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Title: Catholic World, Vol. XIII, April to September, 1871
Author: Various
Language: English
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              CATHOLIC WORLD.





                VOL. XIII.
         APRIL TO SEPTEMBER, 1871.

                NEW YORK:
             9 Warren Street.


             JOHN ROSS & CO.,
          27 ROSE ST., NEW YORK.


      Albertus Magnus Vindicated, 712
      America's Obligation to France, 836
      Ancients, the Writing Materials of the, 126
      Animas, Las, 353
      Animals, Love for, 545

      Bishop Timon, 86
      Bordeaux, 158
      Brébeuf, Memoir of Father John, 512, 623

      Carlyle and Père Bouhours, 820
      Catholic Associations, Spirit of, 652
      Catholicity and Pantheism, 554
      Cayla, A Pilgrimage to, 595
      Cecilia, Saint, 477
      Church, The, Accredits herself, 145
      Church, What our Municipal Laws owe to the, 342
      Civilization, Origin of, 402

      Dion and the Sibyls, 56
      Doña Fortuna and Don Dinero, 130
      Döllinger, The Apostasy of, 415

      Education and Unification, 1
      Education, On Higher, 115
      Egbert Stanway, 377
      Egyptian Civilization according to the most Recent Discoveries, 804
      England, The Serial Literature of, 619
      Europe's Future, 76

      Flowers, 305
      Froude and Calvinism, 541
      France, America's Obligation to, 836
      Future, The Present and the, 452

      Galitzin, The Mother of Prince, 367
      Geneva, The Catholic Church in, 847
      Genzano and Frascati, 737
      Good Gerard of Cologne, The, 797
      Gottfried von Strassburg's Hymn to the Virgin, 240

      _Independent_, A Word to _The_, 247
      Infallibility, 577
      Ireland, Ancient Laws of, 635
      Ireland, The Lord Chancellors of, 228
      Irish Martyr, An, 433
      Italian Guarantees and the Sovereign Pontiff, 566

      Laws, Municipal, and the Church, 342
      Letter from Rome, 134
      Letter from the President of a College, 281
      Liquefaction of the Blood of St. Januarius, 772
      Locket, The Story of an Algerine, 643
      Lourdes, Our Lady of, 98, 255, 396, 527, 662, 825
      Lucas Garcia, 785

      Mary Benedicta, 207
      Mary Clifford's Promise Kept, 447
      Mexican Art and its Michael Angelo, 334

      On Higher Education, 115
      Our Lady of Guadalupe, 189
      Our Lady of Lourdes, 98, 255, 396, 527, 662, 825
      Our Northern Neighbors, 108

      Page of the Past and a Shadow of the Future, A, 764
      Pantheism, Catholicity and, 554
      Pau, 504
      Père Jacques and Mademoiselle Adrienne, 677
      Present and the Future, The, 452
      Protestantism, Statistics of, in the U. S., 195

      Reformation, The, Not Conservative, 721
      Rome, How it Looked Three Centuries Ago, 358
      Rome, Letter from, 134

      Saintship, False Views of, 424
      Santa Restituta, Legend of, 276
      Sardinia and the Holy Father, 289
      Sauntering, 35
      Sayings of the Fathers of the Desert, 274
      Scepticism of the Age, The, 391
      Secular, The, Not Supreme, 685
      Shamrock Gone West, The, 264
      Sor Juan Inez de la Cruz, 47
      Spanish America, Dramatic Moralists in, 702
      Statistics of Protestantism in the U. S., 195
      St. Januarius, Liquefaction of the Blood of, 772

      The Church Accredits Herself, 145

      Unification, Education and, 1

      What Our Municipal Laws Owe to the Church, 342
      Writing Materials of the Ancients, 126

      Yorke, The House of, 15, 169, 317, 461, 604, 746


      "Amen" of the Stones, The, 168
      A Pie IX., 684

      Disillusioned, 489

      Gualberto's Victory, 96

      King Cormac's Choice, 413

      On a Great Plagiarist, 206

      Rose, The, 571

      Saint John Dwarf, 357
      Sancta Dei Genitrix, 771
      Sonnet, 603
      St. Francis and St. Dominic, 745
      St. Francis of Assisi, 133
      St. Mary Magdalen, 511

      The Cross, 14
      The True Harp, 594
      To the Crucified, 352

      Vespers, 275

      Warning, The, 125


      Allies' St. Peter, 860
      Anderson's Historical Reader, 855
      Appleton's Annual Cyclopædia, 573

      Barker's Text-Book of Chemistry, 142
      Bret Harte's Poems, 144

      Caddell's Never Forgotten; or, The Home of the Lost Child, 853
      Catechism Illustrated, The, 854
      Clement's Hand-Book of Legendary and Mythological Art, 143
      Coleridge's Theology of the Parables, 432
      Conyngham's Sarsfield, 143
      Curtius's History of Greece, 575
      Cusack's History of Kerry, 855

      Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom, 573

      Elia; or, Spain Fifty Years Ago, 141

      Fairbanks's History of Florida, 857
      Familiar Discourses to the Young, 288
      Fifty Catholic Tracts, 430
      Folia Ecclesiastica, 144

      Gaskin's Irish Varieties, 142
      Glosswood, The Countess of, 288

      Hamilton's Golden Words, 860
      Heaven, The Happiness of, 286
      Hefele on the Christian Councils, 718
      Hemenway's Vermont, 857
      Higginson's Sympathy of Religions, 286
      Holy Exercise of the Presence of God, 854
      Holmes on Mechanism in Thought and Morals, 139
      Historical Gazetteer, 857

      Illustrated Catholic Sunday-School Library, 573

      Jesus and Jerusalem, 140

      Kellogg's Arthur Brown, 143
      Keon's Dion and the Sibyls, 429

      La Grange's Thecla, 432
      Lallemant's Spiritual Doctrine, 287
      Lebon's Holy Communion, 573
      Life and Writings of De Montfort, 141
      Life of St. Gertrude, 859

      Martyrs Omitted by Foxe, 575
      Meditations on the Litany of the Most Holy Virgin, 431
      Miles's Truce of God, 574
      Moran's Life of Archbishop Plunkett, 574, 858,
      Mrs. Stowe's Pink and White Tyranny, 859
      Mulrenan's Sketch of the Church on Long Island, 854

      Natural History of New York, 432

      Oakeley's Priest on the Mission, 719

      Perrone's Divinity of Christ, 286

      Rome and Geneva, 283
      Russell's My Study Windows, 427

      Seelye on Roman Imperialism, 141
      Sestini's Manual of Geometrical Analysis, 856
      Seton's Romance of the Charter Oak, 288
      Starr's Patron Saints, 853
      Stowe's Little Pussy Willow, 144
      Sullivan's Prayers and Ceremonies of the Mass, 144
      Synchronology of Sacred and Profane History, 144

      Vaughan's Life of St. Thomas Aquin., 427

      Weiss's American Religion, 720
      West's State of the Dead, 574
      Whipple's Literature and Art, 430
      Wonders of European Art, 576
      Wonders of the Heavens, 432

      Young's Catholic Hymns and Canticles, 719

       *       *       *       *       *


      VOL. XIII., No. 73.--APRIL, 1871.[1]


The Hon. Henry Wilson, recently re-elected senator in Congress from
Massachusetts, may not be distinguished as an original thinker or
as a statesman of commanding ability, but no man is a surer index
to his party or a more trustworthy exponent of its sentiments and
tendencies, its aims and purposes. This gives to his article in
_The Atlantic Monthly_, indicating the policy to be pursued by the
Republican party, a weight it might not otherwise possess.

Mr. Wilson is a strong political partisan, but he is above all
a fervent Evangelical, and his aim, we presume, is to bring his
political party to coincide with his Evangelical party, and make each
strengthen the other. We of course, as a Catholic organ, have nothing
to say of questions in issue between different political parties so
long as they do not involve the rights and interests of our religion,
or leave untouched the fundamental principles and genius of the
American system of government, although we may have more or less to
say as American citizens; but when either party is so ill-advised
as to aim a blow either at the freedom of our religion or at our
federative system of government, we hold ourselves free, and in duty
bound, to warn our fellow-citizens and our fellow-Catholics of the
impending danger, and to do what we can to avert or arrest the blow.
We cannot, without incurring grave censure, betray by our silence the
cause of our religion or of our country, for fear that by speaking we
may cross the purposes of one or another party, and seem to favor the
views and policy of another.

Mr. Wilson's _New Departure_ is unquestionably revolutionary,
and therefore not lawful for any party in this country to adopt.
It is expressed in two words, NATIONAL UNIFICATION and NATIONAL
EDUCATION--that is, the consolidation of all the powers of
government in the general government, and the social and religious
unification of the American people by means of a system of universal
and uniform compulsory education, adopted and enforced by the
authority of the united or consolidated states, not by the states
severally each within its own jurisdiction and for its own people.
The first is decidedly revolutionary and destructive of the American
system of federative government, or the division of powers between a
general government and particular state governments; the second, in
the sense proposed, violates the rights of parents and annihilates
the religious liberty secured by the constitution and laws both of
the several states and of the United States.

The general government, in our American political system, is not the
national government, or any more national than the several state
governments. The national government with us is divided between a
general government having charge of our relations with other powers
and internal matters of a general nature and common to all the
states, and particular state governments having charge of matters
local and particular in their nature, and clothed with all the powers
of supreme national governments not expressly delegated to the
general government. In the draft of the federal constitution reported
by the committee to the convention of 1787, the word _national_ was
used, but the convention finally struck it out, and inserted wherever
it occurred the word _general_, as more appropriately designating the
character and powers of the government they were creating. It takes
under our actual system both the state governments and the general
government to make one complete national government, invested with
all the powers of government. By making the general government a
supreme national government, we make it the source of all authority,
subordinate the state governments to it, make them hold from it,
and deprive them of all independent or undivided rights. This would
completely subvert our system of government, according to which the
states hold their powers immediately from the political people, and
independently of any suzerain or overlord, and the general government
from the states or the people organized as states united in
convention. A more complete change of the government or destruction
of the federative principle, which constitutes the chief excellence
and glory of our system, it would be difficult to propose, or even to
conceive, than is set forth in Mr. Wilson's programme.

Mr. Wilson, however, is hardly justified in calling the revolution
he proposes a "New Departure." It has been the aim of a powerful
party, under one name or another, ever since 1824, if not from
the origin of the government itself. This party has been steadily
pursuing it, and with increasing numbers and influence, ever since
the anti-slavery agitation seriously commenced. At one time, and
probably at all times, it has been moved chiefly by certain business
interests which it could not advance according to its mind by state
legislation, and for which it desired federal legislation and the
whole power of a national government, but which it could not get
because the constitution and the antagonistic interests created by
slave labor were opposed to it. It then turned philanthropist and
called in philanthropy to its aid--philanthropy which makes light
of constitutions and mocks at state lines, and claims the right
to go wherever it conceives the voice of humanity calls it. Under
the pretext of philanthropy, the party turned abolitionist, and
sought to bring under the action of the general government the
question of slavery manifestly reserved to the states severally,
and which it belonged to each to settle for itself in its own way.
A civil war followed. The slaves were emancipated, and slavery
abolished, professedly under the war-power of the Union, as a
military necessity, which nobody regrets. But the party did not
stop here. Forgetful that the extraordinary war-power ceases with
the war, and military necessity can no longer be pleaded, it has,
under one pretext or another, such as protecting and providing for
the freed-men and reconstructing the states that seceded, continued
to exercise it ever since the war was over, and by constitutional
amendments of doubtful validity, since ratified in part under
military pressure by states not yet reconstructed or held to be
duly organized states in the Union, it has sought to legitimate it,
and to incorporate it into the constitution as one of the ordinary
peace-powers of the government.

The party has sometimes coincided, and sometimes has not strictly
coincided, with one or another of the great political parties
that have divided the country, but it has always struggled
for the consolidation of all the powers of government in the
general government. Whether prompted by business interests or by
philanthropy, its wishes and purposes have required it to get rid of
all co-ordinate and independent bodies that might interfere with,
arrest, or limit the power of Congress, or impose any limitation on
the action of the general government not imposed by the arbitrary
will of the majority of the people, irrespective of their state

What the distinguished senator urges we submit, therefore, is simply
the policy of consolidation or centralization which his party has
steadily pursued from the first, and which it has already in good
part consummated. It has abolished slavery, and unified the labor
system of the Union; it has contracted a public debt, whether
needlessly or not, large enough to secure to the consolidation of
the powers of a national government in the general government the
support of capitalists, bankers, railroad corporators, monopolists,
speculators, projectors, and the business world generally. Under
pretence of philanthropy, and of carrying out the abolition of
slavery, and abolishing all civil and political distinctions of
race or color, it has usurped for the general government the power
to determine the question of suffrage and eligibility, under the
constitution and by the genius of our government reserved to the
states severally, and sends the military and swarms of federal
inspectors into the states to control, or at least to look after,
the elections, in supreme contempt of state authority. It has
usurped for the general government the power of granting charters of
incorporation for private business purposes elsewhere than in the
District of Columbia, and induced it to establish national bureaus
of agriculture and education, as if it was the only and unlimited
government of the country, which it indeed is fast becoming.

The work of consolidation or unification is nearly completed, and
there remains little to do except to effect the social and religious
unification of the various religions, sects, and races that make up
the vast and diversified population of the country; and it is clear
from Mr. Wilson's programme that his party contemplate moulding the
population of European and of African origin, Indians and Asiatics,
Protestants and Catholics, Jews and pagans, into one homogeneous
people, after what may be called the New England Evangelical
type. Neither his politics nor his philanthropy can tolerate any
diversity of ranks, conditions, race, belief, or worship. A complete
unification must be effected, and under the patronage and authority
of the general government.

Mr. Wilson appears not to have recognized any distinction between
unity and union. Union implies plurality or diversity; unity excludes
both. Yet he cites, without the least apparent misgiving, the fathers
of the republic--Washington, Adams, Jefferson, Hamilton, Jay, and
Madison--who were strenuous for the union of the several states, as
authorities in favor of their unity or consolidation in one supreme
national government. There were points in which these great men
differed among themselves--some of them wished to give more, some of
them less, power to the general government--some of them would give
more, some of them less, power to the executive, etc., but they all
agreed in their efforts to establish the union of the states, and not
one of them but would have opposed their unity or consolidation into
a single supreme government. Mr. Wilson is equally out in trying, as
he does, to make it appear that the strong popular sentiment of the
American people, in favor of union, is a sentiment in favor of unity
or unification.

But starting with the conception of unity or consolidation, and
resolving republicanism into the absolute supremacy of the will
of the people, irrespective of state organization, Mr. Wilson can
find no stopping-place for his party short of the removal of all
constitutional or organic limitations on the irresponsible will of
the majority for the time, which he contends should in all things
be supreme and unopposed. His republicanism, as he explains it,
is therefore incompatible with a well-ordered state, and is either
no government at all, but universal anarchy, or the unmitigated
despotism of majorities--a despotism more oppressive and crushing to
all true freedom and manly independence, than any autocracy that the
world has ever seen. The fathers of the republic never understood
republicanism in this sense. They studied to restrict the sphere of
power, and to guard against the supremacy of mere will, whether of
the monarch, the nobility, or the people.

But having reached the conclusion that true republicanism demands
unification, and the removal of all restrictions on the popular
will, Mr. Wilson relies on the attachment of the American people to
the republican idea to carry out and realize his programme, however
repugnant it may be to what they really desire and suppose they
are supporting. He knows the people well enough to know that they
do not usually discriminate with much niceness, and that they are
easily caught and led away by a few high-sounding phrases and popular
catchwords, uttered with due gravity and assurance--perhaps he does
not discriminate very nicely, and is himself deceived by the very
phrases and catchwords which deceive them. It is not impossible. At
any rate, he persuades himself unification or consolidation can be
carried forward and effected by appeals to the republican instincts
and tendencies of the American people, and secured by aid of the
colored vote and woman suffrage, soon to be adopted as an essential
element in the revolutionary movement. The colored people, it is
expected, will vote as their preachers direct, and their preachers
will direct as they are directed by the Evangelicals. The women
who will vote, if woman suffrage is adopted, are evangelicals,
philanthropists, or humanitarians, and are sure to follow their
instincts and vote for the unification or centralization of
power--the more unlimited, the better.

But the chief reliance for the permanence in power of the party of
consolidation is universal and uniform compulsory education by the
general government, which will, if adopted, complete and preserve
the work of unification. Education is the American hobby--regarded,
as uneducated or poorly educated people usually regard it, as a sort
of panacea for all the ills that flesh is heir to. We ourselves,
as Catholics, are as decidedly as any other class of American
citizens in favor of universal education, as thorough and extensive
as possible--if its quality suits us. We do not, indeed, prize so
highly as some of our countrymen appear to do the simple ability to
read, write, and cipher; nor do we believe it possible to educate
a whole people so that every one, on attaining his majority, will
understand the bearing of all political questions or comprehend the
complexities of statesmanship, the effects at large of all measures
of general or special legislation, the bearing on productive industry
and national wealth of this or that financial policy, the respective
merits of free trade and protection, or what in a given time or given
country will the best secure individual freedom and the public good.
This is more than we ourselves can understand, and we believe we are
better educated than the average American. We do not believe that
the great bulk of the people of any nation can ever be so educated
as to understand the essential political, financial, and economical
questions of government for themselves, and they will always have to
follow blindly their leaders, natural or artificial. Consequently,
the education of the leaders is of far greater importance than the
education of those who are to be led. All men have equal natural
rights, which every civil government should recognize and protect,
but equality in other respects, whether sought by levelling downward
or by levelling upward, is neither practicable nor desirable. Some
men are born to be leaders, and the rest are born to be led. Go where
we will in society, in the halls of legislation, the army, the navy,
the university, the college, the district school, the family, we
find the few lead, the many follow. It is the order of nature, and
we cannot alter it if we would. Nothing can be worse than to try to
educate all to be leaders. The most pitiable sight is a congressional
body in which there is no leader, an army without a general, but
all lead, all command--that is, nobody leads or commands. The best
ordered and administered state is that in which the few are well
educated and lead, and the many are trained to obedience, are willing
to be directed, content to follow, and do not aspire to be leaders.
In the early days of our republic, when the few were better educated
than now and the many not so well, in the ordinary sense of the term,
there was more dignity in the legislative, judicial, and executive
branches of the government, more wisdom and justice in legislation,
and more honesty, fidelity, and capacity in the administration. In
extending education and endeavoring to train all to be leaders, we
have only extended presumption, pretension, conceit, indocility, and
brought incapacity to the surface.

These, we grant, are unpopular truths, but they, nevertheless, are
truths, which it is worse than idle to deny. Everybody sees it, feels
it, but few have the courage to avow it in face of an intolerant and
tyrannical public opinion. For ourselves, we believe the peasantry
in old Catholic countries, two centuries ago, were better educated,
although for the most part unable to read or write, than are the
great body of the American people to-day. They had faith, they had
morality, they had a sense of religion, they were instructed in the
great principles and essential truths of the Gospel, were trained to
be wise unto salvation, and they had the virtues without which wise,
stable, and efficient government is impracticable. We hear it said,
or rather read in the journals, that the superiority the Prussian
troops have shown to the French is due to their superior education.
We do not believe a word of it. We have seen no evidence that the
French common soldiers are not as well educated and as intelligent as
the Prussian. The superiority is due to the fact that the Prussian
officers were better educated in their profession, were less
overweening in their confidence of victory, and maintained better
and severer discipline in their armies, than the French officers.
The Northern armies in our recent civil war had no advantage in the
superior education of the rank and file over the Southern armies,
where both were equally well officered and commanded. The _morale_
of an army is no doubt the great thing, but it does not depend on
the ability of the common soldier to read, write, and cipher; it
depends somewhat on his previous habits and pursuits--chiefly on the
officers. Under the first Napoleon, the Prussians were not superior
to the French, though as well educated. Good officers, with an able
general at their head, can make an efficient army out of almost any

It is not, therefore, for political or military reasons that we
demand universal education, whether by the general government or
under the state governments. We demand it, as far as practicable,
for other and far higher reasons. We want it for a spiritual or
religious end. We want our children to be educated as thoroughly as
they can be, but in relation to the great purpose of their existence,
so as to be fitted to gain the end for which God creates them. For
the great mass of the people, the education needed is not secular
education, which simply sharpens the intellect and generates pride
and presumption, but moral and religious education, which trains up
children in the way they should go, which teaches them to be honest
and loyal, modest and unpretending, docile and respectful to their
superiors, open and ingenuous, obedient and submissive to rightful
authority, parental or conjugal, civil or ecclesiastical; to know and
keep the commandments of God and the precepts of the church; and to
place the salvation of the soul before all else in life. This sort
of education can be given only by the church or under her direction
and control; and as there is for us Catholics only one church, there
is and can be no proper education for us not given by or under the
direction and control of the Catholic Church.

But it is precisely education by the Catholic Church that Mr. Wilson
and his party do not want, do not believe in, and wish to prevent
us from having even for our own children. It is therefore they
demand a system of universal and uniform compulsory education by
the authority and under the direction of the general government,
which shall effect and maintain the national unification proposed,
by compelling all the children of the land to be trained in national
schools, under Evangelical control and management. The end and aim
of the _New Departure_, aside from certain business interests, is
to suppress Catholic education, gradually extinguish Catholicity in
the country, and to form one homogeneous American people after the
New England Evangelical type. Of this there can be no reasonable
doubt. The Evangelicals and their humanitarian allies, as all their
organs show, are seriously alarmed at the growth of Catholicity in
the United States. They supposed, at first, that the church could
never take root in our Protestant soil, that she could not breathe
the atmosphere of freedom and enlightenment, or thrive in a land of
newspapers and free schools. They have been disappointed, and now
see that they reckoned without their host, and that, if they really
mean to prevent the American people from gradually becoming Catholic,
they must change fundamentally the American form of government,
suppress the freedom of religion hitherto enjoyed by Catholics, and
take the training of all children and youth into their own hands. If
they leave education to the wishes and judgment of parents, Catholic
parents will bring up their children Catholics; if they leave it
to the states separately, Catholics in several of them are already
a powerful minority, daily increasing in strength and numbers, and
will soon be strong enough to force the state legislatures to give
them their proportion of the public schools supported at the public

All this is clear enough. What, then, is to be done? Mr. Wilson, who
is not remarkable for his reticence, tells us, if not with perfect
frankness, yet frankly enough for all practical purposes. It is to
follow out the tendency which has been so strengthened of late,
and absorb the states in the Union, take away the independence of
the state governments, and assume the control of education for the
general government, already rendered practically the supreme national
government;--then, by appealing to the popular sentiment in favor of
education, and saying nothing of its quality, get Congress, which
the Evangelicals, through the party in power, already control, to
establish a system of compulsory education in national schools--and
the work is done; for these schools will necessarily fall into
Evangelical hands.

Such is what the distinguished Evangelical senator from Massachusetts
calls a "New Departure," but which is really only carrying out
a policy long since entered upon, and already more than half
accomplished. While we are writing, Mr. Hoar, a representative
in Congress from Massachusetts, has introduced into the House of
Representatives a bill establishing a system of national education
under the authority of the general government. Its fate is not
yet known, but no doubt will be, before we go to press. The
probabilities are that it will pass both Houses, and if it does, it
will receive the signature of the President as a matter of course.
The Evangelicals--under which name we include Congregationalists,
Presbyterians, Dutch Reformed, Baptists, and Methodists, etc.--all
the denominations united in the Evangelical Alliance--constitute,
with their political and philanthropic allies, the majority in
Congress, and the measure is advocated apparently by the whole
Evangelical press and by the larger and more influential republican
journals of the country, as any number of excerpts from them now
before us will satisfy any one who has the curiosity to read them.
We did think of selecting and publishing the more striking and
authoritative among them, but we have concluded to hold them in
reserve, to be produced in case any one should be rash enough to
question our general statement. There is a strong popular feeling in
many parts of the country in favor of the measure, which is a pet
measure also of the Evangelical ministers generally, who are sure to
exert their powerful influence in its support, and we see no reason
to doubt that the bill will pass.

But while we see ample cause for all citizens who are loyal to
the system of government which Providence enabled our fathers to
establish, and who wish to preserve it and the liberties it secures,
to be vigilant and active, we see none for alarm. The bill, if
it passes, will be manifestly unconstitutional, even counting
the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments as valid parts of the
constitution; and there may be more difficulty in carrying it into
effect than its framers anticipate. It is part and parcel of a New
England policy, and New England is not omnipotent throughout the
Union, nor very ardently loved; not all the members of the several
evangelical denominations will, when they understand it, favor the
revolution in the government Mr. Wilson would effect. There are in
those denominations many men who belong not to the dominant party,
and who will follow their political rather than their denominational
affinities; also, there are in them a large number, we should hope,
of honest men, who are not accustomed to act on the maxim, "the end
justifies the means," loyal men and patriotic, who consider it no
less disloyalty to seek to revolutionize our government against the
states than against the Union, and who will give their votes and all
their influence to preserve the fundamental principles and genius of
our federative system of government, as left us by our fathers, and
resist, if need be, to the death the disloyal policy of unification
and education proposed by Mr. Wilson.

The Southern states are reconstructed and back now in their place
in the Union, and will not be much longer represented by Northern
adventurers, or men of little ability and less character, but very
soon by genuine Southern men, who, while strictly loyal to the Union,
will speak the genuine sentiments of the Southern people. The attempt
to New-Englandize the Southern people has not succeeded, and will not
succeed. When to the Southern people, who will never acquiesce in
the policy of unification, we add the large number of people in the
Northern states who from their political convictions and affinities,
as well as from their conservative tendencies, will oppose
consolidation, we may feel pretty sure that the policy Mr. Wilson
presents as that of the Republican party will not be adopted, or if
adopted will not be permitted to stand. As not wholly inexperienced
in political matters, and looking at the present state of parties and
temper of the nation, we should say that Mr. Wilson, as a party man,
has committed a blunder, and that, if he has fancied that his _New
Departure_ is fitted to strengthen his party as a political party,
and to give it a new lease of power, he has miscalculated. Nothing
in our judgment would be more fatal to the continuance of his party
in power than for it boldly and unequivocally to accept Mr. Wilson's
programme. There is such a thing as reaction in human affairs, and
reactions are sometimes very powerful.

The educational question ought not to present any serious difficulty,
and would not if our Evangelicals and humanitarians did not wish
to make education a means of preventing the growth of the church
and unmaking the children of Catholics, as Catholics; or if they
seriously and in good faith would accept the religious equality
before the state which the constitution and laws, both of the Union
and the several states, as yet recognize and protect. No matter what
we claim for the Catholic Church in the theological order--we claim
for her in the civil order in this country only equality with the
sects, and for Catholics only equal rights with citizens who are not
Catholics. We demand the freedom of conscience and the liberty of our
church, which is our conscience, enjoyed by Evangelicals. This much
the country in its constitution and laws has promised us, and this
much it cannot deny us without breaking its faith pledged before the

As American citizens, we object to the assumption of the control
of education, or of any action in regard to it, by the general
government; for it has no constitutional right to meddle with it,
and so far as civil government has any authority in relation to
it, it is, under our system of government, the authority of the
states severally, not of the states united. We deny, of course,
as Catholics, the right of the civil government to educate, for
education is a function of the spiritual society, as much so as
preaching and the administration of the sacraments; but we do not
deny to the state the right to establish and maintain public schools.
The state, if it chooses, may even endow religion, or pay the
ministers of religion a salary for their support; but its endowments
of religion, when made, are made to God, are sacred, and under the
sole control and management of the spiritual authority, and the
state has no further function in regard to them but to protect the
spirituality in the free and full possession and enjoyment of them.
If it chooses to pay the ministers of religion a salary, as has been
done in France and Spain, though accepted by the Catholic clergy
only as a small indemnification for the goods of the church seized
by revolutionary governments and appropriated to secular uses, it
acquires thereby no rights over them or liberty to supervise their
discharge of their spiritual functions. We do not deny the same or an
equal right in regard to schools and school-teachers. It may found
and endow schools and pay the teachers, but it cannot dictate or
interfere with the education or discipline of the school. That would
imply a union of church and state, or, rather, the subjection of the
spiritual order to the secular, which the Catholic Church and the
American system of government both alike repudiate.

It is said, however, that the state needs education for its own
protection, and to promote the public good or the good of the
community, both of which are legitimate ends of its institution.
What the state needs in relation to its legitimate ends, or the ends
for which it is instituted, it has the right to ordain and control.
This is the argument by which all public education by the state is
defended. But it involves an assumption which is not admissible.
The state, having no religious or spiritual function, can give only
secular education, and secular education is not enough for the
state's own protection or its promotion of the public good. Purely
secular education, or education divorced from religion, endangers
the safety of the state and the peace and security of the community,
instead of protecting and insuring them. It is not in the power of
the state to give the education it needs for its own sake, or for
the sake of secular society. The fact is, though statesmen, and
especially politicians, are slow to learn it, and still slower to
acknowledge it, the state, or secular society, does not and cannot
suffice for itself, and is unable to discharge its own proper
functions without the co-operation and aid of the spiritual society.
Purely secular education creates no civic virtues, and instead of
fitting unfits the people for the prompt and faithful discharge of
their civic duties, as we may see in Young America, and indeed in
the present active and ruling generation of the American people.
Young America is impatient of restraint, regards father and mother
as old-fogies, narrow-minded, behind the age, and disdains filial
submission or obedience to them, has no respect for dignities,
acknowledges no superior, mocks at law if he can escape the police,
is conceited, proud, self-sufficient, indocile, heedless of the
rights and interests of others--will be his own master, and follow
his own instincts, passions, or headstrong will. Are these the
characteristics of a people fitted to maintain a wise, well-ordered,
stable, and beneficent republican government? Or can such a people be
developed from such youngerlings? Yet with purely secular education,
however far you carry it, experience proves that you can get nothing

The church herself, even if she had full control of the education
of all the children in the land, with ample funds at her command,
could not secure anything better, if, as the state, she educated
for a secular end alone. The virtues needed for the protection of
the state and the advancement of the public or common good, are and
can be secured only by educating or training the children and youth
of a nation not for this life as an end, but for the life to come.
Hence our Lord says, "Seek first the kingdom of God and his justice,
and all these things shall be added unto you." The church does not
educate for the secular order as an end, but for God and heaven; and
it is precisely in educating for God and heaven that she secures
those very virtues on which the welfare and security of the secular
order depend, and without which civil society tends inevitably to
dissolution, and is sustained, if sustained at all, only by armed
force, as we have seen in more than one European nation which has
taken education into its own hand, and subordinated it to secular
ends. The education needed by secular society can be obtained only
from the spiritual society, which educates not for this world, but
for the world to come. The virtues needed to secure this life are
obtained only by seeking and promoting the virtues which fit us for
eternal life.

This follows necessarily from the fact that man is created with a
spiritual nature and for an immortal destiny. If he existed for this
life only, if he were, as some sciolists pretend, merely a monkey or
a gorilla developed, or were like the beasts that perish, this indeed
would not and could not follow, and the reconciliation of the nature
and destiny of man with uniform human experience would be impossible.
We should be obliged, in order to secure the peace and good order
of society, as some unbelieving statesmen do not blush to avow, to
educate in view of a falsehood, and take care to keep up the delusion
that man has a religious nature and destiny, or look to what is false
and delusive for the virtues which can alone save us from anarchy and
utter barbarism. Yet what would serve the delusion or the falsehood,
if man differs not by nature from the dog or the pig? But if man
has really a spiritual nature and an immortal destiny, then it must
necessarily follow that his real good can in no respect be obtained
but in being educated and trained to live for a spiritual life, for
an immortal destiny. Should not man be educated according to his
spiritual nature and destiny, not as a pig or a monkey? If so, in his
education should not the secular be subordinated to the spiritual,
and the temporal to the eternal? We know well, experience proves it,
that even the secular virtues are not secured when sought as the end
of education and of life, but only in educating and living for that
which is not secular, and in securing the virtues which have the
promise of the life of the world to come.

All education, as all life, should be religious, and all education
divorced from religion is an evil, not a good, and is sure in the
long run to be ruinous to the secular order; but as a part of
religious education, and included in it, secular education has its
place, and even its necessity. Man is not all soul, nor all body,
but the union of soul and body; and therefore his education should
include in their union, not separation--for the separation of soul
and body is the death of the body--both spiritual education and
secular. It is not that we oppose secular education when given in
the religious education, and therefore referred to the ultimate end
of man, but when it is given alone and for its own sake. We deny
the competency of the state to educate even for its own order, its
right to establish purely secular schools, from which all religion
is excluded, as Mr. Webster ably contended in his argument in the
Girard will case; but we do not deny, we assert rather, its right to
establish public schools under the internal control and management of
the spiritual society, and to exact that a certain amount of secular
instruction be given along with the religious education that society
gives. This last right it has in consideration of the secular funds
for the support of the schools it furnishes, and as a condition on
which it furnishes them.

Let the state say distinctly how much secular education in the public
schools it exacts, or judges to be necessary for its own ends, and so
far as the Catholic Church has anything to do with the matter it can
have it. The church will not refuse to give it in the schools under
her control. She will not hesitate to teach along with her religion
any amount of reading, writing, arithmetic, history, geography,
music, and drawing, or the sciences and the fine arts, the state
exacts and provides for; nor will she refuse to allow it to send,
if it chooses, its own inspectors into her schools to ascertain if
she actually gives the secular education required. Let it say, then,
what amount of secular education it wants for all the children of
the land, and is willing to pay for, and, so far as Catholics are
concerned, it can have it, and of as good quality, to say the least,
as it can get in purely secular schools, and along with it the
religious education, the most essential to it as well as to the souls
of all.

But the difficulty here, it is assumed, is that the spiritual
society with us is divided into various denominations, each with its
distinctive views of religion. That, no doubt, is a damage, but can
be easily overcome by bearing in mind that the several divisions
have equal rights, and by making the public schools denominational,
as they are in Prussia, Austria, France, and to a certain extent in
England, where denominational diversities obtain as well as with
us. Where the community is divided between different religious
denominations, all standing on a footing of perfect equality before
civil society, this is the only equitable system of public schools
that is practicable. If the state does not adopt it, it must--1, let
the whole business of education alone, and make no public provision
for it; 2, establish purely secular, that is, godless schools,
from which all religion is excluded, to which no religious people
can be expected to consent, and which would ruin both public and
private virtue, and defeat the very purpose of all education; or,
3, it must practically, if not theoretically, recognize some one
of the several denominations as the state religion, and remit the
education of childhood and youth to its management and control, as
is virtually the case with our present public schools, but which
would be manifestly unjust to all the others--to non-evangelicals, if
evangelicalism is made the state religion, or to the Evangelicals,
if a non-evangelical denomination be established as the religion of
the state. The only way to be just to all is, as everybody can see,
to recognize in practice as well as in profession the equal rights
of all denominations in the civil order--make the public schools
denominational, and give to each denomination that asks it for the
sake of conscience its fair and honest proportion, to be as to their
internal economy, education, and discipline under its sole control
and management.

Mr. Wilson proposes for our admiration and imitation the Prussian
system of public schools, and though we do not know that it is
superior to the Austrian or even the French system, yet we think
highly of it. But, what the Evangelical senator does not tell us,
the Prussian system is strictly the denominational system, and each
denomination is free and expected to educate in its own schools its
own children, under the direction of its pastors and teachers,
in its own religion. The Prussian system recognizes the fact that
different communions do exist among the Prussian people, and does
not aim to suppress them or at unification by state authority. It
meets the fact as it is, without seeking to alter it. Give us the
Prussian system of denominational schools, and we shall be satisfied,
even if education is made compulsory. We, of course, protest against
any law compelling us to send our children to schools in which our
religion cannot be freely taught, in which no religion is taught, or
in which is taught in any shape or degree a religion which we hold to
be false or perilous to souls. Such a law would violate the rights
of parents and the freedom of conscience; but with denominational
schools compulsory education would violate no one's conscience and
no parental right. Parents ought, if able, to have their children
educated, and if they will not send their children to schools
provided for them by the public, and in which their religion is
respected, and made the basis of the education given, we can see no
valid reason why the law should not compel them. The state has the
right, perhaps the duty, in aid of the spiritual society and for its
own safety and the public good, to compel parents to educate their
children when public schools of their own religion, under the charge
of their own pastors, are provided for them at the public expense.
Let the public schools be denominational, give us our proportion of
them, so that no violence will be done to parental rights or to the
Catholic conscience, and we shall be quite willing to have education
made compulsory, and even if such schools are made national, though
we should object as American citizens to them, we should as Catholics
accept them. We hold state authority is the only constitutional
authority under our system to establish schools and provide for them
at the public expense; but we could manage to get along with national
denominational schools as well as others could. We could educate in
our share of the public schools our own children in our own way, and
that is all we ask. We do not ask to educate the children of others,
unless with the consent or at the request of parents and guardians.

The Prussian system of denominational schools could be introduced
and established in all the states without the least difficulty,
if it were not for Evangelicals, their Unitarian offshoots, and
their humanitarian allies. These are religious and philanthropic
busybodies, who fancy they are the Atlas who upholds the world,
and that they are deputed to take charge of everybody's affairs,
and put them to rights. But they forget that their neighbors have
rights as well as themselves, and perhaps intentions as honest and
enlightened, and as much real wisdom and practical sagacity. The
only obstacle to the introduction and establishment of a just and
equitable system of public schools comes from the intolerant zeal of
these Evangelicals, who seek to make the public schools an instrument
for securing the national, social, and religious unification they
are resolved on effecting, and for carrying out their purpose of
suppressing the church and extirpating Catholicity from American
soil. They want to use them in training our children up in the way of
Evangelicalism, and moulding the whole American population into one
homogeneous people, modelled, as we have said, after the New England
Evangelical type. Here is the difficulty, and the whole difficulty.
The denominational system would defeat their darling hope, their pet
project, and require them to live and let live. They talk much about
freedom of conscience and religious liberty and equal rights; but the
only equal rights they understand are all on their side, and they
cherish such a tender regard for religious liberty, have so profound
a respect for it, that they insist, like our Puritan forefathers, on
keeping it all to themselves, and not to suffer it to be profaned or
abused by being extended to others.

Prussia, though a Protestant country, does not dream of making the
public schools a machine either for proselytism or unification.
She is contented to recognize Catholics as an integral part of her
population, and to leave them to profess and practise their own
religion according to the law of their church. Our Evangelicals would
do well to imitate her example. We Catholics are here, and here we
intend to remain. We have as much right to be here as Evangelicals
have. We are too many to be massacred or exiled, and too important
and influential a portion of the American people to be of no account
in the settlement of public affairs. We have votes, and they will
count on whichever side we cast them; and we cannot reasonably be
expected to cast them on the side of any party that is seeking to
use its power as a political party to suppress our church and our
religion, or even to destroy our federative system of government, and
to leave all minorities at the mercy of the irresponsible majority
for the time, with no other limit to its power than it sees proper to
impose on itself; for we love liberty, and our church teaches us to
be loyal to the constitution of our country.

The wisest course, since there are different religious denominations
in the country, is to accept the situation, to recognize the fact,
acquiesce in it, and make the best of it. Any attempt to unmake,
by the direct or indirect authority of the state, Catholics of
their faith or any denomination of its belief, is sure to fail.
Each denomination is free to use Scripture and reason, logic and
tradition, all moral and intellectual weapons, against its rivals,
and with that it should be contented. Whatever may be the rightful
claims of the church in the theological order, she is contented with
the civil protection of her equal rights in the political order. She
asks--with the wealth, the fashion, the public opinion, the press,
nine-tenths of the population of the country, and the seductions
of the world against her--only "an open field and fair play." If
she does not complain, her enemies ought to be satisfied with the
advantages they have.

We have entered our protest against a party programme which threatens
alike the genius of the American government and the freedom of
religion, for so much was obviously our duty, both as Catholics and
citizens. We are aware of the odds against us, but we have confidence
in our countrymen that, though they may be momentarily deceived
or misled, they will, when the real character of the programme we
have exposed is once laid open to them, reject it with scorn and
indignation, and hasten to do us justice.


[1] Entered, according to Act of Congress, in the year 1871, by
REV. I. T. HECKER, in the Office of the Librarian of Congress, at
Washington, D. C.

[2] _New Departure of the Republican Party._ By Henry Wilson. _The
Atlantic Monthly_, Boston, January, 1871.


      In weary hours to lonely heights
        When thou hast travelled sore,
      A sorrowing man hath borne his cross
        And gone thy way before.

      Thine eyes cannot escape the sign
        On every hand that is
      Of him who bore the general woe,
        Nor knew a common bliss.

      But men, remembering his face,
        Dreamed of him while they slept,
      And the mother by the cradle side
        Thought of his eye, and wept.

      Now haunts the world his ghost whose fate
        Made all men's fates his own;
      So for the wrongs of modest hearts
        A myriad hearts atone.

      Oh! deeply shall thy spirit toil
        To reach the height he trod,
      And humbly strive thy soul to know
        Its servant was its God.

      Only earth's martyr is her lord;
        Such is the gain of loss:
      And, looking in all hearts, I see
        The signal of the cross.




Under a thickly-branched tree in the northern part of one of the
southern counties of Maine is a certain gray rock, matted over with
dim green lichens that are spotted with dead gold. From under this
rock springs a sparkling little stream. It is no storied fountain,
rich with legends of splendor, poetry, and crime, but a dear, bright
little Yankee brook, with the world all before it. That world it
immediately proceeds to investigate. It creeps through thready
grasses and russet pine-needles; it turns aside, with great respect,
for a stone no larger than a rabbit; and when a glistening pitchy
cone drops into it, the infant river labors under the burden. When
the thirsty fawn comes there to drink, nearly the whole rivulet flows
down its throat, and the cone is stranded high and dry; what there
is left flows southward. A sunbeam pierces the scented gloom, creeps
down a tree-trunk, steals over a knoll of green-and-brown tree-moss,
which then looks like a tiny forest on fire, over yellow violets,
which dissolve in its light, over a bank of rich dark mould veined
with the golden powder of decayed pine-trees, moist and soft, and
full of glistening white roots, where the flowers push down their
pearly feet. Over the bank, into the water, goes the sunbeam, and the
two frolic together, and the stream dives under the gnarled roots,
so that its playmate would believe it lost but for that gurgle of
laughter down in the cool, fresh dark. Then it leaps up, and spreads
itself out in a mirror, and the elder-tree, leaning over to look at
the reflection of its fan-like leaves and clusters of white flowers,
gets very erroneous ideas concerning its own personal appearance;
for the palpitating rings that chase each other over the surface of
the water make the brown stems crinkle, the leaves come to pieces
and unite again, and the many flowers in each round cluster melt all
together, then twinkle out individually, only to melt again into that
bloomy full moon. Over this shimmer of flowers and water big bees
fly, buzzing terribly, dragon-flies dart, or hang, purple-mailed,
glittering creatures, with gauzy wings, and comical insects dance
there, throwing spots of sunshine instead of shadow down to the leafy
bed. Then the brook flows awhile in a green tranquil shadow, till,
reaching the interlaced roots of two immense trees that hold a bank
between them, it makes a sudden, foamy plunge the height of a stag's
front. She is a bride then, you may say--she is Undine, looking
through that white veil, and thinking new thoughts.

Now the bear comes down to drink and look at his ugly face in the
deepening wave, foxes switch their long tails about the banks, deer
come, as light-footed as shadows, drink, and fling up their short
tails, with a flit of white, and trot away with a little sniff, and
their heads thrown back, hearing the howl or the long stride of the
wolf in pursuit. Rabbits come there, and squirrels leap and nibble in
the branches above. Besides, there are shoals of pretty, slim fishes.

So through the mellow gloom and sunny sparkle of the old forest, the
clear brook wanders, growing wiser, and talking to itself about many

Presently the wild creatures withdraw, sunburnt children wade across
from bank to bank, grassy clearings abound, there are farm-houses,
and cows with tinkling bells; and then comes a bridge, and boats
dance upon the water, and the stream is a river! Alas for the Indian
name it brought up out of the earth with it, and lisped and gurgled
and laughed to itself all the way down--the name spiked with _k_'s
and choky-looking _gh_'s, rough to the eye, but sweet in the mouth,
like a hazel-nut in the burr. The white settlers have changed all

Now, indeed, the young river puts on state, and lets people see that
it is not to be waded through; and when they build a dam across,
it flows grandly over, in a smooth, wine-colored curve. Times are
changed, indeed, since the little gray birds with speckled breasts
looked with admiration at its first cascade, since the bear, setting
down his great paw, clumsily splashed the whole stream up over
his shaggy leg. There are farms to keep up appearances before,
mill-wheels to turn, and ships to bear up. Pine-cones, indeed!
Besides, a new and strange experience has come to it, and its bosom
pulses daily with the swelling of the tides. And here one village
street, with white houses, follows its course a mile or so, and
another street with white houses comes down to its bank from the
west, crosses over, and goes up eastward. This town, with its two
principal streets forming a cross near the mouth of the river, a
white cross at the end of a silver chain--shall we call it Seaton?
It is a good enough name. And the river shall be Seaton River, and
the bay into which it flows shall be Seaton Bay. But the ocean that
makes the bay, and drinks the river, shall be Atlantic still.

We have spoken!

We follow the road that follows the stream on its eastern bank, cross
West Street, get into a poor, dwindling neighborhood, leave the
houses nearly all behind, go over two small, ill-conditioned hills,
and find at our right a ship-yard with wharves, at our left a dingy
little cottage, shaped like a travelling-trunk, and not much larger
than some. It stands with its side toward the dusty road, a large,
low chimney rises from the roof, there is a door with a window at
each side of it. One can see at a glance from the outside how this
house is divided. It has but two rooms below, with a tiny square
entry between, and a low attic above. Each room has three windows,
one on each of the three outer walls.

The kitchen looked toward the village through its north window.
Opposite that was a large fireplace with an ill-tempered, crackling
fire of spruce-wood, throwing out sparks and splinters. It was April
weather, and not very warm yet. In the chimney-corner sat Mr. Rowan,
sulkily smoking his pipe, his eyes fixed on the chimney-back. He
was a large, slouching man, with an intelligent face brutalized by
intemperance. Drunkard was written all over him, in the scorched
black hair, not yet turning gray, in the dry lips, bloated features,
and inflamed eyes. He sat in his shirt-sleeves, waiting impatiently
while his wife put a patch in his one coat. Mrs. Rowan, a poor,
faded, little frightened woman, whom her female acquaintances called
"slack," sat near the south window, wrinkling her brows anxiously
over the said patch, which was smaller than the hole it was destined
to fill. The afternoon sunshine spread a golden carpet close to
her feet. In the light of it one could see the splinters in the
much-scoured floor, and a few fraggles in the hem of Mrs. Rowan's
calico gown.

At the eastern window sat Edith Yorke, eleven years of age, with a
large book on her knees. Over this book, some illustrated work on
natural history, she had been bending for an hour, her loose mop of
tawny hair falling each side of the page. So cloistered, her profile
was invisible; but, standing in front of her, one could see an oval
face with regular features full of calm earnestness. Bright, arched
lips, and a spirited curve in the nostrils, saved this face from the
cold look which regular features often give. The large, drooping
eyelids promised large eyes, the forehead was wide and not high, the
brows long, slightly arched, and pale-brown in color, and the whole
face, neck, hands, and wrists were tanned to a light quadroon tint.
But where the coarse sleeve had slipped up was visible an arm of
dazzling whiteness. Outside the window, and but two rods distant,
hung a crumbling clay bank, higher than the house, with a group of
frightened alder-bushes looking over the top, and holding on with all
their roots. Some day, in spite of their grip--the sooner, perhaps,
because of its stress--the last frail hold was to be loosed, and the
bushes were to come sliding down the bank, faster and faster, to
pitch headlong into the mire at the bottom, with a weak crackling of
all their poor doomed branches.

Presently the child looked up, with lights coming and going in
her agate-colored eyes. "How wonderful frogs are!" she exclaimed

There was no reply.

She glanced at her two companions, scarcely conscious of them, her
mind full of something else. "But everything is wonderful, when you
come to think of it," she pursued dreamily.

Mr. Rowan took the pipe from his mouth, turned his forbidding face,
and glowered at the girl. "You're a wonderful fool!" he growled; then
resumed his pipe, feeling better, apparently, for that expression
of opinion. His wife glanced up, furtive and frightened, but said

Edith looked at the man unmoved, saw him an instant, then, still
looking, saw him not. After a while she became aware, roused herself,
and bent again over the book. Then there was silence, broken only by
the snapping of the fire, the snip of Mrs. Rowan's scissors, and the
lame, one-sided ticking of an old-fashioned clock on the mantelpiece.

After a while, as the child read, a new thought struck up. "That's
just like! Don't you think"--addressing the company--"Major
Cleaveland said yesterday that I had lightning-bugs in my eyes!"

Without removing his pipe, Mr. Rowan darted an angry look at his
wife, whose face became still more frightened. "Dear me!" she said
feebly, "that child is an idjut!"

This time the long, fading gaze dwelt on the woman before it went
back to the book again. But the child was too closely ensphered in
her own life to be much, if at all, hurt. Besides, she was none of
theirs, nor of their kind. Her soul was no dying spark struggling
through ashes, but a fire, "alive, and alive like to be," as children
say when they wave the fire-brand, winding live ribbons in the air;
and no drop of their blood flowed in her veins.

The clock limped over ten minutes more, and the patch was got into
its place, after a fashion, botched somewhat, with the knots on the
outside. Mr. Rowan took the coat, grumbled at it, put it on, and
went out, glancing back at the child as he opened the door. She was
looking after him with an expression which he interpreted to mean
aversion and contempt. Perhaps he mistook. May be she was wondering
at him, what sort of strange being he was. Edith Yorke was very
curious regarding the world she had got into. It seemed to her a
queer place, and that she had at present not much concern in it.

Her husband out of the way, Mrs. Rowan took her knitting-work, and
stood a moment at the north window, gazing up toward the town, with a
far-away look of blunted expectancy, as if she had got in the habit
of looking for help which never came. Then she drew a long sigh,
that also a habit, and, resuming her chair, began to knit and to
rock herself, letting her mind, what there was left of it, swing to
and fro, unmeaningly and miserably, to the sound of the clock as it
ticked. "O dear! O dear!"--that was what the ticking always said to
this poor soul. As she sat, the afternoon sun, sinking lower, crept
about her feet, climbed to her lap, got hold of her knitting, and ran
in little bright flashes along the needles, and snapped off in sparks
at the ends, so that she seemed to be knitting sunshine.

This woman was what remained at forty of a pretty, flaxen-haired
girl of eighteen, who had captivated handsome Dick Rowan, for he
had been handsome. A faded rag of a woman she was, without hope or
spirit, all the color and life washed out of her in a bitter rain
of tears. The pink cheeks had faded, and only the ghost remained of
that dimple that had once seemed to give meaning to her smiles. The
curly hair was dry and thin, and had an air of chronic untidiness.
The blue-gray eyes were dim and heavy, the teeth were nearly all
gone. The pretty, chirping ways that had been captivating when youth
covered their silliness--oh! where had they gone? She was a weak,
broken-hearted, shiftless little woman, and her husband hated her. He
felt wronged and cheated by her. He was more disappointed than Ixion,
for in this cloud there had never even been a goddess. If she had
sometimes turned upon him, when he acted like a brute, and scorned
him for it, he would have liked her better; but she shrank, and
cowered, and trembled, made him feel himself ten times the brute she
dared not call him, yet gave him nothing to resent. "Gentle, is she?"
he cried out once in a rage. "She is not! She is weak and slavish. A
person cannot be gentle who cannot be something else."

So the poor woman suffered, and got neither pity nor credit from the
one who caused her suffering. It was hard; and yet, she was nobler
in her misery than she would have been in happiness. For sorrow gave
her now and then a touch of dignity; and when, stung with a sudden
perception of her own nothingness, she flung her desperate hands
upward, and called upon God to deliver her, a certain tragical power
and beauty seemed to wrap her round. Mrs. Rowan happy would have been
a trivial woman, meaning no great harm, because meaning no great
anything; but the fiery furnace of pain had scorched her up, and what
remained was pure.

When the two were alone, Edith dropped her book, and looked across
the room at her companion. Mrs. Rowan, busy with her own sad
thoughts, took no notice of her, and presently the child glanced
past her, and out the window. The view was not bad. First came
the dusty road, then the ship-yard, then the river sparkling, but
rather the worse for sawdust and lath-edgings that came down from
the lumber-mills above the village. But here all that was sordid
came to an end. The meanness and misery on the hitherward bank were
like witches, who cannot cross running water. From the opposite bank
rose a long, grassy hill, unmarred by road or fence. In summer-time
you could see from far away the pinkness of the wild-roses that had
seen fit to bind with a blooming cestus the dented waist of this
hill. Behind them was a green spray of locust and laburnum trees,
then dense round tops of maples, and elms in graceful groups,
half-hiding the roofs and gables of Major Cleaveland's house--the
great house of the village, as its owner was the great man. Behind
that was a narrow rim of pines and spruces, making the profile of
an enchanted city against the horizon, and above that a vast hollow
of unobstructed sky. In that space the sunsets used to build their
jasper walls, and calm airs stretch long lines of vapor across, till
the whole west was a stringed instrument whereon a full symphony of
colors played good-night to the sun. There the west wind blew up
bubbles of wry cloud, and the new moon put forth her gleaming sickle
to gather in the sheaf of days, a never-failing harvest, through
storm and sunshine, hoar-frost and dew. There the pearly piles of
cumuli used to slumber on summer afternoons, lightnings growing in
their bosoms to flash forth at evening; and there, when a long storm
ended with the day, rose the solid arch of cerulean blue. When it had
reached a certain height, Edith Yorke would run into the south room,
and look out to see the rainbow suspend its miraculous arch over
the retreating storm. This little girl, to whom everything was so
wonderful when she came to think of it, was a dear lover of beauty.

"O dear! O dear!" ticked the clock; and the barred sunshine turned
slowly on the floor, as if the ugly little house were the hub of a
huge, leisurely wheel of gold.

Edith dropped her book, and went to Mrs. Rowan's side, taking a stool
with her, and sitting down in the midst of the sunshine.

"I'm afraid I shall forget my story, Mrs. Jane, unless I say it over
again," she said. "And, you know, mamma told me never to forget."

Mrs. Rowan roused herself, glad of anything which could take her mind
from her own troubles. "Well, tell it all over to me now," she said.
"I haven't heard it this long time."

"Will you be sure to correct me if I am wrong?" the child asked

"Yes, I will. But don't begin till I have taken up the heel of this

The stitches were counted and evened, half of them taken off on to a
thread, and the other half, with the seam-stitch in the middle, knit
backward once. Then Edith began to repeat the story confided to her
by her dead mother.

"My grandpapa and grandmamma were Polish exiles. They had to leave
Poland when Aunt Marie was only a year old, and before mamma
was born. They couldn't take their property with them, but only
jewels, and plate, and pictures. They went to Brussels, and there
my mamma was born, and the queen was her godmother, and sent the
christening-robe. Mamma kept the robe till she grew up; but when
she was in America, and was poor, and wanted to go to a party, she
cut it up to make the waist and sleeves of a dress. Poverty is no
disgrace, mamma said, but it is a great inconvenience. By-and-by,
they left Brussels, and went to England. Grandpapa wanted some way to
get money to live on, for they had sold nearly all their pictures and
things. They stayed in England not very long. Countess Poniatowski
called on grandmamma, and she had on a black velvet bonnet with red
roses in it; so I suppose it was winter. Then one day grandpapa took
mamma out to walk in a park; so I suppose that was summer. There were
some gentlemen in the park that they talked to, and one of them, a
gentleman with a hook nose, who was sitting down on a bench, took
mamma on his knees, and started to kiss her. But mamma slapped his
face. She said he had no right to kiss people who didn't want him
to, not even if he were a king. His name was the Duke of Wellington.
Then they all came to America, and people here were very polite to
them, because they were Polish exiles, and of noble birth. But they
couldn't eat nor drink nor wear politeness, mamma said, and so they
grew poorer and poorer every day, and didn't know what they would do.
Once they travelled with Henry Clay two weeks, and had quite a nice
time, and they went to Ashland and stayed all night. When they went
away the next day, Mr. Clay gave mamma and Aunt Marie the little mugs
they had had to drink out of. But they didn't care much about 'em,
and they broke 'em pretty soon. Mamma said she didn't know then that
Mr. Clay was a great man. She thought that just a mister couldn't
be great. She had always seen lords and counts, and grandpapa was a
colonel in the army--Colonel Lubomirski his name was. But she said
that in this country a man might be great, even if he wasn't anything
but a mister, and that my papa was as great as a prince. Well, then
they came to Boston, and Aunt Marie died, and they buried her, and
mamma was almost nine years old. People used to pet and notice her,
and everybody talked about her hair. It was thick and black, and
it curled down to her waist. One day Doctor Somebody, I can never
recollect his name, took her out walking on the Common, and they
went into Mr. John Quincy Adams's house. And Mr. Adams took one of
mamma's curls, and held it out, and said it was long enough and large
enough to hang the Czar with. And she said that they might have it
all if they'd hang him with it. And then poor grandpapa had to go
to Washington, and teach dancing and fencing, because that was all
he could do. And pretty soon grandmamma broke her heart and died.
And then after a little while grandpapa died. And, after that, mamma
had to go out sewing to support herself, and she went to Boston, and
sewed in Mr. Yorke's family. And Mr. Yorke's youngest brother fell in
love with her, and she fell in love with him, and they married each
other in spite of everybody. So the family were awfully angry. My
papa had been engaged ever since he was a little boy to Miss Alice
Mills, and they had put off getting married because she was rich, and
he hadn't anything, and was looking round to see how he should get a
fortune. And the Millses all turned against him, and the Yorkes all
turned against him, and he and mamma went off, and wandered about,
and came down to Maine; and papa died. Then mamma had to sew again to
support herself, and we were awfully poor. I remember that we lived
in the same house with you; but it was a better house than this, and
was up in the village. Then mamma's heart broke, and she died too.
But I don't mean to break my heart, Mrs. Jane. It's a poor thing to

"Yes!" sighed the listener; "it's a poor thing to do."

"Well," resumed the child, "then you kept me. It was four years ago
when my mamma died, but I remember it all. She made me promise not to
forget who my mother was, and promise, with both my hands held up,
that I would be a Catholic, if I had to die for it. So I held up both
my hands, and promised, and she looked at me, and then shut her eyes.
It that all right?"

"Yes, dear!" Mrs. Rowan had dropped her knitting as the story went
on, and was gazing dreamily out the window, recalling to mind her
brief acquaintance with the fair young exile.

"Dick and I grew to be great friends," Edith continued rather
timidly. "He used to take care of me, and fight for me. Poor Dick!
He was mad nearly all the time, because his father drank rum, and
because people twitted him, and looked down upon him."

Mrs. Rowan took up her work again, and knit tears in with the yarn.

"And Dick gave his father an awful talking-to, one day," Edith
went on, still more timidly. "That was two years ago. He stood up
and poured out words. His eyes were so flashing that they dazzled,
and his cheeks were red, and he clinched his hands. He looked most
splendid. When I go back to Poland, he shall be a general in the
army. He will look just as he did then, if the Czar should come near
us. Well, after that day he went off to sea, and he has not been back

Tears were running down the mother's cheeks as she thought of her
son, the only child left her of three.

Edith leaned and clasped both her hands around Mrs. Rowan's arm,
and laid her cheek to them. "But he is coming back rich, he said he
would; and what Dick said he'd do he always did. He is going to take
us away from here, and get a pretty house, and come and live with us."

A hysterical, half-laughing sob broke through the listener's quiet
weeping. "He always did keep his word, Edith!" she cried. "Dick was a
gallant lad. And I trust that the Lord will bring him back to me."

"Oh! he'll come back," said Edith confidently, and with a slight air
of haughtiness. "He'll come back himself."

All the Christianity the child had seen had been such as to make the
name of the Lord excite in her heart a feeling of antagonism. It is
hard to believe that God means love when man means hate; and this
child and her protectors had seen but little of the sunny side of
humanity. Christians held aloof from the drunkard and his family, or
approached them only to exhort or denounce. That they had any kinship
with that miserable man, that in his circumstances they might have
been what he was, never seemed to occur to them as possible. Dick
fought with the boys who mocked his father, therefore he was a bad
boy. Mrs. Rowan flamed up, and defended her husband, when the Rev.
Dr. Martin denounced him, therefore she was almost as bad as he.
So shallow are most judgments, arraigning effects without weighing

Nor did Edith fare better at their hands. She was to them a sort
of vagabond. Who believed the story of her mother's romantic
misfortunes? She was some foreign adventuress, most likely. Mr.
Charles Yorke, whom they respected, had married a native of Seaton,
and had two or three times honored that town with a short visit. They
knew that he had cast off his own brother for marrying this child's
mother. Therefore she had no claim on their respect.

Moreover, some of the ladies for whom young Mrs. Yorke had done
sewing had not the pleasantest of recollections connected with her.
A poor person has no right to be proud and high-spirited, and the
widowed exile was a very fiery woman. She would not sit at table with
their servants, she would not be delighted when they patronized her,
and she would not be grateful for the scanty wages they gave her.
She had even dared to break out upon Mrs. Cleaveland when that lady
had sweetly requested her to enter her house by the side door, when
she came to sew. "In Poland a person like you would scarcely have
been allowed to tie my mother's shoes!" she cried. The lady answered
suavely, "But we are not in Poland, madam;" but she never forgave the
insolence--still less because her husband laughed at it, and rather
liked Mrs. Yorke's spirit.

These were the ladies whom Edith had heard talk of religion; so she
lifted her head, dropped her eyelids, and said defiantly, "Dick will
come home himself!"

"Not unless the Lord lets him come," said the mother. "Oh! no good
will come to us except by him. '_Unless the Lord build the house,
they labor in vain that build it: unless the Lord keep the city, he
watcheth in vain that keepeth it._'"

"I don't think you have much to thank him for," remarked the child

"I will thank him!" the woman cried out in a passion. "I will trust
him! He is all the hope I have!"

"Well, well, you may!" Edith said soothingly. "Don't let's talk about
it any more. Give me the scissors, and I'll cut the fraggles off the
hem of your gown. Suppose Dick should come home all of a sudden, and
find us looking so! I hope he will let us know, don't you? so that we
can put our best clothes on."

The best clothes in question were a black bombazine gown and shawl,
and an old-fashioned crape bonnet and veil, all sewed up and hidden
away under Edith's bed in the little dark attic, lest Mr. Rowan, in
one of his drunken frenzies, should destroy them. These articles were
the mourning which Mrs. Rowan had worn seven years before, when her
last daughter died. With them was another bag, belonging to Edith,
equally precious to its owner, but from other reasons. There was
a scarlet merino cape, lined with silk of the same color, both a
little faded, and a faded crape scarf that had once been gorgeous
with red and gold. In the innermost fold of this scarf, wrapped
in tissue-paper, and tucked inside an old kid glove of remarkable
smallness, were two locks of hair--one a short, thick wave of
yellow-brown, the other a long, serpentine tress of ebony blackness.

While they talked, the door of the room opened, and Mr. Rowan looked
in. "Aren't we going to have any supper to-night?" he demanded.

Edith fixed a look on him that made him shrink out, and bang the door
behind him. His wife started up, glanced at the clock, and went about
her work.

"Let me help you, Mrs. Jane," the child said.

"No, dear. There isn't much to do, and I'd rather do it." Mrs.
Rowan's voice had a sepulchral sound, her head being deep in the
fireplace, where she was putting one hook into another on the crane,
to let the tea-kettle down. She emerged with a smooch of soot on her
hair and forehead, and began flying round bringing a table into the
middle of the floor, putting up the leaves, spreading the cloth,
taking down the dishes, all with trembling haste. "If you want to
knit a few times across the heel of that stocking, you may. But be
careful not to knit too tightly, as you almost always do. You can
begin to narrow when it's two of your forefingers long."

Edith took the knitting, and went to her favorite chair in the back
window. The room had grown smoky in consequence of Mrs. Rowan's
piling of soft wood on to the fire, and hurrying about past the
fireplace, so she pushed up the window, and fastened it with a wooden
button fixed there for the purpose. Then she began to knit and think,
and, forgetting Mrs. Rowan's directions, pulled the yarn so tightly
over her fingers that she worked a hard, stiff strip across the heel,
into which the looser knitting puckered. The child was too much
absorbed to be aware of her mistake, and it did not matter; for that
stocking was never to be finished.

While she dreamed there, a deeper shadow than that of the clay bank
fell over her. She looked up with a start, and saw Mr. Rowan standing
outside the window. He had placed himself so as to avoid being seen
by any one in the room, and was just turning his eyes away from her
when she caught sight of him.

"Lean out here!" he said. "I want to speak to you."

She leaned out and waited.

"What makes you stare at me the way you sometimes do?" he asked
angrily, but in a low voice, that his wife might not hear. "Why don't
you say right out what you think?"

"I don't know what I do think," replied Edith, dropping her eyes.

"You think that I am a wretch!" he exclaimed. "You think I am a
drunkard! You think I abuse my wife!"

She neither answered nor looked up.

He paused a moment, then went on fiercely. "If there is anything I
hate, it is to have people look at me that way, and say nothing. If
you scold a man, it looks as if you thought there was something in
him that could tell black from white; and if you are impudent, you
put yourself a little in the wrong, and that helps him. He isn't so
much ashamed of himself. But when you just look, and say nothing, you
shut him out. It is as much as to tell him that words would be thrown
away on him."

"But," Edith objected, much at a loss, "if I answered you back, or
said what I thought, there would be a quarrel right off."

"Did I fight when Dick gave me such a hauling-over before he went
away?" the man questioned in a rough tone that did not hide how his
voice broke, and his blood-shot eyes filled up with tears. "Didn't
I hang my head, and take it like a dog? He said I had acted like a
brute, but he didn't say I was one, and he didn't say but I could be
a man yet, if I should try. Wasn't I sober for three months after he
went away? Yes; and I would have kept sober right on if I had had
some one to thorn and threaten me. But she gave up, and did nothing
but whimper, and it maddened me. When I ordered her to mix my rum for
me, she did it. I should have liked her better if she had thrown it,
tumbler and all, into my face."

"You'd better not find fault with her," said Edith. "She's a great
deal better than you are."

The child had a gentle, sincere way of saying audacious things
sometimes that made one wonder if she knew how audacious they were.

The man stared at her a moment; then, looking away, answered without
any appearance of anger, "I suppose she is; but I don't think much of
that kind of goodness when there's a hard job to be done. You can't
lift rocks with straws. I'm sorry for her; but, for all that, she
aggravates me, poor thing!"

He leaned back against the house, with his hands in his pockets, and
stared at the clay bank before him. Edith looked at him, but said
nothing. Presently he turned so suddenly that she started. "Girl," he
said, "never do you ridicule a man who has been drinking, no matter
what he does! You may hate him, or be afraid of him, but never laugh
at him! You might as well look down into hell and laugh! Do you
know what it is to be in the power of rum? It is to have serpents
twining round you, and binding you hand and foot. I've gone through
the streets up there with devils on my back, pushing me down; wild
beasts tearing my vitals; reptiles crawling round me; the earth
rising up and quaking under my feet, and a horror in my soul that no
words can describe, and the men and women and children have laughed
at me. Perhaps they were such shallow fools that they didn't know;
but I tell you, and you know now. Don't you ever dare to laugh at a

"I never will!" Edith cried out, in an agony of terror and pity. "O
you poor man! I didn't know it was so awful. O you poor man!"

Mr. Rowan had stopped, gasping for breath, and, with his patched
sleeve, wiped off the perspiration that was streaming down his face.
Edith tore off her little calico apron with such haste as to break
the strings. "Here, take this!" she said, reaching it out to him.

He took it with a shaking hand, and wiped his face again; wiped his
eyes again and again, breathing heavily.

"Couldn't you be saved?" she asked, in a whisper. "Isn't there any
way for you to get out of it?"

"No!" he said, and gave her back her apron. "No; and I wish that I
were dead!"

"Don't say that!" the child entreated. "It is wicked; and perhaps you
will die if you say it."

The drunkard raised his trembling hands, and looked upward. "I wish
to God that I were dead!" he repeated.

Edith shrank back into the room. She was too much terrified to listen
to any more. But after a moment he called her name, and she leaned
out again. His face was calmer, and his voice more quiet. "Don't
tell her what I have been talking about," he said, nodding toward
the room. "I would sooner tear my tongue out by the roots than say
anything to her."

"I won't tell," Edith promised.

"Supper's ready," Mrs. Rowan announced, coming towards the window.
She had heard her husband's voice in conversation with Edith, and
wondered greatly what was going on.

Mr. Rowan turned away, with a look of irritation, at sound of her
timid voice, walked round the house, and came sulkily in to his

Their meals had always been comfortless and silent; but now Edith
tried to talk, at first with Mrs. Rowan; but when she saw that the
woman's tremulous replies, as if she did not dare to speak in her
husband's presence, were bringing an uglier frown to this face, and
that he was changing from sullen to savage, she addressed her remarks
and questions to him. Mr. Rowan was a surveyor, and a good one,
when he was sober, and he was a man of some general information and
reading. When he could be got to talk, one was surprised to find
in him the ruins of a gentleman. Now his answers were surly enough,
but they were intelligent, and the child, no longer looking at him
from the outside, questioned him fearlessly, and kept up a sort of
conversation till they rose from table.

It was Mr. Rowan's custom to go out immediately after supper, and
not come home till late in the evening, when he would stagger in,
sometimes stupid, sometimes furious with liquor. But to-night he
lingered about when he had left the table, lighted his pipe, kicked
the fire, wound up the clock, and cursed it for stopping, and
finally, as if ashamed of the proposal even while making it, said to
Edith, "Come, get the checker-board, and see if you can beat me."

She was quick-witted enough, or sensitive enough, not to show any
surprise, but quietly brought out the board, and arranged the chairs
and stand. It was a square of board, rough at the edges, planed on
one side, and marked off in checks with red chalk. The men were bits
of tanned leather, one side white, the other side black. She placed
them, smiled, and said, "Now, I'm ready!"

Mrs. Rowan's cheeks began to redden up with excitement as she went
about clearing the table, and washing the dishes, but she said
nothing. She had even tact enough to go away into the bedroom,
when her work was done, and leave the two to play out their game
unwatched. There she sat in the falling dusk, her hands clasped on
her knees, listening to every sound, expecting every moment to hear
her husband go out. The three curtains in the room were rolled up to
the very tops of the windows, and, in their places, three pictures
seemed to hang on the smoky walls, and illumine the place. One was
a high clay bank, its raw front ruddy with evening light, its top
crowned with a bush burning like that of Horeb. The second was a hill
covered with spruce-trees, nothing else, from the little cone, not
a foot high, to the towering spire that pierced the sky. Some faint
rose-reflections yet warmed their sombre shadows, and each sharp
top was silvered with the coming moonlight. The third window showed
a deserted ship-yard, with the skeleton of a bark standing on the
stocks. The shining river beyond seemed to flow through its ribs,
and all about it the ground was covered with bright yellow chips and
shavings. Above it, in the tender green of the southwestern sky, a
cloud-bark freighted with crimson light sailed off southward, losing
its treasure as it went. These strong, rich lights, meeting and
crossing in the room, showed clearly the woman's nervous face full
of suspense, the very attitude, too, showing suspense, as she only
half-sat on the side of the bed, ready to start up at a sound. After
a while she got up softly, and went to the fireplace to listen. All
was still in the other room, but she heard distinctly the crackling
of the fire. What had come over him? What did it mean?

Presently there was a slight movement, and Edith's voice spoke out
brightly: "Oh! I've got another king. Now I have a chance!"

The listener trembled with doubt and fear. Her husband was actually
sitting at home, and playing checkers with Edith, instead of going
out to get drunk! He could not mean to go, or he would have gone at
once. She longed to go and assure herself, to sit down in the room
with him, but could scarcely find courage to do so. She held her
breath as she went toward the door, and her hand faltered on the
latch. But at last she summoned resolution, and went out.

The lamp was lighted, the checker-board placed on the table beside
it, and the two were talking over the slackening game. Edith had a
good head for a child of her age, but her opponent was an excellent
player, and she could not interest him long. She was trying every
lure to keep him, though, and made a new tack as Mrs. Rowan came
in, relating an experience of her own, instead of questioning him
concerning his. "I want to tell you something I saw last night in my
chamber," she said.

Edith's chamber was the little dark attic, which was reached by a
steep stairway at one side of the fireplace.

"I was in bed, wide awake, and it was pitch dark. You know you put
the cover over the skylight when it rained, the other day, and it has
not been taken off. Well, instead of shutting my eyes, I kept them
wide open, and looked straight into the dark. I've heard that you
can see spirits so, and so I thought I might see my mamma. Pretty
soon there was a great hole in the dark, like a whirlpool, and after
a minute there was a little light down at the bottom of it. I kept
on looking, just as if I were looking down into a deep well, and
then there came colors in clouds, sailing about, just like clouds in
the sky. Some were red, others pink, others blue, and all colors.
Sometimes there would be a pattern of colors, just like figures in a
carpet, only they were blocks, not flowers. I didn't dream it. I saw
it as plainly as I see the fire this minute. What do you suppose it
was, Mr. Rowan?"

He had listened with interest, and did not appear to find anything
surprising in the recital.

"I don't know much about optics," he answered; "but I suppose
there is a scientific reason for this, whether it is known or not.
I've seen those colors--that is, I did when I was a child; and De
Quincey, in his _Opium Confessions_, tells the same story. I don't
believe that grown people are likely to see them, for the reason that
they shut their eyes, and their minds are more occupied. You have to
stare a good while into the dark, and wait what comes, and not think
much of anything."

"Yes," said Edith. "But what do you guess it is?"

Mr. Rowan leaned back in his chair, with his hands clasped behind his
head, and considered the matter a moment, some finer intelligence
than often showed there kindling behind his bloated face.

"I should guess it might be this," he said. "Though the place appears
at first to be dark, there are really some particles of light there.
And since there are too few of them to keep up a connection in their
perfect state, they divide into their colors, and make the clouds you
saw. I don't know why particles of light should not separate, when
they have a great deal to do, and not much to do it with. Air does."

"But what made them move?" Edith asked. "They were never still."

"Perhaps they were alive."

She stared, with scintillating eyes.

Mr. Rowan gave a short, silent laugh. He knew that the child was
only questioning in order to keep him. "No reason why not," he said.
"According to Sir Humphry Davy, and some other folks, I believe, heat
isn't caloric, but repulsive motion. It isn't matter, but it moves,
goes where nothing else can, passes through stone and iron, and can't
be stopped, and can't be seen. Now, a something that is not matter,
and yet is powerful enough to overcome matter, must be spirit. Heat
is the soul of light; and if heat is spirit, light is alive. _Voilà

He had forgotten himself a moment in the pleasure of puzzling his
questioner; but catching his wife looking at him with an expression
of astonishment, he came back to the present. The smile died out of
his face, and the frown came back.

"Don't you want to play _solitaire_?" Edith struck in desperately.

He made a slight motion of dissent, but it was not decided; so she
brought out the pack of soiled cards, and laid them before him.
There was a moment of hesitation, during which the heart of the wife
throbbed tumultuously, and the nerves of the child tingled with an
excitement that seemed to snap in sparks from her eyes. Then he
took the cards, shuffled them, and began to play. Mrs. Rowan opened
a book, and, holding it upside down, so as to hide her face, cried
quietly behind the page. Her husband saw that she was crying, cast
a savage glance at her, and seemed about to fling the cards down;
but Edith made some remark on the game, leaned toward him, and laid
her head lightly on his arm. It was the first time in all their
acquaintance that she had voluntarily touched him. At the same time
she reached her foot, and pushed Mrs. Rowan's under the table. Mrs.
Rowan dropped her book, turned her face away quickly, and said, with
an effort of self-control rare for her: "Why, it's nine o'clock! I'll
go to bed, I think; I'm tired."

Nobody answering, or objecting, she went away, and left her husband
still over his cards.

"Isn't it about your bedtime?" he said presently to Edith.

She got up slowly, unwilling to go, yet not daring to stay. Oh!
if she were but wise enough to know the best thing that could be
said--something which would strengthen his resolution, and keep him
in. It was not yet too late for him to go out; for, when every safe
and pitiful door is closed, and slumber seals all merciful eyes, the
beacon of the grog-shop shines on through the night, and tells that
the way to perdition still is open, and the eyes of the rum-seller
yet on the watch.

"How glad I shall be when Dick comes home!" she said. "Then I hope we
can all go away from here, and wipe out, and begin over."

She could not have said better, but, if she had known, she could have
done better. What he needed was not an appeal to his sentiments, but
physical help. Words make but little impression on a man while the
torments of a burning, infernal thirst are gnawing at his vitals. The
drunkard's body, already singed by the near flames of the bottomless
pit, needed attending to at once; his soul was crushed and helpless
under the ruins of it. If an older, wiser head and hand had been
there, started up the failing fire, and made some strong, bitter
draught for him to drink, it might have done good. But the child did
not know, and the sole help she could give was an appeal to his heart.

It is as true of the finest and loftiest natures, as of the
perverted, that they cannot always conquer the evil one by spiritual
means alone. Only spirits can do that. And often the tempter must
laugh to see the physical needs, which were made to play about our
feet like children, unnoticed when the soul speaks, starved till they
become demons whose clamorous voices drown the spirit's fainting

But this man's demon was indulgence, and not denial. He was not
hovering on the brink of ruin, he was at the bottom, and striving
to rise, and he could not endure that any eye should look upon his

"D-- you! will you go to bed?" he cried out fiercely.

Edith started back, and, without another word, climbed the narrow
stair to her attic. Before closing the trap-door, she looked down
once, and saw Mr. Rowan tearing and twisting the cards he had been
playing with.

He stayed there the whole night, fighting desperately with such
weapons as he had--a will broken at the hilt, the memory of his son,
and the thought of that dear little girl's tender but ineffectual
pity. As for God, he no longer named him, save in imprecation. The
faith of his orphaned childhood had gone long ago. The glare of the
world had scorched it up before it had fairly taken root. That there
might be help and comfort in the church of his fathers never entered
his mind. "Drink! drink!" that was his sole thought. "If I only had
some opium!" he muttered, "or a cup of strong black coffee! I wonder
if I could get either of 'em anywhere?"

The day was faintly dawning when he staggered to the window, tore
down the paper curtain, and looked out for some sign of life. At the
wharf opposite lay a vessel that had come up the evening before, and
he knew by the smoke that the cook was getting breakfast there.

"I'll go over and see if I can get some coffee or opium," he
muttered, and pulled his hat on as he went out the door.

"I'll ask for nothing but coffee or opium," he protested to himself,
as he shut the door softly after him.

Alas! alas!



The next morning was a gloomy one for the two who had nursed that
trembling hope overnight, but they did not say much about it.
Mrs. Rowan's face showed the lassitude of long endurance. Edith's
disappointment was poignant. She was no longer a looker-on merely,
but an actor. The man had confided in her, had tacitly asked her
sympathy, and his failure gave her a pang. She cast about in her
thoughts what she should do, having a mind to put her own young
shoulder to the wheel. Should she go in search of him, and give him
one of those scoldings which he had acknowledged his need of? Should
she lead him home, and protect him from abuse?

"Hadn't I better go up to the post-office?" she asked, after
breakfast. "I haven't been there this good while, and there might be
a letter from Dick."

Mrs. Rowan hesitated: "Well, yes." She disliked being left alone, and
she had no expectation of a letter. But it seemed like slighting her
son to make any other reply to such a request. Besides, the village
boys might be hooting her husband through the streets, and, if they
were, she would like to know it. So Edith prepared herself, and went

The ship-yard was full of business at this hour, and two men were
at work close to the road, shaving a piece of timber. Edith looked
at them, and hesitated. "I've a good mind to," she thought. She had
never gone into the ship-yard when the men were there, and had never
asked any one a question concerning Mr. Rowan. But now all was
changed, and she felt responsible. "Have you seen Mr. Rowan anywhere,
this morning?" she asked, going up to the man nearest her.

He drew the shave slowly to him, slipped off a long curl of
amber-colored wood from the blade, then looked up to see who spoke.
"Mr. Rowan!" he repeated, as if he had never heard the name before.
"Oh! Dick, you mean. No, I haven't seen him, this morning. He may be
lying round behind the timbers somewhere."

The child's eyes sparkled. Child though she was, she knew that the
drunkard was more worthy of the title of gentleman than this man was,
for he was rude and harsh only when he suffered.

"Little girl," the other called out as she turned away, "your father
is over there on board of the _Annie Laurie_. I saw him lying there
half an hour ago, and I guess he hasn't stirred since."

"He isn't my father!" she flashed out.

The two burst into a rude laugh, which effectually checked the thanks
she would have given for their information. She turned hastily away,
and went up the road to the village.

Mrs. Rowan finished her work, and sat down in the west window to
watch. She was too anxious and discouraged to knit, even, and so did
not discover the tight little strip of work around the stocking-heel.
It was employment enough to look out for Edith; not that she expected
a letter, but because she wanted company. She was conscious of some
strength in the child, on which she leaned at times. As for Dick,
she had little hope of good news from him, if any. She had no part
in Edith's rose-colored expectations. Dick in peril from storm, foe,
or sin; Dick dying untended in foreign lands; Dick sinking down in
cold, salt seas--these were the mother's fancies.

After half an hour, a small figure appeared over the hills between
the house and the village. Mrs. Rowan watched it absently, and with
a slight sense of relief. But soon she noticed that the child was
running. It was not like Edith to run. She was noticeably quiet, and
even dignified in her manners. Could she have seen or heard anything
of Mr. Rowan at the village? The heart of the wife began to flutter
feebly. Was he lying in the street? or engaged in a drunken quarrel?
She leaned back in her chair, feeling sick, and tried to gather
strength for whatever might come to her.

Edith was near the house, now running a few steps, then walking, to
gather breath, and she held her arm above her head, and swung it, and
in her hand was a letter!

Away went all thought of her husband. In two minutes Mrs. Rowan had
the letter in her hand, had torn it open, and she and Edith were both
bending over it, and reading it together. It had been lying in the
post-office a week. It came from New York, and in a week from the
date of it Dick would be at home! He was on board the ship _Halcyon_,
Captain Cary, and they were to come down to Seaton, and load with
lumber as soon as their East Indian freight should be disposed of. He
had met Captain Cary in Calcutta, Dick wrote, and, having done him a
service there, had been taken on board his ship, and now was second
mate. Next voyage he would sail as first mate. The captain was his
friend, would do anything for him, and owned half the ship, Major
Cleaveland owning the other half; so Dick's fortune was made. But,
he added, they must get out of that town. He had a month to spare,
and should take them all away. Let them be ready to start on short

Having read this joyful letter through once, they began at the
first word and read it all through again, dwelling here and there
with exclamations of delight, stopped every minute by a large tear
that splashed down from Mrs. Rowan's eyes, or a yellow avalanche of
Edith's troublesome hair tumbling down as she bent eagerly over the
letter. How many times they read that letter would be hard to say;
still harder to say how many times they might have read it, had there
been no interruption.

A crowd of men were approaching their door--close upon them, and
darkening the light before they looked up. "Had Dick come, and were
the neighbors welcoming him?" was the first thought.

In her haste, Edith had left the outer door ajar, and now heavy feet
came tramping in without any leave being asked; the inner door was
pushed open, and--not Dick, but Dick's father was brought in and laid
on the floor. This was not the first time he had been brought home,
but never before had he come with such a retinue and in such silence,
and never before had these men taken off their hats to Mrs. Rowan.

"We've sent for the doctor, ma'am," one of them said; "but I guess
it's no use."

"I wouldn't have ordered him off, if I hadn't thought he was steady
enough to go," said another, who looked very pale. "The captain was
expected on board every minute, and it would be as much as my life is
worth if he found a man drunk there."

"He slipped on a plank, and fell," some one explained.

Their talk was, to the bewildered woman, like sounds heard in a
dream. So were Edith's passionate words as she ordered the men away.
The one who had refused the dead man any better title than "Dick" was
just coming in at the door, staring right and left, not too pitiful
even then to be curious regarding the place he was in. "Go out!" she
said, pushing the door in his face.

Some way, still in a dream, they were got rid of, all but two. Then
the doctor came, and looked, and nodded his decision--"All over!"

A dream! a dream!

The bedroom was set in order, the silent sleeper laid out there,
every stranger sent out of the house and locked out, and then Mrs.
Rowan woke up. It was a terrible awakening.

Madame Swetchine comments upon the fact that the thought of death is
more terrible in an arid existence than in the extremes of joy and
sorrow. It is true not only of those who die, but of the survivors.
We go out more willingly on a difficult journey when we have been
warmed and fed; we send our loved ones out with less pain when they
have been thus fortified. It is the same, in a greater degree, when
the journey is that one from which the traveller never returns. It
adds a terrible pang to bereavement when we think that our lost one
has never been happy; how much more terrible if he has never been

Of her husband's future Mrs. Rowan refused to think or to hear,
though she must have trembled in the shadow of it. It might be that
which made her so wild. She would allow no one to come near or speak
to her save Edith. Those who came with offers of help and sympathy
she ordered away. "Go!" she cried. "I want nothing of you! I and mine
have been a byword to you for years. Your help comes too late!"

She locked them out and pulled the curtains close, and, though
people continued to come to the door through the whole day, no one
gained admittance or saw a sign of life about the house. Inside sat
the widow and the child, scarcely aware of the passage of time. They
only knew that it was still day by the rays of sunlight that came in
through holes in the paper curtains, and pointed across the rooms
like long fingers. When there was a knock at the door, they started,
lifted their faces, and listened nervously till the knocking ceased,
as if afraid that some one might force an entrance. One would have
fancied, from their expression, that savages or wild beasts were
seeking to enter. They never once looked out, nor knew who came.

Still less were they aware of Major Cleaveland standing in his
cupola, spy-glass in hand, looking down the bay to see if that cloud
of canvas coming up over the horizon was the good ship _Halcyon_
coming home after her first voyage. Down-stairs he came again, three
stairs at a jump, as joyful as a boy, in spite of his forty years,
gave directions for the best dinner that the town would afford,
ordered his carriage, and drove off down the river-road.

The _Halcyon_ was the largest vessel that had ever been built at
Seaton, and as its launching had been an event in the town, so its
first arrival was an incident to take note of. When Major Cleaveland
drove down to the wharf where Mr. Rowan had that morning lost his
life, more than a hundred persons were assembled there waiting for
the ship, and others were coming. He stepped over to the Rowans'
door, and knocked twice, once with his knuckles, and again with his
whip-handle, but received no answer. "I would force the door, but
that Dick is coming," he said. "It is a shame to let the poor soul
shut herself up alone."

Soon, while the crowd watched, around the near curve of the river,
where a wooded point pushed out, appeared the tip, then the whole of
a bowsprit garlanded with green wreaths, then the leaning lady in her
gilded robes, with a bird just escaping from her hand, then the ship
rode gracefully into sight on the incoming tide.

A ringing shout welcomed her, and a shout from all hands on board
answered back.

Foremost of the little group on the deck stood a man of gigantic
stature. His hair was coarse and black, he wore an enormous black
beard, and his face, though scarcely middle-aged, was rough and
scarred by the weather. Everybody knew Captain Cary, a sailor worthy
of the old days of the Vikings, broad-shouldered, as strong as a
lion, with a laugh that made the glasses ring when he sat at table.
He was a plain, simple man, but grand in his simplicity. By his side
stood a youth of twenty, who looked slight in comparison, though
he was really manly and well grown. He had sea-blue eyes, quick,
long-lashed, and as bright as diamonds; his face was finely moulded,
ruddy, and spirited; his hair, that glistened in the sunlight, was
chestnut-brown. A gallant lad he was, the very ideal sailor-boy. But
his expression was defiant, rather than placid, and he did not join
in the hurrahs. The welcoming applause was not for him, he well knew.
They were no friends of his who crowded the wharf. He had some bitter
recollections of slight or injury connected with nearly every one of
them. But he was no longer in their power, and that gave him freedom
and ease in meeting them. The time had gone by when he could look
upon these country folks as final judges in any matter whatever, or
as of any great consequence to him. He had seen the world, had won
friends, had proved that he could do something, that he was somebody.
He was not ashamed of himself by any means, was young Dick Rowan.
Still, it was no pleasure to him to see them, for it brought back the
memory of sufferings which had not yet lost their sting.

All this shouting and rejoicing was as the idle wind to the mourners
across the way. Their fears of intrusion set at rest, since no one
had attempted to force an entrance to the house, they no longer took
notice even of the knocking at the door. Both had fallen into a sort
of stupor, induced by the exhaustion of long weeping, the silence
and semi-darkness of their rooms, and the removal of what had been
the daily tormenting fear of their lives. There was no longer any
need to tremble when a step approached, lest some one should come in
frenzied with drink, and terrify them with his ravings and violence.
Mrs. Rowan sat by her husband's side, leaning back in her chair, with
closed eyes and clasped hands, only half-alive. Edith lay on the
kitchen-floor, where she had thrown herself in a passion of weeping,
her arms above her head, her face hidden, and her long hair veiling
her. The weeping was over, and she lay silent and motionless. Neither
that shouting over on the wharf, nor Major Cleaveland's loud knocking
with his whip-handle, had made the slightest impression on her.

But at sunset came one who would not be denied. He tried the lock,
and, finding it fastened, knocked gently. There was no answer. He
knocked loudly, and still there was no reply. Then he set his knee
against the rickety panel, took the knob in a strong grasp, and
wrenched the door open. Stepping quickly into the little entry, he
looked to right and left, saw the girl lying, face down, on the
floor, and the woman sitting beside her dead, both as still as the

Something like a dream came into the half-swoon, half-sleep in which
Edith Yorke lay. She heard a slight cry, then a stifled sob, and
words hurriedly spoken in a low voice. Then there was a step that
paused near her. She put her hair back with one hand, and turned her
face listlessly. The curtain had been raised to let in the light, and
there stood a young man looking down at her. His face was pale with
the sudden shock of grief and distress, but a faint indication of a
smile shone through as she looked up at him.

Her first glance was a blank one, her second flashed with delight.
She sprang up as if electrified. "O Dick! O Dick! How glad I am!"

The world moved rightly at last! Order was coming out of chaos; for
Dick had come home!

He shook hands with her rather awkwardly, somewhat embarrassed by the
warmth of her welcome. "We're to go right off," he said. "Captain
Cary will help us."

"Yes, Dick!" she replied, and asked no questions. He knew what was
right. With him had come all help, and strength, and hope.

The next morning, long before dawn, they started. A boat was ready at
the wharf, and Captain Cary and Dick carried out the dead in a rude
coffin that had been privately made on board the _Halcyon_. "They
shall not stare at our poor funeral, captain," Dick had said; "and I
will not ask them for a coffin or a grave."

"All right!" his friend had answered heartily. "I'm your man.
Whatever you want to do, I'll help you about."

So the watch on the _Halcyon_ was conveniently deaf and blind, the
boat was ready in the dark of morning, the coffin carried out to it,
and Mrs. Rowan and Edith helped in after. When they were in their
places, and the captain seated, oars in hand, Dick went back to the
house, and stayed there a little while. No questions were asked of
him when he came away, bringing nothing with him, and he offered no
explanation, only took the oars, and silently guided their boat out
into the channel. The banks on either side were a solid blackness,
and the sky was opaque and low, so that their forms were scarcely
visible to each other as they sat there, Mrs. Rowan in the bows near
her son, Edith beside Captain Cary, who loomed above her like a
mountain of help.

Presently, as they floated around the point that stood between the
village and the bay, a faint blush of light warmed the darkness
through, and grew till the low-hung clouds sucked it up like a sponge
and showed a crimson drapery over their heads. It was too early for
morning light, too fierce, and, moreover, it came from the wrong
direction. The east was before them; this sanguinary aurora followed
in their wake. It shone angrily through the strip of woods, and sent
a long, swift beam quivering over the water. This fiery messenger
shot like an arrow into the boat, and reddened Mrs. Rowan's hands,
clasped on the edge of the coffin. By the light of it, Dick saw all
their faces turned toward him.

"The house was mine!" he said defiantly.

The captain nodded approval, and Edith leaned forward to whisper,
"Yes, Dick!" But Mrs. Rowan said not a word, only sat looking
steadily backward, the light in her face.

"I'm glad of it!" sighed Edith to herself. She had been thinking
since they left the house how people would come and wander through
it, and peer at everything, and know just how wretchedly they had
lived. Now they could not, for it would all be burnt up. She sat and
fancied the fire catching here and there in their poor little rooms,
how the clock would tick till the last minute, even when its face
was scorched and its glass shivered, and then fall with a sudden
crash; how the flames would catch at the bed on which the dead man
had lain, the mean paper curtains, the chair she had sat in, Mrs.
Rowan's little rocking-chair, at the table where they had sat through
so many dreary meals. The checker-board would go, and the cards with
which Mr. Rowan had played the night before, and the knitting-work
with the puckered heel, and her apron that the drunkard had wiped his
ghastly face with. The shelves in the little closet would heat, and
blacken, and redden, and flame, and down would come their miserable
store of dishes, rattling into the yawning cellar. Fire would gnaw at
the ceiling, bite its way into the attic, burn up her books, creep
to the bed where she had lain and seen rainbow colors in the dark,
spread a sheet of flame over the whole, rise, and burst through the
roof. She saw it all. She even fancied that each long-used article of
their scanty plenishing, worn away by human touch, constantly in the
sight of human eyes, would perish with some human feeling, and send
out a sharp cry after them. The crackling of flames was to her the
cries of burning wood. But she was glad of it, for they were going to
wipe out and begin anew. There seemed to her something very grand and
exceedingly proper in it all.

When their boat glided from the river into the bay, others besides
themselves became aware of the conflagration, and the village bells
rang out a tardy alarm. Dick laughed bitterly at the sound, but said

"They were sorry for you, Dick," the captain said. "I heard a good
many speak of it. They would have been glad to do your family any
kindness. I don't blame you for coming off; but you mustn't think
there was no kind feeling for you among the folks there."

"Kindness may come too late, captain," the young man answered. "I
would have thanked them for it years ago, when I had nowhere to turn
to, and hadn't a friend in the world; now I don't thank them, and I
don't want their kindness. Even if I would take it at last, neither
they nor you have any right to expect that I will run to take the
hand that has struck me so many blows the first time it is held out.
I don't trust 'em. I want proofs of good-will when I've had proofs of

"Dick is right, captain," his mother interposed in a weary tone. "You
can't judge of such things if you haven't felt them. It's easier to
hurt a sore heart than a sound one."

Within an hour they reached one of those desolate little sandy
islands with which the bay was studded; and now the faint spring dawn
was breaking, and the heavy masses of cloud lifting and contracting,
pale reaches of sky visible between. By the cold glimmer they scooped
out a grave, and placed the coffin in it. The water washed the shore,
and a chilly, sighing wind came up from the east.

As the first shovelful of earth fell on the coffin, Mrs. Rowan
caught back the captain's arm. "Don't cover him out of sight without
some word spoken over him!" she implored. "He was once young, and
ambitious, and kind, like you. He would have been a man if he hadn't
had bad luck, and then got into bad company. He was more wretched
than we were. O sir! don't cover him out of sight as if he were a

The sailor looked both pained and embarrassed. "I'm not much used
to praying, ma'am," he said. "I'm a Methodist, but I'm not a
church-member. If there was a Bible here, I would read a chapter;
but--there isn't."

Dick walked off a little way, turned his back, and stood looking at
the water. Mrs. Rowan, kneeling on the sand-heap beside the grave,
wept loudly. "His father was a Catholic," she cried. "I don't think
much of Catholics; but, if poor Dick had stood by his religion, he
could have had a priest to say some word over him. I wouldn't have
minded having a priest here. He'd be better than nobody."

Captain Cary was a strict Methodist, and he felt that it would never
answer to have the absence of a Catholic priest regretted. Something
must be done. "I could sing a hymn, ma'am," he said hesitatingly;
and, as no one objected, he straightened himself, dropped his spade,
and sang, to the tune of the "Dead March in Saul,"

      "Unveil thy bosom, faithful tomb,
        Take this new treasure to thy trust,
      And give these sacred relics room
        To slumber in the silent dust,"

singing the hymn through.

In a confined place the sailor's voice would have been too powerful,
and, perhaps, would have sounded rough; but in open air, with no wall
nearer than the distant hills, no ceiling but the sky, and with the
complex low harmony of the ocean bearing it up and running through
all its pauses, it was magnificent. He sang slowly and solemnly, his
arms folded, his face devoutly raised, and the clouds seemed to part
before his voice.

When the hymn was ended, he remained a moment without motion or
change of face, then stooped for his shovel, and began to fill in the

While listening to him, Edith Yorke had stood in a solemn trance,
looking far off seaward; but at sound of the dropping gravel, her
quiet broke up, like ice in spring. She threw her arm, and her loose
hair with it, up over her head, and sobbed behind that veil. But her
tears were not for Mr. Rowan. Her soul had taken a wider range, and,
without herself being aware of it, she was mourning for all the dead
that ever had died or ever should die.

The first sunbeam that glanced across the water showed a feather of
smoke from a steamer that came up through the Narrows into the bay,
and the row-boat, a lessening speck, making for the wharf. Twice a
week, passengers and freight were taken and left at this wharf, three
miles below the town.



      Saunterer (from _Sainte Terre_), a pilgrim to holy lands or

"They who never go to the Holy Land in their walks are indeed mere
idlers and vagabonds; but they who do go there are saunterers in the
good sense, such as I mean," says Thoreau. I found the Holy Land in
Paris, the city of fashion and gaiety, and where _le suprême bonheur_
is said to be amusement. Every church is a station of the divine
Passion, and to every votary therein could I say:

                        "I behold in thee
      An image of him who died on the tree.
      Thou also hast had thy crown of thorns."

Before these churches, consecrated to some sweet mystery of the
Gospel or bearing the hallowed names of those who had put on the
sacred stole of Christ's sufferings, I always stopped. I was like
Duke Richard, in the _Roman du Rau_:

      "Whene'er an open church he found,
      He entered in with fervent means
      To offer up his orisons;
      And if the doors were closed each one,
      He knelt upon the threshold stone."

And one might well kneel upon the threshold stone of these ancient
churches, feeding mind and soul with sacred legends of the past
embodying holy truths which are depicted on the outer walls, as at
the north door of Notre Dame de Paris, the arch of which contains
in many compartments representations of a diabolic pact and of a
deliverance effected by our potent Lady, which is related in a
metrical romance composed by Ruteboef, in the time of St. Louis.
Saladin, a magician, wears a cap of pyramidal form. And what a mine
of legendary and biblical lore all over these venerable walls!
Sermons in stones come down to us from the stonen saints in their
niches and the bas-reliefs which speak louder than human tongues. The
first stone of this edifice was laid by Charlemagne, and the last
by Philip Augustus. How much this fact alone tells! And there is
the Porte Rouge, an exquisite specimen of the Gothic style of the
fifteenth century, the expiatory monument of Jean-sans-Peur after the
assassination of the Duke of Orleans. In the arch are the Duke and
Duchess of Burgundy, in the attitude of supplication, one on each
side of our Saviour and the Blessed Virgin. It is an eternal _Libera
me de sanguinibus, Deus_.

And then the Portail du Milieu, with the last judgment in the ogive,
the angels sounding the last trump, the dead issuing forth from their
graves, the separation of the righteous from the wicked, the great
Judge with the emblems of the crucifixion, the Virgin and the loved
apostle John, and, finally, a glimpse of the joys of heaven and the
horrors of hell. Yes, one could linger here for days before this
_Biblia pauperum_, were there no more powerful attractions within.
And this is not the only church the very exterior of which is full of

In the porch of St. Germain de l'Auxerrois is the statue of a maiden
holding in one hand a breviary and in the other a lighted taper. By
her is a demon with a pair of bellows, vainly trying to blow out the
light--symbol of faith and prayer. This is the statue of one who
deserves to be ranked in history with Joan of Arc on account of her
heroism, for twice she saved Paris by her courage and her prayers.
Would that she might once more have intervened to save the capital
of fair France from the invader! St. Genevieve is placed thus at the
entrance of the church of St. Germain to remind us of his connection
with her history.

When St. Germain, Bishop of Auxerre, and St. Lupus, the learned
Bishop of Troyes and the intimate friend of Sidonius Apollinaris,
were on their way to Britain to combat the heresy of Pelagianism,
they passed through the village now called Nanterre, about two
leagues from Paris. All the inhabitants of the place poured forth
to meet them and obtain their benediction. St. Germain noticed in
the crowd a little girl with a face as radiant as an angel's. His
prophetic instinct told him she was destined to be a chosen vessel
of God's grace, and, when she expressed a wish to be the spouse of
Christ, he led her with him to the church, holding his apostolic
hands upon her head during the chanting of the vesper service. He
afterward suspended a bronze medal, on which was a cross, from
her neck, in remembrance of her consecration to God, bidding her
henceforth give up all ornaments of silver and gold. "Let them who
live for this world have these," said he. "Do thou, who art become
the spouse of Christ, desire only spiritual adorning." Dr. Newman
says it was a custom, even among the early Christians, to wear
on the neck some token of the mysteries of their religion. Long
after, in memory of this event, the Canons of St. Genevieve, at
Paris, distributed upon her festival a _pain bénit_ on which was an
impression of this coin.

