an untried experiment yet, and France is presenting a
very fearful spectacle at this moment in endeavoring to follow in the
track."

"It is of that I came to speak to you. You have relations there?"

"My sister--do you know anything about her?"

"I and some other friends brought her and her husband's daughter
across the Channel last night."

"Last night! across the Channel! And her husband----"

"Has perished by the guillotine!"

"Great God!" Mr. Godfrey hid his face in his hands. "My poor sister!
how did she bear it? where is she? how did you come?"

"We came over in an open fishing boat--the Countess de Meglior,
Euphrasie, the priest of the old chateau, and myself; it was all we
could do to escape detection. I, of course, passed unnoticed, as an
American citizen; but the Countess of Euphrasie and M. Bertolot had to
disguise themselves and to suffer many hardships. The countess now
lies ill in the little inn at New Haven; she sent me on to tell you of
her situation."

"My poor sister! My poor sister! Has she lost all?"

"Nearly so. The estate is confiscated, and save a little money and a
few jewels she was able to save nothing; indeed she was too much
terrified to think. Mademoiselle de Meglior had been sent for on the
first alarm from the south of France, where she had been educated; she
arrived in time to throw herself into her father's arms as the
officers were taking him from his house; and in less than a week he
was no more. Secret intimation was sent to the countess that she and
her daughter were both denounced, and they fled, as I have told you."

To hasten to his sister's aid was, of course, the first thing to be
thought of. It was some days before the countess was sufficiently
recovered to be able to be removed to her brother's house; and even
after removal she was for a long time confined to her room.

Euphrasie, her step-daughter, tended her most assiduously, but the
poor lady could scarcely be comforted. To have, lost everything at
once--husband, estate, wealth, power, and position, and to be reduced
to depend upon a brother's bounty--it was not wonderful that she
should feel her situation acutely. She had lived exclusively for this
world's honors; every duty of domestic life had given place to her
love of the court and its pleasures. Euphrasie, brought up at the
convent and under the guardianship of her paternal grandmother, was
almost as much a stranger to her as the nieces to whom she was now
newly introduced.

. . . . . .

It was a long time ere the Countess de Meglior rallied sufficiently to
appear in the drawing-room of the mansion, and meantime her
step-daughter, Euphrasie, was simply her slave. Madame never
considered her welfare, or seemed to think she was in any way
concerned in the misfortune that bad overtaken them; yet never,
perhaps, was a child more fondly attached to a father than had been
our heroine. Although since the death of her own mother she had for
the most part resided away from him, yet her father's frequent visits
to his ancestral chateau, and the still more frequent correspondence
with his mother and daughter, had kept up a warm interest. At the
death of her grandmother she had received her education at a
neighboring convent, for her step-mother {32} declined taking charge
of her. She was summoned home at last in consequence of the troubles
of the times; arrived in time to be torn by force from the arms of her
father, into which she had thrown herself; passed days of agonizing
suspense, which were terminated only by hearing of his death.

Paris was no longer safe; advertised of her own proscription, Madame
de Meglior, almost in a state of frenzy, excepted the kind offices of
M. de Villeneuve, and, with the old family chaplain, had fled the
country, taking with her Euphrasie, with whom she so suddenly became
aware she was connected, though a stranger alike to her character and
disposition.

Euphrasie, though overwhelmed by the blow, was constrained to hide her
own emotions, the better to console one who seemed so inconsolable as
the countess, her step-mother. Truly, the poor girl did feel she was
as a stranger in a strange land. Until the storm broke forth which
drove the nuns from the convent, and let infidelity and irreligion
like "the dogs of war" loose over the fated kingdom, Euphrasie had
dwelt in happy ignorance of all grosser evil, and with light and merry
heart, chastened by earnest piety, pursued her innocent way; but
suddenly awakened by such horrors to the knowledge of crime, vice, and
their concomitant miseries, she shrank from entering into a world
which contrasted with the abode she had left, seemed to her
over-excited imagination filled with mysterious terrors, and fraught
with indescribable dangers.

She met, then, the advances of her entertainers with constraint; kept
the young people absolutely at a distance, and would more willingly
shut herself up in the apartment of her peevish, unloving stet-mother,
to whom she manifested the affection and paid the respect of a
daughter, than join with Adelaide or Annie either in study or
amusement.

Adelaide, the eldest daughter of Mr. Godfrey's family, was within two
months of her eighteenth year--Eugene, the only son and heir, was then
sixteen--while her sister Annie was but a year younger; and the merry,
laughing Hester had scarcely counted thirteen years. With the
compassionate eagerness of youth they crowded round Euphrasie, whom
they persisted in saluting as "cousin," and were not a little
chagrined to find their advances met in so chilling a manner; they
spared no pains to distract her from her moodiness, or hauteur, or
ill-temper, or whatever it might be, that made her so different from
themselves. Yet moodiness it scarcely could be, for the young French
girl was cheerful in society, so far as the expression of her
countenance went; and when surprised in solitude, a calm serenity sat
on her youthful brow, and she bore the ill-temper of the countess with
wonderful sweetness; her mother's impatience, indeed, seemed but to
increase her patience, and the harshness she underwent served but to
make her more gentle. She was a mystery to her animated young friends,
who, loving a life of excitement and intellectual progress, could not
understand how Euphrasie could exist in so stupid and monotonous a
course.

Yet was the young French girl far from being deficient in those
branches of accomplishments which are especially feminine. She played
and sang with taste and feeling, but I the airs were generally of a
solemn character. She loved, also, to exercise her pencil, but it was
to delineate the head of the thorn-crowned Saviour, of the penitent
Magdalene, or of, "Mary, highly favored among women." Earthly subjects
and earthly thoughts had no attraction for her, yet there were moments
when, as if unconsciously, she gave utterance to fancies which
startled her young companions. She would walk with them by the
sounding shore, and while they were busy gathering and classifying
shells and sea-weed and geological specimens, she, too, would seem to
study' and listen and learn a lesson, but a far {33} different lesson
from the one they sought. The young ladies Godfrey were scientific,
though in a playful way; there was aim, object, utility, in short, in
all their seekings. "Knowledge is power," was the axiom of the family;
and the members of it might fairly challenge the world for the
consistency with which they sought to carry that axiom into practice.
But Euphrasie would wonder and ponder, and philosophize unconsciously.
She did not decompose the fragments of the mighty rocks with acids as
her young friends did; she did not classify and dissect the lovely
flower; but she stood in mute wonderment at the base of the rocks, and
heard their disquisitions on its strata having been once liquid and
gradually consolidating, and said: "What a wondrous history! what a
sight for the angels to behold the atomic attraction forming the
worlds grand order! A true theory of geology would be like a chapter
of the _life of God_--a true revelation of his spirit to man."

"Yes," said Adelaide; "science will yet and if superstition from the
earth."

"Superstition!" said Euphrasie. "Yes! if superstition means false
views of God's relation to the human soul. True science is mystic, and
must reveal God interiorly; but true science can scarcely be attained
by guesses or dissection. You destroy a beauteous flower by pulling it
to pieces, but I do not see how its separate petals and crushed leaves
can speak so plainly to the soul as the living plant on the stem, or
how your anatomy is a revelation."

"Nay, we discern the uses of the different parts thereby, and admire
the structure, seeing how each organ fulfils its office duly, in
minuteness as in grandeur."

"But your long words," said Euphrasie; "do they too reveal God? To me
they hide him in a cloud of dust. I feel the order, I love the beauty,
I am elevated by the grandeur of creation, because nature is a
metaphor in which God hides himself and reveals himself at once, but I
distrust a mere human key. How can we be sure of systems, unless we
spend a life in verification? Did not Pythagoras teach astronomy in
the Copernican fashion? and yet the world did not receive the teaching
till centuries after. The world receives the theory of Copernicus now
on trust; would it be wise to spend a life in verifying it?"

"Have you any other key?" asked Annie.

"There is a key to the lesson which nature teaches," said Euphrasie,
in a low tone; "but not so much as to its formation as to its being a
manifestation of God. We must not speak of these things; they are too
high for us."

"Nay," said Eugene; "they are the very things to speak about,
especially if, as you say, they lead to higher things; my idea of
science is utility. The old Magian astrologers, the Chaldean sages and
Eastern sophists, studied cloudy myths and wrapped up their theories
in a veil of obscurity; but the modern idea is usefulness; an
abridgment of man's toil, and promotion of his comfort. Do you reject
all human research?"

"I reject nothing that God has given," said Euphrasie; "but truth is
one, error is many. The science first to be taught, is how to discover
truth--the next, how to apply it. You say the ancients applied
science to other purposes than we; if they applied it to learn the
qualities of their own souls, and we apply it to the comfort of our
bodies merely, which is the highest object?"

"What, then, would you do?" said Adelaide, a little impatiently; "shut
up our books, and sit and dream on the sea-shore on matters beyond all
practical use?"

Euphrasie answered very gently, as she rose to walk to the seaside, "I
am not a teacher, _ma cher cousine_, but I think mind has its laws as
well as matter, and as on the government of our minds so much depends,
even in {34} our researches after material knowledge, it is likely
that the science of mind is more important than that of matter, and
necessary for the truth-seeker to study first. But I am getting quite
out of my depth; let us go and throw pebbles into the sea."

. . . . . .

Mrs. Godfrey was a kind-hearted and very reasonable woman, in the way
in which she understood reasoning. She was bent on rousing her young
inmate to energy and action. She was but a _girl_, she said--a girl of
seventeen could not have been so spoiled by the insipidities of a
convent as to be beyond reclaiming for the tangible world surrounding
her; or was it that her thoughts were with the dead, and that the deep
sorrow she had undergone had penetrated to the depths of her being?
Whatever the cause, Mrs. Godfrey was dissatisfied with the result, and
her motherly warmth of heart yearned to comfort the young orphan in
her desolation. She let a few weeks pass away in hopes of witnessing a
change, but when none came, or seemed likely to come, she thought it
her duty to remonstrate with Euphrasie, the more so as the countess
being now recovered sufficiently to join the family circle, Euphrasie
had no plausible excuse for passing hours together in the solitude of
her own chamber.

"It is not good for you, my dear, to be so much alone," said Mrs.
Godfrey to her, as one day she intruded on the young girl's privacy.
"Rouse your energies to some good purpose, and employ your mind in
some definite pursuit; it is very injurious, I assure you, to let your
faculties lie dormant so long."

Euphrasie laid aside the embroidery on which she had been employed,
and answered meekly, "What shall I do to please you, my dear madam?"

"Why, exercise your mental faculties--study."

"I am most willing to do so, madam; but what shall I begin?"

"Why, languages if you will; but you know enough of these, perhaps;
your own language and that of this country may content you. Or will
you study German and Italian?"

"I will, if you wish it, though I confess I have no great inclination.
It seems to me as if to learn different names for the same thing were
not very profitable; and unless I had occasion to visit the countries
in which these languages are spoken, I think it would be time thrown
away."

"How time thrown away? Could you not read the literature of the
languages? That will expand your mind."

"Literature? Do you mean poetry and fiction--such as your daughters
read? I do not care for them. I want to study truth."

"Truth? Yes, but fiction may be covert truth. Tales show us mankind as
they are. Literature has a refining tendency, and gives us elegance of
taste."

"I should defer to your opinion, madam," replied Euphrasie, with a
resigned air; "and when you wish, I will begin."

"Yes," said Mrs. Godfrey, "but not as a punishment; it is as a source
of attraction, of interest, that I wish you to cultivate literary
tastes."

"I cannot feel interest, madam, in that which will unfit me for my
duty."

"Unfit you for your duty! what do you mean?"

"Pray, madam, pardon me; I, of course, defer to you."

"I want no deference, child, save what your reason gives. Explain your
meaning."

"I only mean, dear madam, that too much refinement and elegance might
make us forget our inherent weakness; teach us to set too high a value
on exterior accomplishments, and to forget the tendency to sin ever
abiding within us."

"The girl is raving! Now, Euphrasie, do you honestly believe in the
corruption of your heart?"

{35}

"I know I am prone to evil in many ways, and that I must keep a
constant watch over all my dispositions. I suppose I do not know the
extent of evil in my own heart--that were a rare grace, vouchsafed to
few--but I see nothing in myself to lead me to suppose that I am
naturally better than the men who murdered my father."

"Do you feel disposed to murder, then?"

"No; but the very indignation I often feel at their crimes teaches me
not to trust myself. Did we give way to our passions, and had we
power, who can tell what we should do? Nero showed good dispositions
when he began his reign. Alfred the Great was a licentious youth till
Almighty God chastened him by adversity, and humbled him through life
by inflicting him with an incurable disease, which kept him ever
mindful of his former delinquencies."

"Do yon think that disease was a good to Alfred?"

"Decidedly; it helped to keep him mindful of the ever-present Deity
whom his former life had offended, and probably prevented his
relapsing into sin."

"You foolish child! his disease was probably occasioned by the
hardships he had undergone during his campaign; it was the natural
consequence to damp and wet and bad living. You must study science,
Euphrasie; that will rid you of all these foolish notions."

"I will study what you please, madam," replied Euphrasie.

But Mrs. Godfrey's endeavors to make her young _protégé_ comprehend
results as _inevitable_ signally failed, to her own great
astonishment. The girl pursued easily and willingly the course of
study marked out for her; was somewhat amused by chemical and other
experiments, but could never be brought to declare them necessary
results in the absolute sense. "The action of the same spirit that
established these relationships" said she "might at will disturb them;
even as the chemical relationship between two substances is disturbed
by the presence of a third substance more potent in its affinities."

"What, then, is a natural law?" demanded Mrs. Godfrey.

"A natural law," replied Euphrasie, "is the ordinary mode in which
Divine Providence causes one portion of insentient matter to act on
another portion of insentient matter."

Her instructor would object to this. "Nay, but there are natural laws
affecting mind also."

"Doubtless," said Euphrasie, "there are ordinary modes of acting upon
mind, both by the action of matter and by the action of other minds;
but as the special object of this life is to reunite, to re-bind man
to his Creator, supernatural means are ever at work to effect this
object, and of these we can predicate nothing certain."

"Supernatural nonsense, child--who put this precious style of
reasoning into your head?"

"Does not religion mean re-binding, madam? Was not man severed from
God by disobedience? Was not the whole spirit of religion, both before
and since our Lord's advent, founded on the fact that the mercy of God
wished to provide a remedy for that fatal act of Adam and Eve? And has
not insentient nature ever been made to depart from her ordinary
rules, when such departure could forward the cause for which Christ
died?"

Mrs. Godfrey was silenced. She did not wish to avow her scepticism and
infidelity, but in secret she rejoiced that her own children were free
from such a bar to improvement.

The arrival of a box of books as a present to Euphrasie from M. de
Villeneuve, who, in a note addressed to the countess, asked her
permission "to be allowed to present to the daughter of his departed
friend a few works which, he believed, would suit her taste, and which
she would be scarcely likely to find in Mr. Godfrey's library,
valuable as that library was in many respects," came to help the
enemy's {36} cause in Mrs. Godfrey's view of the case, for among the
works were selections from St. Ambrose, St. Augustine, from Bede, St.
Thomas Aquinas, and others of the fathers of the church. "I did not
know you read Latin, cousin," said the girls in surprise. "Nor do I,
except church Latin," said Euphrasie. "I learnt church Latin on
purpose to study these books, which my father had promised me as soon
as I could read them. M. de Villeneuve must have heard of this promise
from M. Bertolot. It was very kind in him to send them to me."

"I wonder you did not say 'it was a special providence'," bantered
Annie; but Eugene looked at her beseechingly and reprovingly, so she
said no more.

In spite of the new attraction, Euphrasie continued to study the
course appointed by Mrs. Godfrey, but in learning thus there was so
evidently a want of appreciation of the importance of the
study--science seemed to her so very little higher than a game of ball
with a little child--that her instructors were fairly discomfited, and
inclined to turn her over to the musty old fathers she had the bad
taste to prefer to their intelligent elucidations.

The young people, too, were annoyed, for they could not attribute to
stupidity the indifference she manifested, and that indifference
seemed felt as a tacit reproach of their own eagerness.

"She is not only not stupid,"' said Adelaide, the oldest of the girls;
"she is absolutely clever; she intuitively comprehends what it takes
me hours to make out. I began to explain algebra to her, and before a
month was up, she knew more of it than I did myself; and when I spoke
to her of this new discovery of locomotive power, which has taken us
so long fully to comprehend, she gave me what she calls the course of
the ordinary sequences of matter, in proof that the invention must
succeed, if this course of sequences be properly applied; and that
then we may travel without horses as fast as we can reasonably wish;
'but,' she added, 'it will be worth no one's while to perfect such an
invention, for, travel as fast as we may, we cannot run away from
ourselves by any material means.'"

"She is a monomaniac," said Mr. Godfrey; "sensible on all points but
one."

"Unless," urged Eugene, "it be true, as she once said, that there is
higher science than the science of matter, and that that science is
the necessary one for us to study."

"_Et tu, Brute_," shouted the father indignantly. "Now, children, let
us have no such trash in my own family. Pity your young friend, and
withhold your censure. Remember, she was brought up in superstition
and ignorance. It cannot be expected that her mind should awaken at
once to the beauty of the physical law. But for yourselves, after the
pains that have been taken to keep your minds unfettered by the
trammels of superstition, it were a disgrace indeed to see you yield
to any such worn-out fancies. The close of the eighteenth century must
witness higher thoughts."

"The close of the eighteenth century has witnessed terrific doings
over the water," said Eugene.

"Yes, and see there the effects of superstition," answered his father.
"Had those poor wretches been taught an enlightened philosophy instead
of an abject superstition, the reaction would not have produced such
awful results."

"Do you then believe, father, that when Euphrasie throws off her
religion, she will become such as these men are?"

"No; Euphrasie is better educated already, even from her intercourse
with us; besides, she is refined and elegant."

"But so they say is Robespierre. A Frenchman, and one not friendly to
him, said to me the other day that his house is the very picture of
simple elegance. Besides, the Roman emperors were excessive in their
luxurious magnificence at the very time they {37} were murdering by
wholesale. Nero sang to his lyre the Siege of Troy while Rome was
burning. What if it were true that he set the city on fire merely to
revel in the luxury of a new sensation, and to realize the emotion he
deemed he ought to feel at such a catastrophe?"

"Why, Eugene," said Hester, laughing, "you, too, are growing
metaphysical. What will come next?"

"Why, next we will inquire how far metaphysics are true when they
teach that mental sensation and moral power are distinct from each
other, and that a man may be consequently imaginatively great--capable
of every grand mental sensation--and be morally weak; nay, the very
slave of his lowest propensities. We have many examples of this."

"So says Euphrasie; and therefore she insists that what we call mental
culture is at best but of secondary value, well enough as an assistant
agent, but not to be considered as a principal means in attaining the
ultimatum of life."

"Euphrasie is a simpleton," said Mr. Godfrey.

Eugene rose to quit the room. He was considering within himself
whether Euphrasie were not in the right.



CHAPTER II.

THE EARTHLY UTOPIA, AND THE LOST EMPIRE.

In a little country town where society is scarce, it often happens
that people associate together whose rank is dissimilar, for the mere
sake of relieving ennui of solitude. Thus in Estcourt a half-pay
captain, his wife, the clergyman and his family, the lawyer, the
doctor, and their incumbrances, were occasionally admitted as visitors
to Estcourt Hall, as Mr. Godfrey's residence was called; and here,
though somewhat restrained by being found in such aristocratic
society, opinions were sometimes broached which plainly manifested
that "the spirit of the time" was working even in that remote
district.

St. Simon, Fourrier, Owen, had not then developed the social system
which is now endeavoring to sap the foundations of all that antiquity
held in solemn reverence; but the principles of socialism to which
these men afterwards gave a "shape" were even then fermenting in the
minds of many. Disturbed spirits were questioning the rights of landed
proprietors, while the sudden introduction of machinery was raising a
faction among the displaced artisans. Ominous signs were visible on
the political horizon, and perhaps an English "reign of terror," that
would have vied in horror with that of France, would have been
inaugurated, had not the threatened invasion of the island by Napoleon
united all classes anew to repel the foreign foe.

Certain it is that, early in the nineteenth century, it was found
necessary to have government agents in many a petty country town in
England to watch the progress of disaffection, and five or six
shopkeepers could hardly assemble together without the fact being
recorded, and inquiries set on foot respecting the purport of their
meeting. Rebellious spirits were mysteriously _pressed_ to man the
royal navy, and the magistrates not only connived at such kidnapping,
but frequently designated the individuals whom it was desirable to
remove.

This process, comparatively easy when it concerned apprentices,
journeymen, or those belonging to the laboring population, could not
be brought to bear upon obnoxious members of the gentry with equal
facility. Now, Alfred Brookbank was one of these. His father was
rector of Estcourt, and, independently of his living, was proprietor
of a pretty landed estate, the whole of which by right of
primogeniture was to fall to the eldest eon, a careless, unprincipled
prodigal, who had already involved his family in pecuniary
embarrassment {38} by his reckless expenditure, and brought disgrace
on his father's cloth by his loose morality.

His brother Alfred was the reverse of this--astute, aspiring,
ambitious, he was smitten with the prevailing mania, and at times
talked loudly of the folly and injustice of sacrificing the interests
of a whole family to one selfish fool. The girls, too, whose fortunes
had been injured by the elder brother's extravagance, lent no
unwilling ear to the doctrine of equal participation of property.

Alfred Brookbank was gifted with an eloquent tongue, an insinuating
manner, and a gentlemanly deportment. His figure was good, and his
features, without being handsome, were agreeable from their animated
expression. He was a general favorite; and being prudent enough to
avoid the expression of his opinions before the elder branches of the
family, it was seldom that he was suspected of spreading sedition and
disaffection among the young.

Of Mr. Godfrey's three daughters, the second one, Annie, was, at this
period of our tale, by far the most susceptible of these novel ideas.
She professed that she would follow truth wherever it should lead her,
even though it involved the relinquishment of her own superior rank in
society. Mr. Godfrey only laughed at such protestations from a girl of
seventeen, well knowing they would not stand the test of experience;
but however harmless might be her sallies, he had not calculated on
one result of freedom of opinion; Annie began to take pleasure in
Alfred Brookbank's attentions, and to feel flattered when he
expatiated to her on the beauty of such a system of co-operative
industry as would banish vice and misery from the globe and renew the
golden era.

"Is it to be wondered at," said Alfred, "that revolutions take place
in blood, when property is so unequally divided? nay, when oftentimes
the property is in the possession of the fool, while the wise man has
to get his living by hard labor? Look at the _rationale_ of the thing!
One man holds wealth, as it is called, and on the strength of it he
must compel fifty men to work for him, while be fives at his ease--the
roasted pigeons flying into his mouth, crying, 'come eat me!'"

"But some one must work," argued Annie.

"You mean to say," replied Alfred, "that food most be raised and
clothing furnished. True. But how many are employed in really useful
labor, compared with those whose occupations might be dispensed with
without loss to society, and those who are mere appendages of
wealth--mere creatures of idleness--men who, by forestalling their
master's wants, make _him_ dependent on themselves; who, by
surrounding him with luxuries, effeminate him; and who, by pandering
to his pleasures, surfeit him, at the same time that by doing these
things they degrade themselves; for why should one man be a mere
appendage to another?"

"But if all must work," said Annie, "all cannot work in the same way.
We most have hewers of wood and drawers of water, as well as poets and
philosophers. A community needs a head, as well as hands and feet.
Suppose you were elected head of a community, you would need servants
to do the manual labor?"

"True, but I would not badge them for it," answered Alfred, glancing
at the liveried servants, who were then bringing in refreshments. "All
men must work for the common weal; therefore, all labor is honorable;
and no man need lord it over another, as if himself were made of
porcelain, and the other of earthenware. An American philosopher has
lately calculated that in order to supply the world with necessaries,
if each grown individual were to work four hours a day, the whole
population of the world might be far better provided for than it is
now."

"And what would they do with their spare time?" asked Annie.

{39}

"What but improve their minds, and employ their energies in loftier
labors--what but grow out of the drudge into the man! Oh! we have yet
to learn the wonders that are to be achieved by a well-regulated
community. Men are scarcely men yet. Half of them are slaves to the
mere bread-winning to support their bodies, and the other half are
seeking phantoms--they are trying to find pleasure in lording it over
their fellows, or they are driven to excess by the mere necessity of
passing away time. It is an unfair position to place a man in, to set
him above that reciprocal dependence which binds man to man as equals.
It is a practical injustice to individuals to sever them thus from
their kind, and prevent their feeling their brotherhood." Alfred
continued, warming with his subject:

  "There are, deep seated in the human heart,
  A thousand thrilling, yearning sympathies--
  A thousand ties that bind us to our kind--
  A thousand pleasures only there enjoyed
  In cheering intercourse with fellow-man.
  'Tis thus the voice of nature speaks aloud,
  Proclaims from pole to pole the heav'n-born truth:
  'Ye are the children of one only God.
  Learn to acknowledge your fraternity.'

I think you have not seen my poem on Human Brotherhood, Miss Annie?"

"I have not, but to judge from the specimen you have just quoted, I
should like very much to read it. These truths seem so evident now, it
is wonderful they have not been discovered before."

"They have been discovered, though not acted on. The fact is that
men's minds have been so trammelled with superstition, they have been
afraid to tread out of the beaten track. They have been afraid to
reason, I scarce know why, even on their own grounds. Yet matters are
mending in this respect. I was present the other day when an indignant
orator thus addressed his audience:

Shall he, the Author of life and light, who has given to man, as the
reward of the use of reason, the power of traversing the trackless
deep, and of drawing down the lightning innocuous from the
skies--shall he deny to his creature the privilege of using his own
gift on themes that more immediately concern man's happiness? Oh no!
believe it not! Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above,
and cometh down from the Father of light, with whom is no
variableness, neither shadow of turning.' The audience he was
addressing shouted applause; so you see the people's cause is
progressing, and even Scripture is called in to aid this desirable
change."

"I wish Euphrasie could hear you speak," said Annie; "she might begin
to believe that there is some good in human learning, and that it can
promote true happiness. I must introduce you to her more particular
acquaintance."

"No; if she is a votary of ignorance, pray don't. I dislike silly
unideaed girls--they are the pest of society."

"But Euphrasie is neither; she is only original and opinionated. Ideas
seem to grow with her indigenously; for no one can tell how she gets
them; but they are very crude, and directly contrary to the spirit of
progression. I wish you would convert her."

"I doubt it would be difficult, and, to say the truth, I do not wish
to attempt it. She is not my taste at all. I prefer animation, zeal,
sympathy. She looks like a marble statue of Contemplation; well enough
in its way, but possessing no interest for me, who am all for
practical life."

"Euphrasie is a great thinker, and thought aids practice. You had
better enlist her on your side; for there is no saying how much she
might assist you, if once she could be brought to see how happy a
paradise you have planned for the human race."

But Alfred was by no means anxious for this. He evidently felt that
Euphrasie would not listen to him. Perhaps he feared that she would
set Annie against himself, and mar his own schemes in her regard; {40}
for different as was their rank in life, and improbable as it was that
Mr. Godfrey should condescend to ally himself with aught save the high
aristocracy, this young man intended, if possible, to secure an
interest in Annie's affections. Not that he loved her; his self-love
was so absorbing that it was almost impossible for him to love any one
save himself; but he thought such an alliance would forward his
ambitious projects, and enable him to begin life under favorable
auspices.

Annie had no idea whatever beyond the amusement of the passing hour,
and was more intent just now on making a convert of the young refugee
than in paying regard to the homage tendered her by Alfred. Euphrasie
was a difficult subject to deal with; but there are some minds to whom
difficulty is an incentive.

She was one day sitting in the library with Eugene, intent in
depicting on canvas the glories of the "Golden Era." Euphrasie
entered, and sat down to some work. Annie called to her:

"Now, my dear Euphrasie, come to me. You are a judge of painting; tell
me what you think of my picture."

Euphrasie drew near. "It is very pretty," she said, "but what does it
represent? Those peasants resting under the fig-trees, those
vine-dressers plucking the beautiful grapes, have very graceful
figures, and most happy and intelligent faces; but what do they belong
to?"

"To the new Utopia," said Annie, "where all are intelligent and
beautiful, and where discord enters not."

Euphrasie looked dreamily in Annie's face, and said doubtingly:
"Heaven? This is no picture of heaven."

"No; it is an earthly paradise, _ma chère amie_. One need not die in
order to enjoy it," laughingly rejoined Annie.

"Oh! a fancy piece," said Euphrasie; "well, it is very pretty, but I
am no judge of fiction;" and she sat down.

"Fiction or not, I cannot let you off so," said Annie; "do you not
think it would be very pleasant to dwell with a goodly number of
intelligent people, each taking his own share of work, and aiding in
making life happy--all good, all instructed and accomplished?"

"Pleasant? Yes, very pleasant I have lived with such," said Euphrasie;
"but their happiness was of a very different kind to that which is
delineated here."

"You have lived with such! Where, in the name of wonder?" asked Annie.

"In France," said Euphrasie.

"And what sort of happiness was theirs?" asked Eugene, now thoroughly
roused.

"I cannot tell you--that is, I could not make you understand. Excuse
me," said Euphrasie, evidently sorry she had said so much.

"And why not? why could we not understand?" asked brother and sister,
both in a breath.

"Because your principles are so different."

"Nay, then, explain the principles, _ma chère_. You have excited our
curiosity; you must gratify it now."

"Nay, I know not how. The principles belong to the interior life, and
on that I cannot speak."

"Why not? are you sworn to secrecy?" asked Annie. Eugene looked his
request for information, but spoke not.

"Not so," said Euphrasie; "but, in the first place, I am no teacher;
and, in the second, there are some subjects which can only be
approached with reverence, and I am afraid--" she hesitated.

"You are right, mademoiselle," said Eugene; "we have too little
reverence."

Euphrasie looked distressed. But Annie broke in with--"But we can be
reverent, and we will be reverent when the case demands it. Tell us
your principles, dear Euphrasie."

{41}

The young girl, with evident reluctance, said:

"My friends held that the soul had been originally endowed with power
over the mental faculties, as also over the senses and the appetites
of the body, and all inferior nature; and that that empire had been
lost through man's fault. They believe that no lasting, no high
enjoyment can be procured until that empire has been regained."

"What kind of empire do you mean?" said Annie.

"As thus," replied Euphrasie. "We _will_ our foot to tread here or
there, and it obeys us. We _will_ our hands to grasp or to work, and
it is done. But when we _will_ our feelings to be calm, or our
appetites to keep within certain limits, they do not always obey. We
resolve, and find that our resolutions fail. We determine, and do not
act. When children, nay, when grown people, are taxed with doing
wrong, they reply, 'I could not help it.' This is a confession of
failure in self-government, or, as might be said, a proof of empire
lost."

"That is, supposing it admitted such empire once existed. But do you
seriously think that perfect self-government may be acquired, or, as
you say, regained?"

"At least a near approach to it may, if the proper means are used."

"And those means?"

"Are too serious for me to mention; besides, they are paradoxical in
appearance; for, though impossible to mere humanity, they are
nevertheless possible. But you must carry your inquiry to a better
teacher than I am;" and Euphrasie rose to depart.

"No; we have no other teacher near us, and I shall not let you go
until you have told me what I want to know;" and Annie laid her hand
somewhat forcibly on the young stranger's arm, and compelled her to
reseat herself.

"Well, then," faltered out the poor girl, "when the soul was in
possession of its pristine empire, it had also the power of communion
with high spiritual intelligences--nay, with the highest--even with
the creative intelligence. The same fault that lost man the high
empire over all inferior natures, and over his own appetites and
passions, by disturbing the equilibrium which primarily existed in the
higher part of his soul, also severed the bond of that high spiritual
communion; and that bond must be reunited ere the empire be restored
to him. Man of himself cannot reunite that severed bond, nor can he be
happy without such reunion; because the higher part of man's soul was
created for such high spiritual communion, and can no more be content
without it than could our inferior senses without the gratification
they require. But what he cannot do will be done for him, if he
prepare himself duly. He must build the altar of sacrifice, lay on the
wood, prepare the victim. Fire from heaven will then descend for his
enlightenment, for his purification, and more than he had lost may be
regained."

"You speak oracularly, _ma belle amie_, but I want something more
tangible yet. Tell me some of the practical rules observed by your
friends; may be I shall better understand your sybilline wisdom then."

Euphrasie shook her head. "They are too minute," she said. "You might
even think them childish." But Annie had not yet relaxed her grasp,
and appeared determined to be satisfied; so Euphrasie continued:
"Nevertheless, if you will promise to let me go immediately after, I
will give you one of their rules of action."

"One, only one?"

"One will be enough at a time. When you have solved one rule, it will
be the time to ask for more."

"Solved one rule? What do you mean by that?"

"There is a body and a soul to every religious rule--the letter and
the spirit. Observance must be yielded to both. I can only give you
the body. God only can teach you to understand the spirit of it."

{42}

"Well; proceed with your enigma."

"You promise to let me go, whether you understand it or not."

"Yes, provided the rule is practical," said Annie.

"Well, then," said Euphrasie, "one reason that my friends were so
happy together--that though there were fifty of them, there was no
quarrelling, no ill will, no envy--was, that they constantly
endeavored, each one of them, to choose for herself the poorest
things; in her diet, the poorest fare; in her clothes, the coarsest
habit; in her employment, the most humbling functions."

"Impossible!" said Annie. "Stay, cousin!" But Euphrasie had already
made her escape, and her reluctance to dwell on these subjects in that
presence was so evident that Annie did not choose to pursue her, and
she was left to conjecture whether the young French girl had been
playing on her credulity or not. The mere fact that fifty ladies had
been guided practically by such a principle as that given, was clearly
beyond her belief. Not so, however, did Eugene decide. His interest in
their young and mysterious inmate was ever on the increase. Each word
she uttered was gathered up as food for thought. The ideas were new to
him, and, not only so, they were contrary to those in which he had
been educated, and he had but a faint glimmering of their meaning. Yet
they worked strangely within him, and fain would he have sought
explanation from that pale sybil, but that for to-day she had
forbidden it.

When Annie also had left the apartment, he walked up and down in deep
thought repeating to himself:

"Man has lost the empire over himself and over inferior nature."

"Man has lost the power of high spiritual communion."

"_But these may be regained._"

"If this be true, any privation or sacrifice may be undergone for
their repossession; too small the price, whatever the cost. But then,
how can contentment with the meanest things, or filling the humblest
offices, assist this conclusion? And this is but one rule; are the
others of a like fashion?" The young man was fairly mystified; that
the oracle had emitted truth, he doubted not; but a clue to the
meaning of that truth was wanting, and where should he find that clue?


CHAPTER III.

THE "MARIAGE DE CONVENANCE."

There was a visible excitement in the house; even Mr. Godfrey, ever so
solemn, and latterly so inclined to severity, put on a cheerful
appearance; people outside the family were _guessing_ at the cause.
For a long time, guessing was the only thing they could do; even
Madame de Meglior was not in the secret until one morning she received
a letter from M. de Villeneuve, which appeared to contain some news,
for she said to Mr. Godfrey, who happened to be the only one present:
"Brother, can this be true?"

"Can what be true, my good sister?" was the question returned.

"That the Duke of Durimond is coming here to marry Adelaide?"

"Why should it not be true?"

"Why, the duke is an old man!"

"Not at all; he was quite young when he made proposals for Adelaide;
surely you remember them."

"Remember them! Do you mean the agreement you made at the
dinner-table, when Adelaide was two years old."

"The agreement was made before, between his father and me; it was
ratified, then, by himself; he had just come of age."

"And that is sixteen years ago. Will you give Adelaide to a man of
seven-and-thirty?'

"Why not, if she makes no objection?"

"Has she ever seen him?"

{43}

"Yes, she saw him in town last winter; 'twas there he renewed his
offer; but, in fact, we have always corresponded. The duke is fond of
the arts; 'twas he sent those fine pictures you admire so much."

"He can't know whether he likes Adelaide or not, and she never struck
me as being in love all this time."

"Pshaw! The duke has proposed; Adelaide is satisfied. The marriage was
agreed upon years ago; what would you have? I thought you' knew the
world by this time."

This was taking madame by her foible, so she said no more. Mrs.
Godfrey was simply quiescent: she was not accustomed to oppose her
husband's will, and, incredible as it may seem, the young girl herself
offered no objection to the marriage announced to her. To deck her
brow with a coronet had charms enough for the deeply fostered pride of
that young heart to induce her to forego the prospect of love,
sympathy, and domestic happiness; she simply coveted rank and power.
The duke had immense revenues; he offered ample settlements: what
mattered it that he was thirty-seven, and she but sweet eighteen?
Marriages occurred every day in which the disparity was more glaring.
What mattered it that she had scarcely seen the noble duke; that she
knew little of his private life, or of his tastes and feelings? He was
a nobleman of high birth; he paid her courtly compliments, presented
her with a magnificent casket of jewels; pleaded his long absence on
the Continent in excuse for his apparent want of attention to herself;
and urged his long friendship and unbroken correspondence with her
father as a plea for hurrying on his happiness; and thus, almost
unwooed, the fair Adelaide was won. Poor girl, the chief idea in her
head was that she should like to be a duchess; and thus both she and
her father contrived to overlook the fact that but little allusion had
been made to the proposed alliance in the sixteen years'
correspondence on art and science that had been maintained between the
gentlemen. The matter had been settled years ago. There was little
occasion for the world to interfere, if the parties concerned were
satisfied. The father's scientific friend was necessarily a fitting
husband for the daughter. And so the preparations went forward. The
house was filled for a time with dress-makers and bandboxes, and when
these were dismissed, there came guests to witness the bridal. Among
these was the Comte de Villeneuve, whom we have already introduced to
our readers; a friend of both families was the comte, and had been a
friend too of the late Comte de Meglior. This made him welcome also to
Madame de Meglior and Euphrasie; indeed he treated the latter with
distinguished attention, and she seemed more at her ease with him than
with any person at the Hall. M. de Villeneuve was thirty-five years of
age, but good-looking and animated, and Madame de Meglior was in some
slight degree uneasy at first at the evident friendship he evinced for
Euphrasie, for she did not approve of disproportionate marriages, and
she thought Adelaide's example a bad one. Gradually, however, she
became so absorbed in the duties imposed upon her by Mrs. Godfrey of
directing the embellishments, that she forgot to look after the object
of her solicitude in the subject which suited her better. Living as
she had been wont to do in the gay circles of Parisian exclusives, she
was regarded as a very oracle of fashion and elegance, and
consequently she willingly took the lead in planning the arrangements
for the bridal day.

The young people were in a puzzle, Annie especially. It was the first
act of unblushing worldliness she had ever witnessed. She felt as if
she did not know the world she lived in. She looked at her mother;
there was no joy on her face; she looked at Adelaide; already the
young girl had {44} assumed her rank; the calm hauteur, the majestic
politeness, with which she received her guests, astonished every one.
Adelaide was born to command, every one felt it; none more so than
Annie, who had been so fondly attached to that sister from whom she
felt already severed.

"O Euphrasie!" she said to her cousin, as they were walking together
in the grounds that surrounded the house, "you must be my sister when
Adelaide is gone; it will be so dreary to have no one of my own age to
love and talk to; will you not try to love me?"

"I love you already, dear; you must not talk in that way--how can I do
other than love you?"

"I was afraid you thought me a reprobate whom it was a sin to love."
This was said half playfully, but the tears started to Euphrasie's
eyes.

"You a reprobate! a sin to love you who have been so kind to the poor
orphan girl! O Annie! have I really been so ungrateful as to give you
this idea?"

"No, dear, no! not so; but I seriously thought you deemed all human
nature utterly depraved, and did not wish to form strong attachments
with those not of your creed."

"If human nature were utterly depraved, how could it hear the voice of
God in the soul? and if you here were utterly depraved, would you have
opened your house and your heart to the wandering outcast?"

"Then you do not think religion essential to goodness? How is that,
then?"

"Man was made in the image of God, my dear Annie, and even his natural
qualities bear witness to this, unless, indeed, he become utterly
depraved."

"You do not, then, exclude us from your heaven," said Annie, embracing
her. "I am so glad; you will be my friend and sister, Euphrasie."

Euphrasie warmly returned the embrace, and said: "I have no heaven to
exclude you from, dear Annie, but if you wish for eternal bliss, you
must offer your natural qualities to him who alone can stamp eternity
upon them."

"And how shall I do that, dear?"

"Pray to God, and he will teach you."

"I would rather have your teaching just now; tell me, if you believe
human nature to be good, what is meant by 'original sin,' as it
affects us. I know the story of Adam and Eve, but not what it means."

"Adam was created with certain natural qualities, even as the inferior
animals were, adapted to the part he was to perform as lord of earth;
these qualities were good, nay, in Adam perfect. They are transmitted
to us, shorn of their brightness by the fall, but still they are good,
though imperfect now. Natures differ in individuals, but some have
very high qualities, very lofty aspirations. Have you not noticed
this?"

"Well, I used to think so, but--"

"But what?"

"No matter what; tell me, what are we to do with our high qualities
more than cultivate them, and act upon them?"

"Bring them under supernatural action, that they may be purified,
refined, and stamped with the seal of immortal truth."

"Is this your religion?"

"I know no other."

The approach of M. de Villeneuve, who was gathering flowers for Hester
to make into bouquets, prevented further conversation. The merry girl
was making garlands, and flung them round Euphrasie and Annie as they
approached. "Now sit down here," she said, "and I will crown you both
as victims to the sacrifice. M. de Villeneuve shall be the priest.
What deity will you offer these victims to, monsieur? They are ready
bound."

{45}

"That is a serious question; we must take time to consider, and
luckily here comes Eugene to solve the question for us. What divinity
rules here, young man? your sister wants to offer up these two victims
to the genius of the place."

"Indeed, it were difficult to say; ours is a pantheistic worship just
now, and we will defer the rite until we know what star is in the
ascendant. What beautiful ceremonies those old worshippers used to
have! We might raise an altar to Flora, I think, just to use to
advantage Hester's flowers."

"Mademoiselle Euphrasie would find a use for your flowers, without
going to a heathen goddess," said M. de Villeneuve. "All beauty
symbolizes good with her, and all nature reveals some truth."

"What a splendid idea, monsieur!" said Annie. "How did you know that
it was Euphrasie's? did she tell you so?"

"Not in words, but I know her of old; to her there was a spirit in
every flower, a mystic word in every form. Matter was the expression
of mind, its language in a certain sense; and she was ever inquiring
its meaning."

"You are laughing at me, monsieur," said Euphrasie; "but those were
pleasant days at the old chateau, when you used to scold me because I
would not reason, but only enjoy."

"Nay," said Annie, "by monsieur's account you did reason, and very
beautifully too. Some people want hard words and long-drawn deductions
for apprehension of what to others is inspiration. I like the
inspiration best."

"It is the easiest, at any rate," said Eugene.

"To those to whom it comes," said the Frenchman; "the materialism of
our day stifles inspiration; men see only in rocks and stones a
moneyed value. Niagara is valued less than a mill-turning stream.
Inspiration is no longer believed in."

. . . . . .

The wedding-day approached, and all were busy trying to make a show of
gladness, which, however, they but imperfectly succeeded in effecting;
but what was wanting in hilarity was more than compensated for in
dignity and magnificence. M. de Villeneuve acted as groomsman, Annie
and Hester as bridesmaids, Euphrasie excused herself on account of her
mourning habit, which she declined to remove; she was not visible
during the whole day and one or two subsequent ones. And now the hour
was come which was to place a coronet on that fair brow; but could the
courtly bridegroom have seen how little he entered into the thoughts
of his young bride, perchance he had been but half pleased, even
though she was as stately and as fair as his great pride demanded. But
love, esteem, or mutual respect entered into the thoughts of neither
during the time that the Bishop of Chichester was marrying them by
special license, in the drawing-room at Estcourt Hall.

This same arrangement was a great disappointment to the townspeople.
They had been desirous of witnessing the ceremony, and were not
well-pleased that the duke had not honored the church with his
presence. The duke, however, liked not to be gazed at, and the
sight-seers had no opportunity of gratifying their curiosity till the
bridal party left the house.

The public entrance was besieged by expectant congratulators, who
waited to shower bouquets over the blooming bride. But here again they
were doomed to disappointment; for, to avoid this publicity, which was
distasteful to them, the bridal party walked through that portion of
the splendid grounds which had been specially decorated for the
occasion, and entered their carriages at the opposite side of the
park. They were, however, obliged to pass through part of the town,
and shouts of "they come--they come!" resounded as the carriages made
their appearance. The road lay down a deep hollow, on the turn leading
to which stood a small inn. The road was so steep that the drivers
necessarily checked the horses, in order to pass safely down the
declivity. At the cry raised of "they come {46}--they come!" a woman
elegantly dressed ran out of the inn, and gazed wildly at the
carriages. At that moment the duke put his head out of the window to
see what occasioned the delay, caught the eye of the woman, turned
pale, and hastily bade the coachman drive on.

The woman shrieked, rather than said, "Tis he! O my God!" and fell to
the ground in a fainting fit.

The bystanders raised her--the carriage passed; but the spirit of the
crowd seemed changed, they scarcely knew why; they crowded round the
woman; they questioned her; and each seemed eager to afford her help.
But, as soon as her strength permitted, she withdrew without
gratifying their evident curiosity, merely apologizing for her passing
weakness, and deliberately saying she would recover best when alone.
The style, the manner, the elegance of the stranger interested them
all, and with difficulty did they persuade themselves to abandon their
inquiries. The groups which had collected to congratulate the bride
were now occupied in discussing the appearance of the stranger, and
many surmises were hazarded as to her connection with the newly wedded
pair.

Meantime that lady ordered a post-chaise to be got ready, and, ere
half recovered, entered it, to the great discomfiture of the gaping
crowd, whom she thus left to their conjectures.

The landlord was now besieged with questions, but he could tell
nothing of importance. The lady came the previous evening; gave her
name as Mrs. Ellwood; made many inquiries concerning the family at
Estcourt Hall, and had the duke's person described to her; seemed
restless, agitated; went out, and hovered round Mr. Godfrey's
residence till nightfall; then returned and locked herself immediately
in her bed-chamber. In the morning she rose late, ate little or
nothing, but sat watching and listening intently, till she issued
forth to enact the scene described. The townspeople shook their heads,
and wished Miss Godfrey, now the Duchess of Durimond, might not be the
worse for it. Adelaide had been very popular among them, and the
public festivities on the occasion of her wedding were not so mirthful
as, but for this incident, they would you have been.

The inmates of the hall, however, were as yet in happy ignorance of
the ominous conjectures raised respecting the fate of the fairest and
cleverest daughter of their house. The incident we have related came
to their knowledge as an accidental circumstance, altogether
unconnected with the wedding. Mr. and Mrs. Godfrey were well pleased
at their daughter's accession to rank and power, and the merry Hester
laughed delightedly at the anticipation of shortly visiting the
ancient castle of which her sister was now mistress, promising herself
much interest and delight in rambling amid the ancient chambers, which
had been the scene of famed historic deeds. Annie was pondering
whether her sister's rank could consist with the newfangled ideas of
liberty and equality that the times were teaching. She was wondering
whether high rank were a fetter or a privilege--a relic of man's
ignorance or a help to man's advancement, Eugene hoped that the "old
man" would use his sister well. He had not been pleased with his new
brother-in-law; he was too courtly, too stately for friendliness, and
altogether the whole affair had looked too much like bartering youth,
beauty, and intelligence for rank and wealth. He had entertained high
ideas of woman's purity, of woman's devotedness, of woman's
disinterestedness, and what was he to think? His beautiful, his
gifted, his cultivated sister had sold herself for a ducal coronet!
Was it true, then, as Shelley sings, "that all things are venal, and
that even a woman's heart may be put up in an auction mart?"

Soon after the wedding, the young man sought but did not obtain
permission to go abroad. In default of this he went to Cambridge, and
said to himself he intended to find out TRUTH.

{47}

The society of an English University is very various. Almost any
disposition may suit itself there. The boisterous, the idle, the
reckless, the gay, the meditative, and the sober, with the refined and
the sentimental, alike are there, and it is of no small importance to
a young man to be well introduced on the outset. Mr. Godfrey, himself
a Cambridge man, could not fail to procure every advantage for his
son, and that son felt himself entitled to stand proudly on his
father's position, not only as a country gentleman, but as a
scientific man, for, as we have already hinted, the Honorable Mr.
Godfrey was an exception to the ordinary stamp of the English country
gentlemen of that day. He cared more for his library than he did for
his hounds and horses, and though he himself was far from being a
profound searcher into nature's secrets, he was a great patron of
science and of scientific men. Eugene had then little to fear from
friendlessness; he was well cared for, and his friends were sober,
well-conducted men.

But accompanying him to college was one whose society he would not
willingly have sought.

Frederic Morley, son of the lawyer at Estcourt, had early given
evidence of a studious disposition, and his father wished to bring him
up to the church, as, by means of Mr. Godfrey's patronage, he hoped to
push him into some church preferment. The young man, however, was in
fact a sentimentalist, a transcendentalist, too refined, too
sensitive, for this world of stern reality. Petted at home as a poet,
he held himself superior to common influences, prided himself on
having a fine mind, on possessing elegant and cultivated tastes, and
affected disgust at the coarse, homespun ideas of ordinary people. He
wrote pathetic tales of unrealities; touching verses of despairing
affection, with which it was his delight to draw forth tears of
sympathy from young lady audiences.

A more uninteresting companion Eugene Godfrey could scarcely have met;
yet as his disposition was naturally kind and urbane, and as Morley
was without friends or acquaintances in the university, he continued
his friendship to him, and endeavored to direct his attention to
earnest themes and loftier subjects. This, however, was unwelcome to
so clever a person as Morley believed himself to be. He wanted no
direction even from the cleverest. All he sought for was appreciation,
sympathy. He could think for himself, and guide himself. The study of
Aristotle's Ethics was in his case soon supplanted by Paine's Age of
Reason and Volney's Ruins of Empires. The coarseness of the former
author he termed "wit" and the sophistry of the latter passed with him
for "wisdom." Eugene felt sorry for these freaks, for in indulging
them Frederic Morley was throwing away his livelihood; he endeavored
to reason with him, and then he became vexed that he had so few
efficient arguments to bring forward, and none but interested motives
to present. Was he to tell Frederic to be a hypocrite, and to study
theology for a "living?" He felt rather than knew the foolish boy was
pursuing a phantom, and was urged forward by very selfish motives, yet
he could not explain his own ideas, vague, mysterious, and undefined
as they were.

             "There is a fire
  And motion in the soul, which will not dwell
  In its own narrow being; but aspire
  Beyond the fitting medium of desire,
  And but once kindled, quenchless evermore."

This Eugene felt, but why he felt it, or how to satisfy it, he knew
not. The words of Euphrasie, "that perhaps there is a science of mind,
more worth than all the science of matter," recurred continually, for
in that science must lie the solution of every difficulty that beset
him. How could he learn this science? how investigate this truth, if
truth it were? And he wandered hour after hour on the banks of the
Cam, in profound meditation burying himself in the thickets near to
avoid observation.

{48}

"O truth!" exclaimed he aloud one day, in the intense excitement of
his feelings--"O truth! if ever thou deignest to visit mortals, reveal
thyself to me; teach me the way, and by all that is holy or dear to
me, I swear to follow thee!"

He was leaning against a tree; the drops stood on his forehead, caused
by the depth of his emotion, and suddenly the answer came: "PRAY,
child of aspirations, bow in prayer."

Eugene started; looked around; no form was visible, but again the
words were repeated: "Pray, seeker for truth, pray! it will come to
thee."


CHAPTER IV.

MAGNETIC INFLUENCES.

"Behold he prayeth."

"Pray, pray!" repeated Eugene; "what is prayer? Is it to hold
communion with a higher being? To be raised above the mists of this
murky earth? If so, how glad I should be to pray!" and involuntarily
he exclaimed: "O mighty Being, who rulest all, if indeed thou wiliest
to communicate with man, instruct me how to approach thee; my mind is
dark and sad. Oh! teach me truth." Eugene Godfrey was sincere; he
wished for truth; but educated in scornful intellectual supremacy,
educated to tolerate religion as a means of keeping in order the lower
classes, it was difficult for him to comprehend how "faith" could
exist otherwise than as a beautiful poetic fancy, to be classed with
the imagery of the Iliad or the Odyssey.

The real, the sentient, had been his study, and till the horrors of
the French Revolution turned his mind to consider how man could
influence man by higher motives than merely getting "good things for
one's self," he had been satisfied to leave these themes unthought of.
But now they were forced upon him. Events unprecedented in the annals
of the world bade him lay aside physical science and tun to study
mental and moral influences. He had heard enough in the little town to
which he belonged to feel sure that the multitude must be cared for,
most be looked to. He saw his father uneasy at every commotion, lest
the English aristocracy should likewise be sent on their travels. He
saw Alfred Brookbank hating his own brother, because that brother
stood between him and a property; and his sister--his fearless
sister, accomplished, beautiful, the very epitome of a refined
lady--he dared not think of her! Oh! for a motive to raise these
groveling aims! Oh! for purity, heroism, good. But for the vision of
Euphrasie, all would have been darkness then. Such were Eugene's
thoughts as he bent his steps to his chambers and sat down in his easy
chair to indulge in this absorbing reverie.

How long he sat he scarcely knew, but at length he became conscious
that he was not alone. He had forgotten to "sport his oak" (as closing
the outer door was called by the students) in token that he wished to
be alone, and Frederic Morley had entered, and, perceiving him so
engrossed, had quietly seated himself without speaking, till Eugene
gave signs of life.

"Ah, Morley, is that you? how long have you been there?"

"I scarcely know, Mr. Eugene; I have been watching your absent
thoughts. You were so still, I might have supposed you magnetized, but
I suppose the great wizard would not take so great a liberty with
you."

"What wizard?" asked Eugene.

"Have you not heard, then? There is a man here who can throw a person
into a trance, and make him reveal all kinds of secrets," answered
Frederic.

"Pshaw!" said Eugene.

"Nay," answered Frederic, "I will tell you what I saw. I was at Mrs.
Moreton's yesterday evening, singing duets with Isabel, and young
Moreton came in with a tall, dark-haired, mustachioed, whiskered
fellow, with eyes {49} like lighted coals, they were so large and
piercing. Where Moreton picked him up, I could not find out, but he
was evidently fascinated with him. He introduced him laughingly to his
mother as a great wizard, and they interrupted the music to hear him
talk. He was grandiloquent enough, told tales of spirits and
influences that haunt me still; but more than this, he insisted that
mind can influence mind irrespective of matter; that the old tales of
magic were true, and the deeds wrought by men of wondrous power, who
had found the key to nature's nighty secrets--only nature with him
does not mean inert matter as we mean by it, but matter and
intelligences who act upon matter. The universe, he says, is peopled
by wondrous forms, and these forms can be communicated with by a
privileged soul. Oh, he is a mighty man!" and Frederic shuddered.

"And you have no more sense than to believe such a cock-and-bull story
as that? Fie, Morley, I am ashamed of you!"

"But let me tell you what I saw with my own eyes. He first threw
Isabel into a trance, from which neither Mrs. Morley, nor her brother,
nor i could awaken her. Then when Mrs. Morley grew frightened, he
assured her there was no danger, that she was only bewitched by his
art, and that he would make her talk as he pleased. Then he put her
brother's hand in hers, and bade him think of the walk he had taken
that afternoon, of the people he had met and spoken to; he did so, and
the wizard bade the girl speak, and she recounted the events of the
walk from his leaving college to his meeting with the wizard, and
their entering the room in which we were--all, as her brother
declared, correctly. The wizard then disenchanted her, and she slowly
roused herself, pale and listless, but quite unconscious of what had
passed."

"I have heard of animal magnetism before, quietly responded Eugene.

"Have you? But do you know its power? It is absolutely frightful. He
lifted my arm before I knew what he was about, passed his hand two or
three times above and below it, and there it remained fixed
horizontally from the shoulder, without my having power to move it up
or down. Young Moreton tried to put it down for me, but he could not;
and there I stood fixed till it pleased the wizard to unloose the
spell he had cast around me."

"Yours was not an agreeable position, truly," said Eugene, "but he did
not hurt you; you are safe and sound now."

"Yes, but the most wonderful is yet to come. Little Helen Moreton came
into the room to bid her mamma good-night. Seeing the stranger, she
was shy, and went to the window-curtains to hide. Mrs. Moreton called
her, but she looked out for a minute, seemed to take a greater dislike
to the stranger than before, and hid again. Mrs. Moreton was annoyed,
and the wizard said: 'Do you want her, madam? If so, I will bring her
to you.' But Mrs. Moreton replied, 'Oh no! if you go near her she will
shriek and cry; she is so shy.' 'Nay,' said the man, 'I will stand
here, and here she shall come without a shriek, and lie down at my
feet.' What he did we could not find out, for he seemed perfectly
still. The window-curtain unfolded, and apparently against her will
the child came forward. She caught at a chair, as if determined to
resist the influence, but that seemed to urge her forward; she let it
go, and then grasped the table with both hands, as if determined to
resist. She pouted, she frowned, she strove to keep her place, but
keep it she could not. Step by step she came and laid herself quietly
down at the wizard's feet. Mrs. Moreton almost shrieked, but the child
lay as if she dared not leave until the magician gave permission."

"Well, and what do you infer from all this?" asked Eugene.

{50}

"I hardly know; I am terrified; what if it is true, as this man says,
that weak minds must obey the strong; that resistance is useless? I
should not like to become the slave of a spirit such as his."

"You believe him to be a wicked man?"

"I do, yet I know not why; I should not like to meet him when
unprotected."

"Why, Morley, you astonish me; I could not conceive you so weak. These
fears are unworthy a noble mind."

"But what are we to do if such theories be true?"

"They are not true--at least not in the way you state them. There are
protecting, counteracting influences for the weakest. I cannot explain
all this to-night; but all history, all experience go to prove that
the 'race is not always to the swift, nor the battle to the strong'
--that bad power is often overcome by weak means. I will repeat to you
a piece of advice I received myself to-day, and which I intend to
take. It is one you must often have received, for your father intends
you for the church. Pray, Morley, to the highest of all intelligences,
to the greatest of all powers. The strongest will then be invoked to
your aid."

"_Pray?_ Are you serious, Mr. Eugene?"

"I am serious; why doubt it?"

"An advice so contrary to the spirit of the age! why, it is the last
to be expected."

"Perhaps so; but listen: That mind is not matter, your experience
proves, as does that of most people. What mind is, perhaps we do not
know; but that mind acts upon mind, irrespective of space and
obstacles, we feel. Listen! you know my family; a family less
superstitious scarcely exists. We are too much wedded to cause and
effect lightly to believe. My grandfather was as little credulous as
my father. Now hear what happened to him. He had a brother to whom he
was fondly attached, and by whom he was as fondly loved. Their
correspondence was constant. That brother went to India, as an
officer. One night about twelve o'clock, as my grandfather was going
to sleep, having sat up later than usual, the curtains at the foot of
the bed were with drawn, and his brother, pale, but in full
regimentals, appeared and said, 'Good-by, Frank.' My grandfather
related the circumstance at breakfast next morning, and noted it down
in writing, being confident that he was not asleep. After due time the
Indian mail arrived, giving an account of the brother's death on the
field of battle at the exact hour and day specified. Ere his spirit
winged its flight, we know not whither, it had communicated with the
being it loved best on earth."

Frederic turned pale. "What do you infer from this?" he asked.

"Simply this," returned Eugene; "that 'there are more things in heaven
and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy,' and this
influence of mind on mind is one of them. If the Supreme Ruler have
made a law that man, to be assisted by him, must pray to him, must put
himself in communication with him, who are we that we should refuse
the means? If you fear the evil spirit in a man, try if there be no
good spirit capable of protecting you. The universal testimony of
mankind is in favor of supernatural agencies. We should ponder well
ere we throw from us such aid."

Frederic smiled, and rose to take his leave. Advice so different from
what he had expected was scarcely likely to be well received. He had
no answer ready, so he left the narrow-minded religionist to his own
crude fancies.

And Eugene closed the oaken door, and returned, and for the first time
of his life knelt down to beseech light from the Author of
light--light to guide him through these wearisome shoals of doubt and
darkness--light to show him something more than how to render matter
subservient to animal comfort--light to enlighten the {51} inward
feeling. Good and evil, what are they? Mind and matter--which is the
true reality? What are we to live for--the animal life, or the
spiritual? And is the purely spiritual distinct from the purely
intellectual as well as from the animal? Is there a soul, the
functions of which are different, distinct, from those of the body,
and to the knowledge of which mere intellect cannot arrive? What is
nature? What is revelation? How do they act upon each other? What is
the office, what the aim of each? Revolving these themes, it was deep
in the night ere the young man sought his couch.



TO BE CONTINUED.

--------

ORIGINAL.


INDEPENDENCE OF THE CHURCH.


Our age is more sentimental than intellectual, more philanthropic than
Christian, more material than spiritual. It may and no doubt does
cherish and seek to realize, with such wisdom as it has, many humane
and just sentiments, but it retains less Christian thought than it
pretends, and has hardly any conception of catholic principles. It
studies chiefly phenomena, physical or psychical, and as these are all
individual, particular, manifold, variable, and transitory, it fails
to recognize any reality that is universal, invariable, and permanent,
superior to the vicissitudes of time and place, always and everywhere
one and the same. It is so intent on the sensible that it denies or
forgets the spiritual, and so engrossed with the creature that it
loses sight of the creator.

Indeed, there are not wanting men in this nineteenth century who deny
that there is any creator at all, or that anything has been made, and
maintain that all has been produced by self-development or growth.
These men, who pass for the great scientific lights of the age, tell
us that all things are in a continual process of self-formation, which
they call by the general name of progress; and so taken up are they
with their doctrine of progress, that they gravely assert that God
himself, if God there be, is progressive, perfectible, ever proceeding
from the imperfect towards the perfect, and seeking by unremitting
action to perfect, fill out, or complete his own being. They seem not
to be aware that if the perfect does not already really exist, or is
wanting, there is and can be no progress; for progress is motion
towards the perfect, and, if the perfect does not exist there can be
no motion towards it, and in the nature of the case the motion can be
only towards nothing, and therefore, as St. Thomas has well
demonstrated, in proving the impossibility of progress without end, no
motion at all. Nor do they seem any more to be aware that the
imperfect, the incomplete, is not and cannot be self-active, or
capable of acting in and from itself alone, and therefore has not the
power in itself alone to develop and complete itself, or perfect its
own being. Creatures may be and are progressive, because they live,
and move, and have their being in their Creator, and are aided and
sustained by him whose being is eternally complete who is in himself
infinitely perfect. They forget also the important fact {52} that
where there is nothing universal, there can be nothing particular,
that where there is nothing invariable there can be nothing variable,
that where there is nothing permanent there can be nothing transitory,
and that where there is no real being there can be no phenomena, any
more than there can be creation without a creator, action without an
actor, appearance without anything that appears, or a sign that
signifies nothing.

Now the age, regarded in its dominant tendency, neglects or denies
this universal, invariable, persistent, real, or spiritual order, and
its highest and most catholic principles are mere classifications or
generalizations of visible phenomena, and therefore abstractions,
without reality, without life or efficiency. It understands not that
throughout the universe the visible is symbolical of the invisible,
and that to the prepared mind there is an invisible but living reality
signified by the observable phenomena of nature, as in the Christian
economy an invisible grace is signified by the visible sacramental
sign. All nature is in some sense sacramental, but the age takes it
only as an empty sign signifying nothing. Hence the embarrassment of
the Christian theologian in addressing it; the symbols he uses and
must use have for it no meaning. He deals and must deal with an order
of thought of which it has little or no conception. He is as one
speaking to a man who has no hearing, or exhibiting colors to a man
who has no sight, He speaks of the transcendental to those who
recognize nothing above the sensible--of the spiritual to men who are
of the earth earthy, and have lost the faculty of rising above the
material, and piercing beyond the visible. The age has fallen, even
intellectually, far below the Christian order of thought, and is
apparently unable to rise even in conception to the great catholic
principles in accordance with which the universe is created,
sustained, and governed.

Nobody in his senses denies that man is progressive, or that modern
society has made marvellous progress in the material order, in the
application of science to the productive arts. I am no _laudator
temporis acti_; I understand and appreciate the advantages of the
present, and do not doubt that steam navigation railroads, and
lightning telegraphs, which bid defiance to the winds and waves, and
as it were annihilate space and time, will one day be made to subserve
higher than mere material interests; but I cannot shut my eyes to the
fact that in many and very important respects, the modern world has
deteriorated instead of improving, and been more successful in losing
than in gaining. The modern nations commonly regarded, at least by
themselves, as the more advanced nations, have fallen in moral and
religious thought below the ancient Greeks and Romans. They may have
more sound dogmas, but they have less conception of principles, of the
invisible or spiritual order, excepting always the followers of
Leucippus, Democritus, and Epicurus, whose absurd materialism is
revived with hardly any disguise by the most approved thinkers of our
own age. The Gentiles generally held catholic principles, but
misapprehended and misapplied them, and thus fell into gross idolatry
and degrading and besotting superstition; but the moderns while
retaining many Catholic dogmas have lost the meaning of the word
principle. The Catholic can detect, no doubt, phases of truth in all
the doctrines of those outside the church, but the Christianity they
profess has no universal, immutable, and imperishable principle, and
degenerates in practice into a blind and fierce fanaticism, a watery
sentimentality, a baseless humanitarianism, or a collection of
unrelated and unmeaning dogmas, which are retained only because they
are never examined, and which can impart no light to the
understanding, infuse no life into the hearty and impose no restraint
on the appetites and passions.

{53}

Having fallen below the conception of a order above the visible and
phenomenal, and sunk to complete Sadduceeism, which believes in
neither angel nor spirit, the age makes war on the church because she
asserts such order, and remains fast anchored in it; because she is
immovable and invariable, or as her enemies say, stationary,
unprogressive, and therefore hostile to progress. She has, it is said,
the insolence to attempt to teach and govern men and nations, instead
of gracefully submitting to their views and wishes, and bestowing her
blessing on their exertions for the liberty and progress of society.
The age denies her to be the church of God, because she fails to prove
herself to be the church of man, holding simply from a human
authorities. It denies her divine origin, constitution, and authority,
because she is stable, cannot be carried away by every wind of
doctrine, does not yield to every popular impulse, and from time to
time resists individuals, civil rulers, the people even, and opposes
their favorite theories, plans, and measures, whenever she finds them
at war with her mission and her law. It applauds her, indeed, to the
echo, when she appears to be on the side of what happens to be
popular, but condemns her without mercy when she opposes popular
error, popular folly, popular injustice, and asserts the unpopular
truth, defends the unpopular cause, or uses her power and influence in
behalf of neglected justice, and please with her divine eloquence for
the poor, the wronged, the downtrodden. Yet this is precisely what she
should do, if the church of God, and what it would be contrary to her
nature and office on that supposition not to do.

The age concedes nothing to the unseen and eternal. In its view
religion itself is human, and ought to be subject to man, and
determinable by society, dictated by the people, who in the modern
mind usurp the place of God. It should not govern, but be governed,
and governed from below, not from above; or rather, in its subversion
of old ideas, it holds that being governed from below is being
governed from above. It forgets that religion, objectively considered,
is, if anything, the revelation and assertion of the divine order, or
the universal and eternal law of God, the introduction and maintenance
in the practical affairs of men and nations of the divine element,
without which there would and could be nothing in human society
invariable, permanent, or stable--persistent, independent, supreme, or
authoritative. The church is simply the divine constitution and organ
of religion in society, and must, like religion itself, be universal,
invariable, independent, supreme, and authoritative for all men and
nations. Man does not originate the church. She does not depend on
man, or hold from him either individually or collectively; for she is
instituted to govern him, to administer for him the universal and
eternal law, and to direct and assist him in conducting himself in the
way of his duty, to his supreme good, which she could not do if she
held from and depended on him.

The point here insisted on, and which is so far removed from the
thought of this age, is, that this order transcending the phenomenal
and the whole material or sensible universe, and which in the strictly
philosophical language of Scripture is called "the Law of the Lord,"
is eminently real, not imaginary, not factitious, not an abstraction,
not a classification or generalization of particulars, nor something
that depends for its reality on human belief or disbelief. Religion
which asserts this divine order, this transcendental order, is
objectively "the Law of the Lord," which, proceeding from the eternal
reason and will of God, is the principle and reason of things. The
church, as the divinely constituted organ of that law, is not an
arbitrary institution, is not an accident, is not an afterthought, is
not a superinduction upon the original plan of the Creator, but enters
integrally into that plan, and is therefore founded in the {54}
principle, the reason, and the constitution of things, and is that in
reference to which all things are created, sustained, and governed,
and hence our Lord is called "the Lamb slain from the foundation of
the world."

But this our age does not conceive. For it the divine, the invariable,
the universal, and the eternal are simply abstractions or
generalizations, not real being. Its only conception of immensity, is
space unlimited--of eternity, is time without end--of the infinite,
the undefined, and of the universal, totality or sum total.
_Catholic_, in its understanding, means accepting or ranking together
as equally respectable the doctrines, opinions, views, and sentiments
of all sects and denominations. Christian, Jewish, Mahometan, and
Pagan. He, in the sense of modern philosophers, has a catholic
disposition who respects all convictions, and has no decided
conviction of his own. Catholicity is held to be something made up by
the addition of particulars. The age does not understand that there is
no catholicity without unity, and therefore that catholicity is not
predicable of the material order, since nothing material or visible is
or can be strictly one and universal. The church is catholic, not
because as a visible body she is universal and includes all men and
nations in her communion; she was as strictly catholic when her
visible communion was restricted to the Blessed Virgin and the
Apostles as she is now, or would be if all the members of the race
were recipients of her sacraments. She is catholic because she is the
organ of the whole spiritual order, truth, or reality, and that order
in its own intrinsic nature is one and universal. All truth is
catholic, because all truth is one and invariable; all the dogmas of
the church are catholic, because universal principles, always and
everywhere true. The law of the Lord is catholic, because universally,
always and every where law, equally law for all men and nations in
every age of the world, on earth and is heaven, in time and eternity.
The church is catholic, because she holds under this law, and because
God promulgates and administers it through her, because he lives and
reigns in her, and hence she is called his kingdom, the kingdom of God
on earth, a kingdom fulfilled and completed in heaven. It is this
order of ideas that the age loses sight of and is so generally
disposed to deny. Yet without it there were no visible order, and
nothing would or could exist.

The principal, reason, nature, or constitution of things is in this
order, and men must conform to it or live no true, no real life. They
who recede from it advance towards nothing, and, as far as possible,
become nothing. The church is independent, superior to all human
control, and persistent, unaltered, and unalterable through all the
vicissitudes of time and place, because the order in which she is
founded is independent and persistent. She cannot be moved or harmed,
because she rests on the principle, truth, and constitution of things,
and is founded neither on the individual man, the state, nor the
people, but on God himself, the Rock of Ages, against which anything
created must rage and beat in vain. "On this rock will I build my
church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it." The
church is therefore, by her own divine constitution, by the very
principle and law of her existence, indefectible. No weapon forged
against her shall prosper. The wicked may conspire for her
destruction, but in vain, because they conspire to destroy reality,
and all reality is always invincible and indestructible. They cannot
efface or overthrow her, because she is founded in the truth and
reality of things, or what is the same thing, in the unalterable
reason and will of God, in whom all creatures have their
principle--live, move, and have their being.

{55}

They who oppose the church in the name of humanity or human progress,
cannot succeed, because she is indivisible, and they would utterly
defeat themselves if they could. They would deprive the human race of
the law of God, which makes wise the simple and strengthens the weak,
and deprive men and nations of the truth and reality of things, the
very principle of all life, and of the very means and conditions of
all progress. Man no doubt is progressive, but not in and by himself
alone. Archimedes demanded a _pou sto_, a whereon to rest his fulcrum
outside the earth, in order to move it, and there is no conceivable
way by which a man can raise himself by a lever supported on himself.
How is it that our philosophers fail to see the universal application
of the laws which they themselves assert? All progress is by
assimilation, by accretion, as that hierophant of progress, Pierre
Leroux, has amply demonstrated, and if there is no reality outside of
man or above him, what is there for him to assimilate, and how is he
to become more than at any given time he already is? Swift ridiculed
the philosophers of Laputa, who labored to extract sunbeams from
cucumbers, but even more ridiculous are they who pretend that
something may be assimilated from nothing, or that a thing can in and
of itself make itself more than it is. Where there is nothing above
man with which he does or may commune, there is for him no possibility
of progress, and men and nations can never advance beyond what they
are. This is so in the nature of things, and it is only what is
implied in the maxim, _Ex nihilo nihil fit_.

An institution, no matter by what sacred name called, founded by
savages, embodying only what they are, and worked by them, would have
no power to elevate them above their savage state, and could only
serve to perpetuate their savagery. The age speaks of the applications
of science to the productive arts, of the marvels of the steam-engine,
steamboats, the locomotive, and the magnetic telegraph, and boasts
that it renders mind omnipotent over matter. Vain boast, poor
philosophy. We have in those things gained no triumph over matter, no
control over the forces of nature, which are as independent of our
reason and will as ever they were, as the first steamboat explosion
will suffice to convince the most skeptical. We have subjected none of
the forces of nature; we have only learned in some few instances to
construct our machinery so as to be propelled by them, as did the
first man who built a mill, constructed a boat, or spread his sails to
catch the breeze. We alter not, we control not by our machinery the
forces of nature, and all the advantage we have obtained is in
conforming to them, and in suffering them, according to their own
laws, or laws which we have not imposed on them, to operate for us.
The principle is universal, catholic, and as true in the moral or
spiritual as in the mechanical or physical world.

Man does not create, generate, or control the great moral and
spiritual forces on which he depends to propel his moral and spiritual
machinery. They exist and operate independently alike of his reason
and his will, and the advantages he derives from them are obtained by
his placing himself within the sphere of their influence, or, to be
strictly correct, by interposing voluntarily no obstacle to their
inflowing, for they are always present and operative unless resisted.
Withdraw him from their influence, or induce him obstinately to resist
them, which he may do, for he is a free moral agent, and he can make
no more progress than a sailing ship at sea in a dead calm. These
forces are divine, are embodied in the church as her living and
constitutive force--are in one sense the church herself, and hence men
and nations separated from her communion and influence are thrown back
on nature alone, and necessarily cease to be progressive. We may war
against this as much as we please, but we cannot alter it, for the
principle on which it rests is a universal and indestructible law.

{56}

Individuals and nations separated by schism or heresy from the visible
communion of the church do not become at once absolutely and in all
respects unprogressive, for they are carried on for a time by the
momentum she baa given them, and besides, they are not, as she
continues to exist, absolutely beyond or outside of the sphere of her
influence, though indirect and reflected. But from the moment of the
separation their progress begins to slacken, their spiritual life
becomes sickly and attenuated, and gradually they lose all that they
had received from the church, and lapse into helpless and unassisted
nature. This, which is demonstrable _à priori_, is proved by the
experience of those nations that separated from the church in the
sixteenth century. These nations at first retained a large portion of
their old Catholic culture, and many of the habits acquired under the
discipline and training of the church. But they have been gradually
losing them ever since, and the more advanced portions of them have
got pretty clear of them, and thrown off, as they express it, the last
rag of Popery. Indeed this is their boast.

In throwing off the authority of the church, they came in religious
matters under the authority of the state, or the temporal sovereign or
ruler--a purely human authority, without competency in spirituals--and
thus lost at once their entire religious freedom, or liberty of
conscience. In Catholic nations the civil authority has always, or
almost always, been prone to encroach on the authority of the church,
and to attempt to control her external discipline or ecclesiastical
administration; but, in the nations that were carried away by the
so-called reformation, the civil authority assumed in every instance
complete control over the national church, and prescribed its
constitution, its creed, its liturgy, and its discipline. This for
them completely humanized religion, and made it a department of state.
It is true these nations professed to recognize the Bible as
containing a divine revelation, and to be governed by it; and this
would have been something, even much, had they not remitted its
interpretation to the civil magistrate, the king, the parliament, the
public judgment of the people, or the private judgment of the
individual, which made its meeting, as practically received, vary from
nation to nation, and even from individual to individual.

This sacrificed, in principle, the sovereignty of God and the entire
spiritual order, departed to a fearful distance from the truth and
reality of things, and if it retained some of the precepts of the
Christian law, it retained them as precepts not of the law of God but
as precepts of the law of man, enjoined, explained, and applied by a
purely human authority. In process of time, the authority of the state
in religious matters was found to be usurped, tyrannical, and
oppressive, and the thinking part of the separated nations asserted
the right of private judgment, or of each believer to interpret the
Holy Scriptures for himself. Having gone thus far, they went still
farther, and assert for everyone the right to judge for himself not
only of the meaning, but of the inspiration, authenticity, and
authority of the Scriptures, though the civil government in none of
these nations, except the United States, not in existence at the time
of the separation, has disavowed its authority in spirituals.
Practically, the doctrine that each individual judges for himself is
now generally adopted.

The authority of the Scriptures has followed the authority of the
church, and is practically, when not theoretically, rejected. It was
perhaps asserted by the reformers at first for the purpose of
presenting some authority not precisely human, which no Catholic would
deny, as offset against that of the church, rather than from any deep
reverence for it, or profound conviction of it« reality. But, be this
as it may, it counts for little now. The authors of Essays and
Reviews, and the Anglican bishop of Natal, take hardly less liberty
with the {57} Scriptures than Luther and Calvin did with the church.
The more advanced thinkers, if thinkers they are, of the age go
further still, and maintain not only that a man may be a very
religious man, and a true follower of Jesus Christ, without accepting
either the authority of the church or that of the Bible, but without
even believing either in the existence of God or the immortality of
the soul. Schleiermacher, the great Berlin preacher, went thus far in
his Discourses on Religion, addressed to the Cultivated among its
Despisers; and equally far, if not farther, in the same direction, go
the rising school or sect called Positivists. Religion is reduced to a
spontaneous development--perhaps I should say, to a secretion of human
nature, implying no reality above or distinguishable from human nature
itself.

It is not pretended that all persons in these nations have as yet
reached this result; but as there is a certain logic in error as well
as in truth, all are tending and must tend to it. What is called
progress of religious ideas or religious enlightenment is not held to
consist in any accession to our stock of known truth, in penetrating
farther into the world of reality, and attaining a firmer grasp of its
principles, nor in a better understanding of our moral relations and
the duties growing out of them, but in simply casting off or getting
rid of so-called Popery--of everything that has been retained in the
nations, and the sects into which they divide and subdivide, furnished
by the Catholic Church in which the reformers had been reared, and in
reducing men and nations to the nakedness and feebleness of nature.
The more advanced portion are already seen sporting _in puris
naturalibus_, heedless alike of shame and winter's cold. The others
are following more or less rapidly in the same direction; for there is
no halting-place between Catholicity and naked naturalism, and men
must either ascend to the one or descend to the other. But those who
choose to descend can find no resting-place even in naturalism, for
nature, severed from Catholicity, is severed from its principle, is
severed from God, from the reality and truth of things, and is
therefore unreal, nothing, Hence the descent is endless. Falsehood has
no bottom, is unreal, purely negative, and can furnish no standing.
Men can stand only on the true, the real, and that is Catholicity, the
order represented in society by the church. Those who forsake the
church, Catholicity, God, forsake therefore the real order, have
nothing to stand on, and in the nature of the case can only drop into
what the Scripture calls "the bottomless pit."

We hear much of the ignorance, superstition, and even of idolatry of
Catholics, nothing of which is true; but this much is certain, that
those who abandon the church, and succeed in humanizing religion,
making it hold from man and subject to his control, do as really
worship gods of their fashioning as did the old worshippers of gods
made of wood and stone, because their religion is really only what
they make it, and fall into as gross an idolatry and into as besotted
and besotting a superstition as can be found among any heathen people,
ancient or modern.

It is easy therefore to understand why the church sets her face so
resolutely against modern reformers, liberals, revolutionists, in a
word, the whole so-called movement party, professing to labor for the
diffusion of intelligence and the promotion of science, liberty, and
human progress. It is not science, liberty, or progress that she
opposes, but false theories substituted for science, and the wrong and
destructive means and methods of promoting liberty and progress
adopted and insisted on by liberals and revolutionists. There is only
one right way of effecting the progress they profess to have at heart,
and that is by conforming to truth and reality, for falsehood is
impotent, and nothing can be gained by it. She opposes the movement
party, not as a movement party, not as a party of light, liberty, {58}
and progress, but as a party moving in the wrong direction, putting
forth unscientific theories, theories which amuse the imagination
without enlightening  the understanding, which if they dazzle it is
only to blind with their false glitter, which embraced as truth
to-day, must be rejected as falsehood to-morrow, and which in fact
tend only to destroy liberty, and render all real progress impossible.
As the party, collectively or individually, neither is nor pretends to
be infallible, the church, at the worst, is as likely to be right as
they are, and the considerations presented prove that she is right,
and that they are wrong. There is no science but in knowing the truth,
that which really is or exists, and there is no real progress,
individual or social, with nature alone, because nature alone has no
existence, and can exist and become more than it is only by the
gracious, the supernatural assistance of God, in whom all things live,
move, and have their being.

A great clamor has been raised by the whole movement party throughout
the world against the encyclical of the Holy Father, dated at Rome,
December 8, 1864, and even some Catholics, not fully aware of the
sense and reach of the opinions censured, were at first partially
disturbed by it; but the Holy Father has given in it only a proof of
his pastoral vigilance, the fidelity of the church to her divine
mission, and the continuous presence in her and supernatural
assistance of the Holy Ghost. The errors condemned are all aimed at
the reality and invariability, universality and persistency, of truth,
the reality of things, the supremacy of the spiritual order, and the
independence and authority of the divine law, at real science, and the
means and conditions of both liberty and progress. In it we see the
great value of the independence of the church,--of a church holding
from God instead of holding from man. If the church had been human or
under human control she would never have condemned those errors,
because nearly all of them are popular, and hailed as truth by the
age. Man condemns only what man dislikes, and the popular judgment
condemns only what is unpopular. It is only the divine that judges
according to truth, and without being influenced by the spirit of the
age, or by what is popular or unpopular. If the church had been human,
she would have been carried away by those errors, and proved herself
the enemy instead of the friend, the protector, and the benefactor of
society.

These remarks on the divine character and independence of the church
are not inappropriate to the present times, and may serve to calm,
comfort, and console Catholics amidst the national convulsions and
changes which, without the reflections they suggest, might deeply
afflict the Catholic heart. The successes of Italy and Prussia in the
recent unjustifiable war against Austria, and the humiliation of the
Austrian empire, the last of the great powers on which the church
could rely for the protection of her material interests, have
apparently given over the temporal government of this world to her
enemies. There is at this moment not a single great power in the world
that is officially Catholic, or that officially recognizes the
Catholic Church as the church of God. The majority of Frenchmen are or
profess to be Catholics, but the French state professes no religion,
and if it pays a salary to the Catholic clergy, Protestant ministers,
and Jewish rabbis, it is not as ministers of religion, but as servants
of the state. The Russian state is schismatic, and officially
anti-papal; the British state, as a state, is Protestant, and
officially hostile to the church; Italy follows France; and Prussia,
which at the moment means Germany, is officially Protestant and
anti-Catholic; and so are Holland, Sweden, Denmark, and Norway.
Belgium and our own great Republic profess officially no religion, but
give freedom and protection to all religions not held to be _contra
bonos mores_. Spain and Portugal, no longer great powers, and {59}
most of the Central and South American states, officially profess the
Catholic faith, but they count for next to nothing in the array of
nations. Hellas and the Principalities, like Russia, are schismatic,
and the rest of the world, including the greater part of Asia and all
of Africa, is Mahometan or pagan, and of course hostile to the church.

I have not enumerated Austria, for what is to be her fate no one can
now say; but as a portion of her population belong to the Greek
schismatic church, and a larger portion still are Protestants, the
most that can be expected of her is that she will, in regard to
religion, assume the attitude of France and Italy. There is then
really no power on which the church can now rely for the support of
her external and material interests. I will not say that the triumph
of Prussia is the triumph of Protestantism, for that would not be
true; but it is, at least for the moment, the success of the party
that denounced the papal encyclical, and would seem to be a complete
victory, perhaps a final victory, over that system of mixed civil and
ecclesiastical government which grew up on the downfall of the Roman
empire and the conversion of the barbarian nations that seated
themselves on its ruins. It is the total and final destruction of the
Christian empire founded, with the aid of the Pope and bishops, by
Charlemagne and his nobles, and not unlikely will end in the complete
severance of all official union of church and state--alike the
official union between the state and the heretical and schismatic
churches, and between the state and the Catholic Church; so that
throughout the civilized world the people will be politically free to
be of any religion they choose, and the state of no religion.

This result is already reached in nearly all the nations hitherto
called Catholic nations, but not in the officially Protestant and
schismatic nations; and for a long time to come the anti-Catholic or
anti-papal religions, schismatical, heretical, Mahometan, and pagan
religions, will be retained as official or state religions, with more
or less of civil tolerance for Catholics. For the moment, the
anti-papal party appears to be victorious, and no doubt believes that
it is all over with the Catholic Church. That party had persuaded
itself that the church, as a ruling body, was of imperial origin--that
the papal power had been created by the edicts of Roman emperors,
and that it depends entirely on the civil authority for its
continuance. Hence they concluded that, if the church could be
deprived of all civil support, it must fall. They said, the church
depends on the papacy, and the papacy depends on the empire; hence,
detach the empire--that is, the civil power--from the papacy, and the
whole fabric tumbles at once into complete ruin. It is not improbable
that, to confound them, to bring to naught the wisdom of the wise, and
to take the crafty in their own craftiness, Providence has suffered
them to succeed. He has permitted them to detach the empire, that they
may see their error.

The successful party have reckoned without their host. They have
reasoned from false premises, and come necessarily to false
conclusions. The church is, undoubtedly, essentially papal as well as
episcopal, and the destruction of the papacy would certainly be her
destruction as the visible church; but it is false to assume that the
papacy was created by imperial edicts and depends on the empire, for
it is an indisputable historical fact that it existed prior to any
imperial edict in its favor, and while the empire was as yet
officially pagan, and hostile to the church. Hence it does not follow
that detaching the empire from the papacy will prove its destruction.
The church was as papal in its constitution when the whole force of
the empire was turned against it, when it sought refuge in the
catacombs, as it is now, or was in the time of Gregory VII. or
Innocent III., and is as papal in this country, where it has no civil
{60} support or recognition, as in Spain, or the Papal States
themselves. The very principal, idea, and nature of the church, as we
have set them forth in asserting the independence and supremacy of the
spiritual order, of which she is the organ, contradict in the moat
positive manner the dependency of the papacy on the empire.

The church as a visible body has, no doubt, temporal relations, and
therefore temporal interests susceptible of being affected by the
changes which take place in states and empires, and it is not
impossible, nor improbable, that the recent changes in Europe may more
or less deeply affect those interests. The papacy has itself so
judged, and has resisted them with all the means placed at its
disposal. These changes, if carried out, if completed, will affect in
a very serious manner the relations of the papacy with temporal
sovereigns, or, to use the consecrated term, with the empire, and many
of its regulations and provisions for the administration of
ecclesiastical affairs will certainly need to be changed or modified,
and much inconvenience during the transition to the new state of
things will no doubt be experienced. All changes from an old
established order, though in themselves changes for the better, are
for a time attended with many inconveniences. The Israelite's escaping
from Egyptian bondage had to suffer weariness, hunger, and thirst in
the wilderness before reaching the promised land. But whatever
temporal changes or inconveniences of this sort the church in her
external relations may have to endure, they are accidental, and by no
means involve her destruction, or impair her power or integrity as the
church of God, or divinely instituted organ of the spiritual order.

There is no question that the party that regards itself as having
triumphed in the success of Italy and Prussia is bitterly hostile not
only to what it calls the papal politics, but to the Catholic Church
herself, and will not be satisfied with simply detaching the empire
from her support, but will insist on its using all its power and
influence against her. That party, indeed, demands religious liberty,
but religious liberty, in its sense of the term, is full freedom for
all religions except the Catholic, the only true, religion. Error,
they hold, is harmless when reason is free, but truth they
instinctively feel is dangerous to their views and wishes, and must
for their safety be bound hand and foot. But suppose the worst;
suppose the civil power becomes actively hostile to the church,
prohibits by law the profession and practice of the Catholic religion,
punishes Catholics with fines and imprisonment, fire and sword, the
dungeon and the stake, the church will be no worse off than she was
under the pagan emperors, hardly worse off than she was under even the
Arians. The empire under the Jew and the Gentile exerted its utmost
fury against her, and exerted it in vain. It found her irrepressible.
The more she was opposed and persecuted, the more she flourished, and
the blood of the martyrs fattened the soil for a rich growth of
Catholics. Individuals and nations may be, as they have been, detached
from her communion, and many souls for whom Christ died perish
everlastingly, which is a fearful loss to them, and society may suffer
the gains acquired to civilization during eighteen centuries to be
lost, and moral and intellectual darkness gather anew for a time over
the land, once enlightened by the Sun of righteousness, for God
governs men as free moral agents, not as machines or slaves; but the
church will survive her persecutors, and reconquer the empire for God
and his Christ. Is she not founded on the Rock of Ages, and is it not
said by him who is truth itself, that the gates of hell shall not
prevail against her?

It would be impossible to subject the church to a severer ordeal than
she has time and again passed through, and it is not likely that her
children will be exposed to greater trials than {61} those to which
they were subjected in the fifth and sixth centuries by the subversion
of the Roman empire by the pagan and Arian barbarians, or to suffer
heavier calamities than were inflicted on them by the so-called
reformation in the sixteenth century. The Protestants of today cannot
be fiercer, more intolerant or fanatical than they were in the age of
Luther and Calvin; and the infidels of to-day cannot be more envenomed
against the church, or more bloodthirsty and brutal, than were the
infidels in the French revolution; and all these the church has
survived.