Eighteen years after, St. Germain again passed through Nanterre, once
more on his way to Britain. He had not forgotten Genevieve. At the
age of fifteen, she had received the virgin's veil from the hands of
the Bishop of Paris. Her parents dying, she went to Paris to reside
with her godmother. Here she suffered that persecution so often the
lot of those who live godly lives. Those who outstrip their fellows
even on the path of piety are objects of envy, and they who leave
the beaten track of everyday religion are derided. St. Genevieve
was visited at Paris by the holy Bishop of Auxerre, who saluted her
with respect as a temple in which the divine Presence was manifest.
Her life was one of prayer and penance. She used to water her couch
with her tears, and when the adversary of our souls extinguished the
taper that lighted her vigils she rekindled it with her prayers.
When Attila, king of the Huns, threatened Paris, she besought the
inhabitants not to leave their homes, declaring that Heaven would
intervene to save them. The barbarians, in effect, were dispersed by
a storm, and betook themselves toward Orleans. In the church of St.
Germain there is a chapel dedicated to St. Genevieve, with a painting
representing her haranguing the inhabitants of Paris.

When Childeric besieged Paris, and sickness and famine were carrying
off the inhabitants, St. Genevieve laid aside her religious dress,
took command of the boats that went up the Seine for succor, and
brought back a supply of provisions. And when the city had to
surrender, the conquerer treated her with marked respect, and Clovis
loved to grant her petitions. The remains of paganism were rooted
out of Paris through her influence over him and Clotilda, and the
first church built on the spot that now bears her name, but then
dedicated under the invocation of Sts. Peter and Paul. In that
church was the shepherdess of Nanterre buried beside Clovis and
Clotilda. St. Eloi wrought a magnificent shrine for her remains,
but it was destroyed at the Revolution, and the contents publicly
burned. A portion of her relics is now enshrined at the Pantheon.
I found lights burning there, and flowers and wreaths, and votive
offerings, and the sweet-smelling incense of prayer rising from a
group of people praying around. But the magnificence of the Pantheon
is miserably depressing, as Faber says. How much more I delighted in
the interesting church of St. Etienne du Mont, where is the curious
old tomb of St. Genevieve! There too were lights and ex-votos, and an
old woman sat near the tomb to dispense tapers to those who wished to
leave a little gleam of love and prayer behind them. Once what lights
and jewels blazed around such shrines, and what crowds of devout
pilgrims! Now, a few dim tapers, a few prayerful hearts, light up the

      "Now it is much if here and there
      One dreamer, by thy genial glare,
      Trace the dim Past, and slowly climb
      The steep of Faith's triumphant prime."

Now the world seems to begrudge the temple of the Most High the
silver and the gold that belong to him. And jewels are not to be
thought of. Such wealth must be kept in circulation, that is, on
Prince Esterhazy's coat, I suppose, and by ladies of fashion. The
world nowadays is like Julian the Apostate, who was displeased at
the magnificence of the chalices used in the Christian churches. For
me, I love these offerings from time to eternity, as Madame de Staël
says. Let all that is most precious be poured out at the feet of the
Saviour, and let no one murmur if such offerings are crystallized. I
took pleasure in looking at some splendid vessels of the sanctuary at
Notre Dame, and thought:

      "Never was gold or silver graced thus
      To bring this body and this blood to us
                  Is more
          Than to crown kings,
          Or be made rings
      For star-like diamonds to glitter in.

      When the great King offers to come to me
                  As food,
      Shall I suppose his carriages can be
                  Too good?
          No! stars to gold
          Turned never could
      Be rich enough to be employed so.

      If I might wish, then, I would have this bread,
                  This wine,
      Vesselled in what the sun might blush to shed
                  His shine
          When he should see--
          But till that be,
      I'll rest contented with it as it is."

In my saunterings I frequently lingered before the tower of St.
Jacques de la Boucherie, the highest in Paris, and the most perfect
specimen of Gothic architecture. The remainder of the church was
demolished at the Revolution. The tower was saved by the artifice
of an architect, who besought the crowd to imitate the enlightened
English revolutionists, who destroyed their churches, but preserved
the towers to be converted into shot-houses! In this church crowds
used to assemble to hear Bourdaloue thunder, as Madame de Sévigné
expresses it. I fancy I can hear that uncompromising preacher ringing
out like a trump in the presence of the Great Monarch, "Thou art
the man!" This exclamation should have appealed to the heart of the
people, and saved the church he loved from profanation.

This church was built by the alms of pious people. Nicholas Flamel
built the portal in 1388, which he covered with devout images and
devices, which were regarded, even by the antiquaries of the last
century, as symbols of alchemy. This Flamel was a benefactor to many
churches and hospitals of Paris, which he took pleasure in adorning
with carvings in which he made all things tributary, as it were, to
the worship of God. At first a simple scrivener, he became painter,
architect, chemist, philosopher, and poet. He certainly had the
fancy of a poet, and wrote in durable materials. He left by his will
nineteen chalices of silver gilt to as many churches.

These churches and religious houses are all connected with the
history of the city. Paris owed its extension on the north side of
the Seine to the school in the Abbey of St. Germain de l'Auxerrois,
which was famous at an early age. There were four great abbeys around
Paris in the time of the third dynasty--St. Lawrence, St. Genevieve,
St. Germain de l'Auxerrois, and St. Germain des Près. These were
surrounded by their dependencies, forming villages which gradually
extended till they united to enclose the city, then chiefly confined
to the island. The poor loved to live near these abbeys. St. Germain
des Près, besides providing for the poor in general, used privately
to support several destitute families who were ashamed of their
poverty. The old abbots of this monastery were both lords spiritual
and temporal in the suburbs on that side of the city. This abbey
was a monument of repentance. Digby says when it was rebuilt in the
year 1000 the great tower and the portals were left as before. The
statues of eight kings stood at the entrance, four on the right hand
and four on the left. One of them held a scroll on which was written
the tragical name of Clodomir. And another, with no beatific circle
around his head, held an open tablet on which were the first and last
letters of the name Clotaire. These were the statues of the murderer
and his victim.

The square tower of the monastery, built in the time of Charlemagne,
contributed greatly to the defence of the house against the Normans.
A stout old monk, Abbon, conducted the defence, and proved himself
on this occasion a valiant defender of the walls of Zion. Perhaps it
was his skilful hand that wrote an Homeric poem on the siege of Paris
by the Normans in the year 885. If not by him, it was by a monk of a
similar name.

The Pré aux Clercs, now the Faubourg St. Germain, took its name from
being a place of recreation for the students of this abbey. One of
the scholars, Sylvester de Sacy, so learned in the Semitic languages,
ascribed the bent of his mind to the aid and encouragement given him
by one of the monks who took his constitutional in the abbey gardens
at the same time as the boy, then only twelve years old.

The library belonging to this abbey was celebrated in the middle
ages, and there were monks of literary eminence in the house.
Dacherius was the librarian when he composed his _Spicilegium_.
Usuard compiled a martyrology. They had a printing press set up
immediately after the invention of printing, which gives one a
favorable idea of their mental activity. Most of these old monastic
libraries were accessible to all; that of the Abbey of St. Victor
was open to the public three days in the week; and there were public
libraries attached to some of the parish churches. In the time of
Charles V., rightly named the Wise, he ordered the Royal Library
of Paris to be illuminated with thirty portable lamps, and that a
silver one should be suspended in the centre for the benefit of those
students who prolonged their researches into the night. The numerous
collections of books in Paris made that city very attractive to
certain minds even in the middle ages. Richard de Bury, Bishop of
Durham, in England, who established the first public library in that
country, used to resort to Paris for fresh supplies. "O blessed God
of gods in Sion!" he exclaims, "what a flood of pleasure rejoices our
heart whenever we are at liberty to visit Paris, that paradise of the
world, where the days always seem too short and too few through the
immensity of our love! There are libraries more redolent of delight
than all the shops of aromatics; there are the flowering meadows of
all volumes that can be found anywhere. There, indeed, untying our
purse-strings, and opening our treasures, we disperse money with
a joyful heart (evidently the truth, for he paid the Abbot of St.
Albans fifty pounds weight of silver for thirty or forty volumes),
and ransom with dirt books that are beyond all price. But lo! how
good and pleasant a thing it is to gather together in one place the
arms of clerical warfare, that there may be a supply of them for us
to use in the wars against heretics, should they ever rise up against

What would this book-loving prelate have done had he foreseen that
the church would one day be accused of being a foe to progress
and to the diffusion of knowledge! This bishop, who lived in the
thirteenth century, was the Chancellor and High Treasurer of England,
and celebrated for his love and encouragement of literature. He had
libraries in all his palaces, and the apartment he commonly occupied
was so crammed with books that he was almost inaccessible. He was
said to breathe books, so fond was he of being among them. None but a
genuine lover of books would give such amusing directions for their
preservation. "Not only do we serve God," says he, "by preparing new
books, but also by preserving and treating with great care those we
have already. Truly, after the vestments and vessels dedicated to our
Lord's body, sacred books deserve to be treated with most reverence
by clerks. In opening and shutting books, they should avoid all
abruptness, not too hastily loosing the clasps, nor failing to shut
them when they have finished reading, for it is far more important to
preserve a book than a shoe." He then goes on to speak of soiling
books; of marking passages with the finger-nails, "like those of
a giant;" of swelling the junctures of the binding with straws or
flowers; and of eating over them, leaving the fragments in the book,
as if the reader had no bag for alms. Waxing warm over the idea, he
wishes such persons might have to sit over leather with a shoemaker!
And then there are impudent youths, who presume to fill up the broad
margins with their unchastened pens, noting down whatever frivolous
thing occurs to their imagination! And "there are some thieves, too,
who cut out leaves or letters, which kind of sacrilege ought to be
prohibited under the penalty of anathema." The bishop had evidently
had some sad experience with his cherished tomes. His testimony
respecting the appreciation of books by the monks of his time is
valuable. Remember the age, reader--that period of deepest darkness
just before the dawn! "The monks who are so venerable," says he in
his _Philobiblion_, "are accustomed to be solicitous in regard to
books, and to be delighted in their company, as with all riches, and
thence it is that we find in most monasteries such splendid treasures
of erudition, giving a delectable light to the path of laics. Oh!
that devout labor of their hands in writing books; how preferable
to all georgic care! All things else fail with time. Saturn ceases
not to devour his offspring, for oblivion covereth the glory of the
world. But God hath provided a remedy for us in books, without which
all that was ever great would have been without memory. Without shame
we may lay bare to books the poverty of human ignorance. They are
the masters who instruct us without rods, without anger, and without
_money_. (The bishop had evidently forgotten those fifty pounds of
silver, and many more besides!) O books! alone liberal and making
liberal, who give to all, and seek to emancipate all who serve you.
You are the tree of life and the river of Paradise, with which the
human intelligence is irrigated and made fruitful."

But I did not always linger at the doors of churches, studying the
walls and pondering on their history. The true Catholic knows that
these magnificent churches are only vast shrines enclosing the great
Object of his adoration and love. M. Olier, when travelling, never
saw the spire of a church in the distance without calling upon all
with him to repeat the Tantum Ergo. He used to say: "When I see
a place where my Master reposes, I have a feeling of unutterable
joy." This feeling comes over every one at the first glimpse of that
undying lamp before the tabernacle, "that small flame which rises and
falls like a dying pulse, flickering up and down, emblematic of our
lives, which even now thus wastes and wanes."

The very first act on stepping into a church completely changes the
current of one's thoughts. The holy water, the sign of the cross,
dispel the remembrance of material things and recall devout thoughts
of the Passion.

      "Whene'er across this sinful flesh of mine
          I draw the holy sign,
      All good thoughts stir within me, and collect
          Their slumbering strength divine."

The _bénitiers_ at St. Sulpice are two immense shells, given to
Francis the First by the Republic of Venice; but for all that, the
_eau bénite_ seemed just as holy, and I made the sign of the cross
just as devoutly.

For devotion, I prefer the largest churches, because the seclusion
is more perfect, as at Notre Dame. Behind some pillar or in the
depths of some dim chapel, one can find perfect solitude where he
can be alone with God. Alone with God! that in itself is prayer. The
world-weary soul finds it good simply to sit or kneel with clasped
hands in the divine Presence.

      "My spirit I love to compose,
      In humble trust my eyelids close
        With reverential resignation,
      No wish conceived, no thought expressed,
        Only a sense of supplication."

Joubert says the best prayers are those that have nothing distinct,
and which thus partake of simple adoration; and Hawthorne asks:
"Could I bring my heart in unison with those praying in yonder church
with a fervor of supplication but no distinct request, would not
that be the safest kind of prayer?" Surely every devout soul feels
that "prayer is not necessarily petition," and what is technically
known as the prayer of contemplation is the very inspiration of such
churches. In this temple of silence, man seems to be brought back to
his primeval relations with his Creator.

What mute eloquence in these walls! What an appeal to the imagination
in the calmness! Earthly voices die away on the threshold, and
peace, dovelike, broods over the very entrance. A daily visit to
such a temple gives life a certain elevation. The very poor who come
here to pray must acquire a certain dignity of character. How many
generations have worshipped beneath these arches! The saints have
passed over the very pavement I tread. I recall St. Louis, who, out
of respect to our Lord, had laid off his shoes and divested himself
of his royal robes, bearing solemnly into this church the holy Crown
of Thorns. And great sinners, too, are in this long procession of the
past. There is Count Raymond of Toulouse, barefoot, and clad only in
the white tunic of a penitent, coming to receive absolution from the
papal legate before the grand altar.

When one recalls the popes, cardinals, and other dignitaries of the
church, the kings and queens and knights of the olden time who have
been here, one almost shrinks from entering such a throng of the
mighty ones of the earth. It seems as if he were elbowing the Great
Monarch or the gallant Henry of Navarre.

On the galleries around the nave were formerly suspended the
flags and standards taken in war, and it was in allusion to this
custom that the Prince of Conti, after the victories of Fleurus,
Steinkerque, and La Marsaille, made an opening in the crowd around
the door of the church for the Marechal de Luxembourg, whom he held
by the hand, by crying: "Place, place, messieurs, au tapissier de
Notre Dame!"--"Room, room, gentlemen, for the upholsterer of Notre

It is charming to see the birds flying about in the arches of this
church, as if nature had taken its venerable walls to her bosom. It
made me think of the old hermits of the middle ages, living with
the sea-birds in their ocean caves. Like St. Francis, the canons of
Notre Dame say the divine office with their "little sisters, the
birds;" and the bird is the symbol of the soul rising heavenward on
the wings of prayer. We, like the birds, build our nests here for a
few days. Blessed are we if they are built within the influences of
the sanctuary which temper the storms and severities of life. It is
only in the clefts of the rocks that wall in the mystic garden of the
church that there is safety for the dovelike soul.

In the transept is the altar of Our Lady, starry with lamps.
Above her statue is one of her titles, appealing to every
heart--Consolatrix afflictorum! To this church M. Olier came, in
all his troubles, to the altar of Mary. There is also a fine statue
of her over the grand altar, formerly at the Carmes. No church is
complete without an altar of the Blessed Virgin. Wherever there is a
cross, Mary must be at its foot, as at Calvary, directing our eyes,
our thoughts, our hearts, to him who hangs thereon.

      "O that silent, ceaseless mourning!
      O those dim eyes! never turning
        From that wondrous, suffering Son!

      "Virgin holiest, virgin purest,
      Of that anguish thou endurest
        Make me bear with thee my part."

In traversing Paris, one passes many private residences of interest
which have a certain consecration--the consecration of wit and
genius. I cannot say I ever went so far as Horace Walpole, who never
passed the Hôtel de Carnavalet, the residence of Madame de Sévigné,
without saying his Ave before it, much as I admire her _esprit_,
and though she was the granddaughter of St. Jane de Chantal, the
foundress of the Nuns of the Visitation. Walpole thought the house
had a foreign-looking air, and said it looked like an ex-voto raised
in her honor by some of her foreign votaries. It was once an elegant
residence, with its sculptured gateway and Ionic pilasters, and
its court adorned with statues. In the day of the _spirituelle_
letter-writer, it was the resort of the learned and the refined;
now, O tempora! it is a boarding-school, and the _salon_ of Madame
de Sévigné (the temple of "Notre Dame de Livry," to quote Walpole
again, if it be not profanity) is converted into a dormitory. Truly,
as Bishop de Bury says, "all things pass away with time," but the wit
and genius she embodied in her charming letters are eternal.

In one of the upper stories of a house in the Rue St. Honoré lived
Joubert, the Coleridge of France. His keeping-room was flooded with
the light he loved, and from it, as he said, he saw a great deal of
sky and very little earth. There he passed his days among the books
he had collected. He rigorously excluded from his library all the
books he disapproved of; unwilling, as he said, to admit an unworthy
friend to his constant companionship. To this room he attracted
a brilliant circle of conspicuous authors and statesmen by his
conversational talents, and there he wrote his immortal _Pensées_. He
said he left Paris unwillingly, because then he had to part from his
friends; and he left the country unwillingly, because he had to part
from himself. Writing from that sunny room, he says: "In many things,
I am like the butterfly; like him, I love the light; like him, I
there consume my life; like him, I need, in order to spread my wings,
that there be fair weather around me in society, and that my mind
feel itself surrounded and as if penetrated by the mild temperature
of indulgence." But he wrote graver and more profound things there.
One of his friends said of him that he seemed to be a soul that by
accident had met with a body, and was trying to make the best of it.
And he, ever indulgent to the faults of others, said of his friends,
"When they are blind of one eye, I look at them in profile."

The Abbaye aux Bois is interesting from its association with Madame
Récamier and her circle. Her rooms were in the third story and
paved with tiles, and they overlooked the pleasant garden of the
monastery, and, when lit up with wit and genius, they needed no other
attraction. Among her visitors there were Sir Humphry Davy, Maria
Edgeworth, Humboldt, Lamartine, Delphine Gay, Chateaubriand, etc.
They must have been like the gods, speaking from peak to peak all
around Olympus. Lamartine read his _Méditations_ there before they
were given to the public. Chateaubriand thus speaks of the room:
"The windows overlooked the garden of the abbey, under the verdant
shade of which the nuns paced up and down, and the pupils played. The
top of an acacia was on a level with the eye, sharp spires pierced
the sky, and in the distance rose the hills of Sèvres. The rays of
the setting sun threw a golden light over the landscape and came in
through the open windows. Some birds were settling themselves for
the night on the top of the window-blinds. Here I found silence and
solitude, far above the tumult and turmoil of a great city."

To the church of the abbey, a plain, unpretending structure, Eugénie
de Guérin went every day to Mass during her first visit to Paris.
There, too, were the bans of her brother Maurice published, and there
he was married.

The house of Madame Swetchine, in the Rue St. Dominique, must be
regarded with veneration. There was no austerity about the _salon_
of this remarkable woman. It was adorned with pictures, bronzes, and
flowers, and in the evening it was illuminated with a profusion of
lamps and candles, giving it a festive air. And then the great lights
of the church, always diffusing their radiance and aroma in that
favored room, Lacordaire, De Ravignan, Dupanloup, De la Bouillerie,
etc. To have found one's self among them must have seemed like being
among the prophets on Mount Carmel. They all loved to officiate and
preach in her beautiful private chapel, which was adorned with a
multitude of precious stones from the Russian mines, gleaming around
the ineffable presence of the Divinity. Mary, too, was there. On the
base of her silver statue was her monogram in diamonds, which Madame
Swetchine had worn as maid of honor to the Empress Mary of Russia.

These circles, and many others I could recall, are now broken up for
ever. We have all heard and read so much of those who composed them
that they seem like personal friends. We linger around the places to
which they imparted a certain sacredness, and follow them in thought
to the world of mystery and eternal reunion, thanking God that the
great gulf from the finite to the infinite has been bridged over by
the Incarnation.

One morning, I went to the church of the Carmelites. A tablet on the
wall points out the spot where the heart of Monseigneur Affre was
deposited--the heart of him who gave his life for his flock. Around
it were suspended some wreaths. On one, of immortelles, was painted,
in black letters, _A mon Père_, the offering of one of his spiritual
children. Wishing to have some objects of devotion blessed, I went
into the sacristy (I remembered Eugénie de Guérin speaks of going
into that sacristy), where I found one of the monks prostrate in
prayer, making his thanksgiving after Mass. Enveloped in his habit,
his bald head covered by a cowl, he looked like a ghost from the dark
ages. Not venturing to approach the ghostly father, I made known my
errand to a good-natured-looking lay brother, who conveyed it to that
part of the cowl where the right ear of the monk might reasonably be
supposed to be, which brought back the holy man to earth, causing me
some compunction of conscience. The brother spread out my articles,
brought the ritual and the stole, and the father, throwing back
his cowl, murmured over them the prayers of holy church, and then
disappeared into the monastery. Presently I heard the voices of the
monks saying the office, which they do, like nuns, in choir and
behind a curtained grate, so they are not seen from the church.

This monastery may be compared to the Roman amphitheatre where the
early Christians were thrown to the wild beasts. Here indeed was
fought the good fight, and the victors rose to heaven with palms in
their hands. I know of nothing more sublime and thrilling in the
annals of the church than the massacre of about two hundred priests
that took place here on the second of September, 1792. I cannot
refrain from giving a condensed account of it by one of the writers
of the day: "For some weeks there had been assembled and heaped
together two hundred priests, who had refused to take the schismatic
oath, or had nobly recanted it. During the first day of their
incarceration, these loyal priests had been inhumanly imprisoned
in the church. The guards in their midst watched to prevent their
having the consolation of even speaking to each other. Their only
nourishment was bread and water. The stone floor was their bed. It
was only later that a few were permitted to have straw beds. These
priests, whom martyrdom was to render immortal, had at their head
three prelates whose virtues recall the primitive days of the church.
Their chief was the Archbishop of Arles, Monseigneur du Lau. He had
been deputed to the states-general; his piety equalled his knowledge;
and his humility even surpassed his merit. The day after the
memorable 10th of August he had been sent to the Carmelite monastery
(then converted into a prison) with sixty-two other priests.
Notwithstanding his age (he was over eighty) and his infirmities,
he refused all indulgences that were not also extended to his
brother-captives. For several days a wooden arm-chair was his bed as
well as his pontifical throne. Thence his persuasive words instilled
into those around him the sentiments of ineffable charity that filled
his own heart, and when his exhausted voice could no longer make
itself heard, his very appearance expressed a sublime resignation.

"Two other bishops, brothers, bearing the name of De la
Rochefoucauld, one the Bishop of Beauvais, and the other of Saintes,
also encouraged their companions in misfortune by their words and
by their example. The Bishop of Saintes had not been arrested, but,
wishing to join his brother, he made himself a prisoner. There were
members of every rank in the ecclesiastical hierarchy: M. Hébert, the
confessor of the king who wrote to him at the beginning of August,
'I expect nothing more from man, bring me therefore the consolations
of heaven;' the general of the Benedictines, the Abbé de Lubusac,
several of the curés of Paris, Mr. Gros, called the modern Vincent
of Paul, and priests brought from various places, holy victims whom
the God of Calvary had chosen to associate with his sufferings, and
judged worthy of the most glorious of all deaths--that of martyrdom.

"For more than two days, the wretches who hovered around their
enclosure had filled the air with cries of blood, and predicting that
the sacrifice was about to take place. One said to the Archbishop of
Arles: 'My lord, on the morrow your grace is to be killed.' These
derisive insults recalled to the holy captives the judgment-hall
of their divine Master, and like him they bore them in silence,
forgiving and praying for their enemies.

"On the second of September they could no longer doubt that their
last hour had arrived. The hurried movements of the troops, the cries
in the neighboring streets, and the alarm-guns they heard made them
somewhat aware of the sinister events that were passing without.
At the dawn of day they had gathered together in the church. They
made their confessions to each other, they blessed one another, and
partook of the Holy Eucharist. They were singing the Benediction
together at about five in the evening when the ominous cries came
nearer. Then two holy hymns succeeded the prayers for the dying.
All at once the jailers entered, and began calling the roll, which
already had been done three times that day. The prisoners were then
ordered into the garden, which they found occupied by guards armed
with pikes and wearing the _bonnet rouge_. The murderers filled
the courts, the halls, and the church, making the venerable arches
re-echo to the noise of their weapons and their blasphemies. The
priests, one hundred and eighty-five in number, were divided into
two groups. About thirty, among whom were the bishops, rushed toward
a little oratory at the extremity of the garden, where they threw
themselves upon their knees, recommending themselves to God. They
embraced each other for the last time, and began saying the vespers
for the dead, when suddenly the gates were flung open, and the
assassins rushed in from various directions.

"The sight of these holy priests upon their knees arrested their
fury for an instant. The first who fell under their blows was Father
Gerault, who was reciting his breviary regardless of their cries.
That breviary, pierced with a ball and stained with blood, was
discovered on the spot at the restoration of the Carmelites, and
it is preserved as a precious relic. Then the Archbishop of Arles
was demanded. While they were seeking him through the alleys, he
was exhorting his companions to offer to God the sacrifice of their
lives. Hearing his name called, he knelt down, and asked the most
aged of the priests to give him absolution; then, rising, he advanced
to meet the assassins. With his arms crossed upon his breast and
his eyes raised toward heaven, he uttered in a calm voice the same
words his divine Master addressed to his enemies: "I am he whom
you seek." The first stroke of the sword was upon his forehead,
but the venerable man remained standing; a second made the blood
flow in torrents, but still he did not fall; the fifth laid him on
the ground, when a pike was driven through his heart. Then he was
trampled under the feet of the assassins, who exclaimed, 'Vive la

"The general massacre then ensued. While the unfortunate priests,
with the instinct of self-preservation, were flying at random through
the garden, some screening themselves behind the hedges and others
climbing the trees, the murderers fired at them, and, when one of
them fell, they would rush upon his body, prolong his agony, and
exult over his sufferings. About forty perished in this manner. Some
of the younger priests succeeded in scaling the walls and hiding
themselves; but, remembering they were flying from martyrdom and that
their escape might excite greater fury against their companions,
they retraced their steps and received their reward! The Bishop of
Beauvais and his brother were in the garden oratory with thirty
priests. A grating separated them from the murderers, who fired upon
them, killing the greater number. The Bishop of Beauvais was not
touched, but his brother had a leg broken by a ball.

"For an instant this horrid butchery was suspended. One of the
leaders ordered all the priests into the church, whither they were
driven--even the wounded and dying--at the sword's point. There
they gathered around the altar, offering anew to their Saviour the
sacrifice of their lives, whilst their executioners, calling them out
two by two, finished their butchery more promptly and completely. To
each one life was offered on condition of taking the revolutionary
oath. They all refused, and not one escaped. Whilst these assassins
added blasphemous shouts to their murderous strokes, whilst they
demolished the crosses and the tabernacles, the holy phalanx of
priests, which death was every moment lessening, kept praying for
their murderers and their country. The two bishops were among the
last executed. When it came to the turn of the Bishop of Beauvais, he
left the altar upon which he had been leaning, and calmly advanced to
meet his death. His brother, whose wound prevented his walking, asked
for assistance, and was carried out to his execution. It was eight
in the evening when the last execution took place. Over four hundred
priests were massacred in different parts of Paris at this period,
besides many isolated murders."

The constancy of these martyrs has made many do more than exclaim
with Horace Walpole: "Almost thou persuadest me to be a Catholic!" He
says, in a letter dated October 14, 1792: "For the French priests, I
own I honor them. They preferred beggary to perjury, and have died or
fled to preserve the integrity of their consciences. It certainly
was not the French clergy but the philosophers that have trained up
their countrymen to be the most bloody men upon earth."

In 1854, this monastery, where flowed the blood of martyrs and which
had echoed with their dying groans, resounded with the strains of _O
Salutaris Hostia!_ on the festival of Corpus Christi, and priests
bore the divine Host through the alleys of the garden where, sixty
years before, had rushed those who were swift to shed blood. An altar
had been erected under the yew-tree where the Archbishop of Arles
fell. Children scattered flowers over the place once covered with
blood. Well might the pale-lipped clergy tearfully chant in such a


Every age has its martyrs. They are the glory of the church, and
their blood is its seed. The church must ever suffer with its divine
spouse. Sometimes its head--the Vicar of Christ-is crowned with
thorns; sometimes its heart bleeds from a thrust in the very house
of its friends; and, again, its feet and hands are nailed in the
extremities of the earth.

And every follower of Christ crucified has his martyrdom--a martyrdom
of the soul, if not of the body. The sacred stigmata are imprinted
on every soul, that embraces the cross, and no one can look upon him
who hangs thereon, with the eyes of faith, without catching something
of his resemblance. Suffering is now, as when he was on earth, the
glorious penalty of those who approach the nearest to his Divine

      "Three saints of old their lips upon the Incarnate Saviour laid,
      And each with death or agony for the high rapture paid.
      His mother's holy kisses of the coming sword gave sign,
      And Simeon's hymn full closely did with his last breath entwine;
      And Magdalen's first tearful touch prepared her but to greet
      With homage of a broken heart his pierced and lifeless feet.
      The crown of thorns, the heavy cross, the nails and bleeding brows,
      The pale and dying lips, are the portion of the spouse."


So little is known of Spanish American literature that any fresh
report from its pages seems to have the nature of a revelation.
Our acquaintance with Heredia, Placido, Milanes, Mendive, Carpio,
Pesado, Galvan, Calderon, is slight or naught; yet these poets are
most interesting on account of the countries, peoples, and causes
for which they speak eloquently, even if we deny that they add
greatly to the genuine substance of our literary possession. Less
question, however, can be entertained of the importance of some older
names whose fame made for itself a refuge in the Spanish churches
and cloisters of the New World long before revolutionists took to
shooting the Muses on the wing. In the seventeenth century lived
and wrought Cabrera, Siguenza, and Sor or Sister Juana Ines. They
belonged to a country which claimed for awhile as its scholars,
though not as its natives, Doctor Valbuena, author of the very
well-known epical fantasy called _The Bernardo_, and Mateo Alaman,
who wrote the famous story of _Guzman de Alfarache_. Juan Ruiz
de Alarcon, one of the most remarkable dramatic poets of a great
dramatic age, was a native of that same country, Mexico. Siguenza, as
mathematician, historian, antiquary, and poet, has been well esteemed
by Humboldt and the scholars of his own race. It is much to say that
the land which produced an artist as great as Cabrera also gave birth
to a scholar and poet as renowned in her day and as appreciable in
ours as Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz. Among all these celebrities, who
would have been eminent in any time among any people, this Mexican
nun of the seventeenth century holds a place of her own. Looking back
upon the past with all our modern light, we cannot but regard her as
one of the most admirable characters of the New World.

Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz was born at San Miguel de Nepantla, twelve
leagues from the city of Mexico, in the year 1651, and died at the
age of forty-four. When but three years old, she was able to read,
write, and "cipher," and at eight she wrote a prologue for the feast
of the Holy Sacrament. Once she cut her hair, and would not allow it
to grow till she had acquired the learning she proposed to herself,
seeing no reason why a head should be covered with hair that was
denuded of knowledge, its best ornament. After twenty lessons, it was
said, she knew Latin, and so great was her desire to learn that she
importuned her parents to send her to the University of Mexico in
boy's clothes. When seventeen years of age, and a cherished inmate
of the Viceroy Mancera's family, she amazed a large company of
the professors and scholars of the capital by tests of her various
erudition and abilities. Notwithstanding her beauty and fortune, her
rank and accomplishments, and the life of a gallant and brilliant
court, she determined at that early age to retire to a cloister, and
in a few years became known as Sor Juana of San Geronimo, a convent
of the city of Mexico. After this appeared her poems, _The Crisis_
and _The Dream_, in the latter of which she writes much of mythology,
physics, medicine, and history, according to the scholastic manner
of her time. With these and her subsequent poetic writings, such as
her sonnets, loas, romances, and autos, she had rare fame, and won
from some of her admirers the enthusiastic titles of "The Phœnix of
Mexico," "Tenth Muse," and "Poetess of America." The writer has an
old volume before him bearing literally this title-page: "Fama, y
Obras Posthumas del Fenix de Mexico, y Dezima Musa, Poetisa de la
America, Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz, Religiosa Professa en el Convento
de San Geronimo, de la Imperial Ciudad de Mexico. Recogidas y dadas a
luz por el Doctor Don Juan Ignacio de Castorena y Ursua, Capellan de
Honor de su Magestad, y Prebendado de la Santa Iglesia Metropolitana
de Mexico. En Barcelona: Por Rafael Figuero. Año de MDCCI. Con todas
las licencias necessarias." Thus it appears we owe to the Prebendary
Castorena the edition of the posthumous works of Sor Juana given to
the light in 1701, six years after her death.

But, whether as the sister or the mother of a convent, Juana Ines de
la Cruz was more than a mistress of vain learning or unprofitable
science. Her daily assiduous exercise was charity, which at last so
controlled her life and thoughts that she gave all her musical and
mathematical instruments, all the rich presents which her talents
had attracted from illustrious people, and all her books, excepting
those she left to her sisters, to be sold for the benefit of the
poor. Though she had evidently prized science as the handmaid of
religion, the time came when her verses upon the vanity of learning
reflected a mind more and more withdrawn from the affairs of this
world to the contemplation of the next. When an epidemic visited the
Convent of San Geronimo, and but two out of every ten invalids were
saved, the good, brave soul of Madre Juana shone transcendently.
Spite of warnings and petitions, and though all the city prayed for
her life, Madre Juana perished at her vigil of charity--the good
angel as well as muse of Mexico.

Of the enthusiasm created by her genius, we have abundant and
curious proofs. Don Alonzo Muxica, "perpetual Recorder of the City
of Salamanca," wrote a sonnet upon her having learned to read at the
age of three, when "what for all is but the break of morn in her was
as the middle of the day." Excelentissimo Sir Felix Fernandez de
Cordova Cordona y Aragon, Duke of Seffa, of Væna and Soma, Count of
Cabra, Palomas, and Olivitas, and Grand Admiral and Captain-General
of Naples, speaks of her in a lofty poetic encomium as for the third
time applauded by two admiring worlds of readers, and praises her
persuasive voice as that of a sweet siren of thought. Don Garcia
Ribadeneyra, with the grandiose wit of his day, says in a decima
that this extraordinary woman surpassed the sun, for her glorious
genius rose where the sun set, that is to say, in the West; and Don
Pedro Alfonso Moreno argues piously that St. John the Baptist's three
crowns of Virgin, Martyr, and Doctor were in measure those of Madre
Juana, who was from early years chaste, poor in spirit, and obedient,
according to the vow of religious women. Don Luis Verdejo declares
that she transferred the lyceums of the Muses to Mexico, and that
the light of her genius is poured upon two worlds. Padre Cabrera,
chaplain of the Most Excellent Duke of Arcos, asserts that the
Eternal Knowledge enlightened Juana in all learning. "Only her fame
can define her," writes one of her own sex; and when the Poetess of
the Cloister wrote with her own blood a protestation of faith, it was
said of this "Swan of erudite plume" that she wrote like the martyr
to whose ink of blood the earth was as paper. Her gift of books to
be sold in order to relieve the poor inspired Señora Catalina de
Fernandez de Cordova, nun in the Convent of the Holy Ghost in Alcara,
to say thus thoughtfully:

      "Without her books did Juana grow more wise,
      As for their loss she studied deep content.
      Know, then, that in this human school of ours,
      He only is wise who knows to love his God."

At thought of her death, Don Luis Muñoz Venegas, of Granada, wonders
that the sun shines, that ships sail, that earth is fair, that all
things do not grieve her loss, whose happy soul in its beatitudes
enjoys the riches of which death has robbed the world--sweetness,
purity, felicity. Fray Juan de Rueda, professor of theology in the
college of San Pablo; Licentiate Villalobos of San Ildefonso, and
Señor Guerra, fellow of the same college; Advocate Pimienta, of the
Royal Audience, and Bachelor Olivas, a presbyter; Syndic Torres,
Catedratico or Professor Aviles, Cavalier Ulloa, have all something
to say in Spanish or Latin on the death of our poetess. Doctor Aviles
imagines the death of Sor Juana to be like that of the rose, which,
having acquired in a brief age all its perfection, needed not to live
longer. Don Diego Martinez suggests beautifully that the profit which
other excellent minds will derive from the posthumous writings of the
poetess will be like the clearness which the stars gain by the death
of the sun. Mingled with these honest tributes of admiration is much
extravagance of comparison; but they prove at least that Sor Juana
was regarded by the learned of her day as a woman of astonishing

Amid all her studies and labors, we read that Sister Juana was
constant in her religious devotions, and faithful to the least rules
of her order. But her conscientious spirit, moved by a letter of
Bishop Fernandez of Puebla, determined her at length to renounce the
exercise of her talents for the strictest and purest ascetism. Hence,
one of her Mexican critics is led to say that we have only the echoes
of her songs, only the shades of her images, inasmuch as her sex
and state, and the reigning scholasticism, were not convenient for
the true expression of her thoughts. The noble, ascetic literature
of Spain, respecting which it is with reason boasted that the world
contains nothing of the kind more valuable, discredits in good part
this supposition. Moreover, the recognition of Sor Juana's work and
genius was, as we have seen, not inconsiderable. The world is still
in its infancy as regards religious ideality, and, spite of the
highest evidences, often refuses to believe that thoughts fed from
the divine source can fulfil the true poem of life, be it written
or acted. What the thoughts of Sor Juana were like in her ordinary
religious life we understand partly from a number of daily exercises
and meditations which have come down to us. Here are specimens of
these compositions:


    On this day, at seeing the light come forth, bless
    its Author who made it so beautiful a creation, and
    praise him with a submissive heart; not only because
    he created it for our good, but because he made it a
    vassal to his mother and our mediatrix. Go to Mass with
    all possible devotion, and those who can, let them fast
    and give thanks to God. Thou shalt sing the canticle
    _Benedicite omnia opera Domini Domino_ and the verse
    _Benedicite lux_. Understand that not only the just
    ought to praise God, who are themselves as light, but
    the sinners who are as darkness. Consider yourselves
    such, every one of you, and mourn for having added to
    the original transgression, darkness upon darkness,
    sins upon sins. Resolve to correct thyself; and that
    Mary's purest light may reach you, recite a _Salve_,
    and nine times the _Magnificat_, face to the ground,
    and fly from all sin this day, even the shadow thereof.
    Abstain from all impatience, murmurings, repinings, and
    suffer with meekness those evils which are a repugnance
    to our nature. If it be a day of discipline of the
    community, that is enough, but if not, it shall be
    especially made so. Those who do not know how to read
    Latin shall recite nine _Salves_ mouth to the ground,
    and shall fast if they are able, and if not, they shall
    make an act of contrition, so that the Lord may give
    them light for his timely service, even as he gave them
    material light by which to live.


    If we look at the properties of the firmament, what
    more assimilates to the miraculous constancy of Mary,
    whom neither those steeped in original sin could make
    fall, nor the combats of temptation make stumble!
    But still, amid the torrents and tempests of human
    miseries, between the troubles of her life, and the
    painful passion and death of her most holy Son and our
    most beloved Saviour; amid the waves of incredulity in
    the doubts of his disciples; among the hidden rocks
    of the perfidy of Judas, and the uncertainty of so
    many timid souls--ever was her constancy preserved.
    Not only was she firm, but beautiful as the firmament,
    which (according to the mathematicians) hath this other
    excellence, that it is bordered by innumerable stars,
    but has only seven planets which are fixed and never
    move. Thus, holiest Mary was not only most pure in her
    conception, transparent and translucent, but afterwards
    the Lord adorned her with innumerable virtues which
    she acquired, even as the stars which border that most
    beautiful firmament; and she not only had them all,
    but had them fixed, all immovable, all in order and
    admirable concert: but if in the other children of
    Adam we see some virtues, they are errant--to-day we
    have them, to-morrow they are gone--to-day is light,
    to-morrow darkness. We will rejoice in her prerogative,
    and say unto her:


    Honored Lady, and crown of our human being, divine
    firmament where the stars of virtue are fixed, give
    their benign influence to us, thy devoted ones, that
    by thy favor we may cure ourselves and acquire them;
    and that light which thou dost partake of the Sun of
    Righteousness, communicate it to our souls, and fix in
    them thy virtues, the love of thy precious Son, and
    thy sweetest and tenderest devotion, and of thy happy
    husband, our patron and advocate, St. Joseph.

These compositions doubtless give us a better idea of the interior
thought of Mexican monasticism than some yellow-covered speculations.
In that life grew the finest genius, the greatest woman, perhaps the
most remarkable character in all respects that Mexico ever produced.
Considering the time and place in which she wrote, the New World
has scarcely produced her superior among women of genius. Up to the
nineteenth century America had, doubtless, no, literary product
comparable to the poems of Sor Juana Ines. What Cabrera, was to the
art, Sor Juana seems to have been to the literature of her country;
and both these workers of genius gave their powers to the service of
religion. It is here worthy of remark that not only were the greatest
painter and poet of Mexico studious servants of the church, but that
its most celebrated scientist was the Jesuit Siguenza y Gongora,
author of a funeral eulogy of Sor Juana Ines, whom he knew and
appreciated, for he, too, was a poet. Without social helps, without
emulation, such as is ordinarily understood, such proofs of her high
intelligence as we possess have come to light. Perplexed as it was
with the mannered erudition of the schools, her poetry nevertheless
reveals noble sensibility and thought in superior forms. Thus she
sings in her verses entitled "Sentiments of Absence:"

      "Hear me with eyes,
      Now that so distant are thine ears;
      Of absence my laments;
      In echoes from my pen the groans;
      And as can reach thee not my voice so rude,
      Hear thou me deaf, since dumbly I complain."

This is like a voice of the Elizabethan age; but what _woman_ even of
that day has left us so rare a record of poetry and piety combined as
the nun of San Geronimo, she who lived in 1670 in far-off, outlandish
Mexico? What chapter of literature would seem too good to entertain
this Tenth Muse, to whom we owe such sonnets as these:


      If pencil, although grand in human wise,
      Could make a picture thus most beautiful,
      Where even clearest vision not refines
      Thy light, O admirable--yet in vain:
      How did the author of thy sovereign soul
      Proportion space to his creation fair!
      What grace he painted, and what loveliness!
      The scope more ample, greater was the hand.
      Was found within the sphere of purest light
      The pencil, schooled within the morning-star,
      When thou wert dawned, Aurora most divine?
      Yea, thus indeed it was; but verily
      The sky has not paid back thy cost to him
      Who spent in thee more light than it has now.


      Feliciano loves me, and I hate him;
      Lizardo hates me, and I do adore him;
      For him who does not want me, do I cry,
      And him who yearns for me, I not desire.
      To him who me disdains, my soul I offer,
      And him who is my victim, I disdain.
      Him I despise who would enrich my honor,
      And him who doth contemn me, I'd enrich.
      If with offence the first I have displeased,
      The other doth displease by me offended--
      And thus I come to suffer every way;
      For both are but as torments to my feelings--
      This one with asking that which I have not,
      And that in not having what I'd ask.


      Celia beheld a rose that in the walk
      Flourished in pride of springtime loveliness,
      And whose bright hues of carmine or of red
      Bathed joyfully its delicate countenance--
      And said: Enjoy without the fear of fate
      The fleeting course of thy luxuriant age,
      Since will not death be able on the morrow.
      To take from thee what thou to-day enjoyest;
      And though he come within a little while,
      Still grieve thou not to die so young and fair:
      Hear what experience may counsel thee--
      That fortunate 'tis to die being beautiful,
      And not to see the woe of being old.


      This that thou seest, a deception painted,
      Which of art's excellence makes display,
      With curious counterfeit of coloring,
      Is an insidious cheating of the sense.
      This, wherewithin has flattery pretended
      To excuse the grim deformity of age,
      And vanquishing the rigor hard of time
      To triumph o'er oblivion and decay;
      Is but the shallow artifice of care,
      Is as a fragile flower within the wind;
      It is a useless guard 'gainst destiny;
      It is a foolish and an erring toil;
      'Tis labor imbecile, and, rightly scanned,
      Is death, is dust, is shadow, and is naught.

These rude translations give but a poor idea of the poet's
expression, but they allow the height and quality of her intellect to
be understood. In one of her most thoughtful poems, the _Romance on
the Vanity of Science_, she argues against self-seeking knowledge,
and the perils to which genius exposes itself by too much seeking its
own devices. This poem is so representative and remarkable that we
must give it entire quotation:


        Finjamos que soy feliz,
      Triste pensamiento un rato;
      Quizá podreis persuadirme,
      Aunque yo sé lo contrario.

          Feign we that I am happy,
            Sad thought, a little while,
          For, though 'twere but dissembling,
            Would thou couldst me beguile!

        Que, pues solo en la aprension
      Dicen que estriban los daños;
      Si os imaginais dichoso.
      No sereis tan desdichado.

          Yet since but in our terrors
            They say our miseries grow,
          If joy we can imagine,
            The less will seem our woe.

        Sirvame el entendimiento
      Alguna vez de descanso;
      Y no siempre esté el ingenio
      Con el provecho encontrado.

          Must our intelligences
            Some time of quiet find;
          Not always may our genius
            With profit rule the mind.

        Todo el mundo es opiniones,
      De paraceres tan varios,
      Que lo que el uno, que es negro,
      El otro prueba que es blanco.

          The world's full of opinions,
            And these so different quite.
          That what to one black seemeth
            Another proves is white.

        A unos sirve de atractivo
      Lo que otro concibe enfado;
      Y lo que este por alivio
      Aquel tiene por trabajo.

          To some appears attractive
            What many deem a bore;
          And that which thee delighted
            Thy fellow labors o'er.

        El que está triste, censura
      Al alegre de liviano;
      Y el que está alegre, se burla,
      De ver al triste penando.

          He who is sad condemneth
            The gay one's gleeful tones;
          He who is merry jesteth
            Whene'er the sad one groans.

        Los dos filosofos griegos
      Bien esta verdad probaron,
      Pues, lo que en el uno risa,
      Causaba, en el otro llanto.

          By two old Greek wiseacres
            This truth well proved appears;
          Since what in one caused laughter,
            The other moved to tears.

        Célebre su oposicion
      Ha sido, por siglos tantos,
      Sin que cúal acertó, esté
      Hasta agora averiguado.

          Renowned has been this contest
            For ages, without fruit,
          And what one age asserted
            Till now is in dispute.

        Antes en sus dos banderas
      El mundo todo alistado,
      Conforme el humor le dicta,
      Sigue cada cúal su bando.

          Into two lists divided
            The world's opinions stand.
          And as his humor leads him
            Follows each one his band.

        Uno dice, que de risa
      Solo es digno el mundo vario;
      Y otro, que sus infortunios
      Son solo para llorarlos.

          One says the world is worthy
            Only of merriment;
          Another, its distresses
            Call for our loud lament.

        Para todo se halla prueba
      Y razon en que fundarlo;
      Y no hay razon para nada,
      De haber razon para tanto.

          For all opinions various
            Some proof or reason's brought,
          And for so much there's reason
            That reason is for naught.

        Todos son iguales jueces
      Y siendo iguales, y varios.
      No hay quien pueda decidir
      Cúal es lo mas acertado.

          All, all are equal judges,
            And all of different view,
          And none can make decision
            Of what is best or true.

        ¿Pues sino hay quien lo sentencie,
      Por qué pensais vos, errado,
      Que os cometió Dios á vos
      La decision de los casos?

          Then since can none determine,
            Think'st thou, whose reason strays,
          To thee hath God committed
            The judgment of the case?

        ¿O por que, contra vos mismo,
      Severamente inhumano,
      Entre lo amargo, y lo dulce
      Quereis elegir lo amargo?

          O why, to thyself cruel,
            Dost thou thy peace reject?
          Between the sweet and bitter,
            The bitter dost elect?

        ¿Si es mio mi entendimiento,
      Por qué siempre he de encontrarlo
      Tan torpe para el alivio,
      Tan agudo para el daño?

          If 'tis mine my understanding,
            Why always must it be
          So dull and slow to pleasure,
            So keen for injury?

        El discurso es un acero
      Que sirve por ambos cabos;
      De dar muerte por la punta,
      Por el pomo de resguardo.

          A sharp blade is our learning
            Which serves us at both ends:
          Death by the point it giveth,
            By the handle, it defends.

        ¿Si vos sabiendo el peligro
      Quereis por la punta usarlo,
      Que culpa tiene el acero
      Del mal uso de la mano?

          And if, aware of peril,
            Its point thou wilt demand,
          How canst thou blame the weapon
            For the folly of thy hand?

        No es saber, saber hacer
      Discursos sutiles, vanos,
      Que el saber consiste solo
      En elegir lo mas sano.

          Not is true wisdom knowing
            Most subtle speech and vain;
          Best knowledge is in choosing
            That which is safe and sane.

        Especular las desdichas,
      Y examinar los presagios,
      Solo sirve de que el mal
      Crezca con anticiparlo.

          To speculate disaster,
            To seek for presages,
          Serves to increase affliction,
            Anticipates distress.

        En los trabajos futuros
      La atencion sutilizando.
      Mas formidable que el riesgo
      Suele fingir el amago.

          In the troubles of the future
            The anxious mind is lost,
          And more than any danger
            Doth danger's menace cost.

        ¡Que feliz es la ignorancia
      Del que indoctamente sabio,
      Halla de lo que podece
      En lo que ignora sagrado!

          Of him the unschooled wise man
            How happy is the chance!
          He finds from suffering refuge
            In simple ignorance.

        No siempre suben seguros
      Vuelos del ingenio osados,
      Que buscan trono en el fuego,
      Y hallan sepulcro en el llanto.

          _Not always safe aspire
            The wings that genius bears,
          Which seek a throne in fire,
            And find a grave in tears._

        Tambien es vicio el saber
      Que si no se va atajando,
      Cuanto menos se conoce
      Es mas nocivo el estrago.

          And vicious is the knowledge
            That seeking swift its end
          Is all the more unwary
            Of the woe that doth impend.

        Y si vuelo no le abaten
      En sutilezas cebado,
      Por cuidar de lo curioso
      Olvida lo necesario.

          And if its flight it stops not
            In pampered, strange deceits,
          Then for the curious searching
            The needful it defeats.

        Si culta mano no impide
      Crecer al arbol copado,
      Quitan la sustancia al fruto
      La locura de los ramos.

          If culture's hand not pruneth
            The leafage of the tree,
          Takes from the fruit's sustainment
            The rank, wild greenery.

        ¿Si andar a nave ligera,
      No estorba lastre pesado;
      Sirve el vuelo de que sea
      El precipicio mas alto?

          If all its ballast heavy
            Yon light ship not prevents,
          Will it help the flight of pinions
            From nature's battlements?

        En amenidad inutil,
      Que importa al florido campo.
      Si no halla fruto el otoño
      Que ostente flores el mayo.

          In verdant beauty useless,
            What profits the fair field
          If the blooming growths of springtime
            No autumn fruitage yield?

        ¿De que le sirve al ingenio
      El producir muchos partos,
      Si a la multitud le sigue
      El malogro de abortarlo?

          And of what use is genius
            With all its work of might,
          If are its toils rewarded
            By failure and despite?

        Yá esta desdicha, por fuerza
      Ha de seguirle el fracaso
      De quedar el que produce.
      Si no muerto, lastimado.

          And perforce to this misfortune
            Must that despair succeed,
          Which, if its arrow kills not,
            Must make the bosom bleed.

        El ingenio es como el fuego,
      Que con la materia ingrato,
      Tanto la consume mas,
      Cuanto el se ostenta mas claro.

          Like to a fire doth genius
            In thankless matter grow;
          The more that it consumeth,
            It boasts the brighter glow.

        Es de su proprio señor
      Tan rebelado vasallo,
      Que convierte en sus ofensas
      Las armas de su resguardo.

          It is of its own master
            So rebellious a slave,
          That to offence it turneth
            The weapons that should save.

        Este pesimo ejercicio,
      Este duro afan pesado,
      A los hijos de los hombres
      Dió Dios para ejercitarlos.

          Such exercise distressful,
            Such hard anxiety,
          To all the sad world's children
            God gave their souls to try.

        ¿Que loca ambicion nos lleva
      De nosotros olvidados,
      Si es para vivir tan poco,
      De que sirve saber tanto?

          What mad ambition takes us
            From self-forgetful state,
          If 'tis to live so little
            We make our knowledge great?

        Oh! si como hay de saber,
      Hubiera algun seminario,
      O escuela, donde á ignorar
      Se enseñara los trabajos!

          Oh! if we must have knowledge,
            I would there were some school
          Wherein to teach not knowing
            Life's woes, should be the rule.

        ¡Que felizmente viviera,
      El que flotamente cauto;
      Burlara las amenazas
      Del influjo de los astros!

          Happy shall be his living
            Whose life no rashness mars;
          He shall laugh at all the threatenings
            Of the magic of the stars!

        Aprendamos á ignorar
      Pensamientos, pues hallamos,
      Que cuanto añado al discurso,
      Tanto le usurpo á los años.

          Learn we the wise unknowing,
            Since it so well appears
          That what to learning's added
            Is taken from our years.

We may dispute, in some respects, the drift of Sister Juana's
philosophy; but we cannot question the poetic wisdom of many of her
reflections. How true it is that in a multitude of reasons one finds
no reason at all; that the rank overgrowth of knowledge does not
bear the best fruit; that genius, allied with base substance, grows
brighter, by a kind of self-consuming; that wisdom can sometimes
find refuge in ignorance! No one, be his fame what it may, has
stated a grand and touching truth with better force than appears in
Sor Juana's grave misgiving with regard to the genius "which seeks
a throne in fire, and finds a sepulchre in tears." Is not this the
history, at once sublime and pathetic, of so many failures of the
restless intellect? Sor Juana knew how to preach from such a text,
for she was a rare scholar, and mistress of verse, and religious
woman. The variety of her literary employments was considerable, in
comparison with the bulk of Mexican verse and prose, notwithstanding
the old-fashioned manners of her cloistered muse. She wrote, in
addition to sonnets and romances, the dramatic religious pieces
called loas and autos, among which we find dialogues and acts
entitled "The Sceptre of St. Joseph," "San Hermengildo," and "The
Divine Narciso." Her poetic moods were not, it appears, limited to
hymns and to blank-verse; indeed, she had the qualities of a ripe
poet--humor, fancy, imagination, able thought, and, if anything else
should be added, doubtless the reader will find it in the ideality of
a sonnet so superb as the one in praise of Our Lady. Of her religious
tenderness we have a fine example in the following lines from "El
Divino Narciso," which have been compared by a Mexican critic to
the best mystical songs of St. John of the Cross and other Spanish
ascetics. They convey the appeal which the Shepherd of Souls makes to
a soul which has strayed from the flock:

      O my lost lamb,
      Thy master all forgetting,
      Whither dost erring go?
      Behold how now divided
      From me, thou partest from thy life!

      In my tender kindness,
      Thou seest how always loving
      I guard thee watchfully,
      I free thee of all danger,
      And that I give my life for thee.

      Behold how that my beauty
      Is of all things beloved,
      And is of all things sought,
      And by all creatures praised.
      Still dost thou choose from me to go astray.

      I go to seek thee yet,
      Although thou art as lost;
      But for thee now my life
      I cannot still lay down
      That once I wished to lose to find my sheep.

      Do worthier than thou
      Ask these my benefits,
      The rivers flowing fair,
      The pastures and green glades
      Wherein my loving-kindness feedeth thee.

      Within a barren field,
      In desert land afar,
      I found thee, ere the wolf
      Had all thy life despoiled,
      And prized thee as the apple of mine eye.

      I led thee to the verdure
      Of my most peaceful ways,
      Where thou hast fed at will
      Upon the honey sweet
      And oil that flowed to thee from out the rock.

      With generous crops of grain,
      With marrowy substances,
      I have sustained thy life,
      Made thee most savory food,
      And given to thee the juice of fragrant grapes.

      Thou seekest other fields
      With them that did not know
      Thy fathers, honored not
      Thy elders, and in this
      Thou dost excite my own displeasure grave.

      And for that thou hast sinned
      I'll hide from thee my face,
      Before whose light the sun
      Its feeble glory pales;
      From thee, ingrate, perverse, and most unfaithful one.

      Shall my displeasure's scourge
      Thy verdant fields destroy,
      The herb that gives thee food;
      And shall my fires lay waste,
      Even from the top of highest mountains old.

      My lightning arrows shall
      Be drawn, and hunger sharp
      Shall cut the threads of life,
      And evil birds of prey
      And fiercest beasts shall lie in wait for thee.

      Shall grovelling serpents show
      The venom of their rage,
      By different ways of death
      My rigors shall be wrought;
      Without thee by the sword, within thee by thy fears.

      Behold I am thy Sovereign,
      And there is none more strong;
      That I am life and death,
      That I can slay and save,
      And nothing can escape from out my hand.

Our last quotation from Sister Juana's poems will be one of those
tributes which, in verse or prose, she so often paid to the Blessed
Virgin. It is a song taken from her villancicos, or rhymes for
festivals. The literary manners of her time seem to have obscured
the native excellence of her thought, but the buoyant style of the
following lines meets with little objection from her modern Mexican

      To her who in triumph, the beautiful queen,
      Descends from the airs of the region serene;
      To her who illumines its vaguest confine
      With auroras of gold, and of pearl and carmine;
      To her whom a myriad of voices confessed
      The lady of angels, the queen of the blest:
      Whose tresses celestial are lightly outborne
      And goldenly float in the glory of morn,
      And waving and rising would seek to o'erwhelm
      Like the gulfs of the Tibar an ivory realm:
      From whose graces the sunlight may learn how to shine,
      And the stars of the night take a brilliance divine,
      We sing thee rejoicing while praises ascend,
      O sinless, O stainless! live, live without end.

The scarcity of the poems of Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz, even in
her native land, is cause for wonder, but not if we first remark
that still greater marvel--the long-continued discomposure of
Mexican society. It is one hundred and seventy years since the
parchment-bound book, from which we have drawn a number of facts
in the life of the _Poetisa_, was published. Our impression of the
rarity and age of her printed works, as derived from acquaintance
with educated Mexicans in their own country, tempts us to doubt
whether they have been issued in any complete shape during the
present century. For a good portion of the extracts we have presented
we are indebted to an intelligent and scholarly review prepared in
Mexico, two years ago, by Don Francisco Prinentel, the author of a
number of books on the races and languages of Mexico. Outside of the
monastic or rich private libraries of that country, it is doubtless
a task of much difficulty to find the poems of Sor Juana. For this
reason we are disposed to excuse the able American historian of
Spanish literature for omitting everything in relation to her except
the mere mention of her name as a lyrical writer. It is hoped,
however, that this notice of her life and works, probably the first
which has appeared in the United States, will supply the omission
of what should be a chief fact in any American notice of Spanish
literature. The claim which we make for Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz,
as regards the literature of the New World, is not short of the very





At the golden gate of the Temple courtyard, a Roman legionary soldier
(detailed as body-servant to the General Paulus) met him. The soldier
was leading a small, wiry Tauric (or really Tartar) horse. Paulus,
twisting a lock of the animal's mane in his left hand, and taking
up with the little finger thereof the loop of the bridle, sprang
into the ephippia. The soldier smiled, as the still handsome and
youthful-looking legatus settled himself on the back of his steed.

"Why are you smiling, my man?" quoth Paulus good-humoredly.

"It was like the spring I saw you take years ago at Formiæ, when
I was a boy, upon the back of the horse Sejanus, which no man, my
general, ever rode save you," replied the soldier.

"Ah!" said Paulus, smiling sadly; "were you there? I fear I am not so
agile now. We are all passing away."

"Just as agile still, my general," returned the legionary, in a
cordial tone; "but about twice as strong."

"Away! begone!" cried Paulus, laughing; "I am growing old." And
shaking the reins, he waved a salute to Longinus, turned his pony
round, and rode away again into the valley westward, while the
centurion entered the city by the golden gate, and repaired under the
walls of the Temple to Fort Antonio, where he was detailed as officer
of Pilate's guard that night.

Paulus, meanwhile, rode slowly on his way, between the Kedron Brook
and the walls of Jerusalem, till he came to the Pool of Siloam.
There, he turned south, galloped to a fort which was near, turned
back again to his right, or northward, followed the valley of Hinnom
at a walking pace, looking up at the white and dazzling buildings on
Mount Zion.

As he slowly passed them, he speculated which could have been David's
palace. He saw Herod's plainly enough. On his right he noticed the
aqueduct from Solomon's Pool, and followed its course as far as the
Tower of Hippicus northward. There he entered the city by the Gate of
Gennath, and followed the valley of the Cheesemongers (or Tyropæon
hollow) until he came to Ophal.

In the middle of a very narrow street in this low and crowded
quarter, where the Romans afterward under Titus were repulsed,
he met a file of people, some mounted, some on foot, led by a
richly-dressed, haughty-looking, burly man, riding a mule.

So narrow was the street that either Paulus would have had to go
back as far as the Tower of Marianne, or the richly-dressed and
haughty-looking man about one-quarter of the distance, to the
bridge between the street of the Cheesemongers and the court of the
Gentiles. Paulus, always full of courtesy, amenity, and sweetness,
was in the very act of turning his small Tauric horse, when the burly
man in rich dress, who led the opposing file, called out, "Back! low
people! Back, and let Caiaphas go by!"

"And who is Caiaphas?" demanded Paulus, instantly facing round again
and barring the way.

"The high-priest of Jerusalem," was the answer, thundered forth in
rude and minatory tones.

"I respect," said Paulus, "and even revere that holy appellation;
but he who uses it at this moment, for some present purpose, has
flung against me, who am a Roman general, the mandate of _Back, low
people_. Where are the low people? I do not believe that I am a low
person. Where, then, are the low people?"

"Come on," cried the imperious voice of Caiaphas.

He himself, being the file leader, began then to move forward, till
he came immediately in front of the traveller who had so courteously
spoken to him.

"If you want," said Paulus, "to pass me at once, I must get into the
ditch, or throw you into it; which do you prefer?"

"I prefer," quoth Caiaphas, "that you should throw me into the
ditch, if you either dare or can."

"Sir," says Paulus, "I am sorry for the sentiment you express, or at
least imply. But I will stand up against your challenge of throwing
you into the ditch, because I both could do it, and dare do it, as
a Roman soldier, only that there is ONE among you who has come to
settle all our disputes, and who has a divine right to do so. For
his sake I would rather be thrown into that drain by you--soldier,
officer, general, and Roman as I am--than throw you into it."

"Let me pass," cried Caiaphas, purple with rage.

Paulus, whose behavior at Lake Benacus against the Germans, and
previously at Formiæ, and afterward in the terrible Calpurnian House
on the Viminal Hill, the reader remembers, made no answer, but,
riding back to the Tower of Marianne, allowed the high-priest and
his followers there to pass him; which they did with every token of
scorn and act of contumely that the brief and sudden circumstances
allowed. Caiaphas thus passed on to his country-house at the
southwest-by-south of Jerusalem, where he usually spent the night.

Paulus then put his pony into a gallop, and soon reached the bridge
across the Tyropæon into the courtyard of the Temple, commonly called
the courtyard of the Gentiles. Such was the nervous excitement caused
by his recent act of purely voluntary, gratuitous, and deliberate
self-humiliation, that he laughed aloud as he rode through the Temple
yard, coasting the western "cloisters," and so reaching Fort Antonio.

There his servant, the Roman legionary, who had before met him at the
golden gate, and whose name was Marcus, was awaiting him.


That night the palace of Herod the tetrarch resounded with music,
and all the persons of rank or distinction in Jerusalem were among
the guests. The entertainment would have been remembered for years
on account of its brilliancy; it was destined to be remembered for
all ages, even till the day of doom, on account of its catastrophe,
chronicled in the books of God, and graven in the horror of men.

Paulus, unusually grave, because experiencing unwonted sensations,
and anxious calmly to analyze them, was assailed for the first time
in his life by a feeling of nervous irritability, which originated
(though he knew it not) in his having suppressed the natural desire
to chastise the insolence of Caiaphas that morning. He sat abstracted
and silent, not far from the semi-royal chair of Herod the tetrarch.
His magnificent dress, well-earned military fame, and manly and grave
beauty (never seen to greater advantage than at that period of life,
though the gloss of youth was past) had drawn toward him during the
evening an unusual amount of attention, of which he was unconscious,
and to which he would have been indifferent.

The "beauty of the evening," as she was called (for in those days
they used terms like those which we moderns use, to express our
infatuation for the gleams of prettiness which are quenched almost
as soon as they are seen), had repeatedly endeavored to attract his
attention. She was royal; she was an unrivalled dancer. Herod, who
began to feel dull, begged her to favor the company with a dance,
_sola_. Thereupon the daughter of Herodias looked at Paulus, to whom
her previous blandishments had been addressed in vain (he was well
known to be unmarried), and heaved a fiery sigh. The mere noise of
it ought to have awakened his notice, and yet failed to accomplish
even that small result. Had it succeeded, he was exactly the person
to have regarded this woman with a feeling akin to that which, some
two-and-twenty years before, she herself (or was it Herodias? they
age fast in the East) had waked in the bosom of his sister under the
veranda in the bower of Crispus's inn, leading out of the fine old
Latian garden near the banks of the Liris.

She proceeded to execute her _ballet_, her _pas seul_, her dance of
immortal shame and fatal infamy. Cries of delight arose. The creature
grew frantic. The court of Herod fell into two parties. One party
proclaimed the performance a perfection of elegance and spirit. The
other party said not a word, but glances of painful feeling passed
among them. The clamorous eulogists formed the large majority. In the
silent minority was numbered Paulus, who never in his life had felt
such grave disgust or such settled indignation. He thought of his
pure and innocent Esther--alas, _not_ his! He thought that, had it
been his sister Agatha who thus outraged every rudimentary principle
of the tacit social compact, he could almost find it in his heart to
relieve the earth of her.

Thus pondering, his glance fell upon Herod the tetrarch. The tetrarch
seemed to have become delirious. He was laughing, and crying, and
slobbering, and clapping his hands, and rolling his head, and
rocking his body on the great state cushion under the canopy, where
he "sat at table." While Paulus was contemplating him in wonder and
shame, the wretched dancer came to an end of her bounds. Indecency,
scientifically accidental, had been the one simple principle of the
exhibition. Herod called the practised female before him, and, in the
hearing of several, bade her demand from him any reward she pleased,
and declared upon oath that he would grant her demand. Paulus heard
the answer. After consulting apart with her mother, she reapproached
the tetrarch, and, with a flushed face, said that she desired the
head of a prisoner upon a dish.

"What prisoner?"

"John," said she.

Paulus gazed at the miserable tetrarch, "the quarter of a king," not
from the height of his rank as a Roman general, but from the still
greater height which God had given him as one of the first, one of
the earliest of European gentlemen. He knew not then who John was.
But that any fellow-creature in prison, not otherwise to be put to
death, should have his head hewn off and placed upon a dish, because
a woman had tossed her limbs to and fro in a style which pleased a
tetrarch while it disgraced human society, appeared to Paulus to be
less than reasonable. What he had said, the tetrarch had said upon

A little confusion, a slight murmuring and whispering ensued, but
the courtly music soon recommenced. Paulus could not afterward tell
how long it was before the most awful scene he had ever witnessed

A menial entered, bearing, on a large dish, a freshly-severed human
head, bleeding at the neck.

"It was not a jest, then," said Paulus, in a low voice to his next
neighbor, a very old man, whose face he remembered, but whose name he
had all the evening been trying in vain to recall--"it was not a base
jest, dictated by the hideous taste of worse than barbarians!"

"Truly," replied the aged man, "these Jews are worse than any
barbarians I ever saw, and I have seen most of them."

Paulus recognized at these words the geographer Strabo, formerly his
companion at the court of Augustus.

At a sign from Herod, the menial carrying the dish now approached the
daughter of Herodias, and presented to her the bleeding and sacred
head. She, in turn, took the dish and offered it to Herodias, who
herself bore it out of the room with a kind of snorting laugh.

Paulus rose slowly and deliberately from his place near the tetrarch,
at whom he steadily looked.

"This, then," said he, "is the entertainment to which you have
invited a Roman legatus. You are vexed, people say, that Pilate,
the Roman governor of this city, could not honor your birthday by
his presence in your palace. Pilate's local authority is of course
greater than mine, for I have none at all; but his real, permanent
rank, and your own real, permanent importance, are contemptible by
the side of those which a Roman soldier of such a family as the
Æmilian has gained on the field of battle; and it was a high honor to
yourself to succeed in bringing me hither. And now, while disgracing
your own house, you have insulted your guests. What is the name of
the man you have murdered because a woman dances like a goat? What is
his name?"

The tetrarch, astonished and over-awed, replied with a bewildered

"What authority to rebuke me, because I took my brother's wife, had

"John who?" asked Paulus, who from the outset had been struck by the

"He who was styled John the Baptist," said the tetrarch.

The words of another John rang in Paulus's memory; and he exclaimed:

"What! John the Baptist? John the Baptist, yea, and more than a
prophet--John the Angel of God! Is this he whom you have slain?"

"What had he to say to my marriage?" answered Herod, through whose
purple face a livid under-color was penetrating to the surface.

"Why," exclaimed Paulus, "the holy books of your own nation forbade
such a marriage, and John could not hear of it without rebuking you.
I, although a Gentile, honor those books. Out upon you, impious
assassin! I ask not, where was your mercy, or where your justice; but
where has been your sense of common decency, this evening? I shall
never cease to lament that I once stood under your roof. My presence
was meant as an honor to you; but it has proved a disgrace to myself."

Taking his scarlet cloak, he flung it over his shoulders, and left
the hall amid profound silence--a silence which continued after he
had quitted the courtyard, and begun to descend from Mount Zion
to the labyrinth of streets branching downward to the Tyropæon
Valley. In one of these, under a bright moonlight, he met again that
same beautiful youth whom he had seen in the morning when he was
descending the Mount of Olives.

"Stay!" cried Paulus, suddenly stopping in his own rapid walk. "Said
you not, this morning, that he who was called 'John the Baptist' was
more than a prophet? Herod has this moment slain him, to please a
vile woman. The tyrant has sent the holy prophet out of life."

"Nay; into life," replied the other John; "but, brave and noble
Roman--for I see you are both--the Master, who knows all things, and
rejoices that John has begun to live, grieves as well."

"Why grieves?" inquired Paulus, musing.

"Because," replied the other John, "the Master is verily man, no less
than _He is Who is_."

"What, then, is he?" asked Paulus, with a look of awe.

"He is the Christ, whom John the Prophet, now a witness unto death,
had announced."

Hereupon the two went their several ways, Paulus muttering: "_The
second name in the acrostic._"

But, really, he had ceased to care for minor coincidences in a huge
mass of convergent proofs all gaining possession of his soul, and
taking alike his will and his understanding captive--captive to the
irresistible truth and the equally irresistible beauty of the message
which had come. The immortality of which he was an heir, the reader
has seen him long since believing; and long since also rejecting both
the pantheism of the philosophers and the polytheism of the vulgar.
And here was a great new doctrine authoritatively establishing all
that the genius of Dionysius had guessed, and infinitely more;
truths awful and mysterious, which offered immediate peace to that
stupendous universe that is within a man, while assuring him of
power, joy, and honor to begin some day, and nevermore to end.

He had not been in Jerusalem long before he learnt much of the new
teaching. He had secured for his mother, close to the Fortress
Antonio, where he himself lodged, a small house belonging to a widow
who, since her husband's death, had fallen into comparative poverty.
The Lady Aglais, attended still by her old freedwoman, Melena, was
allowed the best and coolest part of this house entirely to herself,
with a staircase of their own leading to the flat roof. There they
passed much of their evenings after the sun had set, looking at the
thickly-built opposite hills, the mansions on Zion, or down into
the Tyropæon from which the hum of a great multitude came, mellowed
by the distance, and disposing the mind to contemplation. Many
wonderful things, from time to time, they heard of him who was now
teaching--things some of which, nay, the greater part of which, as
one of the sacred writers expressly declares, never were recorded,
and the whole of which could not be contained in the libraries of
the world. It may well, then, be imagined in what a situation Paulus
and his mother were--having no interest in disbelieving, no chair
of Moses to abdicate, no doctorial authority or pharisaic prestige
inciting them to impugn the known truth--in what a situation they
were, for accepting or declining what was then offered.

After twenty years of separation, a trace of Esther had been
recovered by Paulus. One evening, his mother was on the flat roof of
her residence awaiting his customary visit, when her son appeared and
alarmed her by his pallor. He had seen Esther on foot in a group of
women at the Gate of Gennath, going forth into the country, as he was
entering the city on horseback. Aglais smiled sadly, saying: "Alas!
dear son, is that all? I long since knew that she still lived; but I
would not disturb your mind by the useless intelligence."

"Scarcely altered," murmured Paulus abstractedly, "while I am quite
old. Yes, she must now be past thirty; yes, near thirty-five."

"As to that," said the mother, "you are thirty-eight, and scarcely
seem twenty-nine. Old Rebecca, the mistress of this house, who lives
still in the ground-story, as you are aware, has told me much about

"She is married, I suppose," said Paulus, with a look of anxiety.

"No," replied Aglais. "She has had innumerable offers (spite of her
comparative poverty), and has declined them all."

"But what boots it?" exclaimed Paulus.

"Old Josiah Maccabeus is dead," said Aglais. And here mother and son
dropped the subject by mutual consent.

The dreadful days, closed by the most awful day the world has
known--closed by the ever-memorable and tremendous Friday--came and
went. On the Saturday, Paulus met Longinus, who said he had been
on Mount Calvary that afternoon, and that he, Longinus, was now
and ever henceforth a disciple of him who had been crucified. The
Sunday came, and brought with it a prodigious rumor, which, instead
of dying out, found additional believers every day. The disciples,
most of whom had shown themselves as timid as they were known to be
ignorant, now seemed transformed into new characters, who loudly
affirmed that their Master had risen from the dead by his own power;
and they were ready to face every torment and all terrors calmly in
the maintenance of this fact, which they predicted would be received
and acknowledged by the whole world. And, indeed, it was no longer
a rumor, but a truth, attested by the only witnesses who could by
possibility know anything about it, either for or against; and whose
earthly interests it would have been to deny it, even while they knew
it to be true--witnesses who, if they knew it to be false--and they
certainly knew whether it were true or false (this much was granted,
_and is still granted_, by all their opponents)--could have had no
motive, either earthly or unearthly, for feigning that they believed

So pregnant is this simple reasoning, that a man might ponder it
and study it for a whole month, and yet find fresh strength and an
ever-increasing weight in the considerations which it suggests; not
even find a flaw if he made the one month twelve. Paulus's mind
was determined, and so was his mother's. The son sought that same
beautiful youth whom he had seen twice before; told him the new
desire, the new belief, which had made his mother's and his own heart
glad; and by him they were baptized as Christians, disciples of him
that had been crucified--by that fair youth, I say, who was to be
known for ever among men as "Saint John the Evangelist."

"After all, mother," said Paulus, when they were returning together
to her dwelling, "it is not so very mysterious; I mean that
difficulty about the lowliness of our divine Teacher's chosen place
among men. Because, see you, if the builder of those glorious stars
and that sublime firmament was to come at all amongst us, he would
be certain to take the lowest and smallest lot, lest we should deem
there was any difference as before him. We are all low and small
together--the earth itself, I am told, being but a sort of Bethlehem
among the stars; but, anyhow, we are but mites and emmets on a blade
of grass in his sight, and had he taken a great relative place amidst
us, it might countenance the lie and the delusion of our silly pride.
That part of it is to me not so mysterious, although I don't wonder
at the Jewish notion that their Messiah was to have been a great
conquering prince--that is probably what the Antichrist will be. It
would suit the blindness of vanity better."

As he spoke the words, they heard a quick footstep behind, and
were overtaken by Longinus, who, saying he had just heard of their
reception, greeted them with every demonstration of rapturous

"Now," pursued he, walking by their side, "good for evil to Master
Paulus's family. Forgive the apparent intrusion, dear general, if I
mention that I happen to know the story of your youthful love, as all
the world have witnessed your fidelity to an unavailing attachment.
But learn from poor Longinus that Esther Maccabeus is now a disciple;
and the Christian maiden can wed, under a still holier law, the brave
Gentile whom the Jewess was bound to refuse."

With this he turned into an alley under the court of the Gentiles,
and disappeared.


One still and sultry evening, the decline of a brooding day in
spring, two persons were sitting on the flat roof of a house in
Jerusalem. They were the Athenian Lady Aglais and her son, the
comparatively youthful Roman General Paulus--he who has so largely
figured, even from his gallant boyhood, in the events and affairs we
have been recording.

It was the 30th of March, and a Wednesday--the first of all
Easter-Wednesdays--the first in that new and perpetual calendar by
which, throughout the fairest regions of earth, among all enlightened
nations and civilized races, till the crash of doom, time was for
evermore to be measured.

A servant, carrying a skin-cask slung over his shoulders, was
watering the flowers, faint with thirst; and these, arranged in
fanciful vases, which made an artificial garden of the housetop,
shook their drooping heads under the fresh and grateful shower, and
seemed to answer it with smiles of a thousand blooms and rays. As
the man stole softly to and fro about the roof, now approaching the
lady and her son, now receding, he seemed, in spite of the foreign
language in which they spoke, and in spite of the low and hushed tone
they observed, to follow, with intense and breathless though stealthy
excitement, the tenor of their conversation; while his figure, in the
last evening rays, cast a long, shifting shadow that streaked with
black the yellow flood to its farthest limit, climbed the parapet,
broke upon its grail-work of balusters, and then was beheaded, for it
flung off its head out of sight into empty space, leaving the calm
bright air unblotted above the stone guard-wall.

An occurrence took place of which (that Wednesday evening) Paulus
and his mother were witnesses--an occurrence in dumb show, the
significance of which they were destined, only after several
years, to learn; yet the incident was so singular, so strange, so
impressive--it was such a picture in such a quarter--that when,
long subsequently, the explanation came, they seemed to be still
actually assisting in person at the scene which, while they beheld
it, they had no means of understanding. We are going, in one moment,
to relate that occurrence; and we must here request the reader to
grant us his full belief and his confidence when we remark that, in
comparison of his amusement, his profit, and that mental gallery of
pictures to be his henceforth (which we try to give to all who honor
these pages with a perusal), we feel the sincerest contempt for any
mere display of scholarship or learning. For this reason, and this
reason alone, and certainly from no scantiness, and still less from
any lack of authorities, we shall almost disencumber our narrative
of references to the ancient writers and recondite documents (such
as the _Astronomic Formula of Philip Aridæus_) which establish as
positive historical facts the more striking of the occurrences still
to be mentioned. In one instance the intelligent reader will discern
that the most sacred of all evidence supports what we have to record.
But if we were to show with what nicety of precision much profane,
yet respectable and even venerable, testimony accords with the
passage here meant in the Acts of the Apostles, and how abundantly
such testimony corroborates and supplements the inspired account,
this book would cease to be what it aims at being, and would become a
historical treatise of the German criticism school.[3]

Satisfied, therefore, with the footnotes below (at which the reader
will oblige us by just glancing, and which are appended, in perfect
good faith and simple honesty, as implying no more than we could
make good), we will avoid boring those who have a right to, and who
expect, the conclusion of a straightforward story at our hands.[4]

Paulus and his mother were conversing, as has been described,
in Greek, while the serving-man, despite his ignorance of that
language, had the air of half-following the drift of what they said,
and of catching the main purport of it with wonder and awe. There
was, indeed, at that moment, only one topic in all Jerusalem. He
who, less than a week ago, had been crucified, and with the time
of whose coming (as much as with all the particulars of his life,
teaching, works, and death) the old prophecies were found more and
more startlingly, circumstantially, unmistakably, the more they were
studied, questioned, and canvassed, to agree, point by point, down
to what would seem even trivial details (indicated as if merely to
emphasize the incommunicable identity of the Messiah)--he had himself
stated, distinctly and publicly, that, by his own power, he would
rise from the dead in three days; that, in three days after, he
should be "lifted up" and be made "a spectacle for men and angels;"
in three days after they should have destroyed it, he would rebuild
the holy temple of his body. And now these rumors--these minute,
these positive accounts--had he, then, really reappeared, according
to his word and promise? Was it possible? Was it the fact?

Many had, on the previous Friday night, stated that, of a verity,
they had seen their deceased parents and relatives. Again, on the
Saturday, many declared, amid awe-stricken groups of listeners, that
the unknown land had sent them its visitants, in various places,
under various aspects, to startle the guilty city; which, after
killing the King's messenger-servants, had just killed the King's
Son, who had come, as had been a thousand times announced, in the
very fulness, the exact maturity of days, to deliver the final
embassy to men.

On that Wednesday evening, there was, in truth, but one theme of
conversation, one subject of thought, all through Jerusalem, and
already far beyond Jerusalem; among poor and rich, high and low,
natives and strangers, the robbers of the Syrian hills and Arabian
deserts, the dwellers in the city, the travellers on the roads and at
the inns, among Sadducees, Pharisees, Romans, Greeks, Egyptians, and

No wonder, then, if the humble serving-man, as he watered the
flowers, penetrated the drift of the mother's and the son's
discussion. For him and such as he was the message. The poor Syrian
had once, for a while, rendered occasional out-door service to the
family of Lazarus; and he had known Lazarus in three states--had
known him living, dead, again alive. After days of death in that
fierce climate, where inanimate flesh putrefies fast, he had beheld
Lazarus, at the call of one upon whose lineaments he gazed, at the
time, with unconscious adoration, come forth, not merely from death,
but from incipient decomposition, back into balmy life--back to the
"vita serena."

Now, was he who, in that instance, had allowed it to be perceived and
felt that he was really the Lord of life, whom death and rottenness
were manifestly unable to disobey--was he himself, as his disciples
declared he was, living again among them, since the morning of
the last Sunday (the _feria prima_), according to his own public
prediction and distinct promise? Was he not? Was he?

Aglais and Paulus had heard more than one circumstantial account of
this, his reappearance, according to that, his promise. By this one
and by the other he had been met. They had gazed upon him, spoken
to him, heard him in reply, touched him, in such a place, on that
bridge, that road, in such a garden. He had walked conversing with
them, had sat with them at meat, had broken bread with them, as was
his wont, had then vanished.

Where was his body, over which the Pharisees had set their guard
of soldiers? Not in the grave. No; but where? Had the Pharisees
accounted for it? Could they tell what had become of it? Could the
soldiers? The disciples could, and they did.

"Mother," said Paulus, "do you know what those soldiers say? One of
them once served in a legion which I commanded. Do you know what they

"You mean," replied Aglais, "about their inability to hinder the
abstraction. What?"

"That an act to which they are the only witnesses could not be
stopped by them, because of it they were not witnesses, being buried
in sleep."

"Consistent," said the Greek lady. "Yes; but a much weightier fact
is that expectation of the disciples, to prevent the realization of
which the Pharisees set their guard."

"What expectation? And why weightier? What can be weightier?" asked
the general.

"That their Master would keep his word, and fulfil his prediction of
rising from the tomb on the third day. If they saw him again alive
within the promised time, they and the people would worship him as
God; but, if the Pharisees could show the body on the third day, or
could even account for it, that belief would die."

"Clearly," answered Paulus, "the disciples expected to see him again
on and after the third day, waiting for his word to be fulfilled."

"Now, Paulus," pursued Aglais, "suppose this expectation of theirs
not fulfilled; suppose that not one of those waiting for his word was
conscious of any reason for believing it to have been realized--"

Paulus interrupted his mother.

"There is only one possible way in which they could be induced to
believe it realized--namely, that he should be seen again alive."

"Quite so," she resumed. "But suppose that he has not been seen;
suppose that not one of those who expected to see him again has thus
seen him. How would they then feel on this Wednesday morning?"

"They would feel that the expectation which he had solemnly and
publicly authorized them to depend upon was idle and vain; they would
not and could not by any possibility feel that they had, in this
great particular, reason to consider his word to have been kept. They
would be discouraged to the very last degree. They would, of course,
hide themselves. I would do so myself, and I believe I am no coward.
In short, they would feel no reason to hope in his protection, or to
expect that his other and still mightier promises concerning their
own future eternal life would by him be realized. They would not
incur any inconvenience, or brave any danger, or take any trouble, or
risk any loss--"

It was Aglais's turn to interrupt.

"Now, is this their attitude?" she inquired.

"The reverse, the opposite, the contradictory of their attitude."

The lady continued in a low tone: "If, expecting, upon his own
assurance, that some among them should see him," she asked, "not one
of them had seen him, would they, at this moment, have any motive
for bringing upon themselves the tortures, insults, shame, and death
which he underwent, and all this in order to induce others to believe
apparitions and a resurrection which in their own hearts they did
not themselves believe, and for believing which they were, moreover,
conscious that they possessed no ground, no reason, no pretext?"

A sweet, ringing, vibrant voice at their side here said:

"And in order by deliberate circumstantial lying, of an awful and
blasphemous kind, to please the God of truth; and to compensate
themselves by his protection above, in a future life, for the
present and immediate destruction which they are incurring among the
Pharisees and the men of power here below!"

Looking round, they beheld Esther of the Maccabees.

Never had she seemed to Paulus so beautiful; but there was a marked
change; for, however intellectual had always been the translucent
purity of that oval brow, through which, as through a lamp of
alabaster, shone the vivid mind within, there was now the mysterious
effluence of "that Essence increate" who had come to abide in, and
had strangely transfigured the appearance of, the faithful-souled
Hebrew maiden. And when Paulus, after she had embraced his mother,
abstractedly took her hand, his heart was lifted upward with a
species of wonder; and, without adverting to it, he was asking
himself to what marvellous kingdom she had become heiress, in what
supernal court of everlasting joy and unassailable prerogatives
was this beautiful creature destined to live, loving and beloved,
adorning almost the glories which she reflected, dispensed, and
multiplied, as if from some holy, mysterious, and spiritual mirror.

"O dear Lady Aglais! and O legatus!" she said, with a gesture amazing
in its expressiveness and pathetic fervor (she had brought the
finger-tips of both hands together under the chin, and then lowered
them with the palms outward toward her hearers, and so she stood
in an attitude of the utmost grace and dignity combined, like one
appealing to the candor and good faith of others)--"O dear friends!
I was just now passing through my own garden on my way hither, when,
under the fig-tree (where he used to sit poring over the holy books
of our people), I beheld my dead father, but standing, and not in
his old accustomed wicker-chair; and he gazed upon me with large,
earnest eyes; and as he stood, his head almost touched the leaves
of that hollow, embowering fig-tree; and he was pale, so extremely
pale as he was never during life; and he called me: 'Esther,' he
said, and his voice sounded far away. Ah! my God, from what a huge
distance it seemed to come! And lo! lady, and thou, legatus, he said
these words to me: 'I have been in the vast, dim house, and have seen
our Father Abraham; and I have seen our great Lawgiver, and all our
prophets, excepting only two, Elias and Enoch; and I asked, Where
were they? And in all the dim, vast house none answered me, but the
forefinger was pressed to the silent lips of those who there waited.
And, suddenly, there was the noise of innumerable armies coming
swiftly from afar--but your ears are mortal and your eyes veiled,
and were I even permitted to tell you that which shook, beyond this
little world, the large world and its eternal thrones, your mind
would not at present understand my words. Enough, Esther, that I have
been allowed to renew to you, in my own behalf, and that of others
among our people who have been called before you to the vast, dim,
silent city, the exhortation which our ancestor Judas Maccabeus
sent with offerings to the high-priest; namely, that you will pray
for our spirits. Our innumerable company has just been thinned; the
glorious Judas Maccabeus, our ancestor, and that holy mother of the
Maccabees, and almost all who were waiting with me in the dim, vast
kingdom of expectation, have gone for ever; and I, and a few, have
been commanded to expect yet a little time; until the incense of holy
prayer shall have further gone up in the presence of the Great White

Esther paused, her eyes dilated, and stood a moment with the hands
again brought together; and so perfect a figure of truthfulness,
and such an impersonation of sincerity, she looked, that the
Jewish servant, who understood not a word of the tongue in which
she addressed the Greek lady and her son, gazed at her; his work
suspended, his cask held high in air, with all the marks of one who
heard and accepted some sacred and unquestionable revelation.

"Go on, dear child," said Aglais. "What passed further?"

"I asked the pale image what this meant, that he should term the
condition in which he is waiting and has yet to wait a little
time--that vast, dim condition--'a house,' 'a city,' and 'a kingdom.'
'The dwellers,' he replied, 'are watched in that kingdom by silent
protectors, mighty and beautiful, whose faces, full of a severe, sad
love, are the torches and the only light those dwellers ever see; and
the vast, dim city has a sunless and a starless sky for its roof,
under which they wait; and that sky is the ceiling which echoes the
sighs of their pain; and thus to them it has been a kingdom, and a
city, and a house; and, until the ninth hour of last Friday, they
were numerous as the nations of men!' 'And at the ninth hour of that
day, I asked, 'O my father! what occurred when so many departed, and
you and a small number were left still to wait?' And he gazed at me
for an instant with a wan and wistful look; then, lo! I saw nothing
where he had been standing under the fig-tree.

"But it was at the ninth hour of the last Friday the Master had
expired by the side of the penitent who was that very day to be with
him in paradise!" cried Aglais.

At Esther's arrival, Paulus and Aglais had both risen from a kind of
semicircular wicker settle which occupied one of the corners of the
roof; and they now, all three, when Esther had finished her strange,
brief narrative, leaned silent and musing against the parapet;
where, under the shade of a clustering rhododendron, they had a view
westward (drawn, as people are who ponder, toward whatever object is
most luminous) of the towers and palaces and pinnacles of the Holy
City, then reddening in the sunset. One word respecting the spot
where the little group was thus collected, and (among modern, and
especially western, nations) concerning its peculiar scenic effects.

The roof was an irregular parallelogram, protected on all sides
by a low, thick parapet, at two opposite corners of which, in the
diagonals, were two doors of masonry, bolted with massive round bars
of iron, or left open; thus excluding or admitting communication with
the contiguous houses. The writer, many years ago, saw such parapet
doors on the house-tops of modern Algiers; nor was the arrangement
unknown in the more famous Eastern cities of antiquity, where the
roofs glowed with plants in vases. When, on some public occasion,
the passages were opened, the richer inhabitants, far above the
noise, dust, squalor, sultriness, and comparative darkness of the
narrow and noisome streets, could stroll and lounge for miles, in
mid-air, among flowers; could cross even flying and embowered bridges
(of which a privileged number possessed the keys, like those who have
keys to the gardens of our squares); and so Dives, unseen of Lazarus,
but seeing far down all things little and supine, could wander
through parterres of bloom, and perfumed alleys, and shrubberies of
enchantment, with effects of sunlight sprinkled, so to speak, with
coolness and with shadows, soothed out of the noonday fierceness
into tints various and tender; unsoiled of the stains and pains that
stained and pained the poor sordid world below; until the hearts
of those who thus promenaded amid circumstances of such delicious
refinement and luxury, bearing and hearing news, and exchanging
civilities, were "lifted up," and became even like to the heart of
Nabuchodonosor the king. Sometimes the pecten-beaten dulcimer, or
the fingered lyre of six strings, made long-forgotten airs of music
beguile the declining day, and linger for hours longer, ravishing the
night under the stars of the Syrian sky. Such the scene.

But none of the roof-doors were open that Wednesday evening.
Something ailed the Holy City. Out of the hushed heavens, mysteries
and a stern doom were brooding over Jerusalem. Already the fermenting
germ of those dreadful factions which were to tear to pieces, with
intestine rage, the whole Jewish body, while the city was writhing
in the vain death-struggle against Titus, a few years later, had
begun to make itself sensible to the observant. A fierce hatred of
the Romans and an insane eagerness to re-establish the old Jewish
independence had taken possession of certain youthful fanatics; and
"possessed" indeed they seemed. On the one side, the Roman officers
of the garrison, from Pilate down, had received anonymous warnings,
in the wildest style, requiring them to withdraw from Jerusalem
within a given time, or they should be all executed in the streets,
as opportunity might occur; on the other, the prefect of Syria had
been earnestly requested by Pilate to strengthen the garrison; while
in the city itself the soldiers were strictly admonished to keep
to their quarters, to avoid late hours, and to hold no intercourse
when off duty with the inhabitants. Leaves of absence were stopped.
A few legionaries had been already murdered in the neighborhood
of wine-shops, in the small winding alleys, and in places of evil
repute, and no efforts succeeded in identifying the perpetrators.

But these were only the feeble and evanescent symptoms, destined to
disappear and reappear, of a political and social phase which was not
to become the predominant situation until another situation should
have exhausted its first fury. This, the first, was to be the war
of the Synagogue against the disciples of the Messiah, whom those
disciples went about declaring to have risen from the tomb, according
to his distinct promise; whom they went about declaring to have been
already seen, and heard, and touched by themselves, again and again.

No wonder, then, if Aglais and Paulus and Esther had discussed in
hushed tones and in Greek the wonders and various portents attendant
upon the supreme and central fact--that Resurrection of the Master
which absorbed their whole hearts and minds, leaving no room for
any other interest therein at this tremendous epoch--the grand
turning-point of human destinies and of our whole planet's history.

From the parapet against which they were leaning, they now gazed in
silence upon the splendid scenes below and opposite. Across a maze of
narrow streets they saw the mansions, the pinnacles, the towers, and
that great supernal "Temple of God," all so soon to perish violently,
in a general, a complete, and an irreversible destruction. They saw
the play of light and shadow upon one long tree-lined side of Herod's
proud palace; they saw the ripple of quivering leaves reflected
upon the white colonnades (and their tessellated, shady floors) of
Pilate's fatal house; and, while revolving thoughts and questions of
unspeakable importance and solemnity, they all three suddenly beheld
an acted picture, a passing scene, voiceless to them, yet impressive,
which blent itself into their recollection of other scenes, never to
be effaced from the memory of mankind, which, not a week before, had
been under those very colonnades enacted.

A woman in the attire of a Roman matron came quickly forth upon the
first-story balcony in the house of Pontius Pilate, and, leaning over
the rail, waved her hand with an imperative gesture to some one below.

She was followed into the balcony more slowly by a man wearing the
grand costume of an ancient Roman military governor, who held in his
hand a sealed and folded letter, tied with the usual silk string.
The man was evidently Pilate himself. He looked long and gloomily at
the letter, and seemed to be plunged in thought. He even let what he
carried fall at his feet, and did not appear to be aware of this
for some moments. It was the woman who picked up the letter, and
gave it back into his hand. Then Pilate leaned over the balustrade,
in his turn, and spoke to a man below in military costume, who was
mounted on a powerful horse, and seemed to be equipped for travel.
The soldier saluted, looking up, when he was addressed, and saluted
again when his superior had ceased speaking; whereupon Pilate dropped
the letter (a large and heavy dispatch), which the soldier caught and
secured under his belt, inside the tunic, or "sagum," immediately
afterward riding away at a canter. Our three friends saw Pilate, his
head bent and his eyes on the ground, slowly and ponderingly re-enter
the house by a screen-door, the same through which he had come out
upon the balcony; but the lady, clasping her hands a little in front
of her forehead, gazed into the heavens with a face ashy pale, and
with eyes from which tears were streaming.

It is a well-known and for centuries universally received tradition,
besides being a fact recorded by one most respectable and trustworthy
author (who, besides, was not a Christian, but a Jew)--a fact
without which the allusions to it in various ancient authorities,
together with Phlegon the Chronologer's subsequent recital of
Tiberius's extraordinary conduct, would be unintelligible and
unaccountable--that Pontius Pilate, harassed by the unappeasable
reproaches of his wife, and stung by something within his own bosom
which allowed him peace no more, until (sleepless, and unable again,
unable for ever, to sleep) he bequeathed, some years afterward, by
an awful death, whether intentional or not, his name to a great
Alpine hill, a hill not thenceforth named, or to be named, while
time and mountains last, by any name but "Pilate's" among distant
and then barbarous nations--it is well known, I say, that Pilate
sent to Tiberius Cæsar a long and minute relation concerning the
life, the death, and the disappearance from the tomb of him whom
he had scourged, and whom the Jews had crucified, together with a
notice of the supernatural wonders wrought by him; his previous
notorious announcement of his own intended resurrection; the directly
consequent and equally notorious precautions taken to hinder it;
the disappearance, in spite of this, of the body; the testimony of
the soldiers that they were witnesses _to_ the abstraction, which
they were unable to stop, because they alleged that they were not
witnesses _of_ it (being buried in sleep); that, in fact, their
testimony proved nothing save the body's disappearance from the
massively-sealed tomb (which would have stood a small siege); the
failure of the Synagogue to account for the body; the account of it
by the disciples; and, finally, the admissions of the Pharisees that
all their prophets had become unexplainable if this was not their
Messiah, yet that such a conclusion was to them impossible, because
he was to have been their king, and a conquering king, and to have
founded an empire extending through all nations and tongues; their
stern and ever-growing disaffection to the Roman rule; the universal
amazement, excitement, and anxiety arising from the circumstance
that, while neither the Synagogue nor the soldiers could throw any
light upon what had become of the body, the disciples of him who
had predicted his own resurrection explained the event openly and
fearlessly by stating that they had again and again met him since the
previous _feria prima_; that they cared for no protection except his
alone; that the dead was once more among them--living, and henceforth
immortal--their Master and God; the ultimate Judge of this world, and
the foretold Founder of an everlasting kingdom! Pilate added several
strange and astounding particulars.

This, in a general way, is known; and it is likewise known that
Tiberius Cæsar was so deeply impressed by the dispatch of the
Jerusalem governor, arriving in his hands about the same moment, as
we shall find in the next chapter, when a strange incident (_narrated
by Plutarch_) took place, that he suddenly convened the senate in a
formal indiction, _and proposed to them to raise a temple to Christ,
and to rank him solemnly among the gods of the empire_! But not such
nor of such acknowledgments was to be the kingdom of the "jealous"
and the only God.

Aglais, Paulus, and Esther had assisted at a memorable pantomime.
They had beheld the mounted soldier who rode with a memorable letter
to the sea-coast; they had seen the vain effort of him who had
offered the people a choice between Barabbas and "the desired of
nations," to call the great of the earth into his perplexities, to
quiet his awakened conscience, to turn aside from the dread warnings
whispered to his soul, to lull--by futile means--an all too late


In our last chapter, Paulus and his Athenian mother had obtained,
through Esther's recital of her waking dream or vision, one little
glimpse at that prison, that place of detention, which she had termed
(as she herself had heard it termed) "the dim, vast house," "the
vast, dim city," and the "dim, vast kingdom."

The vague notion she could give of that scene of immurement cannot
be expected to prove interesting to so large a number, as Mr.
Pickwick has cause to feel an interest in his glimpses of the "Fleet
Prison," once famous in London. But such interest as the former
house of detention commands is of a different kind, and those who
may experience it are a different class. Plato (as a great critic
observes) has been translated from age to age into some dozen great
modern languages, in order that he might be read by about a score of
persons in each generation. But that score are the little fountains
of the large rivers that bear to the sea the business of the world.
Few are directly taught by Kant, Sir William Hamilton, John Stuart
Mill, Cousin, or Balmez; but the millions are taught and think
through those whom _they_ have taught to think. Between the good and
evil originators or conservators of ideas, and the huge masses who
do all their mental processes at third hand, stand the interpreters;
and these listen with bent heads, while they hold trumpets which are
heard at the extremities of the earth.

Paulus lingered in Jerusalem. Weeks flew by. Spring passed into
summer; summer was passing into autumn; and still, from time to time,
as, in the evenings, mother and son sat among the flowers on the flat
roof, Esther would join them.

One night, she had hardly appeared, when Longinus the centurion
followed her, bearing a letter for Paulus, which, he said, had
just arrived at Fort Antonio, by the hands of an orderly, from the
governor. The letter was from Dionysius of Athens, now _l'un des
quarante_, a member of that great Areopagus of which the French
Academy is partly a modern image; and it was written immediately
after his return from a tour in Egypt, and a cruise through the
Ægean Sea, among the famous and beautiful Greek Islands, to resume
his duties as a teacher of philosophy and a professor of the higher
literature at Athens.

Paulus, after a word with his mother and Esther, desired Longinus
to favor them with his company. Sherbets and other refreshments
were brought. They all sat down on the semicircular wicker settle
at the corner of the roof, under the bower-like branches of the
large rhododendron; a small lamp was held for Paulus by the Jewish
serving-man, and Paulus read the letter aloud to that sympathetic
group. Extracts we will give, in the substance, concerning two
occurrences. The first, as the reader sees, the listening circle
learned from Dionysius; but _we_ have it in reality from Plutarch,
upon whose narrative Eusebius and many other weighty authorities and
grave historians have commented.

The captain and owner (for he was both) of the vessel in which Dion
sailed back from Egypt to Athens was an Egyptian of the name of
Thramnus (some call him Thamus). He said that a very weird thing had
happened to him in his immediately previous trip, which had been from
Greece to Italy. Dion was at the time at Heliopolis, in Egypt, with
his friend, the celebrated philosopher Apollophanes, who, though
(like Dion himself) only between twenty and thirty, had already (in
this also resembling Dion) obtained an almost world-wide fame for
eloquence, astronomical science, and general learning. When Thramnus
had neared the Echinades Islands, the wind fell, a sudden calm came,
and they had to drop anchor near Paxos. The night was sultry; every
one was on deck. Suddenly, from the lonely shore, a loud, strange
voice hailed the captain: "Thramnus!" it cried. None answered. Again,
louder than human, came the cry, "Thramnus!" Still none answered. For
the third time, "Thramnus!" was thundered from the lonely coast. Then
Thramnus himself called out: "Who hails? What is it?" Shrill and far
louder than before was the voice in reply: "When you reach the Lagoon
of Palus, announce then that the Great Pan is dead."

Thereupon, everything became silent, save the sluggish wash of the
waves under the vessel's side. A sort of council was at once held on
board; and first they took a note of the exact date and the hour.
They found that it was exactly the ninth hour of the sixth _jeria_,
or day, in the month of March, in the fourth year (according with
Phlegon's corrected and checked astronomical chronology) of the two
hundred and second Olympiad: in other words, this, being translated
into modern reckoning, means, six in the afternoon of Friday, the
25th of March, in the thirty-third year of our Lord.

Dion breaks off in his letter here to remark: "You will learn
presently what happened to me and to Apollophanes, and to the whole
renowned city of Heliopolis, at the same hour exactly of that same
day; and it is the coincidence between the two occurrences which has
fixed them so deeply in my mind."

Well; he proceeds to say that Thramnus, having asked his passengers,
who happened to be unusually numerous, whether they considered he
ought to obey this mysterious mandate, and having suggested himself
that, if, on their reaching Palus, or Pelodes, the wind held fair,
they should not lose time by stopping, but if the wind were there
to fail, and they were forced to halt at that place, then it might
be no harm to pay attention to the injunction, and see what came
of it, they were all unanimously of his opinion. Thereupon, as
though by some design, in the midst of a calm the breeze sprang up
freshly again, and they proceeded on their way. When they came to the
indicated spot, all were again on deck, unable to forget the strange
incident at Paxos; and, on a sudden, the wind fell, and they were

Thramnus, accordingly, after a pause, leaned over the ship's side,
and, as loudly as he could, shouted that _the great Pan was dead_. No
sooner had the words been pronounced than all round the vessel were
heard a world of sighs issuing from the deep and in the air, with
groans, and moanings, and long, wild, bitter wailings innumerable, as
though from vast unseen multitudes and a host of creatures plunged in
dismay and despair. Those on board were stricken with amazement and
terror. When they arrived in Rome, and were recounting the adventures
of their voyage, this wild story sent its rumor far and near, and
made such an impression that it reached the ears of Tiberius Cæsar,
who was then in the capital. He sent for Thramnus and several of the
passengers, as Plutarch records for us, particularly one, Epitherses,
who afterward, at Athens, with his son Æmilianus, and the traveller
Philip, used often to tell the story till his death. Tiberius, after
ascertaining the facts, summoned all the learned men who chanced then
to be in Rome, and requested their opinion.

Their opinion, which is extant, matters little. The holy fathers
who have investigated this occurrence are divided in their views.
It must be remembered that Plutarch relates another truly wonderful
fact universal in its range, as being notoriously simultaneous
with the singular local adventure above described--the sudden
silence of Delphi, and all the other famous pagan oracles, from the
8th day before the Kalends of April, in the 202d Olympiad, at six
P.M. At that hour, on that day (March 25, Friday, Anno Domini 33),
those oracles were stricken dumb, and nevermore returned answers
to their votaries. Coupling these phenomena together, in presence
of a thousand other portents, the holy fathers think, one party of
them, that the enemy of man and of God, and that enemy's legions,
were grieving and wailing, at the hour which Plutarch specifies
(the time of evening, and on the very day, when our Lord died), at
the redemption just then consummated; others, that the Almighty
permitted nature "to sigh through all her works," in sympathy with
the voluntary sufferings of her expiring Lord.

"Now, hearken," proceeded Dion in his letter, "to how I was occupied,
hundreds of miles away, in Heliopolis, at the time, the very hour of
the very day, when so wild and weird a response came from the powers
of the air and the recesses of the deep to those who shouted forth,
amid a calm on the silent breast of the Ægean Sea, that the great Pan
('the great All,' 'the universal Lord,' as you, my friends, are aware
it means in Greek) had died!

"I had gone out, shortly before the sixth hour on this sixth day,
to take a stroll in the tree-shaded suburbs of Heliopolis, with
my friend Apollophanes. Suddenly, the sun, in a horrible manner,
withdrew its light so effectually that we saw the stars. It was
the time of the Hebrew Pasch, and the season of the month when the
moon is at the full, and the period of an eclipse, or of the moon's
apparent conjunction with the sun, was well known not to be then;
independently of which, two unexampled and unnatural portents,
contrary to the laws of the heavenly bodies, occurred: first, the
moon entered the sun's disc _from the east_; secondly, when she
had covered the disc and touched the opposite diameter, instead of
passing onward, _she receded_, and resumed her former position in the
sky. All the astronomers will tell you that these two facts, and also
the time of the eclipse itself, are equally in positive deviation
from the otherwise everlasting laws of the sidereal or planetary
movements. I felt that either this universal frame was perishing or
the Lord and Pilot of nature was himself suffering; and I turned to
Apollophanes, and, 'O light of philosophy, glass of science!' I said,
'explain to me what this means.'

"Before answering me, he required that we should together apply the
astronomical rule, or formula, of Philip Aridæus; after doing which
with the utmost care, he said: 'These changes are supernatural; there
is some stupendous revolution or catastrophe occurring in divine
affairs, affecting the whole of the Supreme Being's creation.'

"You may be sure, my friends, that we both took a careful note of
the hour, the day, the week, month, year; and I intend to inquire
everywhere whether in other lands any similar phenomena have
appeared; and what overwhelming, unexampled event can have taken
place on this little planet of ours to bring the heavens themselves
into confusion, and coerce all the powers of nature into so awful a
manifestation of sympathy or of horror."

He ended by conveying to Aglais and Paulus the loving remembrance of
the Lady Damarais.

Aglais and her son and Esther were spell-bound with amazement when
this letter had been read; and Paulus exclaimed:

"What will Dion say when he hears that we also saw this very darkness
at the same moment; that the veil of the Temple here has been rent in
twain; and that he who expired amid these and so many other portents,
Esther, and in the full culmination of the prophecies, is again
living, speaking, acting, the Conqueror of death, as he was the Lord
of life?"

"Let us go to Athens; let us bring our friends, the Lady Damarais and
our dear Dion, to learn and understand what we have ourselves been
mercifully taught."

So spoke Aglais, offering at the same time to Esther a mother's
protection and love along the journey. Paulus was silent, but gazed
pleadingly at Esther.

It was agreed. But in the political dangers of that reign, Paulus,
owing to his fame itself, had to take so many precautions that much
time was unavoidably lost.

Meanwhile, he had again asked the Jewish maiden to become his wife.
Need we say that this time his suit was successful? Paulus and Esther
were married.

Christianity in the interim grew from month to month and from year
to year, and our wanderers had but just arrived at last in Athens in
time to hear, near the statue of "the unknown God," while Damarais,
the friend of Aglais, and Dion, the friend of them all, stood
near, a majestic stranger, a Roman citizen, him who had sat at the
feet of Gamaliel, the glorious Apostle of the Gentiles, who had
been "faithful to the heavenly Vision," though he had not seen the
Resurrection, explain to the Athenians "him whom they had ignorantly
worshipped." And when the sublime messenger of glad tidings related
the circumstances of the Passion, the scenes which had been enacted
in Pilate's house (so well remembered by them), the next day's dread
event, and when he touched upon the preternatural accompaniments
of that final catastrophe, and described the darkness which had
overspread the earth from the sixth hour of that day, Dionysius,
turning pale, drew out the tablets which he carried habitually,
examined the date of which, at Heliopolis, he and Apollophanes had
jointly made note, and showed symptoms of an emotion such as he had
never before experienced.

He and Damarais, as is well known, were among the converts of Saint
Paul on that great occasion. How our other characters felt we need
not describe.

Yielding to the entreaties of their beloved Dionysius, they actually
loitered in Greece for a few years, during which Christianity had
outstripped them and penetrated to Rome, where it was soon welcomed
with fire and sword, and where "the blood of martyrs became the seed
of Christians." Esther shuddered as she heard names dear to her in
the murmured accounts of dreadful torments.

Resuming their westward course, how Paulus rejoiced that he had in
time sold everything in Italy, and was armed with opulence in the
midst of new and strange trials! They gave Italy a wide offing,
and passing round by the south of Germany, with an armed escort
which Thellus (who had also become a Christian, and had, while they
were in Greece, sent for Prudentia) commanded, they never ceased
their travels till they reached the banks of the Seine; and there,
undiscernible to the vision of Roman tyranny in the distance, they
obtained, by means of the treasures they had brought, hundreds of
stout Gaulish hands to do their bidding, and soon founded a peaceful
home amid a happy colony. Hence they sent letters to Agatha and

Two arrivals from the realms of civilization waked into excitement
the peaceful tenor of their days. Paulus himself, hearing of the
death of Paterculus, ventured quickly back to Italy, in the horrible,
short reign of Caligula, and fetched his sister Agatha, now a widow,
to live with them. Later still, they were surprised to behold arrive
among them one whom they had often mourned as lost to them for ever.
It was Dionysius. He came to found Christianity in Gaul, and settled,
amidst the friends of his youth, on the banks of the Seine. Often
they reverted, with a clear light, to the favorite themes of their
boyhood; and often the principal personages who throughout this story
have, we hope, interested the reader, gathered around that same
Dionysius (who is, indeed, the St. Denis of France), and listened,
near the place where Notre Dame now towers, to the first Bishop
of Paris, correcting the theories which he had propounded to the
Areopagus of Athens as the last of the great Greek philosophers.[5]

One other arrival greeted, indeed, the expatriated but happy
settlement. Longinus found his way among them; and as the proud
ideas of a social system upon which they had turned their back no
longer tyrannized over Aglais or Paulus, the brave man, biding his
time and watching opportunities, found no insurmountable obstacles
in obtaining a fair reward for twenty years and more of patient and
unalterable love. He and Agatha were married.



[3] If any one should feel astonished at our insisting not only upon
the exact day, but the very hour, when certain things occurred,
let him or her remember that the calculation of eclipses, passing
backward from one to another (as though ascending the steps of a
staircase), reaches and fixes the date--yes, the precise minute of
day--when incidents took place between which and us the broad haze of
twice a thousand years is interposed.

[4] For the rest, in support of the matters we have too briefly to
recount, we could burden these pages with voluminous, and some of
them most interesting and beautiful, extracts from both heathen
and Christian works of classic fame and standard authority; with
passages of direct and indirect evidence from Josephus, Phlegon,
Plutarch, Saint Dionysius (our own true hero, the Areopagite of
Greece, the St. Denis of France) [_ad Apollophanem_, epis. xi., and
_ad Polycarpum Antistidem_, vii.]; Tertullian (_Cont. Jud._, c. 8);
St. Augustine (_Civ. Dei_, lib. 14); St. Chrysostom (_Hom. de Joanne
Baptista_); the Bollandists, Baronius, Eusebius, Tillemont, Huet, and
a host of others.... But our statements will not need such detailed
"stabilitation," because the facts, being notorious among scholars,
will be impugned by no really educated man or thoroughly competent

[5] The Roman Breviary thus speaks of St. Dionysius:

"Dionysius of Athens, one of the judges of the Areopagus, was versed
in every kind of learning. It is said that, while yet in the errors
of paganism, having noticed on the day on which Christ the Lord was
crucified that the sun was eclipsed out of the regular course, he
exclaimed: 'Either the God of nature is suffering, or the universe
is on the point of dissolution.' When afterward the Apostle Paul
came to Athens, and, being led to the Areopagus, explained the
doctrine which he preached, teaching that Christ the Lord had risen,
and that the dead would all return to life, Dionysius believed with
many others. He was then baptized by the apostle and placed over the
church in Athens. He afterward came to Rome, whence he was sent to
Gaul by Pope Clement to preach the Gospel. Rusticus, a priest, and
Eleutherius, a deacon, followed him to Paris. Here he was scourged,
together with his companions, by the Prefect Fescennius, because he
had converted many to Christianity; and, as he continued with the
greatest constancy to preach the faith, he was afterward stretched
upon a gridiron over a fire, and tortured in many other ways; as
were likewise his companions. After bearing all these sufferings
courageously and gladly, on the ninth of October, Dionysius, now more
than a hundred years of age, together with the others, was beheaded.
There is a tradition that he took up his head after it had been cut
off, and walked with it in his hands a distance of two Roman miles.
He wrote admirable and most beautiful books on the divine names, on
the heavenly and ecclesiastical hierarchy, on mystical theology; and
a number of others."

The Abbé Darras has published a work on the question of the
identity of Dionysius of Athens with Dionysius, first Bishop of
Paris, sustaining, with great strength and cogency of argument, the
affirmative side. The authenticity of the works which pass under his
name, although denied by nearly all modern critics, has been defended
by Mgr. Darboy, Archbishop of Paris.--ED. C. W.



To be able to form a correct judgment regarding the future of Europe,
there are several points and theories which must be previously
considered. First on the list comes--



"The key to the success of the Prussian arms in the contest with
France is found in the decadence of the Latin and the virility
of the German race. The Latin peoples are corrupt; their star is
waning; their moral vigor is gone; while the German nations are still
young and fresh. German culture, German ideas, German muscle and
energy, are taking the place of the decrepit French civilization.
The German victories are but the outward expression of this
historical process. We are on the threshold of a new epoch in the
history of civilization--of a new period which we can appropriately
call the German era." Such is the theory which now possesses the
German mind, and is expressed in the newspapers, pamphlets, on the
railroads, and in the inns all through Germany, with great national
self-complacency. Even many Sclavonians and Italians adopt this
view. The conquest of the Latin by the Germanic races; the downfall
of the former; the world-wide sovereignty of the latter--these are
high-sounding phrases which have a dramatic effect and are popular in
Germany. But do they express a truth? Are they philosophically and
historically correct in view of the actual condition of political and
social life? In the first place, what and where are the Latin races
about which we have been hearing so much during the past ten years?
The southern inhabitants of the Italian peninsula can lay no claim
to Latin origin; for it is well known that they were anciently Greek
colonies, which have since intermarried with Romans, Spaniards, and
Normans. The Lombards of the north of Italy are mostly of Celtic and
not of Latin origin, since they inhabit the ancient Gallia Cisalpina.
The old Iberians of Spain were not Latins; and they are now mixed
with Gothic, Moorish, Celtic, and Basque blood. As for France, its
very name imports that the Latins gave a very small contingent
towards forming a nation which is certainly of Celtic and German
origin, and many of whose provinces are purely of German race, as
Alsace and Lorraine. Where, then, shall we find the Latin races?

There are none properly so-called. Looking at the origin of
languages, we may, indeed, speak of Latin, or, rather, of Roman
nations. In this regard, we may class the Italians, Spaniards,
Portuguese, and French together, on account of the Roman element
prevailing in their tongues, in opposition to the Scalavonic-German,
the Celtic-Anglo-Saxon-Danish-Norman forming the world-wide English,
the Scandinavian, and the pure Sclavonic families. Does this theory
mean that nations of the same tongue should all be politically and
socially united, flourish for a period, and then perish together?
Understood in this way, the race theory would have few defenders.
It may be true that nations, like individuals, must live a definite
period--rise, flourish, and decay. It is true, historically, that
every nation has an era of prosperity and an era of decadence. But
when we come to the question of universal sovereignty, we may ask,
When did the Roman nations ever exercise it? Each of them has had
its golden age of literature, art, science, and material prosperity;
but none of them has had, for any length of time, the sovereignty of
Europe. Not Italy, for instance, unless we go back to the days of
old Rome, and then we have not an Italian but a specifically Roman
supremacy. Not Spain, for although she exercised great power beyond
the ocean, and for a time possessed a preponderating influence in
Europe, from the reign of Charles V. to the first successor of Philip
II., yet who could call the accidental union of so many crowns on the
head of a Hapsburg prince a universal sovereignty for Spain? Lastly,
France had her age of glory during the reign of Louis XIV., whose
influence, or that of the Napoleonic era, cannot be denied. Yet what
gaps separate the reign of the great King from that of the great
Emperor! Great as was France under Louis XIV. and Bonaparte, she
fell to the second rank of nations during the Restoration and under
the July dynasty. As leader in the Revolutionary movement, she has
always controlled Europe, even in her periods of political weakness,
from the days of the encyclopædists to the present time. Even Germany
acknowledges the sway of French literature, politeness, and taste.
Victorious Berlin copies the fashions and manners of conquered
France, as ancient Rome, after conquering Athens, became the slave of
Athenian civilization.

Germany, too, must have already passed the period of her maturity,
according to the race theory; for, under the Saxon Othos, under the
Hohenstaufens, and Charles V., until the Thirty Years' War broke
the strength of the empire, she was superior even to France. Does
not German genius in its peculiar walks rule the world now? German
science, German music? Does not England, usually considered as
belonging to the German race, rule the commerce of the world? And
was not her political influence on the Continent until recently

No! political sovereignty can be explained by no race theory. From
the fall of the first Napoleon until 1848, England with the powers
of the "Holy Alliance," or rather with Austria and Russia, held the
first place in European politics. From the beginning of 1848 until
the Crimean war, England and Russia were in the foreground; after
that war it was France and England; now it is Prussia. These are but
examples of the political fluctuations which follow each other in
continual change, and are seldom of long duration.

And do not the champions of the German race theory see that there
is a laughing heir behind them in the Sclavonic supremacy? Once
admitting the race theory, we must confess that the Panslavist argues
well when he says: "The Roman nations are dead; the German are on the
point of dying. They once conquered the world; their present effort
is the last flicker of the expiring light which points out the road
to us. After them comes our race, with fresh vigor on the world's
scene. Europe's future is Panslavism."

The whole theory is radically false. There are no more primitive
races to take the place of the old ones. The Germans are as old as
the Romans; or, rather, the Romans were simply Germans civilized
before their brethren. Russia alone is young in Europe, but she has
nothing new to give us; and physical force, without a new social or
moral system accompanying it to establish a conquest, never prevails
long. We cannot, therefore, judge of Europe's future by this theory
of races.

The power of regeneration must be sought for elsewhere.



One would have thought that the sanguinary war of 1870 should have
dispelled the illusions of liberalism for ever. By liberalism, we
mean that party which believes in the principles of 1789, whose ideal
is to have the middle classes, or _bourgeoisie_, the ruling power,
to have society equally divided, to have an atheistical state, and
to obtain eternal peace through unlimited material progress, which
would identify the interests of nations. Liberalism, rationalism, and
materialism are different names for the same system. A state without
God, sovereignty of capital, dissolution of society into individuals,
united by no other bond than the force of a liberal parliament
majority under the control of wealth; material prosperity of the
middle classes, founded on gain and pleasure, with the removal of all
historical traditions, all ecclesiastical precepts--such is the dream
of this "shopkeepers' system." Has not the present war dispelled the
dream of happiness arising from mere material prosperity? We doubt
it. Notwithstanding the many hard lessons which the liberal school
has received since the days of Mirabeau and the Girondins, from the
lawyers of the July dynasty to Ollivier, it never seems to grow
wiser. It is superficial, never looks into the essence of things. It
is in vain to charge the present misfortunes of two great nations on
the illiberalism of Napoleon and Bismarck, and thus exalt the merits
of liberalism; for liberalism or mere material prosperity was at
the bottom of all their plans. From 1789 to 1870, France, with few
exceptions, was governed by liberalism; and the revolutions begat
the natural consequences of this system in anarchy and military
despotism. France during this period has made the most wonderful
material progress.

We read lately in a liberal journal that the only remedy for the
rejuvenation of states was "the inviolability of the individual,
and respect for the popular will." Always the same emptiness of
phraseology with these impracticable dabblers in philosophy. What
will you do if the infallible "popular will" refuses to recognize
the inviolability of individuals? Cannot these gentlemen see that
their system merely opens the door for socialism? They take away
religion, and teach the epicurean theory of enjoyment; they destroy
constitutional forms of government, and base authority on the
ever-shifting popular whim. Socialism comes after them, and says,
"You say there is no God, and I must have pleasure. I have counted
myself, and find that I am the majority; therefore, I make a law
against capital and property. You must be satisfied, for you are my
teacher, and I merely follow out your principles to their logical



A new era is dawning. Not a mere political period, but a complete
social change, for the actual order of things is disorder, a compound
of injustice and abuses. We must have fraternity and equality.
Away with the nobles; away with the wealthy classes; away with
property; all things must be in common. The happiness of Europe
will never be realized until socialism reigns supreme. Such is the
socialistic theory. But does not every one see that its realization
is impossible, and brings us back to barbarism? The right of property
is essential to society. It is contrary to nature to expect that
mankind will give up this right to please a whim of drones--a system
according to which the lazy and indolent would have as much right
to property as the industrious and hard-working. If all is to be
common property, who will work, who will strive to acquire, whose
ambition will be aroused, whose interest excited for the attainment
of something in which he will have no right or title? And in fact,
both liberals and socialists use words which they do not mean; they
are far more despotic when they get power than those whom they are
continually attacking. At the Berne Congress of 1868, a socialist
orator said: "We cannot admit that each man shall choose his own
faith; man has not the right to choose error; liberty of conscience
is our weapon, but not one of our principles!" By error he meant
Christianity. In fact, ultra-radicalism is simply ultra-despotism.
Men blamed the despotism of Napoleon III.; but look at the despotism
of Gambetta, and remember the despotism of Robespierre and the "Reign
of Terror." Destroy religion, and you have nothing left but egotism.
Man becomes to his brother-man either a wolf or a fox.

Socialism may indeed have its day in Europe's future. The logic of
liberalism leads to it; but it will be a fearful day of disorder
and revolution; a sad day for the wealthier classes; but still only
a day. Earthquakes are possible, and sometimes they engulf cities;
but they pass away, and quiet returns. New vegetation springs up on
the ruins. If socialism ever gains Europe, it will vanish in virtue
of the _reductio ad absurdum_; therefore its mastery can never be



Since neither the race theory, nor liberalism, nor socialism, can
enable us to solve the problem of Europe's future, let us pass to
other considerations, glance rapidly over the past, study the present
external and internal condition of the continent, in order to be able
to form a judgment on the subject which we are discussing.

The French Revolution of 1789 had its effects all over Europe.
In France since that date, liberalism, anarchy, and Byzantinism
have held alternate sway. The Bonaparte invasions carried through
the rest of Europe the liberal principle of secularization
with the _Code Napoléon_. The writings of the philosophers and
encyclopædists, and Josephism, had prepared the way. The reaction of
1815 was based on Masonic theories of philanthropism and religious
indifferentism. The Emperor Alexander and the Holy Alliance were
infected with these views. The revolutionary movement in Germany,
Italy, and Spain has since been simply against office-holders and
the police. The influence of religion has been ignored. Palmerston
was the _coryphæus_ of the liberals, and during his time English
diplomacy played into the hands of all the irreligious and
revolutionary elements in Europe. This unprincipled system was
finally represented by Napoleon III., in whose diplomacy the theory
of "non-intervention," of "nationalities," of "sovereignty of the
people," were put forward as the types of the perfection of modern
society. In point of fact, they are mere words used as a cloak to
cover up Macchiavellism.

The "balance of power" theory, of purely material import, ruled in
1815, but it soon gave way before the influences of the "liberal"
doctrines of humanitarianism and the race system. Religious
convictions and Christian institutions were ignored in politics,
and a system of police substituted in their place. Greece received
its king in consequence of this system which has prevailed in the
external relations of Europe since 1830. In 1848, the revolutions
and insurrections in Europe were merely premature appearances
of the socialistic element in liberalism. Napoleon III., by his
Macchiavellian policy, which Guizot has happily termed "moderation
in evil-doing," coerced them. He gave all the sanction of French
power to the principles of the liberal school which he was supposed
to represent. On the principle of "non-intervention," he prevented
the interference of Austria and Spain in favor of the Holy See. He
protected the seizure of Naples and Sicily; approved the invasion of
the Papal States, and substituted, in the place of dynastic right
and popular right, the colossal delusion of the _plébiscite_. On the
nationality theory, he allowed Austrian power to be destroyed, and
founded, in opposition to all French interests, Italian and German

Although very defective since it ignored the full claims of religion,
still there was a fixed public law in Europe from 1815 to 1859.
Respect for the minor powers; the sentiment of the solidarity of
thrones against the efforts of Carbonarism and the cosmopolitan
revolutionary party; and regard for treaties, characterize that
period. The traditions of the people were respected; and treaties
repressed avarice or ambition; and there was real peace in
Europe--the peace of order, according to the beautiful expression of
St. Augustine. It is true, far-seeing minds saw the threatening cloud
on the horizon of the future, and knew that the system of 1815 did
not rest on the right foundations. Still, even mere external forms
are a protection.

But since 1859 law or treaties no longer seem to bind. There seems
to be nothing fixed in the public law of Europe. All is whim; might
instead of right, sentiment instead of principle. Powers can no
longer unite, for they cannot trust each other. Instead of all being
united to protect the individual state, now all are hostile to each
other. Italy insists on unification in spite of law and right, and
to gain her purpose depends to-day on Prussia; yesterday, it was
on France. She hates Austria, and Austria acts as if she did not
perceive the hatred, and will not interfere lest she might offend
the liberals. Vienna is in dread of Berlin and St. Petersburg; St.
Petersburg is in dread of Berlin. England looks jealously at Russia,
who, meanwhile, is arming in grim silence, and with occasional
manifestations of her old predilections. France counts now for
nothing. Prussia, which fifteen years ago was allowed merely by the
favor of Austria to sit in the congress of the great powers, is now
the only great military power in Europe. We say military, for it
is not the real, the hidden power. As in the Greek mythology grim,
inexorable fate ruled above all the gods, so the head lodge of the
secret societies makes of the Prussian leaders its blind tools;
Italy obeys it; Napoleon was its slave; Austria, its sacrifice; and
now Prussia also must bend the knee. Such is Europe ten years after
the Franco-Austrian war: the Europe of Metternich, Nesselrode, and



The revolution has changed the internal policy of states as well as
their external relations. Forty years ago, Donoso Cortes remarked
that England was endeavoring to introduce its constitution into
the Continent; and that the Continent would try to introduce its
different governmental systems into England. We are now witnesses of
the truth of this observation. Democratic ideas are gaining ground
in Great Britain; and bureaucracy, with its centralizing tendencies,
is replacing the English theory of self-government. Military
conscriptions, along with universal suffrage, will come next. Owing
to the extension of the franchise, the House of Commons is losing its
aristocratic character, and the House of Lords its influence. England
will go the way of France.

We see what the liberal system begotten of the revolution has caused
in France. An enervated, un-self-reliant, disunited generation,
without traditions, organization, consistency, faith, or true
patriotism, is its result. The decrees of the _Code Napoléon_
concerning inheritances have broken up families; the departmental
system has destroyed the provincial peculiarities in which lies
the people's strength; the system of common lodging-houses for the
laboring classes has destroyed respect for authority, and afforded
ready material for the purposes of despotism or secret societies.

In Italy and Spain, we see the same spectacle. The French, led
into Italy by the first Napoleon, brought thither the principle of
centralization and a revolutionary code. After Napoleon's downfall,
the restored princes allowed too much of his system to remain. This
arose from a want of judgment. The ancient municipalities were
destroyed, even to some extent in the States of the Church; Piedmont
receiving most of the poison, and thus becoming the hearth of the
revolution. Constitutionalism, anarchy, and military governments in
Spain prove the working of revolutionary doctrines. The old freedom
of that Catholic country, the growth of centuries, gives way before a
nominal liberty, but a real despotism.

In Germany, too, centralization carries the day. This country had the
good fortune to be composed of several independent states, without
any great central power, and the provincial spirit consequently
remained strong. But now two un-German words, "unification" and
"uniformity," expressing un-German tendencies, are carrying the
Germans into despotism. Germany will be Prussianized, and Prussia
Germanized, say the unificators; but all will, in the end, be
compelled to give way before the republicans and socialists. The high
schools of Germany are all infected with the revolutionary doctrines
and Masonic ideas.

What shall we say of Austria? Thanks to "liberalism," it
has disappeared, and is now a dualism in its government and
tri-parliamentary in its system.

The licentiousness of the press helps to destroy everything stable in
governments. Journals without principle, honor, or religion, filled
with scandals, edited by adventurers, whose only object is to make
money and serve faithfully their owners, issue their thousands of
copies daily to corrupt the public mind. Evil spreads more rapidly
than good, and consequently the influence of the religious press is
weak compared to that of the revolutionary papers, subsidized by the
agents of secret societies or by the unprincipled men of wealth, who
readily purchase the aid of corrupted minds to help on their ambition.



Governments have therefore ceased to be Christian, and have become
"liberal," that is, infidel. According to liberalism, religion is the
private affair of each individual. Civil society should recognize
no dogma, no worship, no God. We know well that this principle,
from its very intrinsic absurdity, cannot be practically carried
out. For instance, God will be recognized when it is necessary to
swear fidelity to a constitution, and the external forms of religion
will be invoked at the opening of a new railroad or a session of
parliament. But in principle the liberal state ignores all positive
religious belief. Its only dogma is that a law passed by a majority
of voters remains a law until the next majority abrogates it. This
system is called "separation of church and state," or "a free church
in a free state." Then follow broken concordats--in France and
Bavaria, broken by organic articles; in Baden, Piedmont, Austria, and
Spain, destroyed by the will of the prince and cabinet ministers.
Then follows a usurped educational system, in which the rights of
the family and church are disregarded. In all of these states, more
or less, there is a public persecution of the church; a repression
of her rights; enthrallment of her ministers; invasion of her
privileges. God is in heaven, consequently the church should confine
herself to the sanctuary; that is to say, God does not trouble
himself about the conduct of nations, politics, legislation, or
science. These are all neutral affairs, over which his authority does
not extend, and therefore the church has nothing to do with public
life. So say the liberals. They take from God and give it to Cæsar,
the modern civil divinity, all that is his, except one thing which
it is impossible for them to take from him, and that is conscience.
They endeavor to estrange conscience from God more and more by
education, by the press, and by public opinion manufactured by the
leaders of the secret societies. Hence all the talk about "liberty of
conscience." For the same end, they talk of toleration, but they mean
simply indifference, which hence becomes the shibboleth of the party
which the church unceasingly opposes.

This is, in a few words, the actual condition of the church in
European society. It is an unnatural condition. Even Macchiavelli
says: "Princes and republics which would remain sound must, before
all things, guard the ceremonies of religion and keep them ever in
honor. Therefore, there is no surer sign of the decay of a state than
when it sees the worship of the Most High disregarded." Macchiavelli
spoke from the lessons of experience and as a mere utilitarian. Our
modern utilitarian politicians have not his capacity or penetration.
They are mere superficial observers of fact, and cannot see that the
_summum utile_ is the _summum jus_. This fault lies in ignoring the
assistance of the supernatural order--in their erroneous opinion
that there is no absolute truth. The church is not a hospital for
diseased souls; Christianity is not a mere specific for individual
maladies; but as our Lord has taught us to pray, "Thy kingdom come
... on earth as it is in heaven," so must revealed truth pervade the
earth; percolate through civil society, not merely in its individual
members, but in all its natural relations, family, municipal, and
state. This is what the church has taught Europe, and only by
conforming with this teaching can Europe stand. Since Christianity
came into the world, the Christian state is the normal condition of
political governments, and not an ideal impossible of realization.
Undoubtedly, human weakness will always cause many aberrations from
the rule. But the question is not regarding this point, but as to the
recognition of the rule. The sin against the Holy Ghost is the most
grievous of all sins. Our Lord, always so mild and forbearing toward
human passions, is unflinchingly stern against malicious resistance
to truth, and this has been precisely the great evil of our time ever
since 1789. In the early ages, individuals and nations fell into many
errors, but they never touched the sacred principles of religion.
Liberalism and Freemasonry have caused the denial of truth itself.

"Must we, then, fall back into the darkness of the middle ages?"
Such a question, while it shows little knowledge of the middle ages,
exhibits likewise a spirit of unfairness in discussion. For our
purpose, it suffices to show the latter. What would we think of a man
who, on being told that our faith should be childlike, should say to
the priest, "Must I, then, become a child again?" Plainly, we would
say to him: Good friend, you talk nonsense; for you know well that
you cannot get again your infant body, nor blot out the knowledge
and experience acquired in a life of thirty years. But was not the
sun the same four years ago as it is now? Do not two and two make
four now as long ago? Did you not eat and drink when you were a child
as you do now? Some things are always true in all places and times;
and therefore we do not want to bring you back into the middle ages
merely because we want to give the church that position which God has
assigned to her.

"Then you want to saddle a theocracy on the back of the nineteenth
century?" Let us understand each other. In a certain sense, a
theocracy must be the aim of every rational being. God has appointed
two orders to govern men: they are church and state, neither of which
must absorb the other. Theocracy is not a government of priests, as
those imagine who have before their eyes the Hindoo civil systems.
Let us for a moment forget these catchwords, "middle ages" and
"theocracy," and go to the marrow of the subject.

The church is the guide of consciences; not the arbitrary teacher of
men, but the interpreter of revelation for them. St. Thomas likens
the office of the Vicar of Christ to that of the flag-ship of a
fleet, which the other vessels, that is, the secular governments
must follow on the open sea in order to reach the common haven of
safety. Each vessel has its own sails moves in its own way, and
is managed by its own mariners. The church never interferes in the
appropriate sphere of the secular power. But she warns; she advises;
she corrects all civil authority when it deviates from the truth
and opposes the revealed order. Her authority over the state is not
direct, but indirect; she teaches, but she cannot coerce; she _must_
teach, for political and social questions necessarily have relations
with dogmatic and moral subjects. The church must condemn wrongs, no
matter by whom perpetrated, whether by states or individuals. This is
all the theocratic power the church claims. A Christian state will
respectfully hear her warning voice, and thus avoid the danger; while
a pagan state shuts its ears, despises the church's admonitions, and
plunges into the abyss.

Modern paganism in civil governments has brought Europe into her
present miserable condition. Can she get out of it, or is European
society hopelessly lost?



The Franco-Prussian war of 1870 is one of the most important events
in the history of Europe. The prostration of France is no indication
that she will never rise again, for in 1807 Prussia was in a worse
condition than France is now. In 1815, and until the past few years,
Prussia was last in the list of the great powers, though now she is
the first. France, then, in a few years may rise again to her full
power. There are no more fresh, uncivilized races to come into Europe
to take the place of those which are now said to be decaying. We have
shown that liberalism has reached its acme, been found wanting, and
is dying. Its efforts in Italy, Spain, Germany, Vienna, and Pesth are
but the last convulsions of an expiring system. The natural child of
liberalism--socialism--must also disappear before the common sense of
mankind. What remains? Will there be in Europe the alternate anarchy
and despotism of the Central American republics without any end? Must
we despair of Europe's future? No, a thousand times no! We look to
the future with hope and consolation.

Common sense and religion will win the day; Christianity has still
the regenerating power which she showed in civilizing the barbarians.
Christianity has been the principle of national life since the
Redeemer established it as a world religion. The spiritual life
must be renovated by truth and morality. Christianity is both. We
Christians hope, therefore, for the conversion of the popular mind;
we begin even now to perceive signs of regeneration, renovation,
renewed energy, and vigor in mental convictions and civic virtues.

God's punishments are proofs of his mercy. He chastises to convert.
The first punishment of France, in 1789, was not enough to teach her
to repent. Louis XVIII. came to the throne a free-thinker instead of
a Christian. The prostrate armies of Metz and Sedan are the result
of corrupting and enervating infidelity. God chastises ambition and
pride in nations as well as in individuals. The Republic has shown
itself incapable, because it possessed neither honor, principle, nor
religion. The victories of Prussia are a blessing of God for France.
The Prussian army is but the instrument which God has used to punish
a culprit nation--a revolutionary, irreligious, and frivolous system
of government. Victorious Germany, too, will be taught to reflect
when it sees the blood of its thousands of slaughtered sons, and the
miseries which the war has entailed on its once happy families. Wars
teach unruly nations to reflect. Will the present war suffice to
humble Europe, and cause her to reflect? We know not; but God will
send other chastisements if this one avails nothing. Dark clouds are
already rising in the East, which may soon burst over Austria and
Germany. The rod of God's anger will be felt by Austria again, for
her lessons of 1859 and 1866 have been forgotten. They have only made
her throw herself more fondly into the arms of the devil. In Italy,
the secret societies will yet avenge on the house of Savoy the blood
of the defenders of the Vicar of Christ.

But the German empire has been re-established under a Prussian
emperor. Yes, but this is only an episode in the actual crisis of the
world. A Protestant emperor of Germany is entirely different from
a German emperor. The old German emperors represented the idea of
the Christian monarchy; the Protestant emperor in Berlin represents
modern Cæsarism. His empire cannot last long, for history tells
us that empires of sudden and accidental growth lose rapidly the
power which they as rapidly acquired. But is not Prussia's triumph
the triumph of Protestantism in Europe? Such a question is easily
answered: Protestantism as a positive religion no longer exists
in Prussia or elsewhere; and Protestantism as a negation exists
everywhere, perhaps more in some Catholic lands than in Prussia.
On the battle-fields of Wörth and Gravelotte, the Catholic Church
was not represented by France, and Lutheranism by Prussia. Catholic
Bavarians, Westphalians, and Rhinelanders fought for Prussia, and
would be astounded to hear that they were fighting for heresy.
Priests and Sisters of Charity accompanied them to battle. Who,
on the other hand, would call the Turcos Catholics? Or the French
officers, who never heard Mass, and who curtailed the number of
Catholic chaplains to the minimum? Were the French soldiers, who
drilled on Sundays instead of going to church, on whose barracks,
in some cases, was written, "No admission for policemen, dogs, or
priests"--were they the Catholic champions? No; the Christian soldier
in France first appeared, in this war, with Charette and Cathelineau
in the Loire army, demoralized and destroyed, however, by the mad-cap
radical, Gambetta, and his infidel associates. In fact, the Prussian
army was more Catholic than the French. The latter must be won
back to religion from the enervating influences of Freemasonry and
Voltairianism before it can regain its prestige. The only hope for
France is in her zealous clergy, in the vigor of the old Catholic
provinces, and in her humiliations, which ought to bring repentance.

The rustling of Catholic renovation is heard all over Europe. The
rising generation will bring Italy back to the church. The spirit
of the Tyrol and of Westphalia is spreading through Germany. The
Ultramontanes in Saxony, Bohemia, Steyermark, show the energy of
this renovation. The peasantry of Austria and of a large portion of
Germany are still uncorrupted. Hungary is steadfast in the faith.
The seizure of Rome by the Sardinian robbers has roused the Catholic
heart of the world and helped on the cause of regeneration. Where the
Catholic faith was supposed to be crushed, lo! it has raised its head

The deceived nations want peace, freedom, order, and authority.
These blessings infidelity and liberalism have taken away. The people
are beginning to see that the old yet ever young Apostolic Church
alone can guarantee them. They will turn to Rome, where lives the
Vicar of Him who said, "I am the way, the truth, and the life;" to
Rome freed again from the barbarians; to Rome become Roman again
when it has ceased to be Sardinian; to Rome will the people look for
peace and order. It is Rome that tells men that Christ is Lord of
the world; that he conquers; that he governs. The social dominion
of Christ will again be established. We shall see again Christian
states founded on Christian principles and traditions, with Christian
laws and rulers. Whether these rulers will be kings or presidents
we know not; but they will in either case consider themselves as
mere delegates of Jesus Christ, and of his people, not as Byzantine
despots or representatives of mob tyranny. They will understand
that statesmanship does not consist in giving license to the
wicked[6] and forging chains for the good. We shall have Christian
schools, Christian universities, Christian statesmen. Ye liberals
in name, well may ye grow pale! The future of the world belongs to
the principles of the Syllabus, and this future is not far off. We
conclude with the words of Count de Maistre: "In the year 1789, the
rights of man were proclaimed; in the year 1889, man will proclaim
the rights of God!"


[6] "The art of governing men does not consist in giving them license
to do evil."--_Père Lacordaire._


We hope the day may come before many years when historians will see
in the records of the struggles, misfortunes, and triumphs of the
church a theme for the employment of brilliant pens as tempting as
they now find in the clash of armies and the intrigues of statesmen.
Scholars have devoted to our records the patient investigation of
years; the general history of the church has been summarized for
popular reading in most of the principal modern languages; and
for the use of theologians and students there are elaborate and
costly collections. Individual biographies of saints and preachers
innumerable have been written for the edification of the devout.
Sketches of local church history, more or less complete, have
occasionally appeared--sketches, for instance, like _The Catholic
Church in the United States_, by De Courcy and Shea; Shea's _History
of the Catholic Missions_ among the Indian tribes of America, and
Bishop Bayley's little volume on the history of the church in New
York. But a work of a different kind, broader in its design than
some of these excellent and useful publications, more limited in
scope than the dry and costly general histories, still awaits the
hand of a polished and enthusiastic man of letters. Why should not
the same eloquence and learning be devoted to the religious history
of the great countries of the globe that Macaulay, and Motley, and
Froude have expended upon the political revolutions of states and
the intricate dramas of diplomacy? Why should not some glowing pen
do for the pioneers of the cross what Prescott did for the pioneers
of Spanish conquest in the new hemisphere? Properly told, the church
history of almost any country of the world, of almost any period
in Christian times, would be a narrative not only of religious
significance, but of thrilling interest. No men ever passed through
more extraordinary adventures, considered even from a human point
of view, than the missionaries who penetrated into unknown lands or
first went among unbelieving nations. No contest between hostile
kingdoms or rival dynasties ever offered a more tempting theme for
dramatic narrative and glowing description than the contest which
has raged for eighteen centuries and a half, between the powers of
light and the powers of darkness, in all the different quarters of
the civilized world. Think what a brilliant writer might make of such
a subject as the church history of Germany! Think what has yet to be
done for the churches of England and Ireland and France, when the
coming historian rescues their chronicles from the dusty archives of
state and the gloom of monastic libraries, and causes the old stories
to glow with a new light, such as Gibbon threw upon the records of
the declining empire!

We doubt not the literary alchemist _will_ come in time, and melt
down the dull metals in his crucible, and pour out from it the
shining compound which shall possess a popular value a hundredfold
beyond that of the untransmuted materials. Nowhere, perhaps, will
the labor be more amply repaid than in America. Nowhere will
the collection of materials be less arduous and the result more
brilliant. Our church history begins just when that of Europe is
most perplexing, and to an investigator with time, patience, and a
moderate revenue at his command, it offers no appalling difficulties.
In a great part of America, the introduction of the Catholic religion
is an event within the memory of men still living. The pioneers
of many of the states are still at work. The first missionaries
of some of the most important sees are but just passing to their
reward. There are no monumental slanders upon our history to be
removed; no Protestant writers have seriously encumbered the field
with misrepresentations. Industrious students of our own faith have
already prepared the way; scattered chapters have been written with
more or less literary skill; the store-houses of information have
been discovered and partly explored; and every year the facilities
for the historian are multiplied. And certainly the theme is rich in
romantic interest and variety. From the time of the monks and friars
who came over with the first discoverers of the country down to the
present year of our Lord, when missionaries are perilling their lives
among the Indians of the great West, and priests are fighting for
the faith against the cultivated Protestants of the Atlantic cities,
the Catholic history of the United States has been a series of bold
adventures, startling incidents, and contests of the most dramatic
character. In the whole story there is not a really dull chapter. The
Catholic annals of America abound also with that variety which the
historian needs to render his pages really attractive; and among the
great men who would naturally be the central figures of such a work,
there is the widest difference of character, the most picturesque
divergence of pursuits and personal peculiarities. Group together
the most distinguished of the Christian heroes who have illustrated
our chronicles, and you have what an artist might call a wonderfully
rich variety of coloring. There are the simple-minded, enthusiastic
Spanish Franciscans, following the armies of Cortez and Pizarro,
and exploring the strange realms of the Aztecs and the Incas. There
is the French Jesuit, building up his Christian empire among the
Indians of the St. Lawrence and the Great Lakes. There is the gentle
Marquette, floating in his bark canoe down the mighty river with
whose discovery his name will ever be associated, and breathing his
last in the midst of the primeval wilderness. There are Jogues and
Brebœuf, suffering unheard-of torments among the Iroquois; Cheverus,
the polished and fascinating cardinal, winning the affection of
the New England Puritans; England, conciliating the Huguenots and
Anglicans of the South. The saintly Bruté, most amiable of scholars,
most devout of _savans_, is a quaint but beautiful character around
whom cluster some of our most touching associations. Bishop Dubois,
the "Little Bonaparte" of the Mountain; Gallitzin, the Russian
prince who hid the lustre of his rank among the log-cabins of the
Alleghanies; Hughes, the great fighting archbishop, swinging his
battle-axe over the heads of the parsons; De Smet, the mild-mannered
but indomitable missionary of the Rocky Mountains--these are
specimens of our leaders whose place in history has yet to be
described by the true literary artist. Several have been made the
subject of special biographies, but none have yet appeared in their
true light as the central figures of an American church history.

The book which suggests these remarks is a contribution of materials
for the future historian, and as such we give it a cordial welcome.
Mr. Deuther, it is true, is not a practised writer, and is not
entirely at his ease in the use of our language. But he has shown
great industry in the collection of facts, and has rescued from
oblivion many interesting particulars of the early career of Bishop
Timon in a part of the United States whose missionary history is
very imperfectly known. Thus he has rendered an important service to
Catholic literature, and earned full forgiveness for the literary
offences which impair the value of his book as a biography. The
episcopacy of the estimable man whose life is here told was not
an especially eventful one, and except in one instance attracted
comparatively little public notice. The most conspicuous men,
however, are not always the most useful. Bishop Timon had a great
work to perform in the organization and settlement of his new
diocese, and he did it none the less efficiently because he labored
quietly. The best known incident of his official life--the lamentable
contest with the trustees of the Church of St. Louis in Buffalo--is
not one which Catholics can take any satisfaction in recalling; but
it had a serious bearing upon the future of the American Church, and
its lessons even now may be reviewed with profit. Bishop Kenrick in
Philadelphia, Bishop Hughes in New York, and Bishop Timon in Buffalo
have between them the honor, if not of destroying a system which
had done the church incalculable injury, at least of extracting its
evil principle. Mr. Deuther gives the history of this warfare at
considerable length, and with an affluence of documents which, though
not very entertaining to read, will be found convenient some time or
another for reference. We presume that most people will be interested
rather in the earlier chapters of the biography, and to these we
shall consequently give our principal attention.

John Timon was of American birth but Irish parentage. His father,
James, emigrated from the county Cavan in the latter part of 1796
or the beginning of 1797, and settled at Conewago,[8] in Adams
County, Pennsylvania, where, in a rude log-house, the subject of
this biography was born on the 12th of February, 1797, the second
of a family of ten children. The father and mother seem to have
been remarkably devout people, and from an anecdote related by Mr.
Deuther we can fancy that the lavish beneficence which characterized
the bishop was an hereditary virtue in the family. Mr. James Timon
called, one day, upon a priest whom he had known in Ireland, and,
taking it for granted that the reverend gentleman must be in want of
money, he slipped into his hand at parting a $100 bill, and hurried
away. The priest, supposing Mr. Timon had made a mistake, ran after
him, and overtook him in the street. "My dear friend," said the
generous Irishman, "it was no mistake. I intended it for you." "But,"
said the clergyman, "I assure you I am not in want; I do not need
it." "Never mind; there are many who do. If you have no use for the
money yourself, give it to the poor." The Timon family removed to
Baltimore in 1802, and there John received his school education,
such as it was. As soon as he was old enough, he became a clerk in
a dry-goods shop kept by his father; and Mr. Deuther prints a very
foolish story to the effect that he was so much liked by everybody
that by the time he was nineteen "he had become a toast for all
aged mothers with marriageable daughters," and had refused "many
eligible and grand offers of marriage," which we take the liberty of
doubting. From Baltimore the family removed, in 1818, to Louisville,
and thence in the following spring to St. Louis. Here prosperity at
last rewarded Mr. Timon's industry, and he accumulated a considerable
fortune, only to lose it, however, in the commercial crisis of 1823.
In the midst of these pecuniary misfortunes, John Timon suffered
a still heavier loss in the death of a young lady to whom he was
engaged to be married. Mr. Deuther's apology for mentioning this
incident--which he strangely characterizes as an "undeveloped
frivolity" in the life of a bishop of the church--is entirely
superfluous; he would have been a faithless biographer if he had not
mentioned it. We may look upon it as a manifestation of the kindness
of divine Providence, which called the young man to a higher and
more useful life, and designed first to break off his attachment to
all the things of this world. He heard and obeyed the call, and, in
the month of April, 1823, became a student of the Lazarists at their
preparatory seminary of St. Mary's of the Barrens, in Perry County,
Missouri, about eighty miles below St. Louis.

The Lazarists, or Priests of the Mission, had been introduced into
the United States only six years before, and their institutions,
founded, with great difficulty, in the midst of a poor and scattered
population, were still struggling with debt and discouragement. The
little establishment at the Barrens was for many years in a pitiable
condition of destitution. When Mr. Timon entered as a candidate not
only for the priesthood, but for admission to the congregation, it
was governed by the Rev. Joseph Rosati, who became, a year later,
the first Bishop of St. Louis. The buildings consisted of a few
log-houses. The largest of them, a one-story cabin, contained in
one corner the theological department, in another the schools of
philosophy and general literature, in a third the tailor's shop,
and in the fourth the shoemaker's. The refectory was a detached
log-house; and, in very bad weather, the seminarians often went to
bed supperless rather than make the journey thither in search of
their very scanty fare. It was no uncommon thing for them, of a
winter's morning, to rise from their mattresses, spread upon the
floor, and find over their blankets a covering of snow which had
drifted through the crevices of the logs. The system upon which
the seminary was supported was the same that prevails at Mount St.
Mary's. For three hours in the day the students of divinity were
expected to teach in the secular college connected with the seminary,
and for out-of-door exercise they cut fuel and worked on the farm.
Mr. Timon, in spite of these labors, made such rapid progress in
his studies that, in 1824, he was ordained sub-deacon, and began to
accompany his superiors occasionally in their missionary excursions.

They lived in the midst of spiritual destitution. The French pioneers
of the Western country had planted the faith at St. Louis and some
other prominent points, but they had left few or no traces in the
vast tracts of territory surrounding the earlier settlements, and to
most of the country people the Roman Catholic Church was no better
than a sort of aggravated pagan imposture. Protestant preachers used
to show themselves at the very doors of the churches and challenge
the priests to come out and be confuted. Wherever the Lazarists
travelled, they were looked at with the most intense curiosity. Very
few of the settlers had ever seen a priest before. The Catholics,
scattered here and there, had generally been deprived, for years, of
Mass and the sacraments, and their children were growing up utterly
ignorant of religion. Mr. Timon was accustomed to make a regular
missionary circuit of fifteen or twenty miles around the Barrens
in company with Father Odin, afterward Archbishop of New Orleans.
The duty of the sub-deacon was to preach, catechise, and instruct.
Sometimes they had no other shelter than the woods, and no other food
than wild berries. At a settlement called Apple Creek, they made a
chapel out of a large pig-pen, cleaning it out with their own hands,
building an altar, and so decorating the poor little place with
fresh boughs that it became the wonder of the neighborhood. In 1824,
Messrs. Odin and Timon made a long missionary tour on horseback. Mr.
Deuther says they went to "New Madrid, _Texas_," and thence as far
as "the Port of Arkansas." New Madrid, of course, is in Missouri,
and the Port of Arkansas undoubtedly means Arkansas Post, in the
State of Arkansas, which could not very well be reached by the way of
Texas. Along the route they travelled--where they had to swim rivers,
flounder through morasses, and sleep in the swamps--no priest had
been seen for more than thirty-five years. Their zeal, intelligence,
graceful and impassioned speech, and modest manners, seem to have
made a great impression on the settlers. They had the satisfaction of
disarming much prejudice, receiving some converts, and administering
the sacraments; and, after an interesting visit to an Indian tribe
on the Arkansas River, they returned to the Barrens. About this time
(in 1825), Mr. Timon was promoted to the priesthood and appointed a
professor at the seminary. His missionary labors were now greatly
increased. Mr. Deuther tells some interesting anecdotes of his tours,
which curiously illustrate the state of religion at that time in
the West. One day, Father Timon was summoned to Jackson, Missouri,
to visit a murderer under sentence of death. With some difficulty
he got admission to the jail, but a crowd of men, led by a Baptist
minister named Green, who was also editor of the village newspaper,
entered with him. The prisoner was found lying on a heap of straw and
chained to a post. The hostile mob refused to leave the priest alone
with him; but, in spite of their interference, Father Timon succeeded
in touching the man's heart and preparing him for the sacraments.
While they were repeating the Apostles' Creed together, the minister
pushed forward and exclaimed, "Do not make the poor man lose his soul
by teaching him the commandments of men!" and this interruption was
followed by a violent invective against Romish corruptions.

"Mr. Green," said the priest, "not long ago, I refuted all these
charges before a public meeting in the court-house of this village,
and challenged anybody who could answer me to stand forth and do so.
You were present, but you made no answer. Surely this is no time for
you to interfere--when I am preparing a man for death!"

Mr. Green's only reply was a challenge to a public controversy next
day, which Father Timon immediately accepted. The minister then
insisted upon making a rancorous polemical prayer, in the course
of which he said: "O God of mercy! save this man from the fangs
of Antichrist, who now seeks to teach him idolatry and the vain
traditions of men."

"Gentlemen," exclaimed the priest to the crowd which now filled the
dungeon, "is it right that, in a prayer to the God of charity and
truth, this man should introduce a calumny against the majority of

How far the extraordinary discussion might have gone it would be
hard to guess, had not the sheriff turned everybody out and locked
the jail for the night. The next morning, the debate took place
according to agreement, the district judge being appointed moderator.
After about three or four hours' speaking, Mr. Green gave up the
battle and withdrew. Father Timon kept on for an hour and a half
longer, and the result is said to have been a great Catholic revival
in the community. The prisoner, who had steadily refused to accept
the ministrations of any but a Catholic clergyman, was baptized
immediately after the debate.

On another occasion, Father Timon carried on a debate with a
Protestant clergyman--apparently a Methodist--in the court-house at
Perryville. The Methodist was easily worsted, but there was soon to
be a conference meeting some eighteen miles off, and there he felt
sure the priest would meet his match.

"Do you mean this as a challenge?"

"No; I don't invite you. I only say you can go if you choose."

Father Timon refused to go under these circumstances; but, learning
afterward that a rumor was in circulation that he had pledged
himself to be on the ground, he changed his mind, and reached the
scene of the meeting--which was in the open air--just after one of
the preachers had finished a discourse on Transubstantiation and
the Real Presence. "There is a Romish priest present," this orator
had said, "and, if he dares to come forward, the error of his ways
will be pointed out to him." So Father Timon mounted a stump, and
announced that in a quarter of an hour he would begin a discourse on
the Real Presence. This was more than the ministers had bargained
for. They had been confident he would not attend. They surrounded
him, in considerable excitement, and declared that he should not
preach. Father Timon appealed to the people, and they decided that he
should be heard. He borrowed a Bible from one of his adversaries, and
with the aid of numerous texts explained and supported the Catholic
doctrine. The discussion was long and earnest. The preachers at last
were silenced, and Father Timon continued for some time to exhort the
crowd and urge them to return to the true church. Which was, to say
the least, a curious termination for a Methodist conference meeting.

One of the most serious difficulties which the pioneer missionaries
had to encounter was the want of opportunities of private converse
with people whose hearts had been stirred by the first motions of
divine grace. The log-dwellings of the settlers rarely contained
more than one room, and that often held a pretty large family. Many
anecdotes are told of confessions made among the cornstalks in the
garden, or under the shadow of the forest, or on horseback in the
lonely roads. On one occasion Father Timon had been summoned a long
distance to visit a dying man. The cabin consisted of a single room.
When all was over, the wife of the dead man knelt beside the body
and made her confession, the rest of the family and the neighbors,
meanwhile, standing out-doors in the rain. Then the widow was
baptized into the church, and, as the storm was violent and the hour
past midnight, Father Timon slept on the bed with the corpse, while
the rest of the company disposed themselves on the floor.

Ten years had been passed in labors of this kind, when, in 1835,
letters arrived from Paris, erecting the American mission of the
Lazarists into a province, and appointing Father Timon visitor.
He accepted the charge with great reluctance and only after long
hesitation. It was indeed a heavy burden. The affairs of the
congregation were far from prosperous. The institution at the Barrens
was deeply in debt. The revenues were uncertain. The relations
between the seminary and the bishop were not entirely harmonious.
Several priests had left the community, and were serving parishes
without the permission of their superiors. To restore discipline
would be an invidious task on many accounts. But, having undertaken
the office, Father Timon did not shrink. He saved the college and
seminary from threatened extinction; he brought back his truant
brethren; he revived the spirit of zeal and self-sacrifice; he
restored harmony; he greatly improved the finances. In a short time,
he made a visit to France, and returned with a small supply of money
and a company of priests. On Christmas Eve, in 1838, he sailed
for Galveston, in order to make a report to the Holy See upon the
condition of religion in the republic of Texas. He found the country
in a sad state of spiritual destitution. The only priests were two
Mexicans at San Antonio, who lived in open concubinage. There were no
churches. There were no sacraments. Even marriage was a rite about
which the settlers were not over-particular. Father Timon did what
little he could, on a hurried tour, to remedy these evils; but a year
or two later he came back as prefect apostolic, accompanied by M.
Odin, and now he was able to introduce great reforms. Congregations
were collected, churches begun in all the largest settlements, and
the scandals at San Antonio abated. Firm in correction, but gracious
in manner, untiring in labors, insensible to fear, making long
journeys with a single companion through dangerous Indian countries,
struggling through swamps, swimming broad rivers--the prefect and
his assistant, M. Odin, travelled, foot-sore, hungry, and in rags,
through this rude wilderness, and wherever they passed they planted
the good seed and made ready the soil for the husbandmen who were to
come after them. In the principal towns and settlements they were
invariably received with honor. The court-houses or other public
rooms were placed at their disposal for religious services, and the
educated Protestant inhabitants took pains to meet them socially and
learn from them something about the faith. We find in the account of
these tours no trace of the acrimonious polemical discussions which
used to enliven the labors of the missionaries at the Barrens. There
was little or no controversy, and the priests were invited to explain
religious truth rather over the dinner-table than on the rostrum. At
the request of Mr. Timon, M. Odin was soon afterward appointed vicar
apostolic of Texas, and sent to continue the work thus happily begun.

It was in 1847 that Mr. Timon was removed from the Western field
and consecrated first Bishop of Buffalo. When he had disposed all
his affairs and made ready for his departure, his worldly goods
consisted of a small trunk about half-full of scanty clothing. He had
to borrow money enough to pay his way to New York. But meanwhile some
friends, having heard of his poverty, replenished his wardrobe, and
made up a purse of $400 for his immediate needs. He was consecrated
in the cathedral of New York by Bishops Hughes, Walsh, and McCloskey,
on the 17th of October, and reached Buffalo five days afterward. It
was evening when he arrived. An immense crowd of people--it is said
as many as 10,000--were in waiting for him at the railway station.
There were bands of music, banners, and flambeaux, a four-horse
carriage for the bishop, and a long torchlight procession to escort
him home. It is reported--but the biographer gives the story with
some reserve--that, after the _cortége_ had gone some distance,
the humble bishop was discovered, valise in hand, trudging afoot
through the rain and mud, behind the coach in which he was supposed
to be riding. In after-times he must have sadly compared the cordial
greeting of his flock on this night with the trials, the insults, the
persecutions, which he had to bear from some of the very same people
during almost the whole of his episcopate. We shall not enlarge upon
the history of these sad years. The scandals which arose from the
factious and schismatical spirit of the trustees of the Church of
St. Louis in Buffalo are too recent to have been forgotten by our
readers. The troubles began while Bishop Timon was still a humble
missionary in Missouri. They had been quelled by the firmness of
Bishop Hughes, but they broke out again very soon after the creation
of the new diocese, and Bishop Timon suffered from them to the end
of his life. Having no cathedral and no house, he lodged when
he first arrived with the pastor of St. Louis's, but he had been
there only a few weeks when the trustees, in their mad jealousy of
possible invasion of their imaginary rights, requested him to find
a home somewhere else. This brutal behavior was the beginning of a
long warfare. Those who may care about studying it will find the
necessary documents in Mr. Deuther's book. Let us rather devote the
short space remaining at our disposal to a description of some of
the charming traits of character of the holy man who crowned a life
of incessant labor with an old age of suffering. From the moment of
his elevation to the episcopal dignity, the sacred simplicity of his
disposition seems to have daily increased. If the anecdote of his
behavior at the torchlight reception is not true, it is at any rate
consistent with his character. Bishop Hughes declared that the Bishop
of Buffalo was the humblest man he had ever known. Though he was
very neat and precise in everything relating to the service of the
sanctuary, rags of any kind seemed to him "good enough for the old
bishop," and it was only by stealth, so to speak, that his friends
could keep his wardrobe tolerably well supplied. In his visits to the
seminary it was his delight to talk familiarly with the young men.
At the orphan asylum the children used to ride on his back. Visiting
strange churches, he would kneel in the confessional like any other
penitent. In his private and official intercourse with his clergy, it
was not unusual for him to beg pardon with the utmost humility for
fancied acts of injustice. On one occasion he had slightly rebuked
a priest for some irregularity. Satisfied afterward that the rebuke
had not been deserved, he invited the priest to dinner, placed him
at the head of the table, treated him with marked distinction, and
afterward, taking him to his own room, in the presence of another
bishop, threw himself upon his knees and begged to be forgiven. In
the course of a visitation to a disturbed parish, a member of the
congregation he was addressing publicly spat in the bishop's face.
He took no notice of the occurrence, but went on with his remarks.
"Never shall I forget," wrote the late distinguished Jesuit, Father
Smarius, "the days of the missions for the laity and of the retreats
for the clergy which I had the pleasure to conduct in the cathedral
of Buffalo during the three or four years previous to his holy
demise. The first to rise in the morning and to ring the bell for
meditation and for prayer, he would totter from door to door along
the corridors of the episcopal residence, with a lighted candle in
his hand, to see whether all had responded to the call of the bell
and betaken themselves to the spot marked out for the performance of
that sacred and wholesome duty.... And then, that more than fatherly
heart, that forgiving kindness to repentant sinners, even such as had
again and again deservedly incurred his displeasure and the penalties
of ecclesiastical censures or excommunications. 'Father,' he would
say, 'I leave this case in your hands. I give you all power, only
save his soul.' And then, that simple, child-like humility, which
seemed wounded by even the performance of acts which the excellence
and dignity of the episcopacy naturally force from its subjects and
inferiors. How often have I seen him fall on his aged knees, face
to face with one or other of my clerical brethren, who had fallen
on theirs to receive his saintly blessing!" He took great pains to
cultivate the virtue of humility in his clergy. A proud priest he
had little hope for. To those who complained of the hardships of
the mission, he would answer, "Why did you become a priest? It was
to suffer, to be persecuted, according to the example laid down by
our Lord Jesus Christ." In the strictness with which he tried to
watch over the spiritual welfare of his clergy, and changed their
positions when he thought the good of their souls required it, his
rule was like that of the superior of a monastery rather than the
head of a diocese. He was filled to a remarkable decree with the
spirit of prayer. He began no labor, decided no question, without
long and fervent supplication for the divine assistance. On occasions
of festivity or ceremony, he loved to steal away to the quiet of
the sanctuary, and under the shadow of a column in the cathedral
to pass long hours in meditation. In travelling he was often seen
kneeling in his seat in the cars. His household was always ordered
like a religious community. The day began and ended with prayer and
meditation in common. The bishop rose at five, and in the evening
retired early to his room--not to sleep, but to pass most of the
night in devotion, study, and writing. Up to the very close of his
life he used to set out in the depth of winter to visit distant
parishes unannounced, starting from the house before any one else
was awake, and trudging painfully through the snow with his bag in
his hand. Religious communities, when they assembled for morning
devotions, were often surprised to find the bishop on his knees
waiting for them. By these sudden visits he was sometimes enabled to
correct irregularities, which he never suffered to pass unrebuked;
but he used to say that in dealing with others he would rather be too
lax than too severe, as he hoped to be judged mercifully by Almighty

Mr. Deuther, in attempting to show that the bishop had to conquer
a naturally quick temper, has created an impression, we fear, that
this saintly man was irascible if not violent in his disposition.
It is most earnestly to be hoped that no one will conceive such an
utterly wrong idea. Mr. Deuther himself corrects his own unguarded
language, and it is only necessary to read the book carefully to see
that he does not mean what at first glance he seems not to say, but
to imply. Nobody who knew Bishop Timon will hesitate to call him one
of the kindest and most amiable of men; whatever faults he may have
had, nobody will think of mentioning a hot temper as one of them.
The sweetness of his disposition was in correspondence with the
tenderness of his heart. The patience with which he bore the sorrows
of his episcopate was equalled by the keenness with which he felt
them. Toward the close of his life several anonymous communications,
accusing him of cruelty, avarice, injustice, and many other
faults--of cruelty, this man whose heart was as soft as a woman's--of
avarice, this charitable soul, who gave away everything he had, and
left himself at times not even a change of linen--of injustice, this
bishop who pardoned every one but himself--were sent him in the form
of printed circulars. So deeply was he wounded that his biographer
is assured that the incident hastened his death; he never was the
same man afterward. At the end of the next diocesan synod he knelt
before his priests, and, in a voice broken by tears, asked pardon of
every one present whom he might have in any manner treated unjustly.
He died on the 16th of April, 1867, after a rapid but gradual decay
whose termination he himself was the first to foresee, and his last
hours were as beautiful and inspiring as his years of holy labor.


[7] _The Life and Times of the Right Rev. John Timon, D.D._, First
Roman Catholic Bishop of Buffalo. By Charles G. Deuther. Buffalo:
published by the Author.

[8] Mr. Deuther incorrectly calls this Conevago.


      A mountain-pass, so narrow that a man
      Riding that way to Florence, stooping, can
      Touch with his hand the rocks on either side,
      And pluck the flowers that in the crannies hide--
      Here, on Good Friday, centuries ago,
      Mounted and armed, John Gualbert met his foe,
      Mounted and armed as well, but riding down
      To the fair city from the woodland brown,
      This way and that swinging his jewell'd whip,
      A gay old love-song on his careless lip.
      An accidental meeting--yet the sun
      Burned on their brows as if it had been one
      Of deep design, so deadly was the look
      Of mutual hate their olive faces took,
      As (knightly courtesy forgot in wrath)
      Neither would yield his enemy the path.
      "Back!" cried Gaulberto. "Never!" yelled his foe.
      And on the instant, sword in hand, they throw
      Them from their saddles, nothing loth,
      And fall to fighting with a smothered oath.
      A pair of shapely, stalwart cavaliers,
      Well-matched in stature, weapons, weight, and years,
      Theirs was a long, fierce struggle on the grass,
      Thrusting and parrying up and down the pass,
      Swaying from left to right, till blood-drops oozed
      Upon the rocks, and head and hands were bruised;
      But at its close, when Gualbert stopped to rest,
      His heel was planted on his foeman's breast;
      And, looking up, the fallen courtier sees,
      As in a dream, gray rocks and waving trees
      Before his glazing eyes begin to float,
      While Gualbert's sabre glitters at his throat.

      "Now die, base wretch!" the victor fiercely cries,
      His heart of hate outflashing from his eyes.
      "Never again, by the all-righteous Lord,
      Shalt thou with life escape this trusty sword!
      Revenge is sweet!" And upward flash'd the steel,
      But e'er it fell--dear Lord! a silvery peal
      Of voices, chanting in the town below,
      Rose, like a fountain's spray, from spires of snow,
      And chimed, and chimed, to die in echoes slow.

      In the sweet silence following the sound,
      Gualberto and the man upon the ground
      Glared at each other with bewildered eyes.
      And then the latter, struggling to rise,
      Made one last effort, while his face grew dark
      With pleading agony: "Gualberto! hark!
      The chant--the hour--you know the olden fashion--
      The monks below intone Our Lord's dear Passion.
      Oh! by this cross"--and here he caught the hilt
      Of Gualbert's sword--"and by the blood once spilt
      Upon it for us both long years ago,
      Forgive--forget--and spare your fallen foe!"

      The face that bent above grew white and set,
      The lips were drawn, the brow bedew'd with sweat,
      But on the grass the harmless sword was flung,
      And, stooping down, the generous hero wrung
      The outstretched hand. Then, lest he lose control
      Of the but half-tamed passions of his soul,
      Fled up the pathway, tearing casque and coat,
      To ease the throbbing tempest at his throat--
      Fled up the crags, as if a fiend pursued,
      Nor paused until he reached the chapel rude.

      There, in the cool, dim stillness, on his knees,
      Trembling, he flings himself, and, startled, sees
      Set in the rock a crucifix antique,
      From which the wounded Christ bends down to speak:
      "_Thou hast done well, Gualberto. For my sake
      Thou didst forgive thine enemy; now take
      My gracious pardon for thy years of sin,
      And from this day a better life begin._"

      White flash'd the angels' wings above his head,
      Rare subtile perfumes thro' the place were shed;
      And golden harps and sweetest voices pour'd
      Their glorious hosannas to the Lord,
      Who, in that hour and in that chapel quaint,
      Changed, by his power, by his sweet love's constraint,
      Gualbert the sinner into John the saint.





The enemies of "superstition" had lost a good deal of ground in
their desperate struggle against the events which for the last ten
or twelve weeks had scandalized their distressed philosophy. As it
had become impossible to deny the existence of the fountain whose
pure streams were flowing before the eyes of the amazed people, so it
was becoming impossible to continue denying the reality of the cures
which were being worked, continually and in many places, by the use
of this mysterious water.

At first the incredulous had shrugged their shoulders at the report
of these cures, taking the simple course of denying them out-and-out,
and refusing to make any examination. Then some skilful persons had
invented several false miracles, to enjoy an easy triumph in refuting
them. But they had very soon been confounded by the multiplicity of
these wonderful cures, of which a few have been mentioned. The facts
were evident. They became so numerous and so striking that it was
necessary, however painful it might be, either to acknowledge their
miraculous nature or find some natural explanation for them.

The free-thinkers, then, understood that, unless they were willing
either to surrender or to deny in the face of complete evidence, it
was absolutely necessary to take up some new line of tactics.

The most intelligent of the clique, indeed, saw that things had
already gone too far, and perceived the grave error which they
had committed at the outset in denying prematurely and without
examination facts which had afterward become patent and perfectly
well established, such as the appearance of the fountain, and the
cures of a great number of many who were notoriously incurable by
natural means, and who were now to be seen going about the streets
of the town in perfect health. What made the mistake worse and
almost irreparable was that these unfortunate denials of the most
well-attested events were authentically and officially recorded in
all the newspapers of the department.


The greater part of the cures effected by the Massabielle water
had a character of rapidity, nay, even of instantaneousness, which
clearly showed the immediate action of sovereign power. There were
some, however, which did not present this evidently supernatural
appearance, being accomplished after baths or draughts repeated a few
or many times, and in a slow and gradual manner--resembling somewhat
in their mode the ordinary course of natural cures, though in reality

In a village called Gez, near Lourdes, a little child of seven years
had been the subject of one of these cures, of a mixed character,
which, according to one's natural inclination, might be attributed
to a special grace of God or to the unaided forces of nature. This
child, named Lasbareilles, had been born entirely deformed, with a
double curvature of the back and breast-bone. His thin and almost
withered legs were useless from their extreme weakness; the poor
little boy had never been able to walk, but was always either sitting
or lying down. When he had to move, his mother carried him in her
arms. Sometimes, indeed, the child, resting on the edge of the table
or helped by his mother's hand, could manage to keep himself up and
to take a few steps; but it was at the cost of violent efforts and
immense fatigue. The physician of the place had professed himself
unable to cure him; and the disease being organic, no remedy had ever
been resorted to.

The parents of this unfortunate child, having heard of the miracles
of Lourdes, had procured some of the water from the grotto; and in
the course of a fortnight had applied it on three different occasions
to the body of the little fellow without obtaining any effect. But
their faith was not discouraged on that account; if hope was banished
from the world, it would still remain in the hearts of mothers. A
fourth application was made on Holy Thursday, the first of April,
1858. That day the child took several steps without assistance.

The bathings from that time became more and more efficacious, and the
health of the patient gradually improved. After three or four weeks,
he became strong enough to walk almost as well as other people. We
say "almost," for there was still in his gait a certain awkwardness,
which seemed like a reminiscence of his original infirmity. The
thinness of his legs had slowly disappeared together with their
weakness, and the deformity of his chest was almost entirely
gone. All the people of the village of Gez, knowing his previous
condition, said that it was a miracle. Were they right or wrong?
Whatever our own opinion may be, there is certainly much to be said
on both sides of the question.

Another child, Denys Bouchet, of the town of Lamarque, in the canton
of Ossun, had also been cured of a general paralysis in very much the
same way. A young man of twenty-seven years, Jean Louis Amaré, who
was subject to epileptic fits, had been completely though gradually
cured of his terrible malady solely by the use of the water of

Some other similar cases had also occurred.[9]


If we were not acquainted with the wonderfully varied forms which
supernatural cures have assumed since the Christian era, we might
perhaps be inclined to believe that Providence had thus disposed
things at this moment to cause proud human philosophy to catch
itself in its own nets, and to destroy itself with its own hands.
But let us not think that there was in this case such a snare on the
part of God. He lies in ambush for no one. But truth in its normal
and regular developments, the logic of which is unknown to human
philosophy, is of itself an eternal snare for error.

However this may be, the _savants_ and physicians of the country
hastened to find in these various cures, the cause of which was
doubtful, though their reality and progressive nature were well
ascertained, an admirable opportunity and an excellent pretext to
effect that change of base which the increasing evidence of facts
made absolutely necessary.

Ceasing, therefore, to ascribe these cures to such a commonplace
cause as imagination, they loudly attributed them to the natural
virtues which this remarkable water, which had been discovered by the
merest chance, undoubtedly possessed. To give this explanation was of
course equivalent to recognizing the cures.

Let the reader recall the beginning of this story, when a little
shepherdess, going out to gather some dead wood, claimed to have seen
a shining apparition. Let him remember the sneers of the great men of
Lourdes, the shrugging of shoulders at the club, the supreme contempt
with which these strong-minded individuals received this childish
nonsense; what progress the supernatural had made; and how much
incredulity, science, and philosophy had lost, since the first events
which had so suddenly occurred at the lonely grotto on the banks of
the Gave.

The miraculous had, if we may use such an expression, taken the
offensive. Free thought, lately so proud and confident in its
attacks, was now pursued by facts and obliged to defend itself.

The representatives of philosophy and science were none the less
positive, however, and showed as much disdain as ever for the popular

"Well, be it so," said they, affecting a tone of good humor and the
air of good faith. "We acknowledge that the water of the grotto
cures certain maladies. What can be more simple? What need is
there of having recourse to miracles, supernatural graces, and
divine intervention to explain effects similar to, if not even
exactly the same as, those of the thousand springs which, from
Vichy or Baden-Baden to Luchon, act with such efficacy on the human
system? The Massabielle water has merely some very powerful mineral
qualities, like those which are found in the springs of Barèges or
Cauterets, a little higher up in the mountains. The grotto of Lourdes
has no connection with religion, but comes within the province of
medical science."

A letter, which we take at random from our documents, presents better
than we could the attitude of the _savants_ of the neighborhood
regarding the wonders worked by the Massabielle water. This letter,
written by an eminent physician of that region, Dr. Lary, who had
no faith whatever in the miraculous explanations of the cures, was
addressed by him to a member of the faculty:

                                     "OSSUN, April 28, 1858.

    "I hasten, my dear sir, to send you the details which
    you ask of me in regard to the case of the woman Galop
    of our commune.

    "This woman, in consequence of rheumatism in the left
    hand, had lost the power of holding anything with it.
    Hence, if she wished to wash or carry a glass with this
    hand, she was very apt to drop it, and she was obliged
    to give up drawing water from the well, because this
    hand was unable to hold the rope. For more than eight
    months she had not made her bed and had not spun a
    single skein of thread.

    "Now, after a single journey to Lourdes, where she
    made use of the water internally and externally, she
    spins with ease, _makes her bed, draws water, washes
    and carries the glasses and dishes, and, in short, uses
    this hand as well as the other_.

    "The movements of the left hand are not yet _quite_ as
    free as before the illness, but 90 per cent. of the
    power that had been lost before the use of the water
    from the grotto at Lourdes has been restored. The woman
    proposes, however, to go again to the grotto. I shall
    ask her to pass your way that you may see her, and
    convince yourself of all that I have said.

    "You will find, in examining her case, an incomplete
    anchylosis of the lower joint of the forefinger. If the
    repeated use of the water of the grotto destroys this
    morbid condition, it will be an additional proof of its
    alkaline properties.[10]

    "In conclusion, I beg you to believe me yours very

                                                "LARY, M.D."

This explanation, once admitted and considered as certain in
advance, the doctors were less unwilling to accept the cures worked
by the water of the grotto; and from this period they set to work
to generalize their thesis, and to apply it almost without any
distinction to all cases, even to those which were marked by the
most amazing rapidity, which could by no means be ascribed to the
ordinary action of mineral waters. The learned personages of the
place got out of this difficulty by attributing to the water of the
grotto extremely powerful properties, such as had been previously
unknown. It mattered little that they discarded all the laws of
nature in their theories, provided that heaven got no profit thence.
They willingly admitted the preternatural in order to get rid of the

There were among the faithful some perverse and troublesome persons,
who by impertinent remarks interfered with the profound conclusions
of the scientific coterie.

"How," they said, "is it that this mineral spring, so extraordinarily
powerful that it works instantaneous cures, was found by Bernadette
when in a state of ecstasy, and came after her accounts of certain
celestial visions, and apparently in support of them? How did it
happen that the fountain sprang out precisely at the moment when
Bernadette believed herself to hear a heavenly voice telling her to
drink and bathe? And how is it that this fountain, which appeared
suddenly under the eyes of all the people in such very unusual
circumstances, yields not ordinary water, but a water which, as you
yourselves acknowledge, has already cured so many sick persons whose
cases had been abandoned as hopeless, and who have used it without
medical advice, and merely in the spirit of religious faith?"

These objections, repeated under many different forms, provoked the
free-thinkers, philosophers, and _savants_ exceedingly. They tried
to evade them by answers which were really so poor and miserable
that they ought, one would think, to have hardly presented a good
appearance even in their authors' eyes; but then, to find any others
was no doubt very difficult.

"Why not?" said they. "Coffee was discovered by a goat. A shepherd
found by chance the waters of Luchon. It was also by accident
that the ruins of Pompeii were brought to light by the pickaxe of
a laborer. Why should we be so much surprised that this little
girl, while amusing herself by digging in the ground during her
hallucination, should have come upon a spring, and that the water
of this spring should be mineral and alkaline? That she imagined
at the moment that the Blessed Virgin was before her, and that
she heard a voice directing her to the fountain, is merely a
coincidence, entirely accidental, but of which superstition tries to
make a miracle. On this occasion, as on the others, chance has done
everything, and has been the real discoverer."

The faithful were not, however, moved by this sort of argument.
They had the bad taste to think that to explain everything by
accidental coincidence was to do violence to reason under the
pretext of defending it. This irritated the free-thinkers, who,
though acknowledging at last the reality of the cures, deplored more
than ever the religious and supernatural character which the common
people insisted upon giving to these strange events; and, as was
natural under the circumstances, they were inclined to resort to
force to stop the popular movement. "If these waters are mineral,"
they began to say, "they belong to the state or to the municipality;
people should not use them except by the advice of a doctor; and an
establishment for baths should be built at the spot, not a chapel."

The science of Lourdes, forced to assent to the facts in this case,
had arrived at the state of mind just described when the measures of
the prefect, relative to the objects deposited in the grotto, and the
attempt to imprison Bernadette under the pretext of insanity, were
announced--this attempt, as we have seen, having been defeated by the
unexpected intervention of the curé, M. Peyramale.


A certain and official basis for all these theses of the desperate
adherents of the medical theory was still a desideratum. M. Massy
had already bethought himself of asking such a basis from one of the
most wonderful and indubitable sciences of the age--namely, that
of chemistry. With this view, he had applied, through the mayor of
Lourdes, to a chemist of some distinction in the department--M.
Latour de Trie.

To show, not in detail by the examination of each special case, but
once for all, that these cures which were rising up as formidable
objections were naturally explained by the chemical constitution
of the new spring, seemed to him a masterstroke; and he considered
that, in accomplishing it, he would lay science and philosophy under
obligation, not to mention also the administration, represented by
the minister, M. Rouland.

Seeing that it was impossible to have Bernadette arrested as insane,
he urged the analysis, which was to show officially the mineral
and healing qualities of the water. It was becoming imperatively
necessary to get rid of the intrusive supernatural power which,
after having produced the fountain, was now curing the sick people,
and threatening to pass all bounds. Though its abominable influence
should continue strong in many quarters, a really official analysis
might be of great service.

The chemist of the prefecture, therefore, set to work to make this
precious investigation of the water from Massabielle, and, with a
good conscience, if not with perfect science, he found at the bottom
of his crucibles a solution perfectly agreeing with the explanations
of the doctors, the reasonings of the philosophers, and the desires
of the prefect. But was truth also as well satisfied with it as the
prefecture, the philosophers, and the faculty? At first, perhaps,
this question was not proposed, but it lay in store for a future
occasion. But, not to consider this for the present, let us see
what was this analysis which M. Latour de Trie, chemist of the
administration, addressed officially, on the 6th of May, to the mayor
of Lourdes, and which the latter immediately forwarded to the Baron


    "The water of the grotto of Lourdes is very clear,
    without smell or decided taste. Its specific gravity is
    very nearly that of distilled water. Its temperature at
    the spring is 15° Cent. (59° Fahr.)

    "It contains the following elements:

    "1st. Chlorides of sodium, calcium and magnesium in

    "2d. Carbonates of lime and of magnesia.

    "3d. Silicates of lime and of alumina.

    "4th. Oxide of iron.

    "5th. Sulphate and carbonate of soda.

    "6th. Phosphate (traces).

    "7th. Organic matter--ulmine.

    "The complete absence of sulphate of lime in this water
    is also established by this analysis.

    "This remarkable peculiarity is entirely to its
    advantage, and entitles it to be considered as very
    favorable to digestion, and as giving to the animal
    economy a disposition favorable to the equilibrium of
    the vital action.

    "We do not think it imprudent to say, in consideration
    of the number and quality of the substances which
    compose it, that medical science will, perhaps, soon
    recognize in it special curative properties which
    will entitle it to be classed among the waters which
    constitute the mineral wealth of our department.

    "Be pleased to accept, etc.

                                        "A. LATOUR DE TRIE."

The civil order is not so well disciplined as the military, and,
through misunderstanding, false steps are occasionally taken in
it. The prefect, in the multitude of his avocations, had omitted
to give his orders to the editors of the official newspaper of the
department, the _Ere Impériale_, so that, while the chemist of the
prefecture said white, its journalist said black; while the former
was recognizing in the spring at Lourdes one of the future medical
and mineral treasures of the Pyrenees, the latter was calling it
dirty water, and joking about the cures which had been obtained.

"It is needless to say," he wrote on the precise day on which M.
Latour de Trie sent in his report--that is, on the 6th of May--"that
the famous grotto turns out miracles in abundance, and that our
department is inundated with them. At every corner you will meet with
people who tell you of a thousand cures obtained by the use of some
dirty water.

"The doctors will soon have nothing to do, and the rheumatic and
consumptive people will have disappeared from the department," etc.

Notwithstanding these discrepancies, which might have been avoided,
it must be acknowledged that Baron Massy was, on the whole, attentive
to his business. On the 4th of May, at about noon, he had delivered
his address to the mayors of the canton of Lourdes, and given his
orders. On the 4th of May, in the evening, the grotto had been
stripped of the offerings and _ex-votos_. On the morning of the 5th,
he had ascertained the impossibility of having Bernadette arrested,
and had abandoned this measure. On the 6th, in the evening, he
received the analysis of his chemist. Fortified with this important
document, he waited the course of events.

What was about to take place at Lourdes? What would happen at the
grotto? What would be done by Bernadette, whose every movement was
watched by the Argus eyes of Jacomet and of his agents? Would not
the fountain at the grotto disappear in the coming hot weather,
and thus put an end to the whole business? What attitude would the
people assume? Such were the hopes and anxieties of the Baron Massy,
imperial prefect.


At the grotto the miraculous fountain continued to flow, abundant and
clear, with that character of quiet perpetuity which is generally
found in springs coming from the rock.

The supernatural apparition did not cease to assert its existence,
and to prove it by benefits conferred.

The grace of God continued to descend visibly and invisibly upon the
people, sometimes quick as the lightning which flashes through the
clouds, sometimes gradual like the light of dawn.

We can only speak of those graces which were external and manifest.

At six or seven kilometres (four miles) from Lourdes, at Loubajac,
lived a good woman, a peasant, who had formerly been accustomed to
labor, but whom an accident had for eighteen months past reduced to
a most painful inaction. Her name was Catherine Latapie-Chouat. In
October, 1856, having climbed an oak to knock down some acorns, she
had lost her balance, and suffered a violent fall, which caused a
severe dislocation of the right arm and hand. The reduction--as is
stated in the report and the official statement, which are now before
us--though performed immediately by an able surgeon, and though
it nearly restored the arm to its normal state, had nevertheless
not prevented an extreme weakness in it. The most intelligent and
continuous treatment had been ineffectual in removing the stiffness
of the three most important fingers of the hand. The thumb and first
two fingers remained obstinately bent and paralyzed, so that it was
impossible either to straighten them or to enable them to move in the
least. The unfortunate peasant, still young enough for much labor,
for she was hardly thirty-eight, could not sew, spin, knit, or take
care of the house. The doctor, after having treated her case for a
long time without success, had told her that it was incurable, and
that she must resign herself to give up the use of that hand. This
sentence, from such a reliable authority, was for the poor woman the
announcement of an irreparable misfortune. The poor have no resource
but work; for them compulsory inaction is inevitable misery.

Catherine had become pregnant nine or ten months after the accident,
and her time was approaching at the date of our narrative. One
night she awaked with a sudden thought or inspiration. "An interior
spirit," to quote her own words to myself, "said to me as it were
with irresistible force, 'Go to the grotto! go to the grotto, and
you will be cured!'" Who this mysterious being was who spoke thus,
and whom this ignorant peasant--ignorant at least as far as human
knowledge is concerned--called a "spirit," is no doubt known by her
angel guardian.

It was three o'clock in the morning. Catherine called two of her
children who were large enough to accompany her.

"Do you remain to work," said she to her husband. "I am going to the

"In your present condition it is impossible," replied he; "to go to
Lourdes and return is full three leagues."

"Nothing is impossible. I am going to get cured."

No objection had the least effect upon her, and she set out with her
two children. It was a fine moonlight night; but the awful silence,
occasionally broken by strange and mysterious sounds, the solitude of
the plains only dimly visible, and seemingly peopled by vague forms,
terrified the children. They trembled, and would have stopped at
every step had not Catherine reassured them. She had no fear, and
felt that she was going to the fountain of life.

She arrived at Lourdes at daybreak, and happened to meet Bernadette.
Some one telling her who it was, Catherine, without saying anything,
approached the child blessed by the Lord and beloved by Mary, and
touched her dress humbly. Then she continued her journey to the rocks
of Massabielle, where, in spite of the early hour, a great many
pilgrims were already assembled and were on their knees.

Catherine and her children also knelt and prayed. Then she rose, and
quietly bathed her hand in the marvellous water.

Her fingers immediately straightened, became flexible, and under her
control. The Blessed Virgin had cured the incurable.

What did Catherine do? She was not surprised. She did not utter a
cry, but again fell on her knees, and gave thanks to God and to Mary.
For the first time for eighteen months, she prayed with her hands
joined, and clasped the resuscitated fingers with the others.

She remained thus for a long time, absorbed in an act of
thanksgiving. Such moments are sweet; the soul is glad to forget
itself, and thinks that it is in Paradise.

But violent sufferings recalled Catherine to the earth--this earth of
sighs and tears, where the curse pronounced upon the guilty mother
of the human race has never ceased to be felt by her innumerable
posterity. We have said that Catherine was very near her confinement,
and as she was still upon her knees she found herself suddenly seized
by the terrible pains of childbirth. She shuddered, seeing that there
would be no time to go even to Lourdes, and that her delivery was
about to occur in the presence of the surrounding multitude. And for
a moment she looked around with terror and anguish.

But this terror did not last long.

Catherine returned to the Queen whom nature obeys.

"Good Mother," said she simply, "you have just shown me so great a
favor, I know you will spare me the shame of being delivered before
all these people, and at least grant that I may return home before
giving birth to my child."

Immediately all her pains ceased, and the interior spirit of whom she
spoke to us, and who, we believe, was her angel guardian, said to her:

"Do not be alarmed. Set out with confidence; you will arrive safely."

"Let us go home now," said Catherine to her two children.

Accordingly she took the road to Loubajac, holding them by the hand,
without intimating to any one her critical state, and without showing
any uneasiness, even to the midwife of her own village, who happened
to be there in the midst of the crowd of pilgrims. With inexpressible
happiness she quietly traversed the long and rough road which
separated her from home. The two children were not afraid of it now;
the sun was risen, and their mother was cured.

As soon as she returned, she wished still to pray; but immediately
her pains returned. In a quarter of an hour she was the mother of a
third son.[12]

At the same time, a woman of Lamarque, Marianne Garrot, had been
relieved in less than ten days, merely by lotions with the water
from the grotto, of a white eruption which had covered her whole
face, and which for two years had resisted all treatment. Dr.
Amadou, of Pontacq, her physician, was satisfied of the fact, and
was an incontestable witness of it subsequently before the episcopal

At Bordères, near Nay, the widow Marie Lanou-Domengé, eighty years
old, had been for three years a sufferer from an incomplete paralysis
in the whole left side. She could not take a step without assistance,
and was unable to do any work.

Dr. Poueymiroo, of Mirepoix, after having ineffectually used some
remedies to restore life in the palsied parts, though continuing his
visits, had abandoned medical treatment of the case.

Hope, however, is with difficulty extinguished in the hearts of the

"When shall I get well?" the good woman would say to Dr. Poueymiroo,
every time that he came.

"You will get well when the good God sees fit," was the invariable
reply of the doctor, who was far from suspecting the prophetic nature
of his words.

"Why should I not believe what he says, and throw myself directly on
the divine goodness?" said the old peasant woman one day to herself,
when she heard people talking of the fountain of Massabielle.

Accordingly, she sent some one to Lourdes to get at the spring itself
a little of this healing water.

When it was brought to her, she was much excited.

"Take me out of bed," said she, "and hold me up."

They took her out, and dressed her hurriedly. Both the actors and
spectators in this scene were somewhat disturbed.

Two persons held her up, placing their hands under her shoulders.

A glass of water from the grotto was presented to her.

She extended her trembling hand toward the quickening water and
dipped her fingers in it. Then she made a great sign of the cross on
herself, raised the glass to her lips, and slowly drank the contents,
no doubt absorbed in fervent and silent prayer.

She became so pale that they thought for the moment that she was
going to faint.

But while they were exerting themselves to prevent her from falling,
she rose with a quick and joyful movement and looked around. Then she
cried out with a voice of triumph:

"Let me go--quick! I am cured."

Those who were holding her withdrew their arms partially and with
some hesitation. She immediately freed herself from them, and walked
with as much confidence as if she had never been ill.

Some one, however, who still had some fear of the result, offered her
a stick to lean on.

She looked at it with a smile; then took it and contemptuously threw
it far away, as a thing which was no longer of use. And from that
day, she employed herself as before in hard out-door work.

Some visitors, who came to see her and to convince themselves of the
fact, asked her to walk in their presence.

"Walk, did you say? I will run for you!" And, true to her word, she
began to run.

This occurred in the month of May. In the following July, the people
pointed out the vigorous octogenarian as a curiosity, as she mowed
the grain, and was by no means the last in the hard labors of the

Her physician, the excellent Dr. Poueymiroo, praised God for this
evident miracle, and subsequently, with the examining commission,
signed the procès-verbal on the extraordinary events which we have
just related, in which he did not hesitate to recognize "the direct
and evident action of divine power."[14]



[9] We think it well to say that no one of these cures, except that
of Denys Bouchet, whom the physicians had pronounced absolutely and
constitutionally incurable, was declared to be miraculous by the
episcopal commission which will be mentioned further on. For these
cures, the 10th, 11th, and 16th _procès verbaux_ of the commission
may be consulted. Whatever the probability of divine intervention may
be in such cases, the church before proclaiming a miracle requires
_that no natural explanation of the fact should be possible_, and
sets aside, without affirming or denying, every case in which this
condition is not found. She is content to say _Nescio_.

We shall hereafter have occasion to speak of the work of the

[10] The patient was, in fact, entirely cured at the second visit to

[11] The presence of chloride of sodium (common salt), to say nothing
of the others, _in abundance_, without a decided taste in the water,
is a little mysterious. The original reads: "Chlorures de soude, de
chaux et de magnésie: abondants."--NOTE BY TRANSLATOR.

[12] The reader will perhaps like to see the reports of the episcopal
commission on this case:

"Hardly had Catherine Latapie-Chouat plunged her hand into the water,
than she felt herself to be entirely cured; her fingers recovered
their natural suppleness and elasticity, so that she could quickly
open and shut them, and use them with as much ease as before the
accident of October, 1856.

"From that time she has had no more trouble with them.

"The deformity of the hand of Catherine Latapie, and the
impossibility of using it, being due to an anchylosis of the joints
of the fingers, and to a complete lesion of the nerves or the flexor
tendons, it is certain that the case was a very serious one; as also
by the uselessness of all the means of cure used during eighteen
months, and by the avowal of the physician, who had declared to this
woman that her condition was irremediable.

"Nevertheless, in spite of the failure of such long and repeated
attempts, the employment of various active healing agents, and
the statement of the physician, this severe lesion disappeared
immediately. Now, this sudden disappearance of the infirmity, and
restoration of the fingers to their original state, is evidently
beyond and above the usual course of nature, and of the laws which
govern the efficacy of its agents.

"The means by which this result has been brought about leave no
doubt in this respect, and establish this conclusion incontestably.
In fact, it has been averred(a) that the Massabielle water is of
an ordinary character, without the least curative properties. It
cannot, then, by its natural action, have straightened the fingers of
Catherine Latapie and restored their suppleness and agility, which
had not been accomplished by the scientific remedies which were so
various and used for so long a time. The wonderful result, then,
which the mere touch of this water immediately produced, cannot be
ascribed to it, but we must rise to a superior cause, and do homage
for it to a supernatural power, of which the water of Massabielle has
been, as it were, the veil and inert instrument.

"Besides, if ordinary water had been possessed of such a prodigious
power, Catherine Latapie would have experienced its effect long
before by the daily use which she made of it in washing herself and
her children; for she had daily employed for this purpose water
exactly similar to that at the grotto."--_Extract from the 15th
procès-verbal of the commission._

(a): This was, in fact, authentically averred, the administrative
analysis to the contrary notwithstanding, at the time of the
_procès-verbaux_ of the commission.

[13] We will also give the conclusions of the commission on this

"An eruptive affection of this sort might not of itself have a
very grave character, nor threaten serious danger or disastrous
consequences. Still, that from which Marianne Garrot had suffered
would indicate by its duration, by its resistance to the treatment
which had been prescribed and faithfully followed, and by its
continual and progressive spreading, a very decidedly malignant
character, the inoculation, so to speak, of a deeply seated _virus_,
to expel which would require long and persevering attention, with a
patient continuance of the treatment already adopted or of some other
more appropriate and effectual one.

"The rapid though not instantaneous disappearance of the white
eruption from the face of the patient is very different from the
usual effect of chemical preparations; for the first lotion produced
a perceptible improvement or partial cure _instantaneously_, which
was advanced by the second, made four days afterward; and without the
aid of any other remedy, these two lotions accomplished a complete
restoration in a few days by a gradual and rapid progress.

"Now, the liquid the employment of which produced this speedy effect
was nothing but water, without any special properties, and without
any relation or appropriateness to the disease which it overcame;
and which, besides, if it had possessed any such qualities, would
long before have produced the effect through the daily use which the
patient made of it for drinking and washing.

"This cure cannot, then, be ascribed to the natural efficacy of
the Massabielle water, and all the circumstances, as it would
seem--namely, the tenacity and activity of the eruption, the
rapidity of the cure, and the inappropriateness of the element which
brought it about--concur to show in it a cause foreign and superior
to natural agents."--_Extract from the 15th procès-verbal of the

[14] Ninth procès-verbal of the commission.


In the adjustment of differences to which conflicting interests or
a spirit of rivalry may give birth, governments, like individuals,
are prone to satisfy themselves with conventions limited to matters
immediately in dispute. They are like medical doctors, who treat
symptoms as the malady to be cured, and, satisfied with alleviating
present pain, leave its causes to war against mortal life, until
disease becomes chronic and incurable.

Whether the labors of the Joint High Commission, now sitting in
Washington, will be of this description, remains to be seen; but
such, it appears to us, has been the character of treaties or
conventions affecting commercial relations with our Canadian and
provincial neighbors. They seem not to have been founded upon any
intelligent consideration of the wants of contracting parties,
but, presupposing that there must be conflicting interests, are
devised to prevent rival industries from merging in unfriendliness
and strife. We ask, then, whether these rival interests have
legitimate existence. The answer to this question will be derived
from an examination of the statistics of the two countries--their
agricultural and other products--their climatic and social
conditions, and the commercial relations actually subsisting between
them, as well as those which both sustain to other countries and

The productions of a country are properly classified according to the
sources whence they are derived.

We have, then, five distinct classes of products, namely: The
natural productions of the sea, the earth, the forest, and the
results of industry applied to agriculture and manufactures.

Let us now turn to the map of British America. Beginning at the east,
the waters of Newfoundland and the Gulf of St. Lawrence are rich
in fisheries. They yield salmon, mackerel, codfish, haddock, ling,
herring, and oysters, in great abundance. Newfoundland has not enough
of agriculture to save its own population from absolute suffering
when there is a failure in the catch of fish along its shores. It
possesses rich though undeveloped deposits of copper, iron, and other
ores. Prince Edward Island, in the centre of the mackerel fisheries,
is, perhaps, more favored by nature than the other maritime
provinces. Every acre of its surface may be reckoned as arable land.
Its agriculture, always limited to the growth of hay, oats, potatoes,
and turnips, is only partially developed, though even now yielding
a considerable surplus for export. Its forests are exhausted of
timber. And though, from habit, its people still continue to build
wooden ships to send "home" for sale, they are obliged to import
the material for their construction. The southern part of Nova
Scotia contains a considerable portion of good farm lands; yielding
the invariable crops of hay, oats, potatoes, and turnips. In some
districts, apples and pears, of excellent quality, are grown in
abundance. The eastern portion, especially the island of Cape Breton,
is rich in coal, lime, freestone, and marble; all so placed as to be
easily accessible to commerce. Even now, despite protective duties
on colonial products, the streets of some of our Atlantic cities are
lighted with gas from Nova Scotia coal.

Gold has been found in sufficient quantity to afford opportunity
for speculation, but not for profit. The yield for 1867 was 27,583
oz. = $413,745; for 1868, 20,541 oz. = $308,115. The same amount of
capital applied to the growing of potatoes would doubtless afford
a much larger return. Coal is the most important mineral product;
and its chief market is found in the United States. The net amount
mined in one year was 418,313 tons; sold for home consumption and
to neighboring colonies, 176,392 tons; sent to the United States,
241,921 tons.

New Brunswick offers the same agricultural products as the
neighboring provinces of Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia. A
great part of its territory, like the northern part of Maine, is
cold, rocky, and inarable. But its forests yield large quantities
of pine lumber, oak, beech, maple, and other valuable woods, and
bark for tanning leather. This source of wealth is, however, rapidly
failing. The forests begin to give evidence of exhaustion. St.
John already asks what shall be her resource when the lumber is
gone. Formerly, ship-building was a large interest in these lower
provinces. But from the growing scarcity of ship timber, as well as
from the more general use of iron vessels, it has been declining from
year to year.