The well-being of society, its orderly, peaceful, and continuous
progress, requires, as the Holy See has constantly maintained, the
co-operation and harmonious action of the church and the empire or
republic, but the church has seldom found the empire ready and willing
to co-operate with her, and the record of the struggles between her
and it fills more than a brief chapter in ecclesiastical and civil
history. In point of fact, the church has usually found herself
embarrassed and oppressed by officially Catholic states, and most of
the popular prejudices that still exist against her owe their origin
neither to her doctrines nor to her practices, but to the action of
secular governments officially Catholic. In the last century, her
bitterest enemies were the sovereigns of officially Catholic states;
the most generous friends of the Holy See were states officially
heretical or schismatic, as Russia, Great Britain, Sweden, and
Prussia. Austria is humiliated and suffering now for being in the way
of the anti-papal aggression, and every generous-hearted man
sympathizes with her noble-minded and well-disposed if not able
emperor, and it is no time to speak of her past shortcomings; but this
much may be said, she has seldom been a generous supporter of the Holy
See, and sometimes has been its oppressor.

Governments, like individuals, seldom profit by any experience but
their own; yet experience has proved, over and over again, that
governments the most powerful cannot, however determined on doing so,
extirpate Catholicity by force from their dominions. Pagan Rome, once
the haughty mistress of the world, tried it, made the profession of
the Christian faith punishable with death, and death in the most
frightful and excruciating forms, but failed. England, with all her
power, with all her Protestant zeal, aided by her intense national
prejudices, though she emulated the cruelties of the Caesars and even
surpassed the Caesars in her craft and treachery, has never been able
to extinguish the Catholic faith and love of the Irish people, the
great majority of whom have never ceased to adhere to the Catholic
religion. The church thrives under persecution, for to suffer for
Christ's sake is a signal honor, and martyrdom is a crown of glory.
The government can reach no farther than to the bodies and goods of
Catholics, and he who counts it an honor to suffer, a crown to die,
for his faith, fears nothing that can be done to those, and is
mightier than king or kaiser, parliament or congress. The Christians,
as Lactantius well says, conquered the world not by slaying but by
being slain. Woe to him who slays the Catholic for his religion, but
immortal honor and glory to him who is slain! Men are so constituted
that they rarely love that which costs them nothing, no sacrifice. It
is having suffered for our native land that hallows it in our
affections, and the more we suffer for the church, the more and the
more tenderly do we love her. St. Hilary accuses the Arian Constantius
of being a worse enemy to the church then Nero, Decius, or Diocletian,
for he seduced her prelates by favors, instead of enabling them to
acquire glory in openly dying for the faith.

The civil power can never uproot Catholicity by slaying Catholics, or
robbing the church of her temporalities. Impoverish the church as you
will, you cannot make her poorer than she was {62} in our Lord
himself, who had not where to lay his head, nor than she was in the
twelve apostles when they went forth from that "upper room" in
Jerusalem to conquer the world. She has never depended upon the goods
of this world as the means of accomplishing her mission, and her
possessions have often been an embarrassment, and exposed her to the
envy, cupidity, and rapacity of secular princes. If deprived by the
revolution of the temporalities of her churches, and left destitute,
so to apeak, of house or home, she can still offer up "the clean
oblation," as she has often done, in private houses, barns, groves,
catacombs, caverns in the earth, or clefts in the rocks.

The church has frequently been deprived of her temporal possessions
and of all temporal power, but the poor have suffered by it more than
she. She is really stronger in France today than she was in the age of
Louis XIV., and French society is, upon the whole, less corrupt than
in the time of Francis I. Religion revives in Spain in proportion as
the church losers her wealth. There are no countries where the church
has been poorer than in Ireland and the United Slates, and none where
her prosperity has been greater. Let matters, then, take the worst
turn possible, Catholics have little to fear, the church nothing to
apprehend, except the injury her enemies are sure to do themselves,
which cannot fail to afflict her loving heart.

Yet, whatever may be the extent of the changes effected or going on in
the states and empires of Europe, I apprehend no severe or prolonged
persecution of Catholics. The church in this world is and always will
be the church militant, because she is not of this world, and acts on
principles not only above but opposed to those on which kings and
kaisers and the men of this world act. She therefore necessarily comes
in conflict with them, and could render them no service if she did
not. Conflicts there will be, annoyances and vexations must be
expected; but in all the European states as well as our own, if we
except Sweden and Denmark, there is too large a Catholic population to
be either massacred, exiled, or deprived of the rights of person and
property common to all citizens or subjects. The British government
has been forced to concede Catholic emancipation, and all appearances
indicate that she will be forced ere long to place Catholics in all
respects on a footing of perfect equality with Protestants before the
state. Prussia, should she, as is possible, absorb all Germany, will
have nearly as many Catholic as Protestant subjects, and though she
may insist on remaining officially Protestant and anti-Catholic, she
will find it necessary to her own peace and security to allow her
Catholic subjects to enjoy liberty of religion and equal civil rights.
The mass of the Italian people are Catholic, and will remain
Catholics; and these are not times when even absolute, much less
constitutional, sovereigns can afford to is the it's and convictions
of any considerable portion of their people.

The anti-papal party may prove strong enough to deprive the Holy
Father of his temporal sovereignty and make Rome the capital of the
new kingdom of Italy; that is undoubtedly laid down in the programme,
and is only a natural, a logical result of Napoleon's campaign of 1859
against Austria and Napoleon holds that the logic of events must be
submitted to. He said in 1859 that there were two questions to be
settled, the Italian question and the Roman question. As the former
has been settled by expelling the Austrians from Italy, so the latter
is likely to be settled by the deprivation of the Pope as temporal
sovereign--the plan of settlement being evidently to secure to the
anti-papal party all it demands. Austria humiliated cannot interpose
in behalf of the temporal sovereignty, and is reported to have
abandoned it; Napoleon will not do it, unless compelled, for he has
been the determined but politic enemy of that sovereignty ever {63}
since, with his elder brother, he engaged in a conspiracy, in 1831, to
destroy the papal government; and Russia, Great Britain, and Prussia,
all anti-Catholic states, will abandon the papal throne to the logic
of events. Under the providence of God, it depends on the Italian
people whether the Holy Father shall retain his temporal sovereignty
or not, and what they will do nobody can say. They are capable of
doing anything hostile to the Pope one moment, and next falling on
their knees before him, and, with tears in their eyes, begging his
absolution.

But beyond the rights of the Supreme Pontiff as sovereign of the Roman
state, I cannot apprehend any serious attacks on the papacy; or after
the first fury has passed, even on ecclesiastical property. Much
hostility for a time will be displayed, no doubt, against the monastic
orders, and where they have any property remaining in their
possession. It, not unlikely, will be confiscated, and the right of
the church to be a proprietor legally denied or not recognized, yet
property dedicated to religious uses still will be passably secure
under the general law protecting citizens and their rights of
property, to make gifts _inter vivos_, and testamenary bequests. The
law will gradually become throughout Europe what it is with us. The
civil law in the United States knows nothing of the canons of the
Church establishing religious orders, or of the vows taken by the
religious; it takes no cognizance of the church herself, it recognizes
in her no proprietary rights, and gives her no standing in the courts,
and yet nowhere is ecclesiastical property better protected or more
secure, and nowhere are religious orders more free in person or more
secure in property. This proceeds from the right of property secured
to the citizens, and the right of the church, and of religious orders,
not as proprietors, but, if I may so speak, as recipiendaries, or
their right to receive enjoy eleemosynary gifts, grants, and bequests
in whatever form made, which the courts protect according to the will
of the donors or testators. There may be great inconveniences
resulting from the inevitable changes taking place, great wrong is
pretty sure to be done. The church has a valid right to be a
proprietor, and it is a great crime and a great sin to rob her of any
of her possessions; but she can carry on, and in most countries long
has carried on, her mission without the law recognizing any
proprietary rights.

Present appearances indicate that the church throughout the world will
be thrown back, as she was in the beginning, on her internal resources
as a spiritual kingdom; that she will cease to be the official church
any nation--at least for a time, if not for ever; and that she will
not henceforth govern or protect her children as civil life
communities, states, or empires through their civil rulers, but simply
as Catholics, individual members of her communion, through her own
spiritual ministry, her bishops and prelates alone, without any
official relation with the state. She can then exercise her full
spiritual authority over her own members, as the independent kingdom
of God on earth, free from all entangling alliances with the shifting
policies of nations.

It is not assumed that the changes recent events have produced, or are
producing, were desirable, are not evil, or are not brought about by
evil passions, and from motives which every lover of truth and right
does and must condemn; all that is argued is, that the church can
survive them, and with less detriment to her material interests than
her enemies have contemplated. Nothing that has taken place is
defended, or defensible; but who can say that God in his gracious
providence will not overrule all to the glory of his church and the
good of them that love him? Who knows but he has given the victory to
his enemies for the very purpose of confounding them, and showing them
how vain are all their strivings against him and the order he has
established? That is very victory, seemingly so {64} adverse and so
afflicting to the Catholic heart, may prove to be the means of
emancipating the church from her thraldom to the secular powers
officially Catholic, but really anti-Catholic in spirit, and of
preparing the way for her to labor more effectually than ever for the
advancement of truth, the progress of civilization, and the salvation
of souls! It is the prerogative of God to overrule evil for good, and
the church, though immovable in her foundation, inflexible in her
principles, and unchanging in her doctrines, has a wonderful capacity
of adapting herself to all stages of civilization, and to all the
changes in states and empires that may take place; she is confined
within no national boundaries, and wedded to no particular form of
civil government--she can subsist and carry on her work under Russian
autocracy or American democracy, with the untutored savage and the
most highly cultivated European, and is equally at her ease with the
high and the low, the learned and the unlearned, the rich and the
poor, the bond and the free. The events which, to all human judgment,
seem adverse often turn out to be altogether in our favor. "All those
things are against me," said the patriarch Jacob, when required to
send his son Benjamin down to Egypt, and yet the event proved that
they were all for him. When the Jews with wicked hands took our Lord
and slew him, crucified him between two thieves, they, no doubt,
thought that they had succeeded, and that it was all over with him and
his work; but what they did was a means to the end he sought, for it
was only in dying that he could accomplish the work he came to do.

The detachment of the empire from the church, which has been effected
for purposes hostile to her, and with the hope of causing her
destruction, perhaps will prove to her enemies that she does not rest
on the state, that the state is far more in need of her than she of
it, and show in a clear and unmistakable light her independence of all
civil support, her inexhaustible internal resources, her supernatural
energy and divine persistence. The empire detached from her and
abandoning her to herself, or turning its force against her, will
cease to incumber her with its official help, will no longer stand as
an opaque substance between her and the people, intercepting her
light, and preventing them from beholding her in her spiritual beauty
and splendor. The change will allay much political hostility, remove
most of the political prejudices against her, and permit the hearts of
the people to turn once more towards her as their true mother and best
friend. It may in fact tend to revive faith, and prepare the nations
to reunite under her divine banner. Be this as it may, every Catholic
knows that she is in herself independent of all the revolutions of
states and empires, of all the changes of this world, and feels sure
that she is imperishable, and that in some way the victories of her
enemies will turn out to be their defeat, and the occasion of new
triumphs for her.



{65}

From The Month

THE MYSTERY OF THE THATCHED HOUSE.


It was a clean, bright, wholesome, thoroughly lovable house. The first
time I saw it, I fell in love with it, and wanted to live in it at
once. It fascinated me. When I crossed its threshold, I felt as if I
had opened a book whose perusal promised enchantment. I felt a
passionate longing to have been born here, to have been expected by
the brown old watchful walls for years before it had been my turn to
exist in the world. I felt despoiled of my rights; because there was
here a hoard of wealth which I might not touch, placed just beyond the
reach of my hand. I was tantilized; because the secrets of a sweetly
odorous past hung about the shady corners, and the sunny
window-frames, and the grotesque hearth-places; and their breath was
no more to me than the scent of dried rose-leaves.

It was my fault that we bought the Thatched House. We wanted a country
home; and, hearing that this was for sale, we drove many miles one
showery April morning to view the place, and judge if it might suit
our need. Aunt Featherstone objected to it from the first, and often
boasted of her own sagacity in doing so, after the Thatched House had
proved itself an incubus--a dreadful Old Man of the Mountains, not to
be shaken from our necks. I once was bold enough to tell her that
temper, and not sagacity, was the cause of her dislike that April
morning. We drove in an open phaeton, and Aunt Featherstone got some
drops of rain on her new silk dress. Consequently she was out of humor
with everything, and vehemently pronounced her veto upon the purchase
of the Thatched House.

I was a spoiled girl, however; and I thought it hard that I might not
have my own way in this matter as in everything else. As we drove
along a lonely road, across a wild, open country, I had worshipped the
broken, gold-edged rain-clouds, and the hills, with their waving lines
of light and their soft trailing shadows. I had caught the shower in
my face, and laughed; and dried my limp curls with my
pocket-handkerchief. I was disposed to love everything I saw, and
clapped my hands when we stopped before the sad-looking old gates,
with their mossy brick pillars, and their iron arms folded across, as
if mournfully forbidding inquiry into some long hushed-up and
forgotten mystery. When we swept along the silent avenue my heart
leaped up in greeting to the grand old trees, that rose towering
freshly at every curve, spreading their masses of green foliage right
and left, and flinging showers of diamond drops to the ground whenever
the breeze lifted the tresses of a drowsy bough, or a bird poised its
slender weight upon a twig, and then shot off sudden into the blue.

Aunt Featherstone exclaimed against the house the very moment we came
in sight of it. It was not the sort of thing we wanted at all, she
said. It had not got a modern porch, and it was all nooks and angles
on the outside. The lower windows were too long and narrow, and the
upper ones too small, and pointing up above the eaves in that
old-fashioned, inconvenient manner. To crown its {66} absurdities, the
roof was thatched. No, no, Aunt Featherstone said, it was necessary
for such old houses to exist for the sake of pictures and romances;
but as for people of common sense going to live in them, that was out
of the question.

I left her still outside with her eyeglass levelled at the chimneys,
and darted into the house to explore. An old woman preceded me with a
jingling bunch of keys, unlocking all the doors, throwing open the
shutters and letting the long levels of sunshine fall over the
uncarpeted floors. It was all delicious, I thought; the long
dining-room with its tall windows opening like doors upon the broad
gravel, the circular drawing-room with its stained-glass roofing, the
double flights of winding stairs, the roomy passages, the numerous
chambers of all shapes and sizes opening one out of another, and
chasing each other from end to end of the house; and above all, the
charming old rustic balcony, running round the waist of the building
like a belt, and carrying one, almost quick as a bird could fly, from
one of those dear old pointed windows under the eaves down amongst the
flower-beds below.

I said to myself in my own wilful way, "This Thatched House must be my
home!" and then I set about coaxing Aunt Featherstone into my way of
thinking. It was not at all against her will that she completed the
purchase at last. Afterwards, however, she liked to think it was so.

In May it was all settled. The house was filled with painters and
paper-hangers, and all through the long summer months they kept on
making a mess within the walls, and forbidding us to enter and enjoy
the place in the full glorious luxuriance of its summer beauty. At
last, on driving there one bright evening, I found to my joy that the
workmen had decamped, leaving the Thatched House clean and fresh and
gay, ready for the reception of us, and our good's and chattels. I
sprang in through one of the open dining-room windows, and began
waltzing round the floor from sheer delight. Pausing at last for
breath, I saw that the old woman who took care of the place, she who
had on my first visit opened the shutters for me and jingled her keys,
had entered the room while I danced, and was standing watching me from
the doorway with a queer expression on her wrinkled face.

"Ah, ha! Nelly," I cried triumphantly, "what do you think of the old
house now?"

Nelly shook her gray head, and shot me a weird look out of her small
black eyes. Then she folded her arms slowly, and gazed all round the
room musingly, while she said:

"Ay, Miss Lucy! wealth can do a deal, but there's things it can't do.
All that the band of man may do to make this place wholesome to live
in has been done. Dance and see now, pretty lady--now, while you have
the heart and courage. The day'll come when you'd as soon think of
sleepin' all night on a tombstone as of standin' on this floor alone
after sunset."

"Good gracious, Nelly!" I cried, "what do you mean? Is it possible
that there is anything--have you heard or seen--"

"I have heard and seen plenty," was Nelly's curt reply.

Just then, a van arriving with the first instalment of our household
goods, the old woman vanished; and not another word could I wring that
evening from her puckered lips. Her words haunted me, and I went home
with my mirth considerably sobered; and dreamed all night of wandering
up and down that long dining-room in the dark, and seeing dimly
horrible faces grinning at me from the walls. This was only the first
shadow of the trouble that came upon us in the Thatched House.

It came by degrees in nods and whispers, and stories told in lowered
tones by the fireside at night. The servants got possession of a
rumor, and the rumor reached me. I shuddered in silence, and contrived
for the {67} first few months to keep it a jealous secret from my
unsuspecting aunt. For the house was ours, and Aunt Featherstone was
timorous; and the rumor, very horrible, was this--the Thatched House
was haunted.

Haunted, it was said, by a footstep, which every night, at a certain
hour, went down the principal corridor, distinctly audible as it
passed the doors, descended the staircase, traversed the hall, and
ceased suddenly at the dining-room door. It was a heavy, unshod foot,
and walked rather slowly. All the servants could describe it minutely,
though none could avow that they had positively heard it. New editions
of this story were constantly coming out, and found immediate
circulation. To each of these was added some fresh harrowing sequel,
illustrative of the manners and customs of a certain shadowy
inhabitant, who was said to have occupied the Thatched House all
through the dark days of its past emptiness and desolation, and who
resented fiercely the unwelcome advent of us flesh-and-blood
intruders. The tradition of this lonely shade was as follows: The
builder and first owner of the Thatched House was an elderly man,
wealthy, wicked, and feared. He had married a gentle young wife, whose
heart had been broken before she consented to give him her hand. He
was cruel to her, using her harshly, and leaving her solitary in the
lonely house for long winter weeks and months together, till she went
mad with brooding over her sorrows, and died a maniac. Goaded with
remorse, he had shut up the house and fled the country. Since then
different people had fancied the beautiful, romantic old dwelling, and
made an attempt to live in it; but they said that the sorrowful lady
would not yield up her right to any new-comer. It had been her habit,
when alive, to steal down stairs at night, when she could not sleep
for weeping, and to walk up and down the dining-room, wringing her
hands, till the morning dawned; and now, though her coffin was nailed,
and her grave green, and though her tears ought to have been long
since blown from her eyes like rain on the wind, still the unhappy
spirit would not quit the scene of her former wretchedness, but paced
the passage, and trod the stairs, and traversed the hall night after
night, as of old. At the dining-room door the step was said to pause;
and up and down the dreary chamber a wailing ghost was believed to
flit, wringing her hands, till the morning dawned.

It was not till the summer had departed that I learned this story.

As long as the sun shone, and the roses bloomed, and the nightingales
sang about the windows till midnight, I tried hard to shut my ears to
the memory of old Nelly's hint, and took good care not to mention it
to my aunt. If the servants looked mysterious, I would not see them;
if they whispered together, it was nothing to me. There was so short a
time for the stars to shine between the slow darkening of the blue sky
at night and the early quickening of flowers and birds and rosy beams
at dawn, that there was literally no space for the accommodation of
ghosts. So long as the summer lasted, the Thatched House was a
dwelling of sunshine and sweet odors and bright fancies for me. It was
different, however, when a wintry sky closed in around us, when
solitary leaves dangled upon shivering boughs, and when the winds
began to shudder at the windows all through the long dark nights. Then
I took fear to my heart, and wished that I had never seen the Thatched
House.

Then it was that my ears became gradually open to the dreadful murmurs
that were rife in the house; then it was that I learned the story of
the weeping lady, and of her footstep on the stairs. Of course I would
not believe, though the thumping of my heart, if I chanced to cross a
landing, even by twilight, belied the courage of which I boasted. I
forbade the servants to hint at such folly as the existence of ghosts,
and warned them {68} at their peril not to let a whisper of the kind
disturb my aunt. On the latter point I believe they did their best to
obey me.

Aunt Featherstone was a dear old, cross, good-natured, crotchety,
kind-hearted lady, who was always needing to be coaxed. She considered
herself an exceedingly strong-minded person, whereas she was in
reality one of the most nervous women I have ever known. I verily
believe that, if she had known that story of the footstep, she would
have made up her mind to hear it distinctly every night, and would
have been found some morning stone-dead in her bed with fear.
Therefore, as long as it was possible, I kept the dreadful secret from
her ears. This was in reality, however, a much shorter space of time
than I had imagined it to be.

About the middle of November Aunt Featherstone noticed that I was
beginning to look very pale, to lose my appetite, and to start and
tremble at the most commonplace sounds. The truth was that the long
nights of terror which passed over my head, in my pretty sleeping-room
off the ghost's corridor, were wearing out my health and spirits, and
threatening to throw me into a fever; and yet neither sight nor sound
of the supernatural had ever disturbed my rest--none worth recording,
that is; for of course, in my paroxysms of wakeful fear, I fancied a
thousand horrible revelations. Night after night I lay in agony, with
my ears distended for the sound of the footstep. Morning after morning
I awakened, weary and jaded, after a short, unsatisfying sleep, and
resolved that I would confess to my aunt, and implore her to fly from
the place at once. But, when seated at the breakfast-table, my heart
invariably failed me. I accounted, by the mention of a headache, for
my pale cheeks, and kept my secret.

Some weeks passed, and then I in my turn began to observe that Aunt
Featherstone had grown exceedingly dull in spirits. "Can any one have
told her the secret of the House?" was the question I quickly asked
myself. But the servants denied having broken their promise; and I had
reason to think that there had been of late much less gossip on the
subject than formerly. I was afraid to risk questioning the dear old
lady, and so I could only hope and surmise. But I was dull, and Aunt
Featherstone was dull, and the Thatched House was dreary. Things went
on in this way for some time, and at last a dreadful night arrived. I
had been for a long walk during the day; and had gone to bed rather
earlier than usual, and fallen asleep quickly. For about two hours I
slept, and then I was roused suddenly by a slight sound, like the
creaking of a board, just outside my door. With the instinct of fear I
started up, and listened intently. A watery moon was shining into my
room, revealing the pretty blue-and-white furniture, the pale
statuette and the various little dainty ornaments with which I had
been pleased to surround myself in this my chosen sanctuary. I sat up
shuddering and listened. I pressed my hands tightly over my heart, to
try and keep its throbbing from killing me; for distinctly, in the
merciless stillness of the winter night, I heard the tread of a
stealthy footstep on the passage outside my room. Along the corridor
it crept, down the staircase it went, and was lost in the hall below.

I shall never forget the anguish of fear in which I passed the
remainder of that wretched night. While cowering into my pillow, I
made up my mind to leave the Thatched House as soon as the morning
broke, and never to enter it again. I had heard people whose hair had
grown gray a single night, of grief or terror. When I glanced in the
looking-glass at dawn, I almost expected to see a white head upon my
own shoulders.

During the next day I, as usual, failed of courage to speak to my
aunt. I desired one of the maids to sleep on the couch in my room,
keeping this {69} arrangement a secret. The following night I felt
some little comfort from the presence of a second person near me; but
the girl soon fell asleep. Lying awake in fearful expectation, I was
visited by a repetition of the previous night's horror. I heard the
footstep a second time.

I suffered secretly in this way for about a week. I had become so pale
and nervous, that I was only like a shadow of my former self. Time
hung wretchedly upon my hands. I only prized the day inasmuch as it
was a respite from the night; the appearance of twilight coming on at
evening, invariably threw me into an ague-fit of shivering. I trembled
at a shadow; I screamed at a sudden noise. My aunt groaned over me,
and sent for the doctor.

I said to him, "Doctor, I am only a little moped. I have got a bright
idea for curing myself. You must prescribe me a schoolfellow."

Hereupon Aunt Featherstone began to ride off on her old hobby about
the loneliness, the unhealthiness and total objectionableness of the
Thatched House, bewailing her own weakness in having allowed herself
to be forced into buying it. She never mentioned the word "haunted,"
though I afterward knew that at the very time, and for some weeks
previously, she had been in full possession of the story of the
nightly footstep. The doctor recommended me a complete change of
scene; but instead of taking advantage of this, I asked for a
companion at the Thatched House.

The prescription I had begged for was written in the shape of a note
to Ada Rivers, imploring her to come to me at once. "Do come now," I
wrote; "I have a mystery for you to explore. I will tell you about it
when we meet." Having said so much, I knew that I should not be
disappointed.

Ada Rivers was a tall, robust girl, with the whitest teeth, the purest
complexion, and the clearest laugh I have ever met with in the world.
To be near her made one fed healthier both in body and mind. She was
one of those lively, fearless people who love to meet a morbid horror
face to face, and put it to rout. When I wrote to her, "Do come, for I
am sick," I was pretty sure she would obey the summons; but when I
added, "I have a mystery for you to explore," I was convinced of her
compliance beyond the possibility of a doubt.

It wanted just one fortnight of Christmas Day when Ada arrived at the
Thatched House. For some little time beforehand, I had busied myself
so pleasantly in making preparations, that I had almost forgotten the
weeping lady, and had not heard the footstep for two nights. And when,
on the first evening of her arrival, Ada stepped into the haunted
dining-room in her trim flowing robe of crimson cashmere, with her
dark hair bound closely round her comely head, and her bright eyes
clear with that frank unwavering light of theirs, I felt as if her
wholesome presence had banished dread at once, and that ghosts could
surely never harbor in the same house with her free step and genial
laugh.

"What is the matter with you?" said Ada, putting her hands on my
shoulders, and looking in my face. "You look like a changeling, you
little white thing! When shall I get leave to explore your mystery?"

"To-night," I whispered, and, looking round me quickly, shuddered. We
were standing on the hearth before the blazing fire, on the very spot
where that awful footstep would pass and repass through the long,
dark, unhappy hours after our lights had been extinguished, and our
heads, laid upon our pillows.

Ada laughed at me and called me a little goose; but I could see that
she was wild with curiosity, and eager for bedtime to arrive. I had
arranged that we should both occupy my room, in order that, if there
was anything to be heard, Ada might hear it. "And now what is all this
that I have to learn?" said she, after our door had been fastened for
the night, and we sat looking at one another with our dressing-gowns
upon our shoulders.

{70}

As I had expected, a long ringing laugh greeted the recital of my
doleful tale. "My dear Lucy!" cried Ada, "my poor sick little moped
Lucy, you surely don't mean to say that you believe in such vulgar
things as ghosts?"

"But I cannot help it," I said. "I have heard the footstep no less
than seven times, and the proof of it is that I am ill. If you were to
sleep alone in this room every night for a month, you would get sick
too."

"Not a bit of it!" said Ada, stoutly; and she sprang up and walked
about the chamber, "To think of getting discontented with this pretty
room, this exquisite little nest! No, I engage to sleep here every
night for a month--alone, if you please--and at the end of that time,
I shall not only be still in perfect health, my unromantic self, but I
promise to have cured you, you little, absurd, imaginative thing! And
now let us get to bed without another word on the subject. 'Talking it
over,' in cases of this kind, always does a vast amount of mischief."

Ada always meant what she said. In half an hour we were both in bed,
without a further word being spoken on the matter. So strengthened and
reassured was I by her strong, happy presence that, wearied out by the
excitement of the day, I was quickly fast asleep. It was early next
morning when I wakened again, and the red, frosty sun was rising above
the trees. When I opened my eyes, the first object they met was Ada,
sitting in the window, with her forehead against the pane, and her
hands locked in her lap. She was very pale, and her brows were knit in
perplexed thought. I had never seen her look so strangely before.

A swift thought struck me. I started up, and cried, "O Ada! forgive me
for going to sleep so soon. _I know you have heard it_."

She unknit her brows, rose from her seat, and came and sat down on the
bed beside me. "I cannot deny it." she said gravely; "_I have heard
it._ Now tell me, Lucy, does your aunt know anything of all this?"

"I am not sure," I said; "I cannot be, because I am afraid to ask her.
rather think that she has heard some of the stories, and is anxiously
trying to hide them from me, little thinking of what I have suffered
here. She has been very dull lately, and repines constantly about the
purchase of the house."

"Well," said Ada, "we must tell her nothing till we have sifted this
matter to the bottom."

"Why, what are you going to do?" I asked, beginning to tremble.

"Nothing very dreadful, little coward!" she said, laughing; "only to
follow the ghost if it passes our door to-night; I want to see what
stuff it is made of. If it be a genuine spirit, it is time the
Thatched House were vacated for its more complete accommodation. If it
be flesh and blood, it is time the trick were found out."

I gazed at Ada with feelings of mingled reverence and admiration. It
was in vain that I tried to dissuade her from her wild purpose. She
bade me hold my tongue, get up and dress and think no more about
ghosts till bedtime. I tried to be obedient; and all that day we kept
strict silence on the dreadful subject, while our tongues and hands
and (seemingly) our heads were kept busily occupied in helping to
carry out Aunt Featherstone's thousand-and-one pleasant arrangements
for the coming Christmas festivities.

During the morning, it happened that I often caught Ada with her eyes
fixed keenly on Aunt Featherstone's face, especially when once or
twice the dear old lady sighed profoundly, and the shadow of an
unaccountable cloud settled down upon her troubled brows. Ada pondered
deeply in the interval of our conversation, though her merry comment
and apt suggestion were always ready as usual when occasion seemed to
call for them. {71} I noticed also that she made excuses to explore
rooms and passages, and found means to observe and exchange words with
the servants. Ada's bright eyes were unusually wide open that day. For
me, I hung about her like a mute, and dreaded the coming of the night.

Bedtime arrived too quickly; and when we were shut in together in our
room, I implored Ada earnestly to give up the wild idea she had spoken
of in the morning, and to lock fast the door, and let us try to go to
sleep. Such praying, however, was useless. Ada had resolved upon a
certain thing to do, and this being the case, Ada was the girl to do
it.

We said our prayers, we set the door ajar, we extinguished our light,
and we went to bed. An hour we lay awake, and heard nothing to alarm
us. Another silent hour went past, and still the sleeping house was
undisturbed. I had begun to hope that the night was going to pass by
without accident, and had just commenced to doze a little and to
wander into a confused dream, when a sudden squeezing of my hand,
which lay in Ada's, startled me quickly into consciousness.

I opened my eyes; Ada was sitting erect in the bed, with her face set
forward, listening, and her eyes fastened on the door. Half smothered
with fear, I raised myself upon my elbow and listened too. Yes, O
horror! there it was--the soft, heavy, unshod footstep going down the
corridor outside the door. It paused at the top of the staircase, and
began slowly descending to the bottom. "Ada!" I whispered, with a
gasp. Her hand was damp with fear, and my face was drenched in a cold
dew. "In God's name!" she sighed, with a long-drawn breath; and then
she crept softly from the bed, threw on her dressing-gown, and went
swiftly away out of the already open door.

What I suffered in the next few minutes I could never describe, if I
spent the remainder of my life in endeavoring to do so. I remember an
interval of stupid horror; while leaning on my elbow in the bed, I
gazed with a fearful, fascinated stare at the half-open door beside
me. Then, through the silence of the night there came a cry.

It seemed to come struggling up through the flooring from the
dining-room underneath. It sounded wild, suppressed, smothered, and
was quickly hushed away into stillness again; but a horrible
stillness, broken by fitful, confused murmurs. Unable to endure the
suspense any longer, I sprang out of bed, rushed down the stairs, and
found myself standing in the gray darkness of the winter's night, with
rattling teeth, at the door of the haunted dining-room.

"Ada! Ada!" I sobbed out, in my shivering terror, and thrust my hand
against the heavy panel. The door opened with me, I staggered in, and
saw----a stout white figure sitting bolt upright in an arm-chair, and
Ada standing quivering in convulsions of laughter by its side. I fell
forward on the floor; but before I fainted quite, I heard a merry
voice ringing through the darkness,

"O Lucy! your Aunt Featherstone is the ghost!"

When I recovered my senses, I was lying in bed, with Ada and my aunt
both watching by my side. The poor dear old lady had so brooded over
the ghost-stories of the house, and so unselfishly denied herself the
relief of talking them over with me, that, pressing heavily on her
thoughts, they had unsettled her mind in sleep. Constantly ruminating
on the terror of that ghostly walk, she had unconsciously risen night
after night, and most cleverly accomplished it herself. Comparing
dates, I found that she had learned the story of the spirit only a few
days before the night on which I had first been terrified by the
footstep.

The news of Aunt Featherstone's escapade flew quickly through the
house. It caused so many laughs, that the genuine ghosts soon fell
into ill repute. The legend of the weeping lady's rambles became
divested of its dignity, and grew therefore to be quite harmless. Ada
and I laughed over our adventure every night during the rest of her
stay, and entered upon our Christmas festivities with right goodwill.
I have never forgotten to be grateful to Ada for that good service
which she rendered me; and as for Aunt Featherstone, I must own that
she never again said one word in disparagement of the Thatched House.

------

{72}

From the German.

THE RESURRECTION.


  Rise? Yes, with the myriads of the just,
  After short sleep, my dust!
  Life of immortal fire
  Thine from the Almighty Sire!
            Alleluia!

  Sown, to upspring, O joy! in richer bloom,
  The Lord of harvest's tomb
  Gives forth his sheaves within----
  Us, even us, who died in him!
            Alleluia!

  O victory! O dayspring's kindling ray!
  God's everlasting day!
  In the grave's solemn night.
  Slumbering, soon shall thy light
            Wake me to sight.

  As if of visionary dream the end----
  With Jesus to ascend
  Through joy's celestial door----
  Pilgrims of earth no more----
            Our sorrows o'er.

  My Saviour, to the Holiest leading on;
  That we may at the throne,
  In sanctuary free.
  Worship eternally!
            Alleluia!

F. W. P.

------

{73}

Original

AUBREY DE VERE.  [Footnote 20]

  [Footnote 20:
  Search after Proserpine, and other
  Poems. London, 1843.

  Poems. by Aubrey de Vere. London, 1855.

  The Sisters, Inisfail, and other Poems. London, 1861

  May Carols. New York: Lawrence Kehoe, 1866.]


Out of the greater breadth and catholicity, so to speak, of our
present literary taste, it results that one class of poets is arising
among as which has been very rare before our day: those in whom the
soul is the predominant force--men who care nothing for popularity,
and barely enough for recognition by their peers to make them publish
at all--men by nature high-strung and shy, yet tranquil, balanced, and
strong; who write, in short, from the spiritual side of things. These
could not, in ordinary times, hope for a wide, general favor, and they
sailed the nautiluses of literature; dropping from the surface of
themselves, equally native to the cooler, deeper waters below. But so
strong have been the gales of awakening love of reading, that even
these stranger ships, not bound for the ports of popularity, find wind
enough to waft them wherever refinement and scholarship care to deal
in their rare and choice cargoes.

An extreme of this class is Aubrey de Vere. Naturally not a poet of
the people, and still further isolated by holding and eloquently
celebrating a faith which incurs certain ostracism from the literature
of sectarian bigotry, he is almost unknown in America. Fresh from his
works, we are almost at a loss to understand how, in a country not
only of so many Catholic leaders, but where there is so much
pretension to literary taste, he can be such a stranger. All the usual
and more accessible sources are so barren of his biography that we
cannot trust ourselves to attempt any sketch of his life. From
materials so meagre and of such indifferent authenticity, nothing
satisfactory--nothing vivified--can be gathered; and biography that
fails in personality is a body without a soul. So we content ourselves
with the poet as we see him in his works.

In attempting an analysis of the qualities displayed in these volumes,
we find, to begin with, none of the inequalities of those writers who
begin quite young, and whose works go comet-like through after years,
the youthful nebulosity tailing off from the maturer nucleus, in a
long string of promising but not much performing versicles. There is
none of the crudeness of journey work, but everywhere thought and
gravity. The latter quality indeed is conspicuous. De Vere can be too
sarcastic for us to deny him wit, but humor seems to be unknown to
him. There is not the ghost of a joke in all his pages. We call this
remarkable, because he treats of so very many things. In Thomson's
Seasons (even waiving Thomson's nationality) or Paradise Lost--in any
one poem--we may not expect humor; but in a miscellany, where every
side of a man's mind usually displays itself, it seems odd not to find
a trace of sense of the ludicrous. Certainly there is variety enough
for it. The range of subjects is perhaps not very great, but the
individual poems exhibit almost every shade of style, beginning on the
hither side of quaintness and bringing up on the boundaries of the
colloquial. {74} An artificial style like that of the Idyls of the
King, or the Emersonian dialect ("_virtute ac vitiis sapientia
crescat_"), our author never attempts; his thoughts, as a rule, seem
to choose their own channel. He is willing enough to spend pains in
making a thought clear, but such grave, antique costuming of ideas he
takes no time for. The manner is always kept well in subordination to
the matter of what he has to say.

There is a strange versatility in these books in unconsciously
adopting peculiarities of other writers. The author himself, in his
notes, acknowledged this, or rather detects himself after the fact, in
a few instances; but though acute so far, he does not see half. More
honest and unconscious imitation there never was, and just as the
impression of the archetype rarely rose to a fact of consciousness, so
the consequent resemblance seldom amounts to a traceable parallelism.
There is no reproduction of passages, but of characteristics. A shade,
a turn of phrase, a suggestion, a _soupçon_, as we read, recalls at
once some great writer. The sonnets are full of subtle odors and
flavors of Shakespeare, evanescent, intangible, and charming. There
are also what the French would call "coincidences of style" with
Coleridge, and often, especially in the May Carols, with Tennyson.
Both are easily accounted for; the one by kindred tendencies to
philosophy, the other by the strong likeness in plan to In Memoriam.
But perhaps the most singular of all occurs in the very forcible poem
called The Bard Etheil, which bears a curious resemblance to the poet
of all poets the very opposite of De Vere--Robert Browning. There is
nothing at all like this poem in all our author's works. It stands as
saliently alone as a meteoric boulder in a meadow. The subject is an
Irish bard, a relic of the bardic days, but a zealous convert to a
Christianity of his own, tinged with a wild, ineradicable barbarism,
whose outcroppings make the interest of the character. There is all
Browning's sharp outline sketching, all his power of handling
contradictions of character, yet none of the topsy-turvy words and
sentences without which the Great Inversionist would not be
himself;--in short, it is Browning with the constitutional gnarl in
the grain left out.

Another--a closer parallelism than usual--we find in The Year of
Sorrow:

  "The weaver wove till all was dark.
  And long ere morning bent and bowed
  Above his work with fingers stark.
  And made, nor knew he made, a shroud."

The terrible parallel passage in the Song of the Shirt is too familiar
to need more than an allusion.

Yet through all these coincidences runs an abundant individuality that
proves De Vere to be anything but a wilful or even permissive
plagiarist. He is, in simple truth, a great reader, with a mind in
such true tune with all things high and refined, that it responds as
the accordant string of some delicate instrument echoes a musical
note. There needs no better test than this, that mere imitators
invariably copy faults, while Mr. De Vere always reproduces
excellences.

In point of language, our author inherits an Irishman's full measure
of vocabulary. Through a most varied series of metres, his verse is
full of ease, fluency, and grace. In rhythm he rises to the rank of an
artist. He has passed the first degree--that baccalaureateship of
verse-making whose diploma is perfect smoothness and melody; where Tom
Moore took a double first, and beyond which so few ever attain. He is
one of the _maestri_, like Tennyson and Swinburne, who know the uses
of a discord, and can handle diminished sevenths. His lines are full
of subtle shadings, and curious subfelicities of diction, that not
every one feels, and few save the devotee to metre (such as we own
ourselves to be) pause to analyze and admire. His taste, too, is
fastidiously unerring; there is never a swerve beyond the cobweb
boundaries of the line of beauty. {75} Sometimes he misses the exact
word he wants, but he never halts for want of a good one. The only
deficiency arises from his temperament. Where spirit demands to be
heard in sound as felt in sense, he uniformly fails. He cannot often
make his lines bound and ring like Moore's. In the face of the fiery
episodes of Irish history which he deals with in Inisfail, he is too
often like one of his own bards on a modern battle-field.

So much for the mere style; the man himself remains. Pre-eminently he
is a philosopher--too much of one to be a great poet. Not that any man
can be a poet at all without being also a philosopher. Only his
philosophy should be to his poetry as a woman's brain to her heart--a
suggesting, subordinate element--the "refused" wing of his progress.
With him it is just the reverse. Philosophy is the primary fact of his
inner life, out of which blossom incidentally his poetry and his
patriotism, but whose legitimate and beautiful fruit is his religion.
The consequence is, everything is too much a development of high
principle, instead of an impulse of deep feeling. He is too _right_,
too reasonable, too well-considered. He has not enough _abandon_. This
one, but final and fatal fault to the highest poetical success,
ramifies curiously through everything he writes. The first result is
occasionally too much abstractness. There are fetters of thought
poetry cannot be graceful in. Her vocation is to lead us among the
fostered flowers and whispering groves of the beautiful land, not to
go botanizing far up the cold heights, among the snow-growths, whose
classification is caviare to the general. There let science climb with
her _savans_. On rare occasions, indeed, the poet may tellingly deal
with the naked truths of nature, but it demands the inspiration of a
Lysimachus and the glorious contours of a Phryne. Tennyson, in his In
Memoriam, has touched with the rarest felicity on the most pregnant
problems of natural divinity, without even rippling the smoothness of
his verse; De Vere has done the same, with excellent success, in his
May Carols; but he tries too often not to fail oftener than we could
wish. It must be owned an honorable failure; not of strength, but of
grace. His lines lift the weight they grapple with, but he does not
interest us in the labor. At the risk of trespassing on time-honored
critical demesnes, we differ with that tacit _consensus doctorum_
which suffers sonnets, and some other things, to be as abstract as the
author pleases.

Another effect of this over-philosophic temperament, while equally
hurtful to his popularity, greatly endears him to the few. It is the
pure and elevated tone of all he writes. In this quality he is
eminent. He is a mountaineer on the steeps of Parnassus, whose game by
instinct never flies to the plains. He lifts ordinary subjects into a
seeming of unreality. Things seem to lose outline and glide away from
the grasp; as clouds that have form enough when seen from the earth,
are shapeless vapor to the aeronaut among them. So, again, the
interest fails in comparison with a lower grade of thought. People
will buy very indifferent sketches, but care very little for the most
accurate bird's-eye view. There is a singular charm in this unlabored,
if not unconscious loftiness; but the mass of readers weary, as they
do of a lecture on astronomy, from over-tension of unused faculties.
What is the difference to a reader whether an author passes beyond his
reach by going apart into abstruseness or soaring away into idealism?

We have shown before how the versification suffers. Everywhere reason
clogs the wings of rhyme. Our author is for ever putting his Pegasus
in harness to the car of some truth or other. A warm human
sympathizer, a deep and poetical worshipper, a burning and noble
protestant against the woes and wrongs of Ireland, with scholarship,
reading, talent, every auspicious omen, he has never fulfilled, and
may never fulfil, the promise that is in him. {76} His reason is for
ever making clear to his better angels of fancy and feeling the exact
boundaries of just thought, which they may not overstep. It robs his
philanthropy of human tenderness, his religion of ardor, his
patriotism of enthusiasm. His is the calm, trained strength of perfect
mental soundness; the fiery contractile thrills, that make of the
impassioned man a giant for one grand effort, he seems to do battle
with and slay before they can grow into acts. What a combination of
qualities goes to the making of a great poet!

The poems now before us range themselves mainly into three grand
classes--sonnets, religions poems, and lyrics, etc., on Ireland. There
are some noteworthy exceptions, however--as, for example, the
excellent poems on Shelley and Coleridge, whom he thoroughly
appreciates, the widely known stanzas called The AEolian Harp, and the
splendid lines on Delphi--one of his very best efforts. But our
purpose lies rather with the poet, as revealed through his works, than
with the poems themselves. So we must leave a wide, unnoted margin of
miscellaneous pieces, where any reader whom we may succeed in
interesting in the beauties of our author may range unprejudiced by
our expressions of opinion, and confine ourselves to our true
subject--the poet himself, viewed successively in the three great
pathways he has opened for himself. We only pause to advise our reader
that we make no pretensions to gathering the harvest, but leave golden
swathes behind instead of ordinary gleaning.

Sonnets seem to require a peculiar talent. Almost all our best men
have written them, and almost all badly, while the small newspaper and
periodical craft strand on them daily. Only our deepest and most
refined thinkers have written really good ones, and to succeed in them
at all, is to join a very limited coterie, where Shakespeare and
Milton have but few compeers. When, then, we say that De Vere is the
author of some of the best we have in our literature, we justify high
expectation.

He is one of the most voluminous of sonnet writers. There are in the
books between one hundred and fifty and two hundred. It seems to be
his favorite outlet for those briefer, choicer reflections that lose
their charm by being amplified for the vulgar comprehension,

  ". . . . As orient essences, diffuse
  On all the liberal airs of low Cashmere,
  Waft their rich faintness far to stolid hinds,
  To whom the rose is but a thorny weed;"

but which, after all, are the trifles that make up the inner life of a
soul, and for whose waste, as our author himself says,

  "Nature, trifled with, not loved,
     Will be at last avenged."

It may well be imagined that this is a path peculiarly adapted to our
author's contemplative yet versatile mind. He is singularly fitted for
this style of composition, which does not demand the least particle of
that kind of spirit and impulsive animation in which he is wanting;
and accordingly he has written a number of sonnets which will, we
think, compare with the very best for eloquence and just thought.
Walter Savage Landor--_non sordidus auctor_--deliberately pronounced
the one on Sunrise the finest in the language.

Two others, by which he is probably best known to American readers,
appeared in the Atlantic Monthly, one written March, 1860, the other,
June 12, 1861, addressed to Charles Eliot Norton, the editor of the
North American Review. Both relate to the national struggle, and
indicate a somewhat lively interest in our affairs, but otherwise are
not remarkable. Much better than these we find the following. It is a
good sample besides of the author's general style:

  "Silence and sleep, and midnight's softest gloom,
  Consoling friends of fast declining years,
  Benign assuagers of unfruitful tears,
  Soft-footed heralds of the wished-four tomb!
  Go to your master, Death--the monarch whom
  Ye serve, whose majesty your grace endears.
  And in the awful hollows of his ears
  Murmur, oh! ever murmur: 'Come, O come!'
  Virginal rights have I observed full long,
  And all observance worthy of a bride.
  Then wherefore, Death, dost thou to me is wrong,
  So long estranged to linger from my side?
  Am I not thine? Oh! breathe upon my eyes
  A gentle answer, Death, from thine elysian skies!"

{77}

It is no easy thing to be publicly and yet gracefully sad. Do not we
mentally associate an idea of weakness or effeminacy with melancholic
writings? Yet here is--we feel it at once--the true sadness we all
respect: the unaffected weariness which does not cry out its grief,
but sighs because it suffers and is strong.

It is not often that De Vere leaves the lofty pinnacles of thought or
the pleasant hills of fancy for sterner fields, but here for once he
swoops from his eyrie into the following scathing lines. They are the
last of five very spirited sonnets on Colonization, each of which is
worth quoting, did but our space permit:

  "England, magnanimous art thou in name;
  Magnanimous in nature once thou wert;
  But that which ofttimes lags behind desert,
  And crowns the dead, as oft survives it--fame.
  Can she whose hand a merchant's pen makes tame,
  Or sneer of nameless scribe--can she whose heart
  In camp or senate still is at the mart,
  A nation's toils, a nation's honors claim?
  Thy shield of old torn Poland twice and thrice
  Invoked; thy help as vainly Ireland asks,
  Pointing with stark, lean linger from the West--
  Of western cliffs plague-stricken, from the West--
  Gray-haired though young. When heat is sucked from ice,
  Then shall a Firm discharge a national task."

This speaks for itself. It sums up the faults of the English nation
better in a dozen lines than a congress of vaporers about British
tyranny or essayists on _perfide Albion_ could do in a month of
mouthings. There is not a weak line or phrase in it, or one that is
not auxiliary to the general effect intended. This, in short, is what
we call masterly.

There are a score of other sonnets that we would wish to quote in
illustration of the refined thought and elegant delicacy of diction
which characterize them all; but we are constrained to content
ourselves with one also noticed by Landor for its singular felicity
and beauty. It is from his first book, page 268:

  "Flowers I would bring. If flowers could make thee fairer.
  And make, if the muse were dear to thee;
  (For loving these would make thee love the bearer.)
  But sweetest songs forget their melody,
  And loveliest flowers would but conceal the wearer:
  A rose I marked, and might have plucked; but she
  Blushed as she bent, imploring me to spare her,
  Nor spoil her beauty by such rivalry.
  Alas! and with what gifts shall I pursue thee.
  What offerings bring, what treasures lay before thee;
  When earth with all her floral train doth woo thee,
  And all old poets and old books adore thee;
  And love to thee is naught; from passionate mood
  Secured by joy's complacent plenitude?"

This poem is remarkable to us as containing one of the few
recognitions we have ever seen of that beauty which rises above the
province of passion, and strikes a dim awe into admiration. They are
not many who can feel it, and few, indeed, who have expressed it. The
same thought occurs in another passage referred to by Landor:

  "Men loved; but hope they deemed to be
   A sweet impossibility."

But we have a further reason for preferring this to several equally
fine. It is to note what may be another of De Vere's unconscious
adaptations. The well-known scholar, Henry of Huntington, addressed to
Queen Adelicia of Louvaine some lines which hinge upon the very same
turn of thought. The real excellence of the verses emboldens us to
subjoin a few of them, that the reader may observe the resemblance:

  "Anglorum regina, tuos, Adeliza, decores
     Ipsa rcferre parans Musa stupore riget.
  Quid diadema tibi, pulcherrima? quid tibi gemma?
    Pallet gemma tibi, nec diadema nitet.
  Ornamenta cave; nec quicquam luminis inde
    Accipis; illa nitent lumine clara tuo . . . ."

We are not sure but the mediaeval poet, having no further idea beyond
mere laudation, has rather the better of the complimenting. But then
praise to a queen would be flattery to a subject.

Without trying the rather dubious policy of attempting to prove our
taste, we think that upon these sonnets alone we could rest De Vere's
claim to be a first-class sonnet writer. If it were not a received
impossibility, we should be tempted to call him the equal in this
respect of Shakespeare. Of course we admit the impossibility.

{78}

Leaving the sonnets, we come to a far more interesting portion of the
works before us--the religious poems. As a Christian, our author is
indeed admirable. He evinces not only a deep, strong, real, and
realizing faith, but much fruitful thought over the mental details, so
to speak, and a wonderful comprehension of the theory, theology, and
mysteries of the church.

More properly than religious poems, we should speak of poems on
religion; for the man's whole life is a religious poem. Scarcely a
scrap is not full of his deep Catholicity. Of verses specially and
professedly devotional, these volumes contain few, besides the May
Carols, save some Poems on Sacred Subjects, which we find below the
author's average. Some of them carry abstractness to the verge of
vagary. What color of pretence, for instance, has a man for printing
(if he _must_ write it), and deliberately inviting the public to read,
a copy of verses on the Unity of Abstract Truth? We internally know we
are not Wordsworths, but it is very unpleasant to have it made so
plain. In shrewd anticipation of any mental queries, we utterly
decline saying whether we have read the lines or not. We cannot
determine which would be the more to our credit.

But we pass by unnumbered beauties to reach our author's best and most
memorable work--May Carols. This is noble alike in design, tone, and
execution. The plan is simple--to produce a series of poems in honor
of the Blessed Virgin, graduating poetical expositions of her
relations to faith according to the progress of her month of May. It
is just the topic for him, and the result is the most beautiful
development of the entire subject that can be imagined. We have no
words for the subtlety and success with which the individualities of
Mary and Jesus are wrought out. The man who, without seeking
adventitious aid by startling and shocking the habits of Christian
thought and Christian reverence, can so draw a portrait of the
Saviour, has in this alone deserved the thanks of the ages as a
standard-bearer on the march of the hosts of God. These great
delineations form the first and main function of the whole work. We
cannot set forth his purpose more lucidly than in his own words, as we
find them in the preface:

  "The wisdom of the church, which consecrates the fleeting seasons of
  time to the interests of eternity, has  dedicated the month of May
  (the birth-day festival, as it were, of creation) to her who was
  ever destined in the divine counsels to become the Mother  of her
  Creator. It belongs to her, of course, as she is the representative
  of the incarnation, and its practical exponent to a world but too
  apt to forget what it professes to hold. The following poems,
  written in her honor, are an attempt to set forth, though but in
  mere outline, each of them some of the great ideas or essential
  principles embodied in that all-embracing mystery. On a topic so
  comprehensive, converse statements, at one time illustrating highest
  excellence compatible with mere creaturely existence, at another,
  the infinite distance between the chief of earthly creatures and the
  Creator, may seem, at first sight, and to some eyes, contradictory,
  although in reality mutually correlative. On an attentive perusal,
  however, that harmony which exists among the many portions of a
  single mastering truth can hardly fail to appear, and with it the
  scope and aim of this poem."

This certainly is aiming high. Not only does the poet include in his
plan the moral delineation of her whom the church holds the highest
type of created humanity; he scales the heavens themselves. But our
author is impious Enceladus crushed beneath his own presumption, but a
Jacob wrestling with the angel of the Lord, and rising to the infinite
sky in beatific visions. Perhaps we best realize the boldness of the
enterprise when we think for how many centuries the praise of the
Mother and Son has exhausted thought and imagination of the greatest
souls. He is a daring gleaner who follows the fathers of the church
over their chosen fields. Yet the May {79} Carols are a sheaf from the
same golden foison where Augustine and Aquinas and Chrysostom led the
reapers. How fruitful must be the soil!

We have never seen anything to compare with the picture of the Holy
Child here presented, unless it be the picture of the Holy Mother. We
cannot, in our allotted space, render all the admirable gradations and
delicate shadings, but must cull with difficult choice one or two
only. One of the first is the


  MATER CHRISTI

  Daily beneath his mother's eyes
    Her lamb maturity his lowliness:
  'Twas hers the lovely sacrifice
    With fillet and with flower to dress.

  Beside his little cross he knelt,
    With human-heavenly lips he prayed;
  _His will with in her will she felt,
      And yet his will her will obeyed_. . . .

  He willed to lack; he willed to bear;
    He willed by suffering to be schooled;
  He willed the chains of flesh to wear;
    Yet from her arms the world he ruled.

  _As tapers 'mid the noontide glow
      With merged yet separate radiance burn_,
  With human taste and touch, even so,
    The things he knew he willed to learn.

  He sat beside the lowly door:
    His _homeless_ eyes appeared to trace
  In evening skies remembered lore,
    And shadows of his Father's face.

  One only knew him. She alone
   Who nightly to his cradle crept.
  And _lying like the moonbeam prone
   Worshipped her Maker as he slept_.

Whoever can read that without admiring it, is a clod: whoever can read
it without having his whole idea of Christ's childhood intensely
vivified and expanded, must be a St. John or an angel. How beautiful,
and, when we look at it, how bold is the epithet "homeless!" How
exactly it embodies the longing of his spirit out of its human prison
toward the freedom of the heavens! Yet how daringly true to imagine
the omnipresent Deity homeless! Again, how acutely the last scene
characterizes the tender timidity of Mary's mother-love, and how
natural and intensely human the conscious, sweet self-deception which
brought her to worship when only the humanity slept, and she seemed
separated from her Son and alone with her Creator! But the simile of
the taper is perhaps the best touch of all, as being the masterly
expression of one of the most subtle and difficult conceptions of the
human mind. It must divide the honors of comparison with the
concluding lines of the


  MATER SALVATORIS.

  O heart with his in just accord!
    O soul his echo, tone for tone!
  O spirit that heard, and kept his word!
    O countenance moulded like his own!

  Behold, she seemed on earth to dwell;
    But, hid in light, alone she sat
  Beneath the throne ineffable,
    Chanting her clear magnificat.

  Fed from the boundless heart of God,
    The Joy within her rose more high.
  And all her being overflowed,
    Until the awful hour was nigh.

  Then, then there crept her spirit o'er
    The shadow of that pain world-wide,
  Whereof her Son the substance bore;--
    Him offering, half in him she died.

 _Standing like that strange moon, whereon
     The mask of earth lies dim and dead,
   An orb of glory, shadow-strewn,
     Yet girdled with a luminous thread_.

For originality, and perfect expression of an idea by an image, we
know of nothing better in all our range of poetry than those two
similes. That last is especially wonderful for its reconditeness. Who
would ever think of an annular eclipse of the moon as an illustration
of religion? And yet how marvellously well it does illustrate! The
first verse of the poem is very poor and strained in its rhythm, and
the second not much better in its mysticism, which is rather adapted
to the enthusiasm of the middle ages; but the end counterbalances all.

Having thus digressed to the Blessed Virgin, we go on to note in how
many lights these poems display her. The idea of her they present is,
to an ordinary idea, as the flashing, many-faceted jewel to the rough
gem of the mines. Here, for example, the whole poetry of motherhood is
pressed into her service in a few dense lines:

{80}

  O Mother-Maid! to none save thee
    Belongs in full a parent's name:
  So faithful thy virginity,
    Thy motherhood so pure from blame!

  All other parents, what are they?
    Thy types. In them thou stood'st rehearsed,
  (As they in bird, and bud, and spray).
    Thine Antitype? The Eternal First!

  Prime Parent He: and next Him thou!
    Overshadowed by the Father's Might,
  Thy 'Fiat' was thy bridal vow;
    Thine offspring He, the "Light of Light."

  Her Son Thou wert: her Son Thou art,
    O Christ! Her substance fed Thy growth:--
  She shaped Thee in her virgin heart,
    Thy Mother and Thy Father both!

Let us pass on from this, without breaking the continuity, to

CONSERVABAT IN CORDE.

  As every change of April sky
    Is imaged in a placid brook,
  Her meditative memory
    Mirrored His every deed and look.

  As suns through summer ether rolled
     Mature each growth the spring has wrought,
  _So Love's strong day-star turned to gold
      Her harvests of quiescent thought_.

  _Her soul was as a vase, and shone
      Translucent to an inner ray;
   Her Maker's finger wrote thereon
     A mystic Bible new each day_.

  Deep Heart! In all His sevenfold might
    The Paraclete with thee abode;
  And, sacramented there in light,
    Bore witness of the things of God.

The last verse has a flaw rare in these volumes--a mixture of
metaphors. In the first two lines, "heart" is strongly personified,
and clearly represents Mary herself. In the third with no intimation
whatever, and without a break in the construction of the sentence, the
same heart is become a place, and is indicated by "there." We cannot
imagine how the author, with his susceptible taste, read it over in
the proof-sheets without feeling the jar of the phrases.

So much for the loving side of Mary's character. In depicting her
suffering, the poet has even excelled this. The first broad stroke of
his picture is

MATER DOLOROSA

  She stood: she sank not. Slowly fell
    Adown the Cross the atoning blood.
  In agony ineffable
    She offered still His own to God.

  No pang of His her bosom spared;
    She felt in Him its several power.
  But she in heart His Priesthood shared:
    She offered Sacrifice that hour. . . .

Beautifully our author hag named the succeeding poem also Mater
Dolorosa. The one is the agony of loss, the other the bitterness of
bereavement:

  From her He passed: yet still with her
    The endless thought of Him found rest;
  A sad but sacred branch of myrrh
    _For ever folded in her breast_.

  A Boreal winter void of light--
    So seemed her widowed days forlorn:
_She slept; but in her breast all night
    Her heart lay waking till the morn_.

  Sad flowers on Calvary that grew;--
    Sad fruits that ripened from the Cross;--
  These were the only joys she knew:
    Yet all but these she counted loss.

  Love strong as Death! She lived through thee
    That mystic life whose every breath
  _From Life's low harp-string amorously
      Draws out the sweetened name of Death_.

  Love stronger far than Death or Life!
    Thy martyrdom was o'er at last
  Her eyelids drooped; and without strife
    To Him she loved her spirit passed.

For once we can leave the of a poem to the unaided italics with a good
grace. To expound the exquisiteness of these lines would be like
botanically dissecting a lily. But there is a deeper underlying
excellence that may perhaps not suggest itself so irresistibly--the
marvellous intuitive delicacy of the whole conception embodied by this
poem. Only a truly profound religious feeling could thus happily have
characterized the effect of such a sorrow on such a nature. A mere
pietist would have painted a sanctified apathy; a merely smart writer
would have imbued her with an eagerness for the end of earthly
trouble; a man of talent would have made her resigned to death; the
man of genius makes her resigned _to life_. Here is the effortless
exactness of true poet.

Two more views, and we can turn from this picture of the Blessed
Virgin of the May Carols--one, her human and inferior relation to God;
and the other, her human and superior relation to ourselves. To the
first point, perhaps the most explicit of the poems is the following,
which, also, is a good example of the author s peculiar, sudden manner
of turning his broad philosophy into the channel of some forcible
application:

{81}

  Not all thy purity, although
    The whitest moon that ever lit
  The peaks of Lebanonian snow
    Shone dusk and dim compared with it;--

  Not that great love of thine, whose beams
    Transcended in their virtuous heat
  Those suns which melt the ice-bound streams,
    And make earth's pulses newly beat:--

  It was not these that from the sky
    Drew down to thee the Eternal Word:
  He looked on thy humility;
    He knew thee, "Handmaid of thy Lord."

  Let no one claim with thee a part;
    Let no one, Mary, name thy name,
  While, aping God, upon his heart
    Pride sits, a demon robed in flame.

  Proud Vices, die! Where Sin has place
    Be Sin's familiar self-disgust.
  Proud Virtues, doubly die; that Grace
    At last may burgeon from your dust.

But the poem which of all most truly, tenderly, and perfectly develops
the whole beautiful spiritual dependence of the true Catholic upon the
Mother of his God, is the Mater Divinae Gratis, already published in
The Catholic World for May, p. 216.

The beauty of this piece has already attracted wide attention. The
wonder is that any Catholic could have passed it by. It is a
theological treatise in itself. Could all the repositories of divinity
furnish a more complete reputation of those cold and narrow organisms
(we hesitate to call them hearts) whose breasts would seem to have
room for just so much piety, of a prescribed quality and regulation
pattern, and who insist that every one we love is a unit in the
divisor which assigns to each his portion of that known and limited
store, our affection? These people sincerely cannot see how one can
love Mary too without loving God less. It is as if a tree could not
strike another root without sapping its trunk. Perish this narrowness!
How long before these strait-laced souls--the moral progeny of that
unhappiest of men, Calvin--will learn to love God as well as believe
in him?

There is something very difficult of analysis about the power of these
poems. They have none of that dramatic force which consists in
skilfully selecting and emphasizing the striking sonnets of the
situation. De Vere's strength does not seem to tend toward the outward
personality, but rather lies in the direction of the soul and its
sensations. When we lay down the May Carols, we do not conceive a whit
the more clearly how the Virgin Mary looked; there is no impression to
overlie and mar our memories of the great painters' pictures of her.
But we cannot read aright without bearing away an expanded
comprehension and near, real, vivid insight into her love, her pain,
her humility, her deserving, her glory. We so enter in spirit into the
scenes of her life as absolutely to lose sight of the surroundings.
This kind of power may not be the most broadly effective, but we must
admit that it reaches our admiration through our best faculties. Its
secret lies in the fact that the author's own ideas both of Christ and
his Mother are so complete and exalted. At what advantage, for
example, he stands over the author of Ecce Homo, who, it seems, would
have us believe Christ in his childhood to have been a Hebrew boy,
much like other Hebrew boys, till ill-explained causes metamorphosed a
Galilean peasant youth into the most transcendent genius of history!
With this cold casuistic theory compare De Vere's picture of the
mother lying worshipping by the moonlit cradle of her Son and God. He
accepts in their entirety the received ideas of the church, neither
varying nor wishing to vary one jot or tittle of the law, but lovingly
investing it with all the developments of thought and all the
decorations of fancy. No Catholic can help being struck by the
singular doctrinal accuracy which pervades without perturbing the
whole of this work. The result is a portraiture of the incarnation and
the Blessed Virgin, such as an author who could set all the ruggedness
of Calvary before our eyes, and make every waving olive-leaf in
Gethsemane musically mournful in our souls, could not hope to rival by
all the efforts of graphic genius.

{82}

But scarcely less remarkable is the success in the other grand aim of
the May Carols--what he himself calls "an attempt at a Christian
rendering of external nature." His attempt has brought forth a series
of purely descriptive pieces, interspersed at intervals, intended to
present the symbolism which the aspect of May's successive phases
might offer to the imagination of faith. To cultivate Christianity in
the shifting soil of fancy is of itself a bold endeavor; but when the
method proposed is by picturing the delicate and evanescent shades of
spring's advance, the difficulty can be realized.

How far the author succeeds in this most subtle undertaking of educing
the symbolism of May, we must leave to country criticism for final
adjudication. We have our opinion; we can discover many sweet emblems;
but we cannot analyze or reason out our thoughts satisfactorily. We
recognize portraits in the May-gallery, but are not familiar enough
with nature's costumes to judge of the historical order. We can exult
with the earth in the gladness of the season; we are permeated in a
measure, as are all, with the influences of the bluer skies, the
softer breezes, the more confident advance of the flowers. But when it
comes to reading the succession of the changing clouds, harmonizing
the melody of the gales, deciphering the hieroglyphics that spring's
myriad fingers write in verdure on the woods and meadows, we feel that
ours is but a city acquaintance with May. We have rested too well
content with the beauty to think of its moral suggestiveness or
significance.

But this we do know, that the author has struck such a vein of
descriptive felicity that, according to Dr. Holmes's witty logic, he
can afford to write no more description till he dies. There are
touches of this here and there in other places, but nothing to promise
such little gems of landscape as stud the May Carols. There is an
accession of naturalness and a flow of happy phrases as soon as he
reaches one of these themes, that is like swimming out of fresh water
into salt. Take for instance, this:

  When April's sudden sunset cold
    Through boughs half-clothed with watery sheen
  Bursts on the high, new-cowslipped wold,
    And bathes a world half gold half green,

  _Then shakes the illuminated air_
    With din of birds; the vales far down
  Grow phosphorescent here and there;
    Forth flash the turrets of the town;

  Along the sky thin vapors scud;
    _Bright zephyrs curl the choral main;_
  The wild ebullience of the blood
    Rings joy-bells in the heart and brain:

  Yet in that music discords mix;
    The unbalanced lights like meteors play;
  And, tired of splendors that perplex,
    The dazzled spirit sighs for May.


It is a great disadvantage to these beautiful little poems to be thus
taken from their frames, thereby losing their emblematic and retaining
only their intrinsic beauty. But even so, there are two more which we
fearlessly present on the merit of their own unaided charms. Here is
the first:

  Brow-bound with myrtle and with gold,
    Spring, sacred now from blasts and blights,
  Lifts in a firm, untrembling hold
    Her chalice of fulfilled delights.

  Confirmed around her queenly lip
    The smile late wavering, on she moves;
  And seems through deepening tides to step
    Of steadier joys and larger loves.

  The stony Ash itself _relents,
     Into the blue embrace of May
  Sinking, like old impenitents
     Heart-touched at last;_ and, far away,

  _The long wave yearns along the coast_
    With sob suppressed, like that which thrills
  (While o'er the altar mounts the Host)
    Some chapel on the Irish hills.

We scarcely know which to admire most, the precise, clear-cut elegance
of the opening personification, the beauty of the third verse, or the
melody (how the first line matches the sense!) and admirable
comparison in the last one. Only, if the poet had ever waded among the
waves of bloom of our western prairies, he would have found a better
expression than the awkward one of "deepening tides," which is out of
character with the rest.

{83}

But the last one we give is the finest. We had put it in the first
rank ourselves before finding that it had also struck the fine ear of
Mr. Landor. It is a Claude Lorraine done into verse:

  Pleasant the swarm about the bough;
    The meadow-whisper round the woods;
  And for their coolness pleasant now
    The murmur of the falling floods.

  Pleasant beneath the thorn to lie,
    And let a summer fancy loose;
  To hear the cuckoo's double cry;
    To make the noon-tide sloth's excuse.

  Panting, but pleased, the cattle stand
    Knee-deep in water-weed and sedge,
  And scarcely crop the greener band
    Of osiers round the river's edge.

  But hark! Far off the south wind sweeps
    The golden-foliaged groves among,
  Renewed or lulled, with rests and leaps--
    Ah! how it makes the spirit long

  To drop its earthly weight, and drift
    Like yon white cloud, on pinions free,
  Beyond that mountain's purple rift,
    And o'er that scintillating sea!

We do not think we can say anything that will add to this.

There are two very noticeable faults of detail in the May Carols. One
is the great occasional looseness of rhyme. We are no lover even of
the so-called rhymes to the eye--words ending, but not pronounced
alike--but when there is no similarity of sound at all, we
emphatically demur. Here are some, taken at random, of the numberless
false rhymes which disfigure these poems: "Hills--swells;"
"height--infinite;" "best--least" (these last two in one short piece
of sixteen lines); "buds--multitudes;" "repose--coos;" "flower--more;"
"pierce--universe," etc. Now such as these are utterly indefensible.
The different sounds of the same vowel are as different among
themselves as from any other sounds, and there is no sense in taking
advantage of the accident that they are represented by the same letter
to cheat the ear and plead the poverty of the alphabet. In a man who
labored for words, we could condone a roughness here and there; but in
a writer of De Vere's fluency there is no excuse for such gross
carelessness.

We observe also at intervals a kind of baldness of expression--a
ruggedness and disregard of beauty in uttering ideas--that is
unpleasant. We think, with a learned friend who first drew our
attention to it, that this comes of the authors anxiety and
determination to be clear. The lines seem like men trained down to
fighting-weight--all strength and no contour. No doubt the high and
difficult ideas to be rendered (for it is never seen in the
descriptive interludes) constitute ample cause for this fault; but
yet, in noticing the whole, we are constrained to note it as a
blemish.

It remains to speak of the author's poems on Ireland. Here it is
evident that he feels warmly as the chief organizer himself; and yet
nothing can be further from to-day's Fenianism than the tone of his
writings. Irish they are to the core--as animated as the best in
proclaiming the wrongs of Ireland and the misrule of the invaders--but
from the same premises somehow he seems to draw a different
conclusion. This is to our author one of those near and dear subjects
which are elements in a man's inner life: he has published another
volume   [Footnote 21] upon it, and a large portion of his poems turn
on it. Most of the best among his single poems--The Irish Celt to the
Irish Norman, the Ode to Ireland, the beautiful Year of Sorrow, and
others--are either too long or too close-woven for quotation. Another
able one is The Sisters, which is full of beautiful thoughts,
independent of the Irish bearing.

  [Footnote 21: English Misrule and Irish Misdeeds. London, 1848.]

But the most prominent and elaborate of these poems is Inisfail, or
Ireland in the Olden Time--a chronological series of odes, songs, and
all manner of remarks in rhyme, illustrative of Ireland's history and
the feeling of her people, through the various epochs of her national
and denationalized life. There is more historical research, more
talent, and more time buried to waste in this poem, than would make
ten ordinary shallow reputations. The author shows a thorough and a
_vitalized_ knowledge of Irish history, and he penetrates well and
nobly the {84} succession of popular sentiment; nay, he has done a
more difficult thing still--he has caught much of the spirit of bardic
verse. Only our very decided and deliberate opinion is, that the
spirit of bardic verse is extremely like the gorilla--very hard to
catch, and not particularly beautiful when caught. We have read, we
are fairly sure, the better part of the English-Irish poetry that has
attained any note--that class of which Clarence Mangan stands at the
head, and are very much grieved and dissatisfied with it. Wherever the
Gaelic ode-form is adopted, or the Gaelic symbolism--the Roisin Dhu,
Silk of the Kine, etc.--we cannot help wishing it absent. Whatever has
pleased us in poems of this sort would have pleased as well or better
in another guise; whatever has fatigued or offended, has generally
done so on account of its Gaelic form. From weary experience, we have
reached the firm conclusion that the Gaelic style is peculiarly
adapted to the Erse tongue, and we earnestly hope that future
twangings of the harp that hung in Tara's halls may be either in the
aforesaid dialect, or else, like Moore's Irish Melodies (and does any
one wish for anything more nobly Irish?), consonant in style with the
spirit of the language they are written in. The best talent devoted to
grafting Gaelic blossoms on English stems has only served to show them
essentially uncongenial. Every attempt of this kind reads like a
translation from Erse into English, and, like all translations, hints
in every turn of the superiority of the original. And, speaking
disinterestedly (we are, as it happens, neither Gael nor Sassenach),
we scarcely think any translator likely to swim in waters where
Clarence Mangan barely floated.

Thus we admire much of Inisfail for the wonderful adaptiveness which
revivifies for us the dead feelings of dead generations, while at the
same time we cannot thoroughly like nor enjoy it. There is great
artistic taste throughout, but the poetical merit, as indeed might be
expected, Appears to us to be greatest in the delineations from the
fourteenth to the seventeenth century--neither too far nor too near in
point of time. The outlawry times elicit some fine lines: in fact,
violation of law seems always to bring our author out at his best. Of
the earlier poems, perhaps the best are The Malison and The Faithful
Norman. These are of the first, or pure Irish period. The next, or
Irish-Norman epoch, is full of the best and the worst of our author's
verse. Of The Bard Ethell we have spoken before. The Bier that
Conquered is a striking poem, as are also the quaint, rambling,
suggestive lines called The Wedding of the Clans. Amid several long,
fierce, and highly Gaelic exultations over battles, chiefs, and things
in general, we find a noble poem. The Bishop of Ross, which we really
regret we cannot quote here. Just before it, however, is one of the
best which we may have space for:


KING CHARLES'S "GRACES."

A.D. 1626

  "Thus babble the strong ones, 'The chain is slackened!
      Ye can turn half round on your sides to sleep!
  With the thunderbolt still your isle is blackened,
      But it hurls no bolt upon tower or steep.
  We are slaves in name! Old laws proscribed you;
      But the king is kindly, the Queen is fair.
  They are knaves or fools who would goad or bribe you
      A legal freedom to claim. Beware!'

II.

  "We answer and thus: Our country's honor
      To us is dear as our country's life!
  That stigma the bad law casts upon her
      Is the brand on the fame of a blameless wife
  Once more we answer: From honor never
      Can safety long time be found apart;
  The bondsman that vows not his bond to sever,
      Is a slave by right, and a slave in heart!"

There is the true ring about this--strength and spirit both. Close by
it is another--the only one of the odes we like--The Suppression of
the Faith in Ulster, which is of the same calibre.

The last book (there are three) is full of beauty as the style grows
modern. But we have cited so much that is beautiful, that we prefer
quoting one of the few but forcible instances where our most Christian
poet gives vent to his very considerable powers of sarcasm:

{85}

GOOD-HEARTED.

      "The young lord betrayed an orphan maid--
       The young lord soft-natured and easy:
  The man was 'good-hearted,' the neighbors said;
  Flung meat to his dogs; to the poor flung bread.
  His father stood laughing when Drogheda bled;
      He hated a conscience queasy!

II.

      "A widow met him, dark trees o'erhead,
      Her child and the man just parted--
  When home she walked her knife it was red;
  Swiftly she walked, and muttered, and said,
        'The blood rushed fast from a fount full-fed!
        Ay, the young lord was right "good-hearted!"'

III.

      "When morning wan its first beam shed.
      It fell on a corpse yet wanner;
  The great-hearted dogs the young lord had fed
  Watched, one at the feet and one at the head--
  But their months with a blood-pool hard by were red;
      They loved--in the young lord's manner."

There is something about the fierce bitterness here that strongly
reminds one of Tennyson's poem of The Sisters, with its weird line--

  "Oh! the Earl was fair to see!"

From several of very nearly the same purport, we select the following,
influenced to choose it, as we own, by the wonderful flow of its
measure, as well as its truly Irish beauty. There is a kind of
peculiar richness of diction that no other nation on earth ever
attains. Every reader of Tom Moore will know what we mean, and
recognize a kindred spirit in


  SEMPER RADEM

  "The moon, freshly risen from the bosom of ocean,
      Hangs o'er it suspended, all mournful yet bright;
  And a yellow sea-circle with yearning emotion
      Swells up as to meet it, _and clings to its light_.
  The orb, unabiding, grows whiter, mounts higher;
      _The pathos of darkness descends on the brine_--
  O Erin! the North drew its light from thy pyre;
      Thy light woke the nations; the embers were thine.

II.

      "'Tis sunrise! The mountains flash forth, and, new-reddened,
      The billows grow lustrous so lately forlorn;
  From the orient with vapors long darkened and deadened.
      _The trumpets of Godhead are pealing the morn:_
  He rises, the sun, in his might reascending;
      _Like an altar beneath him lies blazing the sea!_
  O Erin! who proved thee returns to thee, blending
      The future and past in one garland for thee!"


But what we regard as really the finest poem in Inisfail is an
apparent, perhaps a real, exception to our rule above stated, that
whatever of this poetry pleases us would please as well if divested of
its Gaelic form. The charm of this lies in its being so essentially
Irish in conception. It is just such an original, bold, wild
inspiration as no other body than an Irish clan could without
incongruity be made to feel. There is more intense _Irishness_ (what
other word will express it?) in it than in all the poems--ay, and half
the poets--of this century. We give it with the author's own
explanation prefixed:


  THE PHANTOM FUNERAL.

  "James Fitz-Garret, son of the great Earl of Desmond, had been sent
  to England, when a child, as a hostage, and was for seventeen years
  kept a prisoner in the Tower, and educated in the Queen's religion.
  James Fitz-Thomas, the 'Sugane Earl,' having meantime assumed the
  title and prerogatives of Earl of Desmond, the Queen sent her
  captive to Ireland, attended by persons devoted to her, and provided
  with a _conditional_ patent for his restoration .... As the young
  earl walked to church, it was with difficulty that a guard of
  English soldiers could keep a path open for him. From street and
  window and housetop every voice urged him to fidelity to his
  ancestral faith. The youth, who did not even understand the language
  in which he was adjured, went on to the Queen's church, as it was
  called; and with loud cries his clan rushed away and abandoned his
  standard for ever. Shortly afterward he returned to England, where,
  within a few months, he died.

  Strew the bed and strew the bier
      (Who rests upon it was never man)
  With all that a little child holds dear,
      With violets blue and violets wan.

  Strew the bed and strew the bier
      With the berries that redden thy shores, Corann;
  His lip was the berry, his skin was clear
      As the waxen blossom--he ne'er was man.

  Far off he sleeps, yet we mourn him here;
      Their tale was a falsehood; he ne'er was man!
  'Tis a phantom funeral! Strew the bier
      With white lilies brushed by the floating swan.

  They lie who say that the false queen caught him
      A child asleep on the mountains wide;
  A captive reared him, a strange faith taught him;--
      'Twas for no strange faith that his father died!

  They lie who say that the child returned
      A man unmanned to his towers of pride;
  That his people with curses the false Earl spurned:
      Woe, woe, Kilmallock! they lie, and lied!

  The clan was wroth at an ill report.
      But now the thunder-cloud melts in tears.
  The child that was motherless played. "'Twas sport."
      A child must sport in his childish years!

  Ululah! Ululah! Low, sing low!
      The women of Desmond loved well that child!
  Our lamb was lost in the winter snow;
      Long years we sought him in wood and wild.

  How many a babe of Fitzgerald's blood
      In hut was fostered though born in hall!
  The old stock burgeoned the fair new bud,
      The old land welcomed them, each and all!

{86}

  Glynn weeps to-day by the Shannon's tide,
      And Shanid and she that frowns o'er Deal;
  There is woe by the Laune and the Carra's side,
      And where the knight dwells by the woody Feale.

  In Dingle and Beara they chant his dirge:
      Far off he faded--our child--sing low!
  We have made him a bed by the ocean's surge,
      We have made him a bier on the mountain's brow.

  The clan was bereft! the old walls they left;
      With cries they rushed to the mountains drear.
  But now great sorrow their heart has cleft;--
      See, one by one they are drawing near!

  Ululah! Ululah! Low, sing low!
      The flakes fall fast on the little bier;--
  The yew-branch and eagle-plume over them throw!
      The last of the Desmond chiefs lies here."


We close, far from completing our sketch of the poet. We have not
exhausted the volumes before us, and they do not exhaust their author.
De Vere has written several other books, mostly of early date--from
1843 to 1850--which one must read to know him entirely. But we are
very sure that those who will read the books from which we have drawn
our illustrations will read all. There are few authors who grow so
upon the reader. Somehow the force and beauty of the thoughts do not
impress at first. We think the rationale of the process is that we
mostly begin by reading three parts of sound to one of sense. After
the melody comes the harmony; gradually, on after-reading, the glitter
of the words ceases to dazzle, and then, if ever, we commune mind to
mind with the author. This is as rare with modern readers as a hand-to
hand bayonet fight in modern battles. Now Aubrey de Vere writes a
great deal of thought so very quietly, that we miss the cackling which
even talent nowadays is apt to indulge in on laying any supposed
golden eggs of wisdom. Hence we have some singular opinions about him.
One finds him cold and impassible; another votes him a sort of
gentlemanly Fenian visionary, while a third devotes a column of one of
our best hypercritical periodicals to viewing him as a mere love-poet.
These are all windfall opinions, which had been better ripening on the
tree. The grace, the rhythm, and, above all, the stern ascendency of
truthful exactness over inaccurate felicities of expression, strike
one constantly more and more. We have ourselves passed through these
phases of opinion, besides several others; but every day fortifies our
final conviction. It is, that Aubrey de Vere is one of those true
poets whom the few love well; who will always have admirers, never
popularity; and who must wait for his full fame until that distant but
coming day when blind, deep movements of unity shall thrill the sects
of Christendom, and bigotry no longer veil from the gifted and
appreciative the merits of the first Catholic poet of to-day.

--------

{87}

From The Lamp.

UNCONVICTED; OR, OLD THORNELEY'S HEIRS.


CHAPTER X.

UNCONVICTED!


Up to the time when James Ball entered the witness-box, the whole case
had been dead against the prisoner. Even the grave doubts which the
cross-examination raised about the housekeeper's veracity had passed
unsubstantiated by any further evidence or proof; and the cook's story
of the footstep on the stairs died out of all reckoning in the modicum
of balance left in favor of the accused man when Davis, the chemist,
had closed his evidence. But when his luckless assistant got down,
after making such astounding admissions, we breathed again, and hopes
that had been trampled under foot rose once more with renewed
buoyancy. The rigid face of Serjeant Donaldson relaxed into anxious
gravity, and the frank, genial countenance of Mr. Forster--Hugh
Atherton's contemporary, and at whose side he had fought many a legal
battle--shook off its cloud as he sat down and conferred with his
senior colleague; whilst I heard a deep sigh of relief burst from
Merrivale as he uttered, "Thank God, we have got over _that_ rock!"

Then Donaldson rose. I think I hear and see him still, that
grey-headed serjeant, with his rugged Scotch features lighted up by
all the earnestness of his will, all the acute intelligence of his
mind, as he turned to the jury, and in a voice tremulous with emotion,
though it failed not to set forth the firmness of his purpose, and the
honest conviction of his soul, opened his defence of Hugh Atherton.

"Though standing at this bar," said Serjeant Donaldson, "with a heavy
cloud of accusation overshadowing his hitherto stainless name, though
branded by public opinion with the foul epithet of murderer, I can
still call Mr. Atherton 'my friend' without a flush of shame; I can
yet take him by the hand and feel proud to hail him brother by
profession, companion in the same vocation. If," said the Serjeant,
raising his voice and looking boldly around him, "the last witness had
never been placed before you and made the remarkable revelation which
you have all heard, I would still indorse what I have just said, and
assert to you, my lords and gentlemen of the jury, my deep and
heartfelt conviction of the innocence of the prisoner. But I have
other and better grounds upon which to plead before you to-day--the
only grounds upon which you can legally and conscientiously find a
verdict."

He then proceeded to review the evidence, pulling it to pieces, and
cutting right and left into every deposition, showing up the flaws,
attacking _sans ménagement_ the character and veracity of the
witnesses, dealing blows with no gentle hand on every side, and
evidently lashing "his learned friend the Solicitor-General" into a
state of suppressed fury; the whole drift and gist of his argument
going to prove that, unless the fact of the prisoner's visit to the
chemist's shop in Vero street did, to the minds of the jury, involve
as a necessary consequence his purchasing the paper of strychnine,
that also being satisfactorily established by conclusive {88}
evidence, no verdict against the prisoner could be found. On the other
hand, the last witness has positively declared that the strychnine had
been purchased under false pretences by a female, and that on the
following day hush-money had been sent to and received by James Ball
not to identify that woman who bought the poison. Further, he should
presently call a witness who would corroborate all that had been
disclosed by James Ball--one whom he, Ball, had evidently considered
as effectually silenced; one who, though but a boy, had given a very
steady, consistent, and lucid account of what had transpired on the
evening of the 23d and on the following day. After commenting further
upon this, and touching pointedly upon the curious coincidence of my
rencontre with the woman in Vere street and the visit of the woman to
the chemist's shop, he wound up his address: "There has been question
today, gentlemen, of one whose name should never have been dragged
before your notice, but who, in her agonized wish of doing her feeble
part in clearing _him_, her betrothed husband, from the foul charge
laid on him, has besought us, who are engaged in his defence, not to
spare her, not to deprive her of taking her share in the testimony we
shall bring forward in his favor. Gentlemen, this noble-minded girl.
Miss Ada Leslie, will tell you in what terms the prisoner at the bar
used to speak of his deceased uncle--the only guardian and father whom
he ever remembers--in that intimate communion which exists between a
man and the woman whom he is going to make part of himself. I need add
no more. Providence has shaken from under your feet the only ground
upon which you could condemn Mr. Atherton; Providence has, to my mind,
pointed out the road along which further inquiries into this most
heinous and wicked murder can be pursued. The same almighty and just
God will enlighten your understandings and bring your minds to a
righteous conclusion upon the case before you. But, gentlemen,
although as I said at first starting, we have better grounds than
those of private conviction upon which to urge the prisoner's
innocence--viz., those of proof and evidence--still I cannot but think
you all feel with me that, as you look at him standing there, as you
remember the tones of his voice, so familiar to us in this court,
urging upon us the arguments of a powerful mind, thoroughly healthy in
its moral tone, and the pleadings dictated by a heart whose impulses
were intrinsically generous and humane, whose guileless soul--and I
crave his pardon for uttering these words in his presence--shone out
of his honest eyes, and whose blameless life was openly known to all
and clear as the noonday--I think, if the evidence had been other than
it was, or than that which you are going to hear will be, you would
still be ready to exclaim, 'That man _cannot_ be guilty of the crime
imputed to him; _who_ is innocent if _he_ is proved guilty?"

I had no idea that Ada would be in court, far less give evidence; and
I concluded she had not mentioned it to me lest I should object or be
distresses on her account. The sensation was tremendous in court when
she entered the witness-box, accompanied by her mother. The latter's
agitation whether affected or real, seemed very great, and the
frequent application of her handkerchief to her eyes betrayed she was
crying. How Ada had got her there at all was a wonder; how she
remained silent _when_ there, was a greater marvel. Can I ever forget
her as she stood there, that tall slender girl, with her pale
colorless face of calm and high resolve, the dark shadows beneath
those eyes that looked as if now they never slept, but with the
steadfast light of deep, devoted affection shining in them as they
fell upon Hugh; her whole figure quivering with emotion, and her
clasped hands leaning upon the table before her? One look at Hugh, and
then she returned to the Lord Chief-Justice. I saw the {89}
undisguised rush of sympathy and of interest flash across his
countenance as his gaze met hers; and he leaned towards her with the
courteous attention of the innate gentleman that he was.

"My lord," she began, in tones that at first were scarcely audible,
though peculiarly sweet, but which rose and deepened as she went on,
"I have come here because there is something I wish to say to you,
although I know you think _he_ is innocent; but still I had best say
it. For many months past I have known every thought of his heart;
there has been no secret kept back from me. My lord, he loved that
poor murdered man very tenderly, even as he would have loved his
father had he lived, and he never spoke of him but with kindness and
affection. It was only on the very day it happened that he was talking
with me of the future. We were to have been man and wife--oh, I trust
in God we shall still be!--and that day he, my Hugh, said how he was
looking forward to the time when we should have a home of our own, and
he could win his uncle away sometimes from his solitary life, and make
him come to us. Do you think," she said, turning with passionate
suddenness to the jury,--"do you think he could say that to _me_ and
an hour afterwards kill the old man? do you think that of him who
never bore an unkindly thought even to a dumb animal?"

And then her womanly timidity seemed to come back, or physical
excitement overpower her; and when Mr. Frost, a young and rather
conceited-looking man, rose with a view doubtless to cross-question
her, the Solicitor-General waved him back, for she had sunk on the
chair placed for her.

Then I heard, and hearing it my heart seemed like to break, a heavy
groan burst from the prisoner's lips--the first sign of deep emotion
that had escaped him during those long weary hours of suffering and
suspense; and I law him stretch out his arms toward her with a wild
movement of unutterable love. Thank God, she neither saw nor heard!
Merrivale hastened to her, and with her mother led her out of the
court.

Jacob Mullins was then called by Serjeant Donaldson.

He said: "I am sixteen years of age, and have lived two years with Mr.
Davis, chemist in Vere street, as errand-boy. I take the medicines
home when made up, and make myself generally useful in the shop. I
never serve over the counter. I clean the pestles, mortars, and all
vessels used, but I never serve out medicines. I quite well remember
the evening of the 23d. I was sitting at the far end of the shop
behind the counter, polishing a brass mortar. I could see who came
into the shop, because where I sat was opposite the flap of the
counter, and I looked through each time any one came in. I wasn't very
busy that evening. I remember a tall gentleman coming in and asking
for some spirits of camphor. Master served him; Mr. Ball was in the
shop. I suppose it was about eight o'clock or thereabouts. I never
take much count of time, except when I have to hurry. He didn't buy
anything else. I am quite sure of it; I could swear it. I was
listening all the time. He was a very tall gentleman. I think it was
the prisoner at the bar; he was like him, but he had his hat on."

Baron Watson: "Let the prisoner put on a hat."

Witness: "Yes, that is the gentleman. I could swear it is the same."

Serjeant Donaldson: "What happened next?"