We see, then, what these provinces can now contribute to commerce;
and we also see their prime deficiency. They cannot supply their
people with bread. That comes from Canada and the United States.
But Canada does not want their mackerel or other fish, their oats,
potatoes, turnips, or hay. She wants money; and for want of a nearer
market, the surplus oats must be sent upon a very doubtful venture
across the ocean, the mackerel to the United States, and the dried
fish to the West Indies and Brazil, to get money to pay for Canadian
bread. But time is money. It is more than money--it is life. And when
we take into account the loss of time in going to and fro across
the ocean, and the great expenditure of unproductive labor that is
required by this selling to Peter on one side of the world to pay
Paul on the other, we cannot help believing that the poor provincial
pays a high price for bread to eat and clothes to wear, as well
as for the various products of other lands which, from being only
conveniences, have become the necessaries of life.

We come now to the Province of Quebec--prior to the Dominion, called
Canada East. Nearly all her territory lies north of the forty-sixth
parallel of latitude. Need we say that agriculture, save for the few
and slender productions of cold climates, is here impossible? For
nearly seven months of the year the greater part of her rivers and
harbors are closed to commerce by bars of impenetrable ice. The soil,
and every industry relating to it, is under the dominion of frost.

The forests of timber may be accessible despite the snows of
winter, and in the early spring her people may hunt seals along the
coasts of Labrador; but during the long period of actual winter,
her agriculturists, nearly her whole industrial population, must
be employed upon indoor labor, or be left to hibernate in positive
idleness. It is simply impossible that agriculture can ever be a
successful industry in so rigorous a climate as that of Quebec.

Going westward through what was once called Canada West, now the
Province of Ontario, we find a peninsula bounded by the St. Lawrence
River, Lake Ontario, and Lake Erie, on the south and east; and by
Lakes St. Clair and Huron, with their connecting straits, on the
west. This peninsula, south of 45° N., comprises the wheat-growing
lands of Canada east of Lake Winnipeg. Its area is something less
than that of the State of New York. It produces good crops of wheat
and other cereals, and nearly all vegetables and fruits grown
in our northern and northwestern states. Farther west, we have
the valleys of the Saskatchewan and its tributaries, capable of
producing cereals, grasses, potatoes, and other vegetables. But our
information, derived from missionaries and others long resident in
that region, induces the belief that it is mere folly to regard a
country in whose streams the fish lie torpid, and where the snow-fall
is not enough to protect the land from killing frosts, in winter, as
suited to the growth of cereals for export, or as capable of giving
bread to any considerable population.

Much has been said and written concerning the territory lying on the
Pacific coast. We believe it is well ascertained that the climate
of British Columbia west of the mountains--we might well add the
southeast coast of Alaska--is as mild as that of the state of New
York. Unfortunately, it is very much more moist; so much more that
it never can become a good agricultural country. The reason is so
obvious that one is hardly disposed to question the assertion. The
vast accumulations of ice and snow in and immediately north of
Behring Strait, and on the high mountain range lying on the east side
of this territory, must produce intense cold when the wind blows from
the north and east. When the warm air comes from the southwest,
the whole atmosphere must resemble a vapor-bath. Seeds may readily
germinate, but can they produce ripe crops?

We have recently discussed this subject with a friend who has had
intimate personal acquaintance with this coast for more than ten
years, and we but reiterate his assertion in saying that, north of
Oregon, agriculture is not a safe reliance for the support of a
colony. We do not doubt that hay, oats, and potatoes will grow there.
It is well known that they may grow where the sub-soil is everlasting
ice. But we know that agriculture cannot be profitable either there
or where the heats of summer last just long enough to melt the snows
on adjacent mountains and convert the soil to mud. There must always
be an excess of moisture to contend with in maturing crops. Our
information as to the fact is positive. But suppose that, in process
of time, by the clearing of forest lands, and other causes incident
to the peopling and cultivation of the soil, these difficulties were
overcome. Does any one believe that the products of the land could
be carried by rail and inland waters through a distance of three
thousand miles, and two or three thousand more by sea, and, after
successive reshipments, at last pay the producer--save in cumulation
of expenses added to the original cost of goods received in return?
If, then, this far western country should ever have an excess of food
or other commodities, they must find a readier market than either the
far-off country of eastern Canada or more distant lands can afford.
Its trade must be with the neighboring states of Washington, Oregon,
and California. Will the people, on either side, long consent to pay
tribute to government officials for the privilege of exchanging the
fruits of their toil?

Were they really of different races--distinct in language, manners,
and customs beyond the degree that always makes the dwellers in one
village imagine its "excellent society" a little superior to that of
the neighboring hamlet--we might say, yes! But knowing, as we do,
that they are by race, by conditions of soil and climate, and by
reason of mutual interests, but one people, we do not believe it.

Let us now glance at the map of the United States. Leaving out Maine,
northern New Hampshire, and Vermont, in the northeast; the narrow
belt north of the 48th parallel, between Lake Superior and the
Pacific Ocean, in the northwest; Florida, Louisiana, and Southern
Texas in the south; the whole vast area between the 32d and 46th
parallels of latitude, from the Atlantic to the Pacific Ocean--in
extent equivalent to three-fourths of all Europe--is suited to the
production of wheat, rye, barley, Indian corn, oats, hay, potatoes,
and every fruit found in temperate climates. There are no frosts
to render agriculture a mere speculative enterprise; no bonds of
ice to close the ports to commerce. Seed-time and harvest may be
counted upon as certainly as the succession of seasons. Can there
be a doubt that here the material interest forming the basis of all
others is agriculture? We have no exact data for a comparison of the
several products of the United States and British America; but for
our immediate purpose it is quite unnecessary to present tables of
statistics. We refer only to chief products. First--of those common
to both countries, the productions of the United States are to the
productions of Canada and the Lower Provinces as 13 to 1. The whole
agricultural products of the United States, excluding those of
orchards, vineyards, and gardens--which would present a still wider
difference--are to those of Canada as 15 to 1. The annual yield of
Indian corn in the United States is worth upwards of $800,000,000,
or about five times the entire value of the agricultural product
of British America. If we include in the comparison the values of
animals and animal products, orchards, vineyards, and gardens, the
proportion is something nearer 30 to 1, while the breadth of improved
land is not as 10 to 1. And this while the breadth of our improved
land is not more than one-thirteenth of our territory--though double
the whole area of Great Britain and Ireland--and while any great
expansion of agriculture in Canada is forbidden by the conditions
of soil and climate. Are not these considerations sufficient to
show the absurdity of persistence in the development of _rivalry_
in agricultural and commercial interests? Do we not see that in the
United States agriculture is legitimately the greatest industrial
interest, and that in Canada it is not? And we may well ask why the
industrial population of Canada should not be employed in utilizing
its timber and other products of the forest and the mine, or,
where material is more readily found in the neighboring country,
using the forces so abundantly provided by their inland waters and
mines of coal, as well as by the muscle half-wasted for want of
use, in supplying fabrics which they now import, and pay for by
the scanty labors of just half the time that God has given them?
These considerations are in some degree applicable to New England.
The difference is, that New England knows it, and acts upon the

Manufacturing is the appropriate industry of cold climates. When this
is acknowledged, hibernation ceases. The people are no longer forced
to eke out a meagre existence in winter upon the slender profits
of toil spent in contention with chilling winds and frosts. True,
Canada--a small part of it--produces bread for export. We know it:
and we also know that every loaf costs twice as much, in human toil,
as the better loaf yielded by the more generous soils and genial suns
of Illinois, Minnesota, Iowa, New York, Ohio, Maryland, Virginia, and
California. Canada produces good beef, mutton, pork, and, of course,
the raw materials for manufactures incident to these products. But
the herdsmen on the plains of Illinois, Iowa, Florida, and Texas
would grow rich in selling beeves, swine, and sheep for the cost of
their keeping through a Canadian winter!

On the other hand, we see, in some parts of our own country, whole
communities of people engaged in mechanical industries, while the
earth calls for tillage. Even in our more populous territories,
enough of what should be fruitful lands to yield subsistence to a
larger population than Canada will ever contain, lies fallow and
neglected. But our commercial relations are adverse to the proper
adjustment of industrial pursuits.

The Canadians dare not rely upon their neighbors for bread to eat,
any more than those neighbors would venture to build their workshops
and factories in Canada. The more venturesome try to obviate the
difficulty, to some extent, by illicit trade; but all the obstacles
to legitimate commerce--to the conveniences of living--remain; and
they must remain as long as the American and Canadian producers have
to pay tribute to Cæsar on exchanging the fruits of their labors.
Reciprocity treaties may modify, but they cannot remove, this great
obstacle to prosperous trade.

Treaties regulating trade cannot so change the industries of the
two countries as to confine large agricultural enterprises to the
soil and climate that would insure success, nor send the artisan,
now living on rich uncultivated lands, to till the earth. What means
the extraordinary emigration from Canada to the States? And how can
we account for the sudden expansion of manufacturing industries in
Montreal and other Canadian towns? It means that, while governments
are discussing treaties for reciprocal trade, their people are
practising reciprocal emigration--but with a difference. The Canadian
becomes an American citizen--the American very rarely a British
subject. We recollect two incidents in our own experience apropos to
the matter under consideration.

Some two years ago we passed a summer in the "Lower Provinces."
In the parlor of our hotel, we fell into conversation with an
intelligent man of business who proved to be a commercial traveller
from Canada. His specialty was boots and shoes. On mentioning that
Lynn, in Massachusetts, was the great shoe factory of "the States,"
his reply was, "Yes! the head of our firm is from Lynn." Lynn had
gone to Montreal to employ Canadian hands in turning Canadian
leather into boots and shoes to supply colonial markets. "The head
of our firm," like other heads of firms, had solved the problem of
appropriate industry as far as he was concerned. He had learned where
material, and hands to work it, were cheapest, and he was utilizing
them. He had emigrated to employ the cheap labor that could not
emigrate. At another time, we met a well-dressed mechanic who was not
at _home_. His home was in "the States." He was only visiting his
birthplace and kindred. In reply to the remark that the high wages
which had enticed him to the States were only high in sound, since
greenbacks were at a great discount, and food, clothing, and rent at
inflated prices, his reply evinced a perfect understanding of the
whole question, as it affected him and the class to which he belonged.

"True," said he, "I am paid in greenbacks; but I have a better house,
better food, and better clothes than I ever had before. And at the
end of the year, my surplus greenbacks are worth more, _in gold_,
than I could get for a year's labor in this colony."

Here are two parties whose interests are reciprocal, whose social
conditions are essentially the same, who live in juxtaposition to
each other, but with broad ocean between them and other countries
and peoples, frittering away material interests, wasting revenues
that of right should be employed for their advancement in social
life, to gratify a spirit of antagonism where even rivalry should
be deemed insane. But is there no remedy for these disorders in our
political economy? We think there is a very obvious one; and if we
may not say, "What God has joined together, let not man put asunder,"
because the parties are not agreed, we can and do say, the sooner
they are agreed, the better for both. We would say to Canada, do not
waste your time and strength in trying to effect impossibilities.
Let us see your many rivers alive with the artisans who can send to
the market something else than ship-timber and deals. Let us see
the smoke of the forge and the foundry rise in proximity to your
mines of coal. We want all that you can make, and have no fear that
you will in any degree impair the prosperity of our own industrial
people. And we will pay you in bread, better and cheaper than you can
get from your colder and less fruitful lands. And when your coarser
materials are wrought into shape for export, we have skilled labor,
nearer than Britain, to receive your surplus products and fashion
them into the thousand fabrics which only skilled labor can supply.

We have no desire to see your wheat-fields fail or to decry their
products in the market. We only say that they are too limited for
dangerous competition with ours. And we further say, that if you
will but develop other and more legitimate industries, so that your
wheat-growing districts cannot feed your people, we will be sure to
have bread enough and to spare. And you may be also sure that all
your efforts will not so overstock the markets we can offer as to
make trade languish, when the thousands now peopling this continent
shall become millions, though the Old World should want nothing that
you can give. And, then, you have but a doubtful road to the markets
of the Old World. For half the year your highway to the ocean and
to other lands must be across our territory. Intercolonial railways
through unsettled and unproductive countries will not answer the
demands of commerce. They will not pay; and, if they would, the
interests served ought not to be so burdened where access may be had
to readier and cheaper lines of communication.

Does all this imply annexation? Call it what you will. As one of your
Canadian statesmen said to the people of a lesser province, "If you
do not want us to annex you, we are willing that you should annex
us." If you are more conservative than we are, a little conservatism
will do us no harm; and the interests you would conserve would be
quite as safe under the eagle's beak as under the lion's paw. If one
be a bird, the other is surely a beast of prey; and we believe that
harmless folk have less to apprehend from one alone than from the
jealous rivalries of both.

Of one thing we feel assured: the time is not far distant when
the people of this northern half of America will have to adopt a
policy so distinct from that of the older nations of Europe that
self-preservation will demand a union of power where there is now an
evident identity of interests.

It were well that this union should be preceded by such guarantees
of existing rights and privileges as might, without specific and
just conventions, be open to subsequent question and dispute. And it
were also well for governments to direct the march which necessity
compels their people to make, rather than incur the risk of finding
themselves at variance with those for whose greater good civil
government is designed. We do not purpose to discuss the origin
or foundation of civil government. It is enough for us to know
that man requires and God wills it; and that, in the absence of
other and higher sanctions, the best evidence of his will is found
in the intelligent, honest consent of the governed. Does any one
doubt what the more intelligent and honest people of Canada and the
United States require? We do not ask what may be the _rôle_ of the
political adventurer, the office-seeker, the government speculator
or tuft-hunter. We always know that the end of all their loyalty or
patriotism is self. But we ask what is needed for the greater good
of the people. Not alone the people of to-day or to-morrow, but of
the future as well. How the people of to-day esteem the policy of
their lawgivers, may be known by their conduct under it. And the
army of government revenue officers and detectives on either side
along the frontiers of Canada and "the States" offers sufficient
evidence of the esteem in which the laws of trade are held. We know
not which is the more corrupt--the law-breakers or the agents of
the law; but we do know, from the notoriety of the fact, that the
commercial relations now existing between the Canadas and the States
are, in effect, so demoralizing, to commercial people and commercial
interests, that the laws which propose to govern them were better
abrogated than left to offer a premium to chicanery and fraud.

We are neither alarmists nor political propagandists. We have no
greedy desire for our neighbor's goods, no fanatical wish to impose
our political dogmas or theories upon the people of other states. We
but behold and see what is before and around us--and, seeing it, we
only give utterance to belief that has grown and strengthened, until
scarcely a doubt remains, when we say that we believe the ultimate
union of the United States and British America to be inevitable. The
time may be more or less distant, the occasion and the means may be
as yet undreamed of; but the event seems as certain as the coming of
the morrow's sun while the shades of evening gather over and around
us. If, unfortunately, war should take the place of peaceful union,
the calamity would hardly be less to us than to Canada.

By peaceful union, existing rights of the weaker party are made
secure. By war, they are jeopardized and may be lost. But to us, as
well as to them, war would be a calamity of such fearful magnitude,
that we are constrained to look with hope to the time when the
conflicting interests of the Old World shall have no power to disturb
the peaceful relations that should always exist between ourselves and
our neighbors.



The whole scope of the subject properly comprised under the title
"Higher Education" obviously includes all that belongs to every kind
of institute of learning above common schools. We have selected
this title in order to leave freedom to ourselves to discourse upon
any part of the subject we might think proper, although in our
first article we limited our remarks to a class of schools intended
for that which is more strictly to be designated as intermediate
education. We have a few additional remarks to offer upon the same
part of our subject, after which we will proceed to throw out a few
suggestions upon some of its remaining and still more important
portions. We are not attempting to treat these topics fully and
minutely, and our observations will be, therefore, brief and

In regard to the course of studies to be pursued in intermediate
schools, it is a question of great practical moment how to arrange
the several branches to be taught to the pupils in such a way as to
prepare them most efficiently for the future occupations of their
lives. The course common to all ought to be made up of those studies
which are alike necessary or important to all. In addition to these
common studies, certain special branches should be taught, or the
distinct branches of the common course more extensively carried
out, for distinct classes of pupils, varying these optional studies
according to the different occupations for which they are preparing.
For instance, a moderate quantity of mathematics and a rudimental,
general course of instruction in physical sciences are sufficient for
all, except those who will need greater knowledge and practice in
them for use in their profession. It is useless to attempt, in these
days, education on the encyclopædic principle. The common and solid
basis of all education once laid, the more specific it becomes, the
better; and for want of good sense and skill in selecting studies,
apportioning the relative time and labor given to them, and directing
them to a definite end, very great waste and loss are incurred in

One other most important point, which we merely notice, is the
propriety of providing the most thorough instruction in the modern
languages, especially the French, which can more easily be done, as
we suppose, in the schools of which we are speaking, that no time
whatever, or at most but a moderate amount, is given to the ancient
languages. Without going further into details, it is obvious that
schools of the intermediate class have an unlimited sphere in which
they can give any kind and degree of instruction belonging to the
most extensive and liberal education, deducting the classics, and
stopping short of the university, properly so called. Nor is there
any reason why, if we had universities in the highest sense of the
term, the pupils of these schools should not afterward enjoy all the
privileges they offer which do not require a knowledge of the ancient
languages. We will not say anything on the vexed classical question.
Did it seem to be practicable, we should strongly favor making the
study of Latin a part of the education of all who go beyond the
common rudiments, as well girls as boys, to such an extent that they
could understand the divine offices of the church. For all other uses
or advantages, we are inclined to think that many pupils who occupy
a great deal of time in gaining a very imperfect smattering of Latin
and Greek, might better spare it for other studies.[15]

However the question may be eventually settled in regard to the
classics as a part of general education, it is certain that they must
retain their place in the education of the clergy, and of at least a
select portion of those who are destined for other learned pursuits
and professions. We shall speak more fully about this part of the
subject a little further on. Before leaving the topic of English
education, however, we have one or two supplementary observations to
make, suggested by the remarks of other writers which we have come
across since we began writing the present article.

F. Dalgairns, in an article which he has published in the
_Contemporary Review_, has expressed himself in a manner quite
similar to our own respecting the necessity of a return to the
scholastic philosophy. His remarks have given us great pleasure,
and they furnish one more proof of the tendency toward unity in
philosophical doctrine among Catholics which is daily spreading and
gaining strength. One observation of his on this head is specially
worthy of attention. He says that it is necessary, if we desire to
teach the scholastic philosophy to those who have received or are
receiving a modern or English education, to translate and explain
its terms in the best and most intelligible English. A mere literal
translation from Latin text-books will not answer the purpose.
This is very true, and we cannot refrain from expressing the wish
that the health and occupations of F. Dalgairns may permit him to
write an entire series of philosophical essays, like the one he
has just published on the _Soul_, to which we have just referred.
Indeed, we know of no one better fitted by intellectual aptitude for
metaphysical reasoning and mastery of the requisite art as a writer,
to prepare a manual of philosophy for English students.

The _Dublin Review_ has repeated and sanctioned the observations of
F. Dalgairns, and has added something to them equally worthy to be
noticed--to wit, that our Catholic text-books of logic need to be
improved by incorporating into them the results of the more careful
and thorough analysis of the laws of logic which has been made by
several English writers. It is very true that, although the English
metaphysic is a sorry affair, there have been several very acute
logicians among modern English thinkers; as, for instance, Mr. Mill,
Mr. De Morgan, and Sir William Hamilton. We suppose that the _Dublin
Review_ intends to designate the doctrine of what is technically
called the "quantification of the predicate" made known by the two
authors last mentioned, simultaneously and independently of each
other, as a real discovery in logical science, and an addition to
Aristotle's laws. We hope the matter will be further discussed,
and that not only English and American writers interested in the
subject of philosophical teaching will give it their attention, but
Continental scholars also. For our own part, our _rôle_ at present
is the modest one of giving hints and provoking discussion, and we
therefore abstain from going any deeper than a mere scratch of the
rich soil we hope to see well dug and planted before long.

From another and very different quarter, we have found within a day
or two a corroboration of several opinions we expressed in our first
article. Prof. Seeley, of the University of Cambridge, England, in a
little volume of essays, noticed by us in another place, advocates
the teaching of logic in English schools, dwells on the importance of
teaching history after a better method, and sketches out a plan of
improving the instruction given in medium schools and universities,
which is well worthy of being read and thought over by those who have
the direction of education.

But we will turn now to another and still higher department of
education, which embraces the courses of study proper to the
university and the schools which are preparatory to it. Beginning
with that branch of study which must undoubtedly still continue to
form an essential and principal branch of the strictly collegiate
education, the classics, we do not hesitate to say that this branch,
instead of being less, ought to be more thoroughly and completely
cultivated. In so far as Latin is concerned, it is evident that those
who aim at anything more than the degree of knowledge requisite for
understanding better the modern languages, and the terms which are in
common use derived from Latin, or, perhaps, for a more intelligent
appreciation of church offices, ought to master the language fully,
together with its classical literature. The reasons which prove this
statement apply with tenfold force to ecclesiastics, for whom Latin
ought to be a second mother-tongue. It is not necessary to give these
reasons, for they are well known and fully appreciated by all who are
concerned with the collegiate or ecclesiastical education of Catholic

The question of Greek is a distinct one. For those who study the
classics for the sake of their intrinsic value as works of art, Greek
has the precedence of Latin in importance. It is evident, therefore,
that a most thorough and extensive course of Greek is necessary for
students of this class. Whether such a course ought to be made a
part of the obligatory collegiate curriculum of studies, or merely
provided for a select class who may choose to enter upon it, we leave
to the discretion and judgment of the learned. Undoubtedly, we ought
to have a certain number of accomplished Grecians among our men of
letters. It is necessary in the interests of ecclesiastical learning
that we should have thorough Greek scholars among our clergy. For
all useful purposes, however, the value of the amount of Greek
actually learned by the majority is exceedingly small, and not to
be compared with the practical utility of a knowledge of any one of
several modern languages, for example, the German. A clergyman,
for instance, who does not aspire to become a learned philologist,
but only to make himself acquainted with the labors of the best
commentators on the Scripture, will not find it very necessary to
be able to read the Septuagint or the Greek New Testament. As for
Hebrew, whatever can be learned by a short and superficial course
will be almost useless. If he desires to read Aristotle, Plato, or
the Greek fathers, for the sake of their sense and ideas, he can do
so in the Latin translations without any fear of being led into any
erroneous interpretation. The point we are driving at is, that the
thorough study of Latin is the most essential thing to be secured in
a _classical_ course. Philosophy; a moderate course of mathematics;
the English language and literature; the physical sciences, and the
modern languages, especially the French, are the other essentials
of a complete collegiate course. Whatever time remains will be most
usefully employed in the study of history and of modern political
and social questions, branches which are certainly essential to
a complete liberal education, though for many, or perhaps most,
students their thorough cultivation may have to be postponed until
after their college course is finished. The improvement of the
collegiate education in all these branches, requires, of course,
a corresponding improvement in the preparatory schools, since the
school and college depend on each other. It is our opinion, in which
we are sure that the men most experienced in these matters concur,
that those who begin their schooling at the earliest suitable age
need to be well trained in an excellent preparatory school until
the age of seventeen, before they are fit to profit fully by a high
collegiate course. Those who begin later must enter college at a
more advanced age, unless they can make up by diligence for lost
time, or be content with a shorter course of study. The raising of
the conditions for entering college, which can be done gradually,
must improve the preparatory schools, and the improvement of these
schools will in turn benefit the colleges, by furnishing them with
subjects fitted for a higher course of studies.

In saying this, we beg to disavow any intention of undervaluing or
finding fault with the colleges and schools at present existing,
or the learned and laborious corps of teachers employed in them.
They deserve the highest meed of praise and gratitude, and we may
well congratulate ourselves on the truly vast work which has been
accomplished, at great cost and by dint of great efforts, in the
cause of Catholic education in this country. But our motto should
ever be, like that of the past generations of laborers in this great
cause, "Upward and onward!" We trust, therefore, that all we may say
in favor of improvement will be taken as an encouragement and not as
a fault-finding criticism--as a friendly suggestion, and not as a
presumptuous attempt at dictation.

We have now reached the proper place for speaking of the great
necessity of a Catholic University in the United States. A
well-conducted college for undergraduates is not a university,
though it is often dignified with that name; but is merely one of
the principal constituent parts of a university. In regard to the
proper constitution, nature, and conduct of a university, much has
been written, of late, both in Europe and America. In Europe, those
who write on the subject either consider the subject of improvement
or reform in universities already existing, or the demands existing
in various quarters for the foundation of new ones. These last are
chiefly among Catholics, who are extremely alive to this necessity
in several countries, but especially in Germany and England. The
foundation of a great Catholic University for Germany at the spot
which is most appropriate for such a grand undertaking, on account
of its hallowed and scholastic memories, Fulda, has been determined.
We hope that the efforts to make the Catholic University of Dublin
completely successful, and to found another in England, may speedily
produce their desired result. In this country, the heads of the
older Protestant colleges are considering what measures can be taken
to raise these institutions to the level of the universities of
Europe. Among the papers which we have read from different quarters
on this subject, those of Professor Seeley, of Cambridge, and of one
or two professors of Yale College, writing in the _New Englander_,
have especially attracted our attention; and we may have occasion
to reproduce some of their remarks or suggestions in the present
article. Among the Catholics of the United States, the Germans have
manifested what looks like the most serious disposition which has
yet shown itself for taking the actual initiative in the movement.
We rejoice to see it, and hope they may go on. They are a most
respectable body; their energy, wealth, and power of organized
action are great. Germany is full of young ecclesiastics of the best
education, who are sighing for employment, and competent to fill
chairs in all the departments except that of English literature.
We have but one precaution to suggest, in case this enterprise
is undertaken, which is: that proper care be taken to secure the
entire subordination of the corps of governors and teachers to the
hierarchy and the Holy See, and to ascertain the strict orthodoxy
of the persons called to fill the professorial chairs. We want no
followers of Hermes, Döllinger, or any other leader of a German sect
in philosophy or theology; and persons of that class whose _rôle_ is
played out at home, might be the very first to look out for a new
field in which to practise their manœuvres, in a German University
in the United States, if they saw a chance of securing in it the
desirable position of professors--a position which has special
attractions for the German mind.

The _Advocate_ of Louisville has recently spoken out very strongly on
the need of a Catholic University in this country; and the topic is
frequently broached in conversation, as, indeed, it has been for the
last fifteen years. Let the Germans go forward and take the lead if
they are able and willing; but this will not lessen the necessity of
the same action on the part of the other Catholics of the country,
who, we may hope, will be stimulated by the example of a body of men
so much smaller in number than themselves. When the time comes for
action in this matter, the direction of it will be in higher hands
than ours; but, meanwhile, we will indulge ourselves in the at least
harmless amusement of sketching an ideal plan of the university as it
lies in our own imagination, and of the possible method of making it
a reality.

A university is a corporation of learned and studious men who are
devoted to the acquisition and communication of science and art
in all their higher branches. It may be more or less complete and
extensive. In its greatest extension it ought to comprise one or
more colleges for undergraduates, schools of all the special
professional studies, and a school of the higher and more profound
studies in every department of literature and science. It must have
a permanent body of learned men residing within its precincts, whose
lives are entirely devoted to study and instruction. It must have
a vast library; museums of science and antiquities; a gallery of
painting, sculpture, and all kinds of artistic works; a complete
scientific apparatus, a botanical garden, magnificent buildings,
beautiful chapels, and a grand collegiate church, with its chapter
of clergymen and perfectly trained choir. It should have, also, a
great publishing-house, and issue regularly its periodical reviews
and magazines, as well as books, of the first class of excellence
in the several distinct departments of science and letters. It must
be richly endowed, and well governed, under the supreme control
and direction of the hierarchy and the Holy See. A plan combining
the chief distinctive features of the Roman University, Oxford,
Louvain, and the best universities of France and Germany, with some
improvements, would represent the full and complete idea we have in
our mind.

When we come to the practical question. What could be done now, at
once, toward the beginning of such a colossal undertaking? it is by
no means so easy to solve it as it is to sketch the plan of our ideal
university. We do not fancy, of course, that such a grand institution
as this we have described, or even one similar to the best existing
European universities, can be created in a hurry by any speedy or
summary process. But if it is commenced now, can it not be brought
to completion by the beginning of the twentieth century? It seems to
us that in the year 1900 or 1925 we shall need not one only, but
three grand Catholic universities in the United States. That we can
and ought to begin the work of founding one without delay, we have
no doubt. The difficulty is, however, in pointing out a sensible
and feasible method of doing well what many or most of us are ready
to acknowledge ought to be done quickly. Let us suppose that the
requisite authority and the necessary funds are confided to the hands
of the proper commission, who are to lay the first stones in the
foundation of a university. How should they proceed, and what should
they first undertake? As these high powers exist only potentially and
in our own imagination, we can be certain that they will not take
offence if we presume to offer them our opinion and advice.

What is the first and most obvious want which we seek to satisfy
by founding a university? It is the want of a collegiate system of
education and discipline superior to the one already existing in
our colleges, and equal to any existing elsewhere. The first thing
to be done, then, is to select some already existing college, or to
establish a new one, as the nucleus of the future university. We will
suppose that some one of our best colleges can be found which has the
requisite advantages of location, etc., making it an eligible place
for a great university. Let measures be taken to place the grade of
education and instruction in this college at the highest mark. The
first of these measures must be to give it a corps of professors
and tutors fully equal to their task, and to make the position of
these professors a dignified, honorable, and permanent one. Another
measure of immediate necessity would be the total separation of the
college from the grammar-school, and the establishment of a system
of discipline suitable not for boys but for young men. The mere
announcement by sufficiently high authority that such a system would
be inaugurated in a college, would draw at once within its walls
students enough eager to begin a thorough course of study, to secure
the success of the experiment. At first, the course of study already
in vogue might be carried on, merely adding to it such branches as
would not presuppose a previous preparation not actually possessed
by the students. For admission to the class of the next year to
come, the conditions might be raised one grade higher, and thus by
successive changes, previously made known, the maximum standard
might be reached without inconvenience or injustice to any; and the
grammar-schools would be enabled and obliged to prepare their pupils
expressly for the examination they would have to pass for admittance
into the college. The college thus properly planted and cultivated
would grow of itself in due time to maturity and perfection. Nothing
more is wanted than a good system, fit men to administer it, plenty
of money, and a body of youth fit and desirous to be instructed and
educated in the best manner. The library, the scientific cabinets,
the philosophical apparatus, the buildings, grounds, and other
exterior means and appliances, should be provided for as speedily and
amply as circumstances would permit.

The second great want, in our opinion, is the provision for
ecclesiastical students of the advantages for education which can
only be completely furnished by a university, and which cannot,
therefore, be fully enjoyed at separate ecclesiastical seminaries.
The Little Seminary is only a superior kind of grammar-school, even
though it gives instruction in the ancient languages and some other
branches to the same extent with a college. The Grand Seminary is,
strictly speaking, a college for instruction in theology, although
it includes a year or two of that study of philosophy which is only
introductory to the theological course. A thorough university course,
in which all the instruction preparatory to theology should be
finished, would give a more complete and thorough education to young
ecclesiastics, fit them much better for their professional studies,
and prepare them much more efficaciously for the high position
which belongs, by all divine and human right, to the priesthood.
This is the way in which the clergy, both secular and regular, were
trained during the Middle Ages. The system of separate training
came in afterward, and has been kept up by a sort of necessity,
chiefly because the universities have become so secularized as to be
dangerous places. We have touched, in these last words, the tender
spot, which we well know must be handled delicately. The great
argument for secluding young ecclesiastics in seminaries entirely
separate from secular colleges is, that their morals, their piety,
their vocation, are otherwise endangered. We reply to this by a
suggestion intended to do away with the objection to a university
life, and at the same time to show how its advantages may be secured.
Let both systems be combined. Let there be a college exclusively
intended for young ecclesiastics, in which they shall be kept under
the discipline of the Little Seminary, at the university. The Little
Seminary will then take its place as a separate grammar-school for
boys who are intended for the ecclesiastical state. From this school
they can pass, not before their seventeenth year, to the college at
the university, and they will have seven years still remaining in
which to finish their education, before they arrive at the canonical
age for ordination to the priesthood. It seems to us that the
separate college is a sufficient security for the morals, piety, and
vocation of any young man above seventeen years of age who is fit
to be a priest in this country outside of the walls of a monastery.
Moreover, we are speaking about a model Catholic university, which,
we should hope, would not be so extremely dangerous a place for young
men. We have never heard that Louvain is considered in that light
by the clergy of Belgium, and the glimpse we had of a large body of
the Louvain students at Malines during the session of the Congress
of 1867, gave us the most favorable impression of their virtuous

The university should also be the seat of the principal Grand
Seminary, and of a school of Higher Theology. The reasons for
locating the place of education for ecclesiastics at a university
apply to all the grades of their distinct schools above that of the
grammar-school with nearly equal force, and they are very weighty in
their nature. They concern in part the professors and in part the
students. So far as the former are concerned, it is evident that
they would derive the greatest advantage from the facilities for
study and intercourse with learned men afforded by the university,
and would exercise the most salutary influence over the professors
in the departments of philosophy and secular science. One great end
of the university is to collect together a great body of learned men
devoted to the pursuit of universal science; and it is obvious that
this cannot be successfully accomplished unless the ecclesiastical
colleges are included within the corporation.

In regard to the students, it seems plain enough that all that
part of their course which precedes theology can be much more
thoroughly carried on at a university of the highest class than at
a Little Seminary, especially if these seminaries are numerous and
therefore necessarily limited in numbers and all kinds of means for
improvement. A concentration of the endowments, the instructors,
and the pupils in one grand institution, makes it possible to give
a much better and higher kind of education, and saves a great deal
of labor besides. It is especially, however, in relation to the
lectures on physical science, and the cultivation of other general
branches distinct from the routine of class recitations, that the
university has the advantage over the seminary. The students of
theology, moreover, can receive great benefit from lectures of this
kind, and from the libraries, museums, cabinets, etc., which a
great university will possess, as well as from the greater ability
and learning which men chosen to fill the chairs of sacred science
in such an institution are likely to have, in comparison with
those who can be made available for giving instruction in many of
the smaller seminaries. Over and above all these advantages for
actually gaining a greater amount of knowledge, there is the immense
advantage to be gained of bringing up together and binding into one
intellectual brotherhood our most highly educated Catholic youth.
There is something in the atmosphere and the surroundings of a
great university which quickens and enlarges the intellectual life;
brightens the faculties; trains the mind for its future career, and
fits it to act in society and upon men. The alma mater is a centre
of influences and associations lasting through life. The learned
men residing there, and their pupils in all professions, are bound
together by sacred ties, which are not only a cause of pleasure to
them in future years, but of great power for good in the community.
Such a university as we have described would in twenty-five years
produce a body of alumni who would intellectually exert a great
influence over the Catholic community throughout the United States,
and make themselves respected by all classes of educated men. The
clergy ought to retain the first place and a commanding influence
among this body of educated Catholics. For this purpose, it seems to
us that they ought to be educated with them, and look to the same
university as their alma mater.

We see no reason, moreover, why the religious orders and
congregations should not share and co-operate in the labors and
advantages of this great enterprise. The smaller congregations find
the suitable education of their postulants a difficult task. One or
more colleges at a university, where these students could reside
by themselves, under their own rule and superior, but receiving
their instruction from the university professors, would solve this
difficulty. The older and more numerous religious societies have
greater facilities for educating their students, and are governed
by their own old and peculiar traditions. We will not presume so
far as to give them any suggestions from our modern brain in regard
to matters in which they have the experience of from one to six
centuries. It strikes us, however, as a very pleasing and quite
mediæval idea, that our proposed grand university, which we may as
well make as splendid as possible while it remains purely ideal,
should have its Dominican, Jesuit, Sulpician, and Lazarist colleges.
There is no reason why such colleges should not make constituent
parts of the university, each one having its own laws and regulating
its own internal affairs according to its own standards.

We will say nothing about the law, medical, scientific, and artistic
schools which a university ought to have to make it complete.

We have only attempted to show how a university might be started
on its career. Once really alive and in motion, the rest would be
more easily provided for. Undoubtedly, a vast sum of money would
be requisite for such an undertaking. Our wealthy Catholics would
have to exercise a princely liberality, and the whole mass of the
people would be obliged to contribute generously for many years in
succession. We must admire the remarkable instances of princely
liberality in the cause of general education recently given by Mr.
Peabody, Mr. Cornell, and a considerable number of other wealthy
gentlemen in the United States, whose benefactions to colleges and
schools have been frequent and munificent. Let us have one-twentieth
part of the money expended on education by other religious or learned
societies, and we will show again what we did in former ages, when we
founded Oxford, Cambridge, St. Gall, Bec, Paris, Salamanca, Fulda,
Louvain, Cologne, Pavia, Padua, Bologna, and the other famous schools
of the middle ages. What more important or more glorious work can
be proposed to the Catholics of the United States than this? We
know what our Catholic youth are, for we have spent much time in
giving them both scholastic and religious instruction. What can be
more ingenuous, bright, and promising than their character--more
capable of being moulded and formed to everything that is virtuous
and noble? They contain the material which only needs the proper
formation to produce a new and better age, which we fervently hope
is already beginning to dawn. As the Alcuins, Lanfrancs, and other
illustrious fathers of education in former times were among the
principal agents in producing epochs of new life, so those who take
up their work now in our own country, and throughout Christendom,
will be among the principal benefactors of the church and the human
race, and deserve for themselves a most honorable crown.

Our topic in the present article has led us to present almost
exclusively and in strong light the advantages to be derived from a
university and from university education, in relation both to the
ecclesiastical state and secular professions. To prevent mistake,
we add in conclusion, that we do not desire or anticipate the
suppression or merging into one institution of all our colleges and
seminaries. It is scarcely possible that all the students of this
vast country should be educated in one place. The necessity for other
colleges and seminaries will of itself create or continue them.
The university will give them an example and model to follow, will
furnish those not already amply provided for from the bosom of old
and learned religious orders with professors, will give those who
desire it a chance to complete their studies after leaving college
by residing for a time within its walls, and will reign as a queen
among lesser institutions, giving tone, character, and uniformity
to the scientific and literary community of Catholic scholars
throughout the country. There are doubtless certain respects in
which the universities of Europe must always have an advantage over
any institution we can hope to found in this new country. Some,
or even many, will always have a longing for a residence abroad
in these ancient seats of learning, which they may and ought to
gratify, when it lies in their power to do so. Above all other
places, Rome must ever draw to her those who desire to drink faith,
piety, and knowledge from their fountain-head. And, if a better age
is really coming, not only will the Pope necessarily be secured in
a more tranquil and firm possession of his temporal kingdom in all
the extent which he justly claims, that he may govern the church
with all the plenitude of his supremacy, but also that the wealth
and prosperity of the Roman Church may give to her institutions
of learning an amplitude and splendor which they have never yet
attained. Planets are nevertheless necessary as well as a sun in a
system, and so also are satellites. However ample and extensive the
provisions made at Rome may be for educating a select portion of
the clergy of all countries, they can never make it unnecessary to
provide also in every country for the best and highest education of
its own clergy. So far as we can see, every reason and consideration
cries out imperatively for the speedy foundation of a Catholic
University in the United States.


[15] Prof. Seeley advocates the plan of devoting a part of the time
during the last two years at English schools to Latin. The proper
study of English must also include in it an analysis of the Latin
element, and an explanation of the derivation of words of Latin


      Ye nations of earth, give ear, give ear,
        From Holy Writ comes the warning true,
      The voice of the ancient captive seer
        Through the dim-aisled centuries reaches you.

      Thus saith the seer: "Ye have lifted high
        Against his altar your impious hand;
      From the Lord's spoiled house is heard the cry,
        'Destruction swift to this guilty land.'"

      But a deeper than Belshazzar's wrong
        Veils the light of these mournful years,
      And many an eye in the saintly throng
        Turns from the earth bedimmed with tears.

      The Holy City by promise given,
        A precious dower to the spotless bride,
      Is trodden by feet outlawed, unshriven,
        And her streets with martyrs' blood are dyed.

      The crown that ever has fallen as light
        On holy brows, from the Hand above,
      Has been torn away by sinful might
        From him whose rule was a father's love.

      The deed was by one; the sin by all;
        By ay, or by silence, ye gave assent;
      Ye saw the shrine to the spoiler fall,
        Nor hand ye lifted, nor aid ye lent.

      O nations of earth! give ear, give ear,
        From Holy Writ comes the warning true,
      The voice of the ancient captive seer,
        From the far-off ages, speaks to you!


It is curious to remark the various and apparently incongruous
substances which men, in their efforts to preserve knowledge
or transmit ideas, have used as writing materials. The animal,
vegetable, and mineral kingdoms have each and all been laid under
contribution. In every land and in every age, stone and marble have
been employed to perpetuate the remembrance of the great deeds of
history. Inscriptions cut in jasper, cornelian, and agate are to
be met with in every collection of antiquities. A cone of basalt
covered with cuneiform characters was found some years since in the
river Euphrates, and is now preserved in the Imperial Library of
Paris, side by side with the sun-baked bricks on which the Babylonian
astronomers were wont during seven centuries to inscribe their
observations on the starry heavens.

The Romans made books of bronze, in which they engraved the
concessions granted to their colonies; and they preserved on tablets
and pillars of the same durable material the decrees and treaties of
the senate, and sometimes, even, the speeches of their emperors.

"The Bœotians," says the learned Greek geographer Pausanias, "showed
me a roll of lead on which was inscribed the whole work of Hesiod,
but in characters that time had nearly effaced."

"Who will grant me," cries Job, "that my words may be written? who
will grant me that they may be marked down in a book? With an iron
pen and in a plate of lead, or else be graven with an instrument in
flintstone?" (xix. 23 24.)

Tanned skins were likewise employed for writing purposes by the
Asiatics, the Greeks, the Romans, and the Celts. In the Brussels
library there is to be seen a manuscript of the Pentateuch, believed
to be anterior to the ninth century, written on fifty-seven skins
sewed together, and forming a roll more than thirty-six yards long.

The custom of writing on leathern garments appears to have been
prevalent during the middle ages. The great Italian poet, Petrarch,
used to wear a leathern vest, on which, while sitting or sauntering
near the shaded margin of the fountain of Vaucluse, he would note
each passing thought, each poetic fancy. This precious relic, covered
with erasures, still existed in 1527.

We read, too, of a certain abbot who strictly enjoined his monks, if
they happened to meet with any of the works of St. Athanasius, to
transcribe the precious volumes on their clothes, should paper be

The use of prepared sheep-skin, that is, parchment, dates from
about a hundred and fifty years before the Christian era; its Latin
name, _pergamena_, is very evidently derived from Pergamos, but
whether because invented there, or because it was more perfectly
prepared in that city than elsewhere, is a question not yet decided.
Besides white and yellow parchment, the ancients employed purple,
blue, and violet. These dark shades were intended to be written on
with gold and silver ink. Several very beautiful manuscripts of
this description are to be seen in the Imperial Library of Paris.
Parchment manuscripts were sometimes of great size; thus, the roll
containing the inquiry concerning the Knights Templars, which is
still preserved in the archives of France, is full twenty-three yards

Parchment became very scarce during the invasions of the barbarians,
and this scarcity gave rise to the custom of effacing the characters
of ancient manuscripts in order to write a second time on the skin.
This unfortunate practice, most prevalent among the Romans, and
which was continued until the invention of rag paper, has occasioned
the loss of many literary and scientific treasures. The primitive
characters of some few of these doubly-written manuscripts, or
palimpsests, as they are called, have been restored by chemical
science, and several valuable works recovered; among others, for
instance, Cicero's admirable treatise on the Republic.

Even the intestines of animals have been used as writing material.
The magnificent library of Constantinople, burnt under the Emperor
of the East, Basiliscus, is said to have contained, among its other
curiosities, the Iliad and the Odyssey, traced in letters of gold on
the intestine of a serpent. This rare specimen of caligraphy measured
one hundred and twenty feet.

The most ancient inscribed characters we possess are upon wood. A
sycamore tablet containing an engraved inscription was discovered,
about thirty years since, in one of the Memphis pyramids; the
learned Egyptologist who deciphered it pronounced it to have been in
existence some five thousand nine hundred years! The Chinese, also,
before they invented paper two thousand years ago, wrote upon wood
and bamboo. Many oriental nations still make books of palm-leaves, on
which the characters are scratched with a sharp-pointed instrument.
The Syracusans of bygone times used to write their votes on an
olive-leaf. The modern Maldivians trace their hopes, fears, and
wishes on the gigantic foliage of their favorite tree, the makareko,
of which each leaf is a yard long and half a yard wide. The Imperial
Library of Paris, rich in all that is rare and interesting, possesses
several ancient leaf manuscripts, some beautifully varnished and gilt.

In Rome, before the use of bronze tables and columns, the laws were
engraven on oak boards. "The annals of the pagan high-priests," says
a French writer, "which related day by day the principal events of
the year, were probably written with black ink on an _album_, that
is, a wooden plank whitened with white-lead. These annals ceased a
hundred and twenty years before Christ, but the use of the _album_
was kept up some time longer." The Romans also wrote their wills on

Linen cloth covered with writing has been found in most of the
mummy-cases that have been opened. The Egyptian Museum in the Louvre
contains several rituals on cloth. The Sibylline Oracles were traced
on cloth. The first copy of the Emperor Aurelian's journal that was
made after his death was written on cloth, and is still preserved in
the Library of the Vatican. On cloth were written also some of the
edicts of the first Christian emperors.

No certain epoch can be ascribed to the fabrication of paper from
the papyrus reed. The celebrated French _savant_, Champollion the
younger, discovered during his travels in Egypt several contracts
written on papyrus, which by their date must have been drawn up
seventeen hundred years B.C.

Egypt appears to have kept the monopoly of the papyrus paper trade.
The principal manufactories of it were situated at Alexandria, and
so important an article of commerce did it become that a dearth of
papyrus was the cause of several popular disturbances in some of
the great cities of Italy and Greece. Under the Emperor Tiberius, a
scarcity in the supply produced so formidable a riot in Rome, that
the senate was compelled to take measures similar to those necessary
in years of famine, and actually had to name commissaries, whose duty
it was to distribute to each citizen the quantity of writing-paper he
absolutely required.

The papyrus reed seems indeed to have been ancient Egypt's greatest
material blessing, for not only was it the principal article of
foreign commerce and source of immense wealth in the form of paper,
but it was also of the most extraordinary utility to the poorer
classes. Household utensils of every description were fabricated from
its roots; boats were constructed of its stem; roofing, sail-cloth,
ropes, and clothes were made of its bark; and from the appellation
of "eaters of papyrus," often applied to the Egyptians by the
Greeks, some have thought that it was a common article of food. How
extraordinary does it then seem that a plant of such inestimable
value should ever have disappeared from a land which derived such
benefits from it. Nevertheless, it is a singular fact that the
papyrus is no longer to be found in Egypt; recent travellers assure
us that not a stalk is to be seen at the present day in the Delta.
Sicily alone now possesses the beautiful reed.

We are ignorant of the exact period of the introduction of the
papyrus paper into Greece and Italy, but Pliny has left us copious
details concerning the manipulations it underwent among the
Romans. Sizing was then, as it is now, one of the most important
operations in paper-making. The membranous covering of the stem of
the papyrus reed was far from being of a firm, compact texture, and
the Alexandrian factories probably sent it forth very imperfectly
prepared. The best quality of paper was made by gluing together,
with starch and vinegar, two sheets of papyrus, one transversely
to the other, and then sizing them. These sheets were sometimes of
considerable dimensions; documents have been discovered written on
paper three yards in length.

Those true lovers of literature, art, and science, the Athenians,
raised a statue to Philtatius--to him who first taught them the
secret of sizing paper!

It is a curious fact that, about thirty years since, the vegetable
size used by the ancient Egyptians was introduced, with some slight
improvement, as a new discovery, into the paper manufactories of
France, and has now almost entirely abolished the use of animal size
in that country for all purposes connected with the fabrication of

About the fourth century, the Arabs made Europe acquainted with
cotton paper, just then invented in Damascus, thereby causing a
great diminution in the papyrus trade. A long struggle ensued
between the rival productions, which was only put an end to at the
commencement of the twelfth century, by the invention of paper
manufactured from flaxen and hempen refuse. The papyrus disappeared
at once and completely; soon forgotten by commerce, but immortal in
the remembrance of poets and sages--immortal as the pages of Cicero
and Virgil, whose sweet and eloquent thoughts were first traced on
Egypt's reed.

Until the present time, this flaxen and hempen rag paper has
been produced in sufficient quantities for the necessities of our
civilization, but as civilization increases, and as education becomes
more general, especially among the masses of Europe, it is evident
that the supply of rags will be inadequate to the demand, and wood
will most probably again be brought into requisition, as in the age
of Pericles.

Not, however, in the form of the ancient tablets, but transformed
by mechanical and chemical science into sheets of white and pliant
paper; or the numerous fibrous plants of Algeria, Cuba, and other
tropical countries will be turned to account, and no longer permitted
to waste their usefulness on the desert air. Even now, in France,
among the Vosges Mountains, there is a paper manufactory where wood
is manipulated with the most complete success. And some few years
since, a newspaper paragraph informed the civilized world that a
process of making paper from marble had been discovered by a canny
Scotchman of Glasgow! It is not, indeed, impossible that the marble
painfully hewn and engraven by our forefathers to perpetuate the
memory of a bloody struggle or of some vain triumph, may in time to
come, by the magic power of modern science, become a sheet of snowy
tissue, whereon the fair, slight hand of beauty shall trace the
dainty nothings of fashionable life!

The tablets so continually mentioned by ancient writers must be
noted. They were made of parchment, thin boards, ivory, or metal,
prepared to receive ink, or coated with wax and written on with a
stylus, or sharp-pointed pencil. In the Fourth Book of Kings we read:
"I will efface Jerusalem as tables are wont to be effaced, and I
will erase and turn it, and draw the pencil over the face thereof."
Herodotus and Demosthenes speak of their tablets. In Rome, they were
used not only as note-books and journals, but also for correspondence
in the city and its environs, while the papyrus served for letters
intended to be sent to a distance. The receiver of one of these notes
not unfrequently returned his answer on the same tablet. Made of
African cypress and highly ornamented and inlaid, they were given
as presents, precisely as portfolios, souvenirs, and note-books are
nowadays. On the wax-covered tablets was generally traced the first
rough copy of any document, to be afterward neatly written out either
on papyrus or parchment. These wax-covered tablets were used in
France until the beginning of the last century.

Two-leaved tablets were called diptychs, and were sometimes of
extraordinary cost and beauty. The Roman consuls and high magistrates
were accustomed, on their first appointment to office, to present
their friends with ivory diptychs, exquisitely engraved and carved,
and ornamented with gold.

Ancient ink was composed of lamp-black and gum-water. Pliny says that
the addition of a little vinegar rendered it ineffaceable, and that
a little wormwood infused in it preserved the manuscript from mice.
This ink was used until the twelfth century, when our present common
ink was invented.

Not only black, but also red, blue, green, and yellow inks were
employed in antiquity. Sepia ink and Indian ink are mentioned by
Pliny. Red ink, made from a murex, was especially esteemed, and
reserved for the emperor's exclusive use, under pain of death to all
infringers of the privilege. Gold and silver inks, principally used
from the eighth to the tenth centuries, were also prized; writers
in gold, termed chrysographers, formed a class apart among writers
in general. The Imperial Library of Paris possesses several Greek
Gospels, and the _Livre des Heures_ of Charles the Bold, entirely
written in gold. Few manuscripts are extant written in silver; the
most celebrated are the Gospels, preserved in the Upsal Library.

The stylus, a dangerous weapon when made in iron, and proscribed
by Roman law, which required it to be of bone; the painting brush,
used still by the Chinese; the reed, which was cut and shaped like
our modern pen, and with which some oriental nations write even now;
and the feather pen, which is mentioned by an anonymous writer of
the fifth century, were the general writing implements of antiquity
and the middle ages. Metallic pens are also supposed to have been
known; the Patriarchs of Constantinople were accustomed to sign their
official acts with a silver reed, probably of the form of a pen.

Some paintings found in Herculaneum give evidence that the ancients
were accustomed to make use of most, if not of all the various
conveniences with which modern writers surround themselves. The
writing-desk, the inkstand, the penknife, the eraser, the hone,
and the powder-box were well-known. They do not seem, however, to
have had the habit of sitting up to a table to write, but rested
their tablet or paper on their knee, or on their left hand, as the
orientals do at the present day.



Well, sirs, Doña Fortuna and Don Dinero were so in love that you
never saw one without the other. The bucket follows the rope, and Don
Dinero followed Doña Fortuna till folks began to talk scandal. Then
they made up their minds to get married.

Don Dinero was a big swollen fellow, with a head of Peruvian gold, a
belly of Mexican silver, legs of the copper of Segovia, and shoes of
paper from the great factory of Madrid.[17]

Doña Fortuna was a mad-cap, without faith or law, very slippery,
uncertain, and queer, and blinder than a mole.

The pair were at cross purposes before they had finished the
wedding-cake. The woman wanted to take the command, but this did not
suit Don Dinero, who was of an overbearing and haughty disposition.
Why, sirs! my father (may glory be his rest!) used to say that if the
sea were to get married he would lose his fierceness. But Don Dinero
was more proud than the sea and did not lose his presumption.

As both wished to be first and best, and neither would consent to be
last or least, they determined to decide by a trial which of the two
had the more power.

"Look," said the wife to the husband, "do you see, down there in
the hollow of that olive-tree, that poor man so discouraged and
chop-fallen? Let's try whether you or I can do more for him."

The husband agreed, and they went right away, he croaking, and she
with a jump, and took up their quarters by the tree.

The man, who was a wretch that had never in his whole life seen
either of them, opened eyes like a pair of great olives when the two
appeared suddenly in front of him.

"God be with you!" said Don Dinero.

"And with his grace's worship also," replied the poor man.

"Don't you know me?"

"I only know his highness to serve him."

"You have never seen my face?"

"Never since God made me."

"How is that--have you nothing?"

"Yes, sir; I have six children as naked as colts, with throats
like old stocking-legs; but, as to property, I have only _grab and
swallow_, and often not that."

"Why don't you work?"

"Why? Because I can't find work, and I'm so unlucky that everything I
undertake turns out as crooked as a goat's horn. Since I married, it
appears as though a frost had fallen on me. I'm the fag of ill-hap.
Now, here--a master set us to dig him a well for a price, promising
doubloons when it should be finished, but giving not a single
_maravedi_[18] beforehand."

"The master was wise," remarked Don Dinero. "'Money taken, arms
broken,' is a good saying. Go on, my man."

"I put my soul in the work; for, notwithstanding your worship sees me
looking so forlorn, I am a man, sir."

"Yes," said Don Dinero, "I had perceived that."

"But there are four kinds of men, señor. There are men that are men;
there are good-for-naughts; and contemptible monkeys; and men that
are below monkeys, and not worth the water they drink. But, as I was
telling you, the deeper we dug, the lower down we went, but the fewer
signs we found of water. It appeared as if the centre of the world
had been dried. Lastly, and finally, we found nothing, señor, but a

"In the bowels of the earth!" exclaimed Don Dinero, indignant at
hearing that his ancestral palace was so meanly inhabited.

"No, señor!" said the man deprecatingly; "not in the bowels; further
on, in the country of the other tribe."

"What tribe, man?"

"The antipodes, señor."

"My friend, I am going to do you a favor," said Don Dinero pompously;
and he put a dollar in the man's hand.

The man hardly credited his eyes; joy lent wings to his feet, he was
not long in arriving at a baker's shop and buying bread, but, when he
went to take out his money, he found nothing in his pocket but the
hole through which his dollar had gone without saying good-by.

The poor fellow was in despair; he looked for it, but when did one
of his sort ever find anything? No; St. Anthony guards the pig that
is destined for the wolf. After the money he lost time, and after
time patience, and, that lost, he fell to casting after his bad luck
every curse that ever opened lips.

Doña Fortuna strained herself with laughing. Don Dinero's face turned
yellower with bile, but he had no remedy except to put his hand in
his pocket and bring out an _onza_[19] to give the man.

The poor fellow was so full of joy that it leaped out of his eyes.
He did not go for bread this time, but hurried to a dry-goods store
to buy a few clothes for his wife and children. When he handed the
_onza_ to pay for what he had bought, the dealer said, and stuck to
it, that the piece was bad; that no doubt its owner was a coiner of
false money, and that he was going to give him up to justice. On
hearing this, the poor man was confounded, and his face became so hot
that you might have toasted beans on it; but he took to his heels
and ran to tell Don Dinero what had happened, weeping the while with
shame and disappointment.

Doña Fortuna nearly burst herself with laughing, and Don Dinero felt
the mustard rising in his nose.[20] "Here," said he to the poor man,
"take these two thousand reals; your luck is truly bad; but if I
don't mend it, my power is less than I think."

The man set off so delighted that he saw nothing until he flattened
his nose against some robbers. They left him as his mother brought
him into the world.

When his wife chucked him under the chin and said it was her turn,
and it would soon be seen which had the more power, the petticoats or
the breeches, Don Dinero looked more shame-faced than a clown.

She then went to the poor man, who had thrown himself on the ground
and was tearing his hair, and blew on him. At the instant the lost
dollar lay under his hand. "Something is something," he said to
himself; "I'll buy bread for my children, for they have gone three
days on half a ration, and their stomachs must be as empty as a

As he passed before the shop where he had bought the clothes, the
dealer called him in, and begged of him to overlook his previous
rudeness; said that he had really believed the _onza_ to be a bad
one, but that the assayer, who happened to stop as he passed that
way, had assured him that it was one of the very best, rather over
than under weight, in fact. He asked leave to return the piece, and
the clothes besides, which he begged him to accept as an expression
of sorrow for the annoyance he had caused him.

The poor man declared himself satisfied, loaded his arms with the
things; and, if you will believe me, as he was crossing the plaza,
some soldiers of the civil guard were bringing in the highwaymen that
had robbed him. Immediately, the judge, who was one of the judges
God sends, made them restore the two thousand reals without costs
or waste. The poor man, in partnership with a neighbor of his, put
his money in a mine. Before they had dug down six feet they struck a
vein of gold, another of lead, and another of iron. Right away people
began to call him Don, then "You Sir," then Your Excellency. Since
that time Doña Fortuna has had her husband humbled and shut up in her
shoe, and she, more addle-pated and indiscriminating than ever, goes
on distributing her favors without rhyme or reason, without judgment
or discretion--madly, foolishly, generously, hit or miss, like the
blows of the blind stick; and one of them will reach the writer, if
the reader is pleased with the tale.


[16] Madame Fortune and Sir Money.

[17] The Bank of Madrid.

[18] Less than a farthing.

[19] A gold piece valued at sixteen dollars.

[20] Was becoming angry.


      My brothers, ye are sad, and my sisters, ye are poor,
      But once was holy poverty the cloak that angels wore;
      My fathers, ye are lame, and my children, pale ye be,
      But in every face, by his dear grace, that blessed Lord I see
      Who brother is and father is, and all things, unto me.

      In the sigh of sick men's prayers, in the woeful leper's eye,
      In the pangs of wicked men, in the groans of them that die,
      Thy voice I hear, thine eye I see, thy thought doth hedge me in.
      Oh! may thy sinner bear thy stripes for them that toil in sin,
      And with thy ransomed suffering ones find me my choicest kin.

      For, whether down to pious rest on these bare stones I lie,
      Or if at last upon thy cross triumphantly I die,
      The joy of thee, the praise of thee, is more than all reward;
      For holy misery doth most with heavenly bliss accord:
      All ways are sweet, all wounds are dear, to them that seek the Lord.

      I made a harp to praise the Lord with ever-glorious strain;
      I tuned a harp to praise my God, and all its strings were pain:
      Its song was like to fire, but sweet its keenest agony,
      And thus in every tune and tear its burden seemed to be,
      "So great is the joy that I expect, all pain is joy to me."

      Through all the weary world do I an exiled orphan roam,
      Yet for thy sake were desert cave a palace and a home;
      And birds, and flowers, and stars are lights to read thy Scripture
      And earth is but a comment rude unto thy wondrous sky,
      The which to reach, my soul must teach earth's body how to die.

      With thy wayfaring ones my crust I've broken by the brooks,
      When flowers were as our children fair, our comrades were the oaks,
      And wildest forests for thy praise were churches, choirs, and
      Such house and kindred doth he find who to thy wisdom harks.
      Praise ye the Lord, ye spirits small--my sisters sweet, the larks!

      The untented air is home for me who in thy promise sleep,
      Or wake to find thee ever nigh, and still my sins to weep;
      And holy poverty's disguise is pleasant to thine eye;
      Yea, richer garb was never worn, that treasures may not buy,
      Since thou hast clad me with thy love, and clothed me with the sky.

      Oh! could I for one moment's light thy heavenly body see,
      All joy were pain, all pain were joy, all toil were bliss to me.
      I would give mine eyes for weeping, and my blood should flow like
      To purchase in that sight of bliss one blessed look of thine,
      Who hath ransomed with a crown of pain this sinful soul of mine!

      My brethren, ye are poor, but as children ye are wise,
      Who wander through the wilderness in quest of paradise.
      O little children! seek the Lord, wherever he may be,
      Whose blessed face by his dear grace on every side I see,
      Who brother is, who father is, and all things, unto ye.


                                        ROME, Jan. 21, 1871.

Four months have gone by since the Italian troops entered Rome
through the breach made by the cannon of Cadorna, four months since
a new light dawned upon the Eternal City, and its regenerators set
about the accomplishment of their aspirations. What has been the
development of this third life of Rome--_la terza vita_, as Terenzio
Mamiani has been pleased to style it--in this its primal stage? The
child is father to the man--the seed produces the tree and its fruit.
So, too, do the beginnings of a political state give an index of its
future, fix the causes that are to produce the results of the future.
The history of these four months, then, must be looked on with
interest, and pondered with care.

The present century is universally considered an age of progress, and
it was in the name of progress that the forces of Victor Emmanuel
entered the capital of Christianity. Progress implies motion from one
state or condition to another more perfect: the simplicity of this
statement cannot be gainsaid, and we shall assume it as uncontested.
The party of progress took possession of Rome in the interest of
progress. Has Rome progressed during these months since the 20th of
September? Has she gone from her past state to one more perfect?
Facts must speak; and facts we give. One thing at a time.

Abundance and cheapness of food are the first essentials in the
well-being of a state, and necessarily connected with this is the
facility of obtaining it. We cannot say that food is scarce in
Rome; but the absolute and the relative cheapness have undergone a
decided change, to the disadvantage of the poorer as well as the
wealthier classes, since the 20th of September. The _mocinato_,
or so-called grist-tax, extending even to the grinding of dried
vegetables, chestnuts, and acorns, has sent up the price of bread.
Salt has risen at least a cent per pound. The further application
of the system of heavy taxation is not likely to make other
articles of prime necessity cheaper. And while this state of things
exists, the facility of obtaining food has become much less for the
poorer classes. The causes of this are to be sought in the want of
employers. It is the universal complaint that there is no work.
Before the coming of the present rulers, the army of the Pope,
composed in great part of young men of some means, spent a great deal
among the people. This source of gain ceased with the disbandment of
the Papal troops, for it is notorious _lippis et tonsoribus_, that
the men of the present contingent have barely enough daily allowance
to keep body and soul together. Besides this, ecclesiastics spent
their revenues, fixed by law and sure, with a liberal hand. Now, when
they find difficulty in getting even what they cannot be deprived of;
now that confiscation hangs over their heads with menacing aspect;
now that religious orders are called on to make immense outlays
to send their young men to places of safety--in one case to the
extent of six thousand dollars--it would be foolish to expect them
to sacrifice what is necessary for themselves; though, to do them
justice, they are always willing to share their little with the poor.
Dearth of foreign ecclesiastics, and of foreigners in general, is
another source of distress, and this is directly a consequence of
the invasion. The result of all this is that there is more misery in
the city of Rome than has been seen for many a day--beggars are more
numerous in the streets, and needy families, ashamed to beg, suffer
in silence or pour their tale of woe into the ear of the clergy, who
always are honored with the confidence of the poor and afflicted.
Surely this state of things is not an improvement on the plenty which
characterized the rule of the pontiffs. We cannot say Rome in this
respect has moved into a better sphere--that she has progressed.

Security of person and property is another essential object of the
attention of every state. No state that cannot guarantee this is
deserving of the name of having a good government. Under the Papal
rule, it is well known that not only in Rome did good order prevail,
as the immense multitude present at the Œcumenical Council can
attest, but that also on the frontiers of the territories governed
by the Pope, after the withdrawal of the French troops from Veroli
and Anagni, the energy displayed by the Roman delegate was such as
to liberate completely the provinces from the bands sprung from the
civil strifes of southern Italy. The city of Rome itself was a model
of good order and of personal safety. Now things are changed. Only
a few days ago, a "guardia di pubblica sicurezza" was stopped in
the streets and robbed of his watch and _revolver_. There is not a
day that has not in the daily papers its record of thefts and acts
of personal violence. Only a few days ago, there was a sacrilegious
robbery in the Church of St. Andrea della Valle. On the 8th of
December there was rioting with bloodshed in Rome. A band of young
students under the charge of a religious were stoned on Sunday,
January 15. On the 16th, the Very Rev. Rector of the "Ospizio degli
Orfanelli" was struck with a stone. It would be easy to multiply
examples, but those we have given are quite enough to show that
progress in security of person and property has not been attained
since the 20th of September, 1870.

Then public morality in the centre of Christianity could not fail
to be at a far higher standard, now that the regeneration of the
city of Rome has been accomplished. What bitter illusions fortune
delights in dispensing to those that trust her! Before the entrance
of Italian statesmen into Rome, vice and immorality did not dare
raise their heads--they could not flaunt themselves on the public
ways. Now there is a change, and the moral order of Italy has entered
through the breach at the Porta Pia. We say no more, the subject is a
delicate one, and we therefore refrain from penning facts notorious
in Rome. Surely, none who has received even an elementary training
in virtue will deem this state of things progress--an elevation to a
higher and more perfect state.

But the King of Italy came to Rome to protect the independence of the
Sovereign Pontiff, to save him from the bondage of foreign hordes.
Now, as the Pope is principally a spiritual sovereign, it is his
spiritual power that most needs protection; consequently, the King of
Italy and his faithful servants have been most zealous in preventing
acts or publications that would tend to diminish the respect due to
the Holy Father.

Incomprehensible, but true--the very opposite has taken place! We
have at hand the satirical paper, the _Don Pirlone Figlio_, of
January 19. On its first page is a ridiculous adaptation of the
heading used by the cardinal vicar in his official notifications to
the faithful. The same page has an article grossly disrespectful
to the Sovereign Pontiff, and insulting to the Belgian deputation,
who have just come on to present the protest of their countrymen,
and their contributions. The Holy Father is styled Giovanni Mastai
detto Colui ex-disponibile anche lui; the members of the deputation
are given ridiculous names; and the contributors of Peter Pence are
blackbirds caught in a cage; finally, a ridiculous discourse is
put in the mouth of the Pope, concluding with a benediction. The
illustration represents Pius IX. with a boot in his hand, in the act
of giving it to the Emperor of Germany, who figures as a cobbler.
Such are the illustrations and articles one sees exposed to the
public day by day. When we who have seen Rome under far different
circumstances witness these things, is it at all strange that we
refuse to see "the general respect shown to ecclesiastics in the
exercise of their sacred functions," even though on the faith of a
Lamarmora it be asserted to exist? Can we be blamed for thinking that
anything but progress in veneration of religion has been the result
of the taking of Rome?

After this, any of the advantages arising from the occupation of Rome
can have no weight sufficient to warrant much attention--for they
must be, as they are, material and of a low order--chiefly regarding
facility of communication and despatch in business matters, things
desirable in themselves, but, it would seem, purchased at a fearful

Is this state of things to continue? Is the Italian kingdom on such
a permanent basis that the Papacy has no hope of a change that may
give it back its possessions? Or can the kingdom of Italy be brought
to make restitution of what it has seized, without itself undergoing
destruction? A word in reply to each of these queries. And first, is
this state of things to continue?

When we consider who the Sovereign Pontiff is, and consult the
opinions of men famed for their foresight and statesmanship, it
is difficult to deny that the restoration of the Pontiff to his
rights is very possible. Napoleon Bonaparte, although he afterwards
made Pius VII. his prisoner, left recorded his opinion that it was
impossible that the Pope should be the subject of any one sovereign,
and that it was providential the head of the church had been
given the possession of a small state to secure his independence.
M. Thiers, in commendation of whom we need say nothing, as his
reputation is world-wide, has clearly and forcibly proclaimed this
very opinion. In the debates on the temporal power in the French
Senate, in 1867, his voice was heard calling on France to protect
Rome, and it was his energy forced from the hypocritical government
of his country the famous word, uttered by Rouher, that struck
terror into Italy--"_Jamais_." One would imagine that now Rome has
fallen, and France is reduced to the verge of desperation, no man
of "liberal" political views would be foolhardy enough to risk his
reputation by reiterating an opinion like this. Yet, strange to
say, there is one who has been willing to run the risk, and that in
the very Chamber of Deputies at Florence. Only a few weeks ago, the
Deputy Toscanelli, a liberal, and, we learn, a free-thinker, with
a courage, a strength of argument, and flow of wit that gained the
respect and attention of the house, almost in the words of M. Thiers
gave the same opinion. In the days of the last of the Medici, said
the distinguished deputy, there was a court-jester riding a spirited
horse down the Via Calzaioli, in Florence. The horse got the better
of his rider, and started off at full speed. "Ho! Sor Fagioli," cried
out one of the crowd, "where are you going to fall?" "No one knows or
can know," was the jester's answer, as he held on with both hands.
Just so is it with the government; it has mounted a policy that is
running away with it, and neither it nor any one else knows where it
is going to fall. The government has gone to Rome, and in Rome it
cannot stay; it cannot hold its own face to face with the Pope. "I
give you, then, this advice: leave Rome, declare it a free city under
the protection of the kingdom of Italy." So much for the opinions of
political men of eminence; we will examine the question for a moment
on its intrinsic merits.

We know the Sovereign Pontiff in his official capacity of teacher of
the whole church is infallible in declarations regarding faith or
morals. But in other matters of policy, of fact, he has no guarantee
against error beyond what is afforded him by the use of the means
which he has at hand, the information of his advisers, and especially
of the Sacred College of Cardinals. Suppose for a moment this
means of information is done away with, or made a vehicle of untrue
statements. Suppose unworthy men are artfully intruded on the Pope,
and act in accordance with instructions received from the rulers of
Italy. Imagine Italy at war or on bad terms with the United States
or England. A crafty statesman sees an opportunity of putting in a
position to aid him in one or the other country an able man, through
the influence of some high ecclesiastic, whose good opinion will
have great weight with men of standing or with the people. The whole
matter is artfully carried out. There is an understanding between
the Italian statesman and his American or English friend; both act
cautiously and avoid alarming susceptibilities. The affair works
well. Persons around the Pope are made to drop a word incidentally in
praise of the virtue and ability of the one whom it is intended to
raise to power. The Pope in his relations with the bishops of foreign
countries, speaking of the prospects of the church in good faith,
speaks also to the ecclesiastic of whom we have made mention, and
in favorable terms, of the person in question. Who that knows human
nature can fail to see the thorough nature of the influence thus
used? The crafty originators are the ones to blame, and the harm done
is effected in perfect good faith by the unconscious instruments of
their design. To show we are not building on our fancy, we turn to
the pages of a man whose name all revere--Cardinal Wiseman. In his
_Recollections of the Last Four Popes_, he speaks of the character of
Pius VII.:

    "When no longer a monarch, but a captive--when bereft
    of all advice and sympathy, but pressed on close by
    those who, themselves probably deceived, thoroughly
    deceived him, he committed the one error of his life
    and pontificate, in 1813. For there came to him men
    'of the seed of Aaron,' who could not be expected to
    mislead him, themselves free and moving in the busiest
    of the world, who showed him, through the loopholes
    of his prison, that world from which he was shut out,
    as though agitated on its surface, and to its lowest
    depths, through his unbendingness; the church torn to
    schism, and religion weakened to destruction, from what
    they termed his obstinacy. He who had but prayed and
    bent his neck to suffering was made to appear in his
    own eyes a harsh and cruel master, who would rather
    see all perish than loose his grasp on unrelenting but
    impotent jurisdiction.

    "He yielded for a moment of conscientious alarm; he
    consented, though conditionally, under false but
    virtuous impressions, to the terms proposed to him for
    a new concordat. But no sooner had his upright mind
    discovered the error, than it nobly and successfully
    repaired it." (Chap. IV.)

Such are the words of a man writing after years of intercourse with
the first men of Europe. They are instructive words--for human nature
is ever the same. There are men still in Italy who follow out closely
the principles of Macchiavelli--to whom everything sacred or profane,
no matter what veneration may have surrounded it, is but the means
to self-aggrandizement and the satisfaction of ambition. It is for
the nations of the world to say whether they are willing to allow the
existence of the permanent danger to themselves, arising from the
subjection of the spiritual head of the church to any crowned head or
even republic whatsoever. Perhaps, of the two, the latter would be
the more to be dreaded. The Roman mobs that drove Eugenius IV. from
Rome, and pelted him as he went down the Tiber, or made many another
Pope seek safety in flight, could be easily gotten together again, as
the present residents of the Eternal City know only too well.

We answer, then, our first query, and say that this state of things
cannot last. Time, the great remedy of human ills, will solve this
question, and establish the See of Peter on a perfectly independent
basis--independent of all sovereign control, even if this be not done
shortly through the armed interference of European powers.

It is hardly necessary to inquire whether the Italian kingdom is so
firmly constituted that no hope of restoration of the Pope is to be
seen. For ourselves, we think there are indications that point to a
speedy dissolution of this state on the first breaking out of a war
between Italy and any great power. Her policy is to avoid entangling
alliances, and this she is following out, striving to propitiate the
Emperor of Germany for her leaning towards France. The first army
that will enter the peninsula to aid the Pope will shiver Italy to
fragments. The southern provinces have too lively a recollection of
the days of plenty under their kings, and too painful an impression
of heavy taxation and proconsular domination of the Piedmontese race,
to hesitate between submission to them and the regaining their own
autonomy, which will make Naples again one of the queenly capitals of
the world.

One index of the general discontent or indifference is the small
number of those who vote at the elections in proportion to those
who are inscribed on the electoral lists. The motto proposed by the
_Unità Cattolica_, the foremost Catholic journal of Italy--"_Neither
elected nor electors_"--has been adopted and acted upon by very many
throughout the country. We feel no difficulty in saying that the
majority of the Italians are not with the House of Savoy, nor are
they in favor of United Italy. The ruling power has the government
and the command of the army, a fact that quite accounts for the
existing state of things.

Our third question, whether the kingdom of Italy can be brought to
make restitution of the territories it has seized, without itself
undergoing destruction, remains to be answered. We believe it cannot,
unless half-measures--always more or less dangerous--be adopted. The
late spoliation is not more criminal than the first, and no amount of
_plébiscite_ can make it legitimate, no more than--to use the words
of the able editor of the _Unità Cattolica_--the popular approbation
of the condemnation of Jesus Christ legitimized the crucifixion.
The claim, then, to restitution extends to the whole of the former
provinces, justly held by the Popes to supply them with the revenue
needed to make them independent of the precarious contributions of
the Peter Pence, and which was none too large for that purpose.

Whatever may come, we know the future of the church is in the hands
of One in whose holding are the hearts of princes and peoples. What
we have to do is to pray earnestly for our spiritual head, aid him
by our means, console him with our sympathy, and give him whatever
support, moral or other, it be in our power to offer. And while we
do so, it is a joy to us to know we have lessened the grief of his
hardships by what we have done hitherto, even gladdened the hours of
his captivity. A few days ago, speaking to the Belgian deputation,
Pius IX. said: "Belgium gives me very often proofs of her fidelity.
Continue in the way in which you are walking; do not allow your
courage to fail. What is happening to-day is only a trial, and the
church came into existence in the midst of trials, lived always
amid them, and amid them she will end her earthly career. It is our
duty to battle and stand firm in the face of danger.... We have an
Italian proverb which says: It is one thing to talk of dying; quite
another to die. People speak very resignedly of persecutions, but
sometimes it is hard to bear them. The world offers to-day a very
sad spectacle, and particularly this our city of Rome, in which we
see things to which our eyes have not been accustomed. Let us all
pray together that God may soon deliver his church, and re-establish
public order, so deeply shaken. Your efforts, your prayers, your
pious pilgrimages, all tend to this end, and I therefore bless them
with all my heart." May the words of the Holy Father find an echo
in our hearts; let us not lose courage, but keep up our efforts, so
happily begun, and never rest till wrong be righted, until we see the
most sublime dignity and power on earth freed from the surroundings
that would seek to make it as little as themselves.


    delivered before the Phi Beta Kappa Society of
    Harvard University, June 29, 1870. With Notes and
    Afterthoughts. By Oliver Wendell Holmes. Boston: James
    R. Osgood & Co. 1871.

Dr. Holmes is a Benvenuto Cellini in literature, and everything he
produces is of precious metal, skilfully enchased, and adorned with
gems of art. The present address is no exception to the general
rule, but rather an unusually good illustration of it. It is a
remarkably curious piece of work, containing many interesting facts
and speculations derived from the author's scientific studies on the
mechanism of the brain. There is nothing in it positively affirmed
which is necessarily materialistic, as far as we can see; rather, we
should say that its doctrine stands on one side of both materialism
and spiritualism, and can be reconciled with either. It can be
explained, if we have understood it correctly, in conformity with
the Aristotelian and scholastic philosophy, in such a way as not
to prejudice the truth of the distinct and spiritual nature of the
soul. The author, indeed, appears more inclined to that belief than
the opposite, although we are sorry to find him expressing himself
in so hesitating and dubious a manner. When he passes from thought
to morals, he gets out of his element, and displays a flippancy and
levity which may pass very well in humorous poetry, but are out of
place in treating of graver topics. His remarks on some points of
Catholic doctrine are so completely at fault as to show his entire
incompetency to meddle with the subject at all. His language in
regard to the Council of the Vatican and Pius IX. is more like that
of a pert and vulgar student of Calvinistic divinity than that of
an elegant and refined Cambridge professor. "But political freedom
inevitably generates a new type of religious character, as _the
conclave that contemplates endowing a dotard with infallibility_
has found out, we trust, before this time" (p. 95). Dr. Holmes has
apparently profited by his close observations among that class of
the female population of Boston who are wont to thrust their bodies
half out of their windows, and "exhaust the vocabulary, to each
other's detriment." We congratulate him, and the learned Society of
Phi Beta Kappa, on the choice sentence we have quoted above. We trust
those Catholics who are disposed to think that we can make use of
Harvard University as a place of education for our youth, will take
note of this sample of the language they may expect to hear in that
and similar institutions, and open their eyes to the necessity of
providing some better instruction for their sons than can be had at
such sources. Notwithstanding our high appreciation of Dr. Holmes's
genius, and the great pleasure we have derived from his works, we
regret to say that we must consider his influence on young people
grievously detrimental. In virtue of a reaction from Calvinism, he
has swung into an extreme of rationalism the effect of which is
checked in his own person by the influence of an unusually good heart
and an early religious education, but in itself is sure to overthrow
all reverence, faith, and moral principle. The whole effect of this
address on the minds of young men tends to a most pernicious result,
and encourages them, with a kind of thoughtless gaiety, to rush
forward in a career of mental and moral lawlessness.

    Spiritual Reading. First Series. Boston: Patrick
    Donahoe. 1871.

Here we have a plain, practical, but very attractively and charmingly
written book of spiritual reading for everybody. It emanates from
the Convent of Poor Clares, Kenmare, County Kerry, Ireland, who
are anything but poor in intellectual gifts and religious zeal. We
suppose it is from the pen of the gifted authoress of the _History
of Ireland_ and several other works of the highest literary merit.
The idea of the volume is apparently taken from the "Parable of a
Pilgrim" in F. Baker's _Sancta Sophia_, of which it is a minute
paraphrase and commentary. Its minuteness, diffuseness, and fluency
of style are, in our opinion, great merits, considering the end and
object of the book. It is easy reading, explains and enlarges on each
topic at length and in detail with great tact and discretion, and is
eminently fitted to help a person in the acquisition and practice of
the homely, everyday Christian virtues. Its bread is of fine quality,
broken up fine. It is eminently adapted for the young and simple,
timid beginners, and persons living an everyday busy life, and also
for the sick, the suffering, and the afflicted. At the same time,
a professor of theology, or even a bishop, may read it with great
profit and satisfaction. We recommend this book with more than usual
earnestness, and we trust the good Sisters of Kenmare will keep on
with their series, which must certainly produce an extraordinary
amount of good.

    ELIA; OR, SPAIN FIFTY YEARS AGO. Translated from
    the Spanish of Fernan Caballero. New York: Catholic
    Publication Society.

Fernan Caballero is the _nom de plume_ of Madame de Baer, who is now
an aged lady, though still in the full possession of her intellectual
powers. We admire the old Spanish character, customs, faith, and
chivalry. Mme. de Baer is their champion, and the enemy of the
revolution which has desolated that grand old Catholic country. This
is one of her stories written to that point, and we trust it will
find even here many a reader who will sympathize with the author,
and help to neutralize the poison, too widely spread, of modern
liberalism--the deadly epidemic of Spain and all Europe. It is a
very suitable book for school premiums, and ought to be in every
library. Other persons, also, will find it a lively and entertaining
book, with a strong dash of the peculiar quaintness usually found in
Spanish stories.

    J. R. Seelye, M.D., Professor of Modern History in
    the University of Cambridge. (Author of "Ecce Homo.")
    Boston: Roberts Brothers. 1871.

These essays are cleverly and agreeably written. Their topics are
very miscellaneous, but all of them important and interesting. Those
on "Liberal Education in Universities," "English in Schools," "The
Church as a Teacher of Morality," and the "Teaching of Politics," are
especially worthy of attention. Some of the writers of the "Broad
Church," to which Prof. Seelye belongs, are quite remarkable for
their honorable candor, largeness of mind, originality of thought,
and, in certain respects, approximation to Catholic views. We like to
read them better than most other Protestant writers, and often find
their writings instructive. We have seldom seen a book written by a
Protestant in which a Catholic can find so many things to approve of
and be pleased with, and so few in which he is obliged to differ from
the author, as the present volume.

    GRIGNON DE MONTFORT. Translated from the French by a
    Secular Priest. London: Richardson. 1870.

The Ven. Grignon de Montfort was a priest of noble birth, who lived
and labored in France as a missionary, and became the founder of two
religious congregations, during the eighteenth century. He was a
person of great individuality of character and many peculiar gifts
and traits, which made his life quite a salient one, if we may be
allowed the expression. His talents for poetry, music, and the arts
of design, and a marked poetic fervor in his temperament, gave a
certain zest and raciness to his career as a missionary, and were a
great help to his success. His character was chivalrous and daring,
and his sanctity shows a kind of exaltation, a sort of gay mockery
of danger, contempt, privation, and suffering, which it almost takes
one's breath away to contemplate. His life was very short, but his
labors, persecutions, and services were very great. He is best
known in modern times by his extraordinary devotion to the Blessed
Virgin. It is altogether probable that ere long the process of his
canonization will be completed, and a decree of the Vicar of Christ
enroll his name among the saints. Those who are capable of profiting
by an example, and by writings of such sublime spirituality, will
find something in this book seldom to be met with even in the Lives
of Saints.

    INORGANIC. By George F. Barker, M.D., Professor of
    Physiological Chemistry in Yale College, New Haven,
    Conn. Charles C. Chatfield & Co. 1870.

Chemical science, as Prof. Barker remarks in his preface, has indeed
undergone a remarkable revolution in the last few years; and the
text-books which were excellent not long ago are now almost useless,
as far as the theoretical part of the subject is concerned. And
though, in all probability, more brilliant discoveries as to the
internal constitution of matter, the formation of molecules, and the
nature of the chemical adhesion of atoms are in store than any yet
made, still the conclusions recently attained on these points maybe
considered as well established, and can by no means be considered
as crude speculations, to be overthrown to-morrow by others of no
greater weight. Chemistry seems, at present, to promise better than
ever before to solve the problem of the arrangement of the ultimate
material elements, though, perhaps, the laws of the forces which
connect them, and the nature of the molecular movements, will be
rather obtained from other sources.

Prof. Barker's book is an admirable exponent of the science in its
present state. The first quarter of it is devoted to an explanation
of the principles of theoretical chemistry, and it is this, of
course, which is specially interesting and important at present,
though the remainder will be found much easier reading. The work is
one, however, which is meant to be studied, rather than merely read,
containing a great deal of information, and giving much material for
mental exercise throughout. It would not have been easy to put more
valuable matter in its few pages, and its merits as a text-book are
very great. The type is very clear, and the illustrations numerous
and excellent.

    VARIETIES OF IRISH HISTORY. By James J. Gaskin. Dublin:
    W. B. Kelly. New York: The Catholic Publication
    Society, 9 Warren Street. 1871.

If Mr. Gaskin had not stated in his preface that "the present work
is, in great part, based on a lecture delivered by the author before
a highly influential, intelligent, and fashionable audience," we
would have anticipated, from the title of his book, something not
only interesting but instructive relating to Irish history. But
knowing very well what pleases a highly fashionable audience in the
dwarfed and provincialized capital of Ireland, this announcement
was enough to satisfy us that his conception of what makes history
was neither very lucid nor comprehensive. It is unnecessary to say
that, within the shadow of Dublin Castle, any rash man who would
be unthinking enough to write or speak seriously about the history
of Ireland--that protracted tragedy upon which the curtain has not
yet fallen--would soon be voted a bore, or something worse, by
the fashionable people who are privileged once or twice a year to
kiss the hand of the representative of royalty. But the author is
evidently too well bred to commit such a solecism, and accordingly,
under a very attractive exterior, he treats us to all sorts of
gossip, from the doings of _Gra na' Uile_, a sort of western Viqueen,
to the murder of Captain Glas, a Scotch privateersman. The intervals
between these two great historical events is filled up with the mock
regal ceremonies that used to be observed annually on the island
of Dalkey; reminiscences of Swift, Dr. Delaney, Curran, and other
distinguished men of the last century, which, though not new, are
pleasant to read; and some correct and elaborate descriptions of
scenery in the suburbs of Dublin, which will not be without interest
to those who have visited that part of Ireland. The _Varieties_ is
not a book which will find much favor with historical students, but
for railroad and steamboat travellers, who wish to read as they
run, and as a book for the drawing-room, being light in style and
handsomely illustrated, it will be found entertaining and agreeable.

    Erskine Clement. With Descriptive Illustrations. New
    York: Hurd & Houghton.

The best thing we can say about this book is that it affords another
striking proof that the Catholic Church is the genius of all true
poetry and art. One-half of the volume is devoted to sketches of
the lives of Catholic saints, the other half being equally divided
between legends of German localities and the gods and goddesses of
Greece and Rome. We look in vain for some notice of works of art or
poetic legend to which Protestantism, with its heroes, or modern
Rationalism, with no heroes, has given inspiration. The authoress,
however, is not a Catholic, for she calls us "Romanists," a vulgar
term, the use of which, she ought to know, we consider as impertinent
and insulting.

False legends and true biographies of our saints are strung together
without discrimination. This we would not complain of so much, if, as
she would seem to imply, they are both illustrated by art; but the
instances in which these apocryphal and unworthy stories have been
chosen by the painter or sculptor as fitting subjects are exceedingly
rare, and where they are, as in the case of Durer's painting of "St.
John Chrysostom's Penance," which is reproduced by the authoress
(shall we say with her in the preface, "to interest and instruct her
children"?), they bear evidence of an art degraded in inspiration
and debased in morals.

    D. P. Conyngham. Boston: Patrick Donahoe.

This short historical novel has been written for two purposes--to
disprove the correctness of the saying, attributed to Voltaire,
that the Irish always fought badly at home, and to illustrate, in a
popular manner, the struggle between James II. and his son-in-law,
the Prince of Orange. With due respect to the author, we submit that
too much importance has already been attached to Voltaire's _ipse
dixit_ with regard to the fighting qualities of the Irish. It is of
little importance, indeed, what that gifted infidel has said about
anything or anybody, as it is pretty well understood in our day that
among his numerous failings veracity was not very conspicuous. Mr.
Conyngham has, however, succeeded very creditably in accomplishing
his main object, and presents us with a succinct and truthful view of
the rival forces which, for three years, contested for the English
crown on the soil of Ireland. There is very little plot in the story,
the principal interest centring in the acts of Sarsfield and other
well-known historical personages; but the narrative of the war is
well sustained, and the author's conception of the inner life of his
principal characters is in the main correct and natural.

    ARTHUR BROWN. By Rev. Elijah Kellogg. Boston: Lee &

This is one of that class of books for boys full of hair-breadth
escapes and improbable incidents. It is the first of _The Pleasant
Cove Series_, which means five more just like this. The fact that the
characters have been introduced in a former "series," and are to be
carried forward through the coming five volumes, renders the story a
little obscure at times. This, however, will not prevent boys who
enjoy tales of perilous sea voyages and marvellous encounters from
finding this volume interesting and amusing.

    Doctrinal, and Liturgical Explanations of the Prayers
    and Ceremonies of the Mass. By Very Rev. John T.
    Sullivan, V.G. Diocese of Wheeling, W. Va. New York: D.
    & J. Sadlier & Co. 12mo. 1870.

The subject and nature of this little book are sufficiently expressed
in its title. The position of the Very Reverend author, and
approbations by the Archbishop of New York and the Right Reverend
Bishop of Wheeling, testify to its sound doctrine and usefulness as a
book of instruction.

    LITTLE PUSSY WILLOW. By Harriet Beecher Stowe. Boston:
    Fields, Osgood & Co.

_Pussy Willow_ is a charming girl and a charming woman, but we think
that it is not often that nature accomplishes so much even with
the aid of country air and simple, healthful habits and pleasures.
However, we must not forget the fairy's gift, of always looking at
the bright side of things. Pity we had not more of us this gift! But
the girls must read for themselves.

    FOLIA ECCLESIASTICA, ad notandum Missas persolvendas
    et persolutas, pro clero ordinata et disposita.
    Neo-Eboraci et Cincinnatii: sumptibus et typis
    Friderici Pustet.

This little memorandum book will be found quite useful for the
purpose designed. Besides the pages appropriated to the record of
Masses, there are also "Indices Neo-Communicantium, Confirmandorum,
Confraternitatum," etc., etc.

    PRESENT TIME. Third edition. Revised. Boston: Lee &
    Shepard. New York: Lee, Shepard & Dillingham. 1 vol.

Before its republication, this work should have been placed in the
hands of a competent editor. As it is now, it is very objectionable,
and loses all its value. Here is one quotation, taken at random.
Under the year 1362, we read: "Pope Urban V. at Avignon; beautifies
the city of Rome; presents the _right arm_ of Thomas Aquinas to
Charles V. of France as an _object of worship_."

    POEMS. By Bret Harte. Boston: Fields, Osgood & Co. 1871.

We have read this unpretending little volume with much interest.
The author is a true poet, and has the merit of originality quite
as much as of descriptive power. His more serious poems display a
high appreciation of the beautiful and the romantic, and there is a
Catholic tone about them. Those in dialect, with the other humorous
pieces, are equally pleasing in their way. The former, particularly,
reflect a side of life which is generally supposed the least poetical
of all. Mr. Bret Harte has "gathered honey from the weed."

CORRIGENDUM.--In the article "Which is the School of Religious
Fraudulence," in our last number, p. 791, col. 2, near the middle,
the sentence beginning, "It is no mark of falsity, therefore, in any
document," should be thus concluded: "that it occurs there, unless it
occurs there alone and nowhere else."


    From JNO. MURPHY & CO., Baltimore: A Circular Letter
    on the Temporal Power of the Popes; addressed to the
    clergy and laity of the Vicariate Apostolic of North
    Carolina. By the Right Rev. James Gibbons, D.D.

    From the YOUNG CRUSADER Office, Boston: Protests of
    the Pope and People against the Usurpation of the
    Sovereignty of Rome by the Piedmontese Government.

    From P. J. KENEDY. New York: The Life of St. Mary of
    Egypt. To which is added the Life of St. Cecilia and
    the Life of St. Bridget.

    From PETER F. CUNNINGHAM, Philadelphia: The Acts of the
    Early Martyrs. By J. H. M. Fastré, S.J.

    From LEYPOLDT & HOLT, New York: Across America and
    Asia. By Raphael Pumpelly. Fifth edition. Revised.--Art
    in the Netherlands. By H. Taine. Translated by J.

    From PATRICK DONAHOE, Boston: The "Our Father." Being
    illustrations of the several petitions of the Lord's
    Prayer. Translated from the German of the Rev. Dr. J.
    Emanuel Veith, by the Rev. Edward Cox, D.D.

    From ROBERTS BROTHERS, Boston: Ad Clerum: Advice to a
    Young Preacher. By Joseph Parker, D.D.


      VOL. XIII., No. 74.--MAY, 1871.[21]


Archbishop Manning's pastoral letter to his clergy on the first
council, _The Vatican and its Definitions_, to which are appended
the two constitutions the council adopted--the one the _Constitutio
de Fide Catholica_, and the other the _Constitutio Dogmatica Prima
de Ecclesia_--the case of Honorius, and the Letter of the German
bishops on the council, though containing little that is new to our
readers, is a volume which is highly valuable in itself, and most
convenient to every Catholic who would know the real character of the
council and what is the purport of its definitions. Few members of
the council were more assiduous in their attendance on its sessions
or took a more active part in its deliberations than the illustrious
Archbishop of Westminster, and no one can give a more trustworthy
account of its dispositions or of its acts. We are glad, therefore,
that the volume has been republished in this country, and hope it
will be widely read both by Catholics and non-Catholics.

The character of the book and of the documents it contains renders
any attempt by us either to review it or to explain it alike
unnecessary and impertinent. The pastoral is addressed officially
by the Archbishop to his clergy; the constitutions or definitions
adopted by the Holy Synod declare, by the assistance of the Holy
Ghost, what is, and always has been, and always will be the Catholic
faith on the matters defined; and we need not say that we cordially
accept it as the word of God, and as the faith which all must accept
_ex animo_, and without which it is impossible to please God. What
the council has defined is the law of God, and binds us as if spoken
to us directly by God himself in a voice from heaven. He speaks to
us by his church, his organ, and her voice is in fact his voice,
and what we take on her authority we take on his authority, for he
assists her, vouches for her, and commands us to believe and obey her.

There are, indeed, enemies of the faith who pretend that Catholics
believe solely on the authority of the church as an organic body;
but this is a misapprehension. We believe what is revealed on the
veracity of God alone, because it is his word, and it is impossible
for his word to be false; and we believe that it is his word on
the authority or testimony of the church, with whom the word is
deposited, and who is its divinely commissioned keeper, guardian,
witness, and interpreter. The word of God is and must be true, and
there is and can be no higher ground of faith or even of knowledge
than the fact that God says it. Nothing can be more consonant to
reason than to believe God on his word. Certainly, it is answered,
if we have his word; but how do I know that what is proposed to me
as his word is his word? We take the fact that it is his word on the
authority of the Catholic Church; we believe it is his word because
she declares it to be his word. It is permitted no one to doubt the
word of God is conceded; but whence from that fact does it follow
that I am not permitted to doubt the word of the church? Or why
should I believe her testimony or her declaration rather than that of
any one else?

To this question the general answer is, that she has been divinely
instituted, and is protected and assisted to bear true witness to
the revelation which it has pleased God to make, to proclaim it,
declare its sense, and condemn whatever impugns or tends to obscure
it. Supposing she has been instituted and commissioned by our
Lord himself, for this very purpose, her authority is sufficient
for believing whatever she teaches and declares or defines to be
the word of God is his word or the truth he has revealed; for the
divine commission is the divine word pledged for her veracity
and infallibility. This is plain enough and indubitable; but how
am I to know or to be assured that she has been so instituted or
commissioned, and is so assisted?

There are several answers to this question; but we would remark,
before proceeding to give any answer, that the church is in
possession, has from the moment of the descent of the Holy Ghost upon
the apostles on the day of Pentecost claimed to be in possession of
the authority in question, and has had her claim acknowledged by the
whole body of the faithful, and denied by none except those who deny
or impugn authority itself. Being in possession, it is for those who
question her right to show that she is wrongfully in possession. They
are, to use a legal term, the plaintiffs in action, and must make out
their case. Every one is presumed in law to be innocent till proven
guilty. The church must be presumed to be rightfully in possession
till the contrary is shown. They who question her possession must,
then, adduce at least _prima facie_ evidence for ousting her before
she can be called upon to produce her title-deeds. This has never
been done, and never can be done; for, if it could be done, some of
our able and learned Protestant divines would, in the course of the
last three hundred years and over, have done it. There is, then, in
reality no need, in order to justify the faith of Catholics, to prove
by extrinsic testimony the divine institution and commission of the
church to teach all men and nations all things whatsoever God has
revealed and commanded to be believed.

But we have no disposition to avail ourselves just now of what some
may regard as a mere legal technicality. We answer the question by
saying the church is herself the witness in the case, and accredits
herself, or her existence itself proves her divine institution,
commission, and assistance or guidance.

The church was founded by our Lord on the prophets and apostles,
being himself the chief corner-stone. This is asserted here as
a simple historical fact. Historically, the church has existed,
without any break or defect of continuity, from the apostles down
to our times. Its unbroken existence from that time to this cannot
be questioned. It has been a fact during all that period in the
world's history, and too momentous a fact to escape observation.
Indeed, it has been the one great fact of history for over eighteen
hundred years; the central fact around which all the facts of history
have revolved, and without which they would be inexplicable and
meaningless. This assumed or granted, it must be conceded that she
unites as one continuous fact, in one body, the apostles and the
believers of to-day. She is a continuous fact; a present fact during
all the period of time that has elapsed between the apostles and us,
and therefore is alike present to them and to us. Her existence being
unbroken, she has never fallen into the past; never been a past fact;
but has always been and is a present fact; and therefore as present
with the apostles to-day as she was on the day of Pentecost, when
they received the Holy Ghost; and therefore presents us not simply
what they taught, but what they teach her now and here. She bridges
over the abyss of time between our Lord himself and us, and makes
us and the apostles, so to speak, contemporaries; so that, as it
is our Lord himself we hear in the apostles, so it is the apostles
themselves that we hear in her.

This continuity or unity of the church in time is a simple
historical fact, and as certain as any other historical fact, and
even more so, for it is a fact that has never fallen into the past,
and to be established only by trustworthy witnesses or documents. By
it the church to-day is and must be as apostolic and as authoritative
as in the days of the apostles Peter, James, and John. Individuals
die, but the church dies not; individuals are changed, as are the
particles of our bodies, but the church changes not. As in the human
race individuals pass off, but the race remains always the same;
so in the church individuals pass away, but the church remains
unchanged in all its integrity; for the individuals die not all at
once, and the new individuals born in their places are born into
the one identical body, that does not die, but remains ever the
same. No matter, then, how many generations succeed one another in
their birth and death, the body of the church is subject to no law
of succession, and remains not only one and the same church, but
always the one and the same present church. The church of to-day
is identically the church of yesterday, the church of yesterday is
identically the church of the day before, and thus step by step back
to the apostles; on the other hand, the church in the time of the
apostles is identically the church of their successors down through
all succeeding generations of individuals to us. There has never been
an interval of time when it was not, or when it lost its identity as
one and the same body. The church is precisely as apostolic now as it
was in the beginning, or as were the apostles themselves.

Now, if we suppose our Lord communicated the whole revelation to
the apostles either by his personal teaching or by the inspiration
of the Holy Ghost, then he communicated it to her, and she is an
eye and ear witness to the fact of revelation in the same sense
that the apostles were, and her historical identity with the
apostles makes her a perpetual and contemporary witness to the fact
of revelation and to what is revealed. What misleads not a few on
this point is that they regard the church as a mere aggregation of
individuals, born and dying with them, or succeeding to herself with
the succession of each new generation of individuals. But this is no
more the case with the church than with the human race itself, or
with any particular nation that has an historical existence through
several generations. In all historical bodies the generations overlap
one another, and no generation of individuals is either aggregated
to the body or segregated from it all at once. The body does not die
with the receding nor is it born anew with the acceding generation.
The church, indeed, is an organism, not a mere aggregation of
individuals, but even if it were the conclusion would not follow; for
though the individuals are successively aggregated or affiliated,
they are aggregated or affiliated to her as a persistent body, and
though they pass off successively, they leave the body standing, one
and identical. This is the simple historical fact. The church, as
an ever-present body, remains one and the same identical body amid
all the successive changes of individuals, and is just as much the
depositary of the revelation and an eye-witness of the facts recorded
in the Gospels, as were the apostles themselves.