Witness: "A few minutes after the gentleman went out, a lady came in.
I did not see her face. She had on a thick veil. She asked for a grain
of strychnine. My master was out of the shop. Mr. Ball said to her,
'That's poison; I daren't give it you.' 'Oh,' says she, 'it's all
right. It's for my husband to try on a dog. He's a doctor.' 'A
doctor!' says Mr. Ball; 'where does he live?' {90}
'Just round the corner--Mr. Grainger, at the top of Vere street 'All
right,' says, Mr. Ball; and goes to the drawer where the poisons are
kept, and unlocks it, and I see him weigh it out and put it up.' 'How
much?' say a she; 'A shilling,' says he; 'and I shall come round
presently and see if it's all right.' 'Very well,' says she; 'come now
if you like.' 'No, by-and-by,' says Mr. Ball, 'when the master's
back.' On that she went out. I couldn't swear to her, nor to what she
wore. I never notices ladies' togs. She had a veil on--that's all I
know. I went home soon after nine that evening. Mr. Ball sleeps in the
house. The next day we heard that old Mr. Thorneley of Wimpole street
had been poisoned by strychnine; and then, that the poison had been
bought at our shop. Everybody was talking of it who came in. I went up
to Mr. Ball when we were alone in the shop at dinner-time, and says I,
'It's along of that strychnine that was bought last night here. I
guess, as the murder's been done.' 'Hold your confounded tongue.' says
he, 'or we shall get into a precious mess.' He jaws awful at me
sometimes, and I'm afraid of him; so I said no more and kept aloof
from him, for he looked terrible black all the afternoon. At five
o'clock the postman brought in a letter for Mr. Ball. He was in the
parlor having his tea. I called out there was a letter for him, and he
came into the shop. I saw him open the letter and take out a banknote.
'My eyes!' says I, 'you're in luck to-day, Mr. Ball.' He was reading
the letter. With that, he turned on me as fierce and red as a
turkey-cock. 'You young viper,' says he, 'if you go blabbing about my
affairs I'll get you discharged as sure as I am standing here!' I
thought he'd have killed me. Why haven't I told this before? Because
nobody's asked, and because I have been frightened of him. He's given
me money several times lately, and mother's been ill, and--" (Here the
witness broke down and began to cry.) It was no use the gentleman (the
Solicitor-General, who was  cross-questioning him) trying to bully
him. He'd told the truth; it was true as gospel. He'd take his oath
any day. He could and did swear to it all. Nobody had given him a
farthing except Mr. Ball. He'd only told this to a gentleman a few
days back who had spoken to him and then served a paper on him to
appear to-day. The gentleman had told him afterwards he was a
detective officer.

This was the pith of what Jacob Mullins deposed. In vain did the
Solicitor-General try to badger and browbeat him; he stuck like a
limpet to the same story. Confronted with James Ball, only the same
results produced. Serjeant Donaldson, at Merrivale's whispered
instigation, tried to bring out of them both a clearer identification
of the person who had bought the strychnine, but in vain. Only
Mullins, in reply to a query as to whether she spoke like a foreigner,
said he couldn't just exactly tell, but she seem to talk rather funny.
Confronted at the prisoner's request with Mrs. Haag, became confused,
and said he didn't think it was the lady; it might be and it mightn't;
was sure he never could point her out for certain. But although the
person who did buy the strychnine had not been identified, the fact
that Hugh Atherton did not buy it was satisfactorily proved, and that
was matter for the deepest thankfulness.

The two detective officers Keene and Jones were next examined. To what
is already known the following was added: Ten years ago a man of the
name of Bradley had been convicted at the Old Bailey of burglary at
Mr. Thorneley's house in the City, and sentenced to fourteen years'
penal servitude. Inspector Keene had been employed in the case, and
had been helped principally by anonymous letters, giving information
which had led to the detection of the burglar. Bradley on being
captured had hinted that he knew to whom he was indebted for {91} his
apprehension. Thinking to ferret out some accomplice, Inspector Keene
had shown him one of the anonymous communications received, and he had
immediately identified the handwriting as his wife's. He then confided
to Inspector Keene that she was a foreigner, a Belgian by birth; that
he had married her at Plymouth, and separated from her two years
after; that she was in domestic service--but where and in what
capacity he would not divulge. Either fear of or affection for her
seemed to be greatly influencing his mind. This same Bradley had made
his escape from the penal settlement in Australia during the spring of
the present year, and had been seen and recognized by Detective Jones
in a small public-house in Blue-Anchor Lane, known as one of the worst
haunts of bad characters in the metropolis. But unable with safety to
take him into custody on the night in question, the police had lost
sight of him since, up to the present time. Putting two and two
together, Inspector Keene had last week travelled down to Plymouth,
searched the parochial registers, found and obtained the certified
copy of marriage between Robert Bradley and Maria Haag which Serjeant
Donaldson had handed in to their lordships. Further, Detective Jones
stated, as a corroboration of what I had already related in my
evidence, that this Bradley, or O'Brian, as he now called himself, was
in close communication with a man of the name of De Vos, _alias_
Sullivan, who again was in communication with Mr. Lister Wilmot; this
same De Vos, or Sullivan, having formerly been in prison for
embezzlement, and was now under suspicion of uttering false coin. The
full relation of the conversation between De Vos and O'Brian on the
night of our visit to "Noah's Ark" was not without its effect upon
judges and jury.

Both the Chief-Justice and Baron Watson put repeated questions to
Jones; and the Solicitor-General quite surpassed himself in his
endeavors to browbeat both him and Inspector Keene. All to no purpose.
Nor could that learned gentleman in his final address, after the case
for the defence was closed, at that supreme moment which English law
gives to the prosecutor to the crushing of all hopes raised by the
evidence and appeal of the prisoner--not then could he remove the
impression made on all minds that a mystery hitherto unpenetrated lay
beneath the last evidence adduced.

The Lord Chief-Justice summed up. He said that, to convict a man of
murder by poison, evidence must be adduced to prove that the poison
was administered by the person accused; that the points of the case
before them were these: The murdered gentleman, Mr. Thorneley, had on
the evening of the 23d of October last received a visit from his two
nephews, Mr. Lister Wilmot, and Mr. Philip Hugh Atherton, the prisoner
at the bar; that a dispute had occurred between the three, relative to
advancing money by the deceased to Mr. Wilmot; that the brunt of Mr.
Thorneley's anger had fallen, strange to say, and from some unknown
cause, upon the prisoner; that the prisoner had retaliated, and used
words of threatening import, implying that the deceased would repent
on the morrow what he had said that night; that at nine o'clock the
housekeeper brought in the usual refreshment of which Mr. Thorneley
partook at that hour--bitter ale and hard biscuits. The prisoner at
the bar went to the table, poured out the ale into a glass, and handed
it to his uncle. Soon after the nephews, one after the other, took
leave of him and went away. Mr. Thorneley retired to rest that night
about ten o'clock, without having any further communication with his
household. In the morning he was found dead in his bed. On medical
evidence he is proved to have been poisoned by strychnine, and
strychnine is found in the few drops of bitter ale left in the tumbler
out of which the deceased had drunk on the {92} previous evening. In
the ale remaining in the bottle no strychnine is found. Now here
arises a question and a doubt. Was there, or was there not, any ale
poured out in the glass before it was brought up into Mr. Thorneley's
study? The prisoner in his statement before the magistrates, and
before the coroner, distinctly says there was; the housekeeper swears
there was not. Is the housekeeper's evidence to be relied on? Much had
been adduced that day which tended to show that at least it was
doubtful. The Chief-Justice commented at length upon the evidence of
the two detectives, and then said:

"The suspicions, however, of the police were directed to Mr. Hugh
Atherton; and the evidence had shown that he was met coming out of a
chemist's shop in Vere street on the evening of the murder, and before
visiting his uncle; that upon being taken into custody the next day,
an empty paper, labelled Strychnine, and bearing the name of Davis,
chemist, Vere street, was found in the pocket of the overcoat which he
had worn on his visit to Wimpole street. On the other hand, both James
Ball, the chemist's assistant, and Jacob Mullins, the errand-boy, had
sworn that the grain of strychnine entered as sold on the 23d was
purchased by a female on false pretenses. Both likewise swore that the
prisoner did not purchase any strychnine, but only the bottle of
camphorated spirits found on his table. Then, again, James Ball had
owned to receiving a letter containing hush-money, and a caution not
to identify the person who had bought the poison. How, then, did the
paper labelled 'strychnine' get into the prisoner's pocket? He
declares he knows nothing of it; and on that point there is no further
evidence. There was another mystery also which in his, the judge's,
mind bore very direct influence upon the case in question; and that
was the assertion of Mr. John Kavanagh that he had made and executed a
will for the deceased gentleman on the night of his death, leaving the
bulk of his property to a hitherto unknown and unrecognized son, which
son and heir had been found under peculiar and difficult
circumstances--a living confirmation of the truth of Mr. Kavanagh's
statement. The question of this will was not for the present jury to
consider; but simply they were to bear in mind the circumstances under
which it was made, the disclosures attendant, and, above all, the fact
that whereas this last will, conferring a handsome income on the
prisoner at the bar, remained a buried secret from everybody, the
prisoner included, save the lawyer who made it under solemn promise of
silence, the other will, bequeathing a mere nominal sum to the
prisoner, and cutting off with a shilling the rightful heir, namely,
Mr. Thorneley's son, was lodged with the deceased's family lawyers,
produced, read, and acted upon by them and the sole residuary legatee,
Mr. Wilmot. This was to be considered  vis-à-vis with the motive by
which the prisoner at the bar was implied to have been influenced to
the commission of the crime charged against him." The Chief-Justice
concluded, after many more comments, by saying that, although every
one must have been touched by the appearance and words of the first
witness heard in the defence, yet that, as far as evidence went, they
must not be allowed to weigh with any value. The one great question,
deduced from all that had gone before, which the jury had to consider
was, whether the prisoner at the bar had or had not purchased the
strychnine in question, had or had not introduced it into the glass of
bitter ale handed by him to the deceased, Mr. Thorneley. And he prayed
the God of light, and truth, and justice to enlighten their minds and
guide them to a right conclusion.

I have but faintly portrayed the clear, lucid manner in which that
able judge summed up the evidence, or the deep feeling expressed in
every tone of his voice. Cautious and prudent {93} to a degree as he
had been in his language, it yet gleamed out from time to time, like a
ray of sunshine, that in his own mind he considered Atherton _not_
guilty. The jury after five minutes' deliberation asked to retire.

Do you know what that suspense is,--that hanging on each minute which
might bring the issues of life or death? Can you thank what it was to
stand there for that hour and a quarter, seventy-five minutes,
forty-five hundred seconds, when every minute seemed an hour, and
every second a minute; with the dead silence reigning in the court,
broken only by casual sounds now and then, that were hushed almost
instantly, to so great a pitch had the interest and suspense of the
whole crowd collected there risen; your eyes fixed upon that fatal
door through which you knew the decision would be borne, with your
heart throbbing in dull, heavy thumps against your breast, and your
breath almost bushed and dying on your lips? So we stood that evening,
the dense November fog stealing into the court, and the gas-lamps
flaring garish and yellow in the thick atmosphere, waiting for the
verdict. Twice over was a message sent in from the jury-room to the
judges, demanding further explanation or elucidation on some point or
other. And still we waited. At last the door opened, and they filed
back one by one into their box, and took their seats in solemn
silence, and were instantly harangued by the clerk of the court, and
called upon to declare whether Philip Hugh Atherton was guilty or
innocent of wilful murder. Amidst a dead hush, a stillness that was
thrilling in its intensity, the foreman stood up and pronounced the
verdict, "NOT GUILTY." I saw the prisoner raise his hands for one
moment, and then his head drooped on his breast, and he leaned heavily
against the railing in front of him. I saw Merrivale rise hastily,
and, turning round, lay his hand upon Hugh's shoulder, and his counsel
eagerly stretching out their bands towards him in fervent
congratulation; and then was heard the Chief-Justice's voice
addressing the foreman of the jury:

"The peculiarities and complexity of the case make it needful that we
should ask upon what grounds you have given in your verdict."

Foreman: "We find the prisoner not guilty, my lord, on the ground that
it is proved he did not buy the strychnine, and that the evidence of
the housekeeper is unreliable evidence. But we think that until the
mystery of the murder is cleared up, suspicion must still attach
itself to Mr. Atherton."

The Chief-Justice to the prisoner: "It is usual to say whether we,
before whom a case has been tried, agree in the verdict of the jury.
Both myself and my brother Watson do most fully in this instance. We
agree that upon the evidence brought forward to-day you could not by
the criminal law be convicted; but we also agree in the remark made by
the foreman that a degree of suspicion and doubt will rest upon you so
long as the real perpetrator of this horrible crime is not
forthcoming. As having known you under happier circumstances, I
sincerely trust and pray for your sake that time may bring to light
this hidden deed of darkness."

The judges rose and left the court. Then arose from all parts a savage
yell of disappointment. Once before I told how thirsty the public were
for another sight of the hangman and his victim; and now to snatch
their prey from under their very eyes, with the stain of crime upon
him, with a shadow of the gallows hanging over him, was more than they
could bear. Amidst groans and hisses, amidst a deluge of the foulest
epithets, he passed out of the court--UNCONVICTED. Unconvicted, but
not unsuspected; uncondemned, but not unblemished. With the taint of
murder clinging to him, with his fair good name tarnished by the
withering breath of imputed crime, and his innocent life robbed of its
{94} noblest beauty in the eyes of his fellow-men, Philip Hugh
Atherton left that criminal court and became once more a free, and yet
a marked man beneath his native sky. His whole position opened out
clear before me in that one brief second which succeeded the closing
the trial--all its future suffering and sorrow. Oh! if he would but
now realize that at least one friend was true to him, that one heart
warmed to him with the same affection as ever, who would devote
himself to clearing away every cloud that dimmed his future! And
dashing away the blinding tears that would force themselves into my
eyes, I made my difficult way through the crowd and gained the outer
court. A carriage stood opposite the private door, and a double line
of policemen guarded a passage to it. I hurried forward. Hugh Atherton
and Lister Wilmot passed quickly out, the carriage-door shut, and they
drove off.

"Atherton and Wilmot!" I was saying the names aloud to myself, when I
heard a mocking laugh. Standing beside me, and looking up into my
face, was Mrs. Haag.

"Have you been drinking again, Mr. Kavanagh?" she said in her peculiar
hard tones, and was gone in a moment. But she left what she little
dreamed of leaving behind her--the indelible impression on my mind of
her strong resemblance to Lister Wilmot.



CHAPTER XI.

FOUND!

Yes, most undoubtedly, most undeniably, a strong likeness did exist
between Lister Wilmot, old Thorneley's nephew, and Maria Haag,
Thorneley's housekeeper,--a likeness that, as I walked home from the
Old Bailey and recalled the various points in their features and
expressions, grew yet more striking to my mental vision. The
housekeeper was fair, with sandy hair; so was Lister Wilmot. The
housekeeper's eyes were of  that peculiar blue-grey, cold, passionless
in their expression; so were Wilmot's. Mrs. Haag's features were cast
in a perfectly Flemish mould, unmarked, broad, flat; Wilmot's were
better defined, especially the nose, and yet they were of the same
stamp, allowing for that difference. But the peculiar resemblance lay
in a character of the tightly-drawn lips, in the dark, evil,
scintillating light that gleamed from time to time in both his and her
eyes; the expression so often alluded to in these pages, full of
danger, of defiance; a glance that sent your blood shivering back to
your heart; a look that told, as playing as words could speak, of
unscrupulousness and utter relentlessness in the pursuit of any
selfish purpose. And as this forced itself with distinct clearness
upon my mind, I remembered the question put to me in Merrivale's
office on the day of the funeral by Inspector Keene,--"Did you ever
see a likeness to any one in Mr. Wilmot?" and my answer, "No, not that
I know of. We have often said he was like none of his relative
living." But how to account for this likeness established so suddenly?
I tried to recollect all I had ever heard about Wilmot. Thorneley had
acknowledged and treated him in all respects as his nephew; he was
thus named in the will made by Smith and Walker, and Hugh Atherton had
told me Lister was the son of Gilbert Thorneley's, his own aunt; that
the marriage had been an unhappy one; that she died soon after her
son's birth; and that of Mr. Wilmot, his uncle-in-law, he knew
nothing. How had this strange and striking likeness arisen? Had he
been privately married to Mrs. Haag? Surely not; and then I remembered
what had come out in court to-day about her connection with Bradley,
alias O'Brian. Old Gilbert Thorneley certainly was no fool; he would
have been too wide awake to be tricked into a marriage with a woman of
whose antecedents {95} he had not made himself perfectly sure. The
conjecture of Haag being his wife was dismissed almost as soon as it
was entertained. Fairly at a nonplus, and yet feeling that much might
come out of this new conviction, I resolved to send for Inspector
Keene as soon as possible, and impart to him all the crowd of thoughts
and speculations and ideas to which the impression received this
evening had given birth. Meanwhile it is necessary I should relate
events as they happened after the trial.

Discharged and yet disgraced, Hugh Atherton left the court that day
with his future blasted, with a blot on his shield and a stain upon
his name. The jury could not convict him, but public opinion hooted
him down, and the press wrote him down. His character was not simply
"blown upon" by the insidious soft breath of undertoned scandal, but
caught up and shivered to pieces in a whirlwind of shame and ignominy.
Friends shunned him, acquaintances cut him; society in general tabooed
him, and "this taboo is social death." Society set its ban upon him;
but Lister Wilmot stuck to him. Stuck to him tight and fast--after
this manner: He went about from one person to another, from this house
to that, and talked of "his poor cousin Atherton, his unfortunate
relative, his much-injured friend." He would ask So-and-so to dinner,
and then when the invitation was accepted, he would add, "You won't
mind meeting my cousin, poor Atherton; he is very anxious to do away
with that unfortunate impression made at the trial; I do assure you
that he is innocent."

The consequences are evident. You may damn a man with faint praise;
you may doubly damn a man by overstrong patronage. And this was done
to perfection by Wilmot. He--a young, agreeable, and not bad-looking
man--was a far different person in the eyes of the world from rough
old Gilbert Thorneley; and when he stepped into the enormous wealth of
his uncle--when, in spite of the existence of the son and heir, no
will was forthcoming, no legal grounds could be found on which to
dispute his possession, the world made her best bow to him, and
society knelt at his feet, offered up her worship and swung her
censers before him. And I had to stand aside and see it all--stand
aside with the bitter smart of broken friendship, of rejected
affection, rankling in my breast. That fatal evening, oh that fatal
evening! One word, and he had turned with me, friends for evermore;
one word, and all the anguish and misery, the blight and the sorrow,
of the past weeks had been saved!

Hugh and I never met after his trial but once. It was on the 3d of
December, the day on which Ada Leslie attained her majority, that I
saw him for the last and only time. I went to Hyde Park Gardens early
in the morning, to offer her my congratulations for her birthday, to
relinquish my guardianship, and to settle many matters which were
necessary on her coming of age.

I need not say that it cost me something to give up the sweet
relationship of guardian and ward; that it was like bidding a farewell
to almost the only brightness that had been cast across my path in
life. There was much business to settle that day, and perforce I was
obliged to detain Ada for a long time in the dining-room. Just before
I rose to leave, Hugh came in. He greeted Ada, and then turning to me
simply bowed. My blood was up; now or never should he explain the
meaning of his past conduct; now or never should the cloud which had
intervened between us be cleared away; now or never should the
misunderstanding be removed.

"Atherton," I said, "I have a right to demand the cause of this change
in you; I have a right to know what or who it is that is murdering our
friendship. No, Ada, do not go away. Be my interpreter with him. _You_
know how much cause he has had to doubt me."

{96}

I saw his face working as if powerful emotions were contending for
mastery in him; but he answered in very cold, measured tones: "If I
have been mistaken, if the heavy load of trouble I have had to go
through has warped my judgment, I trust I may be forgiven; but I see
no reason at present to wish that our former intimacy should be
renewed."

"But why? in heaven's name, why?"

He looked towards Ada, who was standing near him, and then at me.

"If your own heart, Kavanagh, does not supply the reason, I have
nothing more to say." And then, as if a sudden impulse had come over
him, he stretched out his hand to me, and as I grasped it he said in a
voice that shook with agitation: "It is best for us both, John; we can
only forgive and forget."

"Hugh!" said Ada, laying her hand upon his arm, "do be friends with
him. I cannot imagine what has made you think so ill of your best and
truest friend."

But for reply he shook his head and quickly left the room. I took my
leave of Ada and went away. And thus we parted--Hugh and I, after more
than twenty years passed almost entirely together in the most intimate
communion of friendship--a friendship that I for one had never thought
could have been broken save by death, and which even then would have
risen strengthened, purified, and perfect beyond the grave.

Weeks passed on after this last meeting. I was very much occupied with
business that had been accumulating during the past three months, and
I was thankful to plunge into it, and drown in the overpress of work
bitter thoughts that rose but too constantly for my peace. I seldom if
ever went to Hyde Park Gardens. How could I after Hugh Atherton's
steady refusal of any explanation? for I knew I should constantly meet
him there, and it would prove only a source of pain to us all. Poor
young Thorneley remained under my care; Marrivale had then told by
Hugh he should not interfere in any way, excepting to make over the
5000_l_. left him by his uncle to the idiot. Further, I learnt that he
had withdrawn his name from the barrister's roll; but nothing more as
to his future movements transpired. The housekeeper had suddenly
disappeared, and with her had likewise disappeared Inspector Keene.
Jones told me he believe he had gone, on his own responsibility, "to
keep an eye on her." So December went by, Christmas had gone, and the
new year had set in. "I shall hear of their marriage soon," I thought
to myself. "Surely they will let me know _that_." And it was now the
end of January, when one day, as I was deep over some papers, the door
of my private office opened, and a young clerk who was replacing
Hardy, laid up with a fit of gout, looked in. "A lady, sir, wants to
see you."

"What is her name? I'm very busy. If it's nothing particular, ask her
to call to-morrow."

"She says it's most particular, and she won't give her name. She's
very young, and I think she's crying."

"Then show her in."

And in a moment Ada Leslie stood before me.

"Ada! my dear child, what is it?"

She was trembling violently.

"Gone!" she said in her heart-broken accents.

"Gone!" I repeated. "Who?"

"Hugh, Gone to Australia. Look here!" and she thrust a crumpled letter
into my hand. It was indeed a farewell from him--a farewell written
with all the passionate tenderness of his love for her, but admitting
not the shadow of a hope that he would falter in his determination. It
was more than he could bear, he said, the disgrace that had been
heaped upon him; more than he could stand, to meet the cold averted
looks, the sneers, the innuendos which fell so thickly on his path.
Nor would he condemn her to share his lot; the shame that had come
{97} on him should never be reflected on her. He bade her farewell
with many a vow and many a prayer. She had been his first love, she
would be his last; and to know she was happy would be all he would
ever care to hear from the land he was leaving, even if that happiness
were shared with another. Much more he said, and I read it on to the
end.

"How could he! Oh, how could he!" she cried, wringing her hands, when
I had finished and laid down the letter. "Did he not know my whole
heart and soul were bound up in him? Did he not know that he was my
very life? And he has gone from me, left me."

I could not answer for a minute. I was thinking deeply.

"Ads" I said at last, "this is not entirely his own doing. It is
Lister Wilmot's."

"No, no!" she said, moaning and rocking herself backwards and
forwards; "you are mistaken. He is in great distress about it. This
letter was inclosed to him last night; he knew nothing of it."

"Ada, I feel convinced that he did and that he does know. Child, let
me speak to you once more as your guardian and your dead fathers
friend. Take your mind back to that morning before the inquest, and to
a conversation which passed between us then. You remember that Wilmot
had been at your house before me, and repeated something which poor
old Thorneley said the evening of his death--something about you and
me. You called it then, Ada, 'worse than foolishness;' so I will call
it now. Do you remember?'

"I do," she said faintly, the color rising to her cheeks.

"That has been dragged out several times since, privately and
publicly--always by Wilmot himself or at his instigation. Has Hugh
never spoken about it with you?"

"Yes," she answered in the same low tones. "He spoke of it once, very
lately. I was trying to persuade him to be friends with you. It was
the only time he ever said an unkind word to me; but he was angry
then." A sob broke from her at the remembrance.

"I don't wish to distress you; but just think if those thoughts and
feelings were put into his mind and harped upon, traded with by one
professing himself to be so staunch a friend just now,--can we wonder
at the results?"

She looked at me as if she hardly understood.

"I mean," I said, speaking as calmly as I could, "that he was led to
believe it true. He thought I was attached to you, and desirous of
winning you from him."

She was silent for some moments.

"What am I to do?" she said at last.

And I too was silent. One thing presented itself to my mind, if only I
had the heart to speak it out, if only the courage. Suddenly she
looked up with a happy light in her eyes and almost a smile on her
lips. She leaned forward with breathless earnestness. I felt
instinctively she had thought on the same thing, and that she had
resolved to act upon it.

"I can go after him. That is the right thing for me to do, is it not,
guardian?"

For a moment my heart stood still. I knew she would go.

"Can you bear the voyage, Ada?"

"I could bear anything,--all for his sake."

And I felt that her answer was but a faint shadowing of the great
truth that filled her heart.

"Then go," I said; "and may God's blessing go with you!"

I rose, turned my face towards the window, and looked out into the
desolate square with its leafless trees, its snow-covered walks;
looked out into the dull blank future, into the cheerlessness of
coming years.

There and then it was settled she should follow Atherton to Australia
by the overland route, and thus reach Melbourne before his ship could
arrive. I asked her if she would not find great difficulty in
persuading her mother to {98} accompany her, and without whom she
could not go; but she told me she thought not; Mrs. Leslie would
rather enjoy the excitement of travelling. We talked long and
earnestly that morning, and I expressed to her my strong convictions
that the day would come before long when we should see Atherton
cleared from the remotest suspicion of his uncle's murder. All the
sweet old confidence of former days seemed to have come back, and she
opened her heart fully and freely to me. I learnt from her very much
of Wilmot's late conduct, of which I mentally made notes; it was all,
though she little thought it then, valuable information to guide me on
to the one thing I had set my heart on doing, viz., sifting the
mystery of Thorneley's murder and the discovery of the lost will.
Before she left me I had exacted a promise that of her intended
journey nothing should be said to Wilmot; and finally we fixed on the
4th of February for her to start.

The days flew by with more than usual fleetness, so it seemed to me;
and the 1st of February found Ada and her mother with every
preparation completed for their long journey. Up to that moment the
promise made to me had been rigidly kept, and Lister Wilmot was still
in ignorance of their intended movements. His absence from town for a
fortnight rendered this a comparatively easy task, and he was not
expected to return until after the 6th. On the evening of the 1st I
received a note from Miss Leslie.

"I have been greatly taken by surprise and much distressed," she
wrote; "this morning's post brought me an offer of marriage from
Lister Wilmot. He speaks of Hugh's heartless desertion and his own
_long_ attachment. Either he is mad or deliberately insults me. I
entreat you to act as if you still were, and what I shall always
consider you, my guardian, and answer it for me. A horrible fear of
him possesses me, and all I pray is that he may know nothing of this
journey until we are well on our road."

"This then," said I to myself, as I sat down to do Ada's bidding, "is
the reason why Hugh was got  so suddenly and secretly. The secret is
out at last, Master Wilmot; but you have overshot your mark. This time
you have not a trusting friend, not a confiding girl, to deal with;
but with me, a man of law; and I'll be even with you yet. I've a heavy
grudge to wipe out against you, and you shall smart with a bitter
smart."

But before all it was necessary to be prudent, and I answered his
letter to Ada with temperate words and calm politeness in her name.
_At present_, I wrote, she had commissioned me to say she could not
entertain the subject of his letter. In a month's time she would be
glad to see him. Only let him fall into that trap, and she would be
safely on her road to Hugh.

How anxiously I waited for a reply, I need hardly say. It came at last
to Ada (I had told her what and why I had thus written). He would wait
a month, a year, ten years, if only at last she could learn to love
him. The bait had taken; and we breathed again.

The 4th of February came, and they started. I had engaged an
experienced and trusty courier to travel with them, and they took an
old confidential servant to act as maid. I accompanied them to Dover,
and saw them on board the packet. Before it started Ada took me aside.

"John."

For the first time and the last she called me by my Christian name.

"Yes, Ada."

"Will you keep this for my sake, in case we never meet again? and
remember, oh remember, that I shall always cherish you as the dearest
friend I ever had!"

She took my hand and slipped on my finger a twisted circlet of gold,
in which one single stone was set, engraven with the word "Semper." It
lies there now, it will lie there when I am in my grave.

"I will keep it for ever and ever, Ada."

{99}

One kiss I took from her uplifted tearful face--that too the first and
last; and praying God to bless and guard her, left her. Until far out
at sea, till the last faint speck of the departing vessel had
disappeared beyond the horizon, till daylight had verged into the grey
of approaching night, and shore and sea and sky were all blended in
the thickening gloom, I watched from the desolate pier-head, with the
winter wind whistling around me, and the dashing spray, the roaring
waves, beneath. O Ada, fare you well! I have looked for the last time
on your fair loved face, for the last time gazed into your tender
eyes, for the last time pressed your kindly hand! Is it "worse than
foolishness" now to kiss this little ring, and hold it to my heart to
still the dull pain there? See now, as I write these lines my eyes
grow dim looking back to the hour when I turned away from that distant
view. Not on earth, Ada, shall we meet again, but in the better land,
"the land beyond the sea."

. . . . .

Two months had passed away since they had all gone,--Hugh, Mrs.
Leslie, Ada. By this time they had reached that distant land for which
they were bound; and I sat one evening in April by my solitary hearth,
with my books and pipe by my side, and little Dandie, Hugh's dog,
lying at my feet. I had begged hard of Ada to leave him with me. Both
my clerks had long since gone home, and office hours were past, when a
sharp double knock came at the outer door. I went and opened it. A man
rushed in, took the door forcibly from me, closed it, and then seizing
my hand wrung it till my arm ached. It was Inspector Keene.

"_Found it!_" he cried, flourishing his hat in the air. "Hurrah! found
it."

I thought he had been drinking; and lugging hold of him by the collar
of his coat, I drew him into my room, and sat him down in a chair.

"What the deuce is all this about? What have you found? Can't you
speak?" I cried, giving him a shake; for he had only flourished his
hat again in reply to my first question, and cried "Hurrah!"

"Excuse me, Mr. Kavanagh, but I'm beside myself to-night."

"So it seems," I answered drily. "What have you been drinking for?"

He was sobered in a moment.

"I've touched nothing but a cup of coffee since this morning, sir."

"Then what is the matter with you? What have you found?"

"Mr. Kavanagh, I've found the _will!_"

"Nonsense! Where?"

"In the house in Wimpole street. Do you recognize this, sir?" he said,
drawing a document from his breast-pocket, crumpled and dirtied.

"Merciful heavens! it is the will I drew up!"

"You could swear to it, sir?"

"Yes, ten thousand times yes!" I had it unfolded and laid before me.
There was the firm, bold signature of old Gilbert Thorneley; and below
the crooked, ill-formed writing of John Barker, footman, and Thomas
Spriggs, coachman. In the corner the date, and my own name which I had
signed.

"In the name of heaven, where and how did you find this, Keene?"

"In the housekeeper's bedroom in Wimpole street, concealed under a
loose plank in the floor. You know, sir, I have had my thoughts and
suspicions for long; I have watched and waited. To-day my time came.
The house is being done up. The plumber who has the doing of it is a
friend of mine. One workman more or less made no difference: I have
done odder things before than use the white-washing brush. I have been
in that house for the last three days, and to-day I whitewashed the
ceiling in Mrs. Haag's bedroom."

"I understand. And searched it besides?"

{100}

"Just so, sir. She had done it cleverly; but I'm her match in cunning.
I found the plank that had been disturbed, and I found the will under
it and here I am."

A text came to my mind,--"Be sure your sin will find you out;" and I
repeated it half aloud.

The inspector heard me. "Yes, sir, yes," he said gravely. "And there's
another and a worse crime than stealing her master's will that I'm
fearful she's guilty of."

"You mean the murder?"

"I do."



TO BE CONCLUDED IN OUR NEXT.

------

ORIGINAL.

MY SOLDIER.

  "Dear heart," he said, "I love you so,
    I dare not offer you my love
  Till passion purified in woe
    Shall worthier offering haply prove.

  "Then let us part. Mere absence is
    To love like mine enough of pain,
  As presence is enough of bliss;
    So welcome loss that leads to gain.

  "Yes, let us part. The bugles call,
    For God and you I draw the sword:
  Your tears will bless me if I fall,
    And if I live your kiss reward."

  He said, and parted. Long I staid
    To watch while tears would let me see,
  And longer, when he vanished, prayed
    That God might bring him back to me.

  Ah me! it was a selfish prayer
    To rob him of the nobler part;
  And God hath judged more wisely. Bear
    His judgment humbly, bleeding heart!

  Alas! I know not if I sin;
    In vain I wrestle with my woe.
  In vain I strive from grief to win
    That loftier love he sought to know.

  Mine is a woman's love alone--
    A woman's heart that wildly cries,
  "Oh! give me--give me back my own,
    Or lay me where my soldier lies!"


D. A. C.

------

{101}

ORIGINAL.


DIVORCE LEGISLATION IN CONNECTICUT.  [Footnote 22]

  [Footnote 22: Divorce legislation in Connecticut. By Rev. H. Loomis,
  Jr., North Manchester, Conn. article in the new England, for July,
  1865.]


The deadly and destructive epidemic of divorce legislation has crept
through our social system with such stealthy and noiseless advances,
and the Catholic community is so completely free from its contagion,
that we were startled at the facts displayed in the able article which
has suggested our present comments. Connecticut, it appears, stands
pre-eminent among the states for the facility and frequency of
divorce. Mr. Loomis says "that the name of Connecticut has become a
name of reproach among her sister states, with a shameful notoriety
surpassed by only one state in the Union." Nevertheless, many, if not
most of the other states, are entitled to a fair share in the same
reproach, having admitted the same false and ruinous principle into
their legislation. We confine our remarks therefore to Connecticut,
merely because it is a sample of the state of things generally
existing, and because we are furnished with the authentic statements
which are our necessary data by the principal periodical published in
that state.

These statements are, briefly, that divorces are granted by the
Superior Courts, under the statutes of the Legislature, _a vinculo
matrimonii_, leaving both parties free to marry again, for the
following causes: 1. Adultery; 2. Desertion; 3. Habitual Intemperance;
4. Intolerable Cruelty; 5. Imprisonment for Life; 6. Infamous Crime;
7. "_Any such misconduct as permanently destroys the happiness of the
petitioner and defeats the purposes of the marriage relation._"
Moreover, that within the last fifteen years 4,000 divorces have been
granted, of one for every twenty families. To this we add the further
statement that, more than one-fifth of the population being Catholics,
who never ask for these divorces, the proportion is increased to one
married couple out of every sixteen Protestant families.

These are the demonstrated facts in the case. And, in addition, we
have the testimony of Mr. Loomis, published with the sanction of the
editor of the New Englander, that the courts despatch these divorce
cases with the most shameful levity and haste, in many cases without
any due notice having been given to the respondent, and without any
close examination of witnesses.

Mr. Loomis says:

  "It need hardly be matter of surprise, in these circumstances, if a
  citizen of the state of Connecticut, entitled to the protection of
  the law in his most sacred rights, should chance to return from a
  temporary absence on business in another state, and find that in the
  meanwhile he had been robbed of wife and children, and of all which,
  for him, constituted home, on evidence which would not be sufficient
  before any jury in the state to take from a man property to the
  amount of five dollars, or even the possession of a pig; and to
  find, moreover, that both wife and children have, by the authority
  of law, been placed beyond his own control, perhaps in the hands of
  one who has conspired and paid for his ruin. The case supposed is
  not wholly imaginary. There is no reason, so far as the
  administration of the law is concerned, why it should not be
  frequent! In many cases the absence of the respondent is assured by
  pecuniary inducements, and in a yet larger number it must be
  confessed there is no opposition, because there is a common desire
  to be free from a burdensome restraint.

"It is doubtless true that, in the main, our courts have held
themselves bound at least by the letter of the law, though their
decisions are often hurried and based upon {102} wholly unsifted
evidence. And yet lax as are even the terms of the present law, it is
difficult to conceive how some of the decrees of divorce which have
been granted during the past five years can be brought within the
language of the so-called 'omnibus clause.' What shall we say of such
cases as these, for instance, in which, in the western part of the
state, a man and woman came into court with the confession that they
had entered into the bonds of matrimony at the mature age of
threescore and ten, but that now, after three weeks' experience,
having become convinced of their folly, they desired relief from the
court; or in which, after having failed to prove legal desertion, the
counsel simply stated his ability to prove that the husband, from whom
divorce was sought had called his wife by an opprobrious epithet, too
vile and vulgar to be repeated; or in which the soul plea made was
that the parties themselves had agreed through their counsel that a
divorce should be had. And yet in each one of these cases, we are
credibly informed, a decree of divorce was actually granted. Would not
all this tend to show that the administration of no long can be wholly
trusted to a court which is private in its proceedings, unwatched in
its purity, unguarded in its power, with no barriers against abuse,
and in which suits are practically contested only when property or
reputation are sufficiently at stake to induce, in one case in eleven,
a defence?"

Comment on our part seems hardly necessary. This page in the history
of one state which has its counterparts in those of many others, is
too black to need or admit of any deepening tints. As Mr. Loomis well
remarks, such a complete subversion of the essential nature of the
marriage contract by legislation endangers the very institution of
marriage itself, and tends to reduce it to legalized concubinage. An
ostensible marriage contract, in which both or one of the parties
intends to contract for a union which may be dissolved whenever there
is ground for complaint or dissatisfaction, is not a marriage. So far,
therefore, as the idea on which this infamous legislation is based
becomes common, so as to underlie the matrimonial contracts which are
entered into, those contracts are invalidated, and the institution of
Christian marriage is abrogated. This is sapping the foundations not
only of the Christian moral law, but of our civil institutions and
social organization. The extent to which this cancer has already
spread reveals a moral condition truly alarming. It indicates much
more than the discontent of certain married persons with each other,
which is only a symptom of moral depravation lying deeper and more
widely spread in the community.

We are glad to see that some influential clergymen and laymen in
Connecticut are endeavoring to stem and turn back this tide of moral
evil, and to effect a reform in the divorce laws. What have they been
thinking of during these past years, while this destructive work has
been going on? Why have they not preached against these infamous laws,
written against them, agitated against them--in a word, shown the zeal
and energy in a matter which concerns so nearly the public and private
well-being, the very existence of the community in which they live,
which they have displayed concerning the reformation and improvement
of mankind at large? It is useless to ask the question now, for the
mischief is done. The only thing they can do in reparation for their
supine neglect, is to work and agitate now for a correction of public
sentiment which will produce a reformation in public law. They will
have all the influence of the Catholic clergy on their side, and the
support of the whole mass of Catholic voters in any political measure
which may be necessary for restoring a sounder system of legislation.

The Catholic law, which denies all power to any tribunal, secular or
ecclesiastical, to grant a divorce _a vinculo matrimonii_ for any
cause whatever, in the case of marriages validly contracted and
consummated according to the institution of Christ, is manifestly the
most perfect protection possible to the inviolability of marriage.
Those who reject the authority of the church have no certain and
indubitable basis on which to rest the doctrine that marriage is
indissoluble. The author of the article we are noticing does not deny
the right of the civil power to {103} dissolve the bond of matrimony
in certain cases of grievous criminality. The civil power is
consequently the judge of both the law and the fact, and the clergy
cannot pretend to exercise any judgment whatever. They are left,
therefore, to exert what influence they can on public sentiment, in
view of the demoralizing and destructive effects of divorces upon
society. If there is enough left of sound moral sentiment in the
community to compel legislators to restrict the concession of divorces
within the ancient limits, a great good can be effected in checking
this gigantic evil. This is all that the Protestant clergy can
accomplish, and their only means of doing it. They cannot impose their
interpretation of Scripture or their ecclesiastical laws upon the
state. Nor can we expect legislatures or judicial courts to take the
New Testament as their code of laws, to interpret its meaning, or
embody its principles in statutes and decisions. On Protestant
principles, the doctrines of Christianity can be applied to
legislation only as they are absorbed by public opinion, which sways
the minds of those who make and execute the laws. Therefore there is
no remedy in this case except the one we have indicated, namely, to
form a public opinion on the deleterious effects of the divorce laws
upon society, and, as far as this motive is still available, their
contrariety to the spirit of Christianity. If a word of advice from a
Catholic source can be received, we counsel the Protestant clergy of
Connecticut to lose no time before putting all their energies at work
to save their state from the moral desolation which threatens it; and
the respectable lawyers to do something to wipe out the stigma which
attaches to their profession on account of these infamous divorce
laws.

------

From St. James' Magazine.

A SUMMER SORROW.


  She began to droop when the chestnut buds
    Shone like lamps on the pale blue sky;
 She faded while cowslip and hawthorn blew,
   And the blythe month, May, went by.

  I carried her into the sun-bright fields,
    Where the children were making hay;
  And she watch'd their sport as an angel might--
    Then I knew she must pass away.

  With the first white roses I decked her room,
    I laid them upon her bed;
  Alas! while roses still keep their bloom,
    My own sweet flower lies dead!

  I felt that the parting hour was near.
    When I heard her whisper low--
  "Take me once more, my father dear,
    To see my roses grow.

{104}

  "Take me once more to the sunny pool
    Where the dear white lilies sail,
  And below their leaves, through the crystal depth,
    The buds lurk mildly pale.

  "Take me once more to the waterfall,
    That seems blithe as a child at play;
  Where the ivy creeps on the mossy wall,
    And the fern-leaves kiss the spray."

  So I bore her along through the summer air,
    And she looked with a dreamy eye
  At the brook, the pool, and the lilies fair.
    And she bade them all good bye.

  Next day my darling's voice was gone;
    But her yearning spirit-eyes
  Told how she longed for a nameless boon,
    And love made my guessing wise,

  Again I bore her beneath the trees,
    Where their soil green shadows lay;
  But a darker shadow stole o'er my child,
    And at sunset she passed away!


--------

From The Irish Industrial Magazine.

THE RISE AND PROGRESS OF BOOKS.


The manufacture of books has grown from obscure and insignificant
beginnings, in a commercial point of view, to what it has become in
our day--an industrial resource of great importance--and as such
inviting our attention to see and examine its growth. The importance
of literature, as the great agent for educating the intellect for good
or for evil, is obvious to the most unreflecting; but it is not so
generally thought of, in the subordinate or trade aspect, as giving
employment to many hands and heads, that might not easily have found
the means of subsistence elsewhere.

Let us begin the study with the brain that lays the eggs--golden or
leaden, addled or prolific, as the case may be; thence to the
publisher, whose province it is to bring them out; onward to the press
in all its departments, that feathers the offspring for flight; pass
out thence into the paper mill; and end with the poor rag-collector of
delicate scraps, for "wearisome sonneteers" and well-woven and worn
reviews. When you have ranked your items, and summed them, the total
will be found something few imagine. Then we may search a little
closer; and, as we pass through the busy department, it may strike us
that this peculiar work requires a peculiar class, that might not have
been by constitution of mind or body so well fitted for other
employments as they are just suited to this. First the author: if we
praise his head, he will not be offended if we say little of his hand;
indeed, his handwriting is not always of the best. The publisher might
{105} succeed in cheese and pickles; but for the _publishing trade_ a
corresponding intelligence is required, he must be a man of tact and
discernment in intellectual tastes and demands; then compositors,
readers, _et hoc genus omne_, should be men of mind; and the neat and
dexterous female can find work for her hands to do,--type-setting,
stitching, etc. And thus, while they are ministering to the spread of
civilization, civilization repays them by finding a place for them,
where they may gain support and comfort in this working world.

Books, like the air which surrounds us, are everywhere, from the
palace to the humblest cottage; wherever civilization exists, and
people assemble, books are to be seen. But, though all know what books
are, all do not know their origin and development, and by what process
they have arrived at their present perfection. We therefore venture to
present a sketch of their beginning and advancement, and the means by
which they have become such a powerful agency to forward thought and
accumulate stores of knowledge ever increasing.

Without affectation of any erudite speculative knowledge respecting
the origin and progress of language from the first articulate sounds
of the human voice to words, symbolic signs, hieroglyphic characters,
letters, alphabets, inscriptions, writings, and diversities of
tongues, we shall in business-like manner commence with the elementary
raw materials of writing and book-making in the order of their use.
Stone, wood, metal, in which letters were cut with a Sharp instrument,
were the earliest materials. The art of forming letters on lead was
known when the Book of Job was written, as appears from the memorable
sentence "Oh, that my words were now written that they were printed in
a book, that they were graven with a pen and lead in the rocks for
ever!" Sheets of lead were used to grave upon; and inscriptions cut in
rocks or smooth stones in Arabia, where Lot is supposed to have lived,
have been discovered. But even more primitive materials were the barks
and leaves  [Footnote 23] of trees prepared for the purpose.
Shepherds, it is said, wrote their simple songs by means of an awl, or
some similar instrument, on straps of leather twisted round their
crooks. Even in the days of Mahomet, shoulder-blades of mutton,
according to Gibbon's account, were used by the disciples of Mahomet
for recording his supposed inspirations. The introduction of _papyrus_
from Egypt into Greece produced great results, in increasing the
diffusion of writings, and making books known by many for the first
time. Previously, the Greeks had used the materials which we have
enumerated. Vellum was brought into use about two centuries later; but
not commonly, on account of its brittleness. Its introduction is
attributable to a curious incident, remarkably illustrative of the
fact that the protectionist system was acted upon at a remote age,
when political economy was not understood, and the good effects of
free trade were unappreciated. Ptolemy Philadelphus (B.C. 246, to whom
the Septuagint version of the Hebrew Testament is due) had prohibited
the exportation of papyrus from Egypt, to prevent Eumenes, king of
Pergnmos, from obtaining that material, in hopes of preventing him
from multiplying MSS.; for Eumenes like Ptolemy, was a patron of
learning, and formed libraries. This unworthy jealousy on the part of
Ptolemy was deservedly defeated by Eumenes, who ascertained that
parchment would be a good substitute for papyrus. This far less
abundant material was, however, used before; but Eumenes so improved
the process of its preparation, that he may be almost termed the
inventor of parchment. Vellum--the prepared skin of a calf--probably
was brought into use at the same time; the deep yellow which both
materials had was subsequently removed by some process {106} adopted
at Rome, which made it white. The introduction of parchment led to the
present form of books and it became the general material for writing
upon not long afterward, though vellum was employed in all state deeds
until the eighth century.

  [Footnote 23: The terms library and folio are derived from _liber_,
  the _inner bark_; and _folium_, a leaf.]

Cotton paper was introduced into Europe from China about the ninth
century, and superseded parchment. Documents in cotton, of that
period, including diplomas of Italian princes, have been preserved in
foreign museums.

The first manufactory of cotton paper was established in Spain in the
twelfth century, also almost contemporaneously in France and Germany;
but, its durability being questioned, all state and official documents
for preservation were written, or at least engrossed, on parchment or
vellum. Paper made from linen rags is supposed to have originated in
Spain, and to have been introduced into England in the fourteenth
century. It has been considered a pre-eminently good material, with
which none of the various substances used from the earliest times to
the present can victoriously compete.

Dr. Fuller, a noted and quaint writer of the seventeenth century,
affected to detect national characteristics from the qualities of the
paper produced in the respective countries; e.g., Venetian paper he
compared to a courtier of Venice--elegant in style, light, and
delicate. French paper corresponds with the light-heartedness and
delicacy of the Frenchman. Dutch paper, thick and coarse, sucking up
ink like a sponge, is in this respect, he says, a perfect image of the
Dutch race, which tries to absorb everything it touches. Durability
distinguished English paper, a quality essentially English.

In 1749 the Irish Parliment granted a sum of money to a Mr. Jay,  for
having introduced the first paper factory into Ireland, which probably
had the distinction of anticipating England in this respect. Be this
as it may, the first eminent establishment of the kind was not in
operation in England until 1770, when a paper-mill was erected at
Maidstone, by John Whatman, who had acquired much knowledge in the art
by working at Continental factories.

In the British Museum is a book, dated 1772, which contains more than
sixty specimens of paper, made of different substances. The paper
called foolscap, so common in our use, derives its appellation from
the historical circumstances following: When Charles I. of England
found difficulties in raising revenue, he granted monopolies, among
which was one for making paper, the water-mark of which was the royal
arms. When Cromwell succeeded to power, he substituted, with cruel
mockery, a fool's cap and bells for the royal arms. Though this mark
was removed at the Restoration, all paper of the size of the
"Parliamentary Journal" still bears the name of foolscap.

When books first appeared is quite uncertain; for, though the Books of
Moses and the Book of Job are the most ancient of existing books, it
seems from a reference Moses has made to them that there were earlier
ones. Among profane writers Homer is the most ancient; he lived at the
period when King Solomon reigned so gloriously. Four hundred years
afterward the scattered leaves of Homer were collected and reduced to
the order in which we have them; and two hundred years still later
they were revised and accented, so as to have become perfect models of
the purest Greek--the noblest language in the world. And, Greek words
being so remarkably expressive of the meaning of the things or ideas
which they are used to signify, they are now used in arts and sciences
as descriptive of the subjects or things referred to; and very often
in a ludicrously pedantic manner, especially among inventors of patent
medicines and mechanical instruments. But it is not within the range
of our subjects, or knowledge {107} even, to touch upon languages and
literature, authorship and authors, and the gradual development and
progress of literary composition, but simply the subject of books, as
before intimated, as they have been presented to us, in their
material development from age to age.

In a number of the Cornhill Magazine there has appeared an article,
"Publishers before the Art of Printing," which presents a very
interesting account of bookmaking in Italy during the Augustan age.
The brothers Sosii, celebrated by Horace, issued vast  supplies of
manuscript books; fashionable literature was eagerly bought from Roman
booksellers; and, to supply the demand for them, slaves were educated
in great numbers to read aloud to indolent ladies and gentlemen as
they reclined on couches. The copying of MSS. was done principally by
slave scriveners, of whom a great staff was maintained, and, by their
penmanship, books and newspapers could be multiplied quickly. From the
dictation of one reader to several writers a large edition,
comparatively with the number of the reading public, could be soon
produced; in some private families readers and transcribers were
employed in this way. The demand for school-books was also great. As
slave labor was very cheap, bookmaking was then correspondingly
inexpensive, yet authors of high reputation were well paid by
publishers. They received much larger sums than were given long after
the invention of printing. Martial received for his epigrams a vast
remuneration--Milton, for his Paradise Lost, only 24_l_.

The number of what may be called books published by the fathers of the
church in the first centuries of the Christian era was great. Origen
wrote 6,000; many of these were more properly tracts; but his polyglot
version of the Bible (most of which has perished), and his great work
against Celsus, were laborious works indeed. Of the writings of the
fathers generally (apart from the Evangelists) but few have descended
to us. The Koran (partly compiled from the Bible) was composed by the
imposter Mahomet, in the seventh century. At that epoch there were few
books even in Europe, the most enlightened portion of our world, and
this literary darkness prevailed three hundred years longer.

A curious episode in the history of early bookmaking occurred in the
sixth century, Cornelius Agrippa has related, in his Vanity of
Science, that a contrivance had been invented, by which the several
parts of speech in any language could be combined by a system of
circles worked in an ingenious manner. The component parts--nouns,
verbs, etc.--come together so as to form complete sentences--a very
convenient contrivance for writers who are deficient in what we
consider essentials--intellect, learning, and invention. Sir Walter
Scott, in his Life of Swift, says that the dean was indebted for his
entertaining and witty satire on pretending philosophers, as displayed
in his Flying Island of Laputa, to the above historical fact. The
machine of the Professor of Lagado, in Gulliver's Travels, for
imparting knowledge and composing books on all subjects without
assistance from genius or knowledge, was designed to ridicule the art
invented by Raymond Tully, the individual referred to by Cornelius
Agrippa. Various improvements on this mechanical mode of composition
were tried, but of course with utter failure.

During long periods of barbarism, entire libraries of rolls and books
were destroyed by ruthless and ignorant soldiery, as in Caesar's time,
when the library of 700,000 volumes which had been amassed by Ptolemy
was burnt by Caesar's troops. The great library collected at
Constantinople by Constantine and his successors was burnt in the
eighth century.

{108}

The number of books written and collected by King Alfred was
extensive, when we take into account the extent of ignorance that
prevailed in England during the ninth century--an amount which may be
estimated from the fact that there was much difficulty in providing a
tutor competent to instruct the royal youth when twelve years old. Yet
he, like his celebrated contemporary, Charlemagne, became eminent for
encouraging literature, and for his high repute in erudition and
book-writing, when Anglo-Saxon literature was despicably low. The
extreme paucity of books in England in the eleventh century may be
inferred from a mandate of Archbishop Lanfranc to librarians of
English monasteries, ordering them to deliver one book at the
commencement of Lent to the monks in turn, and that any monk who
neglected to read it should perform penance. Anciently every great
church and monastery had its little library; and, as education was
almost entirely limited to ecclesiastics during the middle ages, few
books and transcribers were required.

The survey of the lands of England him Doomsday Book, in two volumes,
was commenced by command of William the Conqueror, in the year 1080,
and completed in six years. The book obtained its name either from a
room in the Royal Treasury called _Domus Dei_, in Winchester, or from
Saxon words signifying doom or judgment, no appeal from its record
being permitted. The first volume is a folio, the second a quarto, and
both are written in abbreviated Latin; the writing being on vellum,
strongly bound, studded, and inclosed in a leather cover. A copy of
_Magna Charta_, the great charter of British liberty, granted and
confirmed by preceding monarchs, but re-enacted after a struggle
between the Barons and that wicked man, King John, in the thirteenth
century, is preserved in Lincoln Cathedral. There were twenty-five
original sealed copies of it written on vellum; one copy was sent to
each English diocese, and to a few special places besides. About
twenty-five barons were present when this important document was drawn
up, none of room signed it; it was only attested by the Great Seal of
England. His majesty could not write; and it may be assumed that his
twenty-five nobles were equally illiterate. If any of them were
penmen, it was very courtier-like on their part to decline doing what
their king was incompetent to do.

Whether Italian or Irish manuscripts were the earliest in which
ornamental letters were employed, is an undecided question. The finest
specimen of the illuminated is the Book of Kells, of the fifth or
sixth century. This beautiful antique is preserved in the library of
the King's College, and is thought to surpass in minuteness of finish
and splendor of decoration the famous Durham Book, or Gospels of
Lindisfarne, which, though probably executed in the north of England,
is classed among Anglo-Hibernian books, because Irish literature was
more advanced than English in the fifth, sixth, and seventh centuries.
If this beautiful art of illuminating originated in the East, it
reached its perfection in the west of Europe. In the British Museum
there is a copy of the Gospels executed at Aix-la-Chapelle in the
eighth century, known as the Golden Gospels, the entire text being in
gold, on white vellum.

We are now to touch upon the variety and forms of books or booklings
--if we may invent a name--after the art of printing was discovered,
about the middle of the fifteenth century--a subject too familiar to
occupy any space here for details as to invention or progress.

Chaucer expressed in rhyme the inconvenience of being obliged to
correct every copy of his works after the scrivener's hands; he did
not anticipate the invention of types in a century afterwards, and the
employment of readers or correctors of the press.

{109}

Almanacs shall have the precedents, not so much from their high rank
in literary importance, but from their antiquity and pioneer character
in the march of uninspired literature. The Arabians, who studied
astronomy and astrology, noted the signs of the seasons, and regulated
their field occupations by the direction of their almanac makers, who
were their wise men; they would neither sow nor reap, nor trim their
beards and nails, without consulting their almanacs; they introduced
their rules of practice into Europe. A German named Müller constructed
an almanac in its present form, suited to general writers. An English
writer who called himself Poor Robin, published long ago an almanac
remarkable for coarseness and eccentricity. The following are
specimens of his style (they recently appeared in a public journal);
we present but a few:

  "Julius Caesar did the Britons came;
  Conquering will you him into England came;
  Brave Montrose was basely murdered;
  The Rev. Dr. Stewart lost his head;
  The plague raged very sore at London;
  London burnt, whereby many were undone;
  The crown on Anna's head was placed;
  She expired, and George's head it graced."

So much for historical records. There a calendar among his monthly
observations:

  "January--The gardens now doing healed no posies,
    And men in cloaks muffle their noses."

  "March--A toast we plunged in March beer,
     Being sugared well, and drunk up clear,
     Revives the spirit, the heart doth cheer;
    And, had for three pence, is not dear."

This old Robin shamefully pecks at the fair sex. In his notes on April
he says:

  "Then let young people have a care,
  Nor run their heads in marriage snare;
  A woman's tongue is like the ocean.
  It ebbs and flows in constant motion;
  But yet herein a difference grows--
  Her tongue ne'er ebbs, but always flows."

No booklings have multiplied more almanacs: we have now clerical,
medical, naval, military, aye, horticultural, down to children's
almanacs; and amongst these almanacs there is one entitled _Almanac
des Voleurs_. Magazines swarm, ranging from the highest class of
religious, literary, and social-scientific, not forgetting
_industrial_, subjects, to the most commonplace and trifling matters.
The Gentleman's Magazine is stated to have been the first of the class
published in England. Of reviews we have a long array, distinguished
by every shade of uniform and badge, and from them a vast amount of
useful and pleasurable information is obtainable. This class of books
first appeared in the middle of the last century; one entitled the
Monthly Review was the first published.

The first newspaper was published in the time of Queen Elizabeth--The
English Mercury, of which the earliest number is in the British
Museum, and bears the date 1588. In the reign of Queen Anne there was
but one daily paper, which made a slow and tedious course of
circulation; whereas in these days newspapers are everywhere, and the
leading ones convey intelligence of the whole world's transactions,
and issue admirable essays, affording information on every subject,
and this within a marvellously short space of time.

Books are so common, that it becomes necessary to be careful in the
selection of them. Tares and wheat will spring up together; the earth
produces noxious weeds with the most excellent fruit. If, then, we do
not reject the tainted and imperfect grains, a diseased crop is the
result. It cannot be expected in this age of inquiry and the rapid
progress of learning, that all books should be of an improving
character, but the good greatly overbalance the evil. "This
advantage," said Gregory the Great (writing so early as the end of the
sixth century), "we owe to a multiplicity of books; one book falls in
the way of one man, and another best suits the level or the
apprehension of another; it is of service that the same subject should
be handled by several persons after different methods, though all on
the same principle." A superfluity of good books is beneficial; I
would {110} illustrate this proposition thus: The Nile as it flows
fertilizes a vast tract of land; but if it were not for the streams
and rivulets that are artificially constructed to diverge from it, in
order to draw from the main supply of water some portion of the
alimentary matter it contains, other tracts would not be fertilized:
so the great folios in their wide expanse of text and margin have
their important use, while the streams and rills which issue from the
parent flood are illustrative of quartos, octavos, duodecimos, 24mos,
and 48mos, that refresh and enrich minds innumerable.

--------

ORIGINAL.

LUCIFER MATUTINUS.

  From a heart of infinite longing the youth
      Looks out on the world;
  "Where, spirit of candor--where, spirit of truth,
      Are thy banners unfurled?

  "O chivalrous chastity! lovely as morn.
      The dew on thy helmet, I hail thee afar;
  Like Lucifer, beautiful angel of dawn,
      I wear thy deep azure, I follow thy star.

  "Not mammon, not lucre; though white as sea-gulls
      The broad sails I watch studding ocean's blue deep,
  To droop their gay pennons where dreamily lulls
      The tropical breeze, and the lotus-flower sleeps.

  "But glory! but honor! the joy of a name
      Not written on sand; which for ages will stir
  All hearts that are noble, or kindle the flame
      Of devotion consuming the rapt worshipper."

  Thus from heart of infinite longing the youth.
      Looking out on the world,
  Cries ever, "Woo wisdom, woo beauty, woo truth:"--
  The sordid world, jaded with care, answers: "Ruth
  Waits on thy wild dreamings, O turbulent youth!"
      And with laughter uncouth
  Mocks life's fairest banners in brightness unfurled.

  O heart of the ostrich! above its own graves
  Of innocent hopes the world every day raves,
  And moans, with a pitiful droon of despair,
  O'er candor and honor, once blooming so fair;
  Yet treads, with a wanton, unpitying scorn.
  To earth every sweet aspiration of morn,
  True mark of a soul to infinity born;
  Or leaves, to the chance of the desert, the good
  Which God, at creating, charged angels to brood,
  And martyrs have guarded with rivers of blood.

------

{111}

Original

TRAVELLERS' TALES.


The world has been so thoroughly explored now, at feast in all but its
most savage and inhospitable recesses, that it seems not unnatural to
suppose that travelers abroad find it hard to get listeners to their
tails of sight-seeing and adventure; and that wanderers into foreign
lands should no longer deem it a part of their duty, as soon as their
peregrinations are over, to come home and write a book about them. We
can't expect any more Marco Polo or Mendez Pintos, unless some
adventurous spirits have a mind to travel beyond the regions of the
Albert and Victoria Nyanzas, and risk their lives among the dirty
tribes of Central Africa, whom even Mr. and Mrs. Baker were unable to
reach; and with all its little differences of manners and customs,
there is after all so much sameness in the untamed negro life that we
doubt whether anybody will think such a journey worth his trouble. Now
that the source of Nile has been found and the costly and useless
problem of the north-west passage has been solved, there really seems
to be nothing very new or startling which can be added to geographical
science. But for all that there is, and undoubtedly their long will
be, a certain fascination in every well-told narrative of life in a
distant country, even though the main features of the story were
familiar to us before. We know that a second Columbus can never come
home to us from across the ocean sees, with news of unsuspected
continents; that old ocean has loosed all the bonds which once shut us
in, and disclosed long ago all the new worlds which he wants
concealed; but we like to travel again and again over the lands we
have already passed, to take a few repeated peeps at the inner life of
distant peoples, even though their domestic interiors were long ago
laid open to our inquisitive eyes. Now and then, moreover, it does
happen that a traveller has something new to tell us, or at least
something which has not been told often enough to be familiar to all
the world. For example, in the spirited Sketches of Russian Life
[Footnote 24] which we have lately received from an anonymous hand in
England, there is, if nothing very new or surprising, at least a
liveliness and an air of novelty which are almost as good. The writer
is an Englishman who spent fifteen years in Russia, engaged in
business pursuits of various kinds, which brought him into contact
with persons of all ranks and conditions, and led him long journeys
back and forth across the empire--now in the lumbering diligence, now
in the luxurious railway train, and many a time and for long distances
in rude sledges across trackless wastes and through fearful snows. In
some parts of Russia there are seasons when the mere act of travelling
is a perilous adventure. In March, 1860, our author, in company with a
Russian gentleman, made a dangerous journey of two hundred miles in an
open sledge, through a snow-storm of memorable severity. They had been
struggling for some miles through drifts and hidden pits, when the
driver alarmed them with the cry of "Volka! volka!"--"Wolves! wolves!"
Six gaunt-looking animals {112} sat staring at them in the road, about
one hundred yards in advance of them. The horses huddled themselves
together, trembling in every limb, and refused to move. The Russian,
who is known in the book only by the name of Fat-Sides, seized a
handful of hay from the bottom of the vehicle, rolled it into a ball,
and handed it to our author, saying "Match." The Englishman understood
the direction, and as soon as the horses, by dint of awful lashing and
shouting, were forced near the motionless wolves, he set fire to the
ball and threw it among the pack. Instantly the animals separated and
skulked away with their tails dragging, but only to meet again behind
the sledge, and after a short pause to set out in full pursuit. The
tired horses were whipped to their utmost speed, but in forcing their
way through a drift they had to come to a walk, and the wolves were
soon beside them. The first of the pack fell dead with a ball through
his brain from the Englishman's revolver, and another shot broke the
leg of a second. At that critical instant the pistol fell into the
sledge as, with a sudden jolt the horses floundered up to their
bellies in in deep drift: then they came to a dead stop, and there was
a wolf at each side of the sledge, trying to get in. The Englishman
fortunately had a heavy blackthorn bludgeon, and raising it high he
brought it down with the desperate force of a man in mortal extremity,
crash through the skull of the animal on his side of the vehicle;
while Fat-Sides coolly stuffed the sleeve of his sheepskin coat down
the mouth of the savage beast on the other, and with his disengaged
hand cut its throat with a large bear knife. The pistol was now
recovered just in time to kill a fifth wolf which had fastened upon
neck of one of the horses. The sixth, together with the one that had
been shot in the leg, ran away.

  [Footnote 24: Sketches of Russian Life before and during the
  Emancipation of the Serfs. Edited by Henry Morley, Professor of
  English Literature in University College, London. 16mo, pp. 298.
  London: Chapman and Hall. Philadelphia: J. B. Lippincott and Co.]

After a day's detention at Jaroslav, where some irritating business
about passports had to be transacted, our travellers resumed their
journey in a "kibitka," or diligence-sledge--a rather more comfortable
conveyance than the one they had left, because it had a canvas cover.
There were no more encounters with wolves, but perils enough awaited
them in the snow. The first day three of their horses died, and in
sixteen hours, with three separate teams, they accomplished only
twenty-seven miles. All along the road they passed wrecks of sledges,
horses struggling in the drifts and men digging them out, and vehicles
overturned and abandoned until spring. Opposite a hut in which they
found shelter one night a cottage had been entirely buried, and the
family were not rescued until after four days. They were none the
worse for their long imprisonment; but the diggers had come upon a
sledge with its horse, driver, and two women frozen to death and
buried in the drift. Three months after this, when the snows
disappeared from two hundred to three hundred corpses were found, all
of whom had met their death in this fearful storm upon the Moscow road
alone.

The wretchedness of the inns added a great deal to the sufferings of
our travellers. A Russian hotel in the interior is the most filthy of
all filthy places. As the floors are never washed, the mud and filth
accumulate to an inch and a half in thickness; the walls are black and
fetid; horrible large brown beetles, called _tarakans_, crawl in
myriads over everything, invading even the dishes out of which the
traveller eats and drinks; and the dirty deal tables are further
defiled with a dirty linen cloth. The public rooms are constantly
filled with the offensive odor of the native tobacco. The waiters are
all men, dressed in print trowsers and shirts; the trousers stuffed
into long boots, and the shirts hanging outside the trowsers; the
particolored band or scarf round the waist completing the costume.
Their hair, like that of all the peasants, is worn long, cut straight
round the neck, and parted in front like a woman's, while the beard is
{113} neither cut nor trimmed. We are not surprised that our author
preferred to lodge with the horses and cows in the stable.

The distance from Jaroslav to Moscow out is about 160 miles, and the
journey occupied seven days and the better part of seven nights.

Our author made another journey, accompanied by his wife and six
children, and an amusing English "handy man", called Harry, who was
for ever knocking somebody down and getting the party into all sorts
of scrapes with the police. They started from Moscow, and rode about
500 miles into the interior. Their equipment consisted of two vehicles
called tarantasses, each drawn by three horses. The baggage, and a
good store of bread, tea, sugar, sardines, brandy, and wine, were
stowed away in the bottom of the wagons, and over them were spread
straw, feather beds, rugs, and other contrivances for breaking the
severity of the jolting. The passengers reclined on the top. Many time
they had no bed but the tarantass, and no food but what they had
brought with them. Harry found plenty of employment for his fists, as
well as for his ingenuity in bridge building and other useful arts.
Once he detected a waiter, in the end where they stopped at Tula,
stealing a bottle of castor-oil from the medicine chest. It was only
fit punishment to make the thief swallow a large dose; but when the
effects of the drug began to show themselves, the man declared himself
poisoned, and was carried to the hospital, while the travelers and
their effects were placed under the charge of the police.

  "We were prisoners for nearly 2 hours, when a doctor from the
  hospital, fortunately for us, a jolly Russ, came with a captain of
  police. While the captain of the police tackled Harry, who, ignorant
  of the language, answered 'da, da' (yes, yes) to everything. I
  explained to the doctor of what had really happened. The worthy
  doctor having gotten hold of the oil bottle cried,

  "'Bravo! Poison! The most excellent medicine in pharmacy. Look here,
  captain. The pig' (meaning the waiter) 'was taken ill with cholera,
  cramps, spasms, vomiting here--mind you, here in this room--before
  madame and mademoiselle. They run to the next room, so does my
  friend here, a great English my-lord. What could they do? But, sir,
  the case was desperate. This gentleman' (pointing to Harry) 'is a
  great doctor, accompanying my-lord and his family; there was no time
  to send for me. What does he do? He opens his great
  medicine-box--look, there it is--and gives the dying moushick a
  great dose of apernicocus celantacus heprecaincos masta, the best
  remedy in the world for cholera. I tell you, "Yea Boch!" there now,
  that's the truth.'

  "'But,' said the captain, 'the moushick, doctor, how is he?'

  "'Ah! the pig!' (and here he spat on the ground in contempt), 'I
  left the beast quite well and sleeping. I will answer for him. Come,
  captain, let us go. Poison! That is a good joke! Come, captain. Safe
  journey. Good-bye!'

  "The police captain was satisfied, however reluctantly. With two
  bottles of something better than castor-oil, and a fee, which the
  doctor might or might not divide with the captain, I paid the cost
  of Harry's thoughlessness."

Having reached their destination, and purposing to remain in that part
of the country for some time, our English friends obtained a house,
and went to housekeeping. The torment they suffered from thievish and
idle servants is pitiful to read. The lower-class of Russians seem to
have no more idea of working without an occasional application of the
stick than a sluggish horse; and an honest servant is the rarest thing
in the empire. Our author began housekeeping with four--a key-keeper
(housekeeper), cook, room-girl (housemaid), and footman. The dishes
were put upon the table dirty, just as they had been taken away after
the previous meal, because it was nobody's business to wash them; so a
dish-washer was added to the retinue. At the end of a week it was
found that nobody had time to scrub the floors; so scrubbers had to be
hired. Then another was wanted to wash clothes (though nobody could be
found who knew what it meant to get up linen, and the authors wife had
to do it herself); another to clean boots; a man to cut and fetch
wood; and another man to {114} split it and keep up the fires. Thus in
one week the establishment increased to thirteen souls. Their wages,
it is true, were small, but their pilferings were great. One day the
master and mistress resolved to examine the servants' boxes. In the
first one opened they found a canvas bag filled with lump-sugar,
parcels him and of tea and coffee, needles, pins, buttons, hooks and
eyes, tape, laces, soap, candles, children's toy», sealing-wax, pens,
note paper, and a keep of small articles, all of which had been
stolen. Every box had been opened in turn, and not one contained less
than the first, and many of them contained more.

Dishonesty, as may be supposed, is not confined to the lower classes,
but infects all ranks. The traders are the greatest cheats in the
world; we were going to say the greatest except the government
officials; but these are not exactly cheats, because their extortion
is open and unblushing. When our author once told a Russian baron that
English magistrates were incorruptible, the assertion caused an
incredulous laugh, and a remark from the baron that he could buy any
country magistrate in Russia for 50 kopecks (about 35 cents).
Certainly our friend often found it convenient to prove their
venality, especially when Harry of the strong arm had been giving his
fists a little more exercise than was strictly according to law. Trade
is a system of lying and cheating. The commonest  purchase can rarely
be made without a tedious and vociferous process of bargaining, very
much such as goes on when a veteran jockey sells an old horse at a
country fair. Our author had occasion to buy a pair of boots and a
portmanteau at Tula. After over an hour's wrangling the price was
reduced from 48 roubles to 16, and the letter some afterward proved to
be about twice as much an the articles were worth. "How shameful of
you," said the buyer to the seller when the transaction was concluded,
"to ask three times more then you would take, and then to tell so many
lies!" "Oh!" he replied, "words do not rob your pocket. I am no thief.
It is all fair bargaining." The larger operations of commerce, if not
so noisy, are at least no more honest then the retail dealing. It has
been remarked that profitably to understand trading in Russia would
require a course of many years training at university teaching the
principles and practice of chicanery, bribery, smuggling, and lying. A
rich trader of St. Petersburg gave our author of good deal of
information about the way business is carried on. Contracts with the
government, especially, are managed in a very curious fashion. Some
one is appointed by the state to draw up plans and specifications of
the work to be done, and to fix and "upset price." The contract is
then offered at auction, and the lowest bidder under this upset price
takes it. As there is a tacit understanding that the successful
competitor shall pay the official who fixes the upset price a
commission of 10 per cent on the gross amount of the contract, it
follows, as a matter of course, that this price is always ridiculously
high.

Smuggling is carried on very extensively, not as commonplace rascals
do it, across the frontier, but through the custom-house itself. "Just
look," said the merchant, "at this piano-forte--a first-rate 'grand'
from Broadwood. Had that instrument come through the 'Tamoshny' a as a
'forte-piano,' it would have cost me 100 rubles, that is 15 pounds of
your money. But, sir, I shipped it as a threshing machine--my children
have certainly made it one--and it cost me no duty at all; machinery,
you know, is the only thing duty-free. I paid my expediter his little
commission, and he managed to convince the examining official, by what
means I do not stop to inquire, that a threshing machine it was, and
as such it passed." Not only is the temptation to dishonesty so
strong, but honesty, on the other hand, is fraught with great danger.
{115} A tradesmen, who was beginning business in St. Petersburg,
imported a quantity of plain glass-ware, the duty on which was two
roubles and twenty-five kopecks per pood. He meant to pay the duty in
an honest, straightforward way; but this did not suit the custom-house
officials, who wanted their little commission. They discovered by some
singular optical delusion that the plain glass was all colored and
gilded, the duty being thus raised to ten roubles per pood. Nor was
this all, for the unfortunate tradesman was moreover fined fifty per
cent for a false declaration, and his dear loss by the importation was
about $500. This and a few similar transactions with the custom-house,
in which he stood out for the payment of just dues and no corruption,
ruined him. There is no redress for such outrages in Russia.

We have no space to go into details of the condition of the serfs,
which our author represents as miserable in the extreme. The stewards
on many of the estates are German adventurers of the worst
description, who cheat their employers, oppress the serfs, and do all
that man can do to ruin the country. Many of the lower class do not
thoroughly understand the czar's ukase of emancipation, and even those
who do understand what great things it does for them, show little or
no gratitude. That is a virtue of slow growth in a Russian bosom. Some
of the wisest land-owners anticipated the time set by the decree for
the abolition of serfdom, and immediately began to work their estates
with paid labor. The result was perfectly satisfactory. In a few
districts, however, the publication of the emancipation ukase was
followed by tumults and disorders, and now and then the peasants took
a bloody vengeance on their oppressors. Our author witnessed one scene
between a villanous steward and his emancipated serfs, which came near
being tragical. The steward was roused from his slumbers one morning
by a big strong mooshick, or peasant, who acted as his coachman.
Entering the room rather unceremoniously, the man bawled out, in a
peremptory voice:

  "'Come, master, get up quick! You're wanted in the great hall.'

  "The steward started at the unusual summons, and stared at the
  fellow in blank astonishment, unable to understand what he meant.

  "'Come, I tell you; rise--you're wanted.'

  "'Dog!' roared the steward, almost powerless with rage--'what do you
  mean by this insolence? Get out!'

  "'No,' said the man, 'I won't get out. You get up. They are all
  waiting.'

  "'Pig! I'll make you pay for this. Let me get hold of you, you
  villain!' and he jumped out of bed; but as he did so he perceived
  three of his other men-servants at the threshold ready to support
  the coachman.

  "'Oh! this is a conspiracy; but I'll soon settle you. Evan, you
  devil, where are you? Come here.'

  "Evan thus called--he was a lacquey--appeared at the door with a
  broad grin on his face.

  "'Did you call, master?'

  "'Yes, villain; don't you see? I am going to be murdered by these
  pigs. Go instantly for the policemen.'

  "'No, no, baron; I have gone too often for the stan's men. We can do
  without them this morning.'

 "'Come, come, master,' again struck in the tall coachman, 'don't you
 waste our time and keep the company waiting. Put on your halat; never
 mind the rest of your clothes; you won't need them for a little. You
 won't come--nay, but you must.' And he laid hold of him by the neck.
 'Come along!' and so they dragged their victim into the great dining
 hall.

  "There, sitting round the room on chairs and lolling on the sofas,
  were all the souls belonging to his domestic establishment, about
  thirty in all. Pillows were spread on the floor in the middle of the
  room; to these the steward was dragged, and forcibly stretched on
  them face down, with two men at his feet and two at his head.

  "The coachman, who had been pretty frequently chastised in former
  times, was ring-leader. He sat down on a large easy-chair, the seat
  of honor, and ordered a pipe and coffee. This was brought him by one
  of the female servants. When the long cherry-tree tube began to
  draw, in imitation of his master's manner he puffed out the smoke,
  put on a fierce look, stretched out his legs, and said, 'Now then,
  go on. Give the pig forty blows! creapka (hard)!'

  "In an instant the halat was torn up, and two lacqueys, standing at
  either side, armed with birch-rods, slowly and deliberately
  commenced the flagellation. The coachman told {116} off the blows as
  he smoked in dignity, 'one, two, three,' and so on to forty.

  "'Now, then,' said coachee, 'stop. Brothers and sisters, have we
  done right?'

  "'Right!' they all said.

  "'Is there one here whom he has not beaten?'

  "'Are you satisfied?'

  "'Then go all of you home, and leave this house. Not one must
  remain. Release the prisoner.'

  "Up jumped their tyrant, little the worse bodily for the beating he
  had got, but he was livid with rage. His face turned green and
  purple, he gnashed his teeth, and spat on his rebellious slaves.
  Speech seemed gone, and they all laughed in his face.

  "'Master,' said the coachman, walking leisurely towards the door,
  'we have not hurt you, but have given you a small taste of your own
  treatment of us for many years; how do you like it? We are free now,
  or will be soon, and will not be beaten any more. Good-bye; don't
  forget the stick. And listen. It you whimper a breath against any of
  us for this morning's work, your life is not worth a kopeck two
  hours after.' Each made a respectful bow as he or she went out, and
  the tyrant was left alone in the deserted house."

This, however, was not the end. In a short time the peasantry from a
long distance began to collect in the courtyard. A mill belonging to
the state stopped work, and its thousand hands joined the gathering
crowd. The steward appeared among them, and in a terrible rage ordered
them to work, They simply shrugged their shoulders and made him no
answer. He struck one of them with his open hand, and the peasant in
return spat in the steward's face.

  "The Russian spit of contempt, the most unpardonable of Russian
  insults, is unlike any other kind of spitting. The Yankee squirt is
  a scientific affair; Englishmen who smoke short black pipes in bars,
  on rails, and elsewhere, expectorate in an uncleanly, clumsy way.
  But with an intense look of detestation, as he says 'Ah pig!' the
  Russian, with the suddenness and good aim of a pistol shot, plunges
  a ball of spittle right into the face or on the clothes of his
  adversary, making a sound like the stroke of a marble where it hits.
  It is a weapon always ready, I have frequently seen a duel
  maintained with it for a considerable time at short range.

  "Matt, having thus shown his contempt, coolly leaned himself up
  against the gate, but the steward, insulted as he had never been
  before in this characteristic manner, before so many of his cringing
  slaves, lost any remains of reason his rage might have left him. He
  used hands and feet on the crowd of passive and hitherto quiet
  surfs, and seeing the old starost--Matt's father--coming up the
  road, he ran and colored the old man, dragged him to show where his
  son stood, and roared out his orders to take the devil into the
  stan's yard for punishment.

  "'Old devil!' he said, 'you are at the bottom of all this rebellion,
  you and your son. You shall flog _him_; and then I shall make him
  flog _you_. Go, pig, and take him away!'

  "The old man, for the first time in his life, openly disobeyed his
  tyrant's orders. He folded his arms across his sheepskin coat, gave
  the usual shrug, spat contemptuously on the ground, and said, 'No,
  steward, that is your work. Now, I will not.'

  "'Dog! Devil! do you refuse to obey your master? I will, if it is my
  work, drag you to punishment myself.'

  "With that he sees the starost by his luxuriant white beard, and
  began pulling him towards the next house, which, I have said, was
  the magistrate's and the police station. The old man resisted with
  all his might, and in the struggle he fell leaving a large mass of
  grey or rather white hair in steward's hands. The steward, finding
  he could not pull the starost by main force, lifted his foot, shod
  with heavy leather goloshes, and struck the old man twice on the
  head. The blood immediately ran down. Up to this moment the crowd of
  peasants, which had increased enormously, had been quiet spectators
  of the scene; but the site of the old man's blood gave the finishing
  touch to their patience. Without a word the crowd began slowly to
  move and concentrate itself around the steward and his fallen
  official. There might then have been five or six hundred people, and
  the numbers were increasing every moment, as the men came in from
  the stopped works. A rush took place, and the centre space was
  filled up with the mass. The bleeding starost was passed to the
  outside. The steward was surrounded, and many hands were laid on
  him. I do not believe there had been any premeditated designed to
  hurt the steward, cordially as they all hated him. Had he applied
  the listen given him that morning, and apprehended the changed
  feelings and circumstances of the serfs, he might have been passed
  from among them without further injury. But his passions were
  ungovernable, and he was slow to believe in the possibility of any
  resistance on the part of the poor slaves he had so long driven. The
  crowd swayed heavily from one side to another, tugging and pulling
  the poor steward about; and now he was in peril of his life. My
  window was wide open {117} He made a mute appeal to me for help. I
  signed to him to try the window. By some extraordinary effort he
  broke loose, and major rush and a spring to catch the sill. He
  succeeded so far, and two pair of strong arms were trying to drag
  the fat body through into the room; but we were too late, or rather
  he was too heavy for us. The crowd tore him down, and held him fast.
  Then a voice was heard, clear and decided as that of an officer
  giving the word of command--'to the water!' The voice was
  Mattvie's. A leader and an object had been wanted, and here there
  were both. Instantly the order was obeyed. The crowd, dragging the
  steward, left the front of my house and took the direction of the
  lake.

  "We hurried through the court-yard down to the end of the
  cotton-mail, and came out on the banks of the lake, just as the
  raging crowd of serfs were tying a mat with a large stone in it to
  the stewards neck.

  "Around the margin of the lake the ice was to some extent broken,
  and their evident intention was to throw him in. We ran to meet
  them, and if possible prevent the horrid act of retribution. But we
  were too late; they had selected the part of the bank nearest the
  road, as it was higher than the rest; and just as we came painting
  up, we saw the body of the steward swaying in the hands of a dozen
  of the man, and heard the fatal words given out by Matt: '_Ras, dwa,
  tree_' (One, two, three); then a cry of despair, above the yelling
  of the crowd; than a plunge in the water; no, two plunges. The
  ragoshkie, or bark mat, containing the heavy stone which was to keep
  the steward down, had not been a good one; for as the body passed
  through the air, the stone fell from the mat, splashing a second or
  two before, and a little beyond the spot where he came down. He
  disappeared under the water for a moment or two, then made desperate
  efforts to scrambled to his feet, in which he succeeded, standing up
  to his shoulders in the shallow water, and with the mat bag,
  drenched and limp, hanging from his neck. There he stood within
  twenty feet of the bank, facing a thousand yelling enemies. Outside
  was plenty of firm ice; but between him and them there might be
  thirty feet of deep clear water, the bed of the lake dipping many
  feet immediately beyond where he stood. He seemed to comprehend his
  position, and was evidently making up his mind to contend with the
  deep water rather than with the turned worms upon the bank. He had
  raised one arm, either for entreaty or defiance, and had taken off
  few steps toward the ice, when one of the many stones thrown at him
  struck the uplifted arm and it fell powerless to his side. Another,
  but a softer missile, struck him on the head. He fell down under the
  water, and again recovered his feet; but the stones were now--like
  hail about him. The serfs were as boys pelting a toad or frog--and
  their victim in the water did look like a great overgrown toad.

  "Saunderson and I had made several attempts to be heard, or to
  divert the attention of the people; but it was spending idle breath:
  'Go away; it is not your business,' some of the men said; others,
  more savage, asked how we would like the same treatment."

The contrivance is by which the unfortunate was rescued from his
perilous situation was so theatrical that we can hardly help
suspecting that the incidents of this story have been arranged with a
sharp eye to effect. The man's fate seemed certain when our author
espied a sleigh approaching at a considerable distance. No doubt it
contained young Count Pomerin, the owner of the estate. If a little
delay could be obtained, the steward might be saved. At this juncture
are friend Harry interfered. "I'll try," he exclaimed; "blow me if I
don't. The buffer's bad lot, but I sha'n't see him killed;" and with
that he jumped into the water, and was by the steward's side in a
moment. The noise and stoning ceased, for Harry was a prime favorite;
but the mob was not to be baulked of its vengeance, and after a
vigorous exchange of expostulations, in the course of which Harry made
several remarks that were more forcible than polite, the chivalrous
Englishman was pulled out of the water, kicking stoutly, and the
pelting was about to be renewed.

Just at this moment the sleigh, drawn by three magnificent greys,
dashed into the centre of the crowd. Three gentlemen occupied it. Two
were in official costume. The third, a tall, well-built man, rose, and
threw off  Is rich black fox-skin cloak, and the mob beheld, dressed
in the uniform of a general, not the young count, but his father, who
had been exiled years before, and was thought to be dead. He had now
come hack, with an imperial pardon, prepared to resume the management
of his estates. The steward was extricated from the water, and
immediately called upon to {118} settle his accounts. The old count
had visited the estate before in disguise, and knew how it had been
mismanaged. He had witnessed and all ready to Convict the steward of
peculation, and the result was that the wretched man was compelled to
refund on the spot $750,000 of stolen wealth, and then allowed
twenty-four hours to leave the place.

The next scene in this pretty little drama was between the count and
his serfs. He called them all together, and told them they were free
from that moment. He did not intend to wait for the period of
emancipation fixed by the ukase. Moreover, he gave to each male
peasant three acres of land, free of price--parting thus with
one-sixth of his estate. The whole assembled multitude then went down
on their knees, and cried, "Thanks, thanks, good count, the
illustrious master--God bless you!" And here, according to all
dramatic rules, unless there was somebody to be married, the thing
ought to have ended. But behold, ten grey-bearded peasants, who
evidently had no idea of propriety, stepped forward and wanted to know
what they were to do with their cows? Three acres would be enough for
garden and green fields, but it would not give them pasture.  Would
not his excellency add to his gift? and so might God bless him! Well,
the count allotted them pasture for ten years; and then the ten
grey-beards advanced again, with the cry a Russian always raises when
you give him anything--"prebavit" (add to it). Pasture was very good,
but how were they to get firewood? "If it please your high-born
excellency, add to your gift firewood. Prebavit!" So his high born
excellency added firewood; and the incorrigible peasant stepped up
again. "Prebavit! How were they to get fish? Would it please his high
born excellency to let them fish in the lakes?" There were the usual
thanks and the prostrations when this was granted; and then "prebavit"
again; they wanted something else; but they did not get it, and the
meeting broke up. A little while afterward our author revisited the
estate, and found that it had undergone a marvellous change. The
village was no longer a collection of mud huts, but a thriving town.
The people were not like the same beings; and there was decided
evidence of the rise of a middle class--a class once unknown in such
places.

Our author gives us an obscure glimpse of a curious religious sect in
Russia called the _starrie verra_, or "old faith," of whose
peculiarities be knows little, and of whoso history be confesses that
he know a nothing at all. It's members deem the present Russian Church
an awful departure from the primitive faith and practice; deny the
emperor's claim to be the head of the church; believe to any extent in
witches; fast, scourge themselves; meet in secret, generally at night
(for they are rigorously proscribed); hate the established religion of
the realm has much as the old Scotch Puritans hated prelacy; and, if
they had their wish, would probably advance the Czar to the dignity of
martyrdom. It is said that many distinguished personages privately
adhere to them, and submit to dreadful midnight penances, by way of
compounding for the sin of outward subserviency to the modern heresy.
People of the old faith are distinguished by a grim gravity and
opposition to all dancing or light amusement. Our author had a
woman-servant of this sect, who was remarkable for never stealing
anything, and for continually smashing crockery which she supposed to
have been defiled. There was a community of the old faith near his
residence? An old wooden building like a Druid temple, set in the side
of a hill among trees and rocks, was pointed out to him as the place
of their midnight conventicles. It was said to be presided over by a
priestess who never left the temple by night or by day. A roving
fanatic, whom the writer sometimes encountered in the village,
collecting {119} peasants around him and shouting like a
street-ranter, was looked up to by the sectaries as a prophet; though
he was certainly not a very reputable one, being often helplessly
drunk, and not very decently clad. He wore no covering for head or
feet, even in the severest frost. He carried a long pole, and danced
some holy dance, to words of high prophetic omen. Our author was
rather surprised to find that, thanks to his crockery-smashing cook,
he himself was commonly reputed a priest of the _starrie verra_; the
big volumes of the illustrated London News in which he used to read
were supposed to be illuminated Lives of the Saints, and the little
plays and dramatic scenes which his children used to perform on winter
evenings were looked upon with holy awe as religious rites of dreadful
power and significance. He bore his honors without complaining, and
even when the cook, on the night of a party, broke all his best
Wedgwood dinner-set, brought from England at a huge expense, he
endured the loss with Christian patience: it was so delightful to have
a Russian servant who would not steal.


From Russian servants to Italian brigands the transition is perfectly
natural. Both are rogues of the same class, only external
circumstances have made a difference in their modes of doing business.
An English gentleman named Moens has recently obtained a more intimate
acquaintance with the robber bands of Southern Italy than any of our
readers need hope to make, and has given us the result of his
observations in a very curious and interesting volume.  [Footnote 25]
Mr. and Mrs. Moens, and the Rev. J. C. Murray Aynsley and his wife,
had been visiting the ruins of Paestum, on the Gulf of Salerno, on the
15th of May, 1865, when their carriage was stopped on the way home by
a band of about twenty or thirty brigands.

  [Footnote 25: English travelers and Italian Brigands. the Narrative
  of Capture and Captivity. By W. J. C. Moens. With a Map and several
  illustrations. 12mo. pp. 355. New York: Harper & Brothers.]

The ladies were not molested, but the gentlemen were hurried off
across the fields, and through woods and thickets, until nearly
daylight the next morning, when they were allowed to lie down to sleep
for a short time on the bare earth. As soon as they felt themselves in
a place of security the band halted, and their captain, a fine-looking
fellow, named Manzo, got out paper and pen and proceeded to business.
The two Englishmen were to be well treated, provided they made no
attempt to escape, and on the payment of a ransom were to be released
without injury. The sum demanded for the two was at first 100,000
ducats, or about $85,000, but this was afterward reduced one-half. It
was now agreed that one of the two captives should be allowed to go
for the money, and lots were drawn to determine upon whom this
agreeable duty should fall. Good fortune inclined to the side of Mr.
Aynsley, and the reverend gentleman set off under the care of two
guides. He was hardly out of sight when the band was attacked by a
party of soldiers, and for a short time there was a sharp skirmishing
fire, in the course of which Mr. Moens came very near being killed by
his would-be rescuers. He was forced to keep up with the bandits,
however, and the whole party finally got away from the troops.
Whatever plans he may have had of flight he now saw were futile. The
brigands ran down the mountain like goats, while he had to carefully
pick his way at every step. The robbers had eyes like cats: darkness
and light, night and daytime, made but little difference to them.
Their sense of hearing was so acute that the slightest rustle of
leaves, the faintest sound, never escaped their notice. Men working in
the fields, or mowing the grass, they could distinguish at a distance
of miles, and they knew generally who they were, and to what village
they belonged.