We say, then, the church is herself the witness, and a competent
and credible witness, to her own divine commission to teach and
declare the word of God which he has revealed, and no better, no more
competent or credible witness is needed or, in fact, conceivable.
She is competent because she is the identical apostolical body, the
contemporary and the eye-witness through the successive ages of the
facts to which she testifies. She is a credible witness, because even
as a human body it would be hardly possible for her either to mistake
or to misrepresent the facts to which she testifies, since they are
always present before her eyes, since, however her individual members
may change, she herself knows no change with lapse of time, and no
succession. She could not forget the faith, change it, or corrupt it,
because there is at all times in her communion an innumerable body
of living witnesses to its unity, purity, and integrity, who would
detect the change or alteration and expose it. It is not with her as
it would be with a book having a limited circulation. Copies of the
book could easily be altered or interpolated without detection; but
the living testimony of the church, spread over the whole world and
teaching all nations, cannot be interpolated or corrupted. It is on
the fidelity of the church, her vigilant guardianship, and uniform
testimony that we depend for our confidence in the genuineness and
authenticity of our copies of the sacred writings, and it is worthy
of note that in proportion as men throw off the authority of the
church, and reject her traditions, they lose that confidence, and
fail to agree among themselves what books, if any, are inspired;
so that without the testimony of the church the Holy Scriptures
themselves cease to be an authority in matters of faith.

In human tribunals the supreme court is presumed to know the law
which constitutes it, and it defines its own jurisdiction and powers.
It declares the law of which it is the depositary and guardian,
and though the judges have only their human wisdom, learning, and
sagacity, it is remarkable how few mistakes through a long series of
ages they commit as to what is or is not the law they are appointed
to administer, and nearly all the mistakes they do commit are due to
the changes the legislature makes in the law or in the constitution
of the court. Why should the church be less competent to judge of the
law under which she is constituted, and to define her jurisdiction
and powers? And since her constitution, as well as the law she
administers, changes not, why should she be less exempt, even as a
human court, from mistakes in interpreting and declaring the law,
than the supreme court of England or the United States? What higher
authority can there be to judge of her own constitution and the law
given her to administer than the church herself?

The church received her constitution in the commission given to the
apostolic body with whom she is one and identical, and the law or
revealed word in the reception of it by the apostles. Being one and
identical body with them, she has received what they received, and
knows what they knew, is taught what they were taught, understands
it in the same sense that they did, and has the same authority to
interpret and declare it that they had. If they were commissioned
to teach all nations to observe all things whatsoever our Lord
commanded them, she is commissioned in their commission to do the
same. If he promised them his efficacious presence and assistance
to the consummation of the world, he made the promise to her; if he
made Peter the prince of the apostles, the father and teacher of all
Christians, and gave him plenary authority to feed, rule, and govern
the universal church, he made the successor of Peter the visible
head of the church, and gave him the same authority. The church,
being the apostolic body persisting through all times, knows what the
apostles received, knows therefore both her own constitution and the
law deposited with her, and is as competent to judge of them as the
apostles were, and has full authority to interpret and declare both,
and it is to her, as to the supreme court of a nation, to judge what
they are, and to define her constitution, jurisdiction, and powers.

The objection which many make to this conclusion arises from their
confounding the authority of the church to interpret and define the
law--and, as a part of the law, her own constitution, jurisdiction,
and powers or functions--with the authority to make the law: a
mistake like that of confounding the supreme court of the United
States with Congress. The church, like the court or the supreme
executive, may make her own rules and orders--what are called the
orders and rules of court, for the purpose of carrying out the intent
of the law--but she no more makes the law than does the civil court
make the law under which it is constituted, and which it administers.
God alone is the lawgiver or lawmaker, and his revealed word is the
law--the law for the human reason and will, and which binds all men
in thought, word, and deed. We want no church, as the supreme judge
of the law, to tell us this, for it is a dictamen of reason itself.
It is the revealed word of God, which again is only his will, the
will of the supreme Lawgiver--that is the law under which the church
is constituted, and which she guards, interprets, and declares,
whenever a question of law arises. She does not make the law; she
keeps, interprets, declares, and defends or vindicates it. Even with
only human wisdom, she can no more make the law, or declare that to
be law which is not, than the supreme civil court can declare that to
be civil law which is not civil law. The objection, therefore, is not
well taken.

The law, it is agreed on all hands--that is, the revelation, whether
written or unwritten--was deposited with the apostles, then it was
deposited, as we have seen, with the church identical with the
apostolic body. Now, she knows, as the apostles knew, what she
received, the law committed to her charge, and, as she is constituted
by the law she has received, she knows, and cannot but know, her
own constitution and powers, also what promises, if any, she has
received from her divine Lawgiver and Founder. The promises of God
cannot fail; and if he has promised her his assistance as an immunity
from error she knows it, and knows that her judgments of law, or
in matters of faith, are through that assistance infallible. Of
all these questions she is the divinely constituted judge. She is
the judge of the law constituting her, of her own appointment and
commission, and of her rights, powers, and jurisdiction, no less
than of the law or revelation committed to her charge, for all this
is included in the law. If she defines that in her commission is
included the promise of the divine assistance to protect her from
error in interpreting and declaring the law--that is, the faith,
the revealed word of God--then of all this she judges infallibly,
and she is the infallible authority, not for believing what God has
revealed--for that is believed on the veracity of God alone--but
for believing that what she teaches as his revealed word is his
revealed word, and therefore the law we are to obey in thought,
word, deed, as the supreme court is the authority for defining its
own constitution and powers, and what is or is not the law of the
state. Say we not, then, truly that the church is her own witness and
accredits herself? Say we not truly, also, that she is the faithful
and infallible witness to the fact of revelation, and teacher and
judge of what God has or has not revealed? The fact, then, that
the church defines that she is the divinely appointed guardian and
infallible teacher and judge of revelation, is all we need to know in
order to know that it is God we believe in believing her.

None of the sects can apply this argument to themselves; for no one
of them can pretend to be the identical apostolical body, or to span
the distance of time from the apostles to us, so as to be at once
their contemporary and ours. They all have either originated too
late or have died too soon for that. Not one of them can pretend to
have originated in the apostolic communion, and to have existed as
one continuous body down to us. There were sectaries in the lifetime
of the apostles, but they were not in the apostolic communion, but
separated from it; and there is, as far as we know, no sect in
existence that originated in apostolic times. Some of the Gnostic
sects sprang up at a very early day, but they have all disappeared,
though many of their errors are revived in our day. The Nestorian and
Jacobite sects still subsist in the East, but they were born too late
to be of apostolic origin, and our modern Unitarians are not the old
Arians continued in one unbroken body. The Lutheran and Calvinistic
sects are of yesterday, and they and their numerous offshoots are
out of the question. The poor Anglicans talk of apostolic succession
indeed, but they separated or were cut off from the apostolic body
in the sixteenth century, and, with all the pretensions of a few
of them, are only a Protestant sect, born of the Reformation, as
the greater part of them strenuously contend. There is something in
people's instincts; and it is worthy of note that no people who have
cast off the authority of the Holy See have ever ventured to assume
as their official name the title of APOSTOLIC. Even the schismatic
Greeks, while they claim to be orthodox, do not officially call their
church apostolic; and the American Anglicans assume only the name of
Protestant Episcopal. _Protestant apostolic_ would strike the whole
world as incongruous, and very much as a contradiction in terms.

Let the argument be worth little or much, the only body claiming
to be the church of Christ that has or has had an uninterrupted
historical existence from the apostles to us, is the body that is
in communion with the See of Rome, and recognizes the successor of
Peter in that see as the Vicar of Christ, the teacher of the nations,
supreme pastor of the faithful, with plenary authority from our Lord
himself to feed, rule, and govern the universal church. The fact is
too plain on the very face of history for any one who knows history
at all to deny it. Nor, in fact, does any one deny it. All in reality
concede it; and the pretence is that to be in communion with that see
is not necessary in order to be in communion with Christ, or with the
universal church.

But this is a question of law or of its interpretation, and can
itself be determined only by the supreme court instituted to keep,
interpret, and declare the law. The court of last resort has already
decided the question. It is _res adjudicata_, and no longer an open
question. The court has decided that _extra ecclesiam, nulla salus_,
or, that out of communion with the church there is no communion with
Christ; and that out of communion with the Holy See there is no
communion with the universal church, for there is no such church.
Do you appeal from the decision of the court? To what tribunal? To
a higher tribunal? But there is no higher tribunal than the court
of last resort. None of the sects are higher than the church, or
competent to set aside or overrule her decisions. Do you appeal to
the Bible? But this were only appealing from the law as expounded by
the church or the supreme court to the law as expounded by yourself
or your sect. Such an appeal cannot be entertained, for it is an
appeal, not from an inferior court to a superior, but from the
highest court to the lowest. The law expounded by the individual
or the sect is below, not above, the law expounded and declared
by the church. The sect has confessedly no authority, and the law
expounded and applied by the sect is no more than the law expounded
and applied by the private individual; and no private individual is
allowed to expound and apply the law for himself, but must take it
as expounded and applied by the court, and the judgment as to what
the law is of the court of last resort is final, and from it, as
every lawyer knows, there lies no appeal. To be able to set aside or
overrule the judgment of the church, it is necessary, then, to have
a court of superior jurisdiction, competent to revise her judgments
and to confirm or to overrule them. But, unhappily for those who are
dissatisfied with her judgments, there is and can be no such court to
which they can appeal.

There might be some plausibility in the pretended appeal from the
church to the Bible, if the church had not the Bible, or if she
avowedly rejected its divine authority; but as the case stands,
such an appeal is irregular, illegal, and absurd. The church has
and always has had the Bible ever since it was written. It was,
as we have seen, originally deposited with her, and it is only
from her that those outside of her communion have obtained it or
their knowledge of it. She has always held and taught it to be the
divinely inspired and authoritative written word of God, which
none of her children are allowed to deny or question. There is no
opposition possible between her teaching and the Bible, for the
Bible is included in her teaching, and consequently no appeal from
her teaching to the Bible. It would be only an appeal from herself
to herself. The only appeal conceivable in the case is from her
understanding of the sacred Scriptures or the revealed word of God
to--your own; but as you at best have confessedly no authority to
expound, interpret, or declare the law, your understanding of the
written word can in no case override or set aside hers.

The Reformers, when they pretended to appeal from the church to the
Bible, mistook the question and proceeded on a false assumption.
There never was any question between the church and the Bible; the
only question there was or could be was between her understanding
of the Bible and theirs, or, as we have said, between the Bible
as expounded by the church and the Bible as expounded by private
individuals. This the Reformers did not or would not see, and this
their followers do not or will not see to this day. Now, count the
authority of the church for as little as possible, her understanding
cannot be below that of private individuals, and the understanding of
private individuals can never override it, or be a sufficient reason
for setting it aside. The Reformers had recognized the church as the
supreme authority in matters of faith, and the question was not on
admitting her authority as something hitherto unrecognized, but on
rejecting an authority they had hitherto acknowledged as divine. They
could not legally reject it except on a higher authority, or by the
judgment of a superior court. But there was no superior court, no
higher authority, and they could oppose to her not the authority of
the Bible, as they pretended, but at best only their private opinion
or views of what it teaches, which in no case could count for more
than her judgment, and therefore could not overrule it or authorize
its rejection.

It is all very well to deny the divine commission and authority of
the church to expound the word and declare the law of God; but a
denial, to serve any purpose, or to be worth anything, must have a
reason, and a higher reason than has the affirmation denied. One
can deny only by an authority sufficient to warrant an affirmation.
It needs as much reason to deny as to affirm. The authority of the
church can really be denied only by opposing to her a truth that
disproves it. A simple negation is nothing, and proves or disproves
nothing. Yet the Reformers opposed to the church only a simple
negation. They opposed to her no authority, no affirmative truth,
and consequently gave no reason for denying or unchurching her.
Indeed, no individual or sect ever opposes either to the church or
to her teaching anything but simple negation, and no one ever makes
an affirmation or affirms any truth or positive doctrine which she
does not herself affirm or hold and teach. Every known heresy, from
that of the Docetæ down to the latest development of Protestantism,
simply denies what the church teaches, and affirms nothing which she
does not herself affirm, as Catholics have shown over and over again.
These denials, based as they are on no principle or affirmative
truth, are gratuitous, and count for nothing against the church or
her teaching. Who would count the denial by a madman that the sun
shines in a clear sky at noonday?

The simple fact is that whoever denies the church or her judgments
does it without any authority or reason but his own private opinion
or caprice, and that is simply no authority or reason at all. It is
not possible to allege any authority against her or her teaching.
Men may cavil at the truth, may by their sophistries and subtleties
obscure the truth or involve themselves in a dense mental fog, so
that they are unable to see anything distinctly, or to tell where
they are or in what direction they are moving. They may thus imagine
that they have some reason for their denials, and even persuade
others that such is the fact; but whenever the fog is cleared away,
and they have _easted_ themselves, they cannot, if they have ordinary
intelligence, fail to discover that the truth which in their own
minds they opposed to her or her teaching is a truth which she
herself holds and teaches as an integral part of her doctrine, or
as included in the depositum of faith she has received. Do you say
there is truth outside of the church; truth in all religions; in all
superstitions, even? Be it so; but there is no truth outside of her
in any religion or superstition that she denies or does not recognize
and hold, and hold in its unity and catholicity. There may be facts
in natural history, in physics, chemistry, in all the special
sciences, as in the several handicrafts, that she does not teach;
but there is no principle of science of any sort that she does not
hold and apply whenever an occasion for its application occurs. None
of the special sciences have their principles in themselves, or do or
can demonstrate the principles on which they depend, and from which
they derive their scientific character. They all depend for their
scientific character on a higher science, the science of sciences,
which the church and the church alone teaches. The principles of
ethics, and therefore of politics as a branch of ethics, all lie in
the theological order, and without theology there is and can be no
science of ethics or politics; and hence we see that both, with those
who reject theology, are purely empirical, without any scientific
basis. An atheist may be moral in his conduct, but if there were no
God there could be no morality; so may an atheist be a geometrician,
but if there were no God there could be no geometry. Deny God, and
what becomes of lines that may be infinitely projected, or of space
shading off into immensity, on which so much in the science of
geometry depends? Nay, deny God, and what would become even of finite
space? Yet without the conception of space, which is in truth only
the power of God to externize his acts, geometry would be impossible.
All the special sciences are secondary, and are really science only
when carried up to their first principles and explained by them. What
more absurd, then, than the attempt of scientists to prove by science
there is no God, or to oppose science to the theology of the church,
without which no science is possible?

We need but look at the present state of men's minds to see how the
world gets on without the church. Never were men more active or
indefatigable in their researches: they send their piercing glances
into all subjects, sacred and profane; they investigate the heavens
and the earth, the present and the past, and leave no nook or corner
of nature unexplored, and yet there is not a principle of ethics,
politics, or science that is not denied or called in question. In the
moral and political world nothing is fixed or settled, and moral and
intellectual science, as well as statesmanship, disappears. Doubt and
uncertainty hang over all questions, and the distinctions between
right and wrong, just and unjust, as well as between good and evil,
are obscured and well-nigh obliterated. The utmost confusion reigns
in the whole world of thought, and "men," as a distinguished prelate
said to us the other day, "are trying the experiment of governing the
world without conscience." All this proves what we maintain, that
they who deny the church, or reject her teaching, have no truth to
oppose to her, no reason for their denial, and no principle on which
they base their rejection of her authority. Their rejection of the
church and her teaching is purely gratuitous, and therefore, if not
sinful, is at least baseless.

This much is certain, that it is either the church or nothing. There
is no other alternative. Nothing is more absurd than for those
who reject the church and her teaching to pretend to be Christian
teachers or believers. They cannot believe the revelation God has
made on the veracity of God alone, for they have no witness, not
even an unassisted human witness, of the fact of revelation, of
what God has revealed, or that he has or has not revealed anything,
since they have no witness who was the contemporary of our Lord and
his apostles--they were none of them born then--and they have no
institution that dates from apostolic times, and that has continued
without break down to the present. In fact, what they profess to
believe, in so far as they believe it at all, they believe on the
authority of the church, or of that very tradition which they reject
and deny to be authority. They agree among themselves in their
doctrinal belief only when and where they agree with the church;
whenever and wherever they break from Catholic tradition, preserved
and handed down by her, they disagree and fight with one another,
are all at sea, and have neither chart nor compass. Do they tell us
that they agree in the essentials of the Christian faith? Yet it is
only so far as they follow Catholic tradition that they know or can
agree among themselves as to what are or are not essentials. There is
a wide difference between what Dr. Pusey holds to be essential and
what is held to be essential by Dr. Bellows. Nearly the only point
in which the two agree is in rejecting the infallible authority of
the successor of Peter; and, in rejecting that authority, neither
has any authority for believing what he believes, or for denying
what he denies. Deny the church, and you have no authority for
asserting divine revelation at all, as your rationalists and radicals
conclusively prove.

But, happily, the other alternative saves us from all these logical
inconsistencies. The church meets every demand, removes every
embarrassment, and affords us the precise authority we need for
faith, for she is in every age and every land a living witness to the
fact of revelation, and an ever-present judge competent to declare
what God reveals, and to teach us what we have, and what we have not,
the veracity of God for believing. She can assure us of the divine
inspiration and authority of the Holy Scriptures, which without
her tradition is not provable; for she has received them through
the apostles from our Lord himself. She can enable us to read them
aright, and can unfold to us by her teaching their real sense; for
the Holy Ghost has deposited with her the whole revelation of God,
whether written or unwritten. Outside of her, men, if they have the
book called the Bible, can make little or nothing of it, can come to
no agreement as to its sense, except so far as they inconsistently
and surreptitiously avail themselves of her interpretation of it.
They have no key to its sense. But she has the key to its meaning
in her possession and knowledge of all that God reveals, or in the
divine instruction she has received in the beginning. The whole word
of God, and the word of God as a whole, is included in the depositum
she has received, and therefore she is able at all times and in all
places to give the true sense of the whole, and of the relation to
the whole of each and every part. In her tradition the Bible is a
book of divine instruction, of living truth, of inestimable value,
and entitled to the profoundest reverence, which we know it is not in
the hands of those who wrest it from her tradition, and have no clue
to its meaning but grammar and lexicon.

The notion that a man who knows nothing of the Christian faith,
and is a stranger to the whole order of Christian thought and
life, can take up the Bible, even when correctly translated into
his mother-tongue, and from reading and studying it arrive at an
adequate knowledge, or any real knowledge at all, of Christian truth
or the revelation which God has made to man, is preposterous, and
contradicted by every day's experience. Just in proportion as men
depart from the tradition of faith preserved by the church, the
Bible becomes an unintelligible book, ceases to be of any use to the
mind, and, if reverenced at all, becomes, except in a few plain moral
precepts, a source of error much more frequently than of truth. One
of the most precious gifts of God to man becomes instead of a benefit
a real injury to the individual and to society. Our school-boards
may, then, easily understand why we Catholics object to the reading
of the Bible in schools where the church cannot be present to
enlighten the pupil's mind as to its real and true sense. It is the
court that keeps the statute-books, and interprets and applies the
law, whether the _lex scripta_ or the _lex non scripta_.

The church, existing in all ages and in all nations as one identical
body, is a living witness in all times and places, as we have said,
of the fact that God has revealed what she believes and teaches,
and is through his assistance a competent and sufficient authority
for that fact, and to interpret and declare the revealed law, as
much so, to say the least, as the supreme court of a nation is
to declare what is the law of the state. The objection made by
rationalists and others to believing on the authority of the church,
or to recognizing her authority to declare the faith, is founded on
the false assumption that the church makes the faith, and can make
anything of faith she pleases, whether God has revealed it or not. We
have already answered this objection. The church bears witness to the
fact of revelation, and declares what is or is not the faith God has
revealed, as the supreme court declares what is or is not the law of
the state; but she can declare nothing to be of faith that is not of
faith, or that God has not revealed and commanded all men to believe,
for through the divine assistance she is infallible, and therefore
cannot err in matters of faith, or in any matters pertaining in
any respect to faith and morals. Since she cannot err in declaring
what God has revealed and commanded, we are assured that what she
declares to be revealed is revealed, or to be commanded is commanded,
and therefore we know that whatever we are required to believe as
of faith, or to do as commanded of God, we have the authority of
God himself for believing and doing, the highest possible reason
for faith, since God is truth itself, and can neither deceive nor
be deceived; and the highest possible law, for God is the Supreme
Lawgiver. It is they who reject the church or deny her authority
that have only an arbitrary and capricious human authority, and who
abdicate their reason and their freedom, and make themselves slaves,
and slaves of human passion, arrogance, and ignorance. The Catholic
is the only man who has true mental freedom, or a reason for his
faith. His faith makes him free. It is the truth that liberates; and
therefore our Lord says, "If the Son shall make you free, ye shall
be free indeed." Who can be freer than he who is held to believe and
obey only God? They whom the truth does not make free may fancy they
are free, but they are not; they are in bondage, and abject slaves.

The church in affirming herself is not making herself the judge
in her own cause, is not one of the litigants, as some pretend,
for the cause in which she judges is not hers, but that of God
himself. She is the court instituted by the Supreme Lawgiver to
keep, interpret, and declare his law, and therefore to judge between
him and the subjects his law binds. She, in determining a case of
faith or morals, no more judges in her own cause than the supreme
court of a nation does in defining its own jurisdiction, and in
determining a case arising under the law of which it is constituted
by the national authority the judge. She has, of course, the right,
as has every civil court, to punish contempt, whether of her orders
or her jurisdiction, for he who contemns her contemns him who has
instituted her; but the questions to be decided are questions of law,
which she does not make, and is therefore no more a party to the
cause litigated, and no more interested or less impartial, than is
a civil court in a civil action. Indeed, we see not, if it pleases
Almighty God to make a revelation, and to set up his kingdom on
earth with that revelation for its law, how he can provide for its
due administration without such a body as the church affirms herself
to be, nor how it would be possible to institute a higher or more
satisfactory method of determining what the law of his kingdom is,
than by the decision of a court instituted and assisted by him for
that very purpose. In our judgment, no better way is practicable, and
no other way of attaining the end desired is possible. We repeat,
therefore, that the church meets every demand of the case, and
removes every real difficulty in ascertaining what is the faith God
has revealed, as well as what is opposed to it, or tends to obscure
or impair it.

It is agreed on all hands, by all who hold that our heavenly Father
has made us a revelation and instituted a church, that the Church of
Rome, founded by Saints Peter and Paul, was in the beginning catholic
and apostolic. If she was so in the beginning, she is so now; for she
has not changed, and claims no authority which she has not claimed
and exercised, as the occasion arose, from the first. She is the
same identical body as she has been from the beginning. All the
sectarian and schismatical bodies that oppose or refuse to submit
to her authority acknowledged her authority prior to rejecting it,
and were in communion with her. The change is not hers, but theirs.
They have changed and gone out from her, because they were not of
her, but she has remained ever the same. Take the schismatic Greeks.
They originally were one body with her, and held the successor of
Peter in the Roman See as primate or head of the whole visible
church. They got angry or were perverted, and rejected the authority
of the Roman Pontiff, and have never even to this day ventured to
call themselves officially the Catholic or the Apostolic church. The
men who founded the Reformed Churches so-called--Anglican among the
rest--were brought up in the communion of the Catholic Church, and
acknowledged the supremacy of the Roman Pontiff, and the Church of
Rome as the mother and mistress of all the churches. The separation
was caused by their change, not by hers. She held and taught at
the time of the separation what she had always held and taught,
and claimed no authority which she had not claimed from the first.
Evidently, then, it was they and not she that changed and denied what
they had previously believed. She lost individuals and nations from
her communion, but she lost not her identity, or any portion of her
rights and authority, as the one and only church of Christ, for she
holds from God, not from the faithful. She has continued to be what
she was at first, while they have gone from one change to another,
have fallen into a confusion of tongues, as their prototypes did at
Babel; and Luther and Calvin could hardly recognize their followers
in those who go by their name to-day.

In the very existence of the church through so many changes in the
world around her, the rise and fall of states and empires, assailed
as she has been on every hand, and by all sorts of enemies, is a
standing miracle, and a sufficient proof of her divinity. She was
assailed by the Jews, who crucified her Lord and stirred up, wherever
they went, the hostility of the people against his holy apostles
and missionaries; she was assailed by the relentless persecution
of the Roman Empire, the strongest organization the world has ever
seen, and the greatest political power of which history gives any
hint--an empire which wielded the whole power of organized paganism;
she was driven to the catacombs, and obliged to offer up the holy
sacrifice under the earth, for there was no place for her altars on
its surface. Yet she survived the empire; emerged from the catacombs
and planted the cross on the Capitol of the pagan world. She had
then to encounter a hardly less formidable enemy in the Arian
heresy, sustained by the civil power; then came her struggle with
the barbarian invaders and conquerors from the fifth to the tenth
century--the revolt of the East, or the Greek schism; the great
schism of the West; the Northern revolt, or the so-called Reformation
of the sixteenth century; and the hostility since of the greatest and
most powerful states of the modern world; yet she stands erect where
she did nearly twenty centuries ago, maintaining herself against all
opposition; against the power, wealth, learning, and refinement of
this world; against Jew, pagan, barbarian, heretic, and schismatic,
and preserving her identity and her faith unchanged through all
the vicissitudes of the world in the midst of which she is placed.
She never could have done it if she had been sustained only by
human virtue, human wisdom, and human sagacity; she could not have
survived unchanged if she had not been under the divine protection,
and upheld by the arm of Almighty God. The fact that she has lived on
and preserved her identity, especially if we add to the opposition
from without the scandals that have occurred within, is conclusive
proof that under her human form she lives a divine and supernatural
life; therefore that she is the church of God, and is what she
affirms herself to be.

Believing the church to be what she affirms herself to be; believing
the Roman Pontiff to be the successor of Peter, the Vicar of Christ
on earth, the father and teacher of all Christians, we have no fear
that she will not survive the persecution which now rages against
her, and that the Pope will not see his enemies prostrate at his
feet. Through all history, we have seen that the successes of her
enemies have been short-lived, and the terrible losses they have
occasioned have been theirs, not hers. It will always be so. Kings,
emperors, potentates, states, and empires may destroy themselves by
opposing her, but her they cannot harm. See we not how the wrongs
done to the Holy Father by Italian robbers, obeying the dictates of
the secret societies, some of which, like the _Madre Natura_, date
almost from apostolic times, are quickening the faith and fervor of
Catholics throughout the world? Not for centuries has the Holy Father
been so strong in the love and devotion of his faithful children as
to-day. Never is the church stronger or nearer a victory than when
abandoned by all the powers of this world, and thrown back on the
support of her divine Spouse alone.


[21] Entered, according to Act of Congress, in the year 1871, by
REV. I. T. HECKER, in the Office of the Librarian of Congress, at
Washington, D. C.

[22] _The Vatican Council and its Definitions._ A Pastoral Letter to
the Clergy. By Henry Edward, Archbishop of Westminster. New York: D.
& J. Sadlier. 1871. 12mo, pp. 252.


One of the first objects that strikes the mariner ascending the
Garonne towards Bordeaux is the ancient tower of St. Michel. I
visited it the very morning after my arrival in that city. It is the
belfry of a church of the same name, but is separated from it, being
about forty yards distant. It was built in 1472, and is two hundred
and fifty feet high. Formerly, it was over three hundred feet in
height, but the steeple was blown down by a hurricane on the 8th of
September, 1768. The view from the top is superb. Before you, like
a map, lies the whole city--a noted commercial centre from the time
of the Cæsars--encircling a great bend of the river. The eye is at
first confused by the mass of roofs, spires, and streets, but in a
moment singles out the great cruciform churches of St. André, Ste.
Croix, and St. Michel. They lie beneath like immense crosses with
arms stretched out--a perpetual appeal to heaven. Such remembrances
of Calvary must ever stand between a sinful world and the justice of
Almighty God. How can he look down upon all the iniquity of a great
city, and not feel the silent _Parce nobis_ of these sacred arms
extended over it, repeating silently, as it were, the divine prayer,
"Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do!" Oh! what
a love for the Passion dwelt in the heart of the middle ages which
built these churches. Absorbed in the thought, I lost sight of the
city. Its activity, its historical associations, the fine buildings
and extensive view, all disappear before the cross. Bordeaux is
generally thought of only as a wine-mart, but it also has holier
associations. "Every foot-path on this planet may lead to the door of
a hero," it is said, and very few paths there are in this Old World
that do not bring us upon the traces of the saints--the most heroic
of men, who have triumphed over themselves, which is better than the
taking of a strong city. They it was that made these great signs of
the cross on the breast of this fair city, hallowing it for ever.

Beneath the tower of St. Michel is a _caveau_, around which are
ranged ninety mummies in a state of preservation said to be owing to
the nature of the soil. Why is it that every one is enticed down to
witness so horrid a spectacle? Dust to dust and ashes to ashes is
far preferable to these withered bodies, and a quiet resting-place,
deep, deep in the bosom of mother earth till the resurrection.
Edmond About says the twelfth century would have embroidered many a
charming legend to throw around these bodies, but the moderns have
less imagination, and the guardian of the tower, who displays them
by the light of his poor candle, is totally deficient in poesy. Had
this writer been at Bordeaux on the eve of All Souls' day, he would
have been invited at the midnight hour, "when spirits have power,"
to listen to the lugubrious cries and chants that come up from the
_caveau_, where, as the popular voice declares, these ninety forms
are having their yearly dance--the dance of death! I wonder if the
mummy next the door, as you gladly pass out into the upper air, has
his hand still extended like an _au revoir_.... Yes, there is one
place where we shall meet, but not in this repulsive form. May we all
be found there with glorified bodies!

The church of St. Michel is older than the tower, having been built
in the twelfth century. It is of the Gothic style, and one of those
antique churches that speak so loudly to the heart of the traveller
from the New World--one in which we are penetrated with

                        "An inward stillness,
      That perfect silence when the lips and heart
      Are still, and we no longer entertain
      Our own imperfect thoughts and vain opinions,
      But God alone speaks in us, and we wait
      In singleness of heart that we may know
      His will, and in the silence of our spirits
      That he may do his will, and do that only."

The ancients had a deep meaning when they represented the veiled Isis
with her finger on her hushed lips. The soul profoundly impressed by
the Divine Presence is speechless.

In one of the side chapels is the tomb of an old bishop of the middle
ages, in a niche of the wall. On it he lies carven in stone, with
the mitre on his head, and clad in his pontifical vestments, and his
hands folded in prayer.

                      "Still praying in thy sleep
        With lifted hands and face supine,
      Meet attitude of calm and reverence deep,
        Keeping thy marble watch in hallowed shrine."

The cathedral of St. André is another of these venerable monuments of
the past. Founded in the fourth century, destroyed by the barbarians,
restored by Charlemagne, and again ruined by the Normans, it was
rebuilt in the eleventh century, and consecrated by Pope Urban II.,
in 1096. I went there at an early hour to offer up my thanksgiving
for the happy end of this stage of my journey. The canons were just
chanting the hours, which reverberated among the light arches with
fine effect. Masses were being offered in various chapels, and there
were worshippers everywhere. I was particularly struck with the
devout appearance of a venerable old man in one of the dimmest and
most remote chapels, enveloped in a hooded cloak, with the capuche
drawn over his head. He looked as if his soul, as well as his body,
was almost done with time.

Through all these aisles and oratories, which whispering lips filled
with the perfume of prayer streaming through the old windows came the
morning sun,

      "Whose beams, thus hallowed by the scenes they pass,
      Tell round the floor each parable of glass."

I can still see the purple light filling the chapel of the Sacred
Heart and ensanguining the uplifted Host.

      "A sweet religious sadness, like a dove,
      Broods o'er this place. The clustered pillars high
      Are roséd o'er by the morning sky:
      And from the heaven-hued windows far above,
      Intense as adoration, warm as love,
      A purple glory deep is seen to lie.
      Turn, poet, Christian, now the serious eye,
      Where, in white vests, a meek and holy band,
      Chanting God's praise in solemn order, stand.
      O hear that music swell far up and die!
      Old temple, thy vast centuries seem but years,
      Where wise and holy men lie glorified!
      Our hearts are full, our souls are occupied,
      And piety has birth in quiet tears!"

And all the worshippers in this church were turned toward the holy
East, whence cometh the Son of Man. The glory of the Lord came into
the house by the way of the gate whose prospect is toward the East.
I like this orientation of churches now too much neglected. The old
symbolic usages of the church should be perpetuated. This turning
to the East in prayer was at one age the mark of a true believer,
distinguishing him from those who had separated from the church.
True, some of the old basilicas at Rome and elsewhere have their
altars at the west, but, according to the ritual of such churches,
the priest turns toward the people, thus looking to the East.
Cassiodorus and others say that our Lord on the cross had his face
toward the west. So, in directing our thoughts and hearts to Calvary,
it is almost instinctive to look to the East.

      "With hands outstretched, bleeding and bare,
      He doth in death his innocent head recline,
      Turning to the west. Descending from his height,
      The sun beheld, and veiled him from the sight.
      Thither, while from the serpent's wound we pine,
      To thee, remembering that baptismal sign,
      We turn and drink anew thy healing might."

Let us, then, place, as Wordsworth says,

                    "Like men of elder days,
      Our Christian altar faithful to the east,
      Whence the tall window drinks the morning rays."

While I was lingering with peculiar interest before a monument to
the memory of Cardinal de Cheverus, the first Bishop of Boston, and
afterward Archbishop of Bordeaux, whose memory is revered in the Old
World and the New, I heard a chanting afar off, and, looking around,
saw through the open door a funeral procession coming hastily along
the street toward the church, and singing the _Miserere_--coming,
not with mournful step and slow, as with us, but like the followers
of Islam, who believe the soul is in torment between death and
burial, and so lay aside their usual dignified deportment and hurry
the body to the grave. But in France the funeral _cortége_ does not
necessarily include the relatives, and I felt this very haste might
be typical of their eagerness to commence the Office of the Dead.
Anyhow, I forgave them when, in the chapel draped in black, I saw
them devoutly betake themselves to prayer during the Holy Sacrifice.
I, too, dropped my little bead of prayer for the eternal rest of one
whose name I know not, but which is known to God.

      "Help, Lord, the souls which thou hast made,
            The souls to thee so dear;
      In prison for the debt unpaid,
            Of sins committed here."

The confessionals seemed to be greatly frequented the day I was at
St. André's--those sepulchres into which rolls the great burden of
our sins. There

      "The great Absolver with relief
      Stands by the door, and bears the key,
      O'er penitence on bended knee."

What non-Catholic has not felt, at least once in his life, as if
he would give worlds for the moral courage to lay down the burden
of memory at the feet of some holy man endowed with the power of
absolving from sin! Almighty God has made his church the interpreter
between himself and his creatures; hence the peculiar grace a holy
confessor has to meet the wants of the human heart laid bare before
him. Zoroaster told his disciples that the wings of the soul, lost
by sin, might be regained by bedewing them with the waters of life
found in the garden of God. It is only the consecrated priest who
has the power of unsealing this fountain to each one of us. These
confessionals are distributed in the various chapels, everywhere
meeting the eye of the parched and sin-worn traveller who would

      "Kneel down, and take the word divine,
      ABSOLVO TE."

Of course there is a Ladye Chapel in this church, as in all others.
Jesus and Mary, whose names are ever mingled on Catholic lips, the
first they learn and the last they murmur, are never separated in
our churches. Devotion to the Virgin has grown up through the
church, beautifying and perfuming it like the famous rose-bush in
the Cathedral of Hildesheim in Germany--the oldest of all known
rose-bushes. It takes root under the choir in the crypt. Its age
is unknown, but a document proves that nearly a thousand years ago
Bishop Hezilo had it protected by a stone roof still to be seen.
So with devotion to our Mystical Rose--_quasi plantatio rosæ in
Jericho_--its roots go down deep among the foundations of the church;
saints have protected and nourished it, and all nations come to sit
under its vine and inhale its perfume.

      "Blossom for ever, blossoming rod!
        Thou didst not blossom once to die:
      That life which, issuing forth from God,
        Thy life enkindled, runs not dry.

      "Without a root in sin-stained earth,
        'Twas thine to bud salvation's flower,
      No single soul the church brings forth
        But blooms from thee, and is thy dower."

What a safeguard to man is devotion to Mary Most Pure! It is like the
Pridwin--the shield of King Arthur--on which was emblazoned the Holy
Virgin, warding off the strokes of the great enemy of souls.

There are some poetical associations connected with Bordeaux: among
others, the memory of the troubadours who enriched and perfected the
Romance tongue, but whose songs at last died away in the sad discord
of the Albigensian wars. Here the gay and beautiful Eleanor of
Aquitaine held her court of love, gathering around her all the famous
troubadours of her time, and deciding upon the merits of their songs.
Among these was her favorite, Bernard de Ventadour, chiefly known to
fame by being mentioned by Petrarch. Eleanor herself was a musician
and a lover of poetry--tastes she inherited from her grandfather,
William, Duke of Aquitaine, generally called the Count de Poitiers,
one of the earliest of the troubadours whose songs have come down to
us. Around this charming queen of love and song gathered the admiring
votaries of _la gaia sciencia_, like nightingales singing around the
rose, all vowing, as in duty bound, that their hearts were bleeding
on the horns!

Poor maligned Eleanor was too gay a butterfly for the gloomy court
of Louis VII. She wanted the bright sun of her own province in which
to float, and the incense of admiring voices to waft her along. She
herself was a composer of _chansons_, and is reckoned among the
authors of France. She dearly loved Bordeaux, her capital, and was
adored by its people. Here she was married with great pomp to Louis,
after which the Duke of Aquitaine laid aside his insignia of power,
and, assuming the garb of a hermit, went on a pilgrimage to St. James
of Compostella, and devoted the remainder of his life to prayer and
penance in hermitage on Montserrat, by way of preparation for death.
It is well to pause awhile before plunging into the great ocean of

These pilgrimages to Compostella were exceedingly popular in that
age, and hospices for the pilgrims to that shrine were to be found in
all the large cities and towns. There was one at Auch, and another
at Paris in the Rue du Temple, which was particularly celebrated and
served by Augustinian nuns. And here at Bordeaux was the Hospice of
St. André for the reception of the weary votary of St. Jago.

"Here comes a pilgrim," says one of Shakespeare's characters. "God
save you, pilgrim. Where are you bound?"

"To St. Jacques le Grand. Where do the palmers lodge, I beseech you?"

        "Eftsoones unto an holy hospitall
      That was forby the way, she did him bring,
      In which seven bead-men that had vowed all
      Their life to service of high heaven's King,
      Did spend their daies in doing godly thing;
      Their gates to all were open evermore,
      That by the wearie way were travelling,
      And one sate wayting ever them before
      To call in comers-by, that needy were and pore."

Digby says the hospitality and charity of these hospices had their
origin in the bishops' houses. Fortunatus thus speaks of Leontius
II., Archbishop of Bordeaux, who, in accordance with the apostle's
injunction, was given to hospitality:

      "Susceptor peregrum distribuendo cibum.
      Longius extremo si quis properasset ab orbe,
      Advena mox vidit, hunc ait esse patrem."

That the devotion of the middle ages is yet alive in the church is
proved by the influx of pilgrims at the shrine of St. Germaine of
Pibrac, at Notre Dame de Lourdes, and a thousand other places of
popular devotion. So great is the number of pilgrims to Lourdes,
drawn by the brightness of Mary's radiant form, that the railway
between Tarbes and Pau was turned from its intended direct line in
order to pass through Lourdes. In one day the train from Bayonne
brought nine hundred, and at another time over a thousand pilgrims.
And as for the continued charity and hospitality of the church,
witness the monks of St. Bernard and of Palestine, known to all the
world. How disinterested is genuine Catholic charity, done unto the
Lord and not unto man! Some suppose the good works practised among
us is by way of barter for heaven, but they little know the spirit
of the church. Charity is one expression of its piety, which, in its
highest manifestations, is devoid of self-interest. Listen to John
of Bordeaux, a holy Franciscan friar, who, after quoting a saying
of Epictetus, that we generally find piety where there is utility,
says: "He does not come up to the standard of pure Christianity:
he pretends that piety takes its birth in utility, so that it is
interest that gives rise to devotion. Yes, among the profane, but
not among Christians, who, acquainted with the maxims of our holy
religion, have no other end but to serve God for his love and for his
glory; forgetting all considerations of their own advantage, they
aspire to attain to that devotion which is agreeable to him without
any view to their own interest."

And in these practical times another holy writer, Dr. Newman, says
in the same spirit: "They who seek religion for culture's sake,
are æsthetic, not religious, and will never gain that grace which
religion adds to culture, because they can never have the religion.
To seek religion for the present elevation, or even the social
improvement it brings, is really to fall from faith which rests
in God, and the knowledge of him as the ultimate good, and has no
by-ends to serve."

But to return to the romantic associations of this land of the vine,
we recall the celebrated old romance of Huon of Bordeaux, which
contains some delightful pictures of the age of chivalry. Here is one
which I have abridged, showing how the religious spirit was inwoven
with the impulses of the knightly heart. The Emperor Thierry, furious
because his nephews and followers had been slain by Huon, seized upon
Esclarmonde (Huon's wife) and her attendants, and threw them into
a dungeon, there to await death. Huon, greatly afflicted at this,
disguised himself as a pilgrim from the Holy Land, and set out for
Mayence, where the emperor lived. He arrived on Maunday-Thursday,
and learned that it was the custom of the emperor to grant the
petitions of him who first presented himself after the office of
Good Friday morning. Huon was so overjoyed at this information that
he could not sleep all that night, but betook himself to his orisons,
imploring God to inspire and aid him so he might again behold his
wife. When morning came, he took his pilgrim staff and repaired to
the chapel. As soon as the office was ended, he contrived to be the
first to attract attention. He told the emperor he was there to
avail himself of the custom of the day in order to obtain a grace.
The emperor replied that, should he even demand fourteen of his
finest cities, they would be given him, for he would rather have one
of his fists cut off than recede from his oath; therefore to make
known his petition, which would not be refused. Then Huon requested
pardon for himself and for all of his who might have committed some
offence. The emperor replied: "Pilgrim, doubt not that what I have
just promised, I will fulfil, but I beg you right humbly to tell me
what manner of man you are, and to what country and race you belong,
that you request such grace from me." Huon then made himself known.
The emperor's face blanched while listening to him, and for a long
time he was unable to speak. At last he said: "Are you, then, Huon
of Bordeaux, from whom I have received such ills--the slayer of my
nephews and followers? I cannot cease wondering at your boldness
in presenting yourself before me. I would rather have lost four of
my best cities, have had my whole dominions laid waste and burned,
and I and my people banished for three years, than find you thus
before me. But since you have thus taken me by surprise, know in
truth that what I have promised and vowed I will hold good, and, in
honor of the Passion of Jesus Christ, and the blessed day which now
is, on which he was crucified and dead, I pardon you all hatred and
evil-doing, and God forbid that I should hold your wife, or lands, or
men, which I will restore to your hands." Then Huon threw himself on
his knees, beseeching the emperor to forgive the injury he had done
him. "God pardon you," said the emperor. "As for me, I forgive you
with right good will," and taking Huon by the hand, he gave him the
kiss of peace. Huon then said: "May it please our Lord Jesus Christ
that this guerdon be returned to you twofold." Then the prisoners
were released, and, after a sumptuous entertainment, the emperor
accompanied Huon and his noble lady on their way back to Bordeaux.

Bordeaux is interesting to the English race, because, among other
reasons, it was for about three hundred years a dependency of the
English crown, being the dowry of Eleanor of Aquitaine, who married
Henry II. after her divorce from Louis le Jeune. We associate the
city, too, with Froissart and the Black Prince, who held his court
here. Richard II. was born hard by at the Château de Lormont.
And Henry III. came here to receive his son's bride, Eleanor of
Castile, and gave her so extravagant a marriage feast as to excite
the remonstrances of his nobles. The country prospered under the
English government. The merchants had especial privileges granted
them by Eleanor, and their wines then, as now, found a ready market
in London. Bordeaux in particular increased wonderfully, and outgrew
its defensive walls. The church of St. Michel dates from the time
of English domination, and in that quarter of the city may be seen
old houses, one story projecting beyond the other, and the whole
surmounted by a pyramidal roof, said to be of English origin, and
such as are to be seen in some of the oldest streets of London.

Eleanor always used her influence for the benefit of her people. The
most ancient charter of privileges granted the Gascon merchants was
given by her on the first of July, 1189.

The English seem to have taken their war-cry from the old dukes of
Aquitaine who charged to the sound of "St. George for the puissant
duke." A devotion to St. George was brought from the East by the
Crusaders. Richard I. placed himself and his army under the special
protection of this saint, who, the redoubted slayer of the dragon and
the redresser of woman's wrongs, appealed to the tenderest instincts
of the chivalric heart. St. George's remains were brought from Asia
by the Crusaders, and a large part is enshrined at Toulouse, in the
great basilica of St. Sernin. The crest of the dukes of Aquitaine was
a leopard, which the kings of England bore for a long time on their
shields. Edward III. is called a valiant pard in his epitaph.

These old dukes of Aquitaine seem always to have gone to extremes
either as sinners or saints. Eleanor's grandfather, as I have said,
was one of the earliest of the troubadours. He was distinguished
for his bravery, his musical voice, and his manly beauty. His early
life was such as to incur the censure of the bishop, but he ended
his career in penitence, and the last of his poems is a farewell _á
la chevalerie qu'il a tant aimée_ for the sake of the cross. He was
one of the first to join the crusades at the head of sixty thousand
warriors, but he lost his troops and gained neither glory nor renown.

The term Aquitaine was given this country by Julius Cæsar on account
of its numerous rivers and ports. The ancient province of this name
extended from the Loire to the Pyrenees. In the time of the Roman
dominion, Bordeaux was its capital under the name of Burdigala. The
origin of the city is uncertain. Strabo, who lived in the first
century, mentions it as a celebrated emporium. Some suppose its first
inhabitants to have been of Iberian origin. The real history of the
city commences about the middle of the third century, when Tetricus,
governor of Aquitaine, assumed the purple and was proclaimed emperor.
About the same time St. Martial preached in this region. But the
pagan divinities were still invoked in the time of Ausonius. In
the annals of the Council of Arles, in 314, Orientalis, Bishop of
Bordeaux, is mentioned.

The intellectual superiority of the Romans was always even more
potent than the force of their arms. Barbarism disappeared before
the splendor of their civilization. Burdigala under their dominion
felt the influence of this superiority, and rose to such a degree
of magnificence and luxury as to be a theme for Ausonius, St.
Jerome, and Sidonius Apollinaris. The remains of buildings at
Bordeaux belonging to this epoch give an idea of its prosperity and
importance. There is still an arena in ruins, commonly called the
Palais-Gallien, but the most remarkable Roman monument of the city
was a temple called _Piliers de Tutelle_, which, partly ruined, was
demolished in 1677, by the order of Louis XIV., for the construction
of a quay. Schools were established at Bordeaux at an early day.
We learn from St. Jerome that in his time the liberal arts were
in the most flourishing condition here. In the time of the Roman
dominion, there were universities at Bordeaux, Auch, Toulouse,
Marseilles, Trèves, etc. The edicts issued for their benefit showed
the importance attached to their prosperity by the government. The
college of Bordeaux furnished professors for Rome and Constantinople.
Valentinian I. chose Ausonius, a native of Bordeaux, to superintend
the education of his son Gratian. When the latter became emperor, he
made his old tutor a Roman consul (A.D. 379). The poems of Ausonius
are still admired, but there is much in them that is reprehensible.
They were translated into French by M. Jaubert, a priest at Bordeaux,
who lived in the last century.

That the wines of Aquitaine were already celebrated in the fourth
century is shown by the writings of Ausonius

      Non laudata minus, nostri quam gloria vini."

St. Paulinus, bishop of Nola, lived at this time. He was born at
Bordeaux in the year 353, and was descended from a long line of
illustrious senators. One of the several estates he owned near the
city still bears the name of _Le Puy Paulin_, puy being a word from
the _langue Romaine_, perhaps synonymous with the Latin word podium.
One of the public squares of Bordeaux also bears the same name.
Paulinus possessed great elevation of mind and a poetical genius,
which he cultivated under Ausonius, for whose care he expresses
his gratitude in verse. But Ausonius was magnanimous enough to
acknowledge that Paulinus excelled him as a poet and that no modern
Roman could vie with him.

In his early life Paulinus held dignified offices under government,
but his intercourse with St. Delphinus, bishop of Bordeaux, inspired
him with a love for retirement, in which his wife, a Spanish lady of
wealth, participated. They passed over into Spain, and spent four
years there in the retirement of the country, but not as anchorites.
He seemed to have given up all of life but its sweetness when he
composed the following prayer: "O Supreme Master of all things,
grant my wishes, if they are righteous. Let none of my days be sad,
and no anxiety trouble the repose of my nights. Let the good things
of another never tempt me, and may my own suffice to those who ask
my aid. Let joy dwell in my house. Let the slave born on my hearth
enjoy the abundance of my stores. May I live surrounded by faithful
servants, a cherished wife, and the children she will bring me."

While in Spain they lost their only son, whom they buried at Alcala,
near the bodies of the holy martyrs Justus and Pastor. This loss
weaned them completely from the world. Their Spanish solitude had
been a garden of roses, but now they chose the lily as their emblem,
and resolved to lead a monastic life. Paulinus received holy orders,
and they both sold all they possessed and gave the money to the
poor. This drew upon Paulinus the contempt of the world. Even his
own relatives and former slaves rose up against him, but to all
their invectives he only replied: "O beata injuria displicere cum
Christo." "O blessed scorn that is shared with Christ." Ausonius,
in particular, was grieved to see the extensive patrimony of
Paulinus cut up among a hundred possessors, and reproached him in
bitter terms for his madness. But if the world rejected him, he was
received with open arms by such men as St. Ambrose, St. Jerome, and
St. Augustine. His devotion to St. Felix, whose tomb he had visited
in his childhood, induced him to fix his residence near Nola in
Campania. Here he lived close by the church where his favorite saint
was enshrined. He had put on the livery of Christ's poor ones, and
contented himself with his cell and garden-plot. And his meekness
and sanctity, joined to his talents as a writer, drew upon him the
admiration of the world. Persons of the highest rank from all parts
went to see him in his retreat, as St. Jerome and St. Augustine
testify. In his seclusion he writes poems that have all the delicacy
and grace of Petrarch. He describes the church of his loved saint,
whose life and miracles he is never weary of dwelling on, as hung
with white draperies and gleaming with aromatic lamps and tapers; the
porch is wreathed with fresh flowers, and the cloisters strewn with
blossoms; and pilgrims come down from the mountains, marching even
at night by the light of their torches, bringing their children in
sacks, and their sick on litters, to be healed at the tomb; for all
the world, a picture of an Italian shrine of these days.

He loved the humblest duties of the sanctuary. "Suffer me to remain
at thy gates," he says. "Let me cleanse thy courts every morning, and
watch every night for their protection. Suffer me to end my days amid
the employments I love. We take refuge within your hallowed pale and
make our nest in your bosom. It is herein that we are cherished, and
expand into a better life. Casting off the earthly burden, we feel
something divine springing up within us, and the unfolding of the
wings which are to make us equal to the angels." These words sound as
if coming from the cloistered votary of the middle ages, or even of
the nineteenth century; the same is the spirit of the church in all

The writings of St. Paulinus show his devotion to the saints and
their relics, a belief in the efficacy of prayers for the dead, and
in the doctrine of the Real Presence. What can be more explicit, for
instance, than these lines on the Holy Eucharist?

      "In cruce fixa caro est, quâ pascor; de cruce sanguis
      Ille fluit, vitam quo bibo, corda lavo."

He adorned the walls of his church with paintings and composed
inscriptions for the altar, under which were deposited the relics of
St. Andrew, St. Luke, St. Nazarius, and others, and sings thus:

      "In regal shrines with purple marble graced,
      Their bones are 'neath illumined altars placed.
      This pious band's contained in one small chest
      That holds such mighty names within its tiny breast."

After fifteen years of retirement, St. Paulinus was made bishop of
Nola. Shortly before he died, as the lamps were being lighted for the
Vesper service, he murmured,

      "I have trimmed my lamp for Christ."

The prosperity of Bordeaux under the Romans was interrupted by the
invasion of the barbarians that swept down from the north, bringing
ruin and desolation to the land. For nearly a century the city
remained in the power of the Visigoths, who, being Arians, persecuted
the Catholic inhabitants. Sidonius Apollinaris deplores the injury
done to learning by their invasion, but perhaps the decline of
learning was partly owing to a growing distaste for pagan literature
among Christians. The barbarians were finally routed by Clovis in
507, and he took possession of Bordeaux. Charlemagne made Aquitaine
a kingdom for his son Louis le Débonnaire. Louis, son of Charles le
Chauve, was the last king of Aquitaine. When he ascended the throne
of France, it resumed its former rank as a duchy.

The college of Guienne was founded here in the middle ages. In the
sixteenth century, it had, at one time, twenty-five hundred pupils.
The famous George Buchanan, whom everybody knows, because his head
adorns the cover of _Blackwood's Magazine_, but who is more spoken
of than read, taught in this college three years. He came here in
1539. Among his pupils was the great Montaigne, who passed most of
his life at Bordeaux and is buried in the church of the Feuillants.
As Buchanan was somewhat given to hilarity and loved the flavor of
Gascon wines, this city probably had its attractions for him. In his
_Maiæ Calendæ_, full of gaiety and merry-making, he speaks of the
grapes of the sandy soil of Gascony:

      "Nec tenebris claudat generosum cella Lyæum,
      Quem dat arenoso Vasconis uva solo."

One vintage season, Buchanan went to Agen to enjoy it at the
residence of his friend, the celebrated Julius Scaliger, who had
been a professor at the college of Guienne, but was now settled as a
physician at Agen.

Among the other literary celebrities of Bordeaux is Arnaud Berquin,
whose charming writings are still popular. His _Ami des Enfants_ was
crowned by the French Academy in 1784. And Montesquieu was born at
the château of La Brède near Bordeaux, whence he took his title of
Baron de la Brède.

Bordeaux is now the finest city in France after Paris, and it ranks
next to Lyons in importance. Perhaps I cannot do better than quote
what a popular French author of the day says of it:

    "Bordeaux is five miles long and has one hundred and
    fifty thousand inhabitants: plenty of room for few
    people. But the entire population does not breathe at
    its ease. If the grass be growing in the streets and
    squares of the new town, there is some stifling felt
    in the old districts. The Jews, chapmen, brokers, and
    marine store men live in a dirty and unhealthy hive,
    and their shops form no straight line along the narrow
    and unpaved streets. You may still see a quantity of
    those paunchy, hunchbacked, and decrepit houses, which
    form the delight of romantic archæology, and you need
    only go to Bordeaux to form an accurate idea of old
    Paris. In the new town all is vast, rectilinear, and
    monumental: the streets, squares, avenues, esplanades
    and buildings rival the splendor of what we are taught
    to admire in Paris. The Grand Thèâtre, containing only
    twelve hundred persons, has the imposing aspect of a
    Colosseum and a staircase which might be transferred
    with advantage to our Opera. The cafés are truly
    monuments, and I saw a bathing establishment which bore
    a strong resemblance to a necropolis. All this grandeur
    dates from Louis XV. and Louis XVI. The population
    of Bordeaux is one of the prettiest specimens of the
    French nation. The women possess more expression than
    freshness, but with good hair, good eyes, and white
    teeth, a woman cannot but look well. The men have a
    sharp look, a lively mind, and brilliancy of language."

One of the glories of Bordeaux is the bridge across the Garonne built
by order of Napoleon the Great. It has seventeen arches, and there is
an interior gallery communicating from one arch to another which is

There are some fine pictures in the Musée des Tableaux--a Perugino,
and others by Titian, Vandyke, Rubens, etc. Some excellent artists
have been formed in the School of Design, among whom is Rosa Bonheur.
But the people in general are more fond of music and the drama than
the other fine arts.

The commerce of Bordeaux is extensive, but is surpassed by that of
Havre, perhaps because there is too much of the _laisser-aller_ in
a more southern temperament. Nevertheless, the city is progressing.
The port, says the author already quoted, is a third edition of the
Thames at London and the Golden Horn at Constantinople.



      Blind with old age, went Beda forth to preach
      The blessed Gospel to the world, and teach
      The listening crowd of village and of town.
      A peasant school-boy led him up and down,
      Proclaiming aye God's word with youthful fire.

      Rather in childish folly than in scorn,
      The lad the trusting graybeard led, one morn,
      Down to a vale where massive stones around
      Were strewed. "A congregation fills the ground,"
      He said, "and, lo, they wait to hear thee, sire."

      Up rose the aged pilgrim, took the text,
      Turned it, explained it, and applied it next,
      Implored, exhorted, prayed, and, ending, bowed his head,
      And to the listening crowd the Pater Noster said.

      When he had ended, from the circling stones
      The cry went forth, as if in human tones,
      "Amen, most reverend father!" and again
      The circling stones in concert cried, "Amen!"

      The boy shrank back, remorseful, on his knees,
      Confessed his fault, and sought to make his peace.
      "Mock not God's word," the old man to him said.
      "Know that, though men were mute to it, and dead.
      The very stones will witness. 'Tis a living word,
      And cutteth sharply, like a two-edged sword.
      And if all human hearts to stones should turn,
      A human heart within these stones would burn."




The early morning of Mr. Rowan's burial had been heavy and dark; but
as they left the island a shower of golden light broke through the
clouds, the water sparkled on all sides, and the sighing air became a
frolic breeze. Dick and the captain brightened, and exchanged a few
words in seamen's phrase complimenting the weather. Mrs. Rowan also
roused herself, brushed the sand from her clothes, arranged the folds
of her veil, and even smoothed her hair. The poor creature's vanity
was dead, but at the prospect of meeting strangers it gave a slight
post-mortem flicker. Out it went, though, the next instant, on the
breath of a sigh. What did it matter how she looked? But she glanced
anxiously at Edith.

The child had put on her mother's red cape and drawn it up over her
head, and she still held it there, one slim hand pulling the folds
close together under her chin. That she might appear outlandish did
not trouble Edith. Indeed, she claimed the right to be so on account
of her foreign blood. But when she noticed Mrs. Rowan's attention to
her own toilet, and met her glance, she pushed the cape off her head,
and, putting her arms up, began to smooth her hair and plait it into
a long braid. It was rich, long hair, not given to wilful ringlets,
but would curl when in the mood. Now the wind blew little curls out
about her face, and the risen sun steeped the tresses in a pale flame.

The braid finished, she tossed it back, and caught it lightly into a
loop, the motion revealing a pair of round white arms, to which the
hands and wrists looked like colored gauntlets. Then she unfolded
her precious Indian relic of tarnished red and gold, and bound it
straightly about her head, half-covering the forehead, so that the
long, fringed ends hung behind, and a loose fold fell over each ear.

Beholding her in that guise, Captain Cary thought that she looked
fitter for some oriental scene than for this crude corner of a crude
land. "She might be a stolen child stained with gypsy-wort," he said
to himself.

But she was Gypsy only in color. No wild fires burned in her face;
her cool eyes looked out calm and observant; her mouth was gently
closed. The very shape of her features expressed tranquillity.

The sailor found himself much interested in this little girl.
Besides that her appearance pleased him, his good-will had been
bespoken; for on one of those days when their ship had lain becalmed
in southern waters, Dick had told him all her story. Listening to
it, half-asleep, as to something that might be fact and might be
fancy, all the scene about him had entwined itself with the history
and with the heroine's character. The solid golden day, shut down
over a sea whose soft pulses told of perfect repose; the wide-eyed,
radiant night, which seemed every moment on the point of breaking
into music far and near, a fine, clear music of countless sweet bells
with almost human tongues--they formed the background on which her
image floated. Seeing her did not dispel but rather strengthened the
illusion. Something golden in her hair, something tranquil in her
face, something expectant in her eyes--all were like.

The rough giant of a sailor mused tenderly over this as he sent their
boat forward with powerful strokes, and watched Edith Yorke bind on
her Egyptian _coiffure_.

They did not row to the wharf, where the steamer had already
arrived, but to a place a few rods above, where the sea had taken
a good semicircular bite out of the land. Here a straggling bit of
dilapidated woods had been allowed to remain by the vandals who had
turned all the rest to grass and pasture, and a mossy ledge broke the
teeth of the soft, gnawing waves.

Edith stepped lightly on shore. She was young, healthy, brave, and
ignorant, and pain, though it called forth her tears, was stimulating
to her. That pang had not yet come which could cut her heart in twain
and let all the courage out.

"You are spry," Captain Cary said, smiling down upon her.

She smiled faintly in return, but said nothing.

Mrs. Rowan needed assistance at either hand. She had been broken by

They stood awhile in the grove, Dick and the captain making some
business arrangements. The _Halcyon_ was to remain four weeks at
Seaton, and it was agreed that Dick should have that time to get his
mother settled. Then the ship would touch at New York, where he would
embark for the East again.

While they lingered, a large yellow coach, loaded with passengers,
rattled past amid clouds of dust.

"There is no hurry," Dick said. "It will take an hour to get the
freight off and on. But you needn't wait, captain. They'll be looking
for you at the village."

The others drew near to Captain Cary at that, holding his hands and
trying to utter their thanks.

"Oh! it's nothing," he said, much abashed. "I haven't done anything
to be thanked for. Good-by! Keep up your courage, and you will come
out first-rate. There's nothing like grit."

A subsiding ripple tossed his boat against the shore. At that hint
he stepped in, dallied with the rope, then said, with a perfectly
transparent affectation of having only just thought of it: "Oh!
I've got a ring here that Edith is welcome to, if she will wear it.
I brought it home for my niece; but the child is dead. It won't fit
anybody else I know."

Mrs. Rowan immediately thanked him, and Edith smiled with childish
pleasure. "You are very kind, Captain Cary," she said. "I always
thought I would like to have a ring."

Dick alone darkened; but no one noticed it. He had meant to do
everything for her; and here was a wish which she had never expressed
to him, and he had not known enough to anticipate.

The captain drew a tiny box from his pocket, and displayed a small
circlet in which was set a single spark of diamond. Edith extended
her left hand, and the sailor, leaning over the boatside, slipped the
ring on to her forefinger.

"Good-by, again!" he said then hastily, and gave each of them a grasp
of the hand. Dick could take care of himself; but the other two,
putting out their tender hands impulsively, grew red in the face
with pain at the grip of his iron fingers. The next instant his boat
shot out into the bay. They looked after him till he glanced back
and saluted them with a nod, and two arches of spray tossed from his
oars; then turned and climbed the shore, Dick assisting his mother,
Edith following.

"Good-by, trees!" said the child, glancing up. "Good-by, moss!"
stooping to gather a silken green flake and a cluster of red-topped
gray. The prettiest cup had a spider in it, and she would not disturb
it. "Good-by, spider!" she whispered, "I'm never coming back again."

She had friends to take leave of, after all--not human friends, but
God's little creatures, who had never hurt her save in self-defence.

When they reached the wharf, there was no one in sight but the men
who trundled the freight off and on. At the upper end of the wharf
there was a small building used as office and waiting-room. The
passage to the boat being obstructed, Dick sent his mother and Edith
there, while he went on board to get tickets. They went to the door
of the waiting-room, hesitated a moment on seeing it occupied, then
went in, and seated themselves in a retired corner.

The party who were already in possession glanced at the new-comers,
and immediately became oblivious of them. This party were evidently
the members of one family. Some indefinable resemblance, as well as
their air of intimacy, showed that. An elderly gentleman walked up
and down the floor, his hands clasped behind his back, and a lady not
much over forty sat near, surrounded by her three daughters. At a
window, to which the mother's back was turned, looking up toward the
village, stood a young man whose age could not be over twenty-three.
The ages of the daughters might vary from sixteen to twenty. They
formed rather a remarkable group, and were attractive, though the
faces of all expressed more or less dissatisfaction. That of the
young man indicated profound disgust. The elder lady had a sweet and
melancholy expression, and appeared like an invalid. The youngest
daughter, who sat beside her, was as like her mother as the waxing
moon is like the waning. She was pretty, had clinging, caressing
ways, a faint dimple in her left cheek, splendid auburn hair, and
gray eyes. They called her Hester. On the other hand sat the eldest
daughter, a rather stately, self-satisfied young woman, whose
attentions to her mother had an air of patronage. This was Melicent.
She was rather fair, neutral in color, and excessively near-sighted.
The second daughter stood behind her mother, and was very attentive
to her, but in an absent way, often doing more harm than good by her
assistance. "My dear Clara, you are bundling the shawl all about
my neck! My love, you pull my bonnet off in arranging my veil!
Why, Clara, what are you doing to my scarf?" Such remarks as these
were constantly being addressed to her. Clara was a dark brunette,
with small features, a superb but not tall figure, and large gray
eyes that looked black. Her coal-black hair grew rather low on the
forehead, straight black brows overshadowed her eyes and nearly met
over the nose, and an exquisitely delicate mouth gave softness to
this face which would otherwise have been severe. She seemed to be a
girl of immense but undisciplined energy, and full of enthusiasm.

The gentleman who paced the floor was slightly under-sized and thin
in figure, thin in face, too, dark, and sallow. The very look of him
suggested bile and sarcasm. But let him speak for himself, since
he is just now on this subject. "Bile, my dear," he said to his
wife--"bile came into the world with original sin. I am not sure that
bile is not sin. It is Marah in a pleasant land. It is a fountain of
gall in the garden of paradise. It poisons life. Doctors know nothing
whatever about bile, and liver-medicines are a superstition. He who
shall discover a way to eradicate bile from the system will be a
great moral reformer. Every sin I ever committed in my life took its
rise in my liver. I believe the liver to be an interpolation in the
original man. We should be better without it."

The gentleman who spoke had a wide, thin mouth, very much drawn down
at the corners and nowise hidden, the gray moustache he spared in
shaving being curled up at the ends. His manner was that of a person
who would scarcely brook contradiction. His speech was clear and
emphatic, and he pronounced his words as if he knew how they were
spelt. A long, delicate aquiline nose had a good deal to do with his
profile, as had also a pair of overhanging eyebrows. From beneath
these brows looked forth a pair of keen gray eyes, with countless
complex wrinkles about them. The chin was handsome, well-rounded,
and, fortunately, not projecting. A projecting chin with an aquiline
nose is one of the greatest of facial misfortunes. Caricature can do
no more. The forehead was intellectual, and weighty enough to make it
no wonder if the slight frame grew nervous and irritable in carrying
out the behests of the brain hidden there. The head was crowned by
a not inartistic confusion of gray hair which seemed to have been
stirred by electricity.

"I am sorry, madam, that I cannot compliment the climate of your
native state," he remarked after a pause. "The spring is a month or
six weeks behind that of Massachusetts, and the fall as much earlier.
The travelling here is simply intolerable. It is either clouds of
dust, bogs of mud, or drifts of snow. I quite agree with the person
who said that Maine is a good state to come _from_."

"We all know, Charles, that the climate of Massachusetts, and
particularly of Boston, surpasses that of any other part of the
world," the lady replied with great composure.

The gentleman winced very slightly. He was one of those who
constantly make sarcastic observations to others, but are peculiarly
sensitive when such are addressed to themselves. In his society, one
was frequently reminded of the little boy's complaint: "Mother, make
Tommy be still. He keeps crying every time I strike him on the head
with the hammer."

"Here will be a chance to practise your famous English walks,
Melicent," the father said. "I presume the old chaise is dissolved.
I remember it twenty years ago nodding along the road in the most
polite manner. By the way, Amy, did you ever observe that in genuine
country places people leave their defunct vehicles to decay by the
roadside? I am not sure that there is no poetry in the custom. The
weary wheels crumble to dust in view of the track over which they
have rolled in life, and are a _memento mori_ to living carriages. It
is not unlike the monument of Themistocles 'on the watery strand.'"

"Papa," exclaimed Hester, "why didn't you say tired wheels? You
started to."

"Because I detest a pun."

Melicent, who had been waiting for a chance, now spoke. "You don't
mean to say, papa, that we shall have no carriage?"

A shrug of the shoulders was the only reply.

The young woman's face wore a look of dismay. "But, papa!" she

"Wait till the pumpkins grow," he said with a mocking smile. "I will
give you the largest one, and your mother will furnish the mice. I
don't doubt there are mice, and to spare."

"You don't mean that we must walk everywhere?" his daughter cried.

"Dear me, Melicent, how persistent you are!" interrupted Clara
impatiently. "One would think there was no need of borrowing

The elder sister gazed with an air of superiority at the younger. "I
was speaking to papa," she remarked with dignity.

The father frowned, the mother raised a deprecating hand, and the
imminent retort was hushed. Clara went to her brother, and, leaning
on his arm, whispered that, if Mel were not her own sister, she
should really get to dislike her.

"How silent you are, Owen," said Hester, looking around at him. "All
you have done to entertain us so far has been to make faces when you
were sick. To be sure, that made us laugh."

"A sea-sick person may be the cause of wit in others, but is seldom
himself witty," was the laconic reply.

The speaker was a slim, elegant youth, with golden tints in his
light hair, with rather drooping and very bright blue eyes, and a
beautiful, sensuous mouth.

Edith Yorke watched this party with interest, and the longer she
looked at the elder gentleman the better she liked him. His manner of
addressing the ladies suited her inborn sense of what a gentleman's
manner should be. There was no contemptuous waiting before answering
them, no flinging the reply over his shoulder, nor growling it out
like a bear. Besides, she half-believed--only half, for her eyes were
heavy with weeping and loss of sleep--that he had looked kindly at
her. Once she was sure that he spoke of her to his wife, but she did
not know what he said. It was this: "My dear, do you observe that
child? She has an uncommon face."

The lady glanced across the room and nodded. She was too much
preoccupied to think of anything but their own affairs. But her
husband, on whom these affairs had the contrary effect of driving
him to seek distraction, approached Edith.

"Little girl," he said, "you remind me so much of some one I have
seen that I would like to know your name, if you please to tell it."

"My name is Edith Eugénie Yorke," she replied, with perfect

He had bent slightly toward her in speaking, but at sound of the name
he stood suddenly upright, his sallow face turned very red, and he
looked at her with a gaze so piercing that she shrank from it. "Who
were your father and mother?" he demanded.

"My mother was Eugénie Lubormirski, a Polish exile, and my father
was Mr. Robert Yorke, of Boston," said Edith. Her eyes were fixed
intently on the gentleman's face, and her heart began to beat quickly.

He turned away from her and resumed his walk, but, after a minute,
came back again. "Your father and mother are both dead?" he asked in
a gentler tone.

"Yes, sir."

"You have no brothers nor sisters?"

"No, sir."

"Who takes care of you?"

"Mrs. Jane Rowan," Edith replied, laying her hand on the widow's lap.

He bowed, taking this for an introduction, a cold but courteous bow.

"May I ask, madam," he inquired, "what claim you have on this child?"

Mrs. Rowan had shown some agitation while this conversation was going
on, and when Edith put out her hand, she grasped it as if meaning
to hold on to the child. Her reply was made in a somewhat defiant
tone. "When Mrs. Robert Yorke died, she asked me to have pity on her
daughter, and keep her out of the poor-house. I have taken care of
her ever since. The Yorkes had turned them off."

The gentleman drew himself up, and put out his under lip. "Thank you
for the information," he said bitterly. Then to Edith, "Come, child,"
and took her hand.

She allowed him to lead her across the room to his wife.

"Mrs. Yorke," he said, "this is my brother Robert's orphan child!"

There was a slight sensation and a momentary pause; but the lady
recovered immediately. "I am glad to see you, dear," she said in a
kind voice. "Who is that person?" she added to her husband, glancing
at Mrs. Rowan.

The widow was staring at them angrily, and seemed on the point of
coming to take Edith away by force.

"One who has taken care of the child since her mother's death, Amy,"
he answered. "She has no claim on my niece, and will, of course, give
her up to us. The little girl is named for my mother. Robert was
always fond of mother."

There was a pause of embarrassed silence.

"You must perceive that there is no other way," Mr. Yorke continued
with some state. "Aside from natural affection and pity for the
child's friendless condition, an Edith Yorke must not be allowed to
go about the country like a Gypsy with a shawl over her head."

"It is just as papa says," Melicent interposed, and immediately took
Edith by the hand and kissed her cheek. "You are my little cousin,
and you will go home and live with us," she said sweetly.

Miss Yorke's manner was very conciliating; but her suavity proceeded
less from real sweetness than from self-complacency. She prided
herself on knowing and always doing what was _comme il faut_, and
took great pleasure in being the mould of form.

"I shall go with Dick! I am going to live with Dick!" Edith cried,
snatching her hand away. A blush of alarm overspread her face, and
she looked round in search of her protector. At that moment he
appeared in the door, paused in surprise at seeing where Edith was,
then went to his mother.

"The Yorkes have got her," Mrs. Rowan said to him, breathless with
excitement. "That is Mr. Charles Yorke. I knew him the moment I set
eyes on him."

Dick wheeled about and faced them. Edith, too proud to run away,
looked at him imploringly.

Then Miss Melicent Yorke arose, like the goddess of peace, adjusted
her most impregnable smile, and sailed across the room. "I am Miss
Yorke," she said brightly, as though such an announcement would be
sure to delight them. "Of course, the dear little Edith is my cousin.
Is it not the strangest thing in the world that we should have met in
such a way? I am sure we shall all feel deeply indebted to you for
having protected the child while we knew nothing of her necessities.
Of course, we should have sent for her directly if we had known. But,
as it is, we have the pleasure of meeting you."

Pausing, Miss Yorke looked at the two as if they were the dearest
friends she had on earth and it gave her heartfelt joy to behold
their countenances.

Dick choked with the words he would have uttered. He felt keenly the
insolence of her perfectly confident and smiling address, yet knew
not how to defend himself. If a man had been in her place, he could
have met his airy assumption with a sufficiently blunt rebuff; but
the young sailor was chivalric, and could not look a woman in the
face and utter rude words. His mother's emotion did not prevent her
replying, and, fortunately, to the point.

"Do you mean to say," Mrs. Rowan exclaimed, "that you are going to
take Edith away from us without leave or license, after we have
supported her four years without your troubling yourselves whether
she starved in the street or not?"

For a moment, Miss Yorke's social poniard wavered before this broad
thrust, but only for a moment. "Every family has its own private
affairs, which no one else has either the power or the right to
decide upon," she said smilingly. "All I need say of ours is that,
if Mr. Yorke, my father, had known that his brother left a child
unprovided for, he would have adopted her without delay. He did not
know it till this minute, and his first thought is that there is
only one proper course for him. His niece must be under his care,
as her natural protector, and must have the advantages of education
and society to which she is entitled. I am sure you would both be
friendly enough to her to wish her to occupy her rightful position.
As for any expense you may have gone to on her account, papa--"

"Stop there, madam!" Dick interrupted haughtily. "We will say no
more about that, if you please. As to Edith's going with you, she
shall choose for herself. I don't deny that it seems to be the proper
thing; but allow me to say that it was my intention to give her a
good home and a good education, such as no girl need be ashamed of. I
will speak to Edith, and see what she thinks about it."

He turned unceremoniously away from Miss Yorke's protestations, and
went to the door, beckoning Edith to follow him. As he looked back,
waiting for her, he saw that the whole family had gone over in a body
to talk to his mother.

Edith clasped the hand he held out to her, and looked up into his
face with large tears flashing in her eyes.

"I wouldn't leave you if they would give me all the world!" she

He smiled involuntarily, but would not take advantage of her
affectionate impulse. He saw clearly that her true place was with
her relatives. They could do for her at once what he could do only
after years of weary labor. Perhaps they could do at once what he
could never do. But it was hard to give her up. Down in the bottom
of his heart was a thought which he had never fully acknowledged the
presence of, but of which he was always conscious: he had meant to
bring the child up to be his wife some day, if she should be willing;
to load her with benefits; to be the one to whom she should owe
everything. But with the pang it cost him to put this hope in peril
came the glimpse of a possibility how far more triumphant! Following
his own plan, he should be hedging her in; giving her up now would
be making her free choice, if it should fall on him, an infinitely
greater boon. Besides, and above all, it was right that she should go.

Dick leaned back against the wall of the building, and folded his
arms while he talked to her. At first Edith broke into reproaches
when she learned that he meant to give her up, but immediately an
instinct of feminine pride and delicacy checked the words upon her
lips. It was impossible for her to press her society on one who
voluntarily relinquished it. She listened to her sentence in silence.

"So you see, Edith," he concluded, "we must make up our minds to

She perceived no such necessity, but did not tell him so. "Then I
shall never see you any more!" she said in a whisper, without looking

Dick's eyes sparkled with resolution through the tears that filled
them. "Yes, you will!" he exclaimed. "I mean to do the best I can for
mother and myself, and you shall not be ashamed of us. And however
high they may set you, Edith, I'll climb! I'll climb! I won't be so
far off but I can reach you!"

The coach had taken its first load of passengers to the village, and
now came down to bring those who were to take the steamer and carry
the Yorkes back. It was time to go on board. Dick stepped to the door
of the waiting-room. "Come, mother!" he said. "Edith and I will see
you to your state-room, and then I will bring her back. She is to go
with her uncle."

He was not surprised to see that his mother had been completely
talked over by Edith's relations, and that, though tearful, no
opposition was to be expected from her. They seemed to be the best
of friends; and when the widow rose to take leave of them, Mr.
Yorke himself escorted her to the boat. In fact, it was all very
comfortably settled, as Miss Yorke observed to her mother when they
had taken their seats in the coach.

When Edith and Dick appeared again, hand in hand, Mr. Yorke stood at
the coach-door, waiting to assist his niece to her place.

"How picturesque!" Clara Yorke exclaimed, as the two stepped over
the planks and came toward them. "It is like something out of the
_Arabian Nights_. He is Sindbad, and she is one of those princesses
who were always getting into such ridiculous situations and
difficulties. The child is absurd, of course, but she is lovely; and
the young man is really very fine--of his kind."

Sindbad and his princess were both very pale. "Sir," the sailor said,
presenting the child to her uncle, "I hope she will be as happy with
you as I and my mother would have tried to make her."

As he released her hand, Edith's face suddenly whitened. All her
little world was slipping away from beneath her feet.

Mr. Yorke was touched and impressed. He liked the young man's
dignity. "I must compliment you, sir, on your honorable conduct in
this affair," he said. "Let us hear from you; and come to see us
whenever you are in our neighborhood."

Dick Rowan, in his turn, would have been touched by this unexpected
cordiality, had not a slight raising of Miss Melicent Yorke's
eyebrows neutralized its effect. The young woman thought that
her father was really condescending unnecessarily. That faint,
supercilious surprise checked the young man's gratitude, and he was
turning away with a cold word of thanks, when Mrs. Yorke called him
back. She was leaning from the carriage, and held out her hand to him.

"Good-by, Mr. Rowan!" she said aloud. "You need not fear that we
shall not cherish this orphan whom you have kindly protected so
far, and you need not fear that we shall try to make her forget
you. Ingratitude is the vice of slaves. I am sure she will never be
ungrateful to you."

"Thank you!" Dick said fervently, melted by the kind smile and
tremulous sweetness of tone. It was none of Miss Melicent's
exasperating affability.

"And I have a favor to ask," she added, leaning still further out,
and lowering her voice so that only he could hear. "I take for
granted that you will write to my niece. Will you allow her to let me
read your letters?"

Dick blushed deeply as he stammered out another "Thank you!" It was a
delicately given warning and kindly given permission. It showed him,
moreover, that the lady's soft eyes had looked to the bottom of his
heart. At that moment he was glad that the ring on Edith's finger was
Captain Cary's gift, not his.

"I would like to see the steamboat just as long as it is in sight,"
Edith said faintly.

Her uncle immediately gave orders to the driver to take them round to
a place from which they could look down to the entrance of the bay.

The boat steamed out over the water, glided like a swan down the bay,
and soon disappeared around a curve that led to the Narrows. Edith
gazed immovably after it, unconscious that they were all watching
her. When it was no longer visible, she closed her eyes, and sank
back into Mrs. Yorke's arms.



Mrs. Charles Yorke was a native of Seaton; her maiden name, Arnold.
Her mother had died while Amy was quite young, and in a few years the
father married again. This marriage was an unfortunate one for the
family; and not only the daughter but many of Mr. Arnold's friends
had tried to dissuade him from it. Their chief argument was not that
the person whom he proposed to marry was a vulgar woman whom his lost
wife would not have received as an acquaintance, but that she was in
every way unworthy of him, and would be a discreditable connection.
They met the fate which usually awaits such interference. Truth
itself never appears so true as varnished falsehood does. Mr. Arnold
was flattered and duped; and the end of the affair was that Amy had
the misery of seeing his deceiver walk triumphantly into her mother's
sacred place. Nor was this all. In a moment of weakness, the father
betrayed to his new wife the efforts that had been made to separate
them, and she half-guessed, half-drew from him every name. From that
moment her instinctive jealous dislike of her step-daughter was
turned to hatred.

Had the young girl been wise, she would have known that her
only proper course was to withdraw from the field; but she was
inexperienced and passionate, and had no better adviser than her
own heart. Had she been a Catholic, she could have found in the
confessional the confidant and counsel she needed; but she was not.
In Seaton there were no Catholics above the class of servants and
day-laborers. She was left, therefore, completely to herself, and
in the power of an unscrupulous and subtle tormentor. Miserable,
indignant, and desperate, the young girl descended to the contest,
and at every step she was defeated. She called on her father for
protection; but he saw nothing of her trials, or was made to believe
that she had herself provoked them. It was the old story of adroit
deceit arrayed against impolitic sincerity. But, happily, the
contest was not of long duration.

Amy was not a person to remain in a position so false and degrading.
There came a time when, quite as much to her own surprise as to
theirs, she had nothing more to say. But their surprise was that she
contended no longer, hers that she had contended so long. The way was
clear before her, and her plans were soon made. Her father had an
unmarried cousin living in Boston, and this lady consented to receive
her. Only on the day preceding her departure did she announce her
intentions. The sufferings she had undergone were a sufficient excuse
for her abruptness. She had become too much weakened and excited to
bear any controversy upon the subject. Besides, the parting from
her father, if prolonged, would have been unbearable. She must tear
herself away.

He sat a moment with downcast eyes after she had communicated to him
her design. His face expressed emotion. He seemed both pained and
embarrassed, and quite at a loss what to say. In fact, his wife had
proposed this very plan, and was anxious that Amy should go, and he
had entertained the project. Therefore he could not express surprise.
For the first time, perhaps, a feeling of shame overcame him. He was
obliged to deceive! His pride, revolting at that shame, made him
impatient. Unwilling to acknowledge himself in the wrong, he wished
to appear injured.

"If you mean to deprive me of my only child, and would rather live
with strangers than with your own father, I will not oppose you," he
said. "But I think you might have shown some confidence in me, and
told me your wishes before."

Amy's impulse had been, at the first sight of his emotion, to throw
herself into his arms, and forgive him everything, or take upon
herself all the blame. But at these words she recoiled. Her silence
was better than any answer could have been.

"I don't blame you, child," her father resumed, blushing for the
evasion he had practised. "It would be cruel of me to wish you to
stay in a home where you cannot live in peace. I am grieved, Amy, but
I can do nothing. What can a man do between women who disagree?"

"Find out which is wrong!" was the answer that rose to her lips, but
she suppressed it. She had already exhausted words to him. She had
poured out her pain, her love, her entreaties, and they had been to
him as the idle wind. She had been wronged and insulted, and he would
not see it. She turned away with a feeling of despair.

"At least, let us part as a father and daughter should," he said in a
trembling voice.

She held out one hand to him, and with the other covered her face,
unable to utter a word; then broke away, and shut herself into her
chamber. There are times when entire reparation only is tolerable,
and we demand full justice, or none.

So they parted, and never met again, though they corresponded
regularly, and wrote kind if not confidential letters. The only
sign the daughter ever had of any change of opinion in her father
regarding the cause of their separation was when he requested her to
send her letters to his office and not to the house. After that they
both wrote more freely.

In her new home, Amy did not find all sunshine. Miss Clinton was
old and notional, and had too great a fondness for thinking for
others as well as herself. Consequently, when the young lady favored
the addresses of a poor artist who had been employed to paint her
portrait, there was an explosion. With her father's consent, Amy
married Carl Owen, and her cousin discarded her. There was one year
of happiness; then the young husband died, and left his wife with an
infant son.

In her trouble, Mrs. Owen made the acquaintance of Mrs. Edith Yorke,
who became to her a helpful friend; and in little more than a year
she married that lady's eldest son, Charles. From that moment her
happiness was assured. She found herself surrounded by thoroughly
congenial society, and blest with the companionship of one who was
to her father, husband, and brother, all she had ever lost or longed
for. Mr. Yorke adopted her son as his own, and, so far from showing
any jealousy of his predecessor, was the one to propose that the boy
should retain his own father's name in addition to the one he adopted.

As daughters grew up around them, he appeared to forget that Carl was
not his own son, at least so far as pride in him went. Probably he
showed more fondness for his girls.

Mr. Arnold died shortly after his daughter's second marriage, and his
wife followed him in a few years. By their death Mrs. Yorke became
the owner of her old home. But she had no desire to revisit the scene
of so much misery, and for years the house was left untenanted in the
care of a keeper. Nor would they ever have gone there, probably, but
for pecuniary losses which made them glad of any refuge.

Mr. Charles Yorke appreciated the value of money, and knew admirably
well how to spend it; but the acuteness which can foresee and make
bargains, and the unscrupulousness which is so often necessary to
insure their success, he had not. Consequently, when in an evil hour
he embarked his inherited wealth in speculation, it was nearly all
swept away.

Creditors, knowing his probity, offered to wait.

"Why should I wait?" he asked. "Will my debts contract as the cold
weather comes on? I prefer an immediate settlement."

Not displeased at his refusal to profit by their generosity, they
hinted at a willingness to take a percentage on their claims.

"A percentage!" cried the debtor. "Am I a swindler? Am I a beggar?
I shall pay a hundred per cent., and I recommend you in your future
dealings with me to bear in mind that I am a gentleman and not an

A very old-fashioned man was Mr. Charles Yorke, and a very hard man
to pity.

Behold him, then, and his family _en route_ for their new home.

We have said that the two principal streets of the town of Seaton
crossed each other at right angles, one running north and south along
the river, the other running east and west across the river. These
roads carried themselves very straightly before folks, but once out
of town, forgot their company manners, and meandered as they chose,
splintered into side-tracks, and wandered off in vagabond ways. But
the south road, that passed by the Rowans', was the only one that
came to nothing. The other three persisted till they each found a
village or a city, twenty-five miles or so away. Half a mile from
the village centre, on North Street, a very respectable-looking
road started off eastward, ran across a field, and plunged into
the forest that swept down over a long smooth rise from far-away
regions of wildness. Following this road half a mile, one saw at the
left a tumble-down stone wall across an opening, with two gates,
painted black in imitation of iron, about fifteen rods apart. A
little further on, it became visible that an avenue went from gate
to gate, enclosing a deep half-circle of lawn, on which grew several
fair enough elms and a really fine maple. After such preliminaries
you expect a house; and there it is at the head of the avenue, a
widespread building, with a cupola in the centre, a portico in front,
and a wing at either side. It is elevated on a deep terrace, and
has a background of woods, and woods at either hand, only a little

To be consistent, this house should be of stone, or, at least, of
brick; but it is neither. Still, it would not be right to call it a
"shingle palace;" for its frame is a massive network of solid oaken
beams, and it is strong enough to bear unmoved a shock that would
set nine out of every ten modern city structures rattling down into
their cellars. When Mrs. Yorke's grandfather built this house, in the
year 1800, English ideas and feelings still prevailed in that region;
and in building a house, a gentleman thought of his grandchildren,
who might live in it. Now nobody builds with any reference to his

But Mr. Arnold's plans had proved larger than his purse. The park
he meant to have had still remained three hundred acres of wild,
unfenced land, the gardens never got beyond a few flowers, now choked
with weeds, and the kitchen-garden, kept alive by Patrick Chester,
Mrs. Yorke's keeper. As for the orchard, it never saw the light. Mrs.
Yorke's father had done the place one good turn, for he had planted
vines everywhere. Their graceful banners, in summer-time, draped the
portico, the corners of the house, the dead oak-tree by the western
wing, and swept here and there over rock, fence, or stump.

Back of the house, toward the right, was a huge barn and a granary;
the eaves of both under-hung with a solid row of swallows' nests. On
this bright April morning, the whole air was full of the twirl and
twitter of these birds, and with the blue glancing of their wings
some invisible crystalline ring seemed to have been let down from
the heavens over and around the house, and they followed its outline
in their flight. But the homely, bread-and-butter robins had no such
mystical ways. They flew or hopped straight where they wanted to go,
and what they wanted to get was plainly something to eat. One of them
alighted on the threshold of the open front-door and looked curiously
in. He saw a long hall, with a staircase on one side, and open doors
to right and left and at the furthest end. All the wood-work, walls,
and ceilings in sight were dingy, and rats and mice had assisted
time in gnawing away; but the furniture was bright, and three fires
visible through the three open doors were brighter still. Redbreast
seemed to be much interested in these fires. Probably he was a bird
from the city, and had never seen such large ones. Those in the
front rooms were large enough, but that in the kitchen was something
immense, and yet left room at one side of the fireplace for a person
to sit and look up chimney, if so disposed.

"_Bon!_" says the bird, with a nod, hopping in, "the kitchen is the
place to go to. As to those flowers and cherries on the floor, I am
not to be cheated by them. They are not good to eat, but only to walk
on. I am a bird of culture and society. I know how people live. I am
not like that stupid chicken."

For a little yellow chicken, without a sign of tail, had followed the
robin in, and was eagerly pecking at the spots in the carpet.

The bird of culture hopped along to the door at the back of the hail,
and paused again to reconnoitre. Here a long, narrow corridor ran
across, with doors opening into the front rooms, and one into the
kitchen, and a second stairway at one end. Three more hops brought
the bird to the threshold of the kitchen-door, where a third pause
occurred, this one not without trepidation; for here in the great
kitchen a woman stood at a table with a pan of potatoes before her.
She had washed them, and was now engaged in partially paring them
and cutting out any suspicious spots that might be visible on the
surfaces. "It takes me to make new potatoes out of old ones!" she
said to herself with an air of satisfaction, tossing the potato in in
her hand into a pan of cold water.

This woman was large-framed and tall, and over forty years of age.
She had a homely, sensible, pleasant, quick-tempered face, and the
base of her nose was an hypothenuse. Her dark hair was drawn back and
made into a smooth French twist, with a shell comb stuck in the top
a little askew. It is hard to fasten one of those twists with the
comb quite even, if it has much top to it. This comb had much top.
The woman's face shone with washing; she wore a straightly-fitting
calico gown and a white linen collar. The gown was newly done up and
a little too stiff, and to keep it from soil she had doubled the
skirt up in front and pinned it behind, and tied on a large apron.
For further safeguard, the sleeves were turned up and pinned to the
shoulder by the waistbands. At every movement she made these stiff
clothes rattled.

This woman was Miss Betsey Bates. She had lived at Mr. Arnold's when
Miss Amy was a young girl, had left when she left, and was now come
back to live with her again.

"Just let your water bile," Betsey began, addressing an imaginary
audience--"let your water bile, and throw in a handful of salt; then
wash your potatoes clean; peel 'em all but a strip or two to hold
together; cut out the spots, and let 'em lay awhile in cold water;
when it's time to cook 'em, throw 'em into your biling water, and
clap on your lid; then--"

Betsey stopped suddenly and looked over her shoulder to listen, but,
hearing no carriage-wheels nor human steps, resumed her occupation.
She did not perceive the two little bipeds on the threshold of the
door, where they were listening to her soliloquy with great interest,
though it was the chicken's steps that had attracted her attention.
That silly creature, dissatisfied with his worsted banquet, had
hopped along to the robin's side, where he now stood with a hungry
crop, round eyes, and two or three colored threads sticking to his

Betsey's thoughts took a new turn. "I must go and see to the fires,
and put a good beach chunk on each one. There's a little chill in the
air, and everybody wants a fire after a journey. It looks cheerful.
I've got six fires going in this house. What do you think of that? To
my idea, an open fire in a strange house is equal to a first cousin,
sometimes better."

Here a step sounded outside the open window behind the table, and
Pat Chester appeared, a stout, fine-looking, red-faced man, with
mischievous eyes and an honest mouth. Curiously enough, the base of
his nose also was an hypothenuse. Otherwise there was no resemblance
between the two. Betsey used to say to him, "Pat, the ends of our
noses were sawed off the wrong way."

"Who are you talking to?" asked Pat, stopping to look in and laugh.

"Your betters," was the retort.

"I don't envy 'em," said Pat, and went on about his business.

"And I must see to them clocks again," pursued Betsey. "The idea of
having a clock in every room in the house! It takes me half of my
time to set 'em forward and back. As to touching the pendulums of
such clocks as them, you don't catch me. But I do abominate to see
one mantelpiece a quarter past and another quarter of at the same

Here a little peck on the floor arrested Betsey's attention, and,
stretching her neck, she saw the chicken, and instantly flew at it
with a loud "shoo!" With its two bits of wings extended and its head
advanced as far as possible, the little wretch fled through the hall,
peeping with terror. But the robin flew up and escaped over Betsey's
head. "Laud sakes!" she cried, holding on to her comb and her eyes,
"who ever saw a chicken fly up like that?"

Wondering over this phenomenon, Betsey went up-stairs and replenished
the fires in three chambers, and set some of the clocks forward and
others back, then hurried down to perform the same duties below
stairs. Just as she set the last hour-hand carefully at nine o'clock,
Pat put his head in at the dining-room window. "It's time for 'em to
be here," he said, "and I'm going down to the gate to watch. I'll
give a whistle the minute they come in sight."

Immersed in her own thoughts, Betsey had jumped violently at sound
of his voice. "I do believe you're possessed to go round poking your
head in at windows, and scaring people out of their wits!" she cried,
with a frightened laugh. "Here I came within an ace of upsetting
this clock or going into the fire."

Pat laughed back--he and Betsey were always scolding and always
laughing at each other--muttered something about skittish women, and
walked off down the avenue to watch for the family.

"I believe everything is ready," Betsey said, looking round. She took
off her apron, took down her skirt and sleeves, and gave herself
a general crackling smoothing over. Then suddenly she assumed an
amiable smile, looked straight before her, dropped a short courtesy,
and said, "How do you do, Mrs. Yorke? I hope I see you well. How do
you do, sir? How do you do, miss? I wonder if I had better go out
to the door when they come, or stand in the entry, or stay in the
kitchen. I declare to man I don't know what to do! How do you do,
ma'am?" beginning her practising again, this time before the glass.
"I hope I see you well. To think of my not being married at all, and
her having grown-up children!" she said, staring through the window.
"The last time I saw her, she was a pretty creature, as pale as a
snow-drop. Poor thing! she had a hard time of it with that Jezebel.
She never said anything to me, nor I to her; but many a time she has
come to me when that woman has been up to her tricks, and held on to
me, and gasped for breath. 'O my heart! my heart!' she'd say. 'Don't
speak to me, Betsey, but hold me a minute!' It was awful to see her
white face, and to feel her heart jump as if it would tear itself
out. That was the way trouble always took hold of her."

She mused a moment longer, then broke off suddenly, and began anew
her practice. "How do you do, ma'am? I hope I see you well."

Presently a loud, shrill whistle interrupted her. Betsey rushed
excitedly into the kitchen, dashed her potatoes into the kettle,
tied on a clean apron that stood out like cast-iron with starch, and
hovered in the rear of the hall, to be ready for advance or retreat,
as occasion might demand.

The old yellow coach came through the gate, up the muddy avenue,
and drew up at the steps. The two gentlemen got out first, then the
young ladies, and all stood around while Mrs. Yorke slowly alighted.
She was very pale, but smiled kindly on them, then took her son's
arm, and went up the steps. Mr. Yorke stopped to offer his hand to
a little girl who still remained in the coach. "My sakes!" muttered
Betsey. "If it isn't that Rowan young one!"

"Mother dear," said the son, "it is possible to make a very beautiful
place of this."

She looked at him with a brightening smile. "You think so, Carl?"
She had been anxiously watching what impression the sight of her old
home would make on her family, and exaggerating its defects in her
own imagination, as she fancied they were doing in theirs. Their
silence so far had given her a pang, since she interpreted it to mean
disappointment, when in truth it had meant solicitude for her. They
thought that she would be agitated on coming again to her childhood's
home after so long an absence. So she was; but her own peculiar
memories gave precedence to that which concerned those dearest to her.

"Besides, mother," Owen continued, "this spot has a charm for me
which no other could have, however beautiful: it is _yours_."

That word conveyed the first intimation Mrs. Yorke had ever received
that her son felt his dependence on a stepfather. But the pain the
knowledge caused her was instantly banished by the recollection that
the cause of his uneasiness was now removed.

"My great-grandfather had ideas, though he did not carry them out,"
remarked Melicent. "If he had built his house of stone, it would have
done very well. It is astonishing that he did not. But the earlier
settlers in this country seemed to revel in wood, probably because it
had been to them in the Old World a luxury. With heaps of stones at
hand, they would persist in building their houses of logs."

At this point Betsey rushed out to welcome Mrs. Yorke. The sight of
that pale face which seemed to be looking for her, and the slight,
clinging form that used to cling to her, quite overcame her shyness.

"You dear creature, how glad I am to see you once more!" she cried
out. And, seizing the lady by the shoulders, gave her a resounding
kiss on the cheek.

"Please do not touch Mrs. Yorke's left arm. It gives her
palpitation," said the son rather stiffly.

Young Mr. Owen had an invincible repugnance to personal
familiarities, especially from inferiors.

"Dear Betsey, this is my son," the mother said proudly, looking at
her manly young escort, as if to see him anew with a stranger's
admiring eyes. "Carl has heard me speak of you many a time, my old

Betsey immediately dropped a solemn courtesy. "I hope I see you well,
sir!" she said, remembering her manners.

"This must be Betsey Bates!" cried Miss Melicent, coming forward with
great cordiality. "Mamma has spoken of you so often I knew you at

Miss Yorke did not say that she recognized Betsey by her nose,
though that was the fact. The impression left on the woman's mind
was of something highly complimentary, that some air expressive of
honesty, faithfulness, and affection, or some subtile personal grace
not universally acknowledged, had led to the recognition.

On the threshold of the door, Mrs. Yorke turned to receive her
husband. She could not utter a word; but her face expressed what she
would have said. In her look could be read that she placed in his
hands all that was hers, regretting only that the gift was so small.

One saw then, too, that Mr. Yorke's sarcastic face was capable of
great tenderness. As he met that mute welcome, a look of indulgent
kindness softened his keen eyes, gave his scornful mouth a new shape,
and lighted up his whole countenance. But he knew better than allow
his wife to yield to any excitement of feeling.

"Yes, Amy!" he said cheerfully, "I think we shall make a very
pleasant home here. Now come in and rest."

They went into the sitting-room at the left of the hall, and Mrs.
Yorke was seated in an arm-chair there between the fire and the
sunshine, and they all waited on her. Hester, kneeling by her mother,
removed her gloves and overshoes, Clara took off her bonnet and
shawl, and Melicent, after whispering a word to Betsey, went out with
that factotum, and presently returned bearing a tin cup of coffee on
which a froth of cream still floated.

"I've taken a cup, mamma," she said, "and I can recommend it. And
breakfast will be ready in two minutes."

Owen Yorke, missing one of the company, went out, and found Edith
standing forlorn in the portico, biting her quivering lips, and
struggling to restrain the tears that threatened to overflow her
eyes. For the first time in her life the child felt timid and
disconcerted. She was among her own people, and they had forgotten
her. At that moment she longed passionately for Dick Rowan, and would
have flown to him had it been possible.

"Come, little Gypsy!" he said. "You're not going to run away, I hope?
Did you think we had forgotten you? See! I have not."

Owen Yorke's face was very winning when he chose, and his voice
could express a good deal of kindness. Edith looked at him steadily
a moment, then took the hand he offered, and went into the house
with him. As they entered, Mrs. Yorke rose to give the child an
affectionate welcome to her new home, and the daughters gathered
about her with those bright, profuse words which are so pleasant even
when they mean so little.

A folding-door opened from the sitting-room into the dining-room,
which occupied the front half of the west wing, and here a breakfast
was set out that dismayed the eyes of those who were expected to
partake of it. There was a fricassee which had cost the lives of
three hens of family, and occasioned a serious squabble between Pat
and Betsey; there was a vast platter of ham and eggs, and a pyramid
of potatoes piled so high that the first time it was touched one
rolled off on to the cloth. Poor Betsey had no conception of the
Yorke ideal of a proper breakfast.

"The good creature has such a generous heart!" Mrs. Yorke said,
checking with a glance the titter which her two younger daughters had
not tried to restrain. "And I am sure that everything is delicious."

Taking a seat at the table, Edith recollected that a trial awaited
her. It was Friday; and abstinence from meat on that day was the
one point in her mother's religion which she knew and practised.
Otherwise she was as ignorant of it as possible.

Owen Yorke, sitting opposite, watched her curiously, perceiving
that something was the matter. He noticed the slight bracing of the
muscles of her face and neck, and that she drew her breath in like
one who is preparing for a plunge, and kept her eyes steadily fixed
on Mr. Yorke. Edith's way was to look at what she feared.

"Some of the chicken, little niece?" her uncle asked pleasantly.