After four days of dreadful fatigue, during which the captive and his
captors all suffered severely from hunger, {120} since the closeness
of the pursuit prevented them from getting their usual supplies from
the peasants, our party joined the main body of the band.

  "On emerging from the trees we saw the captain and about twenty-five
  of his men reclining on the grass in a lovely glade, surrounded by
  large beach-trees, whose luxuriant branches swept the lawn. Several
  sheep and goats were tethered near, cropping the grass. The men,
  with their guns in their hands, their picturesque costumes and
  reclining postures, the lovely light and checkered shade of the
  trees, made a picture for Salvator Rosa. But I do not believe that
  Salvator Rosa, or any other man, ever paid a second visit to the
  brigands, however great his love of the picturesque might be, for no
  one would willingly endure brigand live after one experience of it,
  or place himself a second time in such a perilous situation.

  "The band all arose, and looked very pleased at seeing me, for we
  had been separated from them since the fight on the 17th, and they
  were in great fear that I might have escaped, or have been rescued
  by the troops. I stepped forward and shook hands with the captain,
  for I considered it my best policy to appear cheerful and friendly
  with the chief of my captors. He met me cordially in a ready way,
  and asked me how I was. I said I was very tired and hungry, so he
  immediately sent one of his men off, who returned in a few minutes
  with a round loaf of bread, and another loaf with the inside cut
  out, and packed full of cold mutton cut into small pieces and
  cooked. I asked for salt, and was told it was salted. When cooked
  the meat tasted delicious to me, though it was awfully tough, for I
  and had not had meat since luncheon on Monday, in the temples of
  Paestum, four days before. I ate a quantity, and then asked for
  water, which was brought to me in a large leathern flask with a horn
  around the top, and a hole on one side serving to admit air, as the
  water was required for drinking. I had observed a large lump of snow
  suspended by a stick through its center, between two forked sticks;
  the water dripping from it was collected in flasks, and then drunk.
  There were two or three of these flasks. The captain asked me if I
  was satisfied. I answered 'Yes.'

  "I was then told that there were two more companions for me. I was
  taken through a gap in the trees to the rest of the band, about
  seventeen in number. Here by found those who were destined to be my
  companions for the next three weeks. A young man about twenty-eight,
  with a black beard of a month's growth, dressed just like Manzo's
  band, who was introduced to me has Don Cice alias, Don Francesco
  Visconti, and one Tomasino, his cousin, a boy of fourteen years old.
  I shook hands with them, and condoled them on our common fate, which
  Don Francesco described as fearful. I was told to sit down on one
  side, which I did and looked around me.

  "The spot seemed perfect for concealment. We were at the top of a
  high mountain, entirely surrounded by high trees, excepting two
  small gaps serving for entrances, opposite to each other. The
  surface of the ground was quite level. About twenty yards away, on
  the side opposite to where I entered, there was a quantity of snow,
  from which they cut the large pieces for drinking purposes. I saw
  five or six men bringing a fresh block, which they had just cut, and
  slung on a pole. It was now a little before mid-day, and they were
  preparing a cauldron full of _pasta_ (a kind of macaroni), which was
  ready by twelve o'clock. Some was offered to me, which I accepted.
  One brigand proposed putting the _pasta_ into a hollow loaf, but
  another brigand brought forward a deep earthenwere dish of a round
  shape. I thought milk would be an improvement, so I asked for some.
  Two men went to the goats and brought some in the few minutes. The
  _pasta_ was very clean and well cooked. What with the meat and
  bread, and this _pasta_, I made an excellent dinner, and felt much
  better. The _pasta_ was all devoured in a few minutes by the band,
  who collected round the _caldaja_, and dipped in spoons and fingers.
  I had now leisure to examine the men; they were a fine, healthy set
  of fellows.

  "Here the two divisions of the band were united, thirty men under
  the command of Gaetano Manzo,  and twelve under Pepino Cerino. The
  latter had the two prisoners, who had been taken on the 16th of
  April near the valley of the Giffoni, at five o'clock in the
  afternoon, as they were returning from arranging some affairs
  connected with the death of a relative.

  "The smaller band had for women with them, attired like the men,
  with their hair cut short--at first I took them for boys; and all
  these displayed a greater love of jewelry then the members of men's
  Manzo's band. They were decked out to do me honor, and one of them
  wore no less than twenty-four gold rings, of various sizes and
  stones, on her hands at the same moment; others twenty, sixteen,
  ten, according to their wealth. To have but one gold chain attached
  to a watch was considered paltry and mean. Cerino and Manzo had
  bunches as thick as and arm suspended across the breasts of their
  waistcoats, with gorgeous brooches at each fastening. These were
  sewed on for security; little bunches of charms were also attached
  in conspicuous positions. I will now describe the uniforms of the
  two bands. Manzo's band had long jackets of strong brown cloth, the
  color of withered leaves, with large pockets of a circular shape on
  the two sides, and others in the breast outside; and a slit on each
  side gave entrance to a large pocket {121} that could hold anything
  in the back of the garment. I have seen a pair of trowsers, two
  shirts, three or four pounds of bread, a bit of dirty bacon, cheese,
  etc., pulled out one after the other when searching for some article
  that was missing. The waistcoats buttoned at the side, but had gilt
  buttons down the center for show and ornament; the larger ones were
  stamped with dogs' heads, birds, etc. There were two large circular
  pockets at the lower part of the waistcoats, in which were kept
  spare cartridges, balls, gunpowder, knives, etc.; and in the two
  smaller ones higher up, the watch in one side and percussion caps in
  the other. This garment was of dark blue cloth, like the trowsers,
  which were cut in the ordinary way.

  "The uniform of Cerino's band was very similar, only that the jacket
  and trowsers were alike of dark blue cloth and the waistcoat of
  bright green, with small round silver buttons placed close together.
  When the jackets were new they all had attached to the collars, by
  buttons, _capuces_, or hoods, which are drawn over the head at night
  or when the weather is very cold, but most of them had been lost in
  the woods. A belt about three inches deep, divided by two
  partitions, to hold about fifty cartridges, completed the dress,
  which, when new, was very neat-looking and serviceable. Some of the
  cartridges were murderous missiles. Tin was soldered round a ball so
  as to hold the powder, which was kept in by a plug of tow. When used
  the tow was taken out, and, after the powder was poured down the
  barrel, the case was reversed, and, a lot of slugs being added, was
  rammed down with the tow on top. These must be very destructive at
  close quarters, but they generally blaze at the soldiers, and _vice
  versâ_, at such a distance, that little harm is done from the
  uncertain aim taken. Most of them have revolvers, kept either in the
  belts or the left-hand pocket of their jackets; they were secured by
  a silk cord round their necks, and fastened to a ring in the butt of
  the pistol. Some few had stilettoes, only used for human victims.
  Many wore ostrich feathers with turned-up wide-awakes, which gave
  the wearers a theatrical and absurd appearance. Gay silk
  handkerchiefs around their necks and collars on their cotton shirts
  made them look quite dandies when these were clean, which was but
  seldom.

  "At last, tired of watching the band, I lay down and fell asleep. I
  slept for some hours, during which a poor sheep was dragged into the
  enclosure, killed, cut up, cooked in the pot, and eaten. I must have
  slept until near sunset, for when I awoke another sheep was being
  brought forward and I watched the process of killing and cutting up
  the poor beast. The sheep was taken in hand by two men, Generoso and
  Antonio generally acting as the butchers of the band. One doubled
  the fore legs of the sheep across the head; the other held the head
  back, inserting a knife into the throat and cutting the windpipe and
  jugular vein. It was then thrown down and left to expire. When dead,
  a slit was made in one of the hind legs near the feet, and an iron
  ramrod taken and past down the leg to the body of the animal; it was
  then withdrawn and the mouth of one of the men placed to the slit in
  the leg, and the animal was inflated as much as possible and then
  skinned. When the skin was separated from the legs and sides, the
  carcass was taken and suspended on a peg on a tree, through the
  tendon of the hind leg; the skin was then drawn off the back
  (sometimes the head was the end, but this rarely). The skin was now
  spread out on the ground to receive the meet, etc., when cut off the
  body; the inside was taken out, the entrails being drawn out
  carefully and cleaned; these were wound around the inside fat by two
  or three who were fond of this luxury--Sentonio, and Andrea the
  executioner, generally performing this operation. These delicacies,
  as they were considered, being made about four inches long and about
  one inch in diameter, are fried in fat or roasted on spits. It was
  some time before I would bring myself to eat these, but curiosity
  first, and hunger afterward, often caused me to eat my share, for I
  soon learned it was unwise to refuse anything.

  "While these two men were preparing the inside, the other two were
  cutting up the carcass. The breast was first cut off, and then the
  shoulders; the sheep was then cut in half with the axe, and then the
  bones were laid on a stump and cut through, so that it all could be
  cut in small pieces. One man would hold the meat, while another
  would take hold of a piece with his left hand and cut with his
  right. As it was cut up, the pieces would be put into a large cotton
  handkerchief, which was spread out on the ground; the liver and
  lungs were cut up in the same way; the fat was then put in the
  _caldaja_, and, when this was melted, the kidneys and heart (if the
  latter had not been appropriated by some one) were put in, cooked,
  and eaten, every one helping himself by dipping his fingers in the
  pot. The pieces of liver were considered the prizes. All the rest of
  the sheep was then put in the pot at once, and after a short time
  the pot was taken off the fire and jerked, so as to bring the under
  pieces to the top.

  "They liked the meat well cooked; and when once pronounced done, it
  was divided into as many equal portions as there were numbers
  present; the captives being treated as 'companions'--the term they
  always used in speaking of one another. I soon found that the sooner
  I picked up my share the better. If there was no doubt about there
  being plenty for all, the food was never divided. Then they dived
  with their hands, {122} whoever ate fastest coming off best. I could
  only eat slowly, having to cut all the meat into shreds, as it was
  so tough; so I always took as much as they would let me, and retired
  to my lair, like a dog with his bone. If I finished this before all
  was gone, I returned for more, it being always necessary to secure
  as much as possible, as one was never sure when more food would be
  forthcoming, and it is contrary to brigand etiquette to pocket food
  when eaten thus. When it was divided, I might of course do as I
  liked with my share, but even then it was prudent not to allow them
  to know that I had reserved a stock in my pocket, or I was sure to
  come off short on the next division taking place. The skin was now
  taken and stretched out to dry, and then used to sleep on."


There were five women with the band, all dressed just like the men,
except that they wore corsets. Their hair was cut short, and two of
them carried guns, the others being armed with revolvers. They had no
share in the ransom-money, and were often beaten and otherwise ill
treated by their lords. Doniella, the partner of Pepino Cerino, one of
the subordinate chiefs, was a strapping young woman about nineteen
years old, with a very good figure and handsome features, a pretty
smile, and splendid teeth. She and her husband were prodigious
gluttons, and Pepino was eventually deposed from his rank on account
of his lawless appetite. Carmina, the companion of Giuseppe, was a
good-natured creature, who was often kind and generous to the English
prisoner. Antonina, the wife of a whole-souled rascal named Generoso
di Salerno, had a thin, melancholy face, with magnificent great
lotus-eyes. She was cheerful and generous, and did a great for Mr.
Moens in the way of mending his clothes and sharing her food with him
during the many periods when victuals were scarce. Maria and Concetta
were both ugly and sulky, hardly ever spoke, and never gave away
anything.

It was a terrible life these brigands led, very different from the
free and picturesque career with which poetry and romance love to
identify them. Hunted by the soldiers and fleeced by their friends the
peasants; suffering the extremes of hunger, thirst and fatigue;
passing long days and nights of apprehension among the perpetual snows
of the mountain summits, where they often durst not light a fire to
warm their benumbed limbs or cook their stolen sheep or goat, for fear
lest the flame should betray them, and where they would scarcely
snatch a few moments for repose, that they might be ready for instant
flight; dreading even to take off their clothes to wash themselves,
because the pursuit might be upon them at any moment; paying absurd
prices for all that they obtained from the country people; wasting in
gambling the sums they received for ransoms; and haunted every hour by
the Nemesis of past crimes and vain longings for a lawful and quiet
life--the most wretched captive in his dungeon seems almost happy in
comparison with them. Mr. Moens passed about a hundred days in their
company. The ransom, finally reduced to 30,000 ducats, was not raised
without some delay, in a country where he had few acquaintances, and
even after it was raised the getting it safely to the band was a work
of time and difficulty, for the government punishes all intercourse
with the brigands with great severity. The robbers meanwhile became
impatient. Our author was forced to accustom himself to kicks, cuffs,
starvation, and every species of ill-usage, and there was serious talk
of cutting off his ears and sending them to his wife as a gentle
incentive to haste. The money came at last, however, and he parted
from the gang on very friendly terms, receiving from them before he
left enough money to enable him to travel to Naples "like a
gentleman," besides several interesting keepsakes, such as a number of
rings, and a knife which had been the instrument of one or two
murders.



There is a sort of relief in turning from these two narratives of
rascality to the next hook on our list, though in literary merit it is
very far inferior to {123} them. It is the narrative of a lady's
travels in Spain. There is not much novelty in the subject, and only a
very moderate degree of skill in the execution; but it is something to
get into decent company. Mrs. William Pitt Byrne  [Footnote 26]
travelled from the Pyreneean frontier of Spain, through Valladolid,
Segovia, Madrid, Toledo, and Cordova, to Seville. Her book, with all
its faults, supplies some lively pictures of modern Spanish life, and
the reader who has patience to hunt for them will also find in her
pages some valuable bits of information about the condition and
prospects of the kingdom. She has a great deal to say about the
discomforts of travelling in Spain, and the horrors of the hotels and
inns, which are scarcely less abominable than those of Russia. However
useful these particulars may be to persons meditating a trip through
the Peninsula, they can scarcely be thought very important to the
public generally; and we shall therefore content ourselves with
extracting from Mrs. Byrne's two handsome volumes an account of a
bull-fight at Madrid, which, notwithstanding her sex, she was induced
by a sense of public duty to witness. We pass over the description of
the arena and the spectators, and the preliminary procession of the
actors in the bloody spectacle, and come at once to the moment when
the bull is let into the ring:

  [Footnote 26: Cosas de España: Illustrative of Spain and the
  Spaniards as they are. By Mrs. Wm. Pitt Byrne, Author of Flemish
  Interiors, etc. 2 vols. 8vo. pp. 279, 322. London and New York:
  Alexander Strahan.]

  "No sooner was egress offered him than he rushed headlong into the
  circus, dashing madly round as if he sought an escape; baffled in
  this, and scared by the fanfare of the trumpets, the glare of the
  sun on the yellow sand, and the vociferous shouts of the people, he
  suddenly stopped, raised his head, and stared wildly round. The
  blood was already streaming from his neck where the _devisa_,
  [Footnote 27] in this case a sky-blue ribbon, had been fixed.
  Meantime the _lidiadores_, fifteen in number, were scattered about
  the arena, each with a brightly tinted cloak of different colors
  twisted about his arm, the _picadores_ being drawn up in a defensive
  attitude, one behind the other, as far as possible from the centre
  of the circus. The horses, we observed, were blindfolded, _pour
  cause_. Some precautions were taken for the safety of the _toreros_;
  thus there were, here and there, slits in the barriers,  [Footnote
  28] through which an expert fellow could glide, in extreme cases,
  and there is a step all round, from which the more readily to vault
  over the paling. For the protection of the public, a tight rope was
  strained all round the circus, fixed to iron stays, to arrest the
  progress of the bull, if, in his fury, he should attempt to scamper
  upwards among the spectators. This frequently occurs, to the great
  delight of those who are far enough off not to be damaged, and who
  seem to forget that the next time it may be their turn. Frightful
  indeed are the accidents, both among actors and spectators, which
  sometimes happen during these games; and, as they are generally of
  some unexpected kind, one never knows whether some awful casualty
  may not be on the point of occurring; it is always on the cards.

    [Footnote 27: The _devisa_ differs in color, and indicates the
    _ganaderia_ whence the bull has come.]

    [Footnote 28: At Seville the _lidiadores_, at least those who are
    on foot, have an additional chance of safety in the wooden screens
    placed all around at intervals, about fifteen inches in front of
    the fenced ring, behind which they can glide, without fear of
    being followed by the bull.]

  "The bull now discovered his adversaries, and seemed instinctively
  to recognize their treacherous intentions. The people became
  impatient for an attack, and the trumpets blew; the _capeadores_
  hovered about, dazzling, perplexing, attacking and repelling the
  bewildered brute, according to the different colors of their cloaks,
  and always gracefully and ingeniously eluding his vengeance. At
  length one, emboldened by success, continued his provocations beyond
  the bounds of discretion; the bull abandoned the others, and
  selecting his persevering tormentor, defied him to single combat.
  Scattering about the sand with his hoofs, he ploughed the ground
  with his muzzle, and, putting himself in a butting attitude, he
  pointed the back of his head and the tips of his horns with a
  menacing determination towards the object of his just vengeance. The
  agile _torero_, however, knew his bull; he never lost presence of
  mind for a moment, but twisting about the _capa_ till it became
  inflated, he flung it before the beast's face, and, under cover of
  its folds, fled nimbly to the barrier. The bull, furiously enraged,
  tossed the crimson silk, tearing it with his horns, and then,
  discovering how he had been duped, made for his foe with redoubled
  rage; but the _capeador_ had just gained the time he needed to vault
  over into the fenced ring just as the bull came up with him. His eye
  was dilated, and seemed to glare with fire; he had pursued his foe
  with such fury that the impetus given to his course served him
  instead of address, and, never losing sight of his man, he followed
  him, tumbling rather than leaping over the barrier into the narrow
  passage, {124} within one short section of which man and beast were
  now shut up together.

  "The approving roars from the amphitheatre were deafening; it was
  difficult not to be carried away by the general enthusiasm; it was a
  moment of intense excitement; the life of a fellow-being seemed to
  hang on a thread, and a moment more must decide his doom. It was a
  struggle between brute force and intelligent activity:--the man got
  the better of it. In that instant he made another desperate bound,
  and leaped over into the next division. The people, true to its
  character--

    'Sequitur fortunam, ut semper, et odit Damnatos,'

and who but now had thundered a unanimous '_Bravo toro!_' changed its
cry, and it was the _lidiador_ they hailed. But he was not saved yet;
the next move--quick as thought--was on the part of the bull, who,
making a second and almost supernatural bound, was seen coming up
behind him a third time, when the active fellow, by a happy
inspiration, leaped back into the arena, and his brethren in arms,
rushing to the rescue, threw open the communications to give his
provoked and angry foe free course, till, one of the barriers being
opened, he spontaneously returned into the circus, when it was neatly
closed, and the combatant was saved for _this_ time. Still panting
from the desperate chase, the disappointed brute now turned upon the
first _picador_, but received a check from the point of his lance; a
broad stream flowed from the widening gash, crimsoning the sand, and,
as might be expected, the wounded beast turned again with greater fury
on his assailant, who by this time had driven his spurs into his
horse, and by a bound had cleared the spot, so that the creature's
horns struck violently, and with a fearful crash, into the wooden
wall, and the bull, who as yet had gained no advantage, baffled and
stung, coursed once more desperately round the ring.

  "The men seemed to be taking breath; but the spectators had no
  intention of being satisfied with this tame dallying, and they
  vociferously signified their disapprobation. The trumpet sounded
  once more, and the _picador_ advanced a second time to the bleeding
  hero of the sport, and provoked him with his '_vara_,' at the same
  time siding up to the fence, so that, in case his horse should fall,
  he might secure an escape: the sagacious beast, albeit blindfolded,
  seemed to have an instinctive presentiment of the fate that awaited
  him; he trembled for a moment in every limb, as the bull, with a
  thundering roar, rent the air; but, obedient to the spur and to his
  master's voice, he recovered his pace, and advanced to meet the
  inevitable attack. The bull, lowering his head, rushed at the
  _picador_, and, with all the force of his weight, plunged his horns
  deep into the poor beast's right flank, turning him completely round
  as on a pivot, and lifting his hind quarters several times from the
  ground, the horse kicking violently. It was a ghastly group. The
  _picador_ kept his seat unmoved while the whole assemblage yelled
  it's savage delight. The attention of the bull, as soon as the lance
  had forced him to withdraw his horns, was called off by the
  _chulos_, who dazzled him with the evolutions of a yellow cloak, and
  the gored steed, now released, but frightfully torn, tottered on, a
  hideous spectacle, endeavoring with his fast-failing strength, to
  bear his rider out of danger. Arrived near the middle of the arena,
  however, his broken steps were arrested; his hour was come, and,
  making one last but futile effort, he fell with his rider heavily to
  the ground. When a _picador_ falls, and with his horse upon him, it
  is no easy matter for him to rise; and no sooner had the wretched
  steed succumbed, than the bull, dashing at the struggling and
  powerless man, 'in one red ruin blent,' attacked horse and man once
  more with all the vigor of his horns. The  _picador_ was utterly
  helpless; imbedded in his deep saddle and ponderous stirrups, his
  lower limbs cased in iron, he had not the shadow of a chance of
  extricating himself. His lance he had dropped, and all he could do,
  and all he did, was to urge his dying horse with violent and
  desperate blows to rise and release him. The cruelly-used beast,
  willing and intelligent to the last, mangled as he was, and almost
  swimming in the crimson pool beneath him, made a supreme effort to
  rise; it was in vain, and all he could now do was to serve as a
  shield by receiving the attack of the enraged bull, instead of his
  master. Still the position was eminently critical; the struggles of
  the dying horse under the horns of the infuriated full complicated
  the position, and the next moment might decide the helpless man's
  fate. He looked around, dismayed, when another _picador_ advanced,
  and, driving his lance into the bull's shoulder, aroused him to the
  consciousness of a new foe. The _toreros_ and _chulos_ took
  advantage of the diversion to bear the bruised and wounded _picador_
  off the field, and the expiring horse--not deemed worth of thought,
  because, pecuniarily speaking, he was valueless--was left there, not
  only to struggle in the agonies of a cruel death, but to form a butt
  for the frantic bull every time he passed in the fight.

  "Meantime, as if to carry their barbarity to the lowest depth, two
  or three _chulos_, watching their opportunity, advanced to the
  moribund horse, and beating him violently with clubs and sticks,
  tried to force him to rise, but in vain; his feet, once so swift,
  were destined never to support him again, and, after several
  attempts to comply, he dropped his head heavily, and with an almost
  human expression of powerlessness and despair. His savage tormentors
  were not satisfied even now, and as if determined the noble beast
  should not even die in peace, forestalled the {125} few moments he
  had yet to breathe, by dragging off, with frightful violence, the
  heavy accoutrements with which he was incumbered; and, having
  possessed themselves of these articles, departed without having even
  had the grace to put an end to his miserable existence, the bull
  being engaged in a deadly combat with the second _picador_ on the
  other side of the circus. The second _picador_, indeed, came off
  better than the first. _His_ horse, after the first goring, and when
  just about to fall, was recalled by a sharp spur-stroke in his
  already lacerated sides; he started off at a convulsive gala, and
  for his rider nearly round the ring, a miserable spectacle. His
  entrails were dragging along till, his feet getting entangled in
  them, his master, with surprising skill, contrived to dismount
  before he fell, and abandoned the dying and defenseless creature to
  the fury of the bull, who again gored and tossed him violently,
  escaped scot-free.

  "But the term of the persecuted _toro's_ own existence was
  shortening, and the people, fearing lest his end should arrive for
  they had had all the enjoyment that could possibly be extracted from
  his struggles, called loudly for the _banderillas_. The trumpets
  blew gets approving blast, and to bold _banderilleros_ presented
  themselves, after the bull had been provoked by the _chulos_ into
  the right position and attitude for these new tormentors to commence
  their attack. The _banderillero_ was an accomplished _torero_, who
  understood his business, and he took in at a glance the bull he had
  to deal with. His is a perilous office, but he executed it with
  intelligence, skill, and grace; he hovered about and around his
  bewildered victim, turning and twisting his _banderillas_ with
  provoking perseverance, and gliding aside with surprising muscular
  accuracy every time the poor bull tried to parry a feint; at last he
  succeeded in planting his gaudy instruments of torture into the
  exact spot in which a clever _artiste_ is bound to spike them,
  unless he can face the execrations of an assemblage of fastidious
  and disappointed _connoisseurs_. As it was, they testified their
  appreciation of the barbarous feat by the thunder of applause as the
  nimble _torero_ eluded the pursuit of his foe by swift retreat. The
  bespangled and befringed _banderillas_ drooped over with their own
  weight, and slapped violently on either side of the poor wretches
  neck, as with the sudden start and hideous roar at the unlooked-for
  aggravation, he bounded furiously across the sand, tearing up the
  ground with his horns and hoofs, and tossing everything in his way,
  in his frantic efforts to rid himself of the new torment; the blood,
  which had quite coagulated into a gory texture, hanging like a broad
  crimson sheet from either side of his neck, completely concealed his
  hide, now started in a fresh stream from the new wound, and his
  parched tongue hung from his mouth, eloquently appealing in its mute
  helplessness for one small drop of water. Strange to say, the
  pitiful sight touched no responsive chord in the hearts of that
  countless mass of humanity; on the contrary, like the beast of prey
  who has once licked up blood, this insatiate crowd seemed to gloat
  over the scene that had well-nigh sickened us; so far from being
  moved to compassion, regret, or sympathy, they urged on the
  remaining _banderilleros_, eager in their turn to show their skill,
  and after the usual flourishes, two more pair of fiery _banderillas_
  were adding their piercing points to the smarting shoulders of the
  luckless bull, 'butchered to make a _Spanish_ holiday.' What must
  the Roman circus have been, if this was so unendurable?--and yet
  tender, gentle, loving womankind assisted--ay, and applauded at the
  ghastly human sacrifice.

  "It was a relief when the trumpet blew its fatal blast, and the
  _espada_ came forward, bowed to the president, threw off his cap,
  and displayed his crimson flag. It was Cuchares--the great Cuchares
  himself: the theatre rang with applause. The Toledo steel, bright as
  a mirror, flashed in his practised hand, dexterously he felt his
  ground; he eyed the bull, and in a moment--a critical moment for
  him--perceived by tests his experience suggested to him the nature
  of the animal he had to deal with, and the mode in which he must be
  treated . . . and . . . despatched. All the other _toreros_ had
  retired, and he stood alone, as an executioner, face to face with
  his foredoomed victim. It was a supreme moment, and the attention of
  the amphitheatre seemed breathlessly concentrated into a single
  point.

  "There is a wonderful power of fascination in perfection of any
  kind, and, notwithstanding the nature of the act in which it was to
  be displayed, we felt ourselves insensibly drawn under its
  influence.

  "The _matador_ began his operations by dallying with the bull:
  possessing all the qualifications of a first-rate _espada_, the
  confidence he had in the accuracy of his eye and the steadiness of
  his hand was apparent in every gesture; the group formed a singular
  _tableau_, and the attitudes supplied a series of excitements. Every
  head was stretched forward with an eagerness which offered each
  individual character without disguise, to be read like the page of a
  book. The interest was intensified by a sudden and unexpected plunge
  on the part of the bull; it was vigorous, but it was his last; the
  poor beast was received with masterly self-possession on the point
  of the sword, which entered deep, deep into the shoulder, just above
  the blade, and with a fearful groan, the huge and bloody form fell,
  an inert mass, to the ground.

  "The crimson tide of life burst like an unstemmed torrent from his
  wide nostrils and gaping mouth, and with a quiver which seemed to
  communicate itself to the whole {126} amphitheatre, he was still for
  ever. The air was rent with shouts of men, screams of women, cries
  of approbation and roars of applause, which were still at their
  height, when one of the barriers suddenly opened, and the mules,
  with their harness glittering, and their _grélots_ tinkling, trotted
  gaily in; a rope was fastened with great dexterity around the neck
  of the still palpitating carcase, which was then dragged off with
  incredible rapidity, leaving a purple furrow in the sand: the dead
  bodies of the luckless horses, one of which still lingered on, were
  mercilessly disposed of in a similar manner; the _chulos_ came in,
  some raked over the large deep stains beneath where the dead had
  lain, and cleverly masked the tracks they had left, and others
  sprinkled fresh sand over the spots. All traces of the deadly
  contest were obliterated, and in the few moments the arena, bright
  and sunny as ever, was prepared for a new _corrida_; the _toreros_
  appeared again, as smart and dapper as the first, their costumes as
  fresh, their silk stockings as spotless; not a splash of blood had
  touched them, and their limbs appeared to retain their original
  pliability to the last. One _corrida_ is so like another, the
  routine is so precisely the same--never, apparently, having varied
  since the first bull-fight that was ever exhibited in the crudest
  times, and--unless there be an accident--the detail is so slightly
  varied, that it would be needless to add to the notes we have
  already recorded, especially as it is not an entertainment we would
  willingly linger over, even in recollection. We felt we ought to see
  it once; we saw, were utterly disgusted, and hope never to witness
  the horrid exposition a second time."



We have another book on Spain, just published in London, and much
better written than Mrs. Byrne's, though it does not contain a quarter
so much information as that lady's desultory journal. It is by Mr.
Henry Blackburn,  [Footnote 29] who made a trip through the kingdom,
in 1864, with a party of ladies and gentlemen.

  [Footnote 29: Travelling in Spain in the Present Day. Henry
  Blackburn. 8vo. pp.248. London: Sampson, Low, Son & Marston.]

He too went to see a bull-fight at Madrid, and he really seemed to
have enjoyed it, his chief regret, when he thinks of the performance,
being that the odds were too great _against the bull!_ If the beast
had only been allowed a fair chance, he would have liked it a great
deal better. He attended another bull-fight at Seville, and did not
like it at all. The great attraction on this occasion was a female
bill-fighter, who was advertised as the "intrepid señorita" She
entered the arena in a kind of Bloomer costume, with a cap and a red
spangled tunic, made her bow to the president, and then lo! to the
English gentlemen's unspeakable disappointment, a great tub was
brought, and she was lifted into it. It reached her arm-pits and there
she stood, waving her darts, or _banderillas_. At a given signal the
bull was let in, his horns having been previously cut short and padded
at the ends. "As the animal could only toss or do any mischief by
lowering its head to the ground, the risk did not seem great, or the
performance promising." The bull evidently considered the whole thing
a humbug, for at first he would have nothing to do with the tub, and
kept walking round and round the ring. At last indignation got the
better of him, and turning suddenly upon the ignominious utensil, he
sent it rolling half way across the arena, with the intrepid señorita
curled up inside. This seemed very much like baiting a hedgehog; but
when the bull caught up the tub on his horns and ran bellowing with it
round the ring, the sport began to look serious. There was a general
rush of _banderilleros_ and _chulos_ to the rescue. The performer was
extricated and smuggled shamefully out of the amphitheatre, and the
bull was driven buck to his cage. The next act Mr. Blackburn
characterizes by the appropriate name of "skittles." Nine grotesquely
dressed negroes stood up in a row, and a frisky young bull was let in
to bowl them over. They understood their duty, and went down flat at
the first charge. Then they sat on chairs, and were knocked over
again. This was great fun, and appeared to afford unlimited
satisfaction to the bull, the ninepins, the audience, and everybody
except Mr. Blackburn. The performance was repeated several times.
After that came a burlesque of the _picadores_. Five ragged beggars,
with a grim smile on their dirty faces, rode {127} forward on donkeys,
without saddle or bridle. The gates were opened, and the bull charged
them at once. They rode so close together that they resisted the first
shock, and the bull retired. He had broken a leg of one of the
donkeys, but they tied it up with a handkerchief, and continued
marching slowly round, still keeping close together. A few more
charges, and down they all went. The men ran for their lives and
leaped the barriers, and the donkeys were thrown up in the air. So,
with many variations and interludes, the sport went on for three
hours; and at last, when night came, two or three young bulls were let
into the ring, and then _all the people!_ "We left them there," says
our author, "rolling and tumbling over one another in the darkness,
shouting and screaming, fighting and cursing--sending up sounds that
might indeed make angels weep."

The Spaniard does not always figure in Mr. Blackburn's book as the
high-bred gentleman we are wont to imagine him. Take, for example,
this picture of a señor travelling: "For some mysterious reason, no
sooner does a Spaniard find himself in a railway carriage than his
native courtesy and high breeding seem to desert him; he is not the
man you meet on the Prado, or who is ready to divide his dinner with
you on the mountain-side. He is generally, as far as our experience
goes, a fat, selfish-looking bundle of cloaks and rugs, taking up more
than his share of the seat, not moving to make way for you, and seldom
offering any assistance or civility. He is not very clean, and smokes
incessantly during the whole twenty-four hours that you may have to
sit next to him; occasionally toppling over in a half-sleep, with his
head upon your shoulder and his lighted cigar hanging from his mouth.
He insists upon keeping the windows tightly closed, and unless your
party is a large one you have to give way to the majority and submit
to be half suffocated." Nor is it much better at the hotels: "A lady
cannot, in the year 1866, sit down to a _table d'hôte_ in Madrid
without the chance of having smoke puffed across the table in her face
all dinner-time; her next neighbor (if a Spaniard) will think nothing
of reaching in front of her for what he requires, and greedily
securing the best of everything for himself. That is an educated
gentleman opposite, but he has peculiar views about the uses of knives
and forks; next to him are two ladies (of some position, we may
assume; they have come to Madrid to be presented at the levée
to-morrow), but their manners at table are simply atrocious. In his
own house, it must be admitted, the Spaniard behaves better; but it is
only among the few that one encounters the same degree of refinement
and good manners that commonly prevail in England and America. The
Spanish gentry read little and are very ignorant; and, as a rule,
ignorance and refinement are hardly ever found together."

As a specimen of one of the lower classes take this extract: "Our beds
are made by a dirty, good-natured little man, who sits upon them and
smokes at intervals during the process. Our fellow-travellers, who
have been much in Spain and have been staying here some time, say that
he is one of the best and most obliging servants they have met with.
He attends to all the families on our _étage_, and earns 18s. or 20s.
a day! Every one has to fee him, or he will not work. We found him
active enough until the end of the week, when our 'tip' of 60 or 70
reals, equal to about 2s. a day, was indignantly returned, as
insufficient and degrading. The latter was the grievance: his pride
was hurt, and we never got on well afterward. He had a knack of
leaving behind him the damp, smouldering ends of his cigarettes; and
on one occasion, on being suddenly called out of the room, quietly
deposited the morsel on the edge of one of our plates on the breakfast
table."

{128}

The great feature of Spanish life seems to be its laziness. Crowds of
idlers, wrapped in their picturesque cloaks, stand about the plazas
from morning till night, doing noting, rarely speaking, and scarcely
seeming to have energy enough to light a cigarette. Sometimes they
scratch their fusees on the coat of a passer-by, in a contemplative,
patronizing fashion, that takes a stranger rather aback. A young
Madrileño is content to lounge his life away in this manner; and if he
has an income sufficient to provide him with the bare means of
subsistence, with his indispensable _cigarito_ and his ticket for the
bull-fight, he will do no work. In the morning he lounges on the
Puerta del Sol; in the afternoon he lounges (if he can't ride) on the
Prado; in the evening he lounges in the cafe or the theatre. This is
all he cares for, and about all he is fit for. The middle class--the
shop-keepers--have as little energy as their betters. "We went into a
confectioner s one day," says Mr. Blackburn, "to purchase some
chocolate, and were deliberately told that, if we liked to get it down
from a high shelf, we could have it; no assistance was offered, and we
had to go empty away." Could we accept Mr. Blackburn's sketch, or Mrs.
Byrne's either, as a true picture of Spanish society, we might indeed
despair of the ultimate regeneration of the kingdom. But the author of
Travelling in Spain at the Present Day has the candor to admit that he
is only a superficial observer, and with the following honest and
commendable passages from his concluding chapter, we take leave of him
and our readers together:

  "Spain is not a country to travel in, and there is no nation which
  is more unfairly estimated by foreigners who pay it only a flying
  visit. We have no opportunity of appreciating the Spaniards' good
  points, nor do we become at all aware of their latent fund of humor,
  their good-heartedness, and their true _bonhomie_. We jostle with
  them in crowds, we rub roughly against them in travelling, our
  patience is sorely tried, and we are apt, as Miss Eyre did, to
  denounce them as worse than 'barbarians. But we should bear in mind
  that Spaniards differ from other nations conspicuously in this--that
  they become sooner '_crystallized_;' and crystals, we all no well,
  are never seen to advantage when in contact with foreign bodies. In
  short Spaniards are not as other men; and Spain is a dear delightful
  land of contraries, where nothing ever happens as you expect it, and
  where 'coming objects _never_ cast their shadow before!'"



--------

ORIGINAL.

ANNIVERSARY.

  The brooding July noon, the still, deep heats
  Upon the full-leaved woods and flowering maize,
  The first wheat harvest, and the torrid blaze
  Which on the sweating reapers fiercely beats
  And drives each songster to its own retreats,--
  Much less the stately lily of the field,
  Gorgeous in scarlet, whose large anthers yield
  The honey-bee meet prison for its sweets,
  A flame amid the meadow-land's rich green--
  With the revolving year is never seen
  But o'er the sunny landscape creeps a shade
  Of solemn recollection. Lilies! lean
  Your brilliant coronals where once was laid
  A boy's brow grand in death, and "Rest in peace" be said.

------

{129}

From The Month.

ST. CATHARINE AT FLORENCE.


The history of every race, every institution, every community, and
even every family, has facts, phenomena, and characteristics of its
own, which are the necessary results of the operation of certain
elements or influences that belong to the subject of the history, or
bear upon it with a peculiar force. It is the province of the
philosophical historian to seize upon these characteristic features in
each ease, and to give them their due prominence; and an intimate
acquaintance with them and a due estimate of them are essentially
necessary to any one who understands the work of such a historian. To
be deficient in this point is enough to ruin the attempt. Thus, we
might have a rationalistic writer on church history free from every
prejudice, and endowed with literary powers of the highest
kind--candid, impartial, industrious, judicious, full of generous
sympathies, and large-minded and clear-sighted enough to take rank by
the side of Thucydides or Tacitus--and yet he would fail even
ludicrously as a Christian historian, because he did not recognize the
ever living supernatural agency which the fortunes of the church are
ordinarily guided--the force of prayer, the power of sanctity, the
softening and restraining influences of faith, charity, and
conscience, even on men or masses of men but imperfectly masters of
their own passions, and by no means unstained by vice.

It is our object in these papers to give prominence to some of what
may be conceded to be the more characteristic features of Christian
history, which may nevertheless be left in the shade by those to whom
it is little more than the history of Greece or Rome. Thus, a
philosophical historian might see in the return of the Holy See from
its long sojourn at Avignon a stroke of profound policy, by which it's
emancipation from the straitening influences of nationalism was
cheaply purchased, even at the cost of the great scandals which
followed, and which a calculating politician might have foreseen. But
to such a writer the manner in which the step was brought about would
seem to be a riddle; for nothing is clearer than that it was
consciously no stroke of policy at all. The wisest heads and the most
powerful influences at the pontifical court were united against it; it
was the work of an irresistible impulse on the conscience of a gentle
and peace-loving Pope, the subject of a secret vow, a design conceived
under the personal influence of one saintly woman--of princely race
indeed, and reverend age, and large experience--but carried out under
that of another in whom these last qualities were wanting; young,
poor, the daughter of an artisan, yet who was able to succeed in her
mission when success seemed hopeless, and to become the instrument of
strengthening the successor of St. Peter in an emergency that might
have taxed the courage of the great apostle himself.

Catholic art has sometimes represented St. Catharine of Siena as
taking a part in the triumphal procession with which Gregory XI.
entered Rome, and so terminated the long exile of the Holy See at
Avignon. These representations, although true in idea, are false as to
the historical fact; for St. Catharine never entered Rome in the
lifetime of Gregory. After having seen him embark from Genoa on his
{130} voyage toward the Holy City, she betook herself, with her
company of disciples, to her own home at Siena, where she seems to
have remained, with occasional excursions into the neighboring
country, for nearly a year. She then reappears in public, having been
sent once more by the Pope to Florence, in the hope that her presence
there might strengthen the hands of the better party in the Republic,
and bring it round again to peace with the church. In the interval she
resumed her usual occupations, exerting herself in every possible way
for the good of souls. Her letters at this time show great anxiety for
the peace, which had not yet been obtained in Italy; for the crusade,
which was always in her heart; and, perhaps more than all, for the
most difficult, yet most necessary of the objects that were so dear to
her--the reform of the clergy, and especially of the prelacy. It
would be a thankless task to inquire into the many causes which had
foster worldliness among churchmen at that time, and so prepared all
the elements for the great scandal that was so soon to follow in the
"schism" of the West. The best interests of the church had, in
reality, more deadly enemies than Barnabo Visconti or the "Eight
Saints" at Florence, in men who wore the robes of priests and even the
mitre of bishops.

There is every reason to suppose that the corruption was not widely
spread; but it had infected many in high station and authority, and
even a few bad and ambitious prelates can at any time do incalculable
mischief. The illuminated eye of Catharine had become familiar with
the evil that was thus gnawing at the very heart of the church,
manifesting its presence already by the pride, ambition, and luxury of
ecclesiastics, and ready, when the moment came to give it full play,
to break out into excesses still more deplorable than these. She saw
passion and vice enough to produce the worst of the evils by which the
providence of God permits the church to be afflicted, if only the
provocation came that would fan into full blaze the fire that was
already kindled. The B. Raymond tells us that, so far back as the
beginning of the troubles in the Pontifical States, when the news came
of the revolt of Perugia, he went to her in the deepest affliction to
tell her what had happened. She grieved with him over the loss of
souls and the scandal given in the church; but, seeing him almost
overwhelmed with sorrow, she bade him not begin his mourning so soon.
"You have far too much to weep for: what you see now is as milk and
honey to that which is to follow."

"How can any evil be greater than this," he replied, "when we see
Christians cast away all devotion and respect to Holy Church, show no
fear of her censures, and by their actions publicly deny their
validity? Nothing remains for them now to do but to renounce entirely
the faith of Christ."

"Father," said Catharine, "all this the laity do: soon you will see
how much worse that is which the clergy will do."

Then she told him that there would be rebellion among them also, when
the Pope began to reform their bad manners, and that the consequences
would be a widespread scandal in the church; "not exactly a heresy,
but which would divide it and afflict it much in the same way as if it
were." This prophecy was made about two years before the time of which
we are now speaking. It is no wonder that, with this clear view of the
existing elements of evil before her, Catharine should have urged upon
Gregory XI. the apparently impossible project of a reform of the
clergy. It was apparently impossible, partly from the circumstances of
the time, partly from the character of the pontiff himself. The
troubles of Italy still continued: all attempts at pacification
failed, and the fortune of the war was by no means favorable to the
cause of the church, Moreover, at Rome, the _banderesi_ or bannerets,
who had for some {131} time had possession of the chief power in the
city, had laid, indeed, their rods of office at the feet of Gregory at
his entrance, but they still exercised their authority without regard
to his orders for his wishes, and he found himself, therefore, not
even master in his own capital. This was not the time to undertake
that most difficult of all tasks, which was yet imperatively required
for the welfare of the church. Nor was Gregory, with his feeble
health, with the hand of death already upon him, and with his gentle
and patient disposition, fitted rather for suffering than for action,
the natural instrument for a work that called for sternness severity.
Nevertheless, Catharine urged it upon him with a firmness that shows
fact once the influence she had required, and her burning sense of the
necessity of the measure. In one of the three letters to him that
belong to this time, she tells him that the supreme truth demands this
of him: that he should punish the multitude of iniquities committed by
those who feed themselves in the garden of the Holy Church: "Beasts
ought not to feed themselves on the food of men. Since this authority
has been given to you, and you have accepted it, you ought to use your
power: if you will not use it, it were better to renounce it, for the
honor of God and the salvation of souls." She insists also upon the
necessity of granting peace to the revolting cities on any terms that
were consistent with the honor of God and the rights of the church.
"If I were in your place, I should fear that the judgment of God might
fall on me; and therefore I pray you most tenderly, on the part of
Jesus Christ crucified, that you obey the will of God--though I know
that you have no other desire than to do his will; so that that hard
rebuke may never be made to you, 'Woe to thee, for that thou hast not
used the time and the power that were committed to thee'" (Lett.
xiii.) These were strong words. Catharine sent Father Raymond about
the same time to Rome with a number of practical proposals for the
good of the church. It appears from a letter to Raymond himself that
Gregory XI. was displeased with her, either for her great liberty of
speech, or, as is more probable, for the ill-success that seemed to
have followed the step that he had taken at her advice. Nothing can be
more beautiful or more touching than her humble apology for
herself--she is ready to believe that all the calamities of the church
were occasioned by her own sins.

Gregory had in fact continually occupied himself with endeavors for
peace with Florence and the other confederated cities; but there had
been the usual insincerity on the other side, and besides, the
barbarities committed by the Breton troops at Cesena had produced
their natural effect of alienating still more his revolted subjects.
Negotiations had been recommenced even before the departure of the
Pope from Avignon, at least so far that the Florentines had been
desired to send ambassadors to meet him at Rome. He did not arrive
there by the time appointed, and wrote again from Corneto to fix a
later time. The negotiation failed, as we have said, not from any lack
of a desire for peace on the part of Gregory, but on account of the
bad faith of the rulers of Florence, who really wished the war to
continue. Their cause seemed to gain strength with time; for Visconti
now took their side, regardless of the treaty that had been made with
him, and the English company under Sir John Hawkwood entered their
service. A gleam of hope came when one of the revolted leaders, the
Lord of Viterbo, made his peace with the church. Gregory immediately
despatched two envoys to Florence, but their efforts were in vain; and
in the autumn of 1377 the Eight, who still held the supreme power,
ventured on a step which gave still greater scandal than any of their
former excesses, and seemed to widen still further the breach between
the Republic and the Holy See.

{132}

Florence had now been for nearly a year and a half under an interdict,
The churches were closed--the sacred offices could not be performed,
nor the sacraments administered, except in private. This weighed
heavily on the mass of the population. There were probably but few,
besides the Eight and their immediate followers, who regarded it with
indifference. The Italian character is in many respects unintelligible
to those who have not studied it in Italy itself. We can hardly
understand how nine-tenths of the population of a city or a duchy can
submit quietly to be governed by a handful of usurpers, who proclaim
themselves the representatives of the people--the great majority of
whom have abstained from the nominal voting that had conferred that
character upon them--and let things take their course under the
tyranny of their new masters, though that course lead to financial
ruin, burdensome taxation, and the spoliation of the best institutions
of the country, as well as to open persecution of religion and
deliberate attacks on morality. An Anglo-Saxon population would either
have brought public opinion and general feeling to bear irresistibly
upon the magistrates, or would have taken the matter into its own
hands, and sent the "Eight Saints" floating down the Arno if they had
not conformed their policy to the all but universal desire for peace.
But the Florentines waited and suffered, showing their attachment to
the church and to the services from which they were debarred in many
touching ways, some of which have been specially recorded by the
historians of the time. It was forbidden, for instance, that the
divine office--at which, at that time, it was the custom of the laity
to assist--should be sung publicly in the churches; but pious persons
could not be forbidden from practising such devotions as might occur
to them in place of the regular services; and we find that in
consequence they organized themselves into confraternities, and went
about in processions singing hymns in praise of God. Many of these
seem to have been composed by followers or disciples of St. Catharine.
There was a movement of popular devotion to make up for the solemn
ecclesiastical worship which was suspended. No doubt it was a symptom
of an irrepressible feeling in the public mind which frightened the
"Eight Saints." At length the feast-day of St. Reparata
approached--Oct. 8th. She was the titular saint of the cathedral,
[Footnote 30] and her feast was usually celebrated with splendor and
popular devotion. Were the people to be shut out of the church again
on the day of their patron saint? The Eight had, as we have seen, just
concluded their league with the lord of Milan, and strengthen their
arms by the accession of Hawkwood, and their envoys had have returned
from Rome without terms of peace. They determined to brave the Pope
still further, and to plunge the city into still more flagrant
rebellion against his authority, by ordering the violation of the
interdict. They would indulge the religious wishes of the people,
making them, at the same time, partners in a gross insults to
religion. They would force the clergy themselves to the alternative of
taking part against the church, or of suffering civil penalties and
persecution if they refused to do so.

  [Footnote 30: the Duomo of Florence, as it is signified by its
  name--S. Maria del Flore--is dedicated in honor of our Blessed Lady;
  but it was originally called after St. Reparata, an early martyr in
  Palestine, in gratitude for the deliverance of the city from a horde
  of Huns that besieged it in the fifth century; which deliverance
  took place on the date of the saint--Oct. 8th. The feast was kept as
  one of the first class, with an octave. The epithet "del Flore,"
  added to our Lady's name in the present title, signifies Florence
  itself, the emblem of the city being a lily.]

St. Catharine, in one of her letters about this time, blames certain
members of the clergy, and some of the mendicant friars, as having
either counselled this outrage, or as having been induced by worldly
motives to justify and defend it in pulpit. In a numerous clergy,
connected by countless ties with every party and {133} every class, it
is far more surprising that so few should ordinarily be found to help
on tyranny and persecution such as that of the Eight, then that some
should be weak enough to yield to its threats or its bribes. But the
scandal was very great, and it would seem that the great body of the
clergy, notwithstanding heavy fines levied on those who did not obey
the order of the government, stood firm. The bishop--a Ricasoli--had
already left the city rather than expose himself to the danger of
coercion. But there was the greatest danger for the better party both
among the people and among the ecclesiastics; and the state of things
called for the most vigorous exertions on the part of Pope to provide
a remedy before matters screw still worse. It may seem very strange to
the ideas of our century to say that the remedy adopted by Gregory was
the most fitting that could have been found, and the same of which the
Florentines had bethought themselves when they had wished to make
their own peace at Avignon. It had failed indeed, then, on account of
their bad faith; but it had produced another great result for which
Providence had destined it. The odious government that had plagued the
Florentine republic into so many excesses was to be overthrown by the
better and sounder part among the citizens themselves, who still might
have been too timid to exert themselves on the side of peace and order
if they had not had a saint among them to encourage and direct them.
We should all think ourselves foolish if we were to deny that such
results are the natural and lawful consequence of the exertion of
personal influence: it is only that we cannot bring ourselves to
conceive that the personal influence of great and recognized sanctity
may be more powerful than any other.

Father Raymond, the friend and biographer of St. Catharine, tells us
that he was then in Rome, governing the great convent of the Minerva.
He had had some conversation, before leaving Siena, with Niccolo
Soderini, a noble Florentine, who had told him that the great majority
of the citizens wished for peace with the Holy See, and that it might
easily be brought about if some of the present magistrates were
deprived of their offices. He even pointed out the way in which it
might be done. One morning the Pope sent for Father Raymond, and told
him he had received letters suggesting that peace might be made if
Catharine were sent to Florence to use her influence there; and he
bade him, accordingly, prepare a paper stating with what powers it
would be expedient to invest her. The bulls were at once drawn up, and
Catharine received orders to go to Florence as legate of the Holy See.
She was joyfully received, and at once set to work to confer with the
most influential persons in the state. The first fruit of her
exhortations was, that the interdict was again observed, and the first
great scandal thus removed. The next step was a more difficult one.
How were the obnoxious magistrates to be removed without a revolution?
The friends of peace were obliged to have recourse to a curious
institution, belonging to that long-established party organization
which had been the fruit of the division of the Italian cities, and of
each city, more or less, within itself, into the hostile factions of
Guelphs and Ghibellines. Florence had always been Guelphs, and it
appears that certain elected leaders of the dominant party had
obtained a recognized right, in order to maintain the government of
the city on their own side, to object to persons of the opposite
party, and remove them from any post that they might chance to hold. A
power like this was of course liable to great abuse: it has reappeared
now and then in history in some of the worst times, and been the
instrument of the greatest injustice and wrong. In Florence it seems
to have been exercised with more moderation than in many modern
instances; still it had sometimes been used {134} unscrupulously, and
made the means of satisfying private malice and personal revenge or
ambition. It was therefore very unpopular, and seems to have been
practically disused at the time of which we speak. Catharine, however,
thought that it might now be put in use with advantage, to take the
reins of government out of the hands of the Eight, and break down
their pernicious influence; and it is certain that a fairer use of
such a power could never have been made. The plan seems to have been
suggested by her friend Niccolo Soderini, whom we lately mentioned. It
was urged on the Guelph officials by Catherine; and one of the Eight
was accordingly "admonished," as the phrase was, that he was not to
occupy himself with public affairs for the future. He was a man of
much influence, but he does not seem to have resisted the admonition.

Unfortunately, the leaders of the Guelph party were willing to make
peace with the Holy See, but their dominant idea was to restore
themselves to power and ruin their enemies. They began to "admonish"'
on all sides, and to use the name and authority of Catharine as
vouchers for the purity of their motives and the wisdom of their
policy. It is said that in the space of eight months they either
removed as many as ninety citizens from posts of authority, or
prevented them from acquiring them. It may easily be imagined that
this could not be done without exciting furious passions; a storm soon
began to gather, which did not wait long to burst. Catharine protested
and entreated, and, to some extent, checked the evil. She had already
prevailed on the government to entertain seriously the project of
peace. It was agreed that a congress should assemble at Sarzano for
the settlement of the troubles that agitated Italy. The Pope sent a
cardinal and the Bishop of Narbonne as his representatives; France,
Naples, Florence, Genoa, and Venice were to send others; and Barnabo
Visconti was to be present in person to arbitrate between the Pope and
Florence. A strange position for that inveterate plotter against the
church; but one which shows, at all events, that Gregory XI. was
willing to do a great deal for the sake of peace. Everything seemed to
promise well; but while the congress was deliberating, Gregory died,
and nothing could therefore be concluded. His death took place in
March, 1378. Catharine was still at Florence, and seems to have had
good hopes of bringing matters to a favorable issue, notwithstanding
the failure of the congress. The new "gonfaloniere" seems to have been
elected on the first of May. He bore a name afterward destined to
become connected with the later splendors of his country--Salvestro
dei Medici--and he was a man of firmness and standing sufficient to
enable him to defy and check the extravagances of the Guelph
officials. It was agreed between them that there should be no more
"admonitions," except in the case of persons really tainted with
Ghibelline principles; and that in no case should the "admonition" be
valid after the third time. He was, moreover, bent on carrying out the
peace with the Pope, and, as it seems at the entreaty of St.
Catharine, sent fresh ambassadors to Urban VI., who had now succeeded
Gregory on the pontifical throne.

These fair prospects were soon clouded over by the mischievous
obstinacy of the Guelph party. The time came on, very soon after the
installment of the new "gonfaloniere," for the selection of new
"chiefs," into whose hands would pass the obnoxious power of
"admonishing." The new men did not consider themselves bound by the
promises made by their predecessors; they were not friends of
Catherine, as some of the others had been, and they began to use their
power in the former reckless manner. They especially threw down the
gauntlet to Salvestro and to the other magistrates, by their exclusion
of two men of distinction, which showed their determination {135} to
carry things to extremities. Here, again, we meet with the historic
name of Ricasoli. One of that family was among the captains of the
Guelphs, and is said to have forced this exclusion on his less willing
colleagues. The strain became at length too great, and Salvestro
himself sanctioned a popular outbreak against the Guelph officials; a
movement over which he soon lost all control, and which led in a few
months to a still more terrible outbreak, known as the affair of the
Ciompi. The fury of the people, led by the Ammoniti--those who had
been excluded from office by the exercise of the power lately
mentioned--and unchecked by any attempt on the part of the legitimate
authorities to restraint it, was irresistible. Many lives were
sacrificed; the leaders of the Guelphs saved themselves by flight,
leaving their houses to be sacked and burnt. Niccolo Soderini and
other friends of Catharine were among the fugitives, though they had
not taken part in the excesses that provoked the rising. As the tumult
gathered strength, and the people became blinder in their fury,
ominous voices were heard calling for the death of Catherine herself.
Her name had been freely used by the Guelph officials, though she had
protested publicly against their violent acts, and had entreated them
repeatedly to be guided by justice and prudence. The scene that
followed, a kind of turning-point in her life, shall be told in the
words of her simple biographer. When the rumor of the intended attack
on Catherine spread, "the people of the house in which she dwelt with
her companions bade them depart, for they did not wish to have the
house burnt down on their account. She meanwhile, conscious of her own
innocence, and willingly suffering anything for the cause of the Holy
Church, did not lose a jot of her wonted constancy, but smiling and
encouraging her followers to emulate her Spouse, she went out to a
certain place where there was a garden, and first gave them a short
exhortation, and then set herself to pray. At last, while she was thus
praying in the garden, after the example of Christ, those satellites
of the devil came to the place, a tumultuous mob armed with swords and
staves, crying out, 'Where is this cursed woman? Where is she?'
Catharine, when she heard this, as if she had been called to to a
delightful banquet, made herself ready at once for the martyrdom which
for a long time she had desired, and placing herself in the way of one
who had his sword drawn, and was crying louder than the rest, 'Where
is Catharine?' she cast herself with a joyous countenance on her
knees, and said, 'I am Catharine; do therefore with me all that which
our Lord permits you to do; but I command you, on the part of Almighty
God, not to hurt any of my companions.' When she said these words, the
wretch was so terrified and deprived of all strength, that he did not
dare either to strike her or to remain in in her presence. Though he
had so boldly and eagerly sought for her, when he found her he drove
her away, saying, 'Depart from me.' But Catharine, wishing for
martyrdom, answered, 'I am well here, and where should I go? I am
ready to suffer for Christ and for his church, because this it is that
I have long desired and sought with all my prayers. Ought I to fly now
that I have found what I have longed for? I offer myself a living
victim to my dearest Spouse. If thou art destined to be my sacrificer,
do at once whatever thou wiliest, for I will never fly from this spot;
only do no harm to any of mine.' What more? God did not permit the man
to carry his cruelty any further against her, but he went away in
confusion with all his companions." And then Fr. Raymond goes on to
tell us how, when all her spiritual children gathered round her full
of joy at her escape, she alone was overwhelmed with sorrow, and
lamented that she had lost through her sins the crown of martyrdom.

{136}

She was reserved for further labors, and for a martyrdom of another
kind in the same cause; and she had soon the consolation of seeing
that her mission to Florence had not been fruitless. The death of
Gregory XI. dispersed the congress of Sarzona; but the Florentines
remained, amid all their intestine troubles, firm in their resolution
to make peace with the Holy See. Before the outbreak of which we have
just spoken, they had arranged terms with Catharine, and ambassadors
had been chosen to go to Rome to treat with the new Pope. Catharine,
who had known Urban VI. when she was at Avignon, now wrote to him
earnestly entreating him to accept the terms; she was afraid lest the
scenes of violence and bloodshed that had lately taken place might
make him less inclined to peace. Her entreaties were successful. The
terms of peace were honorable to the Holy See. Everything was to
return to the state in which it had been before the war; the
Florentines were to pay 150,000 florins--a very moderate indemnity for
the mischief they had caused in the Papal States; and two legates were
to be sent to absolve the city from the censures it had incurred.
Catherine, full of joy, returned to Siena. She had refused to leave
the Florentine territory after the outbreak in which her life was
threatened, saying that she was there by order of the Pope; but she
had withdrawn for a while to the monastery of Vallombrosa.

The peace with Florence was of immense importance to the church at
that moment. The great storm which Catharine had predicted was already
gathering; she herself was to be called on for still greater exertions
in the cause of the papacy, and within a year and a half to be in a
true sense the victim of the struggle. After leaving Florence, she
spent a few months in repose at Siena, during which she dictated to
her disciples her only formal work, known by the name of the Dialogue.
It has always been a great treasure of spiritual doctrine, though
never so widely popular as the collection of her marvellous Letters.
It is in the course of these few months that an author as fitted as
any other to decide the question of time places a remarkable anecdote
of the saint, to which we have already alluded, and which shall form
the subject of the conclusion of this paper.  [Footnote 31]

  [Footnote 31: M. Cartier, who had paid great attention to the
  chronology of the life of St. Catherine, is our authority for
  placing the execution of Niccolo Tuldo at this time. As our
  acquaintance with the facts comes entirely from one of St.
  Catherine's own letters, which, like the rest, is without date, and
  which contains no internal notes by which to fix its time, it must
  be more or less than matter of conjecture. Fr. Capecclatro puts it
  much earlier--indeed, as it would seem, at a date when the letter,
  which is addressed to Fr. Raymond, who did not become her confessor
  until 1373, could not have been written. M. Cartier quotes the
  Venice copy of the Process of Canonization to support the date he
  assigns, in having access to which he has been more fortunate than
  the Bollandists themselves.]

As is so frequently the case in times of political instability, the
various governments that so rapidly succeeded one another in the rule
of the small Italian republics, seem to have been in the habit of
attempting to secure themselves in power by measures of the most
extravagant severity against any one who might seem to be disaffected
to them. We have already seen the issue of the odious powers of
"admonishing" possessed by the Guelph party in Florence; and at the
very time of which we are speaking, that republic was suffering under
a fresh tyranny of the lowest orders of her populace, who proscribed
and excluded from all civil authority anyone more worthy of power than
themselves. In Siena also the democratic party, so to call it, held
sway; the chief power was in the hands of a set of magistrates called
"Riformatori," who governed by fear, and by the exercise of the most
jealous watchfulness over the rest of the citizens, particularly the
nobles. We are told by the historians of Siena that it was made a
capital crime to strike, however lightly, one of these officials, and
that a certain citizen was severely punished because he had given a
banquet to which none of them had been invited. In such a state of
things, the anecdote of St. Catharine of which we are {137} speaking
finds a very natural place. A stranger in the town, a young noble of
Perugia, by name Niccolo Tuldo, had allowed himself to speak
disrespectfully and slightingly of the government. His words were
carried to the magistrates; he was seized, tried, and condemned to
death. We do not know what sort of life he had led before; but he was
young, careless, and had never, at all events, been to communion in
his life. He was not a subject of Siena, yet he found himself of a
sudden doomed to be legally murdered for a few light words. No wonder
that his spirit revolted against the injustice, and that he was
tempted to spend his last few hours of life in a fury of indignation
and despair. Here was a case for Catharine--a soul to be won to
penance, peace, and resignation, with the burning sense of flagrant
injustice fresh upon it, from which it could not hope to escape. Word
was brought to her, and she hastened to the prison. No one had been
able to induce the poor youth to think of preparing for death; he
turned away at once, either from comfort or from exhortation.

Catharine went to the prison, and he soon fell under the spell of that
heavenly fascination which is rarely imparted save to souls of the
highest sanctity. She won him to peace, and forgiveness of the injury
he had received. She led him to make his confession with care and
contrition, and to resign his will entirely into the hands of God. He
made her promise that she would be with him at the place of execution,
or, as it is still called in Italy, the place of justice. In the
morning she went to him early, led him to mass and communion, which he
had never before received, and found him afterward in a state of
perfect resignation, only with some fear left lest his courage might
fail him at the last moment. He turned to her as his support, bowed
his head on her breast, and implored her not to leave him, and then
all would be well. She bade him be of good courage, he would soon be
admitted to the marriage-feast in heaven, the blood of his Redeemer
would wash him, and the name of Jesus, which he was to keep always in
his heart, would strengthen him--she herself would await him at the
place of justice. All his fears and sadness gave place to a transport
of joy; he said he should now go with courage and delight, looking
forward to meeting her at that holy place. "See," says she, in her
letter to Fr. Raymond, "how great a light had been given to him, that
he spoke of the place of justice as a holy spot!" She went there
before the time, and set herself to pray for him; in her ardor, she
laid her head on the block, and begged Our Lady earnestly to obtain
for him a great peace and light of conscience, and for her the grace
to see him gain the happy end for which God had made him. Then she had
an assurance that her prayer was granted, and so great a joy spread
over her soul that she could take no notice of the crowd of people
gathering round to witness the execution. The young Perugian came at
last, gentle as a lamb, welcoming the sight of her with smiles, and
begging her to bless him. She made the sign of the cross over him.
"Sweet brother, go to the heavenly nuptials; soon wilt thou be in the
life that never ends!" He laid himself down, and she prepared his neck
for the stake, leaning down last of all, and reminding him of the
precious blood of the Lamb that had been shed for him. He murmured her
name, and called on Jesus. The blow was given, and his head fell into
her bands.

Catharine tells her confessor, in the letter from which our account is
drawn, that she had the greatest reward granted to her that charity
such as hers could receive. At the moment of execution, she raised her
heart to heaven in one intense act of prayer; and then she became
conscious that she was allowed to see how the soul that had just fled
was received in the other world. The Incarnate Son, who had {138} died
to save it, took it into the arms of his love, and placed it in the
wound of his side. "It was shown to me," she says, "by the Very Truth
of Truths, that out of mercy and grace alone he so received it and for
nothing else." She saw it blessed by each person of the Divine
Trinity. The Son of God, moreover, gave it a share of that crucified
love with which he had borne his own painful and shameful death, out
of obedience to his Father, for the salvation of mankind. And then,
that all might be complete, the blessed soul itself seemed to turn and
look upon her. "It made a gesture," she says, "sweet enough to win a
thousand parts: what wonder? for it already tasted the divine
sweetness. It turned as the bride turns when she has come to the door
of the home of her bridegroom; looks round on the friends that have
accompanied her to her new home, and bows her head to them, as a sign
that she thanks them for their kindness."

--------

MISCELLANY.


_The Population of Balloons_.--A very curious apparatus for the above
purpose has been devised by Mr. Butler, one of the members of the
Aeronautical Society, which has been lately established. It consists
of a pair of wings, to operate from the car of the balloon, and whose
downward blow is calculated to strike with a force exceeding forty
pounds, a power equivalent to an ascensive force of one thousand cubic
feet of carburetted hydrogen. The action required is somewhat similar
to that of rowing, and would be exactly so if at the end of the stroke
the oars sprang backward out of the hands of the rower; but, in this
case, the body is stretched forward as if toward the stern of the
boat, to grasp the handle and repeat the process, during which an
action equivalent to "feathering" is obtained. It is anticipated that
these wings, acting from a pendulous fulcrum, will produce, in
addition to the object for which they are designed, two effects, which
may possibly be hereafter modified, but which will be unpleasant
accompaniments to a balloon ascent, namely, the oscillation of the car
and a succession of jerks upward, first communicated to the car from
below, and repeated immediately by an answering jerk from the
balloon.--_London Popular Science Review_.



_The Poisonous Principle of Mushrooms._--This, which is called
amanitine, has been separated and experimented on by M. Letellier, who
has quite lately presented a paper recording his investigations to the
French Academy of Medicine. He experimented with the alkaloid upon
animals, and found the same results as those stated by Bernard and
others to follow the action of narceine. He thinks amanitine might be
used in cases where opium is indicated; and states that the best
antidotes in cases of poisoning by this principle are the preparations
of tannin. The general treatment in such cases consists in the
administration of the oily purgatives.



_The Conditions of Irish Vegetation_.--The inquiries of Dr. David
Moore have shown that whilst Ireland is better suited than any other
European country to the growth of green crops, it is unsuited to the
growth of corn and fruit-trees. This is attributable to the following
circumstances; the extreme humidity of the climate, and the slight
differences between the winter and summer temperatures--a difference
that in Dublin amounts to only seventeen and a half degrees, and on
the west coast is only forty-four degrees. The mean temperature of
Ireland is as high as though the island were fifteen degrees nearer
the equator.


_Libraries of Italy_.--There are 210 public libraries in Italy,
containing in the aggregate 4,149.281 volumes, according to the _Revue
de l'Instruction Publique_. Besides these, there are the libraries of
the two Chambers, that of the {139} Council of State, and many large
private collections, easily accessible. Then there are 110 provincial
libraries, and the collections belonging to 71 scientific bodies. In
the year 1863,  988,510 volumes were called for by readers, of which
183,528 related to mathematics and the natural sciences; 122,496 to
literature, history, and the linguistics; 70,537 to philosophy and
morals; 54,491 to theology; 193,972 to jurisprudence; 261,869 to the
fine arts; 101,797 to other subjects.



_The Poisonous Effects of Alcohol_--Supporters of teetotalism will be
pleased to peruse an essay on this subject by M. G. Pennetier, of
Rouen. The memoir we refer to is a "doctor's" thesis, and it treats
especially of the condition known as alcoholism. The following are
some of the author's conclusions: (1) Alcoholism is a special
affection, like lead-poisoning; (2) the prolonged presence of alcohol
in the stomach produces inflammation of the walls of this organ and
other injurious lesions; (3) the gastritis produced by alcohol may be
either acute or chronic, and may be complicated by ulcer, or general
or partial hypertrophy, or contraction of the opening of the stomach,
or purulent sub-mucous infiltration; (4) in certain cases of alcoholic
gastritis, the tabular glands of the stomach become inflamed, and pour
the pus, which they secrete, into the stomach or into the cellular
tissue of this organ.--_Popular Science Review._



_The Influence of Light on the Twining Organs of Plants._--At a
meeting of the French Academy, held on Oct 26th, a valuable paper on
this subject was read by M. Duchartre. The memoir deals with the
questions already discussed by Mr. Darwin, and in it the French
botanist records his own experiments and those of other observers, and
concludes that there are two groups of twining plants: 1. Such plants
as _Dioscorea Batatas_ and _Mandevillea suaveolens_, which have the
power of attaching themselves to surrounding objects only under the
influence of light 2. Species such as _Ipomoea purpurea_ and
_Phaseolus_, which exhibit this power equally well in light and
darkness.



_Chronicles of Yorkshire_.--To the series of works published under the
direction of the Master of the Rolls, the first volume of the
interesting chronicles of an ancient Yorkshire religious house, the
Cistercian Abbey of Meaux, near Beverley, has been added. Its title
runs thus: "Chronica Monasterii de Melsa, a Fundatione usque ad Annum
1396, Auctore Thoma de Burton, Abbate, accedit continuatio ad Annum
1406, a Monacho quodam Ipsius Domus. Edited from the autographs of the
author, by Edward A. Bond, Assistant-Keeper of Manuscripts and Egerton
Librarian in the British Museum." The abbey was founded in 1150, by
William le Gros, Earl of Albemarle, and its first abbot and builder
was Adam, a monk of Fountains Abbey. Thomas of Burton, who was abbot
in 1396, brings the history down to that year. This first volume ends
with the year 1247.--_Reader_.

--------

NEW PUBLICATIONS.


The See of St. Peter, the Rock of The Church, The Source or
Jurisdiction, And The Centre or Unity. By Thomas William Allies, M.A.,
etc. With a Letter to Dr. Pusey. 1 vol. 18mo, pp. 324. Republished by
Lawrence Kehoe, 145 Nassau Street, New-York. 1866.



We cannot sufficiently praise and recommend this little work, by far
the best on its topic for the ordinary reader, as well as really
valuable to the theologian. It was written before the author had been
received into the church, and immediately translated into Italian by
the order of the Holy Father. Mr. Allies was a noted writer of the
Anglican Church, and one of its beneficed clergymen. He held out long,
before he became, by the grace of God, a Catholic; and made strenuous
and able efforts to clear the Church of England from the charge of
schism. In becoming a Catholic he sacrificed a valuable benefice, with
the prospect before him of being obliged to struggle for a living,
and, we believe, was for a time in very straitened circumstances.

{140}

In this book, the argument for the Papal Supremacy from Scripture and
Tradition is presented in a clear and cogent manner, with solid
learning, admirable reasoning, and in a lucid and charming style,
rendering it perfectly intelligible to any reader of ordinary
education. It is impossible for any sophistry or cavilling to escape
from the irresistible force of Mr. Allies's reasoning. It is a moral
demonstration of the perpetual existence and divine institution of the
papacy in the Christian church.

An attempt has been made to detract from its force by representing
that the author himself had in a previous work drawn a different
conclusion from the same premises. This objection would have force in
relation to a matter of metaphysical demonstration; but has none at
all in the present case, which is one of moral demonstration arising
from the cumulative force of a great number of separate probabilities.
The former conclusion which the author drew was not one totally
opposite to his later one, but merely a partial, defective conclusion
in the same line.

In his first book be admitted the primacy of the Roman See, but not in
its full extent, or complete application to the state of bodies not in
her communion. Preconceived prejudices, and an imperfect grasp of the
logical and theological bearings of the question, hindered him from
comprehending fully the nature of the primacy, whose existence he
admitted. His second book is, therefore, a legitimate development from
the principles of the first, although this very development has led
him to quite opposite conclusions respecting certain important facts.

The policy of the enemies of the Roman See is, to accumulate all
possible instances of resistance to her authority, disputes to regard
to its exercise, ambiguous expressions concerning its nature and
origin, intricate questions of law, special pleadings of every kind,
gathered from the first eight centuries of Christianity. In this way
they file a bill of exceptions against the supremacy of the Holy See.
These disconnected, accidental shreds are patched together into a
theory, that the supremacy of the Holy See has been established by a
gradual usurpation. Starting on this _à priori_ assumption, the
advocates of the claims of Rome are required to prove categorically
from the monuments of the first, second, third, and other early
centuries the full and complete doctrine of the supremacy, with all
its consequences, as now held and taught by theologians. Whatever is
clearer, stronger, more minutely explicated at a later period than at
an earlier, is made out to be a proof of this preconceived usurpation.
In this way, these shallow and sophistical writers endeavor to
bewilder, and confute the minds of their readers amid a maze of
documents, so that they may give up the hope of a clear and plain
solution, and stay where they are, because they are there. A book of
this kind has just been translated and republished in this country,
from the French of M. Guettée, a priest who had left the Catholic
Church for the Russian schism, under the auspices of the American Mark
of Ephesus, Bishop Coxe. From a cursory examination of the French
original, we judge it to be as specious and plausible a resumé of the
materials furnished by Jansenists and Orientals--whose skirts the
Anglicans are making violent efforts to seize hold of just now--as
any that has appeared. Wherefore we trust that it may be soon and
effectually refuted.

It is plain to every fair mind and honest heart, that this method of
argument is, in the first place, false and unsound, and, in the second
place, unsuited for the mass of readers. Greeks and Anglicans use it
against the papacy, intending to hold on to the trunk of their
headless Catholicism. It can be applied, however, just as well to
ecumenical councils, and all of the rest of the hierarchical system.
So, also, to the Liturgy, to the canon of Scripture, then to dogma,
and finally to the doctrines of natural religion. The real order of
both natural and supernatural truth is one in which positive,
indestructible, eternal principles are implanted as germs, which
explicate successively their living power. With all their sophistry,
the enemies of Rome can never banish from Scripture and tradition the
evidence of the perpetual existence and living force of the primacy of
St. Peter.

{141}

They cannot form a theory which can take in, account for, and totalise
all the documents of fathers, councils, history, in the integrity of a
complete Catholic idea. They deny, explain away, object, question.
They have a separate special pleading for each and every single proof
or document. But there still remains the cumulative force of such a
vast number of probable evidences, all of which coalesce and integrate
themselves in the doctrine of the supremacy. The true way is to
interpret and complete the earlier tradition, by that which is later.
This is done by our adversaries in regard to the canon, to sacraments,
to episcopacy, to the authority of councils. It ought to be the same
in regard to the papacy. The grand fact of one Catholic Church,
centred in Rome as the See of Peter, stares us in the face. If we can
trace it regularly back, without a palpable break of continuity, to
its principle and source in the institution of Christ, that is enough.
Those who set up another Catholicity are bound to exhibit to the world
something more palpable, more universal, more plainly marked by the
characteristics of truth, which can be legible to all mankind. They
must solve the problem of all the ages, explain all history, assert a
mastery over the whole domain of the earth, and prove that their
doctrine and church can fill all things like an ocean; or, they must
step aside out of the way of the two gigantic combatants, who are now
stripping for the fight, Rome and Lawless Reason.

Besides, it is absurd to think that any except scholars can be
expected to wade through a discussion like that of a dry law-book, or
abstruse treatise on politics, examining the history and decisions of
councils, and all kinds of official documents. The essential signs and
marks of the truth and the church must be plain, obvious, level to the
common capacity. If the Roman Church be the true church, she must be
able to show it by plain signs, which will put all doubt at rest,
where the heart is sincere. So of the Anglicans, so of the Russians.

Therefore it is that Mr. Allies's book is especially valuable. It
brings out the clear, unmistakable evidence of the supremacy given to
St. Peter and his successors by Jesus Christ. It shows the great sign
of Catholicity to be communion with the Holy Roman Church, the See of
Peter. We recommend it to all, but especially to converts or those who
are studying, and who wish to instruct themselves fully on this
fundamental topic of Catholic doctrine. There cannot be a topic which
it is more, important to study at the present time. The cause of the
papacy is the cause of revelation and of sound reason, of law and of
true liberty, the cause of Christ, the cause of God. Whoever defends
it successfully is a benefactor to the human race.



Felix Holt, The Radical. A Novel. By George Eliot, author of Adam
Bede, The Mill on the Floss, Silas Marner, Scenes of Clerical Life,
Romola, etc. 8vo. pp. 184. New-York: Harper and Brothers. 1866.



Whatever may be thought of the philosophy of this book, there can be
no question that, considered simply as a work of art, it is one of the
most admirable productions of the day. There are passages in it which
deserve to be classed among the gems of English literature, and
characters which will live as long as English fiction itself. With
Felix Holt, the hero, we are less satisfied than with any of the other
personages in the story. Full of generous impulses, and burning with
half-formed noble thoughts, he is, after all, when you look at him in
cold blood, only an impracticable visionary, who wastes his energy in
vain striving after some dimly-seen good, which neither he, nor the
reader, nor, we are persuaded, the author herself, fully understands
and at the end he drops quietly into a grumbling sort of happy life,
no nearer the goal of his indefinite aspirations than he was at the
beginning, and having succeeded no further in his schemes for the
elevation of the people than persisting in his refusal to brush his
own hair, or wear a waistcoat. It is very true that such is generally
the end of reformers of his character; the fundamental defect of the
book is that the author seems unconscious of the hollowness of Felix's
philosophy, and we are not quite sure that she is even conscious of
his ultimate failure.

Mrs. Holt, the hero's mother, is an exquisitely humorous conception,
who deserves a place by the side of Dickens's Mrs. Nickleby. She never
presents her austere "false front," or shows the "bleak north-easterly
expression" in her eye, without arousing a smile; and her {142}
rambling, inconsequential, dolorous conversation is a spring of
never-failing merriment. There is a plenty of humor too in several of
the minor characters, and there is delicate and unaffected pathos in
the fanatical and somewhat wearisome little preacher, Mr. Lyon, and
the proud, suffering Mrs. Transome, whoso youthful sin pursues her
like an avenging fury, and whose whole sad life, "like a spoiled
pleasure-day," has been such an utter, pitiful disappointment. But the
charm of the book is in the heroine, Esther Lyon. Never, we believe,
has the conception of refined physical beauty been so perfectly
conveyed by words as in the delineation of this exquisite character.
We are told nothing of Esther's features; we get no inventory of her
charms, no description of her person: a few words suffice for all that
the author has to tell us of her appearance; but she floats through
the book a vision of unsurpassed loveliness. She never enters a room
but we are conscious of the tread of dainty little feet, the fine
arching of a graceful neck, the gloss of beautiful hair, the soft play
of taper fingers, and a delicate scent like the breath of the
violet-laden south. The art with which this exquisite effect is kept
up all through the book, without repetition, and without the slightest
approach toward sensuality, is so perfect that we are tempted to call
it a stroke of genius. And the character of Esther is as fascinating
as her beauty. The author has thrown her whole heart into the
description of the ripening and development of this girl, and the
casting aside of the little foibles of her fine-ladyism under the
influence of Felix. The scenes between these two strongly contrasted
characters are scenes to be read again and again with never increasing
delight.

The pictures of English provincial life; the petty talk of ignorant
farmers and shopkeepers; the election scenes, the canvassing, the
nominations, the tavern discussions, the speeches, and the riot at the
polls, are all admirable, and their naturalness is almost startling.
There is no exaggeration in any part of the book, and not even in the
richest of the humorous scenes is there a single improbable passage.



Essays on Woman's Work. By Bessie Rayner Parkes. Second Edition. 16mo.
pp. 240. London: Alexander Strahan, 1866.


The serious questions discussed in this little book have happily a
less pressing significance in this country than in England; but even
here the problem of how to find suitable employment for destitute
educated women is often one of no slight importance, and as years pass
on, it will more and more frequently present itself for solution. Miss
Parkes approaches the subject not with the visionary notions of a
social "reformer," but in a spirit of practical and experienced
benevolence, which entitles her remarks to great weight. She points
out how the tendency of modern mechanical improvements is to banish
from domestic life a large and consistently increasing class of women,
and she pleads with eloquence and eagerness for a better provision
toward their moral and intellectual improvement than is made at
present. She treats of the various pursuits to which educated women
now resort for a livelihood--teaching, literature art, business, and
so on, and of others for which they are well fitted and which society
ought to lay open to them. She gives a very interesting account of
certain excellent associations founded in England for the assistance
of working women, with some of which Enterprises Miss Parkes herself
has been prominently connected. We advise our friends to read her
well-written essays, that they may understand something of the
terrible suffering which prevails largely abroad, and to some extent
also at home, among a class of poor who have very strong claims upon
our commiseration, but seldom or never appeal in person two our
beneficence. The evils which she describes, and for which she
indicates alleviations, if not remedies, are constantly growing with
the growth of population, and we ought to be prepared to meet them.



Six months at the White House with Abraham  Lincoln. The Story of a
Picture. By F. B. Carpenter,  16mo, pp. 359. New York: Hurd and
Houghton. 1866


Mr. Carpenter is a young New York artist, who, in 1863, conceived the
purpose of painting a historical picture commemorative of the
proclamation of emancipation {143} by President Lincoln. Through the
intervention of influential friends, he obtained not only the
President's consent to sit for a portrait, but permission to establish
his studio in the White House during the progress of the work; or, as
Mr. Lincoln expressed it, in his homely way, "We will turn you in
loose here, Mr. C--, and try to give you a good chance to work out
your idea." During the six months that he spent at the picture, Mr.
Carpenter was virtually a member of the President's family. He saw Mr.
Lincoln in his most familiar and unguarded moments; he won a great
deal of his confidence and regard; and he has now set down in this
little book his impressions of the President's personal character, and
a great store of anecdotes and incidents, many of which have not
before been published. For the work he has done and the manner in
which he has done it we have only words of praise. He has given us the
best picture of Mr. Lincoln's character as a man that has ever been
drawn, and he has done it with care, modesty, and good taste. We
believe that no man, however far he may have stood apart from Mr.
Lincoln on political questions, can read this admirable little book
without feeling a deep respect for our late President's
straightforward, honest, manly intellect, and faithfulness to
principles, and without loving him for his tenderness of heart, and
his many sterling virtues. Mr. Carpenter writes in a tone of ardent
admiration, but not of extravagant eulogy. He has the pains-taking
fidelity of a Boswell, but without Boswell's pettiness or sycophancy.
He has written a book which will not only be perused with eagerness by
the reader of the present hour, but will achieve a permanent and
honorable place in biographical literature.



An Introductory Latin Book, intended as an Elementary Drill-Book on
the Inflections and Principles of the Language, and as an Introduction
to the Author's Grammar, Reader, and Latin Composition. By Albert
Harkness, Professor in Brown University. 12mo, pp. 162.1 New York: D.
Appleton and Co. 1866.

The Latin books which Professor Harkness has published for more
advanced pupils have enjoyed a flattering popularity, and in schools
which have adopted them the present volume will prove very acceptable
for preparatory classes. It is intended, however, to be complete in
itself, and comprises an outline of Latin grammar, exercises for
double translation, suggestions to the learner, notes, and
English-Latin and Latin-English vocabularies. Unnecessary matters seem
to have been carefully excluded, and the work has an appearance of
great clearness and compactness.



Philip Earnscliffe; or, The Morals of Mayfair. A Novel. By Mrs.
Edwards, author of Archie Lovell, Miss Forrester, The Ordeal for
Wives, etc., etc. 8vo, pp. 173. New-York: The American News Company.



This is a clever, unartistical, readable, repulsive, and utterly
unprofitable story, vulgar in tone and vicious in sentiment. Both hero
and heroine are perfectly impossible and inconsistent characters, and
nobody will be the better for reading anything about them.



The Catholic Teacher's Improved Sunday-School Class Book. Lawrence
Kehoe, New York.

This little book should be in the hand of every Catholic Sunday-school
teacher. It provides for the registry of the scholars names, age,
residence, attendance, lessons, conduct, and everything necessary for
the good order and welfare of the school or class. It is more
comprehensive, and more easily kept, than anything yet published.

It also has a column in which to record the number of the book taken
by the scholar from the Sunday-school library. A library is necessary
to the complete success of every Sunday-school. From the catalogues of
our Catholic publishers a list of about four hundred books can be
selected, tolerably well adapted for this purpose. This, however, is
about one-third as many as an ordinary Sunday-school requires. We must
also confess it is not pleasant to be obliged to pay for these about
twice as much as Protestant Sunday-schools do for books published in
the same style. But it may be replied that they have societies
possessing a large capital, whose aim is to publish their {144} books
as cheap as possible, in order to spread them far and wide. True. And
why cannot the 5,000,000 Catholics in the United States, with 4,000
churches, and 2,500 priests, support a Publication Society, with
capital enough to publish Sunday-school requisites as cheap as they!
This Class Book is printed on good paper, and is not only more
complete than any other, but is furnished much cheaper.



A History of England or the Young. A new edition revised. 12mo, pp.
373. Philadelphia: Peter F. Cunningham. 1866.

This is an American reprint of an English book, and England is spoken
of throughout it as "our country"--an expression which will be very
apt to lead to misconceptions in the juvenile mind. The unknown
compiler seems to have spared no pains to make the book
unexceptionable in a religious point of view, for use in Catholic
schools; but we cannot commend it for clearness, and we think it might
be advantageously weeded of various anecdotes and trivial details, and
of a great deal of turgid rhetoric. There is need of a good English
history for our schools, but we do not believe this publication is
destined to supply it. So far as our examination has gone, it is full
of errors. The account of the American Revolution is absurd--the very
cause of it being egregiously misstated. The story of the Crimean war
is not much better told, and the history of the Sepoy mutiny in India
is very careless and inaccurate.



The Mormon Prophet and His Harem; or, An Authentic History of Brigham
Young, his numerous Wives and Children. By Mrs. C. V. Waite. 12mo, pp.
280. New York: Hurd and Houghton. 1866.

As Mrs. Waite resided for two years in the midst of the society which
she has undertaken to describe, and has also received a great deal of
information from persons long in the service of Brigham Young, her
account of the Mormon system and its arch-priest may reasonably be
assumed as authentic. To anybody who wants to read the disgusting
record of human imbecility and wickedness which disfigures the history
of Western civilization, Mrs. Waite's volume will, no doubt, be found
sufficiently full and interesting.



Mr. Winkfield. A Novel. 8vo. pp. 160 New-York: The American News
Company. 1866.

The unknown author of this book, which we can hardly call a story, as
apparently endeavored to satirize life and society in New-York. His
success has not been equal to his expectations.



Alfonso; or, The Triumph of Religion. A Catholic Tale, P. F.
Cunningham, Philadelphia.

This is a very interesting and instructive tale, designed to show "the
lamentable effects in your religious system of education will
infallibly produce." We hope the talented authoress will give us other
stories for our young people equally good. We think, however, she
crowds her hero along too fast. The charm of the story would be
increased by a more natural and easy concurrence of events.



BOOKS RECEIVED



From Hurd & Houghton, New York. Spanish Papers and other Miscellanies,
hitherto unpublished or uncollected. By Washington Irving. 2 vols.
12mo, pp. 487 and 466.



P. Donahoe, Boston. Redmond, Count O'Hanlon, The Irish Rapparee, and
Barney Brady's Goose. By William Carleton. 1 vol. 18mo.


Andrew J. Graham, New York. Standard Phonographic Visitor Edited and
published by Andrew J. Graham.



We have also received the Seventh Annual Report of the Trustees of the
Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art; and the
Twenty-fifth Annual Report of the Mercantile Library Association of
the City of New York for 1866.



J. J. O'Connor & Co., Newark, N.J., have in press and will soon
published the work entitled "Curious Questions," by the Rev. Dr.
Brann.

--------

{145}

THE CATHOLIC WORLD.


VOL. IV., NO. 20.--NOVEMBER, 1866.


ORIGINAL.

PROBLEMS OF THE AGE.


IX.

A FURTHER EXPLANATION OF THE SUPERNATURAL ORDER.


It has been already remarked, that the Incarnation is a more profound
and inscrutable mystery than even the Trinity. The reason is that the
trinity is a necessary truth, included in the very idea of God as most
simple being and most pure act. The incarnation is not a truth
necessary in itself, but only necessary on the supposition that it has
been decreed by God. The trinity of persons proceeds from a necessity
of nature in God, the incarnation from an act of free will. But the
acts of the divine free will are more mysterious and inexplicable than
those which proceed from necessity of nature.