"No, sir, I do not eat meat on Friday. I am a Roman Catholic," the
child answered with precision. And, having made the announcement
thus fully, shut her mouth, and sat pale, with her eyes fixed on Mr.
Yorke's face.

A smile flashed into Owen Yorke's eyes at this reply. "Little
Spartan!" he thought.

Edith did not miss the slight contraction of the brows and the
downward twitch of the corners of the mouth in the face she watched;
but the signs of displeasure passed as quickly as they came. "Then
I am afraid you will make a poor breakfast," Mr. Yorke said gently.
"But I will do the best I can for you."

There was a momentary silence; then the talk went on as before. But
the family were deeply annoyed. It seemed enough that they should
have to take this little waif, with they knew not what low habits
and associates, or what unruly fires of temper inherited from her
mother, without having an alien religion brought into their midst.
Catholicism as they had seen it abroad appealed to their æsthetic
sense. It floated there in a higher atmosphere, adorned with all
that wealth and culture could do. But at home they preferred to keep
it where, as a rule, they found it--in the kitchen and the stable.

After they had returned to the sitting-room, Mr. Yorke called Edith
to him. She went trembling; for, in spite of himself, her uncle's
face wore a judicial look. The girls, who were just going up-stairs,
lingered to hear what would be said, and Owen took his stand behind
Mr. Yorke's chair, and looked at the child with an encouraging smile.

"Were the family you lived with Catholics, my dear?" the judge began.

"No, sir. Only Mr. Rowan was when he was a little boy."

"And Mr. Rowan wished to make a Catholic of you?" Mr. Yorke said, his
lip beginning to curl.

The child lifted her head. "Mr. Rowan had nothing to say about me,"
she replied. "It was my mother."

A slight smile went round the circle. They quite approved of her

"But you cannot recollect your mother?" Mr. Yorke continued.

"Oh! yes," Edith said with animation. "I remember how she looked, and
what she said. She made me hold up my hands, and promise that I would
be a Roman Catholic if I had to die for it. And that was the last
word she ever said."

Mr. Yorke gave a short nod. To his mind the matter was settled.
"_N'est ce pas?_" he said to his wife.

She bowed gravely. "There is no other way. It is impossible to ask
her to break a promise so given. When she is older, she can choose
for herself."

"Well, you hear, girls?" Mr. Yorke said, looking at his daughters.
"Now take her, and make her feel at home."

Miss Yorke was dignified and inscrutable, Hester unmistakably cold,
but Clara took her cousin's hand with the utmost cordiality, and
was leading her from the room, when Edith stopped short, her eyes
attracted by a cabinet portrait in oils that stood on a shelf near
the door. This portrait represented a young man, with one of those
ugly, beautiful faces which fascinate us, we know not why. Careless,
profuse locks of golden brown clustered around his head, steady,
agate-colored eyes followed the beholder wherever he went, and seemed
at once defying him to escape and entreating him not to go, and the
sunshine of a hidden smile softened the curves of the mouth and chin.

Edith's eyes sparkled, her face grew crimson, and she clasped her
hands tightly on her breast.

"That is your father's portrait, my dear," Mrs. Yorke said, going to
her. "Do you recognize it?"

The child restrained herself one moment, then she ran to the picture,
clasped her arms around it, and kissed it over and over, weeping
passionately. "It is mine! It is mine!" she cried out, when her aunt
tried to soothe her.

"You are right, dear!" Mrs. Yorke said, much affected. "I am sure no
one will object to your having the portrait. You may take it to your
own chamber, if you wish."

Edith controlled herself, wiped her eyes, and put the picture down.
"Dear Aunt Amy," she said, "you know I want it; but I won't take it
unless you and Uncle Charles are quite willing."

It was touching, her first acknowledgment of kinship, and expression
of trust and submission. They cordially assured her of their
willingness, kissed her again in token of a closer adoption, and
smiled after her as she went off with her father's portrait clasped
to her heart.

Melicent and Hester still lingered. Melicent remembered faintly her
Uncle Robert's marriage, and the disagreeable feeling in the family
at that time. It had left on her mind a prejudice against "that
Polish girl," and a shade of disfavor toward her daughter. But she
said nothing.

"It will be so disagreeable having a Catholic in the family!" Hester

"Hester, listen to me!" her father said severely. "I want no bigotry
nor petty persecutions in my family. Your Cousin Edith has as good
a right to her religion as you have to yours; and if either should
find herself disagreeably situated, it is she, for she is alone.
Don't forget this; and don't let there be anything offensive said, or
hinted, or looked. I mean to be consistent, and allow others the same
freedom which I claim myself. Now, let me hear no more of this."

Hester took refuge in tears. It was her sole argument. She was one
of those soft creatures who require to be petted, and have a talent
for being abused. Possibly, too, she was a little jealous of this new
member of the family.

"Melicent, will you lead away this weeping nymph, and dry her tears?"
the father said impatiently. "Common sense is too robust for her

The sisters went up-stairs, and Owen followed them presently, and
climbed to the cupola. Leaning on the window-sill there, he looked
off over the country. The horizon was a ring of low blue hills, with
a grand amethyst glittering to tell where the sea lay. Through the
centre of this vast circle glimmered the river, silver, and gold,
and steel-blue, and the white houses of the town lay like a heap of
lilies scattered on its banks. Everywhere else was forest.

Shadows of varying thought swept over the young man's face as he
looked off, and drew freer breath from the distance. "Henceforth my
shield must bear a martlet," he muttered. "But whither shall I fly?"

That was the problem he was studying. He had come to this place only
to see his family settled, and collect his own thoughts after their
sudden fall from prosperity; then he would go out into the world,
and work his own way. It was not pleasant, the change from that life
of noble leisure and lofty work which he had planned, to one where
compulsory labor for mere bread must occupy the greater part of
his time; but it was inevitable. And as he looked abroad now, and
breathed the fresh air that came frolicking out of the northwest,
and remembered how wide the world is and how many veins in it are
unwrought, his young courage rose, and the plans he had been building
up for that year crumbled and ceased to excite his regret.

Only a few months before their change of circumstances, his mother
had been won to consent that he might visit Asia. He had meant to go
north, south, east, and west, in that shabby, glorious old land, make
himself for the nonce Tartar, Chinese, Indian, Persian, what not, and
get a look at creation through the eyes of each. This young man's
sympathies were by no means narrow. He had never been able to believe
that God smiles with peculiar fondness on any particular continent,
island, peninsula, or part of either, and is but a stepfather to
the rest of the world. He was born with a hatred of barriers. He
sympathized with Swift, who "hated all nations, professions, and
communities, and gave all his love to individuals." Or, better than
Swift, he had at least a theoretical love for mankind unfenced. He
did not have to learn to love, that came naturally to him; he had to
learn to hate. But he was a good hater. Take him all in all, Carl
Owen Yorke was at twenty-one a noble, generous youth, of good mind
and unstained reputation; and it was no proof of excessive vanity in
him that he believed himself capable of taking any position he might
strive for.

"My dear Minerva tells me that I have in me some of the elements of
failure," he said. "I wonder what they are?"

This "dear Minerva" was Miss Alice Mills, Mr. Robert Yorke's deserted
_fiancée_. She and Owen were very close friends. It was one of those
friendships which sometimes grow up between a woman whose youth
is past and a youth whose manhood has scarcely arrived. Such a
friendship may effect incalculable good or incalculable harm, as the
woman shall choose.

"Well," he concluded, not caring to puzzle over the riddle, "she will
explain, I suppose, when she writes. And if anybody can get at the
cube-root of the difficulty, she can."

Meantime, while the son was musing, and the daughters were selecting
their chambers, and making up a toilet for Edith, Mr. Yorke had sent
for Patrick Chester in the sitting-room, and was questioning him
concerning Catholic affairs in Seaton. They did not seem to be in a
flourishing condition.

There was no priest settled there, Patrick said; but one came over
from B---- once in two months, and said Mass for them. They had no
church yet, but a little chapel, what there was left of it.

"What do you mean by that?" his master asked.

"Why, sir, some of the Seaton rowdies got into the chapel, one night,
not long ago, and smashed the windows, and broke up the tabernacle,
and destroyed the pictures entirely. And they twisted off the
crucifix, though it was of iron, two inches wide and half an inch
thick. The devil must have helped the man that did it, savin' your
presence, ma'am."

"Are they vandals here?" demanded Mr. Yorke.

"There are some fine folks in Seaton," said Pat, who did not know
what vandals are. "But the rowdies have everything pretty much their
own way."

"And is there no law in the town?" asked Mr. Yorke wrathfully.

"There's a good many lawyers," said Pat, scratching his head.

"You mean to say that there was no effort made to discover and punish
the perpetrators of such an outrage?" exclaimed his master.

"Indeed there was not, sir!" Pat answered. "People knew pretty well
who did the mischief, and that the fellow that broke off the crucifix
was taken bleeding at the lungs just after; but nobody molested 'em.
It wouldn't be well for the one who would lift his voice against the
Seaton rowdies. Why, some of 'em belong to as wealthy families as
there are in town. They began with a cast-iron band years ago, and
everybody laughed at 'em. All the harm they did was to wake people
out of sleep. Then they broke up a lecture. It was a Mr. Fowle from
Boston, who was preaching about education. And then they did a little
mischief here and there to people they didn't like, and now they
are too strong to put down. And, indeed, sir, when it's against the
Catholics they are, nobody wants to put 'em down."

Mr. Yorke glanced at his wife. She did not look up nor deny
Patrick's charges. She was a little ashamed of the character of her
native town in this respect; for at that time Seaton was notorious
for its lawlessness, and was even proud of its reputation. No great
harm had been done, they said. It was only the boys' fun. They were
sorry, it is true, that a respectable lecturer should have been
insulted; but that a Catholic chapel should be desecrated, that was
nothing. They did not give it a second thought.

"Well, Patrick," Mr. Yorke resumed, "my niece, Miss Edith Yorke, is a
Catholic, and I wish her to have proper instruction, and to attend to
the services of her church when there is opportunity. Let me know the
next time your priest comes here, and I will call to see him. Now you
may go."



The story and celebration of Our Lady of Guadalupe are not so
familiar to Catholics, or so well appreciated by others, as to render
useless or uninteresting, especially in this month of Mary, an
account of her veneration in Mexico. What this actually, veritably
is, no writer, so far as we are aware, has yet undertaken to show--at
least, from such literary evidences of popular conviction as best
illustrate the subject. How anything supernatural could shine or
blossom in a land of wars, robbers, Indians, is an old doubt,
notwithstanding that revelations have taken place in countries
which needed them less than did the once idolatrous Aztecs. Let us
now endeavor to make clear what the true nature of the miracle of
Guadalupe is; to exhibit its real veneration by means of testimonies
borrowed from the worthiest Mexicans; and to prove that the faith of
Guadalupe is not shallow, but long and well-established, widespread,
and sincere.

Here follows a brief history of the renowned miracle of Tepeyac. In
1531, ten years after the conquest, the pious and simple Indian, Juan
Diego, was on his way to the village of Guadalupe, near the city of
Mexico, there to receive the instructions of some reverend fathers.
Suddenly, at the hill of Tepeyac appeared to him the Blessed Virgin,
who commanded her amazed client to go forthwith to the bishop, and
make known that she wished a church to be built in her honor upon
that spot. Next day the Blessed Virgin returned to hear the regret of
Juan Diego that he could not obtain the ear of the bishop. "Go back,"
said the Holy Lady, "and announce that I, Mary, Mother of God, send
thee." The Indian again sought his bishop, who this time required
that he should bring some token of the presence and command of his
patroness. On the 12th of December, Juan Diego again saw Our Lady,
who ordered him to climb to the top of the barren rock of Tepeyac and
there gather roses for her. To his great astonishment, he found the
roses flourishing on the rock, and brought them to his patroness, who
threw them into his tilma or apron, and said: "Go back to the bishop
and show him these credentials." Again came the Indian before the
bishop, and, opening his tilma to show the roses, lo! there appeared
impressed upon it a marvellous image of the Blessed Virgin. The
bishop was awestruck and overcome. The miraculous occurrence was made
known and proved. Processions and Masses celebrated it, and its fame
spread far and wide. A large new cathedral was erected on the hill of
Guadalupe, and multitudes from all parts flocked thither. Specially
noteworthy is the fact that the new shrine to Our Lady was erected in
the place where once the Indians worshipped their goddess Totantzin,
mother of other deities, and protectress of fruits and fields. The
marvellous picture was found impressed upon the rudest cloth, that
of a poor Indian's apron, the last upon which to attempt a painter's
artifice--and hence the greater wonder, the artistic testimony
regarding which is something formidable and wonderful in itself.

What is known in Mexico as the Day of Guadalupe is extraordinary as
a popular manifestation. On the 12th of December every year, fifteen
or twenty thousand Indians congregate in the village of that name to
celebrate the anniversary of the Marvellous Apparition. The whole way
to the famous suburb is crowded with cabs, riders, and pedestrians of
the poorest sort, a great number of them bare-footed. All day there
is an ever-moving multitude to and from the village, and, indeed, the
majority of the inhabitants of the city of Mexico seem to be included
in the parties, families, and caravans of strangely contrasted people
that wend their way to the shrines on the hill. The most numerous
class of pilgrims are the saddest and the most wretched--we mean
the ill-clad, ill-featured, simple, devoted Indians. On them the
luxuries of the rich, the passions of the fighters, the intrigues of
politicians, have borne with ruinous effect. Drudging men and women;
hewers of wood and drawers of water; bare-breasted peasants, with
faces dusky and dusty, the same who any day may be seen on Mexican
roads carrying burdens of all sorts strapped to their backs; children
in plenty, bare, unkempt, untidy, and sometimes swaddled about their
mothers' shoulders; numerous babes at the breast, half-nude--these
are some of the features in a not overdrawn picture of the primitive
poverty which assembles at Guadalupe, and, in fact, in every Mexican
multitude whatsoever. Perhaps nowhere outside of Mexico and the race
of Indians can such a problem of multitudinous poverty be seen. Its
victims are those over whom the desert-storms of wars and feuds
innumerable have passed, and, spite of all their wanderings as a
race, they yet wear the guise and character of tribes who are still
trying to find their way out of a wilderness or a barren waste. Let
enthusiasts for self-willed liberty say what they will, wars of fifty
years are anything but conservative of happiness, cleanliness, good
morals, and that true liberty which should always accompany them.
However fondly we cherish our ideals of freedom, we must yet bear
in mind the wholesome, wholesale truth of history, that no actual
liberty is reached by the dagger and guillotine, or by massacre, or
is founded on bad blood or bad faith. Those who lately celebrated
the execution of Louis XVI. and the intellectual system of murder
established by Robespierre, and not totally disapproved by Mr.
Carlyle, have good reason to be cautious as to how they offend this
menacing truth.

A cathedral and four chapels are the principal structures of the
picturesque hillside village of Guadalupe. By a winding ascent among
steep, herbless rocks, tufted here and there with the thorny green
slabs of the cactus, is reached at some distance from the cathedral
the highest of the chapels, which contains the original imprint of
the figure of Our Lady. Looking up to the chapel from the crowd
at the cathedral may be seen a striking picture, not unlike what
Northern travellers have been taught to fancy of the middle ages,
but the elements of which are still abundant in the civilization of
Europe. It is simply the curious crowd of pilgrims going up and down
the hill, to and from the quaint old chapel, built perhaps centuries
ago. The scene from the height itself is charming and impressive.
The widespread valley of Mexico--including lakes, woods, villages,
and a rich and substantial city, with towers and domes that take
enchantment from distance--is all before the eye in one serene view
of landscape. In the village there is a multitude like another
Israel, sitting in the dust or standing near the pulquerias, or
moving about near the church door. As Guadalupe is for the most part
composed of adobe houses, and as its mass of humble visitors have
little finery to distinguish their brown personages from the dust out
of which man was originally created, the complexion of the general
scene which they constitute can only be described as earth-like and
earth-worn. Elsewhere than in a superficial glance at the poverty
of Guadalupe we must seek for the meaning of its spectacle. Is this
swarming, dull-colored scene but an animated fiction? No--it is the
natural seeking the supernatural. And the supernatural--what is it?
It is redemption and immortality, our Lord and Our Lady, the angels
and saints.

The cathedral is a building of picturesque angles, but, except that
it is spacious, as so many of the Mexican churches are, makes no
particular boast of architecture. A copy of the marvellous tilma,
over the altar, poetically represents Our Lady in a blue cloak
covered with stars, and a robe said to be of crimson and gold, her
hands clasped, and her foot on a crescent supported by a cherub. This
is the substance of a description of it given by a traveller who
had better opportunities for seeing it closely than had the present
writer during the fiesta of Guadalupe in 1867. Whether the original
picture is rude or not, from being impressed upon a blanket, he has
not personal knowledge, though aware that it has been described as
rude. Nevertheless, its idea and design are beautiful and tender.
Everywhere in Mexico it is the favorite and, indeed, the most lovely
presentment of Our Lady. Like a compassionate angel of the twilight,
it looks out of many a shrine, and, among all the images for which
the Mexican Church is noted, none is perhaps more essentially ideal,
and, in that point of view, _real_. Where it appears wrought in a
sculpture of 1686, by Francisco Alberto, on the side of San Agustin's
at the capital, it is, though quaint, very admirable for its purity
and gentleness. Time respects it, and the birds have built their
nests near it. The various chapels in and about the city dedicated
to Our Lady of Guadalupe are recognized by the star-mantled figure.
The Baths of the Peñon, the cathedral at the Plaza, the suburb
of Tacubaya, have each their pictorial witnesses of the faith of
Guadalupe; and to say that its manifestation abounds in Mexico
is but to state a fact of commonplace. Rich and poor venerate the
tradition of the Marvellous Appearance, now for three centuries
celebrated, and always, it seems, by multitudes.

What else is to be seen at Guadalupe besides its crowd and its
altar is not worthy of extended remark. The organs of the cathedral
are high and admirably carved; over the altar's porphyry columns
are cherubim and seraphim, all too dazzling with paint and gold.
Here, as in other places of Spanish worship, the figures of the
crucifixion have been designed with a painful realism. Outside of
the church a party of Indians, displaying gay feathers, danced in
honor of the feast, as their sires must have done hundreds of years
ago. Inside it was densely crowded with visitors or pilgrims, and
far too uncomfortable at times to make possible the most accurate
observation of its ornaments. But it may be well to repeat that the
church is divided into three naves by eight columns, and is about two
hundred feet long, one hundred and twenty feet broad, and one hundred
high. The total cost of the building, and, we presume, its altars,
is reckoned as high as $800,000, most of it, if not all, contributed
by alms. The altar at which is placed the image of Our Lady is said
to have cost $381,000, its tabernacle containing 3,257 marks of
silver, and the gold frame of the sacred picture 4,050 castellanos.
The church's ornaments are calculated to be worth more than $123,000.
Two of its candlesticks alone weighed 2,213 castellanos in gold, and
one lamp 750 marks of silver. To Cristobal de Aguirre, who, in 1660,
built a hermitage on the summit of Tepeyac, we owe the foundation of
the chapel there. It was not, however, until 1747 that Our Lady of
Guadalupe was formally declared the patroness of the whole of Mexico.

Of the many celebrations of Mexico, none are altogether as
significant as that of Guadalupe. It has become national, and, in a
certain sense, religiously patriotic. Maximilian and Carlota, the
writer was informed, washed the feet of the poor near the altar of
Our Lady, according to a well-known religious custom. The best men
and women of Mexico have venerated the Marvellous Appearance--which,
however amusing it may be to those who are scarcely as radical
in their belief in nature as conservative in their views of the
supernatural, is but a circumstance to the older traditions which
have entered into the mind of poetry and filled the heart of worship.
What of the wonderful happenings to the great fathers of the
church and the mediæval saints, all worshippers of unquestionable
sublimation? Say what you please, doubt as you may, saints, angels,
miracles, abide, and form the very testament of belief. There is not
a Catholic in the world who does not believe in miracle, whose faith
is not to unbelievers a standing miracle of belief in a miracle the
most prodigious, the most portentous; and yet to him it has only
become natural to believe in the supernatural. The Mexicans venerate
what three centuries and uncounted millions have affirmed, whence it
appears that their veneration is not a conceit or humbug, but at root
a faith. How can this be more clearly illustrated than by quoting the
following very interesting poem of Manuel Carpio, Mexico's favorite,
if not best modern poet:


      The good Jehovah, dread, magnificent,
      Once chose a people whom he called his own.
      And out of Egypt in a wondrous way
      He brought them in a dark and troublous night,
      And Moses touched the Red Sea with a rod,
      And the waves parted, offering them a path.
      His people passed, but in the abyss remained
      Egyptian horse and rider who pursued.
      Marched on the flock of Jacob, and the Lord
      Spread over them his all-protecting wings,
      As the lone eagle shields her unfledged young.
      He gave them lands, and victories, and spoils--
      Glad nation! which the Master of the heavens
      Loved as the very apple of his eye.
      But now this people, seeing themselves blessed
      By him whose slightest glance they not deserved,
      Erected perishable images
      In homage unto strange and pagan gods.
      The Lord in indignation said: "They wished
      To make their Maker jealous with vain gods.
      Bowing in dust the sacrilegious knee
      Before the dumb creation of their hands.
      Well, I will sting their hearts with jealousy,
      Showing myself to all unhappy lands
      Without employing vail or mystery."
      He said it, and his solemn word fulfilled,
      Convoking from the farthest ends of earth
      Nations barbarian and civilized--
      The Gaul, the Scandinavian, Roman, Greek,
      And the neglected race of Mexico,
      Whom the Almighty Sovereign loved so well
      The holy truth he would reveal to them--
      So that the hard hearts of his people should
      Be softened. Yet his mercy was not full:
      Down from the diamond heavens he bade descend
      The Virgin, who with mother's sorrowing care
      Nursed him in Bethlehem when he was a child.

      Near to the tremulous Tezcoco lake
      Rises a bare and solitary hill.
      Where never cypress tall nor cedar grows,
      Nor whispering oak; nor cooling fountain laves
      The waste of herbless rocks and sterile sand--
      A barren country 'tis, dry, dusty, sad,
      Where the vile worm scarce drags its length along.

      Here is the place where Holy Mary comes
      Down from her home above the azure heavens
      To show herself to Juan, who, comfortless,
      Petitioned for relief from troubles sore.
      Sometimes it chances that a fragrant plant
      In the dense forest blooms unseen, unknown,
      Though bright its virginal buds and rare its flowers;
      So doth the modest daughter of the Lord
      Obscure the moon, the planets, and the stars
      Which all adorn her forehead and her feet,
      When lends she the poor Indian her grace
      In bounty wonderful to all his kind.
      She tenders him the waters and the dew,
      Prosperity of fruits and animals,
      A heart of sensible humility,
      And help unfailing in his future need.
      The Angel of America resumes
      Her radiant flight. With grateful ear he heard,
      Twice did he wondering kneel, and twice again
      He kissed the white feet of the holy maid.

      But did not end God's providence benign:
      The Almighty wished to leave to Mexicans
      His Mother's likeness by his own great hand,
      In token of the love he had for us.
      He took the pencil, saying: "We will make
      In heaven's own image, as we moulded man.
      But what was Adam to my beauteous one?"
      So saying, drew he with serenest face
      The gentle likeness of the Mother-maid.
      He saw the image, and pronounced it good.

      Since then, with the encircling love of heaven,
      A son she sees in every Mexican.
      Mildly the wandering incense she receives,
      Attending to his vow with human face;
      For her the teeming vapors yield their rain
      To the green valley and the mountain side,
      Where bend and wave the abundant harvest fields,
      And the green herbs that feed the lazy kine.
      She makes the purifying breezes pass,
      And on the restless and unsounded seas
      She stills the rigor of the hurricane.
      The frighted people see the approach of death
      When the broad earth upon its axis shakes,
      But the wild elements are put to sleep
      With but a smile from her mild countenance.
      And she has moved the adamantine heart
      Of avarice, who saw decrepit age
      Creep like an insect on the dusty earth,
      To ope his close-shut hand, and bless the poor.
      She maketh humbly kneel and kiss the ground
      No less the wise than simple. She the great,
      Dazzled by their own glory, doth advise
      That soon their gaudy pageant shall be o'er,
      And heaven's oblivion shall dissolve their fame.

      How often has the timid, trembling maid
      Upon the verge of ruin sought thy help,
      Shutting her eyes to pleasure and to gold
      At thought of thee, O Maiden pure and meek!
      Centuries and ages will have vanished by,
      Within their currents bearing kings and men;
      Great monuments shall fall; the pyramids
      Of lonely Egypt moulder in decay;
      But time shall never place its fatal hand
      Upon the image of the Holy Maid,
      Nor on the pious love of Mexico.

Manuel Carpio, who wrote this, his first poetic composition, in 1831,
when forty years of age, was a scholar and professor, and in 1824 a
congressman. He made the Bible, we are told, his favorite study; and
certainly it supplied him with the themes for his best poems. But he
was not the only poet of Mexico who bore earnest witness to the faith
of which we speak. Padre Manuel Sartorio, who wrote about the time
of Iturbide, deprecates the idea of preferring a capricious doubt
respecting "la Virgen de Guadalupe" to a constant belief founded in
tradition. In the following lines the nature of his own belief is
fully attested:

      "Of Guadalupe, that fair image pictured
      Unto the venerating eye of Mexico;
      With stars and light adorned, the figure painted
      Of a most modest Maiden, full of grace;
      What image is it? Copy 'tis divine
      Of the Mother of God.
             *       *       *       *       *
      And what assures me this? My tender thought.
      Who the design conceived? The holiest love.
      Who then portrayed it? The eternal God."

In other lines on the same subject, Sartorio speaks of the Lady of
Guadalupe as "the purest rose of the celestial field," and pays
special respect to her image in the Portal of Flowers, of which there
is a tradition, not vulgar, of having spoken (hay tradicion no vulgar
de haber hablado) to the Venerable Padre Zapa, in order to instruct
the Indians, as relates Cabrera, "Escudo de Armas de Mexico, numero
923." Who this Cabrera may be we are not aware, and cannot affirm
that he is identical with the great painter Cabrera, whose belief in
Our Lady of Guadalupe was so distinct and positive.

One other poet of Mexico we shall summon to give testimony. It is
Fray Manuel Navarrete, who wrote a series of poems, well-known to his
countrymen, called "Sad Moments." He was also the author of a number
of tributes to the fame of Carlos IV. and Ferdinand VII., and seems
to have possessed more influence, if not more merit as a poet, than
Padre Sartorio. From a posthumous volume, bearing date of 1823, we
take the following lines, the allusions of which sufficiently explain
at what time they were written:


      From her eternal palace, from the heavens,
      One day descended to America,
      When in its worst affliction, the great Mary,
      Its sorrows to maternally console.
      Behold in Tepeyac how watchfully
      She frustrates the designs of heresy,
      How she extinguishes the fire that flames
      From the far French unto the Indian soil!
      What matter, then, if proud Napoleon,
      With his infernal hosts the world appalling,
      Seeks to possess the land of Mexico?
      To arms, countrymen: war, war!
      For the sacred palladium of Guadalupe
      Protects our native land.

      The deity of peace have painters skilled
      Portrayed with bounteous grace and elegance,
      Painting a virgin who with fair white hands
      An offering of tender blossoms bore.
      Thus were their pencils' finest excellences
      A promise and foreshadowing of this,
      The image of Our Lady, which in heaven
      Received its colors. Thus beheld it he,
      The fortunate Indian, at Tepeyac,
      That bare and desolate hill, a miracle,
      That unto day has been perpetuate.
      Now while the world's ablaze with lively war,
      Seems that affrighted peace has taken refuge
      Within the happy households of our land.

How sadly, how oddly, sounds in modern ears this felicitation of a
poet that peace, which has left the greater part of the world, has
taken refuge in Mexico! Evidently our Fray Navarrete did not foresee
the results of the war begun by the clerical revolutionist Hidalgo.
But whatever may have been the political bias of this religious
writer, he retains the esteem of his countrymen as one of the fathers
of their fragmentary literature.

Our last witness is Miguel Cabrera, the great Mexican painter, whose
merits have with reason been compared by an Italian traveller, the
Count Beltrami, to those of Correggio and Murillo. Altogether, as
carver, architect, and painter, the New World has not produced the
equal in art of this extraordinary man, who wrought almost without
masters or models, without emulation or fitting aid and recompense,
and whose worth has yet to be made well known to the continent which
he honored. But our object now is to lend the weight of this preface
to the following statement of the Mexican writer, Señor Orozco y

    "Cabrera wrote a short treatise dedicated to his
    protector Sr. Salinas [Archbishop of Mexico] with
    the title of _The American Marvel, and Conjunction
    of Rare Marvels, observed with the direction of the
    Rules of the Art of Painting, in the Miraculous
    Image [prodigiosa imagen] of Our Lady of Guadalupe
    of Mexico_. It is a small book in quarto, printed in
    1756 by the press of the college of San Ildefonso, and
    containing thirty pages, with dedication, approbations,
    and license at the beginning, and the opinions of
    various painters at the end. The reason given for
    this writing was the invitation made by the abbot and
    council of the college to the best known painters of
    Mexico, in order that, after examining the painting on
    cloth of Our Lady of Guadalupe, they might declare if
    it could be the work of human hands. Cabrera was one of
    those who joined in the examination, and in his book he
    undertakes to show that _the Virgin is not painted in a
    manner artificial and human_."


Under the term _Protestantism_, it is intended to comprise all
persons of any religious sect, denomination, or church in this
country, except Catholics, Jews, and Chinese. So numerous are the
divisions and subdivisions that our limits will permit us to present
only the name of each, with perhaps a word as to its distinctive
features, its numbers at different periods, and its average annual
increase for a given period. The given period thus selected is the
twenty-five years and upward preceding the year 1868; because the
statistics of all the denominations which are accessible, are at
present more complete up to that date than they have yet become up to
any subsequent year, or even up to the present date. The statistics
are taken entirely from Protestant sources, and chiefly from official
documents published by the respective denominations. The final
results are then brought together, and compared with the results
presented by the Federal census of the population at different

1. The name "Lutheran" was given to the first Protestant
denomination, in order to designate the followers of Martin Luther.
A part of the members of the denomination in this country have
recently changed their name to "Evangelical Lutheran Church."

The statistics, chiefly official, of the denomination for a series of
years have been as follows:

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      1823           175         900       40,000
      1833           240       1,000       60,000
      1841           418       1,371      145,408
      1842           424       1,371      166,300
      1850           663       1,604      163,000
      1859         1,134       2,017      203,662
      1862         1,419       2,672      284,000
      1863         1,418       2,533      269,985
      1864         1,543       2,765      292,723
      1865         1,627       2,856      312,415
      1866         1,644       2,915      323,825
      1867         1,750       3,112      332,155
      1868         1,792       3,182      350,088
      1869         2,016       3,330      376,567
      1870         2,211       3,537      392,721

The average annual increase during a series of years (ending always
with 1867) has been as follows:

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      In 44 years     36          50        6,640
      In 26   "       51          67        7,182
      In  8   "       77         124       16,061

2. The German Reformed denomination made its appearance, soon after
the Lutheran, in the German part of Switzerland, and sprang out of
a dispute between Ulrich Zwingli and Martin Luther concerning the
import of the words, "This is my body," "This is my blood."

The following table shows their growth in this country since 1820:

                  Ministers.   Churches.  Members.
      1820            68         389       14,400
      1830            84         353       17,189
      1840           123         416       17,760
      1850           231         786       58,799
      1860           391       1,045       92,684
      1862           421       1,122      100,691
      1864           460       1,134      107,394
      1866           475       1,162      109,258
      1867           491       1,152      110,408
      1868           505       1,181      115,483
      1869           521         --       117,910

The average annual increase during a series of years has been as

                  Ministers.   Churches.  Members.
      In 47 years      9          16        2,043
      In  7   "       14          15        2,532

3. The "United Brethren in Christ" are the fruits of a "reformation"
in the German Reformed denomination--a sort of Methodistical
offshoot. The statements of their numbers are as follows:

                  Ministers.  Societies.  Members.
      1842           500        1,800      65,000
      1866           789        3,297      91,570
      1867           837        3,445      98,983
      1868           864        3,663     108,122

The average annual increase during twenty-five years has been as

                  Ministers.  Societies.  Members.
      In 25 years     13          66        1,319

4. The "Moravians," or United Brethren, are a distinct denomination
from the preceding one. As known in this country, they descended from
a colony of dissenters, who were first gathered on his estate in
Upper Alsatia, in 1772, by Count Zinzendorf.

Their numbers have been stated as follows:

                  Ministers.   Members.
      1842            24        6,000
      1867            --        6,655
      1868            --        6,768

Their annual average increase of communicants has been in twenty-five
years 26.

5. The "Dutch Reformed Church," as it was known until 1867, when the
name was changed to "Reformed Church in America," is a descendant of
the Dutch Reformed Church of Holland.

The following table shows the growth of this denomination since 1820:

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      1820            71         105        9,023
      1830           132         197       15,579
      1840           230         245       23,782
      1850           293         292       33,553
      1860           387         370       50,427
      1862           419         429         --
      1863           446         422       53,007
      1865           436         427       54,286
      1866           447         434       55,917
      1867           461         444       57,846
      1868           469          --       59,508
      1869           493         464       61,444

The average annual increase of the denomination at different periods
has been as follows:

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      In 47 years     8½          7         1,039
      In 7    "       10         10         1,060

6. The Mennonites derive their name from Menno Simon, born in
Friesland A.D. 1495. He was contemporary with Luther, Bucer, and
Bullinger. He obtained a great number of followers. In 1683, the
first of them came over to this country, others soon followed.

Their number has been estimated as follows:

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      1843           235        260        30,000
      1860            --         --        35,000
      1862           260        312        37,360
      1867            --         --        39,110

The average annual increase in members in twenty-four years has been

7. The Reformed Mennonite Society was first organized in 1811. The
members ascribe their origin to the corruptions of the Mennonites.
The reform extended into several counties of Pennsylvania, Ohio, and
New York, but their doctrines are regarded as too rigid for general

In 1860, their numbers were estimated at about 11,000.

The average annual increase has been about 200.

8. The denomination known as the "German Evangelical Association"
first appeared in one of the Middle States, about the year 1800.

This denomination is now regarded as German Methodists, and their
numbers have been as follows:

                  Ministers.   Members.
      1843           250        15,000
      1859            --        33,000
      1862            --        46,000
      1863           386        47,388
      1365           405        50,000
      1866           473        54,875
      1867           478        58,002

The average annual increase of the denomination in twenty-four years
has been 1,791.

9. The "Christians," or "Christian Connection," profess not to owe
their origin to the labors of any one man, like the other Protestant
sects. They rose almost simultaneously in different and remote parts
of this country, without knowledge of each other's movements.

The new organizations of this denomination held their twenty-third
annual convention in June, 1868. The number of organizations was one
hundred and sixty.

The numbers of the denomination have been stated as follows:

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      1844         2,000       1,500      325,000
      1866         3,000       5,000      500,000

The average annual increase of members has been as follows:

      In 22 years       7,594 members.

The "Church of God," as it exists by that name in the United States,
is a religious community, who profess to have come out from all human
and unscriptural organizations, and to have fallen back upon original
grounds, and who wish, therefore, to be known and called by no other
distinctive name.

This denomination exists in Ohio and Pennsylvania and the Western
States, and their numbers have been stated as follows:

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      1843           83         125        10,000
      1860          140         275        14,000
      1866           --         360        32,000

The average annual increase has been as follows:

                      Churches.  Members.
      In 23 years        10        960

11. The denominations thus far noticed are chiefly of German origin.
The next class contains those of Scottish origin. Among these the
Presbyterian holds the first place in age and numbers. The first
organization here was made in 1706, and known as the Presbytery of
Philadelphia. Their first synod was convened September 17, 1718.

The first General Assembly met in 1789, and a more efficient and
extensive development ensued. In 1810, a division arose, and the
formation of the "Cumberland Presbyterian" organization. But the most
extensive division took place in 1838, by which a body was organized
and known as the "New School," while those who remained were
designated as "Old School" Presbyterians. The split thus made has
continued for thirty years, but is now ostensibly removed by measures
of reunion.

The statistics of the "Old School" Presbyterians for the year 1863
first show the effect of the separation of the Southern portion
during the war. The report of numbers has been as follows:

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      1843          1,434       2,092     159,137
      1850          1,860       2,512     200,830
      1860          2,577       3,487     279,630
      1861          2,767       3,684     300,874
      1863          2,205       2,541     227,575
      1865          2,201       2,629     232,450
      1866          2,294       2,608     239,306
      1867          2,302       2,622     246,330
      1868          2,330       2,737     252,555
      1869          2,381       2,740     258,903
      1870[23]      4,234        --       446,561

        [23] Old and New School united.

The statistics of the Southern division are given as follows:

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      1865           811        1,277      83,821
      1867           850        1,309      80,532
      1868           837        1,298      76,949
      1870           840        1,469      82,014

The average annual increase of the denomination previous to the
division caused by opposite views on political questions was as

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      In 18 years     74          89        7,874

The average annual increase of the whole denomination (North and
South) to 1868 has been as follows:

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      In 25 years     70          78        6,958

12. The division of the Presbyterian Church was entirely consummated
in 1840, by the meeting of a General Assembly representing the
seceders, or "New School."

Subsequently, the loss of the Southern churches by the "Old School"
denomination, and the increase of the anti-slavery sentiment in the
Northern portion, suggested a reunion with the "New School" soon
after the outbreak of the recent war. At length, in 1868, one General
Assembly met in Albany, while the other was in session in Harrisburg,
Pa. A plan of union was mutually prepared, which, on being approved
by the local presbyteries, went into effect in 1870.

The statistics of the "New School" Presbyterians have been as follows:

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      1839          1,171       1,286     100,850
      1860          1,527       1,483     134,463
      1861          1,558        --       134,760
      1862          1,555       1,466     135,454
      1863          1,616       1,454     135,894
      1865          1,694       1,479     143,645
      1866          1,739       1,528     150,401
      1867          1,870       1,560     161,538
      1868          1,800        --       168,932
      1869          1,848       1,631     172,560

The average annual increase in twenty-eight years has been as follows:

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      In 28 years     24          10        2,167

13. The "General Synod of the Reformed Presbyterian Church" is the
title of a denomination which claims to be a direct descendant of the
"Reformed Presbyterian Church" of Scotland.

The statements of the numbers of this denomination have been as

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      1842            24          44        4,500
      1861            56          --        7,000
      1862            56          91          --
      1866            --          --        7,918
      1867            66          91        8,324
      1868            77          --        8,487
      1870            86          --        8,577

The average annual increase in twenty-five years has been as follows:

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      In 25 years     1¾           2          153

14. The "Synod of Reformed Presbyterians" was formed by certain
persons who separated from the Reformed Presbyterians (General
Synod), principally on the ground that they were of opinion that the
constitution and government of the United States are essentially
infidel and immoral. The separation took place in 1833.

The few statements relative to the numbers of this denomination have
been as follows:

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      1861            59          78        6,650
      1866            60          --        6,000

The average annual decrease during the last half-dozen years has been

15. Another division is the "Associate Presbyterian Church." This is
located chiefly in the Middle and Western States. The members of the
denomination claim to be a branch of the Church of Scotland.

In 1858, the Associate Reformed and the Associate churches reunited
under the name of "United Presbyterian Church in North America."

The statistics of the Associate Presbyterian denomination after 1859
are merged in those of the United Presbyterians, and have been as

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      1844           106         210       15,000
      1861           444         669       57,567
      1863           470         683       54,758
      1864           513         698       57,691
      1865           516         659       58,265
      1866           539         686       58,988
      1867           558         717       63,489
      1868           541         735       65,612
      1869           565         726       65,624
      1870           553         729       66,805

The average annual increase of the denomination during the six years
subsequent to the union, ending in 1867, has been as follows:

                  Ministers.   Members.
      In 6 years      19        1,000

The statistics of the "Associate Synod of North America"
above-mentioned have been as follows:

                  Ministers.   Members.
      1861            49        1,130
      1867            11          778

16. Another order of Presbyterians in this country is known as the
"Associate Reformed Church." Since 1822, the denomination has existed
in three independent divisions, the Northern, the Western, and the
Southern. These divisions are quite small in numbers, and their
growth has been insignificant. They have been stated as follows:

The Associate Reformed Synod of New York in 1843 had 34 ministers and
43 congregations. In 1867, it had 16 ministers and 1,631 members.

The Associate Reformed Synod of the South in 1843 had 25 ministers
and 40 congregations; and in 1867, estimated at 1,500 members.

The Associate Synod of North America in 1867 had 11 ministers and 778

The Free Presbyterian Synod, consisting, in 1861, of 41 ministers
and 4,000 members, had previously separated from the New School
Presbyterian denomination, but was reunited and absorbed after the
outbreak of the recent war.

17. The Independent Presbyterian Church in South and North Carolina
consisted, in 1861, of 4 ministers and about 1,000 members.

18. Another denomination of Presbyterians remains to be noticed.
It is called the "Cumberland Presbyterians" and first appeared in
Kentucky in the year 1800. In 1829, there were four synods and the
first General Assembly of the denomination was held. During the
recent war the Southern churches were not reported in the Assembly,
and there are no complete statistics of that period.

The numbers of the denomination have been stated as follows:

              Synods.  Presby.  Min.  Conversions.
      1822       1       --      46      2,718
      1826       1       --      80      3,305
      1827       1       --     114      4,006
      1833       6       32      --      5,977
      1843      13       57      --        --

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      1860           927       1,188       84,249
      1867         1,000     estimated    100,000
      1870         1,116         --        87,727

The average annual increase in 55 years, from 1812 to 1867, has been

19. Another large class of denominations is known by the name of
"Baptists." They are divided into ten separate sects: Baptists;
Free-Will Baptists; Seventh-Day Baptists; German Baptists or
Brethren; German Seventh-Day Baptists; Free Communion Baptists; Old
School Baptists; Six-Principle Baptists; River Brethren; Disciples of
Christ, or Campbellites.

An estimate of the numbers of the regular Baptists at different
periods, made by themselves, presents the following results:

                  Ministers.  Churches. Communicants.
      1842         6,000       9,000       750,000
      1859         7,150      11,606       925,000
      1862           --          --        966,000
      1863         7,952      12,551     1,039,400
      1865         7,867      12,702     1,040,303
      1866            --      12,675     1,043,641
      1868         8,346      12,955     1,094,806
      1869         8,695      12,011     1,121,988
      1870         8,787         --      1,221,349

The average annual increase of the denomination during twenty-five
years has been as follows:

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      In 25 years     94         158       13,796

20. The "Free-will Baptist Connection" made its first organized
appearance in this country in 1780. In 1827, a General Conference was
organized to represent the whole connection. The statements of their
numbers have been as follows:

                  Ministers.  Churches. Communicants.
      1842           898       1,057        54,000
      1850         1,082       1,252        56,452
      1859           947       1,170        56,600
      1862            --         --         58,055
      1863         1,049       1,277        57,007
      1865            --         --         56,783
      1866         1,063       1,264        56,288
      1867         1,100       1,276        59,111
      1868         1,161       1,279        61,244
      1869         1,141       1,375        66,691

The average annual increase of the denomination during the last
twenty-five years has been as follows:

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      In 25 years      8          9          204

21. The "Seventh-Day Baptists" are so-called because they differ from
all other Protestant denominations in their views of the Sabbath.
They have gradually spread in the Eastern, the Central, and some
Northwestern and Southern States.

Little is known of their numbers, but they have been stated as

                  Ministers.  Churches. Communicants.
      1842            40         50          6,000
      1850            43         52          6,243
      1858            50         56          6,736
      1863            77         66          6,686
      1865            --         --          6,796
      1866            73         68          7,014
      1867            --         68          7,038
      1869            --         75          7,129

The annual average increase of the denomination has been as follows:

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      In 25 years      1⅓          ¾          41

22. There is a denomination of German Baptists which has assumed
for itself the name of "Brethren," but they are commonly called
"Dunkers" or "Tunkers" to distinguish them from the Mennonists.
They have also been called "Tumblers" from the manner in which they
perform baptism, which is by putting the person head forward under
water (while kneeling), so as to resemble the motion of the body in
the act of tumbling.

In 1843, their larger congregations contained from two to three
hundred members; but little was then known among themselves of their
numbers. Their subsequent statistics have been as follows:

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      1859           150        160         8,700
      1862            --         --         8,200
      1863           100        200        20,000
      1866           150        200        20,000
      1867            --         --        20,000

A membership of 20,000 has been stated for this denomination during
the last half-dozen years without increase or diminution.

23. The "German Seventh-Day Baptists" first made their appearance in
Germany in 1694. From these, after their organization in the United
States, sprang the Seventh-Day branch. Their numbers in 1860 were
estimated at:

                  Ministers.   Members.
      1860           187         1,800

24. A society designated as "Free-Communion Baptists" arose in
1858 in McDonough Co., Illinois, and organized a quarterly meeting
conference. At the quarterly meeting in 1859, one preacher, four
licentiates, a few small churches, and 104 members were reported.

25. The "Old School," or Anti-mission, Baptists were formerly a
portion of the regular Baptists, above-mentioned. They are opposed to
the academical or theological education of their ministers, and to
Bible, missionary, and all other voluntary societies of like nature.

Their numbers have been stated as follows:

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      1860           475       1,750       62,000
      1862            --          --       60,000
      1863           850       1,800       60,000
      1864            --          --       63,000
      1865            --          --       60,000
      1867            --       1,800      105,000

The average annual increase of this denomination during seven years
by these statements has been 6,143.

25. The denomination called "Six-Principle Baptists" originated in
Rhode Island as early as 1665. They are distinguished from other
Baptists by deducing their peculiarities from the first three verses
of the sixth chapter of Hebrews.

Their numbers have been estimated as follows:

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      1860            16          18        3,000

Recent statements put their numbers about the same, and there
probably has been no important increase.

27. The "River Brethren" is an organization in Pennsylvania and other
states, so-called to distinguish them from the German Baptists or
Brethren above-mentioned.

Their meetings are generally held in dwelling-houses, or barns fitted
up with seats; in other respects, they are similar to the German

Their numbers have been stated as follows:

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      1860            65          80        7,000

More recent statements make no important alteration in these numbers.

28. The "Disciples of Christ," or, as the denomination is often
called, "Baptists," "Reformed Baptists," "Reformers," "Campbellites,"
etc., originated in the early part of the present century. The first
advocates were Thomas and Alexander Campbell in Pennsylvania.

The statements of their numbers have been as follows:

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      1842           --          --       200,000
      1850           848       1,898      218,618
      1863         1,500       1,800      300,000
      1867           --          --       300,000

The average annual increase, according to these statements, has been
in twenty-one years, in members, 4,762.

29. The first appearance of the Puritans, since known as
"Congregationalists," was in the early part of Queen Elizabeth's
reign. The first church formed upon Congregational principles was
that established by Robert Browne in 1583. The denomination is the
largest in New England, and exists in small bodies in a number of the

Their numbers are stated to be as follows:

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      1742         1,150       1,300      160,000
      1850         1,687       1,971      147,196
      1858         1,922       2,369      230,093
      1861          --          --        259,119
      1862         2,643       2,884      261,474
      1863         2,594       2,729      253,200
      1864          --         2,856      268,015
      1865         2,761       2,723      263,296
      1866         2,919       2,780      267,453
      1867         2,971       2,825      278,362
      1868          --         2,951      291,474
      1869          --         3,043      300,362

The average annual increase of this denomination during the last
twenty-five years has been as follows:

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      In 25 years     73          61        4,734

30. The denomination of "Unitarians" arose in this country from a
division of opinion among Congregationalists on the divinity of
Christ. Their statistics contain no report of the membership. All who
are respectable and orderly members of the society are admitted to
the sacraments if they desire to be.

Their numbers for a series of years have been estimated at 30,000.

                  Ministers.  Societies.  Members.
      1830            --         193        --
      1840            --         200        --
      1850           250         244        --
      1860           298          --        --
      1863            43         260     30,000
      1864           326         250        --
      1867           370         300        --

The average annual increase has been estimated for a series of forty
or more years at about one per cent., or 300.

31. The denomination of "Universalists" first made its appearance
in England about 1750. In Gloucester, Massachusetts, the first
Universalist society was formed in 1779. No statistics of the
denomination contain the "membership" like those of other
denominations, as to believe is to become a member. The active
members have been estimated in 1850 at 60,000, although the
population among which Universalism exists to the exclusion of other
denominations may be ten times greater.

                  Ministers.  Societies.  Members.
      1842           646        990          --
      1850           700        918        60,000
      1859           724        913          --
      1865[24]       496        681          --
      1867           523        732        80,000
      1868           588        792          --
      1869           520        844          --

        [24] Incomplete.

Average annual increase in twenty years, 1,000.

32. The Protestant Episcopal Church is a well-known offshoot of the
church established by the British Parliament in England.

Their numbers and growth have been as follows:

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      1859         2,030       2,111      135,767
      1862         2,270       2,327      160,612
      1863         1,772       1,617      111,093[25]
      1864         1,895       1,741      143,854[25]
      1865         2,467       2,322      154,118
      1866         2,530       2,305      161,224
      1867         2,600       2,370      178,102
      1868         2,736       2,472      194,692
      1869         2,762       2,512      200,000

        [25] Southern States not reported.

The average annual increase during the last nine years has been as

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
                      78          40        6,536

33. Another large class of denominations is embraced under the
general term "Methodism." The first denomination, out of which all
the others have sprung, was an offshoot of the Church of England,
known in this country as the Protestant Episcopal Church.

The statistics of the denomination have been as follows:

                  Preachers.   Members.
      1773            10         1,160
      1783            83        13,740
      1793           269        67,643
      1803           393        86,734
      1813           700       214,307
      1823         1,226       312,540
      1833         2,400       599,736
      1843         4,286     1,068,525
      1850         3,716       629,660[26]
      1859         6,502       971,498
      1862           --        942,906
      1863         5,885       923,394
      1864           --        928,320
      1865         6,121       925,285
      1866         6,287     1,032,184[27]
      1867         8,004     1,146,081
      1868         8,481     1,255,115
      1869         8,830     1,298,938

        [26] Separation of South in 1845.
        [27] Centenary year.

The average annual increase since the separation of the South, and
during seventeen years, has been 30,377. Since the close of the war
conferences have been organized in eight of the Southern states, and
100,000 members gained from the church South.

34. A secession took place in 1830 from the Methodists, and the
persons who composed it assumed the name of the "Methodist Protestant
Church." Its statistics have been as follows:

                Travelling preachers.     Members.
      1830                83                5,000
      1842                --               53,875
      1850               740               64,219
      1854                --               70,018
      1858             2,000               90,000

In 1866, a convention was held in Cincinnati to unite the Methodist
Protestants, the Wesleyan Connection, the Free Methodists, the
Primitive Methodists, and some independent Methodist congregations,
under the name of the "Methodist Church." The union was joined by few
save the Northern conferences of the Methodist Protestant body, who
now compose the Methodist Church; the Southern conferences retain the
original name of Methodist Protestant. Their numbers in 1867 were
estimated at 50,000; in 1869, they were estimated at 72,000.

There has been no actual increase in those now indicated by this name
in twenty-five years preceding 1868.

35. The "Methodist Church" is composed of the Northern conferences of
the Methodist Protestant Church which, in attempting to form a union
with others in 1866, caused a split among themselves. Their report,
made in 1867, states as follows:

                  Ministers.   Members.
      1867           625        50,000
      1869           624        49,030

This is strictly an increase of the Methodist Protestants, but
appears under a new name. It is an average annual increase of 2,000.

36. Out of the original separation of the Methodist Protestants from
the Methodist Episcopal another denomination sprang up, under the
name of the "True Wesleyan Methodists."

The denomination has increased very slowly since its organization, as
appears by the following statements:

                  Ministers.   Members.
      1843           300        20,000
      1850           500        20,000
      1860           565        21,000
      1867            --        25,000
      1869           220        20,000

Average annual increase in twenty-five years, 200.

37. The African Methodist Episcopal Church owes its origin to the
prejudice against the colored members and attendants of the Methodist
Episcopal Church. In the early days of the latter, this prejudice was
so deep that the colored persons were not unfrequently pulled from
their knees while at prayer in the church, and ordered to the back

This denomination has greatly increased by the addition of
emancipated slaves. Its statistics are as follows:

                  Ministers.   Members.
      1842            --        15,000
      1860            --        20,000
      1864            --        50,000
      1865           405        50,000
      1866            --        70,000
      1867         1,500       200,000
      1869         1,500       200,000

The average annual increase in twenty-five years has been 7,500.

38. The operation of the same prejudice against color in New York
gave rise to the "Zion African Methodist Episcopal Church." Its
statistics show a large increase recently at the South, and are as

                  Ministers.   Members.
      1842            --         4,000
      1860            --         6,000
      1864            --         8,000
      1866            --        42,000
      1867           300        60,000
      1869            --       164,000

The average annual increase of the denomination has been 2,008.

39. The "Methodist Episcopal Church, South," is the second largest
body of Methodists in the United States. It arose from a division of
the Methodist Episcopal Church, in accordance with resolutions of the
General Conference in 1844.

The membership of this denomination has been reduced by the war, by
the invasion of its territory by the Northern Methodist Episcopal,
and by the African and Zion churches. Its statistics are as follows:

                  Ministers.   Members.
      1850         1,500       465,553
      1860         2,408       699,164
      1866         3,769       505,101
      1867         3,952       535,040
      1869 presents no important change.

The average annual increase in seventeen years has been 4,087.

40. The "Free Methodist Church" originated in 1859, and consisted
of a few congregations in New York and other Northern states. Its
statistics have been as follows:

                  Preachers.   Members.
      1864            66         3,555
      1866            85         4,889
      1868            94         6,000

The average annual increase in two years has been 617.

41. The "Western Primitive Methodist Church" held its twenty-second
annual conference in New Diggings, Wisconsin, 1866. The subject of
union with other non-episcopal bodies was favorably considered. Their
numbers were in 1865 as follows: Preachers, 20; members, 2,000.

42. The "Independent Methodist Church" organized its first
congregation in New York City in 1860. The third annual session of
its conference was held in 1864, and a movement made toward union
with other non-episcopal bodies.

43. The "Friends," or "Quakers," arose in England about 1647, under
the preaching of Mr. George Fox. The numbers of this denomination are
estimated at 100,000, comprised in eight yearly meetings.

44. A division took place during the first quarter of the present
century among the Friends, under Mr. Elias Hicks. A distinct and
independent association was made under his name. Their numbers are
estimated at 40,000.

45. The "Shakers," or United Society of Believers, are a small
denomination which first made its appearance in this country in 1776.

Their statistics have been as follows:

                  Preachers.   Members.
      1828            45         4,500
      1860            --         4,713

They are found in Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York,
Kentucky, Connecticut.

46. The "Adventists," or "Second Adventists," owe their rise in the
United States to Mr. Wm. Miller, of Low Hampton, New York.

In 1859, they were estimated to comprise about 18,000 persons, and
in 1867 about 30,000, exclusive of members of other denominations.
Average annual increase in eight years, 1,500.

47. The "New Church," or "Swedenborgians," accept as their rule
of faith and discipline the Holy Scriptures as interpreted by Mr.
Emanuel Swedenborg.

Their numbers in the United States have been estimated as follows:

                  Ministers.  Churches.   Members.
      1850            42         30        3,000
      1862            57         49        5,000

Average annual increase in twelve years, 166.

48. Modern "Spiritualism" made its appearance in Western New York
about twenty years ago. It came at first in the form of rappings,
knockings, table-tippings, and other noisy demonstrations, for
the purpose of attracting general attention. The believers held
conventions and public meetings, but adopted no form or plan of
organization. Great numbers in all denominations are supposed to
approve more or less of their views; but the number of separate
public adherents is estimated at 165,000.

49. The "Mormon Church," or "Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day
Saints," was first organized in the town of Manchester, New York, on
April 6, 1830, by Mr. Joseph Smith, of Vermont. The fortunes of the
church thus started have been variable in New York, Ohio, Missouri,
and Illinois, until persecution has compelled her to withdraw to the
wilderness of Utah. Their number is stated to be 60,000. The average
annual increase in twenty-five years, 2,000.

50. Four miles from Oneida, Madison County, New York, is located an
organized community the members of which call themselves "Christian
Perfectionists." It was started by Mr. John F. Noyes, a native of
Brattleboro, Vermont.

They have now a community in Oneida, Wallingford, Conn., New Haven,
Conn., and New York, which consisted of 255 members in 1867. This is
an average annual increase of 10.

51. The "Catholic Apostolic Church," or "Irvingites," originated from
the views of Mr. Edward Irving, preached in London in 1830.

There are about a half-dozen of these congregations in this country,
estimated to contain 250 members.

A number of small nuclei of perhaps future denominations exists in
different states, which it is unnecessary to mention.

A recapitulation of the preceding statistics presents the following

                                          Church      Average
                                          Members     Annual
                                            in       Increase
                                           1867.    in 25 y'rs.

      1. Lutherans                        332,155      7,182
      2. German Reformed                  110,408      3,431
      3. United Brethren                   97,983      1,319
      4. Moravians                          6,655         26
      5. Dutch Reformed                    57,846      1,261
      6. Mennonites                        39,110        380
      7. Reformed Mennonites               11,000        200
      8. Evangelical Association           58,002      1,791
      9. Christian Connection             500,000      7,954
      10. Church of God                    32,000        960
      11. O. S. Presbyterians             246,350      6,958
      12. N. S. Presbyterians             161,538      2,167
      13. Reformed Presbyterians
          (General Synod)                   8,324        153
      14. Synod of Reformed
          Presbyterians                     6,000         --
      15. Associate and United
          Presbyterians                    63,489      1,000
      16. Associate Reformed Presbyterians  3,909         80
      17. Free Presbyterians                1,000         --
      18. Cumberland Presbytr'ns.         100,000      1,819
      19. Baptists                      1,094,806     13,796
      20. Free-Will Baptists               59,111        204
      21. Seventh-Day Baptists              7,038         41
      22. Dunkers                          20,000        500
      23. German Seventh-Day Baptists       1,800         30
      24. Free-Commun. Baptists               104         --
      25. Anti-Mission Baptists           105,000      6,143
      26. Six-Principle Baptists            3,000         --
      27. River Brethren                    7,000         80
      28. Disciples (Campbellites)        300,000      4,762
      29. Congregationalists              278,362      4,734
      30. Unitarians                       30,000        300
      31. Universalists                    80,000      1,000
      32. Protestant Episcopal            194,692      6,536
      33. Methodist Episcopal           1,146,081     30,377
      34. Methodist Protestant             50,000         --
      35. Methodist Church                 50,000      2,000
      36. True Wesleyan                    25,000        200
      37. African Methodist               200,000      7,500
      38. Zion African Methodist           60,000      2,008
      39. Methodist Epis. (South)         535,040      4,087
      40. Free Methodist                    4,880        617
      41. Western Primitive Methodist       2,000         40
      42. Independent Methodists              800         --
      43. Friends, or Quakers             100,000      1,000
      44. Hicksites                        40,000        400
      45. Shakers                           4,713         60
      46. Adventists                       30,000      1,500
      47. Swedenborgians                    5,000        186
      48. Spiritualism                    165,000      8,000
      49. Mormon Church                    60,000      2,000
      50. Christian Perfectionists            255         10
      51. Catholic Apost. Church              250         10
                                        ---------    -------
            Total                       6,396,110    134,802

Thus the whole number of members of Protestant churches in the United
States in 1867 was 6,396,110. The average annual increase of this
membership during the preceding twenty-five years has been 134,802.

The population of the United States according to the usual census and
that of the Bureau of Statistics for 1867, has been as follows:

      1840             17,069,453
      1850             23,191,876
      1860             31,443,322
      1867             36,743,198
      1870 incomplete officially.

The average annual increase in twenty-seven years has been 728,509.

If we deduct from the population of the United States in 1867 the
number of persons who were members of Protestant churches, there
will remain 30,347,088 persons in the United States in 1867 who were
not members of Protestant churches, who made no public profession of
faith in their doctrines, and who did not partake of their sacraments.

If we suppose the church-membership of Protestant denominations to
increase at the same average annual rate during the next thirty-three
years, until the year 1900, that increase will amount to 4,448,466.
If this increase is added to the number of church-members in 1867,
the membership of all the Protestant churches in the year 1900 will
be 10,844,576.

If we suppose the population of the United States to increase in the
same average annual rate during the next thirty-three years, until
the year 1900, that increase will amount to 24,040,797. This amount
added to the population of 1867 will make the population in 1900
reach the number 60,784,945, of whom 49,940,419 will not be members
of any Protestant church, nor make a public profession of faith in
their doctrines, nor partake of their sacraments.

It may be said that the average annual increase of Protestantism for
twenty-five years subsequent to 1867 will be numerically greater
than for the previous twenty-five years. So will also be numerically
larger the average annual increase of the population for a like
period, but the relative proportion of the denominations to the
population would remain unchanged.


      Phœbus drew back with just disdain
        The wreath: the Delphic Temple frowned:
      The suppliant fled to Hermes' fane,
        That stood on lower, wealthier ground.

      The Thief-God spake, with smile star-bright:
        "Go thou where luckier poets browse,
      The pastures of the Lord of Light,
        And do--what I did with his cows."[28]

                                             AUBREY DE VERE.


[28] He stole, killed, and ate the whole of Apollo's herd, before he
was a day old! See Homer's _Hymn to Mercury_.


We were at school together. We little dreamed, either of us, in those
mischief-loving days of frolic and fun, that she was one day to be a
saint, and that I would write her story.

Yet look well at the face. Is there not something like a promise of
sainthood on the pure, white brow? And the eyes, blue-gray Irish
eyes, with the long, dark lashes throwing a shadow underneath,
"diamonds put in with dirty fingers," have they not a spiritual
outlook that speaks to you with a promise--a revelation of some
vision or growth of some beauty beyond what meets your gaze? Yet,
though it seems so clear in the retrospect, this prophetic side of
her beauty, I own it, never struck me then.

I am going to tell her story simply, with strict accuracy as to the
traits of her character--the facts of her life and her death. I shall
tell the bad with the good, neither striving to varnish her faults
nor to heighten, by any dramatic coloring, the beautiful reality of
her virtues. The story is one calculated, it seems to me, to be a
light and a lesson to many. The very faults and follies, the strange
beginning, so unlike the end, all taken as parts of a whole in the
true experience of a soul, contain a teaching whose sole eloquence
must be its truth and its simplicity.

I said we were at school together, but, though in the same convent,
we were not in the same class. Mary (this was her real Christian
name) was a few years older than I. Her career at this time was one
of the wildest that ever a school-girl lived through. High-spirited,
reckless, setting all rules at defiance, she was the torment of her
mistresses and the delight of her companions. With the latter, her
good-nature and good temper carried her serenely above all the little
malices and jealousies that display themselves in that miniature
world, a school; and, at the same time, her spirit of independence,
while it was constantly getting her into "scrapes," was so redeemed
by genuine abhorrence of everything approaching to meanness or deceit
that it did not prevent her being a universal favorite with the nuns.
One in particular, who from her rigorous disciplinarianism was the
terror of us all, was even less proof than the others against the
indomitable sweet temper and lovableness of her rebellious pupil.
They were in a state of permanent warfare, but occasionally, after a
hot skirmish carried on before the public, viz., the second class,
Mother Benedicta would take the rebel aside, and try privately
to coax her into a semblance of apology, or mayhap a promise of
amendment. Sometimes she succeeded, for the refractory young lady
was always more amenable to caresses than to threats, and was,
besides, notwithstanding the war footing on which they stood, very
fondly attached to Mother Benedicta, but she never pledged herself
unconditionally. This was a great grievance with the mistress. She
used to argue, and threaten, and plead by the hour, in order to
induce Mary to give her "word of honor," as the phrase was amongst
us, that she would observe such and such a prohibition, or obey such
and such a rule--silence was the chronic _casus belli_--but all to
no purpose.

"No, sister, I promise you to try; but I won't promise to do or not
to do," she would answer, undefiantly, but quite resolutely.

It was a common thing for Mother Benedicta to say, after one of
these conferences which ended, as usual, in the cautious, "I'll try,
sister," that, if she could once get Mary to promise her outright to
mend her ways, she would never take any more trouble about her. "If
she pledged her word of honor to be a saint, I believe she would keep
it," observed the nun, with a sigh.

I mention this little incident advisedly, for, though at the time we,
in our wisdom, thought it must be pure perversity on the part of our
mistress that made her so pursue Mary on the subject, considering
that we were all in the habit of pledging our words of honor any
given number of times a week with no particular result, I lived to
see that in this individual instance she was guided by prophetic

She never succeeded, however, in inducing Mary to commit herself
during the four years that she was under her charge. It was war
to the end; not to the bitter end, for the strife did not weaken,
nay, it probably strengthened the enduring attachment that had
sprung up between them. By way of sealing irrevocably and publicly
this attachment on her side, Mary added the nun's name to her own,
and even after she left school she continued to sign herself Mary
Benedicta. When the time came round for frequenting the sacraments,
it was the sure signal for a quarrel between the two belligerents.
There was no plea or stratagem that Mary would not have recourse
to in order to avoid going to confession. Yet withal she had a
reputation in the school for piety--a queer, impulsive sort of
piety peculiar to herself, that came by fits and starts. We had an
unaccountable belief in the efficacy of her prayers, and in any
difficulty she was one of those habitually appealed to to pray us out
of it; not, indeed, that we were actuated by any precise view as to
the spiritual quality of the prayers, only impressed vaguely by her
general character, that whatever she did she put her heart in and
did thoroughly. Mother Benedicta used to say that her devotion to
the Blessed Sacrament would save her. But this devotion consisted,
as far as we could see, in an enthusiastic love for Benediction; and
as Mary was passionately fond of music, and confessed a weakness
for effective ceremonial, Mother Benedicta herself occasionally had
misgivings as to how much of the devotion went to the object of the
ceremony and how much to its accessories, the lights, the music, and
the incense. At any rate, once over, it exercised no apparent control
over her life. The rules of the school she systematically ignored;
the rule of silence she looked upon with special contempt as a
bondage fit for fools, but unworthy of rational human beings. To the
last day of her sojourn in the school, she practically illustrated
the opinion that speech was of gold and silence of brass, and left it
with the reputation of being the most indefatigable talker; the most
unruly and untidy subject, but the sweetest nature that ever tried
the patience and won the hearts of the community.

When she was about eighteen, her father sent her to the Sacré Cœur,
in Paris, to complete her education, which, in spite of considerable
expense on his part, and masters without end, was at this advanced
period in a sadly retrograde state, the little she had learned at
school in Ireland having been assiduously forgotten in the course
of a year's anarchical holiday, when reading of every sort and even
her favorite music were set aside for the more congenial pastimes of
dancing, and skating, and flying across country after the hounds.

I was then living in Paris, and Mary was placed under my mother's
wing. We went to see her on the _Jours de Parloir_, and she came
to us on the _Jours de Sortie_. But it did not last long. As might
have been expected, the sudden change from a life of excitement and
constant out-door exercise to one of seclusion and sedentary habits
proved too trying to her health, and after a few months the medical
man of the convent declared that he was not prepared to accept the
responsibility of taking charge of her, and strongly advised that she
should be sent home.

We communicated this intelligence to her father, begging at the same
time that before he came to remove her she might be allowed to spend
a month with us. The request was granted and Mary came to stay with

That we might lose as little as possible of each other's company
while we were together, she shared my room. We spent the mornings at
home; I studying or taking my lessons, she reading, or lolling about
the room, watching the clock, and longing for the master to go and
set me free, that we might go out.

My mother, who only in a lesser degree shared my affection for
Mary, and was anxious to make her visit as pleasant as possible,
took her about to all the places best worth seeing in the city--the
picture-galleries, the palaces, the museums, and the churches. The
latter, though many of them, even as works of art, were amongst the
most interesting monuments for a stranger, Mary seemed thoroughly
indifferent to. When we entered one, instead of kneeling a moment
before the sanctuary, as any Catholic does from mere force of habit
and impulse, she would just make the necessary genuflexion, and,
without waiting for us, hurry on round the building, examine the
pictures and the stained glass, and then go out with as little delay
as might be. This did not strike my mother, who was apt to remain all
the time at her prayers, while I walked about doing the honors of the
church to Mary; but it struck me, and it pained and puzzled me.

She was too innately honest to attempt the shadow of prevarication
or _pose_ even in her attitude, and her haste in despatching the
inspection of every church we entered was so undisguised that I saw
she did not care whether I noticed it or not. Once, on coming out
of the little church of St. Genevieve, one of the loveliest shrines
ever raised to the worship of God by the genius of man, I said rather
sharply to her, for she had beaten a more precipitate retreat than
usual, and cut short my mother's devotions at the tomb of the saint:

"Mary," I said, "one really would think the devil was at your heels
the moment you enter a church, you are in such a violent hurry to get
out of it."

She laughed, not mockingly, with a sort of half-ashamed expression,
and turning her pure, full eyes on me.

"I hate to stay anywhere under false appearances," she said, "and I
always feel such a hypocrite kneeling before the Blessed Sacrament! I
feel as if I would choke if I stay there over five minutes."

I felt shocked, and I suppose I looked it.

"Don't look at me as if I were possessed of the devil," she said,
still laughing, though there was a touch of sadness, it struck me,
in her voice and face. "I mean to be converted by-and-by, and mend my
ways; but meantime let me have my fun, and, above all, don't preach
to me!"

"I don't feel the least inclined," I replied.

"I suppose you think I'm gone beyond it. Well, you can pray for me.
I'm not gone beyond the reach of that!"

This was the only serious conversation, if it deserves the name,
that we had during the first week of her visit. She enjoyed herself
thoroughly, throwing all the zest of her earnest nature into
everything. The people and their odd French ways, the shops and
their exquisite wares, the opera, the gay Bois with the brilliant
throng of fashion that crowded round the lake every day at the hour
of promenade--the novelty of the scene and the place altogether
enchanted her, and there was something quite refreshing in the spirit
of enjoyment she threw into it all.

One evening, after a long day of sight-seeing, we were invited by a
friend of hers to dine at the _table d'hôte_ of the Louvre. It was
the _grande nouveauté_ just then, and Mary was consequently wild to
see it. We went, and during dinner the admiration excited by her
beauty was so glaringly expressed by the persistent stare of every
eye within range of her at the table that my mother was provoked
at having brought her and exposed her to such an ordeal. But Mary
herself was blissfully unconscious of the effect she was producing;
indeed, it would hardly be an exaggeration to say she was unconscious
of the cause. Certainly, no woman ever had less internal perception
or outward complacency in her beauty than she had. This indifference
amounted to a fault, for it pervaded her habits of dress, which were
very untidy, and betokened a total disregard of personal appearance.
The old fault that had been one of Mother Benedicta's standing
grievances was as strong as ever, and it was all I could do to get
her to put on her clothes straight, and to tie her bonnet under her
chin instead of under her ear, when she came out with us.

But to return to the Louvre. It had been settled that after dinner we
should walk across to the Palais Royal, and let Mary see the diamond
shops illuminated, and all the other wonderful shops; but during
dinner she overheard some one saying that the Emperor and Empress
were to be at the Grand Opera that night. Her first impulse was to
take a box and go there. But my mother objected that it was Saturday,
the opera was never over before midnight, and consequently we could
not be home and in bed before one o'clock on Sunday morning.

With evident disappointment, but, as usual, with the sweetest good
temper, Mary gave way. Her friend then proposed that, before going
to the Palais Royal, we should walk on to the Rue Lepelletier, and
see the Emperor and Empress going in to the Opera. There was no
difficulty in the way of this amendment, so it was adopted.

On coming out of the Louvre, however, we found, to our surprise
and discomfiture, that the weather had been plotting against our
little programme. The ground, which was frozen dry and hard when
we drove down from the Champs Elysées less than two hours before,
had become like polished glass under a heavy fall of sleet; the
horses were already slipping about in a very uncomfortable way, and
there was a decided disinclination on the part of pedestrians to
trust themselves to cabs. Fate had decreed that Mary was not to see
the Emperor on any terms that night. It would have been absurdly
imprudent to venture on the macadam of the boulevards, and increase
the risk of driving at all by waiting till the streets were so
slippery that no horse could keep his footing on them. There was
nothing for it but to go straight home, which we did, the horse
snailing at a foot-pace all the way.

It was a memorable night this one of which I am chronicling a trivial
recollection--trivial in itself, but weighty in its consequences.

It was the 14th of January, 1858.

We went to bed, and slept, no doubt, soundly. None the less soundly
for the thundering crash that, before we lay down, had shaken the
Rue Lepelletier from end to end, making the houses rock to their
foundations, shattering to pieces every window from garret to cellar,
and reverberating along the boulevards like the roar of a hundred
cannon. The noise shook half Paris awake for that long night. The
people, first merely terrified, then lashed to a frenzy of horror and
of enthusiasm, rushed from their houses, and thronged the boulevards
and the streets in the vicinity of the Opera. In the pitch darkness
that followed simultaneously with the bursting of Orsini's bombs, it
was impossible to know how many were murdered or how many wounded.
There had been a great crowd of _curieux_ and strangers as usual
waiting to see their majesties alight--the street was lined with
them. Were they all murdered, blown to the four winds of heaven, in
that explosion that was loud enough to have blown up half Paris? Of
course, popular fear and fury exaggerated the number of the victims
enormously, and the night resounded with the shrieks and lamentations
of women, the plunging and moaning of horses, wounded or only
frantic with terror, and the passionate cries of _Vive l'Empereur!_
intermingled with curses on the fiends who, to secure the murder of
one man, had sacrificed the lives of hundreds.

While this ghastly tumult was scaring sleep and silence from the city
close to us, we slept on, all unconscious of the cup of trembling to
which we had stretched out our hand, and which had been so mercifully
snatched away from us.

It was only next morning, on going out to Mass, that the _concierge_
stopped us to tell the news of the attempt on the Emperor's life.

And we had been vexed and felt aggrieved with the rain that drove us
home, and prevented our going to stand amongst those _curieux_ in the
Rue Lepelletier!

Mary did not hear of it till we met at breakfast. I never shall
forget the look of blank horror on her face as she listened to the
account of what had happened on the very spot where we had been so
bent on going.

Although this attack of Orsini's comes into my narrative simply as a
datum, I cannot resist making a short digression toward it.

Most of my readers will remember the singular stoicism displayed by
the Emperor at the moment of the explosion. One of the horses was
killed under his carriage, which was violently shaken by the plunging
of the terrified animals, and a splinter from one of the bombs,
flashing through the window, grazed him on the temple. In the midst
of the general panic and confusion of the scene, the equerry rushed
forward, and, taking the Emperor by the arm, cried hurriedly:

"Come out, sire! Come out!"

"Let down the steps," observed his master with unruffled _sang
froid_, and quietly waited till it was done before he moved.

He entered the Opera amidst deafening cheers, and sat out the
representation as coolly, and to all appearances with as much
attention, as if nothing had occurred to disturb him, now and then
quietly drawing his handkerchief across the splinter-mark on his
forehead, from which the blood was oozing slightly.

Next day a solemn Te Deum was celebrated at the Tuileries. The
Empress wished the little prince, then a baby in arms, to be
present at the thanksgiving for her own and his father's miraculous
preservation. The child was carried into the Salle des Maréchaux,
where the court and the Corps Diplomatique were assembled, and
immediately put out his hands, clamoring for his father to take him.
The Emperor took him in his arms, and the child, looking up at his
face, noticed the red mark on the temple.

"Papa _bobo_!"[29] he lisped, and put up his little hand to touch it.

The hard, sphynx-like face struggled for a moment; but the child's
touch had melted the strong man. He clasped him to his heart, and
literally shook with sobs.

These details, which were probably never written before, were told to
me by one who was present at the attempt the previous night, and at
the Te Deum Mass next day.

That night, when we were alone, Mary and I talked over the diabolical
crime that had within four and twenty hours shaken the whole country
like an earthquake, and over the merciful interposition that had
arrested us on our way to what might have been for us, as it was for
many, a certain and horrible death. Mary, though she said little on
this latter point, was evidently very deeply impressed, and what she
did say carried in it a depth of religious emotion that revealed her
to me in quite a new light.

It was agreed that she would go to confession next day, and that we
were to begin a novena together in thanksgiving for our preservation.

"Mary," I said impulsively, after we had been silent a little while,
"why have you such a dislike to go to the sacraments? I can't
understand how, believing in them at all, you can be satisfied to
approach them so seldom."

"It isn't dislike; it is _fear_," she answered. "It's precisely
because I realize so _awfully_ the power and sanctity of the Blessed
Sacrament that I keep away. I believe so intensely in it that,
if I went often to holy communion, I should have to divorce from
everything, to give up my whole life to preparation and thanksgiving.
I know I should. And I don't want to do it. Not yet, at any rate,"
she added, half-unconsciously, as if speaking to herself.

I shall never forget the effect her words had on me, nor her face as
she uttered them. The night was far spent. The emotions of the day,
the long watch, and perhaps the flickering of our bedroom candle
that was burning low, all conspired to give an unwonted pallor
to her features that imbued them with an almost ethereal beauty.
I always think of her now as she sat there, in her girlish white
dressing-gown, her hands locked resting on her knees, her head thrown
back, and her eyes looking up, so still, as if some far beyond were
breaking on her gaze and holding it transfixed.

Nothing broke on mine. In my dull blindness I did not see that I was
assisting at the beginning of a great mystery, a spectacle on which
the gaze of angels was riveted--the wrestling of a soul with God: the
soul resisting; the Creator pleading and pursuing.

She left us at the end of January to return home. We parted with many
tears, and a promise to correspond often and pray for each other

For a time we did correspond very regularly--for nearly a year.
During this period her life was an unpausing whirl of dissipation.
Balls, visits, operas, and concerts during the season in town were
succeeded in the country by more balls, and hunting, and skating, and
the usual round of amusements that make up a gay country life. Mary
was everywhere the beauty of the place, the admired of all admirers.
Strange to say, in spite of her acknowledged supremacy, she made no
enemies. Perhaps it would have been stranger still if she had. Her
sweet, artless manner and perfect unconsciousness of self went for
at least as much in the admiration she excited as her beauty. If she
danced every dance at every ball, it was never once for the pleasure
of saying she did it, of triumphing over other girls, but for the
genuine pleasure of the dance itself.

Her success was so gratuitous, so little the result of coquetry on
her side, that, however much it might be envied, it was impossible to
resent it.

I am not trying to make out a case for Mary, or to excuse, still
less justify, the levity of the life she was leading at this time.
My only aim is to convey a true idea of the spirit in which she was
leading it--mere exuberance of spirits, the zest of youth in the gay
opportunities that were showered upon her path. She was revelling
like a butterfly in flowers and sunshine. The spirit of worldliness
in its true and worst sense did not possess her; did not even touch
her. Its cankerous breath had not blown upon her soul and blighted
it; the worm had not eaten into her heart and hardened it. Both were
still sound--only drunk; intoxicated with the wine of life. She went
waltzing through flames, like a moth round a candle; like a child
letting off rockets, and clapping hands with delight at the pretty
blue blaze, without fear or thought of danger. There was no such
thing as premeditated infidelity in her mind. She was not playing
a deliberate game with God; bidding him wait till she was ready,
till she was tired of the world and the world of her. No, she was
utterly incapable of such a base and guilty calculation. She had
simply forgotten that she had a soul to save. The still, small voice
that had spoken to her in earlier days, especially on that night of
the 15th of January, stirring the sleeping depths, and calling out
momentary yearnings toward the higher life, had altogether ceased
its pleadings. How could that mysterious whisper make itself heard
in such a din and clangor of unholy music? There was no silent spot
in her soul where it could enter and find a listener. But Mary did
not think about it. She was inebriated with youth and joy, and had
flung herself into the vortex, and raced round with it till her head
reeled. On the surface, all was ripple and foam, rings running round
and round; but the depths below were sleeping. The one, the visible
hold that she retained on God at this time was her love for his poor.
Her heart was always tender to suffering in every form, but to the
poor especially. As an instance of this, I may mention her taking
off her flannel petticoat, on a bitter winter's day, to give it to
a poor creature whom she met shivering at the roadside, and then
running nearly a mile home in the cold herself.

After about a year our correspondence slackened, and gradually broke
down altogether. I heard from her once in six months, perhaps.
The tone of her letters struck me as altered. I could not exactly
say how, except that it had grown more serious. She said nothing
of triumphs at archery meetings or of brushes carried off "at the
death;" there seemed to be no such feats to chronicle. She talked of
her family and of mine, very little of herself. Once only, in answer
to a direct question as to what books she read, she told me that she
was reading Father Faber, and that she read very little else. This
was the only clue I gained to the nature of the change that had come
over her.

At the expiration of about two years, a clergyman, who was an old
friend of her family, and a frequent visitor at the house, came to
Paris, and gave me a detailed account of the character and extent of
the change.

The excitement into which she had launched on returning home, and
which she had kept up with unflagging spirit, had, as might have been
expected, told on her health, never very strong. A cough set in at
the beginning of the winter which caused her family some alarm. She
grew thin to emaciation, lost her appetite, and fell into a state of
general ill-health. Change of air and complete rest were prescribed
by the medical men. She was accordingly taken from one sea-side place
to another, and condemned to a _régime_ of dulness and quiet. In
a few months the system told favorably, and she was sufficiently
recovered to return home.

But the monotony of an inactive life which was still enforced, after
the mad-cap career she had been used to, wearied her unspeakably.
For want of something better to do, she took to reading. Novels,
of course. Fortunately for her, ten years ago young ladies had not
taken to writing novels that honest men blush to review, and that
too many young ladies do not blush to read. Mary did no worse than
waste her time without active detriment to her mind. She read the
new novels of the day, and, if she was not much the better, she was
probably none the worse for it. But one day--a date to be written in
gold--a friend, the same who gave me these particulars, made her a
present of Father Faber's _All for Jesus_. The title promised very
little entertainment; reluctantly enough, Mary turned over the pages
and began to read. How long she read, I cannot tell. It might be
true to say that she never left off. Others followed, all from the
same pen, through uninterrupted days, and weeks, and months. She
told me afterward that the burning words of those books--the first
especially, and _The Creator and the Creature_--pursued her even in
her dreams. She seemed to hear a voice crying after her unceasingly:
"Arise, and follow!"

Suddenly, but irrevocably, the whole aspect of life was changed to
her. She began to look back upon the near past, and wonder whether
it was she herself who had so enjoyed those balls and gaieties, or
whether she had not been mad, and imagined it, and was only now in
her right mind. The most insuperable disgust succeeded to her love of
worldly amusement. She cared for nothing but prayer and meditation,
and the service of the poor and suffering. An ardent longing took
possession of her to suffer for and with our Divine Master. Yielding
to the impulse of her new-born fervor, she began to practise the most
rigorous austerities, fasting much, sleeping little, and praying
almost incessantly. This was done without the counsel or cognizance
of any spiritual guide. She knew of no one to consult. Her life
had been spiritually so neglected during the last two years that
direction had had no part to play in it. There was nothing to direct.
The current was setting in an opposite direction. The supernatural
was out of sight.

Under cover of her health, which, though it was fairly recovered,
still rendered quiet and great prudence desirable, Mary contrived to
avoid all going out, and secretly laid down for herself a rule of
life that she adhered to scrupulously.

But this could not go on long. As she grew in the ways of prayer,
the spirit of God led her imperceptibly but inevitably into the sure
and safe high-road of all pilgrims travelling toward the bourn of
sanctity and aiming at a life of perfection.

The necessity of a spiritual director was gradually borne in upon
her, as she said to me, while at the same time the difficulty of
meeting with this treasure, whom St. Teresa bids us seek amongst ten
thousand, grew more and more apparent and disheartening.

Her father, a man of the world and very little versed in the
mysteries of the interior life, but a good practical Catholic
nevertheless, saw the transformation that had taken place in his
daughter, and knew not exactly whether to be glad or sorry. He
acknowledged to her long after that the first recognition of it
struck upon his heart like a death-knell. He felt it was the signal
for a great sacrifice.

Mary opened her heart to him unreservedly, seeking more at his hands
perhaps than any mere father in flesh and blood could give, asking
him to point out to her the turning-point of the new road on which
she had entered, and to help her to tread it. That it was to be a
path of thorns in which she would need all the help that human love
could gather to divine grace, she felt already convinced.

Her father, with the honesty of an upright heart, confessed himself
inadequate to the solving of such a problem, and bravely proposed
taking her to London to consult Father Faber.

Mary, in an ecstasy of gratitude, threw her arms round his neck, and
declared it was what she had been longing for for months. Father
Faber had been her guide so far; his written word had spoken to her
like a voice from the holy mount, making all the dumb chords of her
soul to vibrate. What would he not do for her if she could speak to
him heart to heart, and hear the words of prayer-inspired wisdom from
his own lips!

They set out in a few days for London; but they were not to get
there. The promise that looked so near and so precious in its
accomplishment was never to be fulfilled. They had no sooner reached
Dublin than Mary fell ill. For some days she was in high fever; the
medical men assured the panic-stricken father that there was no
immediate cause for alarm; no remote cause even, as the case then
stood; the patient was delicate, but her constitution was good,
the nervous system sound, although shaken by the present attack,
and apparently by previous mental anxiety. The attack itself they
attributed to a chill which had fallen on the chest.

The event justified the opinion of the physicians. Mary recovered
speedily. It was not judged advisable, however, to let her proceed
to London. She relinquished the plan herself with a facility that
surprised her father. He knew how ardently she had longed to see the
spiritual guide who had already done so much for her, and he could
not forbear asking why she took the disappointment so coolly.

"It's not a disappointment, father. God never disappoints. I don't
know why, only I feel as if the longing were already satisfied; as if
I were not to go so far to find what I'm looking for," she answered;
and quietly set about preparing to go back home.

But they were still on the road of Damascus. On the way home, they
rested at the house of a friend near the Monastery of Mount Melleray.
I cannot be quite sure whether the monks were giving a retreat for
seculars in the monastery, or whether it was being preached in the
neighboring town. As well as I remember, it was the latter. Indeed, I
doubt whether women would be admitted to assist at a retreat within
the monastery, and, if not, this would be conclusive. But of one
thing I am sure, the preacher was Father Paul, the superior of La
Trappe. I don't know whether his eloquence, judged by the standard
of human rhetoric, was anything very remarkable, but many witnesses
go to prove on exhaustive evidence that it was of that kind whose
property it is to save souls.

To Mary it came like a summons straight from heaven. She felt an
imperative desire to speak to him at once in the confessional.

"I can give you no idea of the exquisite sense of peace and security
that came over me the moment I knelt down at his feet," she said, in
relating to me this stage of her vocation. "I felt certain that I had
found the man who was to be my Father Faber."

And so she had.

All that passes between a director and his spiritual child is of so
solemn and sacred a nature that, although many things which Mary
confided to me concerning her intercourse with the saintly abbot
of La Trappe might prove instructive and would certainly prove
edifying to many interior souls, I do not feel justified in repeating
them. If I were even not held back by this fear of indiscretion, I
should shrink from relating these confidences, lest I should mar
the beauty or convey a false interpretation of their meaning. While
she was speaking, I understood her perfectly. While listening to
the wonderful experiences of divine grace with what she had been
favored, and which she recounted to me with the confiding simplicity
of a child, her words were as clear and reflected her thoughts as
luminously as a lake reflects the stars looking down into its crystal
depths, making the mirror below a faithful repetition of the sky
above. But when I tried to write down what she had said while it
was quite fresh upon my mind, the effort baffled me. There was so
little to write, and that little was so delicate, so mysteriously
intangible, I seemed never to find the right word that had come
so naturally, so expressively, to her. When she spoke of prayer
especially, there was an eloquence, rising almost to sublimity,
in her language that altogether defied my coarse translation, and
seemed to dissolve like a rainbow under the process of dissection.
The most elevated subjects she was at home with as if they had been
her natural theme, the highest spirituality her natural element.
The writings of St. Teresa and St. Bernard had grown familiar to her
as her catechism, and she seemed to have caught the note of their
inspired teaching with the mastery of sainthood. This was the more
extraordinary to me that her intellect was by no means of a high
order. Quite the contrary. Her taste, the whole bent of her nature,
was the reverse of intellectual, and what intelligence she had was,
as far as real culture went, almost unreclaimed. Her reading had
been always of the most superficial, non-metaphysical kind; indeed,
the aversion to what she called "hard reading" made her turn with
perverse dislike from any book whose title threatened to be at all
instructive. She had never taken a prize at school, partly because
she was too lazy to try for it, but also because she had not brain
enough to cope with the clever girls of her class. Mary was quite
alive to her shortcomings in this line, indeed she exaggerated
them, as she was prone to do most of her delinquencies, and always
spoke of herself as "stupid." This she decidedly was not; but her
intellectual powers were sufficiently below superiority to make her
sudden awakening to the sublime language of mystical theology and her
intuitive perception of its subtlest doctrines matter of great wonder
to those who only measure man's progress in the science of the saints
by the shallow gauge of human intellect.

"How do you contrive to understand those books, Mary?" I asked her
once, after listening to her quoting St. Bernard _à l'appui_ of some
remarks on the Prayer of Union that carried me miles out of my depth.

"I don't know," she replied with her sweet simplicity, quite
unconscious of revealing any secrets of infused science to my
wondering ears. "I used not to understand them the least; but
by degrees the meaning of the words began to dawn on me, and the
more I read, the better I understood. When I come to anything very
difficult, I stop, and pray, and meditate till the meaning comes to
me. It is often a surprise to myself, considering how stupid I am in
everything else," she continued, laughing, "that I should understand
spiritual books even as well as I do."

Those who have studied the ways of God with his saints will not share
her surprise. In our own day, the venerable Curé d'Ars is among the
most marvellous proofs of the manner in which he pours out his wisdom
on those who are accounted and who account themselves fools, not
worthy to pass muster amongst men. But I am anticipating.

Her meeting with Father Paul was the first goal in her new career,
and from the moment Mary had reached it she felt secure of being led
safely to the end.

Those intervening stages were none the less agitated by many interior
trials; doubts as to the sincerity of her vocation; heart-sinkings
as to her courage in bearing on under the cross that she had taken
up; misgivings, above all, as to the direction in which that cross
lay. While her life-boat was getting ready, filling its sails, and
making out of port for the shoreless sea of detachment and universal
sacrifice, she sat shivering; her hand on the helm; the deep waters
heaving beneath her; the wind blowing bleak and cold; the near waves
dashing up their spray into her face, and the breakers further out
roaring and howling like angry floods. There were rocks ahead, and
all round under those foaming billows; sad havoc had they made of
many a brave little boat that had put out to sea from that same
port where she was still tossing--home, with its sheltering love and
care; piety enough to save any well-intentioned soul; good example
to give and to take; good works to do in plenty, and the body not
overridden by austerities against nature; not starved to despondency;
not exasperated by hunger, and cold, and endless vigils, and prayer
as endless. It was a goodly port and safe, this home of hers. See
how the deep throws up its prey on every side! Wrecks and spars, the
shattered remnants of bold vessels, and the lifeless bodies of the
rash crew are everywhere strewn over the waters. "Take heed!" they
cry to her as she counts the records one by one. "This is an awful
sea, and bold must be the heart, and stout and iron-clad the boat
that tempts the stormy bosom. We came, and perished. Would that we
had never left the port!"

Mary never argued with the storm. She would fall at the feet of Him
who was "sleeping below," and wake him with the loud cry of trembling
faith, "Help me, Master, or I perish!" and the storm subsided.

But when the wind and the waves were hushed, there rose up in the
calm a voice sweet and low, but more ruthlessly terrible to her
courage than the threatening fury of ten thousand storms. She was
her father's oldest and darling child; she had a brother, too, and
sisters, all tenderly loved, and cousins and friends only less dear;
she was a joy and a comfort to many. Must she go from them? Must she
leave all this love and all the loveliness of life for ever?

Mary's vocation, notwithstanding its strongly marked supernatural
character, was not proof against these cruel alternations of
enthusiastic courage, and desolate heart-sinkings, and bewildering
doubts. Nay, they were no doubt a necessary part of its perfection.
It was needful that she should pass through the dark watch of
Gethsemani before setting out to climb the rugged hill of Calvary.

All this history of her interior life she told me _viva voce_ when we
met. In her letters, which were at this period very rare and always
very uncommunicative, she said nothing whatever of these strifes and

But her adversaries were not all within. A hard battle remained to
be fought with her father. His opposition was active and relentless.
He had at first tacitly acquiesced in her consecration to God in a
religious life of some sort; but he believed, as every one else did,
that to let her enter La Trappe would be to consign her to speedy
and certain death; and when she announced to him that this was the
order she had selected, and the one which drew her with the power of
attraction, that she had struggled in vain to resist, he declared
that nothing short of a written mandate from God would induce him to
consent to such an act of suicide. In vain Mary pleaded that when
God called a soul he provided all that was necessary to enable her
to answer the call; that her health, formerly so delicate when she
was leading a life of self-indulgence, was now completely restored;
that she had never been so strong as since she had lived in almost
continual abstinence (she did not eat meat on Wednesday, Friday, or
Saturday); that the weakness of nature was no obstacle to the power
of grace, and there are graces in the conventual life that seculars
did not dream of, nor receive because they did not need them.

In answer to these plausible arguments, the incredulous father
brought out the laws of nature, and reason and common sense, and the
opinion of the medical men who had attended her in Dublin, and under
whose care she had been more or less ever since. These men of natural
science and human sympathies declared positively that it was neither
more nor less than suicide to condemn herself to the rule of St.
Bernard in the cloister, where want of animal food and warmth would
infallibly kill her before the novitiate was out. They were prepared
to risk their reputation on the issue of this certificate.

Mary's exhaustive answer to all this was that grace was always
stronger than nature; that the supernatural element would overrule
and sustain the human one. But she pleaded in vain. Her father was
resolute. He even went so far as to insist on her returning to
society and seeing more of the world before she was divorced from it
irrevocably. This check was as severe as it was unexpected. Though
her disgust to the vanities of her former life continued as strong
as ever, while her longing for the perfect life grew every day more
intense and more energizing, her humility made her tremble for her
own weakness. Might not the strength that had borne her bravely so
far break down under the attack of all her old tempters let loose on
her at once? Her love of pleasure, that fatal enemy that now seemed
dead, might it not rise up again with overmastering power, and, aided
by the reaction prepared by her new life, seize her and hold her more
successfully than ever? Yes, all this was only too possible. There
was nothing for it but to brave her father, to defy his authority,
and to save her soul in spite of him. She must run away from home.

Before, however, putting this wise determination into practice, it
was necessary to consult Father Paul. His answer was what most of
our readers will suspect:

"Obedience is your first duty. No blessing could come from such a
violation of filial piety. Your father is a Christian. Do as he
bids you; appeal to his love for your soul not to tax its strength
unwisely; then trust your soul to God as a little child trusts to its
mother. He sought you, and pursued you, and brought you home when you
were flying from him. Is it likely he will forsake you now, when you
are seeking after him with all your heart and making his will the
one object of your life? Mistrust yourself, my child. Never mistrust
God." Mary felt the wisdom of the advice, and submitted to it in a
spirit of docility, of humble mistrust and brave trust, and made up
her mind to go through the trial as an earnest of the sincerity of
her desire to seek God's will, and accomplish it in whatever way he

She had so completely taken leave of the gay world for more than a
year that her reappearance at a county ball caused quite a sensation.

Rumor and romance had put their heads together, and explained after
their own fashion the motive of the change in her life and her total
seclusion from society. Of course, it could only be some sentimental
reason, disappointed affection, perhaps inadequate fortune or
position on one side, and a hard-hearted father on the other, etc.
Whispers of this idle gossip came to Mary's ears and amused her
exceedingly. She could afford to laugh at it as there was not the
smallest shadow of reality under the fiction.

Her father, whose parental weakness sheltered itself behind the
doctors and common sense, did not exact undue sacrifices from her.
He allowed her to continue her ascetic rule of life unmolested,
to abstain from meat as usual, to go assiduously amongst the poor,
and to devote as much time as she liked to prayer. There were two
Masses daily in the village church, one at half-past six, another at
half-past seven. He made a difficulty at first about her assisting at
them. The church was nearly half an hour's walk from the house, and
the cold morning or night air, as it really was, was likely to try
her severely. But after a certain amount of arguing and coaxing Mary
carried her point, and every morning long before daybreak sallied
forth to the village. Her nurse, who was very pious and passionately
attached to her, went with her. Not without hesitating, though. Every
day as regularly as they set out Malone entered a protest.

"It's not natural, Miss Mary, to be gadding out by candle-light in
this fashion, walking about the fields like a pair of ghosts. Indeed,
darlin', it isn't."

The nurse was right. It certainly was not natural, and, if Mary had
been so minded, she might have replied that it was not meant to be;
it was supernatural. She contented herself, however, by deprecating
the good soul's reproof and proposing to say the rosary, a proposal
to which Malone invariably assented. So, waking up the larks with
their matin prayer, the two would walk on briskly to church.

Once set an Irish nurse to pray, and she'll keep pace with any saint
in the calendar. Malone was not behind with the best. The devout old
soul, never loath to begin, when once on her knees and fairly wound
up in devotion, would go on for ever, and, when the two Masses were
over and it was time to go, Mary had generally to break her off in
the full tide of a litany that Malone went on muttering all the way
out of church and sometimes finished on the road home.

But if she was ready to help Mary in her praying feats, she highly
disapproved of the fasting ones, as well as of the short rest
that her young mistress imposed on herself. Mary confessed to me
that sleep was at this period her greatest difficulty. She was by
nature a great sleeper, and there was a time when early rising,
even comparatively early, seemed to her the very climax of heroic
mortification. By degrees she brought herself to rise at a given
hour, which gradually, with the help of her angel guardian and a
strong resolve, she advanced to five o'clock.

During this time of probation, her father took her constantly into
society, to archery meetings, and regattas, and concerts, and balls,
as the season went on. Mary did her part bravely and cheerfully.
Sometimes a panic seized her that her old spirit of worldliness was
coming back--coming back with seven devils to take his citadel by
storm and hold it more firmly than ever. But she had only to fix her
eyes steadily on the faithful beacon of the Light-house out at sea,
and bend her ear to the Life-bell chiming its _Sursum Corda_ far
above the moaning of the waves and winds, and her foolish fears gave

No one who saw her so bright and gracious, so gracefully pleased with
everything and everybody, suspected the war that was agitating her
spirit within. Her father wished her to take part in the dancing,
otherwise he said her presence in the midst of it would be considered
compulsory and her abstention be construed into censure or gloom.
Mary acquiesced with regard to the square dances, but resolutely
declined to waltz. Her father, satisfied with the concession, did not
coerce her further.

So things went on for about a year. Father Paul meantime had had
his share in the probationary action. He knew that his patient's
health was not strong, and taking into due account her father's
vehement and up to a certain point just representations on the
physical impossibility of her bearing the rule of St. Bernard, he
endeavored to attract her toward an active order, and used all his
influence to induce her to try at any rate a less austere one before
entering La Trappe. Animated by the purest and most ardent love for
the soul whose precious destinies were placed under his guidance,
he left nothing undone to prevent the possibility of mistake or
ultimate regret in her choice. He urged her to go and see various
other convents and make acquaintance with their mode of life. Seeing
her great reluctance to do this, he had recourse to stratagem in
order to compel her unconsciously to examine into the spirit and
rule of several monastic houses that he held in high esteem. One in
particular, a community of Benedictines, I think it was, he thought
likely to prove attractive to her as uniting a great deal of prayer
with active duties toward the poor, teaching, etc., and at the same
time of less crucifying discipline than that of Citeaux. He gave her
a commission for the superioress, with many excuses for troubling
her, and begging that she would not undertake it if it interfered
with any arrangement of her own or her father's just then.

Mary, never suspecting the trap that was laid for her, made a point
of setting out to the convent at once. The superioress, previously
enlightened by Father Paul, received her with more than kindness,
and, after discussing the imaginary subject of the visit, invited her
to visit the chapel, then the house, and finally, drawing her into
confidential discourse, explained all about its spirit and manner of

Mary, in relating this circumstance to me, said that, though the
superioress was one of the most attractive persons she ever met, and
the convent beautiful in its appointments, rather than enter it she
would have preferred spending the rest of her days in the dangers
of the most worldly life. Everything but La Trappe was unutterably
antagonistic to her. Yet, with the exception of Mount Melleray she
had never seen even the outside walls of a Cistercian convent, and
the fact of there not being one for women in Ireland added one
obstacle more in the way of her entering La Trappe.