Without revelation the incarnation would be inconceivable, and even
when it is disclosed by revelation, the analogies by which it can be
illustrated are faint and imperfect. The union between soul and body
in animal nature and between the animal and spiritual nature in man
furnish the only analogies of anything like a hypostatic union in the
natural world. But these analogies do not illustrate the dark point in
the mystery, to wit: the union of two _intelligent_ natures in one
_subsistence_, or one common personal principle of imputability to
which the acts of both are referrible. We have but little difficulty
in apprehending that acts proceeding from two distinct natures in man,
the animal and the spiritual, should be referred to one principle of
imputability or one personality. These acts are so very distinct and
different from each other, that they evidently have no tendency to
become blended or confused, by the absorption of one nature into the
other. But if we should try to conceive of a hypostatic union between
the angelic and human natures in one person, it would be impossible to
avoid imagining that one intelligent nature would be absorbed in the
other. If there is but one principle of imputability, how can there be
two distinct intelligent voluntary operations? Our opinion is, that a
union of this kind between two finite natures is impossible. The {146}
possibility of assuming a distinct intelligent nature must then belong
to a divine person only, and be included in the infinitude of the
divine essence. The difficulty of understanding it lies then in the
incomprehensibility of the divine essence. We apprehend nothing in the
divine essence distinctly, except that which is apprehensible through
the analogy which created essences bear to it. Evidently that in the
divine essence which renders it totally dissimilar from all created
essences cannot be represented by a similitude in created essences.
And as the divine essence subsisting in the second person renders it
capable of assuming human nature by an attribute which renders it
totally dissimilar from all finite personality, there can be no
analogy to it in finite things. In order to understand this it is
necessary to recall to mind a principle laid down by St. Thomas, that
we cannot affirm anything, whether being, intelligence, will,
personality, or whatever other term of thought we may propose, of God
and a creature, _univocally_, that is, in the same identical sense.
The essence of God differs as really from the spiritual essence of
angels and human souls as it does from the essence of animal souls and
of matter. We apprehend what the intelligence and the will of God are
only through the analogy of human intelligence and will, in a most
imperfect and inadequate manner. In themselves they are
incomprehensible to the human understanding. In the very essence of
God as incomprehensible, or super-intelligible, is situated that
capacity of being the personality of created intelligent nature which
constitutes the mystery of the hypostatic union. The only analogy
therefore in created things which is appreciable by the human mind, is
an analogy derived from the union of natures whose difference is
intelligible to us, as the spiritual and animal. This analogy enables
us to understand that the divine and human natures, not being
intelligent natures in a univocal sense, but being dissimilar not only
in degree of intelligence but in the very essence of intelligence, are
capable of union in one personality. There is no analogy, however,
which enables us to understand what this difference is, because it
would be a contradiction in terms to suppose in the creature any
analogy to that which is above all analogies and is peculiar to the
divine nature as divine. The utmost that reason can do is to
apprehend, when the mystery of the incarnation is proposed by
revelation, that the incomprehensibility of the divine essence renders
it impossible to judge that it cannot be hypostatically united to a
created intelligent nature, and that it increases our conception of
its infinitude or plenitude of being to suppose that a divine person
can terminate a created nature as well as the nature which is
self-existing. All that reason can do then is to demonstrate, after
the mystery of the incarnation is proposed, that the impossibility of
the incarnation cannot be demonstrated on the principles of reason,
and that it is therefore credible on the authority of revelation; and,
by the illumination of faith, to apprehend a certain degree of
probability or verisimilitude in the mystery itself.

Once established, however, as a dogma or fundamental principle in
theology, its reason and fitness in reference to the final cause of
the universe, the harmony of all other facts and doctrines with it,
and the grandeur which it gives to the divine economy, can be
conclusively and abundantly proved by rational arguments.

We know that it must be fitting and worthy of the divine majesty to
decree the incarnation, because he has done it. But we can also see
that it is so, and why. We can see that it befits Almighty God to
exhaust his own omnipotence in producing a work which is the
masterpiece of his intelligence and the equivalent of the archetype
contained in his Word. To show his royal magnificence in bestowing the
greatest {147} possible boon on created nature. To pour forth his love
in such a manner as to astound the intelligence of his rational
creatures, by communicating all that is contained in filiation and the
procession of the Spirit, so far as that is in itself possible. To
glorify and deify the creature, by raising it as nearly as possible to
an equality with himself in knowledge and beatitude.

The reason for selecting the human rather than the angelic nature for
the hypostatic union is obvious from all that has preceded. Human
nature is a microcosm, in which all grades of existence are summed up
and represented. In taking human nature the Word assumes all created
nature, from the lowest to the highest. For, although the angelic
nature is superior to the human, it is only superior to it in certain
respects, and not as a rational essence. Moreover, this superiority is
part only temporary, enduring while the human nature is in the process
of explication; and as to the rest, the inferiority of the human
nature is counterbalanced by the supernatural elevation given to it in
the hypostatic union, which raises the natural, human operation of the
soul of our Lord Jesus Christ far above that of the angelic nature.
Although, therefore, in the series of grades in the natural order of
existence, the angelic nature is above the human, it is subordinated
to it in the supernatural order, or the order of the incarnation, and
in relation to the final cause. For it is through the human nature
united to the divine nature in the person of the Word that the angelic
nature completes its return to God and union with him.

The elevation of created nature to the hypostatic union with God in
the person of the Word introduces an entirely new principle of life
into the intelligent universe. Hitherto, we have considered in the
creative act a regular gradation in the nature of created existences,
from the lowest to the highest. Each grade is determined to a certain
participation in being superior in intensity to that of the one below
it and to a mode of activity corresponding to its essence. There can
be no grade of existence in its essence superior to the rational or
intelligent nature, which is created in the similitude of that which
is highest in the divine essence. No doubt, the specific and minor
grades included under the universal generic grade of rationality might
be indefinitely multiplied. As the angels differ from man, and the
various orders of the angelic hierarchy differ from each other, so God
might continue to create _ad infinitum_ new individuals or new
species, each differing from all others, and all arranged in an
ascending series, in which each grade should be superior in certain
particulars to all below it. It is evidently possible that a created
intelligence should be made to progress from the lowest stage of
development continuously and for ever. Let us fix our thought upon the
most distant and advanced limit in this progression which we are able
to conceive. It is evident that God might have created an intelligent
spirit in the beginning at that point, as the starting-point of his
progression, and might have created at the same time other intelligent
spirits at various distances from this point in a descending series.
Suppose now that this is the case, and that the lowest in the scale
progresses until he reaches the starting-point of the most advanced.
The one who began at this advanced point will have progressed
meanwhile to another point equally distant, and will preserve his
relative superiority. But even at this point, God might have created
him at first, with another series of intervening grades at all the
intermediate points which he has passed over in his progressive
movement. We may carry on this process as long as we please, without
ever coming to a limit at which we are obliged to stop. For the
creation being of necessity limited, and the creative power of God
unlimited, it is impossible to equalize the two terms, or to conceive
of a creation which is equal to God as creator. Nevertheless, {148}
all possible grades of rationality are like and equal to each other as
respects the essential propriety of rationality, and never rise to a
grade which is essentially higher than that of rational nature. The
only difference possible is a difference in the mode in which the
active force of the intellect is exercised, and in the number of
objects to which it is applicable, or some other specific quality of
the same kind. Whatever may be the increase which rational nature can
be supposed to receive, it is only the evolution of the essential
principle which constitutes it rational, and is therefore common to
all species and individuals of the rational order. Although,
therefore, God cannot create a spirit so perfect that it cannot be
conceived to be more perfect in certain particulars, yet it is
nevertheless true that God cannot create anything which is generically
more perfect than spirit or intelligent substance. From this it
follows as a necessary consequence, that God cannot create a nature
which by its essential principles demands its last complement of being
in a divine person, or naturally exists in a hypostatic union with the
divine nature. For rational nature, which is the highest created
genus, and the nearest possible to the nature of God,--"Ipsius enim
et genus sumus,"  [Footnote 32]--developed to all eternity, would
never rise above itself, or elicit an act which would cause it to
terminate upon a divine person, and bring it into a hypostatic union
with God.

  [Footnote 32: "For we are also his offspring." Acts xvii. 28.]

Produce a line, parallel to an infinite straight line, to infinity,
and it will never meet it or come any nearer to it. The very essence
of created spirit requires that it should be determined to a mode of
apprehending God an image reflected in the creation. The activity of
the created intelligence must proceed for ever in this line, and has
no tendency to coincide with the act of the divine intelligence in
which God contemplates immediately his own essence. Increase as much
as you will the perfection of the created image, it remains always
infinitely distant from the uncreated, personal image of himself which
the Father contemplates in the Word, and loves in the Holy Spirit,
within the circle of the blessed Trinity. It has been proved in a
previous number that infinite intelligence is identical with the
infinite intelligible in God. If a being could be created which by its
essence should be intelligent by the immediate vision of the divine
essence, it would be intelligent _in se_, and therefore possess within
its own essence its immediate, intelligible object, which, by the
terms of the supposition, is the divine essence. It would possess in
itself sanctity, immutability, and beatitude. It would be, in other
words, beatified precisely because existing, that is, incapable of
existing in any defective state, and therefore incapable of error,
sin, or suffering. And as, by the terms, it is what it is, by its
essence, its essence and existence are identical; it is essentially
most pure act, essentially existing, therefore self-existent,
necessary being, or identical with God. It is therefore impossible for
God to create a rational nature which is constituted rational by the
immediate intuition of the divine essence. For by the very terms it
would be a creature and God at the same time. It would be one of the
persons in the unity of the divine nature, and yet have a nature
totally distinct. In the natural order, then, it is impossible that a
created nature should either at its beginning, or in the progress of
its evolution, demand as its due and necessary complement of being a
divine personality. Personality is the last complement of rational
nature. Divine nature demands divine personality. Finite nature
demands finite personality. It is evident, therefore, that there
cannot be a finite nature, however exalted, which cannot come to its
complete evolution within its own essence, or which can explicate out
of the contents of its being an act which necessarily terminates upon
a divine person, so as to bring it into a hypostatic union with the
divine nature.

{149}

Let us go back a little in the scale of being, in order to develop
this principal more fully. Lifeless matter is capable of indefinite
increase in its own order, but this increase has no tendency to
elevate it to the grade of vegetative life. A new and different
principle of organization must be introduced in order to construct
from its simple elements a vegetative form, as, for instance, a
flower. So, also, the explication of vegetative life has no tendency
to generate a sentient principle. The plant may go on producing
foliage, flowering, germinating, and reproducing its species for ever,
but its vital activity can never produce a sentient soul, or proceed
to that degree of perfection that it requires a sentient soul as its
last complement or the form of its organic life. Suppose a plant or
flower to receive a sentient soul; this soul must be immediately
created by God, and it would be the principle or form of a new life,
which, in relation to the natural, vegetative life of the flower,
would be _super_-natural, elevating it to an order of life above that
which constitutes it a flower.

A sentient creature, as a dog or a bird, has no tendency to explicate
from the constitutive principle of its animal soul intelligence, or to
attain a state of existence in which an intelligent personality is due
to it as its last complement. If the animal soul could have an
intelligent personality, it must be by hypostatic union with an
intelligent nature distinct from itself, which would then become the
_suppositum_, or principal of imputability to the animal nature. The
animal would then be elevated to a state which would be
_super_-natural, relatively to the animal nature, or entirely above
the plane of it's natural development.

In like manner, the rational nature has no tendency or power to rise
above itself, or to do more than explicate that principle which
constitutes it rational. If it is elevated to a higher order, it must
be by a direct act of omnipotence, an immediate intervention of the
creator, producing in it an act which could never be produced by the
explication of its rationality, even though it should progress to all
eternity. This act is supernatural in the absolute sense. That is, it
lies in an order above created nature as a totality, and above all
nature which might be created; _supra omnem naturam creatam atque
creabilem_.

It is beyond the power even of divine omnipotence to create a rational
nature which, by its intrinsic, constitutive principle of
intelligence, is affiliated to the Father through the Holy Spirit.
Such a nature would be equal to the Word, and another Word, and
therefore equal to the Father, or, in other words, would be a divine
nature although created; which is absurd. The Father can have but one
Son, eternally begotten, not made; and the only possible way in which
a created nature can be elevated to a strictly filial relation to the
Father, is by a hypostatic union with the divine nature of the Son in
one person, so that there is a communication of properties between the
two natures, and but one principle of imputability to which all the
divine and human attributes and acts can be referred. This union can
be effected only by a direct intervention of God, or by the Word
assuming to himself a created nature. For rational nature finds its
last complement of personality, its _subsistentia_, or principle of
imputability, within its own limits, which it never tends to
transcend, even by infinite progression. The human nature individuated
in the person of Jesus Christ, by its own intrinsic principles was
capable of being completed in a finite personality, like every other
individual human nature. The fact that the place of the human
personality is supplied by a divine person, and the human nature thus
completed only in the divine, is due to the direct, divine act of the
Word, and is therefore supernatural. In this supernatural relation it
becomes the recipient, so to speak, of the divine vital current, and
participates in the {150} act in which the divine life is consummated,
which is the procession of the Son and Holy Spirit from the Father.
This act consists radically and essentially in the immediate
contemplation of the divine essence. Created intelligence, therefore,
elevated to the hypostatic union, contemplates the essence of God
directly, without any intervening medium, by the immediate intuition
or beatific vision of God.

Thus, in the incarnation, the creation returns back to God and is
united to him in the most perfect manner, by participating in the good
of being in a way sublime above all human conception, exhausting even
the infinite idea of God. Created intelligence is beatified,
glorified, and deified. In Jesus Christ, man, in whose essence is
included the equivalent of all creation, and God meet in the unity of
one person. The nature of God becomes the nature of man in the second
person, who is truly man; and the nature of man becomes the nature of
God in the same person, who is truly God. Creation, therefore, attains
its final end and returns to God as final cause in the incarnation;
which is the most perfect work of God, the crown of the acts of his
omnipotence, the summit of the creative act, the completion of all
grades of existence, and the full realization of the divine archetype.

In Jesus Christ, the creative act is carried to the apex of
possibility. In his human nature, therefore, he is the most
pre-eminent of all creatures, and surpasses them all, not only singly
but collectively. He has the primogeniture, and the dominion over all
things, the entire universe of existences being subordinated to him.
Nevertheless, his perfection is  not completed merely by that which he
possesses within the limits of his individual humanity. He is the
summit of creation, the head of the intelligent universe, the link
nearest to God in the chain of created existences. The universe,
therefore, by virtue of the principle of order and unity which
pervades it, ought to communicate with him through a supernatural
order, so that the gradation in the works of God may be regular and
perfect. The chasm between rational nature in its natural state and
the same nature raised to the hypostatic union is too great, and
demands to be filled up by some intermediate grades. Having taken
created nature, which is by its very constitution adapted to
fellowship between individuals of the same kind; and, specifically,
human nature, which is constituted in relations of race and family,
the Son of God ought, in all congruity, to have brethren and
companions capable of sharing with him in beatitude and glory. Being
specifically human and of one blood with all mankind, it is fitting
that he should elevate his own race to a share in his glory. Being
generically of the same intellectual nature with the angels, it is
also fitting that he should elevate them to the same glory. This can
only be done by granting them a participation in that supernatural
order of intelligence and life which he possesses by virtue of the
hypostatic union; that is, a participation in the immediate, beatific
vision of the divine essence.

This supernatural order is denominated the order of regeneration and
grace. It is cognate with the order of the hypostatic union, but not
identical with it. The personality of the divine Word is communicated
only to the individual human nature of Jesus Christ, who is not only
the first-born but the only-begotten Son of God. God is incarnate in
Christ alone. The union of his created substance with the divine
substance, without any permixture or confusion, in one person, is
something inscrutable to reason. The knowledge, sanctity, beatitude,
and glory of his human nature are effects of this union, but are not
it. These effects, which are due to the humanity of Christ as being
the nature of a divine person, and are its rightful and necessary
prerogatives, are communicable, as a matter of grace, to other
individuals, personally distinct from Christ. {151} That is to say,
sanctity, beatitude, and glory do not require as the necessary
condition of their community ability the communication of a divine
personality, but are compatible with the existence of an indefinite
number of distinct, finite personalities. All those rational
creatures, however, who are the subjects of this communicated grace,
are thereby assimilated to the Son of God, and made partakers of an
adopted sonship. This adoptive sonship is an inchoate and imperfect
state of co-filiation with the Son of God, which is completed and made
perfect in the hypostatic union. The order of grace, therefore, though
capable of subsisting without the incarnation, and not depending on it
as a physical cause, can only subsist as an imperfect order, and
cannot have in itself a metaphysical finality. The incarnation being
absent, the universe does not attain an end metaphysically final, or
actualise the perfection of the ideal archetype. The highest mode of
the communication of the good of being, the most perfect reproduction
of the operation of God _ad intra_, in his operation _ad extra_, which
the Father contemplates in the Word as possible, remains unfulfilled.
Those who hold, therefore, that the incarnation was not included in
the original creative decree of God must maintain that in that decree
God did not contemplate an end in creating metaphysically final. They
are obliged to suppose another decree logically subsequent to the
first, by virtue of which the universe is brought to an metaphysically
final in order to repair the partial failure of the angelic nature and
the total failure of human nature to attain the inferior, prefixed end
of the first decree. Nevertheless, decrees of God are eternal, God
always had in view, even on this hypothesis, the incarnation as the
completion of his creative act; and only took the be occasion which
the failure of his first plan through sin presented to introduce one
more perfect. Billuart, therefore, as the interpreter of the Thomist
school, maintains that God revealed the incarnation to Adam before his
fall, though not the connection which the fulfilment of the divine
purpose had with his sin as its _conditio sine qua non_. If this
latter view is adopted, it cannot be held that the angelic and human
natures were created and endowed with supernatural grace in the
express view of the incarnation, or that the angels hold, and that man
originally held, the title to glorification from Jesus Christ as their
head, and the meritorious cause of original grace. Nevertheless, as
the incarnation introduces a new and higher order into the universe,
elevating it to an end metaphysically final of which it previously
fell short, all angels and all creatures of every grade are
subordinated to Jesus Christ, who is the head of the creation,
reuniting all things to the Father in his person.

This explanation is made in deference to the common opinion, although
the author does not hold this opinion, and in order that those who do
hold it may not feel themselves bound to reject the whole argument
respecting the relation of the creative act to the incarnation.

It is in regard to the doctrine of original grace, or the elevation of
the rational nature to that supernatural order whose apex is the
hypostatic union, that Catholic theology comes into an irreconcilable
conflict with Pelagianism, Calvinism, and Jansenism. These three
systems agree in denying the doctrine of original grace. They maintain
that rational nature contains in its own constituent principles the
germ of development into the state which is the _ultimatum_ of the
creature, and the end for which God created it, and was bound to
create it, if he created at all. They differ, however, fundamentally
as to the principles actually constitutive of rational nature. The
Pelagian takes human nature in its present condition as his type. The
advocates of the other two systems take an ideal human nature, which
has become essentially {152} corrupted by the fall, as their type.
Therefore, the Pelagian says that human nature, as it now is, has in
itself the principle of perfectibility by the explication and
development of its essence. But the Calvinist and Jansenist say that
human nature as it was first created, or as it is restored by grace to
its primal condition, has the principle of perfectibility; but as it
now is in those who have not been restored by grace, is entirely
destitute of it. The conception which these opponents of Catholic
doctrine have of the entity of that highest ideal state to which
rational nature is determined, varies as the ratio of their distance
from the Catholic idea. Those who are nearest to it retain the
conception of the beatific union with God, which fades away in those
who recede farther, until it becomes changed into a mere conception of
an idealised earthly felicity.

The Catholic doctrine takes as its point of departure the postulate,
that rational nature of itself is incapable of attaining or even
initiating a movement towards that final end, which has been actually
prefixed to it as its terminus. It needs, therefore, from the
beginning, a superadded gift or grace, to place it in the plane of its
destiny, which is supernatural, or above all that is possible to mere
nature, explicated to any conceivable limit. At this point, however,
two great schools of theology diverge from each other, each one of
which is further subdivided as they proceed.

The radical conception of one school is, that nature is in itself an
incomplete thing, constituted in the order of its genesis in a merely
inchoate capacity for receiving regeneration in the supernatural
order. Remaining in the order of genesis, it is in a state of merely
inchoate, undeveloped, inexplicable existence, and therefore incapable
of attaining its destination. There is, therefore, no end for which
God could create rational existence, except a supernatural end. The
natural demands the supernatural, the order of genesis demands the
order of regeneration, and the wisdom and goodness of God require him
to bestow on all rational creatures the grace cognate to the beatific
vision and enabling them to attain it.

The radical conception of the other school is, that rational nature,
_per se_ requires only the explication and perfection of its own
constituent principles, and may be left to attain its finality in the
purely natural order. The elevation of angels and men to the plane of
a supernatural destiny was, therefore, a purely gratuitous concession
of the supreme goodness of God, in view, as some would add, of the
merit of the incarnate Word.

These different theories are entangled and interlaced with each other,
and with many different and intricate questions related to them, in
such a way as to make a thicket through which it is not easy to find a
sure path. It is necessary, however, to try, or else to avoid the
subject altogether.

The obscurity of the whole question is situated in the relation of
created intelligence to its object which constitutes it in the
intelligent or rational order. It is evident that a created substance
is constituted an intelligent principle by receiving potentiality to
the act connoted by this relation of the subject to its object, and is
explicated by the reduction of this potentiality into act. The end of
intelligent spirit is to attain to its intelligent object, by the act
of intelligence. In the foresight of this, the exposition of the
relation between intelligence and the intelligible has been placed
first in this discussion.

It is agreed among all Catholic theologians: 1. That created
intelligence can, by the explication of its own constitutive
principles, attain to the knowledge of God as _causa altissima;_ or,
that God is, _per se_, the ultimate object of reason. 2. That there is
a mode of the relation of intelligence to its ultimate object, or to
God, a permanent state of the intuition of {153} God, by a created
spirit, called the intuitive, beatific vision of the divine essence,
which can be attained only by a supernatural elevation and
illumination of the intelligence.

The point of difference among theologians relates to the identity or
difference of the relations just noted, Is that relation which
intelligence has _per se_ to God, as its ultimate object, the relation
which is completed by supernatural elevation, or not? If not, what is
the distinction between them? Establish their identity, and you have
established the theory which was mentioned in the first place above.
Establish their difference, and you have established the second
theory.

If the first theory is established, rational creatures are _ipso
facto_ in a supernatural order. The natural order is merely the
inchoation of the supernatural, cannot be completed without it, and
cannot attain its end without a second immediate intervention of God,
equal to the act of creation, by which God brings back to himself, as
final cause, the creature which proceeded from him as first cause.
This second act is regeneration; and creation, therefore, implies and
demands regeneration. It follows from this, that reason is incapable
of being developed or explicated by the mere concurrence of God with
its principle of activity, or his concurrence with second causes
acting upon it, that is, by the continuance and consummation of the
creative, generative influx which originally gave it and other second
causes existence. A regenerative influx is necessary, in order to
bring its latent capacity into action, and make it capable of
contemplating its proper object, which is God, as seen by an intuitive
vision.

One great advantage of this theory is supposed to be, that it leaves
the naturalists no ground to stand upon, by demonstrating the absolute
necessity of the supernatural, that is, of revelation, grace, the
church, etc. This presupposes that the theory can be demonstrated. If
it cannot be, the attempt to do too much recoils upon the one who
makes it, and injures his cause. Beside this, it may be said that the
proposed advantage can be as effectually secured by proving that the
natural order is actually subordinated in the scheme of divine
Providence, as it really exists, to a supernatural end, without
professing to prove that it must be so necessarily.

The great positive argument in favor of this hypothesis is, that
rational nature necessarily seeks God as its ultimate object, and
therefore longs for that clear, intellectual vision of him called the
beatific. If this be true, the question is settled for ever. Those who
seek to establish its truth state it under various forms. One way of
stating it is, that reason seeks the universal, or the explanation of
all particular effects, in the _causa altissima_, This is the doctrine
of St. Thomas. God is the _causa altissima_, the universal principle,
and therefore reason seeks for God.

Again, it is affirmed that there is a certain faculty of
super-intelligence, which apprehends the super-intelligible order of
being, not positively, but negatively, by apprehending the limitation
of everything intelligible. Intelligence is therefore sensible of a
want, a vacuum, an aimless, objectless yearning for something unknown
and unattainable; showing that God has created it for the purpose of
satisfying this want, and filling this void, by bringing intelligence
into relation to himself as its immediate object, in a supernatural
mode.

In a more popular mode, this same idea is presented under a countless
variety of forms and expressions, in sermons, spiritual treatises, and
poems, as a dissatisfaction of the soul with every kind of good
attainable in this life, vague longing for an infinite and supreme
good, a plaintive cry of human nature for the beatitude of the
intuitive vision of God. "Irrequietum est cor nostrum donec requiescat
in te"--"Our heart is unrestful until it finds repose in thee," is the
language {154} of St. Augustine, which is echoed and reechoed on every
side.

These considerations are not without great weight; nevertheless, they
do not appear to us sufficient to prove conclusively the hypothesis in
support of which they are adduced, or to over-balance other weighty
considerations on the opposite side.

Reason seeks for the _causa altissima_, but it remains to be proved
that it seeks for any other knowledge of it but that which is
attainable by a mode connatural to the created spirit.

Reason is conscious of its own limitation. But this does not prove
that it aspires to transcend this limitation. Beatified spirits are
conscious of their own limitation. Those who are in the lowest grade
are aware of numerous grades above them, and the highest are aware of
their inferiority to the exalted humanity of Jesus Christ, united to
the divine nature in his person. All together, including Jesus Christ
himself, as man, are aware of an infinite incomprehensibility in the
divine nature. In the words of the greatest of all mystic theologians,
St. John of the Cross: "They who know him most perfectly, perceived
most clearly that he is infinitely incomprehensible. To know God best,
is to know he is incomprehensible; for those who have the less clear
vision do not perceive so distinctly as the others how greatly he
transcends their vision."  [Footnote 33]

  [Footnote 33: Spiritual Canticle, stanza vii. Oblate Ed. vol. ii. p. 44.]

Beatified spirits do not feel any void within themselves, or any
unsatisfied longing for the comprehension of the super-intelligible.
Neither do they aspire even to those degrees of clearer vision which
are actually conceded to spirits of a higher order than their own. Why
then should a rational creature necessarily desire to transcend its
own proper and connatural mode of intelligence? The apprehension of
the super-intelligible shows that the intellect cannot be satisfied
with a limitation of itself to a mere knowledge of second causes and
the contingent--that it must think about God, and apprehend in some
way without infinite, eternal, necessary being and attributes of the
creator and first cause of all things. But it does not show that it
must apprehending God in the most perfect way possible, much less in
such a way that he does not remain always infinitely beyond its
comprehension.

The dissatisfaction of the human heart may proceed in great measure
from the fact that God purposely disquiet's it by withholding from it
the good it naturally seeks, in order to compel it to seek for
supernatural good. Another cause of it is, that most persons have
committed so many sins themselves, and are so much involved in the
consequences of the sins of others, that they cannot possess the full
measure even of that natural enjoyment of which human nature is
capable. That the human heart in its misery and unhappiness turns
longingly toward the hope of a supreme beatitude in the contemplation
of God as he is revealed to the saints in heaven, may be owing to the
fact that God, who proposes this beatitude to men, stirs up a longing
for it in their souls by a supernatural grace.

The question, therefore, reverts to this, as has been repeatedly said
already, What is the principle constitutive of the intelligent life
and activity of a created spirit? When this principle is evolved into
act, the created spirits fulfils its type, and realises its ideal
perfection in its own order. Now, according to the preliminary
doctrine we have laid down, this is an active power to apprehend the
image of God in the creation, or to contemplate a created image of God
which is a finite similitude of the infinite, uncreated image of God,
that is to say, the Word. Beatific contemplation is a contemplation of
this infinite, uncreated image without any intervening medium. Yet is
an intellectual operation of which God is both the object and the
medium. It is not therefore the operation which {155} perfects created
intelligence in its own proper order, but one which elevates it above
that order, giving it a participation in the divine intelligence
itself. Created intelligence is perfected in its own proper order by
its own natural operation; and although the intervention of God is
necessary in order to conduct it to that perfection, so that it is
strictly true that a supernatural force is necessary to the
initiation, explication, and consummation of the natural order of
intelligence, yet this does not elevate it to a supernatural mode and
state of activity in the strict and theological sense of the word.
Created intelligence is perfected by the contemplation of the Creator
through the creating, and has no tendency or aspiration to rise any
higher. True, it has an essential capacity to become the subject of a
divine operation elevating it to the immediate intuition of God, or it
never could be so elevated. This is the really strong argument in
favor of the hypothesis that God, if he creates at all, must create an
intelligent order determined to the beatific union. It is equally
strong in favor of the hypothesis, that he must complete his creative
act in the incarnation, because created nature is essentially capable
of the hypostatic union. For what purpose is this capacity? Does it
not indicate a demand for the order of regeneration, and the
completion of this order in the incarnation? It is not our purpose to
answer this question definitely, but to leave it open, as it has no
practical bearing upon the result we are desirous of obtaining.
Presupposing, however, that God determines to adopt the system of
absolute optimism in creating, and to bring the universe to an end
metaphysically final, as he actually has determined to do, this
question, as we have previously stated, must be answered in the
affirmative. There is no metaphysical finality short of the hypostatic
union of the created with the uncreated nature, which alone is the
adequate, objective externisation of the eternal idea in the mind of
God. The metaphysical, generic perfection of the universe demands the
incarnation, with its appropriate concomitants. But this demand is
satisfied by the elevation of one individual nature to the hypostatic
union, and the communication of the privileges due to this elevated
nature to one or more orders of intelligent creatures containing each
an adequate number of individuals. It does not require the elevation
of all intelligent orders or all individuals, but admits of a
selection from the entire number of created intelligences of a certain
privileged class. It is only on the supposition that God cannot give
an intelligent nature its due perfection and felicity without
conceding to it the beatific vision, that we are compelled to believe
that God cannot create intelligent spirits without giving them the
opportunity of attaining supernatural beatitude. And it is merely this
last supposition against which we have been contending.

The view we have taken, that rational nature precisely as such is not
necessarily created merely in order to become the subject of elevating
grace, but may be determined to an end which does not require it to
transcend its natural condition, comports fully with the Catholic
dogma of sanctifying grace. The church teaches that affiliation to God
by grace is a pure boon or favor gratuitously conferred by God
according to his good pleasure and sovereign will. It is not due to
nature, or a necessary consequence of creation. The beginning,
progress, and consummation of this adoptive filiation is from the
grace of God, both in reference to angels and men. It was by grace
that the angels and Adam were placed in the way of attaining the
beatific vision, just as much as it is by grace that men are redeemed
and saved since the fall. If rational nature cannot be explicated and
brought to a term suitable for it, which satisfies all its exigencies,
without this grace, it is not easy to see how it can be called a grace
at all, since grace signifies gratuitous favor. Rather it would be
something due to nature, which the goodness of God bound {156} him to
confer when he had created it. It would be the mere complement of
creation, and an essential part of the continuity of the creative act
as much as the act of conservation, by virtue of which the soul is
constituted immortal. In this case, it would be very difficult to
reconcile the doctrine of original sin, and the doom of those who die
in it before the use of reason, with the justice and goodness of God.
It would be difficult also to explain the whole series of doctrinal
decisions which have emanated from the Holy See, and have been
accepted by the universal church, in relation to the Jansenist errors,
all of which easily harmonise with the view we have taken.

Moreover, the plain dogmatic teaching of the church, that man, as he
is now born, is "saltem negative aversatus a Deo," "at least
negatively averted from God," and absolutely incapable of even the
first movement of the will to turn back to him without prevenient
grace, cannot be explained on the theory we are opposing without
resorting to the notion of a positive depravation of human nature by
the fall, a notion completely irreconcilable with rational principles.
If rational nature as such is borne by a certain impetus toward God as
possessed in the beatific vision, it will spring toward him of itself
and by its own intrinsic principles, as soon as he is extrinsically
revealed to it, without grace. To say that it does so, is precisely
the error of the Semipelagians which is condemned by the church. It is
certain that it does not; and therefore we must explain its inability
to do so, either with the Calvinists and Jansenists by maintaining
that its intrinsic principles are totally perverted and depraved, or
by maintaining that rational nature, as such, is determined by its
intrinsic impetus to an inferior mode of apprehending and loving God
as its last end, which is below the plane of the supernatural.

This view accords fully with the teachings of the great mystic
writers, who are the most profound of all philosophers and
theologians. They all teach most distinctly, that when God leads a
soul into a state of supernatural contemplation it has an almost
unconquerable repugnance and reluctance to follow him, and is thrown
into an obscure night, in which it undergoes untold struggles and
sufferings before it can become fit for even that dim and imperfect
light of contemplation which it is capable of receiving in this life.
Why is it that the human soul turns toward the supernatural good only
when excited, illuminated, and attracted by the grace of God, and even
then with so much difficulty? Why does it so easily and of preference
turn oh wait from it, unless it is, that it naturally seeks to attain
its object by a mode more connatural to its own intrinsic and
constitutive principles?

The conclusion we draw is, that rational nature of itself is capable
of attaining its proper perfection and felicity, without being
elevated above its own order, by the mere explication of its
rationality, and aspires no higher, but even prefers to remain where
it is. The fact that it is in a state which in comparison with the
state of elevation is merely inchoate existence, and is _in potentiâ_
to a state not realised _in actu_, does not show that its felicity or
the good order of the universe requires it to be elevated any higher,
unless it is elected as a subject of elevating grace.  [Footnote 34]

  [Footnote 34: This does not mean that any human being is at liberty
  to choose to decline proffered grace. The human race _en masse_ is
  elected to grace, and at least all those to whom the faith is
  proposed have the proffer of grace, with a precept to accept it.
  Moreover, God has not provided any order except the supernatural for
  mankind in which the race can attain its proper perfection and
  felicity.]

God alone is _actus purissimus_ without any admixture of potentiality.
The finite is always inchoate and potential, because finite. Its very
nature implies what is called metaphysical evil, or a limitation of
the possession of good in act. Every finite nature except that of the
incarnate Word is limited, not only in respect to the infinite, but
also in respect to some other finite nature superior to itself. It's
proper perfection consists in the possession of good, with that
limitation {157} which the will of God has prefixed to it as its term.
The perfection and order of the universe, as a whole, are constituted
by the subordination and harmony of all its parts in reference to the
predetermined end. The individual felicity of a rational creature and
his due relation to the final cause of the universe, do not require
his being elevated to the utmost summit of existence of which he is
capable, unless God has predetermined him to that place. The mere
inert capacity of receiving an augmentation or elevation of his
intellectual and voluntary operation does not give him any tendency to
exceed his actual limit, unless that inert capacity begins to be
actualized, or unless the principle of a new development is implanted
and vitalized. The inert capacity of being united to the divine nature
by the hypostatic union, is actualised only in Christ. If, therefore,
rational nature could not attain its proper end and completion without
the utmost actualization of its passive capacity, Christ alone would
attain his final end. We most certainly admit, however, that the
blessed in heaven all attain their final end and a perfect beatitude,
each one in his own degree. We are not to understand, therefore, that
the relation of the creation to God as final cause consists solely and
purely in the return of the creature to God in the most sublime manner
possible, and that everything which exists is created solely as a
means to that end. If this were so, the hypostatic union of the human
to the divine nature in the person of Jesus Christ would be the sole
terminus of the creative act, the only end proposed by God in
creating. Nothing else could or would have been created, except as a
means to that end. The rest of creation, however, cannot contribute to
that end. The union of the human nature to the divine in Christ and
its filiation to God, by which it is beatified, glorified, and
deified, is completely fulfilled within itself; and the rest of
creation adds nothing to it. If God had no other end in view, in the
reproduction of the immanent act within himself by a communication of
himself _ad extra_, except the hypostatic union, he would have created
only one perfect nature for that purpose. The beatification and
glorification of the adopted brethren of Christ must be therefore
included in the end of creation.

This is not all, however, that is included in it. The supernatural
order includes in itself a natural order which is not absorbed into
it, but which has its own distinct existence. _Gratia supponit
naturam_, grace supposes nature, but does not supersede or extinguish
it. The inferior intellectual operations of our Lord are not
superseded by his beatific contemplation, nor do they contribute to
its clearness of intuition. The operation of his animal soul--that is,
of the principle within his rational soul which contains in an eminent
mode all the perfection that is in a soul purely animal, and adapts
his rational soul to be the form of a body--continues also, together
with the activity of the senses and of the active bodily life. This
operation does not conduce to the perfection of the act of beatific
contemplation, which does not require the mediation of the senses. The
same is true of the inferior, natural operations of all beatified
angels and men. If supernatural beatitude were the exclusive end of
the creation, there would be no reason why these inferior operations
should continue, any more than the exercise of faith, hope, patience,
fortitude, or works of merit, which, being exclusively ordained as
means for attaining beatitude, cease when the end is gained. The
beatific act would swallow up the entire activity of the beatified,
and all inferior life would cease. For the same reason, all corporeal
and material organization would be swept out of the way as a useless
scaffolding, and only beatified spirits, exclusively occupied in the
immediate contemplation of God, would continue to exist for ever.

{158}

This is not so, however. The body is to rise again and live for ever.
The universe is to remain for ever, with all its various grades of
existence, including even the lowest, or those which are purely
material. There is therefore a natural order coexisting with the
supernatural in a subordinate relation to it--a minor and less
principal part, but still an integral part of the divine, creative
plan. There is a _cognitio matutina_ and a _cognitio vespertina_, a
matutinal and vesperal knowledge, in the blessed; the one being the
immediate intuition of the trinity in unity, the other the mediate
intuition of the idea or infinite archetype of creation in God,
through his creative act. There is a natural intellectual life in the
angels, and a natural intellectual and physical life in man, in the
beatific state. The natural order is preserved and perfected in the
supernatural order, with all its beauty and felicity--with its
science, virtue, love, friendship, and society. The material world is
everlasting, together with the spiritual. All orders together make up
the universe; and it is the whole complex of diverse and multitudinous
existences which completely expresses the divine idea and fulfils the
divine purpose of the creator. The metaphysical finality or apex of
the creative act is in the incarnate Word, but the relation to the
final cause exists in everything, and is fulfilled in the universe as
a totality, which embraces in one harmonious plan all things that have
been created, and culminates in Jesus Christ, through the hypostatic
union of the divine and human natures in his person.

In this universe there may be an order of intelligent existences,
touching at its lowest point the highest point of irrational
existence, and at its highest point the lowest in the grade of the
beatified spirits. That inferior order of knowledge and felicity may
exist distinctly and separately which exists conjointly with
supernatural beatitude in the kingdom of heaven. The perfection of the
universe requires that there should be a beatified, glorified order at
its summit. It may even the maintained that this consummation of
created nature in the highest possible end is the only one which the
divine wisdom could propose in creating. Yet this does not exclude the
possibility of an inferior order of intelligence, upon which the grace
elevating it to a supernatural state is not conferred.

We are prepared, therefore, to proceed to the consideration of the
nature and conditions of that grace, as a cure, gratuitous gift of
God, conferred upon angels and upon the human race through his free
and sovereign goodness. From the point of view to which the previous
reasoning has conducted us, the angels and mankind appear to us, not
as mere species of rational creatures conducted by their creator along
the path of rational development by natural law, but as the elect
heirs of an entirely gratuitous inheritance of glory--candidates for a
destiny entirely supernatural. The relation which they sustain to God
in this supernatural scheme of grace will therefore be our topic next
in order.

--------

{159}

Original

SONG.


  What magician pulls the string
  That uncurtains pretty Spring?
  And the swallow with his wing
      Against the sky 1
  Who brings the branch its green,
  And the honey-bee a queen?
      "Is it I?"
      Said April, "I?"
      "Yes, 'tis I."

  What aërial artist limns
  Rock and cloud, with brush that dims
  Titian's oils and Hogarth's whims
       In shape and dye?
  What Florimel embowers
  Lawn and lake with arching flowers?
      "Is it I?"
      Said bright July, "I?"
      "Yes, 'tis I."

  What good genii drop the grains
  Of brown sugar in the canes?
  Who fills up the apple's veins
      With sweetened dew?
  Who hangs the painted air
  With the grape and golden pear?
      Is it you,
      October? You?
      Yes, 'tis you.

  Who careering sweeps the plain,
  Scoffing at the violet's pain.
  Echoing back and back again
      His wild halloo?
  Who makes the Yule-fire foam
  Round the happy hearth of home?
      Is it you,
      December? You?
      Aye, 'tis you.

T. W. K.

--------

{160}


From The Dublin University Magazine,

COWARDICE AND COURAGE.


Shakespeare, the universal teacher, who knew every phase of the heart,
and touched every chord of feeling, has declared aphoristically,
speaking as Julius Caesar:

  "Cowards die many times before their deaths;
  The valiant only taste of death but once.
  Of all the wonders that I yet have heard.
  It seems to me most strange that men should fear;
  Seeing that death, a necessary end,
  Will come when it will come."

Notwithstanding this, fear is one of the strongest impulses of our
nature--fear of discovery, shame, or punishment when we have done
wrong: fear of pain, danger, or death. Dr. Johnson said in
conversation: "Fear is one of the passions of humanity of which it is
impossible to divest it. You all remember that the Emperor Charles V.,
when he read upon the tomb of a Spanish nobleman, 'Here lies one who
never knew fear,' wittily observed, 'Then he never snuffed a candle
with his fingers.'" In opposition to this we may quote an anecdote
told of Lord Howe, when in command of the Channel Fleet. One night he
was suddenly awakened by an officer, who, in great trepidation, told
him the ship was on fire close to the powder-room; the admiral coolly
replied: "If it is so, sir, we shall very soon know it." Some minutes
afterwards the lieutenant returned, and told his lordship he had no
occasion to be afraid, for the fire was extinguished. "Afraid!"
replied Lord Howe, hastily; "what do you mean by that, sir? I never
was afraid in my life."

No emotions of the human frame are more opposite than cowardice and
courage, each taken in its simple sense, yet both spring from the same
sources--physical temperament early training. We do not make our own
nervous system, which is often grievously tampered with or perverted
by silly, ill-conditioned nurses, servants, and teachers, who
frightened children with tales of bugbears, monsters and hobgoblins,
until they scream if left in the dark for a moment, and dare not sleep
in a room by themselves. Pillory or flogging at the cart's tail would
be too mild a punishment for those moral Thugs, who strangle wholesome
feelings in the first dawn of their existence, and supply their place
with baneful impressions, which, strongly implanted in early youth,
grow and strengthen to a period of life when reason on to subdue them,
but frequently fails to do so. Viewed in this light, constitutional
timidity is a misfortune rather than a crime, however contemptible it
may be considered; while mere animal insensibility to danger, which
readily calls for admiration, has no claim to rank as a virtue. We
speak not here of the moral courage which may be engrafted on a nature
originally pusillanimous, by pride, education or a sense of duty and
station. Henry IV., of France, and Frederick the Great, of Prussia,
are illustrious examples of this victory of over matter. Both were
instinctively afraid of danger, and both are recorded as evincing
perfect self-possession and displaying prodigies of valor in many a
hotly-contested field. Henry's flesh quivered the first time he found
himself in action, although his heart was firm. "Villanous nature, I
will make thee ashamed of thyself!" he exclaimed, as he spurred his
horse through a {161} breach before which the bravest veterans paused;
and ever afterward the white plume was recognized as the rallying
point of battle. Frederick turned from the field of Molwitz, and left
his marshals to win the day without him; but it was his first and only
moment of wavering through a life of hard campaigns.

Some natures are so constant that no surprise can shake them. An
instance occurs in the career of Crillon, called by distinction, "The
Brave," in an Army where all were valiant. He was stationed with a
small detachment in a lone house. Some young officers, in the dead of
night, raised a cry that the enemy were upon them, a company by loud
shouts and the firing of musketry. Crillon started from his bed,
seized his sword, and rushed down-stairs in his shirt, calling on all
to follow him and die at their posts like men. A burst of laughter
behind arrested his steps, and he at once penetrated the joke. He
re-ascendant, and seizing one of the perpetrators roughly by the arm,
explained: "Young man, it is well for you that your trick failed. Had
you thrown me off my guard, you would have been the first I should
have sacrificed to my lost honor. Take warning, and deal in no such
folly for the future."

Charles XII. was gifted from infancy with iron nerves. "What is that
noise?" he asked, as the balls whistling past him when landing in
Denmark--a mere stripling, under a heavy fire. "The sound of the shot
the fire at your majesty," replied Marshal Renschild. "Good!" said the
king; "henceforth that shall be my music." And so he made it, with
little intermission, until the last and fatal bullet, whether fired by
traitor or foe, which entered his brain, and finished his wild career
at Fredericshall, eighteen years later.

Murat and Lannes were the admitted paladins of the Imperial army; yet
both once came to a stand-still before the battery which vomited forth
fire and death. "Rascals!" muttered Napoleon, bitterly; "have I made
you too rich?" Stung by the taunt, they rushed on, and the victory was
gained. No epidemic is so contagious as a panic. When once caught, it
expands with the velocity of an ignited train. A celebrated case
occurred in Henry the Eighth's time, at the Battle of the Spurs, in
1513, so called because the defeated force fled with such haste that
it was impossible for the best mounted cavaliers to overtake them.
Thus the killed and wounded made but a poor figure. Then came Falkirk,
in 1746, of which Horace Walpole said: "The fighting lay in a small
compass, the greater part of both armies running away." Then the
memorable "Races of Castlebar," of which the less that is said the
better; then the _sauve qui peut_ of Waterloo; and though last, far
from least, the pell-mell rout of Bull's Run, which inaugurated the
late American war. Livy records, and Sir William Napier quotes the
anecdote, that after a drawn battle a god, calling out in the night,
declared that the Etruscans had lost one man more than the Romans!
whereupon a panic fell on the former, and they abandoned the field to
their adversaries, who gathered all the fruits of a real victory.

There are some who think they can face danger and death until the
moment of trial arrives, and then their nerves give way. In the
biographies of John Graham, Viscount of Dundee, we find it related
that, during the civil wars of that period, a friend of his, a loyal
and devoted partisan of the house of Stuart, like himself, committed
his favorite son to his charge. "I give him to the king's cause," said
the father; "take care that he does not dishonor his name and race. I
depend on you to look after him." In the first action, the unlucky
youth exhibited undoubted symptoms of cowardice. Dundee took him aside
and said  "The service in which we are engaged is desperate, {162} and
requires desperate resolution on the part of all concerned in it. You
have mistaken your trade. Go home, before worse happens." The youth
shed bitter tears, said it was a momentary weakness, implored for
another trial, and promised to behave better the next time. Dundee
relented. The next trial soon came, with the same result. Dundee rode
up to the recreant, pistol in hand, and exclaiming, "Your father's son
shall never die by the hands of the hangman," shot him dead upon the
spot.

Experienced military authorities have delivered their opinion that of
one hundred rank and file, taken indiscriminately--Alexanders at
six-pence per diem, as Voltaire sneeringly designates them--one third
are determined daredevils, who will face any danger, and flinch from
nothing; the next division are waverers, equally disposed to stand or
run, and likely to be led either way by example; while the residue are
rank cowards. Dr. Johnson took a more unfavorable view. At a dinner at
General Paoli's, in 1778, when fears of an invasion were circulated,
Mr. John Spottiswoode, the solicitor, observed that Mr. Fraser, an
engineer, who had recently visited Dunkirk, said the French had the
same fears of us. "It is thus," remarked Dr. Johnson, "that mutual
cowardice keeps us in peace. Were one half mankind brave, and one half
cowards, the brave would be always beating the cowards. Were all
brave, they would lead a very uneasy life; all would be continually
fighting; but being all cowards, we go on tolerably well."

It is difficult to invest with interest a quality so universally held
in contempt as cowardice; yet Sir Walter Scott has succeeded in
obtaining sympathy for _Conachar_, or _Eachin M'Ian_. the young
Highland chieftain, in the Fair Maid of Perth. He evidently conceived
the character _con amore_, and has elaborated it with skill and care.

Montaigne observes of fear that it is a surprisal of the heart upon
the apprehension of approaching evil; and if it reaches the degree of
terror,  and the evil seems impendent, the hair is raised on end, and
the whole body put into horror and trembling. After this, if the
passion continues, the spirits are thrown into confusion, so that they
cannot execute their offices; the usual successors of reason fail,
judgment is blinded, the powers of voluntary motion become weak, and
the heart is insufficient to maintain the circulation of the blood,
which, stopping and stagnating in the ventricles, causes painting and
swooning, and sometimes sudden death. The quaint old essayist then
illustrates by examples. He tells of a jester who had contrived to
give his master, a petty prince of Italy, a hearty ducking and a
fright to boot, to cure him of an ague. The treatment succeeded; but
the autocrat, by way of retaliation, had his audacious physician tried
for treason, and condemned to lose his had. The criminal was brought
forth, the priest received his confession, and the luckless buffoon
knelt to prepare for the blow. Instead of wielding his axe, the
executioner, as he had been instructed, threw a pitcher of water on
the bare neck of the criminal. Here the jest was to have ended; but
the shock was too great for poor Gonella, who was found dead on the
block.

Montaigne also says, that fear manifests its utmost power and effect
when it throws men into a valiant despair, having before deprived them
of all sense both of duty and honor. In the first great battle of the
Romans against Hannibal, under the Consul Sempronius, a body of twenty
thousand men that had taken flight, seeing no other escape for their
cowardice, threw themselves headlong upon the great mass of their
pursuing enemies, with wonderful force and fury they charged, and cut
a passage through, with a prodigious slaughter of the Carthaginians;
thus purchasing an ignominious retreat at the same price which might
have won for them glorious victory.

{163}

But if fear is a destructive, it also sometimes acts in an opposite
sense. Dr. Thomas Bartoline tells us in his history of anatomy, that
fear has been known to cure epilepsy, gout, and ague. He relates that
a woman of condition, who was affected with the tertian ague, was so
terrified by the explosion of a bomb, which was fired off during her
fit, that she fainted away and was thought to be dead. "Having then
sent for me to see her," he adds, "and finding her pulse still pretty
strong, I prescribed for her some slight cordials, and she soon
recovered from her state of weakness without any appearance of fever,
which had afterward no return."

Bartoline says again that a young lady who had a quartan ague for
several months successively, was invited by some of her acquaintance
to take an excursion on the water, with a view to dissipate the
melancholy ideas occasioned by her illness; but they had scarcely got
into the boat when it began to sink, and all were terribly shocked
with the dread of perishing. After escaping this danger, the patient
found that the terror had cured her ailment, and she had no return of
the ague.

A third instance recorded by Bartoline is even more extraordinary than
the two we have already named. A man forty-two years of age, of a hot
and moist constitution, subject to a colic, but the fits not violent,
was seized one evening, about sunset, with an internal cold, though
the weather on that day was unusually warm. Different medicines were
administered to him, but without success. He died within eighteen or
nineteen hours, without the least agitation or any of the convulsions
that frequently accompany the parting agony, so that he seemed to
subside into a placid sleep. His friends requested Dr. Bartoline to
open his body, and it was found that he had died of a mortification of
the punereus. He was a very fat subject, and what was surprising in to
huge and corpulent a body, his bones were as small as those of a young
girl, and his muscles extremely weak, thin, and membraneous rather
than fleshy. While the doctor was making these observations on the
dissected corpse, a brother of the deceased, who had been absent for
sixteen years, and was of the same size, constitution, and habit of
body, entered the room suddenly and unexpectedly. He looked on the
remains of his relative, heard the detail of the circumstances of his
death, the cause of which he saw confirmed with his own eyes, and
reasoned for some time calmly and sensibly on the mournful event. All
at once he became stupefied, speechless, and fell into a fainting fit,
from which neither balsams nor stimulants, nor any of the remedies
resorted to in such cases, could recover him. The opening of a vein
was suggested, but this advice was not followed. All present appeared
as if paralyzed with horror. The patient seemed to be without pulse or
respiration, his limbs began to stiffen, and he was pronounced to be
on the point of expiring. A sudden idea struck Bartoline, for which he
says he could not account, but he said aloud, "Let us recompose the
dead body and sew it up; in the meantime the other will be quite dead,
and I will dissect him also." The words were scarcely uttered when the
gentleman supposed to be _in articulo mortis_ started up from the sofa
on which he had been laid, roared out with the lungs of a bull,
snatched up his cloak, took to his heels, as if nothing had happened
to him, and lived for many years after in an excellent slate of
health.

Fear has been known to turn the hair in a single night from black to
grey or white. This happened, amongst others, to Ludovico Sforza. The
same is asserted of Queen Marie Antoinette, although not so suddenly,
and, as some say, from grief, not fear. The Emperor Louis, of Bavaria,
anno 1256, suspected his wife, Mary of Brabant, without just cause,
condemned her, unheard, for adultery, and caused her chief
lady-in-waiting, who was also {164} innocent, to be cast headlong from
a tower, as a confederate in his dishonor. Soon after this horrible
cruelty he was visited by a fearful vision one night, and rose in the
morning with his dark locks as white as snow.

A young Spaniard of noble family, Don Diego Osorio, being in love with
a lady of the court, prevailed on her to grant him an interview by
night in the royal gardens. The barking of a little dog betrayed them.
The gallant was seized by the guard and conveyed to prison. It was a
capital crime to be found in that place without special permission,
and therefore he was condemned to die. The reading of the sentence so
unmanned him that the next morning he stood in presence of his jailer
with a furrowed visage and grey hair. The fact being reported to King
Ferdinand as a prodigy, he was moved to compassion, and pardoned the
culprit, saying, he had been sufficiently punished in exchanging the
bloom of youth for the hoary aspect of age. The same happened to the
father of Martin Delrio, who, lying sick in bed, heard the physicians
say he would certainly die. He recovered, but the fright gave him a
grey head in a few hours, and this instance of the terror he had
suffered never afterward left him.

Robert Boyle, in his Philosophical Examples, relates the following
incident of the same class: "Being about four or six years since," he
says, "in the county of Cork, there was an Irish captain, a man of
middle age and stature, who came with some of his followers to
surrender himself to the Lord Broghill, who then commanded the English
forces in those parts, upon a public offer of pardon to the Irish that
would lay down their arms. He was casually met with in a suspicious
place by a party of the English, and intercepted, the Lord Broghill
being then absent. He was so apprehensive of being put to death before
the return of the commander-in-chief, that his anxiety of mind quickly
altered the color of his hair in a peculiar manner. It was not
uniformly changed, but here and there certain peculiar tufts and
locks, whose bases might be about an inch in diameter were suddenly
turned white alone; the rest of his hair, whereof the Irish used to
wear good store, retained its natural reddish color."

A sudden shock operates on the memory as well as on the hair. In
Pliny's Natural History we read of one who, being struck violently and
unexpectedly by a stone, forgot his letters, and could never write
again; another, he says, through a fall from the roof of a very high
house, lost his remembrance of his own mother, his nearest kinsfolks,
friends, and neighbors; and a third, in a fit of sickness, ceased to
recognize his own servants. Messala Corvinus, the great orator, being
startled suddenly, forgot his own name, and was unable to remember it
for a considerable time. The same thing happened to Sidney Smith, not
from fear, but from absence of mind. He called on a friend, who was
not at home, and he happened to have no card to leave. "What name,
sir?" said the servant. "That's exactly what I can't tell you," was
the reply.

Augustus Caesar was not a valiant man, in the popular acceptation of
the word. He shrank in his tent from the onset at Philippi, skulked in
the hold of the admiral's galley during the sea-fight with Sextus
Pompey in the Straits of Messina, and was a safe spectator on shore at
Actium. Antony, and even his own friend and lieutenant, Agrippa,
taunted him with his want of courage. He was so terrified at thunder
and lightning that he always carried with him the skin of a sea-calf
as an antidote. If he suspected the approach of a tempest, he ran to
some underground vault until the symptoms passed over. Yet Suetonius
says he once, under necessity, showed a bold front to a danger he
could not avoid. He was walking abroad with Diomedes, his steward,
when a wild boar, which had broken loose, rushed directly toward them.
{165} Thus steward in his terror, ran behind the emperor and
interposed him as a shield betwixt the assailant and himself. Augustus
stood his ground, because flight was barred, and the boar turned tail.
But knowing that fear, not malice, had prompted the conduct of his
servant, he had the magnanimity to confine his resentment to a
perpetual just. Caligula, who affected to contemn the gods, was
equally terrified with Augustus at the least indication of thunder and
lightning. He covered his head, and if the explosions chanced to be
loud and near, leaped from his couch and hid himself under it.

History mentions several sovereigns who loved war, but had no taste
for personal participation in its perils. Charles the Fifth, and his
son, Philip the second, are amongst the number, The leading
characteristic of the latter was cruelty, a disposition generally
associated with cowardice. Diocletian, after he became emperor, fought
more by his lieutenants than in person. Lactantius said of him that he
was timid and spiritless in all situations of danger. _Erat in omni
tumultu meticulosus et animi dejectus_.  [Footnote 35]

  [Footnote 35: Lactant. De Mortibus Persecutorum, c. ix.]

A commander should be self-collected in a battle, calm under a shower
of darts or the whistling of artillery; but to prove his courage, he
is not called upon to charge windmills with the chivalric madness of
Don Quixote, or to slay eight hundred enemies with his own hand, as
recorded of Aurelian and Richard Coeur de Lion. Charles of Sweden and
Attila loved fighting for fighting's sake; for the _certaminis
gaudia_, as Cassiodorus writes; "the rapture of the strife," as Lord
Byron translates the passage. Yet a brave general is not obliged to be
a vulture snuffing blood like the truculent king of the Huns. He can
maintain his reputation for personal courage without jumping alone
into the midst of an army of foes, as Alexander did from the walls of
Oxydrace; or resisting a host of many thousands with three hundred
men, as Charles XII. did at Bender; or of placing his foot first on
the scaling ladder in emulation of the extreme daring of the Constable
Bourbon, under extreme circumstances, at the storming of Rome. Charles
the First lacked _moral_ courage, but he was no craven physically. His
bravery in the field, and calm dignity on the scaffold, went far in
atonement of his political weaknesses and shortcomings.

The mind naturally revolts from sudden or violent death. Yet it has
its recommendations. It is never painful. The important consideration
is lest it should be unprepared for. We mourn the loss of a friend or
relative who is killed in battle more than we do that of one who dies
in the course of nature, or of an incidental fever. We lament a
soldier's death because it seems untimely. A sufferer who languishes
of disease, ends his life with more pain but with less credit. He
leaves no example to be quoted, no honor to be cherished as an
heirloom by his descendants. We affect to be greatly shocked at the
misfortunes or death of a friend or acquaintance, but there is
something pharisaical in this exuberance of sympathy, only we are
unwilling to confess the truth openly.

Foote, who was a scoffer, and in all respects an irreligious man,
said, when very ill, that he was not afraid to die. David Hume, an
_esprit fort_ of a more pretentious character, declared that it gave
him no more uneasiness to think he should not be after this life, than
that he had not been before he began to exist. An ingenious sophistry,
like his essay on miracles. We do not believe that any one ever really
persuaded himself that he was not a responsible being, and not
answerable for his deeds done in the flesh. Sir Henry Halford, in his
essays, expresses his surprise that of the great number of patients he
had attended, so few appeared reluctant to die. "We may suppose," he
adds, "that this willingness to submit to the common and irresistible
doom, arises from an {166} impatience of suffering, or from that
passive indifference which is sometimes the result of debility and
extreme bodily pain."

Themistocles was quite as unwilling to die, although he assigned a
better reason for his love of life. Finding his mental and physical
powers beginning to decay, in such a manner as to indicate his
approaching end, he grieved that he must now depart, when, as he said,
he was only beginning to grow wise. As an instance of superstitious
terror, Plutarch tells us that Amestis, the wife of the great Xerxes,
buried twelve persons alive, offering them as a sacrifice to Pluto for
the prolongation of her own days. Mecaenas, the great patron of
learning, and favorite of Augustus, had such a horror of death, that
he had often in his mouth, "all things are to be endured so long as
life is continued." The Emperor Domitian, from innate timidity, caused
the walls of the galleries wherein he took daily recreation to be
garnished with the stone called phangites, the brightness of which
reflected all that was passing behind him. Theophrastus, the
philosopher, who lived to be one hundred and seven years of age, was
so attached to life that he complained of the partiality of nature in
granting longevity to the crow and the stag beyond that accorded to
man. Plutarch, in his life of Pericles, names a skilful engineer
called Artemon, who was withal so timorous that he was frightened at
his own shadow, and seldom stirred out of his house for fear some
accident should betide him. Two of his servants always held a brazen
target over his head lest anything might fall upon it; and if
necessity compelled him to go abroad, he never walked, but was carried
in a litter which hung within an inch or two of the ground.

We read, in a more recent author, of a certain Rhodius, who, being
sentenced to perpetual imprisonment in a dungeon, by a tyrant, for
indulging in unseasonable liberty of speech, was treated in all
respects like a caged beast, with great torture and ignominy. His food
was scanty and loathsome; his hands were amputated, his face gashed
and disfigured with wounds. In this miserable plight, some of his
friends suggested to him to put an end to his sufferings by voluntary
starvation. "No," he replied; "while life remains all things are to be
hoped for." He clung to mere existence when death would have been a
relief. How are we to reconcile or account for these strange
contradictions? The sum of all appears to be that human nature is a
complex mystery, beyond the powers of man to fathom with the limited
faculties attached to his transitory condition.

Let us turn now to a more attractive quality, courage and, manly
daring as exhibited in life and and death, particularly in the "last
scene of all." _Finis coranat opus_--the end crowns the work. When
Epaminondas asked whether Chabrias, Iphicrates or himself deserved the
highest place in the esteem of their fellow-beings, he replied, "You
must see us die before that question can be answered." His own exit at
Mantinea, in the moment of a glorious victory, was singularly
brilliant, and his parting sentiments illustrated the purity of his
life. The situation finds an exact parallel in the fall of Gustavus
Adolphus, under the same circumstances, at Lutzen. The name of the
patriot who seals with blood his devotion to his cause, on a winning
field, is encircled with and imperishable halo of glory, the thought
of which would stir the pulse of an anchorite. Claverhouse, in Old
Mortality, describes the feeling with true military enthusiasm. "It is
not," he says, "the expiring pang that is worth thinking of in an
event that must happen one day, and may befall us at any moment--it is
the memory which the soldier leaves behind him, like the long train of
light that follows the sunken sun; that is all which is worth caring
for, which distinguishes the death of the brave or the ignoble. When I
think of death, as a chance of {167} almost hourly occurrence in the
course before me, it is in the hope of pressing one day some
well-fought and hard-won field of battle, and expiring with the shout
of victory in my ear; _that_ would be worth dying for, and more, it
would be worth having lived for." And so fell the real Claverhouse on
the field of Killiecrankie, and with him vanished the passing gleam of
sunshine in the fortunes of the master he served so loyally and well.
Had he lived to improve his victory, he would have been in Edinburgh
in two or three days, and it is difficult to say what turn the pages
of coming history might then have taken. As soon as it was known that
he was killed, his army of Highland clans dispersed, and never
collected again. They were held together by his single name, and had
no faith in any other leader.

A heathen poet, Antiphanes, who lived a century earlier than Socrates
or his pupil Plato, and five hundred years before the Christian
revelation, has a remarkable passage to this effect, of which the
following verbal translation is given by Addison in the Spectator:
"Grieve not above measure for deceased friends. They are not dead, but
have only finished that journey we are all necessitated to take. We
ourselves must go to that great place of reception in which they are
all of them assembled, and in this general rendezvous of mankind live
together in another state of being."

Men of the most opposite characters have jested on the point of death.
Sir Thomas More, a Christian philosopher, said to the executioner,
"Good friend, let me put my beard out of the way, for that has
committed no offence against the king."

The following instance, recorded by the Abbé Vertot, in his history of
the revolutions of Portugal, may claim comparison, for intrepidity and
greatness of soul, with anything that we read of in Greek or Roman
lore. When Don Sebastian, King of Portugal, invaded the territories of
Muley Moloch, Emperor of Morocco to de-throne him and set his crown on
the head of his nephew, Moloch was wearing away with a distemper which
he himself knew and felt to be incurable. However, he prepared for the
reception of the formidable foreign enemy. He was so utterly exhausted
by his malady, that he scarcely expected to outlive the day when the
decisive battle was fought at Alcazar. But knowing the fatal
consequences that would happen to his children and people in case he
should die before he put an end to that war, he gave directions to his
principal officers that if he died during the engagement they should
conceal his death from the army, and should ride up to the litter in
which his corpse was carried, under pretence of receiving orders from
him as usual. Before the action began he was carried through all the
ranks of his host, with the curtains of the litter drawn up, as they
stood in battle array, and encouraged them to fight valiantly in
defence of their religion and country. Finding the action at one
period of the day turning against him, and seeing that the decisive
moment had arrived, he, though verging on his last agonies, threw
himself out of his litter. The enthusiasm of his spirit for the moment
conquered the feebleness of his body; he was lifted upon a horse,
rallied his troops, and led them to a renewed charge, which ended in a
complete victory on the side of the Moors. The King of Portugal was
killed. At least, he disappeared mysteriously, and never was seen
again; his body, like that of James the Fourth at Flodden, was not
clearly identified, and more than one pretender from time to time came
forward to personate him; his entire army was dispersed, slain, or
rendered captive. Muley Moloch lived to witness the effect of his
charge, when nature gave way; his officers replaced him in his litter;
he was unable to speak, but laying his finger on his lips to enjoin
secrecy on all who stood around him, died a few moments afterwards in
that posture.

{168}

Fortitude and valor are, after all, more derived from constitution and
example than from any inherent power of the mind. When Sylla beheld
his army on the point of defeat by Archelaus, the general of
Mithridates, he alighted from his horse, snatched a standard from the
bearer, and rushing with it into the midst of the enemy, cried out,
"Here, comrades, I intend to die; but for you, when asked where you
left your general, remember it was at Orchomenus." The soldiers, moved
by his speech and example, returned to their ranks, renewed the fight,
and converted an imminent overthrow into a decisive victory. At
Marathon, Cynegirus, an Athenian, having pursued the Persians to their
ships, grasped a boat in which some of them were putting off from the
shore, with his right hand, holding it until his hand was cut off; he
then seized it with the left, which was also immediately severed.
After that, he retained it with his teeth, nor did he relinquish that
last hold until his fleeting breath failed, and thereby disappointed
the resolute intention of his mind.

The exploits of Mutius Seaevola, who thrust his hand into the fire to
frighten Porsenna, and of Horatius Cocles, who defended a bridge
singly against an army, are familiar to every school-boy. The latter,
in the glowing verses of Macaulay, is a favorite subject of selection
at school speech-days, and for public readings or recitations.
According to the same authority, Plutarch, the heroism of Seaevola had
been anticipated by Agesilaus, the brother of Themistocles. When
Xerxes arrived with his countless hosts at Cape Artemisium, the bold
Athenian, disguised as a Persian, came into the camp of the
barbarians, and slew one of the captains of the royal guard, supposing
he had been the king himself. He was immediately brought before
Xerxes, who was then offering sacrifices upon the altar of the Sun.
Agesilaus thrust his hand into the flame, and endured the torture
without sigh or groan. Xerxes  ordered them to loose him. "All we
Athenians," said Agesilaus, "are of the same determination. If thou
wilt not believe it, I will also suffer my left hand to be consumed by
the fire." The king, awed and impressed with respect for such
undaunted constancy, commanded him to be carefully kept and well
treated. Did one story suggest the other, or are both real  or
fabulous?

Valerius Maximus relates the following anecdote: "After the ancient
custom of the Macedonians, certain noble youths waited on Alexander
the Great when he sacrificed to the gods. One of these, holding a
censer in his hand, stood before the king. It chanced that a live coal
fell upon his arm, and so burnt it that the smell of the charred flesh
affected the bystanders; yet the sufferer suppressed the pain, in
silence, and held his arm immovable, lest by shaking the censer he
should interrupt the sacrifice, or by his groaning disturb the king.
Alexander, that he might still further try his fortitude, purposely
continued and protracted the sacrifice; yet the noble-hearted boy
persisted in his resolute intention." To this rare instance of
fortitude he adds another. "Anaxarchus, a philosopher of Abdera, was
remarkable for freedom of speech, which no personal consideration
restrained. He was a friend of Alexander, and when the great conqueror
was wounded, said bluntly, 'Behold the blood of a man and not of a
god.' But Alexander was too noble to be offended at such a home truth.
It was otherwise with Nicocreon, tyrant of Cyprus, to whose court
Anaxarchus betook himself on the death of Alexander. When the sage
openly reproached him with his cruelties, Nicocreon seized and
threatened to pound him in a stone mortar with iron hammers. 'Pound
the body of Anaxarchus at thy pleasure,' exclaimed he; 'his soul thou
canst not pound.' The tyrant, in a paroxysm of rage, ordered his
tongue to be cut from his mouth. {169} 'Effeminate wretch,' cried the
undaunted monitor, 'neither shall that part of my body be at thy
disposal.' So saying, he bit off his own tongue, and spat it in the
face of his persecutor."

Bacon, in his History of Life and Death, mentions a certain tradition
of a man, who being under the executioner's hands for high treason,
after his heart was plucked from his body, was yet heard to murmur
several words of prayer. He also instances another strange example in
the case of the Burgundian who murdered the Prince of Orange. When the
first part of his sentence, which only related to cutting off his
curls of hair, was carried out, he absolutely shed shed tears; yet,
when scourged with rods of iron, and his flesh torn with red-hot
pincers, he uttered neither sigh nor grown. Before his sense of
feeling became extinct under reiterated tortures, a part of the
scaffold fell on the head of a spectator. The criminal was observed to
laugh at the accident.

It is recorded of Caius Marius, seven times Roman consul, and conquer
of the Cimbri and Teutones, that a short time before his death, in his
seventieth year, a swelling in the leg location the necessity of its
being cut off. To this he submitted without a distortion of the face
or any visible sign of suffering. The surgeon told him the other leg
was as badly affected and peremptorily demanded the same remedy, if he
wished his life to be prolonged. "No," said Marius, "the pain is
greater than the advantage." Something very similar occurred at the
death of General Moreau on the field of Dresden, in 1813. A cannon
ball, as he was in conversation with the Emperor of Russia, shattered
his right knee, passed through the body of the horse, and left his
other leg suspended by a few ligaments. He sat up and coolly smoked a
cigar while undergoing the amputation of the left. On being told that
he must also lose the right, he shrugged his shoulders, and said to
the surgeons, "On with your work, if it must be so; but if I had known
at the beginning, I would have kept my legs and spared your trouble."
He survived only a few hours.

In 1571 Marc Antonio Bragandino, a noble Venetian, who was governor of
Famagusta, in the island of Cyprus, defended that city with
indomitable perseverance during a long siege, which cost Mustapha, the
general of the Turkish army, many thousands of his bravest soldiers.
The promised aid from Venice not arriving in time, Bragandino was
compelled to surrender on honorable conditions, which Mustapha
violated with consummate treachery. He caused the principal officers
to be beheaded in sight of their commander, who was reserved for a
more inhuman punishment. Three times the scimetar was drawn across his
throat, that he might endure the pain of more than one death, yet the
illustrious victim quailed not nor wavered in his intrepid demeanor.
His nose and ears were then cut off, and loaded with chains he was
compelled to carry earth in a hod to those who were repairing the
fortifications. With this heavy burden he was forced to bend and kiss
the ground every time he passed before Mustapha. Still his courage
supported him, and he kept dignified silence. Finally he was lashed to
the yard-arm of one of the Turkish galleys, and flayed alive. He
endured all with unshaken firmness, and to the last reproached the
infidels with their perfidy and inhumanity. His skin was carried in
parade along the coasts of Syria and Egypt, and deposited in the
arsenal of Constantinople, whence it was obtained by the children of
the illustrious hero, and preserved as the most glorious relic in
their family.

We find it written in Baker's Chronicle that King William Rufus, being
reconciled to his brother Robert, assisted him to recover Fort St.
Michael, in Normandy, forcibly held by Prince Henry, afterwards Henry
the First. During the siege, William one day {170} happening to be
riding carelessly along the shore, was set upon by three knights, who
assaulted him so fiercely that they drew him from his saddle, and the
saddle from his horse. But catching up his saddle, and drawing his
sword, he defended himself until rescue came. Being afterwards blamed
for his obstinacy in risking his life for a trifling part of his
equipment, "It would have angered me to the very heart," he replied,
"that the knaves should have bragged they had won the saddle from me."
The same authority tells us that "Malcolm, king of the Scots, a
contemporary of William Rufus, was a most valiant prince, as appears
by an act of his of an extraordinary strain. Hearing of a conspiracy
and plot to murder him, by one whose name is not recorded, he
dissembled all knowledge of it, till being abroad one day hunting in
company with the concealed traitor, he took him apart in a wood, and
being alone, 'Here now,' said he, 'is fit time and place to do that
manfully which you intended to do treacherously; draw your weapon, and
if you now kill me, none being present, you can incur no danger.' By
this speech of the king's the fellow was so daunted, that presently he
fell down at his feet and humbly implored forgiveness; which being
granted, he proved himself ever after a loyal and faithful servant.
This same Malcolm, son of the Duncan who was murdered by Macbeth, was
himself killed at the siege of Alnwick Castle, in 1093. A young
English knight rode into the Scottish camp, armed only with a slight
spear, whereon hung the keys of the castle, and approaching near the
king, lowered his lance, as if presenting the keys in token of
surrender. Suddenly he made a home thrust at the monarch's eye, which
ran into his brain, and he fell dead on the instant, the bold
Englishman saving himself by the swiftness of his horse. From this act
of desperate valor came the surname of Piercy, or Percy, ever since
borne with so much honor by the noble house of Northumberland."

A Dutch seaman being condemned to death, his punishment was changed,
and he was ordered to be left on the island of St. Helena, at that
time uninhabited. The horrors of solitude, without the hope of escape,
determined him to attempt one of the strangest actions ever recorded.
There had been interred that day in the same island an officer of the
ship. The seaman took the body out of the coffin, and having made a
kind of or of the upper board, ventured to see in it. There was
fortunately for him a dead calm, and as he glided along, early the
next morning he came near the ship lying immovable within two leagues
of the island. When his former companions saw so strange a float upon
the waters, they imagined it was a spectral delusion, but when they
discovered the reality, were not a little startled at the resolution
of the man who durst hazard himself on the sea in three boards
slightly nailed together. He had little hope of being received by
those who had so lately sentenced him to death. Accordingly it was put
to the question whether he should be saved or not. After some debates
and much difference of opinion, mercy prevailed. He was taken on
board, and came afterwards to Holland, where he lived in the town of
Hoorn, and related to many how miraculously God had delivered him.

Raleigh's History of the World abounds in anecdotes of undaunted
action. Amongst many others, the following is not the least
remarkable: "Henry, Earl of Alsatia, surname Iron, because of his
strength, obtained great favor with Edward the Third by reason of his
valor, and of course became a mark of envy for the courtiers. One day,
in the absence of the king, they counselled the queen that forasmuch
as the earl was unduly preferred before all the English peers and
knights, she would make trial whether he was so highly descended as he
gave out, by causing a lion to be let loose on him unawares, affirming
that if Henry were truly noble the lion would {171} refuse to assail
him. They obtained leave to the effect that they desired. The earl was
accustomed to rise before day, and to walk in the lower court of the
castle in which he resided, to enjoy the fresh air of the morning. A
lion was brought in during the night, in his cage, the door of which
was afterward raised by a mechanical contrivance, so that he had
liberty of escape. The earl came down in his night gown, with girdle
and sword, when he encountered the lion, bristling his hair and
roaring in the middle of the court. Not in the least astonished or
thrown off his guard he called out with a stout voice, 'Stand, you
dog!' Whereupon the lion crouched at his feet, to the great amazement
of the courtiers, who peeped from their hiding-places to see the issue
of the trick they had planned. The earl grasped the lion by the mane,
shut him up in his cage, and left his night-cap upon his back, and so
came forth, without even looking behind him. 'Now,' said he to them
that skulked behind the casements, 'let him amongst you that standeth
most upon his pedigree go and fetch My night-cap.' But they, one and
all, ashamed and terrified, withdrew themselves in silence."

But the most brilliant deeds and daring of warriors on the
battle-field, stimulated by all the excitements of pride, ambition,
and man's applause, in the estimate of true heroism fall far below the
glory of the patient, unpretending martyr, who dies for his faith at
the stake, amidst the blaspheming yells of his persecutors.

How impressive is the character drawn by Modestus, deputy of the
Emperor Valens, of St. Basil the Great, as he is justly called, whom
he sought to draw, with other eminent bishops, into the heresy of
Arius. He attempted it at first with caresses and all the sugared
phrases that might be expected from one who had words at command.
Disappointed in this course, he tried threats of exile, torture, and
death. Finding all equally fruitless, he returned to his lord with
this character of Basil--"Firmior est quam ut verbis, praestantior
quam ut minis, fortior quam ut blanditiis vinci possit." He is so
resolute and determined, that neither words, threats, nor allurements
have any power to alter him.

A sense of duty, in its high moral definition, ranks far beyond the
mere courage of the soldier, the selfish love of fame, the thirst of
glory, or the desire of personal pre-eminence. The late Duke of
Wellington was duty personified. The following illustrative anecdote
has never, we believe, been in print, and came to the present relater
through a source which vouches its authenticity. The duke was also
reticent, and not given to communicate his arrangements more openly to
his officers than was required for their exact comprehension and the
fulfilment of their instructions. It is generally supposed that Lord
Hill was second in command at Waterloo, and that he would have assumed
the direction of affairs had the great duke been killed or wounded
during the battle. This is a mistake. Lord Uxbridge, afterwards
Marquis of Anglesea, was senior in rank, by the date of his
lieutenant-general's commission, to Lord Hill, and on him the command
would have devolved in the possible and not improbable contingency
alluded to. The duke communicated with him most frankly and cordially
on all professional points, but from family incidents there was not
that perfect unreserve and friendly intercourse in private which
otherwise might have been. On the evening of the 17th of June, Lord
Uxbridge said to Sir Hussey Vivian, his old friend and brother officer
of the 7th Hussars, "I am very unpleasantly situated. There will be a
great battle to-morrow. The duke, as we all know, exposes himself
without reserve, and will, in all probability, do so more than ever on
this occasion. If an unlucky shot should strike him, and I find myself
suddenly in command, I have not the most distant idea of what his
intentions are. I would give the world to know, as they {172} must be
profoundly calculated, and far beyond any I could hit upon for myself
in a sudden crisis. We are not personally intimate enough to allow me
to ask or hint the question. What shall I do?" "Consult Alava,"
replied Vivian. "He is evidently more in the duke's confidence than
any one else, and will perhaps undertake to speak to him." Lord
Uxbridge followed the suggestion, rode over to head-quarters, and
finding General Alava, stated the object of his visit. "I agree with
you," said the Spaniard; "the question is serious; but honored as I am
by the duke's confidence, _I_ dare not propose it to him. I think,
however, that _you_ can and ought to do so. If you like, I will tell
him you are here." Lord Uxbridge, not without reluctance, consented,
and being introduced to the duke's apartments, with some hesitation
stated, as delicately as he could, the matter which disturbed him. The
duke listened until Lord Uxbridge ceased to speak; his features
indicated no emotion; and when he replied, it was without impatience,
surprise, or any alteration of his usual manner. After a short pause
he said, "Who do you expect will attack to-morrow, I or Bonaparte?"
"Bonaparte, I suppose," answered Lord Uxbridge. "Well, then," rejoined
the duke, "he has not told me his plans; how then can I tell you mine,
which must depend on his?" Lord Uxbridge said no more; he had nothing
more to say. The duke seeing that he looked a little blank, laid his
hand gently on his shoulder: "But one thing, Uxbridge," he observed,
"is quite certain; come what may, _you and I will both do our duty_."
And so, with a cordial pressure of the hand, they parted.


--------

ORIGINAL.


SAINT LUCY.


      The giving of my eyes
      In loving sacrifice
      Was my appointed way;
  No soft decline from the meridian day
  Through dusky twilight slowly into dark,
  But blackness, bloody, swift, and stark
      From hands unkind.
      And I was blind.

  Thus reads the story, writ on sacred scroll,
  Of Lucy, virgin martyr: that sharp dole
  Won heaven's eternal brightness for her soul;--
  The blotting out of sunshine, the recoil
  From utter blackness, the heart's gasp and spasm
  Before the unseen void, the imagined chasm
  Of untried darkness, was the martyr toil
  Whose moment's agony surpasses years--
  The love, long years of patience and of tears
  Allotted unto others. "All for all;"
  Not doling out with a reluctant hand,
  But in one holocaustal offering grand,
  Will, senses, mind, responding to heaven's call.

{173}

  "Bought at whatever price, heaven is not dear,"
  Sounds like an echoed chorus full of cheer
  From crypts of mangled martyrs, and charred bones,
  And blood-stained phials of the catacombs:
  And that young Roman girl's adoring eyes,
  One moment darkened, opened in surprise
  Upon the face of God. The cruel, taunt
  Of judges obdurate, the accuser's vaunt,
  The mob's wild shout of triumph deep and hoarse,
  Might still be heard around the bloody corse
  When her sweet soul, in peace, at God's own word
  Had tasted its exceeding great reward;
  To "see as she was seen," to know as known;
  The beatific vision all her own.

  Upon the sacred canon's sacred page.
  Invoked by vested priest from age to age,
  Stand five fair names of virgins, martyrs all,
  As if with some peculiar glory crowned
  That thus their names should crystallize; "their sound
  Is gone through all the earth," and great and small
  Upon those five wise virgins sweetly call
  With reverent wish: Saint Lucy! Agatha!
  Agnes! Cecilia! Anastasia!
  And chanted litany chose names enfold
  In reliquary more precious than mute gold.

  With what a tender awe I heard that name--
  A household name, familiar, dear, and kind.
  Of gentlest euphony--such honor claim!
  Thenceforth that name I speak with lifted mind,
  More loved in friend, because revered in saint;
  And daily as to heaven I make complaint
  Of mortal ills, and sickness, sorrows, woes,
  This one petition doth all others close:
  Saint Lucy, virgin martyr, by thine eyes
  Which thou didst give to God in sacrifice,
  His mercy and his solace now implore
  For darkened eyes and sightless, never more
  To gaze on aught created: by that meed
  Of choicest graces in that hour of need,
  Sweetness of patience and a joyful mind,
  And faithful, gentle hands to guide the blind!
  But more than this, Saint Lucy; thou didst gain,
  By loss of thy young eyes with loving pain.
  The vision given to angels; then obtain
  The lifting up of blinded orbs to where
  God sitteth in his beauty, the All-fair;
  Saint Lucy, virgin martyr, aid our prayer!

------

{174}


THE GODFREY FAMILY;
OR, QUESTIONS OF THE DAY.



CHAPTER V.

IS MERE MATERIAL PROGRESS A REAL BENEFIT, OR A PROGRESS IN THE RIGHT
DIRECTION?

I have already stated that Eugene Godfrey was well introduced on his
entrance at Cambridge. Scientific professors found pleasure in
bringing forward the son of so eminent a patron of literature and
science. But they were disappointed at finding little response in
Eugene's mind to the boastful glory of scientific improvement. "Cui
Bono?" was ever in his heart, and sometimes on his lips, when any new
inventions were proposed to him.

"Supposing we should be able to light our streets and our houses with
this wonderful combination of gases," he would say, "will the light
within be the greater? Supposing we travel without horses at the speed
of thirty miles an hour, can we travel nearer to truth? Improvement!
Is it an improvement to multiply bodily wants, or (beyond supplying
means of actual existence) is it rational to spend so much time in
rendering the body comfortable? Is multiplying luxury a good?"

"It employs hands," would be the reply, "and thus diffuses wealth."

"If that is the only object, riches could be easily scattered without
compelling those who own them to become effeminate triflers."

"But simply to give away wealth without exacting an equivalent, would
encourage idleness," argued the professor.

"And so to benefit our neighbor's morals we yield our own," said
Eugene. "Well, that is new philanthropy, and I am less inclined to
assent to it than ever I was. To keep untrammelled, we must, methinks,
reduce the number of our physical wants instead of increasing them.
Surely there are other modes of benefiting mankind than those which
enervate. The education of the hero is frugal, hardy, temperate almost
to scantiness. Fancy Sesostris or Cyrus lolling at ease in a
spring-patented carriage, propped up luxuriously with velvet cushions!
or think of a hero dressed out in gewgaws! Our minds lose the heroic
element altogether in the picture."

"A good loss," replied the professor! "methinks these warriors make a
great show, but what good do they effect: They destroy the arts of
peace and live on the excitement of vain glory. That excitement over,
they are as weak as other mortals. Hercules playing the distaff at
Queen Omphale's court is a fitting type of a so-called hero's rest."

"Not of all," replied Eugene; "conquerors have been lawgivers, and
good ones too. The passion of glory may not be a good in itself, but
it is better than sensuality. You would not compare Cyrus with
Heliogabalus."

"Not for himself, perhaps, not for his own private dignity; but for
the good he did in the world at large. I think the preference
questionable. Even allowing that the cruelty of Heliogabalus destroyed
whole multitudes, it had not the devastating effect on whole districts
which war ever produces; conquest lays waste large fields, destroys
produce, and brings famine and played in its wake."

{175}

"I am not arguing in favor of war for its own sake, I am only saying
that constant attention to mere bodily comfort must cause the race to
degenerate. He who would rise individually in the scale of existence
must repress bodily appetites, not encourage them; and this, if true
of the individual, must be true of society also: consequently the
introduction of luxury on a system, most eventually prove itself to be
an evil.

"Pshaw!" said the professor, "these theories are well enough in the
closet, but in action they are good for nothing. Why, you destroy
incentive to mental activity, when you debar man from applying it to
useful purposes."

"Useful, meaning increase of luxury?" asked Eugene.

"Well," somewhat petulantly rejoined the professor, "is not the
definition of luxury a good? The rich may please themselves, but the
poor need more comfort than they enjoy; among them diffusion of luxury
must be a good."

"Does that diffusion take place among the poor, as a matter of fact--
at least among the masses? Is not the contrary rather the case? Are
they not rather the ones to _suffer_ from the first fruits of
improvement. Look at the Manchester riots for the good you do;--awhile
ago there was in that town a contented population, sufficiently
provided with food, clothing, shelter, fire, and other real
necessaries; suddenly one of your clever men invents a machine which
makes the rich people's dresses at half the cost, and throws one-third
of the hands out of employ. What good have you done? There is in that
community as much food as before, as much clothing, as much of every
necessary of life! Yet two or three thousand families are suddenly
deprived of the means of subsistence, and driven by despair to break
the peace and disturb the public security, while you are boasting of
the good of physical science. Methinks moral science wants studying
too."

"Oh, these things will right themselves, will find their own level;
other employment will soon absorb the now displaced hands, and all
will be peace again."

"I doubt it: the selfish principle engenders the selfish practice.
Teach the laboring class by example to cater only for their private
gratification, whether that gratification be in vanity,
self-aggrandizement, or luxury; teach them to place all their
happiness in physical good, and then show yourself reckless of their
requirements by an indiscreet introduction of machinery, and an
English edition of the Reign of Terror may ensue."

"But what can be done? You would not stop these new inventions, nor
set a limit to improvement?"

"I would seek a higher principle of action altogether; and before
setting up new insentient machinery, would provide that the highest
_sentient_ machinery, _Man_, should receive due consideration. It is a
manifest injustice, when the interests of the producers of wealth are
rashly sacrificed to increase the luxury of the consumers."

"And what is this new principle, most compassionate sir?'* asked the
professor.

"I do not know, it is precisely that which troubles me. Men are not
the mere money-machines you would turn them to--of that I am well
assured; but what they are and what their destiny is, I have yet to
learn."

The professor laughed, rose and took his leave.

Eugene remained plunged in a profound reverie, from which he was
aroused by the visit of a stranger, who announced himself as the M.
Bertolot introduced to our readers in a previous chapter.

He said that although personally a stranger, yet hearing of Eugene's
residence at Cambridge, he had taken the liberty of calling to inquire
after the welfare of his former friends.

Eugene welcomed him, and assured him that the countess was in good
health and spirits.

"And her amiable daughter?" inquired the old man.

{176}

"Is also well, I hope and believe," said Eugene; "but she leads so
secluded a life, even in our large family, that it is difficult for
those about her to speak with any degree of certainty concerning her."

"Indeed! She is probably scarcely recovered from the shock of her
father's terrible death."

"Perhaps not; but I do not think _that_ is the sole cause of her
seclusion: she is essentially contemplative, and the things of this
world interest her but little. What her ideas are, I do not know, for
she seldom speaks of them, but I think they would be worth the
knowing."

"Probably so," replied M. Bertolot "She is a pure soul, beautiful and
good; of whom we may almost affirm that she scarcely knows what sin
is."'

Eugene looked at the speaker in surprise. "What sin is! What is sin!"
thought he. "Is it aught beside the consequence of error? and how can
we escape error if we cannot light on truth?" His puzzled look was
perhaps his best reply.

"You do not credit me," said M. Bertolot; "you think, and justly, that
all men are sinners; yes, indeed, all, all are so, I spoke but by
comparison: it is rare to find so pure, so simple a soul as is that of
Mademosielle de Meglior; though not sinless, as none can be, she is a
consistent aspirant alter heavenly lore, ever keeping her heart fixed
on the only true source of light and life: at least she was so when I
knew her."'

"She is tranquil and contemplative," said Eugene, "and when she does
speak, often startles us with the originality of her sentiments; but
when you spoke of her as not knowing sin, it was the expression that
astonished me. People in polite life do not often speak of themselves,
or of their friends, as sinners."

"No!" said M. Bertolot; "excuse me then, the expression came as
naturally to my lips as to my thoughts. I intended no offense."

"Nor did you give any: on the contrary, I should be glad to know from
you the principle of Euphrasie's mode of action, if without violating
confidence, you can tell me what it is. She is actuated by motives not
comprehended by those with whom she lives."

"I can give you no other explanation than that I suppose her actuated
by the purest principles of religion. As a child she gave promise of
this: all her thoughts and ideas tended upward. Does she continue so?"

"I never heard her speak of religion," replied Eugene; "she sometimes
speaks very sublimely, though very laconically, of truth being the one
thing to be cared for."

"Ah!" said M. Bertolot, "is it thus she veils herself? But with her
truth, and the worship of the author of truth, must go together. I
know Euphrasie from childhood. I know how she struggled with her
naturally vehement spirit, until, even as a child, she obtained the
mastery. I remember, too, the explanations she sought for most
earnestly, of why our evil tendencies remain to molest us when we
become members of Christ. All that the child learned _once_ she
pondered over, and oftentimes surprised her teachers with her
comments."

"I doubt it not: her remarks are ever original. I have often felt
quite anxious to know the basis of her actions."