When Father Paul heard the result of this last _ruse_, he confessed
the truth to her. Noways discouraged, nevertheless he persisted in
saying that she was much better fitted for a life of mixed activity
and contemplation than for a purely contemplative one, and he
forbade her for a time to let her mind dwell on the latter as her
ultimate vocation, to read any books that treated of it, even to pray
specially that she might be led to it. To all these despotic commands
Mary yielded a prompt, unquestioning obedience. She was with God like
a child with a schoolmaster. Whatever lesson he set her, she set
about learning it. Easy or difficult, pleasant or unpleasant, it was
all one to her cheerful good-will. Why do we not all do like her?
We are all children at school, but, instead of putting our minds to
getting our lesson by heart, we spend the study-hour chafing at the
hard words, dog-earing our book, and irreverently grumbling at the
master who has set us the task. Sometimes we think in our conceit
that it is too easy, that we should do better something difficult.
When the bell rings, we go up without knowing a word of it, and stand
sulky and disrespectful before the desk. We are chided, and turn
back, and warned to do better to-morrow. And so we go on from year
to year, from childhood to youth, from youth to age, never learning
our lesson properly, but dodging, and missing, and beginning over
and over again at the same point. Some of us go on being dunces to
the end of our lives, when school breaks up, and we are called for
and taken home--to the home where there are many mansions, but none
assuredly for the drones who have spent their school-days in idleness
and mutiny.

To Father Paul, the childlike submission and humility with which Mary
met every effort to thwart her vocation were no doubt more conclusive
proof of its solidity than the most marked supernatural favors would
have been.

At last her gentle perseverance was rewarded, grace triumphed over
her father's heart, and he expressed his willingness to give her up
to God.

In the summer of 1861, we went to stay at Versailles, and it was
there that I received from Mary the first definite announcement of
her vocation. She wrote to me saying that, after long deliberation
and much prayer and wise direction, she had decided on entering
a convent of the Cistercian order. As there was no branch of it
in Ireland, she was to come to France, and she begged me to make
inquiries as to where the novitiate was, and to let her know with as
little delay as possible. I will not dwell upon my own feelings on
reading this letter. I had expected some such result, though, knowing
the state of her health, it had not occurred to me she could have
joined, however she might have wished it, so severe an order as that
of the founder of Citeaux.

I had not the least idea where the novitiate in France was; and, as
the few persons whom I was able to question at once on the subject
seemed to know no more about it than I did myself, the hope flashed
across my mind that there might not be a convent of Trappistines at
all in France. But this was not of long duration.

We had on our arrival at Versailles made the acquaintance of a young
girl whom I shall call Agnes. My mother was already acquainted with
her parents and other members of the family; but Agnes had either
been at school or absent visiting relations, so from one cause or
another we had never met till now. She was seventeen years of age, a
fair, fragile-looking girl, who reminded most people of Schaeffer's

Agnes had a younger sister at the Convent of La Sainte Enfance, not
far from her father's residence, and she asked me one day to come
and see this sister and a nun that she was very fond of. I went,
and, being full of the thought of my sweet friend in Ireland, I
immediately opened the subject of Citeaux with the pretty talkative
little nun who came to the parlor with Agnes's sister.

"What a singular chance!" she exclaimed, when I had told as much of
my story as was necessary. "Why, we have at this moment a community
of Cistercian nuns in the house here! Their monastery is being
repaired, and in the meantime we have permission from the bishop to
harbor them. See," she went on, pointing to a row of windows whose
closed _Persiennes_ were visible at an angle from where we sat, "that
is where our mother has lodged them. You can speak to the prioress,
if you like, but of course you cannot see her."

I was more struck by the strange coincidence than overjoyed at being
so near the solution of my difficulty. I could not, however, but take
advantage of the opportunity. Sister Madeleine, which was the little
nun's name, ran off to ask "our mother's" permission for me to speak
with their Cistercian sister, and in a few minutes returned with an

I was led to the door of the community-room, and, through a little
extempore grating cut through the panel and veiled on the inside, I
held converse with the mother abbess.

A few words assured me that Sister Madeleine had been mistaken in
supposing her guests to be the daughters of St. Bernard. They were
Poor Clares--an order more rigorous, even, than the Trappistines;
bare feet, except when standing on a stone pavement or in the open
air, when the rule is to slip the feet into wooden sandals, are added
to the fasting and perpetual silence of Citeaux. Of this latter
the abbess could tell me nothing--nothing, at least, of its actual
existence and branches in France, though she broke out into impulsive
and loving praise of its spirit and its saintly founder, and the rich
harvest of souls he and his children had reaped for our Lord.

Here, then, was another respite. It really seemed probable that, if,
in a quarter so likely to be well informed on the point, there was no
account to be had of a Trappistine convent, there could not be one in
existence, and Mary, from sheer inability to enter La Trappe, might
be driven to choose some less terrible rule.

Mary meantime had set other inquirers on the track of St. Bernard,
and soon learned that the novitiate was at Lyons. The name of the
monastery is _Notre Dame de toute Consolation_.

After some preliminary correspondence with the abbess, the day was
fixed for her to leave Ireland and set out to her land of promise.

She came, of course, through Paris. It was three years since we had
met. I found her greatly altered; her beauty not gone, but changed.
She looked, however, in much better health than I had ever seen her.
Her spirits were gone, but there had come in their place a serenity
that radiated from her like sunshine. We went out together to do some
commissions of hers and the better to escape interruption, for this
was in all human probability to be our last meeting on earth, and we
had much to say to each other.

We drove first to Notre Dame des Victoires, where, at her constantly
recurring desire, I had been in the habit of putting her name down
for the prayers of the confraternity, and we knelt once again side by
side before the altar of our Blessed Lady.

From this we went to the Sacré Cœur, where Mary was anxious to see
some of her old mistresses and ask their prayers. Perseverance in her
vocation, and the accomplishment of God's will in her and by her,
were the graces she was never weary asking for herself, and imploring
others to ask for her. Her greediness for prayers was only equalled
by her intense faith in their efficacy. She could not resist catering
for them, and used to laugh herself at her own importunity on this

The sister who tended the gate gave us a cordial greeting; but, when
she heard that Mary was on her way to La Trappe, her surprise was
almost ludicrous. If her former pupil had said she was going to be a
Mohammedan, it could not have called up more blank amazement than was
depicted in the good sister's face on hearing her say that she was
going to be a Trappistine.

The mistress of schools and another nun, who had been very kind to
her during her short stay at the Sacred Heart, came to the parlor. I
was not present at the interview, but Mary told me they were quite as
much amazed as the _sœur portière_.

"It only shows what a character I left behind me," she said, laughing
heartily as we walked arm in arm. "My turning out good for anything
but mischief is a fact so miraculous that my best friends can hardly
believe in it!"

It was during this long afternoon that she told me all the details of
her vocation which I have already narrated. She seemed transcendently
happy, and so lifted by grace above all the falterings of nature as
to be quite unconscious that she was about to make any sacrifice.
She was tenderly attached to her family, but the pangs of separation
from them were momentarily suspended. Her soul had grown strong in
detachment. It had grown to the hunger of divine love. Like the
Israelites, she had gone out into the desert where the manna fell,
and she had fed upon it till all other bread was tasteless to her.

When I expressed surprise at seeing her so completely lifted above
human affections, and observed that it would save her so much
anguish, she answered quickly, with a sudden look of pain:

"Oh! no it will save me none of the suffering. That will all come
later, when the sacrifice is made. But I always seem to have
supernatural strength given me as long as it remains to be done. I
took leave of Father Paul and my dear old nurse, and all the friends
that flocked to say good-by, almost without a tear. I felt it so
little that I was disgusted with myself for being so heartless while
they were all so tender and distressed; but when it was all over,
and the carriage had driven out on the road, I thought my heart would
burst. I didn't dare look back at the house, lest I should cry out to
them to take me home. And I know this is how it will be to-morrow."

"And have you thought of the possibility of having to come home after
all?" I asked.

"Yes, I have a great deal of it. It is possible my health may fail,
or that I may have mistaken the will of God altogether in entering La
Trappe," she answered, with a coolness that astonished me.

"What a trial that would be!" I exclaimed. "What a humiliation to
come out, after making such a stand about entering!"

She laughed quite merrily.

"Humiliation! And what if it were! I don't care a straw if I go into
ten convents, and come out of them one after another, so long as I
find out the right one in the end. What does anything signify but
finding out God's will!"

There was no mistaking the perfect sincerity of her words. It was as
clear as sunlight--the one thing necessary, the one thing she cared
one straw about, was finding out the will of God. Human respect
or any petty human motive had simply gone beyond the range of her

"And the silence, Mary?" I said, smiling, as the memory of her old
school-day troubles came back on me. "How will you ever keep it?
To me it would be the most appalling part of the discipline of La

"Well, is it not odd?" she replied. "It is so little appalling to
me that I quite long for it. Sometimes I keep repeating the words,
'Perpetual silence!' over and over to myself, as if they were a
melody. It was it, I think, that decided me for La Trappe instead
of Carmel, where the rule allows them to speak during recreation. It
seems to me the hush of tongues must be such a help to union with
God. Our tongues are so apt to scare away his presence from our

We came home to dinner. While we were alone in the drawing-room, she
asked me to play something to her. She had been passionately fond of
the harp, and stood by me listening with evident pleasure, and when I
was done began to draw out the chords with her finger.

"Does it not cost you the least little pang to give it up for
ever--never to hear a note of music for the rest of your life, Mary?"
I said.

"No, not now. I felt it in the beginning; but the only music that has
a charm for me now is silence."

We parted, never to meet again, till we meet at the judgment-seat.

On her arrival at Lyons, the fatigue and emotions of the journey told
on her. An agonizing pain in the spine to which she was subject after
any undue exertion obliged her to remain at the hotel, lying down on
the sofa nearly all day.

The following morning, her father took her to the monastery. Like
Abraham, he conducted his child to the mount of sacrifice, and with
his own hand laid the victim on the altar; but no angel came to
snatch away the sacrificial knife and substitute a meaner offering
for the holocaust. He left her at the inner gate of La Trappe.

She wrote to me some weeks after her entrance.

"I was less brave at parting with my beloved ones than I ought to
have been," she said; "but, on account of the pain that kept me lying
down in the midst of them nearly all the previous day, I had not
been able to pray as much as usual, and so I had not got up strength
enough for the trial-time. I seemed to have let go my hold on our
Lord a little and to be leaning on them for courage; but, when I had
been a few hours before the Blessed Sacrament, the pain calmed down,
and I began to realize how happy I was. I am in great hopes that I
have found the will of God."

One trifling incident which gave innocent delight to Mary I must not
omit to mention.

She was asked on entering what name she wished to bear in religion,
and on her replying that she had not thought of one and would rather
the prioress chose for her, "Then we shall call you Mary Benedicta,"
said the mother. "The saint has no name-sake amongst us at present."

The only thing that disappointed her in the new life was the mildness
of the rule and the short time it allotted for prayer!

It may interest my readers and help them to estimate the spirit of
the novice to hear some details of the rule that struck her as too

The Trappistines rise at 2 A.M. winter and summer, and proceed to
choir, chanting the Little Office of the Blessed Virgin. Mass,
meditation, the recital of the divine office, and household work,
distributed to each according to her strength and aptitude and to the
wants of the community, fill up the time till breakfast, which is
at 8. The rule relents in favor of those who are unable to bear the
long early fast, and they are allowed a small portion of dry bread
some hours sooner. I think the novices as a rule are included in
this dispensation. The second meal is at 2. The food is frugal but
wholesome, good bread, vegetables, fish occasionally, and good, pure
wine. Fire is an unknown luxury, except in the kitchen. The silence
is perpetual, but the novices are allowed perfect freedom of converse
with their mistress, and the professed nuns with the abbess. They
converse occasionally during the day amongst each other by signs.
They take open-air exercise, and perform manual labor out-of-doors,
digging, etc. In-doors, they are constantly employed in embroidering
and mounting vestments. Some of the most elaborately wrought
benediction-veils, copes, chasubles, etc., used in the large churches
throughout France, are worked by the Trappistines of Lyons.

They retire to rest at 8. Their clothing is of coarse wool, inside
and outside.

Mary described the material life of La Trappe as in every sense
delightful; the digging, pealing potatoes, and so forth, as most
recreative and not at all fatiguing. After her first Lent, she wrote
me that it had passed so quickly, she "hardly knew it had begun when
Easter came."

Her only complaint was that it had been too easy, that the
austerities, "which were at all times very mild," had not been more
increased during the penitential season.

My third letter was on her receiving the holy habit.

"I wish you could see me in it," she said. "I felt rather odd at
first, but I soon grew accustomed to it, and now it is so light and
pleasant. I am so happy in my vocation I cannot help being almost
sure that I have found the will of God."

This was the burden of her song for evermore: to find the will of
God! And so in prayer and expectation she kept her watch upon the
tower, her hands uplifted, her ears and her eyes straining night and
day for every sign and symbol of that blessed manifestation. She kept
her watch, faithful, ardent, never weary of watching, rising higher
and higher in love, sinking lower and lower in humility. She had set
her soul like a ladder against the sky, and the angels were for ever
passing up and down the rungs, carrying up the incense of the prayer,
which, as soon as it reached the throne of the Lamb, dissolved in
graces, and sent the angels flying down earthward again.

The world went on; the wheel went round; pleasure and folly and sin
kept up their whirl with unabating force. All things were the same
as when Mary Benedicta, hearkening to the bell from the sanctuary,
turned her back upon the vain delusion, and gave up the gauds of time
for the imperishable treasures of eternity. Nothing was changed. Was
it so indeed? To our eyes it was. We could not see what changes were
to come of it. We could not see the work her sacrifice was doing,
nor measure the magnitude of the glory it was bringing to God. Poor
fools! it is always so with us. We see with the blind eyes of our
body the things that are of the body. What do we see of the travail
of humanity in God's creation? The darkness and the pain. Little
else. We see a wicked man or a miserable man, and we are filled
with horror or with pity. We think the world irretrievably darkened
and saddened by the sin and the misery that we see, forgetting the
counterpart that we do not see--the sanctity and the beauty born of
repentance and compassion. We see the bad publican flaunting his
evil ways in the face of heaven, brawling in the streets and the
market-place; we do not see the good publican who goes up to the
temple striking his breast, and standing afar off, and sobbing out
the prayer that justifies. We forget that fifty such climbing up to
heaven make less noise than one sinner tearing down to hell. So with
pain. When sorrow crushes a man, turning his heart bitter and his
wine sour, we find it hard to believe that so much gall can yield any
honey, so much dark let in any light. We cannot see--oh! how it would
startle us if we did--how many acts of kindness, how many thoughts
and deeds of love, are evoked by the sight of his distress. They
may not be addressed to him, and he may never know of them, though
he has called them into life; they may all be spent upon other men,
strangers perhaps, to whom he has brought comfort because of the
kindliness his sorrow had stirred in many hearts. Some miser has been
touched in hearing the tale of his distress, and straightway opened
his purse to help the Lazarus at his own door. A selfish woman of the
world has foregone some bauble of vanity and given the price to a
charity to silence the twinge that pursued her after witnessing his
patient courage in adversity. There is no end to the small change
that one golden coin of love, one act of heroic faith, one chastened
attitude of Christian sorrow, will send current through the world.
It would be easier to number the stars than to count it all up. But
the bright little silver pieces pass through our fingers unnoticed.
We do not watch for them, neither do we hear them chime and ring as
they drop all round us. We do not listen for them. We listen rather
to the wailing and the hissing, hearkening not at all to the rustle
of angels' wings floating above the din, nor to the sound of their
crystal tears falling through the brine of human woe and lamentation.

One more virgin heart is given up to the Crucified--one more victory
won over nature and the kingdom of this world. One more life is being
lived away to God in the silence of the sanctuary. Who heeds it? Who
sees the great things that are coming of it?--the graces obtained,
the blessings granted, the temptations conquered, the miracle of
compassion won for some life-long sinner, at whose death-bed, cut off
from priest or sacrament, the midnight watcher before the tabernacle
has been wrestling in spirit, miles away, with mountains and seas
between them. Only when the seven seals are broken of the Book in
which the secrets of many hearts are written shall these things be
made manifest, and the wonders of sacrifice revealed.

Mary Benedicta was drawing to the close of her novitiate. So far her
health had stood the test bravely. She had passed the winters without
a cough, a thing that had not happened to her for years. The pain
in her spine that had constantly annoyed her at home had entirely

Every day convinced her more thoroughly that she had found her true
vocation, and that she was "doing the will of God." Her profession
was fixed for the month of December. She wrote to me a few lines,
telling me of her approaching happiness, and begging me to get all
the prayers I could for her. Her joy seemed too great for words. It
was, indeed, the joy that passes human understanding. I did not hear
from her again, nor of her, till one evening I received a letter from
Ireland announcing to me her death.

Till within a few days of the date fixed for her vows, she had
been to all appearance in perfect health. She followed the rule
in its unmitigated rigor, never asking nor seemingly needing any
dispensation. She attended choir during the seven hours' prayer,
mental and vocal, every day. There were no premonitory symptoms
of any kind to herald in the messenger that was at hand. Quite
suddenly, one morning, at the first matins, she fainted away at her
place in the choir. They carried her to the infirmary, and laid her
on a bed. She recovered consciousness after a short time, but on
attempting to rise fell back exhausted. The infirmarian, in great
alarm, asked if she was suffering much. Mary smiled and shook her
head. Presently she whispered a few words to the abbess, who had
accompanied her from the choir, and never left her side for a moment.
It was to ask that she might be allowed to pronounce her vows at once.

Was this, then, the summons? Yes. She was called for to go home. The
joy-bells of heaven rang out a merry peal. The golden gates turned
slowly on their hinges. The Bridegroom stood knocking at the door.

A messenger was dispatched in haste to the archbishop for permission
to solemnize her profession at once. Monseigneur Bonald granted it,
and sent at the same time a special apostolic benediction to the
dying child of St. Bernard.

That afternoon Mary pronounced her vows in the presence of the
Blessed Sacrament, and surrounded by the sisterhood, weeping and

An hour later, summoning her remaining strength for a last act of
filial tenderness, she dictated a few lines of loving farewell to her
father. Then she was silent, calm, and rapt in prayer. Her eyes never
left the crucifix. The day past and the night. She was still waiting.
At daybreak the Bridegroom entered, and she went home with him.


[29] A French child's word for _hurt_.


The most indefatigable student of the history of Ireland is, at
some time or another, sure to become wearied of, if not positively
disgusted at, the interminable series of foreign and domestic wars,
base treachery, and wholesale massacre which unfortunately stain the
annals of that unhappy country for nearly one thousand years; and
were it not that the study of profane history is a duty imposed upon
us not only as an essential part of our education, but as a source
rich in the philosophy of human nature, there are few, we believe,
even among the most enthusiastic lovers of their race or the most
industrious of book-worms, who would patiently peruse the long and
dreary record of persistent oppression and unfaltering but unavailing

The few centuries of pagan greatness preceding the arrival of St.
Patrick, seen through the dim mist of antiquity, appear to have been
periods of comparative national prosperity; and the earlier ages of
Christianity in the island were not only in themselves resplendent
with the effulgence of piety and learning which enshrouded the land
and illumined far and near the then eclipsed nations of Europe, but
were doubly brilliant by contrast with the darkness that subsequently
followed the repeated incursions of the merciless northern Vikings,
to whom war was a trade, and murder and rapine the highest of human

The ultimate defeat of those barbarians in the early part of
the eleventh century brought little or no cessation of misery
to the afflicted people; for, with the death of the Conqueror,
the illustrious King Brian, in the moment of victory, no man of
sufficient statesmanship or military ability appeared who was
capable of uniting the disorganized people under a general system
of government, or of compelling the obedience of the disaffected
and semi-independent chiefs. The evils of the preceding wars were
numerous and grievous. The husbandman was impoverished, commerce had
fled the sea-ports before the dreaded standard of the carrion Raven,
learning had forsaken her wonted abodes for other climes and more
peaceful scenes, and even the religious establishments which had
escaped the destroyer no longer harbored those throngs of holy men
and women formerly the glory and benefactors of the island. It was in
this disintegrated and demoralized condition that the enterprising
Anglo-Normans of the following century found the once warlike and
learned Celtic people; and as the new-comers were hungry for land and
not overscrupulous as to how it was to be obtained, the possession of
the soil on one side, and its desperate but unorganized defence on
the other, gave rise to those desultory conflicts, cruel reprisals,
and horrible butcheries which only ended, after nearly five hundred
years of strife, in the almost utter extirpation of the original

Had the Norman invasion ended with Strongbow and Henry II., or had
it been more general and successful, as in England, the evil would
have been limited; but as every decade poured into Ireland its
hordes of ambitious, subtle, and landless adventurers, who looked
upon Ireland as the most fitting place to carve their way to fame
and fortune, new wars of extermination were fomented, and the wounds
that afflicted the country were kept constantly open. To facilitate
the designs of the new-comers, the mass of the people were outlawed,
and the punishment for killing a native, when inflicted, which was
seldom, was a small pecuniary fine. The efforts of the "Reformers"
to convert by force or fraud the ancient race and the bulk of the
descendants of the original Anglo-Normans, who vied with each other
in their attachment to the church, perpetuated even in a worse form
the civil strife which had so long existed between the races, and
terminated, at the surrender of Limerick, in the complete prostration
of the nation. But it was only for a while. The extraordinary revival
of the faith in Ireland, and its substantial triumphs in recent
years, almost make us forget and forgive the persecutions of "the
penal days," and not the least of these auspicious results is the
appearance of the noble book before us, written by a distinguished
gentleman of the legal profession of the ancient race and religion.

In his voluminous work, Mr. O'Flanagan, avoiding all matter foreign
to his subject, and touching as lightly on wars and confiscations as
possible, while relating succinctly and carefully the lives of the
numerous lord chancellors of Ireland, necessarily gives us a history
of English policy and legislation in that country in an entirely new
form, and fills up in its historical and legal records a hiatus long
recognized on both sides of the Atlantic. In ordinary histories, we
see broadly depicted the effects of foreign invasion and domestic
broils: in the _Lives_, we are permitted to have a view of the most
secret workings of the viceregal government and of the managers of
the so-called Irish Parliament; of the causes which governed British
statesmen in their treatment of the sister kingdom, and the motive of
every step taken by the dominant faction of the Pale, supported by
the wealth and power of a great nation, to subdue a weak neighboring
people, who, though few in numbers, isolated and disorganized,
possessed a high degree of civilization and a vitality that rose
superior to all defeat. The book has also this advantage, that, while
it supplies the links that bind causes with effects and develops in a
critical spirit the true philosophy of history, it neither shocks our
sensibilities uselessly with the perpetual narration of mental and
physical suffering, nor tires us with vain speculations on what might
have been had circumstances been different. The author is content to
accept the inevitable, and deals exclusively with the subject in hand.

The partial success of Strongbow in conjunction with the Leinster
troops induced Henry II. to project a visit to Ireland, partly
from a fear that his ambitious subject might be induced by the
allurements of his newly acquired greatness to forget his pledge
of fealty and allegiance, and partly in the hope that his presence
with an armed retinue would so overawe the native princes that their
entire submission would follow as a matter of course. He therefore
landed at Waterford, in 1172, and after visiting Lismore, where
a provincial synod was being held, entered Dublin on the 11th of
November of that year. But though he remained in that city during the
greater part of the winter, surrounded by all the pomp of mediæval
royalty, his blandishments were only partly successful in winning
any of the prominent chieftains to acknowledge his assumed title
of Lord of Ireland. He rested long enough, however, to establish
a form of provincial government for the guidance and protection
of the Anglo-Normans, and such of the Irish of Dublin, Kildare,
Meath, Wexford, and of the surrounding counties as acknowledged
his jurisdiction, and these became what was long afterwards known
as the English Pale. The head of this system was the personal
representative of the monarch, appointed and removed at his pleasure,
and called at various times lord deputy, viceroy, chief governor,
and lord-lieutenant, and in case of his absence or death a temporary
successor was to be chosen by the principal nobles of the Pale,
until his return or the appointment of his successor by the king. In
the year 1219, during the reign of Henry III., the laws of England
were extended to the Anglo-Norman colony, and a chancellor in the
person of John de Worchely was appointed to assist the viceroy in the
administration of the laws and public affairs.

The office of chancellor, or, as he was afterwards styled, lord high
chancellor, was known to the Romans, and many of its peculiar duties
and powers are directly derived from the civil law. In England, its
establishment may be considered as contemporary with the Norman
conquest, and from the first it assumed the highest importance in the
state. "The office of chancellor or lord keeper," says Blackstone,
"is created by the mere delivery of the great seal into his custody,
whereby he becomes the first officer in the kingdom and takes
precedence of every temporal peer. He is a privy counsellor by virtue
of his office, and, according to Lord Ellismore, prolocutor of the
House of Lords by prescription. To him belongs the appointment of all
the justices of the peace throughout the kingdom. Being formerly,
usually, an ecclesiastic presiding over the king's chapel, he became
keeper of his conscience, visitor in his right of all hospitals
and colleges of royal foundation, and patron of all his livings
under the annual value of twenty pounds, etc. All this exclusive
of his judicial capacity in the Court of Chancery, wherein, as in
the Exchequer, is a common law court and a court of equity."[31] In
Ireland, while the chancellor exercised the same functions within
a more contracted sphere, his political power and duties were more
directly and frequently felt. The viceroys, particularly those of
the early periods, were generally soldiers expressly deputed to
hold the conquests already gained, and to enlarge by force of arms
the possessions of the Anglo-Norman adventurers. They were little
skilled in the arts of government, and, from their short terms and
frequent removals, knew little of and cared less for the people
they were temporarily sent to govern.[32] The chancellors, on the
contrary, were the reverse, being from the first up to the reign of
Henry VIII., with a few exceptions, ecclesiastics, generally men well
versed in law and letters, and having been usually at an early age
selected from the inferior ranks of the English clergy and promoted
to the highest positions in the church in Ireland, as a preliminary
step to their appointment to the most important judicial and
legislative office in the colony, they had every inducement to become
familiar with its affairs and with the dispositions and influence of
the people among whom their lot in life was cast. "Learned men were
those chancellors," says O'Flanagan, "for the most part prelates of
highly cultivated minds, attached to the land of their birth, while
exercising important sway over the destinies of Ireland."

For the first two hundred years after the creation of the office of
chancellor, very little can be gleaned by the author of the _Lives_,
except the mere names, date of patents, and a few dry facts usually
connected with well-known historical events. The destruction by fire
of St. Mary's Abbey in Dublin, at the beginning of the fourteenth
century, and of the Castle of Trim, in both of which valuable
public records were kept, accounts to some extent for this paucity
of materials, while, as he says, "others were carried out of the
country, and are met with in the State Paper Office, the Rolls
Chapel, Record Office, and British Museum, in London; others are
at Oxford. Several cities on the Continent possess valuable Irish
documents, while many are stored in private houses, which the recent
commission will no doubt render available"--a sad commentary upon the
way in which everything relating to the history of the country has
been neglected by that government which so frequently parades its
paternal inclinations.

The want of judicial business during this period was amply
compensated for by repeated but vain efforts to reconcile the
different factions into which the colonists of the Pale were divided,
and to prevent the followers of the rival houses of Ormond and
Kildare from open warfare whenever the slightest provocation was
offered by either side. While the power of England was expended in
foreign wars or in the internecine struggles of the Roses, her grasp
on the dominion of Ireland was becoming every day more relaxed, and
it was only by the judicious pitting of one party against another, by
alternate threats and bribes, that even the semblance of authority
could be maintained at all times. Thus, in 1355, Edward III., writing
to the Earl of Kildare, uses the following emphatic words:

    "Although you know of these invasions, destructions,
    or dangers, and have been often urged to defend
    these marches jointly with others, you have neither
    sped thither nor sent that force of men which you
    were strongly bound to have done for the honor of an
    earl, and for the safety of those lordships, castles,
    lands, and tenements, which, given and granted to your
    grandfather by our grandfather, have thus descended to
    you. Since you neither endeavor to prevent the perils,
    ruin, and destruction threatening these parts, in
    consequence of your neglect, nor attend to the orders
    of ourselves or our council, we shall no longer be
    trifled with," etc.

This was strong language, but fully justified by the unsettled
condition of affairs in and outside the Pale. Chancellor de Wickford,
Archbishop of Dublin, who was appointed in 1375, found that his
sacred calling and official dignity were no protection to him even
in the vicinity of the capital, and was therefore allowed a guard of
six men-at-arms and twelve archers, while the lord treasurer had the
same number. Nor was this precaution taken against the Irish enemy
alone, for we find that Thomas de Burel, Prior of Kilmainham, when
chancellor, while holding a parley with De Bermingham at Kildare,
was, with his attendant lords, taken prisoner. The lay noblemen were
ransomed, but the prior was kept a prisoner only to be exchanged for
one of the De Berminghams then confined in Dublin Castle. This family
seem to have held the judicial officers somewhat in contempt, for
we read at another time that Adam Veldom, Chief Chancery Clerk, was
captured by them and the O'Connors, and obliged to pay ten pounds in
silver for his release. When John Cotton, Dean of St. Patrick's, was
appointed chancellor in 1379, and commenced his tour, accompanied by
the viceroy, from Dublin to Cork, he was allowed for his personal
retinue, independent of his servants and clerks, not very formidable
opponents, it is to be presumed, "four men-at-arms armed at all
points, and eight mounted archers," a circumstance which shows that
the Irish and many of the Anglo-Irish of the country had very little
reverence for the person of even an English chancellor.

In 1398, Dr. Thomas Cranley was sent over to Dublin as its archbishop
and chancellor of the colony, and from his high position and known
ability it was expected that he would not only remedy the disorders
of the Pale, but bring back the great lords to a sense of their
duty to the king, and devise measures for the collection of his
revenues, which these noblemen did not seem inclined to pay with
the alacrity befitting obedient subjects. After several years of
fruitless endeavors to effect these objects, he was obliged to write
to King Henry IV. for funds to support his son, who was then acting
as viceroy. "With heavy hearts," says the chancellor, speaking for
the privy council, "we testify anew to your highness that our lord,
your son, is so destitute of money that he has not a penny in the
world, nor can borrow a single penny, because all his jewels and his
plate that he can spare of those that he must of necessity have, are
pledged and be in pawn. All his soldiers have departed from him,
and the people of his household are on the point of leaving him."
And he further significantly adds, "For the more full declaring of
these matters to your highness, three or two of us should have come
to your high presence, but such is the danger on this side that not
one of us dare depart from the person of our lord." This was indeed
a sad condition for the son of the reigning monarch and his council
to find themselves in, while the Talbots, Butlers, and Fitzgeralds
were feasting on the fat of the land surrounded by thousands of their
well-paid followers. Again, in 1435, when Archbishop Talbot was
chancellor, the council through that prelate addressed a memorial to
the king, in which the following remarkable passage occurs:

    "First, that it please our sovereign lord graciously
    to consider how this land of Ireland is well-nigh
    destroyed and inhabited with his enemies and rebels,
    insomuch that there is not left in the northern parts
    of the counties of Dublin, Meath, Louth, and Kildare,
    that join together out of subjection of the said
    enemies and rebels, scarcely thirty miles in length and
    twenty miles in breadth, as a man may surely ride or
    go, in the said counties, to answer to the king's writs
    and to his commandments."

This extraordinary admission, made two hundred and sixty-six years
after the landing of the Normans, would be almost incredible did
it rest on less weighty authority. This was the time for the Irish
people to have regained their freedom, and, had they had half as much
of the spirit of nationality and organization as they possessed of
valor and endurance, a decisive blow might easily have been struck
that would have for ever ended the English power in their island. But
the propitious moment was allowed to pass, and dearly did they pay in
after-times for their supineness and folly.

The dissensions were not confined to the natives. The quarrels and
bickerings of the nobles and officials of the Pale seemed to invite
destruction. Rival parliaments were held; viceroys who were attached
by policy or affection to the houses of York and Lancaster contended
in the Castle of Dublin for the legitimacy of their respective
factions; and even the Lord Chancellor Sherwood, Bishop of Meath,
and the members of the privy council, whose office and duty it was
to preserve the peace between all parties, were found the most
turbulent; "the chancellor and chief-justice of the king's bench
requiring the interposition of the king to keep them quiet, while the
Irish so pressed upon the narrow limits of the English settlements
that the statute requiring cities and boroughs to be represented by
inhabitants of the same was obliged to be repealed upon the express
ground that representatives could not be expected to encounter, on
their journeys to parliament, the great perils incident from the
king's Irish enemies and English rebels, for it is openly known how
great and frequent mischiefs have been done on the ways both in the
south, north, east, and west parts, by reason whereof they may not
send proctors, knights, nor burgesses."[33] Such was the condition of
Ireland in A.D. 1480, just three centuries after the advent of Henry
II. to her shores.

One of the principal duties of the Irish lord chancellors, even to
the very moment of its extinction, was the management of the Irish
parliament. The body that for so many centuries bore that pretentious
title, but which never spoke the voice of even a respectable minority
of the people, is said to have owed its origin to the second Henry,
though according to Whiteside, who follows the authority of Sir John
Davies, no parliament was held in the country for one hundred and
forty years after that king's visit.[34] Except in an antiquarian
point of view, the matter is of little importance, as such gatherings
in Ireland, even more so than those of England, could not at that
time be called either representative or deliberative bodies, for
their members were not chosen by even a moiety of the people, and
they were mere instruments in the hands of the governing powers,
who moulded them at will when they desired to impose new taxes or
unjust laws on the people, ostensibly with their own sanction. From
the days of Simon de Montfort to those of George IV., the English
parliamentary system has been an ingeniously devised engine of
general oppression under the garb of popular government.

Of the ancient parliaments, the most famous was that held at Kilkenny
during the chancellorship of John Trowyk, Prior of St. John, in
1367, at which was passed the statute bearing the name of that
beautiful city. Though the name only of the chancellor, who doubtless
was the author _ex officio_, has come down to us, that delectable
specimen of English legislation is doubtless destined to survive
the changes of time, and expire only with the language itself. It
prohibited marriage, gossipred, and fostering between the natives
and the Anglo-Irish under penalty of treason, also selling to the
former upon any condition horses, armor, or victuals, under a like
penalty. All persons of either nationality living in the Pale were
to use the English language, names, customs, dress, and manner of
riding. No Irishman was to be admitted to holy orders, nor was any
minstrel, story-teller, or rhymer to be harbored. English on the
borders should hold no parley with their Irish neighbors, except by
special permission, nor employ them in their domestic wars. Irish
games were not to be indulged in, but should give place to those of
the English, as being more "gentlemanlike sports." Any infraction
of these provisions was to be punished with rigor, for, says the
preamble to the act, "many of the English of Ireland, discarding the
English tongue, manners, style of riding, laws, and usages, lived
and governed themselves according to the mode, fashion, and language
of the Irish enemies," etc., whereby the said "Irish enemies were
exalted and raised up contrary to reason." This enactment is perhaps
without a parallel in the history of semi-civilized legislation, if
we except that passed at a parliament held at Trim in 1447, and for
which we are indebted to no less a person than the Archbishop of
Dublin, lord chancellor at that period. It enacts "that those who
would be taken for Englishmen (that is, within the protection of law)
should not wear a beard on the upper lip; that the said lip should be
shaved once at least in every two weeks, and that offenders therein
should be treated as Irish enemies." As no provision was inserted
in the statute providing for the supply of razors, or mention made
of the appointment of state barbers, we presume it soon became

By such penal legislation it was weakly supposed the evils of the
country could be cured most effectually, but, unfortunately for the
lawmakers, it was easier to pass statutes than to enforce them. On
the mass of the people they had no effect whatever, except, perhaps,
to bind them faster to their ancient laws and customs, and he would
have been a bold officer indeed who would have attempted to carry
them out, even among the Anglo-Irish families outside of the Pale;
for we find that, at a parliament held in Dublin in 1441, under the
supervision of Archbishop Talbot, a strong request was made to the
king to furnish troops for the defence of the colony, the privy
council having some time previously represented "that the king
should ordain that the Admiral of England should, in summer season,
visit the coasts of Ireland to protect the merchants from the Scots,
Bretons, and Spaniards, who came thither with their ships stuffed
with men of war in great numbers, seizing the merchants of Ireland,
Wales, and England, and holding them to ransom."[35]

The selfish but sagacious policy of Henry VII. had done so much
to remedy the evils inflicted on England by the wars of the Roses
that when his son, Henry VIII., ascended the throne in 1509, he
found a united and contented people, a well-filled treasury, and a
subservient parliament. The character of this notorious ruler is too
well known to need comment, and the effects of his crimes are still
perceptibly felt by the country that had the misfortune to have given
him birth. His influence on Irish affairs, though more disastrous
in its immediate results, has happily long since been obliterated.
Dr. Rokeby, Bishop of Meath, and afterward Archbishop of Dublin,
first appointed chancellor in 1498, was retained in his office by the
new king. He is represented as a man of marked piety and learning,
but he would have been unfitted to fill an office under the English
crown had he allowed any scruples of conscience to stand between him
and the behests of his royal master. What these were may be judged
from a passage in a private letter from Henry to his viceroy. "Now,"
he writes, "at the beginning, political practices may do more good
than exploits of war, till such time as the strength of the Irish
enemy shall be enfeebled and diminished; as well by getting their
captains from them, as by putting division among them, so that they
join not together"[36]--an advice eminently suggestive, but by no
means new, for the policy of arraying the Irish against each other
had been practised long before with fatal effect. Rokeby held the
great seal for twenty-one years, and his long term was marked by his
successful efforts to reconcile the hostile Anglo-Irish factions, his
negotiations with the native chiefs, for the purpose of inducing them
to acknowledge the sovereignty of Henry, and the consequent extension
of the functions of the courts over the greater part of the island.
The success of the first and last of these measures was mainly due to
the personal efforts of the lord chancellor, and the submission of
the Irish party resulted from the loss of the battle of Knocktough,
in 1504, and the favorable promises held out by the chancellor
and viceroy, inducements, it is needless to say, which were never
fulfilled. He was succeeded by the two St. Lawrences, father and
son, of whom nothing notable is recorded, but that they were laymen
and natives of the soil; and by Archbishop Ingle, who, however, held
office for but one year.

The next ecclesiastical chancellor was Dr. Alan, commissioned in
1528. This distinguished official was remarkable not only for his
great mental capacity, but as a not unfavorable sample of the English
political churchmen of the era immediately preceding the so-called
"Reformation"--men who, by their laxity of faith and worldly
ambition, paved the way for the subsequent grand march of heresy and
immorality. Born in England in 1476, he studied with credit both at
Oxford and Cambridge, and at an early age entered the priesthood. His
varied acquirements and experience of mankind gained him, in 1515,
the degree of doctor of laws and the confidence of the Archbishop
of Canterbury, then Lord Chancellor of England, by whom he was
sent to Rome on a special mission. On his return, he was appointed
chaplain to Cardinal Wolsey, and judge of his legantine court. In
both capacities he appears to have given satisfaction, particularly
in the latter, in which he materially assisted the ambitious cardinal
in suppressing certain monasteries, and appropriating the revenues,
it is more than suspected, to his own and his patron's use. For these
services he was rewarded with the archbishopric of Dublin and the
Irish chancellorship. His two great vices, avarice and the love of
intrigue, became now fully developed. When not begging for increase
of salary or emoluments, he was writing scandalous letters to his
friends at the English court, complaining of the conduct of the
viceroy, the unfortunate Earl of Kildare, and it was mainly through
his instrumentality, supported by Wolsey, that that nobleman was
called to England and committed to the Tower of London. His next step
was to circulate a false report that the earl had been executed. This
led, as he anticipated, to the rebellion of Kildare's son and deputy,
better known as Silken Thomas, and a number of Irish chiefs with
whom the Fitzgeralds were allied, and, upon its suppression, to the
confiscation of vast estates in Leinster and Munster. But Alan did
not live long enough to behold the result of his sanguinary policy.
Alarmed at the storm he had raised, he endeavored to escape from
the country, but the elements seem to have conspired against him,
for he was cast ashore near Clontarf, and, on being discovered by
some of Thomas's followers, he was put to death. He was succeeded as
chancellor by Cromer, Archbishop of Armagh, who was, however, shortly
after deprived of his office for his unflinching opposition to
Henry's absurd pretensions of being considered "Head of the Church."
It was of this prelate that Browne, the king's Archbishop of Dublin,
wrote to Lord Henry Cromwell, in 1635, "that he had endeavored,
almost to the hazard and danger of his temporal life, to procure
the nobility and gentry of this nation to due obedience in owning
his highness their supreme head, as well spiritual as temporal; and
do find much oppugning therein, especially by his brother Armagh,
who hath beene the main oppugner, and so hath withdrawn most of his
suffragans and clergy within his see and diocese."[37]

Unable to coerce or cajole the Pope, Henry at length threw down the
gauntlet to the Holy Father, and, emboldened doubtless by the ready
submission of the English, resolved to enforce his new ideas of
religion on the people of Ireland. The parliament of that country,
pliant as ever, voted him king of Ireland and head of the church,
and would as willingly have conferred on him any other title, no
matter how far-fetched or absurd, had he desired it. Archbishop
Browne, of Dublin, was a Christian after the king's own heart, and,
in his way, as consistent and as zealous a reformer; and with the
chancellor, Lord Trimblestown, at the laboring-oar, the task of
converting the Irish to the new faith was considered quite easy.
Here and there a stubborn recusant was anticipated, but were there
not monasteries and nunneries enough to be confiscated, and lands
and revenues to be given away, to satisfy those benighted adherents
to the old faith? A grand tour of proselytism throughout the country
was therefore projected, and the lord chancellor, the archbishop, and
the other members of the privy council sallied out, accompanied by
their men-at-arms, procurants, clerks, and retainers, to expound the
Gospel according to King Henry, and to enforce their doctrines, if
all else failed, by the carnal weapons of the lash and halter. They
visited in succession Carlow, Kilkenny, Ross, Wexford, and Waterford,
where they are mindful to acknowledge "they were well entertained."
The archbishop on Sundays "preached the word of God, having very
good audience, and published the king's injunctions and the king's
translation of the _Pater Noster_, _Ave Maria_, the Articles of
Faith, and the Ten Commandments in English," while on week-days
the chancellor took his share of the good work; for, continues the
report, "the day following we kept the sessions there (Waterford)
both for the city and the shire, where was put to execution four
felons, accompanied by another, a friar, whom, among the residue,
we commanded to be hanged in his habit, and so to remain upon the
gallows for a mirror to all his brethren to live truly."[38] This
judicious mixture of preaching and hanging, the Lord's Prayer and the
statute of Kilkenny, it was thought, would have a salutary effect
on the souls and bodies of unbelievers, and was a fitting form of
introducing the Reformation to the consideration of the Irish people.

The war on the faith of the nation having been thus openly and
auspiciously inaugurated, we must henceforth look upon the
chancellors of Ireland not only as the persistent defenders of the
English interest in that country, but as the most dangerous because
the most insidious and influential enemies of Catholicity.

Sir John Alan was appointed chancellor in 1539, and in the following
year we find him at the head of a royal commission for the
suppression of religious houses. The authority to the commissioners
sets forth, with a mendacity never surpassed in a state paper,
and rarely paralleled, even in the worst days of anti-Catholic
persecution, the following pretexts for striking a deadly blow at the
bulwarks of charity, religion, and learning:

    "That from information of trustworthy persons, it being
    manifestly apparent that the monasteries, abbies,
    priories, and other places of religious or regulars
    in Ireland are, at present, in such a state that in
    them the praise of God and the welfare of man are next
    to nothing regarded, the regulars and others dwelling
    there being addicted, partly to their own superstitious
    ceremonies, partly to the pernicious worship of
    idols, and to the pestiferous doctrines of the Roman
    Pontiff, that unless an effectual remedy be promptly
    provided, not only the weak lower order, but the
    whole Irish people, may be speedily infected to their
    total destruction by the example of these persons. To
    prevent, therefore, the longer continuance of such
    religious men and nuns in so damnable a state, the
    king, having resolved to resume into his own hands all
    the monasteries and religious houses, for their better
    reformation, to remove from them the religious men and
    women, and cause them to return to some honest mode of
    living, and to true religion, directs the commissioners
    to signify this his intention to the heads of religious
    houses," etc.[39]

It is unnecessary to say that this measure of wholesale spoliation
was promptly and thoroughly carried out. The thousand ruins that dot
the island attest it, and the title-deeds of many a nobleman's broad
acres bear date no earlier than this edict of the greatest monster
that ever disgraced the British throne.

From this time forth, the lord chancellors found their best passport
to royal favor in devising measures for the destruction of the
popular faith. Being generally needy adventurers, with nothing but
their legal knowledge and facile consciences to begin the world
with, they neither loved the country nor respected the people,
and their titles and wealth depended simply on their zeal for
Protestantism. Of the hundreds of penal laws which disgrace the
statute-book of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, every one
of them owes its inception and enactment to one or another of those
subtle-minded officials who, as the head of the lords, president of
the privy council, and the dispenser of vast judicial and executive
patronage, had a potent influence in all public affairs. They
continued industriously to carry out the designs of Henry during the
successive reigns of his worthy daughter Elizabeth, the Stuarts,
William, Anne, and the House of Brunswick. Even when the fears of
foreign invasion in 1760, and the noble resistance of the fathers
of our republic some years later, had awakened the fears of the
British authorities and induced them to relax somewhat the chains
of the Catholics, the voice of the lord chancellors was still for
war. Apart, however, from this spirit of intolerance which seemed to
be naturally attached to the office, it must be confessed that from
the days of Henry the great seal was held by many able lawyers and
distinguished statesmen, some of whom were not unknown in the world
of letters as authors and liberal patrons of learning and science.
The names of Curwan, Loftus (who founded Trinity College University),
Boyle, Porter, Butler, Cox, Broderick, Bowles, and many others,
occupy honored positions in the legal annals of Great Britain and
Ireland, and their lives, full of incident and variety, are fully and
fairly placed before us by Mr. O'Flanagan.

The treaty of union in 1800, by which Ireland lost her parliament,
and legislatively became a province, deprived the Irish chancellors
of much of their original political power; though, strange as it may
appear, this object was effected mainly through the exertions of Lord
Clare, who at that time held the office. In this man's character,
distinguished as it was for many private virtues, and for every
public vice that it is possible to conceive, were united the good and
bad qualities of all his predecessors, joined to a wonderful mental
capacity which far surpassed them all. Born in Ireland, he was of
English extraction and more than English in feeling, and, though of
an exemplary Catholic stock, he was the son of an apostate clerical
student, a most violent Protestant and a rancorous proscriptionist.
A profound jurist and an upright judge in purely legal matters, his
anti-Catholic prejudices seemed totally to have warped his judgment
whenever the question of religion presented itself, and, though a
steadfast friend in private of those who agreed with or did not care
to differ from him, he never failed to carry into official life the
hatreds and animosities engendered in political struggles or domestic
intercourse. A powerful orator, full of strong legal points, logical
propositions, and keen, and sometimes coarse, sarcasm, he ruled his
party with a rod of iron, and, when persuasion and threats failed, he
hesitated not to use bribes and cajolery. His mental energy was equal
to any amount of labor, and his physical courage was beyond question,
even in a country and age where bravery was ranked among the highest
of virtues. Such was John Fitzgibbon, first Earl of Clare, born near
Dublin in 1749, a man pre-eminently fitted by Providence to adorn
his country and benefit mankind, but who perverted his great gifts
and employed them with too much success in destroying that country's
remnant of independence, and in devising new methods of persecution
for his Catholic relatives and countrymen. He died in the plenitude
of his power in 1802; his name when mentioned is reprobated by all
good men in the nation he betrayed; his title, so ingloriously won,
is extinct; and his bench in Chancery and his seat in the House of
Lords are filled by one of that race and creed which he so cordially
detested and so ruthlessly persecuted.[40] _Sic transit gloria

Mr. O'Flanagan brings down his _Lives_ to the time of George IV., but
this latter portion of his valuable collection of biographies belongs
more to the domain of law than of history. Indeed, the entire work
is full of curious and interesting information which will be highly
prized by the legal profession. What the late Lord Campbell has done
so well for the English chancellors, the author has endeavored to
do for those of Ireland, and with equal success, notwithstanding
the scarcity of materials and the loose manner in which the Irish
records have been kept. One of the most attractive features of this
book is the total absence of passion or prejudice in the narrative of
events and estimation of character; but every necessary circumstance
is detailed in a plain, lucid, and intelligible style, and with
something of judicial gravity and impartiality befitting so important
a subject. As far as the author's own political predilections are
concerned--and we suspect that they are by no means intensely
national--the tone of the book may be said to be colorless, a
peculiarity in modern biography which, while it may detract from
its vivacity, will certainly add much weight to its value as an
authority. We are promised a sequel to the chancellors, containing
the lives of the lord chief-justices, which we hope will soon appear,
for the more light that is shed on those darkened pages of Ireland's
history, the better for the cause of truth, justice, and humanity.


[30] _The Lives of the Lord Chancellors and the Keepers of the Great
Seal of Ireland_, from the Earliest Times to the Reign of Queen
Victoria. By J. Roderick O'Flanagan, M.R.I.A. Two vols. pp. 555,
621. London: Longmans Green & Co. New York: The Catholic Publication

[31] _Com. on the Laws of England, p. 429 et seq._

[32] Between 1172 and 1200, Ireland had no fewer than _seventeen_
chief governors. In the thirteenth century, they numbered
_forty-six_; in the fourteenth, _ninety-three_; in the fifteenth,
_eighty-five_; in the sixteenth, _seventy-six_; in the seventeenth,
_seventy-nine_; and in the eighteenth, _ninety-four_.--_O'Flanagan_,
vol. i. p. 293.

[33] O'Flanagan, vol. i. p. 130.

[34] _Life and Death of the Irish Parliament._ By the Right Hon.
James Whiteside, C.J.

[35] Gilbert's _Viceroys of Ireland_.

[36] _State Papers, temp. Henry VIII._

[37] Ware's _Life of Browne_.

[38] _State Papers_, vol. iii. p. 108.

[39] Morrin's _Cal._ vol. i. p. 55.

[40] John O'Hagan, the present Lord High Chancellor of Ireland.


The period of the German Minnesinger, dating from about the middle
of the thirteenth to the middle of the fourteenth century, witnessed
probably the intensest and sincerest devotion to the worship of the
Virgin Mary in the whole history of the Catholic Church. Intense
and sincere pre-eminently, because so expressed in the vast number
of paintings and poems in her glorification whereof we have record.
That whole period, indeed, was one of fervent religious feeling,
stimulated by the Crusades, and naturally choosing the Virgin for
the chief object of worship, as the whole knightly spirit of that
age was one of devotion to woman. The pure love--for Minne is _pure_
love--of woman has never, in the history of literature, been so
exclusively made the topic of poetry as it was during that century of
the Minnesinger; it is the absorbing theme of the almost two hundred
poets of that time, of whom we have poems handed down to us, and its
highest expression was attained in those poems that were addressed to
the woman of all women, Mary, the mother of Jesus.

The German language in the thirteenth century had attained a
development which fitted it pre-eminently for lyric poetry in all its
branches. What it has since gained in other respects it has lost in
sweet music of sound. Furthermore, the true laws of rhythm, metre,
and verse for modern languages, as distinguished from the rules that
governed classic poetry, had been discovered and fixed; rules and
laws the knowledge whereof subsequently was lost, and which it gave
Goethe so much trouble, as he tells us in his autobiography, to find
again. The purity of rhyme has never since in German poetry attained
the same degree of perfection, not even under the skilful hand of
Rueckert and Platen, which the Minnesinger gave to it; and thus
altogether those matters, which constitute the mechanism of poetry,
were in fullest bloom.

Now this mechanism and the wonderful language which it operated
upon being in the possession and under the full control of such men
as were the poets of that day, the result could be only poems of
perfect form, and yet at the same time naïve, earnest, intense, and
enthusiastic in their character. For those poets were not--like those
of our modern poets who have completest control of the mechanism of
poetry, as Tennyson, Swinburne, etc.--poets of a cold, reflective
bent of mind, but they were simple knights, with great enthusiasm in
the cause of the Crusades and of ladies; at the same time gifted with
a wondrous power of versification. A considerable number of them,
some of the best, as Wolfram von Eschenbach, Ulrich von Lichtenstein,
etc., could not even write and read, and had to dictate their poems
to their Singerlein, or sing it to him--for these poets invented a
melody for each of their poems--which Singerlein again transmitted
it in the same manner until, in the course of time, these unwritten
Minnelieder were, as much as possible, gathered together by the
noble knight, Ruediger von Manasse, his son, and the Minnesinger,
Johann Hadlaub, put into manuscript, and thus happily preserved for
future generations.

The songs that these Minnesingers sang are of a threefold character:
either in praise of the ladies, usually coupled with references to
the seasons of the year; or of a didactic character; or, finally, in
praise of the Virgin.

Their form is only twofold: either they are lays or songs proper.
The song or Minnelied proper has invariably a triplicity of form in
each stanza, that is, each stanza has three parts, whereof the first
two correspond with each other exactly, whereas the third has an
independent, though of course rhythmically connected, flow of its
own. The lay, on the contrary, is of irregular construction, and
permits the widest rhythmical liberties.

Of the many Minnelieder addressed to the Virgin we have presented to
us examples of both kinds, lays and songs. Chief among them are a lay
by Walther von der Vogelweide, and the _Great Hymn_ by Gottfried von

The latter is probably the finest of all the Minnelieder--worldly
and sacred--of that period. Ranking next to these two there is,
however, another poem to the Virgin, not to be classified strictly
under the general title of Minnelieder, but still the production of
a famous Minnesinger, and withal a poem of wondrous beauty, which
for two centuries kept its hold upon the people. This is Konrad von
Wuerzburg's _Golden Smithy_--a poem that is written in the metre
of the narrative poem of that age, namely, in lines wherein every
line ending in a masculine rhyme has four accentuations and every
line ending in a female rhyme has three accentuations, the syllables
not being counted--a metre that Coleridge has adopted in his poem

In this _Golden Smithy_ the poet represents himself as a goldsmith,
working all manner of precious stones and gold into a glorious
ornament for the Queen of Heaven, by gathering into his poem all
possible images and similes from the world of nature, from sacred
and profane history and fable, and from all the virtues and graces
of mankind. It is a poem of wonderful splendor, and has a great
smoothness of diction. "If," says the poet in the opening of the
poem, "in the depth of the smithy of my heart I could melt a poem
out of gold and could enamel the gold with the glowing ruby of pure
devotion, I would forge a transparent, shining, and sparkling praise
of thy worth, thou glorious empress of heaven. Yet, though my speech
should fly upward like a noble eagle, the wings of my words could
not carry me beyond thy praise; marble and adamant shall be sooner
penetrated by a straw, and the diamond by molten lead, than I attain
the height of the praise that belongs to thee. Not until all the
stars have been counted and the dust of the sun and the sand of the
sea and the leaves of the trees, can thy praise be properly sung."

But even this poem is far surpassed in beauty every way by Gottfried
von Strassburg's _Great Hymn_. Indeed, Konrad himself modestly
confesses this in his _Golden Smithy_, when he regrets that he does
not "sit upon the green clover bedewed with sweet speech, on which
sat worthily Gottfried von Strassburg, who, as a most artistic smith,
worked a golden poem, and praised and glorified the Holy Virgin in
much better strain."

There is, indeed, a wondrous beauty in this hymn of Gottfried
von Strassburg, a beauty much akin to that of his own Strassburg
Cathedral, which was begun about the same time.

"It is," says Van der Hagen, "the very glorification of love (Minne)
and of Minnesong; it is the heavenly bridal song, the mysterious
Solomon's Song, which mirrors its miraculous object in a stream
of deep and lovely images, linking them all together into an
imperishable wreath; yet even here in its profundity and significance
of an artistic and numerously-rhymed construction; always clear as
crystal, smooth and graceful."

The poem separates into three parts: in the first whereof the poet
exhorts all those who desire to listen to his song of God's great
love to endeavor to gain it by unremitting exertion; and furthermore
to pray for him, the poet, who has so little striven to attain it
for himself. In the second part, the poet calls upon the heavens and
Christ to bend down and listen to his truthful lays in praise of
Christ's sweet mother. Then in the third part begins the praise of
the Virgin, followed by that of her Son, and the poem reaches its
supreme fervor when it breaks out finally in praise of God himself.
Thence it gradually lowers its tone, and finally expires in a sigh.

I suppose it is impossible to give an adequate idea by translation of
the melodious sound of words, the perfect rhythm, and the artistic
gradation of effect which this poem has parts of the poem, and so
selected as to give a general idea of both the manner and the matter
of the poem. The selection opens with the first and ends with the
last verses of the whole poem; but the whole itself being composed of
ninety-four stanzas, it was necessary to take from in the original.
I can say only that I have done my best in the following stanzas,
selected from the various the intermediate ones only specimens.
The imagery may often seem far-fetched, but it must be remembered
that the men of that period likened God and the God-begotten unto
everything on earth and in heaven, for the simple reason that they
deemed it irreverent and impossible to characterize them by any
single predicate or word.

Of the poet himself we know very little. His name indicates him to
have been a citizen of Strassburg. His title Meister (master) shows
that his station in life was that of a citizen and not of a noble
or knight, their title being Herr. He was undoubtedly the foremost
poet of his age, and--together with Wolfram von Eschenbach--was then
and is still so considered. His greatest work is the narrative poem,
_Tristan und Isolde_; but that he left unfinished. We have no other
work of his handed down to us except three or four small Minnesongs.


      Ye, who your life would glorify
      And float in bliss with God on high,
      There to dwell nigh
      His peace and love's salvation;
      Who fain would learn how to enroll
      All evils under your control,
      And rid your soul
      Of many a sore temptation:
      Give heed unto this song of love
      And follow its sweet story;
      Then will its passing sweetness prove
      Unto your hearts a peaceful dove,
        And upward move
      Your souls to realms of glory.

      Ye, who would hear what you have ne'er
      Heard spoken, now incline your ear
      And listen here
      To what my tongue unfoldeth.
      Yea, list to the sweet praise and worth
      Of her who to God's child gave birth;
      Wherefore on earth
      God as in heaven her holdeth.
      E'en as the air when fresh bedewed
      Bears fruitful growth, so to man
      She bears an ever-fruitful mood:
      Never so chaste and sweet heart's blood,
        So true and good,
      Was born by mortal woman.

      I speak of thee in my best strain:
      No mother e'er such child may gain,
      Or child attain
      So pure a mother ever.
      He chose what his own nature was;
      His glorious Godhead chose as case
      The purest vase
      Of flesh and bone's endeavor
      That woman ever to her heart
      'Tween earth and heaven gave pressure.
      In thee lay hidden every part,
      That ever did from virtue start;
        Of bliss thou art
      The sweetest, chosen treasure.

      Thou gem, thou gold, thou diamond-glow,
      Thou creamy milk, white ivory, oh!
      Thou honey-flow
      In heart and mouth dissolving;
      Of fruitful virtue a noble grove,
      The lovely bride of God above--
      Thou sweet, sweet love,
      Thou hour with bliss revolving!
      Of chastity thou whitest snow,
      A grape of chaste and sure love,
      A clover-field of true love's glow,
      Of grace a bottomless ocean's flow:
        Yea more, I trow:
      A turtle-dove of pure love.

      God thee hath clothed with raiments seven,
      On thy pure body, brought from heaven,
      Hath put them even
      When thou wast first created.
      The first dress Chastity is named,
      The second is as Virtue famed,
      The third is claimed
      And as sweet Courtesy rated.
      The fourth dress is Humility,
      The fifth is Mercy's beauty,
      The sixth one, Faith, clings close to thee,
      The seventh, humble Modesty,
        Keepeth thee free
      To follow simple duty.

      To worship, Lady, thee doth teach
      Pray'r to drenched courage and numbed speech,
      Yea, and fires each
      Cold heart with heavenly rapture.
      To worship thee, O Lady! can
      Teach many an erring, sinful man,
      How from sin's ban
      His soul he still may capture.
      To worship thee is e'en a branch
      On which the soul's life bloometh;
      To worship thee makes bold and stanch
      The weakest soul on sin's hard bench;
        God it doth wrench
      From hell and in heaven roometh.

      Then let both men and women proclaim,
      And what of mother's womb e'er came,
      Both wild and tame,
      The grace of thy devotion.
      Then praise thee now what living lives,
      Whatever heaven's dew receives,
      Runs, floats, or cleaves
      Through forest or through ocean.
      Then praise thee now the fair star-shine,
      The sun and the moon gold-glowing,
      Then praise thee the four elements thine;
      Yea, blessedness around thee twine,
        Thou cheering wine,
      Thou stream with grace o'erflowing.

      Rejoice, then, Lady of the skies,
      Rejoice, thou God-love's paradise,
      Rejoice, thou prize
      Of sweetest roses growing!
      Rejoice, thou blessed maiden, then,
      Rejoice, that every race and clan,
      Woman and man,
      Pray to thy love o'erflowing.
      Rejoice, that thou with God dost show
      So many things in common:
      His yea thy yea, his no thy no;
      Endless ye mingle in one flow;
        Small and great, lo!
      He shares with thee, sweet woman.

      Now have I praised the mother thine,
      O sweet, fair Christ and Lord of mine!
      That honor's shrine
      Wherein thou wast created.
      And loud I'll now praise thee, O Lord!
      Yea, did I not, 'twould check my word;
      Thy praise has soared,
      And with all things been mated.
      Seven hours each day thy praise shall now
      By me in pray'r be chanted;
      This well belongs to thee, I trow,
      For with all virtues thou dost glow;
        From all grief thou
      Relief to us hast granted.

      Thou of so many pure hearts the hold,
      So many a pure maid's sweetheart bold,
      All thee enfold
      With love bright, loud, and yearning.
      Thou art caressed by many a mood,
      Caressed by many a heart's warm blood;
      Thou art so good,
      So truthful and love-burning.
      Caressed by all the stars that soar,
      By moon and sun, thou blessing!
      Caressed by the great elements four;
      Oh! ne'er caressed so was afore,
        Nor will be more,
      Sweetheart by love's caressing!

      Yea, thou art named the God of grace,
      Without whose special power, no phase
      Of life in space
      Had ever gained existence.
      What runneth, climbeth, sneaketh, or striveth,
      What crawleth, twineth, flieth, or diveth,
      Yea, all that thriveth
      In earth and heaven's subsistence:
      Of all, the life to thee is known,
      Thou art their food and banner,
      The lives of all are held alone
      By thee, O Lord! and on thy throne;
        Thus is well known
      Thy grace in every manner.

      God of thee speaking, God of thee saying,
      Teareth the heart its passions flaying,
      And stay waylaying
      The ever-watchful devil.
      God of thee speaking, God of thee saying,
      Much strength and comfort keeps displaying;
      And hearts thus staying,
      Are saved from every evil.
      God of thee speaking, God of thee saying,
      Is pleasure beyond all pleasure.
      It moves our hearts, thy grace surveying,
      To keep with love thy love repaying;
        O'er all things swaying
      Thus shines thy love's great treasure.

      God of thee speaking repentance raises
      When they, who chant thy wondrous praises,
      Use lying phrases:
      So purely thy word gloweth.
      It suffers less a lying mood
      Than suffers waves the ocean's flood,
      So pure and good
      Its changeless current floweth.
      God of thee speaking doth attest
      Pure heart and chaste endeavor,
      It driveth the devil from our breast.
      Oh! well I know its soothing rest,
        It is the zest
      Of thy vast mercy's flavor.

      Ah virtue pure, ah purest vase!
      Ah of chaste eyes thou mirror-glass!
      Ah diamond-case,
      With fruitful virtues glowing!
      Ah festive day to pleasure lent!
      Ah rapture without discontent!
      Ah sweet musk-scent!
      Ah flower gayly blooming!
      Ah heavenly kingdom where thou art!
      On earth, in hell, or heaven!
      Ah cunning o'er all cunning's art!
      Ah thou, that knoweth every part!
        Ah sweet Christ's heart!
      Ah sweetness without leaven!

      Ah virtue there, ah virtue here!
      Ah virtue on many a dark and drear
      Path, far and near!
      Ah virtue e'er befriending!
      Ah thou self-conscious purity!
      Ah goodness, those that cling to thee
      So many be
      Their number has no ending.
      Ah father, mother thou, and son!
      Ah brother both and sister!
      Ah strong of faith as Jacob's son!
      Ah king of earth's and heaven's throne!
        Ah thou alone
      Our friend to-day as yester!



    "We address you, Reverend Dr. Hecker, in this public
    way because we recognize in you not only the ablest
    defender of the Roman Catholic Church in the United
    States, but also the most progressive and enlightened
    leader of thought in that church. In the words we have
    to speak, we wish to speak not to Dr. Hecker, the
    antagonist of Protestantism, but to Father Hecker, a
    leader of Catholicism. We write in no polemical spirit.
    We have many things against the Church of Rome, and
    have spoken severely of Catholicism as you have of
    Protestantism. But we have also much veneration for
    many things in that church, and a very great admiration
    for some passages in its history. Enthusiastic as you
    are, sir, you cannot revere more sincerely than we
    the self-sacrificing benevolence of St. Francis of
    Assisi, the zeal of St. Francis Xavier, the piety of
    Fénelon and of Lacordaire, the eloquence of Bossuet and
    Massillon, or the courage of Pascal and Hyacinthe.

    "We come to you for help. In all our great cities
    there are sections inhabited almost wholly by Roman
    Catholic people. It is a fact, as well known to you
    as it is to us, that Catholic sections of the cities
    abound in destitution, in ignorance, in vice, in crime.
    Children are here trained by all their surroundings
    to a life of wickedness. In many homes they learn
    profanity from the lips of their mothers, and they are
    familiar with drunkenness from their cradle, if they
    are so fortunate as to have one left not pawned to buy
    the means of drunkenness. We know how many honest and
    hard-working Catholics there are in these sections, and
    we know how many villanous non-Catholics there are. But
    you know as well as any one knows that the Catholic
    population furnishes vastly more than its proportion
    of paupers and criminals. The reform schools, the
    prisons, the alms-houses, are nearly full of Catholics.
    In the Catholic sections of the cities there are
    drinking-saloons, dog-pits, and brothels in abundance.
    The men who keep these places are, in undue proportion,
    Catholics. They receive extreme unction on their
    death-beds, and are buried in consecrated cemeteries
    with the rites of the church. We say these things
    not to wound your Catholic pride, nor to injure that
    church, but to ask one question: Cannot the Catholic
    Church herself do something to mitigate these evils?

    "Protestants plant missions in some of these Catholic
    quarters. We are not sure that these missions are
    always conducted as they should be. Perhaps there may
    be too much of a spirit of proselytism in some of them;
    but, at any rate, there is a sincere desire to make men
    better. Drunkards have been reformed by these missions.
    Women of evil life have been reclaimed. Children have
    been taken from vile homes and taught the ways of
    virtue. Sunday-schools and reading-rooms have been
    established, and have contributed to the culture and
    elevation of adults and children.

    "But you know, sir, how strong is the Catholic
    prejudice against Protestants. Broken windows,
    and sometimes broken heads, have testified to the
    appreciation the Catholic population has of such
    efforts on the part of Protestants. There are whole
    districts from which Protestants are practically
    excluded. For the worse the lives of these people are,
    the more combatively devoted are they to the Catholic
    Church. Of course, we believe that Protestantism is
    better than Roman Catholicism; but since the reaching
    of these people with Protestant missions is not
    possible, we come to you and ask you whether you, who
    have done so much for the enlightenment of the Catholic
    Church through its literature, will not lift up your
    powerful voice to plead with the church to use her
    almost unlimited influence for the regeneration of her

    "We are never tired of praising Catholic charities.
    But Catholic charities, like many Protestant ones, are
    only half-charities. Of what avail is it that you build
    a House of the Good Shepherd for abandoned women, if
    you do not also take means to mitigate the ignorance
    and the wickedness of the children who are quickly to
    supply the places of those whom you have recovered?

    "We point you to no Protestant example. We know of
    none so good as that of the illustrious St. Charles
    Borromeo. If the great Cathedral of Milan were the
    rudest chapel in Europe, it would yet be one of the
    most glorious of temples. We need not point the
    application of his example to the present subject. If
    the Catholic Church in America had one ecclesiastic of
    ability who possessed half the zeal of the illustrious
    successor of St. Ambrose, this stain upon American
    Catholicism might soon be wiped away. We need not
    remind one so learned in church history as yourself
    of his toilsome labor in the cause of education,
    and of his endeavors, which ceased only with his
    life, to remove ignorance and vice from his diocese.
    In suggesting to you, whose parish has already so
    admirable a Sunday-school, the good that might be
    accomplished by a thoroughly organized Sunday-school
    system, we do not need to suggest that in Sunday-school
    work Catholics are not imitators of Protestants. We are
    proud to trace the history of Sunday-schools to St.
    Charles Borromeo.

    "By helping to improve the moral, intellectual, and
    religious character of the lower class of American
    Catholics, you can do more than by all your eloquent
    arguments to make Protestants think well of the mother
    church. Americans are very practical, and a good
    chapter of present church history enacted before their
    eyes will have more weight with them than all the old
    church history your learning can dig from the folios of
    eighteen centuries."

We depart from our usual course to reprint the above rather, long
article, which appeared some time ago in the _Independent_, one of
the leading Protestant papers of the country, not because of its
intrinsic merits or special untruthfulness, nor yet for its assumed
knowledge of the views and duties of the reverend gentleman to whom
it is so pointedly addressed, but because we consider this a fitting
time and place to answer the invidious attacks which, under one guise
or another, are so constantly being made on the church in America
by those who are neither able to meet openly our arguments, nor to
arrest covertly the astonishing progress which our holy religion
is happily making in every part of this republic. These assaults
sometimes take the form of wholesale and mendacious assertion and
passionate appeal to blind prejudice and unreason; while sometimes,
like the one before us, they assume the thin disguise of personal
courtesy and general charity to all men. The former are perhaps the
more manly, the latter have the merit of permitting us, without loss
of self-respect, to reply to them. The object in either case is the
same: a vain endeavor to stem the tide of Catholicity which, in a
succession of great waves, as it were, is fast spreading over the
land, and an attempt to make our faith an object of aversion to those
of our countrymen not yet in the church, by associating it with all
that is impoverished, illiterate, and immoral.

It is true, as the writer says, that the Americans are a practical
people; but we are not by any means a very reflective people, and are
very apt to judge hastily of others without sufficiently considering
the various causes which underlie the surface of society, or the
effects which may be produced on a people less fortunate than
ourselves by ages of misrule and persecution. Knowing this national
failing very well, the writer in the _Independent_ adroitly seeks
to hold the Catholic Church responsible for the faults and vices
of a certain class of nominal Catholics in our midst, when he is
fully aware that these very vices, so far from being the growth of
Catholic teaching, are not only in absolute contradiction to it, but
are the direct and logical results of an elaborate system of penal
legislation, designed to produce the very degradation of which he
complains, and persistently carried out to its furthest limit by the
leading Protestant power of Europe.

Take New York, for instance. Here the church is practically the
growth of but half a century. There are some among us whose
Catholic ancestors came to this country in the last or even in the
seventeenth century; others who have sought refuge from the doubts
and uncertainties of Protestantism in the peaceful bosom of mother
church; but by far the greater number are immigrants of this century,
and their children, who, glad to flee from famine and persecution
with nothing but their lives and faith, have sought refuge on our
shores from the tyranny of a hostile government, which the world
has long recognized as both insincere, oppressive, and illiberal,
but which, by virtue of its assumed leadership in the Protestant
revolt called the Reformation, wantonly and tenaciously continued
to persecute its subjects who dared to profess their devotion to
the faith of their fathers. Any one, be he lawyer or laymen, who
reads the penal acts of the parliaments of England, Scotland, and
Ireland from the reign of Henry VIII. downward, must be satisfied
that a more complete network of laws for the purpose of beggaring,
degrading, and corrupting human nature has never been devised. Some
of them, in fact, are almost preternatural in their ingenuity; and
the wonder is how any class of people coming under their operation
could, for any length of time, retain even the semblance of
civilization. Everything that it was possible to take by legislation
from the Catholics of Great Britain and Ireland was taken, every
advantage arising from the possession of land or the acquisition
of commercial wealth was denied them, and the avenues to honor and
distinction were, and are partially so to this day, closed against
them, generation after generation. That many of the descendants of
these persecuted people who have come among us are uneducated is
true, that they are generally poor is a fact patent to every one; but
it ill becomes the _Independent_ to taunt them with their ignorance
and their poverty, knowing, as it does, that it was Protestantism,
of which it is the expounder and the eulogist, that has robbed them
of their birthright, and striven, with some success, it seems, to
plunge their souls in darkness. Is it fair or generous to hold these
people up to public contumely because of the scars they have received
in their unequalled struggle for the freedom of conscience and
nationality; is it just or American to try to steal from those who
seek an asylum on our soil that for which they have imperilled and
lost all else--their faith, which is to them dearer than life itself?
Or is it more in keeping with all our ideas of true manhood and
republican liberty that while we extend one arm to shield the victim
of oppression, the other should be stretched forth in reprobation of
his plunderer and persecutor? If they have vices--and what people
have not?--let a share of the blame at least be laid at the doors of
those who designedly and continually debarred them from all means
of enlightenment and every incentive to virtue, instead of being
attributed to the influence of the church.

And yet, in view of the gloomy history of these people--a chapter
in the annals of England which the best of her Protestant statesmen
are endeavoring to efface from the popular memory--the writer in
the _Independent_ appears to be surprised at what he calls Catholic
prejudice against Protestant missions. No man, we are safe in saying,
has less prejudice against his fellow-man than the American Catholic,
in all the usual intercourse of life; but when a person under the
garb of charity invades the sanctity of his home simply to abuse
his religion, or waylays his children in the streets and inveigles
them into mission-houses and Sunday-schools by the proffer of a loaf
or a jacket, for the purpose of telling them that their fathers'
faith is rank idolatry, is it not too much to expect that he will
remain unmoved and uncomplaining? The writer should recollect that
the class of so-called missionaries who infest the quarters of our
poorer fellow-Catholics are not new to those people. They have seen
their counterparts long ago in Bantry and Connemara, in the fertile
valleys of Munster and on the bleak hills of Connaught, in the dark
days of the great famine, when the tract distributer followed hard on
the heels of the tithe-proctor and the bailiff, tendering a meal or a
shilling as the price of apostasy. If heads are occasionally broken,
they are not the heads of those who attend to their own affairs and
let their neighbors attend to theirs, but of some intermeddling
tract-scatterer, whose salary depends upon the number of copies
he can force into the hands of Catholics without regard to their
wishes or feelings. The provocation emanates from them, and they
must take the consequences. If the law permits us to inflict summary
chastisement on the burglar who enters our house to take our goods,
shall we have no remedy against him who prowls about our doors to
steal our children and abuse our faith?

If Protestant missions were properly conducted, they would have
none of these difficulties to contend with. But are they properly
conducted? The writer in the _Independent_ seems to have some doubts
on this point. We have none. Whoever will take the trouble to attend
the Bible-classes, prayer-meetings, day-schools, and Sunday-schools
of the Howard Mission and its adjuncts, will be satisfied that they
are nothing but ingeniously contrived machines for the purpose of
proselytizing Catholic children. Abuse of Catholicity of the most
unqualified and vulgar kind forms the staple of the instructions
there from beginning to end. Even the material relief is diverted
to this purpose. The poor half-starved lad, as he eats his food,
swallows it down with a draught of no-popery cant, and the ragged
little girl, as she dons some cast-off garment, has her young mind
polluted by aspersions on the name of her whom Holy Writ declared
should be called blessed by all nations. We have before us a
periodical issued from the Howard Mission, under the superintendence
of a Rev. W. C. Van Meter, which is as full of that canting,
snivelling, anti-Catholic spirit as ever characterized the days of
God-save-Barebones or of John Wesley's unlettered disciples. As a
specimen of the veracity of this modern apostle to the Fourth Ward,
and for the benefit of the _Independent_, which has some doubts as to
whether Protestant missions are properly conducted, we extract the
following prominent article from its pages:

    "PROTESTANTISM _vs._ ROMANISM.--In the Protestant
    countries of Great Britain and Prussia, where 20 can
    read and write, there are but 13 in the Roman Catholic
    countries of France and Austria. In European countries,
    1 in every 10 are in schools in the Protestant
    countries, and but 1 in 124 in the Roman Catholic. In
    six leading Protestant countries in Europe, 1 newspaper
    or magazine is published to every 315 inhabitants;
    while in six Roman Catholic there is but 1 to every
    2,715. The value of what is produced a year by industry
    in Spain is $6 to each inhabitant; in France, $7½;
    Prussia, $8; and in Great Britain, $31. There are about
    a third more paupers in the Roman Catholic countries of
    Europe than in the Protestant, owing mainly to their
    numerous holidays and prevailing ignorance, idleness,
    and vice. Three times as many crimes are committed in
    Ireland as in Great Britain, though the population is
    but a third. There are six times as many homicides,
    four times as many assassinations, and from three to
    four times as many thefts in Ireland as in Scotland.
    In Catholic Austria, there are four times as many
    crimes committed as in the adjoining Protestant kingdom
    of Prussia."[41]

Now, we ask, is the man or men who penned and circulated this
atrocious calumny likely to command the respect of any class of
Catholics, learned or ignorant? He or they knew, or ought to have
known, that it contains several deliberate falsehoods. Take, for
example, the portion of the extract relating to Great Britain and
Ireland. By referring to the report of "Her Majesty's Inspector of
Schools, August 31, 1868," we find that in England and Wales the
average attendance at all the schools in the kingdom was 1,050,120,
in Scotland 191,860, and in Ireland, at the model schools alone,
354,853, or nearly twice as many as in Scotland, and, in proportion
to the population, one-seventh more than in England. From the
official report of the statistics of crime in the same year (the
latest published reports that have reached us), there were convicted
of crime in England 15,003, in Scotland 2,490, and in Ireland 2,394.
Of those sentenced in England, 21 were condemned to death, 18 to
penal servitude for life, and 1,921 for a term of years. In Scotland,
one was condemned to death, and 243 to penal servitude, while in
Ireland none were condemned to death, and but 238 to penal servitude.
We find also that in England alone 118,390 persons are reported as
belonging to the criminal classes known to the authorities, and but
23,041 in Ireland; and while the former country has 20,000 houses of
bad character, the latter has 5,876. The number of paupers in each
of the three countries shows even a greater disparity. England in
1868 had, exclusive of vagrants, 1,039,549, or one in every twenty of
the population; Scotland, 158,372, or one in every 19; and Ireland,
74,254, or one in every 80![42]

If it were not foreign to our present purpose, we could prove that
the managers of the Protestant missions are equally untruthful in
their invidious comparisons instituted between other countries,[43]
but we have shown enough to convince any impartial person that they
are not fit to be entrusted with the care of youth of any class, much
less of Catholic children. If the supporters of the _Independent_
are sincere in their desire to benefit the destitute, the needy, and
the vicious, let them first remove all suspicion of proselytism from
their charities by appointing proper persons to administer them.
If they have conscientious scruples against co-operating with the
various Catholic charitable societies, who know the poor and are
trusted by them, there are other ways of dispensing their bounty
judiciously than by tampering with the poor people's faith, and
their charity will then become a blessing to the giver as well as
to the receiver. Then let them, above all things, advocate a fair
and impartial distribution of the public school funds. It is well
known that the Catholics as a body are far from being rich, and that
while they are struggling hard to sustain their own schools, they
are heavily taxed for the support of those to which they cannot
consistently send their children, and from which, in many instances,
the offspring of the rich alone receive any benefit. Can we not
in this free democracy have laws regulating education at least as
equitable as those of Austria and Prussia--countries which we
are pleased to call despotic? Help us to the means to educate our
children in our own way, as we have a right to do, and you will see
how the stigma of ignorance and its consequences will be removed from
the fair forehead of this great metropolis. We ask not charity, we
simply want our fair share of that public money which is contributed
by Catholic and Protestant alike for educational purposes, and the
liberty to apply it with as much freedom from state interference as
is enjoyed in the monarchies of Europe.

The writer in the _Independent_ assumes, with a coolness approaching
impertinence, that the clergyman whom he addresses knows that the
Catholic population "furnishes more, vastly more, than its proportion
of paupers and criminals." He knows no such thing, nor does any
right-minded man in the community know it. That there are many and
grave crimes committed by nominal Catholics is, alas! too true,
but that many such are perpetrated, to any appreciable extent, by
the hundreds of thousands of practical Catholics in this city, no
sane man believes. Poor and ignorant, if you will, without capital,
business training, or mechanical skill, many thousands of our
immigrants are from necessity obliged to make their homes in the
purlieus of our great cities. Disappointed in their too sanguine
expectation of fortune in the New World, some seek solace in
intoxication, and in that condition commit acts of lawlessness which
their better nature abhors. But much as the commission of crime in
any shape is to be regretted and reprehended, it must be admitted
that most of the offences are comparatively trivial in their nature
and consequences, and few, even of the darkest, are the result of
premeditated villany. In searching over the criminal records of
our state and country, we seldom find a contrived infraction of the
law by the class to which the writer so ungraciously alludes. A
gigantic swindle, a scientific burglary, a nicely planned larceny,
an adroit forgery, a diabolical seduction, or a deliberate and
long-contemplated murder by poison or the knife, is seldom committed
by that class, but by those who were reared in as much hostility
to Catholicity as the writer of the _Independent_ himself. This
higher grade of crime, this "bad pre-eminence," we might with some
show of justice ascribe to the effects of the laxity of Protestant
morals, but we have no desire to do so here; and with even much
more truthfulness might we charge the sects who teach that marriage
is merely a civil contract with the responsibility of those other
vices which, striking at the very foundations of society and the
sanctity of the family, are more lasting in their consequences and
more demoralizing in their immediate effects, than all the others
put together. The columns of this same virtuous _Independent_ have
obtained an unenviable notoriety by spreading the most shameful and
corrupting doctrines on this vital subject. But we have no wish to
retort: the records of our divorce courts will prove that this class
of criminals is made up almost exclusively of non-Catholics.

The writer in the _Independent_, throughout his appeal, assumes a
tone of superior knowledge and a lofty contempt for details that
might mislead some into the belief that the Catholic body of this
city was an inert and helpless mass. He asks, "Will you not lift
up your powerful voice to plead with the church to use her almost
unlimited influence for the regeneration of her people?" Does the
writer know, or has he attempted to ascertain, all that the church
has done and is doing in this city, as in every other, for the
"regeneration of her people"? If he does not, by what right does
he assume that the voice of any one man or any number of men is
required to _plead_ with the church to do her duty? If he be ignorant
of his subject, then by what authority does he take upon himself
the office of mediator between the church and the people? If he be
not in ignorance, then his carefully worded sentences and smoothly
turned compliments merely cover, without concealing, a tissue of base
insinuations, beside which downright falsehood were rank flattery.

Let him look at what the church has done in New York in the past
generation! Forty churches and chapels have been built, with a
capacity, it is said, to seat fifty-six thousand persons, but really
equal to the accommodation of five times that number, as in every
church the divine service is offered up at least three times each
Sunday, and all are attended beyond the greatest capacity of the
building. To many of our churches is attached a free day-school for
boys and girls, and invariably a Sunday-school--thronged weekly by
the youth of both sexes, to listen to the instruction and counsel
of competent teachers. Every parish has its St. Vincent de Paul
Society, counting hundreds and in some cases thousands of members,
whose aim it is to visit the sick, the afflicted, and the needy; and
its temperance society, the strength of which may be judged by the
long line of stalworth men we see parading our streets on festal
occasions. Colleges, schools, and convents there are in great numbers
for the teaching of the higher branches of education. Hospitals
for the sick and afflicted, asylums for the blind, the orphan, the
foundling, and the repentant sinner, a reformatory for erring youth,
and a shelter for old age. Almost every conceivable want of weak
humanity has its appropriate place of supply among our charitable

All this grand system of charities is, however, lost on the writer in
the _Independent_. His special attention is directed to the "dense
Catholic sections." Well, we will take the Fourth Ward, which is
blessed with the Howard Mission and the beneficent supervision of
Mr. Van Meter. St. James's Church is situated in this ward, and its
parish embraces all the Protestant missions so-called, and most of
their offshoots. Upon personal inquiry, we find that there is erected
in this parish a magnificent and spacious school-house, at a cost
of _one hundred and twenty thousand_ dollars, attended daily during
week-days by upwards of _fourteen hundred_ boys and girls, taught by
twenty-two teachers of both sexes. The tuition is entirely free, the
expenses amounting to about twelve thousand dollars annually, being
sustained by the voluntary contributions of the parishioners. The
Sunday-schools of this church are attended by _twenty-five hundred_
children, about one-half of whom, being employed during the week,
are unable to attend the day-schools. Then there is an industrial
school, attended by between one and two hundred poor children, mostly
half-orphans, who are provided with dinner every day, and to whom
are given two entire suits of new clothing every year, on July 4th
and Christmas Day. In addition to these there is a branch of the St.
Vincent de Paul Society, numbering several hundred members, forty
of whom are constantly on duty, visiting the sick, counselling the
erring, helping the needy, and performing other works of charity.
This society alone expends annually at least five thousand dollars.
Besides, there are two temperance societies, numbering nearly _nine
hundred men_, who not only discourage intemperance by their example,
but seek by weekly meetings, lectures, and other popular attractions
to win others to follow in their footsteps. Now, these are facts
easily verified by any one who may wish to do so, and may be taken as
a fair specimen of the gigantic efforts which the church is making in
every parish in this city for the conservation of the morals and the
education of her people. St. James's Parish may be said to contain
the largest proportionate number of our poorer brethren, who, though
heavily taxed as tenement holders and retail purchasers of all the
necessaries of life, contributing of course their quota to the public
school fund, can yet afford, out of their scanty and often precarious
means, to educate and partly feed and clothe over _fifteen hundred
children_. Can the _Independent_ show any similar effort on the part
of any of the sects?

The writer in the _Independent_ says, "We come to you for help."
What sort of help? If it is assistance to prop up the decaying
Protestant missions which have so long been sources of discord and
bad feeling among our Catholic fellow-citizens, profitable only to
their employees, we respectfully decline: if he is in truth and all
sincerity desirous to devote a part of his leisure time and means
to improve the condition of his less fortunate fellow-beings in the
denser populated portions of the city, we cannot advise him to do
better than to consult the pastor of St. James's or of any of the
churches in the lower wards, who will give him all the help required
for the proper disposal of both. And, in conclusion, let us suggest
to him that no amount of politeness will justify the violation of the
commandment which says, "Thou shalt not bear false witness against
thy neighbor."


[41] _The Little Wanderer's Friend_, January, 1871.

[42] _Thom's Directory of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and
Ireland_, for 1870, pp. 713-721.

[43] See CATHOLIC WORLD for April, September, and October, 1869, and
April, 1870.




The press of Paris and of the provinces was beginning to discuss the
events at Lourdes; and public attention far outside the region of the
Pyrenees was gradually being attracted to the Grotto of Massabielle.

The measures of the prefect were loudly applauded by the infidel
papers and as vehemently condemned by the Catholic ones. The latter,
while maintaining a due reserve on the subject of the reality of the
apparitions and miracles, held that a question of this nature should
be decided by the ecclesiastical authorities, and not summarily
settled according to the will of the prefect.

The innumerable cures which were taking place at the grotto, or even
at distant places, continually drew an immense number of invalids and
pilgrims to Lourdes. The Latour de Trie analysis, and the mineral
properties claimed for the new spring by the official representative
of science, added yet more to the reputation of the grotto, and made
it attractive even to those who depended for their cure only on the
unaided powers of nature. Also, the discussion, by exciting men's
minds, added to the throng of the faithful there assembled another of
the curious. All the means adopted by the unbelievers turned directly
against the end which they had proposed to themselves.

By the irresistible course of events, then--a course fatal in the
eyes of some, but providential in those of others--the crowd which
the authorities had been trying to disperse was continually assuming
larger and larger proportions. And it increased the more, because, as
ill luck would have it, the material obstacles which the frosts of
winter had produced had gradually disappeared. The month of May had
returned; and the beautiful spring weather seemed to invite pilgrims
to come to the grotto by all the flowery roads which traverse the
woods, meadows, and vineyards in this region of lofty mountains,
green hills, and shady valleys.

The provoked but powerless prefect watched the growth and spread
of this peaceable and wonderful movement, which was bringing the
Christian multitudes to kneel and drink at the foot of a desolate

The measures already taken had, it is true, prevented the grotto from
looking like an oratory, but, substantially, the state of things
remained the same. From all sides people were coming to the scene of
a miracle. Contrary to the hope of the free-thinkers, the fear of the
faithful, and the expectations of all, absolutely no disturbance or
breach of the peace occurred in this extraordinary concourse of men
and women, old and young, believers and infidels, the curious and
the indifferent. An invisible hand seemed to protect these crowds
from mutual collision as they daily thronged by thousands to the
miraculous fountain.

The magistracy, represented by M. Dutour, and the police, personified
in M. Jacomet, looked at this strange phenomenon with astonishment.
Was their irritation all the greater on his account? We cannot say;
but for some dispositions extremely fond of authority, the spectacle
of a multitude so wonderfully orderly and peaceable, is certainly
anomalous and revolutionary, if not even insulting. When order
preserves itself, all those functionaries whose only business is
to preserve it feel a vague uneasiness. Being accustomed to have a
hand in everything in the name of the law, to regulate, to command,
to punish, to pardon, to see everything and everybody depend on
their person and office, they feel out of place in the presence of
a crowd which does not need their services, and which gives them no
pretext for interfering, showing their importance, and restraining
its movements. An order which excludes them is the worst of all
disorders. If such a fatal example should be generally followed, the
_procureurs impériaux_ would no longer have a sufficient reason for
their existence, the commissaries of police would disappear, and even
the prefectoral splendor would begin to wane.

Baron Massy had indeed been able to order the seizure of every
object deposited at the grotto; but there was no law recognizing
such deposits as criminal, and it was impossible to forbid or punish
them. Hence, in spite of the spoliations of the prefect, the grotto
was often brilliantly lighted by candles, and filled with flowers and
votive offerings, and even with silver and gold coins contributed for
the building of the chapel which the Blessed Virgin had required.
The pious faithful wished in this way--though it were an ineffectual
one--to show the Queen of Heaven their good-will, zeal, and love.
"What matter is it if they do take the money? It will have been
offered all the same. The candle will have given its light for a
time in honor of our Mother, and the bouquet will for an instant
have perfumed the sacred spot where her feet rested." Such were the
thoughts of those Christian souls.

Jacomet and his agents continued to come and carry everything off.
The commissary, much encouraged after having escaped the dangers
of the 4th of May, had become very scornful and brutal in his
proceedings, sometimes throwing the object seized into the Gave
before the scandalized eyes of the faithful. Sometimes, however, he
was obliged in spite of himself to leave a festal appearance at the
holy place. This was when the ingenious piety of its visitors had
strewn the Grotto with innumerable rose-leaves, and it was impossible
for him to pick up the thousand remains of flowers which formed its
brilliant and perfumed carpet.

The kneeling crowds continued meanwhile to pray, without making any
reply to this provoking conduct, and let matters take their course;
showing an extraordinary patience, such as God alone can give to an
indignant multitude.

One evening, the report was spread that the emperor or his minister
had asked for the prayers of Bernadette. M. Dutour raised a shout of
triumph, and prepared to save the state. Three good women, who, as it
seems, had made such a statement, were brought before the court, and
the _procureur_ demanded that they should be treated according to all
the rigor of the French law. Notwithstanding his indignant eloquence,
the judges acquitted two and condemned the other only to a fine of
five francs. The procureur, dissatisfied with this small amount,
insisted upon his suit, and made a desperate appeal to the imperial
court at Pau, which, smiling at his anger, not only confirmed the
acquittal of the two, but also refused to sustain the very small
judgment pronounced against the third culprit, and dismissed the
charge altogether.

We mention this little occurrence, though an insignificant one in
itself, to show how keenly the judges were upon the watch, and how
carefully they searched for some offence, for some opportunity to be
severe, since they employed their time in prosecuting poor simple
women whose innocence was soon after declared by the imperial court.

The people still continued quiet, and afforded no pretext to the
authorities for making an attack upon them in the name of the law.

One night, under cover of the darkness, unknown hands tore up the
conduits of the miraculous spring, and covered its waters with
heaps of stone, earth, and sand. Who had raised this vile monument
against the work of God, what impious and cowardly hands had secretly
committed such profanation, were not known. But when the day broke,
and the sacrilege became known, a sullen indignation, as might
have been foreseen, pervaded the multitudes who were collected at
the place, and that day the people filled the streets and roads
in agitation like that of the sea when it foams and roars under
a violent wind. The police, magistracy, and _sergents-de-ville_
were on the watch, spying and listening, but they could not report
a single lawless action or seditious word. The divine influence
which maintained order among these enraged multitudes was evidently

But who, then, was the author of this outrage? The judges and police,
in spite of their active and zealous endeavors, did not succeed in
detecting him. Hence it happened that some evil-minded persons dared
to suspect the police and judiciary themselves (though evidently
with great injustice) of having tried by this means to produce some
disorders, in order to have an occasion to proceed with rigor.

The municipal authority most earnestly exculpated itself from all
connivance in the affair. That very evening, or the next day, the
mayor gave orders to replace the conduits, and to clear the floor
of the grotto of all the rubbish with which the fountain had been
obstructed. The mayor's policy was to not assume personally any
decided position, but to keep things as they were. He was ready to
act, but always as a subordinate, upon the prefect's orders and

Sometimes the people, fearing that they would not be able to control
their feelings, took precautions against themselves. The association
of stone-cutters, numbering some four or five hundred, had planned
to make a great but peaceful demonstration at the grotto, and to go
there in procession singing canticles in honor of their patron feast
of the Ascension, which came that year on the 13th of May. But,
feeling their hearts indignant and their hands unsteady under these
proceedings of the authorities, they distrusted themselves, and gave
up the idea. They contented themselves with relinquishing on that day
in honor of our Lady of Lourdes the ball they were accustomed to give
every year to conclude their festival.

"We intend," said they, "that no disturbance, even though
unintentional, and no entertainment not approved by the church, shall
occur to offend the eyes of the Holy Virgin who has deigned to visit


The prefect perceived all the time, more and more, that coercion
of any ordinary kind was impossible for him on account of this
surprising quietness, this peace as irritating as it was wonderful,
which maintained itself without exterior force in these great
collections of people. There was not even an accident to disturb
it. He was therefore obliged either to retrace his steps in the
course which he had thus far pursued, and to leave the people quite
alone, or to come to open violence and persecution by finding some
pretext for the imposition of arbitrary restraints upon them. It was
necessary either to recede or to advance.

On the other hand, the variety and suddenness of the cures which had
been worked seemed to many good people rather poorly explained by the
therapeutic and mineral properties ascribed to the new spring. Doubts
were raised as to the strict accuracy of the scientific decision
which had been given by M. Latour de Trie. A chemist of the vicinity,
M. Thomas Pugo, claimed that this water was in no way extraordinary,
and had not of itself any healing properties whatsoever; and in this
he was sustained by several other very capable professors in the
province. Science was beginning to assert the entire incorrectness
of the De Trie analysis; and the rumors to this effect had become so
strong that the municipal council of Lourdes took cognizance of them.
The mayor could not refuse to gratify the general desire to have a
second analysis made of the water from the grotto. He, therefore,
without consulting the prefect (which seemed to him useless on
account of the conviction entertained by the latter of the accuracy
of the results of M. Latour), procured from the municipal council a
vote authorizing him to obtain a new and definitive analysis from
Prof. Filhol, one of the principal chemists of our day. The council
at the same time voted the funds required for the due compensation
of the celebrated _savant_.

M. Filhol was a man of authority in modern science, and his decision
would evidently not be open to appeal.

What would be the result of his analysis? The prefect was not chemist
enough to tell; but we think we cannot be much mistaken in thinking
that he must have been somewhat uneasy. The verdict of the eminent
professor of chemistry of the faculty of Toulouse might, in fact,
disturb the combinations and plans of M. Massy. Haste was becoming
imperative, and on this ground especially it was necessary to fall
back or press forward.

In the midst of such various passions and complicated calculations,
people had not failed to subject Bernadette to some new trials as
useless as the preceding ones.

She had been preparing to make her first communion, and made it on
Corpus Christi, the 3d of June. This was the very day on which the
municipal council of Lourdes requested M. Filhol to analyze the
mysterious water. Almighty God, entering into the heart of this
child, made also the analysis of a pure fount, and we may well
believe that he must have admired and blessed, in this virginal soul,
a most pure spring and a most transparent crystal.

Notwithstanding the retirement in which she preferred to hide
herself, people continued to visit her. She was always the innocent
and simple child whose portrait we have endeavored to present. She
charmed all those who conversed with her by her candor and manifest
good faith.

One day, a lady, after an interview with her, wished, in a moment of
enthusiastic veneration easily conceivable by those who have seen
Bernadette, to exchange her chaplet of precious stones for that of
the child.

"Keep your own, madam," said she, showing her modest implement of
prayer. "You see what mine is, and I had rather not change. It is
poor, like myself, and agrees better with my poverty."

An ecclesiastic tried to make her accept some money; she refused.
He insisted, only to be met by a refusal so formal that a longer
resistance seemed useless. The priest, however, did not yet consider
his case as lost.

"Take it," said he; "not for yourself, but for the poor, and then you
will have the pleasure of giving an alms."

"Do you, then, make it yourself for my intention, M. l'Abbé, and that
will do better than if I should make it myself," answered the child.

Poor Bernadette intended to serve God gratuitously, and to fulfil
the mission with which she had been entrusted without leaving her
honorable poverty. And yet she and the family were sometimes in want
of bread.

At this time the salary of the prefect, Baron Massy, was raised
to 25,000 francs. Jacomet also received a gratuity. The Minister
of Public Worship, in a letter which was communicated to several
functionaries, assured the prefect of his perfect satisfaction,
and, while commending all that he had so far done, he urged him to
take energetic measures, adding that, at all costs, the grotto and
miracles of Lourdes must be put an end to.[44]

On this ground, as well as on all the others, it was necessary
either to retreat or to advance.

But what could be done?


The plan of the divine work was gradually being developed with
its admirable and convincing logic. But at that time no one fully
recognized the invisible hand of God directing all the events,
manifest as it was, and M. Massy least of all. The midst of the
_mêlée_ is not the best position from which to judge the order of
battle. The unfortunate prefect, who had set out upon the wrong
track, saw in what occurred only a provoking series of unpleasant
incidents and an inexplicable fatality. If we remove God from certain
questions, we are very likely to find in them something inexplicable.

The progress of events, slow but irresistible, was overthrowing
successively all the theses of unbelief, and forcing this miserable
human philosophy to beat a retreat and to abandon one by one all its

First, the apparitions had occurred. Free thought had at the outset
denied them out-and-out, accusing the seer of being only a tool, and
of having lent herself to carry out a deception. This thesis had not
stood before the examination of the child, whose veracity was evident.

Unbelief, dislodged from this first position, fell back on the theory
of hallucination or catalepsy. "She thinks she sees something; but
she does not. It is all a mistake."

Providence meanwhile had brought together from the four winds its
thousands and thousands of witnesses to the ecstatic states of the
child, and in due time had given a solemn confirmation to the truth
of Bernadette's story by producing a miraculous fountain before the
astonished eyes of the assembled multitudes.

"There is no fountain," was then the word of unbelief. "It is an
infiltration, a pool, a puddle; anything that you please, except a

But the more they publicly and solemnly denied it, the more did
the stream increase, as if it had been a living being, until it
acquired prodigious proportions. More than a hundred thousand litres
(twenty-two thousand gallons) issued daily from this strange rock.

"It is an accident; it is a freak of chance," stammered the infidels,
confounded and recoiling.

Next, events following their inevitable course, the most remarkable
cures had immediately attested the miraculous nature of the fountain,
and given a new and decisive proof of the divine reality of the
all-powerful apparition whose mere gesture had brought forth this
fountain of life under a mortal hand.

The first move of the philosophers was to deny the cures, as they
had before denied Bernadette's sincerity and the existence of the

But suddenly these had become so numerous and indubitable that their
opponents were obliged to take yet another step in retreat, and admit

"Well, granted; there are some cures certainly, but they are natural;
the spring has some therapeutic ingredients," cried the unbelievers,
holding in their hands some sort of a semblance of chemical analysis.
And then instantaneous cures, absolutely unaccountable upon such a
hypothesis, were multiplied; and at the same time, in various places,
conscientious and skilful chemists declared distinctly that the
Massabielle water had not any mineral properties, that it was common
water, and that the official analysis of M. Latour de Trie was meant
simply to please the prefect.

Driven in this way from all the intrenchments in which, after their
successive defeats, they had taken refuge; pursued by the dazzling
evidence of the fact; crushed by the weight of their own avowals; and
not being able to take back these successive and compulsory avowals,
publicly registered in their own newspapers, what remained for the
philosophers and free-thinkers to do? Only to surrender humbly to
truth. Only to bow the head, bend the knee, and believe; only to do
that which the ripe grain does when its cells begin to fill.

"The same change has taken place," says Montaigne, "in the truly
wise, as in the stalks of wheat, which rise up and hold up their
heads erect and proud as long as they are empty, but, when they are
full and distended with the ripe grain, begin to humble themselves,
to bend toward the ground. So men, when they have tried and sounded
all things, ... renounce their presumption and recognize their
natural condition."