"Nay, have you not said already, that it was the love of truth? Her
every thought tends that way, and she early discovered how liable the
practical recognition of metaphysical truth is to be impeded by human
passion. Hence, from childhood upwards, she has been accustomed to
watch over herself, and to check the indulgence of any emotion that
would form a 'blind' between herself, and the object of her adoration.
She is young yet, but I venture to say she will pass by the age of
passion unscathed.*

"Do you mean that she will love?" asked Eugene.

{177}

"Nay, that I cannot exactly affirm," replied M. Bertolot; "but I think
she will never be governed by any passion--be it love, pride, fame,
or ambition. I think she has laid the true foundation in obtaining the
mastery over her feelings; and though she is naturally affectionate, I
am not sure that she would be happy now, if bound by human ties. She
has accustomed herself to live an abstracted life; she would scarcely
be at home in domestic duties."

"Nay, I hope such is not the case!" exclaimed Eugene, more warmly than
he intended, for his latent feelings toward Euphrasie ever and anon
betrayed themselves; and while he scarcely confessed it to himself,
interest in her style of thought colored the course of his own ideas.

M. Bertolot dexterously turned the conversation by reverting to a
former subject. "It were well for mankind," said he, "did they
consider how much passion and prejudice warp the mind, even in the
consideration of abstract truths. Few, very few, keep their own
intellects open for the reception of any such foreign ideas as would
contravene their previous conceptions. Fewer still, give their
neighbors credit for such power to look at facts impartially. This is
an attestation that passion reigns rather than justice. Methinks the
old system of Pythagoras, subjecting youth to moral training as a
necessary preliminary for bringing the intellectual faculties into
harmonious play, were not a bad precedent for this unruly age."

"It would scarcely go down now," urged Eugene.

"Indeed no!"' said M. Bertolot. "The master says it would seem but a
ridiculous phrase in this all-disputing age. All faculties, whether of
mind or body or soul, seem now confounded. Positiveness usurps the
place of reason, and the mere child is allowed to question, instead of
being compelled at once to obey. If the world goes on with this
principle in action twenty years longer, we shall have little men and
women in plenty, but no children left, and then woe to the generation
that succeeds: a generation untrained and undisciplined by wholesome
restraint, with intellects prematurely developed without the adjunct
of self-government, which only moral training can impart. What a world
it will make! Methinks its inevitable tendency is to undue animal
preponderance. It is frightful to think of!"

"I was just making the same remark to Professor K----," said Eugene;
"but though I see the evil, I cannot discern the remedy."

"It is indeed difficult to compass the remedy," said M. Bertolot, "the
departure has been so wide. Men have ceased to distinguish between the
result of mere human intelligence and that of a loftier lore, and they
now use the intellect as the slave of the only good recognizable in
their system, _i. e._ of bodily ease or pleasure. Practically men
ignore the soul and its high destiny. Hence the disorder of the times.
Animalism is essentially selfish, and animalism is the tendency of
modern times--refined, veiled, adorned, with much of intellectual
allurement I admit, but nevertheless animalism thorough and entire."

"I have thought of this before," said Eugene, "but my ideas are as yet
vague and undefined. I want data to go upon some firm ground on which
to plant my feet. The guesses of philosophers content me not."

"Nor should they, my young friend, since, as you say, they are but
guesses, without a sure foundation. But have you heard of nothing
beyond philosophy? Has it never occurred to you that the creative
intelligence has revealed himself to the creature of his formation,
and that through that revelation we are informed of that which it
interests us to know--of our own soul, of the object of our creation,
and of the final destiny of man?"

"I have heard of religion certainly," said Eugene, "but I cannot say I
ever studied it or practised it."

{178}

"No? Then no wonder you are dissatisfied. Your mind is evidently
seeking for truth. Nothing but the great truth can satisfy it. Study
dispassionately the evidences of the truth of the great Mosaic
history. Contemplate the grand position of our first father, Adam,
receiving instruction from God himself concerning the mighty mysteries
of creation, not only of matter and of material forms, but of bright
intelligences created to glorify and adorn the court of heaven, and
who fell from their sublime position. Study man first, fresh in
perfection from the hand of God, living as the _friend of God_,
communing with his Maker in the garden of Eden. Appointed by him to
rule o'er all inferior nature, the entitled Lord of the Creation, the
master of animal existences, and superior in his own person to much of
material influence. Think what it must have been to walk with God, and
have divine knowledge infused into his soul, as also all such material
science as would befit the founder of a mighty race to transmit to his
offspring, over whom he was to reign as prince, father, priest, and
teacher; and then consider what it must have been to find suddenly
that source of knowledge dried up, the door of communication closed,
power weakened, intuitions dimmed, and labor imposed as the price
alike of happiness, knowledge, and of that supernatural communication
which had been man's best and highest privilege: the solution of these
problems will give you the key to many difficulties which perplex
you."

"There are modern theories which agree not with these premises," said
Eugene. "These trace man from the savage upward."

"Yes,' said M. Bertolot, "_the mutum et turpe pecus_ [Footnote 36] of
Horace has found, if not admirers, yet professed believers in this
age.

  [Footnote 36: Dumb and filthy herd.]

A theory contrary to analogy, to evidence alike of history and
tradition, has been assumed, and wondrously has found asserters too.
All mere animals are observed to be born complete--their instincts,
their organization serve but the individual; and though accident may
train an individual to feats beyond his fellows, yet there is no
appearance of new organs being formed to be transmitted to its race.
Now, these modern progressionists, who go back to the time

  'When wild in woods the Noble Savage ran,'

deprive man of his soul, assimilate him to the brutes to make him
perform what brute nature never did perform, namely, _create_ faculty.
Men have lives to laugh at the doctrine of the transmigration of
souls, but methinks the doctrine of the progression to bodily beauty
from monkeys without tails; of barbarians to civilized man without
aid, is to the full as absurd; to say nothing of that comprehensive
power of contemplation which enabled Newton to demonstrate the order
of  the universe, it would be very difficult to understand how
abstract ideas could be latent in the soul of a monkey waiting
development. Besides, by the theory of progression, during the time of
which we have record, say six thousand years, men should be steadily
on the _improve_--both as to arts, science, moral government, legal
government, _self_-government, and bodily development; but we do not
find it so. The ruins of Babylon, of Thebes, and of other great cities
built soon after the flood, attest architectural skill among the
ancients such as is hardly aimed at no. Callisthenes found
astronomical tables reaching as far back as within a few years of the
deluge, in the Temple of Belus, when he accompanied Alexander the
Great on his expedition to the East. And many arts have been lost
altogether that were well known to the ancients. The half-barbarian
Copt erecting his hut amid the fallen pillars and statuary of ancient
Thebes, the Mameluke riding recklessly and savagely amid the pyramids,
that still remain to puzzle the assertor of progression even with the
mere mechanical difficulties of the machinery used for {179} raising
such immense stones to such a height and in such a plain, so distant
from any known quarries. These are hut poor indications of the race
advancing, though individual nations, worked on by a regenerative
influence, may appear to make, nay do make, great improvements in all
respects."

"Do you, then, think that man's tendency is to degenerate?" asked
Eugene.

"Not necessarily, by any means," replied M. Bertolot; "but in
proportion as he departs from the centre of unity, from the truths
once imprinted on the soul of Adam, thence to be transmitted for human
guidance, it will, I think, be found so."

"But," said Eugene, "is Adam's religion yours? Surely he was not a
Christian."

"If not in name and with the same outward rites, yet in reality he
must have been," replied the mentor. "There is but one truth, and the
difference between his creed and ours was that he looked for a
Redeemer to come. We believe in him as having come."

"But was Adam's religion that of the Jews, then?" asked Eugene.

"In creed and in spirit, yes. In form and observance it differed,
because the Jews had typical forms specially given to them, alike to
commemorate their deliverance from Egypt, and to typify their delivery
through Christ from sin. They were living amid idolatrous nations, and
the safeguard of a special ceremonial was needful to them."

"And save in the fulfilment of their expectation, is the Jewish creed
Christian?" asked Eugene.

"As far as it goes it is; the Christian revelation is a fuller
development of the old tradition, a clearer exposition of God; it
destroys nothing of the past revelation, it fulfils and expands. The
Jews were the preservers of the great tradition, transmitted through
the patriarchs to Noah, and by him, through his sons, to the race it
large. The tradition became corrupted by the majority; yet it is found
in some form or other mixed up in all mythologies; and what deserves
remark is, that the further back we trace mythology the purer it
becomes. The early records of all nations tell us of purity,
discipline, and sacrifice to secure purity of morals, and teach of
justice after death, of good and evil spirits, and of the interference
of the deity to check man in his career of evil. Men seem at first not
so much to have denied the true God, as to have associated other gods
with him, and to have changed their worship from seeking such
spiritual union as would render them 'sons of God,' to adoration of
the creator and upholder of physical power, physical grandeur, and
physical beauty. Atheism, and the lowering of man's nature to that of
a mere mortal animal, is an invention of modern times, and has for the
most part only been held by men satiated, as it were, by a spurious
civilization."

"I am but little versed in the Bible," said Eugene, "but I have heard
learned men assert that all the education, so to speak, of the Jewish
nation was of a worldly character; and that though there are passages
of Scripture containing allusions to the immortality of the soul, yet
that doctrine was nowhere definitely asserted, but that, on the
contrary, all the rewards and punishments promised, or threatened,
were of a temporal nature."

"And yet no one disputes that the Jews did, and do believe the soul to
be immortal, as also that they believed, and still believe, in the
traditions concerning the fallen angels, the fall of man, the promised
redemption, and many others. These doctrines, promulgated to all the
world, were kept intact by Abraham and his descendants; and it is a
very general belief that they were renewed in their purity in the soul
of Moses, during that long communion vouchsafed him on Mount Sinai.
The material law for exterior conduct he wrote down; but the spiritual
themes which formed the staple of the expositions given by the rulers
and doctors of the synagogue {180} and which were only figured by the
material types, were probably deemed by the holy lawgiver too sacred
to dilate upon in writing. If, after that forty days' sublimation, his
spirit was so triumphant that he was fain to veil the glory of his
face, we must needs suppose that not the mere written law, or setting
forth the ritual of their worship, occupied his whole attention, but
that his spirit expanded beneath the graces vouchsafed to him, and
that he was, in a sense, made partaker of those spiritual truths which
lie concealed from more materialized minds."

"These facts deserve attention, at any rate," said Eugene; "can you
refer me to authorities within my reach?"

"Indeed, I know not what your resources are, and my own books I have
lost. My memory, too, serves me but treacherously on controversial
subjects; but I think if you will turn to Grotius de Verit. Christ,
you will find him quoting Philo Judaeus in proof of the similarity of
the Christian doctrine with the Jewish."

Eugene handed the book to his friend, who read the passage, of which
the following is the translation:

  "We have still to answer two accusations with which the doctrines
  and worship of Christians are attacked by the Jews. The first is,
  that they say we worship many gods. But this is nothing more than a
  declaration thrown in hatred at a foreign faith. For what more is
  asserted by the Christians, than by Philo Judaeus, who frequently
  represents three in God, and who calls the reason, or word of God,
  the name of God, the framer of the world, neither uncreate, as is
  the Father of all, nor so born as are men (whom both Philo and
  Moses, the son of Nehemanni, calls the angel, the deputy for ruling
  this world); or what more than the cabalists assert, who
  distinguished in God three lights, and indeed by somewhat the same
  names as the Christians do, namely, of the Father, of the Son or
  Word, and of the Holy Spirit. And I may also assume that which is
  confessed by all the Jews, that that spirit which moved the
  prophets, is not created, and yet is distinct from him who sent,"
  etc., etc.

"But," said the old man, starting up and closing the book, "I am
forgetting myself; I came not here to deliver a lecture on theology,
but to inquire after my former friends. Excuse an old man's garrulity.
Adieu!"

"Not yet," said Eugene; "your conversation interests me much; do not
go yet."

"Yes, for to-night I leave you; if you permit me, however, I will
return on another day. Meantime, I would suggest to you one important
reflection. When Almighty God had created all things, and pronounced
them good; when he had formed man from the slime of the Earth, and
rendered him the most perfect of animals, man was not yet quite
complete; and the completion, what was it? No angel had command to
fulfil that wondrous office, nor was it by word that that mysterious
power was called into being: but God breathed, and man became a living
soul. The soul of man is, then, the in-breathing of the divinity
--immortal in its essence, God-like in its affinities. Quench not its
trembling impulses, when it bids you look upward in love and
confidence; but pray--ever pray--fervently, confidently,
perseveringly." This he added with a half-smile, which revealed to
Eugene who had been his former monitor. He then abruptly quitted the
room.



CHAPTER VI.

MODERN PAGANISM

The Duke of Durimond and his fair bride prolonged their tour among the
lakes and mountains of the "land o' cakes" until autumn  begun to show
the fallen leaf. Hester was not a little disappointed at this--she was
impatiently expecting a summons to {181} meet her sister at the dacal
mansion, and she thought the period unnecessarily delayed.

At length the wished-for invitation came, and father, mother, sisters,
brother, aunt, and Euphrasie were called upon to welcome the young
duchess to one of the costliest and most elaborately finished palaces
in England. Hester shouted in glee as the carriage entered the
mile-long avenue of stately trees that formed the approach to the
ducal dwelling. The bevy of liveried servants that awaited their
approach at the hall-door, the quiet, respectful bearing of the
gentlemen servants out of livery who waited within to escort them to
the suite of rooms prepared for their reception--all this was
charming! delightful! only a look from her parents presented the merry
girl from dancing round the house in ecstasy. The entrance-hall itself
was sufficient to send her into raptures. The beautiful marble of the
floor, the large fires burning on each side, the triple row of
balconies, raised one above another, on the three sides within the
hall, betokening the communication of the upper stories with the rest
of the house by some unseen means, and displaying the full height of
the edifice, crowned as it was by a beautifully carved cupola, into
which sufficient skylight was artificially admitted to display to
advantage the figures of the rosy Aurora accompanied by her nymphs,
scattering flowers on her way as she opened the gates of morning,
which subject was skilfully portrayed on the ceiling. They passed
through this, the outer hall, to another, which contained the
magnificent staircase leading to the apartments opening on the
balconies described. To Hester's joy the entrance to their suite of
rooms opened on the first of these, and she could look up to the
painted ceiling and down to the marble floor, and gaze, unrebuked, on
the colossal figures of bronze which appeared to uphold the balconies.

How happy Adelaide must be, mistress of so gorgeous a palace! And
Adelaide was there at the door of the apartments to greet her mother
and her mother's friends. What was there in her manner to damp at once
the ardor of Hester's enthusiasm? Grace, kindness, and dignity were
there! and yet Hester was not satisfied; a chill came o'er her
unawares as she returned her sister's kiss. She mastered herself,
however, sufficiently to express her admiration of the splendid hall.

"Oh, that is nothing," said the young duchess, with a faint smile.
"His grace will introduce you to his hall of sculpture and to the
picture gallery by and by, and then you will be really pleased. I
believe royalty itself cannot boost such master-pieces as Durimond
Castle."

"So I have heard," said Mrs. Godfrey; "but where is the duke, my
dear?"

"He was unexpectedly occupied when you arrived, mamma, but doubtless
he will be here to welcome you immediately."

There was a constraint and melancholy about Adelaide's manner that
struck the whole party, and their pleasure was more than a little
damped as they entered the magnificent apartments prepared for them.

"Here," said the hostess, "you can be as private as in your own house
when you wish it;  and when you desire society you will generally find
some one either in the library, or in the conservatory or
drawing-room."

"Have you many guests?" asked the Countess de Meglior.

"Your friend, the Comte de Villeneuve, came with us from town; he is
not here to-day, though I think the duke expects him to-morrow. He is
absent on some business; there is a strange gentleman closeted with
the duke just now, for whom apartments are ordered; he is a foreigner,
I think; the duke seems to have business with him. He will be our only
visitor today."

{182}

Just then the bell rang to warn the guests it was the dressing hour.
Valets and ladies' maids were in attendance, and though only to join a
family party, state-dresses were in requisition.

Adelaide retired to make her preparations, and the visitors, amid the
luxurious surroundings, felt oppressed with a sadness for which they
could scarcely account, and which they cared not to express, even to
one another.

The duke met them in the drawing-room before dinner, and his gay
manner in some degree dispelled the gloom that had crept over the
party. He inquired kindly after Eugene.

"Eugene, from some cause or other," said Mrs. Godfrey, "keeps away
from home altogether. He spent his long vacation at the lakes, and has
again returned to Cambridge. He has taken a studious fit, I suppose,
and must be allowed to gratify if ."

"And does he not, then, intend to honor us with his company?" inquired
the duke.

"Oh, he will run down for a day or two ere long, I dare say. He must
see Adelaide, of course; but when, he does not exactly say."

Adelaide did not appear displeased to hear this. She turned to her
husband and asked what he had done with his visitor.

"He would not stay, he had an appointment to keep, so we must make up
for all deficiencies ourselves."

The dinner passed away stiffly enough, and as the season was too late
for a walk afterward, the gentlemen, following the then national
custom, passed a considerable time over the bottle, discussing the
politics of the day. It was late in the evening ere they joined the
ladies. They found them in a large conservatory, which was illuminated
in honor of Mr. and Mrs. Godfrey's arrival; and in this flowery
retreat sundry self-acting musical instruments were hidden, which,
from time to time, sent forth, as it were unbidden, melodious sounds
and  tuneful harmonies, which, vibrating amid the flowering shrubs
that formed an artificial spring within the glass enclosure,
contrasted pleasingly with the "fall of the leaf" that made all nature
desolate without.

"Art conquers nature here," said Mr. Godfrey, as he entered the
enchanted scene. "We might fancy ourselves in a fairy palace now. What
says my Hester to this?"

"Oh! this is beautiful, indeed! Music, moonlight, love, and flowers
are it 'A glorious combination,'" said Hester, pointing to the moon,
which shone brightly through the windows; but her voice had lost its
usual animation as she made the quotation, for a feeling passed over
her heart, as if one ingredient, and that precisely the most important
one, was wanting; she could not be satisfied that "love" presided in
this abode of beauty and of grace.

The next morning the state rooms of the house were inspected. The duke
was the great patron of the fine arts, and taste shone forth in every
part of the stately edifice that was exposed to view.

The picture gallery and the hall of sculpture were celebrated far and
wide, particularly the latter. Nor were the figures promiscuously
arranged that decorated this scene of art; on the contrary, much care
had been expended to form one harmonious whole. On the dome which
formed the ceiling was painted ancient Saturn devouring his offspring
as they rose into being, and beneath this centre-piece were painted
the war of the Titans against Satan on the one side, and the war of
the giants against Jupiter on the other. Thus far the ceiling. In the
midst of the marble floor stood the mighty Jupiter, armed with his
thunderbolts, majestic in strength and grand in intellectual
sensualism. Beside him, grouped symmetrically and appropriately, were
the legion of subordinate divinities--Venus, attended by the graces;
Apollo, radiant in beauty; Hercules strangling the serpents while he
was yet in the cradle; the Muses in various attitudes, with
appropriate symbols of office. Scarcely a god, goddess, or demigod
{183} could be named who was not here represented. Types of
beauty--sensual, intellectual, and physical; types of grandeur and of
tenor; types of mystery, beneath the veiled figure of the Egyptian
deity, Isis; types of knowledge and of artistic skill were there. All
that man bows before and worships when the sense of the supernatural
is shut, and he learns of _self_ to deify his own passions, was here,
other delineated on the walls or chiselled out in the sculptural
forms. It was ft Pantheon dedicated to all the gods of human sense,
refined by beauty and grace, and polished by artistic merit of the
highest order. Unbounded and unfeigned was the applause elicited from
the party: hardly could they satisfied themselves with gazing on these
perfect forms: even the lack of drapery seemed scarcely a drawback.
Euphrasie, indeed, retired, but she was so strange habitually that her
absence was hardly commented upon; and but for the smile that went
round the circle as she left the hall, might have been deemed
unobserved.

"The true gods of the earth are these yet." said Mr. Godfrey, when the
door had closed behind the young French girl, "and the race has sadly
degenerated since their worship was abandoned."

The young duchess and her sisters looked up in mute wonder at the
speaker, but the duke cried, "Hear, hear!" and the elder ladies tried
to look wise and responsive.

Mr. Godfrey continued: "That is god to a man which his mind worships
and reveres, and which to the extent of his power he strives to
imitate. Julian, the Roman emperor, understood this well. He felt
(what time has proved true) that the human frame must degenerate when
its proportionate and due development ceases to be the primary object
of the legislator. He saw that when, instead of these glorious
physical powers, there is substituted a pale, emaciated figure nailed
to a cross for the glorification of an ideal good, that all nature's
teachings must become confused, and a fake romance lead to decay the
powers that heretofore were so beautiful in their proportions."

"Surely, papa, you do not believe in paganism," said Hester,
wonderingly.

"Yes and no, Hester. In the fables of the personal divinity of
Jupiter, Venus, and Minerva--No! In paganism as the expression of a
grand idea, well suited to man's capabilities, and to his nature--Yes!
You must not confound the hidden meaning of the myth with the outward
expression. The uninstructed multitude will always look to the
outward, and believe the fables as facts, whatever religion they
profess, and often times they penetrate no further; but the learned
look through the myth to the meaning, and the meaning of the pagan
myth is,--Cultivate physical strength, in union with intellectual
power, worship beauty, study and contrast nature. Destroy infirmity:
it is the most humane way, and the most just way. Do not perpetuate
disease. Let all ill-constituted children die. Let the
conquered--_i.e._, the weaker--serve; it belongs to the strong to
rule. To develop the physical frame duly, Lycurgus caused even the
young women to wrestle publicly, without drapery of any kind. Our more
fastidious tastes cramp the form of our women, and distort the figure;
and, worse than this, our perverted theology distorts their intellect,
and makes it afraid even to look at the human form. Again, I say,
Julian was right. The Christianity he forsook has caused not only the
degeneration of human power, but has substituted false ideas of good.
The real has given place to the ideal, and a sickly, romantic,
sentimentalized race has taken the place of the hardy heroes of
antiquity."

And Mr. Godfrey bowed profoundly to the deities before him.

{184}

The duke laughed and clapped his hands. "Well said, Mr. Godfrey, well
said. I hardly knew till now, how great a benefactor I was to the
human race when I collected these statues. Hitherto I have thrown open
my house but once a week for the public benefit. Henceforth I will
direct my steward to allow instructions oftener in this temple of the
true gods of the earth. By the by, I believe there is a very good
chance of restoring this gone-by worship, if, as you say, it consists
in the exaltation of physical power. Science, in its diffusion, is
fixing men's minds on material agencies, very much to the exclusion of
superstitious ideality. We have only to throw in a vein of the love of
beauty, and much will be effected toward bringing back men's minds to
the natural worship, here so beautifully symbolized."

"I believe so," said Mr. Godfrey; "but, meantime, how much evil has
been effected by letting in upon the race so many delicate
constitutions! How shall we restore the hardy races that peopled the
earth, when these mighty types of glory ruled the populations?"

"Indeed, it is difficult to say. Men have accustomed themselves to a
false estimate of mere vitality, as if life without enjoyment were
worth the having. We shall, I fear, find it difficult to persuade
English mothers to destroy their diseased and crippled children for
the good of the public, or to train their daughters in the gymnasium."

"Would you seriously wish it, my lord duke?" asked his wife.

"I hardly know. We are all trammelled more or less with the feelings
our mothers instilled into us. I think Lycurgus a great man, and
perfectly reasonable. Had I been born a Spartan, I think I should have
thanked the gods for it, but now--"

"Now," interrupted Mrs. Godfrey, "you are more nearly a Sybarite. I
know of no one whom a crumpled rose-leaf disturbs more easily than
yourself."

"Nay, Mrs. Godfrey, the _argumentum ad hominem_ is hardly fair; but,
after all, I suppose we must admit that character is geographical and
chronological, besides being modified by individual circumstance. I
think freely, but I am scarcely free to change my character; so in
legislating I must legislate on public grounds for others. It does not
follow that I can keep the law I deem it fitting to make.

"But if you cannot keep it, how can others?" demanded Annie.

"Well asked, my fair sister--asked not only by you, but by others
also, and therefore is it that we must practically legislate not as we
think best, abstractedly, but as nearly best as can be carried out.
So, as the people are not yet ripe for ancient Spartan laws, we must
be content yet a while to diffuse the principle that physical
development, physical beauty, and physical power are the legitimate
objects of human worship. When we have accustomed the people to adopt
these views, the rest may chance to follow. Meantime, I see De
Villeneuve coming up the avenue: excuse me for an instant;" and
somewhat to the surprise of the party, the duke bolted through the
open door that led on to the grounds to meet his friend, who
dismounted when he saw him coming. In deep conference they slowly
approached the house. There was a cloud on the duke's brow, but he
shook it off as he entered and gayly introduced his friend.

"I am afraid De Villeneuve hardly admires these divinities, Mrs.
Godfrey; let us adjourn to the drawing-room."

"Nay, defend yourself, M. de Villeneuve; you will not plead guilty to
not loving art?" said the lady addressed.

"No, indeed, dear madam, his grace is only avenging himself for my
criticisms. I suggested to him the other day that he might get up
another temple of modern art as a supplement to this, and he felt
piqued, I suppose; yet I have found him many times standing rapt
before a Madonna."

{185}

"The gentlemen decided this morning that these were the true gods of
the earth, and that Madonnas and Crucifixions were false, unreal
types, and to be discouraged."

"Not possible!"

"Nay, it is true, they were voting a return to paganism."

"But you, ladies," said M. de Villeneuve, "you, ladies, were not of
that mind, surely?"

"I don't know," said Hester, mischievously, "papa was very eloquent In
lauding ancient institutions."

"But," said the comte, turning very earnestly to her, "he did not tell
you how woman was treated in the olden time, before Mary's _fiat_
repaired the fault of Eve. Women, intelligent, beautiful women, owe
everything to that divine Mother; and if they cast off their religion
it is because the misery is hid from them which the sex was subject to
formerly."

"There is no necessity just now of making it more clear," said Mr.
Godfrey drily.

"No," said the comte; "and yet when I see the tendency of the age, I
often feel that it would be safer did our ladies know the truth. Eve's
fault should at least bring knowledge when knowledge is necessary to
truth. Woman could not help but be fervently religious, did she know
from what an abyss of degradation Christianity has raised her."

Mr. Godfrey turned impatiently to the window. "It is splendid weather
for riding," said he; "suppose we order the horses."



CHAPTER VII.

MARRIAGE OR NO MARRIAGE.


But why was Adelaide so sad? Why was the young duchess apparently most
constrained when with her husband? Why, on the contrary, was he, as
usual, gay, cheerful, and animated? These were questions for a
mother's heart to ask, and yet, uneasy as she was, Mrs. Godfrey asked
them not. She dared not seek the confidence of her daughter, lest
aught should be betrayed which it were better she should not know. She
knew that the confidence of a married woman is sacred even from a
mother, in all that appertains to her husband; and what other secrets
could Adelaide have?

Several days passed, and no clue to the enigma was discovered. Parties
of pleasure were formed, the grounds were traversed, the library
ransacked--literary, scientific, nay political excitement created for
the amusement and entertainment of the guests; but no familiar,
confidential chit-chat gave occasion to the disclosure of the secret
which it was evident was weighing on Adelaide's mind.

One morning, however, Mr. Godfrey shut himself up in the library, in
order to search through some volumes for a passage he desired, and his
daughter entered, turning the key in the door as she did so. Mr.
Godfrey looked up. Adelaide was pale and trembling. He took her hand
and led her to a sofa. In a few moments she partly recovered; yet it
was in a faltering voice that she asked:

"Father, is a marriage with a Roman Catholic valid?"

"Valid? Yes, I suppose so; why not, my dear?"

Adelaide became still more pale, but did not answer.

Mr. Godfrey was alarmed. "How does this concern you, my child?" he
asked.

"Why--why--the duke is then married to another lady," faltered she.

"Impossible!" said the father. "Impossible! he would not--dare not do
such a deed. You have been imposed upon, Adelaide. Tell me the story,
and the authority for it."

"Did you hear of a woman fainting, almost under the carriage-wheels,
on the morning of my marriage, father?"

"I did; what of it, my child!"

{186}

"That woman believes herself to be his wife! She followed us, and
confronted the duke in Scotland in a narrow glen. She watched day and
night to speak to him; her watching was noticed, pointed out to me,
and one day as he was returning home I saw her start up from under a
hedge and stand before him. He evidently sought to avoid her, but she
would not be avoided; she held him by the skirts of his coat till he
consented to speak with her. Unperceived by both I stole near them; I
heard her claim him as her husband; I listened in vain for his denial;
I heard him urge her to go home; I heard him say that he would satisfy
her another time--that it should be all right if she would only
quietly depart; and I heard, too, her indignant refusal to depart
until he had told her his true name, and where he was to be found. 'To
me,' she said, 'you have called yourself Colonel Ellwood, and my boy
has borne that name!'"

"'Let him bear it still,' replied the duke.

"'But is it the right one? is it yours!' she shrieked.

"'I am the Duke of Durimond,' answered he. She fell fainting at his
feet. Unthinkingly, I pressed forward to succor her, thus revealing
that I had overheard the conversation. The duke started, and said,
'This is no scene for your grace; if you will send an attendant from
the house yonder to wait on this poor stranger, it will be kind of
you.' I did as requested, but the agitation of my feelings caused an
illness which detained us a long time in Scotland. I did not like to
inform you of my illness then. The duke would have been kind, but I
liked not to see him near me. Once or twice he tried to explain to me
that the whole was a mistake, but I asked him not to mention it. When
we came to London he again tried explanation, but I told him all
explanation must be to you. He endeavored in vain to shake my
resolution, and at length brought me here and sent for you. A lawyer
was with him in London several times, and a Catholic priest was
closeted with him the day he arrived. I suspect this unhappy business
was the cause of their visits, but I have asked nothing. We have held
little communication with each other since that unfortunate
recognition in Scotland."

"My poor child!" said the father "and was this your honeymoon?"

Adelaide laid her head on her father's shoulder, and wept.

"But why do you think the woman is a Roman Catholic, Adelaid?"

"He told me so one day, and therefore, he says, the marriage is not
valid."

"Perhaps it is so, Adelaide."

"But if it is so, she believes herself his wife, and she is pure,
good, innocent; it is written in her face."

"My poor child?" again ejaculated the father.

How long they sat sorrowing silence they heeded not. Each felt that
whichever hypothesis were true, married or not married, there was
bitterness enough. At length the sound of voices in the hall warned
Adelaide to seek her own apartment. Mr. Godfrey went immediately to
the duke.

"My daughter has been with me this morning, your grace," said he, in
solemn, deliberate tones.

"Ah yes! Well--Mr. Godfrey--well--your daughter is not quite well, I
fear."

"She is seriously unhappy, I am sorry to inform you, my lord duke."

"Unhappy!--ah!--well, well; she has taken a youthful in discretion of
mine somewhat too sorely to heart; but you, Mr. Godfrey, know that
those little affairs are common enough to men of the world."

"My daughter speaks of a previous marriage, your grace."

"Pshaw! some few words she heard have been made to signify too much.
Adelaide is my wife, my duchess. Let her be satisfied on that point."

"It is just on that point she is not satisfied--it is just on that
point that I now require to be satisfied."

{187}

"How can I satisfy you save by denying any other marriage?"

"Has no ceremony ever passed between your grace and another woman who
claims to be your wife?"

"No legal ceremony, upon my honor as a nobleman."

"No legal ceremony; some kind of ceremony has taken place, then?" said
Mr. Godfrey.

"If not a _legal_ one, then none which concerns you. Be content, Mr.
Godfrey, daughter is indisputably a duchess."

"I am not content, my lord duke; I must see this other claimant to the
ducal coronet," said Mr. Godfrey, rising.

"By heaven, you shall not!" answered the duke, rising as suddenly;
"you shall not--indeed you shall not. No, my poor Ellen, no: injured
you have been, but at least I will save you from insult."

"Methinks your grace's words are strange ones to the father of your
ride," said Mr. Godfrey. "Is the peace of your mistress to be
preferred to that of your wife?"

"Let us understand each other, Mr. Godfrey," said the duke; "and to do
that, I must caution you not to say one word in disrespect of the
person you falsely term my mistress. Listen: Fifteen years ago I met a
being, lovely, tender, innocent; before one personating a Romish
priest I called her wife; she knew not, until now, the title was not
legal; for fifteen years I have, as a simple gentleman, sought her
society when weary of ambition and of the selfishness of the world;
for fifteen years have I, at such intervals as I could steal away from
grandeur and false honors, found repose and happiness in the society
of that gentle, that unworldly being. Children have been born to me
and died, all save one, a noble boy--one whom I would gladly train to
deeds of glory, were it that--O Ellen, Ellen!"

"And with such feelings as these, my lord, you dared to lead my
daughter to the altar?" indignantly demanded Mr. Godfrey.

"Yes, and why not?" replied the duke. "Your daughter suffered no
injury. You sought for her not _love_, but a coronet, and that she has
now. Let her enjoy it. I acted not the hypocrite. I promised what I
gave--power, rank, grandeur, and respect; these she has: what cause
is there for complaint?"

"But why, if a peerless beauty were already yours, why seek another
bride, my lord? Why not have made the lady of your love your duchess?"

"Because--because--I knew not her value at first. At first it was her
beauty that attracted me; then her virtue kept me true to her, and I
loved her unworldliness, her want of ambition. To have made her a
duchess would have spoiled my dream of being loved for myself alone.
Besides, Ellen is a Catholic, a sincere one, and never would she
consent that a child of hers should be brought up in the paganism of
these times."

"But why, I must yet inquire, why, with these feelings, did your grace
marry at all?"

"Why? did I not want a duchess in my halls? a pagan heir to my
Pantheon, sir? To whom were these gorgeous collections of heathen
idols, these entailed estates, these titles, honors, to descend?
Ellen's son could not inherit all, even were he legitimate. His
Catholic feeling would turn aside in disgust from much, and English
law would exclude him from office or dignity in the nation. Had I
lived anywhere but in England, perchance my child had risen to compete
with the highest."

"He and his mother still hold, evidently, the highest place in your
affections. And is my daughter for ever to play second part in your
heart, and this incomparable miracle of goodness the first?"

"Your daughter, sir, is to reign supreme, the imperial queen of the
Parnassian deities. Juno-like, she treads her path o'er high Olympus;
all bow to her, and Jupiter himself shall treat her with reverence,
save when she {188} intrudes upon his private moments. She has
bargained for wealth, and power, and pomp, and influence; she has
them: let her be content. Love was out of the 'bargain;' it is useless
now to contend for it, as if it were her due. But for my Ellen, you
misjudge her, if you think that, with the knowledge she now has, she
would ever admit me to her presence again. I do not even know how I
can induce her to accept a maintenance from me--from me, who would
have died to save her, yet who have caused her such bitter pangs! Oh!
I could stab myself from sheer remorse!"

And the dark shade that passed over the features, now convulsed with
mental agony, showed that the words were not ones of mere expression.

Mr. Godfrey paused, yet was his anger not subdued; he had not deemed
that the duke had so much of human feeling in his composition. Worldly
and courtly as he seemed, who could suspect go strong an undercurrent
of deep and passionate emotion?

That this should be there, and not felt for his wife! Mr. Godfrey did
feel this an injury; though, as the duke said, love had not been in
the bargain.

The long pause was at length broken by Mr. Godfrey's saying: "Your
grace must excuse me, but, for my daughter's sake, I must insist on
obtaining evidence that this marriage, which you admit _did_ take
place, was not legal. If I may not approach the lady myself, who can
procure me the evidence I demand?'"

"I know not--unless--stay; I would willingly make one more attempt to
secure Ellen's acceptance of a provision for her child. Hitherto she
has rejected all mediation: not only the lawyer, but De Villeneuve,
and a bishop of her own church, have solicited her in vain to listen
to such an idea; a lady--a Catholic might be more successful. You have
in your family one seemingly as pure and good as Ellen's self--one
holding the same holy faith; if she will consent to undertake the
mission, I will confide to her the secret of Ellen's residence. De
Villeneuve will escort her, but I doubt if she will gain admittance;
none have yet succeeded who went from me."

"You mean Euphrasie, I presume?"

"I do; if you can trust to her report, I shall gladly make her my
ambassadress to treat respecting the future provision to be made for
mother and child."

"I will see her on the subject."

"Tis well; good morning, Mr. Godfrey."

How little do we know of the inward feelings even of those with whom
we fancy ourselves intimate! Here was the cold, heartless man of
pleasure, so-called by the world, so thought of by his father-in-law,
a prey, when left to himself, to the most violent emotions of grief
for the loss of Ellen. Had it been possible at that moment to redeem
her affections by the sacrifice of earthly grandeur, there is but
little doubt that the sacrifice would have been made, for the loss of
that sweet solace had never been contemplated as a necessary
accomplishment to this marriage. For fifteen years he had kept his
incognito in her society as Colonel Ellwood, and as Colonel Ellwood he
meant to visit her still, and to indemnify himself in her sweet
society for the heartlessness and cheerlessness of the ducal mansion.

This dream was at an end; he's incognito had been discovered, and at
once all intercourse was over. The gay and courtly duke felt as if all
interest in life had suddenly vanished from the earth. His outward
demeanor appeared, indeed, unchanged, at least to superficial
observers, but those who looked beneath the surface could detect a
latent disdain for all things; and if the same pursuits still seemed
to engage his attention, it was from habit, or from want of
occupation, not from any relish for the pursuit itself. {189} Little
did the world suspect that his gay and polished manner covered a
broken heart, and that the munificent owner of countless rangers, the
haughty scion of a long line of ancestors, was pining away beneath the
blight which had destroyed is happiness, and was eventually to destroy
his life. But we must not anticipate, rather let us return to our
theme.

Euphrasie heard with surprise and pain of the position of her young
friend Adelaide, but was most unwilling to undertake the negotiation
proposed; it was only at M. de Villeneuve's reiterated assurance that
it was a great work of charity which she demanded of her, that she at
length consented.

On their arrival at the village, some hours' journey distant from
London, and further yet from the duke's residence, M. de Villeneuve
requested Euphrasie to proceed from the hotel alone to Ellswood
cottage, as his presence would be suspicious, and probably prevent her
gaining admittance. A dark-haired, bright-eyed boy was playing in the
garden before the cottage; he came to the gate on seeing a stranger
approach, and as he held the gate in his hand, he said, before
Euphrasie addressed him:

"Mamma is very ill, no one can see her today."

"I am very sorry to hear that. Has she been ill long?"

"Yes, ever since she took a long, long journey, and came back so
tired. She went to find papa, and did not find him," and the child's
voice dropped to a whisper: "I think papa is dead, but I must not tell
her so."

"Why do you think so, my dear?"

"Because he would never stay away so long if he were alive; he never
did before: and when he did stay away he used to leave mamma lots of
money; now she has no money at all, and she is going away from here."

"Where is she going to?"

"I do not know; but she says she must work, and that I must work now
for my living; so I know she must be very poor."

"I want to see your mamma. They say she is very kind. Tell her I am a
stranger--a French girl; that I seek kindness from her."

"Are you poor, too?" asked the little boy.

"Yes, very poor, indeed," replied Euphrasie.

"Then I will ask mamma if you may come in; mamma loves the poor."

When the boy returned he was accompanied by an elderly woman, bearing
the appearance of an upper servant. She addressed Euphrasie
respectfully: "Mrs. Ellwood can see no one to-day, miss; can you send
in your business by me?"

"Not very well, my business is personal; shall I be able to see her
tomorrow?"

"It is impossible to say, but you can call and see; to-morrow you may
be able to find some one who will see you in her stead; she sees no
one herself, but she expects a friend to-night who manages her
business for her."

With this answer she was obliged to be content: she returned to the
hotel where M. de Villeneuve awaited her. "This is a bad business," he
said; "I have been here twice before with no better result, she will
not see strangers."

"You have not seen her, then?"

"No! I have only heard of her, she is almost adored here for her deeds
of kindness and charity. I never knew of a case which excited my
interest so much; it was on her account, not on the duke's, that I
assented to pay this place so many visits. God only can console her!"

* * * * * *

There was a sound of carriages in the night, a very unusual thing in
that secluded village; and in the morning early, again there was the
sound of wheels. M. de Villeneuve strolled to the end of the street;
he shook his head on his return. "We are altogether too late," he
said; "the people {190} say that she is gone; and many are weeping,
for she was dearly loved."

"Shall we not go to the house?" asked Euphrasie.

"There is no harm in making the inquiry, but she is not there."

It was even so: Mrs. Ellwood had departed, fearing that if she
remained there she should be constantly subject to intrusion. In the
parlor into which they were shown, Euphrasie found one whom she was
little prepared to see: it was M. Bertolot. A general grasping of
hands and affectionate recognition took place; and then the old priest
inquired their business. "The bishop sent me here," he said, "because
he could not come himself, and because the poor lady entreated the
utmost secrecy; but what brought you here?"

M. de Villeneuve took up the word: "We came from the duke; his grace
thought our young friend here might find admittance, though we were
all refused."

"His grace need not dream of any such thing; the wrong he has done is
not such as embassies or money can rectify. The lady is a
true-hearted, noble woman, a sincere Catholic; the message that she
has left for him is simply that 'she forgives him, and will pray for
his conversion; but if ever he loved her, she entreats that he will
never more pursue her or send to her.'"

"But how is she to be supported?"

"She trusts in God, who is a husband to the widow, and a father to the
fatherless. The duke's money she will not touch; it is no use to press
the matter, she has a woman's instincts, and that is often better than
a man's reasoning."

"You are severe, father, but this is a case to make you so; may we not
know where she is gone to?"

"No! you may not even know you saw me here; say only you saw her
agent, who gave you her message, and would not tell you her residence.
Never let the duke or the Godfrey family know that the bishop sent me
here."

"You may depend on us, father. But is this all that we are to say to
the duchess? You know the question has been raised respecting the
validity of the marriage."

"The bishop examined that himself; he would have been glad to prove it
a true one, but the scamp who married them was a disguised young
spendthrift, who did not know how to keep out of a debtor s jail in
any other way than by taking that wicked fee; if Mr. Godfrey is uneasy
on that point, he can apply to the bishop, there is his address."

When M. de Villeneuve and Euphrasie returned to Durimond Castle with
the result of this mission, they found Adelaide far less placable than
the more deeply injured Ellen had expressed herself by her message.
She assented indeed to do the honors of the castle, to _reign_
supreme, but she insisted on a virtual separation as the price of her
continuing to wear the title of the Duchess of Durimond.

The duke was in no humor to contend with her; perhaps even he was as
well pleased to have it so. He was careful to surround her with all
imaginable tokens of deference and respect, and told Mr. Godfrey he
would see what time would do to soften his haughty Juno. Soon after he
accepted the office of ambassador to a foreign court, and thus left
his wife at liberty to queen it o'er her vassals at her pleasure.

Meantime we lay before our readers the sad history which occasioned
all this commotion.



CHAPTER VIII.

ELLEN'S HISTORY.

Ellen D'Aubrey was the daughter of an Irish officer, who her mother
(Ellen Carpenter) had married against the wishes of her family. Our
heroine was their only child. {191} Soon after her birth the mother,
Mrs. D'Aubrey, fell into delicate health, and years of pain and
suffering ensued, after which she died, leaving Ellen, then ten years
old, to condole her husband for her loss. This, however, was not so
easy, for Captain D'Aubrey had truly loved his refined and gentle
wife, and the illness she had borne with so much sweetness and
patience had the more endeared her to him; besides which, during that
sickness he had learned many important lessons. Up to that time his
wife, though amiable and affectionate, had thought but little on
serious subjects, and he, though nominally a Catholic, had neglected
his religion. But when sorrow came, and the wife and mother became
aware that though she might linger on a while, she could not regain
health, and must leave behind her those so dear to her, then an
anxiety for future reunion took possession of her. She began to
question her husband of religion, and he, recalling for her solace the
lessons of his youth, became himself impressed with their importance.
Catholic truth and Catholic consolation were poured into the soul of
the departing wife, and having procured her every necessary aid, the
captain imparted himself a great consolation by promising to watch
over the education of their darling child, and endeavor to bring her
up in the faithful performance of her duties as a Catholic Christian,
without endangering her faith by permitting her to frequent schools or
society hostile to her religion.

The noble-hearted captain had scarcely closed the eyes of the being he
held so dear, than he began to consider how he might best fulfil his
promise. He sold his commission, and living on a small annuity which
he possessed, applied himself to develop in his child the powers that
lay enfolded in her soul; but above all, he sought to cherish and to
strengthen religious principle. Well did the little Ellen repay his
care. At that time, in England, there were few exterior aids to
religion. Catholic chapels were few and far apart. One priest attended
many missions, and these but stealthily; but so much the more
sedulously did the captain endeavor to infuse the spirit of religion
into the soul of his child, and to animate her with patience,
meekness, humility, and universal charity. Loving and beloved, she
grew up beneath her father's eye like a beautiful flower,
reciprocating his tenderness, and increasing daily in beauty and
accomplishments. Suddenly a dark cloud lowered above that happy home.
Captain D'Aubrey was seized with a fever, and in three days expired,
leaving Ellen, at the age of sixteen, an orphan, almost penniless,
cast upon the world's cold charity.

Strangers made out her connexions, for Ellen was stupefied by the
blow. Strangers wrote to Mrs. Carpenter, her maternal grandmother, and
before Ellen well knew what she was about she was travelling south
with an old lady, who endeavored in vain to rouse her from her sorrow.

When the captain's affairs were arranged, but little was found
remaining. His annuity ceased at his death. It had just sufficed for
their maintenance; and as the sale of the furniture amounted to very
little, the poor girl was utterly dependent.

Such was the account given by Mrs. Carpenter to Mrs. Barford, her
married daughter, with whom, being herself a widow, she then resided.
Mrs. Barford had married a man whose character was the very reverse of
that of Ellen's father. He was a thorough business-like, money-making
instrument, having no higher idea than to be continually extending his
business, no higher ambition than to be mayor of the city in which he
resided. Already he was a great man in his own estimation, and he
intended that his family should become of importance also. This couple
received Ellen but coldly, though she hardly knew or felt it, for she
was as yet absorbed in grief. Mrs. Carpenter intended to be kind, and
insisted on Ellen's grief being respected. {192} A week or two passed,
then it was proposed one Sunday to Ellen to go with the family to
church. She excused herself. Another week passed--and the same
proposal was repeated. On this she was closely questioned as to the
reason why; and when Mr. Barford came at length to understand that
Ellen was a Catholic, his anger knew no bounds. A Catholic in his own
house! _He_ feed popery! _He_ foster rebellion! _He_ countenance
powder-plots! The thing was impossible! the girl must leave the
house--she would corrupt the children, contaminate the servants,
compromise his respectability, pervert the neighborhood; in short,
breed every kind of disorder and endanger his position. Go she must.
In vain his wife pleaded that the poor girl had nowhere to go to; she
was obliged to summon Mrs. Carpenter to her aid. As the old lady had
plenty of money, Mr. Barford held her habitually in respect,
especially as she could will it as she pleased; therefore, when she
insisted that where she was her grand-daughter should find a home, the
great man yielded, and among themselves they arranged a plan which was
to counteract the evil influence they dreaded. Mrs. Carpenter
undertook to watch Ellen closely, and by degrees to win her from her
papistry: and as there was no papist church in the locality, the
neighbors need not even know what her religion was.

As for powder-plots, the good old lady argued that a girl of sixteen,
without friends, money, or resources, could not effect much against
the government, so she was not uneasy on that score. Silenced, but not
convinced, Mr. Barford, who dared not disoblige his wife's mother,
said no more on the subject to her, but he determined to keep a sharp
lookout, and nip in the bud any incipient conspiracy. But under these
influences, the poor girl's happiness was sadly compromised. Her
grandmother undertook to enlighten her as to the character of these
papists, to show her what a terrible set these unfortunate, benighted
idolaters are, and so to bring her round to the Protestant
establishment. Most horrible tales of conspiracies, plots, martyrdoms,
inquisitorial victimizing, and every species of villanous scheming for
the overthrow of pure religion, were recounted to her. These failing
to make impression, the sin of idolatry was brought home to herself,
and on Fridays the crime of not eating meat was by no means accounted
a small one. A regular series of petty persecutions were commenced,
the children of the family were taught to distrust her; she was not
allowed to make acquaintances in the neighborhood, nor to stir out,
save at her grandmother's side.

The old lady meant well in the part she took in this; she was not
aware of the greater portion of the annoyance Ellen underwent, and she
thought time only was wanted to enable her to throw off the prejudices
of her education. She really liked Ellen for her refinement and
gentleness, and kept her as much as she could about her. She made her
read to her, and wait upon her; and though the books were not to
Ellen's taste, yet this was by far the most tolerable portion of her
existence. But even of this small alleviation, Mrs. Barford grew
jealous; she was greatly afraid that her mother would leave too great
a portion of her wealth to the poor orphan girl, and her harshness
increased in proportion as Mrs. Carpenter's partiality manifested
itself. She did not hesitate to impute the most unworthy motives to
Ellen for paying such kind and respectful attentions to her
grandmother, for Ellen's conduct contrasted too painfully with that of
the unruly children of the household; and when by her reproaches Mrs.
Barford drew tears from the poor girl's eyes, she would bid her "go
and warm herself into her grandmother's favor, by her Jesuitical
caresses and her crocodile tears." {193} Poor girl! it was no wonder
that she became pale and thin and miserable; but instead of being
induced to give up her religion, she clung to it the more, the more
she stood in need of consolation. And thus a year, a long and dreary
year, had passed away. At length a partial respite came. Mrs.
Carpenter was taken sick; Ellen waited on her most assiduously; but
although she could scarcely be spared as a nurse, on account of the
comfort her presence seemed to afford the sick, yet Mrs. Barford's
jealousy, and her husband's ill-treatment, considerably increased.
Measures were often spoken of between this amiable pair, and plans
devised to effect an estrangement between Ellen and her grandmother.
The old lady partially recover, and then Mrs. Barford grew eloquent on
the wonderful effects of a change of air. By dint of manoeuvering, she
at length made the poor sick woman consent to dispense with Ellen's
attendance at the watering-place to which they were bound. Mrs.
Barford went herself to take care of her mother, and her children
accompanied her.

* * * * * * Ellen was now virtually alone, for Mr. Barford was engaged
in his business, and not wish to be troubled with her company, even at
his meals. What a relief! Ellen heard the carriage drive from the door
with a feeling of release from bitter thraldom. How long it might last
she knew not, but certainly for some weeks. She read her own books
--her father's books--so long concealed at the bottom of her chest.
She opened the piano, and sang the hymns of the church. She took out
her sketch-book, and reviewed the seems she had visited with her
father.

At once her spirits rose, her eyes sparkled, her animation returned,
and at the close of the day she retired to rest, for the first time in
that house, with a light and joyous spirit. The next morning she was
up with the lark. She opened her window to inhale the balmy air, and a
gush of joy came over her as she felt that she was secure from
annoyance at least for a time. A hasty breakfast was soon despatched,
and the fragrant, breeze driving in at the window, attracted her
attention to the flowery meadows. Her spirits were too keen to permit
her to sit still, and as the bright sunshine poured in upon her, she
asked herself why she should not enjoy it out of doors; she had been
imprisoned so long, and now there was no one to rebuke or find fault
with what she did. She could not withstand the temptation. "I will go
and sketch the ruins of the abbey," she said, "and meditate on the
times the good old monks were there." Sketch-book in hand she sallied
forth. The streets of the city were soon traversed, and the avenues
leading to the ruins more slowly paced. The morning was one of most
glorious beauty. The birds sang in the new-leafing groves, the busy
bees hummed, and the dew-drops clinging to the tips of the
fresh-springing grass, presented a most dazzling appearance as, waving
in the sunshine, they reflected hues of every color, and freshened
with new life the whole creation. Ellen's spirits were at their
height; yet with somewhat of a solemn step she approached the hallowed
solitudes. None was there save herself--at least she perceived none.
Long she wandered within the precincts trodden by holy feet of old,
and at length sat down on a fallen tree to begin her sketch.

The ruin had formerly been surrounded by a moat; even now one side of
this remained, and communicated with the river. By the side of this,
our heroine took her seat on the fallen tree. How long she sat she
knew not. It was a great delight to her once more to handle the pencil
so long laid aside. She worked as if inspired, and the main features
were at length described with taste and accuracy. In her eagerness she
had untied her bonnet, (which was a close one, covering her face,
after the fashion of those days,) and pushed it slightly back, {194}
thus displaying her animated features, unconscious the while that a
stranger was gazing at her, and that for upward of an hour he had been
tracing her features in his gratified imagination.

At length she rose to depart, but as she was putting up her sketch,
her bonnet fell from her head, and would have rolled into the river
had not the stranger caught it, as it reached the brink, and
gracefully restored it to her. He was older than herself and wore an
officer's uniform. Could there be any harm in thanking him, and in
unfolding, at his request, the sketch which had occasioned the
accident? Ellen thought not of harm. She was unversed in the world's
ways, and had experienced more of its annoyances than its dangers.
Insensibly a conversation was entered into. It was prolonged until the
shadows proclaimed that the sun was verging to the west. The stranger
was evidently pleased and surprised at Ellen's keen sense of natural
and artistic beauty, and at the simple yet poetic manner in which she
clothed her ideas. The themes dilated on touched exactly his favorite
hobby, and it was evidently a gratification to him to find one fresh
in feeling, endowed with genius and beauty, who could appreciate his
feelings and sympathize with his artistic tastes.

Reluctantly he parted with his companion, and on the morrow he seemed
intuitively to know where he should find her, to renew the enjoyment
of the previous day. Another day came, and another, until at length it
became a matter of course that the two should meet. And still it was
only poetry, or music, or painting, that occupied them. Why, then, did
Ellen half surmise that the meeting was wrong? One day she did keep
away, and thought she would try to do so always, but the hours hung
heavily on her hands, and her resolution failed; so the walks
continued.

At length the period for her aunt's return arrived, and not only must
she expect to be virtually imprisoned as before, but the dread of what
her aunt would say when she heard (as surely from some kind, gossiping
neighbor she would hear) of her daily interviews with a strange
gentleman, broke upon her. Why had she not thought of this before? Why
had she yielded to the temptation? All too late those questions now,
and those only who know what it is to live amid insult and neglect can
appreciate her feelings or estimate the temptations to which she was
exposed.

The stranger, who called himself Colonel Ellwood, had travelled much;
he spoke to her of Italy, of Spain, of France; he had brought her a
rosary which the Pope had blessed, and had described to her in glowing
terms many of the ceremonies which he has witnessed. Why should she
distrust him? With tears in her eyes she told him that in two days her
aunt was expected home, and that these interviews must cease.
"Indeed," she added, "I am afraid my aunt will half-kill me when she
finds they have ever taken place."

"Then why not forestall her return by your own departure?"

"And to what quarter of the world should I go?' asked Ellen.

"If, sweet lady, you would trust yourself with me," said Colonel
Ellwood.

Ellen started and shrank back, but the colonel followed her, saying:
"Nay, do me not the injustice to suppose that I would wrong you; the
impression you have made upon me is for life; your happiness, your
honor, are as dear to me as my own soul. It is marriage I offer you--a
_bona fide_ marriage, though a private one. My circumstances at this
moment are peculiar. But fly with me, and a Catholic priest shall
bless our union; I swear it on my honor."

Ellen hesitated, but her very hesitation encouraged hope. The day
passed. Another came. Again Colonel Ellwood urged flight. Again the
fear beset her lest her aunt should hear of these clandestine
meetings. Love, too, for the stranger, who, although {195} unknown,
was evidently refined, cultivated, and well versed in all human
learning, grew rapidly since he had declared his love. To lose him was
to lose everything; for who save he had shown kindness to the poor,
friendless orphan girl? The time passed:--the day was at hand--a
restless day--sleepless night--haunted by the sound of carriage wheels
bringing back her tyrant to her home. Ellen's resolution gave way: two
hours before her aunt's arrival she quitted that dwelling of strife
for ever.

Colonel Ellwood appeared to keep his promise. One in the dress of a
Catholic priest united them in marriage, and to Ellen's fancy that
there was someone of informality in the ceremony, came the ready reply
that it was necessitated by the anomalous position of a Catholic
priest in England.   [Footnote 37]

  [Footnote 37: This was before the Catholic emancipation bill had
  passed.]

She knew little or nothing of the law, and for some time afterward she
resided on the Continent with her husband. Here no doubt harassed her;
love for him excluded doubt, and that love at times nearly reached the
height of adoration. On the other hand, the happiness of geniality,
combined with the high mental culture which her husband loved to
promote, added so intellectual, nay so ethereal an expression to her
naturally handsome features, that his love and reverence increased as
time wore on, and he dared not tell the being who thus fondly loved
him for himself alone, how foully he had deceived her. In his eyes she
was an angel of light; and far from offering impediments to her
fulfilling her religious duties, he delighted in her constancy; though
there were times when a cloud came over him, and he felt as if he were
but he demon of darkness by her side, destined to become the destroyer
of her happiness. At such moments, Ellen, who was in mute amazement at
the paroxysms which assailed him would strive by every endearing art
to charm away his melancholy, and by so doing sometimes nearly drove
him to frenzy; and alarmed her for his sanity, without decreasing her
affection. But these fitful moments passed away. Continental troubles
drove them back to England, and here Colonel Ellwood's difficulty in
keeping his incognito increased. Sometimes he took an abode for her in
the North of Scotland, sometimes in the mountains of Wales; his
restlessness and anxiety distressed and puzzled her, he was not the
same man in England he had seemed on the Continent. He was often
absent, too, for weeks, nay for months together; but this he accounted
for so plausibly on the score of army duties and the like, that Ellen
tried to be satisfied, especially as he carried on a constant
correspondence with her, and always sent her regular and plentiful
remittances. But one circumstance puzzled her even in this--it was
that she had to address all her answers to him under cover to his
lawyer. This person, who knew nothing of Ellen, believed it was a sort
of affair common among the nobility, young and old, and performed the
business part of the transaction faithfully as regarded transmitting
money and letters, while he gave himself no further trouble about the
matter.

The time of discovery arrived but too soon. Ellen's child had been
ill, and she had taken him to the seacoast to restore his health. It
was the first time that she had ever left the residence appointed for
her by her husband without his sanction and permission, and it was the
urgency of the case that prompted her to deviate from this settled
plan. She thought to be gone only a few days, and his last letter had
bidden her not to expect him for a month or two, as pressing business
was to be imperatively attended to; so there was little chance of his
being displeased at the proceeding, indeed he had never been really
displeased with her. She went, then, and on the beach she was
recognized by a lady she did not remember, but {196} who chanced to
have a better memory than Ellen. The lady appeared to be somewhat of a
morose and malignant disposition, and entered into conversation
apparently to gratify some ill-natured feeling. Ellen was annoyed and
would have avoided her, but the other evidently had an object in view.
At last she blurted out:

"So the Duke of Durimond is to be married soon, I hear."

"I do not know," said Ellen, "I have no acquaintance among the great."

"No acquaintance with the Duke of Durimond, madam? Why, surely I saw
you at----Hotel in Inverness-shire with him three years ago."

"In Inverness-shire I was with my husband, but I saw no duke there."

"Your husband, ma'am! the gentleman was called Colonel Ellwood, was he
not? Well, then, madam, the world believes Colonel Ellwood and the
Duke of Durimond to be the same person. But, to be sure, you ought to
know best. I can only say I was told so, often, in Inverness-shire,
and now the duke is gone to marry Miss Godfrey of Estcourt Hall; is
that a secret also to you?"

The woman evidently gloated in the pain she inflicted, and stood
gazing at the victim. Ellen replied not--she was thunderstruck. Then
she deemed it impossible. She turned back to the house, gave up the
lodgings, and returned to her former home. There, making necessary
arrangements, she left her child in the care of trustworthy servants,
and ordering a post-chaise, was driven, as fast as horses could carry
her, to the house of the London lawyer, travelling night and day till
she reached her destination.

The lawyer, Mr. Reynolds, would not reply to her questions. He begged
the lady to go home, saying that Colonel Ellwood would soon be with
her, and that he would be the best person to explain all mysteries.
He, Mr. Reynolds, really was not in a position to satisfy her.

What an answer to an anxious heart! mystery upon mystery! Why, since
they came to England, did these long absences take place? Why did she
not know his address? Why--a long list of whys that sorely oppressed
her heart. What was she to do now? Being thus far, she thought at
least she would go down to Estcourt Hall and try to catch a glimpse of
the Duke of Durimond; she would know then if the report that
identified him with her husband was based on truth.

She turned suddenly on the lawyer: "Where is the Duke of Durimond at
this instant?" Her manner, so unlike her usual calm demeanor, startled
Mr. Reynolds, and put him off his guard.

"I believe, madam, the duke is at the mansion of the Hon. Mr. Godfrey,
at Estcourt."

"What is he doing there?"

"The world reports him as about to be married."

Ellen turned in a resolute manner to the door--the lawyer followed
her. "Be persuaded, ma'am, go home in peace; all will be right in
time, believe me."

Ellen got into the post-chaise, and ordered the driver to proceed to
Sussex without delay. That night she was at Estcourt. The next day, as
we have seen, she approached the carriage, recognized the duke to be
Colonel Ellwood, followed him in his bridal tour, spoke with him, and
then returned, as best she might, to her now dreary home.

The duke sent to her--she received not his messages; he wrote--she
returned his letters unopened; he called on a Roman Catholic prelate
to confess the transaction, and beg of him to take care that Ellen was
suitably provided for; but the bishop, after seeing Ellen and becoming
interested in the story, would not receive any money from the duke on
Ellen's account. He said she refused it, and he could but acquiesce in
her decision. The duke was utterly perplexed.


TO BE CONTINUED.

--------

{197}


Translated from La Correspondant

THE FOUNDERS OF FRENCH UNITY.  [Footnote 38]

BY THE COUNT DE CHAMPAGNY.

  [Footnote 38: Historical Studies. By the Count L. de Carné.]

Our readers are certainly not ignorant of the name or the book of M.
de Carné. The work which he published in 1848, on the eve of the
revolution of February, attracted the interest as well as the
suffrages of all serious times, and the mass of those who read may
know and appreciate it.

The idea of this book is well known. M. de Carné has been struck with
what constitutes the peculiar genius of the French nation, its unity.
He has wished to ascertain and trace the origin of that unity; and has
found it summed up in a few proper names, and has condensed in the
history of a small number of statesmen that of the nation.

Nothing could be more proper. We are the republican of any nation that
God has made, and we are so because the French nation is more strictly
one than any other, and more than any other needs a chief. Abandoned
ourselves, and obliged, willingly or unwillingly, to take each a
personal part in the common action, we are worth very little; but we
are admirable when we are commanded. I do not know if Shakespeare is
right when he calls France the Soldier of God, but what appears to me
certain is that we are much better soldiers than citizens. In France
the citizen is a stupid lout who, three-fourths of the time, lets
himself be led, and miserably led, either by a journal or a spouting
chief of a club; he abdicates himself and consents to be led blindly
by the passions of others. He cries "Harrah for Revolution!" when he
thinks he is only crying "Hurrah for Reform!" and makes a revolution
without intending it, and makes it to the profit of his enemies. The
soldier, on the contrary, finds in obedience the element of his
spontaneity, of his intelligence, I had almost said, of his liberty.
He was but a peasant, very dull and lubberly when he was free; put
upon him the coat of passive obedience, and he acquires abilities
which seem to belong only to liberty. He is prompt, he is sagacious,
he is intelligent; faithful to his commander when his commander guides
him, full of activity and spontaneity, if by chance the commander
fails him. Why is this? Why is the English citizen so intelligent in
commercial and political life, so hampered under the red coat? Why is
the French peasant so stupid when he is taken from his plough, so much
at his ease when in uniform? To this I know no answer, unless it be,
that God has so made us. In France, the soldier is more himself when
under discipline than the citizen in his liberty. It is not, then,
surprising that the history of a people, I will not say so royalist,
but so monarchical in the etymological sense of the word, should be
summed up in the proper names of a few men.

The Abbé Suger, St. Louis, Du Guesclin, Joan of Arc, Louis XI., Henry
IV., Richelieu, Mazarin: such are the personages whom M. de Carné has
selected, and who he shows have gradually effected the development of
French unity. It is in the succession of these names that we can
follow with him that development.

{198}

However, it is not necessary to believe, and M. de Carné does not
pretend it, that these men made French unity. It has been made by
itself. France was really one in fact before being made so by the
government and laws. From the tenth century, when all Gaul was
parcelled out, when the large provinces all belonged to masters
independent in fact, save for the nominal law of vassalage, hardly
acknowledged, this divided nation felt herself already one, felt
herself already a nation. She has been one ever since, in reacting
against the yoke of the Austrasian dynasty of the Carlovingians, she
commenced to reject from her midst the Germanic race, language, and
institutions. She had her language--we find it distinctly in the oath
of 843; she had her capital--that little mud city which began to pass
the arm of the Seine and to spread itself from the island over on the
right bank, was already the centre of French life. She had her
dynasty--that kinglet possessor of a narrow domain, which he disputed
with great feudatories more powerful than he, was already and for all
the king of France. She was already herself advancing to the time when
the grandson of Robert the Strong would make himself obeyed from the
Rhine to the Pyrenees, the _langue d' Oyl_ would become the common
tongue of Christendom, and all the fiefs from Flanders to the
Mediterranean would hold from the great tower of the Louvre.

Thus it seems to me that one of the most important facts in our
history, though little remarked, is the first armed manifestation of
France under Louis the Fat. At the time the Emperor Henry V.
penetrated into Champagne with a German army, the king, who, according
to his own expression, had grown old at the siege of Montlhéry, in a
few weeks found himself at the head of three hundred thousand men,
united as a thick cloud of grasshoppers, who cover the banks of the
rivers, the mountains, and plains. A few weeks more, and the great
vassals, the Count of Flanders, the Duke of Aquitaine, the Count of
Brittany, brought him new reinforcements, and his army, raised to four
hundred thousand men, was double that of the emperor, which was itself
enormous for the middle ages. The political bond, however, which
united those different countries which are to-day called France, was
very feeble. These vassals, present at the camp of Louis the Fat,
rendered him scarcely a ceremonial homage. What bond could unite so
many different populations for the defence of a territory which, at
that epoch, had scarcely a name, if it was not community of origin and
a common aversion to the Germanic domination? The French nation was
then one, even at that epoch, when the king was king of only five of
our present departments at most. She made herself one by herself and
her blood, before being made so by kings and laws.

In all we have been ourselves, and more ourselves than we think. We
are neither Franks nor Visigoths; we are Gallo-Romans. We are Gauls
civilized by Rome, and baptized by the church. The influence of the
Frank domination has been more superficial than was believed in the
last century; the name remains to us, but what else remains? In the
language, which is the great symbol of nationality, the Germanic
element, whether in words or in forms of speech, has evidently been
only secondary; and it has left no traces in the national character.
In institutions the Germanic element dominated for a time, for the
simple reason that it possessed the political power; but it was the
labor of the middle ages, and we can say their glory, to efface it.

In fact, the struggle against feudalism and feudal institutions was,
to speak truly, a national struggle. There were traces of German
domination during four centuries which it was necessary to efface. The
day when France demanded of the house of Robert the Strong a chief,
king or not, but a chief to oppose to the Rhenish sovereignty of the
Carlovingians, that day she commenced, without knowing it, the
struggle against the institutions which grew out of the Germanic {199}
conquest. That struggle was continued under St. Louis, the epoch of
the great radiation of French power, when the Mediterranean was almost
our domain; when we established colonies even on the coasts of Africa;
when our missionaries penetrated even to Thibet; when the sons of
Genghis Khan were in diplomatic relations with us, and when even in
Italy they spoke by preference our language as "the most delightful"
and the most generally understood of any in the world.

In this work the church came to our aid. The great struggle of the
papacy was also against the pride of the Germanic supremacy. It was
against the feudalism planted in the church, against feudatory bishops
who bore armor, and carried the falcon on their wrist, who held their
dioceses as fiefs, and received their investiture from the German
suzerain, and against the kings their patrons, that St. Gregory VII.
wielded the papal power. It was against the institutions of Germanic
barbarism, against the feudal aristocracy, against tests by fire and
water, against private wars and judicial combats, that the church, and
especially the papacy, never ceased to struggle. There was, then,
during a whole century a perfect accord between the kings of France
and the pontiffs of Rome, between the independence of the commons and
the franchises of the religious orders, between the authority of the
legists and that of the councils.

And for these institutions introduced by the Germanic conquests, and
which we in accord with the church combated, what have we in accord
with the church substituted? The institutions proper to our race,
proper to our traditions as a civilized people, proper to our manners
as Christians. For feudalism the idea of direct power such as Rome had
taught, and such as Charlemagne comprehended and attempted to revive;
in other words, for suzerainty sovereignty; for the jurisdiction of
lords was substituted in spirituals that of ecclesiastical judges, in
temporals that of royal justices; consequently, for feudal law the
canon law of Christian, and the civil law of imperial Rome. For the
right of private battle we substituted the possession of arms remitted
to the sovereign alone, as in Rome and in all civilized countries. For
duels and judicial trials by fire and water we substituted trials by
witness, according to the Roman law and the law of the church and of
all civilized nations. In a word, we effaced the traces of Germanic
paganism and barbarism, to become in our laws once more what we were
by blood, Gallo-Romans; what we were by our faith, Christians; what we
still are by our reminiscences, civilized men. Such was the work of
our race from Robert the Strong to St. Louis, of the popes from
Gregory VII. to Gregory IX., of our commons from the first communal
revolt to the enfranchisement of the serfs under Louis le Hutin, of
the church from the day when she proclaimed the truce of God, and
constituted to sustain it a sort of universal _Landwehr_, to that in
which she canonized, in the person of St. Louis, the type, not of the
feudal chief, but of the Christian king. Only from this union of all
forces in reference to a single end, essentially national, legitimate,
and Christian, there was one unhappy exception, that of the nobility,
the heir, whether by blood or position, of the Germanic traditions,
investitures, and institutions, and who became a sort of common enemy.
They were found, in spite of their patriotism, standing apart from the
nation, and unpopular in spite of the many ties which bound them to
the people. The church, royalty, even the legists had their place in
the popular affection, but the nobility had none. They were suspected
by the government and abandoned by it to the suspicions of the people.
Hence they were so much the further removed from the political
tendency of the nation as they were nearer to its political action,
and all the less disposed to co-operate in the work of national
elaboration as they were more open to the seductions of foreign {200}
politics. Hence they could make the war of the Annagnacs in the
fourteenth century, the war of the Public Good in the fifteenth, the
religious wars of the sixteenth, and of the Fronde in the seventeenth;
but it was never theirs to exercise that popular, regular, pacific
action, the action of patronage and defence, exercised by the
aristocracy of England. They had only the choice, on the one hand, of
a selfish, unpopular revolt against the king--a revolt resting on the
enemies of France for its support, or on the other, of service to the
crown, a service which they gloriously and courageously rendered
indeed, but which was a service of perfect obedience, in which there
was nothing to be gained for their order, in which indeed they could
reap glory, but not power. Never has there been a real aristocracy in
France--there has been only an obedient or an insubordinate feudal
nobility.

Thus may be given in brief the sum of the first part of M. de Carné s
book; and this first part foretells what is to follow. The position of
royalty, the nobles, and the commons respectively, was during four
centuries developed only on bases furnished by the middle ages. The
development effected in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries M. de
Carné has personified in Suger, abbot of St. Denis, and St. Louis--an
able and intelligent choice. Suger and St. Louis were two rare
statesmen in an epoch when statesmanship hardly existed. Suger, formed
by the rigid and wise discipline of the church, a full-grown man in
the midst of the childish caprices and inconsequences of his age, a
real statesman, although the minister of a king who was no statesman
at all, was certainly one of the greatest and most intelligent agents
in the national work, of which those even who were its instruments
rarely had the slightest conception. St. Louis rose still further
above his age. He pertained not more to the middle ages by his faith
than by his statesmanship he pertains to our own times. No king ever
labored harder to evolve from its feudal envelope the civil and
political life of France; no king ever studied more diligently to
place royalty on the footing of modern sovereignties, and to fashion
it, as M. de Carné well observes, after the Biblical royalty, rather
than after feudal suzerainty.

M. de Carné is very right, then, in seeking in these two rare men a
serious and matured political plan; but he would have found it
difficult to discover traces of such a plan in others, and perhaps
even the habits of his own mind render him less fitted to judge other
heroes of the middle ages. In the very pages he has written, I see,
indeed, Suger; I see, indeed St. Louis; but I do not see enough of the
middle age itself, of that age of youth with its contradictions and
it's inconsistencies; and M. de Carné it seems to me to be too wise,
too sensible, too logical, and too much of a modern statesman, to
paint it in its true light.

I express here, I confess, a personal impression, not a judgment, and
perhaps a profounder study of the monuments of the middle ages would
give me a different impression. But I own that when I seek the the
middle ages in modern writings, I receive an impression quite
different from that which I receive when I attempt to study them in
their own monuments. With the moderns, not only with M. de Carné, but
with writers who are antiquaries rather than statesman, I find
presented as characteristic of the middle ages profound political use,
or at least a certain power of foresight and calculation in those who
govern; but if I open the smallest chronicle, I discover nothing of
the sort. These kings and these statesmen become only warriors, rude
captains, capable of any devotion--capable also of any violence and
even of any falsehood, rather than of any wise or consistent policy
seriously and steadily pursued. Whether it is merely the result of the
oldness of the language, and the simplicity, so often apparent, which
a still unformed idiom gives to thought, I {201} must say this age has
on me the effect of an age of infancy.

It's tongue stammers, and its diction resembles the _patois_ of our
provinces and the songs of our nurses. In art it had, not without a
simplicity sometimes admirable, that awkwardness and that stiffness
which mark the first toddling walk of children. Its public life was
mingled with puerile ceremonies, with a fantastic symbolism, sometimes
even indecent. Its faith asked for no reason, as asks the mature man;
but felt, saw, understood as does the adolescent; it carried into it
sometimes a puerile superstition which impaired it, sometimes an
admirable simplicity which excludes the wisdom of the doctors, though
not the devotedness of martyrs. It instituted the Feast of Fools and
of Asses. Yet it made the Crusades. It embraced Christian morality
without hesitation and without an objection; it embraced it, forgot to
practise it; while professing good, it practised evil with the
facility of contradiction surpassing even the ordinary powers of human
nature; it was a good Catholic, but scrupled not to pillage the
churches. Its submission it refused in principle to nobody--to the
pope, the king, or the suzerain; and yet never did the papacy receive
more frequent insults, never had royalty such trouble to make itself
obeyed, never were quarrels between superior and inferior so frequent,
as in the middle ages--those ages of submission and of
insubordination, in which the rules of the hierarchy were better
established and less observed than in any other. This contradiction,
this inconsistency, this easy acceptance of the law while it is
asserted only in theory, and this easy forgetfulness of it when it
comes to practice, this subordination of the mind, and this revolt of
the heart, is it not plainly that of boyhood? Boy seldom refuses to
accept the moral truth that is taught him; he does not reject in
theory even the obedience which is exacted of him; but, at a given
moment, it costs him nothing to contradict that truth in practice, and
to fail in that obedience; he denies never the law; he unceasingly
breaks it.

It is true, that when we rise to a certain general point of view,
nothing appears better regulated than the mediaeval society.
Regularity, far from being defective, was in excess. A manifold
foresight multiplied the laws. The church and the state, feudality and
the commons, sovereignty and suzerainty, had each their codes,
complicated and provident as those of a society in which right and
interest are complicated and run athwart each other. Decretals, bulls,
decisions of councils, feudal assizes, royal charters and commercial
charters, laws and regulations of all kinds, embarrass us by their
number much more than they sadden us by their absence. And the
definitive result of the whole is a grand and admirable effort of
Christian wisdom to establish in this world the reign of justice and
peace. No right is denied, no interest is sacrificed, no power is
without its limit, no liberty without its defense. Relations of the
king to the subject, of the suzerain to the vassal, of the master to
the serf, all are regulated there on the basis, so often forgotten, of
reciprocal rights and duties. Never, perhaps, have the conciliation of
order and liberty, hierarchy and the equality, the powers of the chief
and the rights of the inferior, been conceived in so happy a manner.

I said _conceived_, not effected; for if we come to the fact, the rule
fails to be translated into reality, or, rather, is so often broken
that it may be said not even to exist; all relations become violent;
master and serf, suzerain and vassal, king and subject, whose mutual
relations were so well settled in law, are in a continual struggle
against one another. That magnificent edifice presented us in theory,
with the pope and the emperor at its summit, and in which the lowest
serf holds his place, is in reality as unsubstantial as the fairy
castles seen in our dreams.

{202}

When I speak thus of the middle ages, I speak only of the lay society;
I do not speak of the cloister and the church. They judge very
improperly the middle ages who identify society in them with the
church. The church was then, as now, not of her age. She struggled
against it, and was more or less sullied on the points on which she
came more directly in contact with the world--that is, in the secular
clergy, and even the episcopacy, and more completely herself only when
the cloister, the distance of places, and the diversity of origin
removed her farthest from the feudal society--that is to say, in the
religious orders and the papacy. I regard as a veritable chimera that
dream, sometimes entertained, of a Europe gentle and submissive,
obedient to the least word of the papacy, and conducted peaceably by
the staff of St. Peter--in the ways of ignorance and barbarism, say
unbelieving historians--in the ways of happiness and salvation, say
Catholic writers. Both delight in this dream; the former because they
would ruin the church by throwing upon her the responsibility of the
crimes and vices of the middle ages; the latter because they would
restore those ages by identifying them with the church. But I ask them
to tell me at what time, during what year, what day, or what hour only
this general submission existed? I ask them to tell me if there was a
single day, a single minute which did not bring to the church her
combat, not merely against kings and feudal lords, but against
nations, and not only on one point of Europe, but on a thousand?--if
once only this temporal jurisdiction of the papacy over the world was
exercised otherwise than at the point of the sword--the sword of
steel, as well as the sword of speech?

This middle age, this docile child, this innocent lamb, which allows
itself to be led gently and blindly by the shepherd's crook, I find
nowhere; I see indeed a child, but a hard and rebellious child, who
seldom bends, rarely except to threats, and who, however humbly he may
and, finds it no fault to straighten himself immediately after. Alas!
the infancy of a people is not the infancy of men. The infant man has
his physical weakness, which permits him to be controlled, and in
restraining protects him. The infant people, for its misfortune, has
all the passions and all the material forces of the full-grown man,
and by the side of this formidable infant, the papacy to me appears
different in everything, different by its supernatural life, which
lifts it above the human condition, by the maturity of its
intelligence, which elevates it above this youthful world, by the
traditions of the Italian civilization which raises it above this
world, still sunk in barbarism. It is divine in the midst of men,
adult in the midst of children, Italian in the midst of these Teutons,
Roman in the midst of these barbarians, civilian in the midst of these
soldiers.

And by this, it seems to me, is justified, even if not otherwise, the
political part played by the papacy in the middle ages. When it is
demanded by what right it pretended to the temporal government of
Europe, I answer unhesitatingly, by

  "The right that a spirit vast and firm in its designs
  Has over the gross spirits of vulgar men;"

or, at least, the right which maturity has naturally over youth,
science over ignorance, reason over unreason. The mature man, whom
chance has placed in the midst of indocile and imprudent children, has
over them by his age and reason alone a part, at least, of the rights
of a father and a teacher. Only, with the father or teacher physical
force supports this right, while to the papacy it was wanting, and
could be supplied only by the sanctity of its character, the authority
of it's words, and the intrepidity of its government.

{203}

This will be for ever its glory. The glory of the church is far less
in having reigned than in having fought. That temporal dominion of the
Holy See was never in the state of a peaceable, regular, acknowledged
sovereignty. It was only a form of the unrelenting warfare which the
church sustained against evil,--one of the phases of her never-ending
combat, one of the arms of her ceaseless struggle. The church has
fought either without auxiliaries, or with auxiliaries always ready to
abandon her; she herself wields not the sword of the flesh, and is
never sure that those who do handle it in her name will not turn it
against her; sometimes saved by kings and menaced by the people,
sometimes aided by the people and crushed by kings, she has fought her
fight without having, in reality, any other human power than that of
her dangers, the sufferings, the exile, the captivity, the
humiliations, the death of her pontiffs. She has never completely
triumphed, but she has never fainted. She has never completely teamed
the lion she combated, but she has been able to soften him. She has
never been a peaceful and happy mother in the midst of submissive
children, a pacific queen in the midst of devoted subjects; she has
been rather an unwearied combatant, according to his word who said, "I
am calm to bring the world not peace, but a sword."

But the moment must come when the child becomes a man. The struggle
then changes front. The man is not better than the child; properly
speaking, he is not wiser or more reasonable: he has simply more order
in his life, and more logical sequence in his conduct. A sort of human
respect induces him to study to maintain greater harmony between his
principles and his actions; when he has a good theory,  he tries
oftener than the child to have a good practice; and oftener when his
conduct is bad, he concocts a bad theory to justify it. To use a
well-known word, he practices his good maxims or he _maxims_ his bad
practices, as the grace of God in him and his conscience are stronger
or weaker. This accord with himself, which is the characteristic, at
least the pretension, of the mature man, makes alike his greatness and
his littleness. The church, when society is matured, has to combat
doctrines rather than passions, ideas rather than vices. The middle
ages were, then, the infancy of Christian nations; should we say the
sixteenth century--the age of passion, of effervescence, of revolt, of
lapses--was the age of youth? Is the present age the age of maturity
or of decrepitude? This, five hundred years hence, our descendants may
be able to determine.

It still remains to know whether the childhood of a people, like the
childhood of individuals, ought not to be regretted rather than
disdained, and whether it does not charm us more by the memory of its
joys than it humiliates us by the memory of its weaknesses. If the
childhood of the individual is not capable of crimes, it is not any
more capable of great deeds; the childhood of a people, on the
contrary, although it may have its gentle and simple side, has also
its heroic and sublime side. It was so with the child-people who
passed the Red Sea, or fought under the walls of Troy. They are
child-men for whom the Pentateuch was written, and who inspired the
Iliad. They are child-men, our ancestors, who reconquered the tomb of
Christ, who carried faith even to the depths of China, and who with
Joan of Arc chased the English from France. They were not souls free
from all blemish, nor hands never sullied; very often the brutality of
their manners repels us, and we are borne, in seeing them, like the
tender souls in those iron ages, to seek refuge in the shadow of the
cloister, in order to find there, at least, peace, delicacy of heart,
dignity of intelligence, and serenity of soul. But they were really of
those to whom much is forgiven, for they loved much. Among their
contradictions they had this grand and noble contradiction--that of
having committed great faults, and yet preserving the love of God; of
being soiled with vice, and yet not abandoned to it; of having removed
far from the Lord, {204} but having never despaired of his mercy; of
being very hard and very cruel, and yet preserving a loving fibre in
their hearts, and tears in their eyes. After all, if these men were
children, they were the children of whom it is said, "Of such is the
kingdom of heaven." If the middle ages had vices, they had also faith:
the world in ripening has lost the faith, and retained the vices.

Here is what, as it seems to me, may be said of the middle ages, after
what M. de Carné has said, and by the side of what he has said. It may
not be without some advantage to place this very different view by the
side of the political view, which he has so well developed. I repeat
it, that considering only the two types of Suger and St. Louis, he
comprehends them, for they come within his sphere; he has, perhaps,
not so well comprehended the medium in which they lived, or perhaps he
partially forgets it.

We must now follow France and Europe in that more manly, or senile,
epoch of their life, which M. de Carné after having given us sketches
of Du Guesclin and Joan of Arc, personifies in Louis XI., Henry IV.,
Cardinal Richelieu, and Mazarin. These are already times which touch
very closely our own. The work of Henry IV., of Richelieu, Mazarin,
and Louis XIV., has crumbled almost under our own eyes, and in many
respects their spirit is still living in our midst. The proof is in
the fact that it is still the object of attack, Richelieu especially.
Louis XIV. is discussed with all the vehemence of a contemporary
controversy. This indeed is not the case with M. de Carné. There is
not, perhaps, in his book an appreciation more calm, more dignified,
more grave than that of the policy of the great cardinal.

He has justified this policy. He shows with an evidence that seems to
me incontestable, that, setting aside the severity of certain acts,
setting aside the last months of a premature old age, when weariness
of power began to obscure his lofty intellect, Richelieu could have
done hardly otherwise than he did. The nobility, it must be said, a
little in all times, and very much for a century, had yielded to a
deplorable spirit of faction. Whether it dreamed, like the Calvinistic
gentlemen of the sixteenth century, of a resurrection of feudalism;
whether in its eyes, as in those of the Duke of Rohan, was zoning the
plan of an aristocratic republic; or whether, as more frequently
happens, all its ambitions were individual, and that the alliances it
formed were only the coalitions of dissatisfied pretensions, always is
it certain that it was in an eminent degree incapable of a serious and
well-defined policy. It could not even be national, and for fourscore
years there was not a chief of the party who did not seek his support
in England or in Spain, and who did not treat in the beginning of his
revolt with foreigners, as he counted at its close on treating with
his king. The commonalty, though more national, had not a whit more
case for the necessary conditions of regular political action. The
parliament incontestably formed the head all the Third Estate: it was
the most dignified post, the highest placed, the gravest, and the most
capable of affairs; and yet the parliaments interfered in politics
only with the littlenesses and caprice of children, the conceit of
youngsters, or the timidity of old men; by turns submissive and
rebellious, idolaters of absolute power, and rebels to every
government; rash and timid, rebelling and begging pardon.

The cardinal has been almost always reproached for having established
royalty without a basis; but this basis, where was he to find it? Was
it ever in his power to create it? Could he found a political
aristocracy, respecting the laws, and protecting the people, where
there was only a turbulent, unpopular, and unstatesmanlike nobility?
Could he erect on French soil a House of Commons, animated at once
with the spirit of legal obedience and of constitutional resistance,
{205} at a time when it did not exist even in England, and where there
were only citizens ready to revolt, as was proved in the time of the
League, and ready to submit, and even to worship power, as was proved
under Henry IV., but wholly incapable of resisting without rebelling?
At least, it will not be said that at all hazards, and without taking
any account of these facts, the cardinal should have inaugurated in
France something like the charter of 1814, or that of 1830, which
would be very much like reproaching Hannibal for not using gunpowder,
and Christopher Columbus for not using steam!

Richelieu felt that all force, that every principle of peace,
grandeur, and unity, was at the time in royalty. Royalty was in the
sphere of things possible, or imaginary, the only regular, and even
the only popular power. Outside of it there were only resistances, or
rather attacks, more or less inconsequent and factious. The liberties
of the middle ages, such as they had then, could appear only as
turbulent and irregular liberties, incompatible with that order and
that regularity which were a necessity for the genius of the cardinal
and his age. Richelieu rendered absolute that power which alone could
be a protection, well the others would be only sources of danger. In
doing this he abolished no liberties, for there were then no liberties
in the modern sense of the word. He had little else than privileges to
suppress, and absolute monarchy conferred more privileges then it
destroyed. We had only insubordinations to quell, and misdeeds to
punish. That, in this struggle, his untempered severity amounted even
to cruelty, sometimes odius, and almost always useless, M. de Carné
does not deny, and I concede it even to a greater extent, perhaps,
than he would approve; but what had been the triumph of the party, or
rather of the contradictory parties? What monarchy--national,
constitutional, and legal--could have resulted from the victory of
those great lords, leagued together, and constantly intriguing against
the government ever since the death of Henry IV.; sometimes open
rebels, sometimes submissive; ever uniting, or separating, allying
themselves at the the exigency of the moment; enemies to their friends
of yesterday, faithful to-day with the factious of the morrow,
Protestants with Catholics, Catholics with Huguenots, Frenchmen with
Spain! What a magnificent bill of rights the Duchess de Chevereuse
would have drawn up for Louis XIII. to sign!

Richelieu did the only thing which in his time was possible, and that
is the justification of the political order which he founded. But his
work was not complete, and was not completed, I dare add, solely
because it was sanguinary. The blood shed, as M. de Carné well says,
was not so abundant as is commonly believed; twenty-six men in all
perished on the scaffold. How many politicians have the reputation of
great benignity, who have put to death a much larger number! But on
more than one occasion Richelieu's proceedings were odious, his
cruelty refined, his vengeance useless. It belonged to a man of quite
another nature to finish the work which he, with less violence, might
have accomplished. The cardinal, when he died, left feudal opposition
humbled, but living area The blood of Montmorency had implanted still
more hate than fear. All the uneasy and restless forces, which, with
no purpose, or only that of personal satisfaction, agitated France for
nearly a century, crushed by the hand of the cardinal, drew themselves
up anew when he was no longer there, and made themselves immediately
felt and feared, under the reign of a child, the regency of a Spanish
woman, and the ministry of an Italian. The work, then, was not
complete, and the last germ of that aristocratic faction had not been
extinguished on the scaffold of Cinq-Mars.

{206}

M. de Carné, who overrates Richelieu, greatly underrates Mazarin.
Certainly, the man had less grandeur, and was more sullied; there were
defects in his genius, and undeniably dark shades in his character;
his morality was certainly of a low order, but his intellectual power
was something marvellous. I am astonished to see that foreigner, that
adventurer, that man who was never popular, that minister with greedy
and grasping instincts, triumphing over enemies which the great
cardinal had not been able to subdue, surviving the spirit of faction
that had survived Richelieu,--to see him accomplish the work which
Richelieu had not been able to accomplish by violence; and
accomplishing it without having to reproach himself with erecting a
single scaffold. This Italian, so furiously decried, who on
re-entering Paris, after his victory, had not a word of anger to
utter, nor a vengeance to inflict on any one; who re-established in
their seats the magistrates of Parliament who had set a price on his
head; who, vilified to satiety by the men of letters, tranquilly, and
without ostentation, restored to them their pensions; who granted to
the grandees of the kingdom--who were his enemies--nearly all they had
asked, except their independence; this man, in all this, may indeed
have been more able than generous, but I much like that kind of
ability, and regard it as worth imitating. And what is curious, is
that, from that minister, so many times dishonored, from that peace in
which the factious were so well treated, from that struggle in which
royalty was often so hard pressed, and in which it was so often forced
to give way, royalty itself came forth stronger, more absolute, more
venerated, more adored, than it was left by the lofty struggle
maintained by Cardinal Richelieu, and in which his victories were
ratified by the hangman.

It is in this way that monarchy was established in France; and, be it
said in passing, without recurring to the necessity and legitimacy of
this work, it has produced, in spite of its many imperfections and
excesses, the most normal epoch in our history since that of St.
Louis. This epoch had only brief duration, and it is sometimes, said,
that what is called the ancient _régime_, was only a period of
transition. I grant it. In this passing world, what century is there
that is not a century of transition? When is it that the nations can
stop, pitch their tents, and say, "It is good to be here?" I remember
still all in my youth, the defunct Saint-Simonian school, which,
perhaps, is not so defunct as is supposed, divided the history of the
world into critical periods and _organic_ periods; but as for its
organic periods, they could not tell where to find them. It is the
same with us all. I see, indeed, in history, times of passage, but not
the time of sojourn; and I know not any century in which it might not
be said with as much truth has in our own, "We are in the moment of
transition." But if ever there was really an organic epoch, it was
that of which we speak. If any age could really pass for a normal age,
not indeed for the perfection of its virtue, but for the plenitude of
its principle, it would certainly be the age of Louis XIV. That was
essentially, in good and in evil, in greatness and littleness, in its
good deeds and in its evil deeds, in its legitimate honor and in its
idolatrous apotheosis, the age of royalty.

On many sides, certainly, this age is open to attack: yet neither men
nor human institutions are to be judged after an absolute type. The
greatest must miserably fail, if so judged. All judgments of human
things our relative. When we place a life, in age, a rule, any
institution whatever, by the side of the ideal type which are
imagination forms to itself, nothing is to be said; that life is
stained, that period is wretched, that _régime_ is odious, that
institution is detestable; but if we compare it with that which has
been before, after, or contemporary with it, or even that which would
have been humanly possible to put in its place {207} Our judgment is
more indulgent, because less absolute. It is our glory, but also our
error, to bear in ourselves a certain passion for the beautiful and
the good, which can find no satisfaction in this world; to form to
ourselves in everything, an ideal type superior to all human power to
realize; to have in us the measure of heaven, which we very clear that
Louis XIV. was only a poor knight, Bossuet only a common-place writer.
Homer a street-singer, Raphael a dauber by the side of the king, the
orator, the poet, the painter, of which we dream in our imagination.

That _régime_, inaugurated by Richelieu, confirmed by Mazarin, and
glorified by Louis XIV., had, doubtless, its baseness as every other,
but not more than others. It had its cruelties, and they were often
inexcusable; it had a greater and more fundamental wrong still, that
of pushing power to excess, and exaggerating its rights, as well as
deifying the person of the sovereign. Human powers have all a limit,
however absolute they may claim to be; and whether collected in a
single hand, or dispersed among many--whether they are vested in the
people, in an assembly, or in one man alone, the sphere of their
action is no greater. Power has its limit in right, and this limit
cannot be passed without guilt; it has its limit in fact, and against
that it cannot dash its head without breaking it.

This was its fault, and it was cruelly expiated. We say, however, that
the monarchy of Louis XIV. perished less by his fault than by that of
his successor. Louis XV. inherited a royalty in its plenitude,
surrounded by the profound respect of the nation. Louis XlV. had died
unpopular, but he left the throne popular. The public calamities were
charged to the man, not to the monarchy. I know not in all history a
king more beloved, more venerated, more adored as king and
independently of his personal qualities, than was Louis XV. A child at
first, then a young man, without other personal merit than that of
leaving Cardinal de Fleury to govern, Louis XV., during twenty years,
gathered in peace the fruits of royalty. More humane than Louis XIV.;
as selfish indeed, but selfish in another manner; not taking like him
his royalty in earnest, and instead of accepting it as a dignity
almost divine, regarding it as a private estate he had a right to
enjoy without being under the slightest obligation to look after its
management, Louis XV. took pleasure in squandering the treasures of
popular respect and affection which his predecessor had bequeathed
him. France persisted in respecting his royalty as long as she could.
Neither the scandals of the Regency, less public than they have become
for posterity, nor the succession of court influences, not yet sunk to
the baseness of the later years, though beginning to approach it; nor
the indolence and the corruption of that prince who hardly ever opened
a letter on business, hardly ever spoke in council, and hardly ever
went to the army; nor that egotism of the man crudely paraded in the
place of the egotism of the king professed by Louis XIV. as a
religion--nothing of all this disgusted the country, so marvellously
had France been imbued with the love and worship of royalty by
Richelieu, Mazarin, and Louis XIV.!

The corruption of ideas was slowly effected. The eighteenth century
did not begin in 1700 nor in 1715, it was only beginning in 1750. The
first irreligious book which gave much scandal was that of Toussaint
in 1748. Up to that time Voltaire had restricted himself to some timid
allusions against priests mingled with many flatteries of the court;
the Pucelle was written but not published. Twenty-eight years after
the death of Louis XIV., at the time of the illness of Metz, was still
seen a thing unique perhaps--a whole country, not only the nobility
and the court, but the citizens, the people, all those who were most
disinterested in regard to royal favors, were seen {208} praying with
a tenderness truly filial that God would leave to them a king who had
reigned for twenty-eight years without having done anything, and
wresting from Providence, so to speak, by the force of supplications,
a life steeped in debauchery. This great and sincere testimonial of
monarchical enthusiasm, which remained so deeply rooted in the memory
of our fathers, was given, I say not to the worst, but certainly to
the least meritorious of all our monarchs.

It is necessary, then, to render to our country this justice, that, if
it came at length to despise power, it was because in spite of itself
it was driven to it by power itself. It needed that this so solemn
mark of filial devotion should be returned by continued indolence and
corruption. It needed more than thirty years of the cynical workings
of this royalty to erase from the heart in which it was so deeply
rooted, the taste and the worship of royalty. They who, in seeking the
semi-metaphysical, semi-political causes for the fall of the monarchy
of Louis XIV., think they find the principle of its ruin in the manner
of its constitution, may, in certain respects, be right, but they
should tell us how it could have been constituted differently.
However, they seem to me to count for too little the abuses so
flagrant and so prolonged, which were made of it.

Neither am I among those who accuse the France of the old _régime_ of
servility. Its love for royalty may have been excessive, but it was,
at least, sincere; and if sincere it was not servile. We may be guilty
of idolatry towards those we love, but we can be guilty of servility
only towards those we love not. Royalty, I admit, was regarded as a
demi-god, but they who really worship the false god do it in good
faith. Our fathers were, perhaps, fanatics, but they were not slaves.
The great English lords who, in the eighteenth century, traversed
France in a post chaise, in order to attend the court at Versailles,
and to pass several weeks in Parts, doubtless judged the country to be
inhabited only by the cowardly slaves of an Asiatic despot;--they
found no House of Commons, no speaker nor usher with the black rod. In
the same way, Sterne, seeing at a play a man who annoyed his neighbors
and whom the guard ordered to leave, was confounded by the arbitrary
proceeding, and could not comprehend that the citizen did not maintain
by his fists the right to disturb the performance. It was a country
judged on the surface by the habits of mind of another country during
About the same time, another Englishman,  [Footnote 39] who did not
journey in a post-chaise, who went on foot from village to village,
playing the flute for the peasantry, holding disputations in the
monasteries, and thus paying his reckoning, judged France a little
differently. He came very near, God forgive him, envying it, and
preferring it to his own country! He met here not miserable slaves,
but happy men, satisfied with themselves, and satisfied with all the
world. The current money in this country, according to him, was not
silver; was not the material favors of the government; was not, or, at
least, was not only, pension and place; it was a vain money, no doubt,
like all human riches, but a money, at least, more delicate and more
noble. "Society here finds its life in HONOR. Praise gained by merit,
or obtained by an imaginary worth, is the money which passes current
from hand to hand, and by a noble commerce passes from the court to
the camp and the cottage." France, which for the others was the
country of servitude, was for him the country of honor.

  [Footnote 39: We need hardly tell our readers the person referred to
  here was an Irishman--Oliver Goldsmith. (Ed. C.W.)]

In reality it is hardly for us to be ashamed of the servitude of
forefathers. It is true, more mature than they, we no longer either
worship or respect authority; but we count it no fault to beg its
favors. We crowd around the altar, though we no longer believe in the
god. Every revolution has shown us the ante-chambers {209} invaded in
turn by a cloud of conquerors, revolutionists, or conservatives,
monarchists or republicans, all men have profound conviction, of a
well-tried self-respect, a liberalism true as steel, and an
independence as firm as iron, but who nevertheless came to beg their
bit from the budget Since we came into the world, four times, at
least, have we seeing this hideous quarry to which (we must render all
justice to our equalitarians) all classes, high or low, rich or for,
lettered or unlettered, have flocked with a harmony truly democratic.
We now no longer conceive of a public service which is not paid for, a
state function which is not an income, a position which has not its
money value. Have we the right, in good faith, to be ashamed of the
times when they said not _places_ but _charges_, because the public
service was considered not a position but duty? Have we the right to
attack even that court and that finance of aforetime, stained, I
grant, with cupidity and adulation, but not otherwise than in all
times, and are still the classes that approach power? Have we the
right, above all, to attack the whole of that society much less greedy
of the favors of power, much more independent of it than we are
ourselves,  that bourgeoisie who loved so much its king from whom it
had nothing to expect, except the suppression of a fourth of its
revenue? Those magistrates who gave their last penny for the right to
rise at five o'clock in the morning, and pass the forenoon in the
audience, well to-day the lowest deputy finds himself poorly paid by
two thousand francs for rising at ten o'clock? That provincial
nobility, poor, obscure, disdained, who had all the charges of
aristocracy without its benefits, and who esteemed themselves but too
happy when, after twenty years of service in order, where they left
their patrimony at first, then an arm, a leg, their brothers and
cousins, they obtained from the bounty of the king their discharge,
and permission to retire to their homes with the cross of St. Louis,
and the brevet of Brigadier-General; crippled, impoverished, but
endeavoring, if possible, to "preserve a fortune sufficient to enable
their children to replace them"? We, citizens and freemen, do we even
for much money, what those servile beings did for a little honor?

I have passed here a little beyond the work of M. de Carné, who stops
with Mazarin. He will pardon me, even thank me, for not permitting
myself to go farther still, and to broach the hackneyed subject of
1789. I have elsewhere had occasion to set forth my views on that
subject, by the side of M. de Carné's, happy to agree with him in many
respects, though more severe, perhaps, in my judgment of that
revolutionary movement than he is. The tendency of minds toward
reforms might have been legitimate, but the way taken to effect them
was false, and in my eyes infected with evil from the first. In fact,
the groundwork of French unity, which M. de Carné represents for us
with so much love, what has been its use, if, after the labor of so
many centuries, it could be attained only by a national convulsion,
the most violent, perhaps, which has figured in history? Civil
equality, unity of territory, reform in legislation, were they not
already sufficiently prepared by St. Louis, Charles VII., Louis XI.,
Richelieu, and Louis XIV., and was it necessary that they should be
purchased by the revolt of the _jeu de paume_, by the blood of
Versailles, and by the crimes of the reign of Terror? Were our
countrymen not criminal, at that epoch, in repulsing a past in which
they might, on the contrary, have found a firmer support for the
reforms needed?

Be that as it may, I cannot but thank M. de Carné, in the name of all
those who still read, for the work which he achieved in 1848, and for
the return which he has just made to his former studies. Whoever we
may be, and whatever may be the present, it is not necessary that it
should absorb us. As the spectacle of the present age serves to
explain past ages, so should a return to the past cool and calm in our
minds {210} the agitation of the present. Of this freedom from
contemporaneous reflection, M. de Carné has given us a noble example.
On two or three points, at most, the statesman of our times is a
little too perceptible. I much doubt, for instance, if in the
sixteenth century, the Balafré could have founded in France a dynasty
and a citizen royalty like that of Louis Philippe. Still it might have
been had the Balafré been a cadet of the Capetian family, and if the
dynasty of the Valois had been for forty years shaken by two
revolutions. What strikes me, on the contrary, in the history of the
League, and what appears to me one of the greatest proofs of the
spirit of nationality and of loyalty which then reigned in the
commonalty, is the repugnance which they always manifested to
accepting a foreign dynasty, the timid and reluctant manner with which
the proposition was made, and the unpopularity with which it was
received. At the time of the League, the nation wished two things
which then seemed irreconcilable--Catholic royalty and French loyalty;
it wished, so to speak, an impossibility, but it willed it with
decision and perseverance, and that impossibility it obtained.

But, save these slight traces of the man of the present, M. de Carné
has been able, with rare facility, to identify himself with past ages;
he has known how to take from erudition what was necessary to
enlighten his political point of view, without suffering it absorb
him. He has been perfectly able in surveying all these different
subjects to identify himself by turns with each of them. Without
neglecting details and without losing himself in them, without
disdaining to speak to the imagination, and without suffering himself
to be carried away by the fascinations of the picturesque, without
abandoning himself to political theories, and without dispoiling
history of them, he has in turn as fully known his Abbot Suger, his
St. Louis, is Du Guesclin, and each one of his heroes, as if he had
never studied else. He makes himself master of each one of these
subjects in brief time, but with a sagacity worth more than time, and
with a quick perception of the dominant idea which often escapes the
simple erudite. He has not me what is called a philosophical history,
a task become facile and commonplace, and he has not made what is
still more easy, purely contemporary politics _à propos_ of the past;
he has not made a history, if by history we understand the detailed
recital of events; but he has known how to keep constantly at his
disposition the philosophical view which illuminates history, the
political sense which helps to judge it, and the knowledge of facts
which is its foundation. He has not made a history, but he has made a
luminous summary, and given us a necessary complement of all the
theories of French history.


----------

MY TEARS.

  Ah me! how many precious tears for naught I've wept;
            And thus my soul did cheat.
  Would I, like Magdalene, had treasured them, and kept
            Their wealth for Jesus' feet.

------

{211}

LEGEND OF COUNT JULIAN AND HIS FAMILY.

BY WASHINGTON IRVING.


Many and various are the accounts given in ancient chronicles of the
fortunes of Count Julian and his family, and many are the traditions
on the subject extant among the populace of Spain, and perpetuated in
those countless ballads sung by peasants and muleteers, which spread a
singular charm over the whole of this romantic land.

He who has travelled in Spain in the true way in which the country
ought to be travelled--sojourning in its remote provinces, rambling
among the rugged defiles and secluded valleys of its mountains, and
making himself familiar with the people in their out-of-the-way
hamlets and rarely visited neighborhoods--will remember many a group
of travellers and muleteers, gathered of an evening around the door or
the spacious hearth of a mountain venta, wrapped in their brown
cloaks, and listening with grave and profound attention to the long
historic ballad of some rustic troubadour, either recited with the
true _ore rotundo_ and modulated cadences of Spanish elocution, or
chanted to the tinkling of a guitar. In this way he may have heard the
doleful end of Count Julian and his family recounted in traditionary
rhymes, that have been handed down from generation to generation. The
particulars, however, of the following wild legend are chiefly
gathered from the writings of the pseudo Moor Basis; how far they may
be safely taken as historic facts it is impossible now to ascertain;
we must content ourselves, therefore, with their answering to the
exactions of poetic justice.

As yet everything had prospered with Count Julian. He had gratified
his vengeance; he had been successful in his treason, and had acquired
countless riches from the ruin of his country. But it is not outward
success that constitutes prosperity. The tree flourishes with fruit
and foliage while blasted and withering at the heart. Wherever he
went, Count Julian read hatred in every eye. The Christians cursed him
as the cause of all their woe; the Moslems despised and distrusted him
as a traitor. Men whispered together as he approached, and then turned
away in scorn; and mothers snatched away their children with horror if
he offered to caress them. He withered under the execration of his
fellow-men, and last, and worst of all, he began to loathe himself. He
tried in vain to persuade himself that he had but taken a justifiable
vengeance; he felt that no personal wrong can justify the crime of
treason to one's country.

For a time he sought in luxurious indulgence to soothe or forget the
miseries of the mind. He assembled round him every pleasure and
gratification that boundless wealth could purchase, but all in vain.
He had no relish for the dainties of his board; music had no charm
wherewith to lull his soul, and remorse drove slumber from his pillow.
He sent to Ceuta for his wife Frandina, his daughter Florinda, and his
youthful son Alarbot; hoping in the bosom of his family to find that
sympathy and kindness which he could no longer meet with in the world.
Their presence, however, brought him no alleviation. Florinda, the
daughter of his heart, for whose sake he had undertaken this {212}
signal vengeance, was sinking a victim to its effects. Wherever she
went, she found herself a byword of shame and reproach. The outrage
she had suffered was imputed to her as wantonness, and her calamity
was magnified into a crime. The Christians never mentioned her name
without a curse, and the Moslems, the gainers by her misfortune, spake
of her only by the appellation of Cava, the vilest epithet they could
apply to woman.

But the opprobrium of the world was nothing to the upbraiding of her
own heart. She chained herself with all the miseries of these
disastrous wars--the deaths of so many gallant cavaliers, the conquest
and perdition of her country. The anguish of her mind preyed upon the
beauty of her person. Her eye, once soft and tender in its expression,
became wild and haggard; her cheek lost its bloom and became hollow
and pallid, and at times there was desperation in her words. When her
father sought to embrace her she withdrew with shuddering from his
arms, for she thought of his treason and the ruin it had brought upon
Spain. Her wretchedness increased after her return to her native
country, until it rose to a degree of frenzy. One day when she was
walking with her parents in the garden of their palace, she entered a
tower, and, having barred the door, ascended to the battlements. From
thence she called to them in piercing accents, expressive of her
insupportable anguish and desperate determination. "Let this city,"
said she, "be henceforth called Malacca, in memorial of the most
wretched of women, who therein put an end to her days." So saying, she
threw herself headlong from the tower, and was dashed to pieces. The
city, adds the ancient chronicler, received the name thus given it,
though afterward softened to Malaga, which it still retains in memory
of the tragical end of Florinda.

The Countess Frandina abandoned this scene of woe, and returned to
Ceuta, accompanied by her infant son. She took with her the remains of
her unfortunate daughter, and gave them honorable sepulture in a
mausoleum of the chapel belonging to the citadel. Count Julian
departed for Carthagena, where he remained plunged in horror at this
doleful event.

About this time the cruel Suleiman, having destroyed the the family of
Muza, had sent an Arab general, named Alahor, to succeed Abdalasis, as
emir or governor of Spain. The new emir was of a cruel and suspicious
nature, and commenced his sway with a stern severity that soon made
those under his command look back with regret to the easy rule of
Abdalasis. He regarded with an eye of distrust the renegade Christians
who had aided in the conquest, and who bore arms in the service of the
Moslems; but his deepest suspicions fell upon Count Julian. "He has
been a traitor to his own countryman," said he; "how can we be sure
that he will not prove traitor to us?"

A sudden insurrection of the Christians who had taken refuge in the
Asturian mountains, quickened his suspicions, and inspired him with
fears of some dangerous conspiracy against his power. In the height of
his anxiety, he bethought him of an Arabian sage named Yuza, who had
accompanied him from Africa. This son of science was withered in form,
and looked as if he had outlived the usual term of mortal life. In the
course of his studies and travels in the East, he had collected the
knowledge and experience of ages; being skilled in astrology, and, it
is said, in necromancy, and possessing the marvellous gift of prophecy
or divination. To this expounder of mysteries Alahor applied to learn
whether any secret treason menaced his safety.

The astrologer listened with deep attention and overwhelming brow to
all the surmises and suspicions of the emir, then shut himself up to
consult his books and commune with those supernatural intelligences
subservient {213} to his wisdom. At an appointed hour the emir sought
him in his cell. It was filled with the smoke of perfumes; squares and
circles and various diagrams were described upon the floor, and the
astrologer was boring over a scroll of parchment, covered with
cabalistic characters. He received Alahor with a gloomy and sinister
aspect; pretending to have discovered fearful portents in the heavens,
and to have had strange dreams and mystic visions.

"O emir," said he, "be on your guard! treason is around you and in
your path; your life is in peril. Beware of Count Julian and his
family."

"Enough," said the emir. "They show all die! Parents and children--all
shall die!"

He forthwith sent a summons to Count Julian to attend him in Cordova.
The messenger found him plunged in affliction for the recent death of
his daughter. The count excused himself, on account of this
misfortune, from obeying the commands of the emir in person, but sent
several of his adherents. His hesitation, and the circumstance of his
having sent his family across the straits to Africa, were construed by
the jealous mind of the emir into proofs of guilt. He no longer
doubted his being concerned in the recent insurrections, and that he
had sent his family away, preparatory to an attempt, by force of arms,
to subvert the Moslem domination. In is fury he put to death Siseburto
and Evan, the nephews of Bishop Oppas and sons of the former king,
Witiza, suspecting them of taking part in the treason. Thus did they
expiate their treachery to their country in the fatal Battle of
Guadalete.

Alahor next hastened to Carthagena to seize upon Count Julian. So
rapid were his movements that the count had barely time to escape with
fifteen cavaliers, with whom he took refuge in the strong castle of
Marcuello, among the mountains of Aragon. The emir, enraged to be
disappointed of his prey, embarked at Carthagena and crossed the
straits to Ceuta, to make captives of the Countess Frandina and her
son.

The old chronicle from which we take this part of our legend, presents
a gloomy picture of the countess in the stern fortress to which she
had fled for refuge--a picture heightened by supernatural horrors.
These latter the sagacious reader will admit or reject according to
the measure of his faith and judgment; always remembering that in dark
and eventful times, like those in question, involving the destinies of
nations, the downfall of kingdoms, and the crimes of rulers and mighty
men, the hand of fate is sometimes strangely visible, and confounds
the wisdom of the worldly wise, by intimations and portents above the
ordinary course of things. With this proviso, we make no scruple to
follow the venerable chronicler in his narration.

Now so it happened that the Countess Frandina was seated late at night
in her chamber in the citadel of Ceuta, which stands on a lofty rock,
overlooking the sea. She was revolving in gloomy thought the late
disasters of her family, when she heard a mournful noise like that of
the sea-breeze moaning about the castle walls. Raising her eyes, she
beheld her brother, the Bishop Oppas, at the entrance of the chamber.
She advanced to embrace him, but he forbade her with a motion of his
hand, and she observed that he was ghastly pale, and that his eyes
glared as with lambent flames.

"Touch me not, sister," said he, with a mournful voice, "lest thou be
consumed by the fire which rages within me. Guard well thy son, for
blood-hounds are upon his track. His innocence might have secured him
the protection of heaven, but our crimes have involved him in our
common ruin." He ceased to speak and was no longer to be seen. His
coming and going were alike without noise, and the door of the chamber
remained fast bolted.

{214}

On the following morning a messenger arrived with tidings that the
Bishop Oppas had been made prisoner in battle by the insurgent
Christians of the Asturias, and had died in fetters in a tower of the
mountains. The same messenger brought word that the Emir Alahor had
put to death several of the friends of Count Julian; had obliged him
to fly for his life to a castle in Aragon, and was embarking with a
formidable force for Ceuta.

The Countess Frandina, as has already been shown, was of courageous
heart, and danger made her desperate. There were fifty Moorish solders
in the garrison; she feared that they would prove treacherous, and
take part with their countrymen. Summoning her officers, therefore,
she informed them of their danger, and commanded them to put those
Moors to death. The guards sallied forth to obey her orders.
Thirty-five of the Moors were in the great square, unsuspicious of any
danger, when they were severally singled out by their executioners,
and, at a concerted signal, killed on the spot. The remaining fifteen
took refuge in a tower. They saw the armada of the emir at a distance,
and hoped to be able to hold out until its arrival. The soldiers of
the countess saw it also, and made extraordinary efforts to destroy
these internal enemies before they should be attacked from without.
They made repeated attempts to storm the tower, but were as often
repulsed with severe loss. They then undermined it, supporting its
foundations by stanchions of wood. To these they set fire and withdrew
to a distance, keeping up a constant shower of missiles to prevent the
Moors from sallying forth to extinguish the flames. The stanchions
were rapidly consumed, and when they gave way the tower fell to the
ground. Some of the Moors were crushed among the ruins; others were
flung to a distance and dashed among the rocks; those who survived
were instantly put to the sword.

The fleet of the emir arrived at Centa about the hour of Vespers. He
landed, but found the gates closed against him. The countess herself
spoke to him from a tower, and set [illegible] at defiance. The emir
immediately laid siege to the city. He consulted the astrologer Yuxa,
who told him that for seven days his star would have the ascendant
over that of the youth Alarbot, but after that time the youth would be
safe from his power, and would effect his ruin.

Alahor immediately ordered the city to be assailed on every side, and
at length carried it by storm. The countess took refuge with her
forces in the citadel, and made desperate defense; but the walls were
sapped and mined, and she saw that all resistance would soon be
unavailing. Her only thoughts now were to conceal her child. "Surely,"
said she, "they will not think of seeking him among the dead." She led
him therefore into the dark and dismal chapel. "Thou art not afraid to
be alone in this darkness, my child?" said she.

"No, mother," replied the boy; "darkness gives silence and sleep." She
conducted him to the Florinda. "Fearest thou the dead. my child?" "No,
mother; the dead can do no harm, and what should I fear from my
sister?"

The countess opened the sepulcher. "Listen, my son," said she. "There
are fierce and cruel people who have come hither to murder thee. Stay
here in company with thy sister, and be quiet as thou dost value thy
life!" The boy, who was of a courageous nature, did as he was bidden,
and remained there all that day, and all the night, and the next day
until the third hour.

In the mean time the walls of the citadel were sapped, the troops of
the emir poured in at the breach, and a great part of the garrison was
put to the sword. The countess was taken prisoner and brought before
the emir. She appeared in his presence with a haughty demeanor, as if
she had been a queen receiving homage; but when {215} he demanded her
son, she faltered and turned pale, and replied, "My son is with the
dead."

"Countess," said the emir, "I am not to be deceived; tell me where you
have concealed the boy, or tortures shall wring from you the secret."

"Emir," replied the countess, "may the greatest torments be my
portion, both here and hereafter, if what I speak be not the truth. My
darling child lies buried with the dead."

The emir was confounded by the solemnity of her words; but the
withered astrologer Yuza, who stood by his side regarding the countess
from beneath his bushed eyebrows, perceived trouble in her countenance
and equivocation in her words. "Leave this matter to me," whispered he
to Alahor; "I will produce the child."

He ordered strict search to be made by the soldiery, and he obliged
the countess to be always present. When they came to the chapel, her
cheek turned pale and her lip quivered. "This," said the subtile
astrologer, "is the place of concealment!"

The search throughout the chapel, however, was equally vain, and the
soldiers were about to depart, when Yuza remarked a slight gleam of
joy in the eye of the countess. "We are leaving our prey behind,"
thought he; "the countess is exulting."

He now called to mind the words of her asseveration, that her child
was with the dead. Turning suddenly to the soldiers he ordered them to
search the sepulchres, "If you find him not," said he, "drag forth the
bones of that wanton Cava, that they may be burnt, and the ashes
scattered to the winds."

The soldiers searched among the tombs and found that of Florinda
partly open. Within lay the boy in the sound sleep of childhood, and
one of the soldiers took him gently in his arms to bear him to the
emir.

When the countess beheld that her child was discovered, she rushed
into the presence of Alahor, and forgetting all her pride, threw
herself upon her knees before him.

"Mercy! mercy!" cried she in piercing accents, "mercy on my son--my
only child! O Emir! listen to a mother's prayer and my lips shall kiss
thy feet. As thou art merciful to him so may the most high God have
mercy upon thee, and heap blessings on thy head."

"Bear that frantic woman hence," said the emir, "but guard her well."

The countess was dragged away by the soldiery, without regard to her
struggles and her cries, and confined in a dungeon of the citadel.

The child was now brought to the emir. He had been awakened by the
tumult, but gazed fearlessly on the stern countenances of the
soldiers. Had the heart of the emir been capable of pity, it would
have been touched by the tender youth and innocent beauty of the
child; but his heart was as the nether millstone, and he was bent upon
the destruction of the whole family of Julian. Calling to him the
astrologer, he gave the child into his charge with a secret command.
The withered son of the desert took the boy by the hand and led him up
the winding staircase of a tower. When they reached the summit, Yuza
placed him on the battlements.

"Cling not to me, my child," said he; "there is no danger." "Father, I
fear not," said the undaunted boy; "yet it is a wondrous height."

The child looked around with delighted eyes. The breeze blew his
curling locks from about his face, and his cheek glowed at the
boundless prospect; for the tower was reared upon that lofty
promontory on which Hercules founded one of his pillars. The surges of
the sea were heard far below, beating upon the rocks, the sea-gull
screamed and wheeled about the foundations of the tower, and the sails
of lofty caraccas were as mere specks on the bosom of the deep.

"Dost thou know yonder land beyond the blue water?" said Yuza.

{216}

"It is Spain," replied the boy; "it is the land of my father and my
mother."

"Then stretch forth thy hands and bless it, my child," said the
astrologer.

The boy let go his hold of the wall; and, as he stretched forth his
hands, the aged son of Ishmael, exerting all the strength of his
withered limbs, suddenly pushed him over the battlements. He fell
headlong from the top of that tall tower, and not a bone in his tender
frame but was crushed upon the rocks beneath.

Alahor came to the foot of the winding stairs.

"Is the boy safe?" cried he.

"He is safe," replied Yuza; "come and behold the truth with thine own
eyes."

The emir ascended the tower and looked over the battlements, and
beheld the body of the child, a shapeless mass, on the rocks far
below, and the sea-gulls hovering about it; and he gave orders that it
should be thrown into the sea, which was done.

On the following morning the countess was led forth from her dungeon
into the public square. She knew of the death of her child, and that
her own death was at hand, but she neither wept nor supplicated. Her
hair was dishevelled, her eyes were haggard with watching, and her
cheek was as the monumental stone; but there were the remains of
commanding beauty in her countenance, and the majesty of her presence
awed even the rabble into respect.

A multitude of Christian prisoners were then brought forth, and Alahor
cried out: "Behold the wife of Count Julian! behold one of that
traitorous family which has brought ruin upon yourselves and upon your
country!" And he ordered that they should stone her to death. But the
Christians drew back with horror from the deed, and said, "In the hand
of God is vengeance; let not her blood be upon our heads." Upon this
the emir swore with horrid imprecations that whoever of the captives
refused should himself be stoned to death. So the cruel order was
executed, and the Countess Frandina perished by the hands of her
countrymen. Having thus accomplished his barbarous errand, the emir
embarked for Spain, and ordered the citadel of Ceuta to be set on
fire, and crossed the straits at night by the light of its towering
flames.

The death of Count Julian, which took place not long after, closed the
tragic story of his family. How he died remains involved in doubt.
Some assert that the cruel Alahor pursued him to his retreat among the
mountains, and, having taken him prisoner, beheaded him; others that
the Moors confined him in a dungeon, and put an end to his life with
lingering torments; while others affirm that the tower of the castle
of Marcuello, near Huesca, in Aragon, in which he took refuge, fell on
him and crushed him to pieces. All agree that his later end was
miserable in the extreme and his death violent. The curse of heaven,
which had thus pursued him to the grave, was extended to the very
place which had given him shelter; for we are told that the castle is
no longer inhabited on account all the strange and horrible noises
that are heard in it; and that visions of armed men are seen above it
in the air: which are supposed to be the troubled spirits of the
apostate Christians who favored the cause of the traitor.

In after-times a stone sepulcher was shown, outside of the chapel of
the castle, as the tomb of Count Julian; but the traveller and the
pilgrim avoided it, or bestowed upon it a malediction; and the name of
Julian has remained a byword and a scorn in the land for the warning
of all generations. Such ever be the lot of him who betrays his
country!

Here end the legends of the conquest of Spain.

------

{217}

ORIGINAL.

RECENT EUROPEAN EVENTS.


When it is said that the church is independent of time and its events,
and can subsist and operate under all forms of government, and in all
stages of civilization, it is not meant that she is indifferent to the
revolution of states and empires, or cares not how the state is
constituted, or the government administered. Subsisting and operating
society, though not holding from it, she cannot be indifferent to its
constitution, either for her sake or its own. It may be constituted
more for less in accordance with eternal justice, or absolute and
unchanging right, and therefore more or less favorable to her catholic
mission, which is to introduce and sustain the reign of truth and
right in the state and the administration as well as in the individual
reason and will.

Far less does the independence of the church, or her non-dependence on
the political order and its variations, imply that politics, as is but
too often assumed, are independent of the moral law of God, and
therefore that statesman, civil magistrates, and rulers are under no
obligation to consult in their acts what is right, just, or
conformable to the law of the Lord, but only what seems to them
expedient, or for their own interest. All sound politics are based on
principles derived from theology, the great catholic or universal and
invariable principles which govern man's relation to his Maker and to
his neighbor, and of which, while the state is indeed in the temporal
order the administrator, the church is the divinely instituted
guardian and teacher. No Christian, no man who believes in God, can
assert political independence of the divine or spiritual order, for
that would be simply political atheism; and if men sometimes do assert
it without meaning to deny the existence and authority of God in the
spiritual order, it is because men can be and sometimes are illogical,
and inconsistent with themselves. Kings, kaisers, magistrates, are as
much bound to obey God, to be just, to do right, as are private
individuals, and in their official no less than in their private acts.

The first question to be asked in relation to any political measure
is. Is it morally right? The second, Are the means chosen for carrying
it out just? If not, it must not be adopted. But, and this is
important, it is the prerogative of God to overrule the evil men do,
and to make it result in good. "Ye meant it for evil, but God meant it
for good." Hence when things are done and cannot be recalled, though
not before, we may lawfully accept them, and labor to turn them to the
best possible account, without acquitting or approving them, or the
motives and conduct of the men who have been in the hands of
Providence the instruments of doing them. Hence there are two points
of view from which political events may be considered: the moral--the
motives and conduct of those who have brought them about; and the
political--or the bearing of the events themselves, regarded as facts
accomplished and irrevocable, on the future welfare of society.

If we judge the recent territorial changes in Italy and Germany from
the moral point of view, we cannot acquit them. The means by which the
unity of Italy has been effected under the house of Savoy, and those
by which {218} that of Germany has been placed in the way of being
effected under the house of Hohenzollern, it seems to me are wholly
indefensible. The war of France and Sardinia against Austria in 1859,
the annexation to Sardinia of the Duchies, and the AEmilian provinces
subject to the Holy See, the absorption by force of arms of the
kingdom of the Two Sicilies, and the still more recent war of Italy
and Prussia against the same power, resulting in the mutilation and
humiliation of the Austrian empire, and possibly in depriving the pope
the remainder of his domain, are, I must hold in every sense
unjustifiable. They have been done in violation of international law,
public right, and are an outrage upon every man's innate sense of
justice, excusable only on that most detestable of all maxims--the end
sanctifies the means.

But regarded from the political point of view, as facts accomplished
and irrevocable, perhaps they are not indefensible, nay, not unlikely
under divine Providence to prove of lasting benefit to European
society. I cannot defend the _coup d'état_ of Napoleon, December 2,
1851, but I believe that the elevation of Louis Napoleon to the French
throne has turned out for the benefit of France and of Europe. I
condemned the means adopted to effect both Italian and German unity,
but I am not prepared to say that each, in view of the undeniable
tendency of modern politics, was not in itself desirable and demanded
by the solid and permanent interests of European society. Taken as
facts accomplished, as points of departure for the future, they may
have, perhaps already have had, an important bearing in putting an end
to the uneasiness under which all European society has labored since
the treaties of Vienna in 1815, and the socialistic and revolutionary
movements which have, ever since the attempted reconstruction of
Europe after the fall of Napoleon, kept it in continual turmoil, and
rendered all government except by sheer force impracticable.

The tendency of European society for four or five centuries has been,
on the one hand, toward civil and political equality, and on the
other, toward Roman imperialism. European society has revolted against
mediaeval feudalism, alike against the feudal aristocracy and the
feudal monarchy, and sought to revive the political system of imperial
Rome, to place all citizens on the footing of an equality before the
law, with exclusive privileges for none, and to base monarchy on the
sovereign will of the nation. It would be incorrect to say, as many
both at home and abroad have said, that European society has been or
is tending to pure and simple democracy, for such has not been, and is
not by any means the fact; but it has been and is tending to the
abolition of all political distinctions and privileges founded on
birth or property, and to render all persons without reference to
caste or class eligible to all the offices of state, and to make all
offices charges or trusts, instead of private property or estates.
Under feudalism all the great offices of the state and many of the
charges at court were hereditary, and could be claimed, held, and
exercised as rights, unless forfeited by treason or misprision of
treason against the liege lord. It was so in France down to the
revolution of 1789, and is still so in England in relation to several
charges at court, and to the House of Peers. The feudal crown is an
estate, and transmissible in principle, and usually in fact, as any
other estate.

Since the fifteenth century this feudal system has been attacked,
throughout the greater part of Europe, with more or less success. It
received heavy blows from Louis XI. in France, Ferdinand and Isabella
in Spain, Henry VII. in England, and Maximilian I. in Germany. The
tendency in this direction was resisted by the Protestant princes in
Germany, leagued against the emperor, the Huguenot nobles and the
Fronde in France, and by the whig nobility in England, because while
it {219} strengthened the people as against the crown, it equally
strengthened the crown against the nobility. The British reformers
to-day, under the lead of John Bright, are following out this European
tendency, and if successful, will abolish the House of Peers,
establish civil and political equality, but at the same time will
increase the power of the crown, and establish Roman imperialism,
which the Stuarts failed to do, because they sought to retain and
strengthen the feudal monarchy while they crushed the feudal
aristocracy.

But for the king or emperor to represent the nation and govern by its
sovereign authority, it is necessary that the nation should become a
state, or body politic, which it was not under feudalism. Europe under
feudalism was divided among independent and subordinate chiefs, but
not into sovereign independent nations. There were estates but no
states, and the same proprietor might hold, and often did hold,
estates in different nations, and in nations even remote from one
another, and neither power nor obedience depended on national
boundaries or national territory. There was loyalty to the chief, but
none to the nation, or to the king or emperor as representing the
national majesty or sovereignty. Hence the tendency to Roman
imperialism became also a tendency to nationality. Both king and
people conspired together to bring into national unity, and under the
imperial authority of the crown, all the fiefs, whoever the suzerain
or liege lord, and all the small principalities that by territorial
position, tradition, language, the common origin, or institutions of
the inhabitants, belonged really to one and the same nation.

The first of the continental powers to effect this national unity was
France, consisting of the former Gallic provinces of the Roman empire,
except a portion of the Gallia Germana now held by Belgium, Holland,
and the Germanic governments on the left bank of the Rhine. The
natural boundaries of France are those of the ancient Keltica of the
Greeks, extending from the Alps to the Atlantic ocean, and from the
Mediterranean sea to the English channel and the Rhine. France has not
yet recovered and united the whole of her national territory, and
probably will never be perfectly contented till she has done it. But
after centuries of struggle, from Philip Augustus to Louis XIV., she
effected internally national unity which gave her immense advantages
over Italy and Germany, which remained divided, and which at times has
given her even the hegemony of Europe.

The defeat of the first Napoleon, the restoration of the Bourbons, and
the treaties of Vienna in 1815, arrested, and were designed to arrest,
this tendency of modern European society under all its aspects, and
hence satisfied nobody. They prevented the free development and play
of the tendency to national unity and independence, re-established
aristocracy, and restrained the tendency to equality, and reasserted
monarchy as an estate held by the grace of God and inviolable and
indefeasible, instead of the representative monarchy, which holds from
the nation, and is responsible to it. Those treaties grouped people
together without any regard to their territorial relations, natural
affinities, traditions, or interests, without the slightest reference
to the welfare of the different populations, and with sole reference
to the interests of sovereigns, and the need felt of restricting or
guarding against the power of France. A blinder, a less philosophical,
or a more ignorant set of statesmen than those who framed these
treaties, it is difficult to conceive. The poor men took no note of
the changes which had been produced during four or five hundred years
of social elaboration, and supposed that they were still in full
mediaeval feudalism, when people and territory could be transferred
from one suzerain or one liege lord to another, without offending any
political principle or any sentiment of {220} nationality. Of all
legislators in the world, reactionists suddenly victorious, and not
yet wholly recovered from their fright, are the worst, for they act
from passion, not reason or judgment.

From the moment these treaties were published a social and political
agitation began in nearly all the states of Europe. Conspiracies were
everywhere, and the revolutionary spirit threatened every state and
empire, and no government could stand save as upheld by armed force.
Bold attempts at revolution were early made in Naples and Spain, which
were defeated only by foreign intervention. Hardly a state was strong
enough in the affections of its people to maintain order without the
repressive weight of the Holy Alliance, invented by Madame Krudener,
and effected by the Emperor Alexander and Prince Metternich. Austria
dominated in the Italian peninsula, France in the Spanish, and Russia
in Poland and Germany; Great Britain used all her power and influence
to prevent the emancipation of the Christian populations of the East,
and to uphold the tottering empire of the Turks. The Holy Father was
at once protected and oppressed by the allied powers, especially by
Austria; the people everywhere became alienated from both church and
state, and serious-minded men, not easily alarmed, trembled with fear
that European society might be on the eve of a return to barbarism and
oriental despotism.

Matters grew worse and worse till there came the explosions of 1830,
driving out of France the elder branch of the Bourbons, detaching
Belgium from Holland, and causing the final extinction of the old and
once powerful kingdom of Poland, followed by revolutions more or less
successful in Spain and Portugal. Force soon triumphed for the moment,
but still Europe, to use the figure so hackneyed at the time, was a
smouldering volcano, till the fearful eruptions of 1848 struck
well-nigh aghast the whole civilized world, and conservatives thought
that the day for social order and regular authority had passed away,
never to return. Anarchy seemed fixed in France, the imperial family
in Austria fled to Innspruck, and the Hungarians in revolt, forming a
league with the rebellions citizens of Vienna and the Italian
revolution, brought the empire almost to its last gasp; the king of
Prussia was imprisoned in his palace by the mob, and nearly every
petty German prince was obliged to compromise with the revolutionists.
All Italy was in commotion; the Holy Father was forced to seek refuge
at Gaeta, and the infamous Mazzinian republic, with the filibuster
Garibaldi as its general and hero, was installed in the Eternal City.
Such had been the result of the repressive policy of the Holy
Alliance, when Louis Napoleon was elected president of the French
republic.

It is true, in 1849 the revolution was suppressed, and power
reinstated in its rights in Rome, Naples, Tuscany, the Austrian
dominions, Prussia, and the several German states; but everybody felt
that it was only for a moment, for none of the causes of uneasiness or
dissatisfaction were removed. The whole of Europe was covered over
with secret societies, working in the dark, beyond the reach of the
most powerful and sharp-sighted governments, and there was danger
every day of a new outbreak, perhaps still more violent, and equally
impotent to settle European society on a solid and permanent
foundation, because the revolution was, save on its destructive side,
as little in accord with its tendencies and aspirations as the Holy
Alliance itself.

The cause of all this uneasiness, of this universal agitation, was not
in the tyranny, despotism, or opposition of the governments, or in
their disregard of the welfare of the people more hostility to them;
for never in the whole history of Europe were the governments of
France, Italy, Germany, and {221} Austria less despotic, less
arbitrary, less respectful of the rights of person and property, less
oppressive, indeed more intelligent, or more disposed to consult the
welfare of the people--the French, Prussian, and Austrian systems of
universal popular education proves it--than during the period from
1815 to 1848; and never in so brief a period has so much been done for
the relief and elevation of the poorer and more numerous classes. The
only acts of government that were or could be complained of were acts
of repression, preventative or punitive, rendered necessary by the
chronic conspiracy, and perfectly justifiable, if the government would
protect itself, or preserve its own existence, and which, in fact,
were not more arbitrary or oppressive than the acts performed in this
country during the late rebellion, by both the general government and
the confederate government, or than those practiced for centuries by
the British government in Ireland. Nor was it owing entirely or
chiefly to the native perversity of the human heart, to the impatience
of restraint and subordination of the people, who were said to demand
unbounded license, and determined to submit to no regular authority.
Individuals may love licence and hate authority, but the people love
order, and are naturally disposed to obedience, and are usually far
more ready to submit to even grievous wrongs then to make an effort to
right them.

The cause in France was not that the Bourbons of either branch were
bad or unwise rulers, but that they retained too many feudal
traditions, claimant the throne as a personal estate, and, moreover,
were forced upon the nation by foreign bayonets, not restored by the
free, independent will of the nation itself. Their government, however
able, enlightened, and even advantageous to France, was not national;
and while submitting to it, the new France that had grown up since
1789 could not feel herself an independent nation. It is probable that
there is less freedom for Frenchmen in thought and speech under the
present régime than there was under the Restoration or even the King
of the Barricades and his parliament; but it is national, accepted by
the free will of the nation, and, moreover, obliterates all traces of
the old feudal distinctions and privileges of caste or class, and
establishes, under the emperor, democratic equality. Individuals may
be disaffected, some regretting lost privileges and distinctions, and
others wishing the democracy without the emperor; but upon the whole
the great body of the people are contented with it, and any attempt at
a new revolution would prove a miserable failure. The secret societies
may still exist, but they are not sustained by popular sympathy, and
are now comparatively powerless. The socialistic theories and
movements, Saint Simonism, Fourierism, Cabetism, and the like, fall
into disrepute, not because suppressed by the police, but because
there is no longer that general dissatisfaction with the social order
that exists which originated them, and because the empire is in
harmony with the tendencies of modern European society.

In Italy the cause was neither hatred of authority nor hostility to
the church or her supreme pontiff, but the craving of the people, or
the influential and controlling part of them, for national unity and
independence. In feudal times, when France was parcelled out among
feudatories, many of whom were more powerful than the king, their
nominal suzerain; when Spain was held in great part by the Moors, and
the rest of her territory was divided into three or four mutually
independent kingdoms; when England was subject to the great vassals of
the crown, rather than to the crown itself; when Germany was divided
into some three hundred principalities and free cities, loosely united
only under an elective emperor, with little effective power, and often
a cause of division rather than a bond of union between them; {222}
and when the pope, the most Italian of all the Italian sovereigns, was
suzerain of a large part of Italy, and of nearly all Europe, except
France, Germany, and the Eastern empire, the division of the peninsula
into some half a dozen or more mutually independent republics,
principalities, or kingdoms, did not deprive Italy of the rank of a
great power in Europe, or prevent her from exercising often even a
controlling influence in European politics, and therefore was not felt
to be an evil. But when France, Spain, Austria, and Great Britain
became great centralized states, and when in Switzerland, Holland, the
British Isles, Scandinavia, and North Germany the rise of
Protestantism had weakened the political influence of the pope, these
divisions reduced Italy, which had been the foster-mother of modern
civilization, and the leader of the modern nations in the arts of war
and peace, in commerce and industry, in national and international
law, in literature, science, architecture, music, painting, and
sculpture, to a mere geographical expression, or to complete political
nullity, and could not but offend the just pride of the nation. The
treaties of 1815 had, besides, given over the fairest portion of the
territory of the peninsula to Austria, and enabled her, by her weight
as a great power, to dominate over the rest. The grand duke of Tuscany
was an Austrian archduke, the king of the Two Sicilies, and even the
pope as temporal prince, were little less, in fact, than vassals of
the house of Hapsburg-Lorraine.

Italy felt that she was not herself, and that she could be herself and
belong to herself, own herself, as our slaves used to say before they
were emancipated, only by expelling Austria and her agents from
Italian territory, and uniting the whole peninsula in a single state,
unitarian or federative, under a single supreme national government.
For this Italian patriotism everywhere sighed, agitated, conspired,
rebelled, struggled, was arrested, shot, hung, imprisoned, exiled, and
filled the world with its complaints, the story of its wrongs and
sufferings. It was not that Italy was badly governed, but that she was
not governed by herself, was governed by foreigners, or at least by
governors who would not, or could not, secure her national unity and
independence, without which she could not become the great European
power that she aspired to be, and felt herself capable of being. The
Fenians do not agitate and arm against England so much because her
government in Ireland is now--whenever it may have been formerly--
tyrannical and oppressive, as because it is not national, is not
Irish, and offends the Irish sense of nationality, far stronger now
than in the time of Strongbow or that of the confederate chieftains.
Through the armed intervention of Napoleon III. in 1859, and the
recent alliance with Prussia against Austria, Italy has no got what
she agitated for, national unity and independence, though at the
expense of great injustice to the dispossessed sovereigns, and is free
to become a great European power, if she has it in her, and her
chronic conspiracy is ended. She has obtained all that she was
conspiring for, and is satisfied: she has gained possession of
herself, and is free herself to be all that she is capable of being.

The Germans, also, were uneasy, discontented, and conspiring for the
same reason. The Bund was a mockery, formed in the interest of the
sovereigns, without regard to the people or the national sentiment,
and in practice has tended far more to divide and weaken, than to
unite and strength the German nation, both on the side of France and
on that of Russia. Germany, in consequence of the changes effected in
other nations, was, like Italy, reduced to a geographical expression.
Austria in the south was a great power, Prussia counted for something
in the north, but Germany was a political nullity. The Germans aspired
to national unity, and attempted {223} to obtain it in 1848 by the
reconstruction, with many wise modifications, of the old Germanic
empire, suppressed by Napoleon I. in 1806, but were defeated by the
mutual jealousies of Prussia and Austria, the withdrawal of the
Austrian delegates from the Diet, and the refusal of the King of
Prussia to accept the imperial crown offered him by the Diet, after
the withdrawal of Austria. What failed to be legally and peaceably
effected 1848 and 1849, has been virtually effected by Prussia in this
year of grace, 1866, after a fortnight's sharp and fierce war, not
because of her greatly overrated needle-gun, but because Prussia is
more thoroughly German than Austria, and better represents the
national sentiment.

The success of Prussia must be regards, I think, not only as breaking
up the old confederation, and expelling Austria from Germany, but as
really defecting German unity, or the union of all Germany in a single
state. The states north of the Main, not as yet formally annexed to
Prussia, and those so of that line, as yet free to form a southern
confederation, will soon, perhaps, with the seven or eight millions of
Germans still under Austrian rule, in all likelihood be absorbed by
her, and formed into a single military state with her, and transform
her from Prussia into Germany. It is most likely only a question of
time, as it is only a logical sequence of what has already been
effected. Austria ceases to be a German power, and must seek
indemnification by developing, as Hungary rather than as Austria,
eastward, and gradually absorbing Roumania, Herzegovina, Bosnia,
Servia, and Bulgaria, and placing herself as an impassable barrier to
the advance of Russia southward in Europe. This she may do, if wise
enough to give up Germany, and to avail herself of the vast resources
she still possesses; for in this she would probably be aided by Great
Britain, France, and Italy--all deeply interested in preventing Russia
from planting herself in Constantinople, and gaining the empire of the
world. Turkey must fall, must die, and European equilibrium requires a
new and powerful Eastern state, if the whole of Europe is not to
become Cossack.

The independence and unity of Italy, and the union of Germany in a
single state, had become political necessities, and both must be
effected as the means of putting an end to what European writers call
"the Revolution," and giving internal peace to European society. No
doubt they have not been thus far effected without great violence to
vested rights; but necessity knows no law, or is itself law, and
nations never have been and never can be arrested in their purposes by
vested rights, however sacred religion and morality teach us to hold
them. National and popular passions can be controlled by no
considerations of right or wrong. They sweep onward and away whatever
would stay their progress. If the possessors of vested rights opposed
to national union, independence, or development, consent to part with
them at a just ransom, the nation is ready to indemnify them
liberally; but if they will not consent, it will take them all the
same, and without scruple.

I say not that this is right; I pretend not to justify it; I only
state what all experience proves that nations do and will continue to
do in spite of religion and morality. Ahab was willing to pay a round
price for Naboth's vineyard, but when Naboth refused to sell it at any
price, Ahab took it for nothing. But these political changes, regarded
as accomplished and irrevocable facts, and setting aside the means
adopted to effect them, and the vested rights violated in obtaining
them, are not morally wrong, and are in no sense threatening to the
future peace and progress of European society, but seem to be the only
practicable means that were left of preventing it from lapsing into
certain barbarism. They seem to me to have been needed to render the
{224} European governments henceforth able to sustain themselves by
the affections and good sense of the people, without being obliged to
keep themselves armed to the teeth against them. International wars
will, no doubt, continue as long as the world stands, but wars of the
people against authority, or of subjects against their rulers, may now
cease for a long time to come, at least in the greater part of Europe.
The feudal system is everywhere either swept away, or so weakened as
to be no longer able to make a serious struggle for existence; and
save Ireland, Poland, and the Christian populations of the East, the
European nations are formed, and are in possession of their national
unity and independence. The people have reached what for ages they
have been tending to, and are in possession of what, in substance,
they have so long been agitating for. The new political order is
fairly inaugurated, and the people have obtained their legitimate
satisfaction. Whether they will be wiser or better, happier or more
really prosperous, under the new order than they were under the old,
we must leave to time to prove. Old men, like the writer of this, who
have lived too long and seen too much to regard every change as a
progress, may be permitted to retain their doubts. But changes which
in themselves are not for the better, are relatively so when rendered
necessary by other and previous changes.

The English and American press very generally assert that the Emperor
of the French is much vexed at the turn things have taken in Germany,
that he is disappointed in his expectations, and defeated in his
European policy. I do not think so. The French policy since the time
of Francis I. has been, indeed, to prevent the concentration and
growth of any great power on the frontiers of France; as the papal
policy ever since the popes were temporal sovereigns, according to
Tosti in his Life and Times of Boniface VIII., has been to prevent the
establishment of any great power in the immediate neighborhood of
Rome. That this French policy and this papal are defeated by the turn
things have taken is no doubt true, but what evidence is there that
this is a defeat of Napoleon's policy, or is anything else than that
he both expected and intended? When he entered on his Italian campaign
against Austria in 1859, he showed clearly that he did not intend to
sustain the Papal policy, for his purpose was the unity no less than
the independence of Italy. He showed, also, no less clearly, that
while he retained traditional French policy of humbling the house of
Hapsburg, he did not intend in other respects to sustain that policy;
for he must have foreseen, as the writer of this, in another place,
told him at the time, that the unity of Italy would involve as its
logical and necessary sequence the the unity of Germany. We can
suppose him disappointed only by supposing he entertained a policy
which he appears to have deliberately made up his mind to abandon, or
not to adopt.

After the Italian campaign, and perhaps before, the unity of Germany
was a foregone conclusion, and if effected it must be either under
Austria or under Prussia. Napoleon had only to choose which it should
be. And it was manifestly for the interest of France that it should be
under Prussia, an almost exclusively German power, rather than under
Austria, whose non-Germanic population was three times greater than
her Germanic population. If the unity of Germany had been effected
under Austria with her non-Germanic provinces, Germany would have
constituted in central Europe a power of nearly seventy millions of
people, absolutely incompatible with the European equilibrium; but if
effected under Prussia, it would constitute a state of only about
forty millions, not a power so large as to be dangerous to France or
to the peace of Europe. France has nothing to fear from a Prussian
Germany, for she is amply able to cope with her, and the first war
between the two powers would restore to France her natural {225}
boundaries, by giving her all the territory on the left bank of the
Rhine, and thus make her commensurate with the ancient Keltica.

France is too strong in her unity, compactness, and extent, as well as
in the high spirit and military genius of her people, to think of
precautions against Germany. The power for her to guard against is
Russia, embracing a rapidly increasing population of upward of seventy
millions, and possessing one-seventh of the territory of the globe.
She has no other power to fear, since Austria is separated from
Germany. Prussia, capable of becoming a great maritime power, and
embracing all Germany, not only rescues the smaller German states from
Russian influence and intrigue, but becomes an efficient ally of
France, in the west, against Russia, and far more efficient and
trustworthy an ally than Great Britain, because a continental power,
and more exposed to danger from the common enemy. While Prussia
becomes a powerful ally in the west, Austria, by being detached from
Germany, and too weak to stand without alliances, becomes a French
ally in the east; and the more ready to be so, because the majority of
her future population is and must be of the Slavic race.

Napoleon's policy, it seems to me, has been first, to drive Austria
out of Italy and detach her from Germany, for the security of France;
and then to organize pan-Germanism against pan-Slavism in the West,
and an Austrian, or rather, Slavic or Hungarian Empire, embracing the
Magyars and Roumans, against pan-Slavism in the East. With these two
great powers, having as against Russia a common interest with France,
the Emperor of the French, the ally and protector of the Latin
nations, will be able to settle the terrible Eastern question without
suffering Russia to receive an undue accession of territory or power,
and also without the scandal of sustaining, in order to please Great
Britain and save her Indian possessions, the rotten empire of the
Turks, and preventing the Christian nations it holds, through the aid
of the western Christian powers, in subjection, from working out their
freedom and independence, rising to national dignity and influence.

Such, briefly stated, has been, I think, substantially the policy of
Napoleon, since he became Emperor of the French; and the recent events
in Italy and Germany so strikingly accord with it, that one cannot
help believing that they have been dictated by it. It seems designed
to give measurable satisfaction to the principal nationalities of
Europe, as it secures undisputed preponderance to no one, and
humiliates no one over much. It may, therefore, be said to be a policy
of peace. It is a policy, if carried out in all its parts, that would
enable France, Prussia, Italy, Austria, to isolate Russia, and at need
Great Britain, from Europe; but it robs neither of any of its
territory or inherent strength, and is hostile to neither, unless one
or the other would encroach on the rights of others.

Will this policy be carried out and consolidated I know not. It is
substantially in accordance with the tendencies of modern European
society; the most difficult parts of it have already been effected,
and we have seen no movement on the part of either Russia or Great
Britain to assist Austria to prevent it. Napoleon had succeeded in
isolating Austria from Europe, and almost from Germany, before he
commenced his Italian campaign in 1859. Should Napoleon die suddenly,
should Russia or Great Britain interpose to prevent Austria from
expanding eastward before she has recovered from her losses in being
expelled from Italy and Germany, and should France, Germany, and Italy
refuse to act as her allies, or should she herself look to the
recovery of what she has lost, rather than to the development of what
she retains or has in prospect, the policy might fail; but these are
all improbable contingencies, except the first; yet even Napoleon's
death would not seriously {226} affect the unity and independence of
Italy, or the unity of Germany, as much as the South Germans dislike
the Prussians. This age worships strength and success.

The most doubtful part of this Napoleonic policy is the part assigned
to Austria in the future; and the part the most offensive to the
Catholic heart, is that which strips the Holy Father of his temporal
dominions, annexes them to the kingdom of Italy, and leaves him to the
tender mercy of his despoilers. The Holy Father, sustained by the
general voice of the episcopacy, has said the maintenance of the
temporal sovereignty is _necessary_ to the interests of religion; but
he said this when there was still hope that it might be retained, and
he, of course, did not mean that it is _absolutely_ necessary at all
times and under all circumstances; because that would have made the
principal depend on the accessory, and the spiritual on the temporal.
Moreover, religion had existed and flourished several centuries before
the popes were temporal sovereigns, and what has been may be again.
Circumstances have changed since the Holy Father said this, and it is
not certain that, as it is not a Catholic dogma, he would insist on it
now.

Of course the change is to be deeply deplored, especially for those
who have effected it; but is there any possibility, humanly speaking,
of re-establishing the Holy Father in his temporal rights? I confess I
can see none. It is a great loss, but perhaps some arrangement may be
entered into with the new Italian power, which, after all, will enable
the Holy Father still to reside at Rome, and exercise independently
his functions as the spiritual chief of Christendom. Italy has more
need of the pope then the pope has of Italy, and Victor Emmanuel, at
worst, cannot be worse than were the Pagan and Arian Caesars. No
Catholic can ever despair of the church. At present the temporal, to
all human ken, seems to have triumphed over the spiritual, and
politics to have carried it over religion. Yet the triumph cannot be
lasting, and in some way the victory won will prove to have been a
defeat. God will never forsake his church, his beloved, his bride, his
beautiful one, and the Lord will not suffer Peter to sink when he
walks upon the waters. Peter's bark may be violently tossed on the
waves, but the very independence of the church prevents us from
fearing that it will be submerged. In what way the future of the
papacy will be provided for, it is not for us to determine or to
suggest. We cheerfully confide in the wisdom of the Holy Father,
assisted as he will be by the Holy Ghost.

--------

{227}


From The Sixpenny Magazine.

THE SUMMER DAYS ARE GONE.

  The flowers that made the summer air
    So fragrant with their rich perfume,
  Alas! are gone, their leaves so fair
    Lie faded in their autumn tomb.

  The branches now are almost bare,
    Where summer song-birds made their homes;
  Where trees are green, where flowers are fair,
    Once more the happy birds have flown.

  To distant lands o'er sunny seas
    The songsters bright have taken wing.
  To warble on that warmer breeze
    The notes they sang to us in spring.

  Her autumn robe of red and brown
    Once more the gliding year puts on,
  And yonder sun looks colder down
    Since the bright summer days are gone.

  The stars, the glory of the night,
    Look on us still with silvery eye--
  Shine on us still as clear and bright.
    But not from out the summer sky.

  The chilly breezes of the north
    Tell us it is no longer spring,
  And winter's hand is reaching forth
    To wither every verdant thing.

  So even like the birds the flowers.
    When dearest things of life have flown.
  Then in the heart's deserted bowers
    The naked branches stand alone.

  Oh, then, alas! no breath of spring
    Can breathe the living verdure on.
  No sun will shine, no birds will sing--
    For ever is the summer gone.

  But when the heart beats high and warm.
    And kindred hearts its throbbing share.
  It heeds not winter's clouds nor storm,
    But summer tarries always there.

--------

{228}

From The Lamp.

UNCONVICTED; OR, OLD THORNELEY'S HEIRS.



CHAPTER XII.

THE BEGINNING OF THE END.


The tidings that Old Thorneley's missing will was found fell like a
thunderbolt upon Wilmot and his lawyers, Smith and Walker; and their
genuine astonishment was a matter of equal surprise to me. In my own
mind I had felt convinced that Lister Wilmot had had a hand in the
suppression of that will; and if I hardly dared in my heart to believe
him guilty of, although suspecting him at least of complicity in, the
death of his uncle, I never doubted but that he knew of the existence
of this last testament, and knowing it, had destroyed it. In my own
mind I had, during many hours of solitary reflection, of the most
scrutinizing study of every fact and circumstance connected with all
these past events, arrived at a conclusion that some unknown link
united Maria Haag and Lister Wilmot together, and that the double
mystery of the murder and the lost will lay buried secret in their
hearts. But there was no mistaking the undisguised and overwhelming
amazement with which he received the communication of Merrivale and
myself. We made it in person to him before Smith and Walker; and I can
only say that his manner of receiving it exonerated him at once in my
eyes from suspicion of his having had anything to do with the theft or
concealment of that will.

Of course on either side legal proceedings were commenced: Merrivale
on the part of Hugh Atherton undertaking to prove the genuineness of
the recovered document; Smith and Walker for Lister Wilmot endeavoring
to repudiate it. In less than a week they were all "hard at it."
Meanwhile, the will, as stolen property found by the police, was
lodged with them; meanwhile, Inspector Keene had once more
disappeared, and this time we all knew that the purport of his absence
was the apprehension of Mrs. Haag; meanwhile, the heir to all this
mine of disputed wealth played with his childish toys, laughed his
crazy laugh, and jabbered his idiot nonsense, without the ray of
intelligence crossing his for witless brain; meanwhile, Hugh Atherton
roamed far over the broad treacherous ocean--an exile and a wanderer,
the victim of a cruel and shameless plot--ignorant of the brave
loving heart that was following him so near, all of the tender eyes,
the faithful hand, that would bid him welcome on that foreign shore.

Unwilling as I was to leave London just then, where my presence was at
any moment necessary, the affairs of one of my best and oldest clients
summoned me to Liverpool for a couple of days, and I took a
return-ticket thither from the Saturday to the Monday after that last
memorable visit from Inspector Keene. Who shall ever dare to doubt the
special Providence ordering and overruling every event, every
circumstance of our lives, however trivial and unimportant they may
seen at the moment of their occurrence? That journey of mine, which
outwardly had not the smallest bearing or reference to the story I am
telling, was in reality the beginning of the end.

Travelling by an early training, I arrived in Liverpool about three
o'clock. After engaging a bed at a hotel near the station, and
refreshing my inner man, I set off immediately on the business {229}
which had brought me thither. This lay asked some of the great
shipping offices in Tower Buildings, close to the docks. Coming out of
one, I noticed a man following me. Suddenly my arm was touched, and
looking round I saw Inspector Keene.

"God bless me! Who'd have thought of seeing you here?"

"And who'd have thought of seeing you, sir? I don't suppose you ever
expected it would be so, Mr. Kavanagh, but you and I have hunted the
fox together, and now you and I will be in at the death."

"You mean to say you have traced the housekeeper?"

"That's just precisely what I do mean, sir."

"Where is she?"

"Not a stone's throw from here."

"And you have her in charge?"

"Not yet, sir, not yet. I have but just obtained a warrant for her
apprehension from the sitting magistrate, and I am on my way now to
announce the agreeable tidings to her."

"Had you trouble in tracking her?"

"An awful deal, sir. She was all but gone; her passage taken to
America, and the vessel is to sail to-night. The news of my finding
the will must have reached led her in Lincolnshire, for I've followed
her across the country here; and then I lost sight of her, and only
found her trail this morning. But she's safe now; the house is watched
on all sides. Strange enough, sir," said the inspector, lowering his
voice, "there's been another after her too."

"Another man?"

"Yes, sir. I've caught sight of him from time to time, dodging and
watching and following her as cute and as silently as any of _us_; and
if his name isn't Bradley, well, mine isn't Keene, and I'm not one of
her majesty's detective officers."

"Shall I go with you, Keene?"

"Do, sir; it may be like a satisfaction to you to see the end of it."

We turned into a by-street, narrow, ill-paved, and dark, where the
houses were high and overhanging, and fashioned like those in little
obscure foreign towns, that nearly meet overhead. Before the door of
one a policeman stood, apparently engaged only in his ordinary duty of
looking up and down the street; but from a glance of intelligence that
passed between them I knew he was on special service--the special
service being to watch that identical house. The door opened by a
simple latch, and the inspector's hand was on it, when the policeman
stepped back, and whispered to him. Keene paused for a moment, and
then turned to me. "_He_ is in there;" and I knew he meant the man who
was likewise following Mrs. Haag--the man Bradley.

"Follow us," said the detective to the officer on duty; and opening
the door, we passed down a narrow dark passage and proceeded up the
stairs, quietly, stealthily. We had gained the first landing, and
Inspector Keene's foot was on the stair to ascend the second flight,
when a loud, piercing cry broke upon the stillness--the cry of agony.
In a moment we had cleared the stairs and stood before a door on the
left. Keene turned the handle. _It was fastened from inside_.

He shook it with a strength I had not thought he possessed, and
demanded admission. There was no answer. Again it rattled on its
hinges, and I thought it would be too weak to resist my strength.
"Give way, Keene!" I cried; "I can break it in;" and retreating to the
further end of the landing, I ran and brought my whole weight to bear
against it. Useless! _Another weight_ was strengthening it on the
inside. And then a shriek yet more piercing, more agonized than before
rang through the house, and footsteps were heard from below and above
of people hurrying to the spot. We once more strained at the door. O
God! would it never give way? I turned to the policeman. "You ought to
be powerful; let us both run together." I felt a giant's strength
within me; and as our feet crashed against the wood it bunt open,
{230} and we were precipitated into the room, almost falling over the
body of Mrs. Haag, prostrate on the ground, weltering in a great pool
of blood. A large clasp-knife lay beside her, red up to the very hilt;
and by the window, with his arms folded, stood a man of large, heavy
build, with dark gipsy features and lowering brow--a man who in the
prime of youth might have been of comely form and handsome
countenance, but who now, with the wear of more than fifty years'
familiarity with crime and evil, bore more indelibly printed in his
face the felon and the convict than ever the mark branded, but hidden,
upon his shoulder could betray. With one glance at the miserable woman
lying on the floor, the inspector sprang toward the man, who stood
motionless, and staring at the body of his victim, and laying his hand
on his arm he said, "Robert Bradley, I arrest you for this attempt to
murder your wife, and for unlawful escape from penal servitude." No
expression crossed the man's face--only the same dull, stony gaze.

"Do you hear?" said Keene, giving him a little shake; "and say nothing
to criminate yourself now." There was no answer. "Policemen, do your
duty:" and two advanced from the crowd now gathered in the room and on
the stairs. They slipped the handcuffs on his unresisting hands, and
then proceeded to lead him away. Meanwhile I had knelt down beside the
unfortunate woman, and was feeling her heart and pulse. She still
lived. "Send for a surgeon instantly," I cried; and a dozen of the
lookers-on instantly scampered off to do my bidding. Then, with one
cry of anguish, the prisoner burst from his captors and flung himself
down beside the woman he had murdered. He raised his manacled hands,
and tried to draw her head toward him and pillow it on his breast.

"O Molly, Molly, I've killed thee; I've killed thee!" There was a
faint moan. "She's my wife, gentlemen; before God, she's my wife. I
wanted her to come away with me and let us hide together, for we've
both done bad enough; but she wouldn't--she bade me begone: she spoke
so harshly, she looked so cruelly with her cold eyes--and I was mad,
mad--and I struck her. Molly, Molly!"

With difficulty he was torn away, dragged out of the room and borne
off by the police; then we lifted the almost lifeless body of his wife
and laid her on the bed. How far she had been injured I knew not as
yet; but something within seemed to tell me she had received her
death-wound. I said as much to Inspector Keene when the room was
cleared a little from the crowd, and he, I, and one or to women, who
said they lived in the house, only remained. In less then a quarter of
an hour two surgeons were on the spot, and we left them with the woman
to make the necessary examination.

"This is indeed being 'in at the death,'" I said to the inspector as
we stood outside.

"Yes, sir; yes. And I have been a consummate fool not to have foreseen
what would happen." I saw he was looking unusually pale and agitated.

"How could you help it?" I asked.

"I ought to have given orders not to have allowed _him_ to go into the
house. I made over-sure of all being right."

"Depend upon it, Keene," I replied, "neither you nor any one else
could have warded off what was _to be_. Another and a mightier hand
than any human one has been in this. We may not question God's
providence."

The inspector was silent. He could not get over it.

"If the worst comes to the worst," I said, "we must be ready to have
her confession taken down. Surely she will speak at the last."

"Not if I judge her rightly, sir; she will make no sign now."

"Nay, I trust she will. If what we guess at is true, it is too
terrible to think she will die with that upon her soul."

{231}

"She is a Catholic, sir, I believe; she'll tell her priest, but what
use is that to us?"

"If she does _that_, there will be no fear."

Keene shook his head despairingly. "I never made such a mull in my
life before."

Just then one of the surgeons came out. We both eagerly turned to him
with the same question: "Will she die?"

"Who can tell? While there is life there is hope. The wounds are very
dangerous ones. There is little chance for her; still there _is_ a
chance. I am going now for instruments and dressings to my house close
by. She ought to be in the hospital, but we dare not remove her. The
sole hope is in staunching the bleeding; it has stopped for the
moment, but the least motion will cause it to break out afresh. Who
knows anything of her? who is responsible in the matter? We have heard
no particulars as yet."

Keene explained in a few words all that was necessary.

"Can you tell me where to find the nearest Catholic priest?" I asked
him as he went away.

"In the next street to this there is a small chapel. I know the priest
attached, and excellent man, though he is a papist. Pardon me; perhaps
you are the Catholic?"

For the hot blood had rushed to my brow involuntarily, not for the
man's words, but at the grave thoughts which passed through my
mind--the hope,  the fear of what those ministrations I was going to
seek would do for the wretched woman lying in that room.

"I am a Catholic," I said briefly; "but say anything you like, I don't
mind. I'll come out with you, and you'll show me the way to find this
priest."

I found and brought him--Father Maurice. He was a man who had grown
old and grey in the care of souls, who had stood by many a death-bed,
had been called to witness the penitence of many a dying sinner; never
had his services been more needed than now. On our road I briefly
related to him the circumstances, and all I knew of the poor creature
to whose side he was hastening.

When we arrived, they told us she had been conscious for a few
moments, but was now again insensible; that during that lucid interval
she had murmured a name which sounded like Wilmot. "Send for Mr.
Wilmot," the doctor had understood her to say. Keene and I looked at
each other.

"Telegraph for him," I said.

"Would he come, sir, do you think?"

"Telegraph in Mrs. Haag's name. Simply say, 'Danger; come
immediately.' That may bring him. He will get it in time to catch the
night-mail."

Keene departed.

The room opposite the one where the injured woman lay was vacant, and
I took possession of it, knowing that the inspector would station
himself on the spot. Presently the two surgeons came in, and conferred
together for some minutes in low tones. Then they turned to me and to
the priest, who waited there likewise.

"We have probed and dressed the wounds, but she lies perfectly
unconscious at present; two nursing sisters from the hospital have
been sent for to take charge of her, and it will be necessary for one
of us to remain here during the night. There is just a hope and no
more. What we have most to fear is internal haemorrhage. She may
probably linger out the night, or even a day or two, in the event of
no favorable change taking place. But her state is most critical."

"I shall go home and make arrangements for remaining here during the
evening and night, if it is necessary," said Father Maurice in his
quiet, determined way.

I expressed my thanks.

"There is no need," he said; "if all is well in the end, I shall have
my reward."

{232}

When Inspector Keene returned he told me he had dated the telegram
from my hotel, and that it would be best for me to return there by and
by, and await the arrival of the night train. It was then between six
and seven o'clock.

How that long evening passed I know not. There we sat, we three
men--Inspector Keene, Father Maurice, and I--saying very little to one
another, and the prevailing silence only broken by the low whispering
sounds of the priest as he said his office, and the hushed footsteps
of the surgeon, who remained coming in and out from time to time.

Oh! would she ever wake from that terrible unconsciousness? would no
power of mind, no strength of body, no grace of soul ever be given her
to unlock all the dark secrets of her heart, to clear the innocent and
proclaim the guilty? Must she go down to her grave without one act of
sorrow, unshrived, uncleansed, without a moment in which to make
reparation for the terrible past, for all that world of shame and
suffering that had fallen so crushingly upon guiltless heads?

It was just upon ten o'clock, and I was preparing to leave for my
hotel, when Mr. Lovell, the surgeon, came in and beckoned to Father
Maurice. They left the room together, and soon the surgeon and the two
nurses came in. The former stooped down and whispered to me, "She
asked to have a priest sent for, and I told her one was here. It
seemed a relief to her. She has not been conscious more than five
minutes."

The inspector looked across at me with an inquiring glance. I think he
had grown suspicious of me, and feared I was conniving at some
concealment about her confession.

"As soon as my _prisoner_" (laying a stress on the word ) "comes to
her senses, sir, I ought to be told. There's something to be got out
of her before she gives us the slip, and I'll have no interference in
the matter." The inspector spoke roughly. I took him aside.

"Keene, if you ever want to get at the bottom of what lies on that
wretched woman's soul, believe me we have taken the best means to
attain that object in allowing her to see Father Maurice."

"But _he_ won't tell what she's said, bless you; I've seen them
imprisoned for it. Not a word, Mr. Kavanagh, not a syllable, sir,
shall _we_ here?"

"Very likely not from him. But _he_ will make _her_ tell."

The inspector stared at me with a cynical smile on his lips.

I continued: "Do you think _I_ have no interest in wishing to probe
that woman's soul, in longing--ay, with a longing you cannot
understand--to know who committed that black crime which has robbed me
of my dearest friend? Man, what is there at stake with you in
comparison with _him_ who has been driven from his fatherland and his
home? What is _your_ little professional vanity to compare with what
_he_ has lost--name, fame, position--everything most dear to him save
one?"

"God bless you, sir, and you're right!" said the little man, wringing
my hand; "and you'll please to excuse me. For hang me but I think I'm
jealous of those priests. They seem to ferret out in one talk what it
costs us detectives days and nights to hunt for, and puts us on our
wits' ends. And one ain't a bit the wiser for it after all; they _do_
keep it snug, to be sure. I'd give much to know their dodge."

"Ah, inspector, it's a 'dodge' neither you nor I possess. But leave
this in God's hands. If there is anything that ought to be made known
publicly, it _will_ be known."

In a quarter of an hour Mr. Lovell went into the sick-room, and soon
after Father Maurice came back to us. It was curious to see the
suspicious glance which Keene cast upon him.

"I have warned her of her state," said the priest. "She seems to wish
to make a statement to some proper person; Mr. Lovell advises that she
should be allowed some rest now. Of course you will judge of what is
best to be done, having the poor woman under your charge;" and he
looked across at the inspector.

{233}

Keene colored up and shuffled his feet. "Of course it's as you and the
other gentlemen think proper, sir," he said; then plucking up his
courage, "There's a deal she's got to tell which _ought_ to be known
in _proper_ quarters, though I know that gents in your profession
ain't fond of letting on what they hear. But I'm responsible in this
instance to government, sir; and I hope you'll remember it."

"Just so," said the priest coolly, but with an amused smile; "and it
is in the presence of lawful authority, or proper witnesses, that she
must make her statement, or, as you would call it, confession."

Inspector Keene was shut up. "Never heard tell of such a thing in all
my life," I heard him mutter to himself; "this one can't be a Roman."

I waited for another report from the surgeon before leaving; and when
he came in he said she had rallied a good deal, and that he thought no
further change for worse would take place during the night; so I left,
desiring that I should be sent for if anything did occur. The mail was
due at half-past three in the morning, and there was all the
probability of Wilmot travelling by it if the telegram had reached him
in time. I determined to sit up and meet the train at the station.

At a little after three I was on the platform, pacing up and down in
the chilly air of the early morning; the stars shone through the
glazed roofing, and the moonlight mingled cold and pale with the
flaring gas. Save a drowsy official here and there, I was alone--alone
waiting for mine enemy. And yet but little of enmity stirred my heart
in that still hour--only pity, deep unutterable pity. I had never
liked Lister Wilmot much, even in old times; and of late--well, what
need to think of it, though his sins had been great? But somehow the
remembrance of past days stole over me--days when he and Hugh and I
had been young; of pleasant hours passed together in social
intercourse, of merry-meetings, and all the joyousness of young men's
lives. Yes, even with the thought of Hugh Atherton before me, I felt
softened toward the wretched man for whom I waited then. Shame,
disgrace, and ignominy were awaiting him, and I was to lead him to it.
After all he was a fellow-man, though he had disgraced his manhood. At
last, with a whistle and a shriek, the train rushed into the station.
I ran my eye along the line of first-class carriages, and presently
saw a slight figure with fair hair alight on the platform. In a moment
I stood before Lister Wilmot, and I never can forget the unearthly
color which overspread his face as his eye fell on me. Had he been
armed, my life had not been worth much in that moment.

"_You_ here!" he hissed between his teeth.

"Yes, Mr. Wilmot; I am here to meet you."

"Then you sent that telegram, curse you!"

"No, not I, but Inspector Keene. Some one is dying, and has need of
you." Perhaps my solemn face revealed something to him of the truth,
for a change passed over his countenance.



"Who is it?" he asked with white, quivering lips.

"Mrs. Haag."

He threw up his arms wildly above his head. "Dying! O my God!" Then,
turning to me, "How was it?" he asked.

I hesitated for a moment in pity. "She met with an accident," I said
at last, not daring to tell him more at once.

"Where is she?"

It never seemed to occur to him that it was strange I should be there;
the one piece of news I had imparted had stunned him with its shock.

{234}

"I will take you to her," I answered, and putting my arm in his, led
him off to a cab in waiting. He never spoke all the while we drove to
the house in Cross street, where the housekeeper lay, and when we got
down suffered me to lead him up-stairs like a child. Inspector Keene
met us at the door.

"I'm thankful you've come, sir; Mr. Lovell sent off a message to the
hotel half an hour ago. The priest is with her."

"How is she?" uttered Wilmot in hollow tones.

Keene answered: "There's been a change; I don't know more. She has
asked again for you," turning to Wilmot.

Mr. Lovell came in.

"Is this the gentleman, Mr. Wilmot?" he asked.

"Yes," I  replied.

"Then whatever she wants to say had better be said now."

Inspector Keene touched me on the arm.

"You must take it down in writing, sir; here's pen, ink, and paper.
You, Mr. Lovell, and I must sign it."

"Yes, yes. I will"

And we entered the room.

The housekeeper's face was turned from us when we came in. One hand
lay outside on the coverlet--that white, well-formed hand, that looked
more like a lady's than a servant's.

At the foot of the bed stood Father Maurice, and a nurse was bending
over the prostrate form and wiping the moisture from the brow. She
must have heard us enter, for she looked round, pale, ghastly, in the
wretched light of the fire and candles. The surgeon went first, then
Inspector Keene, then I and Wilmot. She marked each one as we
approached the bed, eagerly, wistfully. At first Wilmot shrank behind
me, and my tall frame hid him from view. Her lips moved.

"Where is he?" I heard her murmur. "Where is Lister Wilmot?"

The surgeon approached her with a glass.

"You must drink this; it will give you strength to speak."

He lifted her head, and she swallowed it; then turned her face once
more toward us.

"Lister, are you there?"

He stood forward, but did not go near her.

"I am here."

She gave a low moaning cry.

Father Maurice went to her.

"Say what you have to say now, my poor sister, and make your peace
with God."

"Raise me up a little," she said to the surgeon; and they lifted her a
little on the pillow. Then in low broken tones, with many a pause for
strength and breath, with the dews of death standing upon her pallid
brow, with the vision of life and judgment to come nearing her moment
by moment in the presence of us all, Maria Haag made the confession of
her life.



CHAPTER XIII

THE HOUSEKEEPER'S CONFESSION.

"They tell me I am a dying woman; and though I feel as I never felt
before, I can hardly realize it. I never thought to bring myself to
save the words I am going to say, to tell the story I am going to
tell. All my life long I have been a wicked woman. I don't ask your
pity--I do not want it; and if you now feel pitiful, seeing me lie
here, when you have heard all, you will turn from me with loathing and
spurn the miserable creature before you. No, I never thought it would
come to this--that I should wish to tell out the sins of my life. But
I have listened to words this night that I have not heard since the
days of my childhood, from the lips of that good man, and they have
done what nothing else could do. I could fancy myself a child once
more, kneeling at my mother's knee and saying the 'Our Father;'
lisping the prayers I have never dared to teach _my child_. My child!
O God, {235} will he not curse his mother, knowing what she is, and
what she has made him? My child, who will rise up in judgment against
me at the last day, because in loving him I have worked his ruin!
Better he had died, my fair-haired boy, nestling his baby head against
my breast, cooing his baby cry in my ear, than live to be what I have
made him. Better far we both had perished--mother and son--and been
buried in one grave; the angels would not have veiled their faces then
as they veil them now. Life and strength are ebbing fast, fast from
me; and if I want to say all that I have to say--all the crushing load
of guilty knowledge that lies upon my soul--I must hasten on. Lift me
up a little more--it is hard to get breath--and turn my face from the
light, sister. I can bear it better when it is dark. I go back to the
beginning. One is standing there who has a right to know all I have to
tell."

"I am a Belgian by birth, a native of Antwerp. My father was clerk in
the custom-house there, and I was his only child. He and my mother
lavished their love and their all upon me, and I received a very good
education. At seventeen I met Robert Bradley; he was mate on board an
English merchant-vessel. My parents looked down on him, but he loved
me, and soon my heart was bent on him. We ran away together and were
married at Plymouth. I never saw father nor mother nor my native place
again. They died soon after; I broke their hearts. A year after our
marriage my baby was born: it was the first joy unmixed with pain I
had known since I left Antwerp when the boy was placed in my arms; it
was the last I was ever to have. Six months after his birth Robert got
into trouble; trouble that brought him in danger of the law. His
employers dismissed him, and we were fated to quit Plymouth, where I
had lived since our marriage whilst he was at sea. The little savings
Robert had put by were soon gone, like his character, and we had to
tramp, tramp, till we came to London. There he got temporary
employment on the river; but he was changed. He was no longer like the
Robert of old days, the man I had loved and for whom I had forsaken
everything. Poverty pinched us very sorely; but if he had been what he
was when I first knew him I would have minded nothing. But he degraded
me, and I felt he would degrade my child. It was all I cared for
now--my little boy; let him remember that. Oh! let him remember it,
that he was all I loved and cared for! For more than a year we
struggled on through misery untold. Robert drank terribly, and this
vice brought out the coarseness of his nature, the low habits he had
contracted amongst his seafaring associates. At last, when it came to
seeing my boy wanting bread, I could bear it no longer; and one day I
left the wretched hole where we lived, and with the child in my arms
walked away from London. Miles away I wandered beyond the Surrey
hills, with a little money in my pocket and my best and only gown on
my back, lying down to rest in the sweet hay-fields or by the
woodside, for it was summer-time, till at last one early morning I
reached a little village, and sought rest and shelter at a small
farmhouse. I found both, and I likewise found friends--or rather my
child did. He was fair and winning with his baby beauty, and the
mistress of the house took to him, having just lost hers. I stopped
some months, helping her in all her household duties, for I was very
thrifty and handy, and I earned my own bread and the boy's. But his
future troubled me. I wanted money to educate him, to set him forward
in life; and I determined to go into regular service. When my friends
heard of this they offered to take charge of my little one, whom they
loved as if he had been their own. So it happened that when I came
across an advertisement for a married woman to take charge of a city
merchant's house in London and act as housekeeper to him, I answered
it. I referred to the people I lived {236} with and to the clergyman
of the parish, and finally was engaged by Mr. Gilbert Thorneley.
Perhaps the low wages I asked induced him to take me; perhaps having
seen me, his keen shrewdness detected there was a story that was mine,
and so could trade upon it and grind me down. Anyhow I entered his
service in the spring of 1832. Of my husband up to that time I had
heard nothing. I assumed my maiden name, and carefully concealed every
clue to finding either myself or my child. The kind people who had
taken charge of the boy were named Wilmot. He was christened Robert;
but they gave him the name their dead child had borne, and he went by
the name of '_Lister Wilmot_.' I made no objection; it helped to
conceal him from his father."

There was the movement of a violent shiver in the form that stood next
to me, and a low muttered sound; I did not catch the words, but the
dying woman must have heard something, for she paused and half turned
her head, as if listening. Then after a moment she continued her
narration:

"I have no need to describe to you Gilbert Thorneley's character. What
right have I now, with death so close to me, to malign the dead! And
yet I must tell, because it is part of the burden I am laying down,
all the hatred, the contempt I felt for him as I got to know his
meanness, his low cunning, his niggardly ways. The clerks he kept on
miserable salaries, the workmen he employed and ground down to the
uttermost farthing, all knew and told me of the heaps of wealth that
were flowing into his coffers; how sum upon sum accumulated in his
hands; and how his name was a byword and a proverb for a rich and
prosperous man. And one hundredth part of that wealth had bought me
the only joy I ever craved now--union with my child, and security for
his future! I brooded over this in long lonely hours, brooded until I
grew mad, until Satan entered into me, and I turned my face from God.
Just at this time my master was away from home for many weeks. I did
not know where he went, or on what business; but on his return he made
two announcements to me: first, that he had bought a house and estate
in Lincolnshire; and secondly, that he was going to be married. I
replied I supposed he would now no longer want my services. To my
surprise and dismay, he answered me by saying he should require me to
go down to his new house and act there as housekeeper. He added he had
discovered all about me, where my child was, and the whole story of my
husband; that I was now in his power; if I would serve him faithfully
I should never want for money, and that my boy should be forwarded in
life. If I refused, he would make everything known, and put Robert on
my track. I consented to remain in his service, and to do all that he
required.

"I went down shortly into Lincolnshire to the Grange; and there he
brought home his young bride. By this time I had got to know many of
his secrets. I had sold myself to him and he paid me; handsomely
enough for him, considering the miser that he was. His wife was not
happy--how could she be? She was kept shut up in that dismal Grange
from month to month, without a soul to speak to save him or me. He did
not want _her_, he wanted her fortune. That has been told before. To
spy upon her, to watch her, was my office down in those dreary fens;
to walk with her, to attend her in her drives, never to lose sight of
her except when with him. If she had liked me, if she had shown any
kindness to me, I would have been her friend, and shielded her from
the tyrant whom she called husband. But she treated me with
haughtiness--undisguised contempt; me, who had her in my power. I
have hot blood and passions in me, cold and phlegmatic as I seem; and
she roused the passion of hatred within me. During my residence in
Lincolnshire, my husband traced me out through an accidental
circumstance. We had one interview. {237} He entreated me to return to
him; but I would not. He threatened to keep and eye on me, to watch
me. I dared him to it. Afterward I found that I had been foolish to
brave him. A year after her marriage Mrs. Thorneley bore her first
child; but before that an event occurred which influenced and sealed
her fate. I detected her in two stolen interviews with a cousin of
hers, an officer in the army. My master believed that when her aunt
died she had no living relative left. I bear witness now that nothing
passed at those interviews that all the world might not have heard;
but I used my knowledge of them with Mr. Thorneley. I have said before
he wanted her money and not her, and this cousin turning up frightened
him. He accused her of all that was most shameful, egged on by me. I
was the richer for it. I had now a goodly sum put by for my boy. Then
the heir was born; a weakly, puling child. You know what he grew up to
be--an idiot. Mrs. Thorneley was very ill; I knew her husband did not
wish for her recovery. I did not suspect he absolutely wished her
death. At last she died--suddenly. Only he and I were in the room, _I_
was that '_other person_' spoken of by him to Mr. Kavanagh. She died
by prussic acid administered to her by him; and _I_ discovered it.
Henceforth _he_ was in _my_ power, not I in his. I kept silence, and
the matter was hushed up with money.

"The baby was left to be nursed at the Grange; and my master and I
returned to town. Once more I settled down to my old duties in the
city house, bearing in my breast the knowledge of my master's fearful
secret. All sense of right and wrong, all conscience, was deadened
within me; the secret was mine--mine to turn into gold and riches for
my child. I went down to visit him at the farm in Surrey; and as I
pressed him in my arms I whispered to him of what he should be--a
grand, rich gentleman.

"Two years after this time my masters widowed sister, Mrs. Atherton,
died; and he adopted her only child, Hugh. I saw that this would prove
either an aid or an obstacle to my plans. Very little, I found, was
known about Mr. Thorneley's family; he had come to London as a lad,
from a distant part of England. One evening I sought him, and opened
my scheme to him. I had him in my power, terribly, irremediably; and
he consented to it. I was to bring my boy away from Surrey, and he
would adopt and bring him up as the child of another sister, with his
nephew, Hugh Atherton. He was to retain the name of Lister Wilmot.