Perhaps the philosophers of Lourdes had not an intellect open or
strong enough to receive and hold the good grain. Perhaps pride made
them inflexible and rebellious to manifest evidence. At any rate,
with the happy exception of some who were converted, that change did
not come to them which has come to those who are truly wise, and they
continued to keep the lofty and proud attitude of the empty stalks.

Not only did their attitude remain thus, but their impiety, after
being disgracefully pursued from one quibble, sophism, or falsehood
to another, and finally driven against the wall, suddenly unmasked
itself and showed its real face. It passed, as we may say, from the
domain of discussion and reasoning, which it had been trying to
usurp, to that of intolerance and violence, which was its proper home.

Baron Massy, who was perfectly informed as to the state of public
feeling, understood with his rare sagacity that, if he took arbitrary
measures and resorted to persecution, he would have a considerable
moral support in the exasperation of the unbelievers, who were
defeated, humiliated, and furious.

He also had been defeated as yet in the contest similar to, if not
exactly the same as, theirs, which he had been carrying on against
the supernatural. All his efforts had come to nothing.

The supernatural, beginning at the base of a desolate rock and
announced only by the voice of a child, had entered upon its course,
overthrowing all obstacles, drawing the people with it, and gaining
to itself on the way enthusiastic acclamations, prayers, and the
cries of gratitude from the popular faith.

Once more, what remained to be done?

One course yet remained: to resist evidence, and to make an attack
upon the multitude.


In the midst of all these turns of fortune, the question of the
prefectoral stables had become more and more exciting, and greatly
increased the prefect's exasperation. The month of June had come. The
season at the watering-places was beginning, and would soon bring
to the Pyrenees bathers and tourists from all parts of Europe, and
show them the disturbance which the supernatural was making in the
department governed by Baron Massy. The instructions of M. Rouland
were becoming most urgent, and pointed to summary proceedings. On the
6th of June, M. Fould, the Minister of Finance, stopped at Tarbes
on his way to his summer residence, and had a long interview with M.
Massy. It was rumored that this conference related to the events at
the grotto.

The act of drinking at a spring upon the common land of the town
could not be considered as in itself an offence against the law. The
first thing to be done by the opponents of superstition was therefore
to find a pretext for so regarding it. Arbitrary proceedings have not
in France the official right which they enjoy in Russia or Turkey,
but need a cover of law.

The able prefect had an idea on this subject as ingenious as it was
simple. The site of the Massabielle Cliffs belonging to the town of
Lourdes, the mayor, as its administrator, could prohibit any one from
visiting them, for or even without any reason whatever, in the same
way as any private owner of land forbids at his pleasure the trespass
of others upon it. Such a prohibition, publicly announced, would turn
each visit to the grotto into a formal crime.

The plan of the baron hinged upon this idea; and, having hit upon it,
he decided to act it out and play the despot.

Accordingly, on the following day, the mayor of Lourdes was
instructed to issue the following order:

"The mayor of the town of Lourdes, _acting under the instructions
addressed to him by the superior authorities_, and under the laws of
the 14th and 22d of December, 1789, of the 16th and 24th of August,
1790, of the 19th and 22d of July, 1791, and of the 18th of July,
1837, on Municipal Administration;

"And considering that it is very desirable, _in the interest of
religion_, to put an end to the _deplorable_ scenes now presented at
the Grotto of Massabielle, at Lourdes, on the left bank of the Gave;

"Also, that _the care of the local public health devolves upon the
mayor_, and that a great number, both of citizens and strangers, come
to draw water from a spring in the aforesaid grotto, _the water of
which is suspected on good grounds to contain mineral ingredients_,
making it prudent, before permitting its use, to wait for a
scientific analysis to determine the application which may be made of
it in medicine; and,

"Also, that the _laws subject the working of mineral springs to a
preliminary authorization by government_:

"Issues the following


    "1. It is forbidden to draw water at the aforesaid

    "2. It is also forbidden to pass through the common
    land known as the bank of Massabielle.

    "3. A barrier will be put up at the entrance to the
    grotto to prevent access; and

    "Posts will be set bearing these words: 'It is
    forbidden to enter this property.'

    "4. All transgressions of this decree will be
    prosecuted according to law.

    "5. The Commissary of Police,

    "The Gendarmerie,

    "The Gardes Champêtres,

    "And the authorities of the commune,

    "Are entrusted with the execution of this decree.

    "Signed in the mayor's office at Lourdes, on the 8th of
    June, 1858.

                                      "The Mayor, A. LACADÉ.


          "The Prefect, O. MASSY"


It was not without some hesitation that M. Lacadé consented to sign
and undertake to execute this decree. His character, somewhat
wanting in decision and inclined to compromise, necessarily
disinclined him to such a manifest act of hostility against the
mysterious power which hovered invisibly over the events which had
centred round the grotto at Lourdes. On the other hand, the mayor, as
was very proper, enjoyed the exercise of his office, and perhaps had
even a little undue fondness for it; and his alternative was either
to become the instrument of the prefectoral violence or to resign
the honors of the mayoralty. Although perhaps not really trying,
the situation was certainly embarrassing for the chief-magistrate
of Lourdes. M. Lacadé hoped, however, to conciliate all parties by
requiring M. Massy, as a condition of his signature, to insert at the
head of the decree, at the very outset, the words, "Acting under the
instructions addressed to him by the superior authorities," as above.

"In this way," said the mayor to himself, "I assume no responsibility
before the public or in my own eyes. I have not taken the initiative,
but remain neutral. I do not command, but only obey. I do not give
this order, but receive it. I am not the author of this decree, I
only execute it. All the blame rests upon my immediate superior, the

Coming from a soldier in a regiment drawn up for battle, such
reasoning would have been irreproachable.

Having reassured himself on this principle, M. Lacadé took measures
for the execution of the prefectoral edict, having it published and
put on the walls in all parts of the town. At the same time, under
the protection of an armed force and the direction of Jacomet,
barriers were put up around the Massabielle rocks, so that no one,
except by breaking through or climbing over them, could reach
the grotto and the miraculous fountain. Posts with notices, as
prescribed by the decree, were also set up here and there at all
points of entrance to the common land which surrounded the venerable
spot. They prohibited trespass under pain of prosecution. Some
_sergents-de-ville_ and _gardes_ kept watch day and night, being
relieved hourly, to prepare _procès-verbaux_ against all who should
pass these posts to kneel in the vicinity of the grotto.


There was at Lourdes a judge of the name of Duprat, who was as
violently opposed to the supernatural as Jacomet, Massy, Dutour, and
others of the constituted authorities. This judge, not being able
under the circumstances to sentence the delinquents to anything more
than a very small fine, contrived an indirect method to make the
fine enormous and truly formidable for the poor people who came to
pray before the grotto, and to beg from the Blessed Virgin, one the
restoration of health, another the cure of a darling child, a third
some spiritual favor or consolation under some great affliction.

M. Duprat then imposed upon each offender a fine of five francs.
But, by a conception worthy of his genius, he united under a single
sentence all who disregarded the prefectoral prohibition, either by
forming a party together, or even, as it would seem, by visiting the
grotto in the course of the same day; and he made each liable to
the whole amount of the fine. Thus, if one or two hundred persons
came in this way to the rocks of Massabielle, each one of them was
responsible not only for himself, but also for the others, that is,
to the extent of five hundred or a thousand francs. And as the
individual and original fine was only five francs, the decision of
this magistrate was without appeal, and there was no way to correct
it. Judge Duprat was all-powerful, and it was thus that he used his


Such an outrageous interference in the important question which had
for some months been pending on the banks of the Gave implied on the
part of the authorities not only the denial of the supernatural in
this particular case, but also that of its possibility. If this had
been admitted for an instant, the measures of the administration
would have been entirely different; they would have had for their
object the examination, not the suppression, of the controversy.

One thing had been absolutely certain, namely, the cures; whether
they had been brought about by the mineral qualities of the water, by
the imagination of the patients, or by miraculous intervention, these
cures were indubitable, and officially recognized by the infidels
themselves, who, not being able to deny them, merely tried to explain
them on some natural principle.

The faithful and perfectly trustworthy witnesses to the efficacy of
the water in their own cases could be counted by hundreds. There was
not a single one who reported that its effects had been prejudicial.
Why, then, all these prohibitory measures, these barriers put up,
this menacing armed force, these persecutions? And why, if such
measures were proper, should not the principle be carried out
further? Why not close every place of pilgrimage where a sick person
has been restored to health, every church where any one has received
an answer to prayer? This question was in every mouth.

"If Bernadette," said one, "without saying anything about visions and
apparitions, had simply found a mineral spring possessing powerful
healing virtues, what government would ever have forbidden sick
people to drink of it? Nero himself would not have gone so far; in
all countries, a reward would have been given to the child. But here
the sick people kneel and pray, and these liveried subalterns, who
crouch before their masters, do not like to have any one prostrate
himself before God. This is the real reason. It is prayer which is

"But shall we allow superstition?" said the free-thinkers.

"Is not the church able to take care of that and to guard the
faithful against error? Let her act in her own province, and do not
make an œcumenical council out of the prefecture, and an infallible
pope out of a prefect or a minister. What disorder has been caused by
these events? None whatever. What evil has occurred to justify your
precautionary measures? Absolutely none. The mysterious fountain has
only done good. Let the believing people go and drink of it, if they
please. Leave them their liberty to believe, to pray, to be healed;
the liberty to turn to God and to ask from heaven consolation in
their grief. You who demand free thought, let prayer also be free."

But neither the anti-christian philosophy nor the pious prefect of
Hautes Pyrenees would consent to notice this unanimous protest, and
the severe measures were continued.

The intolerance of which the enemies of Christianity so unjustly
accuse the Catholic Church is their own ruling passion. They are
essentially tyrants and persecutors.



[44] This letter of M. Rouland, the text of which, in spite of all
our efforts, we have not been able to procure, was communicated to
several persons, and all the correspondence before us mentions it,
giving it in the same terms which we have just used.



About a generation ago, there might have been seen moving across
the Wabash Valley, Indiana, one of those heavy-built wagons, with
broad canvas tops, known in the West as prairie schooners. The
wheels, which had not been greased since they left New Hampshire,
were creaking dolefully, and the youth who urged on the jaded team
declared that the sound reminded him of the frogs in his father's
mill-pond. Attached to the rear of the wagon was a coop, containing
a rooster and half a dozen hens, evidently suffering from their long
confinement; while underneath the coop, swinging to and fro, as if
keeping time to the music of the wheels, was a bucket.

Nat Putnam held the reins with a tight grip, his eyes were fixed
straight in front of him, and his steeple crowned hat, which
looked as if it might have been a legacy from one of his Puritan
forefathers, was placed as far on the back of his head as possible,
so as not to obstruct the view. He was perhaps twenty-one or two
years of age; but it would have been rash to gauge his wisdom by
the date of his birth. If ever there was a Yankee hard to outwit,
it was our friend, and his mother had often declared that her boy
could see through a stone wall. The very shape of his nose, which was
not unlike an eagle's beak, warned you to be on your guard when you
were making a trade with him; while his face, spotted all over with
freckles, could readily assume every expression from highest glee to
deepest melancholy; thus enabling him to fill whatever post in life
might be most congenial, were it circus clown or ruling elder.

"Mr. Putnam, when are we going to halt?" inquired a female voice,
which seemed to come from the interior of the wagon. Before the
youth answered, the speaker had placed herself at his side and was
gazing at him with a woeful look. Poor thing! well might she ask the
question. Ever since he had picked her up in the State of New York,
he had kept travelling on and on, until Mary O'Brien thought he was
never going to stop. Her father, who had been with them the first
week of the journey, had died, and Nat had only tarried long enough
to bury the old man, and let the daughter say a few prayers over his

"Don't find fault," he replied. "The spirit moves me to keep pushing
West; the further I go, the better I feel. This everlasting woods
must come to an end by-and-by, and when we reach the open country
you'll not grumble."

"But I'm quite worn out," pursued Mary; "and my shamrock is tired
too. If you'd only rest and make a home, and let me plant it! The
jolting of the wagon and the want of sunlight is killing it. Poor
shamrock!" Here she left the seat, but presently returned, carrying
a box filled with earth, in which was a little three-leafed clover.

"See," she exclaimed, "how different it looks from a month ago. 'Tis
drooping fast." As she spoke she gave the plant a kiss. Her companion
glanced at her a moment, then with a smile of pity, "How old are
you?" he asked.


"Humph! I guess you're out of your reckoning. If you were that old,
you'd chuck that piece of grass away and take to something serious.
There's my Bible, why don't you read a chapter now and then? 'Twould
instruct you, and keep me from getting rusty--a thing I'd deeply
regret, for I may take to exhorting if farming don't pay."

"Throw my shamrock out of the wagon! Why, Mr. Putnam, 'twas father's,
and he brought it all the way from Tipperary. I'm going to keep
it--as long as I live, I am. It may wither, but I'll never throw it

"Well, well, as you like. But I repeat--why can't you read the Bible
once in a while, instead of wasting your time playing with a lot of
dried peas? Do they come from Tipperary, too?"

"Oh! these are my beads," she replied, taking her Rosary from her
pocket; "and it's praying I am, when you see me slipping these little
round things through my fingers."

"Praying! Then you must have prayed a heap. Are you in earnest?"

"I am."

"Well, can't your spirit be moved without using them peas, or beads
as you call them? It seems to me they must bother you."

"I use 'em, sir, to keep count, or I mightn't say all the Hail Marys
and Our Fathers." Here Nat started, and lifting his sandy eyebrows,
"Aha!" he exclaimed. "So! Indeed! Then 'twas keeping a tally of
your prayers? Well, now, there's something in that. I really didn't
believe you were so 'cute. The devil couldn't say that you hadn't
been square on your devotions when you'd kept a strict tally."

The girl smiled, then, bowing her head, seemed to be whispering
something to the shamrock.

"Different from other gals!" thought Putnam, as he glanced at the
pale face and long, raven hair, which without braid or ribbon flowed
down until it rested on the bottom of the wagon. "Yes, different from
other gals! Can't quite make her out. She ain't a child, yet seems
like one. Keeping a tally of her prayers is the first sign of her
being 'cute. But that's a beginning anyhow. I'll educate her little
by little. Oh! if she'd only take to the Bible." Here he gave the
reins a jerk, then asked Mary to read him a chapter from the Book of

"I can't read," she frankly replied.

"Can't read! Can't read! That I won't believe. Why, there's Jemima
Hopkins, in Conway, where I come from, that not only reads, but has
started on a lecturing tour; and she ain't--let me see; she was born
the year of the comet--no she ain't a day over fourteen."

"Well, I'm not Jemima Hopkins."

"No, that you ain't; Jemima is a prodigy."

"And I'm a goose."

"But don't own it," said the youth. "Talk as little as possible, and
then the world may not find it out. Why, I know a chap in Conway that
passes for 'larned,' and all 'cause he has the toothache every time
he's asked to make a speech. You see, he puts on a wise look, holds
his tongue, and has so humbugged the folks that they call him Uncle

"Well, I don't want to be taken for what I'm not," rejoined Mary, a
tear trickling down her cheek.

"What ails you now?" exclaimed Nat. "Oh! how different you are from
Jemima Hopkins!" The girl made no response, but sighed, "Father,

"The old man's underground," pursued the youth, in as soft a voice
as he could assume. "Crying won't bring him back. Dry your eyes, and
vow to smash to atoms every whiskey-bottle that ever comes within
your reach. I suspect his constitution was undermined by habits of

"Father didn't drink in Ireland," sobbed the girl. "'Twas at that
horrid grog-shop in New York he got the habit."

"Pure fountain water," murmured Nat, rolling his eyes toward the
heavens, "what a blessed thing thou art! Those who give thee up for
alcohol make a poor swap." Then suddenly fixing his gaze on the young
woman, "Mary," said he, "I never but once tasted liquor. 'Twas at a
cattle show year afore last; and do you know what happened? I paid
two hundred and fifty dollars for a horse that was foundered and
kicked so bad I couldn't drive him home. Now that's something I'd
never have done if my head had been clear; but 'twas a lesson--a good
lesson, and I told Jemima Hopkins (who got wind of it--women find out
everything) to make her first lecture on temperance."

The young woman, who seemed not to have been listening to this
episode in his history, was now moaning piteously for her father, nor
did she cease until her companion in an agitated tone bade her keep
quiet. "Your lamentations," he said, "are horrible to listen to."

"Don't you love your father?" spoke Mary, gazing at him through her
tears. "Wouldn't you cry if he were dead?"

"Cry if he were dead!" repeated the youth with a shudder. "Oh! why
did you ask me that question? You're a strange being. Who gave you
power to look into my heart? Do you know that I quarrelled with
the old man, and left without saying good-by, and every mile I've
travelled his last look has haunted me? 'I am near the grave,' he
said, 'don't abandon me. Attend the mill, 'twill soon belong to you.'
But I laughed in his face. 'The mill,' said I, 'is out of repair, and
only fit to shelter rats and swallows; while the soil won't yield
more than fourteen bushels of corn to the acre.' And then I turned my
back on him."

"When he's dead, you'll be sorry for that," said the girl. "Write
home and ask his forgiveness. Do, before it's too late."

"Home!" murmured the youth as he drove along. "Home!" Oh! what
memories were awakened at the sound of that word which spoke in a
thousand magic whispers! He was again a little boy seated on his
father's knee, in the old house at the foot of Mount Kearsarge,
listening to stories of the Revolution. The wind was howling--the
snow coming in through the key-hole and under the door--a fearful
night to be out. But what did he care about the tempest? He was safe
on his father's knee.

"Mary," said Putnam, just as they reached the foot of a hill, "I'll
take your advice, and write home the first chance I get. And I'll
tell the old man that I'm sorry for the hard words I used. I'll ask
him, too, to follow me-for I'm going to halt by-and-by; and I'll make
him as comfortable as if he were in New Hampshire."

"Do," said the young woman; "'twill bring God's blessing on you."

Here he placed the reins in her hands, then, telling her that he was
going to reconnoitre and find which was the best way to get over the
hill, he left the wagon with a lighter heart than he had known in
many a day.

A little climbing brought him to a spot where the ground was again
level, but where the timber was thicker and the wagon would have hard
work to get along; and he was wondering if the everlasting forest was
never coming to an end, when he was startled by a rustling noise,
and, looking round, saw a wild turkey dart off her nest, while at
the same instant ever so many young ones, which appeared as if only
just hatched, began scattering in every direction. "I'll catch this
fellow," said Nat, running after the nearest bird, "and make him a
present to Mary." But, young as it was, the little thing managed
to reach a clump of hazel-bushes about thirty yards distant, into
which, its pursuer dashed only a step behind, and in his excitement
Nat kept straight on, nor did he stop until he found himself clear
of the thicket. But there he came to a sudden halt, and for almost a
minute stood as if rooted to the earth. Was the scene which had burst
upon him a vision of paradise? The forest had ended, the hill sloped
gently to the west, and before him like a boundless sea, fired by the
rays of the setting sun, lay the prairie of Illinois. Then he shouted
for Mary, who with impatient step hastened up the hill, wondering
what was the matter, and who arrived just as he was beginning to sing
_Old Hundred_. The glorious view brought tears of joy to her eyes,
for she felt sure Nat had at length found a spot where he would be
willing to settle down and make a home, and, clasping her hands, she
likewise offered up a prayer of thanksgiving.

"Isn't this ahead of anything you ever dreamed of?" exclaimed the
youth, when he had finished the hymn. "I've heerd Parson Job at
camp-meeting trying to picture heaven; but, although I'd not have
dared say it aloud, yet really I never felt as if I'd care a straw
about such a place as he described--fellows with wings and harps
skipping around, and singing hallelujahs for all eternity without
ever getting out of breath. But here is a country I can imagine like
the home of the blest."

"Heaven is more beautiful than this," rejoined his companion. "Yet
'tis a glorious country. Oh! settle here, do, and give my shamrock

"As you say," continued Nat, patting her cheek, and at the same time
piercing her through with his sharp gray eyes. "You're my 'Blessing.'
I owe you more than I ever can pay. When you made me promise to
write home and ask the old man's forgiveness, a load heavier than
a millstone was taken off my heart. You ain't as larned as Jemima
Hopkins, and you ain't 'cute--though keeping a tally of your prayers
is something, and shows what you may become by proper education--but,
ignorant as you are, there's still a great deal in you." Here he
left her, and went back for the wagon, which, after not a little
difficulty, he managed to bring across the hill; then, having chosen
a spot near a spring of water, he unhitched the horses, while Mary
let out the fowls, who clapped their wings as if they were mad; nor
did the rooster stop crowing until the hens--anxious to make their
nests--gathered round him, and forced him to hold his tongue and be

As it was sunset, Putnam could do little more than reconnoitre the
vicinity of the camping-ground, so, shouldering his rifle, he walked
off, leaving the girl to prepare the evening meal.

But Mary had scarcely lit the fire when he came running back, and
pointed out to her a figure on horseback, advancing along the
prairie. "It may be an Indian," said he. "If he's peaceful, I'll read
him a chapter in the Bible; if he's ugly, I'll shoot."

In about a quarter of an hour the stranger had approached near enough
for them to discover that he was a person of their own race, with
long, white hair, and a cross hanging at his side; so, throwing down
the gun, Nat shouted welcome. The traveller, although astonished to
hear a human voice, did not draw rein, but kept on up the hill, and
in another moment the youth had grasped his hand and was giving it a
hearty shake.

"So soon!" exclaimed the Jesuit missionary--for such was the
character of the new-comer. "Already! Oh! you Americans are a great
people. In a few years you will be across the continent."

"Well, I've fetched up here," said Putnam, grinning. "Not that the
spirit didn't move me to push further West; but yonder gal--my
'Blessing,' as I call her--urged me to stop."

Here the priest glanced at Mary, then remarked:

"Your sister, I suppose, or wife?"

"I haven't any sister," replied the youth, "and ain't 'spliced' yet.
She's a gal I picked up as I was coming through York State. Her
father was with her, and I took him along too; but he died in a few
days, and I buried him on the roadside, and as she had no home I told
her she'd better stick to me. She's awful green, but for all that she
has her good points, and has made me happier than I've been in a
long time."

With this Nat beckoned to Mary, who, as soon as she discovered
in whose presence she was standing, fell on her knees, while the
missionary gave her his blessing.

That evening the youth, true to his promise, wrote an affectionate
letter to his father, which the Jesuit assured him he would deliver
with his own hand. "And I will bring you an answer," said the latter,
"for I shall pass this way on my return to the mission, which I hope
to reach before winter sets in."

The next morning, when Putnam awoke, he found that the priest had
already departed.

"That," said the youth, "is a point in his favor. The early bird
catches the worms. So, Mary, he was one of your preachers? First I
ever saw."

"I hope you liked him," rejoined the girl.

"Well, his coming so handy to take my letter did bend me toward him;
yet I don't think I ever could sit still under his preaching."

"And why not?"

"'Cause he's a papist. I've heerd enough about 'em."

To this the young woman made no response, but gazed sorrowfully at
her companion a moment, then turned her eyes toward the West. The
scene was enchanting. The breeze, which had risen with the dawn, was
coming joyously over the prairie, brushing aside the mist, gathering
up the perfume of ten thousand flowers, and touched Mary's lips
like a breath from the Garden of Eden. And as it played with her
raven hair, and brought the roses to her cheeks, Nat could not help
thinking she was as fair as any lass he had ever met in New Hampshire.

"Yet she don't seem to know it," he said. "She's very green about
her beauty." A herd of deer were feeding only a short distance
away--in every direction the grouse dotted the plain--while circling
round and round, in bold relief against the azure sky, was an eagle.

The whole of this day and the next, Putnam kept hard at work felling
trees to build a log-house, while the girl remained near the wagon,
plying her needle, watching her shamrock, which already showed signs
of renewed life, and gathering the eggs, which the hens insisted on
laying every hour, so as to make up for lost time.

At length, when he had cut down trees enough, he bade Mary follow him
out on the plain, having first filled her apron with stakes--for what
purpose she could not imagine.

"What on earth are you doing?" she exclaimed, after having walked by
his side almost an hour.

"Can't you guess?" he said, halting abruptly. "Are you so green as
all that?"

"Upon my word," replied the girl, "your conduct is distressing; yes,
it frightens me to see you turning and twisting in every direction,
driving these pieces of wood into the ground, and counting on your
fingers. Oh! what'll become of me if you've gone mad?"

"Mad! Ha! Jemima Hopkins wouldn't have said that. Jemima--"

"Was born the year of the comet," interrupted his companion,
laughing, "and I'm only a goose."

"Well, don't own it if you are; I'll educate you. And now here goes
the first lesson." With this he lifted his forefinger, then shutting
one eye, "You must know we won't be long in such a beautiful spot
without company. My wagon-tracks will lead many to Illinois who
wouldn't have stirred from the shadow of Mount Kearsarge if I hadn't
set the example. Me-thinks even now I hear 'em cracking their whips
and bidding good-by to the old folks in Conway. They'll come, too,
from other parts of New Hampshire; ay, by the score and hundred
they'll come. Now, such being the case, why not have a town laid out
by the time they arrive? And right here where we stand shall be our
mansion: 'cause, you perceive, it's a corner-lot. While yonder, on
t'other corner--so as to be handy in case of rain--I'll get 'em to
build the meeting-house; and oh! won't I be proud when it's finished!
And what a fine rooster I'll put on the steeple!"

"No, put a cross," said the young woman, "or I'll not go inside of

"What! a cross, emblem of popery, on this virgin soil, where there's
never been one seen, unless 'twas that which your preacher carried
yesterday? No, indeed! I've heerd enough about popery."

"I'll pray God to enlighten you," said the girl, at the same time
heaving a sigh.

"Well, the more light I get, the less I'll want a popish emblem on
top of the meeting-house." Here Nat struck his forehead, then gazing
at Mary with an expression of anger, "Have you come so far with me,"
he said, "to quarrel at last? Bah! you are a goose." With this he
turned on his heel and walked off, muttering to himself and evidently
very much excited.

Poor Mary did not open her lips again that day, but helped build the
log-house with the greatest good-will. Nor did Putnam address her a
single word. In fact, it was not until a week had gone by and the
dwelling was almost finished that he so far recovered from his ill
humor as to speak to her in a friendly way.

"Mary," said he, looking proudly up at the mud-plastered chimney,
"this is a good beginning. The first house is always the hardest to
erect; and you've worked like a beaver. Tell me, now, are you still
of the same mind about the cross? Will you stay away from meeting
unless I give up my point?"

"I will," replied the girl firmly. "I want a Catholic Church, or none
at all."

"Is my 'Blessing' in earnest?"

"Yes, and praying hard that God may open your eyes to the truth."

"Open my eyes! Well, you're the first mortal ever insinuated that
Nat Putnam wasn't wide-awake. But enough; there's a split between us
nothing can mend. Alas!" Here he walked off to the hill muttering,
"What a pity! what a pity! Ignorant as she is, there's yet something
about her which goes to my heart. I love Mary O'Brien. I might even
ask her to become my wife, if she hadn't such foolish notions about
religion. But not content with making the sign of the cross afore
every meal, she actually wants one put on top of the meeting-house.
What an idea! A cross! A thing never seen on this virgin soil till
that old preacher came along."

For more than an hour the youth wandered about the hillside,
lamenting Mary's obstinacy and superstition, until at length he heard
her blowing the horn for dinner.

"Let her blow," he said, "I'm in no humor to eat anything. I'll just
lay down and take a nap." With this he threw himself on the ground,
and was about settling his head on a comfortable spot, which seemed
as if intended by nature for a pillow, when he gave a start and rose
to his feet. "As I live," he cried, "this is a grave! And if there
isn't a cross at one end of it!--and some thing carved upon the
wood--what can it be?" Here he stooped, and, after brushing away a
little moss which partly covered the knife-cuts, spelt out the words,

    "May his soul rest in peace!"

"Well, now, this does beat all," he continued. "Who'd 'ave believed a
cross had got to this place ahead of me? And there's something about
the epitaph which makes me feel solemn. I wonder how long since these
words were cut. Perhaps for years and years only the deer and eagles
have gazed upon them. Perhaps since the day the corpse was buried, no
lips but mine have spoken over this lonely grave, 'May his soul rest
in peace!'"

For a few minutes the youth lingered by the mound, wrestling with
himself--for he was conscious that a change was coming over him--then
wended his way back to the cabin, resolved to be frank with Mary, and
confess that a cross had got here before Nat Putnam.

He had arrived within a couple of paces of the door, which was
half-open, when, hearing her speaking, he stopped. "She is praying,"
he said. "What a fine voice she has! Better than Jemima's." Then,
softly advancing, he discovered her kneeling on the floor, her hands
clasped, and her cheek wet with tears. In an earnest tone she was
asking God to pardon her father his many sins of intemperance; then
with equal fervor, she began to pray for the speedy return of the
missionary, bringing Putnam a blessing and forgiveness from his aged

At these words the youth trembled with emotion, and bursting into the
room, "Mary, Mary," he cried, "I take back all I said. I laughed when
you made the sign of the cross, and I called you ignorant. But you're
more larned than Nat Putnam. Your prayer, a moment ago, stirred me
up as I never was stirred at camp-meeting. It made me feel as when
through the dark clouds I see blue sky peeping out. Praying for the
dead! O God! if your preacher comes back and tells me father is dead,
I can do one act of reparation--pray for his soul. And but for you,
I'd not have written home; but for you, black remorse would have gone
on eating deeper and deeper into my soul--and remorse is hell."

"Mr. Putnam," said the young woman, who, startled by his wild look,
had risen to her feet, "my prayers have been heard."

"Yes, they have. I am a Catholic, and vow that our first
meeting-house shall have a cross upon it. O my 'Blessing!' never can
I be grateful enough to the Almighty for throwing you in my path!"

"It seemed an accident," pursued the girl, "yet it may indeed have
been God's work. If it has proved for the good of your soul, it,
perhaps, has saved mine. I cannot tell you how I was tempted when
I lived in the city of New York. Why, one night, when I was out
looking for father, somebody whispered in my ear that I might live
in splendor if I chose. The tenement-house where we lodged seemed to
hold as many people as there are in the whole of Tipperary. Father
and I, with a score of others, slept in a damp room underground. Oh!
when I think of those days, it is like a horrid dream."

"Well, why don't them people follow my tracks? There's land enough
here, dear knows. Yes, let 'em all come; only they must leave whiskey
behind. I want this to be a temperance settlement." Then, after a
pause, "But, Mary, I wonder if amongst them I'd find another like
you, my 'Blessing'?" With this, he rose, and was about to throw his
arms round her neck, when he checked himself; then, after fumbling
a moment in his pocket, went out to where her shamrock was blooming,
and, close by it, he put in the ground a pumpkin-seed. Happy were the
June days which followed. With what a light heart did Mary watch the
youth at work!

"He's a strange being," she would say; "different from any I ever met
in the Old Country. But, for all that, he is good; and when Father De
Smet returns I'll have him baptized, and then there'll be no firmer
Catholic than Nat Putnam."

And the young man--how shall we describe his feelings as, hour after
hour, he follows the plough?

"I'm making a home," he would say, "for my 'Blessing.' How she leans
upon me! If I were to die, what would become of her? She don't know
enough to give lectures, like Miss Hopkins. Oh! if I could only mix
her and Jemima together. Yet she's pretty handy at the needle, and
since she's overhauled my things I ain't lost a button. And yet my
suspenders, darn 'em, do give awful jerks once in a while."

One morning, while he was thus silently praising Mary's skill in
the art of sewing, he stopped, gave a groan, then, letting go the
handle of the plough, "Wrong!" he exclaimed. "There goes one! Rip!
whew!" and, as he spoke, he grabbed a button out of the furrow. For
more than a minute the youth examined it thoughtfully, turned it
over and over, put it to his eye; then, with a grin, "No," he said,
"Mary didn't sew this on; the thread sticking to it ain't the kind
she uses. Ah! Jemima Hopkins! Jemima Hopkins! 'tis some of your work.
Yes, I remember; 'twas just afore you started off lecturing, and when
your head was full of big words. O Jemima Hopkins!"

And so the summer passed away. The corn came up magnificently, and
when it was in all its glory, with the west wind shaking the tassels,
Putnam would call Mary out to admire it. "It looks," he would say,
"like a regiment of militia on parade." The pumpkin-seed which he had
planted was now well above ground, and creeping slowly but steadily
round and round the shamrock. Once the girl was tempted to pull the
vine up, but, on reflection, it occurred to her that she had better
not. And she was right; for under its broad leaves her little plant
found shelter from the scorching rays of the sun; and when the
thunder-storms burst over the prairie, the shamrock would have been
crushed by the great rain-drops, which fell thicker and faster than
ever she had known them fall in Ireland, but for the same kindly

One evening, toward the middle of September, Nat came home from
work at an earlier hour than usual. He appeared troubled; there was
evidently something on his mind; and, when the girl asked what was
the matter, he scratched his head, devoured her a moment with his
sharp, gray eyes, then, turning on his heel, walked off to a log near
the door. There he seated himself, and, after musing awhile, beckoned
her to approach.

The young woman obeyed, not, however, without some misgiving. "Mr.
Putnam," she thought, "has got tired of living so long in one place,
and is anxious to move further west. Alas!"

In another moment she was seated near him and gazing anxiously in his
face. He returned her look only for an instant, then coughed, and,
rolling up his eyes, "'Tis a solemn thing to do," he murmured. "But I
can't help it, and wouldn't if I could. I've felt it coming over me
ever since the day she persuaded me to write home to father. Jemima
Hopkins would grab at me like a sunfish at a worm in April if I gave
her a chance; but this girl is so innocent-like that really I don't
know how to begin. And then her very dependence on me, the solitude
of this spot, makes her kind of sacred, and I dread lest even words
of purest love might give her offence."

"Well, Mr. Putnam," said Mary, interrupting his soliloquy, "you're
not going to move away? Don't make my shamrock travel any further.
Speak! Oh! I feel so anxious."

At these words, Nat cleared his throat, cracked his knuckles, then,
in a voice singularly agitated for one of his temperament, "Mary," he
began, "I am never going to move from this spot. You are fond of it,
and that's enough." At this unexpected announcement the girl clapped
her hands. "But," he went on, "I am not contented; there is yet
something wanting to make me perfectly happy."

"And, pray, what is it, sir? I know I am very green, but tell me if
the fault be mine; tell me, and I promise to do all I can to please

"Well," he pursued, raising his hand and pointing at the pumpkin-vine
which circled round the shamrock, "do you see yonder plant almost
hiding, and at the same time protecting, the smaller one?"

"I do."

"Well, now, Mary, suppose you be the shamrock, and let me be the

As he spoke, he gazed earnestly at her. A faint blush crimsoned the
girl's cheek. She seemed a little startled; and when she replied,
"Yes, I will be your shamrock!" it was in a voice low and scarce
above a whisper.

"Well done!" cried Nat, tossing his hat in the air. "Well done! As
soon as the priest comes, we'll have the knot tied."

That very evening, the missionary arrived, bringing Putnam news
from home, which, although sad indeed, was yet not unmingled with
consolation. His father was dead, but the last words he had spoken
were words of forgiveness to the youth who had abandoned him in his
old age. The Jesuit remained at the log-house almost a fortnight,
instructing the convert in the faith, and, before he departed, the
latter had the happiness of serving a Mass offered for the repose of
his father's soul.

"This never would have happened but for you, my 'Blessing,'" said
Nat, pressing Mary's hand. "Those who will follow me to this
enchanting spot may laugh at my becoming a Catholic, but 'twill be
because they are ignorant. Your religion has in it something sublime;
it reaches across the grave, and, by our prayers, gives us a hold
upon those who have gone before us. Father! father!" Here his voice
failed, and for a minute or two he wept. At length, mastering his
grief, he turned to the priest and signified that he was ready for
the marriage ceremony to begin. It was short; but while it lasted,
a song-sparrow (the first the youth had heard since he arrived in
Illinois) alighted upon the window-sill and piped a joyous carol.
Often had he heard the bird at his home near the foot of Mount
Kearsarge, and now its sweet notes fell on his ear like the voice of
a spirit come all the way from the Saco Valley to wish him happiness
on his wedding-day.

That evening, he took his wife and the priest to visit the mound on
the hillside, and around it they knelt and offered a prayer for the
unknown whose dust lay beneath.

As they sauntered back to the cabin, Putnam expressed a lively hope
that all his friends in New Hampshire would emigrate to the West.
"And when Jemima arrives," he said, closing one eye and looking at
his wife with the other, "you'll see something worth seeing; for
she's awful smart, and when we get arguing together it's diamond cut
diamond. But I'll convert her; oh! I will."

"No doubt," rejoined Mrs. Putnam, "the discussion will be animated
and interesting, for you have a clear head and a ready tongue, while
Miss Hopkins was born the year of the comet; but believe me, husband
dear, it is praying, not arguing, brings into the fold those who are
out of it."

"That must be so," he continued, "for you never argued with me, and
yet now I'm a Catholic. O happy day when Nat Putnam met Mary O'Brien!
And while I will strive by every honest means to improve my worldly
condition, I will remain true to the faith. Illinois is a wilderness
now, but they're coming, Mary, they're coming; and, before your raven
hair turns gray, a city will stand on this prairie; and opposite
our corner-lot shall be a church with a cross upon it--a Catholic
church. And 'twill be thanks to you, my 'Blessing;' yes, thanks to
the shamrock gone West."


An aged monk said to a brother who was tempted by evil spirits: When
the evil spirits begin to talk to thee in thy heart, do not reply to
them; but arise, pray, and do penance, saying: Son of God, have mercy
on me. But the brother said to him: Behold, O father, I do meditate,
and there is no compunction in my heart, because I do not understand
the meaning of my words. And he replied: Yet do thou meditate; for
I have heard that Abbot Pastor and other fathers have spoken this
proverb: The charmer knows not the meaning of the words which he
says, but the serpent hears, and knows the virtue of the charm, and
is humbled and subjected to the enchanter. So also with us, even
though we be ignorant of the meaning of what we say, yet the evil
spirits, hearing, tremble and depart.

       *       *       *       *       *

Abbot Pastor said: The beginning of evils is to distract the mind.

       *       *       *       *       *

Abbot Elias said: I fear three things. One, when my soul shall depart
from the body; the second, when I shall come before God; the third,
when sentence shall be pronounced upon me.

       *       *       *       *       *

Archbishop Theophilus, of holy memory, when he was about to die,
said: Blessed art thou, Abbot Arsenius, because thou hast ever had
this hour before thy eyes.


    [The term Vespers is derived from Vesper, the star that
    appears toward sunset, the time appointed by ancient
    usage for the recital of the Evening Song.--_Hierugia._]

      Evening quiet overspreads the sky:
      Vesper rises clear and liquidly.
        Star of prayer! whose ray
          Brings spirit-whispers,
        Brings the saintly hour
          Of holy vespers.

      Not a bell, perchance, of prayerful cry,
      Yet the pious foot comes mindfully!
        O'er the flinty street,
          Or daisied meadow,
        Glides, from near or far,
          The Christian shadow!

      Evening quiet overspreads the soul:
      Restful rites the restless pulse control.
        Now the tuneful waves
          Of organ tremble;
        Now the tuneful prayers
          God's choir resemble!

      Words of ancient plaint, flung long ago
      From a kingly harp's melodious throe;
        Words to her, who oped
          Of Christ the vision,
        Gabriel words--still serve
          Their music-mission!

      Now the censer's aromatic breath
      Wreathes th' abode of One who smiles on death!
        Now the portals ope--
          Ah! dread appearing!
        Christian, veil thy glance,
          A God revering!

      --Changed to flesh and blood my daily food:
      Changed the bread and wine to flesh and blood!
        Yet, my God, forgive
          If reason falter:
        Faith, alone, sustains me
          At thine altar!

                                      RICHARD STORRS WILLIS.


Ischia is one of the gems of the Bay of Naples, and fortunately one
of the least known and least visited of the tourist-haunted island

The Monte Epomeo rises in its midst, a mass of tufa rock, perforated
here and there by _fumarole_, that is, openings through which
volcanic exhalations are constantly sending forth their thin blue
threads of hazy smoke to mingle with the blue and hazy atmosphere
that veils the whole island in a fairy and gossamer robe. Two or
three villages are built upon the low girdle of sand that lies at
the foot of the mountain; on one side of the island are ledges of
rock where the vine grows, on the other is a projection, or rather
a separate rock, on which is built a state-prison. Only one road
passes through Ischia, and no wheels ever leave their marks there,
save when a royal visitor brings a modern carriage with him. The
inhabitants walk barefoot, and the strangers ride donkeys, or are
carried in open sedan-chairs, called "portantine." The women lounge
about at their cottage-doors, spindle in hand, their heads curiously
bound up in silken handkerchiefs, and their ears weighed down by huge
ear-rings. There is a wonderful and unspeakable charm hanging over
the place; the beauties that elsewhere in Italy hardly surprise you,
seem to hold you spell-bound here. The sea is now blue, now green,
now purple, always of an intense color, and seemingly an inverted
firmament, where the white fishing-smack sails stand for clouds,
and the little silver-crested wavelets for stars. The air is very
pure, yet warm and balmy, and, when the storm visits the island,
even the lightning must make itself more softly beautiful than
elsewhere, for it is often seen in rose and violet colored flashes,
making the heavens like to a vault of opal. The myrtle grows on the
mountain-side, and the oleander blooms lower down, the vines climb
from the water's edge to the roofs of the few rustic hotels the
island boasts, and among all these beauties are hidden springs of
medicinal water and hot sea-sands, all of them much used by Italians
chiefly in the shape of baths. The sand-bath is a hole within four
shanty-like plank walls, and the patient has himself buried in it up
to his neck for the time prescribed.

Of course, much is said to strangers concerning the beauty of the
sunrise from the top of Epomeo. But, as usual, when you go to see
the sun, you find him behind sulky curtains of gray-white clouds
that roll like another sea between the blue unseen Mediterranean
and the bright purple heaven above. Still, this, too, is beautiful,
though coldly so, and very unlike the lovely western sunrise over
the Atlantic. But the glory of Italy is in her sunsets, and toward
evening sea and mountain, tufa rock and yellow sand, put on a
marvellous robe, a veritable "coat of divers colors," and life seems
to breathe and sigh in things that before seemed lifeless.

Ischia, like all Italian localities, has its patron saint; they call
her _Santa Restituta_.

When persecution was raging in Egypt, in the third century, says the
simple legend, the body of a young maiden, with a millstone tied
round her neck, floated across the sea and rested in a creek on the
south side of the island. The creek is called after the martyr to
this day, and above it are rocks whose black mass literally overhangs
and roofs in part of the bay. Just where her body rested, in a
sandy, barren place, lilies grew up and continued to bloom; they are
there now, and are very peculiar as well as very lovely, a sort of
cross between the lily and the iris, with delicate pointed petals,
five in number, and a tall smooth stem with very little verdure.
Not only do these flowers grow nowhere else in the island or out of
it, but they will not even grow in a land of their own sandy soil
if transplanted with a quantity of it elsewhere. The millstone that
was round the saint's neck is said to be embedded in a wall in the
neighborhood of her church: there _is_ such a stone, whether the
same or not no one can tell. Later on, a church was erected over the
remains of the martyr, and she was chosen patroness of the island. A
very curious Byzantine figure, gilt all over and nearly life-size,
was made in wood and placed over the altar. In one hand, she was
pictured as holding a book of the Gospels, and, in the other, a
full-rigged vessel. When the south of Italy was invested by Saracen
hordes, Ischia did not escape pillage, and of course, judging the
most precious things to be in the church, as they always were in
Catholic times, the marauders rushed to Santa Restituta's shrine, and
attempted to carry off the golden statue, as they believed it to be.
The statue, naturally, was a movable one, and used to be carried in
procession on certain stated occasions. But now it remained rooted
to the spot, and no effort of the stalwart infidels could move it a
hair's-breadth from its pedestal. In rage and disappointment, one
of them struck at it savagely with his scimetar, and a mark upon
its knee still attests this outrage. The sacrilege was promptly
punished, for the men themselves now found they were unable to
move, and remained invisibly chained at the foot of the miraculous
image. If they were released, the legend does not say; let us hope
that they were freed by faith, and that conversion followed this
strange sign. The statue remained immovable ever since, and another
image was made to be carried in procession, with the addition of
the miraculously riveted Saracens, in a small painted group on the
same stand as the figure itself. Whether the legend be absolutely
true or only partly so, whether fact and figure be mixed together,
and things spiritual typified under tangible forms, it is not for us
to decide, but the simple faith of the happy islanders is certainly
to be admired, and even to be envied. They have yearly rejoicings,
fireworks, processions, songs, and services, and a military parade
of what national guards they can muster, to celebrate their saint's
anniversary; they are proud of her, and point out her statue and tell
her history to strangers with the same enthusiasm with which soldiers
speak of a favorite general.

And, if my surmise be true, they have had her celebrated in art by no
less a painter than Paul de la Roche, whose "Martyre" is well known
all over Europe as one of the chastest, truest, and most reverent as
well as most beautiful representations of martyrdom. He has painted
a fair maiden in a white robe, and her hands tied with a cruel rope
in front. The long, golden hair is gently moved, like a strange and
new sea-weed, by the rippling water that flows over it; the cord cuts
into the flesh of the white, delicate hand, and the water seems
reverently eager to pour its coolness into the wounds and to stay the
cruel fever in them; the face is that of an angel that is looking
on the Father's countenance in highest heaven; a coronal of light
rests, like a sun-touched cloud, just above her head, and in the dark
background a large mass of overhanging rock, just like the rocks of
Ischia, frown down upon the sea-green bay, and shadows of muffled,
lurking figures are seen watching the floating wonder from above.

If the painter had not Santa Restituta in his mind, the coincidence,
at least, is curious. Yet it is true that so many blessed saints died
this death that he may have meant to portray a typical rather than
an individual representation in this picture, which is one of his

There is another floating figure, with golden hair and folded hands,
which is more familiar to most people than this one, and, though the
comparison is strange, I cannot help introducing it here. I mean
the figure of Tennyson's _Elaine_, whom Gustave Dore has made his
own in his unapproachable illustration of the _Idyls of the King_,
but whose history and especially whose death has been the source
of many a painter's inspiration. I hardly know one more touching
object in all modern poetry, save that more solemn and more dignified
one that closes the idyl of _Guinevere_, and whose calm sublimity
almost touches the divine. But though the analogy of the "Lily Maid
of Astolat" borne down the river to the oriel-windowed palace of
Arthur's Queen to that other lily maid, the virgin-martyr of Egypt,
be brought to mind by the likeness in both cases of the floating
waters and the unbound hair; yet here the analogy ends, for we see
that as far as heaven is from earth, so far are these two beautiful
figures removed one from the other. Both died for love, both died
pure; but the love of the one was such as, once quenched in death,
would never live again, for she would be "even as the angels;" while
the love of the other not only did death not quench, but would make
tenfold more ardent, as she would "follow the Lamb whithersoever he
goeth," and sing "the new canticle" no man could sing but those "who
were purchased from the earth."

Tennyson's _Elaine_ is a figure of earth in earth's most sinless form
and most innocent meaning, yet still earthly, still imperfect, still
embodying the idea of man's natural weakness and inherent decay. Paul
de la Roche's "Martyre," or Ischia's Santa Restituta, is a figure of
heaven, an already glorified soul, who, having conquered the flesh,
the world, and the devil, having offered her body to God "a living
sacrifice," and having "put on immortality," has passed beyond our
understanding and beyond our criticism into that region of bliss
whose very dimmest ray would be unbearable glare to our eyes, and the
full vision of which would bring a blessed and a painless death in
its inevitable train.

It has been the fashion of our days to think lightly of legends and
traditions of saints, to ridicule their so-called _inventors_, and
pity their supposed _victims_. On the other hand, we see families
clinging to certain versions of certain facts relative to their long
descent and the doughty deeds of their world-famed forefathers;
we see nations dwelling complacently on marvellous explanations
concerning their origin, and proudly pointing to distant feats of
knightly prowess performed by northern Viking and Frank or Vandal
chief; we see tradition already growing up like irrepressible vines
around the memory of great men buried perchance but yesterday, and
even around the persons of living men to whom the wheel of fortune
or the rarer gift of genius has given a temporary prominence; and
is it strange that Catholics should love to repeat similar legends
concerning _their_ forefathers, the founders of _their_ spiritual
nation, _their_ forerunners in the kingdom of heaven? We, too, have
in our faith a family pride, a national pride, and a pride born of
personal friendship and attachment for some of God's living saints,
his yet uncrowned champions. We are all one family, we all call to
God "Abba," that is, Father; we are "the sons of God" and the "joint
heirs with Christ." We cannot help rejoicing over the glory of one of
our brethren or sisters; we cannot help being proud of their virtues
and seeking to perpetuate and honor their memory. We are all one
nation, too, for there is but one Head, one Lord, one Christ; and in
the history of the saints we learn the history of the church, our
state, our country, our kingdom. And among _our_ great men, whom no
wheel of fortune but the divine decree of Providence has lifted to
pre-eminence among us, and with whom, for the most part, holiness and
humility take the place of genius--is it strange we should single out
some of whom, having known them, we willingly speak and hear little
details told, and treasure them up, and weave them into heart-poems
for our children's children? So grows tradition, and a mind that
has no place in it for tradition's evergreen vines to spread their
beautiful network is but a misshapen likeness of the mind that
God created in Adam, and endowed with sympathetic tenderness and
appreciative discrimination.

Some among us have had the happiness to be brought into contact with
men greatly favored by God. And who that had daily seen his humble,
hidden convent-life, that sweet soul-poet and child-like priest,
Frederick Faber, could fail to accumulate concerning him loving
traditions, and what our descendants may hereafter call fond and vain
legends? And who that had once heard the voice of Henry Newman, the
leader of the school of thought of our days in the simple converse
he loves best, or in the plain instructions to his school-children
at catechism, could help treasuring up such a recollection as more
precious by far than a token of royal friendship, or the memory of
some unexampled intercourse with state minister or powerful diplomat?
There are others who have lived or are living in the same cold,
beliefless days as ourselves, and whose presence, either tangible
through personal acquaintance or reflected through their sermons or
their books, is a perpetual fragrance, which we seek ever to keep
alive in the garden of our hearts by heaping up and stowing away
in our minds all manner of details belonging to their useful and
everyday lives.

Pius IX. and Montalembert, and the Curé d'Ars, and Father Ignatius
Spencer, and the Père de Ravignan; Lacordaire and the convert Jew,
Hermann, the musician and Carmelite who has but lately passed away,
and will be remembered, let us trust, even as the Fra Angelico of the
nineteenth century; Mother Seton and the Sœur Rosalie; Thomas Grant,
the saintly Bishop of Southwark, who meekly laid down his burden in
the City of the Catacombs when his Lord called him from the Council
of the Vatican to the foot of the throne; and Henry Manning, and
John Hughes, and others yet whose names are known only to a few
friends on earth, but widely known among the hosts of heaven, sons of
Benedict and daughters of Scholastica, all these are among the chosen
ones whose names cannot but be speedily wreathed in legendary and
traditional history. And even if it happens that some detail lovingly
told comes to be exaggerated, and have accessories linked to it by
earnest--if indiscreet--zeal, shall that be accounted as a crime
and a malicious distortion of truth? An error of love can be surely
forgiven by mothers who are proud of their battle-stained sons; by
children who worship the mother that taught them, and the father who
guided and corrected them; by soldiers who tell round the camp-fire
of the iron men who led them to victory, or who bore with them and
for them an equally glorious captivity and defeat; by sick men who
do not forget the "Sister's" care; by all, in a word, who have a
heart wherewith to be grateful, a mind wherewith to admire, a memory
wherewith to give honor.

What is true of the saints of to-day is so, and was so from the
beginning, of the saints of long ages ago. And if their history has
come down to us woven of fact and legend both, it is thus only the
more historical to us, for it tells us the history of the church's
love for her glorified children, as well as the record of the real
life of those children themselves. Santa Restituta has thus led us
far from Ischia's scarcely known beauties and simple island shrine,
but she now leads us back to her own sanctuary by the thought here
suggested, that, even as many hidden saints walk among us now, so
there are many hidden nooks of the earth, like her sea-girt home,
where faith is still the daily bread of the people, and where an
almost primeval innocence reigns under the protection of that happy,
childlike ignorance which, according to modern civilization, is the
root of all evil.

Hidden saints are like to these little inclosed gardens of faith;
their hearts are valleys sequestered from the glare of the world's
unbelief and the world's selfishness; their souls are as rock-bound
creeks where lilies grow and wavelets ripple over golden sands; with
them, too, the sunset of life is ever the most glorious hour, as it
is with Ischia's myrtle-clad rocks and vine-crowned cottages.

Santa Restituta, pray for us, and, if we are not worthy to be of the
number of the saints ourselves, suffer us to be the historians, the
biographers, the poets of such saints as those who are known only
by name in one remote corner of God's universe, or of such other
saints of whom glimpses are now and then revealed to us by the very
simplicity and utter unguardedness of their sweet and undefiled


    [We have received and publish the following letter with
    great pleasure, and it is to be hoped that others will
    take up the same subject, and express their views upon
    it. Perhaps we may even venture to suggest the project
    of a convention or congress of heads of colleges under
    the auspices of the prelates, in order to discuss and
    resolve on useful measures connected with Catholic


You have a talent for evoking thought. The excellent paper on higher
education, which you published in your issue for March, has set me
a-thinking; and as I hold you to be a wise counsellor, I hope you
will allow me to communicate my poor thoughts to you. I want to talk
to you about some of the difficulties of Catholic education in the
United States.

By the way, the subject of your article was working at the same
time in several minds. I read in the _Galaxy_ for March a long
dissertation, full of idolatry for Germany, on higher education; and
the students of St. John's College, Fordham, New York, celebrated
Washington's birthday by a series of splendid speeches on the same
theme. Would you, Mr. WORLD, feel complimented if I should exclaim,
"Les beaux esprits se rencontrent"?

Well, then, in the matter of college education--for that is what I
have been thinking on--as in a multitude of other matters, Catholics
in this country owe eternal gratitude to their clergy. If we have
any colleges at all, to whom do we owe them? To the zeal and
self-sacrifice of our Christian Brothers, of our priests and our
bishops. I think that all our colleges were established by churchmen,
whether secular or regular. It were, perhaps, invidious to mention
names--but we ought not to withhold a deserved and willing tribute of
praise from the heroic men who gave us our colleges. We say heroic,
for these men were truly such. Lengthy reflection is not necessary
in order to justify the epithet. What a mountain of obstacles had
to be cleared away to purchase the site of these colleges, to build
them, to man them, to govern and carry them on! Education is a noble
and fertile subject to speak about. It is an immense blessing to
be really educated. But what an amount of toil and anxiety does
not this delicious fruit cost those who seek to bestow it on our
children! How many harassing days and nights have not the faithful
superior, professors, and prefects of a college to spend in the
exercise of their several functions! All the world knows that boys
are not a very inviting material to work on. They are unreasoning,
ungrateful, thoughtless, inconstant; often weak, lazy, perverse, and
incorrigible. Many of them act in college as though they went there
to torment everybody--or, at most, for the benefit of the officers,
and not at all for their own good. Of course, if boys were merely to
be taught lessons, much of the trouble connected with their education
could be avoided. But Catholic colleges mast make moral men and
Christians--and that, as we all know, is a difficult task, for the
young heart is very wayward. Then, too, what heartburns with fathers
and mothers and guardians! How little pecuniary compensation for the
educator! Yet our clergy, be it said to their undying honor, have
nobly braved, outfaced, all these privations and humiliations. They
are doing so even at this day. Let them refuse to sacrifice their
time, talents, health, and temporal weal, and we ask whether there is
in the United States a single Catholic college which would not have
to suspend operation to-morrow? We must remember that our colleges
are not endowed. In a financial point of view, they depend almost
entirely on the fees of their students. Commonly, too, they have more
or less of standing debts, for which yearly interest must be paid.
Were the presidents, professors, and prefects of such houses to exact
fat salaries in return for their sublime abnegation, what, Catholic
Americans, would be the fate of all your colleges? Do you often think
of this when, amid the ease and luxury of your drawing-rooms and
dinner-tables, you run down this college, sneer at that other, and
wonder why a third does not do this, that, and the other thing in
the shape of improvement? You have colleges because your clergy are
willing to sacrifice their time and tastes, to submit to drudgery, to
wear out their very lives, and live and die in poverty. All praise to
you, Catholic priests and bishops, to you religious orders of these
United States.

These remarks go to prove that our first difficulty in the walks of
higher education is the slender means of our colleges.

In the next place, it appears to your unworthy correspondent
that very little is done to put an end to this precarious and
from-hand-to-mouth existence. What generosity does the laity show to
our colleges? People contribute munificently to convents, asylums,
churches, etc.; but how many make donations to colleges; how many
found prizes, medals, or scholarships in them? Very few, at least
so far as my knowledge goes. Colleges, like poor bears in winter,
are supposed to live on their own fat. No one asks them whether they
are in debt, in need of money, would not accept of a collection of
books, minerals, philosophical apparatus, or anything of that kind.
No one says: Wouldn't you allow me to build you a good gymnasium,
an exhibition hall, give you an organ for your chapel, or transfer
to you some of my shares in this or that lucrative business? No,
dear colleges, be comforted. Live on as best you can. The result
is that these institutions can never fully shake off their debt,
they can make but little material improvement, or, if they attempt
improvements, it must be at a snail's pace. Even graduates will
forget the wants of Alma Mater, and despise her for her blameless
penury, just as some gross-natured upstarts scorn their poor parents
and friends. What a different spectacle we should soon witness in our
colleges were gentlemen of means to show their zeal for education,
and follow the wholesome example of Protestants by bestowing upon
our seats of learning a portion of their wealth! Progress would then
be possible, college bills could be lightened entirely or at least
partially, gratuitous education might be granted to deserving young
men. As things now stand, charity is out of the question for most of
our colleges. We must endeavor to beget and promote in our people
this enlightened and patriotic spirit toward our colleges.

Difficulty number three: Many persons take a narrow view of
education. Some act upon what may be called the system of the three
R's, that is readin', 'ritin', and 'rithmetic. They fancy their sons
educated when they can read, write, and cast up accounts. Others may
raise their eyes a little higher, but in the end, like the old Romans
laughed at by Horace, they value education only in so far forth as
it is a money-making machine. Few are broad-minded enough to see
in education a development of the entire man, and, as a necessary
inference, a slow and gradual process. In consequence of the errors
afloat on this head, parents will not allow time sufficient for the
education of their children. They force colleges to crowd an immense
circle of studies into a short space. The consequences are not
flattering. The mind cannot be thoroughly developed, and education
degenerates into ill-digested instruction. Depth is lost. Your paper,
which led me to think upon all these topics, speaks very sensibly
about philosophy. But how, I ask, can anything like a deep, serious,
thorough course of philosophy be taught in one year? Still, that is
all our young men get, and that is all the generality of parents
will concede. Look at our colleges--how many graduates of the first
year return to study a second? Were it not better to give no degree
until the close of the second year? The diploma once obtained,
though it is only a cowardly sheep-skin, fills our young graduates
with valor, and makes them fancy that they are fit to play roaring
lion all the country over. Every college should devote at least two
years of its course to the study of philosophy. Education without
a sound philosophy must always be a mere broken shaft, a truncate
cone, an abortion. We ought to organize a crusade for the welfare of
philosophy in our colleges. I was right glad, Mr. WORLD, to hear
you advocating the study of this crowning branch of education, and
insisting, I think, upon sound scholasticism. Scholastic philosophy,
that is the philosophy.

My next difficulty shall be proposed in the form of a question: Could
not our Catholic colleges come to an understanding, so as to have
in all of them about the same programme and the same text-books?
At present, there is a very great divergence on these points. For
instance, what a multitude of grammars we have, and what wretched
things for boys some of these grammars are! They lack method and
logic, they dive too deep into philosophy, and are too learned and
philosophical. Banish philosophy and philology to their proper
spheres. When grammars of the dead languages were much more modest
and unpretending, Latin and Greek were better known, better written,
if not also better spoken. What I say of grammars applies with equal
force to many other books now used in our colleges. A convention of
our college authorities for the discussion of these topics might do
as much good as many other conventions, if not far more.

Parents and guardians have a great share in the troubles experienced
by colleges. Nowadays, boys decide almost everything with respect
to their education. It is they who make choice of their college,
determine whether they shall study, how long and what they shall
study. All that parents seem to have to say or do in the matter is
to obey their whimsical offspring. I can understand that there is
no use in forcing a lad to study what he reasonably cannot learn;
but I cannot see why the management of his education should be given
over to him in fee-simple. This violation of the fourth commandment
throws honest colleges into a dilemma. On the one hand, they would
like to keep their students, and, on the other, they feel bound
to make those students work. But the young lord of his destinies
often does not wish to study, and, if he is urged to do so, he
grows dissatisfied, says the officers are too cross, and leaves the
institution. Should he not be urged, he will idle away his time,
annoy everybody, learn nothing, and finally, by his ignorance and
bad conduct, injure the reputation of his college. Parents, when
they send their sons to college, should not forget that these sons
are not immaculately perfect. They need a strong dose of discipline.
They must be taught by word and deed that they have to study and
to obey. The word of college authorities should weigh more in the
balance than that of weak, lazy, and roystering young lads. If these
ideas prevailed somewhat more than they do, and were acted up to,
colleges would have an easier task to perform, their task would be
better performed, and the education given to boys would be more
vigorous. There is too much womanish fondness, too much indulgence,
shown to boys in these days. We live in an age of feeling, of likes
and dislikes. Energetic, self-controlling, strong manhood is on the
wane. Magnificent men could be made out of our American boys. I love
them dearly. Their character is full of fine traits. They are clever,
generous, open, and manly. Why should they be emasculated by false
kindness and compliance?

Once in college, let us subject these boys to solid and stiff
examinations. Those who fail, if they are in the graduating class,
should not graduate that year, no matter what great man or great
woman may intercede, scold, or shed tears in their behalf. No
_prædeterminatio physica_ should settle on the gentlemen of the
graduating class. Because they happen to be in that class, their
graduation must not become a fated necessity. No doubt, it is a very
nice sight at the close of the year, on the annual commencement day,
to behold a large number of young gentlemen receiving their diplomas.
The heart of Alma Mater throbs with gladness at the beautiful
spectacle. But it is a much nicer thing for Alma Mater to have to
say that her diploma is deserved, and that she tells no lie to the
public when she asserts that her graduate is _bonæ spei et rite
probatus_. Then the diploma is a testimony to worth: it is an honor
to possess it. If undergraduates miss their examination, put them
down mercilessly into the class below that in which they fail. By
this process you will lose a few boys, but you need not regret them.
For, first, they were either idlers or stupid fellows. In the next
place, you can raise the standard of your classes, you will make your
pupils work seriously, get a good name for your college, and end by
having more students. Sensible people will always send their children
to institutions that insist upon hard study and rid themselves of

Another difficulty which I must notice regards the action, or
rather inaction, of the state. It is a pity that our government,
with all its fuss about education, does so little real honor to
higher education. What is the necessity or emolument of a diploma
from a college? I think that, without a diploma, I can occupy any
position in the gift of the country, save perhaps that of officer
in the regular army or navy. In one way, the state is too much of a
busybody; in another, it does not fulfil its office in regard to
education. But I do not wish to open the question, to-day, on the
office of the state in education.

One of the gravest obstacles in the way of higher education arises,
I think, from our colleges themselves. It is this: our colleges are
too numerous. With the exception of some boys from Spanish America,
we receive no pupils from other countries. At home, the number of
Catholics who can afford a college education for their children
is limited. Supposing, then, all our colleges patronized, it is
impossible that any of them should reach a respectable figure in the
number of its attending pupils. Besides, it must be no easy task to
find competent professors and directors for so many colleges. If we
had fewer colleges, each one would have a larger number of pupils,
and be more fully provided with all that is necessary for education.
Yet there appears to be a stronger desire to open new colleges than
to perfect those actually in existence. Why do we thus weaken and
scatter our forces? Why do we render success and large, grand centres
of learning next to impossible? Grammar-schools, or schools in
which boys are prepared for college, should be multiplied, but not
colleges. Then our colleges would resemble a university more than
they do to-day. It is a great plague for them to be obliged to do
at once the work of the grammar-school and of the college properly
so-called. They are burdened with a crowd of children, who are no
companions for young men, and lessen the dignity of a college. And
now, Mr. WORLD, let me end these remarks by asking: When shall we see
each diocese in the Union possessing a _petit séminaire_? When shall
we see arise in our midst a noble Catholic university?

      Yours, etc.


    ROME AND GENEVA. Translated from the French. With an
    introduction by M. J. Spalding, D.D., Archbishop of
    Baltimore. 8vo. Pamphlet. Baltimore: John Murphy & Co.

We always knew that the Archbishop of Baltimore is an able writer
of the more solid kind of essays, but were not before aware how
gracefully he can use his pen in description. In his preface to the
pamphlet whose title is given above, he draws a very pretty and
graphic picture of Geneva, the ancient headquarters of Calvin, and
in right, though not in possession, the See of St. Francis of Sales.
Some interesting, curious, and gratifying facts in connection with
that city are mentioned by the archbishop. He tells us that half
the population of the city and canton is Catholic, and of the other
half only one-tenth is Calvinistic. John Calvin's house is a convent
of Sisters of Charity. The gloomy heretiarch and his companions are
unhonored and almost unknown in the city which was once called the
Rome of Protestantism, but which is now a sort of temporary centre
of Catholic activity in Europe, while the Holy City is desecrated
by the rule of the Lombard usurper. The pamphlet itself is a letter
addressed by a young law-student of Geneva to our old friend the
eminent romance-writer, Merle d'Aubigné and one of his _confrêres_,
both of whom, it appears, seized the occasion of the absence of
the bishop at the Council to make a feeble assault on the church.
It is a manly, sensible letter, more interesting as a specimen of
what a young student can achieve in a polemical combat with veteran
antagonists than from anything new or peculiar in its arguments.
The youthful champion uses his sling and pebble with skill and
dexterity, although he had not so hard a skull as that of Goliath of
Gath to crack. Our young gentlemen who are training for professional
life ought to be interested to see how he does it, and the noble,
chivalrous spirit of faith and honor which is manifest in the letter
is one we desire to see extended as much as possible among these
generous youth who are able to do as much for the cause of truth.

    THE SYMPATHY OF RELIGIONS. An address delivered at
    Horticultural Hall, Boston, February 6, 1870. By Thomas
    Wentworth Higginson.

"Our true religious life begins when we discover that there is an
inner light, not infallible, but invaluable, which lighteth every man
that cometh into the world. Then we have something to steer by, and
it is chiefly this, and not any anchor, that we need." These are the
two opening sentences of the above lecture. If an "inner light, not
infallible" is all that our author has "to steer by," we beg, for
our part, not to enter on board the ship of which he is the captain.
In this case, it is not the "inner light, not infallible" that is
invaluable, but the anchor, unless one would foolishly expose himself
to certain shipwreck.

If this be man's plight, then let him keep silence until he finds
something that will give him certitude. For what else can an erring
guide lead to than error? It is the blind leading the blind into the

Think, too, of the absurdity of the author's pretensions, with such
a guide, to criticise all religions in order to give to the world
"_the_ religion"!--"the religion of all ages!"

These free-religionists who talk so much about the value of reason
have yet to learn its true value and the great dignity of the human
soul. If the author's premise be true, it is an insult to our common
sense to read his lecture.

    THE HAPPINESS OF HEAVEN. By a Father of the Society of
    Jesus. 1 vol. 16mo, pp. 372. Baltimore: John Murphy &
    Co. 1871.

We might perhaps appropriately designate this work as "The Popular
Theology of Heaven:" _theology_, because it is strictly accurate in
its dogmatic teaching; _popular_, because the whole subject, without
being lowered, is brought within the sphere of the popular mind. We
might call it also the "Spiritual Geography of Heaven," since it
gives us such a knowledge as we can have at this distance of the
promised land which we must hope one day to inhabit. We are told what
is that beatific or happy-making vision of God which is the essential
bliss of the elect; what is the light of glory by means of which the
soul sees God; what are the occupations of heaven, the social joys
of the blessed; the qualities and enjoyments of the glorified body
and senses; the degrees of beatitude, yet the complete and satiating
happiness of each individual, without envy or jealousy, without
regret of the past or fear for the future. The book presents an
elegant appearance, and is brought out in Messrs. Murphy & Co.'s best

    Turin: Marietti. Baltimore: John Murphy & Co. 1870.

To the many excellent volumes which Father Perrone has contributed
during his long career to the theological library, he has now made in
the work before us an addition in no way inferior to his previous
writings. It is a work addressed to the learned alone, and in the
language of the learned; but it is one which they will prize very
highly, not only for its depth of theological lore, but also for its
peculiar fitness to the present time. Its subject is the fundamental
dogma of Christianity--now so much attacked and, we may add, outside
of the Catholic Church so little believed--the Divinity of Jesus
Christ, which it proves and defends against the infidels, the
rationalists, and the mythics of our day.

In the first volume, we have the proofs drawn from the pages of the
Old Testament; in the second, those furnished by the New Testament.
The third volume establishes the Divinity of Christ on evidence drawn
from the institution of the church, and, in particular, from the
institution of the Roman Pontificate. The author demonstrates how
the promises made by the Redeemer to his church, the characteristic
marks by which he distinguished her, the gifts with which he enriched
her, give evidence of a Divine Author and Founder. A most convincing
argument springs from the Primacy conferred on St. Peter and his
successors in the See of Rome, since God alone could have established
and maintained throughout the ages and the nations of the earth so
exalted a dignity, together with the prerogatives which befit its

Of all the works produced in our day on this important subject, Fr.
Perrone's is without doubt the most satisfactory, because the most
forcible, learned, and exhaustive.

    Preceded by some Account of his Life. Translated from
    the French. Edited by F. W. Faber, D.D. New Edition.
    London: Burns, Oates & Co. For sale by the Catholic
    Publication Society, 9 Warren Street, New York.

F. Lallemant was one of the brightest lights of the Society of
Jesus, and occupies in French spiritual literature a place analogous
to that of F. Alvarez in the Spanish. This book, of which a new
edition has been lately published, is now well known in England
and the United States through the translation which was brought
out under the auspices of F. Faber. It ranks among the best of
modern times, and even deserves to be classed with the works of
the celebrated authors of past ages. The pietistic mystics among
the Protestants, and even some Catholics, prepossessed by certain
unfounded prejudices, have accused the Jesuits as the enemies of
interior spiritual piety. There was never a more unfounded charge.
The present work is one signal proof, among many others, that strict
orthodoxy in doctrine, unswerving fidelity to the teaching of the
Roman Church, and accurate theological science, so far from having
quenched spirituality in the Society of Jesus, have only given it
purity and illumination. The writings of the thoroughly orthodox
masters of the spiritual life are, beyond all comparison, superior,
in respect to their insight into the mysteries of faith and their
knowledge of the higher paths of the ascent toward union with God, to
any of those who have fancied themselves illuminated with a private
and personal light of the Holy Spirit, which they have thought
should supersede the infallible teaching of the church. F. Lallemant
is specially remarkable for his skill and accuracy in pointing out
the perfect harmony which must always exist between the genuine
interior guidance of the Holy Spirit in the soul and the exterior,
divinely-appointed, infallible guidance of authority to which it
must always be subordinate. The _Spiritual Doctrine_ is orthodox
and precise in its teaching without being dull or dry; fervent and
spiritual without any tinge of vague or visionary enthusiasm; clear,
judicious, and practical in its treatment of every topic; void
of all wordy declamation and vapid sentimentalism; addressing the
will and the heart through the intellect; clothing the thoughts and
feeling of a saint in the style and language of a scholar. It is just
the book for the more intellectual and educated class of readers,
provided they have some desire for solid Christian virtue and piety.

    vols. 12mo. New York: P. O'Shea. 1871.

To weave into a story interesting incidents of colonial life in the
state of Connecticut, during the reign of James II. of England,
is the intention of these two volumes. The delineation of that
remarkable incident in Connecticut history, the seizing of the state
charter from under the very eyes of the British authorities, and its
secretion for many years in the famous Charter Oak, and the picture
of the regicide Goffe living in perpetual fear of detection are well

The story in some respects shows a pen not yet perfectly at home in
this kind of writing; but no one who takes an interest in our early
colonial history can fail to find in reading these volumes both
pleasure and much useful historical information.

    Address to Parents. By a Catholic Priest. 1 vol. 18mo.
    New York: The Catholic Publication Society, 9 Warren
    Street. 1871.

The reproduction, in America, of this work, originally written in
Ireland, will prove to be a benefaction in many a homestead. This is
the work of a man who thoroughly knows his subject. It is a book for
the time, free alike from the doubtful stories of too many writings
of the same kind and the tedious dryness that meets the youthful eye
in most books of instruction. We wish a hearty God-speed to this
valuable accession to our English Catholic literature. No Catholic
family in the land should be without a copy of this book. It will be
worth more than its weight in gold to those who read it; and to those
who practise the lessons of wisdom it contains it will be their glory
on earth and their crown in heaven.

It is a book that ought to be encouraged on missions and by all
priests having charge of congregations.

    THE COUNTESS OF GLOSSWOOD. A Tale. Translated from the
    French. 1 vol. 16mo. Baltimore: Kelly, Piet & Co. 1871.

We have here a touching but 'ower sad' tale of the life of a Scotch
Covenanter who, being found in arms against his king Charles II., is
condemned to death, but has his sentence changed by the interposition
of a friend to a life of hard labor in the Cornish mines. His wife,
the Countess of Glosswood, will not leave her husband, but with her
infant daughter follows his hard fortune, all communication with
the world outside of mining life being forbidden by his sentence.
But the good God, in compensation for their desolate lives, sends
them the priceless gift of faith, through the instrumentality of
a Catholic priest, disguised as a miner that he may win souls for
Christ, in times when to be known as a priest was to give one's
self up to certain death. The countess had been taught to regard
the Catholic Church with hatred and terror, and the agony of mind
through which she must pass in learning to love what she had before
hated is forcibly described; and the gentle way in which she is led
step by step toward the light by the devoted priest cannot fail to
give satisfaction to the earnest reader. The doctrine of indulgences
was, of course, a terrible stumbling-block in her way, and Father
Deymand's explanation is specially clear and convincing. The book
comes to us in an attractive dress, with tinted paper and good type.


      VOL. XIII., No. 75.--JUNE, 1871.[45]


The volume giving the call and proceedings of the meeting held last
January at the Academy of Music, in this city, in celebration of
Italian unity, especially the occupation of Rome and the suppression
of the Papal government, is handsomely printed, and does credit
to the taste and skill of our New York book-makers; but it is
a sad book, and almost makes one despair of civil society and
natural morality. Nothing can be more sad and discouraging to all
right-minded men than to see a large number of the most distinguished
and influential men of a great nation-statesmen, politicians, judges,
lawyers, officers of the army, ministers of religion, journalists,
poets, philosophers, scholars, professors and presidents of colleges
and universities--assisting, by their presence, addresses, letters,
or comments, to applaud events notoriously brought about by fraud,
craft, lying, calumny, and armed force, in contravention of every
principle of international law and of public and private right. It
is a sad thing for our republic when so many of its representative
men, whose names are recorded in this volume, can endorse the fraud
and violence by which the Sard king has effected what he calls the
unity of Italy, and congratulate him on his successful sacrilege
and spoliation in the Roman state; and the only consolation left us
is that, with a solitary exception, no Catholic name appears on the
list, and all the sympathizers are Protestants, and all, or nearly
all, prominent adherents of the same dominant political party.

To the unity of Italy, under some circumstances, we might not
seriously object. It is true, we hold small states are more favorable
to the growth of intelligence, the development of elevated and strong
personal character, to individual liberty, to social well-being, to
the moral progress of the people, than huge centralized states or
empires, which can be governed only despotically, and in which there
is so great a distance between power and the people that personal
and affectionate relations between the governors and the governed,
and which do so much to soften the asperities of authority and to
render obedience willing and cheerful, are, for the most part,
impracticable. But if the several independent Italian states that
have been absorbed by Sardinia to form the new kingdom of Italy had
freely and of their own accord given their consent to the absorption,
and no craft, fraud, violence, or disregard of public or private
right had been resorted to in order to effect it, we might doubt its
wisdom, but we could not object to it on the ground of international
law or of natural justice. We, of course, defend the temporal
sovereignty of the Pope; but if the Pope had, _motu proprio_, without
coercion, the show or the threat of coercion, given his consent
to the absorption of the Roman state in a united Italy, we should
have nothing to say against it, for it would have been the act of
the Roman state, no public or private right of justice or morality
would have been violated, and no blow struck at the equal rights of
independent states or nations, at the authority of the sovereign
power of a state to govern it, or to the duty of obedience to it.

But it is well known that such is not the case either with the
Holy Father or the several other Italian sovereigns that have been
dispossessed and their states absorbed by Sardinia in order to
effect Italian unity. In every case, the absorption was effected
by violence and force, without and against the consent of the
sovereign authority. The Pope refused his assent to the absorption
of the ecclesiastical state, and said, to the demand to surrender
it, "_Non possumus_." The Roman people, without the Pope, gave no
assent--had no assent to give or to withhold; for, without the Pope,
they were not a state or a sovereign people. It matters not whether
plebiscitums can or cannot be alleged, for a plebiscitum, where there
is a legitimate government, cannot be taken without its authority,
especially not against its authority; for without its authority it
would be a legal nullity, and against it it would be revolutionary
and criminal. Nor would it help the matter for the absorbing state
to invade with its armies the state to be absorbed, overthrow the
legitimate government, take forcible possession of the territory,
and then call upon the population to decide their future condition
by a plebiscitum, so long as a legitimate claimant to the government
remains living. This was the case in the Roman state and in the other
independent Italian states that have been absorbed. As a plebiscitum
before the conquest is treasonable and not permissible, after the
conquest it is a mockery, for the fate of the state is decided,
however the population may vote.

Let us look the facts in the face, and see by what deeds and on
what principles the unity of Italy has been effected. Sardinia,
aided by France and Prussia, made an unprovoked war on Austria, and
wrested from her the Lombardo-Venetian kingdom, and appropriated it
to herself. Neither she nor her allies had any just cause of war
against Austria, or even of offence, except that sire wanted to get
possession of all Italy. France wanted the left branch of the Rhine
for her boundary, and Prussia wanted to absorb the rest of Germany.
There was no other reason for the war. The several independent Ducal
states fell with Austria, with whom they were closely allied, and
were invaded and taken possession of by the Sard king. The Kingdom
of the Two Sicilies was invaded by Garibaldi and his filibusters,
backed--covertly at first, openly at last--by the Sard government,
conquered, because the Neapolitan king listened to the insidious
advice and deceitful promises of Imperial France, said to have been
given not to offer any serious resistance, taken possession of and
appropriated as the highwayman appropriates the traveller's purse.
The Æmilian provinces of the Roman state, prepared for insurrection
by the secret societies and Sardinian emissaries, were invaded by the
Sardinian forces and appropriated by the House of Savoy. Finally, the
Roman state was invaded by the same Victor Emmanuel, with too strong
a force for the Papal government to resist, its sovereign declared
deposed, its government suppressed, and its territory and people
annexed to the so-called kingdom of Italy.

This simple recital of facts tells the whole story. Sardinia, aided
by the arms and diplomacy of France and Prussia, by the foreign
policy of the Whigs and Radicals of Great Britain, the intrigues of
the secret societies, the money and co-operation of the Protestant
propaganda, the malcontents and malefactors of all the states of
Italy, and adventurers and miscreants from all nations of the earth,
has succeeded, without any right, without having received any offence
or provocation, in the violation of every principle of international
law and every precept of morality or natural justice, in absorbing
every Italian state, and effecting the unification of the whole
peninsula under her own royal house. These are the facts, stated in
their simplest form, without passion and without exaggeration.

These facts, being public and notorious, must be as well known to
those distinguished American sympathizers who addressed the meeting
or wrote letters of approval to the committee that called it as they
are to us. We dare not so insult the intelligence of such eminent
men as to suppose, for a moment, that they did not know what they
sympathized with, or that, in applauding the unity of Italy, they
were ignorant of the craft, violence, and robbery that had been
resorted to in order to effect it. What, then, must we and all
right-minded men think of their own principles, of their religion,
their politics, or their sense of justice? Does their Protestantism
or their hatred of the Papacy justify, approve the violation of
international law, the equal rights of sovereign states, the sacred
rights of property, public and private, the principles of natural
justice the basis of the state and of all legitimate authority,
without which not even natural society itself can subsist? Does it
authorize them to applaud unprovoked war and conquest, and public
and private robbery? If so, how can they justify their Protestantism
or their hatred of the Papacy? If they cannot assert either without
denying all public and private right and trampling on all laws, human
and divine, how can they regard either as defensible?

There is no mistaking the real character of the acts by which the
sovereign states of Italy have been suppressed by Sardinia and her
allies, and the present unification of Italy effected; and it only
adds to their atrocity that it was done in part by exciting the
populations, or a portion of them, to insurrection and rebellion
against their respective sovereigns. There is nothing meaner or more
unjustifiable than for one sovereign to tamper with the fidelity
of the subjects of another, especially in time of profound peace
between the two states. If persisted in, it is a justifiable
cause of war. International law, or the law of nations, makes all
sovereign states equal in their rights, without regard to the form of
government, size, race, language, or geographical position; and the
law of ethics, at least, requires each sovereign state to respect,
and to cause its subjects to respect, the authority of every other
sovereign state over its own subjects, as it requires every other
to respect its authority over its subjects. The rule is, no doubt,
often violated, but it is none the less sacred and binding on that
account. It is equally wrong for the citizens of one state to attempt
to seduce the citizens of another state from their allegiance.
International law, national law, municipal law, as well as the moral
law, know nothing of the doctrine, so eloquently preached by the
ex-Governor of Hungary, of "the solidarity of peoples."

Hon. Richard H. Dana, Jr., an able lawyer, reputed to be well versed
in the law of nations, and who affects, in his elaborate letter
to the committee, to argue the question as it affects Catholics
with fairness and candor, appears to have some doubts whether the
invasion of the Roman state by the Sardinian troops, the deposition
and virtual imprisonment of its sovereign in his own palace, and
the annexation of its territory and inhabitants to the dominion of
the House of Savoy, is really a violation of international law; but
he evidently, besides arguing the question on a collateral issue,
takes a juridical instead of an ethical view of international
law, and considers it only so far as it enters into the national
jurisprudence, and is enforcible by the nation through its own
courts on its own citizens. Yet he cannot be ignorant that there are
violations of international law which cannot be taken cognizance
of by the national jurisprudence, and which may be, and often
are, justifiable causes of war. The basis of international law is
the law of justice, or _droit naturel_, as it is the basis of all
natural ethics. There may be treaty or conventional agreements
between nations, which must be considered whenever the case comes
up juridically, or the law is to be juridically enforced, but these
cannot abrogate or modify the law of justice, the _jus gentium_
of the Roman jurists, which is the principle and foundation of
all law. Acts in contravention of justice, St. Augustine and St.
Thomas after him tell us, are violences rather than laws, and are
nullities. International law applies justice to the mutual relations
of sovereign states, precisely as ethics does to the relations of
individuals. It declares all sovereign states equal in their rights,
the territory of each to be sacred and inviolable, and that no one
is permitted to do to another what it would not have another to do
to it. The rule is plain and practicable, and under it Mr. Dana's
doubts ought to vanish. For one sovereign state to invade with its
armies another, suppress its government, and absorb its territory and
population, without any provocation or any offence given, but merely
because it wants it to complete and round off its own territory,
as Sardinia has done to the Roman or ecclesiastical state, is too
manifestly a violation of international law to leave any doubt on any
mind that does not hold the principle of all law to be that might
makes right.[47]

No doubt certain untenable theories of popular sovereignty and
certain alleged plebiscitums have had something to do with blinding
the eyes of our American sympathizers to the atrocity of the acts
they applaud. But plebiscitums cannot be pleaded when taken without
the order or assent of the sovereign authority, if there is a
sovereign authority, as we have already said. In the case of every
Italian state absorbed, there was a sovereign authority, and the
plebiscitum taken was not by its order or assent, but against its
positive prohibition. It is idle to say that the people of these
several states gave their consent to be absorbed, for except as the
state, represented by its sovereign authority, there is no people
with a consent either to give or to withhold. The people, no doubt,
are sovereign in the constitution and government, but not otherwise,
for otherwise they have no existence. A people or population of a
given territory wholly disorganized, without constitution or laws,
and deprived of all government, must necessarily, for simple
preservation, reorganize and reconstitute government by conventions
or plebiscitums as best they can; but when they have reconstituted
government or the state, their sovereignty merges in it. The people
of the United States and of the several states can amend the
constitution, but only constitutionally, through the government. The
notion which has latterly gained some vogue, that there persists
always a sovereign people back of the government and constitution,
or organic people, competent to alter, change, modify, or overturn
the existing government at will, is purely revolutionary, fatal to
all stable government, to all political authority, to the peace and
order of society, and to all security for liberty, either public or
private. We see the effects of it in the present deplorable condition
of France.

The resolutions reported by the committee and adopted by the meeting,
and which Dr. Thompson in his address tells us "are constructed on a
philosophical order of thought," attempt to place "the temporal power
of the Pope within the category of all earthly human governments,
and bound by the same conditions and subject to the same fortunes."
This may be successfully disputed. The Roman or ecclesiastical state
was a donation to the Holy See or the Church of Rome. Gifts to the
church are gifts to God, and when made are the property, under him,
of the spirituality, which by no laws, heathen, Jewish, or Christian,
can be deprived of their possession or use without sacrilege. They
are sacred to religious uses, and can no longer, without the consent
of the spirituality, be diverted to temporal uses, without adding
sacrilege to robbery. Whoso attacks the spirituality attacks God. The
property or sovereignty of the Roman state vests, then, in the Holy
See--hence it is always called and officially recognized as the state
of the church--and not in the Pope personally; but in him only _ex
officio_ as its incumbent, as trustee, or administrator. Hence the
Pope denied his right to surrender it, and answered the Minister of
Sardinia, _Non possumus_. The temporal power of the Pope is therefore
not within the category of all earthly human governments, but is
the property of the spirituality. Victor Emmanuel, in despoiling
the Pope, has despoiled the Holy See, the spirituality, usurped
church property, property given to God, and sacred to the religious
uses. The deed which our eminent jurists and Protestant divines
sympathize with and applaud, strikes a blow at the spirituality, at
the sacredness of all church property, of Protestant churches as well
as of Catholic churches--at the sacredness of all eleemosynary gifts,
and asserts the right of power when strong enough to divert them from
the purposes of the donors. These Protestant ministers assert in
principle that their own churches may be despoiled of their revenues
and funds without sacrilege, without injustice, by any power that
is able to do it. They defend the right of any one who chooses to
divert from the purpose of the donors all donations and investments
to found and support hospitals, orphan asylums, retreats for the aged
and destitute, asylums for idiots, deaf-mutes, the blind, the insane,
public libraries, schools, colleges, seminaries, and academies, peace
societies, tract societies, home and foreign missionary societies,
and Bible societies; they not only defend the right of the state
in which they are placed to confiscate at its pleasure all funds,
revenues, and investments of the sort, but the right of any foreign
state to invade the territory in time of peace, take possession of
them by armed force, as public property, and to divert them to any
purpose it sees proper. Did the learned divines, the eminent jurists,
who approve the resolutions ever hear of the speech of Daniel Webster
and the decision of the Supreme Court of the United States in the
famous Dartmouth College case? Or are they so intent on crushing the
Papacy that they are quite willing to cut their own throats?

But the fact of the donation to the Holy See is denied. Be it so.
Certain it is that the Roman state never belonged to the Sard
kingdom; that the church has always claimed it, had her claim allowed
by every state in the world, has possessed the sovereignty, not
always without disturbance, for a thousand years without an adverse
claimant; and that is sufficient to give her a valid title by
prescription against all the world, even if she have no other, which
we do not admit--an older and better title than that of any secular
sovereign in Europe to his estates. Every sovereign or sovereign
state in Europe is estopped by previous acknowledgment, and the
absence of any adverse claimant with the shadow of a right, from
pleading the invalidity of the title of the Holy See. The Roman state
is therefore ecclesiastical, not secular.

Whether Père Lacordaire ever said, as Dr. Thompson asserts, that
"in no event could the people be donated," or not, we are not
authentically informed; but if he did, he said a very foolish and a
very untrue thing. The people cannot be donated as slaves, nor could
any of their rights of property or any of their private or public
rights be donated. Every feudal lawyer knows that. The donation,
grant, or cession could be and was only the right of government and
eminent domain, or the right the grantor possessed; but that could
be ceded as Louisiana was ceded by France, Florida by Spain, and
California by Mexico, to the United States. In the cessions made
to the Holy See, no right of the people to govern themselves or to
choose their own sovereign was ceded, for the people ceded had had
no such right, and never had had it. The sovereign who had the right
of governing them ceded his own right to the church, but no right
possessed or ever possessed by the people or inhabitants of the
territory. International law knows no people apart from the sovereign
or government. The right of self-government is the right of each
nation or political people to govern itself without the dictation
or interference of any foreign power, and is only another term for
national independence. What was Pepin's or Charlemagne's, either
could cede without ceding any right or possession of the people. So
of the donations or cessions of that noble woman, the protectress of
St. Gregory VII., the Countess Matilda. If Père Lacordaire ever said
what he is reported to have said, he must have forgotten the law to
which he was originally bred, and spoken rather as a red republican
than as a Catholic theologian, statesman, or jurist.

But waiving the fact that the sovereignty of the Roman state
has a spiritual character by being vested in the Holy See, and
granting, not conceding, that it is in "the category of all earthly
sovereignties," its right is no less perfect and inviolable, and the
invasion and spoliation of the Roman state by Sardinia, as of the
other Italian states, are no less indefensible and unjustifiable on
any principle of international law or of Christian or even of heathen
ethics; for one independent state has no right to invade, despoil,
and appropriate or absorb another that gives it no just cause of
war. Nor is the act any more defensible, as we have already shown,
if done in response to the invitation of a portion, even a majority,
of the inhabitants, if in opposition to the will of the legitimate
authority. Such invitation would partake of the nature of rebellion,
be treasonable, and no people has the right to rebel against their
sovereign, or to commit treason. Men who talk of "the sacred right
of insurrection," either know not what they say, or are the enemies
alike of order and liberty. The people have, we deny not, the right
to withdraw their allegiance from the tyrant who tramples on the
rights of God and of man, but never till a competent authority has
decided that he is a tyrant and has forfeited his right to reign,
which a Parisian or a Roman mob certainly is not. How long is it
since these same gentlemen who are congratulating Victor Emmanuel
were urging the government, leading its armies, or fighting in the
ranks, to put down what they termed a rebellion in their own country,
and condemning treason as a crime?

But the Romans and other Italians are of the same race, and speak
the same language, we are told. That they are of the same race
is questionable; but, suppose it, and that they speak the same
language. They are no more of the same race and speak no more the
same language, than the people of the United States and the people
of Great Britain; have we, on that ground, the right to invade Great
Britain, dethrone Queen Victoria, suppress the Imperial Parliament,
to annex politically the British Empire to the United States, and to
bring the British people under Congress and President Grant?

But as Italy is geographically one, it ought, we are told again, to
be politically one. The United States, Canada, and Mexico, including
Central America and British Columbia, are geographically one; but
will any of the honorable or reverend gentlemen who addressed the
meeting, or wrote letters to the committee that called it, contend
that we have, therefore, the right unprovoked, and simply because it
would be convenient to have them politically a part of our republic,
to invade them with our armies, suppress their present governments,
and annex them to the Union?

"Rome is the ancient capital of Italy, and the Italian government
wishes to recover it, and needs its prestige for the present kingdom
of Italy." But in no known period of history has Rome ever belonged
to Italy; Italy for ages belonged to Rome, and was governed from and
by it. Never in its whole history was Rome the capital of an Italian
state, or the seat of an Italian government. She was not the capital
of any state; she was herself the state as long as the Roman Empire
lasted, and as such governed Italy and the world. The empire was not
Roman because Rome was its capital city, but because Rome was the
sovereign state itself, and all political power or political rights
emanated, or were held to emanate, from her; and hence the empire was
Roman, and the people were called Romans, not Italians. If you talk
of restoration, let it be complete--recognize Rome as the sovereign
state, and the rest of the world be held as subject provinces. Italy
was never the state while Rome governed, nor has the name Italy
at all times had the same geographical sense. Sometimes it meant
Sicily, sometimes the southern, other times the northern, part of the
peninsula--sometimes the heel or the foot, and sometimes the leg, of
the boot.

It might or it might not be desirable for the pretended kingdom of
Italy to have Rome for its capital, or the seat of its government,
though we think Florence in this mercantile age would be far more
suitable. But suppose it. Yet these Protestant ministers must know
that there is a divine command that forbids one to covet what is
one's neighbor's. Achab, king of Israel, wanted Naboth's vineyard,
and was much troubled in spirit that Naboth would not consent to
part with it either for love or money. His queen, the liberal-minded
Jezebel, rebuked him for his dejection, and, fearing to use his power
as king of Israel, took measures in his name that Naboth should be
stoned to death, and the vineyard delivered to Achab. It was all very
simple and easily done; but we read that vengeance overtook the king,
fell heavily on him, his household, and his false prophets; that
Jezebel fled from the Avenger, was overtaken and slain, and "the dogs
came and licked up her blood." There is such a reality as justice,
though our American sympathizers with the liberal and enlightened
Jezebel seem to have forgotten it.

Dr. Stevens, the Protestant Episcopal Bishop of Pennsylvania,
rejoices at the spoliation of the Pope, the absorption of the Roman
state, and the unification of Italy, because "Italy is thus opened to
liberal ideas, and Rome itself unlocked to the advancing civilization
and intelligence of the nineteenth century." Which advancing
civilization and intelligence are aptly illustrated, we presume,
by the recent Franco-Prussian war, the communistic insurrection
in Paris, the prostration of France, the nation that has advanced
farthest in liberal ideas and nineteenth-century civilization. We
have here on a fly-sheet a specimen of the liberal ideas to which
Italy is opened, and of the sort of civilization and intelligence
to which Rome is unlocked. We extract it for the benefit of Bishop
Stevens and his brethren:

    "Religions said to be revealed," these free-thinkers
    tells us, "have always been the worst enemy of mankind,
    because by making truth, which is the patrimony of all,
    the privilege of the few, they resist the progressive
    development of science and liberty, which can alone
    solve the gravest social problems that have tormented
    entire generations for ages.

    "Priests have invented supernatural beings, made
    themselves mediators between them and men, and go
    preaching always a faith that substitutes authority for
    reason, slavery for liberty, the brute for the man.

    "But the darkness is radiated, and progress beats
    down the idols and breaks the chains with which the
    priesthood has bound the human conscience. Furiously
    has raged the war between dogma and the postulates of
    science, liberty and tyranny, science and error.

    "The voice of justice, so long silenced in blood by
    kings and priests conspiring together, comes forth
    omnipotent from the secret cells of the Inquisition,
    from the ashes of the funeral pile, from every stone
    sanctified by the blood of the apostles of truth.
    People believed the reign of evil would last for
    ever, but the day is white, a spark has kindled a
    conflagration. Rome of the priests becomes Rome of the
    people, the Holy City a human city. She no longer lends
    herself to a hypocritical faith, which, by substituting
    the form for the substance, excites the hatred of
    people against people solely because the one worships a
    God in the synagogue and the other in the pagoda.

    "The association of free-thinkers is established here
    most opportunely to give the finishing stroke to the
    crumbling edifice of the priesthood, founded in the
    ignorance of the many by the astuteness of the few.
    Truth proved by science is our creed; respect for our
    own rights in respecting the rights of others, our

    "It is necessary to look boldly in the face the monster
    which for ages has made the earth a battle-field,
    to defy him openly and in the light of day. We shall
    therefore be true to the programme of civilization,
    in the name of which the _world has applauded the
    liberation of Rome_ from the Pope, and we call upon
    all who love the moral independence of the family,
    prostituted and enslaved by the priest, upon all who
    wish a country great and respected, upon all who
    believe in human perfectibility, to unite with us under
    the banner of science and justice.

    "To Rome is reserved a great glory--that of initiating
    the third and most splendid epoch of human civilization.

    "Free Rome ought to repair the damage done to the
    world by sacerdotal Rome. She can do it, and she must
    do it. Let the true friends of liberty be associated,
    and descend to no compromise, no bargain with the most
    terrible enemy the human race has ever had."[48]

This programme of the Association of Free-thinkers in Rome is not
an inapt commentary on the letter of the Bishop of Pennsylvania,
and is a hearty response to the sympathy and encouragement given
them in their work of destruction by the great and respectable New
York meeting. It at least tells our American sympathizers how their
friends in Rome understand their applause of the deposition of the
Pope from his temporal sovereignty and the unity of Italy. Are they
pleased with the response given them?

There may be a difference between the free-thinkers and their
American friends; but the chief difference apparently is, that the
free-thinkers are logical and have the courage of their principles,
know what they mean and say it frankly, without reticence or
circumlocution, while their American sympathizers have a hazy
perception of their own principles, do not see very clearly whither
they lead, and are afraid to push them to their last logical
consequences. They have not fully mastered the principles on which
they act; only half-know their own meaning; and the half they do
know they would express and not express. Yet they are great men and
learned men, but hampered by their Protestantism, which admits no
clear or logical statement, except so far as it coincides with the
free-thinkers in regarding the Papacy as a monster, which must, in
the interests of civilization and liberty, be got rid of. Yet we
can discover no substantial difference in principle between them.
The deeds and events they applaud have no justification or excuse,
save in the atrocious principles set forth by the free-thinkers. We
are willing to believe these distinguished gentlemen try to persuade
themselves, as they would fain persuade us, that it is possible to
war against the Papacy without warring against revealed religion or
Christian morals, as did the reformers in the sixteenth century;
but these Roman free-thinkers know better, and tell them that they
cannot do it. They understand perfectly well that Christianity as a
revelation and an authoritative religion and the Papacy stand or fall
together; and it is because they would get rid of all religions that
claim to be revealed or to have authority in matters of conscience,
that they seek to overthrow the Papacy. They attack the temporal
sovereignty of the Pope only as a means of attacking more effectually
his spiritual sovereignty; and they wish to get rid of his spiritual
sovereignty only because they wish to rid themselves of the spiritual
order, of the law of God, nay, of God himself, and feel themselves
free to live for this world alone, and bend all their energies to
the production, amassing, and enjoying the goods of time and sense.
It is not the Pope personally, or his temporal government as such,
that they call the worst enemy of mankind, or the "monster that for
ages has made the earth a field of blood," but revealed religion,
but faith, but the supernatural order, but the law of God, the
spiritual order, which the Pope officially represents, and always and
everywhere asserts, and which his temporal power aids him to assert
more freely and independently. They recognize no medium between
the Papacy and no-religion. They disdain all compromise, admit no
_via media_, neither the Anglican _via media_ between "Romanism"
and dissent, nor the Protestant _via media_ between the Papacy and
infidelity. They war not against Protestantism, though they despise
it as a miserable compromise, neither one thing nor another; they
even regard it with favor as a useful and an efficient ally in their
anti-religious war.

The free-thinkers in Rome and elsewhere present the real and true
issue between the Papacy and its enemies, and give the real meaning
of the atrocious deeds which have effected the deposition of the
Pope, the absorption of the state of the church, and the unity
of Italy under the House of Savoy. They present it, too, without
disguise, in its utter nakedness, so that the most stolid cannot
mistake it; precisely as we ourselves have uniformly presented it.
The issue is "the Papacy or no-religion," and the meaning of the
deeds and events the New York meeting applauded is, "Down with the
Papacy as the means of putting down religion and emancipating the
human conscience from the law of God!" How does the Protestant
Episcopal Bishop of Pennsylvania, and his brother Protestant
Episcopal bishops among the sympathizers with Italian unity, like
the meaning or the issue, when presented truly and honestly, and
they are forced to look it squarely in the face? What does Mr.
Justice Strong, of the Supreme Court of the United States, think of
it? He is the president of an evangelical--perhaps we should say
fanatical--association, whose object is to procure an amendment to
the preamble of the Constitution of the United States, so that the
republic shall be made to profess, officially, belief in God, in
Christ, and the supernatural inspiration of the Scriptures of the
Old and New Testaments. What says he to the assertion that "religions
said to be revealed have always been the worst enemy of mankind"? Yet
his name appears among the sympathizers with Italian unity. Do these
gentlemen know what crimes and atrocities they applaud, and what is
the cause with which they express their sympathy? Or, like the old
Jews who crucified the Lord of Life between two thieves, are they
ignorant of what they do?

These Roman free-thinkers only give us the programme of the secret
societies, who have their network spread over all Europe, and even
over this country; of the Mazzinis and Garibaldis, of the Red
Republicans and Communists, who have instituted a new Reign of
Terror in Paris, who are filling the prisons of th