"Excepting during occasional hasty visits to the Grange, Mr. Thorneley
never saw his son and heir. The child had been born an idiot; that he
would ever be otherwise was hopeless.

"I went down to the little farm and brought away my boy--my little
Robert. For two years he had never seen me, and had forgotten his
mother. I brought him away from his friends, from all the pure, simple
influence that surrounded him there, from the innocent joys of country
life, from the wholesome atmosphere of honest toil and labor--brought
him up to dwell in the abode of one whose hands were dyed with crime,
brought him within the baleful influence of his mother's teaching. Too
late now--too late; but as I see it all at this moment, it had been
better to beg, better to die, than have brought him within the shadow
of that man's gold.

"Once more my husband burst upon me. He was jealous, he said, jealous
of my master, and he insisted upon knowing where his child was. With
false promises I got rid of him. It was late in the evening when he
came and went. He had a companion with him--an ill-looking Irishman,
named Sullivan. That night the house was broken into. Being roused, I
surprised one of the burglars retreating; he was the image of my
husband, and yet it was not he, I felt convinced. But it gave me an
idea. If I could swear to him and he were taken, he would be
transported, and I should be free from {238} him, at least for a time.
I helped Inspector Keene to detect him by means of anonymous letters,
and then swore to his identity. He was condemned and sentenced to
twenty years' penal servitude. I have not much more to tell, up to
last October.

"The two boys grew up together into young men--one the real, the other
the pretended nephew of Mr. Thorneley--and as his joint heirs. Of his
own son nothing was seen, nothing heard; he might have been dead, but
that I knew he was not. If Lister Wilmot had only succeeded to
one-half of Gilbert Thorneley's fortune his future would have been
amply, brilliantly provided for. I coveted more for my son; he coveted
more for himself. In those days he never knew I was his mother; but I
had tended him when a child, and he used to confide in me. It was the
only sweetness I ever tasted amidst the cup of bitterness I had
prepared myself. He was proud and ambitious; I dared not tell him who
he was. So he grew up in ignorance of our relative positions--he, the
reputed nephew and joint heir of the richest man in England; I, his
mother, that man's housekeeper and servant. He confided in me; and
shortly after Mr. Hugh Atherton's engagement to Miss Leslie, I wormed
from him that he too loved her. This and some money difficulties he
got into at that time were harassing him sorely. I could not see my
boy suffer and not try to help him--I could not see him thwarted in
his love; and one day I went to his chambers and told him I possessed
a secret of his uncle's, and would use it in his favor. He then said
how jealous he was of his cousin, how fearful he felt lest Atherton,
being Thorneley's favorite nephew, should at last be left sole heir.
That evening I once more sought my master; and using all the power I
had over him, extorted from him an oath that, with the exception of a
nominal sum left to Mr. Atherton, a will in favor of my son as his
sole heir should be made on the morrow. This was done. That will was
read on the day of the funeral. After making it my master never seemed
well or at ease; and day by day, hour by hour, I watched him in fear
and dread lest he should revoke it. We were both hurried on
mysteriously to our fate.

"On the 23d of October last Mr. Thorneley received a visit from Mr.
John Kavanagh in Wimpole street. I misdoubted the object of the
interview; watched, listened, and overheard in great part what took
place. The sending for the two men servants, and their saying on
returning to the kitchen that they had been signing their names to
something which looked like a will, confirmed my suspicious. Then the
devil once more entered into my soul. What! after all my toil, my
watching, my sufferings; after having bartered my salvation for this
mess of pottage, should my boy be cast adrift upon the world when the
old man died, and not inherit a penny of the money he had been taught
to consider rightfully as his own? Never. Perish rather and die. Die!
The word haunted my brain and rang in my years--die! Who should die
but he, the old miser? Then a terrible resolve got possession of me,
and I dressed myself and went out. The history of that evening is
known to you all. _I_ was the woman who met Mr. Kavanagh Vere street;
_I_ was the women who entered the chemist's shop and the poison; _I_
was the woman who sent the money to James Ball and bade him not
identify me. I saw the meeting between Mr. Atherton, whom I hated, and
Mr. Kavanagh, whom I hated also, because he was his friend. I heard
the whole of their conversation and then the future opened out to me,
lighted by the flames of hell. I went home; and scarcely had I arrived
when first Lister came, and then Hugh Atherton. I heard them talking
together; I heard my son say he trouble about money, and that he was
going to ask for some. That was well. I had poisoned the old man's
mind, and told him days before that Atherton was leading Lister into
extravagance; that {239} only my son had gained Miss Leslie's
affections, he should never have come upon Mr. Thorneley's for a son.
He was irritated against his nephew; this evening was the crisis. What
I have related explains his words to Mr. Atherton.

"At nine o'clock I took up his usual refreshment. Ale _was_ poured out
in a glass, and into the ale poured out I emptied the paper of
strychnine bought at the chemist's. Strangely enough, I did it
unobserved by Barker. He little thought there was need to watch me.
Strangely, too, Mr. Atherton never noticed that I spoke to Lister as I
left the study. I said to him in a low voice: 'Don't give your uncle
his ale to-night; let him get it himself'.' The results were what I
foresaw. Lister never stirred, and Mr. Atherton handed the glass to
his uncle. I put the paper in the pocket of Mr. Atherton's overcoat as
I passed through the hall on my way down.

"In the night I went into the dead man's room, took his keys, sought
and found the will in the escritoire in his study. Mine were the
footsteps heard on the stairs by the cook. I took the will and
concealed it up in my bedroom, effectually as I thought; but it seems
not. This is the history of that night of the 23d of October last;
this is the mystery of Gilbert Thorneley's death. He was murdered by
_me_."

The feeble voice ceased, and the weary head sank lower upon the hello.
We thought the end had come, and both priest and surgeon hastened to
the dying woman's side. But it was not so; her task was not yet done.
After an interval of many minutes she rallied again. Whilst she had
spoken Wilmot gave no sign, save that one shuddering movement. I had
rapidly taken down her confession in shorthand, standing just as we
had entered, grouped at a little distance from the bed; and when she
was silent I looked round at her son beside me. There he stood with
his arms folded, motionless and rigid, his eyes fixed on the ground,
his lips drawn tightly together, set and firm, and a dark heavy frown
upon his brow. His face was deadly pale. "God move his heart," I
inwardly prayed as I looked at him; for it was like gazing on a block
of granite. Presently I heard Father Maurice say to her, "Are you able
to speak without pain? You have said all that is necessary."

"No, no!" she replied, "not all;" and turned her face, on which the
shadow of death was gathering fast, toward us once more. How long she
had been unburdening her soul we had taken no count, and the grey dawn
was stealing in at the window as she spoke again. It was opposite the
bed.

"Will you undraw that curtain, sister?" she said; "I should like to
look once more upon the sky before I die. It is very long since I
dared to lift my face to it without dread; there seemed to be an eye
looking down upon me with such terrible anger. It is gone now, the
great fear. Can this be peace that is stealing over me? Peace for such
as I?"

Father Maurice stooped down and spoke to her in a low tone, and I saw
her hands fold together and her lips move. In a few moments she spoke
once more. Her mind was wandering. "Robert! where is my boy?" and she
started forward. "It is growing dark; why doesn't he come? Lister!"

Oh! the anguished longing of that cry, as if the mother's heart went
out and broke with yearning! Would he, _could_ he resist that appeal?
"Mother!" I saw a wild movement beside me, and a figure rushed forward
and flung himself on his knees by the bed. I saw him encircle the
dying woman in his arms and press his lips passionately to hers. She
laid her hands round his neck and smoothed his face, just as if he had
been a child. "Robert, my little Robert!" The intervening years had
passed away to her mind; the memory of crime and sin {240} was taken
from her, and only the consciousness of her child's presence was with
her. "Forgiveness!" we heard her murmur; and she drew her son's head
yet closer to her breast. Then there was a dead stillness. Once more
the surgeon approached and touched Lister Wilmot on the shoulder. He
raised his head a little, and the arms that clung round his neck fell
powerless on the coverlet.

"She has fainted," said Mr. Lovell. Lister knelt on whilst
restoratives were being applied, with his face buried in his hands.
After a while consciousness came back; her eyes opened, and lighted up
with a gleam of ineffable joy as they fell upon her son's bent head.
She passed her hand caressingly over his hair, and then let it rest
upon his shoulder.

"This is more than I deserved," she said; and her voice was fainter
than when last she had spoken. "I ought not to have such happiness as
this. Are you there, Mr. Kavanagh?"

"Yes, I am here;" and I went up to the bedside.

"I have done grievous wrong to your friend Mr. Atherton. Can you, can
he forgive me?"

I told her yes, freely from my heart, and I knew I might say so from
_him_. She moved her hand restlessly over Wilmot's hair, and a
momentary look of trouble crossed her face.

I asked her if she had anything else to say to me; not to fear. That I
prayed the Almighty Father to forgive her, even as I forgave any
trouble she had caused me.

"My son, my poor boy! What will be done to him? He is innocent of the
crimes I have revealed--innocent of the murder, innocent about the
will."

Then a broken, hollow voice answered, "No, mother--not entirely. I
suspected there was something wrong, but the temptation to profit by
it was too strong."

She looked more troubled; and I thought she glanced at me piteously,
imploringly.

"Do not let that disturb you. You may trust Atherton. Nothing will be
done against your son. Die in peace."

"Robert, don't kill me! I have not got him here. He is safe. Little
Robert, little baby! kiss me, kiss poor mother. It is very dark. I
cannot see him;" and the poor hands wandered over the coverlet. We
drew near, and the low solemn tones of the priest were heard saying
the prayers for the dying. The red streaks of early morning shed their
faint glow on the dying woman's face; her lips moved, and Wilmot
passing his arm beneath her head, raised her a little on his shoulder;
she stole her arm up round his neck, and we heard the words, "Forgive!
Mercy!" There was a long struggling sigh, a gasp for breath; the
blue-grey eyes opened once more and looked toward the eastern sky,
then closed in death.



CHAPTER XIV.

EXEUNT OMNES.

This story which I have then telling, acted now long years ago, was
wearing to an end. The unfortunate housekeeper's confession cleared up
almost entirely what had mystified and baffled our inquiries for so
many months; and, standing beside his mothers bier--the mother who
had loved him all too well for her peace--Lister Wilmot, in the depth
of his humiliation and the grief which the tide of natural affection,
so recently aroused within him, had wakened, added what little was
wanting to throw complete light upon the dark mystery of the past.

On the day before the remains of his unhappy parent were consigned to
the grave, as he took his last farewell of the corpse, he told me his
own story, his temptation and his fall. Alas! for him the sins of his
parents had returned with double vengeance upon his head; the evil in
them had reproduced itself in him. Deluded with the belief that {241}
he was the heir to immense wealth, he had given full swing to his
besetting vice--gambling. The billiard-table, the gaming-house, and
that curse to young man, secret betting clubs and societies, had been
his familiar though unknown resort. There, too, he had met with and
fallen into the meshes of a creature but too familiar to the
frequenters of such places--a man (if such can claim pretence to
manhood) mature in years, even to gray hair; one of those who gain the
substance which supports their infamous lives by sponging upon the
young, by in tangling in their web young men destined to be the pride
and hope of high-born families with stainless lineage; or the scions
of noble houses; or the youth of houses not less noble, though perhaps
more in the sense of present deeds than departed worth; or sadder and
more shameful still, the young man who is the only son of his mother,
and she a widow, her sole stay and support. Into such hands did Wilmot
fall when he met the man Sullivan or De Vos. Through him he became
mixed up in some disgraceful gaming affair; and De Vos used it to get
him more thoroughly into his power, and upon the strength of it to
extort money from him. Then came his real but misplaced attachment to
Ada Leslie, and consequent jealousy of Hugh Atherton. An affection
requited might have been his salvation; unreturned and hopeless, it
became his moral ruin. Deeper and deeper he plunged into vice, faster
and faster he gambled. None save those who haunted the same scenes as
himself knew how far he was involved, how far lost; none even
suspected a tithe of it, save one. But the mother's eye, the mother's
heart could not be deceived. She whom he had been taught to look upon
only as his uncle's housekeeper, who had nursed and tended and petted
him as a child--she saw the care and trouble of his mind; she sought
and won his confidence to a great extent. He told her he was
overwhelmed with debt and difficulty, and she urged him to apply to
Mr. Thorneley for a sufficient sum to free him at least from danger.
That application was to be made on the very evening of the murder. She
hinted to him darkly that she had the means of forcing Thorneley to
give what he required, and that she would risk everything and hesitate
at nothing for his (Wilmot's) sake. The first suspicion which entered
his mind that she had indeed not scrupled even at the worst, was on
the morning after Old Thorneley was found dead. This had strengthened
more and more; but the temptation of his opening prospects, of the
princely fortune which he found he alone was inheriting, dazzled,
blinded him, and stupefied his conscience. A yet greater inducement to
evil lay in the alluring thought that if the murder of Old Thorneley
were saddled upon Hugh Atherton, and his disgrace, his banishment, if
not his death secured, there might be a chance of winning in time Ada
Leslie's affections for himself. To this end he had labored,
ostensibly endeavoring to establish belief in Hugh's innocence, and
acting as his best friend, but in reality undermining Mrs. Leslie's
faith in him by the most subtle diplomacy, and shaking, by the most
specious representations, Hugh's trust in and friendship for me. With
Ada alone he had met entire defeat. Steadfast and unwavering had been
her solemn, unqualified declaration that her affianced husband was
guiltless; steady and unwavering likewise--God bless her for it!--had
been her childlike trust in her old guardian. And this maddened him.

Then came Hugh's acquittal, accompanied by public censure and public
disgrace. Here was a loophole through which a ray of hope gleamed upon
Wilmot's dark soul. Atherton writhed beneath the shame that had fallen
upon him with all the anguish of a keenly sensitive nature; and Wilmot
played his game with this. He lost no opportunity of making Hugh feel
his position; constantly, though skillfully, {242} he brought before
him the shadow that was over him, and would artfully represent to him
the magnanimity of Miss Leslie's conduct in wishing to share his
blighted name and fortune. Hugh's first proposition of emigrating he
had opposed outwardly, working in the dark to bring about its
realization; and when Hugh was actually gone, he felt at last that the
field was clear for him. Wilmot described his rage at finding that I
had outwitted him as ungovernable, his desire for revenge burning and
deadly. Then came the discovery of the will. Of its existence he had
in truth been ignorant; and though suspecting some complicity in the
matter on the part of Mrs Haag, once possessed of Old Thorneley's
money, he had buried his suspicions in his own breast. Three days
after the will was found by Inspector Keene, he received a letter from
the housekeeper. In it she told him of their relationship in brief
words, with no further explanation; she said that the discovery of the
missing document involved her in serious trouble, and that she was
hastening to Liverpool to catch the first vessel for America. Then he
felt for the first time that his heyday was over, that the worst might
shortly come; and he too began hasty preparations for leaving England
secretly. In the midst of these came the telegram from Liverpool, and
the subsequent tragic events.

This was the epitome of what Lister Wilmot (I keep his assumed name)
told me the day before his mother's funeral. I said to him, "You have
not explained one thing. Why, when I went down to the Grange, did you
send De Vos to follow me and drug the coffee?"

"I did not," he said. "I knew absolutely nothing of it." And at such a
moment I felt he was speaking the truth. He continued: "I have not
seen De Vos for months; and I believe he has left the country."

I found afterward that another person was to clear up this remaining
item of the mystery.

Of Wilmot I have little more to tell. In the abyss of his humiliation
and degradation the message of divine mercy reached his soul; in the
depths of his heart, chastened and and purified, he listened and
responded to its whisper. So far as Hugh Atherton was concerned he
went scatheless; and through the generosity of the man whom he had so
deeply injured, he was enabled eventually to emigrate to the same land
whither his unfortunate mother was flying for refuge when she met her
death. But before that he had a duty to perform, a stern, hard duty of
pain; and he set his face to the work resolutely, unshrinkingly.

In the Liverpool prison late Robert Bradley the elder, biding his
trial for the murder of his wife; and from his lips we were to learn
yet more to complete the history of the past. Once, and once only, the
father and son met. In the bitterness of his trouble and his newly
wakened penitence, Lister had turned and clung to the one who had
ministered to his dying mother, and in Father Maurice, after God, he
found his best friend. At his request the old priest went with him to
that single interview with his father.

"I never meant to kill your mother, Robert," the convict said to his
son. "Heaven is my witness, I never had a thought of harm to her when
I went after her in Cross street. I loved her, ay, I loved her, little
as you may think it now. I loved her though she left me, though she
hid my boy away, though she brought him up not know his father; though
she branded me with a crime I never committed, and got me sent to
prison and chains, and a life in comparison with which death will be
sweet; though she spurned me and defied me, I loved her with all the
might of my heart, all the passionateness with which I loved her when
she came to me a fair young bride. Away in that penal settlement,
amongst that hideous gang, beneath that burning sky, I had longed and
thirsted more for one look at her face, for one touch of her hand,
then {243} ever longed for a drop of water to slake my parching thirst
or cool the fever of my lips. They tell me she has revealed the story
of our lives--all is misery and shame. I have heard a few particulars.
In one thing I believe I have wronged her; I thought her guilty of
Mrs. Thornely's death; I thought she wished to usurp her place. I used
the threat of what I suspected to induce her to make out with me; but
she spurned me from her; she told me she would die on the gallows
rather than live with me again; and then the madness seized me; I
struck her--once--twice--and killed her."

Of all that passed in that single meeting between the two Robert
Bradleys little was heard; it was not meet that much should be known.
They met solemnly, in bitterness, in shame, with agony in either
heart, with a world of anguish, of feelings surging over their souls
to which they dared not give utterance. They parted solemnly, but in
peace: the son who had never you known his father until now--and then
in what a terrible manner! the father who had never looked on his
child since the time when he had taken him on his knee and listened to
his infant prattle. Parted, never more to meet on this side the grave.

I saw the convict once or twice before his trial came on, and I found
from him that he had known Sullivan of De Vos all his life. That he
was on his wife's track when she went down to the Grange, and De Vos
was with him. That the latter, seeing I was bound thither likewise,
and having reason to fear me both for his own and Bradley's sake, had
given me the stupefying dose in my coffee at Peterborough Station,
trusting to the results which did really happen. That it was his
appearance which must have alarmed his wife and caused her to
relinquish her visit to the Grange. Further than that he could give me
no information. Strangely enough, the bad companion of the father had
proved the bad companion of the son, though in totally different ways.
There is nothing more to tell of Robert Bradley. He was tried,
condemned, and sentenced to death; but the sentence was commuted to
transportation for life by the exertions of his son. Father Maurice
had the satisfaction of receiving from his lips the assurance before
he left the Liverpool Docks bound for his final journey, that he
accepted his sentence as the only expiation he could make for his long
career of sin.

And what of those who were once so near and dear to me--dear still,
though far away, Hugh Atherton and Ada, now for many years his wife--
what of them! We never met again; humanly speaking, we never more
shall meet upon this earth. There is a writer--to my mind the essayist
_par excellence_ of this age, with power to touch the finest chords
and sound the most hidden depths in the heart of man--who says that he
knows no word of equal pathos to the little word "gone." And it is the
word which expresses the long blank, the great vacuum of all these
latter years since they went away--since they have been among the
"gone." And how is it, you will ask, my readers, that still they
should be far away when all the storms and clouds which had shadowed
their horizon passed away, and the sunshine and fair blue sky once
again greeted them? Well, it was in this wise:

Tidings of all that took place in Liverpool were instantly forwarded
to Hugh Atherton at Melbourne, and we thought we should welcome them
all back to England ere long; but he did not come--he never will come
now. He wrote that the thought of returning to England was
insupportable to both himself and Ada; that they would remain where
they were, and where he had received the greatest happiness of his
life--his true and tender wife. They settled in Australia, some miles
from Melbourne, doing much for the new colony in the way of
usefulness; and Hugh devoted {244} himself to the interests of his
adopted country. His name is well known there, and it is coupled with
everything that is good and great. I hear sometimes from them, most
often from Ada. Her mother died a few years ago, and she has lost two
children. They have three living, two boys and a girl; the youngest
boy is called John after me. She would have it so. No, the old
friendship between me and Hugh has never been rekindled into the same
warmth; we are friends, but not the friends of yore. I do not blame
him; he was blind, blind; and so we drifted away from one another, or
rather he from me. It was just one of those clouds which come between
human hearts because they are human; and then we see through a glass
darkly whilst earth clings so closely about us. By and by all will be
clear. He thought I should have confided his uncle's secret to him or
Merrivale under the circumstances. Perhaps I ought. If I was mistaken,
if I kept my solemn promise to the dead too rigidly, God pardon me; I
did it for the best. But we may make mistakes in our shortsightedness,
in our finite views, in our imperfect comprehension of events over
which we have no control, and in which we have very little hand. If he
outlives me, he will perhaps know this; and the knowledge of it, the
memory of our ancient friendship will bring back the tenderness of his
heart for me; he will feel, I pray not too sadly, that he also was
mistaken when he withdrew the trust and confidence that never before
heaven had for one moment been betrayed.

Some years ago I buried Gilbert Thorneley's idiot son; he lived with
me up to the time of his death, harmless, but irrational to the last.
It was a satisfaction to his guardian that with me he would receive
every kindness and attention; and the poor fellow died in my arms,
repeating in his indistinct and childish manner the words I had taught
him to address to his Father in heaven--he who had never known a
father's love on earth.

I am alone in my old study, and I turn to write the last page of my
story.

The stillness of evening is creeping on afast, and the fire burns low;
before it lies old Dandie--he is blind now and stiff with age. Neither
he nor I can ramble out far into the country lanes, or across
Hempstead Heath, as once we used. Years have come and gone, and the
little golden circlet on my finger has grown thin and worn, but it
will last my days. Shadows of the past are around me, and voices of
the past are busily whispering in my ear. What is this that has fallen
upon my hand? O Ada! is this "worse than foolishness," the tears
should rush to your old guardian's eyes when he thinks of you, and
writes your name for the last time? Nay, that has passed--past with
the bygone years that have rolled on into eternity. A little longer,
and the dark strait that divides us from our beloved shall "narrowed
to the thread-like mere;" a little longer spent in hope and patience,
and then the hand will come. Not now, Hugh--not now, Ada: I shall see
you by and by.


--------

{245}

Original.

DEVELOPMENT OF NATIONALITIES.


Each age through which civilized humanity has passed, has its special
characteristic. If, as most people admit, the nineteenth century has
inaugurated a new era in the history of mankind, the characteristic of
that era will be found in the rapid strides which the various races
are making toward the attainment of a national existence. This
development of nationalities is not, however, peculiar to our time; on
the contrary, through its entire course modern history presents the
same scene--a scene varied indeed and often interrupted, but
preserving its unity to such an extent as to justify us in discerning
therein a law of Providence. The constant yearning of each individual
after happiness is used by philosophers as a proof that he is destined
to one day attain it, and we are not quite sure that the noble
aspirations of the great popular heart do not indicate on the part of
the great Ruler a design to one day furnish it with a realization of
its hopes. The individual attains his end in the future world--the
people in the present. Those who respect but Little the popular
feeling call it mercurial. They are right. Dash some mercury on the
ground, and observe how the particles you have separated float wildly
on the surface as though seeking to be reunited. Do you see how
naturally they coalesce when brought in contact? There is an affinity
most perfect between these particles, and so there is between peoples
of the same race. Both were originally separated by violence, and the
process of reunion is in both quite natural. Modern history presents
no picture more vivid than that of the disintegrated peoples of the
earth slowly but uniformly tending toward a reunion of their separated
portions. Just now the figures seem more distinct--they stand out in
such bold relief that prejudice herself perceives them. A gigantic
war, commenced and finished almost with the same cannon's roar, has
knocked out the keystone of a governmental fabric once admired for
symmetry, and rulers see that in their structures they must imitate
those architects who seek for stones that fit well one with another.
People say that Beelzebub once gave a commission to a painter, for the
portrait of his good dame Jezebel, and that when the poor artist
despaired of picturing a countenance fit for the queen of hell, the
fiend turned to a collection of handsome women, and taking a nose from
one, an eye from another, mouth from another and complexion from
another, he manufactured so foul a visage, so dire an expression, as
to cause the votary of art to die outright. Various fishes make a very
good chowder, and various meats, well condimented, produce an
excellent _olla podrida_; but history shows that the various races
into which it has pleased God to divide mankind, cannot be
indiscriminately conglomerated without entailing upon the entire body
chronic revolution, with all its attendant evils. If you can so merge
the individual into the country as the United States have done with
their cosmopolitan population, no difficulty will be experienced; but
if you take various peoples and fit them together as you would a
mosaic, the contact will prove prejudicial to their several interests,
and powers {246} which would have otherwise developed for the good of
the body corporate, will either lie dormant or exercise a detrimental
effect upon the neighboring victims of short-sighted policy. Something
more than interest is felt in noticing the way in which the peoples
now enjoying national existence have attained so desirable an end; we
are enabled to thereby judge, with something like accuracy, of the map
those who will come after us must give of the world. So long as man is
man, just so long will it be in one sense true, that history repeats
herself; but we do not believe in that system of Vico which would make
of her a mere whirligig--introducing now and then something new to
certain portions of mankind in rotation, but nothing new to the world
in general. Such a system might satisfy that conservative of whom some
one has said that had he been present at the creation, he would have
begged the Almighty not to destroy chaos; but our prejudices are
against it, and though in avowing some prejudice we are pleading
guilty to the possession of a bad thing, we think that in this case
history will turn our fault into a virtue. We do not contend that
modern times present a picture of national development according to
the system of races so uniform as to contain no deviation whatever,
but history does show us that such deviations have been more than
counterbalanced by subsequent changes. The general rotundity of the
earth cannot be denied, because of the inequalities of its surface.
The American Republic furnisher us with no conflict of races on
account of the fact already alluded to. The various peoples of Asia
and Africa scarcely afford us a theatre for observation if we take our
stand upon modern history, since for all practical purposes they are
yet living in the days of Antiochus. Europe shows us a field worthy of
research, for there were thrown together the mongrel hordes of Asia
and the North, and with their advent and to the music of their
clashing weapons a new scene unfolded itself to the gaze of man. With
the fall of the Western empire commence all reflections upon modern
history, for then dawned our era by the release from the unnatural
thraldom of the Roman Caesars of the innumerable peoples of the earth.
To notice the manner in which these tribes grouped themselves into
national and integral existence is our present purpose. In the early
summer of 1866, had we been asked to classify the peoples of Europe,
we would have spoken as follows: The nations of Europe worthy of
consideration, and which are now regarded as united or "unified," are
France, England, Spain, Sweden and Norway, and Russia proper. The
nations as yet disintegral are Germany and Italy. The disnationalized
peoples are those of Ireland, Poland, Hungary and her dependencies,
Venice, Roumania, and Servia. Europe may hence be regarded as composed
of, 1st, nations which are _in se_ one and undivided and leading
therefore a national existence; 2d, peoples not under are you foreign
to themselves, but still not one with others of the same stock; 3d,
peoples governed by foreign nations. Of this latter class the most
prominent evil is furnished by the heterogeneous Austrian empire, to
compose which a draft is made on Hungary and the Hungarico-Sclavic
dependencies, on Germany, on Poland, and on Italy. The late war has
changed the situation somewhat, but the classification may remain
unchanged.

The first class of nations became integral by the grouping to gather
of peoples of common origin; and the steadiness with which they
pursued their destiny and the easy manner in which they consummated
it, cause us to believe that the others will yet attain a like end. Up
to the time of Alfred, England was composed of seven kingdoms. The old
Briton stock had been hidden in the mountains of Wales, and the
Anglo-Saxon race, which held undisputed sway over the land, became
one. France, now {247} the most unified of all nations, was for
centuries the meet distracted. In A.D. 613, she was composed of four
kingdoms: Neustria, Austria, Bourgogne, and Aquitaine. After the
conquest of Neustria, Austrasia conquers Aquitaine in 760. The Romans
found a new power in the north, but the people bear ill the yoke. The
French kings give them the aid of their arms, and after various losses
and successes Charles VII., in 1450, unites the regions definitively.
The powerful duchy of Burgundy, which, for five hundred years, impeded
the unity of France, was at length united to the crown in 1470. Spain,
once composed of Leon, Castile, Aragon, and Navarre, was not unified
until 1516. Scandinavia (Sweden and Norway) was, before the tenth
century, composed of twelve states. It was then reduced to two, Sweden
and Gothia, while in the thirteenth century these two were united. In
1397, the "union of Calmar" added Norway, and to-day the probabilities
are not very small for the annexation of the remaining Scandinavian
power, Denmark. Especial attention is merited by Russia proper, by
which term we mean the nation so called exclusive of her foreign
conquests, Finland, Lapland, Poland and her dependencies, Caucasus,
and Georgia. The groundwork or foundation of this people in blood,
language, and customs, is Sclavic. The proper name of the nation is
Muscovy. When, in the middle of the fifteenth century, Ivan lV. shook
off the Tartaro-Mongol yoke, the Muscovites commenced that headlong
career of annexation and amalgamation which in four centuries has
united more than twenty once independent Sclavic peoples, and has
formed what is now denominated the Russian nation. Although not
directly coinciding with him, we must here allude to the prediction of
the first Napoleon that in a century Europe would be either Republican
or Cossack. We half suspect that he leaned toward the first horn of
his dilemma, and we do not think he imagined that his second should
include a physical sway of Russia over Western Europe. If, however,
the lance of the Cossack seemed to him to weigh heavily in the balance
of power, history sufficiently justified him to prevent our regarding
his remark as absurd. When he saw that either by force or persuasion
the Sclavic peoples were being slowly but surely united, he might
naturally regard as probable the incorporation of the remaining
Sclaves of Poland, Bessarabia, Roumania, and Servia. Thirty years
after he so talked, Bessarabia went the way of her sisters, and
Roumania and Servia are year by year nearing St. Petersburg. We do not
think, however, that history will warrant the application of
Napoleon's theory to Poland and her dependencies, although they are
Sclavic. When history shows us the innumerable tribes of Europe, left
free by the fall of the Western empire, little by little grouping
themselves by races and situation, so that in a few centuries are
formed the nations now integral, she informs us that if such groupings
were sometimes violent, they were still conquests _sui generis_. They
were not _national_ but _political_. The great Baron de Jomini, in his
_Precis de l'Art de la Guerre_, insists most strongly upon the
importance of a general understanding whether the war he is about to
undertake be a national or a political war. We think the principle is
just as important for the historian. A national war is one of a people
against another; a political war, of a dynasty against another, either
to revenge an insult or to extend its own domain. The effects of a
national war are terrible, and the prejudices engendered are not
easily eradicated; those of a political war are light, while there are
entailed but few prejudices since the people have had no voice in the
matter. In a political war the people are not conquered--they merely
change masters, and often instead of receiving any injury {248}
experience a great benefit. Thus, when Ivan of Moscow conquers
Novgorod, the Sclaves of Novgorod are not conquered--a dynasty falls
and not a people. Such a conquest leaves behind it no heart-burnings
in the masses, while, on the contrary, if the people united were
hitherto not only disintegrated but also disnationalized, it is a
consummation by all devoutly wished. Poland, however, belongs to
another category, owing to the religious antipathy existing between
her and Russia. So great has this hatred of late years become, that
the war for the incorporation of the unfortunate kingdom is at last
national, not political--a war of peoples and not of kings. Such a war
cannot be terminated by annexation--nothing can end it but an
annihilation of the popular spirit. Let us bear in mind, then, that if
modern history shows us a gradual development of nationalities and of
unity in national government, there are certain principles according
to which changes are wrought. But how is it with the two nations of
Europe as yet disintegral? Have they hitherto tended toward unity? An
impartial and conscientious study of their history convinces us that
they have been uniformly nearing the goal which more fortunate nations
have already reached.

In the eighth century Italy was, the Roman States alone excepted,
entirely in the hands of the barbarian. From A.D. 1050, however, the
two Sicilies commenced to enjoy a half-autonomous existence, there
being but a personal union by means of a common sovereign between them
and the countries whose rulers successively wore the Sicilian crown.
In 1734 the kingdom became independent, and thus in this part of the
peninsula was made the first step to unity, namely, independence of
foreign rule. Parma became independent of the foreigner while under
the sovereignty of the Farnesi in 1545. Tuscany became independent in
828, and with the exception of eighty years, during which the German
emperors usurped the investiture of the duchy, remained so. The small
republics need no allusion. Venice was independent from 697 to 1797.
The Milanais was always more or less subject to the empire. Savoy and
Piedmont were ever independent. Italy was slow in becoming free from
foreign domination, but not so slow in the concentration of her
strength. The innumerable states and principalities of which she was
once composed gradually amalgamated, until in 1859 there were but
seven; two hundred years ago there were twelve really independent of
each other, and many more virtually so. We do not intend to touch upon
the question of Italian unity in its bearings upon the independence of
the Holy See. God will work out the problem long before any
disputation of the point could come to a conclusion. This, however we
feel, that if Providence has guided the peoples of Europe in the way
of national development, it is for the good of man and in aid of true
progress; and if in the case of Italy no compromise can be effected
without injury to Holy Church, the future of Italy will prove that she
has not attained the end of other countries; but history will show
that until now she has tended to it. When studying the facts of
history, one should not allow his feelings to blind his perception of
the scenes that pass before him, for his insincerity would prevent his
being a successful defender of any cause however good.

A few reflections upon German history as bearing upon the theory of
national developments cannot but interest us, both on account of the
late war, and on account of the apparent objection accruing to our
position from the fact of Germany's seeming to be an example of a
great nationality slowly disintegrating herself.

The history of Germany may be divided into three periods: 1st, under
the "Holy Roman Empire" until the rise of Prussia; 2d, under the same
from the rise of Prussia until 1806; {249} 3d, under the Confederation
until the present day. In the first period there were an immense
number of principalities, rivals not only of each other, but but also
of him who held the imperial sceptre. The emperor depended so much
upon his foreign vassals for his influence that he could scarcely be
regarded as a German sovereign governing German states. Suddenly
Prussia arose from nothing, and with majestic strides overran nearly
all the north; then for the first time the Germans beheld a power of
respectable strength, essentially German. When a nation is divided
into many parts, its first step toward unity is the acquisition of a
centre toward which all may tend. We pass by the origin of Prussia
since we are dealing with facts and not principles at present. We know
it is the fashion with a certain school to excite sympathy for Austria
by alluding to Albert of Brandenburg; but as we are of those who
believe that a man's own sins are scarcely less discreditable to him
than those of his ancestors, and have our memory fresh with
recollections of the long unbroken chain of outrages which the House
of Austria, when powerful, heaped upon the Church of God, we ask to be
excused if we allow no false sentimentality to intrude upon us. The
rise of Prussia and the interest manifested in her by the unitarian
party, forced the emperor and the secondary princes to be more German,
less foreign, in their policy. This second period, therefore, had
elements of unity which were wanting in the first. The third period,
however, gave something more. In 1806 Napoleon I. bade Francis II.
abdicate his title of Emperor of the Romans, and assume that of
Emperor of Austria, and then disappeared even the name of that which
for two hundred years had been a shadow. Then came the federal union
of all the German, and only the German provinces--a confederation in
which the interests of Germany might be consulted without prejudice
from foreign connections--a union full of faults, we confess, and in
many respects a sham, but yet an advance toward national unity.

We know of no records by means of which we can ascertain the exact
number of independent states with which Germany was accursed under the
feudal system, but we know that after Prussia had swallowed up many
there were before 1815 nearly a hundred. Before the late war there
were thirty-seven. How many there are now the telegraph has not
informed us, but we imagine the number has become small by degrees and
beautifully less.

Since 1815 the march toward German unity has been more steady and more
uniform than at any other period. The pressure exercised upon Austria
by Prussia, upon the secondary princes by their people, has forced
them to seek German rather than foreign alliances, to study German
more than dynastic or local interests. The Zollverein, the Reform
associations, the hue and cry openly made about unity, the very
entrance of Austria into the Holstein war, and latterly the alliance
between the liberals and a statesman whose principles they have
uniformly opposed, all indicate the popular effervescence, and excite
a suspicion that ere long Germany will be united. All the machinery of
which governments can avail themselves is used by Austria and the
secondary princes to ward off the danger which menaces them.

The friends of the system of which Austria is the last important
standard bearer, give us a bit of news which, if true, would be
interesting, since it would be the first time we could conscientiously
receive it, that the cause of the Kaiser is the cause of the church;
that to his banner are nailed her colors. The jackal follows the lion
to pick up his leavings, but his eating them does not make him a lion.
The fact of the matter is, that the history of the church gives so
painful a picture of her struggles with kings and princes, that it is
to us a matter of complete indifference whether the {250} victory be
won by the impersonation of military autocracy, or by the sickly
anomaly now catching at straws for an extension of life--unless,
however, the victory of the former were to vindicate the principle
that the peoples of the earth have rights to claim, and were to result
in the end in the collapse of its winner, and the leaving thereby of a
powerful nation in the hands of popular government. If this latter
consummation is reached, we shall be ready to do what we can to attach
the children of the church to a particular government, for we believe
that then the church will have in Europe more than ever a fair show,
so to speak, at humanity. The church is for the people, and for them
alone--when she approaches a king, she approaches him as a man--and
she need fear but little from those for whose interest she lives. The
popular heart quickly conceives an affection, and is seldom mistaken
in its impulses.

We have alluded to an opinion held by some that Germany is an example
of a great nationality disintegrated after centuries of integral
existence. If history deals with words and not with facts, if empty
titles and enthusiastic notions are criterions of national condition,
then that opinion is correct; but if the calling the Emperor of China
the Child of the Sun gives him no solar affinity, we must hold the
contrary one. The ancient so-called unity of Germany was not only an
empty word, but the very title Emperor of Germany had no foundation in
law. When the imperial crown was transferred from the French
Carlovingians to the House of Saxony, its mode or conditions of tenure
were not changed by the Holy See. Just as Charlemagne, though Emperor
of the Romans, was not Emperor of France, but as before King of the
Franks, so Conrad of Franconia, Otho of Saxony, and their successors
were emperors of the Romans, and mere feudal superiors of the other
German princes. If, in the lapse of time, the holder of the sceptre of
the "Holy Roman Empire" (which alone was the legal title from which
imperial rights derived) came to be called Emperor of Germany, the
title did not originate in law, but in the common parlance of the
Italians, French, and English, who recognized in the emperor a foreign
Prince, and who--at least the two latter--being naturally repugnant to
the universal monarchy system, constantly insisted upon the emperor's
primacy being as to them purely honorary. So much for the title. As
for the Holy Roman empire itself, nothing to prove the ancient unity
of Germany can be deduced from it. The public law of the middle ages
was based upon the principle, then the foundation of all economy, of
sacerdotal supremacy and princely subjection--a blessed thing for
humanity at that time by-the-by, which thus found some protection from
the tyrants who then ruled the earth. European government became
hierarchical; at the head stood the pope, then came the emperor, then
kings, etc. Now, according to the titles of courtesy in use at the
time, it might be supposed that France and England were subordinate to
the emperor, yet their constant history proves them to have been
independent of his sceptre. If, then, this so-called resurrection of
the western empire was purely nominal, was it merely honorific? Was
there no authority attached to it? If there were none, especially as
to Germany itself, of a part of which the emperor was a hereditary
prince, we would conclude at once that as Europe could not then be
called one, so could not Germany. Our proposition, however, is not so
self-evident.

There was an authority resident in the imperial sceptre over the
princes of Germany, but for all matters all practical importance it
was, with the exception of a few privileges, the same as that enjoyed
over Italy, Hungary, Bohemia, etc, viz., that of right of investiture.
If, however, from this fact of imperial suzerainty any argument can be
gathered for the ancient unity of Germany, we must say that at the
present time Egypt, Roumania, and Servia are {251} one with Turkey,
Liberia one with the United States. If before the late war Germany was
not integral, it was not so under the ancient system. Then it had an
emperor, in our days it had a federal diet--the emperors' decisions
were generally laughed at, while the decisions of the diet were
respected when allowed to decide. Nor, while speaking so disparagingly
of the imperial power, do we allude to the time when the imperial
dignity had become a mere puppet show--to the period between the rise
of Prussia and the annihilation of the title. We need not confine
ourselves to the time when the great Frederick could laugh at his
"good brother, the sacristy-sweep," trying to rival his power; the
same want of efficacious influence was ever felt from the day when
Conrad accepted the diadem--one only period excepted, that of Charles
V., and even he was wanting in force, and was obliged to succumb to
his powerful "vassals." The history of no country, either in Europe or
in Asia, can afford an example of such persevering strife for
ascendancy as that which the princes of Germany presented, either
among themselves--the emperor a spectator--or united in factions
against him and his factions. The imperial dignity was in some things
great, and over some periods of its existence there is a halo of
glory, but only in its external relations. The Hohenstaufen emperors
were by inheritance both internally and externally powerful princes;
their principality of Suabia and their immense possessions of the
Palatinate furnished them such a number of personal vassals that they
did much toward making the imperial sceptre respected, while there
kingdom of Sicily and lordship of Milan caused them to be feared
without. But then it was not the emperor who was feared, but the
Prince of Suabia, the Count Palatine, the King of Sicily, and lord
suzerain of Milan and Tuscany; just as under the Habsburgs and the
Lorraines it was not the emperor but the Archduke of Austria, King of
Hungary, of Lombardy, of Naples, of Illyrium, who, by means of his
personal and hereditary states in foreign lands, commanded that
respect from his German rivals which a purely German emperor never
extorted. The unity of Germany under the Holy Roman Empire was
therefore not of fact. It was an idea--quite poetical certainly, but
still an idea.

When we consider the obstacles which had to be surmounted by those
peoples who have already attained a national existence, we must fain
believe that those who are yet panting for it will not be long
disappointed. Roumania and Servia have been for centuries dreaming of
independence, but we must remember that only at a recent period did
civilization commence to act upon their peasantry. Even now many of
the boyards seem to be removed scarcely a generation from their Dacian
ancestry. All the Sclavic peoples of Eastern Europe have much to
acquire before they can be called fully civilized. The tyranny,
however, to which they owe most of their backwardness has of late
years very much diminished, and already they commence to ask
themselves the question which has so long preoccupied other minds, Are
the people created for the ruler, or is a ruler established for the
people? When men commence to think seriously on such subjects, action
is not far off. Bucharest and Jassy have been the scene of tumults
which have made many a European conservative cry out that nothing but
an iron rule will benefit the Roumanian--that Roumanian nationality
will prove a seminary of trouble for Europe. We believe in lending a
helping hand to a degraded people that they may in time raise
themselves to the level of their fellows--we would deem ourselves
worse than their tyrants if we regarded the passions which tyranny has
engendered as an excuse for that tyranny's perpetuation.

{252}

A bright day seems to have dawned for Hungary--at least so think the
Austrian wing of the Hungarian patriots. For these gentlemen the
ungermanization of Austria means that Pesth is to be the capital of a
new heterogenous empire. They should remember those long years during
which they mourned the short-sighted policy which drowned Hungarian
nationality for the benefit of Germany, and reap from them a knowledge
of other sins they will commit if they repress those nationalities
which are as sacred as their own. Heaven cannot bless those who claim
liberty for themselves and deny it to others.

And in the midst of this conflict of the peoples of the earth for real
or imaginary rights, how fares the church of God? Excellently well,
for no change man will here below experience can ever unman him. So
long as there are people on the earth, so long will there be souls to
save, and the church will be ever on hand to do the work. But there is
more to be said. Of those people who are now so strenuously laboring
in the cause of liberty, a large proportion are outside of the church.
Many of them are working from a pure love of justice, as God has given
them the light to see it, and if they are true to their natural
convictions the supernatural will yet be engrafted upon them. It
cannot be denied, however, that there are many who throw their weight
into the scale of liberty as for they think Catholicity is in the
other scale, and that they will hence contribute to weakening the hold
the church has upon man. Would they could live to see the day when
liberty shall have triumphed--were it only to realize the true mission
of that church they now so bitterly hate! From the day the church
entered upon her glorious career she has been constantly contending
with the potentates of the earth. Her first struggle was with brute
force, and she triumphed. Her second contest was more terrible, for
the means brought against her were more insidious. Under the pretext
of honoring her, the gods of the earth encircled her limbs with golden
chains. How pretty they seemed, and how complacently some of her
members regarded them! How anxiously some yearn after them yet! But
they were torn away, and--great providence of God!--by those who
thought to thus ruin her. Her enemies say she yearns for that society
now disappeared. Has she forgotten how much those struggles cost her?
Gentlemen of the liberal world, you are mistaken if you think the
church fears the success of your designs. You are another illustration
of the truth of the saying, that God uses even the passions of men to
further his ends. When you will have succeeded in obliterating all
artificial distinctions of caste and privilege, and will have actuated
your vaunted ideas of liberty and equality, the church will confront
you, and thrusting you aside, will render real what with you would
always be an idea--fraternity. Those who now applaud you will lift
from the church their eyes of suspicion and jealousy, and will realize
how greatly you were mistaken when you called her retrograde and
tyrannical.

--------

{253}

PHYSICAL SCIENCE AND CHRISTIAN REVELATION



BY REV.  JAMES A. STOTHERT.


If the philosophers of the nineteenth century are proud of its
scientific character, it is not without reason; if they congratulate
themselves on having penetrated further into the secrets of nature
than their predecessors, the impartial judgment of future times will
confirm the opinion. It is no ordinary age that has, in the first half
of its course, produced men of the first eminence in every branch of
science, and contributed discoveries, remarkable alike for their
intrinsic value, and their influence on the welfare of mankind. The
progress of the physical sciences, since the year 1800, has been rapid
and unprecedented; some of them have assumed a character and position
entirely new, in consequence of the number and brilliancy of the
discoveries, and the importance of the principles unfolded in relation
to them. Another era in the history of chemistry opened with Dalton's
atomic theory, aided by the amazing industry of Berzelius, in its
practical application; the labors of Davy, in reducing the number of
simple elements by means of voltaic electricity, and Faraday's patient
and even-advancing discoveries in the wide field of electro-magnetism,
have developed chemical science to an extent, and in a direction,
which a former generation would have deemed fabulous. During the same
period, geology has been rescued from neglect, and from serious
charges of unsound tendencies, and been placed in deserved rank among
the sciences by the eminent labors Smith and Buckland, of Sedgwick and
Delabeche, of Lyell and Murchison, and Miller. Thee stamp of the age
has been put on the science of optics by the discovery of the
polarization of light by Malus; by the subsequent extension and
perfection of that discovery by Brewster and Arago; and, more
remarkably still, by the profound investigations and independent
research of Young and Fresnel, on the subject of the wave theory of
light. Zoology, especially in its bearing on geology and the history
of the earth, has been carried to astonishing perfection, by the
intuitive genius and sagacity of Cuvier and Agassiz and Owen and
Forbes. In the history of astronomy, the queen of the sciences, the
nineteenth century must be ever memorable as that in which was first
established the appreciable parallax of some among the stars commonly
called fixed; at once spanning the hitherto illimitable abyss which
separates the solar system from those distant luminaries, and opening
up to human intelligence clear and better defined views of the
vastness of the universe. The names of Bessel, Struve, and Argelander,
of Airy and Lord Rosse, and the two Herschels, are associated with
observations and discoveries, for which future ages will look back to
our time with admiration and gratitude. The more recent observations
of Herschel on Multiple Stars may be assumed to have established, the
existence of the great law of gravitation in regions of space, so
remote from our sight, that the diameter of the earth's orbit, if
searched for at that distance, through telescopes equal to our most
powerful, would be invisible. The circumstances attending the
discovery of the most distant planet, Neptune, are perhaps the most
extraordinary proof of the high intellectual {254} culture of our
time. Another planet, Uranus, its next neighbor, had been long
observed to be subject to perturbations, for which no known cause
could altogether account. By an elaborate and wholly independent
calculation of these disturbances, and a comparison of them with what
would have resulted from all the known causes of irregularity, two
mathematicians, Leverrier in France, and Adams in England, were
enabled, nearly at the same time, and quite unknown to each other, to
say where the disturbing cause must be, and what must be the
conditions of its action. They communicated with practical
astronomers, and told them where they ought to find a new planet;
telescopes were directed to the spot, accurate star-maps were
consulted, and there it was, the newly discovered planet Neptune,
wandering through space, in an orbit of nearly three thousand millions
of miles' semi-diameter. Other discoveries had been the result of good
fortune, or the reward of patient accuracy and untiring perseverance;
here discovery was anticipated, and directed by the conclusions of
purely mathematical reasoning.

The nineteenth century, little more than half elapsed, can also point
with satisfaction to numerous observatories in both hemispheres,
where, in nightly vigils and daily calculations, the accumulating
observations and details are amassed and arranged, which for years to
come are to guide the mariner through the pathless seas, and to
furnish materials for future generalization in regard to the laws of
the physical universe; where untiring account is kept of those occult
and variable magnetic influences which permeate the surface of our
globe and the atmosphere around it, to which the distinguished
Humboldt first urged attention, and in the investigation of which the
names of Kater and Sabine are conspicuous. In chemical laboratories at
home, and on the continent, the progress of investigation into the
internal constitution of matter is so extensive and so fruitful in
results, that as we were lately informed by an eminent chemist, it is
hardly possible even for a professional man to keep up to the mark of
weekly discovery. The triumphs of steam-power in connexion with
machinery; the perfection attained my modern engineering, and the
multiplication of its resources; the wonderful results produced by the
combination and division of labor, illustrated by the completion of
vast works, and the supply of materials for our world-wide commerce;
and, not least of all, the application of the electric current to the
transmission of messages, originally suggested by a Scotsman, in the
year 1753,  [Footnote 40] and perfected by Wheatstone and others, the
influence of which, in flashing intelligence from one side of the
world to the other, is not improbably destined to act more powerfully
than that of steam and railway communication, on the future history of
mankind; all these valuable in enduring evidences of the scientific
preeminence of our age, are no inconsiderable or unreasonable cause of
elation and self-congratulation among contemporary philosophers. There
never was a time when juster views on the subject of physical science
were more generally diffused among the community at large; when a
readier ear could be gained for any new and well-supported claims of
science; when the public mind thirsted more eagerly for fresh draughts
from the fountain of knowledge; or when more competent persons were
engaged in providing means for satisfying this universal thirst.
Scientific societies are numerous and active; mechanics' institutes,
philosophical associations, athenaeums and other reunions alternating
kindred nature, are organized and flourishing in every large town in
the country, for the purpose of conveying a little rill of this
coveted knowledge to the tradesmen and artisans in the short intervals
of their daily toil. The very credulity with which some {255}
unscientific and preposterous theories of motion have been lately
accepted and believed by multitudes of educated persons, and which
Faraday has the merit of first boldly denouncing, is another proof of
the desire of something new in physics, which animates large masses of
thinking men, and which is often much more developed than their power
of distinguishing what is true from what is false, or empirical, in
the philosophy of nature.

  [Footnote 40: See Scots Magazine, February, 1753.]

The contemplation of this picture of the nineteenth century suggests a
question of some moment: What is the relation of this scientific
development to revelation? What influence is it likely to have on the
conclusions of faith? A simple mind, or a simple age, receives these
implicitly: will the influence of science on either dispose, or
indispose it, to similar confidence? Are modern discoveries likely to
throw a reasonable doubt on the province of revelation; or are they
more likely to reflect light upon it, and establish its landmarks?

This is a question of the last moment. The age is bent on acquiring
knowledge; it is justly elated by its progress in search of this
precious gift; and, all the while, its dependence on the great truths
of revelation is not less than that of a simple age. Faith, if ever
necessary, is not less so now, than when all the brilliant discoveries
of our era lay in the folds of the future time. They will not, with
all their brilliancy, direct and save one human soul, or illuminate
the obscure region which lies beyond the grave. If science must
dissolve the charm of belief, alas! for the elation of our age at its
own high attainments; better had it been for it that the ancient
ignorance of physical laws had never then dissipated, than that its
dispersion should have been so dearly purchased.

Of course, by revelation, the author must be understood to mean the
whole will of God, revealed to the world, and taught by the Catholic
Church; as well that part of it which Protestants reject, as the
mutilated part of it which the greater number of them are agreed in
accepting; all the doctrines peculiarly and distinctively belonging to
Catholicity, together with others which it holds and teaches in common
with all calling themselves Christian. What relation, then, we ask,
has the modern advance of science to this undivided sum of revealed
truth? Is it one of hostility or of harmony, of illustration and
confirmation, or of antagonism? Is physical science the handmaid, or
the enemy of faith?

(1.) Now, a very great number of persons, understanding revelation in
the sense in which we have defined it, would answer this question by
saying that science is the enemy of revealed truth, as maintained by
the Catholic Church; that the more generally scientific and accurate
ideas of the laws and constitution of the physical universe are
diffused, the more difficult must grow the belief of sensible men,
claimed by the Catholic Church for apparently impossible exceptions to
those laws. We can even imagine some good Catholics, little versed in
scientific pursuits, of the same opinion, and therefore jealous of
this general craving of the people for secular knowledge. Among the
Protestants of this country it is currently believed that the Catholic
Church is as keenly and doggedly opposed to science as science is to
her; that her unchanging policy has always been to keep her children
in ignorance, so as the more easily to subdue their intelligence to
her bidding.

(2.) An answer of a different kind we should expect to receive from a
numerous class of friends, and from a few opponents; namely, that the
relation of science to revelation is one of indifference, as they
belong to spheres of knowledge totally distinct and independent. A few
remarks on each of these answers will best introduce the author's own
attempt at a solution of the question.

{256}

As to the first: well informed and candid inquirers into the truth of
things are beginning slowly to perceive that the Catholic Church has
been misrepresented, as invariably the enemy of science; especially in
the critical and much agitated controversy of the geocentric and
heliocentric theories of the planetary motions, which has been chosen
as the weakest point of attack. Two writers of the highest eminence in
science, with no religious bias whatever toward Catholicity, have
given remarkable testimony on this subject. Sir David Brewster in his
Life of Galileo has adopted a tone of fairness to the Catholic Church,
unhappily rare in Protestant treatment of such topics in general. We
do not think he has done full justice to Galileo's Roman judges; but,
at least, he has given the Roman pontiffs some credit for their
patronage of men of science. We recommend the whole life to the notice
of our readers, and shall cite the following passage from it. After
mentioning the pension granted to Galileo by Pope Urban VIlI., in
1624, Sir David adds: "The pension thus given by Urban was not the
remuneration which sovereigns sometimes award to the services of their
subjects. Galileo was a foreigner at Rome. The sovereign of the papal
state owed him no obligation; and hence we must regard the pension of
Galileo as a donation from the Roman pontiff to science itself, and as
a declaration to the Christian world that religion was not jealous of
philosophy, and that the church of Rome was willing to respect and
foster even the genius of its enemies."  [Footnote 41]

  [Footnote 41:  Martyrs of Science, ed. 1846, p. 68.]

The other writer whom we shall cite is a no less celebrated authority
in science than the present astronomer royal, who, while condemning
the treatment which Galileo received at the hands of the Roman
Inquisition, is free to admit that Rome did not always oppose science;
and even this qualified admission, from so eminent a person, is worth
a good deal to our purpose. His remark is this: "This great step in
the explanation of the planetary motions was made by Copernicus, an
ecclesiastic in the Romish Church, a canon of Thorn, a city of
Prussia. The work in which he published it is dedicated to the pope.
At that time it would appear that there was no disinclination in the
Romish Church to receive new astronomical theories. But in no long
time after, when Galileo, a philosopher of Florence, taught the same
theory, he was brought to trial by the Romish Church, then in full
power, and was compelled to renounce the theory. How these two
different courses of the Romish Church are to be reconciled, I do not
know. But the fact is so."   [Footnote 42]

  [Footnote 42: Airy's Lectures on Astronomy, p. 85.]

We are not concerned at present with Galileo's unhappy story, farther
than to remark, that there is as usual much to be said on the side of
his Roman judges, which is perhaps nowhere so well said as in the
pages of the Dublin Review, No. IX., July 1838. The views there
advanced have never been called in question; we may therefore assume
that they are substantially unassailable. As to the general question
of the assistance which the Catholic Church has lent, directly or
indirectly, to science, we should like to know what other church, or
body of ecclesiastics, has done anything in this field compared with
the labors and the successes of the Society of Jesus alone. The names
of Clavius and Kircher, of Boscovich, De Vico, and Pianciani, may
stand for a memorial of the prosperous union of science and Catholic
revelation.  [Footnote 43]

  [Footnote 43: F. Christopher Clavius, S. J., an eminent German
  mathematician and astronomer, was employed by Gregory XIII. in the
  reformation of the calendar. His Gregorian Calendar, published in
  1581, tardily adopted in Protestant countries, and now regulates our
  system of leap-years. His collected mathematical and scientific works
  amount to five volumes folio. He was killed in 1612, page 75.

  F. Athanasius Kircher, S. J., also a native of Germany, was a
  diligent cultivator of science. His works, in twenty-two folio and
  eleven quarto volumes, embrace learned and original treatises on
  many recondite branches of physical science; on Magnetism, Optics,
  Acoustics, Geography, etc., etc. He filled the chair of Mathematics
  in the Jesuit Roman college, and laid the foundation of its
  extensive and valuable museum. He died in Rome, in 1680, at the age
  of 79.

  F. Roger Joseph Boscovich, S.J., a native of Ragusa, filled the
  chair of Astronomy in the Jesuit Roman College for thirty years, and
  was highly distinguished for the depth, originality, and variety of
  his aquirements in Natural Philosophy. He published several valuable
  treatises on the philosophy of Newton, on optics, etc. He is best
  known out of Italy for his ingenious theory of the molecular
  constitution of matter: a theory which the increasing knowledge of
  more modern philosophy has only confirmed. After the suppression of
  his order in 1778, he was welcomed to Paris, and taught philosophy
  there for a time; he returned to Italy, he died at Milan, in 1787,
  page 73.

  F. De Vico, S.J., was also an eminent astronomer in the Jesuit Roman
  College. His discovery of several comets introduced him to the circle
  of men of science. When the Jesuits were driven from Rome in 1848,
  he was received with open arms in the United States; but, unhappily
  for science, he died in London a very few years ago, while procuring
  instruments for his observatory in the far West. He was highly
  esteemed and beloved by his pupils, of whom there are many in this
  country.

  F. Pianciani, S.J., for many years taught chemistry in the Jesuit
  Roman College. He is admired for the simplicity of his manners no
  less than for the valuable contributions he has made to the nature
  of chemical science. Besides all larger and smaller treatise on it,
  he has published a work on the cosmogony of Moses; and we believe,
  is still preparing other treatises for the press.]

{257}

As to the second solution of our question--that science and
revelation are indifferent, because entirely dissimilar to each other
in nature and objects; it appears to us that analogy points quite the
other way. For, (1.) they both have a common origin in the will of
God; and it is not unreasonable to expect that they shall exhibit some
traces of common principles. And this, especially, if we direct our
attention to the difficulties which lie in the way of our acceptance
of the conclusions proposed to us by either; if they are actually
found to resemble each other in many of these, their relation can no
longer be considered one of indifference. Nay,  on the principles on
which Dr. Joseph Butler constructed his immortal work, if revealed
truth proceeds from the author of nature, we may expect to find the
same difficulties in it as we find in nature. And, conversely, it is
no objection to the divine origin of revealed truth, that its
reception implies difficulties as great as the acceptance of the facts
and laws of nature presupposes us to have overcome. And, (2.) we may
argue from the mutual analogy of other sciences to one another; how
dissimilar soever they appear to a superficial observer to be, there
is a community of principles, and of general laws, which binds them
together, and connects them with their common origin in the divine
mind. This idea is, as many of our readers are aware, beautifully
developed by Mrs. Somerville in her charming work on the Connexion of
the Physical Sciences.

From these preliminary remarks, the author's own solution of the
question of hostility, or indifference, between science and revelation
may be gathered; namely, that though in their nature, objects, and
details widely separated, yet they are linked together by a thousand
delicate ties, unperceived by a careless observer, but well repaying
elaborate study. Science is the true handmaid of Revelation, doing
service to the superior nature, but exhibiting tokens of a commission
to do so, imparted to her by the divine creator of both. The author
has devoted some attention to this interesting subject; and at some
future time, if granted health and leisure, he hopes to state and
illustrate his views more at large, and in a more permanent form;
meanwhile he proposes briefly to sketch some of the conclusions and
trains of thought suggested to him by these studies; confining his
remarks entirely to those portions of revealed truth which are the
exclusive property of the Catholic Church, and which are generally
known in the Protestant world as popish doctrines, such as the Blessed
Eucharist; the question of Miracles in general; and all that is
supernatural and imperceptible to the senses in Catholic belief.

I. A preliminary difficulty lying in the way of belief in the
supernatural character of revealed religion, is the flat contradiction
which it apparently gives to the evidence of the senses, the manifest
discrepancy between what is alleged and proposed to our belief, and
what is seen with our eyes, and appreciated by other sensuous organs.
{258} Modern science, however, is as inexorable in her demands on
human credence, in defiance of the senses, as was ever revelation on
the assent of faith. The senses have their empire much restricted by
the canons of our philosophers. For, (1.) it is fully established that
each organ of sense is susceptible of one class of impressions only,
which it passes on to the sensorium, or seat of thought. Thus the
organ of vision admits and communicates impressions of light alone;
that of hearing, impressions of sound, or of the wave of air set in
motion by the cause producing sound, and no others. The organs of
taste and smell, in like manner, have their own classes of
susceptibilities, which, again, are not the same as those belonging to
the nerves of touch. For every other class of impressions than its
own, each organ of sense is absolutely inert and useless. The eye can
take no cognisance of sound, nor the ear of light: if the eye can feel
a touch, it is because certain parts of its structure are furnished
with branches of the nerves of touch; and so of the rest. Electricity
alone seems to have the remarkable power of exciting in all the organs
of sense, sensations proper to the nature of each; in the eye, for
example, a flash of light; distinct sounds; a phosphoric odor, a
peculiar taste, and a pricking feeling, in the same person at the same
time.  [Footnote 44]

  [Footnote 44: Sommerville's Connexion, etc., § xxix. p. 339.
  Carpenter's Manual of Physiology, § 932.]

Again, (2.) sensations arising from those impressions are so
exceedingly complex, that we attribute many more of them to each
separate sense than really belong to it. By habit we have become so
much accustomed to associate several of those impressions together, as
to be unable, without difficulty, to analyze them, and to separate the
simple results of the sensuous impression from the more complicated
judgments which experience and reason add to it, and by which they
interpret it. The eye, for example, receives and conveys impressions
purely and solely of light, and its absence, including those of color,
which belong to light. Form, extension, sense of distance, etc., are
no part of the simple impression made upon the eye, and through it
upon the mind, further than they influence the condition of the light,
as by bounding it, shading it, etc. These belong exclusively to the
sense of touch, combined with experience, so as to be suggested,
without actual contact, by certain conditions of light. An
inexperienced eye, looking for the first time at a plain surface, as a
disc, or at a cube, or a ball, would see only the color, and the edges
where that changed. It could not enable the mind to judge how far the
object was distant; nor why the light and shade were differently
disposed in each; why the light reflected from the disc was uniform,
and bounded by a circle, while that from the ball was softly shaded,
though bounded by a circular line similar to the disc; nor why the
light coming from the cube was divided and bounded by straight lines
and sharp angles. To judge of these peculiarities, and their meaning,
touch must come to the aid of sight; and afterward memory will recall
the conclusions of former experience; and comparison will enable the
reasoning mind to form a judgment regarding the shape, size, and
distance of the object. In a similar manner, the organs of hearing
convey impressions of sound alone; distance, direction, exciting
cause, are quite out of the province of its information. Sight and
touch, and experience and judgment, all enter into the complex
information, now communicated to a practiced observer. This fact is
strikingly exemplified in musical sounds. A skillful musician will
tell you the notes and chords composing a series of such sounds, in
which an uninformed and unpractised ear will be able to detect nothing
but concord or this court. Thus Mozart, at two hearings, was able to
note down the score of Allegri's _Miserere_. Thus, too, there are many
substances which we of {259} by taste, as it is supposed, but which
are in reality operative on the sense of smell. For instance, if the
nose is held while eating cinnamon, we shall perceive no difference
between its flavor and that of a pine shaving.  [Footnote 45] The same
fact is observed with regards to many aromatic substances: if held in
the mouth, or rubbed between the tongue and the palate, the nostrils
being all the while dosed, their taste is hardly, if at all,
recognized; but it is immediately perceived on reopening the nasal
passages. Thus, too, the wine-taster closes his mouth, and sends the
aroma of the wine through his nostrils. Other substances, again, there
are, neither aromatic nor volatile, taste very strongly irritates the
mucous membrane both of nose and tongue, as mustard does, for example,
just as it would the skin, if applied long enough externally. Such a
sensation, therefore, as the taste of mustard, evidently belongs to
the organs of touch, differing in degree of sensitivity only. Hence we
are taught that the substances properly the objects of the sense of
taste, are those only which produce sensations purely and exclusively
gustative, perceived neither through the nose nor through the nerves
of touch, but acting on the tongue and palate only. Salt, sugar,
quinine, tannin, and citric acid, types of the saline, saccharine,
bitter, astringent, and sour, are said to possess sapid properties.
[Footnote 46] From these simple considerations it appears undoubted
that the province of each separate organ of sensation, and its
resultant impressions on the mind, are much limited, when compared
with the wider empire attributed to them by popular language and
opinion. Reason is ever correcting and enlarging the simple
impression, adding the conclusions of experience and judgment and
comparison to the primary suggestions of the sensation; making
allowances for what is faulty or imperfect; measuring circumstances,
and comparing all the conditions of the impression with each other,
before even an approximately true result can be arrived at.

  [Footnote 45: Herschel's Discourse on the Study of Natural
  Philosophy, § 72.]

  [Footnote 46: Carpenter's Manual of Physiology, § 945.]

Further (3.) there is much in nature of which the senses totally fail
in giving us any information whatever. "None of the senses," says Sir
J. Herschel, "gives us direct information for the exact comparison of
quantity. Number, indeed, that is to say, integer number, is an object
of sense, because we can count; but we can neither weigh, nor measure,
nor form any precise estimate of fractional parts by the unassisted
senses. Scarcely any man could tell the difference between twenty
pounds, and the same weight increased or diminished by a few ounces;
still less could he judge of the proportion between an ounce of gold
and a hundred grains of cotton by balancing them in his hands."
[Footnote 47] Nay, even in their own proper and peculiar province, the
senses are singularly deficient in certain kinds of information,
especially when comparison is involved. "The eye," says the same high
authority, "is no judge of the proportion of different degrees of
illumination, even when seen side by side; and if an interval elapses,
and circumstances change, nothing can be more vague than its judgment.
When we gaze with admiration at the gorgeous spectacle of the golden
clouds at sunset, which seem drenched in light, and glowing like
flames of real fire, it is hardly by an effort we can persuade
ourselves to regard them as the very same objects which at noonday
pass unnoticed as mere white clouds basking in the sun, only
participating, from their great horizontal distance, in the ruddy tint
which luminaries acquire by shining through a great extent of the
vapor of the atmosphere, and thereby even losing something of their
light. So it is with our estimates of time, velocity, and all other
matters of quantity; they are absolutely vague and inadequate to form
a foundation for any exact conclusion."   [Footnote 48]

  [Footnote 47: Discourse on the Study of Natural Philosophy,§ 117.]

  [Footnote 48: Discourse on the Study of Natural Philosophy,§ 117.]

{260}

Again (4.) there is a large class of phenomena whose causes, and even
whose existence, are far too remote or too minute to be revealed to us
by our senses. What are telescopes and microscopes, but the means
which science ingeniously devises to supply this innate and
irreparable deficiency of our organs of sense? Satirists of the middle
age, and its scholatic philosophers, have said that they would dispute
as to the number of spirits that could dance on the point of a needle.
Modern science shows us, in the infusoria, animals of perfect
formation, endowed with functions suited to their condition, many
thousands of which could pass at once through the eye of the finest
needle; a million of which would not amount in bulk to a grain of
sand. No less wonderful is the world of minute existence, revealed by
the microscope, in a drop of stagnant water. It is a world within
itself, an epitome of the earth, and its successive geological races.
A variety of microscopic creatures make their appearance, and die; in
a few days, a new set succeeds; these disappear in their turn, and
their place is occupied by a third race, of a different kind from
either of the former--the remains of all of them lying at the bottom
of the glass.  [Footnote 49] "If for a moment," says Humboldt, "we
could yield to the power of fancy, and imagine the acuteness of our
visual organ to be made equal to the extreme bounds of telescopic
vision, and bring together that which is now divided by long periods
of time, the apparent rest which reigns in space would suddenly
disappear. We should see the countless hosts of fixed stars moving in
thronged groups, in different directions; nebulas wandering through
space, and becoming condensed and dissolved like clouds, the veil of
the milky way separated and broken up in many parts, and motion ruling
supreme in every portion of the vault of heaven, even as on the
earth's surface, where we see it unfolded in the germ, the leaf, and
the blossom, the organisms of the vegetable world. The celebrated
Spanish botanist, Cavanilles, was the first who entertained the idea
of 'seeing the grass.' He directed the horizontal micrometer threads
of a powerful magnifying glass at one time to the apex of the shoot of
a bambusa, and at another, on the rapidly growing stem of an American
aloe, precisely as the astronomer places his cross of network against
a culminating star."   [Footnote 50] Without speculating so deeply in
what is distant and hidden, the very atmosphere in which we live and
breathe is imperceptible to every one of our senses, except, indeed,
when viewed through its whole depth, to that of sight in the blue
color of the sky, or indirectly to that of touch, by the resistance
which it offers to the hand, or the face, in passing rapidly through
it, or when it is set in motion by the wind. We perceive its effects,
indeed, in the modifications which the phenomena of light and sound
undergo, in consequence of its action upon them; in the barometric
column, and in a thousand other physical and chemical agencies which
attest the presence of the atmosphere, and the important functions
which it performs in our terrestrial economy. But as far as sight or
hearing, taste or smell, are affected by it, directly, it has
absolutely no existence.

  [Footnote 49: Somerville's Physical Geography; II., xxxii. 348,
  note.]

  [Footnote 50: Cosmos, I. 189, 40.]

Modern science, indeed, coming to the aid of the senses, can enable
them to attain the results of an almost inconceivable acuteness. Thus
while quantity and comparison are inappreciable, or nearly so, by the
unaided organs of sense, balances have been constructed with a
sensibility so exquisite, as to turn with the thousandth part of a
grain, and yet pretend to no extraordinary degree of merit.
[Footnote 51]

  [Footnote 51: Herschel's Discourse on the Study of Natural
  Philosophy, § 338.]

{261}

By the aid of an instrument called a spherometer, which substitutes
the sense of touch for that of sight, an inch may be divided into
twenty thousand parts; and the lever of contact, an instrument in use
among the German opticians, enables them to appreciate quantities of
space even yet smaller.  [Footnote 52] Instruments have been devised
capable of measuring intervals of time equal to the 1/1000 part of a
second. By the revolution of a toothed wheel, striking against a piece
of card, human ear is enabled to appreciate a sound which lasts only
1/24000 of a second, and thus to measure that extremely minute
interval of time. [Footnote 53] Wheatstone, in the course of his
experiments on the velocity of the electric fluid, constructed an
apparatus which enables the eye to perceive an interval equal to less
than 1/1000000 of a second of time. The exact value of this almost
infinitesimal interval was ascertained and measured by the known
effect of a sound of high high pitch upon the ear.  [Footnote 54] It
is unnecessary to multiply such examples; but so many we have adduced,
for the purpose of demonstrating the extent of the world of physical
observation which lies forever concealed from the natural organs of
sense. We owe this knowledge of their incapacity for more than a very
limited range of observation to the inventions of science, applied to
remedy and supplement this very incapacity. Thus science tells tales
against the human senses, of which a less inventive and informed age
could never have even dreamed.

  [Footnote 52: Herschel's Discourse on the Study of Natural
  Philosophy, § 338.]

  [Footnote 53 Somerville's Connexion, etc., § xvi. p. 147.]

  [Footnote 54: Ib., § xxviii. p. 325.]

Once more, (5.) the senses are not only restricted in their sphere of
action, and incapable of penetrating beyond a certain limit into the
mysteries of physical nature, but even within their own proper
province of observation their indications are constantly false and
erroneous; so that if we were implicitly to receive and adopt these
indications, without due correction, our notions of the constitution
of nature would be singularly wide of the truth. As they appear to the
naked eye, the sun and moon seem nearly of the same size; flat discs,
about as large as the crown of a hat. Uncorrected sense teaches us no
more; it furnishes no means of measuring either their absolute or
their relative distance. But from other sources, we learn that one is
about four hundred times further off than the other; that the mass of
the one would fill a space bounded by double the orbit of the other;
and that the centre of the sun is nearly half a million of miles
nearer our eye than his limb, or the bounding line of his disc, a
space equal to more than twice the distance of the moon from the
earth. The limits prescribed to himself, forbid the author to enlarge
on this interesting portion of his subject, which, however, he regrets
the less, that any one anxious to follow it out, will find an
excellent paper on "Popular Fallacies," in Lardner's Museum of Science
and Art, January 1854; a new scientific and popular serial, which has
started under the best auspices, and deserves to be widely circulated.

Did space permit, we might illustrate the fallacious teaching of the
senses regarding the phenomena of nature, by the corrections made
necessary in every scientific observation, as to the position of
distant objects, in consequence of the refraction or bending of the
rays of light in their passage through the air, which has the effect
of making distant objects in space seem higher than they really are;
of the correction necessary for the aberration of light, depending on
the time taken to transmit it from a distant object in space; together
with others which enter into the daily experience of the observers of
nature. Other circumstances also materially influence the impressions
conveyed through the organs of sense. Thus a person going into an
ordinarily lighted apartment from the dark night, will be painfully
affected by the brightness of the light {262} for a few moments; while
another, entering the same room from a brightly illuminated chamber,
will hardly be able for a moment or two to see anything. [Footnote 55]
If we plunge our hands one into ice-cold water, and the other into
water as hot as it can be borne, and after letting them stay a while,
suddenly transfer them both to a vessel full of water at blood heat,
the one will feel it hot, and the other cold. If we cross the two
first fingers of our hand, and place a pea in the fork between them,
moving and rolling it about on a table, we shall be fully persuaded,
especially if we close our eyes, that we have two peas.  [Footnote 56]
The other senses are similarly affected by circumstances, so as to
convey erroneous impressions. Mrs. Somerville sums up the evidence on
this head in one word, when she remarks that, "a consciousness of the
fallacy of our senses is one of the most important consequences of the
study of nature. This study teaches us that no object is seen by us in
its true place." [Footnote 57] And elsewhere she adds, "A high degree
of scientific knowledge has been necessary to dispel the errors of the
senses ." [Footnote 58] Herschel has the following remark in his
Outlines of Astronomy:  [Footnote 59] "No geometrical figure, or
curve, is seen by the eye as it is conceived by the mind to exist in
reality. The laws of perspective interfere and alter the apparent
directions, and foreshorten the dimensions of its several parts. If
the spectator be unfavorably situated, as, for instance, nearly in the
plane of the figure, they may do so to such an extent as to make a
considerable effort of imagination necessary to pass from the sensible
to the real form."

  [Footnote 55: Carpenter's Manual of Physiology, § 93.]

  [Footnote 56: Herschel's Discourse, § 72.]

  [Footnote 57: Collection of Physical Sciences, § xxv. p. 264.]

  [Footnote 58: Ib.,  § iv. p. 37.]

  [Footnote 59: Chap. i. §78.]

There is one form of illusion to which the senses are liable, so
remarkable and irremediable as to deserve a moment's notice; we mean
their erroneous testimony regarding motion. We have the authority of
Sir. J. Herschel for saying, that "there is no peculiar sensation
which advertises us that we are in motion. The rough inequalities in
the road are felt as we are carried over them, by the successive
elevation and falling of the carriage; but we have no sense of
progress if we are prevented from seeing surrounding objects. The
smoother the road, and the faster the speed, the less able are we to
feel our motion forward. Every one must have felt this in night
travelling by the railway, or in a tunnel. In a balloon, with a steady
breeze, which merely propels, without gyration or oscillation, the
motion is described as a sensation of perfect rest. The same is
observed on shipboard, in still water or a calm. Everything goes on as
if on land."  [Footnote 60] To complete the illusion, nothing is more
common than apparently to transfer our own motion to the stationary
objects around us. This is peculiarly observable at railway stations,
when a train first gently moves off. If another training is standing
near, and parallel to our own, it is impossible to tell which is
moving, our own, or the other in an opposite direction, without
calling in the age of a third object, to correct the doubtful or
erroneous impression, by the direction in which it seems relatively to
change its place; or by examining the wheels of the other training. In
the same way, many persons, while witnessing a panorama, are painfully
affected by the shifting of the scenes, which conveys to them an
impression as if the room were going round, and the picture remaining
stationary. It was this illusion of the senses, as to motion, that
perpetuated to a very late date the capital error regarding the
supposed circulation of the sun and planets round the on moving; the
dispelling of which, by Galileo and subsequent observers, was the
greatest triumph ever achieved my philosophy over the empire of the
senses.

  [Footnote 60: Outline of Astronomy, § 15, 16.]

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The simple matter of fact is this, that our senses were given us for a
certain definite and practical end, not for the acquisition of
universal knowledge. We use them thankfully within their own domain,
but we should err by inferring that their indications are the measure
of the true, or of the whole constitution of things: their teaching
falls far short of what exists in the universe of material nature;
into the world of spiritual existence and operation they have no
mission to enter. Catholic doctrine, therefore, is in no worse
position, as regards the contradictions of the senses to the results,
than is the great mass of scientific knowledge; to deny the one is as
unphilosophical as to deny the other, merely because the organs of
sense fail to appreciate it, or afford indications directly contrary
to it.

--------

ORIGINAL.



HOME AT LAST.

  They gathered 'round the dying stranger's bed,
  They heard his words, yet knew not what he said--
          "Oh! take me home!"

  With earnest looks they pressed his feverish hand,
  And sorely grieved they could not understand--
          "Oh! take me home!"

  The busy host forgot his clamoring guests.
  Wistful to answer this of all requests--
          "Oh! take me home!"

  The good-wife scanned the stranger's pallid face,
  And wept. But to his meaning found no trace;
          "Oh! take me home!"

  The hostess' fair-haired daughter stood apart,
  "What can he mean?" she asked her beating heart;
          "Oh! take me home!"

  "Whence had he come? His name?" None knew. And yet
  He speaks in tones I never can forget--
          "Oh! take me home!"

  With timid step she softly neared the bed,
  And took his hand. The stranger raised his head,
            And deeply sighed.

  Weeping, she sang a simple, childish rhyme.
  He smiled and said: "Jetzt bin ich endlich heim!"   [Footnote 61]
            And then he died.

  [Footnote 61: I am home at last.]


----------

{264}



Translated from the Etudes Religieuses, Historiques et Littéraires.


THE OLD OWL.


When I was living in my native village, about twenty years ago, I made
the acquaintance of an old owl who lived in one of my forests. One of
my forests I say, and with good reason; for I was the only being who
could appreciate them, although a few landed proprietors in the town
were wont to make clearings therein, on the plea of having bought them
and paid down certain moneys in the presence of our notary public.
Therefore in my forest dwelt my owl, who was a personage of mature
years, and had first attracted me by the singular similarity of his
tastes and opinions with mine. Our first meeting took place under
rather peculiar circumstances. One evening, after belaboring my brains
over some enigmatical Persian verses for hours, I left the house,
still conning over an enigmatical hemistich; and strolling on until I
gained the edge of the forest, plunged in without noticing whither I
went. I might have wandered about all night, lost in the mazes of this
mysterious satire, had not the sweet odors of a cherry tree in full
blossom attracted my attention, penetrating through the olfactory
nerves to the inmost recesses of my brain; even to the bump of
pedantry itself. This brought me to myself; and astounded to see how
far I had wandered at that late hour, I turned to go home at once; but
the tangled path and deepening shadows threw me into confusion, and at
the end of a quarter of an hour I found myself completely lost. "Never
mind," said I, yielding gracefully to circumstances, "this is just
what I meant to do;" so on I plunged, through brake and thicket, until
I reached the confines of the forest, where an ancient ruined castle
frowned down upon the valley, with my little village sleeping at its
feet. I sat down by one of the towers to rest, but had hardly drawn
one long breath, when there came a flapping of wings about my head,
and raising my eyes I beheld--_monstrum horrendum_--an owl. He flew to
the left of me, fanning my cheek with his heavy grey wings.
Superstitious as an ancient, I turned instinctively that he might be
on my right and, so dreadful seemed the omen; but hardly had I yielded
to this involuntary impulse, when good breeding warned me that the
self-love of the work hermit might be wounded;--for an owl has
feelings as well as other people. But I was mistaken, he replied to
the insult only with a disdainful laugh; and perching himself on the
top of the tower, glared at me out of his red eyes with an expression
of profound pity.

The laugh irritated me; so I said, wishing to recover his respect if
possible, (and here in parentheses be it said that this narrative is
addressed, not to those who maintain that animals cannot speak, but to
sympathetic beings who enjoy the singing of birds in the woods, and
understand their mysterious language; who know what various emotions
their songs express; who listen, in short, with reverence to the
accents of nature and respond to them;--to such of these we tell this
authentic tale, begging the vulgar herd to withdraw from the
audience.)

Then I said to the owl, "Pray pardon my silly rudeness; I merely
obeyed an instinctive feeling, without the least intention of annoying
you; on the contrary, it would really grieve me if you doubted the
high esteem in which I hold you."

{265}

"Where's the good of excuses?" said he, shaking his head; "if you
really wish to serve me, take yourself off and leave me in peace."

"I cannot go," said I, "until you pardon my offense."

"And if I did pardon you", rejoined he, "what use would it be? But
I'll do no such thing. I cannot forgive you for being a man, or for
being here. Begone! you are a miscreant like the rest of your kind."

"You are a miscreant yourself!" retorted I, "and very unjust and
distrustful to boot. I never injured the smallest creature--I have
been the unfailing defender of birds' nests against children and
fowlers. I have incurred the contempt of mankind by my
knight-errantry. At least I ought to be treated with common civility
by those whom I have loved and protected."

"Oh, well! well! well!" said he, "don't say any more about it. You are
young, and seem to be well-meaning enough. I will trust you and rue
the indiscretion at my leisure."

"You must have been unfortunate," I remarked respectively, "to have
grown so distrustful."

"What's that to you?" he answered shortly; "my wretched story will do
you no good if you are destined to remain innocent; and if you are to
become like other men, it will not touch you."

"Nay," said I, thinking to tickle his vanity by a neatly turned
complement, "it would teach me wisdom and prudence. What less could I
learn from the favorite of Minerva and the protector of Athens?" But
my Timon's wisdom was proof against assault, and he replied:

"You think probably to flatter me, but I never knew the goddess you
mention. She was, I am told, is exceedingly turbulent person,
continually whirling and setting up her heroes by the years. And what
were the Athenians but a set of frivolous, shattering magpies,
incapable of forming a sound idea, or of putting it in execution if
they had."

"You seem to have a great contempt for mankind," said I, rather
abashed at the failure of my little complement. "What has shaken your
faith in us, if I might venture to ask?"

"That is a long story," answered he; "but I will tell it to you one of
these days if you and death can wait so long."

"Why not now? Everything is at rest; even the squirrels are sound
asleep, coiled up in the beech boughs, unmindful of you and me."

"No, no," said he snappishly, "I'm too tired to think now. Besides, I
don't know you, nor what you would be at with your teasing questions.
Go away and let me alone."

Fearing to vex him further and rouse his suspicions, I bade him
goodbye and retreated, promising to return the following night. The
next evening, just after sunset, I turned my steps toward the forest,
and heard as I drew near the tower my poor hermit shooting out into
the darkness his dismal cry houloulou! houloulou! which was answered
by a dreary echo.

"Poor old soul!" said I to myself, "it is frightful even to hear him,
his cries are so full of hatred, menace, and irony. Either he is
wicked or--" but I was standing at the foot of the tower and the voice
of the solitary called out: "Oh! is that you? It never occurred to me
that you would be so punctual. I must confess that your exactness
charms me."

And from that hour the anchorite and I were bound together by the
strongest friendship. He told me that from the first he had felt drawn
to me by a singular sympathy, but had vigorously resisted the
attraction for fear of fresh disappointment. His words shocked me by
their harshness, but our disputes were always friendly and his rebukes
were administered with a fatherly tenderness which touched me
extremely.

{266}

"But," said I one evening, "what would become of society if we adopted
your maxims? The noblest friendship, the most heroic devotion, would
be but deceitful snares. We should see in our companions only knavery,
hypocrisy, and treachery beneath a fair outside. And at this moment
you are not in harmony with your theories, for you are confiding in me
without dreaming that while I speak to you I may be planning your ruin
and destruction."

He smiled, and I believed him convinced; but a moment after the
doleful theme was resumed, and he was preaching his lamentable
doctrines as if I had not interrupted him.

"You are sincere and perhaps even virtuous now," he said. "But that is
no more than your duty, so you deserve no credit. I am so old in
experience that sometimes my wisdom seems to have been bought with
every drop of blood in my veins, and with every hope of happiness.
Now, this is the fruit of my experience, which I will give you, and
you can digest it at your leisure. Have no friends--live by
yourself--never marry--live in a village rather than in a city, and in
a forest rather than in either. You laugh, but let me tell you that it
is no laughing matter, as you will find when you know the world as
well as I do; and you will know it one of these days, when experience
has come too soon and death too late for your prayers."

So spake the misanthrope, and I replied: "We must take men as they are
and life as we find it; remembering that other people's faults are
sooner seen than our own, and that they have as much reason to shun us
as we have to despise them. God made us to live with our
fellow-creatures, and if each person followed out your dismal precepts
the world would become a vast solitude--a living tomb to engulf
humanity."

"Alas! young man!" was his mournful reply, and it was only by dint of
entreaty that I at last discovered the grounds of his grief and
disappointment. One beautiful evening lie told me his story. The
forest was radiant with a sunset glow; and the little birds were
hopping about and building their nests in the branches of the trees,
twittering and singing in the fulness of their joy.

"I was born," said he, "in the very place where I live to-day, for the
one illusion, the supreme consolation that I have left, is a love of
my native land. I was hatched in that crumbling old tower yonder
covered with moss and ivy. My two brothers came into the world with
me, and it was a dream of ours that we would go through life together,
always sacrificing private interest to mutual happiness: promises
suited to infancy and destined to be forgotten before youth had fled.

"We were the pride of our parents' hearts, and as we grew from day to
day our mother gloried in our size and beauty--our father in the
fancied promise we gave of strength and virtue. One day, when we had
grown old enough to take a little care of ourselves, our parents
addressed these words to us: 'In another month, little ones, you will
need our help no longer, and will enter boldly upon life. Now listen
to our directions: if we should die before you are old enough to take
care of yourselves, go to our neighbor, the old owl, who lives in the
oak that was struck by lightning last year, and who comes to see you
sometimes. He will be father and mother in one to you, if a parent's
place can be supplied. And another piece of advice: never let a silly
curiosity prompt you to leave this wood and go in search of new
places. Beyond this forest you would find treachery, misfortune, and
death. Now mind and remember our words when we are taken from you, and
never forget the father and mother who have love you so dearly.'

{267}

"All this made us cry so bitterly that we could hardly speak. The
words had a dreadful sound, though we did not know what they meant.
'What was it all about?' thought we; and yet with a sense of dread and
ill omen, we promised with tears to follow their device. We pledged
ourselves to everything, and thought our fidelity unimpeachable--for
childhood has such unbounded faith in itself. Our parents rejoiced in
our docility, and for several days our happy life continued unclouded.

"One evening they went out as usual to get food for us after saying
goodbye very tenderly. For a long time we awaited their return in
vain, and fell asleep at last worn out with watching and listening.
When we awoke they had not come back, and we asked each other in
terror if this could be the eternal separation they had spoken of. The
ruins rang with our cries, and the mocking echo sounded to our excited
fancy like the laugh of some mysterious enemy. Then hunger came to add
bodily misery to our sufferings; and I made up my mind that I, as the
eldest, was bound to sacrifice myself to save my little brothers.
Telling them to keep up their courage and wait for me patiently, I
threw myself boldly out of the nest and flew off in search of the old
friend of my mother and father. By help of all sorts of landmarks, I
succeeded at last in finding the shattered oak, but he, alas! was not
there; and trembling with fatigue I perched myself on a bough to wait
in dumb resignation for whatever might come next. A few hours had
taught me life's bitterest lesson, and I felt a century older than the
day before. At length, hungry and tired, and crazy with grief, I made
my way back to my brothers, who were waiting to tell me good news. Our
old friend, our only protector now, was with them. From his hermitage
he had seen his two poor friends pursued by an eagle and torn with his
cruel claws. Then he had remembered us and flown to our nest, bringing
food for us all. So my strength was restored, and I awoke once more to
the full vigor of life and suffering. When the first anguish of grief
passed away, it was only to leave room for fresh trial and
disappointment. One day--it was in the beginning of June--I heard the
birds singing in the foliage, I saw on every side living beings
enjoying life in the great forest, and the thought came to me for the
first time that I too might mingle in the festival of nature. I flew
out of the nest and perched quietly on an oak that stood at the edge
of the glade where all the little birds had met together for a
concert. They were listening to a linnet; every one was attending in
silence to her joyous notes, and all, even to the nightingale, were
filled with admiration for the pretty songstress. And I too admired
her. I too was penetrated with love for all these little birds who
looked so kind and good. 'How sweet it would be to live among them!'
thought I, and I determined to give up solitude and come with my
brothers to live among them, to be their friend and admirer. Love
seemed so sweet! Admiration of others so ennobling!

"Such were the thoughts in which I was luxuriating while the linnet's
song lasted. When she ended, I was still rapt in attention and cried
out: 'Oh! how beautiful, how exquisite that is!' Hardly were the words
uttered when they discovered me. In an instant I was surrounded,
hustled, assailed, insulted